"I am against religion because it teaches us to be satisfied with not understanding the world." -Richard Dawkins

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Recycled Crayons and New Layout

Two things to do on those gray and cruddy February days when you're just so tired of waiting for spring to get here. 1) Redecorate your blog to something warm and cozy looking- (Hi Raisin! We miss you! Hope you're doing well on your horse farm, baby!) and 2) Make recycled crayons with your kid.

Every one of you with kids know what it's like when you're about four years in and you've amassed this heaping amount of crayon stubs and off-brand crap crayons and restaurant freebies. Ro got a new box of 64 Crayolas for Christmas and has another box of 8 in her "school" backpack for when we take her workbooks to the laundromat or whatever. All the rest of the crayons she's had over the years filled an 8"x8" tin and she... wasn't exactly excited about using them.

So? I scrounged through my memories of After-School-Program craft projects and recalled that one time when we melted crayons into muffin tins. That was fun! I was, however, pretty sure Mom wouldn't want me desecrating her muffin tin with our little project though, so I picked up four silicone pinch-bowls which hold maybe three tablespoons each. A great size. And then? We got to work.

Peel your crayons, all the paper must be off of them. I found about two crayons in that slicing them down one side with a knife makes peeling the paper off a lot easier. For this and the next step, I grabbed an old paring knife. Easy enough to clean. I divided them by color into a muffin tin and some prep bowls, just to make the sorting easier for Ro and so that they wouldn't roll away. I did not bake them in there.

 Chop them all up!

They were baked in these silicone bowls on a toaster oven tray covered in waxed paper. Every crumb that dropped when filling the bowls with chopped crayons melted and made a gorgeous Jackson Pollock-esque canvas below. When all was said and done, the silicone bowls were stained and abused, but the project turned out great- 10-15 minutes at 250°, until melted. Let cool (I cooled mine in the freezer, I was in a rush since I could only do 4 crayons at a time!)

I found it was a bit like Easter eggs, which made me feel very springy indeed. And yes, you can draw with them, just like that!

And that waxed paper? Makes a really pretty suncatcher.


  1. I love it! Great idea :D

  2. Love the new layout :) I have been tempted to try making crayons and now really want to try it. I think we shall gather up items and try it over February break.

  3. @Beth- right now, Target has silicone ice cube trays in their Dollar Spot. They're heart-shaped, and I wish I'd known before I bought these little bowls! DUH. Thought I'd give you a heads up.