Saturday, October 31, 2009

pastels and paint

Simple Saturday

I love Saturdays.. Daddy is at home so I dont get much of a look in with any of my three kids :) Crafty things are fairly simple on Saturday as mostly they are happy to trail behind him like a little row of ducks.. noisy, giggly ducks.
This morning though, daddy decides to go for a run, leaving little ducks screaming at the front door. One goes to bed, one (who still isnt that well) finds a stack of books, his pillow, blanks and "honey" (dummy) and flakes out on the lounge, the last asks for some black paint and crayons. I get out the pastels and ask her what she has planned for the black paint. But I am told to "just watch" and so I decide to trust this little creative sod and join her.
I am told to cover the piece of paper in pastel colouring in. This in itself is very therapeutic. I am quite possibly the worst drawer ever so to colour without a plan is perfect for me :) I LOVE colour, and these pastels are so awesome to colour with as they are smooth on the paper and bright on the eye.

Once completely covered in colour, she begins to paint over the page with black paint. I do the same. Once the whole page is covered in black paint, she gets two skewers and we begin to draw in the black paint. ( We actually did this craft ages ago, but I was surprised she remembered it. Last time we had a craft disaster with the black paint, a sneezing fit, a not quite 2yr old, very pale new carpet in a very new rental... it really wasnt good or something I ever wanted to do again)

I wasnt happy with my picture (of course, the perfectionist in me really should just shut up) but Jumeirah told me this was ok, and repainted my page in black paint and WOW! brand new canvas to draw with :)

I love the results of these pictures. Hers with the swirls, mine with the fireworks.

" You did a very good job Mum. Not quite as good as me, but its a good job."

I love simple Saturday :)

Friday, October 30, 2009

zoo maps

What I walked in on this morning... " she needs to learn to bounce mum, I'm teaching her. Look she loves it!"

Sisters are different flowers from the same garden. ~Author Unknown

Oh sick kids are so not fun :(
My little guy is really not well, high temps, lethargic and miserable. Luckily for me, he has worked out that bed is really the best place to be (either that or tucked up snuggly watching spongebob squarepants) so hes been asleep for the best part of two days..hopefully back to his charming gorgeous self tomorrow :)

So we have had a quiet day here today. Jumeirah has spent some of every day this week drawing animals.

Its random, but its good! And yesterday, I found this activity of drawing zoo maps ( and now for the life of me I cant find the site I found it at,but dont worry I will!) and so I printed her off two zoos, Taronga Zoo in Sydney, and the Sandiego Zoo ( which she knows of from "Madagascar").

First we took our our trip around the zoos, stopping to look at the animals, talking about the differences between an Australian Zoo and an American Zoo. Then we set to work drawing our own zoo (actually she drew and asked me to go clean the kitchen.. hmmm and grrrr).

Its pretty good actually! She tends to draw really quickly (exactly like her daddy who does great cartoons and can play the most games of "Mr Squiggle") so sometimes it can be a bit messy for me but I am working hard at not correcting it :)
I asked her why I couldnt see it before, her response was " Cos I took dad and not you this time".

What is it about daddies???? :)
( sorry photos are a bit dark today.. cant access photo fixer so you'll have to put up with it :) )

Thursday, October 29, 2009

box castles

'Boys are meant for kisses and hugs, chasing rainbows and catching bugs'

A friend asked me for some help ( actually a little while ago but life got in the way... oopps) as she was about to embark on a weeks visit with a busy little gang of preschool boys... scary they are!! :)
Apparently they are very into all things BOXy. And so I did some research on the net ( such a wonderful treasure trove of EVERYTHING!) and found this fantastic Box Castle from Enchanted Learning.

Jumeirah was watching me find things too add to my box ideas but when she saw this one said " OH MUM! We have to do that!"
And so we did.
We got a box from our pile of moving boxes (yup they are still everywhere) and set to work. Once I had completely destroyed a good kitchen knife and had cut all the pieces out, she and Jared set to work painting it.

Now, I gently suggested that grey would be a good colour to start with and then they could decorate it but no, it had to be pink :)

And I tell you what, I am so impressed with the way this has turned out! It looks awesome. I think it helped that the cardboard box was really thick. Jumeirah got her princesses out and started playing with it as soon as it was dry. Amahli was also keen to play :)

Hopefully it will last a while..

Jared, once he'd finished painting ( something he CHOSE to do of his own volition!) found the most exciting treasure, a dead cicada. He then spent most of the afternoon talking to this wonderful big bug and taking him on tours around the yard.

I asked him: " Hey Jared, whats your friends name? Does he like our yard?"

He replied: " No Mum. He dead."

hmm I'll know better next time :)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

tooth fairy bags

Oh we have had some huge excitement here!! Jumeirah has lost her first tooth!
Mind you it did happen at preschool so I was a bit disspointed after waiting for it to happen for a week! ( I have told her that all major milestones are to be done within a 10 metre radius of me in the future thankyou!!) Boy was she excited :)

This is the conversation of last week

J: "Mum the tooth fairy isnt really real is it."

Me: "(torn between keeping a little bit of magic or teaching her that you cant really sell body parts for money) "of course she's real! And you know what else? She will give you some money for your tooth"

J: "REALLY???"

Me: "YES!"

J: "WOW! I am going to buy that last princess doll with my tooth money!"

Me: " Oh its normally only one coin"

J: "What?? Only one coin?"

Hmmm... methinks its time to talk about being in a hard economic times....tooth fairy is trying to struggle on with rising flight path prices, landing fees, the rising cost of fairy dust....

