Monday had the happy coincidence of being a day off work for me plus a curriculum day for Bethany, which meant we could all spend time together doing whatever we wanted. You may have seen these recent adventures with the girls if you follow me on Instagram, but on Monday we all sat down to make the biggest bunch of Christmas cards you ever did see!
Here's the thing. Every year Bethany insists on giving every single kid in her class a handmade card. She also insists that they're not the same as the year before, and that she of course gets to be the one to make them. I love this idea. In theory.
Of course, if Bethany says she's going to do something then Moriah will jump straight on that bandwagon and want to go for the ride.
So how do you make 40 odd cards created by kids in the space of a single morning?
You gotta keep it simple!
I cut plain white squares of paper ready for them to decorate. These will later get mounted onto card bases, but for now it's best to keep them separate in case of stuff-ups and the need for spares. I first taught them to spray ink through a stencil to create the stars in the sky. Pink and yellow and aqua is what we used. The best thing about stenciling is that it's not supposed to be perfect anyway (or at least, that's my opinion) so if only half the stars come out then I say it's part of the effect!
Next it's stamping. My girls have been stamping from the time they could hold an acrylic block, so this is no biggie for them. I started with a single design in mind, and that was to stamp the row of buildings from this Mama Elephant Stamp down the bottom, and Kellie Stamps sentiments at the top. And that's how a great chunk of them ended up. However, the appeal of mixing and matching the other pictures and designs on the stamp sets was too great for my intrepid Bethany and she came up with a few other combinations of her own.
I always let the kids use my Studio Calico Color Thoery Inks as first preference. Not only because the colours are so bright and juicy, but because they're water soluble and will wash off their hands relatively easily.
But the fun doesn't stop there. Because the next stage involves glitter! We're all big fans of glitter in the Elphie house and Christmas is the best excuse to get it out.
I mixed equal parts of PVA glue with water and used a paint brush to splatter each card. Yes, I made sure that I was the one doing this part! But I'm happy to let them be the ones to
And here they all are drying merrily in the sun.
Time to wash up, get some lunch and get distracted by other activities for a while.
But come the afternoon we're all eager to see this project through to completion. So Bethany gets out her class photo and addresses a card to each kid in turn. This is her method of making sure she doesn't forget anyone. She has also made sure to have a few extra for those other special friends that aren't in her grade as well. Plus all the teachers. Yes we made a LOT of cards for Bethany!
Thankfully, Moriah was a little more down-to-earth and only wanted to make five for her best friends and teachers at kindergarten. She also addressed each one by hand as I told her each letter in turn for all of the kids names. Love her cute bold penmenship.
And that's how the Elphie Kids make Christmas Cards on a Monday off from school.