May 8, 2014

Soapy Olafs- Perfect Teacher Gifts!!



We made these incredibly cute Olaf soaps for teacher gifts this year. The idea was based on what we had previously done with the soap snowballs. This time, we took it up a notch and formed OLAF!!


We first, formed the head and body parts and stacked them together while they were still wet. Like an actual snowman, you need to have some "flatness" where the parts meet so they will stay together. The next day, while the soap was still soft, but not wet, we gently inserted the twigs we cut from our bushes. The hair twigs were short little things and the arm twigs had to have forks in the end to qualify. Then we took a break and left them out on the porch for a week or so.

We purchased Sculpey clay in black and orange and we formed LOTS of buttons, eyes, and noses. The eyes were just round balls, the buttons were flat sort-of hexagons and the noses were bent cone shapes. We baked the clay in the oven and then glued (with Elmers so it would come off when wet) them in the appropriate places. We could have made his tooth too, but I forgot to buy the white and then the kids ran out of steam!

When Olaf's body was dry and harden, we boxed him up in a clear plastic PVC 5"x5"x7" container with a fancy drink umbrella glued to his hand, and a summery napkin behind for the background. We used playdough for his towel underneath (and a little more glue) to keep him from sliding around on the slippery gold "sand" bottom of the box.


Once his was all boxed up, the kids added a sun shaped tag cut with my sister-in-laws Cricut that said, "Teachers have fun... IN SUMMER!!" Soooo excited to give it them away to our deserving teachers next week!

Here's what you need if YOU want to make soapy Olafs...

  

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March 16, 2014

Camouflage Party

We are still struggling with our younger son around here. Last year, in the midst of everything with Abigail, he was diagnosed with ADHD. He has manic moments and has a really hard time in group settings. After a few weeks in kindergarten, the school suggested I move him to a Special Ed class. Whew - that was a hard one and while I was in the middle of chemo appointments! Still, once I got over myself (cause really it was only hard for me to swallow) I saw how the class was a much better place for Andrew. I adore his teachers and the sweet (only six) kids he is in class with. When his birthday rolled around, he wanted to invite "the boys only" to his birthday party. I came up with the idea of having a Camo Party and decided this one would be pretty low key. I mean, after all, this is the kid that doesn't do well with crowds or chaos! :)
Everything was outside, including the food. We set out real army facepaint and said anyone could use it (I think only Andrew and his Daddy did). I had some MRE's for decoration - pretty gross to actually eat. We had some army flak jackets for the kids to try on - they are soooo heavy.

After they dressed out, we had lunch. It was tang, sloppy joes, mac and cheese, Frito's, asparagus spears and clementines.


 After lunch my husband set up an obstacle course for the kids and just let them run wild. I think they all had a great time and were definitely exhausted when they left.

 For the camo cake, I tried a new technique. I made the colors of icing and crumb coated the cake. then I squeezed blobs of icing in random shapes with a large hole tip. I let that set up and then used a high density foam roller to "meld" the colors together. I was not happy with this technique. It often picked up the icing or smooshed it too hard even when I being gentle. I finally gave up and went back to the trusty paper towel method. It's not a smooth finish when you look up close, but it's good enough for me.


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March 12, 2014

Mad Scientist Birthday Party

Preserved Brain Cake...just what everyone needs at a Mad Scientist party. 

As promised, I am posting photos of birthday parties. I'm not doing much other posting, but if you join me on Facebook, I am posting my weekly dinner menus. Tonight was steak with a Greek barley salad and edamame. I'm hoping you will come over there and tell me what YOU had for dinner too.

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When Banana Girl said she wanted a Mad Scientist Birthday party WITH her best friend - I (of course) said, "yes!". It was a riot. I did the food and the other Mommy did the awesome science experiments. the girls had a super fun time. And they actually learned a few things along the way.

Don't you love the backdrop and the labcoats?? Donated by the Grandma and perfect for the occasion!
Please excuse the photos - they were taken in a garage at night. With all of these experiments we felt like the garage was the best place to set up.

We made slime - easy and a BIG hit. We packaged a little bit up in petri dishes for them to take home as part of their goodie bag.
We made "elephant toothpaste". This was pretty cool until the kids wanted to start playing with it. What a mess!
We made "milk fireworks", learning about oil and water in techicolor.
The dry ice was a big hit around the punch bowl. Notice the double helix cheese sticks?? We also served: Dissected chicken (whole roasted chickens), Amoeba Porridge (corn pudding), Radioactive Mush (orange colored mashed potatoes), DNA strands (green beans), and Cultured Worms (jello with gummie worms in petri dishes). I made little cards with the names on them and some test tube graphics.

We also served (the famous ever used) chip and dip tray filled with little goodies so the kids could make their own molecules. There were things like: mini marshmallows, grape tomatoes, grapes, dates, gumdrops and toothpicks to set it all up. I was really impressed at what some kids created!

Details of the cake, if you ever need to make BRAINS!!  This would be a great cake for Halloween or a doctor.


The key with brains is to not cross the middle line and keep them moving in swirls.



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