by Ariel Diamond
I couldn't wait to spend the summer at home after my freshman year at Michigan State. As much as I loved my first year of college, I looked forward to spending time with friends and loved ones. Unfortunately between my summer school class schedule, course assignments, and juggling two jobs I had yet to spend the day with my favorite seven year old, my cousin Alyssa.
Alyssa and I love imaginary travel and have especially enjoyed children's books that take us to lands far, far away. Over the years we probably have read Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are dozens of times. We have joined both Babar and Curious George as they roam Africa and particularly enjoy Madeline's escapades in Paris. When I read about Tea Collection's Around the World Activity Contest I had one of those “aha” moments. Now that Alyssa has turned 7, I thought she could appreciate and begin to understand the cultures of the world through crafts.
I meticulously began to plan our special day together! I would like nothing more than to win a $500 Tea Shopping Spree for Alyssa's back to school wardrobe! Together we have already picked out some adorable pieces for Alyssa and even found a cute easy to wear, run-around dress for me!
All I needed to do was
- Take a photo of Alyssa completing a DIY activity based on one of Tea's Anniversary destinations (Brazil, Turkey, Japan, Korea, or West Africa).
- Add a photo caption describing the destination inspired craft
- Share our experience as part of Tea Collections Facebook entry page
Since PartyIdeaPros.com has been a huge supporter of Wrap2gether.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to global education and social justice, I had access to the most amazing art project ever. Izzy had designed and fabricated original handmade African inspired dwenimmen jewelry to foster cross-cultural relationships and benefit the Mancona International School in Odumase-Krobo, Ghana Eastern Region. Lucky for me and for Alyssa, Izzy had enough supplies left over so we could actually complete an age appropriate project using hand made dwenimmen, a West African Adirinka symbol representing strength, humility, wisdom, and learning.
We decorated the leather with markers and puffy paint to give it that nice tribal feel. Once finished Alyssa couldn’t help but model and show off her new creation.
Is this not the cutest destination inspired craft ever! So to entice you to vote for Alyssa's West African Dwenimmen Jewelry Making and Lion Cupcake Baking Day as your favorite entry in< Tea Collection's Around the World Activity Contest, if you email us indicating you voted for our photo, you will be eligible to win a free dwenimmen pendant “crafting kit” so you can replicate this project at home! (Supplies are limited!. Paints and markers are not included) If you would like to organize an entire party around this activity — email us. We can definitely help.
In the spirit of fostering cross cultural connections, don't you think these African pieces would look fabulous with some of the new Nordic inspired colorblock dresses in Tea's new Fall Collection?
In between jewelry making Alyssa and I also made and decorated African inspired cupcakes!
The day actually started off by making cupcake batter and dying it orange for a nice surprise when you bite into it (not to mention orange is Alyssa's favorite color). We then baked our cupcakes, removed them from the oven, and put them aside to cool. We then proceeded to our jewelry-making activity which wound down just about the time our cupcakes had cooled enough to begin decorating. I asked Alyssa to name her favorite safari animal – her reply: “lions.” So of course we had to decorate the cupcakes to look like lions. We made our frosting yellow and I handed her a spatula to begin frosting. She especially enjoyed a few tastes along the way! After we put the orange mane on, we were all ready to add the finishing touches! Alyssa had a blast laying the cheerios and pretzels on to give the lions their ears and whiskers. And since this was a learning activity, we talked about the lion's strength and how the concept of strength and humility related to Alyssa's own life. Once finished we got to enjoy the best part – eating them!
Just to recap
- Go to Tea Collection's Around the World Activity Contest and vote for Alyssa's West African Dwenimmen Jewelry Making and Lion Cupcake Baking Day – Exploring the Values of Strength, Humility, Wisdom, and Learning!
- Email us a quick note saying you would like to receive a “thank you for voting” dwennimen crafting kit
- Submit your own entry in Tea Collection's Around the World Activity Contest
- Visit Tea Collection to check out their latest Fresh Finland | Danish Modern Fall Collections
We would love to see your photos! Enjoy and cherish these special times together!