Wednesday, April 20, 2011

.baby beach.

 Amazingly...I've lived on Kauai for 1/3 of my life, and just a short two weeks ago was my first time going to Baby Beach.  How did I not discover this gem years ago.  Especially since the water isn't very deep (is that why they call it baby beach...or is it because there isn't much beach...hmmm?)...which is a MUST for this mama who can't swim.  Yes...another amazing fact...I've lived on an island in the middle of the pacific for 1/3 of my life...and I can't swim.  I've had friends try to teach me to swim.  I even had swimming lessons when I was younger.  Yet...I am confident in saying that I will drown if I can't touch the bottom!  So...please do not throw me in the pool in the deep end unless you plan on playing lifeguard and saving me. 

Kaiya also!  She loves any beach actually.  She loves the water.  She loves the sand.  She loves the sun.  She LOVES the sand.  This past weekend I caught her dumping handfuls of sand all over herself and laughing away. 

I love it so much I would become a Baby Beach junkie if I didn't have to work.  But I will try my best to convince Eric to go every chance we get.  Baby Beach is where it's at.  But there's so much more of Kauai that we have yet to explore.  So lucky we live here!  When I was in high school, even college, I would have never thought I would be back living on Kauai.  But now that I'm here, and older, soooo much to appreciate.  Kauai does have it's drawbacks (no shopping! no museums! no zoos!)...but the beauty outweighs it all.  When I think about it...tons of people dream of coming to Kauai for vacation...and we live here!  Amazing.

.chalkboard pages.

A few posts back, I mentioned how I found this amazing tutorial on Attempting Aloha on how to make your own chalkboard paint in ANY COLOR!  Luckily, I found the secret ingredient  (dry non-sanded grout) at Ace (and it was under $5!) and mixed up a batch of an aqua/teal-ish shade. I used the majority of the paint to cover a broken table so the kids could do chalk art whenever they wanted, rain or shine, day or night...however, I still need to apply a final coat, so I'll post about that when it's finished.

I had just a little left (obviously not enough for a final table coat), so I thought it would be a great medium to add to my forever-work-in-progress art journal! I don't find much time to work on the art journal...but I LOVE how it looks thanks to a Composition Book Art Journal Tutorial from Lil Blue Boo.  Her journals are 5000x more creative, my pages are seriously lacking some creative content.  But...with the addition of the chalkboard paint, it adds yet another dimension...that can be worked, erased, and re-worked...over and over again! Who needs a fancy schmancy journal when you can make one like this out of a cheap-o $.99 composition book! It's a lot of work to prepare the journal, but so worth it! I will definitely be making other colors of chalkboard paint and adding them to random pages in the journal.

Monday, April 18, 2011

.spray bottle painting.

We absolutely love taking advantage of the beautiful Garden Isle that we call home.  Since it was a nice day out, why not get out of the house and enjoy the sunshine.  I had made a homemade bubble solution and dyed them a few different colors with the intent of having the kids blow bubbles onto a big sheet of butcher paper and creating bubble art.  However...the bubble solution was horrible.  Not to mention that the color was almost transparent.  Big fat fail for bubble art.

So, we improvised.  I filled a spray bottle with water and food coloring so they could do some spray painting.  Well, only Kaytin is capable of actually pressing the spray bottle trigger, so she had a LOT of fun with it.  She even got creative and took a paintbrush that was sitting in some bubble solution, drew some letters, then sprayed over it...she had discovered her own invisible ink!  I can't wait until Kaiya gets to be Kaytins age...cause every time Kaytin comes over she tells me, "Aunty Kelli, I haven't done any art yet."  Although sometimes it drives me crazy...Aunty Kelli, Aunty Kelli, Aunty Kelli, Aunty Kelli, art, art, art, art, art...Love that girl!

Kaiya and Caleb played with the bubble solution and bubble wands while Kaytin spray painted.  They had no idea that the original art project didn't turn out as planned!  I guess art day wasn't a fail after all.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

.marker holder.

Another quick project from MaryAnn Kohl's First Art Book.  A fabulous marker holder!!  It solves the problem of lost marker caps, especially with the little ones.  Although...they can't really take the markers out.  I even had a hard time getting them out at first!  Ooops!!!  But, it's a great way to keep the markers all in one place and keeps the markers from drying out...provided they put them back in their caps (unlike Kaiya who will just ditch out on the markers and leave them laying on the floor since she can't put them back in the cap totally defeating the purpose of the marker holder!).  

