DIY Christmas Owl Family Painting

It is that time of year again - time to decorate for the holidays!  Although I will admit that I drool looking through my Martha Stewart Living (1-year auto-renewal) magazine and the Pottery Barn catalog, our family tries very hard to minimize the amount of "stuff" we purchase on a daily basis, exspecially during the month of December when it seems like the season for "buying." And thus came... 
                                                                               the DIY Christmas Owl Family Painting.

If you have been reading our blog for a while, you may remember this "Funky Tree" painting from last year. Well, with a couple coats of paint, we had a new canvas to start from!  I didn't have a lot of color choices and ended up mixing a lot of colors to get some more color choices.

If you have a canvas to reuse - GREAT!  If not, they are reasonably priced at craft stores. 

Supplies Needed
What you do:
First, decide on a theme.  We chose Owls because we are in LOVE with them and a Christmas theme because I needed wanted something new to put on the walls for the holiday. 
I always paint the background first and then let it dry.
Then, if you need a little creative help like I did, do a google image search with some key words like "owl family."  Save the pictures that you really connect with.
Last, get the paint brushes out and have at it.  Let the kids join in too.  They are great helpers at mixing paints to make new colors and painting big areas.  My 6 year old enjoyed painting a bit, but then I guess I was squashing her creative ideas with my own, because she ended up getting out her own sheets of paper and painting houses!
 When you are done, hang it where ever there is already a nail hole and enjoy!
This painting really is supported by 4 of our family values. 
  1. The first is living within our means.  Yes, some of the decorations are by far more beautiful to the eye than this simple painting, however, at a total of $0.00, we are able to stay within our family budget while still having something new to hang on the wall. 
  2. Second, we try to live as environmentally friendly as possible.  We are not extreme live of the land people, nor complete wasters, rather we fall somewhere in-between.  We use cloth napkins, our home is solar powered, we garden, use re-usable water bottles and more.  Re-using and using up the supplies we have on hand is great for our environment!
  3. Third- Stress is a huge factor during the holiday season.  When you see all these gorgeous homes it is hard to want to "keep up with the Jones."  (or the Martha's) Admitting that we all have our own style and that what we have is great for us.  Loving what you already have is a HUGE de-stresser!!!
  4. Last, but not least- at our home, we believe that all things made with love are better and this painting is not "pinterstingly" perfect, but perfect for us.

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A week of just being a Kid: Afterschool Express

It was so nice just to have my daughter home this week from school for Thanksgiving!  It gave her lots of opportunities for playtime with her younger sister who will be turning two next weekend.  I think with our busy schedules sometimes I forget she's just six and needs just as much play as ever with the schedule she has at school in first grade. 

After School Playtime
This week they had a baby nursury with the baby dolls and even an airplane trip with them.  There were lots of handprint turkey created too! It's fun to see them begin to interact with each other more and crafting together has become a fun time.   

After School Adventures
Local Living History Farm
It was a lot of fun to join Amanda and her children at a local living farm where the kids had so much fun learning about life long ago.  I think holiday breaks are a great time to go on adventures with kids.  Do you have anything special planned for the winter break? 
After School Reading
Tomie dePaula is our new Virtual Book Club for Kids author for November. He has so many books, it's been so much fun.  We spent some time reading the Strega Nona Books and then also with his Christmas Books.  We'll be sharing some of our Christmas crafts next week! 
We had a chance to head to the library and spend some more time there than usual. Do you visit the library with your kids often during the school year? It's such a great resource! If you're looking for some afterschool fun with books you should check out the 40+ Activities for Tomie dePaola that is growing every day on our blog hop! Jan Brett is next month!  She's a great author for the holidays!     

Cohosted by:

We would love to have you link up your School-Age Posts (Ages 5 and up) about your learning week after school including, crafts, activities, playtime and adventures that you are doing to enrich your children's lives after their day at school or on the weekend! When linking up, please take a moment to comment on at least one post linked up before yours and grab our after school button to include a link on your post or site! By linking up you're giving permission for us to share on our After School Pinterest Board or Feature on our After School party next week!
Link up your after school activities and crafts! We'd love to see them!

Tomie dePaola Author Study


Tomie dePaola is the November Virtual Book Club for Kids author!  Tomie dePaola is best known for his books for children. He’s been published for over 40 years and has written and/or illustrated nearly 250 books.  He has created such a variety of books we are so excited about our Virtual Book Club this month.  My daughter was very surprised to see how many books were available of his at the library.  I think I was most suprised at how many Christmas themed books of his that we were able to find and learn from. 
Which books are you going to read and do a book related projects with?

Learning about authors and connecting with them can be one of the greatest ways to teach your own child about becoming a writer and an inspire them to read!   Here's your chance to learn about Tomie dePaola with your child and see how much fun you can have as you're inspired by his imagination! 
We started to learn about Tomie DePaola by reading his biography written for children.  Then we explored his website and his blog.  He even has a site where he sells his artwork. We encourage you to visit his sites below with your child and explore his world!   

Tomie's Blog

Resources for Tomie dePaola Author Studies

Tomie dePaula Author Study with printables The Home School Share

Scholastic Review of Tomie dePaola's Books

3 Kisses for Tomie... artwork honoring his 75th Birthday

We Give Books has 3 books to read and give to others from Tomie dePoala


This was our favorite video from Tomie dePaola and this was our favorite quote by him.  "Reading is important because, if you can read, you can learn anything about everything and everything about anything. " by Tomie dePaola


Resources for Strega Nona Activities

We recently shared activities for fun with Strega Nona Books by Tomie dePaola.  There is an adorable Christmas themed one that truthfully taught us quite a bit about the various holidays.  I love how many of his books are educational as well.  We were surprised to find so many Christmas themed books of his and are enjoyed them as they are coming in the from the library on hold.  One of my favorite features of our library is you can reserve things online and they email you when they arrive. I've also linked up the books in case you'd rather purchase them on Amazon. 

Christmas Themed Stories by Tomie dePaola
We're looking forward to bring your a few special Christmas Themed Love Books Activities this month using Tomie dePaola's books!  Don't forget Jan Brett is going to be featured December 17.  She's such a great author for winter themed books with beautiful illustrations.  Something to consider when you're holiday shopping this year, BOOKS make great gifts!   
For more ideas for Tomie dePaola books visit our Virtual Book Club for kids Round Up!  
Image created by Mommy and Me Book Club

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