Tuesday, May 11, 2010

25 favors: The final chapter


So here I sit, staring at this 9" x12" piece of paper that Mrs. M. had handed to me. 

"Anything that you come up with, we will love. " 

Her words kept ringing through my head but no creative energy was flowing in my veins.


It is a simple assignment. Just make 25 book covers for 25 1st Graders. I look down at what my kids had brought home as their memory book the year before. Three alphabet cutouts were all that decorated the covers. Hurmm... 

"I could cut out some things that reflect the subjects in this year's curriculum.", I thought to myself. I opened up Design Studio and using the Keyword feature, searched for "penguin", and "polar bear". The Arctic and the Antarctica are pretty big subjects in the 1st Grader's class this year. Design Studio showed that the images can be found on the Animal Kingdom cartridge. Easy Peasy! I'll just cut out some of those animals and I'm done!

"Mommy, are these the tents you are bringing?"

"Don't forget to bring hot dogs."

"Is Daddy coming to see our Camp Out program?"

Argh. The twins are studying about the desert and they have not been able to stop talking about their big Desert Camp Out in the Classroom event.

I sent the kids to the Study to finish off their homework so I can work on mine. Except that mine were not coming out the way I imagined. No matter what  I do, the penguins and the polar bears just looked odd on the layout.

"Mommy, can we bring our flash lights, too?"

"...and you need to help us make the cowboy hats and vests. "

The twins went on. My head started to spin. I decided to go outside and get the mail.

Scott the mailman had shoved my latest ebay purchase into the mailbox. I really liked the ferris wheel cut on the Summer Vacation cartridge and was pleased that I won it for $19 plus free shipping. I ripped opened the plastic baggie and there, staring back at me were the "Campground" label and the tent right next to it.


The kids have been telling me about cacti and rattlesnakes, tents and cowboys, camping and CAMPING!


I have been searching for ideas when it was already here all this time. My pathological fear of not meeting expectations had prevented me from seeing what a 7 year old think, is the most important event in First Grade. The girls have been looking so forward to seeing their classroom transform into a camp ground with camping tents and all.

Not the Arctic or Antarctica! It wouldn't be long before they forget that they learned those subjects in First Grade. The thing that they'll remember the most is the Camp Out!

Once the idea hit me, I was unstoppable. 25 paper dolls (Paper Doll Dress Up) were done up in no time. Tents, campfires, and "Campground" labels (Summer Vacation) were next.

Finally, I welded up the names (Robotz) and titles in Design Studio and I was ready to stick everything down. A little gluing and a lot of outlining and I'm done!

So there they are. All 25 First Grade Memory Book Covers. I'm all crafted out but I can hardly  wait until Thursday when I will hand these to Mrs. M. I wonder if she would notice that I even matched the hair color on the paper doll to that of the real kid. :-)


  1. Those look great! Loved your story, too. (I can certainly related to the fear of not meeting expectations!) I'm sure the children will love their memory books. How very sweet of you to do this for them!

  2. Those are awesome!!! I love them. I might have to get that carterage!!!

  3. Thank you, Vanessa and Pauline! :-)

  4. I really enjoyed your post! Sometimes, we all forget it's the little stuff that matters most! What a great job you did! Thanks so much for sharing!

  5. Wow, great job!! I think sometimes non crafters don't notice those things so I hope you pointed them out. lol

  6. I just found your blog and think it's great! I am very interested in doing the target mailboxes next year. Would you mind sharing your pattern with me? Thanks so much, Gail gailheinecke@charter.net

  7. Gale, I made sure that the teacher noticed the hair. :P I agree though that sadly, non-crafters rarely notice the little details.

  8. Gail, I will be emailing you once I clean up the file. Thanks for stopping by my blog. :-)

  9. Wow! That was alot of work. They turned out great!

  10. Hey jin :) Great JOB!!! Love these!! I have the everyday paper dolls and was cutting out a guy today for a fathers day card for my father in law but noticed my faces did not cut out the details like yours did. I was wondering did you draw those black lines in or layer the black underneath? I layed my black underneath but still the lips line did not show up. Am i doing something wrong or was my cut not big enough? Im new to cricut lol just got it a few days ago so any tips would help me a lot hun!!! Thank you so much!! Hugs, Brandy

  11. Hi Brandy, the paperdolls were cut at 5" using the blackout feature and the faces were hand drawn. I used a regular cut paperdoll (that had the facial details cut) and used that as a template. Hope that helps!

    :-) Jin

  12. wow, 25, i thought i was crazy matching hair colors and styles to 13 little girl scout paper dolls a while back LOL...
    awesome job, too cute, details are everything!