Summer Jar: Make Your Own Monsters
Without a doubt, my favorite Summer Jar activity was making our own stuffed animal monsters. We got the instructions from Craft, which were blissfully straightforward. First, the boys drew pictures of what they wanted their monsters to look like.
Henry drew a wacky elephant thing, and Eli drew a rectangle with a belly button. Then they chose fabric from our scrap bag, cut out the outlines (tip: don’t forget to cut the shape a little bigger than the paper cutout, to allow for the seam), and I sewed them together. The boys stuffed them while I worked on eyes and mouths. Eli suddenly took a great interest in sewing while I was doing the second eye for his monster, so I let him sew a bit on the eye, and a lot on the mouth. He totally has the fine motor skills to do it, and was working really hard on sewing his little monster parts. This was really my favorite part — the investment Eli put into the thing now means that his monster is one of his favorite stuffed animals. Here they are, finished:
I told them they had to name them, and they thought about names really earnestly, until Eli came up with “Soup” as his monster’s name, which led Henry to choose “Pizza.” So here you have it, Soup and Pizza. (This also led to a funny interchange when we briefly looked at a preschool for Eli. The preschool served breakfast and lunch, which was a big disappointment to Eli, who had been looking forward to bringing his lunch in a lunchbox. The school director said, “You could still bring your lunchbox, and you could put a favorite stuffed animal in there.” I said, “You could bring Soup in there,” and the director looked kind of worried and said, “Well, we do serve lunch, though, so he really wouldn’t need to bring soup.”)