Tuesday, March 25, 2014

10 Craft Supplies to Have on Hand for Creativity

I love inspiring my children to create various art pieces using a wide variety of media! Allowing children to create allows them to foster their imagination and I believe it helps build confidence. When a child is able to create they learn to trust their instincts. If a problem should arise they can analyze it and work through the problem. Here is my list of must haves for in the art room....

1. Paper
All types of paper should be available. Construction paper, drawing paper, watercolor paper, newsprint, tracing paper, etc. Having different sizes is helpful too. Smaller paper is easier to fill than larger sheets. Teaching  a child to fill the canvas is a lot easier when the paper is smaller. Scrapbooking paper comes in various sizes and patterns which are create for art projects.

2. Markers, Pens, and Pencils
It's fun to learn how to use different types of media. Markers come in all types of sizes, colors, and some even have fun tips that can be used as stamps. Pencils can be found in a variety of colors and sizes. Some can add a fine detail while other wider points can add wonderful shading effects. Charcoal is a great way to teach children to add light and darkness to a object by shading. Learning to draw with pen can be fun for older kids. The pens can come in a variety of tip points. A really fine point can a the tiniest detail while the a broad tip can add an important focal point.


3. Crayons
These are must for any household. It is the first tool most kids get to use. They come in so many colors and they have different sizes available for the youngest artist. You can even melt them to create rainbow crayons. Crayola even came out with a crayon maker. We save up the small crayon pieces, the ones that get broken off or are too small to use.

4. Colored Pencils
The selection in colored pencils is amazing. They have cheaper brands perfect for the younger artist starting out. As they get older you can invest in a set of more expensive set that can be blended. They come in a variety of colors and they even have glitter ones which Princess P loves.


5. Chalk
Regular school chalk, colored or white, can be fun to use. Kids can use it outside and inside for various art projects. My kids get a pack of chalk every year in their Easter basket. There also chalk pastels which are a great introduction to pastels. As they get older, you bring in oil pastels that can add a whole new dimension to a child's art work.


6. Pastels

Pastels are a wonderful way to teach kids how to blend and create an Impressionist piece of artwork. You can start out with chalk pastels and then move on to oil pastels. Crayola now makes an oil pastel that are geared to younger kids.

7. Paint and Paint Brushes
Paint! There are so many choices here. Washable, Tempera, Acrylic, Oil, Watercolor, etc. With younger kids, it's always great to start with a washable and non toxic paint. Once the kids are older, you can introduce them to Acrylic and oil paints. Each paint has a different texture. It changes the way the kids can paint with them. Acrylic will dry faster than oil. Experimenting with different brush sizes and shapes will allow for more creativity. There are fine tipped, broad tipped, fan, and sponge brushes. All of them can be used to create a wonderful painting. To introduce kids to painting have them watch a Bob Ross video on YouTube. It will leave them amazed!

8. Fabric, Ribbons, and Rope
Any type of fabric will do. Scraps from leftover projects, old t-shirts, towels, etc. Fabric can be used with a mixed media project like a collage.


Fabric can be woven together, sewn to make an animal or outfit, draped to create a beautiful visual effect. Fabric can also be used to teach kids how to draw. You can drape the fabric and have the kids work on recreating the folds and light of the fabric.The possibilities are endless.

9. Glue
Not all glue is the same. For younger kids, I would suggest a type that is non toxic. Types needed for various projects are Elmer's school glue, glue sticks, rubber cement, wood glue, fabric glue, etc. They even have a ribbon fray glue that will keep ribbons from fraying. This can be very important for a project made from ribbons.

10. Clay
Clay can be used to make models of buildings, animals, jewelry, mugs, etc. You can find clay in all types of colors. Some clay will be air drying while some will need to be baked. In the past, we have created canoes, gargoyles, hieroglyphics, mugs, and lots of animals. Princess P and myself have created play food for her dolls.

You can see what we did here and here.


And two to bonus supplies that can be fun.

11. Recycled Products from the House
Basically think garbage or anything you would put in the recycling bin. Plastic containers, glass, jars, twisty ties, lids, plastic silverware, different size packaging boxes, shoe boxes,cotton balls, q-tips ....the list in endless. We have a whole shelf devoted to this type of stuff in our pantry. Lego Man has created robots, cat houses, and forts out of regular household items.

12. Various Craft Supplies
If you head into any craft store, you will see an endless array of supplies that can be used for craft or art projects. Beads, Pipe Cleaners, Popsicle sticks, foam, felt, gems, pom poms, stickers, wax, flowers, ribbon, tissue paper, wood cutouts, buttons, and so much more.



Monday, March 24, 2014

Moments of Grace

As I look out my window.....
I see "the girls" scratching away in the leaves.


They have been enjoying the few warm days we've had and have loved searching for bugs. They are calling for snow in our area again! NO MORE SNOW! I really am hoping this will be the last snowstorm of the season.

