Friday, December 31, 2010

The Twelve Singing Princesses

What is the best way to ring in the new year?
By having a princess party, of course!Sophie and Syrena spent three weeks planning and scheming about this party and today they pulled it off. Here is how it went:
First everyone arrived in their gowns and had tea. (Amazingly, there were 12 girls in all, which I think is great because my all time favorite fairytale is the Twelve Dancing Princesses. Coincidence? I think not.)They each had a chance to wear a "real" crown to introduce themselves and tell us what their favorite present was for Christmas.

After tea, the princesses gathered for the activity. Since I'm in the business of raising girls with depth, these princesses had to prove to me that they were worthy enough to receive their own crown. They had three tasks to complete. Each task was associated with a value, and after they completed each task they would be given a jewel for their crown.

The first value was HONESTY.
The princesses were told that an Evil Sorcerer had stolen my gold coins from my treasure box and scattered them upstairs. I needed someone to find all of my coins. But who could I trust? Of couse the princesses heartily volunteered. But could they find ALL 21 coins and put them back in my box without eating them? Could they be HONEST?
Well, of course they can. They did a fantastic job and found all 21 gold coins. On to the next task.

For the second task they had to prove to me that they were PROBLEM SOLVERS. They were each given a small bag, and in each bag there was one puzzle piece. Their task was to assemble the puzzle together. But they could only use their own puzzle piece, and they couldn't trade or take anyone else's puzzle piece. The catch: they were not allowed to speak.

I should have made them assemble a smaller puzzle because they finished it so fast I didn't have any time to snap a photo. Those smarties. From this task I learned that they were not only PROBLEM SOLVERS, but that they could use TEAMWORK, and that they were CLEVER. All very important things to know if you are going to run a kingdom, of course.

The third and final task. This one was the most terrifying. If they could accomplish this task it would prove to me that they were BRAVE.
The above mentioned Evil Sorceror had secretly kidnapped 12 of my girls' stuffed animals and taken them to a high, dark, damp, spooky place [several girls started visibly trembling at this point]. This place was the.....

The stuffed animals were all tied up in the treehouse and the princesses had to rescue them.
The girls went up in groups of three and each brought back one rescued animal.

See the happy animals? Thank you, princesses!

For each completed task the princesses received jewels for their crown. They kept the jewels in their little bags:

Now they proved to me they were worthy to wear their crowns.
We passed out the crowns and the glue,

and everyone went to work.

In the middle of the craft someone started singing, "On the First Day of Christmas..." and they all joined in and sang the whole song. This only happens at princess parties, folks.

We had lots of sparkles,

lots of dimples,

and tons of fun.
Here they are with their finished crowns.

Afterwards they watched the movie Mulan.
(Now she's got some depth.)

Thanks, parents for letting me have so much fun with your lovely girls.
They are beautiful on the inside as well as on the out.
They were kind and gracious and sweet to each other the entire time.
What wonderful girls who will some day be wonderful women.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Sew Lovely

Do you remember those cute "Metta's Magnets" we made back in June?
Well this, dear friends, is Metta.

She is a good friend and an excellent crafter. This week she came in person to teach the mermaids how to embroidery.

First she pulled out all of these wonderful fabrics for the girls to choose from. How fun is that!

Then the girls drew a shape that they wanted to embroider.

The blue mermaid chose to draw a star.

The red mermaid decided on a heart,

...and the orange mermaid decided to make an "N."

The mermaids were so excited to stitch their shape with REAL needles and REAL thread and REAL embroidery hoops. It was almost as if they were REAL colonial girls stitching samplers.

Metta helped the orange mermaid learn to stitch. She was thrilled. It was at this moment that she exclaimed, "THIS IS A FUN CRAFT!"

(Probably because the day before I told her she was too young for needles.)

Concentration in the room was so thick you could poke it with a needle.

