Very Hungry Caterpillar Children’s activities

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Since I really got into the theme of The Very Hungry Caterpillar for my son’s 1st birthday I decided to have a couple children’s activities. Even though we were at a campground with many other things to do some of the kids did sit down for awhile to do some crafts. The materials for these activities were really cheap, I had a lot of it laying around already. In the spring we did a butterfly unit with the Kindergarteners so naturally we did a few craftivities with them and these two are no exception! So when thinking about easy ideas that kids can manage to do on their own these two activities came to mind. The first children’s activity was coffee filter butterflies.

For the coffee filter butterflies the supplies you will need are: coffee filters, markers, clothespins, spray bottle and paper towels if you want to lay them down on something while they dry. Have your children color the coffee filter any way they want. When they are done coloring them you can do one of two things: Option 1. bunch it up in the center and attach it to the clothespin and then spray with water and let dry or Option 2: Spray coffee filter with water before putting it on clothespin. Let it dry and then attach to clothespin. I did option 1 and it worked perfectly in my opinion but when we did it in school some did option 1 and some did option 2, they all turned out great so whatever works best for you. I just wrote out the directions for option 1 and put it up so that people would know what to do on these free downloadable labels from Polkadots and Puppies. I believe there is a blank one at the end that I used to create the labels for the activities.

Here are the finished butterflies from work (I may have gotten too caught up on the day to remember to take any pictures of completed butterflies at the party):

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The other children’s activity that we had at Conner’s 1st birthday was called Caterpillar Egg Carton Painting. We also did this activity in our kindergarten classrooms this last year during our butterfly unit. Materials you will need include:I  few egg cartons (I knew there weren’t going to be too many young kids) and cut them into sections that consisted of 3 body part areas), paint (red and green), googly eyes, glue, bowls and paint brushes and children’s aprons.

Have kids paint the caterpillar body and let it dry. After it is dry glue the eyes on. It is really simple. In our classrooms we actually had the kids put the caterpillars in their cocoons using construction paper and color butterfly wings which we attached. The students came to school to see that their caterpillar had changed into a beautiful butterfly.

Here is a picture of my 3 year old before she started painting. As soon as I set it out that’s all she wanted to do was paint. I did not get a end result picture and will have to check to see if I got one at work. What can I say a 1 year old’s birthday party is a fairly busy place!!!

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Very Hungry Caterpillar Cake

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For my son’s 1st birthday the theme was based on the children’s book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. I am not a baker by any means so naturally I went out to the local bakeries in search of the perfect cake and smash cake to fit my theme. What did I find? Absolutely NOTHING! So where do I turn when I need an idea? That’s right again, Pinterest! I stumbled upon this website with the idea for the cake.  This website gave me the inspiration for Conner’s cake.  I used a 6″ round cake pan for the head, which also doubled as Conner’s smash cake. Then I drew the eyes and nose on with icing tubes. For the cupcakes I made chocolate and vanilla. It is hard to see in this picture but the chocolate cupcakes had a little lighter shade of green for the frosting than the vanilla cupcakes. Since Eric Carle uses varying shades of colors I thought different shades of green for the frosting would be great. For the backboard that the cake is on I also got the idea from the above website since all the materials I would need were easily accessible. I found an unused cardboard box that use to house a large object and then I went to my work and got some white butcher paper to cover the cardboard. Before I glued the paper to the cardboard I drew circles in colored pencil over the entire piece of butcher paper to go with the circle theme that keeps presenting itself in the book. After all the circles were drawn and colored in I attached the butcher paper to the cardboard box using craft glue and probably a few glue dots. Then I busted out the Cricut to make the lettering for the board. Now since I didn’t have the cupcakes made I just laid out the cupcake liners, by the way I found the bright lime green ones at Hobby Lobby, in the shape of the caterpillar so I would know where to place the letters.

Here’s a picture of my little man digging into his cake!

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Newborn Closet Dividers

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So when I was pregnant with my daughter I saw these closet dividers online and decided I would try my hand at creating them. Now I make them for everyone I know who is going to have a baby. I just go with what their theme and color scheme is for the nursery.

I found the wood hangers at Hobby Lobby (I believe they are $1 each). I then bought 2 different colored acrylic paints in the nursery colors or as close to them as possible. I also buy paint pens to compliment the the base color. Now, I don’t think I have made the exact same 5 dividers because I never seem to find a 5th design I just love. I always do the large circles, the ribbon look with a complimentary sticker, the checkered, and the lines with dots. The fifth one here I didn’t care for too much but the last set I did I just used paint pens to make fine point dots all over and it turned out cute (I will see if I have a picture for that.

The first thing I do is paint the wood dividers. Make sure to paint on newspaper in case you get some on something. It usually takes a good 2-3 coats of paint on the entire divider (make sure to paint both sides because you can see both when hanging in the closet!). I then complete the entire design using paint pens on the dividers. After I have created the designs on the dividers I outline with usually either a silver or gold paint pen a rounded box to write the month range for the divider. Make sure to alternate colors with months. Example- Newborn=blue, 0-3= green, 3-6= blue, 6-9 = green, 9-12 = blue. For time and expense I only make through 12 months when making them for gifts. With my daughter I did through 24 months but that was the first time I made them and I had a little extra time.

Back to the tutorial… After you have your rounded outlined box (I used Word to create a rounded box and printed it out and traced it on using a pencil that was it wasn’t disproportional and looked nice. Inside the outlined circle, paint the base color so that it is one solid color. After the paint dries write the month with the paint pen. For any mistakes or touch-ups that may be necessary use a toothpick or fine toothed paint brush to fix any flaws.

Here are some close-ups of the dividers:

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After everything is dried and ready to be gifted I find a complimentary ribbon (I use the thick ribbon because this is what will be used to hang divider). For presentation I use that ribbon to tie all the closet dividers together like this:

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To use just untie the ribbon and tie it around the bar. Enjoy!!!

1st Birthday Party Girl- Overall set up and decor

Wow I need to update and get to blogging things. This was the set up for my daughter’s 1st birthday (she just turned 3 in April this year). Anyways it was a brown and pink circles theme. I made the banner using cardstock from Hobby Lobby. I made the pom poms using tissue paper (I googled how to make tissue paper pom poms, can’t remember the exact website since it’s been so long).  Sorry there is not a better picture. The pictures under the banner are pictures from each month of her first year.