Thursday, May 31, 2012

Foam Magnets

I love to peruse the craft store & see what's new or really, what newly hits my eye for inspiration. Thing is, unless it is a craft kit for one project, most things come in multiples. I only have one Gabriel so often I think of many different ways to utilize something. Large foam items often come in packages (see foam hands) so if I get them, they need to be special. I spotted these awesome Foam Crab shapes & felt summer approaching immediately; had to buy them. Here's one project we made- a family set of crab magnets.

Self-Stick Craft Magnets

Glitter Glue Pens
Googly Eyes 
School Glue
Foam Magnet Crab

Check out these other crab foam crafts:

Colored Salt Crab Picture
Gift Tag
<3 Lishie & Gabriel
Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Foam Hands

Foam hands are soooooooo versatile!

A Birthday card

Sign Language Message

Fun Theme

The Foam Hands Displayed...
<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Father's Day Project

Father's Day is fast approaching & this is one of the gifts Gabriel made for his daddy. We did it on the sly since we had to borrow a shoe...

Which brings me to Materials: One of each shoe (from daddy & son) of the same foot, washable paint, a sponge paintbrush & a piece of construction paper + a crayon...
Take the sponge brush a dip it in the paint, then "paint" the bottom of each shoe... Use the shoe like a stamp, beginning with the biggest one, daddy's...

Then using a different color paint, do the same with son's shoe, stamping near the instep of the daddy shoe...
 Allow to dry then write,
Gabriel loves to line up his "daddy" animals with their "sons".
Love this boy.

<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Whale of a Good Time

Gabriel loves his animal figurines & the ocean ones get played with a lot. Since the summer is nearly here (yay!) the ocean trips are around the corner as are our aquarium trips! I love our day trips. So making a whale seemed like a great idea. Gabriel thought so too. The inspiration for this craft came from Oriental Trading again. 
Materials: All you need is a paper cup (can be white! We happened to have blue) a piece of construction paper (blue again), scissors, googly eyes, school glue & 2 pipe cleaners (we used blue & white. We also used glitter glue.
On the construction paper, draw the tail & the fins for the whale; cut them out. Glue the tail, fins & googly eyes onto the inverted (upside-down) cup. Allow to dry. Using glitter glue, "draw" on a mouth. Or you can use a marker! 

On the top of the cup, cut/punch a small hole to create a "blow-hole". Take the pipe cleaners & fold them in half; Roll them on your finger to make "springs". Insert the bottom of the springs into the hole. This is "water sprouting" from the whale's blow-hole. 
Then go to National Geographic Kids to learn about the blue whale.

Fast Facts
The scientific name of the blue whale is Balaenoptera musculus.

Their average lifespan in the wild is 80-90 years.

Blue whales are usually between 82 and 105 feet (25 to 32 meters) long.

<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Monday, May 14, 2012

Colored Salt

I can feel it coming... summertime. And I am so happy... weekend drives down the shore, to the beach, trips to the zoo, the aquarium, to the amusement parks... Ahhhh... Time for summer themed crafting...

Start with large foam crabs
& googly eyes...
a small bowl of salt +
a couple of drops of food coloring...
mix it together well
& allow it to DRY (your fingers will get stained if not!)
Take a sheet of colored paper
& spread some school glue where you want your "colored sand" (salt)...
Sprinkle the colored salt onto the glue
& allow to dry...
When dry, carefully lift the paper & discard the excess salt over a trash bin...
Affix the googly-eyed crab to the scene with school glue.
A crab in the sand!

<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Paper Plate Shark

Not all of my ideas are original or from Pinterest. This one came about from an Oriental Trading
catalog. I just made my own version of the pieces & had Gabriel put it together. I think it came out adorable, like the little archangel himself! 

Recently he's been playing a lot with Squeaky, a rubber shark toy that squeaks. Squeaky is a souvenir from our trip to the Adventure Aquarium in Camden, NJ last year. For the craft, all you need is a paper plate (we used a silver one but you can color a white one with a silver or grey crayon), googly eyes, school glue & a sheet of paper &/or foam (for the fins, mouth & belly) + a black marker for the teeth, nose & eyebrows. And you can make a friendly shark too! 

<3 Lishie & Gabriel
Gabriel, in his shark pjs, holding "Squeaky" the shark

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Magnetic Puzzles

Gabriel is into the Puzzling age, ha, I mean into Puzzles... so when I saw this on Pinterest, from My Kind of Makeover I knew I had to do it. Especially since G also loves magnets. (are YOU on Pinterest? No? You should be especially if you are reading a craft blog! Also, Parents, PLEASE glance at this article on the danger of magnets for children. )

There's a great article from the Examiner on why puzzles are good for children. Key points:
  • Puzzles build hand eye coordination
  • Puzzles develop fine motor skills
  • Puzzles offer opportunities for social and language skills
  • Puzzles encourage problem solving and logical thinking
MATERIALS: All you need is a puzzle (we have a few of the kind that come in a baggie instead of a box):
& self-adhesive craft magnets like these below. I love these because they are easy to cut with scissors & they are thin. They also adhere well. 

Turn all of the pieces over. 

Adhere one magnet to the center of each piece:
And you are ready to put together the puzzle on any magnetic surface... the refrigerator, dishwasher... washing machine (keeps kids busy!) or on a magnetic lapboard (great busy time in the car! No pieces lost.)
See the Beatles magnet, upper left-hand corner? Gabriel knows all 4 Beatles' names since he was one! Now it is "his" magnet.
<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish


Yeah, I kind of re-purpose everything, or try to... So much so that when I ask my hubby not to toss something, he says, "What are you going to make with it?" Ha... Re-purposing, or up-cycling is good all around... for the environment, to save money & for the recipient. Here are some re-purposed, up-cycled goodies for Gabriel:

Dish washing soap bottle for Bubbles
Gabriel LOVES bubbles. Anytime is a bubble time with us... inside or outside... I carry a little bottle in my bag at all times! Sesame Street had a Bubble Fest Episode. Part of it was the scienec of finding the right homemade mixture to create the perfect bubbles... This is what they came up with:
Bubble Formula=1/2 cup of dishwashing liquid & 4 cups of warm water
I fill the plastic dish soap bottle then refill a couple of little bottles, here & there.