This project is super simple and fast to make.  I used one of Kaiya's Hello Kitty lunchboxes as a holder since it had a flat bottom...and it was broken anyway.  I made a batch of plaster of paris, poured it into the tin, and arranged the markers in rows, making sure the cap was in at least half-way.  I left it to dry overnight and by morning...a handy dandy marker holder was born.  I have to admit that a few days later, one of the marker caps came flying out when I tugged on the marker to get it out for Kaiya...but a few drops of gorilla glue and some drying time and that's probably the most secure marker in that bad boy. teach Kaiya how to take the marker out herself, and replace them into the cap.

*Warning...if you have never used plaster of paris before, it gets HOT after a while, so don't be alarmed.  Also, do not pour the leftover plaster of paris down the drain, it'll clog the drain for sure.  I just left it in the container I mixed it in and when crumbled it in the trash when it dried.*

Thursday, April 14, 2011

.homemade playdough.

First of all, I have to consider this project a somewhat disaster. I took a basic homemade playdough recipe, however, I substituted wheat flour. What was I thinking? I mean, it came out okay, and the kids do love it...but the color was definitely affected by the darker flour. Vibrant greens and blues turned out blah and not so fun. And although the recipe says kids won't eat it because of all the salt (1/2 cup!), guess whose daughter thought it was snack time. Yes...little miss Kaiya was munching away as the other kids sat there playdoughing away. Oyyy.  

I used the Playclay recipe from MaryAnn Kohl's First Art book.  I did a bunch of batches of the single serving recipe.  All you need is:
1 cup water
1/2 cup salt
2 tsp. cream of tartar
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 cup flour (totally using white next time!)
food coloring
Just combine the water, salt, cream of tartar and food coloring in a large pot over low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon.  As the mixture heats up, stir in the oil, and then slowly add in the flour.  Keep stirring until the mixture starts looking dry and pulling away from the sides of the pot.  Remove from heat.  When you pinch a little piece with your fingers, it should NOT be sticky.  If it is, keep stirring over heat.  Place the dough on a flat surface and need until smooth.  Voila...playdough!  Or Playclay.  Whatevs.
 I made around 5 different colors, thats all that I could get out of the tiny cream of tartar container I bought from WalMart.  I made them about a month ago, and the kids just played with them last week.  So like she says in the book, it lasts quite a while.  Actually...Kaytin and Caleb played with the dough and Kaiya drew with markers because as we learned earlier...she's the play dough eating monster. 

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

.because you can never have too many kids art books.

Blog Tour: Teach Yourself Visually Crafting With Kids & Giveaway!

The Crafty Crow...another absolutely fabulous blog on my google reader...just posted this giveaway for a signed copy of a new book by Jennifer Casa called Teach Yourself Visually Crafting with Kids.  Looks like a great book with all sorts of fun for the kids (and adults).  And I figured since Borders is closing on Kauai (yes, we will soon only have a small mom & pop bookstore in Hanapepe and the trusty library to choose from), this would be great if I if I actually win anything.  :)

So go on over to The Crafty Crow and check it out.

{chalkboard paint}

In recent months, I've gone toddler arts, DIY, crafts blog crazy!  I find myself constantly adding blog after blog to my Google Reader list.  So glad that I have been doing this, though, as I would have NEVER even known about half of these creative, DIY crafts and projects that you could do with a lot of basic ingredients that you already have....not to mention the joy of repurposing items that would normally be looked at as "trash".  One of the blogs on my list is tatertots & jello, and today she featured a guest blogger, Charlie of Attempting Aloha...who lives right "next door" on Oahu.  Anyway, I browsed on over to Charlie's site, and I came across a tutorial on DIY Chalkboard Paint!  Seriously?  So you're telling me not only can I make my own chalkboard paint, but I can make it in practically ANY COLOR that I choose?!?  Must.try.soon.  What a fab.u.lous find this tutorial is....especially to this island-bound mama that has only come across the basic black chalkboard, I haven't even come across the old school green.

Now let's all cross our fingers that Kauai's trusty craft stores: WalMart or Home Depot or Ace will have the necessary ingredients--->acrylic craft paints and dry non-sanded grout.  Yeah, you like how we have all of those "craft stores" to choose from...tell me about it! At least I'm sure they have acrylic craft paint, and luckily I have a few on hand from my art's the dry non-sanded grout I'm worried about.  Once I track down this item...surely, they must have it, right...all I have to do is figure out what color I want to use start with, and what I want to use it on.  Mason Jar labels...a mini chalkboard for Kaiya...oh the possiblities.  So it's off to the usual stores I go...and according to Charlie, her dry non-sanded grout cost her under $2, so I'm hoping $5 AT MOST with the special hike in price for only Kauai. 
{via Attempting Aloha}
Here is the link if you want to make an attempt on making your own chalkboard paint.  Check it!!
Attempting Aloha's Chalkboard Paint How-To
{via Attempting cute are these chinese take-out boxes decked out with chalkboard paint that she made!}

And finally...speaking of special hike in price for only's this for gas?