I am thankful for......
daffodils emerging from the cold hard ground
Stations of the Cross
a boy conquering his fears
Lenten suppers
a Saint Patrick's day dinner
the loud purr of a cat curled up on my lap
family dinners
spending warm, sunny days outside with family
children giggling while they do dishes

What I am reading......
The Classically Catholic Memory Gamma Year textbook.

I am reading through it and starting to plan out next years lessons. I am hoping to have them done by May! This is the 3rd year we will be using the CCM books. We love the program and are so happy we found it.



What I am working on.......
Lesson plans and spring cleaning. I love planning lessons for the upcoming year. I get excited about the lessons and what we will be learning next year. Spring cleaning is something I don't enjoy. I really wish the house just cleaned itself.



What's on the menu this week....
Sunday~ Chicken Kabobs with homemade french fries
Monday~ Gluten Free Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo
Tuesday~ ???
Wednesday~ Leftovers
Thursday~ Tacos
Friday~ Lenten Supper at the Church
Saturday~ Italian Chicken, Potatoes, and Beans


A favorite prayer......
Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from Christ's side, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee
From the malicious enemy defend me
In the hour of my death call me
And bid me to come unto Thee
That I may praise Thee with Thy Saints
and with Thy Angels
Forever and Ever
Amen


Captured



The kids captured this photo when I left the room. Miss Maddie decided she was going to be the teacher for awhile. Silly puppy!




Linking up with Plain Grace and Happy Homemaker Monday

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Saint Patrick's Day Feast Day


Today in CCD, we talked about Saint Patrick since his feast day is tomorrow. While the kids were waiting for the other students to arrive and class to begin, they colored a coloring page of Saint Patrick.

Here are some wonderful coloring pages for Saint Patrick!



Saint John the Baptist Church ~ These coloring pages are taken from the stained glass windows from St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Fredericksburg, VA. They depict the life of Saint Patrick. They are wonderful coloring pages.


We watched a short film about Saint Patrick, called Patrick Brave Shepherd of the Emerald Isle.


The children really enjoyed this wonderful tale of how Saint Patrick found himself in Ireland.


I had a game from when we celebrated All Saints Day. Pin the Shamrock onto Saint Patrick!


We made a Trinity shamrock craft from Catholic Inspired
You can gain access to this fun craft if you subscribe to  Jennifer's blog!


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Gluten Free Banana Streusel Muffins

Last week we bought bananas at the store. The kids ate a few of them but suddenly stopped eating them. I reminded the kids about the bananas and they informed me they were letting them go bad so I would make banana muffins. So a few days passed and the bananas were ready for use. I had 4 bananas ready to go. Since adding Princess P to the gluten free diet, I have been experimenting more with the gluten free flours we have.
I took two recipes, my grandmother's banana bread recipe and a streusel banana nut muffin recipe. I worked with both recipes and gluten free flour to create a new gluten free banana muffin recipe.





The muffins were a hit. They are moist and have tons of banana taste.

Ingredients
Muffins
2 cups gluten free flour ( I bought mine at Costco)
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4 ripe medium bananas
3/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons of butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg

Streusel
6 tablespoons of gluten free oats
5 tablespoons of gluten free flour
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare your muffin pans. I use butter to grease mine. You can use cupcake liners.
In a large bowl combine the gluten free flour, sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, and sea salt. Make a well in the dry ingredients.
In a separate bowl, combine the milk, bananas, butter, vanilla, and egg. Pour the banana mixture into the well. Stir the ingredients together until well blended.

To make the streusel, combine the oats, flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Add the butter and blend with a fork until it's a crumbly mixture. Sprinkle the mixture onto the prepared muffins.

Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool and enjoy. These are very moist and soft when you eat them. They are not dry or crumbly!





CCM Beta Year~ Shields and Coat of Arms

During co-op this week, the children created a shield depicting their own coat-of-arms.

Knights had to understand the system of badges, called Heraldry.


Each knight had their own personal badge. These badges would help identify the contestants during the mock battles. They would also identify each other during real battles.
Knights would have these badges painted on their tunics, coats, shields, and armor. They would decorate their horses with their badges.

There were 5 basic colors that were used-- blue, red, black, green, and purple. Two metals, gold and silver, were used too. Various patterns would be used to decorate their shields. A variety of animals would be used, like elephants, lions, ermines, vairs, eagles, and serpents.

In art class, the kids were encouraged to create a coat of arms that describe them.
Princess P made a pink and blue shield with hearts and stars.


Lego Man created a Viking shield.


Coat-of-Arms were passed down from father to eldest son.
They became the family badge.




CCM Beta Year~ Shields and Coat of Arms

During co-op this week, the children created a shield depicting their own coat-of-arms.

Knights had to understand the system of badges, called Heraldry.