Produce Holder as Sand Mold
Which one is the re-purposed item? I bet you can tell but does it really matter to your child? Those plastic containers make great sand toys once they are washed with warm, soapy water. This blue one originally housed button mushrooms.
 Paper Towel Tube Robot
I do a lot of crafts with paper towel tubes so I always save them. This one was for a sniffly, sick G... it took 3 paper towel rolls & string & a hole punch...

<3 Lishie & Gabriel

Visit my Food Blog: DeLish

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Astronaut Birthday! 3... 2... 1...

Since this blog is ABOUT & FOR Gabriel, I thought I'd revisit his 3rd Birthday Party from last month, originally blogged on DeLish:

Now I do not have the typical 3 year-old. And I am so thankful for that. Why? He never asks for anything in any store, not the grocery store, not candy, nor…the toy store. Seriously. Yes, he loves his toys. Yes, he has his favorite snacks. But he is seemingly content with what he has. And, on the same token, he didn’t make any specific birthday requests. Don’t get me wrong, he loves Sesame Street & Donald Duck, to name a couple of popular kids’ themes but he is also adventurous. He has fun at the aquarium, the zoo, the farm, the science center… just about anywhere we take him.

So with that in mind, so far I can create a birthday out of an amusing idea & turn it into a wonderland. For Gabriel's 2nd birthday last year, I created a Blue Bird theme to coincide with his love of birds & nature. This year, for Gabriel’s 3rd, we blasted off to the Planet G…, Gabriel’s Aeronautic Space Academy was a one-day astronaut training camp for his little cadet friends since he loves stars so much.
Every birthday boy needs the perfect uniform… I made his tee (there’s also a dangling “3” sewed on beneath the astronaut body) Gabriel did not want to take this off that night!!!


Rocket Booster!

Rocket Man

the invitation

And Jen from Jar of Designs, created his awesome invites, once again. She is the “go to” if you want to set the perfect tone for your event! Remember the invitations are very important! Just look at these!!! And, because we made up the Planet G (well, it took Pluto’s place ;) ) Jen also devised the beautiful round stickers to apply to the envelopes! Just add a flag stamp & perfect!

  I am always saying I get lost in the details & yes, again I did. I want the children to have a good time & remember it. What I do remind myself (constantly), is kids do NOT look for perfection. And I am very thankful for that… Here is some of the signage I whipped up… Thank you to Hostess {with the Mostess} for the paper plates as a wall hanging background idea. All else was from the deep black hole that is my mind! Ha! All crafted by me. The Space Shuttle signs are printed from NASA's actual web-site & the GABRIEL banner is from Oriental Trading Co.  
Happy 3rd Birthday Gabriel!
A friend has a latex allergy so a little smattering of balloons was perfect for G… Every child’s party needs some balloon-age!


Space capsule
I asked the guests to sign inside this book as gabriel's "space" time capsule
I printed out Name tags & affixed them to Giant nut & bolt robot erasers I found to match my theme & color scheme (love when that happens!)

The Moon Cake

So for the cake I created a moonscape, complete with a little astronaut G, a shuttle, American Flag & Planet G flag + 3 candles (a “3”, a star & a “G”) & oreo cookie craters. The cake was shared with family later but for the party, we used it for “happy birthday” & to blow out the candles then…. And this was my hubby michael’s brilliant idea… swapped it out for carvel flying saucers!!! They were a huge hit. Huge.

flying saucers



area 51
Tang station
What is a space training party without tang?!
And wow, was it a huge hit!!! We had to buy more because my hubby wanted it!
Food served but NOT pictured:

Rocket Fuel
Soda & apple juice boxes

Planet Pizzas

We ordered a bunch of pizzas, freshly made & delivered from a local pizzeria. YUM.


Carrots, celery, broccoli & cauliflower served with hummus to dip.

Space junk

Chips & pretzels

Birthday boy traveling on an Inflatable space shuttle!!!:
Games & Fun!

The kids were greeted with their space folder (confidential!)…
It contained An astronaut name badge & a space shuttle coloring book

They were immediately pointed to a craft table for:


Space Crafting

Creating their own planet
Getting glow sticks
Grabbing a “telescope”- a repurposed paper towel holder

Shooting Star Toss!

I drew this game on foam picture-board then cut out the holes. Bought yellow & orange bean bags separately. The kids had tons of fun throwing the bean bag “stars”
Space shuttle pinata
PiƱata swag
Includes milky ways, glitter star bouncy balls, flag mints, plastic paratrooper men, robot finger puppets, robot pencils, lollipops & more candy!!!!

Games not shown:

Tandem Planet jump

I affixed colored, cut planet printouts to foil stars, swapping Pluto with the planet g & had the children two-legged jump from planet to planet. Again, this easy game went over so well, the children lined up two & three times to do it!

Alien hunt

Guess the number of rubber aliens in the jar
I just forgot to take out the jar. Oops. 
These Area 51 guys:

Photo id

We didn’t get a chance to hang it, nor the time. Oops.




Giant robot eraser
Foam space shuttle glider 

Certificate of completion 

 I am pretty sure everyone had a great time!!! We sure did!!!
And wow, Gabriel received the most throughtful gifts. What an amazing birthday!!!
Thank you all for looking!!!

<3 Lishie