Beach life Countdown Chain

by Dana on April 7, 2011

In a few weeks, two fun things are happening for our family:
1) my three sisters, my mom, and my niece and nephew are coming to visit!
2) we’re going with good friends to stay at a beach house in southern Texas for Easter weekend!
We can’t wait for both events to happen.

We haven’t had family visit in a year and for many of them, this is their first time in Austin. Plus, it’s a rare treat to have all my sisters and I together. I’ve got a list of must-see’s and must-do’s ready to go. One week till they get here!
To help the time pass we made a simple paper countdown chain, with a special link for the day my family arrives and a final link for the day we go to the beach.
Then to get us extra excited about the salty sunshine, we gave it a beach-inspired twist: paper starfish, shells, and sand dollars.
Lucy helped me tape all the treasures on the chain and now we’re both waiting out the days till we get to squish our feet in the sand and splash in warm water–the gulf is so much warmer than the Pacific Ocean I grew up in.

We went to the beach last October with another set of friends and just loved it….so much in fact, that I started looking at real estate prices the day we got home. A girl can dream right?
Who wouldn’t want to do this 9 months out of the year:
Now I’m sure you all now how to make chains.
But if not, here’s what you do….

Grab a bunch of construction paper, in beach-like colors. The blue reminded me of the water, and the other colors are for sand, shells, and beach life treasures. I love mixing white with off-white. All these colors are in our house too.
Draw and cut out starfish and shells. I looked at images online for examples.
Throw some sand dollars in the mix too. They’ve got to be some of the coolest shoreline decor.
Then give everything a touch of color. Use crayons and colored pencils that are just a shade darker than the color of the paper to create dimension. I saw some purple sand dollars online and just had to throw the pretty color in there.
Cut strips of paper to create the chain links, gather you beach treasures, and make a chain!
Staple (or tape, or glue) each link together. Typically you use one chain to represent each day in the coundown. We decided to use two chain links for each day, so that both kids can tear off a link in the morning. Who needs the aggravation of kids fighting over chain links?
Then place tape on the back of each seashell to tape them to the links. Lucy enjoyed this part.
And hang it up!
It’s right by our front door, near our Hello sign, so the kids can easily see it. The chain would also make cute decor for a beach-inspired party or even a baby shower.
Before we know it….we’ll be saying this:
And moving like this.
How great is that tan line?
Have a great day!

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