Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Milhazes inspired Geography project!

Maddie had a big project for Geography this week. It REQUIRED creativity! Love that. 

Simple parameters were given and then the students were asked to be creative. 

Maddie chose to focus her project on South America. Doug was interested as he spent a few months there while in college. I was interested as my favorite artist is from there. I quickly showed Maddie the work of Beatriz Milhazes and she agreed, creating a layered "mural" would perfectly fit the parameters of the assignment.

So Maddie did all of her research and found clip art to visually reflect all of the requirements and then she sent me her file. I then used my Pazzle and cut all of her files from vinyl. Milhazes actually paints each of her objects, but with it being the end of the semester there was no time for that!

And here we are tonight putting the layers of vinyl down. I had so many ideas as to how I would do the project.. But it wasn't mine to do...so here is Maddie creating HER project!

It turned out cute. I suggested that she shade out the rest of the map.. You know change the opacity of the first layer.. So that the vinyl images would pop off the map. 

Obviously Maddie didn't agree.

Anyway, all in all, I gotta say, I liked the project. Doug and I were given a chance to tell our teen about something we love and as is our norm- we came from totally different ends.. But we ended up at the same place. 

This time Brazil!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Ok, maybe not a total loss...

The results of our crafting.
I guess it wasn't a total loss, cause boy are these cute. We lost one in the final stage of cleaning when Kylie dropped it. But other than that, I think they turned out pretty cute. 

Like so many projects.. The result is nothing like I envisioned from the start, but the little girls really enjoyed making their ornaments!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Crafting Fail!

I do tons of craft projects with my kids. Tons. But this morning it was an epic fail! In fact, it was one of those moments that made me stop and say, "oh.. This is why people hate craft projects!"

So what was so bad? Nothing really, just NOTHING worked right!

Kylie and I were set to emboss some ornament blanks. I gathered all the stuff and we got set up.

I opened up the versamark to stamp the image and it was dry. So I got out my other embossing ink to use it. It was too well loved. Ugh.

So I dug around and found a white stazon that was bone dry but I had a refill.. Too bad the ink wouldn't penetrate the pad! It just puddled on top of the pad.

I finally got an image stamped decently on the tile and we poured embossing powder on it. Or we tried. It was stuck together like sugar in a container in humid weather.

I brushed off the excess and this is what we were left with.

I tried it get it to bond, but it just wiped off the tile. Soo frustrating! I did get a couple of images to finally heat set, but while I was working on that, Kylie accidently knocked off the embossing powder onto a cloth covered chair and we had to clean and vacuum that up. 

At that point we gave up on the embossing powder and switched to glue and glitter.

You can imagine the amount of glitter that has now been spread around the house.

Anyway, hopefully when the ornaments have dried and we can brush off the excess glitter, they will look better. 

For now, I'm done with decorating ornaments!!!

What I was reminded about this morning is that materials make or break the project. My embossing materials are almost 10 years old and have long outlived their projected life. Time to clean and purge before we try another project!

Friday, December 5, 2014

784 pictures later.. the first installment of my summary of our Disney world trip.

I started this post while sitting in the Orlando airport waiting for our plane to go home. It had been delayed. twice.. Fitting as our flight to Orlando had been cancelled and we were rerouted. Thanks American. At first we laughed and said that if Disney were in charge, it would run on time! But now, waiting to go home, it's just frustrating. No storm, no reason given, just late.

I was hoping to get this post completed and uploaded before the incredibly hectic week started. Obviously that didn't happen. So I'm going to hit the high points and just move on.

Thankfully I have 784 pictures on my phone to choose from as I tell the story of our journey in pictures. These plus the 220 pictures that we had taken on our Magic Photo Pass just might get me enough pictures to make a few scrapbooks!

Picture #1

Loaded up!

Take note of the yellow bag tags. These are part of the Magical Express service and they truly are magical. When you get to your starting airport you hand off your luggage and you don't see it again until it arrives in your hotel room!

Picture #8.

My carry on. 

Yes it was fun going through airport security with this thing!  
A note to parents that need to travel with meds, take unopened bottles if possible. An unopened bottle of medicine just has to have the box swabbed along with everything else. An opened bottle has to be put in the screener and tested. It's not difficult, it just takes more time.

