School Projects

Fun Projects

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Day I Became An Honorary Construction Guy

 My sister and brother-in-law are re-siding their old farmhouse.  It is one of those houses that has been added on to and modified many different times which makes it a bit tricky to put new siding on.  It has nooks and crannies and funny angles and really high gables....all the fun stuff.  All the family has been chipping in to help, and I was happy to donate my husband to the cause for a few days and evenings.  My contribution was limited to making some bottles of ice.  Not very impressive, I know, but I have four kids and keeping those kids away from the job site was probably my most useful occupation.

All that changed, however, on Friday night.  The guys had been working all day, so my sister invited all the wives and mothers and kids and siblings to come over for a bonfire.  I loaded the kids up in my trusty minivan, braved the construction on the highway, and arrived to enjoy a little social time.  My kids were thrilled!
 I was starting to unload all the paraphernalia that we Moms transport wherever we go, when I heard a voice from the scaffolding call "Dana, can you have your mom watch the kids?  We need someone to run the saw."  Ummm.....okay.  It wasn't exactly what I had been planning on doing that evening, but how could I resist my husband's sweet-talking?
My brother-in-law gave me a three minute tutorial (he's a teacher, so those three minutes were VERY educational) and I was on my own.  Using a power tool.  I think it was called a Chop Saw.
Not only did I learn a how to use a power tool, I also started to learn a whole new language with phrases like "factory edge" and "F-channel".
 Somehow I managed to avoid any major disasters or embarrassing mishaps and I was dubbed "Honorary Construction Guy for the Day."  But only honorary, since I'm not a guy.  I might get to be an official construction "worker" soon, though, since I went back for more work experience on Monday.  What can I say...power tools are kinda cool.

Happy Siding, Everyone!

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Friday, June 21, 2013

Weekend In Iowa

Just a little camping project from last weekend.
Happy Camping Everyone!

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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

How Many Projects Can You Do In One Morning?

I'm here!  I really am!  I took an unplanned blogging sabbatical, but I'm back now and ready to do a project.
Okay, I suppose a week and a half isn't really a sabbatical, and I am always ready to do a project, but even so I am pleased to announce that I am back.

While I was out, we had a couple of unpleasant weather days in a row and the kids were getting a little cabin fever.  When I pulled down the basket that holds the crayons so that they could color for a while, they all spotted other things they wanted to do instead.  In the interests of family peace and harmony (but perhaps not my sanity), I agreed.

Ian worked on the last remaining vehicle in this kit - the ambulance.  He was actually able to follow the directions and build the model himself, which was pleasant to see - and also made my life a wee bit easier.
Brynnie picked "melty beads."  I am sure there is an actual name for this product, but I prefer to call them "melty beads."  This particular kit also involved a small piece of cross-stitch, for which you made a frame of "melty beads" to display it in.  The sewing party didn't really interest her, but the "melty beads" did.
Blair opted for pony beads.  Nice and first.  Then, as she accidentally unstrung more beads then she strung on, it became a little more complicated.  In the end, however, "we" finished it.
It was at this point that the morning started to get a little more interesting.  Brynn finished her melty beads and wanted to do something else.  After searching for a bit, I found some clay sculptures that she had made in art class, and she decided to paint those.
Then Ian wanted to paint too.
Guess who else wanted to paint?
Ian finished painting his clay pieces first (he has a more splash-dash style then the girls) so he moved on to the beading station.  Thankfully his motor skills are more developed than Blair's and he was able to make me a patterned necklace without my assistance.
Eventually Brynn moved on from painting to necklace making, but by that time my camera had been lost beneath the growing mound of drying and finished projects, so there is no record of the cream and orange piece she made for me.  Cam spent the morning practicing his walking by chasing escaped beads around the floor.  Thankfully he was still too slow to catch them.
Happy project marathon, everyone!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Spring Planting

 Time for some flowers around here!

I promised each of the kids they could plant their own pot, so they picked out their own flowers and got to work.
 Happy planting, everyone!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Project Day: Fun Field Day

The school year has ended, and with it our weekly Project Day.  To celebrate the end of the year, we decided to have an outdoor field day.  Our unpleasant spring weather delayed the day once, and sickness almost did it a second time, but all the older kids managed to get healthy in time to have some fun.
We started things off with a running, water-balloon throwing, kicking obstacle course.
Then we had "Speed Chalk Art."  Each kid picked a sidewalk square to color in and then they had three minutes to create before moving to a new square.
Once again, horses and dogs were a favored subject matter.
After a brief pause for a snack, it was on to the "Egg on a Spoon Race."  The grass must have been really soft, because we had the usual number of eggs fall, but not a single one break.  When they had run several races, the kids took matters into their own hands and carried their eggs off to the wooded area and smashed their eggs against some trees.  When you are a kid, there is nothing quite as satisfying as the splat of an egg against a tree trunk.
Jumping was the final event.  I should have measured how far some of these kids could jump, because I was quite impressed.
We finished up with a picnic lunch - which I failed to take pictures of.  It was as tasty and messy as a picnic lunch should be.

Happy summer, everyone!