Because Kids Are Crabby

 As my kids grow older, I’m becoming a sucker for anything that measures how little they are at this stage in their lives.  I love crafts that use their finger or handprints, like here and here.  I have their infant footprints framed in my bedroom.  I imagine that twenty years from now I will cherish all things that remind me of this magical time of their early childhood.  I already do and they’re both still so small!

So unsurprisingly, when my dear friend Amy made summer crabs out of her darling little daughter Nia’s handprints, I knew that I absolutely had to do them with Jax.  Amy got the idea for them here, which is a great crafty resource if you’re looking for some summer activities.  We went to JoAnn Fabrics to pick out “gold, sparkly paint,” aka gold paint and glitter, and after that Jax was sold. 

The only materials you actually need for this craft are paint, paper, and paintbrushes.  We were fancy and added glitter, and Amy used googly eyes for her crab, but you really can be as creative or as simple as you like!

The first thing we did was paint the sandy beach for the crab to scuttle across.  I finally branched out and used acryllic paint–I just didn’t have any fingerpaint that was the right color–so this was a new chapter in our craft experiences.   Jax was fairly well-behaved, especially when I told him that the paint wouldn’t wash off as easily.

I’m sure it would have been more convincing if I had been at all worried about getting paint on my kitchen table and actually put down newspaper (I did, after I saw this mess).  As usual, I’m not known for my forethought!  Jax was probably like, Whatever, Mom.  Like this stuff is sooooooo permanent.  You’re slopping it all over your table. 

True enough, young grasshopper, true enough.

Next comes the fun part, making the crab!  I’ll let the pictures do the talking, but you basically put two handprints overlapping on the heels of the palms so that the fingers are the crab’s legs and the thumbs are the crab’s eyes.  We used red but I saw it orange and yellow, too, and they all were adorable.

I will admit I filled in a little of the crab’s body–Jax just didn’t push down hard enough and the crab’s mid-section was kind of see-through.  So I added some definition.

Then, because I didn’t have black paint, I used a brown thumbprint to create each of the crab’s eyes.

And then I added some gold glitter to the still-wet brown paint just for fun and to make it feel like sunshine reflecting off the sand.

At this point, I loved his crab so much that I was worried if I let Jax participate in the blue-paint process, he would smear it across the crab and ruin our masterpiece.  I gave him one of those little sponge paintbrushes that are like 39 cents (worth its weight in gold) and let him work only at the very top of the paper.  We still had a few close calls, and finally I just thanked him for his help and sent him on his way. 

I finished coloring in the blue water (or sky?) and our little friend was complete!  I absolutely love it.  And it’s one of those crafts that I actually didn’t destroy with my craft idiocy.  I am going to frame it and put it in Jax’s room.

A crab for my little toddler monster.  Because all kids are crabby sometimes!

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  1. That's super cute! I actually might do that one!

  2. Those are adorable!! Thanks for the craft resource too, I'm always looking for some way to inexpensively entertain my son.

  3. That is awesome! I wish my kids were able to not fight long enough to do amazing art projects like this!

  4. Crab for our little crabbies. Love it! So cute :)

  5. A Barefooted Angel says:

    Cute kiddos.
    Stopping by from the Alexia Blog hop, would love if you would follow me back

  6. I'm following your blog back from Alexa Blog Hop Please Follow me back Evoluchun's Miscellaneous

  7. These are AWESOME! And perfect for us folks in Maryland!

  8. That is really cute!

  9. Love it, and love that you filled in the crab and stopped him from going further lest he ruin it. hahaha A mom after my own heart!

  10. rubsomedirtblog says:

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  11. rubsomedirtblog says:

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  12. What a cute idea! That little crab and beach scene are perfect for summer!

  13. kelly a says:

    Love this idea. i did an ocean theme unit with my preschoolers and we actually put sand on top of the wet paint. it gives it some texture.

  14. Kristin says:

    This turned out beautifully – and the photos are awesome! So glad I found this site;)

  15. This turned out beautifully!! Love the glitter ;)

  16. BRILLIANT! I love the way you made this handprint crab! Ingenious!!

    Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit!
    Hope you have a great week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success

  17. dArling!!! i love it:) im having a link party going on now:)
    would love for you to enter this

  18. I love this! I will have to remember this when I do oceans with my kindergarten kids! So cute!

  19. So cute! Following from Not Just a Housewife. Would love to have you link this up to my {wow me} wednesday link party going on right now over on my blog. The most view link will receive a set of fancy rectangle chalkboard labels from my etsy shop. Hope to see you there.


  20. That is so creative! I can't wait till my son gets a little bit older and we can do stuff like that. I found your blog on the "Inspired By You Wednesdays" party. I am a new follower. Cute blog!

  21. so so cute! we love crabs and everthing beachy!

  22. Hi following u from friday blog hop, really cute creation, kindly follow back:

  23. mermaid says:

    Oh, that`s supercute!

  24. My kids love when their hands and feet are painted- great for sensory too! Thanks for linking up with us at The Sunday Showcase

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