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Happy St. Nicholas Day

st nick

Today is the Feast of St. Nicholas. If you are still looking for some fun activities for your kids, or just more info on St. Nick, head to the St. Nicholas Center.

Don’t miss Paper Dali’s St. Nicholas paper doll who’s just waiting to be a part of your St. Nick celebration.

Cool kids’ crafts for St. Joseph’s Day

I’m double-posting from over at the Virtual St. Joseph Altar blog:

3D Cut & Color Virtual St. Joseph Altar

Cut, color, and create your own mini St. Joseph’s Altar. This fun family craft will help you and your little ones learn about the lovely St. Joseph Altar tradition. Complete instructions included on the pdf download. Send me a photo of your 3d Altar and I will post it right here on the Virtual St. Joseph Altar blog.

This craft has been used by PSR classes, homeschool co-ops, and individual families wanting to teach children about this beautiful tradition.

St. Joseph Novena with Free Download!

Don’t let the title fool you — this is a really fun craft to get little ones involved in a Novena to St. Joseph. Lacy at Catholic Icing has posted a great kids’ prayer craft, complete with lilies for St. Joseph, for the upcoming feast day.

Keep in mind: If you are planning a novena to end on the March 19th Feast Day, you’ll need to start on March 11.

Enjoy!

Compliments of Vee at Paper Dali. One of her earliest creations, and one of my favorites!

Paper . . . rock . . . scissors

Skip the rock!

If you love paper as much as I do, you’ll love these links!

For tomorrow’s Feast of St. Nicholas, you will want to head to Paper Dali for a free, downloadable, ready to cut and color:

Then head to Papertoys.com where you’ll find more free paper stuff for kids and grown ups. Line up your little elves and get to work on these fun Christmas projects:

There’s lots more, but these were my favorites.

Enjoy!

Links of the month — 4th of July

Let’s get patriotic!

stars

For the adults:

    What’s Right With America

    My top ten list of patriotic movies.

For the kids:

    Cut a five-pointed star in one snip. Even I had fun with this one!!

    American flag timeline from 1776 to 2010 with images and brief historical notes.

    Try this patriotic windsock. For a smaller variation, we have used toilet paper rolls and ribbons or crepe paper instead of the stiffer construction paper. Another variation is to add a pointed top to your windsock to turn it into a patriotic rocket.

Coloring pages:

    American flag

    Fireworks

    Revolutionary War

Have fun and Happy 4th!

Your very own mini Mardi Gras parade

shoe box floatOne of my favorite childhood craft projects is the shoe box Mardi Gras float. Get a crowd together and have everyone make a float and you’ve got your own mini parade.

The theme is up to you so be creative. One year our homeschool group had a shoe box float contest and our theme was “saints.” One kid added music to his float, another used a piece from an electronics kit and had their saint turning around on the top of the float. Another added mini lights. Simple or elaborate, this is a fun project for all ages.

The picture here says it all, but if you need some guidance, check out How to Design a Mardi Gras Shoebox Float.

For a handful of other fun Mardi Gras links, visit my Mardi Gras page.

September Links of the Month — get crafty!

Links of the month is back! Don’t ask me where it’s back from, but here it is. Everyone is back to school and academics are top of mind where they should be, but don’t forget the crafts! There’s always a need for a quick craft project to keep little, and big, hands busy. Here are a few of my recent favorites, most of which won’t need any prep work and can be done with things hanging around your house.

• Break out the scissors ’cause Fantastic Toys Blog has just what you need — Gnome paper toys. The free set includes: Gnome bowling; a Gnome paper doll with three outfits; and a Gnome hanging mobile. Love ‘em!

• While you’ve still got those scissors out, head over to Paper Dali, my all-time favorite place for fun paper crafts. At Paper Dali you’ll find an ever-growing collection of saints, blesseds, and historical figures to cut and color. Plan ahead for Feast Days and get your paper dolls, and coloring pages ready. My 5th grader will be using Vee’s Egyptian, Greek, and Roman historical figures this year in history class.

• Another great rainy day, keep ‘em busy project is the Craft Projects’ puppet theatre. This fun craft includes directions and printables for a curtained stage and three puppet characters. Let your children’s imagination run wild and then let the show begin!

• Need some color in your homeschool life? Catholic Icing’s priest peg dolls are a great back-to-school project and a hands-on way to teach the colors of the liturgical seasons. Have your kids each make their own peg priest and then make the various colored vestments. Change the vestments to the appropriate color as we roll through the new Church year.

As always, enjoy!

My all-time top post

First Communion Banners with 5,823 hits in just over one year!

I never would have thought that this simple post would see so much action!

