Saturday, February 13, 2010

Last-minute Valentine's Craft

My almost 4-year-old loves crafts. She wants to "play a craft" every day, at least. And, she's started saving everyday objects to use for these crafts. Recently, she chastised me for throwing away a Hello Kitty bandaid box because she'd been planning to use it for a craft when it was empty. She rescued it, painted it pink, and cut it up. I love seeing this creativity come from her and it's fascinating to see what she'll create.

When my paper towels ran out a couple weeks ago, I saved the tube and stuffed bread bags into it. It fits perfectly in my drawer and my supply of bags for fresh bread is much more orderly. Well, my girl wasn't pleased because she had planned on using it for a craft. Of course!  How could I not know that?! So, when the paper towels ran out again this week, I saved the tube. After a little pondering, this is the craft I came up with. It's loosely based on my (ahem, award-winning) valentine box from an oatmeal container that I made in gradeschool.

First, I cut the tube in half and had them paint it.  You could really use anything here; TP tubes, gift wrap, just plain old paper.  Also, this is a good time for a color lesson.  What colors make pink?  By the way, I love freezer paper.  It's cheap and lets me clean less.  Which makes me much more willing to do messy crafts.  Which makes my kids happy.  Which makes me happy.

And paint, paint, paint.  Very serious business!

Then we cut out a bunch of different sizes of hearts in different papers.  I drew half hearts on the fold for my girl to cut out.  My boy and I cut some out, too, using these teaching scissors.  Well, we cut out two or three, then he just cut up a bunch of paper.  We were both happy with that arrangement. 

They drew on the hearts with markers and glued them together, overlapping them so they looked like butterfly wings.  After they dried a bit, they glued the wings to the tubes, using plenty of glue.  I folded the freezer paper over and set them on the shiny side to dry so they wouldn't stick.

Now you have the basic butterfly shape and can embellish them as you please.  We added googly eyes.  We loooove googly eyes here. 

Then we curled pipe cleaners by twisting them around markers.  I poked a couple of holes near the top of the tubes with a toothpick and in went the antennae.

Pretty fancy!  And my sweeties were immensely happy.  They got to use paint, scissors, glue, googly eyes, and pipe cleaners!  A little glitter and they would have been in heaven, but I just didn't have it in me that day.  Those of you with little ones know what I mean.  Glitter can take a toll on a mama's sanity.

Happy Valentine's Day!



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