Hypnotize your friends with this simple paper plate craft. Here’s how we made this colorful and groovy paper plate spinning wheel.
This is a fun and messy piece of process art that the kids will love. Turn up the music and then drum and splatter and paint away.
We have once again gotten hit by another few days of cold and nasty weather. It has been sleeting and snowing and we have been stuck home, so we were looking for some rainy day fun. We built forts, made things with Legos and played with our toy instruments. The banging of my daughter’s drum gave me an idea. Rainy days are perfect for a little bit of messy fun and this canvas drum painting fits the description of both messy and fun.
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If you follow us regularly, you probably already know that we love pancakes. Pancakes are one of the few foods that my daughter will always eat. We have gotten inventive with our pancakes over the last year & breakfast has never been more fun. Pancake art has become a favorite for us both on the weekends. Sometimes, she puts in a special request & it becomes a challenge to see what we can come up with. Even if they don’t come out right they are still delicious. Today, my little girl said that she wanted cupcake pancakes. Here is what we came up with.
Start with a basic pancake recipe. We added a couple of Tbsps of chocolate powder to our recipe.
Use a mixer to blend the batter well. Make sure to get out all the lumps.
Use the squeeze bottle to draw out your cupcake.
Let the pancake cook until bubbling & flip. Cook on the opposite side for a few minutes & put on a plate.
Add whipped cream and sprinkles to finish your cupcake off. My daughter was so excited & the pancakes were a big hit.
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Kids love boxes. The larger the box, the more fun to be had. We are still in the process of getting our house unpacked after our move and have a ton of empty cardboard boxes. We have been having a lot of fun making things out of our boxes & the cardboard.
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My daughter has a great building blocks marble run set. She used to play with it all of the time. The whole family loved playing with it. Unfortunately, since our move, we have been unable to find it.
I have seen a number of homemade marble runs made out of cardboard tubes, straws & even Legos & I thought we could try our hands at our own while we searched for our missing one.
We used a large cardboard box. We cut the flaps off of one side to leave one side wide open. We used the flaps to form our ramps. I wanted to add different options & obstacles to the ramp so I cut a hole or multiple holes into each piece of cardboard.
I used a glue gun to glue the cardboard pieces in place at an angle, making sure to leave space on the bottom end of each piece for the marble to be able to drop. I used plenty of glue around the edges to hold the ramp pieces in place and used cardboard tubes in a couple of areas for additional drop options.
We tested it out a couple of times & found that our marbles fell forward a few times, so we glued a couple of extra scraps of cardboard under the bottom front to balance it out. We used the marbles, but then found that a handful of poms poms was just as fun.
My little girl was so excited about her cool new toy. “This is soooo awesome, mama.”
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I have always considered myself to be a pretty fun person or at least I thought I was. My daughter & I have a lot of fun together. We do arts & crafts together. We go on fun outings when daddy is at work & we have a lot of smiles & laughs. For some reason though, it seems as if those smiles are wider & those laughs are louder when daddy is around. I know that I am not alone in this either. What is it about daddies that make them so much fun?
1. Dads like to rough house. They will throw you up in the air & swing you around by your arms, as mommies cringe in the corner watching. They are freer with their play & not as cautious. A scraped knee to a father is a lesson not a catastrophe.
2. Dads aren’t afraid of a little dirt. They are not afraid of mud pies, puddles or messes quite as much either. Dads know that the bigger the mess, the more fun that is had.
3. Dads have no problem serving Doritos & jelly beans for dinner. I am constantly stressing about what we feed our daughter. While I am grinding up vegetables to try to sneak into meatballs & smoothies, my husband does not bat an eyelash about bringing home a box of munchkins for breakfast & McDonald’s for lunch. What kid wouldn’t prefer a Happy Meal to a strawberry/spinach smoothie?
4. Dads can act like big kids themselves. I can get pretty silly & goofy, but my husband can always take it to the next level. Whether he is climbing into a crib to read a bedtime story, jumping on the bed or riding around on our daughter’s tricycle, his inner kid comes out to play & our little girl loves it.
5. Dads don’t care what you wear. If you want to wear pajama pants with rain boots and a cowboy hat to school it is fine. Who cares? Mommy does a little. I laid out a perfectly cute outfit.
6. Dads don’t say “No” quite as often. My husband often refers to me as the “No” mommy. If I am the “No” mommy, I guess that makes him the “Yes” daddy. If my child wants to stay up late, or have that sugary snack before supper, it isn’t mommy that she is going to ask. Dads don’t mind bending the rules a little bit.
7. Dads build & fix things. When you get that new bike for Christmas or one of your toys breaks, it is daddy that is the hero. This does not mean that mommy can’t do it of course. We just let him handle the tools.
