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Crafts for Kids: Thumbprint Art

2 Dec

Yesterday I posted my first “Your Tray or Mine? Cookie Tray Recipe of the Day” and it was for Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies.

I mentioned several ways your kids could help out with the cookie baking if you wanted them to. But, I figure that all that cookie rolling and thumbprinting might get kids into the mood for…..thumbprint art!

Many of you know that for eleven years, until this past August 2011 I was a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator, teaching adults and kids how to work with stamps and inks for paper crafting. In fact, in 2004 and 2005 I was one o the top 100 demonstrators in the country! It was a job I loved very much and it combined a lot of the things I love, including teaching and kids. This project today reminds me of my SU days!

A fun thing for kids to do with ink is to use their fingerprints to turn them into drawings. I actually own a whole book about it: Ed Emberley’s Fingerprint Drawing Book and it’s a book I’ve had since I was little.

This is the Ed Emberley book I have at my house.

You can find Ed Emberley’s book as well as several of his others, here on if you’re interested in buying it for your kids.

The cool thing about it is that besides teaching the basics of thumbprint art, it also has seasonal and holiday thumbprint art pages as well! It gives kids hours of fun thumbprint art to keep them busy. I also find with my kids, once you get them going, their own innate creativity keeps them going on their own for hours (which gives you time to mix up more cookie batter!)

a Christmas page from Ed Emberley's book

If you don't want to do Christmas thumbprint art, you can do winter instead!

My personal recommendations when choosing ink pads is: be sure to use water-based ink (if you see Pigment Ink, think PERMANENT INK!!) Water-based ink washes off easily with soap and water or with baby wipes. I also always recommend using a paper tablecloth (Chinette makes them and you can reuse them as long as they’re dry and not ripped too badly.) Paper absorbs the ink that gets on the table, where plastic doesn’t and once it gets on the plastic tablecloth it stays wet and gets on arms, elbows, clothes etc.

Dress for mess when your kids work with ink, and the kids could even wear an apron if you’re nervous about clothing.

You can have your kids make scenes using their fingerprints or they can make Christmas cards, pictures for family members, teachers, friends, etc. My daughter Alex could make an entire book of her artwork. For her everything is made into a book. Your kids could do that as well, make a book, write a story to go along with their fingerprint characters.

Well there you have it, my first cookie and crafts double feature for you! What do you think??

I bet you’re wondering what I will come up with next, right?!

Just wait and see…

Thankful for those who serve

11 Nov

Today is Veteran’s Day.

Today is a day to remember and honor all those who have served for our country and all those who are still serving. Yesterday I had the privilege to attend a very special Veteran’s Day assembly at one of our local schools. The students at every grade level honored those who have served from World War I all the way through those who are currently serving, as well as those who have given their lives for our country.

I have a special connection to the Ron Gill Jr. Foundation. Ronnie Gill lived in our city and he gave his life for our country. His family has ensured that his legacy lives on. Please check out their website to see all that their foundation has done, helping families send kids to college for more than four years now, since Ronnie’s death. To date they have given out almost $100,000 in scholarship money.

Today I also give thanks for all of the military spouses and families whose family members are currently serving our country or have served in the past. If my husband is gone for dinner one night, I feel his absence. I cannot imagine him being gone for months at a time, a year at a time, many times over. I cannot imagine not seeing my own parents for months and years on end. Those military spouses, children and families sacrifice as well. I am thankful for their strength.

Finally, today would have been my grandparents’ anniversary. By my count, I think they would have been married 68 years. Two years ago my grandfather passed away, but my grandmother is still living. So today, I am remembering them as well. This day has always had dual meaning for me.

No matter how you spend your day, be sure to take at least a moment to give thanks for your freedom.





My first morsel

25 Sep

Welcome to my very first blog post for my new blog, The Whole Bag of Chips. Slowly but surely, I’m catching up with the world of mom blogging. I’m transitioning from the role of reader of mom blogs to that of writer of a mom blog. Wish me luck!

Over the days and weeks I hope to share with you funny or meaningful tidbits from my life as a married mother of three school-aged daughters, as a newspaper reporter and as an author. You can see more about me in the “About” section of the blog and you can also check out my website at You can order my books at

But for now….

This is my family:

It was SO hot on this August day! We were letterboxing, one of our family's favorite activities, in Bristol, RI.

This is our new puppy, Bella, my fourth child!

This past August we got a new dog, so every once in a while, you might see a post about her on this blog! She’s a cutie-patootie!

I’m sure that with jobs and kids and a puppy, and all that goes on in our daily lives there will be lots to share as time goes by.  I hope that you’ll find it helpful, funny and engaging. I encourage you to comment along the way!