Archive for the ‘ Outdoors ’ Category

5 Bright Spots: Gardening with Kids

Friday, May 31st, 2013

1.  These (see above) Garden Markers made out of rocks are bright, punchy, simple, and SO cheery!

2. Spread some seed love with Dana’s DIY Shredded  Paper Seed Starters.

3. Mark special occasions, moments, and memories with lovely Garden Stones. I especially love the fern prints!

4. My friend Annie, creator and author of Alphabet Glue, offered this wonderful guest post on The Crafty Crow.  Make super sweet Origami Planting Pots with her!  And, smile.

5. After all of their hard work in the garden, have your children cozy up under this snug, easy to construct, garden tent.

Have fun outside!

Emily

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5 Bright Spots: Weekend Fun!

Friday, May 24th, 2013

Are you looking for fun things to do with your family this weekend?  Perhaps one of these five fun projects will be just the answer!

1. Make  Crepe Paper Wind Catchers (pictured above) with Jessica Wilson.

2. Or, how about a Kite on a Stick?  My two would love to zip around the yard with these flying high.

3. Jessica Okui pointed me to her incredibly realistic Make-Your-Own-Fossil project.  What a wonderful way to learn about Ammonite Fossils!

4. Make your house festive with lovely Felt Party Flags.  Perhaps, they’ll provide an excuse to have a spring gathering?

5. Gather all of the bright, beautiful fabric scraps in the house and round up children to Weave with Fabric Scraps.  via The Crafty Crow

Happy weekending!

-Emily

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Messy Backyard Art

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

As a contributor to FamilyFun magazine, part of my job is bringing super fun projects home for my children to try out. I’m a lucky duck (and, so are my kids!).   Right now, I’m working on a Messy Backyard Art feature where the gooey, gloppy, sticky, runny stuff rules. Needless to say, my children are thrilled.

These are some photographs from yesterday’s project:  dribbly paint art with bright colors and lots of mess!  Perfect for a summery hot afternoon.  Oh, and YES!, my two wore their pajamas.

Cheers,

Emily

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Backyard Nature Collecting

Thursday, May 16th, 2013

In our backyard, Magnolias are blooming, Lilacs are bursting, patches of chives are thick and green, and Violets and Dandelions are polka-dotting the grass. Last weekend, my two daughters set to work harvesting some of the beauty — some for spells and magic potions and some for a gorgeous flower garden centerpiece.  Not only was their creation beautiful and a true independent creation, it was a lovely way for them to explore the different textures, colors, shapes, and smells in their backyard.

Encourage  children to pick and collect the flowers, weeds, herbs, and growth in your surroundings (teach them to skip over special, planted flowers like Tulips and Irises). Leaves from trees and sticks and twigs are great additions to a natural collection!  Ask them to share notes about their observations and to draw pictures of their bounty.

Sometimes, it is okay to pick the flowers.

-Emily

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Make it :: Communal Twig Sculpture

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

 

This past fall, I ran a Story Disk workshop at the Boston Children’s Museum and had the honor of spending the day in the art studio with the incredible Arts Program Manager,  Alice Volger.  The studio is gorgeous — inspiring, organized, and filled with most beautiful creative work.  I found myself especially captivated by the communal twig and tape sculpture that dangles from the ceiling, cheerfully greeting visitors.

Alice told me a bit about the process. Children filtered into the studio all day long and used twigs and colorful masking tape to add to the sculpture.  By the end of the day (or perhaps it was a few days), the twigs were intertwined in the grandest of ways.  It is breathtaking, really.

Why not try this at home?  Ask children to gather sticks and twigs (yard clean-up!).  Leave the twigs and multiple roles of colorful masking tape at a craft station for a few days.  Show children photographs of sculptures and encourage them to experiment with making their own unique creation.

If you have small children and are anywhere near Boston, definitely stop by the museum for a visit!

-Emily

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