Salt & Glue Painting

The girls are getting a little stir crazy since I’ve been put on bed rest. I pushed through today in hopes that a little activity gave them that special attention they’ve been needing, little did I know the clean up would be so crazy!!!

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I used food coloring & water since I didn’t have liquid watercolors on hand.

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The kids loved going crazy with the glue all over their papers… I even enjoyed that part too (:

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The craziness began when I dumped salt out onto each of our papers then let the kids twist and curl their papers until the salt covered all the glue spots. Salt went everywhere! Next time I’ll have them do this part over a tray or even outside.

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We immediately began painting our salt lines… the coolest part of the whole project!

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The girls loved painting with three brushes at a time and watching the different colors collide!

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I imagine we will try liquid watercolors and white paper next time that way the colors will just POP!!!

After much scrubbing and sweeping the salt is all cleaned up- I hope! I did learn this wasn’t the best “bed rest” activity solution.

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DIY Light Table

What mom of toddlers and preschoolers hasn’t drooled over the amazing tight tables for sale online?
I know I have many of times, but the hefty price tag just isn’t appealing to me. I’ve waited many, many months to catch one on sale, but the price is never right. Recently I decided to search Pinterest for some DIY alternatives and I found one I liked really well by Here Comes The Sun.

I even had everything necessary to make it! I didn’t go to the extent of drilling holes, finding a lid and such, but I did grab a clear tub and strand of Christmas lights!

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I plugged in my lights and flipped my tub upside down on top of them -THAT SIMPLE!!!!

I surprised my kiddos with their new favorite toy by setting up this play invitation in their tent…

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At their disposal was:
-a clear container of salt with silly straws to write with
-shiny sequences
-foam shapes
-ABC/123 letters
-tanagrams

They went to playing like crazy as soon as they entered through the doors! I had a blast just watching them.

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Little Miss didn’t hesitate spewing out her ideas for future light table play. I’m very excited about several of them, stay tuned!

Miss Grace’s Art Studio 2nd Birthday

Miss Grace turned TWO on Monday! Cannot believe my baby is officially a big girl now. What joy she has brought to our family!!!

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We celebrated several days early with our closest family members by throwing Miss Grace an Art Studio Birthday!!! This was quite a party. I had the whole party setup and ready for messy art fun at a local park, but I began having some pregnancy issues and my husband and I packed everything back up and headed to our church’s activity center to reset it all back up in only an hours time- whew!

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The art supply castle was a huge hit in decor- everyone had something to say about it!
I loved the little composition notebook party favors I threw together after not being able to find what I originally intended.

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Decorations for this party were very simple. I had over a dozen mason jars filled with art supplies, several chalkboards, many construction paper pendent banners and of course construction paper paper chains!!!

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For the art studio I set up a few kids tables for activity tablecloth/books as well as free drawing, puffy paint posters and collage wands & posters. (Puffy Paint post to come soon)

At the park I had also set-up for giant canvas watercolors & painting as well as a shaving cream & paint pit, but location changes didn’t allow for these activities. Posts to come soon from us doing them at home though 🙂

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We kept the food & desserts simple: large pizzas & lots of colorful desserts and mason jars full of candy!

All the little ones AND even the adults greatly enjoyed creating all sorts of masterpieces! This was probably the most relaxing and laid back party we’ve had by far!

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Miss Grace enjoyed her party more than anyone though! She was a little birthday diva!!! She sang happy birthday to herself because we didn’t start soon enough, we had to blow out candles two times and keeping up with her as she opened her gifts was almost impossible. I’m still getting, “I love my party, thank you mommy” even now!

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Thank you to all who attended and celebrated with us!

Baby’s Hospital Bag

Well, we only have 5ish weeks until Mr. B should make his grand arrival! Look at how big that baby bump of mine has become. I no longer joke about getting around the house like a penguin, but now like a rollie pollie- ya, you only think I’m kidding!

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Almost 2 weeks ago I spent an entire weekend in the hospital because labor contractions were progressing and I was having to be given all sorts of things to make the labor stop. That weekend just terrified me not only because Mr. B was trying to come entirely too early, but also because the organizer & preparer in me WAS NOT READY! So as soon as I arrived home & recovered in rest Mr. B’s hospital bag was packed.

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With Little Miss I was overly prepared and had brought WAY TOO MUCH to the hospital. Miss Grace was an unexpectedly 2 weeks early and I had nothing packed, in fact my family just ran to the store and bought everything we needed. With Mr. B, I feel like my list is just perfect!!!! 3rd times a charm, right?

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3 Blankets (1 receiving, 1 fleece & a heavy baby blanket): I’ve learned the air in a hospital is never consistent so swapping out blankets instead of baby clothes is much easier.

2 Baby Gowns: I cannot express how much easier it is to change nighttime diapers on a newborn in a gown nightie vs. a snapped onesie or footed sleeper. & since I always have to stay 2 nights at the hospital it’s a given that we need 2!

3 Baby Outfits: I choose 3 because you’ll never know if you need a back up. I love the sets that have a long sleeve, tee & pants because I can easily switch out a shirt if need be instead of a whole entire outfit.