By the way, Metta's charming mer-baby came as well.
This is her, chillin' on my bed:

After the girls finished embroidering the shapes, (and no one's eyes got poked out,) Metta and I sewed the girls' stitchings on to a larger piece of fabric.

Then we tacked them with some other pieces that Metta had cut out and made

Here are the finished bags :

(Metta's example is the one with the "M".)

Sew fun. Sew cute. Sew Metta.

Thank you!

Monday, August 9, 2010

The Rest of The Story

I promised to let you see the mermaids' ransom note, and here it is:
So we spent five agonizing days wondering if the V. family would meet us at the rendezvous spot. Did they know who sent the note? Did they understand our unequivical directions? Would they be there to retrieve the lip gloss or would they shrug their shoulders and say,
"ah, who needs lip gloss?"

We would soon find out.
The day came. We brought some treats.

And of course, the lip gloss.

Sure enough, they were there, hiding in the playground equipment. Slowly they came out of their hiding places and the ransomed lip gloss--

--was delivered back to its proper owner.

Look how happy she is.
Her first words were, "You gave it EYES!"

Then we enjoyed our treats
And our new friends.
A good time was had by all.

But who ended up with the lip gloss at the end of the day?


Thursday, August 5, 2010

Read My Lip Gloss

For our Mermaid Craft today we had our first official Guest Crafter. Our guest was Nicole Empey, the very same Nicole that designed the beautiful mermaid treehouse banner above.
Nicole's craft was to teach the mermiads the art of writing Ransom Letters. I will not tell you the details on how Nicole became an expert at this, but I will say that her experience is extensive.
The first thing we needed was something of value that we could ransom. Nicole, vigilant at a recent playgroup outing at the park, pounced on an opportunity and secured the perfect object:
Lip gloss.

Little does she know, but the young, unsuspecting child who "lost" this item will soon be receiving a letter.

First, Nicole gave some examples of ransom letters:

Then it was time to make our own.

The red mermaid and blue mermaid get to work.

(Or, at least watch Nicole work, which is much more fun. )

Meanwhile, the orange mermaid added eyes and I took a photo of the lip gloss, obvious distress.

Then the girls delivered the ransom note....

[I will not post the photos of the actual ransom letter today, since then our rendezvous might be compromised. Date/time of rendezvous is in the letter. We wounldn't want anyone to meet us there to take the lip gloss and then ransom our ransom.]

What will happen to the lip gloss? Will the owner fulfill the requirements needed to obtain her precious cosmetic item? Will she meet us at the proper location? Or will she abandon her lip gloss, leaving it in the hands of the mermaids, who might use it all up any moment?

What will happen?


Sunday, August 1, 2010

Everyone Loves Danny

I asked my good friend Jill if she had some good ideas on how to handle sibling rivalries.
One way, she said, is to take photos of siblings laughing and having fun together and then display the photos around the house.
I thought that was a great idea. I was also behind on my baby book for our mer-son, so I combined the ideas.
I gave each mermaid a small pile of photos of her and her little brother together. Then pulled out my stickers, paper, scissors and glue and I had them make a scrapbook page for Dan's baby book.

At this point, everyone *loves* our little baby and the only sibling rivalry concerning him is who can be the first to wake him up, make him laugh, or pick out his clothes. (And believe me, the competition is fierce.)

But I know that will not always be the case...

I think they will always be able to look back on these pages in Dan's scrap book and remember how much he means to them. This will also mean a lot to Dan as he gets older and looks through these pages, to see how he was adored.

Here are the finished pages:

My next task is to see if they will make scrap book pages for each other...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Roses Are Red, Carnations are....

For this week's craft we changed some plain, white carnations into all the colors of the rainbow. It was so easy.
First we put in the food coloring, drop by drop.
Then we put the flowers in their vases.
And then we you think if we are quiet enough we can hear the flowers drinking?
The next morning our flowers looked like this:
Now all we have to do is give them away!