Given that we were traveling with a dozen prescriptions plus all sorts of allergy meds, it wasn't too bad, but I think part of it was that I had put most of it in the one bag so security just had to check the one piece of luggage. The epi-pen and nebulizer meds clued security in quickly that I meant business and treated us with great respect.
Pictures #11-12

FINALLY on a plane. I was and am so thankful to have good kids! All the waiting for planes and on planes took a toll on us. I can't imagine trying to travel with stinkers! (The silver lining in the horrible travel day showed me that my girls will be fine when we travel to Europe in a year and a half. Given that a 3 hour flight ended up taking almost 12 hours and two planes.. I think we will be fine!)

Picture #44

On the Magical Express!! Once we made it to the Orlando airport and got off the plane, we made it through the terminal and onto the waiting bus in 10 minutes!!  Oh the Magic of Disney! We desperately needed that!

Pictures #62 -65

At the Art of Animation Resort! Quite the first impression!

Ready to put on our magic bands!!

As soon as we got our bands on we headed to the Hall of Flavors for some food. It was YUMMY!  I know some people aren't fans of the dining plan, but man, for our family it is perfect. In fact, I'd consider dumping the table service meals for a couple more quick service meals! For example, my meal was a custom burger with avocado, bacon and swiss cheese. YUM! And when you pay with your magic band, you don't have "real" money.. so you can go ahead and get that $5 dessert!

The next morning we went to Animal Kingdom. It was cold and rainy, but we had a BLAST!

Pictures #73-83 assorted

Lexi rode her first roller coaster. Four times. and we all LOVED the Finding Nemo show!

Picture #125 Cold and Wet!

Don't you just love the little girls' faces?! They were freezing, but having a ball!

After we played at Animal Kingdom we went back to the hotel and warmed up and rested for a little while then went to Epcot for dinner.

Picture #210
We ate at Chefs de France. It was outstanding! For adults. Kylie didn't eat and Lexi barely did. Fancy mac'n cheese just isn't what my 5 year old wants!!!

Day Two:

Picture #217 Magic Kingdom!

We got to Magic Kingdom fairly early and enjoyed the relative calmness on a few rides. Then the Thanksgiving Day crowds showed up and it was insane.

Pictures #253 and 259

Tomorrowland Speedway was a hit. As were the carousel and Dumbo's flight. But the big hit of the day had to be a tie between Haunted Mansion and The Barnstormer! 

Kylie LOVED the roller coaster! Lexi was worried about her glasses, but everyone enjoyed the ride, do we did it a few more times!

We finished our day at Magic Kingdom with Aladdin's Magic Carpets.  We rode it a couple of times too.

What a wonderful day! And I have soo much more to say that I'm going to make it another post as this one already has too many pictures! 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Counting Their Savings, the Girls Get Ready for Disney World!

We leave for Disney World on Tuesday morning! We are so ready!

One of the biggest changes we made getting ready for this trip to Disney compared to our first family trip there was that we made the girls earn/save their own spending money!  We told them that we would get them there and feed them, but all other purchases were on them!

And they have done a fantastic job this year saving! I am so proud of them.  Maddie hasn't really worried about it much. She has a job and has money. But Lexi and Kylie are pretty much at our mercy, so they have been more diligent and intentional about their savings.  

So today, just three days out, we were ready to count our money! Doug and I have saved change all year and we plan to use that for the incidentals. It's been fun to watch our change jar grow!

Sidenote: we had all the money bagged up and Lexi and I went to the coinstar machine so that it would count it for us. Both machines in town were broken.  Besides the having to carry the truckload of change in and out of stores for no reason, I'm glad we couldn't use the machines. Counting the money was way more rewarding and tangible. It was hard work! The girls learned how to count of the coins and roll the money. We spent most of the day working on it. I think the machines would have been too much like using a credit card.. not a real transfer of money therefore not a real experience of earning and learning!

Here are the girls ready to count the change. 

The girls sorted and counted and rolled. All of them.

Doug came in and started on his MOUND of pennies!!

Can you believe the coins!

We had to stop 1/2 way through for Doug and Lexi to run to the office supply store and get more penny rolls! Here we are at break time. You can really see just how many pennies we had!

Back at it. 

Kylie couldn't help it. She had to go change into a costume. Here she is with her savings as Anna.

Maddie finished counting hers early and helped Doug and I with ours. 

And here is Doug with our loot.

Ready for the bank!

Total Disney spending money savings for the year for the girls..

Kylie: $84
Lexi: $95.50
Maddie: $78

Doug and I saved $255 in change!

Gotta say, it's pretty fun to watch the girls save for something special and really follow through with it. I love seeing their proud faces and seeing their accomplishments!