The tooth fell out yesterday and she came bounding home, of course needing something "special" to put it in for the tooth fairy.
And so we found a gorgeous pattern for a Tooth Fairy Bag and I set to work. It had to purple as we assumed thats the colour she would wear. ( "Even if she wore pink it would be ok cos they go together")

I was then instructed to let fairy headquarters know of the occasion and then needed to reassure that of course I had changed our address with them when we moved (!).
We then celebrated with fairy bread :)

And, earlier than normal, she asked to go to bed, fairy bag safely under her pillow.
And guess what??? through the night, not only did the tooth fairy come and take her tooth ( and almost forgot that she left it on the bench in the kitchen, silly fairy had to get up at 4am cos she'd remembered about it) but she also had time to whip up this gorgeous skirt ( using my GOOD scissors I might add) from a pattern she must have found at Grace Violet!!

That tooth fairy was sure popular this morning and I had one happy, gappy girl :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

dot monsters/cheerio fun

Oh how I love the rain.... I love watching it, walking in it and sleeping snuggled in bed listening to it.My children seemed to have taken on this same love. And so this morning I had trouble getting anyone enthused about anything but sitting outside in our lovely undercover area watching the rain.
Jumeirah, in her gorgeous quirky nature, was snuggled up in the camel blanket, complete with head covering "so my head band doesnt get wet". hmmm ok :)
Amahli was more content to see how far she could push me by taking mad dashes out onto the grass.. crazy baby.

Over breakfast we talked about what they wanted to do today, which was " nothing today mum". I absentmindedly was fiddling with some wool I had planned to find some use for and began to thread their cheerios onto it. "Hey! we could do that! Then we could eat them!" And so I wrapped the end in sticky tape to make for easier threading and instead of eating breakfast, we threaded it :)

Cheerio threading
Cheerios are quite small but Jared was able to thread five on before realising he was never going to get to eat them anytime soon so he stopped.
Jumeirah, who absolutely loves those lolly necklaces, decided the more she threaded, the more she could eat at the end. So she just kept on threading...when she'd finally finished she took her cheerio snake to munch on. Unfortunately, wool and cheerios arent really a good combination so she de-threaded it and ate them from a bowl :)

In the afternoon, I put out some textas for free drawing for Jared and Amahli, and started to show Jumeirah a cool idea I found.

Dot Monsters

Fairly simple concept... draw 20-30 dots on a page ( we did 20 which was plenty)
Join them together with straight lines.
Transform into a monster ( or really whatever your child can see in the shape)
Add legs, teeth, arms, horns.. whatever takes their fancy.

I totally thought this wouldnt work, mine turned out very average unsurprisingly ( I cant draw to save myself)
But hers was awesome!
Heres the straight lines....

And she turned it into a Pterodactyl!! How I dont know cos I didnt "see" it until she had filled in the other parts. Clever cookie :)

Have a go at this simple drawing activity! See if you can post so I can see them :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

going on a "date" :)

I took Jumeirah to her first "transition to big school" day this week and I realised that my carefree days with her are numbered. All too soon she will be joining the big school ranks and really she seems very excited about it, she knows what type of uniform she wants, and already wanted to stay longer and play last week. I am dreading though having to give her up 5 DAYS A WEEK to someone else. I also am not keen on hearing the never ending praise of " the best teacher in the world" ( I already have had this all year with "Amy" who actually is the best teacher in the whole world. :) ) I am nervous about the influences I will have to fight against to have my opinions and values, that I have spent nearly 5 years nailing into her, still be important. And yes, I know I am possibly just an anal mum who is having trouble letting go, but I have abosolutely loved having her around, all day every day.

I wanted to do something special with just her today. ( she actually would have preferred daddy " cos you can always come another time mum" but in the end it was me who went which I was pleased about!). And seeing as she has slept in her own bed for 16 days now, I took her to a fancy resturant on the water.
She was pretty excited... what shes heard about this place is that you can feed the fish while sitting at the table! And lucky for us we got a corner table with a spectacular view. And so we ordered our lunch, went and fed the fish ( bit windy to do it at the table), watched the pelicans, talked to the lobsters in the tank, got excited at the dolphins.... and chatted. My Oh my how this little girl is growing up. I love that she has such amazing ideas and opinions on so many things that are quite different from mine. I love that she is one of the best conversationalists I know. ( yes that she gets from me)
We had such a lovely time. And so shes planning another one, for next month.

"And guess what Mum? I think I'll take you again". :)

icecream and jelly hearts for dessert :)

dolphin! view from the table

(day off tomorrow, see you tuesday!)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

photo magic

I cant believe my littlest angel is about to turn 1, and yet in the last few weeks shes changed so much. Shes now walking at great speed, shes climbing, she acts just like Jumeirah in so many ways.... and so we are planning to PARTY!

I like to make my own invites. Its cheaper and I love the personal look. Plus is pretty easy too!
I have recently found an awesome website that not only fancifies my photos but also is great for creating easy but really effective invitations :)
The website is called Picnik and I have used it a bit for editing my favourite photos. You can use it for free but to open all areas of the site you have to pay. I am not quite up to needing that bit yet. :)
Here are some of the cool things you can do:

Simple editing like turning things to black and white

This is actually fancy focus black and white.. i love it with the rose in the middle

turning photos to sepia

Then there are all manner of fancy editing. Here are my favourites:


this effect is called is called "orton ish" is absolutely awesome with the right photo

effect called: Holga ish

Plus you can stitch them together to make a simple collage to make a great invite :)

I printed this little collage out and then on the back printed the details of her party. I am going to laminate the t wo sides together and add a magnet so it can go on the fridge!

have a see for yourself!!