They finished their treasure chests when they first came in also. One of the newcomers was a little boy who was disappointed he couldn't make a treasure chest at first but once he got going on his shell necklace he was all smiles.
Stone carving was the featured craft tonight and it was a hit with all. We made our "stones" on Tuesday to give them time to harden somewhat and they were perfect tonight. I can't take credit for that. It stormed Tuesday, was sweltering Wednesday, and stormed again tonight after a pleasant day. But the combination seems to have been just right for setting the stones. Every child chose a different design to carve and really enjoyed the carving. We used dowel rods that I cut at 45 degree angles so there were rounded points on both ends for the carving tools. One of the helpers is really talented and chose one of the patterns I had printed out for inspiration and carved a flying dove. I sent her home with extra stones and high praise.
I like the more natural look of these "stones" rather than the square molded ones we almost did. The first batch we used molds but it didn't set so we poured it back in the mixing bowl and added more plaster and vermiculite to thicken it. The result was the rounded lumps of "stone" the kids got to carve.
Jen took a poll during snack time and asked the kids to name their favorite things about VBS. About half said the music and the other half said the crafts. Both are my favorites, too.
I had extra helpers tonight so was able to stay off the foot a bit more than last night. Still so wonderfully tired, though. When we left the church the sky was clearing after the storm and the sun was setting beyond the hills across the river. Jen took some awesome photographs and I hope she posts them for all to see.
Lord, I think we blessed some children tonight. Thank you for the spontaneous hug from little Vonn who said he just wanted to hug me. Thank you for all the children and seeing things anew through their eyes.