Tag Archives: Art

Fun Friday: Celebrate Spring With The Very Hungry Caterpillar

21 Mar

spring

My daughter counted down the days until she gets to the Tulip on her school calendar, which marked the first day of Spring!  We ready to pack up our winter jackets and head to the park for hours on end.  We’re excited to chase butterflies, watch the ducks in the pond, and picnic with friends!

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A throw back, catching butterflies at an educational event in NJ.

Did you know yesterday not only marked the first day of Spring but it was also The Very Hungry Caterpillar Day?

I have childhood memories listening to and reading books by Eric Carle.  Some of my childhood favorites included Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, The Mixed Up Chameleon, The Tiny Seed, and but my favorite was The Very Hungry Caterpillar!  For generations, Eric Carle books have been a favorite in classrooms and in homes.   Now that I am a parent, it’s always fun when my girls come home loving books that I loved as a little girl.  My girls are big fans of his books especially The Very Hungry Caterpillar.  For Christmas, the girls received The Very Hungry Caterpillar Take and Toss Game, The Very Hungry Caterpillar Stencil Set, and The Very Hungry Chunky Colored Pencils. To welcome Spring and celebrate Spring we pulled out our game and made art projects.

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Twirl and Toss Game is simple to set up. Snap the caterpillar and leaves onto the branch.  Each player receives 3 soft pieces of fruit.  Players help the Very Hungry Caterpillar catch his lunch, by tossing soft-stuffed fruit at the twirling caterpillar.  Be the first to get all three pieces onto the velcro targets to win.  My girls have a great time playing and love cheering each other on to feed their caterpillar friend.

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image from amazon

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Stencil Set & The Very Hungry Chunky Colored Pencils are great for after school coloring and crafting.  The girls have a lot of fun making cards for their friends and family.  This afternoon we will be coloring our favorite shapes, cutting them out and glueing them on a construction paper crown.  With Easter around the corner, these would make a great basket filler.

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20140321-140918.jpgThe World of Eric Carle toys and games are fun for playdates, sleep overs, or to keep busy during the April showers.  You can find other games and activities from your favorite Eric Carle books here.    Want to have a Very Hungry Caterpillar themed Fun Friday find snack ideas and other activities on my The Very Hungry Caterpillar Board on pinterest.  Happy Spring!

Barnes and Noble also carries toys, games, and other Eric Carle favorites!

Barnes and Noble also carries toys, games, and other Eric Carle favorites!

Disclaimer: I received products for review however this did not alter my opinions.  All opinions expressed are my own.  Information in italic are from amazon.com.   All images are my own unless noted in the caption below them.

Create a Refreshing Look with Minted’s Art Prints

16 Feb

While I was stuck inside during the recent snow storms, I glanced around my apartment and realized it needs a little updating!  We’ve been in the same apartment for almost 5 years and have had the same decor and furniture so a little refresher is overdue!  In an online class with Jill Vegas, I learned you don’t have to get rid of all your furniture and start from scratch to change the look of a room.  You can do something as simple as adding flowers, using a piece of art, or changing the color of your throw pillows.

I was excited to learn one of my favorite sites, Minted, launched limited edition art prints created by independent artists and printed on archival paper.   I plan to do a little refreshing during my upcoming Spring Cleaning Project by adding new pieces of art to my walls.   I’ve found several limited edition prints I LOVE! It’s so hard to choose. Minted offers a Style Your Walls page to help find inspiration and ideas to get you started in creating a look for your walls you’ll love.

Christy Turlington Burns' inspiration for a simple and light design!  Prints start at $28 for this gorgeous look!

Christy Turlington Burns, founder of Every Mother Counts, created a simple and light design! Image from Minted, click to get the look for your wall! Prints start at $28 for this gorgeous look!

One of the biggest challenges I’ve had in the past when I’ve looked for art work is finding the print in a size that works for my space.  Minted offers  various sizes  in 5″ x 7″, 8″ x 10″, 11 “x 14″, 16″ x 20″, 18″ x 24″, 30″ x 40″ and 44″ x 60” vertical prints and vice versa for horizontal.  Select prints have multiple color scheme options to choose from.  Framing options are also available so you don’t have to go to a frame shop and it can go straight on your wall!

