Giveaway: One-Year Subscription to Crafting Connections: 3 Winners! $120 ARV {5.18; Worldwide}

This is a joint giveaway with Living Peacefully with Children and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only. Please find the section marked “Win it!” for the mandatory entry and optional bonus entries.

Photo Credit: Living Peacefully with ChildrenCrafting Connections is offering three of our readers a one-year subscription to Crafting Connections Magazine. One reader will receive a one-year print subscription, and two readers will receive a one-year digital subscription.

Crafting Connections is a full-color magazine whose purpose is to help adults and children connect with  one another and create an authentic life using crafting mediums. With an emphasis on nature and creation, Crafting Connections hopes to help families connect with one another through authenticity and creativity.


From our reviewer, Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children :

About Crafting Connections

Photo Credit: Crafting ConnectionsCrafting Connections Magazine launched in the autumn of 2012. The owners, Andrea and Danielle, have a strong desire “to create authentic, connected and creative lives for [themselves] and [their} children.” While there are many crafting magazines available for adults or for children, they recognized a need for something that would appeal to families as a whole. They wanted to help other families who were looking for ways to connect with their children while growing and learning with and through their own creativity.


Crafting Connections Magazine

Photo Credit: Crafting ConnectionsI was pleasantly surprised when I received a copy of Crafting Connections magazine. The full-size magazine is in vibrant color and printed on heavy paper. When the owners said they wanted a magazine for adults and children to enjoy together, they meant exactly that. The size, color, and strength of this magazine make it perfect for snuggling with little ones and leisurely looking through. The magazine can stand up to multiple children turning pages and still hold its own.

The content of the magazine is down to earth. You won’t find unrealistic projects that leave you wondering why something sounded so easy until you attempted it. There is no perfection in its simple ideas, and that is exactly where the true perfection lies. The magazine gives ideas for families but stresses that the finished projects are culminations of the people, lives, and creativity of the individuals who make them.

Photo Credit: Crafting ConnectionsThe actual projects focus a great deal on nature and reusing items that would otherwise be in your recycling or garbage bins or using natural items found in or around your home. There are no calls for expensive or hard-to-find items, and you can easily substitute items.

The magazine would appeal most to those families wanting to do nature- and/or craft-themed projects with their young children but who could use some simple ideas to do so. If you are a wealth of ideas when it comes to this type of thing, you may not find the magazine as beneficial. While many of the projects are things that my older children (my four children range from almost three years to ten years old) like to do, the magazine is targeted mainly for families with smaller children.



You can purchase your own magazine subsription at One-year print subscriptions (4 issues) cost $60. One-year digital subscriptions (4 issues) cost $30. If you would like to try out an issue to see if you like the magazine, you can buy a single print issue for $15 or a single digital issue for $8.



For your own chance to win a ONE-YEAR SUBSCRIPTION to Crafting Connections, enter by leaving a comment and using our Rafflecopter system below.


MANDATORY ENTRY: Visit Crafting Connections and tell us one thing that has inspired you to get crafting with your little ones! You must enter your name and email address in the Rafflecopter entry system for your entry to count, after leaving a comment on this blog post.

Leave a valid email address so we can contact you if you win. Email addresses in Rafflecopter are not made publicly visible. Please leave the same valid email address in your mandatory comment so we can verify entries.

This is a joint giveaway with Living Peacefully with Children and Natural Parents Network. You may enter at one site only, and we’ll be recording IP addresses to ensure that there are no duplicate entries. That said, please do visit and enjoy both sites!

BONUS ENTRIES:See the Rafflecopter entry system for bonus entries to increase your chance of winning after completing the mandatory entry. All bonus entries are entered directly into Rafflecopter. Give it a try, and email or leave a comment if you have any questions!

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The Wisdom of Your Child’s Face

The Wisdom of Your Child's Face

I found Jean Haner’s book, The Wisdom of Your Child’s Face: Discover Your Child’s True Nature with Chinese Face Reading, to be extremely well written. Her stance on understanding your child and their perspective is one which readily fits with consensually living philosophies. However, I just couldn’t take the book seriously.

