15 February 2011

Over the Holidays... (Part 4)

The fourth and final installment of recovering from slackardlyness. It's starting to feel like a punishment. I tried to group the content of these posts to be at least vaguely related categories, and today is ornaments. Buy some empty, clear, glass ornaments. Add to them a few drops of acrylic paint in your choice of colours. Kaia added green, purple, and gold to her first couple.

The idea is to let them slowly drip and periodically rotate them. Kaia wanted to watch, but these puppies were really slow moving. She gave up on trying to watch them the entire time, but was very excited every time I called her back to turn them.

We did the rest in red and gold and I let the drips fall down the sides from the tops instead of dropping the paint strait to the bottom, then Kaia turned them on their sides a few times. This seemed to work a bit better. I did end up adding a very, very small amount of water to a couple of the paints which literally did not move and began to dry in little blobs, but I also did lose a few to having added too much water. The paint would coat nicely, but it didn't stick.

They are supposed to have a marbled glass effect, but we had a lot of difficulty with this project, maybe it is our paint? Better luck next year, I guess! Kaia's first two dried out before coating the entire globe and she added another shade of purple and some red to finish the job. To these, I painted on her and her sister's names and the year. She's made or picked out one ornament to have her name and the year put on every Christmas so far.

Now, these acorn cap decorations were a huge hit and are, in fact, still gracing our table after all of the other Christmas decorations were put away. Kaia regularly takes them down and plays with them before scattering them down the runner again. 

You need only: 
Acorn Caps
White Glue
Washable Markers

First, Kaia coloured the insides of acorn caps with the washable markers, a task she loved doing.

 The more marker you add, the brighter the colour will be, but the glue will pick up even a small amount of marker. I couldn't even see the marker on some of her caps, but they all came out colourful.

Find a surface you can set them on that will keep them relatively even. I used a holey pizza pan, but you could just as easily use anything with holes or divots in it. Fill the caps full of white glue.

They will need overnight to dry completely, but because we made ours earlier in the afternoon, we checked on them every few hours. The different stages they went through were absolutely fascinating. Starting off looking like tiny bowls of cream, the level of glue began to dip and the colour to seep out around the rims. They looked like the most adorable little glazed bowls, and I kind of wish there were a way to stop them right there and keep them as beautiful faerie dinnerware. But the glue continued to dry out and pick up more and more of the marker.

The original plan was to glue them all over a ball to make a hanging ornament, but after they went on the table we didn't want to take them off. Everyone who sits down with us cannot help but pick them up and play with them.

Incidentally, should you have a toddler who is beginning to melt down at the table, they also make very good eyes for a washcloth puppet to talk to them. ;)

We also made these tiny little nests found on Twig and Toadstool. I adore them! Our soybeans were pretty much perfectly spherical, so Kaia actually painted navy beans instead for our nests.

And we're done with the Holidays! What? It's only mid-February. I could be later.

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