Tag: painting

What To Do on This Rainy July 4th

Greetings on this rainy 4th of July! If your day is starting out like ours, you may need some ideas on how to spend this rainy day inside with your little ones. Below is a recap of some fun things to do while stuck inside.

 

Today is the perfect opportunity to check off some of those summer bucket list items! If you haven’t made your summer bucket list yet there’s still plenty of time! Or you can just use this 2014 Summer Bucket List printable.

Check list

 

 

Arrrr ya ready for an indoor Pirate adventure? Take some time to make a map then hide treasures around the house and find them using your map.

Final maps
Final maps

 

Did you miss my post on making pinwheels? This is a quick, fun activity to do with the kids. Use whatever paper you have on hand!

Final product
Final product

 

How about simply bringing out the paints and paper and let the kids run wild? Here are some easy, fun July 4th craft ideas.

Step 1

 

And, if you can’t get out to see the fireworks, why not paint them? Here’s a fun craft from our friend Pam at Creating Barefoot.

fireworks

 

 

So you just blew through all the crafts in less than an hour, now what? Who says you have to stay inside ALL day? Why not let your kids run outside to play in the rain? Every kid loves dancing n the rain! They are only little once! Maybe it will inspire you to host your own Mess Fest later this summer?

The perfect day for puddle jumping!
The perfect day for puddle jumping!

 

However you choose to spend your day I hope it is relaxing, safe and enjoyable. Happy July 4th everyone!

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Reclaiming my passion for painting.

My finished painting.
My finished painting.

I walk into a Vine Van Gogh paint night so excited to spend time with other moms (and a glass of wine). It really does not matter what we are painting, I am just happy to be out of the house and among other adults. In the last three years I’ve made due with stolen moments alone at the grocery store, or late night drives to run errands. FYI, none of those are fulfilling or deeply gratifying.

Connecting with friends.

Connecting with friends.

The instructor shows us how to set up our canvas and lets us loose with paint. My mind is flooded with distant memories of moving a brush around on canvas in another life. It feels like a refresher course of all the art classes I have taken. Then without expecting it, it becomes a refresher course in how much I love painting. I spend so much time painting with my toddlers I have forgotten how much I love painting for myself. There was a time in my life (before kids, marriage, house) I couldn’t go a day without painting, or drawing something. Don’t get too excited I’m not an artist by any stretch. But, I am creative. I can see new ways to reuse something, or finish a project in simple easy steps and occasionally I can get downright crafty.

Remembering how this painting thing works.

Remembering how this painting thing works.
Class shot.
Class shot.

I love my kids and I love that I get to stay home with them. I simply forgot the value of having my own space and time, or a project just for me. Something I clearly took for granted before kids. I feel guilty spending money on myself, or leaving when I know my kids will melt down. But, it’s OK to let dad feed the kids whatever for dinner, and so what if they skip a bath because it’s what dad needs to do to get through his night with the kids? The important thing I try to remember is it is one night. They will survive and so will I! I realize I am not spending hundreds on myself. The occasional expense of nurturing my own happy pursuits goes a lot further than just me. When I am personally fulfilled I am better at nurturing my family.

I love my time out painting and chatting (and I love escaping the monotony of laundry and the constant barrage of shrill screeches of“Mama! Mama! Mama!”  that jumbles all of my thoughts).  The class is nearly 3 hours long- which is long enough for me to reconnect with a long forgotten passion. Now, I can’t wait for the next class!!

Class photo.
Class photo.

We are all busy women, whether you’re a mom or working girl- what are some ways you keep in touch with your passions?

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Painting away the winter blues.

In case you missed it, it’s stiiiiill winter here in the Northeast! There have been a few sunny days since our last beating of snow. But, it is still very cold and hard to get outside with the kids. Moms in my circle are longing for the days we can meet at a park and let our kids run free, and not have to mess with layers and layers of winter clothes. Come on Spring!

To keep my girls busy (and to keep our sanity) we are visiting different libraries to take advantage of a variety of free programs. From story time to crafts to music and movement classes and so much more. This week we traveled to two new libraries. While at one story hour we discovered the Le Petite Picasso painter program offered each week. The mere mention of paint (and opportunity to make a mess) and my kids are all over it. We came back the very next day for our Picasso experience!

This little library has such a warm and colorful space for kids to play and create. We donned our painting smocks and were ready to paint … bubble wrap! Who doesn’t love bubble wrap?!

Painting a sunny yellow.
Sunny yellow on a winter’s day.

Of course they used their hands to mix the paints and pop the bubbles. It’s all a great sensory learning experience, and just plain fun!

Little hands love paint.

Little hands love paint.
Different sized bubbles offered variety of texture.
Different sized bubbles offered variety of texture.

Once the kids had a chance to play with the paints for a bit, the librarian leading the class placed plain paper over the top of the bubbles. The children pressed down on the paper and rubbed their hands over it. Pealing the paper back revealed a unique print.

Taking advantage of programs at different libraries is a great way for us to get out of the house on a cold day, make a mess that someone else cleans up and we make some new friends- all for free!  Paying for two kids to attend painting class, or private lessons is costly. Attending painting class at the library for free is a huge savings for us!

This is such a simple activity to do at home with your kids. All you need is a roll of bubble wrap, some plastic on the floor, paints and brushes. If you have those cute little painter pallets great- if not, just dump the paint right onto the wrap and let your kids go.

Does painting at home make you nervous? If you’re embracing the whatever philosophy  you’ve already wrapped your kid in plastic, moved away all the furniture and have plenty of wipes on hand! This of course is to alleviate our own stress by attempting to contain the mess. The beauty of this project is when the kids are finished you can roll it all up and toss it in the trash. If you want more Eco-friendly put paper on the floor and recycle.

Tip: I rarely pay for paper for my kids to paint on. I save the paper that comes in shipping boxes.  I just fold it neatly and lay it flat. Now I have paper any time we need it for painting, crafting, or to use as underlay to keep a project area neat.

What are some ways you save on art/craft supplies for your kids? Does your library offer any fun, free programs?

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