Really?!?  Again...the price of paradise.

Monday, April 4, 2011

{succulent terrarium}

I have been on a hunt to find a plant for my office and I recently came across a few DIY terrariums. Immediate thought...perfect for the office...if I could find the materials. Over the course of the next few days, I hunted down my materials, most which I found at the trusty WalMart.  Home Depot failed in the succulent department, but luckily Wally World had two cute mini succulents for only .99 a piece.  I also picked up some white aquarium rocks, cactus soil, and a clear vase to pot my soon-to-be cute little terrarium.  I searched high and low for the activated charcoal at WalMart, as well, but couldn't find it, so I went home and did a quick internet search and figured that maybe I could check the nearest pet store.  A quick call to Lihue Pet Store...and bingo...activated carbon was a quick trip away (I thought I would have to ultimately order it on the internet).

So..the work began.  My two little succulents wasn't quite the look I was shooting for, so I went across to my Grandma's house and what do you know...she had just planted some succulents and said I could take whatever ones I wanted.  I searched for a couple mini ones and she even gave me some to take for future terrariums.  She even gave me some tips on succulents.  Score!  Bonus having a garden savvy g-ma!  In the end...gathering of the materials took the most time, as building the terrarium was done in about 10 minutes or less.  And here she is....isn't she a beauty!

My next project inspiration {via in words and pictures}  A tabletop water garden.  How cute is it?!  All I have to do is find some time to head over to Kauai Nursery to see if they have water plants.  They have to have taro right?  After all...we do live in Hawaii.  Guess I'll have to wait and see.  

If you want to make your own terrarium, just do a quick search on the internet for inspiration.  The materials you need are pretty cheap...I'd say less than $20 (only because the activated charcoal was probably overpriced at $12.99...the hike in price you pay to live in paradise, where everything has to be shipped over).  Here are a list of materials I used....and the order that they're layered in:
  • Glass Container (doesn't have to be a vase...a cup, bowl, mason jar, etc. will also work well)
  • Rocks or Pebbles (which I found by the pet supply)
  • Activated Charcoal
  • Cactus Soil
  • Succulents
Easy as pie!  Good luck!

{marching for babies}

This past Saturday, we marched for babies! It was our first time participating in the March of Dimes walk, but I'm sure it definitely won't be the last. I'm makes me happy to think that we are involving Kaiya in all of these events that benefit our community. I guess she has no choice...whether she likes it or not. But just think about it, if she continues to participate, by the time she graduates high school, she can say that she's been involved for 18 years! I wish I could say that.

This year, MOD took place at Kukui Grove and they teamed up with the DOE STEPS program and held a Parent and Child Fair. There was entertainment and all sorts of activities for the keiki. The walk itself was a 3 mile walk, or 2 laps around Kukui Grove. Such a great event and it's always good to know that the monies raised comes back to our local community.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

i want....

BOAT SHOES!!!  Not necessarily the ones pictured, but something pretty similar.  And I wouldn't mind these ones, actually, I'd just have to try them on first.  The problem about living on a rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean...selection is extremely limited!  The shoe selection we have to choose from...go ahead and feel free to chuckle...Macy's, Famous Footwear, Foot Locker, Payless, Kmart, Walmart.  Right?!?!?  
Which would possibly explain why these ----->  are the go-to footwear of choice.  Zappos or some other online shopping source is another option.  The only problem with can't try before you buy.  

Another problem that I, personally, come across...small feet.  A lot of brands start at size 6, and while some shoe types I can get away with getting a whole size larger, closed shoe-types like these boat shoes...not happening.  I haven't even checked to see, just my luck these Sperry's start at size 6 as well.  The search continues...and since we are headed to Oahu (for a week...can't WAIT!) in June for my cousins wedding, I have a few months to figure out what kind of boat shoe that I want.  Of course, by that time, I'll probably want something else. 

.help fight cancer.

Once again, we are participating in American Cancer Society's Relay for Life.  This year, however, we're actually trying to raise funds, instead of just walking.  We look forward to this event every year, as it's so inspiring (and heartbreaking) to see so many that are affected by cancer.  Please help us raise funds!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...