We’ve been trapped….
…inside for the past week as a wave of fevers swept the household. Luckily, they were pretty much symptom free, but the fact that they struck all six of us at once made parenting pretty much a lost cause.
The silver lining is that it was less of relay race – lasting weeks and weeks to get to the end – and more of an intense, sweat inducing, sprint (without the adrenaline burst at the end).
The good news is that the week prior to infection, we created some smiley little sun catchers that helped bring the outdoors in as we lay pig piled among dirty tissues, sticky baby tylenol syringes , and untouched smoothies (I tried). And they did help brighten our spirits, just a little bit.
Now that we’re healthy again, they continue to delight as they hang on our windows. The kids insist on moving them from room to room depending on where they are – or where the sun is shining.
As usual, this craft is very simple and can be done in stages for those of you juggling the stuff we all juggle as moms. All you need is some basic supplies and a little bit of light – not even sunlight (for those of you in drearier climates, I promise I’m not trying to rub in our California sunshine!) any cloud ridden daylight will suffice!
Black paper / or this printable heart if you want to use the pattern I made
Acrylic Matte Medium/ Mod Podge/ liquid starch
Shape punches (if you have them)
Clear shipping tape (if you have it)
1. Use scissors to cut out scraps of tissue paper. Double, triple, quadruple the paper up and go crazy. Let the kids practice their cutting skills and create piles of tissue “confetti”. If you have paper punches, these work great for shapes. Depending on how sharp they are, you may need to layer the tissue paper between regular printer paper to get a clean edge. Create at least four cups of “confetti”.
Ike and Ella loved this – especially making masks out of the scraps… I couldn’t bring myself to throw those away!
2. Cut a 12 x 24″/ 300 x 600cm piece of wax paper and secure the edges with tape.
3. Paint half of it with acrylic/ mod podge/ liquid starch. The wax paper will want to move around, so you will need to hold one side and have the kids paint away from that side. Cover half of the paper.
4. Lay down the tissue paper on the sticky surface. For us, this started with a lot of intention – one piece at a time – and quickly moved to more of a frantic sprinkling technique. Glue was drying and kids were getting antsy! Either way, cover the entire paper with tissue shapes.
5. Cover the other half of the paper with acrylic/ mod podge/ liquid starch. I squirted it on, the kids painted it around. Be sure to cover the whole thing!
6. Carefully fold the wet half over onto the tissue paper confetti and press down firmly. Try to smooth out any air bubbles.
At this point, my kids were getting a little skeptical. They heard “stained glass” and were looking at smushed paper. Though fun and tactile, the magic had yet to be delivered. Good news! At this point, even though the project is still “wet,” it’s contained, so you can tape it up to the window to dry and get a little immediate gratification in the meantime…
7. Cut out the black heart shape from the downloaded printable heart OR create any shape with your black paper. Keep it simple!
8. Use clear packing tape to tape the design over the “glass.” If you don’t have tape, just use more acrylic/ mod podge/ starch to glue the shape on top. My kids got excited about the shininess of the tape – just like real glass (it’s the little things, right?).
9. Cut around the outside of the heart/ shape.
And there you have it – simple and gorgeous in rain or shine! Another benefit for me: it distracts from our dirty windows 🙂
All the kids really got into this and the older two made some completely on their own later in the week! I’m going to experiment with different shapes so we can make a cool montage on our front door! I’ll keep you posted…
ps. Indy has become… totally demanding these days. She’s found her voice and is exerting her will (it was bound to happen! Give me grace these next 8 months!). Pretty much the whole time we worked on these, I had the distraction of the monkey below GLUED to my legs. If I can achieve sun catching under these circumstances, you can too!