The first space I hope to revamp is my girls room.  They have a play kitchen area that could use a little revamping and I would love to include other prints around the room! A few of my favorites are pictured below:

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Love the Tea Cozy print to go above their kitchen sink!

Language of Love

Language of Love Typography Art.  Image from Minted!

Customizable Prints are available to include birth and name information!

Custom Art Prints are available to include birth and name information!  Something I’ve yet to do for the girls. Image from Minted

Heart Snapshot Mix Custom Photo Art: My two girls share a room!  A great print to showcase photos of "sister love" over the years!

Heart Snapshot Mix Custom Photo Art: My two girls share a room! A great print to showcase photos of “sister love” over the years! Image from Minted

Love these prints for my living room or bedroom:

A City at Night! Image in Midnight with Distressed Indigo Frame

A City at Night! Image in Midnight with Distressed Indigo Frame.  Image from Minted

Serene Forest in Taupe!

Serene Forest in Taupe! Image from Minted

West Elm collaborated with minted to support independent Artists.  I love this  Waterscape Color block!  Image from and available at WestElm.com

West Elm collaborated with minted to support independent Artists. I love this Waterscape Color block! Image from and available at WestElm.com

Escape

Escape image from Minted

Not only did I find several gorgeous prints, I learned 2 percent of the proceeds from sales of Minted’s art will benefit Every Mother Counts, an advocacy and mobilization campaign founded by Christy Turlington Burns in 2010 to increase support for maternal mortality reduction globally (learn more here)!  Getting ready for your Spring Cleaning and/ or refreshing project?  Check out Minted’s limited edition prints that will add freshness to any wall in your home!

The Minted Design Challenge: From now until March 14, 2014 submit a design.  The minted community will vote and choose a winner whose design will be sold on Minted.  Learn more here.

Minted is also a wonderful site for stationary, gifts, and party supplies.

Disclaimer:  I received a credit towards minted for the purpose of this post however this did not alter my opinions. As always opinions expressed are my own.  Images and information about the prints came from Minted.com!

SNOW ART

22 Jan

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I was a little disappointed when I saw that school was on for today!  I love heading out in the morning with them for fun in the snow!  Yesterday, I spent the day looking for activities a snow day.  I stumbled upon the Ideal Sno-Marker Sno-Man Kit with Snowman Top Hat!  I remember seeing snow markers in the past but I couldn’t remember where!  I knew the Sno-Marker Sno-Man Kit wouldn’t get here in time and since I didn’t buy the markers when I saw them, I tried to get creative with what I had at home!  I used a condiment container I bought a while ago at Bed, Bath, and Beyond.  If you are almost finished with a yellow mustard container you can clean out and use that instead.  Initially, I planned to use food coloring but realized that wasn’t a good idea unless I wanted the girls to stain their clothes.  I decided to try crayola washable paint that we had in our art supply bin.  I added warm water and some paint to the container and shook it up to mix it together.  Since we only had one container, the girls could only choose one color (of course they chose purple).  I’ll be headed out for more containers so we can add a little more color to our SNOW ART!  It’s a quick and easy activity if you want a little time in the snow after school (while it’s still here) and you don’t have to hassle with all the gear if you don’t want to.  *The water comes out a little quick, so it takes some time to adjust and create but the girls had fun adding color to the snow.*

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Disclaimer: All opinions expressed are my own.

Last Minute Thanksgiving Activity

27 Nov

We celebrate Thanksgiving with my husband’s family tomorrow but we celebrate it again with my family on Saturday.  For our gathering Saturday, my cousin came up with a great idea…a table decorating contest.  We made a last-minute Thankful Tree this afternoon using everything we had at home (except for the kisses, I ran to Duane Reade for) to use as our centerpiece with other cute fall decorations (check out my Instagram for our finished table Saturday afternoon).  It’s easy to make, you can make it Thanksgiving morning:

  • paper towel roll
  • one sheet brown construction paper, cut into stips
  • red, orange and yellow construction paper (cut out leaves)
  • crayons, marker, or pen
  • tape
  • glue
  • vase
  • bag of Hershey kisses (we used caramel for the fall colors)
  • stapler
  • Print out this little note:

