Craft Time with Preschool and Early Elementary Age Disney Fans

Bottle cap necklaces

During the next three weeks I will be sharing some simple and inexpensive Disney – inspired craft ideas that are perfect for preschool and early elementary age children. I completed each of these crafts with a fun group of 1st and 2nd grade students and they’ve proved that the projects can be completed in less than an hour!

Today’s craft is Bottle Cap Jewelry.

My Supplies:

  • White card stock
  • Glue Stick
  • 1 inch circle hole punch
  • 1 inch Bottle caps with loop (I used Darice brand- note, that the size of the loop was not consistent and some of the loops broke, so I’d recommend purchasing from a craft store so you can inspect them before purchase.)
  • 1 inch Epoxy stickers (I used Beadaholic brand.)
  • Silkies brand necklaces and bracelets (The simplicity in using these necklaces with young children was wonderful!)
  • Craft beads (If you choose to use Silkies brand necklaces and bracelets, purchase craft beads with a wide opening to fit over the end.)

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Tutorial:  (I’d recommend completing steps 1 & 2 before starting the project with the kids.)

  1. Google images of your child’s favorite Disney characters, for example “Disney’s Frozen characters.” Pick out a clear image of the characters faces and save them to your computer. (Note: The images are most likely copyrighted images from Disney so make sure you are using them for personal use only.)
  2. Import the image into Microsoft Publisher and resize the character image so that the face is no larger than 1 inch. Print your images out on card stock.
  3. Using a 1 inch circle hold punch, create the circle images for the inside of the bottle caps by punching the images from the printed card stock.
  4.  Apply glue to the back of the 1 inch circle card stock with the character image.
  5. Center the image on the bottle cap using the loop as the top of the image.
  6. Place an epoxy sticker on top of the image.
  7. String the beads and bottle caps onto the necklace or bracelet.

That’s it!  I worked on this project today with 17 little ones and I was shocked at how quiet the room got when the kids were stringing their beads.  This was serious business people!!

Now it’s your turn ~ make a bottle cap necklace or bracelet with your little Mousketeers!

Simple Mickey and Minnie Mouse Inspired Valentine Garland Craft

 Mickey and Minnie Valentine Garland by MouseEarsMom.com

Get out the paper, glue sticks, scissors, ribbon, and cookie cutters, it’s time to beat the snowed-in boredom!

We’ve had quite a few snow days lately. If you have children, then you know that playing in the snow doesn’t fill an entire day for our little Mouseketeers.  The kids and I have been occupying that time with some fun Valentine crafts. Today I’m sharing how we made our Mickey and Minnie Mouse inspired valentine garland.

Supplies:

  • red cardstock
  • black cardstock
  • white card stock
  • standard hole punch
  • 1″ hole punch
  • two different size heart cookie cutters
  • glue stick
  • pencil
  • ribbon

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Now start tracing and cutting out your hearts from the red and black cardstock.

Both Mickey and Minnie Mouse hearts are made by cutting off the top half of a black heart and gluing the black piece onto the top half of a red heart. The Mickey Mouse inspired hearts have his two white buttons and the Minnie hearts have her polka dots.  For Mickey’s buttons, punch two 1″ circles from the white card stock and glue the circles onto the red bottom half of a heart. For Minnie’s polka dots, we used a stand hole punch on white card stock and punched out 10 miniature circles.  (Remember to empty your hole punch before making Minnie’s polka dots.  It’ll save you from the clean up when your son dumps a hundred punches all over the table….experience has taught me.)

Once your hearts are glued and dried, use the standard hole punch to create holes on both sides of each heart. Connect the hearts together with some cute ribbons. Now you and your Mousketeers have made the cutest little Mickey and Minnie Valentine Garland in town!

Mickey and Minnie Inspired Valentine Garland www.mouseearsmom.com

Have you made any Disney-inspired Valentine’s Day decorations this year? I’d love for you to share them with me! Post a photo of your project on the Mouse Ears Mom Facebook page or if you’re a blogger and you have a tutorial, great!  Share the link in the comments!

D.I.Y. Olaf Inspired Frozen Heart Pillow

Olaf Frozen No Sew Heart Pillow

Looking for a fun and inexpensive Frozen-Inspired Valentine’s Day craft to make with your children?