8. Dads think farts & poop jokes are funny too. Toilet humor is a favorite of little kids & dads alike. They share giggles with every passed gas & chuckle about stinky poops. My daughter even has her father’s toilet lingo down. Last week at daycare, she said to her daycare provider “Miss Laura, I need to go squeeze one out. It’s going to look like a strawberry.” She is her father’s girl.
Teaching your children science doesn’t have to be complicated. Here is a simple experiment that toddlers and preschoolers will love.
Science for kids does not need to be complicated. The simplest of things can be fun & educational. I like doing experiments that require very little set up, clean up & are done with items that are easily accessible. This is about as simple as it gets.
When you have a toddler, cleaning your home is not always the easiest thing to do. Having an only child, I am in charge of my daughter’s entertainment, so when I am busy, she wants my attention. Today our house needed a good cleaning, but Mai wanted to play.
On Cleaning Day, there is a lot of potential for fun. Here are some fun activities for your kiddos while you clean.
1. Cushion Mountain- Is it time to clean your sofa cushion covers? While they are in the washer, pile up your cushions in a safe, clear area & let them have some fun.
2. Let Them Help Out- We may not like our chores, but give a kid a broom and they are tickled pink. There are many chores your child can help you with, sweeping, dishes or wiping down tables.
3. Loose Parts Play- Cleaning out a junk drawer or throwing out other odds & ends around the house? Give them to your child to play with, provided that they are clean & safe. Playing with loose parts is a fabulous way for a child to work their imaginations.
4. Sheet Forts- Are you stripping your bed to make way for clean sheets? Use your dirty sheets to make a monster sheet fort.
5. Laundry Basket Or Hamper Fun- Laundry day is always fun for our daughter. Kids love to jump into an empty laundry basket. Our daughter has a pink collapsible hamper. When it is empty she likes to pretend that she is Sheriff Callie & ride it like a horse. “Giddy up, Sparky!”
6. Obstacle Course- If you clean the house anything like me, you tear it apart & trash it before you put it back together. With all the moved tables & chairs, cushions & laundry baskets lying around, it is a great opportunity to build an obstacle course. Climb over the ottoman, jump over a broom, crawl under the play table and climb your cushion mountain to victory.
7. Imaginary Beach- Before you throw those sheets and blankets in the washing machine, lay them down on the floor for some imagination play. We placed a blanket down for our water & a sheet for our sand. We broke out a few shovels & beach toys and our daughter’s mind did the rest. Lunchtime? Let them have a beach picnic.
You don’t need to wait for cleaning day to enjoy these activities. These are fun on any day. I have to admit that I stopped cleaning to join in on some of the fun too. Before we put our couches back together, we let our princess do one more thing. The princess did not feel the pea on her royal bed, but then again I had just swept the floor. Happy cleaning.
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Yesterday I did a post about the irrational fears of mothers. A reader commented that these irrational thoughts are part of our job description. This made me chuckle. My response was that our job description is far too long, that sometimes I forget what is on it. It got me thinking. Being a parent is a difficult job. It is demanding, keeps long hours & you never get a day off. Our list of responsibilities is a lengthy one.
A Mother’s Resume
The Pinterested Parent
To successfully raise our child to be a sweet, smart, well-mannered young lady with family values, respect for others and a strong sense of self, without screwing it all up.
Mother to Mai (January 2012-present)
Child Care Manager
- Nursing with no regard to sore breasts, bleeding nipples or mastitis
- Changed thousands of soiled diapers & cleaned poop out of clothing, hair and sheets on several occasions.
