Saturday, February 28, 2015

Rainbow Pudding Cups

We love making this yummy treat around this time of year. Somehow it's become a family tradition on St. Patrick's Day (although don't worry, we still make the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage and Irish Soda Bread too.) But every year it's Rainbow Pudding Cups that Big Brother asks for!

What's great about this fun treat is it's easy enough for kids to make almost totally on their own! 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Spring Flower & Coffee Playdough Invitation

As we're still in the throes of winter we are definitely getting ready for some color in our white landscape. A recent trip to the dollar store inspired us to try some playdough play with a spring theme. 

At the dollar store we stocked up on colorful fake flowers, florist rocks, floral butterflies, and small plastic pots. Already the colors started to make us smile!

And in an effort to create a playdough that looks a little more like real dirt, we got creative with Daddy's left over coffee.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Snowflake Rubbing Paintings

Sometimes we create art for the product and sometimes we create art for the process. This was definitely a process based project that turned out very pretty in the end.

To create our artwork we used some basic materials we had around the house, including some plastic snowflake decorations we've used in our windows before. Quite a while ago I thought about trying to use them as rubbings. We finally had an afternoon to play with them a few weeks ago. 

Friday, February 20, 2015

Toddler Color Sort Box

As I've mentioned before, I'm often looking for ways I can capture Little Brother's attention with a "quieter: activity. He has loved "drop" activities for quite a while now. Other drop activities we've created before include a pom pom can drop, the simple straw drop, and a big bottle ball drop. For this activity I was inspired by my husband's poker chip set (because he's not using them anyway) and a small shoe box to create a Toddler Color Sort Box.

We've tried some color sorting activities with Little Brother before, including a pipe cleaner color sort, but this was our first time using three colors. The poker chips were a perfect sorting material because of their size and distinct colors. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Oatmeal Maple Raisin Cookies

This month we've loved experimenting with different varieties of oatmeal cookies. We've had a lot of fun playing around with our favorite recipe, adding in and taking away different ingredients.

One of the favorite varieties we've come up with is this Oatmeal Maple Raisin Cookie.

It's a cookie with a classic oatmeal cookie taste, except it has a maple twist. We did use a dry, maple sugar in addition to maple syrup. Sometimes this sugar is called "indian sugar" and can be found in baking stores and some larger grocery stores.  

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Rhyming Fish Play with Dr. Seuss

In the last few months Big Brother has gotten really interested in Dr. Seuss books, asking to read the ones in our collection quite often. I was excited when I saw that this month's Virtual Book Club for Kids author was Dr. Seuss himself. We decided to read One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish for our read this month.

The book is full of silly rhymes. As an extension I decided to play with rhymes in connection with reading the book. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Simple Sticker Valentine's (with Free Printables)

I absolutely love all the amazingly adorable and fun Valentine's ideas you can find these days on Pinterest. We've loved sharing them this month on Facebook and adding them to our Valentine's Day Pinterest Board.

And while we were tempted to recreate some of these amazing ideas, this year we decided to keep it simple with these Sticker Valentine's Day cards.

I originally didn't plan on sharing them, so we're posting this a little close to the day, but they were so simple and easy to create, and looked pretty cute in the end we couldn't resist posting anyway. 

Monday, February 9, 2015

Rolling Pin Valentine's

I first saw using a rolling pin and foam stickers to paint this fall over at Fantastic Fun and Learning when they were creating Rolling Pin Fall Leaf Paintings. I tucked it into the back of my mind as something I wanted to try with the boys. When I was trying to think of a way for Little Brother to be a little more hands on with his Valentine's, it came to mind.

I decided to use the smaller rolling pin that the boys use in their play kitchen or play dough play, with the idea it might be easier for Little Brother. Even though it's a rolling pin used for play, I took the tip of wrapping it in plastic wrap. On top of the plastic wrap I added a few foam heart stickers. (Foam stickers are pivotal to the project as they are thick and are raised off the pin.) 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Road Crew Sensory Snow Bin

Although the first snow storm last week didn't bring us as much as we expected, the second storm this week combined with with a few smaller storms has definitely started to make the snow add up. And although some grown ups may feel differently (this time I was actually excited to get some snow, but who knows how I'll feel in a few weeks) most kiddos usually get pretty excited about the snow coming down.

The other thing that my boys get excited about is watching the plow trucks.

We live on a small, dead end road but our town road crew, or highway department as they're called in larger areas, plows a large chunk of our roadway. For our boys, that's part of the highlight of a snow storm: they get to watch the plow trucks at work.

This lead me to be inspired to create our newest sensory play activity: Road Crew Sensory Snow Bin.

Across the east coast cities and towns have people busy at work plowing, loading, and removing snow. What kiddo wouldn't enjoy recreating the same experience?

Monday, February 2, 2015

Groundhog Paper Bag Puppet

This post is going up a little late for the day, but this morning I felt so bad for the poor groundhog. Between the Superbowl and the large snow storm hitting the East Coast, he barely got a mention on the morning news.

And of course we hate to let a holiday pass us by, so why not honor the groundhog on this snowy Groundhog Day at home?

We've enjoyed making paper bag animal puppets before, they're quick and easy to assemble and take very little prep time. (Check out our dragon and owl puppets here.)

Monthly Goals: February 2015

Hard to believe a month has already come and gone, but it's time for thinking about monthly goals again.
Kicking off a new month with a chilly sleigh ride. 
Unfortunately at the beginning of the past month a knee injury that had been bothering me worsened, and although I've had spells of being able to work on my goals, I was not able to accomplish as much as I had hoped. After a successful minor knee surgery this past week I'm hoping to jump back into it soon. I kicked off yesterday by finally getting a chance to enjoy some of the beautiful new snow we've gotten the last week, and it felt great to start a new month with all that fresh air!