We had gotten so used to all the beautiful sunny weather around here, that a rainy day came as bit of a shock. After we got over our depression, Z and I decided to turn it into a fun craft day!
We had been waiting for just the right time to try our hand at making some crayons, using a dinosaur cake mold. We were both very excited (yay, the boy loves to craft as much as his mama!) and really, the rainy weather, was just the excuse we needed. We gathered our supplies and got to work...
Step 1: Place non-craft participating child in high chair and bribe with copious amounts of Puffs
Step 2: Unwrap and break (in half) pretty crayons (if you're not quite as anal as me, just use your kid's already beat-up crayons. I bought the box of Crayola, because I thought they would melt better, or something. Really, I just have some control issues)
Step 3: Mutter, grumble and swear (to yourself) about the amount of time it's taking to unwrap the damn crayons.
*Here are some things I discovered: Crayola crayons have really tough paper to get off and the darker colors are even tougher (not scientific, I know, but trust me, after doing a bazillion of these, I know)
Step 4: Realize that step 2 should have been putting the crayons in the freezer, because crayons are made of wax, and wax shrinks when frozen...thus crayons shrink making the paper easier to get off! Now, if only I had realized this before I only had three crayons left.
Step 5: Give up your crazy dream of having only Crayola crayons and send your kid for the crayon box to use whatever ghetto crayons you can find... *sigh*
So, after what seemed like hours of doing this, we finally had enough crayons to fill our mold. Well, all but one anyway; but since Avalee was giving us this crazy, “What are you guys doing?”, “Get me out of this stinkin' chair!” and “What ARE you guys doing??” look, we had to make time.
After filling the molds (we did multiple colors for each dino), we popped the pan in a pre-heated (350) oven and cooked for about twenty minutes (we tried ten, but there were still some chunks, so we decided on another ten. Hmmm...I bet if only high-quality Crayola crayons were used, ten min would have been fine).
He's hiding the one spot we didn't get filled...LOL
What they look like after they are melted
After we took them out, we put them in the freezer for about ten minutes, then popped them out of the mold. The result was some pretty awesome dinosaur crayons! So awesome, that you want to take like a hundred pictures of them while your kid keeps bugging you to “pleeeeze” let him just use them already.
My camo crayon...pretty proud of that one! ;0)
So, we unfolded a giant piece of butcher paper on the kitchen floor and Z picked out his favorite crayon. He was way excited to discover it made two colors at once started making giant swirls all over, while giggling and saying “Look, Mommy!”...and I then realized it was all worth it. :0)
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Friday, September 4, 2009
So, my mom called us last week to see if we wanted to go pick cucumbers at my (Great) Aunt and Uncle's house. They live in Stayton (Ore), out in the country, away from the urban neighborhood we live in. Now, I used to live in the country (actually, we lived right behind my aunt & uncle) when I was Z's age, but it's been a long time. Z has lived in the city his entire life, and the closest he gets to 'nature' is “ewww, is that skunk??” or “ooh, look, a squirrel!” For him, Stayton is a world away and filled with all the wonders he misses out on by living within a mile from Wal-Mart, and McDonalds. Just the drive there is fun for him; “Ooh, look...Cows!” “Mommy, horses!” “Look at ALL the corn!” And, it gives me a renewed sense of wonder for those things that I've long forgotten (like the smell of the country, long windey roads and wild blackberries growing everywhere).
Once we got to their house, he was even more excited. Uncle Harold took him to see the bees making honey, then he got to pick some cucumbers. Once he spotted the horses though... He decided the horses needed to be fed hay, and that he needed to feed them...massive quantities of hay. Luckily, horses are okay (I think) with getting fed much more hay than they need, and I think wait for just the time when three year old boys show up, so they can over-indulge. Oh, Avalee, was loving the country life too. She adored the horses and was even brave enough to grab their ears.
After Z had enough of the horses (well, at least for a few minutes), he decided to check out the old tractor my Uncle souped up for the local parade (just like the tractor my little bro and I used to ride in the parades!). He climbed into the drivers seat, then had to check out the trailer in the back. He just couldn't get enough of it...but when he did, it was onto the swingset (made by my uncle). He gleefully called to the horses, “Look at me...I'm swingin!” The horses, of course, just kept on being horses (chewing grass, and swishing their tails).
We ended our visit by picking a bowl of blackberries on my aunt and uncle's property. Actually, I believe Z ate more than he actually contributed to the bowl, but the rest of us picked.
I was once again reminded of my life in the country, decades ago, riding horses and snapping peas in my aunt's kitchen for dinner. I'm happy the kids could experience a little of what I had growing up, and hope to take them back out more often.
Z was so spent on the way home, that he fell asleep; dreaming of horses, tractors and swings, I'm sure. :^)