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Columbus, Ohio, United States
I'm a stay at home mom and wife with a passion for family, creating and photography. I'm a little bit quirky and a little bit odd, but that's what makes me...well me. I'm a jack of all trades. So check back often because, to paraphrase Forest Gump's mom "I'm like a box of chocolates, you never know what your going to get.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

You Color My World--Valentine project

Crayon Kids
This was my son's first year in pre-school. I wanted to do something special with him for Valentine's day that he could do most of the work and be proud of what HE did. Plus I hadn't done much for Halloween and did nothing for Christmas. I was feeling like a bad domestic goddess. Since he is only 4 getting him to focus on craft projects can be a challenge, so I usually  throw up my arms in frustration. I promised myself and him that I would work on my patience this year and we'd do more projects together.

I was looking through Pintrest and ran across several blogs about making shaped crayons to give for Valentine's day tokens.  I thought this could be something I  could get him interested in doing from start to end. The first step was showing him what I wanted to do, explain the process(with the help of some great photo tutorials) and made sure what we would have as an end product. He thought it was cool. So he was in. 

 What you need:

-Silicon mold
-Old cutting board
-Cookie sheet

It takes quite a few crayons to make these, so you may need to think about this part before hand. Especially if your trying to do this as an up-cycling project. I recruited my best friend's kids and their supply of broken crayons. This is a great play-date activity for all ages and if you start it when they first arrive it can be done before your guest go home. One thing though, make sure to give yourself time to peel the paper off the crayons. This might be silly to think about, but this is a tedious and time consuming task. Try to have wrappers removed before hand or you will lose the kids interest before you even start.

Coarsely chop the crayons (an adult should of course to this part). Be sure to use a cutting board designated for crafts, because the crayon is difficult to get out. Especially if you have a lot of crappy restaurant crayons. The first tray we made, the kids made on their own. I simply chopped the crayons and the kids stuffed the mold. My son had so much fun that his best friend couldn't distract him from the task at hand. An adult should place the pan on a cookie sheet and cook for.....

20 minutes at 215 degrees

We chilled ours in the fridge, to hurry the hardening process along. They simply pop right out of the silicon mold. It didn't take long for them to harden, perhaps an hour or so. The kids were so excited to see their creations. My son even came back to make more when I pulled everything back out to make some myself. He continued to ask to do it everyday for three days after. 

This is one of those projects that you are only limited by your imagination. You can be more deliberate with you colors, add glitters and sparkle, and experiment with molds. At Little sprout Creations they melted the wax first then poured them in candy molds to make these really cute dinosaur crayons. I though about doing it this way, but my son isn't ready for pouring hot wax, and I like to use my candy molds for candy. Let your imagination run wild. 

As for the cards. I did most the work. He's too young for the cutting part and although I tried to show him antiquing and inking he really wasn't very interested. So those tasks fell mostly on me. Which was fine with me, I need something to do. The color was his choice (purple is his favorite color) and he was allowed to pick the papers from a collection of papers I had already put together. The one part that he did part in was adhering the papers together.

Several years ago when I got into scrapbooking I bought a 5" Xyron sticker maker. It is one of my prized craft tools. He knows touching it will bring severe consequences.  I've been know to snap at him for just looking funny at it. The sticker paper for it is expensive so I use it sparingly and I get really irked when it is wasted. For this project, since there was a lot of piece work, I pulled it out and let him use it with me. He was so excited to turn the crank and cut the stickers off. I did center the circles but he placed all hearts. He also picked out gingerbread folks for each card  and told me exactly where to hot glue them.  He was so proud of what he had created and couldn't wait to share them with his friends. We had so much fun doing this and the kids loved them at school.  We've already began plotting out next collaboration........

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