Our Thankful Tree: There is so much to be thankful for. We’ve left a few branches for you to add more. When you’re done writing, just staple them on. And don’t forget to grab a kiss, Because we are so thankful to be here with you! Happy Thanksgiving! XO

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Cut the bottom of the paper towel roll so that it looks as pictured below.DSC_0620

Next, on the opposite of the roll, slice cuts around the top.  Cut the brown construction paper into strips.  Fold in half, glue together partially then stick into slits.  DSC_0625

Use a vase, place paper towel roll in center (taping flaps down is optional) then fill with Hershey Kisses!
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Let your child fill out as many leaves as they want and talk to them about what it means to be thankful.  Staple some leaves on but leave some branches for guests at Thanksgiving lunch/ dinner can add their own thankful thoughts.Display on table with the print out note (signed by your child), extra leaves, a permanent marker, a little note, and a stapler.  DSC_0641

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Happy Thanksgiving!  Thank you for all of your support and for following!

Take A Trip Around the World This Holiday With Green Kid Crafts

19 Nov

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Most afternoons turn into a play date with friends but some days it’s nice to come home and take it easy.  When we aren’t having a play date with friends my oldest likes to sit at the table and do some kind of art project.  Usually, she just pulls out her crayons and colors because I am in the process of getting dinner together and don’t want to pull out a million art supplies.  Green Kid Crafts, an eco-friendly company that designs creative activities to do with kids through art boxes that spark creativity, build confidence, and cultivate respect and love for the environment.  Discovery boxes are filled with supplies and instructions for hands-on learning, making afternoon crafts easier. We recently received a sample of the Around the World II discovery Kit.  The kit included materials to make:

GreenCraftKids

A Chinese Hand Kite that really flies

GKC Chinese kite

Guatemalan Worry Dolls and a Worry Box

worrydolls

Aboriginal Rock Art from Australia

GKC RockArt

I LOVED this box because it teaches about other parts of the world.  The instruction cards for each project also explain the history behind the culture and the traditions.  My daughter,5, had a lot of fun making the projects but needed help on the activities.   She loved learning about the different cultures. Her best friend was in Australia at the time and was excited to tell her about the rock art when she returned.  Her cousin was adopted from Guatemala.  She wants to ask him if he ever received a worry doll.  After the Chinese hand kite was complete, her and her sister ran around the apartment trying to fly it for luck.  A passport is also included in the box.  After visiting each county, my daughter was so excited to stamp her passport.  This Holiday I will be purchasing the Around the World I which includes projects from Japan, India, and Africa!

Around

Around the World I, Image from Green Kid Crafts

Check out all the Discovery Boxes available at Green Kid Crafts! Stocking Stuffers, Holiday boxes and Party Favors are also available!

Give Green Kid Crafts as a gift this Holiday Season or join now to get started on your first discovery box:

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Disclaimer:  I received a sample discovery box to review.  This did not alter my opinions.  All opinions expressed are my own.  Information in italics is from Green Kid Crafts.

Fun Friday: A Color Me Mine Halloween

11 Oct
Image from Color Me Mine

Image from Color Me Mine

One of our favorite outings is to Color Me Mine.  My girls love picking their pottery and using as many colors as they can to paint it.  Our favorite to go is around Halloween.  The girls love going to the themed workshops.

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This month the Tribeca Location will have these “Spooky Workshops”:

image from Color Me Mine.  Click for the entire October Schedule!

image from Color Me Mine. Click for the entire October Schedule!

Our Spooky Collection!

Our Spooky Collection!

 

While I was looking up the events to sign-up for this Halloween, I discovered they also have PJ Party themed sessions on certain Fridays during the month.  If you paint in your PJ’s you will receive 50% off the studio fee!  Color me mine also allows you to bring your own food and drinks! In addition to Halloween, Color Me Mine also has other Holiday events.  The pottery makes a great gift for parents, grandparents, and friends.  A trip to Color Me Mine would make a great uKloo surprise too!  Find a Studio and Schedule of Events near you to get painting!

