Saturday, March 31, 2012

Recent Developments

Mommy's #1 Draft Pick
We had our 18 month appointment this week! Here are the results:

Oh and by the way, we're tons of fun :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Austin's Weekend in Review

It has been so rainy the past week! But at least things were nice and green for St. Patrick's day!

Which we celebrated by visiting the Easter Bunny. Unwillingly.

We also got to see some nice rocks. 

Mom thought we might see if gardening was our thing. Naturally, we loved the dirt. And you can see one of the casualties there by his foot.

Fortunately (for the plants),  we lost interest before we could commit much more herbicide.

We also visited a beautiful Japanese style garden.

We were really into the gravel paths.

We also enjoyed climbing these steps...

 Mostly so we could fling our gravel really really far.


You may notice that most of these pictures are of Mr. Austin's caboose. This is because we are always running away from Mom, who won't let us dive into the koi pond.


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Contact Paper Prints

mmmm... particles
So, my son isn't particularly creative yet. It's something I'm eagerly waiting for, but I don't pressure him. He'd rather feel the flour we're using for salt dough, or dump it out so he can watch it falling. And that's fine! Maybe he'll study physics like almost all my relatives did. But yours truly went to art school. And I'm beside myself wanting to make things with him instead of just watching him destroy whatever I make for him. So I'm always looking for ways to get some sort of memento or intentional looking something out of these adventures. I also have this grand plan to help him understand the ideas of holidays and traditions by showing him what we've made the years before. We can go through our projects together as part of our celebration. And this was such a fun and easy thing to do! I'm really looking forward to telling him about his Holi footprints next year!

You'll need scissors, an empty picture frame with removable glass pane, and glass cleaner. The first step is to remove the glass from the frame and clean both sides thoroughly, using something fairly lint-free. Hang onto your cloth or whatever for the next step. I used alcohol, because it just happened to be there. You want something that will get all the smudges and fingerprints off, so that the contact paper can stick easily and you have a nice, clean, smudge-free end product.

Next, find the piece of the contact paper you want to save. I think this would work best with a lot of negative space, so more of the paper can adhere to the glass. Using your rag to hold the glass so you don't smudge it again, carefully place your glass over your image. It's also a good time to push it into place, burnishing it and pressing with the cloth so the contact paper sticks. This makes cutting it out a great deal easier.

Cut out carefully. Try to pay attention to the edge of the glass so you don't accidentally detach your contact paper too much.

Once it's free of the larger sheet, trim as necessary and press down any edges that may have lifted. It doesn't have to be super neat unless you choose not to frame it. These would be pretty cool as floating prints too!

Now reassemble your frame and you're done! I don't know how long the chalk powder will cling, but I guess we'll find out! I bet this will work with any flattish contact paper collage. Enjoy!

Friday, March 9, 2012

A Festival of Colors...

...Mostly on our pants. We celebrated Holi this week. Holi is a Hindu festival, celebrated by flinging lots of brightly colored powders all over your friends. Mom has always loved the pictures of the celebrants and decided this was right up our alley. And because she is an equal opportunity partier, she shoe-horned some early Easter fun too...

Awesome idea, Mom.

First things first, we liberated the eggs.

We're all about dumping.

The aftermath...

This was so much fun that we did it again the next day. We obviously couldn't get any authentic Holi powders and the recipes I found for making them at home were pretty time intensive. We might do that next time, but as usual, this time Mom had to be resourceful. The first day, we used some materials we happened to have. Turmeric worked brilliantly for gold. The unsatisfyingly grayish blue was made mixing food coloring and flour. Green and red were powdered jello, which were too pale, although they did smell interesting. On day two, we hit a winner: grated sidewalk chalk.

Sometimes, Mom is brilliant. Special thanks to GM Kaki for the grater:


We borrowed an idea from another blog Mom's been following, called, Play Create Explore. Jessie has some really amazing ideas for toddler crafts! We took some regular old contact paper and taped it sticky side up to our tarp.


As usual, the feet must be involved.

A lot.

As you might notice in the video, he was having a hard time opening the smaller eggs. He started handing them to Mom to open, who would carefully hand them back for inspection.

Whereupon he dumped it in his face...
this is why Mom prefers non-toxic chalk

Yes, the contact paper footprints stick to glass! Here are instructions if anyone wants to try it:

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Southern Exposure

This is the story of Austin's first trip to LA to see Grandpa and Mere...

We stayed in a fancy hotel. Actually, the elevators at the hotel may have been his favorite part of the trip. I would have gotten a picture of him enjoying the koi pond too, but keeping him out of the pond took both hands.

We got to sit in a big boy chair because everyone with toddlers hits the buffet at the same time.

Here we are visiting the Farmer's Market. Everyone eagerly anticipated Austin's first pony ride...

Except Austin. Here we see some intense negotiations...

And here we see Austin leaving the pony rides...

We rode Dad instead.

We'll have more on the bubble gun later. It merits a post all by itself. Let's just say that the guy parked between the market and the park selling those suckers was a genius.

And travel is just exhausting! Thank goodness we have people to drive us home and put us to bed :)