18 October 2011

Arts, Crafts, and Fun

Lately, I've been getting big into do-it-yourself projects. In the past few weeks, we've found a few simple (and cheap!) ways to have fun with my son, and I've been starting to get revved up about trying to do some homemade crafts, some of which I hope to do for my son for Christmas (either this coming one or in the future) - and maybe even some for my nieces and nephew.

So far, our homemade flour finger paints and dyed ice cubes at bathtime have both gone over very successfully. For the finger paints, I actually doubled the recipe on the website, and have 3 decent-sized containers (red, yellow, and blue) stored in my fridge. They've kept well for several weeks so far, and we've had at least 4-5 fingerpainting sessions with them, where I've filled a 1/2 dozen egg carton with paint. It washes off easily, and flakes off once it's dried.

The dyed ice cubes idea I got from a mom friend. My husband had a brilliant idea, since small ice cubes will melt in the warm tub water quickly; we used a small tupperware (about the size of 1-2 cups of water) and froze it up with some food dye in it. This has now become a weekly tub treat.

I've been adding them to my Pinterest account, so that I have an easy to find place for them. My first three crafts are two small projects and one HUGE project.
Turning a Wipes Container into a Toddler Toy
Felt Envelopes
Quiet Book (aka the "HUGE" Project)

I'm looking at getting a sewing machine, because I want to start making other felt toys as well.

I've been getting into do-it-yourself projects for around the house as well. Recently, I made my own dishwasher detergent, thanks to this recipe. So far, it's done a great job of keeping the dishes clean, and we've done away with the $3-4 bottle of detergent that we need to replace every 2 weeks. It was quick to mix up, and the supplies we got will make many batches (or may even start getting used for other cleaners). This will be a great cost savings for very little effort. The only "inconvenient" part is that the mixed batch sometimes needs a good shaking before spooning some out, since it can clump.

My next do-it-yourself for the home is to set up a family command center that can serve as a memo board, place to keep the shopping list, a calendar, etc. I just have to find a wall in my home that I can hang things on without them falling out that is in a central location. My entryway just doesn't want to hold up the things I try to nail to the wall....

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