A Stick House and 2 Archers

I was looking around on pinterest yesterday and found a link to what I thought were the cutest little houses.

stick house


I had just picked up some popsicle sticks at Dollar Tree, and so Davey and I began gathering some sticks from the yard.  We had fun creating our own little house.



It’s a great craft because anything goes.  There’s no real plan, and we got to be creative although we did also have the to figure out logistics like how to make the walls attach to the floors etc.  This was challenging for my brain but fun, and it was a good challenge for Davey as well.  We haven’t tried to put our house up on stilts yet so that we can attach the ladder, but I liked our final result.



Davey sat down with me for quite awhile and worked on this little house.  He even made a “sun on a stick” which I forgot to attach.

BUT – while building stick houses with Mama is fine and dandy, it ain’t got nothin’ on archery with Daddy.

Davey has had so much fun playing with his little plastic bow with suction cup arrows, that David decided to get him an upgraded more sturdy bow.


They both had a good time shooting it.


Notice the dramatic fingers follow through demonstrated by both Davids.

Davey enjoyed showing me variations on his form as well.



Today they are creating new targets to shoot at!


Davey and I: Weavers

I am kinda fascinated by weaving.  I think it would be fun to have a loom someday and weave fabric.  But in the meantime, I found a weaving activity on pinterest.  It’s from Made By Joel where I discovered the fun Paper City.  This is an easy easy way to begin weaving, and he provided a great pictorial tutorial.

I used the lid of a shoebox for our cardboard.  I actually cut the lid in half.  We each had one half as our “loom”. weaving1


The tutorial provides good pictures on how to set this up.  Here’s how the back of the loom looks.


I set up the looms for us and then showed Davey how to weave. It’s very easy. Any yarn would work fine.  I had some leftover bulky wool yarn that I thought would be easy for Davey to grab and maneuver.


We just took a length of yarn and went over and under the yarn on the loom.  I did wind a little bit of scotch tape at the end so that the yarn wouldn’t fray as much.  It gave him something to grab onto as well.



Davey did great for awhile.


I loved watching his little hands work.  I think it’s a great activity to build fine motor skills.

weavingfingersHe started to get a little weary of it though after not too long.  So I told him that the yarn was “breaching” and going back in the water, and coming up and “breaching” again.  He loves whales so this inspired him to weave on for awhile longer.


So that’s about as far as he got.  He did really well, and I could see how it could become kind of repetitious for him.  I found it calming and fun – kinda like knitting a row so I kept on going.


At the end you just carefully take the end loops off and you can adjust the weaving so that those loops work in smoothly.  I did have to weave in the ends where I did the color changes, but that was ok too. Being a fiber fiend, I enjoyed the whole process.

The ending result was a somewhat primitive square that could be used as a coaster maybe?  A person could get inspired and make a larger loom to make placemats or hot pads.


I think with a little practice, I would have a smoother result.

I thought it was a lot of fun.  Davey thought so too – for a little while anyway!


Paper City

Pinterest is a bottomless well of creative possibilities (now there’s a sentence!).  It’s especially perfect for the summer days as I try to find creative activities to do with Davey.

This weekend, I made him a Paper City.  I discovered a website (through pinterest) called Made by Joel.  He has all kinds of free paper crafts on his site, and specifically I found templates for a Paper City.  I had more fun making Davey’s little city.

There are several templates.   I made a mini Paris with a little Eiffel tower.  I cut out the Sydney Opera House.  There’s a neighborhood with people and cars.




All I had to do was print out the templates.  I glued them to cardstock so they would be sturdier and then cut them out.  It would be cool to laminate them I think, but we are also slowly adding colored pencil to several of them.  We means me actually.  I am having fun doing that.  Davey’s not much for coloring.  He’d rather get right to the pretending part.



I made him a circus.



I even made the Taj Majal!


The circus has a hot air balloon.  I attached yarn and a button at the end of the yarn, so he could fly the hot air balloon around.  I did the same thing with one of the helicopters for the helipad.



The circus is his favorite of these, and he likes flying his hot air balloon and helicopter around.

We could add more guys to it.  I am thinking it could use a few superheroes.  Davey would really enjoy that.

I had a lot of fun cutting them out and getting his city ready.  It’s such a simple fun imaginative activity!

In Which I Sing the Praises of Craftsy!

I’ve decided I want to learn to sew.  I got out my sewing machine and was prepared to have to try to find some instructions online on how to thread my 20+ year old Pfaff (which I love).  But it all came back to me.  Like riding a bike.  Apparently, I have sewed more than I had initially remembered.   So I thought about it and quite awhile back, I did make a couple of quilts which I machine pieced.  I also made some flannel floppy Santa guys somewhere back in the 90s.  So I have some sewing in my past.  I’ve never made a garment though (by myself that is).

