Friday, 26 April 2013

Easter fun!

Yes, I know, Easter was a long time ago!  But, due to a horrible sickness bug that hit the whole house for the first week of the holidays and other things going on, then back to work and school, time has been a bit limited, so better late than never :)

The baby bugs had lots of fun over Easter: painting, playing with rice based small world play, decorating eggs and making yummy treats.

I bought some Easter themed stamp pads thinking they could make some nice Easter pictures.  But they decided it was much more fun to swirl them around on the paper, which (as usual) morphed into swirling the paint around with hands - at least they enjoyed themselves!

Then, inspired by fabulous internet finds we set up an Easter themed small world play.  This involved dying some rice yellow (put rice in a ziplock bag, add a small amount of food colouring and move around in the bag, leave on a tray to dry) - baby bug 2 really enjoyed helping with this.  Then to the rice we added plastic eggs, rabbits and chicks.

However, avoid if you don't like your carpet messy!  No matter how big the tray the stuff never stays inside it!

Time for something slightly less messy - bubble wrap printing.  The bugs painted some bubble wrap, then placed this upside down on top of egg shaped cards to make easter eggs.  Baby bug 1 was very creative and drew faces and made swirling patterns with hers too.

And Easter wouldn't be Easter without the annual egg decorating.  We decided to make Room on the Broom with baby bug 1 and a simple bumble bee for baby bug 2.  Careful consideration needs to be given regarding transporting to school though.  We placed it carefully in a carrier bag over the back of the puschchair handles, which was fine....until we tilted the pushchair to go up a kerb, when all the eggs promptly fell out - thankfully into the carrier bag, so just a little rearranging was needed when we finally got to school!

Small Easter goodie bags were made for family - contact paper cut into an oval shape, with yellow feathers stuck on, finished off with a beak and googly eyes - which kept falling off!

And lastly - who doesn't love a crispie cake nest?  We just about managed to stop the kids eating all the mixture before it made it into the cake cases!  (Hats and safety goggles optional!)

Happy Easter!

Friday, 15 March 2013

Happy red nose day

More cakes baked for school:

I think the black writing icing was past it's best, not to worry Baby Bug 1 has ate one of them already so I don't think they'll make it to school!  Of course the baking of these was too much temptation for Baby Bug 2 who looked at them this morning and asked for cakes, so 2 batches have now been made, one for us and one for school.  We got chocolate ones with chocolate icing, 3 smarties and sprinkles.  Yummy!

Off to get Bug 2 ready in her new uniform for today only - a onesie (how excited is she!?)

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Dinosaur small world play

I used the Baby Bugs as guinea pigs for work today and tested out some dinosaur small world play on them.  (Thanks to @athomewithali for sharing her ideas).  We made our own playdough in 3 colours (red, blue and yellow) then added some pebbles and dinosaurs.

Baby Bug 2 enjoyed playing with this, though admittedly played more with the playdough than the dinosaurs, though after been shown he was also interested in making dinosaur footprints. He later got some cars and had great fun making car tracks in the dough too.

Big sister, Baby Bug 1 also enjoyed this and made a small playdough island complete with palm tree and then later made a model of her Grandad too.

I've left the tray out and hopefully it will interest them over the next few days.  I am also thinking of adding a small bottle and making a volcano using vinegar and bicarbonate of soda, but that could get messy so I'm leaving it for now, until we have more than half an hour between breakfast and the school run!

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Happy world book day from Mr Messy!

World Book Day is here again, how time flies.  This year we went for the (apt) costume of Mr Messy.  Having sourced a large cardboard box from a local shop, Baby Bug 1 lay down on it so we could do a messy outline around her.

Having cut this out we worked out roughly where the eye holes should be and then made them really big in the hope she could actually see where she was going once it was completed!

We decided to paint the background white.  Having painted both pieces of card with white poster paint it then all soaked into the cardboard, leaving us with the original cardboard box colour!  (Also, you should ensure that you turn the back section of card around before cutting it out so you don't have to paint over the logos on the box making the job twice as hard, which I did not do...)  So a coat of white undercoat later and after haging them on the washing line to help the drying process (thank goodness we got a sunny day) it was time to add the messy scribbles.  

Now the easy and obvious option here is to use pink wool, but for some unknown reason my mind by-passed this obvious idea and I decided to dye some string pink with food colouring!  This did work but took twice as long as wool would have. 

Baby Bug 1 helped me to do some big scribbles onto the white background.  We ended up using OHP pens as all other felt tips and markers just seemed to wipe straight off.  Then we swirled lots of pva glue on it and added swirls of string.   We poured more pva glue on top for good measure and once it had been left to dry overnight gave it a final coat of spray glue, before painting on the outline of the eyes and mouth. (We did later think that maybe a tube of puffy paint would have worked too and been easier to apply).

The tricky part was then getting the costume to stay on at to keep the eyes at the right level.  We cut 2 slits on each side, front and back and fed fabric tape through both sides, resting on the shoulders, tying them in a knot at roughly the right height.  The costume still hung a bit too low so on each arm we added cardboard tubes to slot her arms into meaning she could move it up a bit to the correct height.  A pair of pink tights and pink sparkly shoes were added and we put her hair into 2 knots and added some pink pipecleaner messy bits!

Thankfully, though it was a bit grey and foggy it wasn't raining so we could walk to school without too much trouble - though it did involve a bit of sideways walking to get through doors and avoid oncoming pedestrians with puschairs.

I just hope she has a fun day with it - we certainly had a laugh making it! Hope you and yours have had a good day too :)

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Aquarium inspired art

During the half term holidays the baby bugs and myself visited a local aquarium.  We had a nice time looking at the different fish, including a dancing crab, and some mammosets and otters among other things.

A few days later and following a significant amount of snowfall (!) we decided to do some fish-themed crafting.  We took some different coloured tissue paper and ripped it into small pieces. 

These were then placed inside a laminating pouch, trying not to leave any gaps - more tricky than it sounds as the static moved them all over the place when you tried to put the two parts together.  This created a stained glass effect. 

Baby bug 1 decided she would like to draw small fish on hers.  Baby bug 2 helped me draw a big fish shape onto his, we added some bubbles and cut it out.  Baby bug 1 then decided to make a seaside themed one using strips of blue and yellow paper and adding stickers and her own illustrations. 


We then hung them up at the window to brighten up a dreary day.

This has also given me inspiration for some home-made resources for the light box activities I have planned, so hopefully more on that another day.