 

Disclaimer:  I was not compensated for this post.  All opinions expressed are my own.  Photos unless noted are my own!

Back-to-School: Our Favorite Backpacks & Bags

13 Aug

When I was a child, I always got excited for back-to-school shopping. One of my favorite shopping trips was looking for my backpack. Now I get to enjoy looking for backpacks with my two girls. My youngest is in pre-school and my oldest starting kindergarten. Some of our favorites found while shopping:

For the aspiring artist: My oldest could color and draw all day long. She fell in love with ALEX Craft Color a (Messanger) Bag she found at Boomerang Toys and requested it as her school bag for Kindergarten.

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Image from Amazon

Make it Personal: Let your child pick his/her favorite color and design from Personal Creations and then add their name. A personalized backpack to start the year off right.

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Image from Personal Creations

Keep It Simple: I popped into American apparel the other day and fell in love with this color-blocked backpack. Simple, bright, and fun.

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Image from American Apparel

A Walk on The Wild SideJanSport was always my must-have backpack growing up so I had my girls look online with me.  The  Zebra print was a favorite for both girls on the Super FX bag.

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Image from JanSport

For the little one: Beatrix NY has been a favorite for both of my girls. My oldest picked the owl for her first back pack when she started preschool. Last year my youngest chose the ice cream cone and loves it so much she decided she didn’t want a new one so will be using it again for the upcoming school year.  Love all the “creatures of the forest” Beatrix NY has. (Read my past post)

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Image from Beatrix NY

Roll with It:  My oldest has had her eyes on the Pottery Barn Rolling Backpack for a while now.  Last year, getting her to carry her backpack was impossible because she complained “it was too heavy”.  She watched older kids roll their backpack by and immediately decided she might need a rolling backpack when she is a little older and needs to carry more for school.

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Image from Pottery Barn Kids

This year my girls will be heading off to school with these bags pictured below, but will be keeping the others in mind for the future!

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Coloring her backpack.

Coloring her “ALEX color a bag” to get ready for Back-to-School!

Have you purchased your backpack yet?  How often do you get a new one for your child?  What do you look for in a bag?

Disclaimer: I did not receive compensation for this post.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Shine NYC

8 Mar

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I love living in New York City with my two girls.  Although, I could definitely live with a bigger space, I love that the city offers so many wonderful child development classes to get your little ones out of the tiny apartments.  I recently tried Shine NYC, an amazing children’s program offered in the beautiful Freshmade NYC space.  Shine will offer two drop-off classes this semester:

  • Lights Up: Wednesdays from 4-5pm.  A series of weekly workshops for children 7-10 years old that explores dramatic play through puppetry and mask work. Students will explore imagination through storytelling and performance utilizing different styles of puppetry and theatrical mask work used in cultures around the world. In addition to crafting their own puppets, from the classic sock puppet to marionettes, children will engage in teamwork while building confidence and cultural awareness. 
  • Little Luminaries: Fridays from 3:30-4:30pm.  A class for 3-5 year olds that combines yoga, discussion, art/journaling, music, movement, and books all centered around a weekly theme. With themes including Roots, Cycles, Friendship, and Memory, each class will explore the different meanings of the word and how we relate to them, both creatively and critically.

My youngest, 3 in April, and my oldest, 5 in September attended the Little Luminaries class together.   The class was led by Aaron Goldschmidt, founder, with Misty Foster assisting.The theme for the class was colors: mixing and shades of color.  The class started in a  circle with color shakers to play with, showing two colors mixing together to make another.  For example: half of one shaker was yellow and the other half was red and when shaken, they made an orange color.  Color plates were also on the floor to play with.  When you took two primary color plates and placed them on top of one another they made another color.  My oldest LOVED this theme because she just finished a color mixing unit at school.  After talking about colors, they read Pantone: Colors, a book for children showing that a basic color like red may have a variety of shades.IMG_5543

After circle time, Misty, led yoga time.  Before beginning, Misty, explained to the kids what yoga was and asked if they had done it before.  They began with a simple wiggle, pinched fingers, shook sillies to serious, acted like a shark, went to a plank and then into downward dog.  After they stretched with yoga they read another book, What Colour Is Your World?, to lead into the art segment.IMG_5550

