Saturday, February 16, 2013

Mardi Party!

So, I am making this post late.  Very late.  This event was over a week ago, and I waited to post it because I wasn't sure I was going to at all.  Last week, I hosted our homeschooling co-op and chose to teach the kids about Mardi Gras, mainly, how Jesus plays a part in Mardi Gras.  I am from Mobile, the birthplace of Mardi Gras (Nope!  It wasn't New Orleans!), and I wanted to share it with the kids, but also tell them about its Christian roots.  I had prepared well, was very excited, and for the first time ever, the rec center where we meet at double-booked our room!  BIG.  BUMMER.  My lesson was cut short and the things we did get to do were rushed, so I guess you could say I have been pouting about it ever since.  I have finally decided, though, to share the ideas with you here.  After all, it's not your fault my hosting when awry.  (Grrr...)  Tuck these away for your next year's Mardi Gras celebration!

These first photos are photos of my tables.  I served everyone lunch -- red beans and rice, cornbread muffins, and homemade king cake!  I posted these same recipes last year, which you can find at this link:
I even had Moon Pie coffee to serve the moms!  (I found the coffee at Big Lots!)
I found this cute hologram cross in honor of Lent at the craft store.  It went great with my lesson!
Cornbread muffins!
My homemade king cakes (last year's cake was much prettier but these still tasted great) and my scrapbook with pictures of Mardi Gras celebrations past for the kids to see.
Books, books, and more books!
More décor ...
After a quick introduction to what Mardi Gras is, and a quick book, we ate some lunch.  The red beans and rice was a hit with everyone (so was the jazz and Cajun music I played while we ate)!
It wasn't long after we ate that we were informed by the rec center staff that we had to clean up!  What?!  I was pretty upset.  I let the kids do their first craft, decorate Mardi Gras masks, while the moms and I cleaned up lunch.
Here are a few of the kids, adorning their disguises!
It was time for a surprise -- a parade!  I had them give their decorated masks to their moms, then I handed the moms Moon Pies, beads, and doubloons to throw.  The kids then caught the goodies, to simulate a real Mardi Gras parade!
Here are the kids, picking up throws, while they wait for the "Mom Parade" to come back around!
After the parade, we were officially removed from the room, so we went to a smaller room, the rec center's playroom, to eat our king cakes.  Maggie was one of the lucky kids to find the baby Jesus in her piece of king cake!
Before the kids left, I sent them each home with a bag of goodies ...
 ... and the materials to make the bead art craft we didn't have enough time to get to.  This is my bead art I made as an example, the cross.  (Isn't this neat?  I saw this idea all over Pinterest, and thought this would be great for the kids to do!)
 For your own bead art, you need some strands of Mardi Gras beads, a piece of cardboard, scissors, glue, and a pencil.
First, using your pencil, draw a simple picture on your cardboard, like Mags is doing here.
 Next, use your scissors to cut your necklaces to fit onto your drawing, deciding which colors you want where.
Here is Maggie's art, in progress.  (Cute!)
 Keep adding beads.
Here is Maggie's bead art!  I love it!
Happy belated Mardi Gras and happy crafting! 

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