Thursday, March 24, 2011

In like a lion...

Do you know that old saying?  March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb. Well that is pretty true for Northern Indiana, of course we still get snow at the end of March, it's just not as cold and nasty.  I believe that I saw both of these crafts at The, but I can't be sure. 

The lion was done in the first weeks of the month.  I painted a paper plate yellow for each of us. Normally I don't mind the kids doing this step, but since I wasn't using washable paints, and the kids behavior was questionable, I just went ahead and did it.  Then I cut a bunch of strips of paper in brown, yellow and orange.  I should the kids how to wrap each strip around a pencil and pull it off. I had them glue these around the outside of the plate.  I had pre-cut the whiskers, eyes, nose, and mouth, and just had them glue them on.  They had fun with this, but tired of rolling the strips of paper quickly.

Next up was the lamb.  I got a giant roll of un-printed newspaper paper from our local newspaper (just ask your local one, they usually give them away for free!), and spread that over the kitchen floor.  I poured the white paint on the leftover paper plates from our St. Patrick's day party. I picked up fun bows for the kids to use at the Dollar Tree, and used one of our cut up sponges for myself.  We went to work "painting" the blue piece of paper.

We had to let them dry all day, so luckily we did these early in the morning!  This evening I cut out a large circle from the pages we painted.  We then traced our hands on black paper. The key to this was keep your pointer, middle, and ring finger together, and spread out the thumb and pinkie.  The kids glued the face, rectangle legs, and eyes on to finish the project.

Happy Spring everyone!!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

St. Patrick's Day!

Again, I know I'm a bit behind.  The kids and I celebrated ourselves on the actual day, but had a party with our friends the next day.  We went as a family to the local parade last Saturday.  It was great, but freezing cold.  Adam and I were starting to worry that the kids would get frostbite on their little fingers. But they were troopers and insisted on staying to see them dye the river green.

On March 17, the kids and I dressed in our finest green!  We had made a leprechaun trap the night before. The kids designed it themselves, and Adam and I helped complete it. Inside we had a small block bed, some gold candy, and a bowl of Lucky Charms. Well that little stinker got in, upturned everything, and got away leaving glittery green tracks behind for the kids to find in the morning. We did some rainbow worksheets, and then headed out for a special lunch.  I got a Shamrock shake for the kids to share.  They LOVE it, just like I do. And then, because it was unusually warm (70's), I took them to the park to run off some of the winter blues.  We also took a trip to our local library because they had a special rainbow mobile craft for the kids to do that day. At home I had corned beef, cabbage, and carrots cooking in the slow cooker.  For dessert I made Guinness cupcakes, and shamrock sugar cookies.

For the party, I had the kids make a shamrock out of green hearts.  I gave each child a piece of white paper, 3 green hearts, and a small rectangle, and let them glue them down.  For the other craft, each child received a half sheet green piece of paper, a black pot cut out, and a bowl of Kix cereal.  They glued it all together to make a pot of gold.  For snacks we had a fruit rainbow, green jello, kiwi, cookies, Lucky Charms, and green juice.  They had a blast and because it was in the late afternoon, was a great way to end the week.

Books we read:
The Luckiest St. Patrick's Day Ever by Teddy Slater
Hooray for St. Patrick's Day! by Joan Holub
It's St. Patrick's Day by Rebecca Gomez
St. Patrick's Day Countdown by Salina Yoon

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Johnny Appleseed day!

We celebrated Johnny Appleseed yesterday.  Most people celebrate him in the fall when apples are all around.  Not us crazy kids!  We actually do it on his death, or supposedly!  Morbid, yes, but we don't tell the kids that.  We ask that everyone just bring an apple snack.  There were sliced apples, applesauce cups, oatmeal applesauce cookies, apple butter with mini bagels, apple jacks cereal, apple juice!  Last year Adam made apple seed bean bags for the kids to play with.  We had to remake the dirt piles the kids throw the seeds in.  L and D cut green stripes of construction paper to make grass for them.  I also had the kids make apple trees out of construction paper.  Luckily I had found a small apple shaped punch this fall in the dollar section at Target.  All the kids (between the ages of 1-4) did a great job of glueing the pieces together.