Baby Socks: a pair for each outfit, gotta keep those baby feetsies warm!

Baby Caps: Now my hospital usually gives our newborn a little hat, but I just never know what to expect- cotton, knit, crocheted, etc. So this time I am bringing my own. 1 hat will be fine, but I found a set that matched each of my hospital outfits.

Scratch Mittens: The mittens are a MUST! Baby’s fingernails won’t be quite ready to clip yet and these keep him from scratching up his face every chance he gets

Health & Beauty: Now this is a section that is mostly completely optional, BUT I’ve found it easier in the past to pack these things instead of having to find a nurse to get me them.
-baby nail file
-comb, especially if your baby ends up with some locks (my girls didn’t)
-aspirator: The very first time I used mine wasn’t for Miss Grace’s nose boogers it was for suctioning her throat because as I nursed her in the hospital she began turning blue. My husband, family and I had her to normal color before the nurse made it down the hall. An aspirator is a MUST in my opinion!
-baby cleansing wipes: great for keeping baby fresh and clean!
-rash cream: just in case baby’s bum gets irritated, but also because I think it helps easily wipe clean baby’s bum after a yucky newborn diaper
-health care bag: this is mainly to just keep the above items together, but also contains everything we would need after we leave the hospital.

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I’ve also tucked away the nursing cover and burp cloths I made into the diaper bag. I loved these sewing tutorials so much that I had to share them with you!
Nursing Cover: Diary of a Quilter, I used a shiny button to fasten my cover and I added a washcloth triangle pocket to the inside corner to hold my nursing shields, baby’s paci and to wipe baby’s chin clean after nursing.
Burp Cloths: Diary of a Quilter

Diapers & wipes will be given to you during you stay, but I always pack a few of diapers and pack of wipes just in case they are needed on the way home from the hospital.

I absolutely love this post by E Tells Tales, If I Could Repack My Hospital Bag.

Now, onto packing my bag in the next few days!!!

5 Ways To Play With Old Maid Cards

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We love getting out our deck of Old Maid cards and just playing with them. Truth is… we have NEVER actually played Old Maid with them.

Here are 5 different ways we play with them at our house:

1. Matching: We shuffle our cards, spread them face down then take turns flipping over 2 cards at a time trying to find a match. (Remove Old Maid Card)

Play w/ Old Maid Card: If a player turns the Old Maid over they get an extra turn that round. Be sure to remove the Old Maid once it’s been found.

2. Memory: For this memory game I take 8 pairs of cards that match from the Old Maid deck, split them up into two decks making sure that there are no pairs in each deck, then I place one of the decks in a particular sequence. I let the kids analyze the cards for a bit then I stack the deck back up and they use their deck to make the sequence of cards that I made. This can be very tricky at times, but if it gets easy for your child just add more pairs of cards to your deck to add more difficulty. (Remove Old Maid Card)

3. Sorting: Our Old Maid cards consist of different poses from all the Disney princesses so my girls greatly enjoy when I shuffle the deck and let them sort the cards into different piles of each princess. (Remove Old Maid Card)

4. Slap: We use the whole deck for this game, but remove the old maid card. Before we start we decide which princess we want to “slap” (wow, that sentence sounds harsh!!!). I then shuffle the deck and deal the cards one by one until the deck is gone. One of us lays down a card in the middle and we take turns until the princess we agreed upon is laid down then we must slap the deck. Whoever slaps the deck first gets the pile of cards. The winner is the person who ends up with the most in their “slapped” pile.

Play W/ Old Maid Card: You can also slap the deck when the Old Maid has been turned over AND steal another player’s slapped pile.

5. OLD MAID: Play it like your supposed to 😉 That’s on our bucket list for the week IF I can talk the kids out of playing the other “games” we play with our Old Maid cards!

Our 3 Favorite Simple Snacks for Kids

We love spending time together in the kitchen and today the kids helped make our favorite SIMPLE snacks.

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These little sandwiches are so yummy, I’m pretty sure they are my favorite snack! Though it’s not a healthy snack it’s very refreshing on a hot day. This snack was introduced to us at a baseball game by a competing coach who thought Miss Grace was so AWESOME- & she IS! He said his mom made these for him for every baseball game he played when he was little till he was grown and now he makes them for his son- so sweet!

Directions: Spread strawberry frosting in between two graham crackers and store in the refrigerator.

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What’s better than frozen yogurt on a hot day? These are so simple and refreshing! My kids love yogurt, but love frozen yogurt even more!

Directions: Put yogurt in a sandwich bag, snip off a corner, place yogurt dots on wax paper and pop in the freezer.

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Up, next are these simple fruit snacks that I’m sure have to be healthier than most sold in stores. I got this recipe from dear ole’ pinterest linking back to Six Sisters’ Stuff.

All you need for this snack is a 3oz box of flavored Jello, 2 (.25oz) packages of unflavored gelatin and 1/3 cup water
Directions: Pour your water into a small pot on the stove, sprinkle the jello and gelatin packages on the water and heat on medium heat, stirring occasionally until the powder is dissolved, then pour into your molds and let set 20min.

So, we want to know what are your favorite simple snacks for kids?