It’s that time of year again folks. Time to thank the dozen different day care providers, half of which I don’t even know the names of, for putting up with my darling children 2 days each week.
This year I decided to make something that all the kids could help with, as last years gift required minimal effort from the kids. So we made Bath Bombs and I am happy to report they were a success (we tested one out last night!)
I used 2 different recipes, the first one was here
- Baking Soda – 8 ounces
- Citric Acid – 4 ounces
- Corn Starch – 4 ounces
- Salts – 4 ounces
- Water – .75 tbsp
- Essential or Fragrance Oil – 2 tsp (I used peppermint, as it is Christmassy)
- Oil – 2.5 tbsp
- Food coloring – 1 or 2 drops
For the pink lot, I used this recipe
- 1 1/2 cups bicarbonate of soda
- 1/2 cup citric acid powder (use fine grade, available from chemists or pool supply shops)
- Potpourri or herbal teabags such as chamomile, lemon, rosehip or peppermint
- An essential oil such as peppermint, lavender, geranium
- Sweet almond oil (I just used vegetable oil)
- Food colouring
- Rubber gloves
- Moulds from craft shops
Which came from here
The method I used for both was the same though. Mixed all dry ingredients in a large bowl, then had Mr8 ever so slowly pour in the wet ingredients while I stirred like a mad woman. With the second recipe, it doesn’t actually call for corn flour (starch) but I decided to throw a handful in just to make the recipe go further. The second lot stuck together better than the first recipe while wet, but they have both dried lovely and firm and both fizz wonderfully in the bath tub.
We made the round ones in some empty plastic Christmas ornaments like the blogger in the first link did, as well as some smaller ones in some Aldi silicone trays. If I was to make them again, I think I’d find a mould that was spherical, but a bit smaller, so you end up with more bombs from your mix. I left the silicone tray ones to dry over night, and they popped out easily the next day.
It is summer here right now, and humid, which can destroy the bombs. So before putting them in the little draw strings bags ($2 for 5 at the cheap shop) I wrapped them in cling wrap to protect them from moisture.
Added a little thank you note and Merry Christmas tag to the bags and we are ready to drop them off.
Mr8 weighing out the Bi Carb,
Mr 8 adding dry ingredients
Ms4 with the important job of mixing the dry ingredients,
We used this pink salt as I thought it would look cool through the green bombs, but normal salt would have been fine too
Mr8 measuring out the wet ingredients into a separate bowl
Stirring very quickly while wet ingredients are being added, so a reaction does not occur.
Press firmly into moulds.
Mr9 and Mr8 making the bombs
Wrap with cling wrap to protect from moisture
Ok, so the school holidays have not quite started here, but this looked like too much fun and I had a fairly light schedule for the day, so we gave it a go. The best part is, unlike normal play dough, it is not going to go bad when stored between uses.
The recipe I followed required Elmers Glitter Glue, but after searching everywhere in a 20km radius I was still empty handed. Apparently Elmers is available in Australia now, but from what I can tell it is only the white stuff, and I really wanted the clear version for this project. So I just used non toxic craft glue, added my own glitter and was thankfully able to achieve the results I was after. The recipe came from this delightful blog
Santa Slime Recipe
Combine the above ingredients in a bowl
In a separate bowl combine
- 3/4 teaspoons of borax
- 1 & 1/3 cups very warm water
Once the ingredients of both bowls are mixed, combine them and mix, the slime will form almost instantly.
– See more at: http://www.growingajeweledrose.com/2013/12/santa-slime-recipe.html#sthash.MROKZyw1.dpuf
As I mixed up the ingredients I found it very hard to believe it needed all that water – but it really did, and then some! Not sure if it was because I used so much glitter or because the make up of the glue I used was different than Elmers, but it turned out really firm, almost like play dough, and certainly didn’t ooze like I anticipated. After I got over the initial disappointment, I figured I could either spend another $11 on glue or try to fix it – had nothing to lose, so I added more water to a section of it in a bowl (which did nothing while cool) and put it in the microwave for 2 minutes. Yes, it worked, the slime took on more water and began to get runnier. I continued to do this in sections, increasing the time in the microwave and the amount of water until I had the desired texture.
The kids have been having heaps of fun with it, even the older 2. We ended up with about 3 litres of slime after adding all the extra water, so plenty to share between the 4 of them. If I make it again using the same glue, I will use twice as much water from the start, because adding some extra borax to thicken will be a lot easier than adding extra water was!
What we used.
