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Star Wars II

Manchild: A full grown man of delayed emotional maturation. They’re easy to spot. He’s the one watching Star Wars with his kids and imparting invaluable light saber moves, courtesy of the toothbrush, the hair comb, the garden rake… anything he can get his hands on really. He’s also thrilled that Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) recently released on Twitter more behind the scenes photos from the original Star Wars trilogy.

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Another little boys birthday is on the horizon and a Star Wars book and Lego set needs gift wrap.

Star Wars wrapping paper using thumbprints and paint.

1 thumb print darth vaderii

Darth Vader & Yoda duel

3 Darth vader vs Yoda

The finished product demonstrates a versatile Darth Vader…

4ii

No one rocks that Do like Leia!

1 Star wars collageii


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Mermaids

Mermaids, unicorns, knights and dragons, pewter plates, smelly people and a world that’s flat…welcome to the Dark Ages! Mermaid legends were rampant then, sight sworn by more than the odd sailor, believed to be beautiful and dangerous, much like the high seas.

A Mermaid Feeding Her Young 1520-40, Workshop of Romano, Royal Collection, LondonA Mermaid Feeding Her Young 1520-40, Workshop of Romano, Royal Collection, London.

In 1493, during his first voyage to the Americas, Christopher Columbus noted in his journal a mermaid sighting:

‘The day before, when the Admiral was going to the Rio del Oro, he said he saw three mermaids who came quite high out of the water but were not as pretty as they are depicted, for somehow in the face they look like men.’

Not exactly the hair brushing, mirror toting dames of Disney!

9 mermaids

10 mermaids

Shakespeare wrote of mermaids in ‘Midsummer Nights Dream.’

‘Thou rememberest

Since once I sat upon a promontory,

And heard a mermaid on a Dolphin’s back

Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath,

That the rude sea grew civil at her song;

And certain stars shot madly from their spheres,

To hear the sea-maid’s music.’

It’s believed he was having a go at Mary Queen of Scots!

sea of mermaids

Here are my Sirens of the Sea, bewitching sailors to their underwater world.

Mermaid wrapping paper made with acrylic paints, bubble wrap and thumb prints. Anchor made with apple core.

apple core stamping anchor

Hello Sailor gift wrapped …

18 gift wrapped


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Mary Mary Quite Contrary

Mary Mary quite contrary,

How does your garden grow?

With silver bells and cockleshells

And pretty maids all in a row.


A sweet nursery rhyme dating back to Olde England. A simple straightforward tale about a gardening green thumb?

mary quite contrary

Apparently not. Like many nursery rhymes that sound sweet enough, this one too has sinister roots. It tells of Mary Queen of Scots.

bloody-mary-Queen-Mary-I--007

How does her garden grow? Fertilized by the bodies of many, many protestants. How pretty is her garden filled with silver bells and cockleshells. No again. These were slang terms for torture devices. As for the pretty maids….  guillotines.

Twin GuillotinesMary Quite Contrary Wrapping Paper for my mum Mary (who is fortunately nothing like the Queen of Scots) using Acrylic paints, thumb prints and black marker pen.

thumbprint flowers ii

Birthday card made by daughter

1 drawing flower faces

1 thumbprints flowers card

How to make Floral Wrapping Paper with Thumb prints

how to make thumbprint flowers

Gift wrapped with Mary Quite Contrary Wrapping Paper

gift wrapped

 logo_fun family crafts


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Let’s Fly Away!

There are many things in this life that are in short supply. Top of the list is Sleep, followed closely by More time. Nipping at his heels are the fishes in the deep blue sea, the little birds that sing at dawn, and honeybees.

Things lacking

Well now we can add Helium to that list too. Earth’s supply of helium is predicted to be exhausted within the next 30 years. Although we can bio-engineer an ear to grow on a mouse, we cannot make more helium. This gas took 4.7 billion years of solar fusion and radioactive decay from terrestrial rock to accumulate, and about 100 years for us to use!

So make haste as your days of sucking back a lung full of helium and singing like a Bee Gee are numbered!

bee gees

Stayin’ alive, Stayin’ alive, a,a,a, ahhhh my goodness really?

No more blimps, no more party balloons! Although our parties may never look (or sound) the same again, spare a thought for hospitals who use liquid helium to cool their MRI scanners!

At a recent playgroup we did a very simple and fun craft with acrylic paints and fingerprints. I drew a picture of a bike with lots of string tied to it and the kids fingerprinted the helium balloons. My demo bike loaded with helium balloons ready to fly away…

Fingerprint kids craft

The kids having finger dabbing fun…

kids finger painting Collage

1 all the kids fingerpainting

The kids efforts…

2 the kids bikes

For more kids fingerprints craft ideas click here: https://speckledsydney.wordpress.com/category/fingerprint-kids-craft/


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Bee my Valentine

Yep, it’s that time of year again, when people the world over turn to Barry White, a box of chocolates or a suitably soppy card to express their feelings for each other. As much as I’d love to be beedazzled by De Beers, it’s very likely I’ll bee seing less bling and more the garden variety token of love. As for myself, don’t know what I’ll be giving husband for Valentines yet, but it’s sure to bee wrapped in some very inere-sting paper.
Rather than droning on and on, why don’t I just show you how I made some beeautiful valentine’s day wrapping paper using acrylic paint, bubble wrap, thumb prints and a black marker pen.
 1 paint bubble wrap
Painted the bubble wrap yellow then rolled it along the brown butchers paper. Painted another layer of colour: orange/ red and rolled again in a different direction.
2 rolled out wrap and paint
The bubble wrap was supposed to look like honey comb. 3 bubble wrap yellow and orange
Dabbed thumb in yellow paint and made random thumb prints on the paper. Once dry, used a thick black marker pen to draw in buzzing bees. 4 bees in progress
5 bees wrap paper
I glued the  paper to the surface of a pizza sized box, all ready for an edible gift!

8 gift box

Now I have to find a gift for the box, and not the other way around. Just add card and tacky quote. eg. Let’s misbeehave!
Any other sickly sweet suggestions?
Bee my valentine