At JoAnn Fabrics this past weekend I found adorable Frozen themed fleece on sale for 40% off! With Valentine’s Day just around the corner I thought it would be cute to make a miniature (5.5″ wide x 7″ high) “Frozen” heart pillow with the kids.  After completing this one, Victoria, my three-year-old daughter, snatched it up for her Bitty Baby doll to use and Gavin, my seven-year-old son, immediately wanted to make one “all on his own.” How could he not? Don’t we all love this warm hug-loving little snowman?

I’m not the first person in the world to come up with the idea of a “no-sew” heart pillow. In fact, a quick Google search of “no sew heart pillow” will give you a ton of tutorial options to read. Regardless, I’ve included my tutorial in this post to give you some insight on how we made our pillow.

Supplies

Disney licensed material of any type is significantly more money per yard than your typical run of the mill fabric. So for this project I decided to use the licensed character fleece on one side and a generic blue on the opposite side.  In addition, if you’re planning on following my directions for this project to make more than one pillow, note that you’ll need more of the Olaf print than the blue fleece. Why? Due to the character placement on the fleece, you will end up with a pillow that doesn’t have Olaf’s face represented and instead you’ll have Olaf’s feet or a partial face. It’s important to decide what images you want shown on the pillow and measure out from there before you start cutting.

Here are the exact sizes and supplies I used for making one pillow.

  • 8″ x 7″ hand drawn heart template cut out of card stock
  • Measuring tape
  • Fabric scissors
  • Marking tool – I used a fine tip marker but a fabric pencil would have been easier.
  • 18″ x 14″ piece of fleece “Olaf Winter Snowflakes Scene by Disney for Springs Creative Products Group, LLC. (NOTE: This material is for noncommercial home use only.) Why this large? If you are choosing to make multiple pillows, I found that allotting this size piece will guarantee at least one Olaf image as a focal point for the pillow.
  • 14″ x 13″ piece of complimentary-colored solid blue fleece
  • Polyester Fiberfill

10 Simple Steps Tutorial

1. Using the heart template that you drew out of card stock, decide how you’d like the pillow to lay out. Below is an example of how I started. (However I chose to go larger as the original cookie cutter idea was way too small.)

Olaf Fabric www.mouseearsmom.com

2. Draw your heart outline onto back side of the Olaf fabric using your template.

3. Measure three inches from all sides of the heart to create an outside heart image around the originally drawn heart.  (This three-inch border will be the area that you’ll need to mark and then cut for knotting.)

4. Cut an equal size heart out of the solid blue fleece. I did this by tracing my Olaf fabric heart after I cut it out.

Materials for Frozen hearts  www.mouseearsmom.com

5. Using your measuring tape and marking tool, mark off 3/4″ to 1″ pieces around the perimeter of the heart. They will act as guide lines to follow when creating your fringe to later knot.

6. With the two pieces of fleece fabric placed on top of each other, cut three-inch strips into both layers of fleece at the same time.

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7. Continue to cut three-inch strips from the outside of the heart to the center heart marking until you’ve cut the entire outside heart.

Frozen Heart Pillow www.mouseearsmom.com

8. Start knotting!  Making sure that the correct side of the fabric is facing outwards, double knot each strand from the top fleece to the bottom fleece, stopping only when there is a about four or five strands left to knot.

9. Stuff the heart with Polyester Fiberfill.

10. Double knot the remaining strands and you’re done!

Olaf's Frozen Heart Pillow www.mouseearsmom.com

Although this little Valentine heart is frozen blue, I’m sure the hug-loving snowman on the outside will warm up the heart of your child this Valentine’s Day.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by!

This Mom’s Thoughts On Disney’s Club Penguin

 Do Your Children Play Club Penguin?

This post is sponsored. I was given a Club Penguin Membership. The opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own and in no way influenced by the sponsor.

My son has asked to play in the on-line virtual world known as Club Penguin for over a year.  Up until last week, I told him no.  Do you know why I said no? I didn’t like the idea of him playing an on-line game that interacts with other people when he is young age of seven. I didn’t trust that he would be safe and I didn’t take the time to educate myself on Club Penguin.

Then a press release came into my inbox.

Club Penguin

My son LOVES Star Wars Rebels. I knew he’d enjoy finally having the opportunity to play on Club Penguin too, so I took the time to educate myself on Club Penguin. If you’re child has been asking about Club Penguin too, and your hesitant to jump into their snow-covered world, I’m going to share with you what I found.

