Monday, December 22, 2014

Our DIY Pinecone Christmas Trees

Dear Em,
You did so much crafting this holiday season. We made six shell heart frames & tons of Christmas tree pinecones. You were so excited to craft together in November, but when I told you we were finally finishing our last crafts in mid December, a look of relief spread over your face. You were ready for some Christmas movie down time.

The idea for the Christmas tree pinecones actually came a year ago. We went for a walk in a park in North Carolina & found giant pinecones littered everywhere across the park grounds. I remarked how much they reminded me of pinecones from the Redwood Forest in California & how they would be great to use in making Christmas crafts (which is probably because we had just made these). Your Nonnie agreed, & so the three of us spent the rest of our walk at the park collecting pinecones. We tried to pick large, straight ones. There were so many to choose from, & we ended up returning home with a big bag full.

That bag sat in our basement until a couple months ago. Not knowing exactly what kind of Christmas craft to make, I turned to Pinterest. If you type in "Christmas pinecone crafts," you will find endless ideas. I pinned a few ideas that would work with the giant pinecones we had & then asked you which idea you liked best. You chose to make glittery Christmas trees with a gold star on top.

We used:
- Large Pinecones
- Small Wood Stars
- Gold Paint
- Mod Podge (spray & regular)
- Gold & Silver Glitter
- Paint Brushes
- A piece of cardboard to catch the paint & glitter
- Wire Cutters (if you want to trim the bottoms of the pinecone)

While you painted the stars gold, we enlisted your uncle Jared's help with the pinecones. Some of them were crooked, & he trimmed the bottoms a little so the pinecones would stand a little straighter. Note to self, teenage boys (& maybe most males) do not enjoy making Christmas crafts like you & I do. Jared pretty much hated me 90% of the time I enlisted him to help out with our craft. Sorry, Jared.

While you painted the stars independently, you & I glittered the trees together. Using paint brushes, we generously covered the pinecones in Mod Podge, trying to get every crevice (we probably could have used spray Mod Podge & it would have been easier but then you wouldn't have been able to help as much). Once our pinecone was covered in sticky Mod Podge, we generously sprinkled a mix of gold & silver glitter (creating a champagne glitter look) all over the pinecone.

Later, I sprayed Mod Podge thoroughly all over the pinecones to seal the glitter onto the pinecones. After they all dried, I used a glue gun to fasten the gold stars to to the top of the pinecones. You & I both loved how they turned out. I mean, when you take an adventure at the park & add Mod Podge & glitter (it's still all over the house, poor Daddy), what's not to love?

I think our "trees" are such fun holiday gifts for some of the special people in our lives. I love them so much, we took a bunch for our home (since we made more than twenty, we were able to keep some for ourselves & still gift them to many of our friends & family & your teachers). I love the natural & festive elements they bring to our holiday decor. Looking at them & knowing that my almost five year old & I (& Uncle Jared, sorry Jared) made them together...I think they are going to make me smile for years to come.

I love you so,

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