Guest Author - Paula Devore
Kids and art go together like hot dogs and buns. Kids never met a crayon they didn't like. And if the project is for Mom or Dad, Grandma or Grandpa, so much the better!
A book of gift certificates is always a great way for kids to give their parents something they can both enjoy over and over together. This project is not just for the kids to color, but it will make a free gift for Father's Day with little effort on your part so you can get your own artwork done.
If your the child is old enough, they can create their own pictures for each certificate, but if they are younger or have trouble deciding what to put on the certificates, you can go to google.com and click on the "images" link in the upper left corner of the page. When the page loads, you can search for any type of image they want. This is what a search for "animals to color" brought up: Animals to color. You can search for anything to color and you will get pages and pages of endless hours of entertainment for the kiddies! Be sure to size the images to fit your space before printing.
You can use almost any word processing program, but WordPad (it comes with every Windows installation) will work very nicely. This font is called Birdland Aeroplane and it looks like a child's writing. You can select it or any other of about 400 fonts by highlighting the text and clicking on the arrow beside the font name on the toolbar at the top of WordPad.
Plan to get about three certificates to a page with each one being about 3 - 3 1/2 inches tall and the width of a page of paper. Put a title at the top like "Happy Father's Day 2009". Go down a couple of lines and type in what the certificate can be redeemed for, such as "This certificate is good for one FOOT RUB". Let the child choose what the certificates should be for, but guide them with a list of selections that are appropriate for them: a back rub, a hug and kiss, carrying out the trash without whining, crushing the cans for recycling, walking or bathing the dog, washing the car, cleaning the garage or whatever suits your situation. Originality counts here. Each certificate should be suited to the skills and abilities of the child. 8 to 12 certificates is a good number, but let that be based on what you feel is best.
One one side or the other, have the child color a picture or you can put in a googled picture for them to color that goes with the gift on that certificate such as a pair of hands on a back rub certificate or a soda can for recycling. You can add a time limit to the offer (good anytime during the month of July or to be used in 2009), but this is not absolutely necessary. Be sure to put a line at the bottom for the child to sign each one.
Make a cover for your book of gift certificates much the same as the individual certificates. Having a colored picture of the child and Dad would be a great idea for the cover. If there are more kids, each can make his/her own booklet, alternate certificates from each child or give each child a section of their own in one booklet. This is especially good if there are much older and younger kids.
When all is completed, the booklet can be stapled together or you can punch a couple of holes in the left end and tie it together with a piece of yarn or ribbon.
Your child will be so proud of his/her gift because it is something only they can give to Daddy. And it will only cost you a few minutes and the paper to print it on.
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