Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Big Thank You And Some Questions

I want to thank everyone who left me a comment or emailed me yesterday. I was feeling pretty low because I've loved putting together my art, handicraft and nature study kits. It just doesn't seem right that it could be illegal in a few weeks to sell something I know isn't going to harm any children.

But I am going to carry on in the hopes that the laws will change. In the meantime, I am looking for new opportunities for Hearts and Trees.

I am asking you for any suggestions of what you homeschooling families would like to see from Hearts and Trees in the coming months.

A few have suggested that I sell PDF instructions for handicrafts (like the ones I have included in my kits) and make specific supply lists (possibly even linking through Amazon) so parents can gather the materials themselves. I think part of the appeal of my kits is that I have been able to provide all of the materials packaged together, but if the instructions are something people would be interested in, I am more than willing to consider the possibilities. Here are some things I am thinking I could put the instructions together for: a tote bag/library bag, basic apron, crochet scarf, pincusion, doll blanket/lap blanket, freezer paper applique. Are these things you'd be interested in purchasing the instructions for as a PDF, even if you'd have to gather the materials yourelf or purchase the materials through Amazon links I would provide?

I have been toying around with the idea of putting together a mini-kit focusing on embroidery. I would introduce a number of basic stitches and your students would complete a small sampler. At this point I don't think I will be able to sell the kit with materials, but would you be interested in a PDF set of instructions with photos (like what I offered in my mini kit- you can see in the first photo) of how to make each embroidery stitch to make a sampler?

I have also been thinking about putting together a quilt square of the month club, if this is something people would be interested in participating in.

These are just some of the ideas I have in mind for the handicrafts portion of Hearts and Trees. I have some ideas for nature lapbooks and art/artist notebooking pages as well. If you have any ideas or suggestions of what you'd like to see from me, please email me (amandachristina@yahoo.com) or leave me a comment. Thanks!

I am also putting a poll in my blog sidebar. (If you are reading this in a reader or email you will have to click through to my blog to vote in the poll.)

I still have quite a few Winter Kits that I need to sell before February 9th. Be sure to check them out!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

February 9th, CPSIA and Hearts and Trees

Because my kits are designed for children under the age of 12 I am going to be affected by the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act which comes into affect February 9, 2009. Unless there is some legislation change, I possibly will no longer be able to sell my art, handicraft and nature study kits after that date.

In the coming weeks I am going to try to sell all of my Winter 2008 kits. If you are at all interested in purchasing a kit I suggest you do so very soon.

Hearts and Trees will still continue to operate after February 9th. I am going to focus more on PDF downloads like the ones I am already selling, instead of the arts and crafts kits. I have a lot of ideas, and hopefully in time I will be able to sell my kits again. I thank everyone who has supported my blog and my business in the past.

Clearing Out My Inventory

Because I will no longer be able to sell my kits after February 9, 2009 I am trying to clear out my inventory.

Here is what I have available:
  • 4 Summer Kits ($14.00 each with First Class shipping) SOLD!! Thank you!
  • 1 Fall Kit ($14.00 with First Class shipping)SOLD!! Thank you!
  • 1 lime green easy fleece hat project kit- includes all project materials and instructions ($5.00 with First Class shipping)This project was included in my Winter 2007 kit.SOLD!! Thank You!
  • Extra aluminum sheets- like the ones included in my Winter 2008 Kit ($0.30 a sheet plus shipping) Once I know how many you would like I can let you know how much shipping will be.
I am also hoping to sell the last of my Winter 2008 Kits. I have quite a few left and will not be able to sell them after February 9th. Please purchase yours today if you are interested.

If you are interested in purchasing anything other than my Winter Kit (which you can purchase by using the Pay Now PayPal buttons on my sidebar), please email me (amandachristina@yahoo.com) and I will get all the information to you. Everything will be first come first served. Thanks!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Hearts and Trees Winter 2008 Kit

This post will stay on the top, so scroll down for new posts.

Each kit includes the instructions and materials to complete easy and fun handicraft, art and nature study projects with a minimum of effort on your part. (Please note that you will need to provide common art supplies such as colored pencils or crayons, scissors, tape, etc, as well as a hammer.)


In this kit we have a fleece sewing project. Your child will learn how to draft their own mitten pattern out of paper, then cut and sew a pair of mittens. You have your choice of fleece colors!


There is also a metal punching project, inspired by Pennsylvania Dutch folk art designs. Your child will love using a hammer and nail to punch out the design into the aluminum.

A template is provided for your child to learn how to make his own stencil. Again the design is inspired by Pennsylvania Dutch designs, and included on the instructions page for this project is some general information about the Pennsylvania Dutch folk art style.

For the nature study portion of this kit, my mom has once again put together a wonderful lapbook to include in my kit. This lapbook focuses on mammals. Components of this lapbook include sorting pockets and cards to learn about 5 different classes of mammals, a "What Is a Mammal?" mini-book, a "Mammal Trivia" mini-book, mammal vocabulary, more mammal classifications, mammal babies and more!

An 8 page nature journal focusing on mammals is also included in this kit. In it you will find facts about 8 common mammals as well as space for you to record which species of that mammal live where you live, whether you have ever seen one and to sketch what the animal's tracks look like. (Links are provided to help you find this information.)

