Back to School Teacher Gifts

Back to School Teacher Gifts in this PostBack to School Teacher Gifts

Spane starts back to school on August 12, 2013. I wanted to make a some nice Back to School Teacher Gifts, one for our new Principal and one for Spane’s fifth grade teacher. We don’t know yet who Spane’s teacher is going to be, so I did not want to make anything that was gender specific. I also didn’t have a lot of money to spend, so I headed out to my nearest craft store and purchased two silver toned boxes, some school themed stickers, blue and gold ribbon to reflect the school’s colors, yellow wine gift bags, and some horses from the toy department because the school mascot is a mustang.

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Make a Coordinated Scrunchy Ribbon using the Bowdabra with Pictures

Crafts in this PostRibbon using the Bowdabra with Pictures

I love making really nice looking bows, both for gifts, and to go in my hair. I like to coordinate ribbons with my outfits, but either can’t find the right color, or don’t want to spend the money on something I can make better at home. You don’t have to spend a whole lot of dough on ribbons. Hit the craft stores a month or so before a holiday or right after a holiday to get good prices, or visit your nearest dollar store that often has ribbons for cheap. Sometimes, fabric stores have remnants that can make good bows, too.

Bowdabra BlogI bought the wonderful tool, the Darice Mini Bowdabra Bow Maker at my local Michael’s a few years ago, and it has been a star of my crafting arsenal, along with my hot glue gun, ever since. I bought the ribbon at my local Dollar King in their craft department. This bow was featured on August 9, 2013 Bodabra’s Feature Friday blog. How great is that?

I was used the bow to make Back to School Teacher Gifts. Come see how our Back to School Teacher Gifts came out. I also baked some Mocha Butterscotch Chip Cookies to put in the gift bag. Oh, the joy of kids going back to school!

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Teacher Appreciation Day – Apple Napkin Rings

Crafts in this PostNapkin Rings

I love Teacher Appreciation Week. I love it because it honors the most important people in the world, the people who teach our children. Teachers are underpaid, and have to put up with increasingly larger class sizes. These dedicated men and women well deserve our appreciation. Last year, 2012, when Spane was in third grade, the PTA had a special luncheon in the newly created Teachers’ Garden, and I made a Lemon Wafer Cake that everyone thought was art, and not edible. The year before that, 2011, I made Star Party Sandwiches, because Spane had written about them in a second grade paper and his teacher really wanted to taste them. When Spane was in first grade, in 2010, I made Quick Meatless Enchiladas. I don’t think I knew about Teacher Appreciation Week when Spane was in Kinder, but if I did, I probably made something then, too.

Originally, I was going to make napkin rings for the Teacher Appreciation Luncheon, but then realized it is not a sit down type of affair, it’s a buffet featuring dishes prepared by parents (and they are ALL good cooks). So, I decided to make them just for his teacher. Part of appreciation week involves the kids bringing their teacher a present of some sort – Spane said that his teacher only wanted a card, and then when I presented him with these, he was happy.

These are very, very simple to make. You can probably find the apples in a craft store, although you might have a take them out of something else. The ones I found were loose and had been on some kind of spray. I was only charged one dollar for them – your mileage may vary.

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Easter Centerpieces

Crafts in this ProjectEaster Centerpiece

I think the best part about Easter is kids, and how much fun they can have. As some of you may know, I have been involved with a wonderful organization called Ascencia. I wanted to make them special centerpieces for their Easter breakfast, and I cooked breakfast as well.

We had a lot of fun making these little “nests”, as I got the children, including my dear Spane, to decorate plastic eggs in whatever fashion they desired. I had plenty of glitter glue, paint, sticky gems, and all we really needed to make FabergĂ© jealous.

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How to Make an Advent Wreath

Crafts in this PostAdvent Wreath Unlit

Today is All Saints Day, the day after Halloween. This is a good time to get supplies for your Advent Wreath.

What is Advent? Advent starts on the 4th Sunday before Christmas, and is the time for preparing ourselves for the coming of the Baby Jesus. Just as pregnant women “nest” in the last few weeks of their pregnancy, we decorate our house, put up the Christmas tree, the Nativity village, and bring out the Advent Wreath. For Roman Catholics like us, Advent is also the beginning of the Liturgical Year.

Advent comes from the Latin word, adventus, meaning “coming”. It can be as early as November 27th, and as late as December 3rd, depending on that year’s calender. There are 22 to 28 days of Advent, depending on the date of First Advent Sunday. This year, 2012, Advent starts on December 2nd.

Advent and Christmas Week Days
Advent Starts Days til Christmas Christmas Day of Week
Dec 2, 2012 23 Tuesday
Dec 1, 2013 24 Wednesday
Nov 30, 2014 25 Thursday
Nov 29, 2015 26 Friday
Nov 27, 2016 28 Sunday
Dec 3, 2017 22 Monday

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Spane’s Renewable Energy Diorama – Projects for Kids

Spane and his diorama

Crafts in this Post

So, Spane comes home and says that he has to make a diorama for his third grade class to be shown at Open House. I’ve never made a diorama before, but I love crafts, and I’m very interested in renewable energy.

When I asked Spane what his diorama was going to be, he said, a farm. His farm has corn, a house, a river, and a cherry tree. He’s actually right on target, there are a lot of things on his farm that can use or create renewable energy.

Part of the project was the diorama itself, the other was research that I did for the project. I have included sources for my research in this post, so you can find more about it.

Update: Parents were treated to all the wonderful dioramas on Open House on Thursday, May 31, 2012. The children got to see other classrooms the next day, Friday, so the diorama had to be up for one more day. I got to do a little repair work at Open House as the kids had been spinning the windmill, and touching the cherry tree. I quickly glued the “leaves” back on the tree, sadly only one of the “cherries” were left, I guess the rest got eaten! The good thing about this diorama is when Spane went to take it home, everything collapsed, he closed up the box, and put it in his backpack.

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