Monthly Archives: November 2016

How to Make Craft Stick Story Fairies

craft stick story fairies pinterest graphic

These craft stick story fairies are inspired by my daughter’s love of acting out stories.

Craft sticks are one of our favorite things to create with, and we decided that it would be fun to have a little set of fairies to help her act out her tales.

They were super easy and fun to make, and you can create a lot or just a few.


CRAFT STICK STORY FAIRIES


SUPPLIES:

craft stick story fairiesHot glue gun and glue sticks

Small craft sticks

Felt and/or fabric scraps

Yarn, ribbon, and fiber scraps

Pipe cleaners

Paint or Sharpie

Scissors

INSTRUCTIONS:

To make a shirt, take a small craft stick and put hot glue on about a half inch surface, leaving a small space at the top for the face.

Wind the small scrap of yarn around the area with the glue.

craft stick story fairies

craft stick story fairies

Next cut a small scrap of fabric or felt for the bottom. You can cut a simple rectangle, or get a little fancy and make a triangle for a skirt.

We even found some tulle that worked well as a tutu, we just made some folds to make it fluff out a bit and attached it to some hot glue.

craft stick story fairies

craft stick story fairies

Now it is time to make the fairy wings. If you have the long craft pipe cleaners, cut it in half. Then bend it in the infinity shape or a figure 8.

Push the sides in a bit to make a little indentation for the wing shape. Put some hot glue in the center of the wings and glue it onto the back of your fairy.

craft stick story fairies

craft stick story fairies

Finally it is time to add some fun hair and the faces. My daughter helped to make these, so we kept the faces simple. We discovered that a sharpie marker bleeds a little on the craft stick, so we used a toothpick dipped in a big of black acrylic paint and drew on eyes and smiles.

The hair was the fun part. Just arrange it however you like, and attach it with the hot glue.  We used some wool and yarn scraps and made some crazy hair do’s. We thought it would make the story telling more exciting.

craft stick story fairies

Aren’t they fun?

They are the perfect size to play with and different from the usual finger puppets.

After we played a bit, Bean and I decided that these story fairies needed a special place to rest when they weren’t busy acting out stories.

So we made a cute box out of our craft sticks to store them in. Here is how we did it.


STORY FAIRY STORAGE BOX


SUPPLIES:

Medium sized craft sticks

Hot glue gun

INSTRUCTIONS:

First, line up 11 sticks vertically. Then, use the hot glue gun and attach a craft stick horizontally at the top and bottom of your 11 sticks.

This is the base of the box.

craft stick story fairies

To give depth to the box, glue a craft stick vertically on the right side, and another on the left side.

Next, line up a craft stick with the horizontal stick at the top, and glue it to the one that you just placed vertically. Do the same thing for the bottom.

Keep alternating and gluing your craft sticks horizontally and vertically until your box is deep enough to fit your craft stick story fairies.

craft stick story fairies

The lid is the final step. Line up another 11 sticks vertically.

Leave a space of about the width of three craft sticks (this helps the lid stay on and not just slip off) and glue a stick horizontally on the top. Do the same thing for the bottom.

craft stick story fairies

Now you have a cute little box to keep the story fairies in when they aren’t being used!

craft stick story fairies

The lid can be decorated any way that you want, or it could just be left plain.

We debated using glitter or paint, but instead we kept it simple and cut out some magazine letters to spell out “once upon a time” to decorate the lid. Bean had a fun time helping search for the perfect letters.

craft stick story fairies

These were both fun and easy to make. We are already thinking up different sets that we can make next.

If you decide to try this out, let me know how it went in the comments.


This is the first of several craft stick projects I will be sharing, so be sure to stay tuned for the next one!



Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. ?

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30 Great Bullet Journal Page Ideas

bullet journal page ideas pin graphic

Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. ?

Starting a bullet journal was my attempt at finding a good system to help me stay organized and motivated.


If you aren’t sure what a bullet journal is, and if it would work for you, check out my Beginners Guide to Bullet Journals post.


The past 30 days have been tough on me emotionally. Our family experienced two deaths, and a close friend also lost her father.

I was sad and left with a lot to process.

