Handmade Stepping Stones

Hey, friends…today I’m excited to introduce you to a super-sweet blogger friend of mine, Kara.  She’s here to share a fun kiddo project with us today that I know you’re going to enjoy!  Here she is to introduce herself…

Hi One Artsy Mama followers!  My name is Kara and I blog over at Simplistically Sassy.  I am a mom of 6 kids, that are 7 years apart.  My oldest is 8, and my baby is 1.  It is always busy and crazy around our house, but it is loads of fun too.  I love to craft and crochet when I get a chance.  Blogging keeps me sane (along with my projects).  I love when I find a great project to do with my kids.  That’s what I’m going to share with you today!  You’re welcome to follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

Make your own Stepping Stones

Stepping Stones in our yard became a must after putting wood chips down.  The kids were always walking through the wood chips, totally hurting their feet, but they kept doing it!  Lol.  I was worried this was going to be complicated and hard with all the kids around.  It was actually MUCH easier than I was anticipating.  Although, having 5 little kids around (the baby was napping) trying to “help” each other (when they didn’t want help) made it a bit more stressful.  
Alright, let’s get right into it!
Make your own Stepping Stones

Materials Needed:
*Fast Drying Cement Bag (Make sure it’s fast drying.  We found our bag for less than $10 at a big hardware store)
*Container for mixing Cement (we used an old ice cream container, it blew away from the picture and I realized it too late, lol)
*Tool for mixing cement and water together
*Empty Soup (type) Can 
*Oil/Cooking Spray
*Pastry Brush (if using oil)
*Liquid Measuring Cup
*8 inch or 10 inch round plastic flower dish/pie plate (I found mine at the dollar store in the gardening section.  They came in packs of 4.)
*Stones/Gems for decoration (I also found these at the dollar store.)

Step One:
Brush your mold with oil, or you can try spraying it with cooking spray.  I didn’t use cooking spray, so I’m not positive it’ll work.  I don’t know why it wouldn’t though. This step is super important, so don’t skip it!!

Step Two:
Now you’ll want to mix your cement and water.  Since we’re using fast drying cement, you do NOT want to make it all at once.  You’ll want to make enough to fill one of your containers at a time. 
Mix 3 cans (3/4 full-ish) with about 1 cup of water. As a side note, we live in Utah, and it is dry here … so if you live in a humid climate it may be slightly different.  
To test if it’s too soupy or too thick, shake your container to level the top out.  If you’re still seeing a lot of chunks, add a little water at a time.  If it’s super super smooth and runny it’s too soupy.  Here is the perfect consistency we came up with (using the above measurements).
Make your own Stepping Stones
This is the only picture I got of any of the kids decorating.  We let each of the kids make their own.  Like I mentioned, I was keeping other little fingers out of others projects.  This one was WAY too chunky and we actually let her do another one because this one will hurt to walk on, lol. 
Make your own Stepping Stones
Our first two tries.  It obviously took a little bit to figure out the right amount of water vs cement. 
Make your own Stepping Stones

Step Three:
Now you get to decorate!  When putting in the stones, place them in and squish them down slightly so they will be flush on top.  Don’t push too hard, or they’ll be sunken down into the stone. Also, watch for any stones that may have sharp edges, those won’t feel great to step on.
Make your own Stepping Stones
Make your own Stepping Stones

Step Four:
Let the stepping stones dry.  With the fast drying, you can read the bag for how long it takes to dry.  It could be as little as 2 hours, but it’s probably safer to wait over night.  We waited over night.  They slide right out of the mold.  You can see on the bottom of the stone there is an impression from the mold, which is fine, it sits flush still.  Then you can see that the top turned out great and flush as well. 
Make your own Stepping Stones
We made enough that long legs could reach just right. 
Make your own Stepping Stones
Medium legs could reach if balanced just right. 
Make your own Stepping Stones
Little legs couldn’t quite reach from step to step.  I guess we’ll just have to make more.  🙂 
Make your own Stepping Stones
In the end, we made 8 stepping stones, that were 8 inches.  We used about half the bag of cement that we got (I believe it’s a 50 lb bag).  If you were only using 8 inch molds, you could probably get 16 molds.  If you’re using 10 inch, I’d guess you’d get about 12.  
**If you’re wanting to do hand prints instead of rocks/gems, you’ll want it on the thicker side.  You’ll need to play with the consistency to get the hand print to stay.
Where would you put hand made stepping stones in your yard?
Thanks so much, Kara, for sharing these with us today!  They turned out fantastic; I can see that LC and I are going to need to make a few of these in the near future; he would love this project.  And I’m super impressed that you managed to do it with five kiddos at the same time!  Friends, be sure to give Kara some love and let her know how glad you are that she visited with us.
Hugs & Glitter,

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