Thursday, May 19, 2011

End of the school year!

We have just a few days left to the school year! 10 school days to be exact, and then summer vacation starts!! Im always excited about summer vacation. It means balloon fights, pool parties, movie days, lazy afternoons and lots and lots of popsicles!!

My girls and I like to make strawberry lemonade pops from those little molds using fresh strawberries and lemon juice. We take about 1 cup of hulled, sliced strawberries (the molds are small) and a few tablespoons of sugar and macerate the strawberries for a few hours, then at the end of the day, we pour them into the blender with 1/2 cup of lemon juice and pulse, then pour into the molds, put the sticks in and freeze. I swear my girls get so excited about them, theyre asking for them before lunch the next day! And since Im such a cool mommy, I let them. After all, theyre real fruit and juice!! If you dont have a mold set, no worries! Ive used small paper cups and popsicle sticks. Fill the cups, let freeze for a while, then while still slightly soft, push the stick in and freeze until solid. Then, once solid, peel the paper from the pop. Easy peasy!! And, recyclable!

Mine are similar to these. Ive had them for years!! 

I love these, theyre bpa free and dishwasher safe, and theyre PINK!! Gotta get me some!

We also like to make fruit kabobs. What better way to play with your food, right? We use a variety of fruit, from strawberries to kiwi slices, and sometimes we dip them in a cream dip made from marshmallow puff and cream cheese. Its fantastic stuff!!! You just let the cream cheese come to room temp, then mix in with a jar of puff. If the kabob sticks make you nervous you can always use straws, long sucker sticks, or popsicle sticks. I make my girls sit while putting them together and eating them, if Im using the skewers. I use straws a lot of the time though, I buy them for a buck from walmart or the dollar store in bright, happy summer colors, and we can reuse them after a quick wash in a sink of hot soapy water.
These also make great snacks for beach or pic nic trips, or snacks for the park. Combined with a chunk of cheese and a couple slices of turkey, its the perfect snack on the go.

With the end of the school years comes thank you gifts for teachers and every year its hard for me to decide what to do because there are sooo many great ideas floating around, and Im always trying to plan an end of the year treat and summer fun, and this year Im planning a b-day party for our youngest as well. One year I made rice bags with lavender in them, for those stressful days. This year, Im going to make personalized door hangings from clip boards, paint and ribbon to hang with. Ill probably get them started this weekend, and have a post up by sunday. I have to make 4. Ill be doing a ton of crafting since my husband is leaving for almost 2 weeks for work! Ack!
Heres a few fun and easy ideas:
I think this would be so cool and simple to make. A wooden block drilled with different size holes, then painted or left bare. I would paint it to fit the teachers personality, and add some ribbon or something similar. You can find apple shaped wooden pieces at michaels. Dont forget to fill with pencils! Also, on the back you can glue a paper holder and put some cute paper for notes on the back.

This is such a cute idea! If you have jewelry making supplies (and skills) this would be an awesome gift.

This is just so simple its fantastic!

If you dont have a lot of time to make something, a gift card to a book store or teacher supply store would look great in these super cute gift card holders.

I love coasters, and I love making them. Use a simple white (or any color) to print with paint then cover with a thin coat or two of clear sealant. Pad the backs with a piece of felt.

These are just the coolest things. Paper, wood, a paint pen, and ribbon are all you need!

I just love this! It is so sweet. You could use your childs hand print in place of the heart.

Arent these adorable?? Use them to hold food treats or the gift itself.

I love this idea. I always do something similar at the beginning of the year, but Ive never used a box like this before. Its perfect.

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