Monday, July 5, 2010

Fun Sticks

This project is mainly for Mommy to do.  I modified a couple of ideas I've seen floating around the web to come up with it.  It's based on the wish jar and wish sticks.  Here's what you'll need:

  • Jar
  • Craft sticks or popsicle sticks
  • Pen
  • Paint, I used different colors
  • Glass discs, marbles, pebbles
  • Ribbon
  • Foam stickers

    I started with a larger hurricane glass used for candles.  I let Paige pick the ribbon from the ribbon bag.  She picked the pink flowers and butterflies, of course.  I used foam stickers to put her name on the jar.  If you have more than one child you could do a jar for each, or put Fun Sticks or your last name on the jar instead of a child's name.

    Once the name is on the jar, hot glue the ribbon along the top and bottom.

    Pick your activities.  Mine are varied and include crafts, skating, going to the park, riding the carousel at the mall, getting a Starbucks, and movie time.  Each child is different, so think of what your child enjoys most. I first tried to write with a Sharpie on the craft sticks.  I quickly found out that they bleed too much and are very messy.  I ended up using a Vision rollerball pen, and it worked great!  If I wrote a craft on one side, I put where the directions were on the other, such as the website, or what craft book and the page number.  This way, when the time comes to do the project, I won't have to rack my brains trying to figure it out.

    Paint the ends of the sticks. It's not important that all sticks be painted to the exact same point.  Mine are all varied, depending on how much was written on the stick.  I found turning ramekins upside down and setting the sticks on them allowed both sides to dry quickly and not get paint everywhere.  I used different paints, painting 3 sticks each color.  This gives us some variation and color in the jar.

    I let the sticks dry overnight.  I used glass discs in the bottom of my jar.  I found a bag of red/clear at Walmart for $3.  It was the closest I could find to pink.  I put a few in the bottom of the jar, and started putting in the sticks.  Once all sticks were in, I filled in the rest of the discs.  I didn't want Paige to start recognizing the words and picking out the sticks she wanted each time. 

    Our finished project.

    I ended up with close to 40 sticks when I was done.  I made a stick for each activity I could think of.  There is definitely some cheating going on.  If I know money is tight, before I let Paige pick a stick, I would remove the Starbucks and the carousel sticks.  (Not that the carousel is expensive, but if we go to the mall she'll want a cookie and a Starbucks.)  If it's raining outside I would remove the ride bikes or go to the park.  The only set rule is once you pick a stick, you do what's on that stick.  There's no putting it back and picking another one.