Thursday, May 26, 2011
With the smell of Spring in the air and warming temperatures of summer approaching, I find myself wanting to spend as much time outdoors as possible. I want to plant flowers, eat hot dogs and potato salad, sit by a crackling fire, and just take it all in.

Those patio lanterns, they were stars in the sky.. Kim Mitchell

Patio lanterns are an excellent way of illuminating your yard and creating a fun ambiance for a party or just for your own enjoyment.  Patio lanterns, however, can be expensive.  Here is a way to make your own artistic patio lanterns, plus it is a great activity for your kids to get involved.
Recycle your cans and light up your yard!
1) Fill empty tin cans with water and put them in your freezer.
2) Use a frozen can to punch holes, stars, moons, or any shape you want with a hammer and a nail, or ice pick.  The ice inside the can will allow the can to hold it's shape without denting.
3)Let the can thaw.
4)Punch holes in the top to insert lights or insert tea lights for a sparkly glow in your backyard!

Garden Rocks
Painting rocks or stones is a great way to dress up your garden, flower beds, or even use as door stoppers.  Your kids will have a blast creating these little gems, or perhaps you  yourself could use a little rock painting therapy! Rock painting is also a fabulous activity for birthday parties or children picnics!

1) Before beginning to paint, the stone should be scrubbed thoroughly with detergent and water so that any dirt is removed. It is often advised that it should be left for several days to dry so that the paint won't eventually flake or bubble. To speed the drying process many painters recommend baking rocks in an oven but this should be undertaken with care.
2) Acrylic paint is the best paint for rock painting both for its durability and quick drying time.  If the stones are to be left outside exposed to the elements there are some brands that weather extremely well.
Synthetic brushes tend to work the best but be sure to clean them right after you use them
otherwise they will be ruined.  You can buy raw bristle brushes at dollar stores.

Buy little buttons (for eyes), glitter (for sparkle) and other types of decorative items at craft stores where you buy the paint. ENJOY!

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