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Happy 2012! Our Christmas tree has been de-decorated for some time, but was sadly languishing in the corner of our living room, looking somewhat bare and exposed. Ahji is in charge of removing the lights, dismantling the tree and returning it to storage. He promised he would do that “soon”, but I had my doubts. As I’m fairly lazy and didn’t want to take down the tree myself, we decorated it for Chinese New Year.
I like having all the ornaments in one place and not scattered around our house. Traditionally they dangle from pussy willow branches. Our tree also provides a nice display of the ornaments the kids have made in school over the years.
May the year of the Dragon be a prosperous and joyful one for you.
As mentioned in the previous post, Jaylene and Jayden have fun working on the sticker Sudoku book together. There are leftover stickers which Jayden puts to good use in creating his own collector cards.
Taiwan sells boxes of these name card sized cards. They’re the perfect size for our artists and a few cards will entertain the kids for a surprisingly long time. Do you recognize the following cartoon characters?
If you guessed a flock of angry birds(card 1) and the naughty green pigs (card 2) then you’re right!
What themes are in your kid art these days?
Jaylene is getting more than a little excited about her upcoming birthday. I am more than a little reluctant to see my baby girl enter the double digits. To help keep things festive, I created a little countdown calendar for her.
It was inspired by this cute Santa Beard advent calendar. Jaylene’s having fun using our decorative scissors to cut away strips. The closer we get to the big day, the shorter her present becomes.
What do you do to celebrate birthdays?
Some sparkly stones, scarves in water and jewel tones and a tiara or two can create a wonderful world that exists below the water’s surface.
What’s more fun than helping a mermaid swim through an underwater tunnel?
This play area was set up for weeks, but there were still tears when it was time to clean it up. Do you have any tips on how to dismantle a large scale play area?
Jaylene (white paper below) and I (yellow paper) have been making endless doodles, inspired by this lesson. We find a square and fill it up. Some of them we jazz up with color, most we just doodle and move on.
What’s been mesmerizing you lately?
We’re creeping into the last days of summer so we thought we would host a playgroup potluck. Jaylene being the creative girl she is, wanted to have an Angry Birds theme. So we did!
The large square angry birds are paper covered cardboard with Printable angry bird faces. I believe they were intended for balloons. These squares are actually from my classroom. I use them as mascots for team games and as a conversation starter during the “get-to-know-you” phase of the school year. Jaylene worked very hard to create the watermelon and lemon pig decorations. The lemon pigs were a huge hit with the guests and most of them were taken home as favors.
Earlier in the summer, Jaylene practiced some map skills by creating an “Angry Bird Land” map. It was a perfect touch as a decoration.
I was a little worried about how the different ages would collaborate but I think most of it was done by Jaylene. The other kids enjoyed playing the homemade board games we had set out.
Once all the guests had arrived we began the competitive games. During Dragonboat festival, I found a market vendor who was selling Angry Bird character “fragrant bags”. They were fairly inexpensive, and thankfully not fragrant at all. I scooped a bunch up and my kids have enjoyed creating a version of Angry Birds Live.
They set up “castles” with the foam blocks and then toss the birds to try and knock down the pigs.
We also played a game where each team tried to keep the birds and pigs on the other team’s side by throwing them. It was a fast and fun game, but hard to determine a winner. Next on the schedule was to create your own Angry birds on circle sticky notes.
We then taped the “Design a level” to the wall and played a version of pin the tail on the donkey, using the sticky note angry birds.
That was it for the structured games so it was time to hand out the prizes. I forgot to take a picture before the kids started choosing.
The rest of the time was spent munching and chatting and watching the kids play Pig-in-the-middle, Dodge-ball and Keep-away with the stuffed pigs. I couldn’t think of a better way to end the summer.
How are you finishing up the season?
While not on the scale of these, mini sculptures, I think Jaylene did an awesome job creating this teeny tiny paper airplane.
What small things have been making you smile these days?
I really appreciate how Jayden’s school has a blog that they upload pictures to *every* day. It does mean that I have 200 or so pictures to go through each week to download the ones that have my cutie in them. Thankfully it doesn’t take much time, and I love seeing what he’s up to. It makes chatting with him about school much easier because I can ask him about specific activities he did instead of the generic, “What did you do in school today?”
However, today instead of having a happy, warm fuzzy feeling when perusing the school photos, I gave a gasp and felt my heart race. Last night the teacher called us and asked if they could borrow some of my craft punches. She spoke with my husband and he’s never a very thorough translator. I assumed they were for making graduation books. We all know what happens when you assume… Anyway, I’m skimming through their blog and I see this:
Cute little chefs using my craft punches to create seaweed shapes for sushi. Which they then consumed. I *really* hope they cleaned them first. Had I known the intended use I would have sent along the punches I own that are specifically for seaweed. Although, I only have three of those. Unlike my outrageous amount of craft punches.
So, should I ask to see if they washed them first? Or maybe I don’t want to know the answer.
I saw this project floating around the internet years ago and made one for Jaylene when she was a wee little one. Jayden used hers for a bit but it got lost so I made up a new one for him today. I thought I’d share with you the process.
Materials: A clear plastic lid, a back (I’ve used another lid but this time we used a paper plate cut to size), a brad (paper fastener), and a washer of some sort (it could be thick paper with a hole in the middle).
Layer the materials together and thread onto the brad. We originally were using two of the little coins in the middle, but found the cards slipped through, so we took one out.
Uno and Go fish are Jayden’s favorites at the moment. Jaylene likes Uno, Set and Monopoly Deal. What are your favorite card games?