Friday, June 14, 2013

A gift of rocks

Hey, look at me!  Posting again before an entire year went by.  I'm on a roll. 
A couple of weeks ago was my mother-in-law's birthday.  I made some homemade vanilla extract for her as a gift (didn't try it here's hoping it's any good!).  I wanted the kids to make something for her since I know she would appreciate something handmade much more than something store bought.  And the kids have about $2 between the two of them, so that wouldn't have bought anything fabulous anyway ;-)  She loves to garden and has a lot of plants, planter boxes, etc, so I thought it might be fun to make some "pet rocks" to live in her garden!  The kids would love doing it (I would try not to have an anxiety attack, like I often do when I get out a bunch of painting supplies around my 2-year-old), and my MIL would have some things in her garden that would remind her of the kids on a daily basis.
I browsed around online and saw a few different ideas to pull from, and we also made some up on our own.  Here is our first venture into the world of pet rocks!
Armed with some "base" colors for our critters
Jersey girl painting her rocks.

While painting there were plenty expressions of her current favorite phrase: "Mommy, I do it MYSELF" - complete with big eyes, serious tone, and the most exaggerated emphasis on "myself" that you can imagine.  She must be two. 

Tyson choosing to pain a mouse grey.

The finished product of Stage 1!  We wrote next to them in the box what we thought they should become after observing their various shapes.  *Most* of what we originally thought of came to fruition.
 Stage 2 was just me and Ty.  I woke him up a little bit early from his nap so he could help me paint stripes and eyes and noses, etc.  I knew Jersey would get frustrated with me trying to show her what to paint, and she doesn't have the fine motor skills to do anything more than broad strokes yet.  So for this particular project, Tyson and I had some special time putting on the finishing touches.

Ty blowing on the "googly eyes" so they would dry.

My goof ball thought he was pretty "big time" waking up early to help with a special project.

Here is the finished product!  We decided to make: fish, tiger, ladybug, bee, mouse, dog, and 3 monsters (Tyson's favorite!).  After the rocks were dry we decided to spray the fish and two of the monsters with some glitter (I mean, who doesn't love a glittery pink monster!?).  Then we sprayed all of the rocks with a clear, UV resistant coating.  I'm hoping it will keep the colors from fading too much this summer!

Tyson's favorite monsters! He LOVED the googly eye effect.

A couple of my personal favorites.
There you have it!  A cheap, fun, relatively painless (probably completely painless if you don't have a 2-year-old!) project which turned out super cute.  My only regret is not making any for us, because the kids both carried the rocks around and talked to them like they were real pets, ha!  So cute.  We will have to make some more for our own yard at some point.