Disclosure: I was not financially compensated for this post. I received a sample of the product for review purposes. The opinions are my own, based on my personal experience with the product.

 

I teach preschool two days a week and I love it!  The kids are like little sponges and we have so much fun learning about all kinds of things.  We focus on a different letter of the alphabet each week and we always incorporate a fun craft to go along with it.  For letter “B” we made suncatcher letter B butterflies.  All you need is black construction paper, cut up tissue paper in various colors and clear contact paper.  Just cut out the letter B as well as circles from the contact paper big enough to cover the openings in the B. Cover the FRONT of the B openings first.  The sticky part should face the back of the letter.  Let the child cover the sticky parts with the tissue paper.  Once they are done, cover the back of the B openings with contact paper so that the tissue paper is encased between the two sheets.  Cut out a small circle with two antennae and have the child glue it to the top left of the B shape. There you have it, an easy, fun craft that looks great taped to a window!

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To make it stand out and reinforce the lesson, we used Chalk Ink Markers to write “B” is for Butterfly on the window.

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These great markers can be used on chalkboards, glass and even metal.  Our class is called the dinosaurs and we have a large metal tray that the kids use with alphabet and number magnets.  We can write different words and numbers on the tray with the Chalk Ink markers and then have the kids match up the letters with the magnet versions.

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Chalk Ink works like a paint pen but has the appearance of chalk, but with no dust!  They come in a ton of different colors so there’s one for every project.

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There is no smearing once the writing dries and it wipes off with just water.  I have found so many uses for them in the classroom and at home.  We’ll be studying pumpkins next month so the orange pen will get a lot of use!

Are you a crafty person? How would you use these awesome markers from Chalk Ink?

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

Recently, I was at a craft show and saw some cute Valentine’s Day wreaths.  I decided to try and make a similar one.  It was super easy although I admit a little time consuming.  It took me about 2 1/2 hours total.  I was really happy with how it turned out!

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Materials:

3 colors or patterns of Valentine fabric (I got 3/4 of a yard of each one)

12″ wire wreath frame

ribbon

wooden “X” and “O”

red paint

scissors

glue gun

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First, cut LOTS of strips from the fabric.  Mine were about 1″x8″.  I underestimated how many strips I would need and had to cut more half way through.

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Tie one of the strips around the first and second wire ring. Tie into a knot.  Then repeat on the THIRD and FOURTH ring with one of the other fabric strips.

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Tie the third strip around the second and third rings and slide down tightly against the first two strips.

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Repeat this process, alternating patterns/colors.  Make sure to slide each new ribbon knot close to the previous ones.

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It will make a sort of braided pattern that will look like this on the underneath side:

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Like I mentioned before, this is time consuming.  I did it while I watched “Love It or List It” on TLC.  I’m a sucker for home reno/home buying shows!  It also helped that I had a helper sorting and handing me the strips 🙂

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Once you have filled the entire frame with fabric strips, you need to attach a loop of ribbon to the top for hanging.  I tied each end of my ribbon to the top ring.

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I then had my helper paint my wooden letters red.

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Once they were dry, I hot glued some of my white ribbon the the bottom, back of the wreath and then to the back of the letters.

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To finish it off, I cut a notch into the end of the ribbon.

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I love my new wreath and plan on making more for each season.  I plan on doing one for Easter with  a cross or Easter egg in place of the X and O.  My total cost was around $13 which was $12 cheaper than ones already made.  Plus, I had fun making it with my son and that’s priceless!

 

 

 

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

*Disclosure- I received a gift card from Family Christian Stores to help facilitate this post.  All opinions are my own.

Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching and that means classroom parties.  As a preschool teacher with 6 kids, I’ve been to a lot of them!  I love finding crafts and snacks that are easy and kid friendly.  One of my favorite go to party snacks is icing dipped pretzels.  They’re super easy and so yummy!  All you need is a bag of pretzels, a can if icing and some sprinkles.

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First spoon some of the icing into a microwave safe dish.  I put mine in for 15 seconds and I think that was a tad too long.  You don’t want the icing to be too runny.  Stir the icing to make sure it’s smooth and dip a pretzel in it halfway.

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These are great because the kids can help and because you don’t totally submerge the pretzel, it’s not too messy.

Lay the pretzels on wax paper and shake some pink or red sprinkles on them.  You will need to so this pretty quickly because once the icing starts to dry, the sprinkles won’t stick.  I recommend dipping and sprinkling the pretzels 3 or 4 at a time.

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It only took us about 15 minutes to make 50 pretzels.  The kids love them and so do I.  They are the perfect mix of sweet and salty.

Of course, a highlight of any school Valentine party is exchanging valentines.  We have made countless valentine holders over the years.  One of the absolute easiest, is one made from a cereal box.  We go through a ton of cereal so thankfully, we have plenty!

