My kids love to collect rocks and shells and with all the trips to the beach and pond this summer we've accumulated a LOT of loot. We became very discriminating rock hounds by summer's end. Even so, I've got bowls on my kitchen table and windowsills. Teresa has a huge jar on her dresser. And we've got buckets out on the deck. All filled with rocks. I even got into the game. I always keep my eye out for heart shaped rocks and managed to find over half a dozen cute little heart shaped stones. But this year I also really took a hankering to rocks that have bands of another color running through them. So I have a bucket of striped rocks I plan on using for this craft featured here.
Okay...on to the messy stuff.
We decided, and by we I mean me, to use some of the summer's treasure to create stepping stones. It's a very simple process and the stones become summer souvenirs that should last far longer than a keychain or snowglobe. You will need a mold for your stepping stone. We have purchased molds from the craft store but this time around we just used some foil baking pans from the supermarket. You will also need a bucket of ready mix cement, an old bucket, water and a wooden paint stirrer. I also recommend a board or flat pan to do the project on so you can move it easily while the cement is still wet. The crowning glory will be whatever you plan on decorating your stone with. It can be rocks and shells or you can buy pretty marbles or tiles at the craft store if you want.
First you need to dump some of the cement mix into the bucket. Then begin adding in the water. Add a little (1/2 cup) at a time and stir it thoroughly. You want the mixture to resemble cake batter in the end. Once you've mixed it to the right consistency you will need to pour the cement into the mold. I would not mix the entire bucket all at once because it will be really hard to stir. I make enough for one mold at a time. As soon as the mold is filled your little artists can begin decorating. All they need to do is place the rocks and shells in the cement and push them in just a bit (not too deep). And that's it. Just pick the board up and move it to a spot where it can sit undisturbed for a day or two and once it's hardened pop it out of the mold.