Sunday, August 28, 2011

T's Book Review

What could be a better book recommendation than straight from a 4-year old?

What library book was your favorite?

Why is it your favorite?
That's cause daddy reads it last night.

What happens in this story?
He went upstairs on the escalator and he wishes for he was going to the mountains. It was a living room and there was a lot of big beds to lay in. And the big boy thought someone was awake in the store and he heard a crash and he saw some brown little ears and he went down the escalator and he saw Corduroy and take him down and he put him back on the shelf with all the animals. And the same little girl taked him home and she knitted the button for him. And that's the end and that's why it's my favorite.

Corduroy by Don Freeman

This was one of my favorites from when I was a little girl as well.

Other favorites last month include:
Bunny Money by Rosemary Wells
We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen
Fancy Nancy and the Posh Puppy by Jane O'Connor

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Body Tracing

(Face photo taken by T)

Everybody who has seen this can't help but laugh. It is too cute! Not sure if the hair or the toes are my favorite. (She calls her hair 'stick hair'.) Haha!

Next time, I think I'll double up on the paper (we only have easel paper) and tape them together side by side so T can sprawl out more. I also think I'll have her use paints to decorate. I'll be sure to post it if we do this again. Which, I am almost positive we will since T just thought it was the coolest thing to have a picture of her the same size as she is.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Our New Sandbox

My kids have begun to play together. Their favorite spot: T's new sandbox that Papa made her for her birthday. I absolutely LOVE watching them play together.

Of course, my head began turning with more play ideas...
T and I created a little jungle world for her Lion King toys. (With a few Disney princesses thrown into the mix.)

We even dug a long hole in the middle of the sandbox for a river. We both took turns using the hose to fill it up.

For some more ideas on how to expand on your typical sandbox play:

- Add some ramps to the sandbox as seen over at Happy Hooligans.
- Or do like Jenny at Let the Children Play did and add some sort of divider with holes and have different levels and spaces to play in.

Monday, August 15, 2011


So, I was just about to write my new post this morning but before I did, I read this over at Let the Children Play. (One of my favorite blogs, btw.)

Ummm... that is EXACTLY what I was going to post about today. Ha! Great minds think alike, right? :-)

Anyway, I love boxes. Mainly because of how much children love boxes. I will always keep boxes around the house before reusing them for something else or recycling. Kids never seem to tire of them.

And.. I've begun introducing baby L to them as well.

This kept him entertained for quite some time actually. This photo was taken a couple weeks ago though; now he is on the move and probably wouldn't stay sitting in that box for long these days.

Want more ideas on how to reuse your boxes?

Another D&G post - A Cardboard Home
Tinker Lab has 24 inspirational ideas - Cardboard Box Challenge
And, over at the wonderful, The Imagination Tree - Cardboard Box Town, Cardboard Play Tunnel, and A Discovery Box.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

A New Tea Set

"Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon. A happiness weapon. A beauty bomb. And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one. It would explode high in the air - explode softly - and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air. Floating down to earth - boxes of Crayolas. And we wouldn't go cheap, either - not little boxes of eight. Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in. With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest. And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination." ~Robert Fulghum

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

More Shaving Cream

I just read a great article over at Toddler Times that discusses the benefits of sensory art for young children; here. It also mentions an article from Early Childhood News that explains how sensory explorations help young children learn through cognitive, language, social, emotional, physical, and creative development, along with some sensory ideas to do with your child.

I admit to having a soft spot for anything that gives young children fun sensory experiences. This is why I love to use shaving cream a LOT.

I invited my niece over to enjoy in another sensory exploration activity I had.

I set out food coloring, filled a bucket full of shaving cream, put them in their swimsuits and set it all into the bathtub. Then, they went to town.

It's always more fun with a friend.

And, they really got into it.

T asked to do this again a few days ago but I haven't picked up more shaving cream at the store yet. (It's on the grocery list though.)

I do have to warn that it got really slippery in the bathtub. But, it was SO easy to clean up. I actually was able to clean the entire bathtub afterwards.

Sometimes, I feel like maybe I overdo it with my activity ideas. Or it's just another crazy idea from aunt Jacquie. But, I really am just a strong believer that a child needs to be allowed to get messy. I firmly want to encourage this with my children.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

T's Book Review

What could be a better book recommendation than straight from a 4-year old?

What library book was your favorite?
Room on the Broom

Why is it your favorite?
That's cause the witch loses her bow and her wand and her hat.

What happens in this story?
The broom snapped to two pieces and she found her wand. And that's it.

Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson

This book contains a generous witch, repetitive rhyming, and helpful animals. I enjoyed reading this book to T.

Other favorites last month include:
The Growing Story by Ruth Krauss
How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You? by Jane Yolen
Emily and Daisy by Elsa Beskow
Bella the birthday party by Mandy Stanley

Also, I've begun to participate in The Imagination Tree's: 5-a-day-books. Every Monday, other bloggers post books that they are reading and enjoying. If interested in finding more great books to read to your children, head on over there on Mondays. I have a link in the right side bar to it as well.

5 a day books

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Me, oh my! Sweet Cherry Pie

Last week, we were very excited to see that the neighborhood cherry trees were ready to be picked. So, we got to go berry picking in our front yard.

And it was such a gorgeous day.

The cherries were perfectly juicy. T couldn't get enough.

Daddy went and got the ladder because a lot of the cherries were pretty high up.

The following day, I decided to make a cherry pie. So, I got busy pitting all the cherries. (Did you know you can use a chopstick to pit cherries if you don't have a pitter? Well, you can and it works great!)

Of course, T helped me in the kitchen. She LOVED playing with the extra dough and practiced rolling it out and feeling it between her fingers. She spent most of her time in the kitchen playing with the dough.

She couldn't wait for it to cool down so we could eat some. She was very proud to have helped make it.

And it was so yummy too! The crust was flaky and moist and the cherries were just the right sweetness.


For the pie, I used this recipe here and this crust here.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Painting with Colored Ice

This art activity allows for kids to experiment with mixing colors. I set out yellow, blue, red, and green food coloring along with an ice cube tray filled with water. I let T put in whatever color mixtures she wanted to experiment with. She really enjoyed watching the water turn different colors and seeing what color she could come up with. I gave her toothpicks to stir it with and then had her leave them in the hole to use later as a handle for painting.

After she was finished mixing the colors, we put the ice cube tray into the freezer.

Later that day, we took it out and I let T begin to paint with the colors she made.

I let her use both regular and watercolor paper. They both worked equally well.

We used food coloring for this activity but liquid watercolors would also work.

This was another fabulous art idea found in First Art Experiences for Toddlers and Twos by MaryAnn F. Kohl.