The books we read were:
Johnny Appleseed: My story by David L. Harrison
Our Apple Tree by Gorel Kristina Naslund
Ten Apples up on Top! by Dr. Suess

All 3 of our trees.

D's tree. She was very proud of the apples falling off the tree, and the on that is going to land on the top. Not sure where it is coming from, but oh well!

Apple seed toss game.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Baking with Kids

I bake a lot, but I don't always let my kids help. Sometimes it's for an order, but mostly it's my quiet time.  It's like my relaxation, and I cherish that.  But occasionally I do projects just with the kids.  They LOVE to bake and ask all the time.  My mom just picked up some kid baking sets that include a mini muffin pan, spatula, measuring spoons, whisk, wooden spoon, and apron.  They have just been itching to use them.  Well I found a toddler cookbook at the library and found the perfect recipe for them to make.  Mini banana muffins!  I had them help measure out all the ingredients, mix the batter, and slice the banana to put on top. They even scooped out the batter to put into the muffin cups.  They were very proud of the job they did, although if you ask L he will proudly tell you that he "xploded the oil all over the place"!  I think you can tell from the pictures they loved doing it.

Mardi Gras!

I know this is a little late, but we don't have the internetz at our house right now, and that will all change hopefully on Tuesday.  I can't wait to be back to the "real" world again.  So on Wednesday we had a Mardi Gras play date for the moms group.  Unfortunately there are very few books for kids on Mardi gras and our library doesn't carry any of them. So I did pick up some books for slightly older kids and showed them pictures out of it while talking about the fun stuff that happens.

The kids colored poster board masks with markers (to keep clean up a breeze!), and then we made noodle beaded necklaces.  My co-organizer colored the noodles for a play date last year, and we were able to us the leftovers.  To dye them, she soaked them in a bowl with food coloring and rubbing alcohol.  After they soaked for some time, lay them out on paper towel to dry.  Repeat until you get the color you like.  We also made sure to already have the yarn cut, one end taped with masking tape, and a noodle tied to the other end to make it easier for the kids. They all did such a great job, and seemed to really have fun doing it.

I don't have a picture of the necklaces my kids made because they disappeared as soon as we got home.  I'm not sure what happened to them, but I'm guessing I will find them soon when I clean out their room!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Today is Dr. Seuss' birthday, and this is the 3rd year that we celebrated it.  The kids and I made Thing 1 & 2 painted handprints yesterday.  This was a fun idea from!  Today was our super fun play date with our mom's group.  We met at the library.  I had a paper hat for each kid, a sticker, an award, and a bookmark.  For this I made Thing 1 & 2 mini cupcakes for the kids inspired by this post, and mini green eggs candy made out of candy melts for the kids to snack on.  We also had fish (colored goldfish), pink ink (pink lemonade, and pink yogurt)!  Because most of the kids are younger, and the story Cat in the Hat is long, I used another great idea from  I brought with 2 stuffed toy kittens and had the kids pass them around every time they heard the word cat.

For dinner tonight I made green eggs, ham, and Cat in the Hat stacked pancakes.  I dyed the scrambled eggs green, and divided the pancake batter in half, and dyed one half red.  I made the pancakes on the smaller side, and when they were done, stacked them alternating colors to look like the cat's hat.

The books we read:
Cat in the Hat
Mr. Brown can Moo. Can you?
There's a wocket in my pocket (board book)
and started to read One Fish, Two fish, Red fish, Blue fish, but the kids had had enough.  There is always next year!

Mini Thing 1 & 2 cupcakes

Green Eggs candy

D's Things

L's things

My little things

Green eggs, ham, and Cat in the Hat pancakes

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