Mexico, post 2!

Here we go! I felt the other post was getting a little long.

These are the crafts we did for Mexico week!

Tissue Paper Cut outs

Tissue paper flowers (one of my favorites)

Mexican Yarn Painting

Pinatas!!!

First the Tissue Paper cut outs!

These are simple enough. Take a square of tissue paper,

fold it however many times you want and let your kiddo get to cutting.

Easy. We put ours in the windows. Adorable!

Next up, the tissue paper flowers. Now I thought everyone knew what these were, going to public schools in Colorado, we made them all the time. Not in Michigan apparently. So I taught everyone I knew. Including snug.

All you need is a bunch of different colors of tissue paper and some pipe cleaners. (P.S. the dollar store has great tissue paper to use for crafts, a nice size pack for, well $1). Cut your tissue paper into a square, any size you want, or you can layer sizes, be sure to keep the smaller size inside. Now take 4 or more pieces of tissue paper and place them on top of each other in the color order you want. The bottom color is going to be the outside of the flower, the top color will be the inside.

Now take one of those handy books, mentioned in the last post, if you

don’t happen to have a table handy, and stat folding accordion style.

Which means you fold a little bit down one way.

Then you flip it over and fold it down going the other way. The snug is very good at making creases, but has trouble right now with the folding. We will have to work on that.

Anyway, keep going until the whole tissue paper is folded like this.

<–You want that zig zag look you see on the side there.

Now take the pipe cleaner and wrap it around the middle or the color you want to be the center of your flower. Mine is going to be green. Give the pipe cleaner a twist to secure it on the other side of the flower center.

Now the fun part, that is a little hard to decipher in my photo. You want to take the pieces of tissue paper and peel them apart from each other. Start with the center color and pull it all the way into the center and then move on to the next colors. Repeat for the other side.

Here is a better picture.

Once you are done, full the flower up a bit. You can make more and twist them together with the pipe cleaner and…

make a headband for Minnie Mouse. Or…

Hang it up somewhere high, where the cat can’t reach and tear it apart. Or you could just make one for your cat. Possibilities are endless. Well almost endless, you can’t take these out in the rain, but if you don’t live in Michigan and actually get sun for more than a few minutes per day, you could twine these on your fence for festive decorating! Or twist them in and out of a gazebo for a simple/cheap wedding decoration!

Now on to Mexican Yarn Painting.

We got this project from the craft book mentioned in the other post. This was the only project we did from that book. It turned out okay, but goodness, is it time-consuming. If you have an older kiddo who wants to be occupied for a couple of hours, I would suggest this. The artwork turns out to be great and is very neat to look at. If you take the time to finish it that is.

Here is what you need.

Various colors of yarn, any kind will do, we used ones that I had lying around. A piece of sturdy paperboard or cardboard, here we have the top of a pizza box. Scissors, liquid glue (no preschool glue sticks for this project) and a marker, if you want to draw out what you want to do.

That is what we did.

For our pictures, we started on the outside and worked out way in. So here is the cloud, with glue. You should put the glue down first and then the string.

Suddenly…

Cloud is finished!! So we did the outline of the cloud in yarn, then glue, yarn, glue, yarn, etc.

Someone is doing a great job! She was also very good at gluing and cutting the yarn. I drew the pictures though. Oh also, it is fun to add lots of swirls in this art too.

At around this time she started getting pretty bored with this project so we moved on and did some more later. This is about as far as we got.

It looks pretty cool and I really thought we should finish it and see how neat we could make it. Then a couple of thoughts crossed my mind. We were, at the time, getting ready to move across the county. There was probably not enough time to finish this before we left, then even if we did finish it where would we put it. It is a pizza box lid after all. So we stopped, but we didn’t throw it away, I actually have no idea what happened to it.

The point is, if you do this project and are not getting ready to move across the country. It would be completely worth it to finish it and hang it somewhere. Maybe in a playroom or the dinning room or some place that is used often. So you can see that hard work your little kiddo did, their creativity and their determination to finish something really very cool.

PINATA TIME!!!

