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 ISSUE 19   •   3  DECEMBER 2006  
   This issue: mail


1. Editorial: The brisk march towards Christmas
2. MAKE: pretend postage stamps
3. MAKE: a set of spongy stampers
4. MAKE: a functional post box
5. MAKE: wacky letter boxes
6. PLAY: a day at the post office
More mail ideas
8. This issue's featured subscriber's blog

1. Editorial: The brisk march towards Christmas

I suspected that these mail crafts would be quite popular with the kids but I wasn't anticipating the remarkable reception that ensued. Would you believe that Ella has carried around her letterbox for close to a week? That's right folks, the pretend letterbox!

If we go shopping or take the dogs for a walk the letterbox comes too – usually stuffed full of notebooks and pens and other bits and pieces. Tomorrow is a preschool day and I'm already trying to figure out how to convince her to leave it at home. Wish me luck!

As the brisk march towards Christmas continues you may wish to take a peek at yet another Christmas resource – this time, some easy tree ornaments that young kids can make.

Also, I'm very excited to announce that I have written up one of my all time favourite Christmas activities on the fabulous Kiddley website this week. If you're after a great idea to entertain the kids at the dinner table this Christmas you should head over and take a look at my crazy hat crackers.

The next issue of kids craft weekly (due out December 17) will be full of fabulous gift ideas to keep little fingers busy in the holidays.

Happy crafting and I'll see you then! 

Amber Carvan

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2. MAKE: pretend postage stamps

Invite your little one to create their own postage stamps and marvel at the original designs that they come up with. Older children will happily run with this exercise from the get go but younger ones might need some suggestions in order to get started. Try suggesting simple ideas like stripes, spots and flowers.

You will need

• a sheet of small labels
coloured markers
colourful stickers

1. Draw on the labels and/or use small stickers to decorate them.

3. MAKE: a set of spongy stampers

These stampers are fantastic fun but the potential for a food colouring disaster is quite high so be vigilant! As you can see in the picture below, we also used one of our sushi rolls (from Issue 16) to make a groovy spiral stamp. Experiment with different shapes and textures to make your own set of fun stampers.

You will need

empty plastic bottles with lids on them
strong glue
dish sponge
food colouring
shallow dish

1. Cut some shapes from the dish sponge and glue them to the tops of the bottles using strong glue.

2. Dilute some food colouring with a small amount of water in a shallow plastic dish. Put a sponge in the container to soak up the liquid and you've made your own stamp pad!

3. Use the stampers to add your own postmarks to your internal mail, or just to have fun making colourful shapes on a large piece of paper.


4. MAKE: a functional post box

Both kids loved the mail crafts featured in this newsletter but the post box was a particular favourite, especially for Arky who furtively practised his posting and retrieving skills whenever his big sister was off on her mail run.

You will need

a large box
acrylic paint, brushes and roller
scissors or knife
cotton reel
strong glue

1. Paint the box using a roller and cut out a mail slot at the top of the box and a door at the bottom of the box for collecting the mail. We attached a handle to the door by gluing on a cotton reel.

2. Arky demonstrates his letter posting skills for those unfamiliar with the concept.

5. MAKE: wacky letter boxes

With all this mail action going on your little one is going to need some letter boxes at various points around your home so that a suitable mail run can be established. Grab hold of some old boxes and see what you and your little one can come up with.

6. PLAY: a day at the post office

You can set up your very own postal service using the crafts in this newsletter.

1. Write letters or wrap parcels for other members of the household. Then stuff them into envelopes, address them and add stamps and postmarks.

2. Deposit them into a post box.

3. Then don a postie's cap and satchel to collect and deliver the mail.

7. More mail ideas

• Send a message in a bottle.
• Write a letter to Santa.
• Wait for the postman with a plate of cookies.
• Make envelopes from colourful pages cut from magazines.
• Write a secret letter using a wax candle and reveal it with watercolour paint.

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8. This issue's featured subscriber's blog

SA Moms Blog – barefoot and pregnant in South Africa

"I love the image these words create in my mind… a woman’s naked feet flat on South African soil, new life growing inside her beautifully round belly, a blazing sun to warm her back. It is an image filled with hope and power – a woman’s power… a mother’s hope. So as a dear friend an ocean away once said to cheer me up: Wiggle your toes in that rich South African soil! Please feel free to 'wiggle your toes' in the SA Moms Blog. I hope you discover the information you need, feel inspired, and find something to smile about too."

I need more blog addresses for the new year. To have your blog featured in this section just send in your web address – there are no hidden catches!


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