Working through those feelings and trying to stay on top of my normal routine, was a struggle. I definitely fell behind in my blogging, and I wasn’t feeling my creative self. It was hard to find the motivation to be productive.

But, I noticed one change in myself, and that was that I didn’t completely quit and just sit there being sad. Instead, I used my bullet journal to help me find a little happy again, and get back into my groove.

I got out my colored pencils, pens, and paper, and focused on my wish list, places I want to visit and quotations. The end result? Three new pages for my bullet journal.

bullet journal page ideas completed pages

Making these pages helped me re-focus, and also distract me from feeling so down. I found it healing to think about the future, and it felt good to put some of my wishes and goals down on paper.

They will provide a concrete reminder to keep going and continue working for those things.

The things that I focused on may not be exactly what you need, but that is the beauty of a bullet journal.

You can add whatever is important and relevant to YOU!

Here are a few bullet journal page ideas that might inspire you to get started.

bullet journal page ideas colored pencil photo

HEALTH: MIND AND BODY

  • Gratitude log
  • Water intake tracker
  • Exercise log/weight tracker
  • Self care and relaxation ideas
  • Habit tracker
  • Dream log
  • Vitamin tracker

HOME

  • Recipes to try
  • Shopping list
  • Bill tracker
  • Spending log
  • Home and organization projects
  • Cleaning schedule
  • Menu plans

FAMILY and RELATIONSHIPS

  • Birthday lists
  • Things kids say
  • Family night ideas
  • Gift Ideas
  • Date night ideas

PERSONAL

  • Bucket list
  • Wish list
  • Movies/T.V. to watch
  • Books to read
  • Accomplishments
  • Memorable quotations
  • Places to travel
  • Skills or hobbies to learn
  • Restaurants to try
  • Journal prompts


I encourage anyone to create and keep adding pages to their bullet journal. It has been such a helpful, and personalized tool in my life. Just don’t try to do too many at one time, or you might feel overwhelmed!

If you have some bullet journal page ideas, or even pages that you have created, please share them in the comments!

xo, Melissa

P.S. Are you new here? Follow Disco Bumblebee on Pinterest and be sure to join my Facebook group for more journaling ideas, quick and easy crafts, and other lifestyle tips.

discobumblebee

 

 

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Lessons and Activities for November

lessons and activities november pin graphic

November has arrived, and that means it is time for some new books, experiments, lessons and activities in our homeschool classroom!

In addition to our regular work, we will focus on being thankful, and the history of Thanksgiving, which I will be incorporating into our lessons and activities throughout the month.

I found a great resource on the Scholastic website. It has a ton of information on The First Thanksgiving, so we will definitely be using that as a resource this month.

LANGUAGE AND READING

We are continuing to use our sight word list from our word hunt last month. They have been helping Bean learn some key words that she is seeing more often now that she is reading.

We’ve also been working on identifying long and short vowel sounds. I have a little game I found at the dollar store to help her with that.

I also selected some books that fit well with the Thanksgiving season:

Being Thankful by Mercer Mayer

The Very First Americans by Cara Ashrose

The Story of the Pilgrims by Katharine Ross

The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush by Tomie dePaola

Please and Thank You Book by Richard Scarry

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

10 Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston

Pete the Cat by Kimberly and James Dean

SCIENCE

Another fun part of Thanksgiving is the food, so I have picked out a few food experiments for our science lessons.

Bendy Bones

When you make turkey, set aside some bones for this fun experiment (chicken bones would work too, you don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving turkey time for this one).

First, make sure to clean and scrape any meat off of the bones.

Then, make some observations and discuss your findings. Are the bones strong? Do they bend? What color are they? How long are they?

Next, fill a container large enough to submerge the bones, with vinegar.

Place the bones in the vinegar and let them sit for four days. If it gets smelly, cover the container with a little plastic wrap and secure with a rubber band.

After four days, remove the bones from the vinegar. Observe and discuss again.

Because of the acidic vinegar, the bone should bend because the calcium has been broken down.

You can even try other acids, like lemon juice or soda.

Re-Grow Food

lessons and activities green onion experiment image

Find a fun recipe that calls for green onions, and when you use them, leave about 3 inches of the root .

