Thursday, January 28, 2016

Mail "Winter" to A Friend

We recently learned about the 100 Acts of Kindness Challenge that Toddler Approved and Coffee Cups and Crayons are co-hosting. From Martin Luther King Day to Valentine's Day they focus on Kindness, and challenge their families and others to 100 Acts of Kindness. Each week they have a different theme but the kindness acts can stand on their own. They can also be a bigger act or something small and daily.

We're joining in a little late this year, but excited to try acts of kindness ourselves. We're kicking off our participation by putting together a "winter" surprise to mail off to friends. 

I know, there are some of you out there whom probably think the idea of sending winter to someone is not necessarily a kindness act, but it is for these specific friends. This summer a family of friends moved to Florida. When we saw them briefly at Christmas, their two boys both mentioned missing the New England winter weather. 

So we decided, why not mail a little "winter" to them down in Florida?

"Blizzard Pictures"
For the cards we decided to create "blizzard" pictures using a favorite watercolor technique: watercolor and salt. 

Watercolor paper*
Liquid watercolors (in our case we actually used just water and food coloring mixed well)
Coarse grain salt

*I find watercolor paper works best for this project as you want to get the paper a little wet first, be able to add enough water to make the salt dilute, and have it hold up to brushing off the salt.

1. Paint each piece of paper with a little bit of plain water, and then add watercolors on top. (Again, we used food coloring.) 

2. When the painting looks the way you want it and while the paper is still wet, sprinkle a little of the salt on top of the painting. 

Do not rub the salt in, just let it sit. It will react with the water and create patterns. 

3. Once the paint is dry, brush the dry salt off of each picture. There should be some pretty interesting patterns/designs on the paper. It always has reminded me of the patterns frost can make on a window.

4. We then added some snowflake stickers onto the dry cards to create more of a wintery scene. 

Although we had originally planned to mail these as postcards, we decided instead to turn the cards into one piece of a larger package. 

In our packages we continued to add to our winter theme. We've added in paper snowflakes, cotton balls, and plastic snowflakes, trying to create a "wintry" mix.

We can't wait to hear what our friends think of this project arriving on their doorstep. 

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