Oh goodness the pinatas. We had some friends over the day we made pinatas, it was also the day we made the homemade tortillas. We went through a ton of flour that day, but for the best, we were moving anyway. That day happened to be a very, very windy one and for some reason the universal air/balloon continuum was off-balance. Literally almost every balloon we blew up popped for no reason. Big ones, small ones, ones that we were holding, ones on the grass, ones on a smooth surface, it didn’t matter. Finally we got a handful of balloons to stay inflated and we started trying to make pinatas.

Alright, here is what you will need.

A balloon, that will stay inflated, a big bowl that you are just itching to get very, very messy, water, flour, salt, and lots and lots of strips of newspaper. 3 inch strips will do, but they can vary. You don’t want them to be too big though. Also if you are feeling crafty, you can make a little balloon stand out of pipe cleaners, like the one shown. Don’t ask me how I did it, it was a one time engineering type feat for me. Or you can also just use a sting to hang the balloon from somewhere.

The flour to water ratio is 1:2. So 1 part flour to 2 parts water. Or in simpler terms, 1 cup flour for every 2 cups water. Also a little salt helps, to prevent any mold, if you live in a wet place.

Whisk that up in the big bowl and start dipping the newspaper and covering your balloon. Now you want to remind the kiddos that they should not squeeze but kind of run their fingers over the paper strips after dipping them in the ‘paste’ or else you will have this stuff everywhere! And it will get too wet.

There we go. I also forgot to mention, it is time for learn from my mistakes moment! If you want your pinata to have different features other than just round, you should do that first. With the balloon. That means taping (masking tape works the best) toilet paper tubes or paper towel tubes or various sizes of balloons to the main balloon. Then paper mache everything together. Trust me, we learned this the hard way. See what happened was we made what you see above. A balloon with a toilet paper tube. It was going to pinata up to be a bird. So after this was dry, we popped the balloon inside and attached a new balloon to paper mache a bird head.

Here are the preparations for the bird head. Well, turns out, you can’t really re-wet paper mache, it kind of collapses. So I ended up ruining our pinata. In a big messy ruin. Did that stop us though??  Of course not, this time however I did learn from my mistakes.

We started over (because we had to, we needed this pinata for our going away party) and took two balloons and taped them together with a toilet paper tail.

There it is. Then snug and I paper mached the entire thing and waited for it to dry. Also when you paper mache something, you want to make sure there is a little hole, one small enough to cover easily, but big enough to pop your balloon (once the paper mache is dry) and fill with goodies like these.

Bouncy balls and our favorite lollipops!!! We had a couple packs of each. The balls I think are from a dollar section somewhere. Oh Toys R us maybe. There was a terrible reason that I was there, but that is a non-eco friendly story for another day.

Once your pinata is dry you can go ahead and decorate it. You can do this however you want, paint works great, or you can do tissue paper. Tissue paper works especially well if, you are moving and need to use up what you have, have done a ton of other tissue paper crafts recently and are still feeling the tissue paper itch, or you just like tissue paper. For the tissue paper you will have to use glue, but please, please don’t use too much glue and get your paper mache all wet again!

This is also a good time to add different adornments on your pinata, beaks and feet in our case. Here is how our pinata turned out.

Pretty darn good, if I do say so myself!

Sorry there aren’t more pictures of pinata making. It is messy business and the flour/water combo tends to dry your hands out a bit, then washing them every few minutes to snap a picture doesn’t help, and then putting the camera in a mess free zone, along with trying to make sure your preschooler doesn’t dump over that giant bowl of flour and water while trying to paper mache. Well lets just say, I had enough going on.

Now for fun, here are some pictures of the end of the pinata. For the record I did take a swing at it, but after all we had been through, it was hard.

Actually, it wasn’t just hard for me to break into that pinata, it was hard for the kids. Turns out, it was a pretty sturdy pinata.

The kids took turns hitting it, this is snug’s 3rd or 4th turn.

Then the adults tried to help.

Finally the wrath of Kelly, defeated the mighty pinata bird!

The children rejoiced as candy poured from the beast!

The remains of the paper mache monster beast were discarded in the nearest waste reciprocal.

Thus bringing closure to the end of our Mexico week and the end of our stay in Michigan!

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One response to “Mexico, post 2!

  1. I will always be there for your piñata destroying needs!

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