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In addition to the box, you also need construction paper, tape, glue, scissors, ribbon and your choice of decorations.  We used Big Bling Rhinestone Shapes and the Martha Stewart Double Punch-Heart Seal from Family Christian.  The heart punch is really neat and creates both solid hearts and circular heart patterns.  My son had fun using it.

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After taping the top of the box closed, turn it sideways and cut an opening along one of the narrow sides of the box.  Make sure the opening is big enough for bigger valentines or goodies that may be attached to them.  Next, cover the box with pieces of construction paper.  I just used tape for this part.  Since we like to stress the importance of being kind and being a good friend around Valentine’s Day, I wrote “A friend loves at all times” on the front of our box.  I then let my 4-year-old have free reign on decorating his Valentine holder.

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He had so much fun and really thought about where to put each rhinestone or cutout!

Once the box was dry, I cut a slit on either side of the opening on the side and tied a ribbon through each side to make a handle.

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It took us about 20 minutes to make (not including drying time) and K was so proud of his creation.

I’m also a big fan of Valentine crafts.  One of my all time favorites, is the fingerprint heart tree.

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We did this on an 8×11 canvas.  You just let the child paint a tree trunk (or paint it for younger kiddos) and then have them add heart shaped flowers using their thumbprints.  We also added a couple thumbprint butterflies as well. You could also do this on a t-shirt or apron.  It’s fun for the kids to do and makes a great keepsake or gift for grandparents.

So what are your favorite Valentine’s Day crafts or recipes?  Please share them below!

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

A few years ago, we made 4th of July shirts with the kids.  It was pretty easy and they turned out really cute!  Since I wan’t blogging at the time, I thought I’d take the chance to now share it with our readers!  All you need is a white t-shirt, cardboard (we used and old box), red blue and blue glitter fabric paint and pipe cleaners.

First, cut out several different sizes of stars out of the cardboard.  Next, take 4 pipe cleaners and fold them in half.  Then twist then about 4 inches up and spread them out into a star/firework shape.  Here’s a couple of pics of the boys with the ones we made so you can get a visual.

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You want to make sure you put a barrier inside the shirt to keep the paint from seeping through onto the backside.  We used a small piece of cardboard. plastic bags or posterbord would work well too. To make fireworks on the shirt, just coat each pipe cleaner in the different paints.  You could use any colors you’d like really.  Gold and silver would look great!  Then press the shape onto the shirt.  Make sure you press each individual pipe cleaner onto the shirt.  The add the star shapes, you can either coat the cardboard star completely with paint, or do as we did and just squeeze out or paint on stripes or squiggly lines onto the star.  Then carefully press it down onto the shirt.

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Once the paint has dried, remove the barrier inside the shirt and it’s ready to wear!

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They turned out great and the boys had so much fun making them!  I got the shirts on sale at Michael’s for $2 and the paint only cost $5 so basically each shirt only cost $3.  Can’t beat that!

 

 

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda

We love decorating for the holidays!  Recently , we were walking through Home Depot and came across a display with a snowman made from a landscape timber.  I enjoy DIY projects and my hubby is pretty handy so we made a list of materials and set out to make one for ourselves.  All you need is a landscape timer (one timber actually makes 2 snowmen), a piece of plywood, some white, black and orange paint, a drill and some twigs from the yard.

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First, cut the timber in half.  Then cut the top at an angle.  This will be the top of the snowman’s hat.  Next cut a piece of plywood to use a s the base.  Ours was about 12″x18″.  Cut a small strip of plywood, about 2″x12″ to use as the brim of the hat (we used a 1×2 because we already had one). Paint the top 10″ of the timber black, along with the base and the strip.  Paint the rest of the timber white.  Once dry, paint on the eyes, nose, mouth and buttons.  Use screws to attach the base to the bottom of the timber and nail the brim onto the hat.  Use a drill to make small holes just big enough for some twigs to fit into.  The boys had fun finding just the right arms for our snowman 🙂

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My hubby put a tad of wood glue onto the twigs before sticking them into the pre-drilled holes.   Tie and old scarf around the snowman’s neck and you’re done!

I love how it turned out and it only took about an hour and a half including drying time.  Since we already had the paint and plywood, out total cost was only $4 for the timber.  Plus since we only used half the timer, we can make another one!  I like that our snowman can be used past Christmas on into the winter months.  How do you decorate your yard?

Belinda is a wife, mom, blogger, and Brand Ambassador. She has six children including 5 boys and 1 girl. Belinda enjoys reading, photography, crafts and DIY projects, and watching her boys play soccer. You may contact Belinda at mudpiesand tiaras at gmail dot com. Click here to meet Belinda