Place your trimmings standing up in a glass container.

Fill the glass with water, leaving an inch or two above the water.

Find a sunny window, and set the glass nearby.

Change the water every other day, and in a few days, green shoots should begin to appear.

Once you have some growth, trim and use in another meal. Leave your roots in the jar, you should be able to get a few cycles of re-growth. See how many you can get!

Bouncy Rubber Egg

lessons and activities bouncy egg experiment image

Grab a glass jar, an egg, and white vinegar.

Place the egg carefully in the jar, and add enough vinegar to cover the egg.  Let it sit for 24 hours.

Once that time period has passed, carefully remove the egg from the jar, and dump out the vinegar. Replace egg and cover again with vinegar. The wait is a little longer this time around, let it sit for 2 days.

Remove your egg from the jar, and observe. What does it feel like? Does it look different? What happened to the shell? What do you see?

Now is the fun part! See if it will bounce! Gently bounce it from a short distance- it is still fragile and could break.

Because an eggshell is made of calcium carbonate, the acid in the vinegar reacts and produces carbon dioxide. The egg membrane may absorb some of the vinegar, which will make the egg larger.

CRAFTS

lessons and activities art supplies image

I found a few fun activities on Pinterest:

Paper Bag TeePees

Paper Bag Turkeys

T.P. Roll Totem Poles

Herb and Spice Play Dough

Handprint Turkey

You can also find these on my Arts and Crafts board. Follow me for easy access!

I hope you found these November lessons and activities helpful. I would love to hear about what is happening in your homeschool classroom too, tell me about it in the comments and be sure to link your blog so that I can visit!

 

Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. ?

 

 

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How To Sneak In Self Care When You Are Too Busy

Self Care when you are busy

I have to admit, these past two weeks were pretty tough.

I started a new contract position, and in addition to my other job, homeschool, and other regular mom duties, I was exhausted!

self care exhausted graphic

Adding something extra to my routine threw me off, and I started to find it really hard to keep up, let alone carve out some time for my own self care.

I was quickly reminded that it is quite easy to get caught up in life and the changes that it brings. Which in turn makes it even easier to forget about setting aside time to recharge. I know that it is important, and that it might even help ease the stress of such a crazy schedule. However, when there seems to be a never ending to-do list, figuring out HOW to fit it in seems absolutely impossible!

I decided that making a list of quick and fairly easy things to do for a little recharge might be helpful. Sometimes, for me, figuring out what to do is half the battle.

Ideally, it would be helpful to have a little alone time for self care, but let’s be honest, with kids, it can be difficult to get a moment alone.

This list has a few things that can be done solo, but most can be done with a little one hanging out. Have them do the same activity, give them an independent craft project, or some solo reading time. This will enable you to have some time for a mini escape.

self care teacup photo

20 Quick Self Care Ideas

  1. Create a morning ritual, start the day with a favorite coffee or tea.
  2. Get out some crayons or colored pencils, and color.
  3. Write in a journal. Jot down worries, and then, write out what you are grateful for.
  4. Put on some favorite music and have a dance party.
  5. Get some fresh air and Vitamin D. Walk, run, play and jump in the backyard or a park.
  6. Organize something.
  7. Work out or do some yoga or stretching.
  8. Give yourself a mani and pedi.
  9. Read a magazine or a few chapters of a book.
  10. Light some candles and take a bubble bath.
  11. Take a class that interests you. There are even some wonderful ones on YouTube!
  12. Treat yourself! Get some new sheets, or pajamas.
  13. Take some deep breaths and listen to a guided relaxation.
  14. Pet a furry friend.
  15. Buy or pick some beautiful flowers to help brighten your day.
  16. Lay in the grass and watch the clouds.
  17. Put on some relaxing music and soak your feet.
  18. Put on your pajamas, pour some wine (or hot cocoa) and watch a movie or favorite show.
  19. Play solitaire or do a cross word puzzle.
  20. Curl up in bed and take a nap.

There you have it! I hope that this list might provide some ideas on ways to fit self care into your busy schedule. If you have a favorite way to sneak in some relaxing, I would love to hear about it in the comments.


Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. ?

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