The art print for this kit is Edward Hicks' The Residence of David Twining. A notebooking page focusing on Edward Hicks, which includes a drawing project idea is also included. A notebooking page about neutral colors is also provided.
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In all there are 3 handicraft projects, 3 notebooking pages, an art print with corresponding drawing project, a complete lapbook and a nature journal focusing on mammals in this kit!

Complete Contents List:
  1. Instuctions and materials (fleece, needle, thread, pins) to sew pair of fleece mittens
  2. Instructions and template for a Pennsylvania Dutch folk art stencil project (with information about the Pennsylvania Dutch folk art style)
  3. Instructions and materials (aluminum, nail, cardboard for mat) for Pennsylvania Dutch inspired metal punching project
  4. 8 page mammals nature journal
  5. Mammals lapbooking pages (10 pages Note: file folder is not included)
  6. Edward Hicks art print (The Residence of David Twining)
  7. Edward Hicks notebooking page with drawing project idea
  8. Art element notebooking page focusing on neutral colors

These kits were gathered with children ages 6-12 in mind. Parents may need to help their students, especially younger children, with some aspects of this kit.

To purchase a kit you will just need to make a PayPal payment to my account. You can do that using the "Pay Now" buttons in my sidebar. Just be sure to use the button for the right number of kits you would like to purchase.

*****SOLD OUT!*****

All kits will ship within the next two to three business days after payment is received.

Please note that the price per kit has remained the same. The cost of shipping has increased partly because this kits weighs slightly more than past kits and because of the increase of USPS shipping prices.

If you are interested in purchasing any of the PDFs I am currently selling (they are in my sidebar) and you wish to make a combined payment for multiple items, feel free to email me for a total.

If you have any questions, feel free to email me at amandachristina@yahoo.com.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

REDUCED SHIPPING FOR WINTER 2008 KIT!!!


I still have a lot of Hearts and Trees Winter 2008 Kits left to sell.

I have had some questions about the shipping cost of the kit. I have figured out a way to decrease shipping costs for 2 kits.
The new totals will be as follows:
  • 1 Kit- $14.80 ($11.95 plus $2.85 First Class Shipping)
  • 2 Kits- $29.60 ($11.95 each plus $5.70 First Class Shipping)
  • 3 Kits- $43.85 ($11.95 each plus $8.00 Priority Shipping)

There is a savings now of $2.3o when you buy two kits!! (Please note, now when you purchase two kits they will come separately in TWO First Class envelopes.)

For more information about this kit, as well as information about how to purchase one, please see this post.

In all there are 3 handicraft projects, 3 notebooking pages, an art print with corresponding drawing project, a complete lapbook and a nature journal focusing on mammals in this kit!


winter kit button 3
More info here

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Edward Hicks and Pennsylvania Dutch- More Ideas

Because my winter kit focused on Pennsylvania Dutch style folk art and Edward Hicks, I have had some people ask for some more resources so they can learn more about Hicks and folk art. So in today's post I am including links to some resources you might find interesting.

Here are two lesson plans based on Edward Hicks:
(You may need to click through to the actual blog post if you are reading this in an email or reader since the Amazon links do not always show up.)


Here are some books on Amazon focusing on Pennsylvania Dutch:





I hope you find something you can use in these links. As always feel free to leave any additional suggestions in the comments section.

And I still have plenty of winter kits left, so if you are looking to get started in a study of Edward Hicks and the Pennsylvania Dutch folk art style, be sure to check it out. In all there are 3 handicraft projects, 3 notebooking pages, an art print with corresponding drawing project, a complete lapbook and a nature journal focusing on mammals in this kit!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Mammals Lapbook PDF For Sale Now


I am now offering the mammals lapbook that my mom helped me to design that is included in my Winter 2008 Art, Handicraft and Nature Study Kit for sale as a separate PDF. This lapbook focuses on mammals. Components of this lapbook include sorting pockets and cards to learn about 5 different classes of mammals, a "What Is a Mammal?" mini-book, a "Mammal Trivia" mini-book, mammal vocabulary, more mammal classifications, mammal babies and more!

If you would like to purchase the 10 page set of Mammal Lapbooking Pages as a PDF, I am offering it for $3.95. To purchase the PDF you can use the Pay Now PayPal button on my blog sidebar. This is not automated, so I will have to email the lapbooking pages to you once I receive your PayPal payment. The PDF will be emailed to you within 72 hours after I receive payment, usually sooner. (I currently do not have Internet access at my house.) The PDF will be emailed to the email account associated with the PayPal payment I receive.
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Be sure to check out the other PDFs I have for sale. Links are in the sidebar of my blog.
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If you have any questions about the Mammals Lapbook PDF feel free to email me at heartsandtrees@yahoo.com.

*Please note if you purchase these pages they are for your own personal use and are not to be distributed or sold.

Watercolor Techniques #8 Watercolor Splatters

So after a long break, I have put together another watercolor tutorial. In this tutorial you will learn how to make watercolor splatters. This is a lot of fun, even if it is a bit messy. So get out your watercolors and have a little fun.

video
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For tutorial #8 you will need:
(If you are reading this via a feed you will most likely need to click through to the post to watch the video.)

Feel free to share any projects you and your children complete using this watercolor technique. I love seeing what you all have done.

You can find my other watercolor tutorials listed in my sidebar.
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*And I still have some Winter Kits left, so be sure to check them out if you haven't already.*
winter kit button 3
More info here