The first time Ingrid finger-painted, Derek and I practically wrapped our entire kitchen in paper, taping rolls and rolls of it all over the floor. We video recorded and took photos galore. She ended up looking like she had a full body tattoo. And then we promptly plunked her into the bathtub.
Fast forward a few years to child #3 and well... finger painting happens wherever it happens - rarely in the playroom where no "dry clean only" items reside and usually in the living room instead, where a weary mom can sit on a comfy couch and mumble "ohhh pretty, good job" from her supine, semi-conscious position. And the clean-up also happens roughly, as in, whenever. I do my best to guide them to the bathroom without leaving a trail of colourful handprints behind but what doesn't come off with a few baby wipes and a quick rinse gets taken care of in the bath... a few days later. That's right, I don't bathe my children every day. OMG! The insanity of that would positively kill me!
Danica is a fan, for sure, though. She had a blast and had remarkable self-control with the paints. She wanted to squeeze out the paints herself but otherwise wasn't gratuitously messy, unlike a certain older sister.
And Elodie has always been a very neat finger painter. Even as a very young toddler she usually preferred to use a brush or sponge over her fingers. Not that she doesn't like to get dirty. She just seems to prefer to use a tool instead.
Elodie loves painting. I am not sure why I make her take off her shirt to paint, though. She is very, very neat. I put out some paper for her fully expecting her to get right into it and make a bif of a mess but she concentrated on just this one little corner of paper. She used a separate brush for each colour and lined all the used brushes up neatly on another piece of paper.
She did paint much of anything but she enjoyed herself anyway.
Danica enoyed some green beans.
And soaked up some delicious afternoon sunlight in the living room.
And Elodie practiced her printing. Isn't it funny how children start off making their letters sooooo big?
It's the first official day of March break and I feel somewhat prepared. At least for a day or two. My action plan for survival is to just keep 'em busy. The ratio of small, needy children to harried, tired mother does not work out in my favour so I have no plans to take them anywhere outside the general area of our home.
So I prepared some crafty activities in advance.
Ingrid nearly jumped out of her skin with excitement when she saw this set up just for her.
She (and I) thought it would take her all day but she loved it so much she just kept working hard at it, for a long time and before we knew it she was nearly done. It was so nice to see her so happy and full of concentration.
Elodie hung out with us and did her best to stay out of trouble.
Ultimate trouble maker right here, though.
Elodie asked to have her own project so I quickly marked out her name and gave her some craft supplies and, of course, glue. She chose to use only a green bingo dabber.
Doing her own thing...
Bird's eye view.
"Wanna see my pet?" - Elodie filled an empty gum container with glue, beads and a million other left over doo-dads from Ingrid's project and called it her pet. She was very proud of it and very carefully carried it around all day.
"I made this for you, Mom!", said Elodie. Girlfriend loves some glue.
And then she made some more pets that apparently smell like grape.
After one our of remarkable concentration from a child so easily distracted, it was mission complete for Ingrid and the alpahbet.
Later she wanted to do more crafts so I whipped up a paper plate cow thingamabob and she went to work.
Ingird has been asking to make pixie dust. She is convinced that I know how to make it, despite how many times I told her I cannot. Mom's can do everything, after all.
Anyway, I remember seeing "pixie dust" on the internet using glitter and glow sticks and decided to give it a whirl.
First mistake - I bought the thicker glow sticks, not knowing how difficult they are to cut open. I very nearly lost a digit trying to get one open. Then when I did I spilled it all over my hands. My hands glowed when I went to the bathroom. Seriously, I turned off the light and there they were, glowing.
Anyway, I poured what glowing liquid I salvaged into a jar and Ingrid dumped in an astonishingly large amount of silver glitter. We sealed it up, shook it and voila - a jar of something that in no way resembled pixie dust. Ingrid declared that this was not pixie dust and proceeded to try to convince me to try again.
No, go, little girl. Not happening.
I was, however, able to convince her that if we put the jar outside we might attract some fairies over night.
The pixies never came no matter how many times she opened the door and froze out the house.
Elodie kept trying to count the specks of glitter inside. She's no fool. I do believe she is aware that there is no such thing as a fairy, certainly none that could be lured to our door with ill prepared pixie dust.
I do not recommend making pixie dust from glitter and glow sticks. Fail!
Ingrid likes to draw happy faces. With the exception of that skeleton head/happy face gone wrong the other day, they are really the only thing draws. She even does it in a semi conscious state. While lying in her bed with her last night, she curled up next to me and rested her head on my arm. Exhausted myself, I started to drift off to sleep but was brought back to reality by this tickling sensation on my arm. I knew it was Ingrid doodling around so I paid more careful attention to it. Sure enough, she was drawing imaginary happy faces on my arm. I think tattoos are completely horrible but if I could have gotten one of those happy faces inked on my skin right then and there, I would have been a convert, for sure.
Anyway, tonight I thought I'd encourage to broaden her drawing horizens and try something else. So together, with my hand guiding hers, we drew a house. She then thought it was only right that she should draw the family that lives in the house, too.
Cute, I know... even the baby throwing up in the top right corner.
Ingrid has been making Valentine cards for Derek, Elodie and me since before the new year. She has no trouble leaving one holiday behind and moving on to the other. Just call her Lightning Andersen.
Typically, her cards will be just a few scribbles here and there, maybe an attempt at printing out her name and most frequently, a happy face, her favourite thing to draw.
This one, though, makes me feel like perhaps she has her seasons mixed up.
Is it just me or does that not look like some kind of Halloweenish skull of sorts to you, too? I don't think that top part with the spiky hair is supposed to be the top part of a skull but, by her own explanation, those are bloody eyes and a boogerful nose. And those three teeth? Hello skeleton.