Friday, April 29, 2011

Progress... With Easter Projects

Here it is. The post that was suppose to be four different posts. Because of this fact, this is very picture heavy post, so beware. :-]

We ended up doing everything except for the pom-pom sheep. I bought the stuff for it though, so when we get a free stretch of time that Elijah seems to be in a good mood we'll do that one.

First up is the "Cross on a Hill". When I went to the store and saw how small the 2" styrofoam balls were, I opted to buy a 5" one instead, so the proportions would kind of match.

I cut it in half with a knife, cause I had no idea how else to cut it... seeing as I don't work with styrofoam much. Then Elijah got to painting...

He only painted the top part, which is fine with me, cause it's his craft.

I let it dry overnight, cause he was bored with the project after he painted it. The next day I let him put on the flowers...

I got flower shaped confetti instead of using stickers, but if I ever do this in the future I will def be using stickers instead. These are the only two pictures that exist for this part, because of the ruckus that was going on... Elijah decided that throwing the confetti all over the floor and dumping it from cup to cup sounded more fun than actually placing the flowers onto the ball.

I have no finished picture because I didn't put the cross together and push it in yet, but you can imagine it'll look pretty cool once it gets to that point.

The next "project" we did was face/body painting. Elijah didn't want the paint anywhere near him, for some reason. I asked if I could draw a heart on his hand and he was like, "OK!" but still just stood half way across the room. When I approached him with the paint crayon to draw it on there, he ran away. So I gave up and just painted my belly like I was planning.

It didn't turn out as good as I had planned, but if you tilt your head, close one eye and squint the other one you can kind tell that it's an egg.

Speaking of eggs... We also dyed some eggs on Friday night. It's an annual tradition at our house to do it that day.

First we put in the tablets. I let Elijah help put them in, since I knew he could be trusted not to put them in his mouth. The measuring cup was his idea...

Next it was time to pick a color. If I had read the box correctly we would have had more eggs, but it turns out there was one egg per color, this year. Not that that bothered Elijah at all.

Then it was "egg toss" time. As Elijah put it. We went through all the colors that way.

This is what we ended up with, afterward. The crack in the one (turned out to be 2 actually) egg was the result of the boiling, not the "tossing".

Then it was sticker time.

He also placed one sticker on each egg. So we have one color and one sticker per egg. That's how he wanted it.
This one is my favorite.

He sat there and played with the eggs for a good hour... admiring his work, naming the colors and counting them as he moved them back and forth between the drying tray and the egg carton.

He only played for an hour because it was bedtime and he needed to get settled down and ready for bed. Here are the eggs all tucked away. I like that you can see a peek of color through the holes in the top. Looks very festive.

That is all I have for now. I will update about the Easter Egg hunt and Easter very soon. Hope everyone had as much fun as we did this Easter. :-)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Progress... *Not Easter Project Related*

**We did get through a few projects, but I still have to compile the post. Look for that this coming week. But anyway, onto the subject of this post.**

Well, it looks like we are making progress with Elijah's attitude about the baby that's on the way.

When we found out I was pregnant, we told Elijah about the baby right away, but he wasn't too thrilled about the idea:

He didn't even like to talk about it, in general. When we would bring up the baby he would get upset and throw a fit. He wouldn't even tell us if he wanted a brother or a sister... whenever we would ask he would say the last thing we said "Do you want a brother or a sister?" "Sister" "Do you want a sister or a brother?" "Brudder". (I must say I do love the way he says brother, so I'm glad we're having a boy, haha.)

The next phase to go through was complete denial... Apparently instead of a baby growing inside of me, Elijah decided I was just getting fat and making excuses not to play certain things with him. Mostly they were things that involved sliding down slides and sitting on the ground.

One day we had a conversation that went a little like this:

*Elijah was rubbing my belly
Jo: There's a baby in there
Elijah: No no no no, Dop (stop) it!
Jo: Yes, there is. Isn't right in there.
Elijah: No! Dop it!!

After a while things started to get better. As my belly was getting bigger, Joe would request that Elijah give the baby a hug or a kiss and he would run over, lift up the bottom of my shirt and do whichever. It was nice to see that Elijah was at least acknowledging that something was in there. That was good enough for me. I figured we would just work out the rest after the baby was born.

However, to prepare for that event Joe and I decided we were going to get Elijah a book about what to expect after the baby is born, so he's not shocked and appalled, all the while wondering why the baby isn't leaving. So we searched high and low and at every bookstore to find the perfect book. All the books we found were entirely too detailed for a little 3-year-old mind. I mean what 3-year-old wants to know what a uterus looks like?
We happen to stumble upon the perfect book (for a sister) at a Borders that was closing, so Joe ordered the boy version from Barnes and Noble the next day:

It is a pretty awesome book. Just the right amount of information and nothing too grown up. It says how there's a new baby and it can't eat things like pizza and ice cream and it can't walk or talk. But it says how the big brother is special because he can do all those things. It also says a little bit about why babies cry... which will be helpful to prep him that there will be crying going on.

We gave him the book and, at first, he didn't want to read it. Then one day I found him in a good mood, so he let me read it to him. Then about a week later he let me read it again. That leads us to earlier this week. We hadn't read it in a few weeks, so he was like, "How 'bout that one?" pointing to the big brother book. He actually requested to read/look at it. Turns out he didn't want me to read it, but he wanted to flip through it and look at the pictures while he was eating dinner. He is a very picky and slow eater, so usually I don't let him do anything that will distract him from eating, during meal times, but this time I let him, since, after all, it was a very special request.

