Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Three snowmen & fantastic keepsake ornaments

Last Thursday I had 2 four year olds, 2 three year olds & one 18 month-er sitting on my living room couch (it was my turn for hosting 'pre-school').  As soon as the sweet children arrived I directed them to take a seat and I pulled out three wonderful snowmen books.  I really love seasonal books,  I love that they are new and fun when you pull them out for their particular season and I love that they're something special are rare to read out of season... also it's fun to change up the at home library... I just love them.  And snowmen books are a plentiful kind of seasonal books- there are LOTS out there.  Anyway, for school I pulled out three of our favorites.  I should note, I picked up all three of these books from book orders in the past few years.

We started with
The Missing Mitten Mystery by Steven Kellogg

I don't know about you, but anything written by Steven Kellogg (even if it's recent, like this one- published in 2000) makes me feel nostalgic for my childhood.  I really really love his artwork.  And I like the non-conventional way he tells a story.  He usually writes in first person narrative, and you don't find many children's books written like that.  This snowman book is absolutely delightful and imaginative.

Next came
The Biggest, Best Snowman by Margery Cuyler

A story of empowerment.  Little Nell's always getting told she's too small to do anything.  So she goes off into the woods where her woodland friends help her to see that even though she's small she can still do big things.  A great story for the underdog!  I really like this one, it's perfect to read to your little one, because (as we all know) kids get told about all the things they can't do far too often. 

We ended with
All You Need for a Snowman by Alice Schertle

A truly artistic and delightful book.  The text is poetic and the illustrations are simple and beautiful.  This book is meant to be read aloud with feeling, the words flow in perfect rhythm.  Each page includes a bit of a tease as it states 'All you need for a snowman is...' one single piece at a time (starting with one snowflake)... just enough of a tease to be fun.

I have proof that all three of these books are great because I read all three in consecutive order to earlier said children... and I had their undivided attention the whole time.

I picked these books out because of something I found in internet land a few weeks ago...
...The photo below was my inspiration for this activity...  it came from Little Bit Funky and when I saw this picture on one of those linky parties...  I fell in love. 

So 'thank you' to them and now come see what we made!

These keepsake ornaments are SUPER easy and I think each one we made turned out great

Step One:

(I picked up glass ornaments and some white craft paint before hand and had damp rags at the ready.)  I painted each child's hand- and I wasn't very consistent, some were drippy/some were a bit dry- regardless- they all turned out great.

Step two:

After painting I had the child spread her hand out flat, I placed the ball in child's hand and told her to squeeze tight for five seconds.

Step three:

I had the child slowly open her hand.  I gently took the ball and placed it upside down on a cardboard tube to dry.  I then repeated steps 1-3 with each child.

Step four:

A few hours later with a two sharpie markers (one black - one orange) the snowmen came to life...

Here's the lot of them- ADORABLE, right?

Now I just have to feature a few individually so you can really take in all the holiday wonder and delight (the kiddos were amazed at the transformation from hand print to snowman party).

Here I must interject... baby was included in the fun (her ornament is below) I think I must have been a little paint happy coupled with the fact that she's not exactly the best at following directions... we got a smeary hand blur instead of a print, per say.  Even though, I think it's absolutely delightful!

Oh and don't forget to label each ornament with name & date.

Really, I will love these ornaments forever.  You should make some too!  They are a fantastic addition to our eclectic tree (which I love) - Robyn

...and if you do make some I would love to see them- link up or post your pics on our FB page, we would love it!

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