These felt banners are simple and fun to create. For the craft impaired, there are even kits. But don’t sell your, or your child’s, creativity short. With a little bit of sketching and planning, cutting and gluing, you’ll have a one-of-a-kind First Communion masterpiece in no time!

Easter links for the Easter Link-Up

easter linkupIt’s time to share our Easter posts in Catholic Icing’s Easter Link-Up.

Head over to Catholic Icing and enter your link, or links, about Easter. Link to your actual post, then, link your post back to the Easter Link-Up. Be sure to spend some time visitng all the great posts.

Everyone has seen the Lenten version of our chocolate crown of thorns. Well, here is our Easter version. An instrument of the crucifixion transformed into a spring bird’s nest. That’s what Easter is all about. You can top a cake with it, or simply use it as a centerpiece. Catholic Cuisine has some smaller nests complete with peeps!

nest

Here are a few of my favorite Easter posts from Homeschool Goodies:candle

Be sure to visit Catholic Icing’s Easter Link-Up and check out all the great Easter ideas. Don’t forget to “link-up.” We want to see your Easter posts too!

Easter party time at Catholic Icing

Don’t miss out on Lacy’s Easter Link-Up! Head over to Catholic Icing for all the details. The fun begins on Wednesday, April 7.

Here’s our Last Supper craft

There’s still time to head to Catholic Icing for Lacy’s Last Supper craft. It was quick and easy and looks great on top of our piano. Thanks, Lacy!

2010 Pascal Candle art

UPDATE: Looking for 2011 Paschal Candle art?

I’m very excited! The Pascal Candle art which I referred everyone to in last year’s post, How to make a simple Pascal Candle, has been updated for 2010. No excuse now!

Last Supper craft for Holy Week

I shared this in my reader, but this project is so cool I just had to post about it! Lacy has outdone herself again with this craft based on the famous Leonardo da Vinci Last Supper painting.

Head over to Catholic Icing for complete instructions and downloads. Lacy has also included an art lesson about da Vinci’s famous painting.

Thanks again, Lacy!

$ store stickers

I saw, on at least two different blogs, that some moms had found nice Catholic stickers at their nearby dollar store. Well, I hit my Dollar Tree yesterday and scooped up 5 different packs! Each pack has four sheets — what a deal! My sets include: Mary, Mysteries of the Rosary, Stations of the Cross, Lent, and Jesus. These will make nice additions to some of our recent lapbooks.

stickers

Lenten Link-Up 2010

lent link up

It’s time to share all our Lenten posts in Catholic Icing’s Lent Link-Up.

Head over to Catholic Icing and enter your link, or links, about lent. Be sure to link to the actual post. Then, link back to the Lent Link-Up in your post. Be sure to spend some time visitng all the great posts.

I’ve compiled all my favorite Lenten posts into this one post. Enjoy!

Celebrating St. Joseph

The penitential nature of Lent makes finding inspirational family activities somewhat difficult. Forty days is a very long time to the smaller members of the household. One bright spot in our Lenten journey is the March 19 Feast of St. Joseph. In the tradition of the St. Joseph Altars of New Orleans, we prepare our own small Altar on our dining room table in honor of St. Joseph for his feast day each year.

The St. Joseph Altar is Sicilian in origin. During a terrible famine, the people of Sicily pleaded to St. Joseph, their patron saint, for relief. St. Joseph answered their prayers, and the famine ended. In gratitude, they prepared a table with foods they had harvested. After paying homage to St. Joseph, they distributed the food to the less fortunate.

In 1999 I created the first and only online, interactive St. Joseph Altar – The Virtual St. Joseph Altar. A few adaptations have been made, but the Virtual Altar still offers many of the basics, not to mention a clean kitchen.

I invite you to visit the Altar and learn more about this tradition. Add deceased loved ones to the prayer list, or make a special prayer request. You’ll find history, recipes, altar photos, images of St. Joseph, and much more. Don’t miss the 3D cut and color mini St. Joseph Altar on the craft page. Enjoy, and Viva San Guiseppe!

Here are some other things that keep us busy during the season of Lent:

    Chocolate Crown of Thorns

    Stations of the Cross votive project

    40 Bags in 40 Days

    Our Lenten Lapbooks

    Our projects for Holy Week 2009

    Face to face with Christ

Stations of the Cross votive project

I spotted this project a bit late for last year’s Lent, but I printed out the vintage black and white Stations and this year I am ready to go! Check out Just Another Day in Paradise, for a more elaborate version and complete directions.

station votives
I placed our votive Stations on the hearth of our fireplace. Since we always put the Holy Face image out during Lent, I used it as a backdrop. The True Vine runner came, many years ago, from Our Father’s House. Looks like they only have wall hanging versions now. We’re all ready for our Friday Stations of the Cross.

station votives