Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Crayon Redo - Crafting Green (and Red and Blue and Yellow)

We're moderately green at our house. Our weekly recycling bin is about equally full as our trash bin. We try not to use disposable plastic materials; for example, Jonathan and I have used washable lunchboxes for years in order to avoid putting our PB&J sandwiches into plastic baggies. We use cloth diapers...and even cloth training pants. We keep many of our appliances unplugged when not in use, and we have low-flow shower heads. I'll be the first to say that many of these green decisions were more influenced by economics than environment. But even while I'm not spending money on baggies and disposable diapers, I feel pretty good about reducing our environmental impact.

So choosing to have a "green" theme for the month of March is a little bit of a stretch for me. I don't usually think in terms of green. I thought about doing something green with Hannah, maybe taking some of the stuff out of our recycling bin and making something really cool out of it. Instead, during a long morning, we ended up making some re-molded crayons.

I know...not the most original thing in the world, but we did have a lot of fun. Hannah really enjoys coloring with the crayons that she helped to make. There are lots of really good instructions for how to do this out there, so I won't repeat them, but here are some colorful pictures of our project.

While many households have buckets of broken crayons, we don't. Maybe in a few years... Meanwhile, we gathered our few broken ones, and some off-brand crayons we gathered at restaurants, and got started. First, we peeled off he paper. This was surprisingly hard!

We broke the crayons (also harder than expected) and separated them by color.

These went into a mini muffin tin, where they were cooked in the oven...

...then cooled...

...then unmolded.

All in all, a lot of fun!

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