A Graduation Present Signed Book

the wonderful things you will be
the wonderful things you will be

A few years ago I saw a post on Facebook about having all your kids teachers sign and write little notes for your child from kindergarten through high school. I fell in love with this idea. I however didn’t want to use the Dr Seuss book they did, since Sophia isn’t a big Dr Seuss fan. I’ve been looking for alternatives to use the last few months since Sophia’s first preschool prep class ends soon. I finally found her the perfect high school graduation present, The Wonderful Things You Will Be by Emily Winfield Martin.

At first I wasn’t sure if it would be big enough with enough space to write on for the next 15 years for all her teachers. I ordered it to see it in person. I read it and it made me cry. It is the perfect one for us.

Here is a video of me reading it so you can see for yourself if this is the one for you 🙂

Cookie Cutter Salt Dough Ornaments

Having a play date and looking for a easy fun craft activity for the little’s to do for cheap? Want to make ornaments for your own tree or maybe some presents for family members? These are a great choice for all of them!

Cookie Cutter Salt Dough Ornaments
Cookie Cutter Salt Dough Ornaments (and a handprint)

What you will need:

  • 1 cup Salt
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 1/2 cup of Water
  • Measuring cups
  • Rolling pin
  • Mixing bowl
  • Spatula
  • Cookie cutters
  • Skewer (or something else to make holes for the ribbon)
  • Parchment paper
  • Cookie Sheet
  • Ribbon or string
What you need to make Cookie Cutter Salt Dough Ornaments
What you need to make Cookie Cutter Salt Dough Ornaments

Mix together the salt and flour.

Tasting the flour
Tasting the flour
Pouring the flour in the bowl
Pouring the flour in the bowl

Add the water in smaller increments while mixing with the spatula.

Adding water a little bit at a time
Adding water a little bit at a time
Mixing it up slowly
Mixing it up slowly

TIP: You may not need to add the whole 1/2 cup of water. If dough gets sticky and a little bit more flour.

We actually needed a few extra table spoons of water to pull the dough together. The dough is perfect when it holds form. See below.

At this point it will be easier to use your hands. Press the dough together to form a ball.

All done and ready to go
All done and ready to go

Place the dough on a piece of parchment paper and flatten it out with the rolling pin to a desired thickness. We did ours at about 1/4″ thick. The thicker the dough is, the longer it will take to dry and the heavier the ornaments will be (heavy is generally not good for Christmas trees).

Dough rolled out and ready for the cookie cutters
Dough rolled out and ready for the cookie cutters

Cut out the ornaments and set aside.

Cutting out ornaments
Cutting out ornaments

After the first set was cut out, we balled the scraps and re-rolled them flat again.

Cutting out ornaments
Cutting out ornaments

After the second set of ornaments were cut out, we decided to make a hand print ornament with the rest of the scrap dough.

DON’T Forget to poke holes in your ornaments before baking. I used the skewer to make the holes.

From the leftover scraps we decided to make one handprint ornament
From the leftover scraps we decided to make one handprint ornament

TIP: If you want to smooth down cracks and rough edges, you can do so by dipping your finger in water and smoothing them out, adding water as needed.

After 2 hours in the oven at 200 F
After 2 hours in the oven at 200 F

Put the ornaments on the parchment paper covered cookie sheet. Put in the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for at least two hours. After 2 hours in the oven at 200 F the ornaments still had wet spots (when you squeeze they are soft and give to pressure). So I flipped them over and increased the oven temperature to 225F and baked them for 2 more hours.

After 2 hours in the oven at 200 F, still wet in spots. Flipped over and increased temp to 225 for 2 more hours.
After 2 hours in the oven at 200 F, still wet in spots. Flipped over and increased temp to 225 for 2 more hours.

Once the ornaments are fully dried out allow them to cool down before continuing to the next step.

The ornaments can be used as is, just add the strings, or you can further decorate as desired.

This is for different ideas for decorating your ornaments. For ideas on how to make decorate your salt dough cookie cutter ornaments click here.