2013 Handprint Calendar

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Believe it or not, tomorrow is January 1st of a brand new year which means a NEW CALENDAR.  I don’t know about you, but I’m over the fuzzy baby animals.  SO for the better part of a week in early December we worked on handprint and footprint pictures to use in our 2013 calendar.  We gave them to my husband, Steve, for his office and to my parents for Christmas (and of course one for our fridge).

After we made the pictures I scanned them and saved them on a CD at CVS.  Then I loaded the pics of the pics (lol) onto my computer at home and uploaded them into a calendar template using Shutterfly (a photo/card etc webservice – google it).  Shutterfly had the best deal at the time, but there are other sites to use.   TIP:  google search for coupons for these places to use when you check out – I saved an additional $15 !  I mixed in pictures of the kids on the calendar pages too 🙂  It turned out so cute!

These pictures are what we did, but be creative and come up with some on your own!   There is no right or wrong.  If you have older children have them draw/paint pictures instead of doing the hand/foot prints!

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JANUARY – Aedan and Audrey footprint penguins, fingerprint snow

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FEBRUARY – Aedan and Audrey footprint snowmen, fingerprint snow

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MARCH – Aedan handprint leprechaun and palmprint pot o’ gold

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APRIL – Aedan handprint umbrella, fingerprint rain, and footprint duckling, Audrey footprint baby swan

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MAY – Aedan handprint flowers and fingerprint caterpillars, Audrey footprint bees

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JUNE – Aedan and Audrey footprint butterflies

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JULY – Aedan footprint seagull and handprint crab

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AUGUST – Aedan handprint fish, fingerprint weeds and bubbles, Audrey footprint guppies

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SEPTEMBER – Aedan handprint and footprint peacock

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OCTOBER – Aedan and Audrey footprint ghosts

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NOVEMBER – Aedan handprint turkeys, Audrey footprint Native American and Pilgrim

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DECEMBER – Aedan handprint reindeer and fingerprint snow, Audrey footprint Christmas Tree

 

 

 

 

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Clay Baking Soda Ornaments

 

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So this year I felt like Aedan would like to be a more active participant in making his yearly ornament so instead of making another hand-print ornament I searched for a clay/baked ornament and found this one.  It is a no-bake Clay Baking Soda Ornament.  I was a little worried that they would be crumbly or possibly even fall apart, but they turned out really great and Aedan had a blast mixing, kneading  cutting, decorating and finishing them!
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You will need:

  1. 2 cups (16oz box) of baking soda
  2. 1 cup cornstarch
  3. 1 1/4 cups water
  4. food coloring
  5. holiday cookie cutter(s)
  6. beads, sequins, glitter etc
  7. mod podge (we used gloss)
  8. ribbon

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Directions:

  • combine baking soda, cornstarch, and water (AND FOOD COLORING IF YOU WANT) together and mix in a medium sauce pan. (no lumps!)
  • Stir continuously over medium/low heat until the clay has the consistency of mashed potatoes.  (I started on medium heat then turned down to low once it started to come together)
  • Remove from pan and allow to cool 5 minutes on counter top
  • Knead together a few times then roll out on parchment paper lined cookie sheet
  • Cut using cookie cutters
  • Decorate using beads, sequins, pipe cleaners, pom poms, glitter, etc (MAKE A HOLE FOR RIBBON SO YOU CAN HANG ON TREE!)
  • Allow to thoroughly dry (a day or so)
  • Brush with mod podge to seal
  • Tie ribbon
  • Ta-DA!!!

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We made 2 different batches because       , again, I was worried that some might break or crumble, but they all ended up turning out so we have a bunch to give away to pretty much everyone we know 😉

 

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Santa Handprint Ornaments

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We have started a tradition since Aedan was 6 months to do a handmade ornament for Grandparents’ and our Christmas tree every year.  This year Aedan is able to more actively participate and will be making clay baking soda ornaments which I will post after they are finished, but sweet pea Audrey helped mommy make these today.

