Since my husband and I's families both live out of town, I try to show Jayce pictures and talk about our family members regularly, so that when we do get to see them he has some idea of who they are. I saw this great article about blocks here, and decided that I would make Jayce some family blocks.
I started off with a piece of poplar wood from Lowes, 36” by 1 1/2” by 1 1/2” for $5. Luckily, one of our friends has a power saw and cut the wood into 1 1/2” blocks for me. They splintered a bit in the cutting process, but it was no problem since I was covering up the sides anyway, and I ended up with 18 blocks. (I saw some 2” blocks at Michaels the other day for $.99 a piece, so I saved $13 doing it this way!)
I Mod Podged scrapbook paper onto 4 sides of each block, trimmed the excess paper and then sanded the edges off. I think this little detail (the sanding) made all of the difference in the world. I love how the rounded edges look kind of worn and vintage.
I printed pictures of each of the family members, printed corresponding names, and then Mod Podged these to the backs of the blocks. Here is our little family stack.
For the couples, I used a picture of the two people together, and just cut them apart. This was the easiest way of making sure that each person’s head was roughly the same size, and the backgrounds matched a bit too.
Jayce’s unmarried aunts had the same scrapbook paper as their parents. I don’t think that I’ll make new blocks once they get married, and since both just turned 20, I won’t need to worry about that too soon.
That said, I do plan on updating this middle block once our little niece is born, able to be photographed, and a name is decided upon. For now, I just left the picture and name sides blank.
As I was making the blocks I was so excited about them and slightly bummed that they would inevitably end up strewn around the house, so I decided to make myself a little family set to
play decorate with. I used a more adult style scrapbook paper and printed the picture in black and white.
Once everything was glued on, I Mod Podged the whole thing with a matte finish to seal it. I’m glad that I decided to do this step, because one of the blocks ended up in a cup of water shortly after Jayce was done playing. I guess they do look a little bit like ice cubes. But the paper and photo were completely unaffected by the water.
Jayce loves these! We build houses and choo choos, we count them, we talk about family, and in no time we will be learning about spelling too!
I'm linking this to the CSI Project.