Last Christmas Dan’s family decided to do all homemade gifts for 2013. For Dan’s Mom, Lydia (with some help from Mommy) made a “handmade” calendar with finger paint. She had a lot of fun doing it, and (although I wouldn’t recommend doing the whole thing in two days like we did) I would highly recommend this as a fun activity/craft/project for other little toddlers.
My original idea was to print off a homemade calendar and then do the painting and get it all bound at Kinkos for about $5. However, I caught a deal online for a $5 photo calendar. So I ordered a photo calendar but left all the photos off so I had a nice template for our painting.
Once our calendar arrived we took the pages apart and made our handprint paintings for each month. I didn’t take pictures of each month at the time, but I still have the links and pictures where we got our ideas.
Side Note: While you can make all these pictures just like the ones shown below, we had only purchased a finger paint set of four colors: red, yellow, green, and blue. With some adaptation to the colors in the pictures below and some half-hazardous mixing, we made it work. We left out any black or brown and we left the white portions unpainted since everything was on a white background.
Here are the pictures we used:
January – footprint penguin
For the penguin we just left the belly unpainted. To do so, I cut out a piece of paper in the shape I wanted and taped it to Lydia’s foot. Then, after she had paint on her foot, I removed the paper to leave the belly unpainted. For older kids, it would probably work better to tape the cut out paper to the calendar and remove it after the painting is done. For younger kiddos with less gross motor control, I recommend taping the paper to the foot.
February – handprint hearts
March – handprint four-leaf clover
April – handprint bunny
We did the bunny on the top left.
May – handprint Very Hungry Caterpillar
For the eyes we cut out two ovals and taped then on Lydia’s hand. Then we removed them once her hand was painted to leave the eyes unpainted. (similar to the penguin painting technique)
June – handprint goldfish
July – handprint American flag
We used a white gel pen to draw the stars. Alternatively you could use white paint or stick on some star stickers. If you want to get real fancy you could use the stickers the same way we used the belly cutout for the penguin, but that could get pretty tricky!
August – hand and footprint lobster
September – handprint apple tree
October – handprint fall tree
November – handprint turkey
December – handprint Christmas tree
Here’s Grandma’s reaction as she opened her calendar:
I think she liked it. Happy Painting!