My reviews are based on my personal experience with a product or event. I am not a professional product tester nor do I get paid for any of my blog posts.

The items that I post reviews on, have either been purchased on the internet or through a local vendor. Additionally I will review items that I got on sale, as a gift or as a sample from either the manufacurer or some other source.

Note: always read the manufacturers directions on how to properly use a product and craft carefully. Additionally, I am an Amazon Associate and may earn a few cents (literally) from your clicking on my Amazon links. Since they raised the minimum payout from earnings to $10 I haven't seen a credit for a while but eventually I will get one.

Every penny counts when trying to set a budget to get supplies to use for my reviews, tutorials and hauls. However, you do not have to use my links. You can use your favorite search engine to find the best price for your budget.

My Review of "Chalk on the Wild Side" by Lorie King Kaehler

Chalk on the Wild Side by Lorie King Kaehler is a great book for anyone looking for chalk bubbles, chalk spray paint, and chalk recipes to create fun and inexpensive kid orientated activities.  My kids love to draw with chalk.  I even painted our refrigerator with chalkboard paint so they would have a large area to express themselves each day (instead of my walls).

One of my kids had an allergy to store bought chalk and I had to spend hours searching the Internet to find a recipe for homemade chalk, I wish this book had been available then.  I love that Chalk on the Wild Side  offers several recipes for different types of chalk. Additionally, this book takes chalk art from the traditional chalkboard drawings into a bunch of other fun ways to use chalk and create some fun art.

The table of contents is as such:


  • Tools & Materials
  • Drawing Techniques
  • Projects:
  • Chalk & Paper
  • Chalk & Pavement
  • Homemade Sidewalk Chalk

The drawing techniques section introduces the reader how to use chalk for drawing techniques like linear strokes, smudging, blending and more.  This book is a great primer to introduce kids to various drawing and color blending techniques in a fun and non stressful atmosphere (one of my kids finds her art class to be very stressful, so this helps).  The author goes through how paper texture can affect how the chalk looks and blends.  There are a lot of really great ideas incorporated into this book.  The photographer Donna Starry did a beautiful job with her photos.  The photos really give the reader a great sense of how to follow the directions and the fun activities that these projects really are.

My favorite project is the chalk volcano project, it is getting warm out here in California and this provides a fun way to spend time outdoors and bring a little science into our activities. 

The recipes are made with easy to find materials such as:

  • Cornstarch or flour
  • food coloring
  • soap
  • plaster of Paris (this should only be used under adult supervision)
  • vinegar, baking soda, salt, etc.
  • Antacid Tablets, etc,
  • essential oils, unsweetened drink mixes, cinnamon etc.
  • candy or soap molds
  • and other easy to find items.

The book also offers fun recipes for glow in dark chalk, fizzing chalk, and scented chalk.  The activities are written so easily, that family can spend quality time making the chalk and doing the projects with out the stress of hard to find items.  Anything I did not have on hand, I easily found at my local dollar store.  If you have kids and they love chalk and wanted to expand their activities, then this book is worth looking at.

Cray-Pen Colored Pigment Melted Wax Crayon Painting Set by Surebonder | Review

The Cray-Pen Colored Pigment Melted Wax Crayon Painting Set is a fun new way to paint vibrant color to a variety of surfaces, including glass, wood, canvas, paper and more.  I can honestly say that these are not your mothers' crayons!   The Surebonder Cray-Pen Painting Set with 20 Variety Color Pack comes with two different sized copper tips.  This is a fabulous and fun new method of coloring or painting with melted wax colors. This tool is great for adults to express themselves creatively.

As you can see in the video, the tool and colored wax can color wood, canvas, glass and even Easter eggs (not the plastic ones...the hot tip will possibly melt the plastic).  This is really easy to use; you just dip the heated tip onto the colored wax crayon and then color the project with by transferring the wax onto the project. There are eighteen color pucks.  The wax dries in seconds.  Also, projects can be retouched by just dipping the heated tip onto colored wax and transferring the hot colored wax onto the surface of the project. 

There are three palettes of color pucks currently available:

  • Neon Palette
  • Standard Palette
  • Secondary Palette (flesh tones, etc.)

Two Copper tips:

  • Bold tip
  • Fine tip

These are basically large crayons that are produced in a wax tart size that is far easier to use than the traditional thin crayons. 

You can use the different tips to layer colors and to blend colors to create even more bright vibrant colors.  You can also touch up pieces just be dipping the tip onto the wax and touching up the project.  Additionally, you can find a lot of creative ways to use the non-tinted wax for achieving batik style effects on the project surfaces.

The tool and hot wax can be used to color on paper too (like the adult coloring books). 

Because of the pigments used in the wax crayon material, the colors are fairly vibrant which allows for some lovely patterning.  I also pressed stamps onto the wax while it is cooling to get some unusual effects.  However, the wax cools quickly so I had to work fast.  I did paint some canvas with it but I found I needed to show some care while coloring on it.  It could have been the quality of the canvas I was using, so I won't blame the tool for the indentations left on the canvas.

Additionally, I  did play with the product to try to get some "Encaustic Painting” like effects.  I have always wanted to work in encaustic but the price tag of the tools and classes have kept me from doing so. This is a much less expensive way to play around with pigmented wax and find out if you even like the medium without the added expense. .  For those who are not familiar with “Encaustic Painting” is a form of hot wax painting.  The artist melts the beeswax (using various methods) and then adds pigment to it.  Then the melted wax is applied to a variety of surfaces.  Click here to see my Pinterest page on "Encaustic" paintings and techniques.

I used my iPhone to take this video at a recent craft show and it shows how easy it is to dip the heated tool (you will need a plug near the area you intend to work in) in the colored wax and then apply it to the surface of your project.  Allow it to cool for a moment before moving on to the next color, unless you are trying to merge two colors together for effect.  I did find that with a little bit of patience I could even get a marbled effect with this.  Also the wax is buildable, so you can get some fun effects with that too.

Safety: While the manufacturer recommends this for ages 13 and over, the tip gets hot so I recommend adult supervision if you intend to allow a minor to use this.  Just think of it this way:  would you allow a child to use a hot glue gun?  The tip of this tool has to get hot enough to melt the wax crayon material and will burn if touched.

Also, anytime you work with melted wax and pigment, you should do it in a well-ventilated area.  I pop open my window while working and just make sure my project is not being hit by a direct draft.

I love this tool and keep finding new ways to use.   I included some photos in the video of other projects that were on display using the tool at that craft show.  I hope you enjoy it too. The Surebonder Cray-Pen Painting Set with 20 Variety Color Pack can be found on Amazon (I have included a link for this).  I recommend buying the 20 color kit with the fun selection of colors to maximize use of this tool but you can also just buy the tool and use it with crayons.  However, I found that to be messy and time consuming.  The big blocks of colored wax are just so easy to use and do not create a big mess.

Note: This is not a sponsored post, I purchased all my supplies on Amazon and used my own phone to video tape the demo and take some photographs.