I decided to see what craftsy.com had to offer in the way of sewing classes.  Turns out they have quite a bit to offer.  I found a free mini class on how to make a tote bag.  It was great.  I can’t recommend this enough.  The teacher explained every step so clearly, and I just followed along with the video.  I learned to box corners.  I made a pocket.  I made handles. I made a lining, put the lining in the bag and successfully sewed it in!

The bag is not perfect, but I am pretty excited.  I had actually bought this material back in 2006 at a quilting show in Nashville.  I’d never gotten around to making the baby quilt it was supposed to become.  I was happy to get to use it for the bag.



I asked Davey to take some pictures of me with the bag.  It’s still hard for him to wield my good camera, but he loves to take pictures.  He much prefers taking pictures of me over me taking pictures of him.

proudSo I think I am ready (maybe) to take on my next project.  I got some material on sale at Fancy Tiger (love that place) and a pattern for some pajama style pants and/or shorts.  I won’t have a video to guide me through though.  We shall see how it goes.

Painting River Rocks and Decorating the Garden!

Davey and I have been wanting to paint river rocks.  We did this once before when we were still in Arkansas (I’m sure he doesn’t remember it, but I have kept one of those rocks on the window sill ever since).

I was worried about the legalities of “stealing” too many river rocks.  Apparently you can gather up to 250 pounds a day on federal land, but you can’t take rocks out of state parks.  There is a state bill that has not yet been passed which would allow you to also take no more than 250 pounds a day (I think – that sounds like a lot) in Washington state parks.  Apparently you have more leeway in Oregon.  This information was gathered with a little google searching;  I didn’t go too in-depth (so don’t quote me on this!).

So my moral dilemma was solved yesterday when David found a 2 pound bag of river rocks for $1.88 at Bi-Mart (local discount store here).  Whew!

This morning we got out the acrylic paints and we started painting.  Oh, prior to this I had gone to pinterest and done a search on painted river rocks.  I now have a board devoted to river rocks.  There were lots of examples!

Davey wanted to make a tomato rock.



David joined in as well.



After we were done painting the rocks, Davey put them all in the garden.  He had the great idea of decorating the garden with them.

After making a tomato rock, Davey painted a volcano rock.  I like his finished rock.  Of course the red is the lava bubbling up out of the volcano!


Davey put the frog and ladybug together at first (painted by David).


But then he decided that the ladybug should sit up higher.


Here’s the tomato rock.  Davey asked me to label it. Next to the tomato rock is my little guy.  I call him Francois.



Buster was just taking it all in. Such a pretty boy (almost a year old!).



Crafts for Kids!

I received an email yesterday about a post that I’d written about a year ago.  Davey was into pirates at about this time, and we’d made a treasure map and pirate hats.   So the lady who designs crafts for the website emailed me and wanted to include the picture of Davey wearing the pirate hat that we’d made from a guide on her website.  I don’t know how she happened onto it, but I said sure.  Anyway, I thought I’d share this because there are lots of fun crafts on this website.  I plan to go back to it and find some more activities for us to do together!

(The title of the blog is the link and if you scroll all the way down there’s Davey with his hat!)

Hoodie and Craft Fail/Success

I follow a knitting group on facebook.  The other day someone posted a picture of an iphone hoodie.  I had to go find the pattern immediately.  I went to my stash, picked out some yarn, and knitted this right up.



Cute cute cute.  I loved it.  My purse is like a bottomless cavern, so this also helps me locate my phone more easily.  This is a fun easy knit.

Davey, David and I have been doing several crafts this summer.  Our success rate has been pretty good, but we tried a craft the other day that just didn’t work.  It was one of those 3d foam projects.  We were supposed to make a pirate ship.

This required glue.  So the tricky thing was that we were supposed to connect the sides of the ship with a piece of foam which was also the bottom of the ship and then curved up to be the front.  So we had the foam glue.  We carefully applied it and then held it in place.  and held it. and held it.  The craft was designed for ages 6+.  Two 45 year olds were holding it in place.  One of them was saying “this will never work.  this is not going to work.”  He was right, but I couldn’t stand to just give up.  We needed Super Glue to have a prayer, but Super Glue over a fairly large project seemed potentially hazardous.

So finally we gave up.  I told Davey that we were just going to have fun with it.  So we have lots of packing tape right now.  Davey and I just taped the heck out of that ship.

It looked terrible.  It’s supposed to have about six billowing sails. I love Davey’s expression as he gazes at it.



Davey and David have this funny exaggerated voice that they use to say “Gilderoy Lockhart” (as he is so pretentious and thinks he is awesome – Harry Potter –  Chamber of Secrets).  Davey applied this voice to the ship.  It is the “Lousy Pirate Ship.”



He is developing a great sense of humor.  He makes us laugh all the time.

So it was a craft fail pretty much in the sense that it looked terrible, but we had a great time, so I guess it was actually pretty successful!