4 Little Indians

$1 Native American wooden picture frames from Jo-Ann.  I can’t wait to take these out every year!

They make great Thanksgiving place settings and a fun family or classroom activity.  We used feathers, glitter glue, colored Sharpies, sequins and adhesive gems.

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“I Wanna Wash My Haaaands!”

These kindergartener-made polar bears are adorable.  But applying paint with marshmallow “stamps?”  Not quite the hit I expected it to be!

The original lesson comes from Kids Artists (tagged for slightly older children) and I adapted it to suit our 30-minute time frame.

My son and 18 of his classmates traced a paper plate with pencil on blue 12-x18 paper for the bear’s face.  Then added half-circle ears.  They used a big marshmallow to add white tempura paint for fur, and a mini-marshmallow to add snow.  Eyes and a mouth were made with a small brush (they were so relieved!) and black tempura paint.

With no time for the white paint to dry, I thought they’d be disappointed in how a big, black painted nose would turn out.  So they stuck on pre-cut noses made from sparkly adhesive-backed foam (love that stuff!).

A few children were interested in making grey, which I showed them individually so they could add depth to the insides of the ears and under the bear’s chin.  But most were desperate to wash their hands!

The biggest hit of this project?  Eating marshmallows once everyone’s hands were clean and reading aloud The Marshmallow Incident.

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Better-Than-Fancy Napkin Rings

When my children were 3 and 5 we sat down together one afternoon
and made these toilet paper roll napkin rings for our fancy Thanksgiving table.

We cut out pictures of each guest, along with paper strips that read, “We are thankful for you.”
The children painstakenly glued them on, along with anything else they found in the craft drawers.

They were so proud to contribute.

And the napkin rings, which go beautifully with Williams-Sonoma linens
and a Waterford stainless pattern, by the way, were the hit of the table.

Football Helmet?

My 2nd grader came home today wearing a milk jug on her head!

It vaguely resembled a football helmet, but we’re a big-headed family so it didn’t quite cover her ears.  The occasion was “college team spirit day” – a fundraiser, I think, since I paid a dollar so she could wear a football shirt to school.

If I could ever stay awake late enough to host a Super Bowl party, I’d use this as a craft to occupy the kids.

Or, on Thanksgiving, little houseguests could make them for the dads parked in front of the TV.  Imagine the group photos!


Chicken & Poodle Ring Pillows

Happy Anniversary to us!

This blog is 10-months-old, but the original Clown and Poodle made it official 10 years ago today.

Digging through our attic for that candle we’re supposed to light every year (I think I’ve remembered it twice), I found our ring pillows.  The chicken theme is from a chorus that my husband used to sing with.  And the poodle…well, it was already clear then that I was going to be higher maintenance.

Anyway, not terribly sophisticated – I didn’t even use a sewing machine – but they are my craft idea for the day.  And an excuse to broadcast how proud I am to be married to this man.Homemade Ring Pillows