Each knight had their own personal badge. These badges would help identify the contestants during the mock battles. They would also identify each other during real battles.
Knights would have these badges painted on their tunics, coats, shields, and armor. They would decorate their horses with their badges.

There were 5 basic colors that were used-- blue, red, black, green, and purple. Two metals, gold and silver, were used too. Various patterns would be used to decorate their shields. A variety of animals would be used, like elephants, lions, ermines, vairs, eagles, and serpents.

In art class, the kids were encouraged to create a coat of arms that describe them.
Princess P made a pink and blue shield with hearts and stars.


Lego Man created a Viking shield.


Coat-of-Arms were passed down from father to eldest son.
They became the family badge.




Monday, March 10, 2014

Our United States Scrapbook~ Maryland

                                                                         Source~ Wikipedia


This state was a fairly easy state to do, since this is the state I was born and raised in. My kids have been to Maryland multiple times visiting the grandparents!
Nothing beats Maryland crabs.... at least that is what they say.

Source~ Wikipedia

I personally don't eat them. Yup, I'm from Maryland and don't like seafood!

Lego Man's state pages for Maryland!



And her are Princess P's pages.






Here are some of the resources we used for our State Scrapbooks.

Map of Maryland Coloring Page



Blacked Eyed Susan Coloring Page

Source~Wikipedia


State Bird~ Baltimore Oriole

Maryland Stamp Coloring Page

State Flag Coloring Page

Maryland State Quarter coloring page

State Seal Coloring Pages
Side 1
Side 2

Maryland Crab Coloring Page

Maryland State Cat coloring page

Fun Worksheets about Maryland

We learned the Star Spangled Banner using the We Sing America CD.





Star Spangled Banner coloring page.



Recipes to Try

Maryland Crabcakes

Maryland Black Walnut Cake



Sunday, March 9, 2014

Keeping Love in Lent



I am participating in the 
link up
Keeping Love in Lent 2014.

This is the second year I am linking up and I am very excited to be participating in this wonderful event.
Bloggers from all over will be sharing tips, stories, experiences, and suggestions on how we can focus on Lenten sacrifices, prayer, good deeds, and how to carry them out with LOVE instead of GRUMBLE.
Are you a Christian blogger who would like to share their Lenten ideas?
You're welcome to join!
Just scroll down to the link at the bottom of this post and visit the hostesses.




As we prepare for this holy time, I am busy pulling together resources we use to help us stay focused on this very important time. 
Here a few of the things we will be doing!


We have books that we read every year and activities that have become family traditions.
A favorite story we read every year is The Story of the Three Trees.





I have actually purchased two of these books so that both of my children will have a copy for their own families when they get older.
I read this every year to my CCD students too. I think the story is poignant in how it teaches the real significance of Jesus' life and the sacrifice he made for us.
A new book we are going to read this year is My Path to Heaven.




We have a sacrifice jar. 


We have an empty mason jar that is slowly filled up with beans as the children do good deeds, show acts of kindness, do chores without complaint, complete schoolwork in a timely manner, help others without being asked, etc.
When Easter comes the beans are switched out to jelly beans.

We have a Jesus Tree, similar to a Jesse Tree, that helps us stay focus on the season. We take tree branches and place them in a vase. We add ornaments that co along with bible stories or versus each day. We start on Ash Wednesday and will place our last ornament on the tree limbs on Easter. This year, I am going to have the children read the bible verses.
Here is a beautiful set on Etsy.

We sign up for Holy Heroes Lenten Adventure every year. My kids look forward to watching the videos and working on the corresponding worksheets. This year we are making a notebook with the worksheets  and coloring pages. This is our third year doing the adventure and I am amazed at how much my kids have learned and remembered!

You can sign up here for your own Lenten Adventure!


Lent has always been important part of my growing up. 
Attending Catholic school, we always participated in the Stations of the Cross.


We headed to church on Fridays to do the Stations. The older classes would help Father out by reading the Stations. 
This year, Lego Man will be following in this tradition. Our church has the older CCD classes help out with the Stations on Friday nights. 
I am excited and proud that he has been asked to help read a station.
So this year on Fridays, we will be heading to the Lenten dinners, Stations of the Cross, and follow them up with confessions with Father.

We are going to make our own Stations of the Cross candles. I am a little behind with this. I need to get to the store to get the candles, the modge podge, and votive candle holders. 
I saw the idea at a Patty's blog Reasons for Chocolate. She has some wonderful ideas for Lent too. If you haven't stopped by for a visit, you should drop in and say hello to her.

We are saying the rosary daily. This was Princess P's idea.



We will be reading along in two activity books about Lent. Both books provide various activities to do during this season of prayer.





This link up is being sponsored by some amazing bloggers.

Equipping Catholic Families on Facebook

Campfires and Cleats on Facebook

Tina at Truly Rich Mom
Truly Rich Mom on Facebook

A Slice of Smith Life on Facebook

Home to 4 Kiddos on Facebook


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