Saturday morning in Qatar (which is a Friday morning in the rest of the world): I get out the painting and drawing utensils to give my youngest some much-needed free art time. (Much needed because his nursery here in Qatar is very much different from a German one, even though we tried to find one with a more relaxed schedule. More on that some other time.)”Tinterbell!” he shouts (he’s turning 3 soon). “Want Tinterbell!” He shoves the DVD with “Tinkerbell – The Great Fairy Rescue” under my nose.
“You can watch TV later, now we want to paint a little.”
He flat out refuses. Until I have the idea: “We’ll create a fairy-house. Like Lizzy does in the movie!”
Both children whoop with excitement.
I love it that they’re still at that age (the oldest is 7) where they can totally excited about stuff like that. :-)

Tinker Bell and the Great Fairy Rescue

We get out all the “raw materials” I have been saving for weeks now. There’s not a lot of crafting supplies for kids to be found in Qatar, at least not the kind that’s so cheap you don’t wince when a 2-year old goes to town with it and creates … uh … marvelous architecture from a box of stuff and a ton of glue and paint in 20 minutes. ;-)
So I saved all sorts of food containers, buttons, cardboard. Bought feathers, pipe cleaners, beads. Fabric scraps at IKEA (I guess you could also get great stuff at the Souqs but I haven’t ventured that far yet; just for some evening strolling and dinner).
Pair that with kid-friendly colors for the 2-year old plus acrylic colors and mediums for the 7-year old and me.We ended up making 3 separate houses but we all together created the biggest one. The youngest got distraugt after an hour (!) of cutting, painting and gluing that the house “won’t be ready when Tinterbell wants to go to bed”. I assured him Tinker Bell would be fine, but he grabbed another cardboard box, glued some knitting yarn inside, splashed color over it and hurried outside with it so it was “ready when she comes”. :-)
I hope he won’t be too disappointed when no fairy has moved into after we wake him from his nap now :-)

My oldest decided to create his own house, also from a shoe box, to test out different color schemes and because he wanted to glue “jewels” onto the floor, like a treasure map.

I’m still super-astonished that he could concentrate on this task longer even than me. After 4 hours of painting, glueing, carving, … he was still totally focused. I, on the other hand, was yearning for more coffee, the couch … and kept nudging him that “actually, we had wanted to play Pandemic while your brother is napping … ” No chance.
I can highly suggest this project for anyone (with or without kids) who loves to work with mixed media! We ended up using everything in our arsenal: gold, different mediums, glitter dust (on the bed, the roof, the fairy bath tub), modeling paste for the roof structure (isn’t really visible on the photos), found objects that were turned into furniture, fabric … In Europe, I would have used much more twigs, moss, … for a fairy house.

The roof will later be covered with large leaves we made weeks ago from salt-dough. :-)
It’s a good mind-cleanse, akin to meditation, to play with “fairy color”-schemes, with light-reflecting objects, small bells, nature materials.