The little ones helping decant the glue
Stirring in the gold glitter
After mixing the red glitter and adding the borax solution
Home made sludge
Storing for later.
Here’s a unique home made card idea that the whole family can get involved in. All you need is some card stock, paint (brush and roller), sequins or other bling and some tree shaped leaves. Glitter optional!
Coat the leaves in a thick layer of paint, we used white as I thought it would stand out nicely on the black card. Place the leaf, painted side down, carefully on the card, then roll over it with a clean dry paint roller to press down. Remove leaf and you should have a pretty leaf print. If you want to add glitter, do so now while the paint is still wet so it sticks. If you are creating more than one card, just give the roller a wipe with an old rag between leaves to remove any paint and avoid smudges. Once dry, let the kids decorate with sequins, we used PVA to attach them – done.
Coat with paint
Place on card and roll over to press down
Sprinkle with glitter while paint it still wet
Shake off excess glitter
Leaf print cards
Home made Christmas Cards
Maybe I should rename this blog ‘101 alternate uses for Christmas Baubles’, lol. Here is something we put together this afternoon. It took about 45 minutes and stands over a meter tall. As usual, I struggled to take a photo of it, I really need to learn how to use my camera properly.
The sticks are those ornamental ones you buy from home decor shops, I think these ones actually came from The Reject Shop as around $4 a bundle. We cut them to size with secateurs and glued with hot glue, I reinforced the corners with zip ties. The stem is glued on – it is not weight bearing! Then starting at the top we glued the bead string to one side, worked out the length needed to reach the other side, cut the string, threaded on some baubles, and glued the cut end to the other side. Repeat, working your way down the tree. To create the zig zag look, the strands are 12cm/5cm apart down each side.
Once upright, I shortened each string on the baubles by just tying another knot in them. Glued on the star (came with the pack of baubles, $8 for the lot), and we are done.
What you’ll need
The tree frame
Mr8 helping glue
Glue the beads to what will be the back of the frame
Work your way down.
Christmas Tree Wall Art
These are very easy to make and can be as fancy or as simple as you like.
I usually avoid glitter when doing craft. Sure it’s pretty, but after we use it, that stuff turns up all over the place for the next month. ‘The herpies of the craft world’ a friend of mine called it, I think she was right. But today I caved, because an angel needs her sparkle! Honestly, there was no template, just trial and error until I got the shape I was after. You can see the steps in the photos below. Double sided plates for the body would have made pretty dresses, but I couldn’t find any of those, so we stuck with white. Of course you could get the kids to colour them or even use a different colour glitter on the body too. But I was all glittered out after the wings alone!
Cut your plate something like this, that’s right, no pattern, trial and error was all I went by
Secure with tape or staples.
Apply a generous amount of hot glue to the bauble
Place on top of the body. Tie a ribbon around the neck once glue has dried to cover any mess.
Run some glue (we just used a glue stick) along the edges and sprinkle with glitter
Once the wings are dry, attach to the body.
Hang from a string
Paper plate craft.
These were so quick and easy to make and I could not be happier with the results.
I picked up this wool a while back with nothing particular in mind, I just loved the colours. The styrofoam tree shapes are available just about anywhere at this time of year. These came from a $2 shop. However, there’s no reason you couldn’t just make a cone shape from cardboard and achieve similar results.
I tied a tight knot in one end to stop fraying, then pushed through the wool and down into the middle of the cone. Then gently began wrapping the knit around the top of the cone, before fastening again a few rows down so that it doesn’t spin off. Continue down the full length of the cone until you reach the bottom. Cut with enough room left over to tie another knot, then secure with a 3rd pin. Done!
What you need
Close up of the pre knitted wool
Pin fastening to the top, and again at the side
Fasten at the bottom
Wool Christmas Trees
Christmas Table Centrepiece.
Check out these cute little Christmas Angels Miss4 and I put to gather today. The best part? The whole kit, with everything except glue – $2 from Kmart. Win.
Ok ok, they have no arms, but who cares! We used hot glue to stick on the hair and faces, because hot glue rules the craft world (and I didn’t have time to PVA to dry). The project is not something Miss4 could have done on her own, but it was quick, simple fun and the results are pretty cute. She has been playing with them throughout the day and they have not fallen apart yet!
If you didn’t have access to a Kmart, the kit is made up of 4 old style wooden pegs, 4 paper doilies, wool, gold string and some pre cut wings. All things that are easy to get your hands on from a craft of $2 shop.