- Endured sleepless nights comforting a crying baby, a cranky toddler, a sick kid & a scared child
- Over-protector and dirty look wielder to playground bullies
- Kissed and bandaged many boo boos & ouchies
- Wiper of runny noses, poopy bottoms, dirty hands & tears
- Personal chef to the most finicky of eaters
- Washed, bathed, shampooed & brushed the teeth of a squirming child daily
- Hairdresser & stylist specializing in pig tales & Elsa braids
- Responsible for transport by either horsey ride, piggy back, carrying, stroller or car
- Diffusing tantrums & meltdowns
- Teacher of colors, objects, animals, math, reading, sign language, problem solving and geography
- Acting as a role model trying to accomplish all of the things in the above objective without passing on all of my own bad habits and short comings
- Professor of arts & crafts with a deep focus on paper plate art, painting, Play-Doh sculptures & macaroni art
- Assists in the progression of crawling, walking, talking, potty training & riding a bike
- Responsible for discussions on God, love, sex, death and other various subjects pertaining to life
Purveyor of memories
- Amateur photojournalist chronicling the life of my little girl from birth to present day
- Collector of art projects & drawings
- Archiver of cute, funny & beautiful moments that I will hold securely in my heart & head
Head of Entertainment
- Skilled at Peekaboo, I got your nose & shadow puppets
- Builder of sheet forts & puzzles
- Lead singer of popular children’s songs & silly made up ones
- Tea party guest and Play-Doh cake taste tester
- Master story teller and book reader
- Knock Knock joke aficionado
- Washer of dirty laundry (no sir, that is actually daddy)
- Sweeps up dried up Play-Doh, glitter, crumbs, chunks of crayon, etc…
- Wipes up juice spills and potty training accidents
- Picks up toys, and then picks them up again and then again and again
- Instructs our little housekeeper in training how to be responsible for all of the above chores
- Carrying a diaper bag, pocket book, juice boxes and stuffed animal while balancing a child on the hip
- Giver & receiver of unconditional love
- Demonstrating patience when my patience wears thin
- Expert at hugs, kisses & cuddles
- Mind reader during incomprehensible crying fits
- References are available in crayon upon request.
For somebody that was as eager for the holiday season to begin as I was, I was a little behind in putting up our Christmas decorations. It had been a busy few weeks, but we finally found an evening to put up our Christmas tree.
The first year that my husband & I started dating we purchased our first Christmas tree as a couple. We put it up in my apartment. We spiked some eggnog, put in the movie Elf and decorated the tree together. Eight Christmases later & we are still doing the same thing. Now we just have an extra set of hands & there is one smaller glass of eggnog minus the rum added into the mix.
We let Mai do most of the decorating this year with a few boosts from mommy & daddy. She did a lovely job.
We also added a new elf tradition to our holidays. Last year my sister bought Mai an Elf on the shelf for Christmas. Tonight I read her the elf’s story. She listened, intrigued by his tale, nodding in between sentences as to say that she understood. She named her Elf “Koontz”. She whispered to him that she would like a train set. Forgive me if the next few weeks are filled with pictures of our sneaky little visitor.
In the midst of all of our new & old traditions, Mai asked me if we could make a project. She loves working on projects. Since we were surrounding ourselves with elves, I figured why not one more.
Paper Plate Elf Mask
What you will need:
Foam sheets or construction paper
Draw eyes on the back of your paper plate & cut them out.
Paint your plate in flesh tone. Let dry.
Paint on two pink circles for cheeks.
Paint a mouth and nose.
Cut out shapes for the hat, ears and collar. You may use construction paper. I always opt for foam sheets though as they do not rip or wrinkle. Glue into place.
Bend 4 pipe cleaners into curls as shown.
Glue the curls to the edge of the hat. Draw on eyelashes & eyebrows with a marker or paint.
Glue two pipe cleaners to the back of the mask. Use the pipe cleaners to secure the mask to your head.
Glue cotton balls to the rim of the hat & to the end of it to form the fur.
My love for pasta crafts needs no intro. If you follow me regularly, you already know about my many boxes of pasta set aside just for projects such as these. This weekend we spent 2 days making crafts out of a variety of pasta for the latest article that we were doing in this month’s SEEK. I have to admit, we got a bit carried away. I could not stop once we started.
For these crafts you will need assorted pasta, Elmer’s school glue or a glue gun (for adult use only), paint, glitter & some ribbon
Place your pasta on wax paper & glue bow ties in a circle as seen below. Let dry. Paint the wreath in green & paint 3 more bow ties in red. Let dry & then glue the red bows to the wreath. Attach a bow, string or pipe cleaner around the wreath to hang.
Place your pasta on wax paper & glue as seen below. Let the glue dry. In a small container mix the school glue with a few drops of water to thin out the glue. Paint the entire assembled snowflake with the mixture & the sprinkle with glitter. Let the glue dry & flip over. Attach a ribbon with glue to form an ornament,
Large shells (stuffed shells pasta shells)
Wagon wheel pasta
Glue a wagon wheel on top of the flattest end of a pasta shell. Glue an elbow to the top of the wagon wheel. It should form a half circle hole.
Paint your ornaments in colors of your choice. Let dry completely. Using glue draw an ornament design on your shell. Shake glitter over the top. Let dry & then shake off excess glitter. String a ribbon or string through the hole.
Medium sized shells
Uncooked chick pea for the nose
Paint both sized shells brown. Paint the bow ties and elbows in black. Attach the pasta as pictured. Add the googly eyes & a red painted chickpea for his nose.
Please stop in & visit us at Seek and check out our latest article. Fun With Pasta Crafts