DIY Back-to-School Stress Ball

DIY Stress Balls
DIY Stress Balls

Back-to-School

Are you anxious about a new school year? Know any kids that are dreading homework? Not in school, but could use something besides yoga breaths to release stress? My daughter made her Stress Ball at camp and, since I liked it so much, she taught me how to make my own.  It’s sooo fun to squish!

When my daughter was helping me fill the balloon, I said, “Wow, I didn’t think it could fit that much flour.” My teen daughter replied (visualize an eye roll and sarcastic voice), “Mom, it’s a balloon.”

Point taken.

Supplies: a balloon, flour, spoon, permanent markers, pom-pom optional
Supplies: a balloon, flour, spoon, permanent markers, pom-pom optional
1. Fill balloon with flour.
1. Fill balloon with flour.
2. Knot balloon closed. Draw on face. Tie pom pom to balloon under the knot.
2. Knot balloon closed. Draw face. Tie pom-pom to balloon under the knot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

DIY Stress Ball Supplies:

–balloon

–flour

–spoon

–permanent markers

–pom-pom, optional

Stress Ball Directions:

  1. Two people are needed.  One person holds the balloon open and one spoons in the flour. Flour will get everywhere, so fill over a bowl or plate. We used a lot of flour, filling until the balloon reached a squishiness we liked.
  2. Knot the balloon closed.  Draw a face.  Tie a pom-pom around the balloon knot, making sure the pom-pom knot is secured under the balloon knot.

Pom-Pom Supplies:

–yarn or string, same or different colors

–cardboard (we used an old cereal box)

–scissors

Pom-Pom Directions:

  1. Fold a piece of cardboard in half.  Trace a circle around a glass.  Draw another circle inside, about 1 to 11/2 inches from first circle. Cut out circles.
  2. Starting with about 2 arm spans of yarn, wrap yarn around doubled cardboard circles. If you run out of yarn and/or want to change colors, attach a new piece of yarn to old one and continue wrapping.
  3. When yarn has been wrapped around cardboard circles several times, slip a scissors between the circles.  Cut the outer perimeter of yarn.
  4. Slip a separate piece of yarn between the cardboard circles. Keeping that piece of yarn taught, draw it to the center of circles.
  5. Hold pom-pom yarn still while bringing taught yarn ends completely around circles. Tie tightly and knot. Remove pom-pom from cardboard.
  6. Keep ends of knotted yarn hanging out. They will be used to secure the pom-pom to the balloon Stress Ball.

 

1. Fold a piece of cardboard in half. Trace a circle within a circle. Cut out circles.
1. Fold a piece of cardboard in half. Trace a circle within a circle, about 1 to 1/2 ” from 1st circle. Cut out circles.
2. Wrap yarn around doubled cardboard circles.
2. Wrap yarn around doubled cardboard circles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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3. Slip scissors between cardboard and cut around perimeter of outer circles.
3. Slip scissors between cardboard and cut around perimeter of outer circles.
4. Slip a separate piece of between the cardboard circles and draw to center.
4. Slip a separate piece of yarn between the cardboard circles. Keeping that piece of yarn taught, draw it to the center of circles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5. Cinch separate piece of yarn tight. Knot that yarn, securing the cut yarn in the middle. Remove pom-pom from cardboard.
5. Hold pom-pom yarn still while bringing taught yarn ends completely around circles. Tie tightly and knot. Remove pom-pom from cardboard.
6. Keep end of knotted yarn hanging out. They will be used to secure the pom-pom to the balloon.
6. Keep ends of knotted yarn hanging out. They will be used to secure the pom-pom to the balloon Stress Ball.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Stress Balls hanging out.
Stress Balls hanging out.
Stress Balls with personalities.
Stress Balls with personalities.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade: Balloons Above

When you see Tom Turkey, you know the parade has started.
When you see Tom Turkey, you know the parade has started.

Guess what I bid on and won last year?

 Tickets to the 2013 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in Manhattan!

True, anyone can go to the parade, but I bid on tickets to a VIP section with a car service to the city and back.  Sitting next to the parade route and getting in and out of the city stress free?  It was a no-brainer!  Hubby and Teen Son didn’t want to go.  “Fine,” I said, “you two can get the turkey in the oven!”  Instead, my three daughters and I braved the 30 degree chilly weather to gape at the enormous balloons, clap to the marching bands, admire the performers and wave and high-five the clowns.

Here are some of the balloons we saw along with Fun Facts found on the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade website.

Snoopy and Woodstock
Snoopy and Woodstock

Fun Facts:  As high as a 3 story building; As long as 11 bicycles; As wide as 5 taxi cabs, 90 handlers.

Hello Kitty
Hello Kitty

Fun Facts:  As high as a 3 story building. As long as 8 bicycles. As wide as 8 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

Spongebob Squarepants
Spongebob Squarepants

Fun Facts:  As high as a 4 story building. As long as 7 bicycles. As wide as 7 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

Pillsbury Doughboy
Pillsbury Doughboy

Fun Facts:  As high as a 4 story building. As long as 9 bicycles. As wide as 7 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

Buzz Lightyear
Buzz Lightyear

Fun Facts:  As high as a 3 story building. As long as 11 bicycles. As wide as 8 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

Spiderman
Spiderman

Fun Facts:  As high as a 2 story building. As long as 13 bicycles. As wide as 7 taxi cabs. 90  handlers.

The Wizard of Oz
The Wizard of Oz

Fun Facts:  As high as a 4 story building. As long as 5 bicycles. As wide 6 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

Chippy Elf on the Shelf
Chippy Elf on the Shelf

Fun Facts:  As high as a 5 story building. As long as 8 bicycles. As wide as 6 taxi cabs. 90 handlers.

The Story of Macy's "Yes, Virginia"
The Story of Macy’s “Yes, Virginia”

Fun Facts:  As high as a 3 story building. As long as 4 bicycles. As wide as 4 taxi cabs. 32 handlers.

I loved the Spiderman balloon, Snoopy and Woodstock are adorable, and Virginia’s wide-eyed, smiling expression got me in the holiday spirit.

Do you have a favorite?