So twenty some years ago, when I was little, people didn’t really move or get relocated for work all that often. I was lucky to grow up with all of my family living in close proximity to me. My Nan and Pop cooked Sunday dinner every week without fail, so I had time with my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents at least once a week. I always looked forward to it, so it hurts my heart a little that my girls don’t exactly have that. Now I shouldn’t complain too much because everyone is within a three hour drive, but adding that drive to the business of everyday life can make visits tricky.
As Layla was getting older and learning to interact with others, we noticed that every time she saw family after a long stretch of time she took FOREVER to get comfortable with them again. It was like they were strangers! We used social media and FaceTime to do our best to keep in touch, but it wasn’t quite enough. To potentially avoid this problem with Olivia, we wanted a way to help her see our family members faces every day.
Our solution to this problem was a picture garden.
Here we could place pictures of our family for the girls to see anytime they were in the playroom. To make it more interactive I added velcro dots to each flower and have name tags that can be attached to identify the person.
- Foam sheets (I chose this material since it is a little more durable than paper, however you could use this, construction paper, or felt)
- Family pictures
- Wall adhesive or thumb tacks
- Velcro tape
- Name tags
- Hot glue gun (optional)
I started by finding some pictures of each family member that I wanted in the garden. Once I had all my images I could decide how large I should make my flowers. I’m not the best at free-handing things, so I made myself a flower, and flower pot stencil out of card stock and traced it onto all of my foam pieces. Next, I assembled the flowers into the pots using a hot glue gun (if you don’t have one, or don’t feel like using it, you can just piece everything together on the wall with whatever adhesive you choose.)
I chose to use a poster board to securely attach the flowers. This is a necessity if you are using the velcro name tags! I first tried just attaching the flowers to the wall with adhesive strips- but when we pulled the name tags, the flowers fell down. I treated this like a classroom bulletin board (which I clearly miss making). I attached everything directly to the poster board with staples, and than attached the poster board to the wall with thumb tacks. If you opt to leave the velcro name tags off- 3M adhesive strips will work just fine!
You can really get creative with how you set up your flowers. I choose simple pots and flowers, but you could add grass, a picket fence etc. Have boys who don’t want a garden? Make an outter-space scene with family in stars, or get silly and build a farm with your family members faces on different animals.
Did you give this a try? We want to see the results, especially if you tried a new theme! Email your pictures Here so we can show them off to our readers!