Sunday, February 24, 2013

A cardboard laptop

I wanted to prevent the Older from pounding on my laptop, so I decided to make one of her own.

Originally I was inspired by this amazing felt laptop , but since I don't have a sewing machine, and gluing felt would probably turn out very messy, I decided to simplify the whole thing.

I've noticed how a certain candy box reminds me of a laptop when it's opened upside down.

And the idea was born:

We stated by wrapping it in some white paper. At first I was going to use an ordinary paper glue, but it just did not produce a neat result, so I used the electrical tape instead:

No, this is not a typo, it is how the Older calls a laptop

The inner side, the one intended to become the keyboard, was also wrapped in some white paper and I manually draw keyboard keys by using colorful markers. This part was the trickiest and lasted for a while, but the final result was great, as little hands could hardly wait to start typing:

And after she "typed" for a while, some images "appeared" on the screen (we used stickers):

The Younger also liked it, so I'll definitely have to make another one (anyone who has at least two children, knows what I mean ;)

Let the play begin!

Serenity you

Monday, February 18, 2013

A fishing game - DIY

Looking for a great indoor activity? How about these cute little fish?

Maybe it seems complicated at first, but I assure you, they are really easy to make and kids will love them.


Step one - a fishing rod


Every fisherman knows that there is no catch without a good fishing rod. To create a rod you'll need: metal hooks (from clothes hangers), a piece of string and a stick. Just tie it all together and you have a simple fishing rod: 

Step two - making fish 


For cardboard fish, you'll need the following: some cardboard and some wool / thicker thread or a ribbon and crayons for decorating them as well as a holepunch.

Cut two pieces of cardboard in the shape of a fish and decorate them as you like.
Make holes with a holepunch, through which you'll pull string and in that way, connect the two parts. While binding, ensure that the loops are not tight, so that children can catch fish (see the tail of a fish on the photo bellow).

This one turned out the best:

For rag fish you'll need: old socks or mittens, buttons for eyes, a bit of string and some  fabric scraps for filling.

Take the sock (or a mitten, like us). Sew two buttons that will be the fish's eyes:

Fill it with fabric scraps and tie it with a piece of string / ribbon:


And it's also important to make loops, so that children can "catch" the fish. 

It didn't take much for fellow fish to gather:

There's plenty fish in the sea ...

Let the play begin!

P.S. I'd like to thank these awesome bloggers for inspiring us:
223808_Melissa & Doug-Leading Designer of Education Toys!! Click Here!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Simple finger puppets

A dramatic play is among the most important activities in a child's development.

One of the simplest ways to implement such actions are finger puppets. Kids will love them, just because of their simplicity.

When I saw an idea from the page, where they made finger puppets from rubber gloves, I finally found a way to recycle all those accumulated left gloves (as right-handed, my right glove is always faster torn out). And every crafter knows how nothing should be thrown away.

We used a regular pen to draw faces expressing different feelings, but you can also use waterproof markers. This is also a great way to explain the feelings and associated facial expressions to children.

Let the play begin!

 223808_Melissa & Doug-Leading Designer of Education Toys!! Click Here!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Bottle caps activities

You have already seen that we like to play with bottle caps and how we made some toddler toys, like this box with a lid:

In this post you could see how the hamster mom (that would be me), has gathered a remarkable amount of bottle caps. So it was the time to figure out what to do with them.

Learning colors with plastic bottle caps 


First we learned some colors. I collected all the caps in one basket:

Then I took five little boxes, of the same color as the caps so then we sorted them by color. Since I couldn't find the boxes in all the necessary colors, I wrapped them in gift wrapping paper scraps.
Kids had a lot of fun and also learned something, and it was very easy for me to prepare it!
And they were also playing by mixing the caps, moving them from one container to another, in no particular order and meaning. I dare to say they liked this part the best. 

  A memory game with bottle caps


Before starting, wash all the caps (since they may contains some food leftovers). We all know how important the sensory play is, so this could be a good start and to introduce something like that into everyday activities. An additional plus: it is super fun kids.

When you wash and dry them, you can start adding stickers. 
I made one set for the Older and one for the Younger:

But in the end, the sisters mixed it all together and played:

 I'd like to thank the East Coast Mommy for this great idea.

Try it, it's super easy and we had lots of fun while playing it!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Seven days till Valentine's - seven hearty crafty ideas

Each child will be delighted with making heart crafts. We suggest seven ways that you can do it, with the materials you probably have at home, and some of them can be made by kids.

1. Cardboard necklaces


Kids will be occupied with this activity for some time. You just have to cut the cardboard rolls into smaller pieces, and let them to color the pieces and put them on a nice ribbon.

The one on the left picture were made by mum, and on the right by The Older. 

I found the idea for this craft here .

Need more ideas what to do with cardboard rolls? Look for them here !

2. A Garland

One of the easiest decorations we've ever done. We have these floor puzzles which have lost its purpose (in fact, I can not recall that they ever fulfilled their purpose, because babies just crawl away), but they have those super cute hearts which we pasted to some yarn and here it is, a simple and beautiful Valentines decoration.  The lattices used for hanging were the puzzles' framework.

3. Valentine's tic tac toe

This craft is definitely my favorite. It did not took as much time as I expected, and the children were thrilled with the result.

I cut felt into 12 pieces in the shape of a heart (6 red and 6 green).

One of my daughter's toys was used as a template for cutting hearts.

Do not throw away the scraps, since later they will be used for filling the hearts.

Sew or glue two hearts to each other, as I described in this post . When I was about halfway, I inserted the scraps in the middle and finished sewing. You should do it with all the hearts, to get 3 green and 3 red hearts.
Draw a large square on the cardboard and divide it into 9 smaller squares.

And that's it! You can immediately start playing the game that reminds us on our childhood.

I'd like to thank another blogger for this great idea

4. The Magic Wand


The whole process of making the Wand was described in this post , and it is very similar to the preparation of the above described felt hearts in the tic tac toe game. 

5. A Carnival Costume

This year, The Carnival (12.2.) and  The alentine's Day (14.2.) are very close dates, and in this way they can be celebrated at once. See here for a tutorial on how to make the wings. Decorate them with hearts and add aforementioned hearty magic wand. you can be a Love Fairy. 


6. Feeding the birds

Show some love to birds as well, in this crafty way.
See here for more information about bird feeding

7. A pendant


This pendant was made in the same way as described above with the magic wand or the hearty tic tac toe game. The only difference is in the material - we used cotton (from old shirts). You've probably already noticed that we are crazy about recycling. 

Looking for more activities for Valentine's Day? Look here .  

Happy Valentine's!
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