I was thrilled to find out that Club Penguin uses filtering technology and live moderators to ensure that it delivers a fun and safe entertainment experience for kids. Surprisingly, it’s free for any child to play, but a paid membership allows for upgraded features, like cool clothing for their penguin and a wider variety of colors for their penguin’s pets. When I set up my son’s Club Penguin account, I was impressed to find an entire section dedicated to Parents!  In this section, parents can learn how to set a “Play Timer” to limit their children’s time on Club Penguin, educate themselves on the Club Penguin’s learning and development attributes and find out exactly what their children mean when they talk about their “Puffles”, and there is a boat load of other Club Penguin knowledge to dig into. However, my favorite thing about Club Penguin is the “intuitive safe chat” feature.  This feature allows children to communicate to each other with a list of suggested words and phrases to select from in their chat. The dialog is appropriate to the game the kids are playing, while blocking all inappropriate language. I set my son’s account to use this feature and I’m extremely happy with the results.

We played for over an hour last night and again this evening, trying to earn our, I mean HIS, Lightsaber.  It’s tougher than I thought! We’ve really been enjoying it, so much so, that I have been asked, by my son, to step away from the decorating.  I’m sorry but I thought it was only appropriate to have two floor plants to balance out the room in his Igloo. Apparently purchasing more “Puffles” was more important to him…I understand, they are cute.

Needless to say, Club Penguin is truly a great experience for children. After visiting Club Penguin with my child the past two days,  I feel comfortable allowing him to enjoy the experience without me hovering around the entire time. Although I can see him getting “hooked” on the game and wanting to play for hours on end, I know with the Play Timer feature, Club Penguin will be a great alternative to TV time and one that maybe Mommy can join in the fun too!

 Now through February 4th, Club Penguin is transformed into the home planet of the Disney XD hit TV show, Star Wars Rebels.

Club Penguin Star Wars Rebels Takeover

For a limited time, Club Penguins players can “Join the Rebellion” in a quest to save the island against the Imperial forces, all while stylishly dressing their penguins in Star Wars-themed outfits and decorating their Igloos with galactic furniture.  Members can even earn their penguin different color Lightsabers, after completing special missions from the Ghost crew. (We’re working on it!)

Is your child ready to join the Club Penguin Rebellion?

Do you watch Star Wars Rebels as a family?

Star Wars Rebels airs Monday evenings at 9 pm (ET/PT) on Disney XD.

101 Dalmatians Inspired Treats

Happy 54th Anniversary Walt Disney’s 101 Dalmatians!

Last night my family and I celebrated this classic family friendly movie during our weekend moving night. Watching fashion-forward Cruella and the adorable spotted puppies, on their wild adventure through London, brought so many smiles and laughs (some of them full belly, I might add) that it’s hard to believe this film was release to theaters over five decades ago!

Of course, with every Disney themed movie night, one MUST have character-inspired treats! Should we go Villain or Hero?

Cruella de Vil cupcake

These Cruella de Vil and her captured puppies cupcakes are super simple to make and I think, look fantastic!  Want to see how I created Cruella’s infamous hair? You can find my tutorial here.

Here’s a healthier alternative to cupcakes and they pay tribute to Dalmatian heroes, Pongo and Perdita! Dalmatian Tails (white chocolate covered bananas) are so easy to make!

101 Dalmatians Tails

To make this tail-waging treat, you need these three ingredients:

  • Bananas
  • White chocolate melts
  • Candy sticks

Dalmation inspired treats www.mouseearsmom.com

  1. Cut your bananas in half and insert sticks in the bottom.
  2. Place the bananas on a wax-lined cookie sheet.
  3. Put the cookie sheet with bananas in the freezer for about 15 minutes.
  4. Melt your white chocolate in a shallow pan that you can roll your banana in or a deep enough cup that you can dip the entire banana directly into cup.
  5. Take the bananas out of the freezer and dip or roll each one in the bananas in the melted chocolate until their covered.
  6. Place them back on the wax-lined cookie sheet and place them in the refrigerator until the chocolate hardens.
  7. Enjoy! If you’re not ready to eat them, keep the “Dalmatian Tails” in an air-tight container in the refrigerator until later that day.

Have you watched Walt Disney’s 101 Dalmatians with your family? Why not pull the DVD out this afternoon, whip up a batch of “Dalmatian Tails” and enjoy the movie!

You have to admit, Cruella sure looks great for 54!

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