During the art segment, they used paint chips to create a collage… such a great idea.  I never thought about going to the paint store, getting paint chips and letting the girls get creative cutting them up and gluing to make a masterpiece.  Some of the kids decided they were finished way before others.  Aaron told them they could go look at the books and let them go look at the color shakers and books while he set up for an experiment and others finished, making a point to tell the kids that he would leave the projects out if they wanted to finish or add more.  Of course at the end of class my girls decided they wanted to do more and Aaron let them take some paint chips home to finish.IMG_5558IMG_5580

After creating art collages, everyone participated in the “milk experiment“.  My girls are still talking about this experiment and had to show their dad the following day.  We have also done this experiment with their friends during their play dates because they absolutely LOVED it at Shine NYC.  During the experiment the kids used milk, soap, food coloring, and a q-tip to make an explosion of multiple colors.IMG_5566IMG_5573IMG_5576

Next up was a game in which colors were matched with feelings: happy was yellow, blue was sad, red was angry, and green was surprised.  A color was called and kids ran to a colored circle the expression that matched the feeling.  The kids in the class had a great time during the game and it made them have to think quickly.  There was a lot of laughter when they ran to the wrong circle.

The class ended with Dr. Seuss’ color book read in a circle, similar to how the class began.  Throughout the entire class both teachers were full of energy and kept the kids engaged.  I loved that there were a variety of activities during the class to keep the kids from getting restless.  One of my favorite lines was when my daughter said she didn’t like the color she received Aaron responded with “From the famous words of Pinkalicious, you get what you get and you don’t get upset.”  We can’t wait to go back for more fun!

Shine ON!

Shine ON!

Visit ShineNYC.net to see other services offered.

Disclaimer:  I received a trial class for the purpose of this review.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Coloring With Fruits and Veggies

4 Feb

20130204-140328.jpgIn December I attended a celebration for the launch of the Bluum Toddler Box (see post). I received We Can Too Veggie Baby Crayons in a Bluum Toddler Box from the event. My girls LOVE art. We spend cold afternoons coloring or creating art projects. My youngest came across the bag of Wee Can Too Veggie Baby Crayons the other day and had to pull them out to color her latest creation. The cube-shaped crayons come in 5 organic colors: pink/ red, orange, yellow, green and blue. They are made with real fruits and veggies. Although not intended as food, the crayons are non-toxic and naturally safe for the occasional “crayon in the mouth” move young children are known to do. No worrying about harmful dyes. After using the crayons that we loved and I know are safe to use I learned that We Can Too makes more all-natural art products like face paint, tempera paint, finger paints, sidewalk chalk and face paint (for a list click here). I look forward to trying more We Can Too Edible Supplies for my little aspiring artists.

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

Exploring Colors With Rudolph

22 Dec

20121222-104856.jpgMy girls love art time. In fact, because they dropped naps a long time ago, our “down” time is usually spent coloring or doing some type of craft. The other day we were stuck inside for most of the day. I tried putting on a Christmas movie but in five minutes the girls were fighting. The more activities we do, the happier they are and the less fighting. I was running out of ideas until I saw a used water bottle laying on its side. I thought to myself for a bit while the girls were screaming and decided that water bottle would make a great Rudolph. All I needed was pipe cleaners, google eyes and brown paint. I went to look for the brown paint and realized we didn’t have any. A perfect opportunity to explore colors by mixing primary colors. We started painting but my girls were having trouble mixing the paint to make brown so we started over with a new plan. I got two more plastic water bottles, filled them with tap water and pulled out the food coloring. My youngest mixed red and blue first making purple, then added green making the water look black. My older daughter started with red and then added green making her water a better shade of brown for “Rudolph”. Next we decorated our bottle cap with a red glitter glue pen for Rudolph’s nose. I then used tacky glue and the girls placed the eyes and antlers on the bottle.  The tacky glue wouldn’t hold so I reinforced with a glue gun. Rudolph is a fun activity, especially on a cold day like today.  The girls had a great time seeing who could get the closest to brown.  Save it and use it for a place card holder for your holiday gathering.

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