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What you will need:

  • Flesh tone colored paint (I used acrylic)
  • Red paint (I had leftover puff/fabric paint so I just used that)
  • White Crayola Model Magic (I LOVE this stuff!)
  • Red and black sharpies
  • Paint brush
  • Ribbon (I use white curling ribbon)

Kneed the model magic to an even consistency (no bubbles), roll into a ball, and squish down into a pancake shape that is wide enough to fit your child’s hand.   Press your child’s hand into the clay.  Make sure to press down on each finger to get a good imprint (but not to worry, you can re-do as many times as needed to get it right) and make a hole for ribbon to hang on your tree.  Allow to thoroughly dry (a day or so).  I started with the black sharpie outlining – beard and mustache -, then flesh paint, red paint, red marker outlines the tip of the thumb where the white ball at the tip of the santa hat is, allow to dry, facial features.  Ta -da!

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Kid Created Snowflake Christmas Cards!


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We are sending out a family Christmas card this year which was very exciting and interesting for Aedan.  He wanted to help by drawing all over our faces on the card… which I wasn’t too thrilled about.. SO yesterday Aedan made his own Christmas cards to send out.

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We used:

  • 3 pipe cleaners
  • tempera paint (white, blue and purple)
  • blue construction paper

Take all 3 pipe cleaners and bend together in half.  Twist them down from the bend to the loose ends until you are about 1/2 -1 in from the bottom (depending on how big you want the snowflakes).  Bend the ends out 90 degrees and spread apart to create your snowflake.  We used mostly white paint, but Aedan wanted to add some color so I mixed a little blue and purple on our paint palette.  I cut the construction paper in half and plan on folding them to make a card once they’re dry.  Use the snowflake pipe cleaners as a stamp on your paper. You may have to fix the snowflake now and then especially if you have an over-zealous stamper 🙂

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Dinosaurs!

To start, I have never pushed anything on my son.  We didn’t buy him cars, trucks, trains, and dinosaurs because it’s what we wanted him to play with – in fact if I did that I would have gotten whatever the opposite of all that is. lol (not my thing)  His intense curiosity and interest in the world of things that go and extinct reptiles is all his own.  For Halloween this year it was a tossup between a dinosaur and Thomas the Train costume – I’m secretly thankful he chose dinosaur.  I encourage him to expand his interests, but when I can I try to incorporate the things he really likes into themes to get him excited.

So for the past week our theme was Dinosaurs.  We went to JoAnn where I know they have a large variety of Safari Ltd. Toobs which are mini animals/ppl/insects/etc packaged in a tube.  I used my 40% off coupon, but originally they are $8.99/ea.  They have ‘Dinos,’ ‘Baby Dinos,’ ‘Herbivore Dinos,’ and ‘Carnivore Dinos.’  I bought the ‘Dinos’ one since it had both herbivores and carnivores.  They really are a good deal as long as you incorporate them in as many activities as possible.

  • Dinosaur discussion.  What did the dinosaurs eat?  We talked about meat eaters vs plant eaters then sorted the mini dinosaurs into meat eating and plant eating piles.

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  • Dinosaur Tracks!  We experimented with the different types of dinosaurs and made impressions into our play doh.


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  • Dinosaur Fossils!  Using gray Crayola Model Magic we made tracks and  impressions of our dinosaurs and set them aside to dry.

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  • Paleontologist!  (Dinosaur dig)  Using our sensory bucket, we filled it with colored rice, added our dry  ‘dino fossils’  and mini dinosaurs.  Aedan dug around and uncovered them using a basting brush and sandbox shovel.

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  • VOLACANO!  Definitely the hit of the day – we made brown play-doh to cover the outside of our cups to create a more realistic appearance.  He had so much fun and wanted to do it again and again (we went through a whole bottle of vinegar!  What you will need: 
  1. A cup or bottle (optional: play doh to cover the outside)
  2. pyrex dish or cookie sheet (with sides) for your experiment to take place
  3. Warm water
  4. Dish soap
  5. Baking Soda
  6. Vinegar
  7. Red food coloring

Cover the outside of your glass/bottle with play doh and place inside the pyrex dish/cookie sheet.  Fill the glass/bottle most of the way with warm water.  Add a squirt of dish soap (this makes the lava bubbly).  Add a couple tablespoons of baking soda.  In a measuring cup, pour the vinegar and a couple drops of red food coloring.  When you’re ready for the eruption, pour a few tablespoons of your red vinegar into your volcano and sit back and watch!  Recharge your volcano with baking soda to experiment again.

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  • Art!  D is for Dinosaur.  Handprint dinosaur.  Free painting.  Paper plate stegosaurus.  (sorry I forgot to take pics!)
  • Books!