Watercolor Easter eggs

On one of my many pilgrimages  Target this week, I set out looking for an egg dying kit… a SIMPLE Easter egg dying kit.  You can tye-dye your Easter eggs, cover them with stickers or glitter, turn them into Star Wars characters…. Those vinegar solutions that result in such pure, pastel colors were no where to be found.

I’m sure there are homemade recipes that yield a similar result… Ones that involve pain painstakingly peeling beets, soaking them for days, and then dipping your eggs… all while you sip tea, knead homemade bread, and count the endless hours you have left at your disposable.

NOT MY LIFE!

Cut to watercolors.  I already had them in the house and goodness knows I’ve seen many kids test the “non-toxic” label, so I can’t imagine that they’ll poison the eggs (Update:  I’m alive, not poison).

And I’m loving the results.  Depending on the amount of water you put into the paint you can go from a saturated, pure hue all the way to a light, glowing pastel.

If you wet the egg a bit, and then load up the brush it bleeds in a wonderfully, beautiful way.  Even when a heavy handed, 3 year old is wielding the brush the results are delicate.

I’m thinking I may try round 2 and dab with Saran-wrap.  This method creates a marbled look on paper that I’m pretty sure will transfer to eggs no problem.

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Fun with forts and Engineering pitfalls

On these rainy, cold days we all start to get a little stir crazy… Am I wrong?  Along with social media, we’ve also given up t.v. for the kiddo this lent.  We always try to monitor screen time, but it’s just so tempting when you’ve been inside all day!

One coping mechanism as of late has been fort building.  It has been a learning curve for me.  Apparently, there is a reason I’m not a structural engineer:  I’m no good at building things that will actually stand!  So I googled around and came across the following visual on lifeasamama.com.

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This tutorial redeemed me.  I’m not sure I’m ready to actually begin a career as a structural engineer… but I can build a darn good fort now-a-days!!!

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Art Room Week in Review

 

It’s been a long time since I posted art room pictures!  Here are a few random, fun photos from this week…

Preschool read “Little Yellow, Little Blue” by Leo Lionni and created these masterpieces by pushing a ping pong ball through yellow and blue paint.  The resulting pieces look very active…. and very green!

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First Grade has been studying the art of America.  We’ve studied Jasper Johns, Peter Max, and Romero Britto.  These pieces examine size variety and repetition just like Jasper Johns’ “3 Flags”.IMG_5641

These koinobori and “Great Waves” were created by second graders during their exploration of Asian art.  We studied the culture and work of Japanese artist Hokusai.

And these 3rd grade desert landscapes just make me happy.  We studied  Georgia O’Keeffe’s use of color theory (specifically warm/cool colors).  We were inspired by her landscapes painted in New mexico.  O’Keeffe lessons are always a hit.  Her work is so like-able.  Kids always “oooo and ahhhh” at her work…and I always “ooooo and ahhhhh” at the work they create in response.

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The joys of a cardboard box

 

IMG_5581I’ve recently had a surplus of boxes floating around school and the house.  Usually I just crush these bad boys and throw them in the recycle… but Ollie’s been REALLY into making things out of boxes lately… airports, fire stations, houses on fire, parking garages, cities… endless possibilities.

Constructing out of boxes alongside him has really been a joy for me.  A reminder of the little things.  A reminder to look at boxes (and life) differently, with an open mind.  A reminder that the simplicity can bring such joy.

So, I dare you.  I double dog dare you.  Jump into cardboard box architecture without hesitation.  You may find, like me, that you needed a reminder of the simple joys.

Need ideas?

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apartment therapy

 

Technology, Lent, and Life

It’s been such a long time!  There are many reasons I’ve been out of technological touch.  Busyness is first among the reasons!  Not sure I’m actually drawing breath some days.

But I’ve also made a concerted effort to take leave of technology.  I can get so caught up looking at other peoples’ family pictures on facebook… following stream after stream on instagram… I sometimes have to totally cut it out to remind myself of priorities.

So, for lent this year, I gave up social media.  This sounds so silly.  Just 10 years ago social media was not a part of my daily life.  But now… I don’t even want to know how many minutes, hours… I spend staring at a screen.

It was embarrassingly difficult to give up at first, but more recently, it has been liberating.  I have found myself reading every article in the paper, doing crosswords, and yes, taking time to write little notes on this blog (which is technically social media… and will automatically post to facebook… but I promise not to open facebook!).

I’m wondering if lent may overflow beyond Easter for me… I guess I never realized how all those minutes spent staring at a glowing screen add up to hours.  How those hours of extreme connectedeness make me feel somehow claustrophobic.  I had forgotten how free I feel with my phone on “do not disturb” and all that matters right in front of me.