With three months left, I think we are making good progress with the whole thing. I'm sure it will be a big adjustment when the baby actually gets here, but for now he seems to be coping well with the idea. Afterward we plan on letting him help with the baby, if he wants to. For instance getting diapers and wipes or anything else we might need that's across the room. He also likes to "read", so I'm going to see if he would like to read to the baby. We will think of more along the way, but that's a good start.

I know he'll be a wonderful big brother. I just hope everything goes smoothly for the most part.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Easter Update

Well... life has been interesting these past couple weeks. I didn't realize that even though every Saturday was pretty much booked that that meant that Thursday and Friday would be booked to prepare for Saturday. So as it is with all my excuses of being pregnant and working full time, we started on the first project (the cross on the hill). I cut the ball in half and Elijah painted it. There are pictures... I remembered to do that at least. However there are is still no cross or flowers on it, so we might do that tonight... if the little boy who decided to wake up way early the past 3 days decides he wants to be in a good mood to do the project. If he's not, whatever, we have until the 24th or later...

I promise to have finished projects and pictures up, soon, though. If you are doing any projects I hope they are coming along better than ours. :-)

Friday, April 1, 2011

Easter Excitement

Seeing as Easter is my favorite holiday, as I might have mentioned a few dozen times in the past... This year I'm totally excited about it because Elijah has reached that wonderful age where he wants to do crafty things. We usually do a few of the usuals, dying eggs and an Easter egg hunt, but this year I thought we could do a few extras, as well. I was surfing around the web for some ideas and I found one that I really liked, then I came up with two of my own.

I thought, since I am somewhat ahead of the game thinking up ideas, I would tell you all, in case you would like to join along. My plan is to do a craft/activity each week, up until Easter. So here's the layout:

April 2 or 3 - Cross on a hill - From Danielle's Place

You Need:

Two popsicle sticks hot glued into a cross
A 2-inch styrofoam ball, cut in half
Glue Gun with hot glue
Green paint
Flower stickers
Optional 1" x 6" purple cloth

Have the child paint the half of the styrofoam ball green (like grass) and put flower stickers on it. I think I will have Elijah paint the half a ball green earlier in the day, then set it aside to dry, then that evening let him put the flower stickers on it... That's the plan anyway. Afterward I'm going to glue the popsicle sticks together, push the cross into the half a ball and glue it in place.The optional purple cloth should be draped over the cross and glued in place.

April 9 or 10 - Cottonball Sheep

You Need:

Sheep outline printed out on or cut out of heavy white cardstock
Optional die cutting machine
Cottonballs or pom poms (depending on if you want an all white or multicolored sheep)
Glue - either Elmers or glue stick
Black marker or pen to draw in eyes/nose/ears, etc. If it wasn't already printed out.

Because I don't have a die cutting machine with a sheep shape that I like, I am going to use this sheep shape and print it out on heavy white cardstock. I'm going to cut it out and I plan on squeezing some glue onto the main portion of the sheep, all over, and letting Elijah go to town on putting down cotton balls.

Afterward, which is completely optional, I plan on gluing it to a piece of cardstock (8.5 x 11) and writing a verse or saying about sheep underneath... Like "Jesus is the shepherd and we are the sheep" or something along those lines.

April 16 or 17 - Painted faces, bellies and other extremities

You Need:

Face/body paint
Body parts to paint on

This is more of a fun thing to do as opposed to a project. Things are kind of up in the air about how this will go, but all I know at this point is that I am going to paint my pregnant belly like an Easter egg with a crack in it. We might paint Elijah's face like a bunny, cause we have play bunny ears to accessorize it. Otherwise I might just ask what he would like to have painted on him and see if Joe or I can work it out.

April 22 - Easter Egg dying (even though I'm pretty sure everyone knows how to do this, I'll lay it out anyway)

You Need:

Hard boiled white eggs (cooled)
A dying kit
Plastic cups (clear, if possible)

Mix up the different colors in different cups as directed on the back of the dying kit. If the kit comes with the wax crayons, then let you child (if he or she wants to) scribble or draw on the egg. I'm guessing if it doesn't come with it you could use a white candle to draw on it. Anyway, then stick the eggs, one at a time in the dye of choice. If you choose to use more than one color, make sure the egg is somewhat dry before you put it in the second dye and so on. After it is dyed to your satisfaction, put it on the drying tray. Continue until you run out of eggs.

April 23 or 24 - Easter Egg Hunt

I'm pretty positive that everyone knows how to do an Easter egg hunt. We don't use the ones we dye... those are for eating or playing with. I buy the cheap-o plastic Easter eggs from the dollar store or Walmart. The first year we did this I filled them with animal crackers, since Elijah was only about 14 months old. Last year we didn't do one, but if we did, I wasn't going to put anything in the eggs. This year I don't think I am either. Elijah just enjoys finding the eggs, for right now.

So that's the plan. Sorry this is such short notice, seeing as I plan to start tomorrow or Sunday, but that doesn't mean you have to do yours on the weekend (if you choose to join along), these are so simple they can be done anytime. I will be posting pictures of our projects and activities as they are completed, so stay tuned. :-)