How to make a natural Day of the Week Calendar

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My 5 year old daughter is always asking “Is it a school night?”.  I have been trying to explain days of the week, which days are “school days” and which days are weekends.  She just can’t get it without a visual, so I was inspired to make a Waldorf style “Day of the Week” calendar.  Here is how I did it.

It was a very inexpensive project for me.

Materials:

    • 7 unfinished Peg People 
    • A piece of rough sawn 3/4 inch Cedar Shelving wood (any wood will do, I just happened to have this in my garage)
    • watercolor paint (I used my kids)
    • beeswax polish (two ounces of organic beeswax and 1 cup of almond oil melted together in a double broiler) optional

 

Tools:

    • Wood Burning pen (one of my favorite things)
    • Scroll saw
    • paint brush

 

1: I took the 7 unfinished “Peg People” and wrote the abbriviation for the day of the week at the bottom of each one.

ie. Monday = M, Tuesday = Tu, Wednesday = W etc…

Then using Rudolf Steiner’s “Planets of the Day”, I drew a little representation on each person.  On Monday the daily heavenly body is the Moon.  So I drew a small crescent moon on Monday.  Below I am listing the “Planets and Colors of the day” as laid out by Steiner:

    • Sunday: Color – White, Heavenly Body: The Sun
    • Monday: Color – Purple, Heavenly Body: The Moon
    • Tuesday: Color – Red, Heavenly Body: Mars
    • Wednesday: Color – Yellow, Heavenly Body: Mercury
    • Thursday: Color – Orange, Heavenly Body: Jupiter
    • Friday: Color – Green, Heavenly Body: Venus
    • Saturday: Color – Blue, Heavenly Body: Saturn

 

note* I do not really know much about why these colors and planets are assigned to a specific day, and I wasn’t too concerned about it.  I just wanted to paint the peg people interesting colors, and have some decoration on each one.  This seemed like a good theme to follow!

My main challenge came in figuring out a way to make Tuesday’s Mars look different from Thursday’s Jupiter, Tuesday’s Mercury and Friday’s Venus.  These planets are all basically round spheres.  I made Mercury a very small circle, I made Jupiter a very big circle with a spot on it (the red spot), and lastly I made Venus with a tiny heart in the middle.  The Sun, Moon and Saturn were much easier!  Here is a picture of the rough pencil drawings:

 

 

 

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2: Using my wood burning pen, I traced lightly over the pencil marks to make them dark and permanent.

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3: Using a palate of my daughters watercolor paints I painted each person in the “color of the day” from the table above.

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4: Using the beeswax polish recipe above I rubbed a generous portion of the polish into each peg person and let it sit for an hour.  Then using a wash cloth I wiped off all the excess and gave each person a little “shine”.

HERE are the finished Peg People!

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You could stop at this step, but I wanted a place to put them…

Making the Base:

1: I took a piece of unfinished 3/4 inch cedar shelving wood that I had left over.  Any wood would work, in fact, the wood I chose is probably not the best choice.  I brought one of the peg people in to the garage with me.  I wanted a flowing curved shape so without much planning I freehand drew a “S” like  shape.  Then I took the peg person and spaced out 8 holes by tracing around him 8 times leaving about an inch in between each hole.  The first try I ran out of room and had to sort of elongate my drawing.  This was a very “by the seat of my pants” process.  Here is a picture of my diagram, you can see where I kind of elongated it.:

 

 

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2: Using this really big drill bit I happened to have, I drilled 8 holes over the peg people holes.   I wanted to drill before I cut, in case I messed up and had to start again.  Drilling is easier than cutting.

 

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3: Since I did a passable job drilling, I went ahead and cut out the shape on the scroll saw!

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4: I happen to be lucky enough to own a belt sander, which I used to sand the bottom, top and sides of this wood.  Regular old sand paper would work just as well!  Sand away all the rough bits and try as hard as you can to sand inside the holes, although I had no luck with this part myself.

5: I took the base inside and gave it a good coat of beeswax polish and let it sit an hour.  After I wiped off the excess and polished it up, it was very pretty!

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6: As you can see from the picture above, the holes look kind of unsightly!  So I took some felt left over from another project and cut out little circles, glued them into place, and voila… I was done!

Finished work!

 

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