Chinese face reading seems to be the equivalent of astrology or number reading. Write something with enough generality, and you can find patterns in anything. I admit to being a skeptic, and thinking this through most of the book. However, towards the end she discusses how facial features are indicative of previous or future life events. Prior to that point, I would have at least given some credence to some of the features in chinese face reading as being a product of social and cultural perceptions.

I would recommend the book to anyone who really likes astrology or other vaguely patterned fortune telling methods. The five types of personalties may also appeal to hardcore Steiner/Waldorf advocates. Personally, I’ll just stick with nonviolent communication methods to understand my children.

Disclaimer: A copy of this book was provided by the publisher.

Redyed Playsilks

When my oldest was a toddler, I purchased quite a few playsilks from Dharma Trading Company. At the time, I used Kool-Aid to dye them. The colors were never spectacular, but they worked well enough. Years of use and some washing had the playsilks looking faded and shabby. I decided to try my hand at dying with actual fabric dyes, but the use of procion dyes from Dharma was a bit intimidating.

I picked up some Jacquard’s iDye at our local JoAnn’s, unsure of what the process would be like. The washing machine instructions seemed easy enough. When I pulled the first playsilks out, they were gorgeous. I couldn’t wait to see each color.

Here are the 35″ squares rolled up before being wrapped for Yule:

I can’t recommend the 11″ handkerchief size enough. They have always received so much use in our home:

And here is my youngest, playing in one of the larger playsilks while I was wrapping them:

Waldorf merfolk…

My children have several dolls, all of which have been made by me. I hadn’t planned on making more dolls for the holidays, but I was inspired by the tumbleberry dolls.  The fun, funky hair was more than I could resist. Considering that I had almost all of the supplies to make the dolls, I set about the task. The original plan was to make various Greek gods. However, as with all great plans, it evolved. My older daughter really wanted a mermaid. Once my younger son saw the removeable mermaid tail, he was immediately upset that he hadn’t chosen that. Before long, all four dolls had removeable mermaid tails. We’ll see if I find time to make the removeable fairy wings for them.

 I made the hair for the boys first. I went a little crazy sewing it down, and I’m not pleased with the results. Can I claim that I was going for an 80s rock band style? Regardless, my sons seems pleased. I will probably work on them a bit more, though. The longer hair was much easier, and I’m rather pleased. I have to thank some sweet friends for sharing their yarn stashes. I only needed to buy the main yarns and was able to use scraps from my own stash and others to make the depth of color.

stick horse…

Every little child who loves horses needs a stick horse. When I was a small child, my stick horse was an old broom handle my grandfather found in his garage, complete with the hole and leather throng still attached from where it used to hang on the wall. Stick horses have gotten a bit more complicated since then. In fact, I was hard-pressed to find a commercially made one that wasn’t electronic. There are a few, but if you want a basic stick horse, you really have to look these days.

Luckily, my penchant for homemade gifts led me to this stick horse pattern. I have to recommend it. The pattern is cute and customizable. Unlike many patterns, this one uses a T shape for the portion of the dowel rod in the head. I love that. It makes the stick horse much more durable. My younger son is receiving this for his third birthday and I have plans to make more as gifts. I even have plans to alter the pattern already for some other little people in my life.

all the little horses…

My younger son loves horses, so when I happened across this lovely little pattern for felt horses, I knew I wanted to make them for his upcoming birthday. The fact that I had all of the supplies was an added bonus.


Upon receiving the pattern, I realized it called for wire in order to shape the legs. I’m not a fan of wire in toys. It tends to get bent, break, and poke out – not fun! I made the horses without wire, and they were looking rather bow-legged. A few extra stitches where the legs meet the belly fixed that problem. I had the horses finished minus the manes for a while. The directions for the manes were a little confusing for me and I really wasn’t digging it. Then a friend directed me to these instructions. I used a similar technique, and the manes came together. 

I know he’s going to love them. The giggling and jumping while I was making them were a certain sign that this little herd will be a hit.