Friday, February 26, 2010

Restaurant Napkin Doll Tutorial

If you have been following this blog for a while you may remember a post I did about a year ago with ideas for passing the time while waiting with your family at a restaurant. Well, the other day, I was browsing Valerie's blog Frugal Family Fun and was tickled to find a great idea to add to the list.

Wouldn't your kids love it if you could make them a little doll to play with every time you went to a restaurant? You can! I tried this tutorial the other day and it was EASY and turned out cute (and I can assure you that I am especially UN-talented at all things origami-related).

If you try it, I'd love to know how it turns out for you (and whether you impress any waitresses with your fun new skill)!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Daffodil photo cards

Recently our playgroup did a project for an elderly lady in our church. The idea for the cards came partly from a recent issue of Better Homes and Gardens. This is what we did:

1. Took a picture of each of the children hugging a teddy bear. Printed the pictures off the computer, and cut them out as circles.

2. Glued the picture to the center of a muffin liner.

3. Glued the muffin liner inside of a second liner to make a daffodil shape.

4. Glued the flower to a card (folded construction paper)

5. Cut a number of green stems and leaves out of construction paper. The children then used glue sticks to glue them to the card. (something they could easily do, got them involved, and still left the card looking nice)6. Gave the teddy bear and the cards to our friend in the nursing home, showing her that the teddy bear came bearing hugs from all of the little children at church.

I really liked the way this worked out. Bringing all of the children to the nursing home would have been overwhelming to our friend, but the craft gave us all a sense of connectedness, and our friend seemed to really like knowing that we all had been thinking of her during our playgroup.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Toddler Box Train

My friends who are moms and I have often wondered what it is about trains that so fascinates little children. They sure like to ride them, talk about them, look at them, etc.!

M made this train today out of toy boxes from the playroom. It kept her (and her stuffed animal menagerie) happily occupied for about 45 minutes.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Daily Schedule with 2 Little Ones

A while back a reader asked me to do a post describing our daily routine. It seems like things are often changing, but we have been doing what we do now for a few weeks. (I should mention that my girls are roughly 6 months and 2 1/2 years old).

Here is the skeleton of a regular day with the girls:

6:00am- Rise and shower
6:30am Bible reading and prayer
7:00am- G rises, eats, I make breakfast
8:00am- M rises, dresses,
8:30am- Breakfast- M and I work on memorizing bible verses
9:00am- G goes down for morning nap; Morning chores (M's job is to sort the clean silverware into the drawer- when she is done, I continue working while she has free play time)
10:00am- M's "school time"
11:30- G eats followed by errand running about town on some days; on other days this is outdoor play time
12:30pm Lunch
1:15pm- Story time with both girls
1:30pm- M goes down for nap, G's alone play time with me
2:00pm- G goes down for nap, My project/cleaning/napping/emailing time
4:00pm- M and G get up; M gets snack, G eats
5:00pm- I make dinner; M has a "Blanket Time"
6:00pm- Dinner and talk time with husband
7:00pm- Daddy play time with girls
7:15pm- Bible bedtime story with M, get her ready for bed
7:45pm M in bed, G eats and goes to bed

Of course, some days aren't like this at all- either because of unusual circumstances, or because of laziness. Do any of you have any tips or suggestions for arranging daily routines with little ones? I'm really very eager to hear about them. Hearing about other families' days is one of the best ways I have been able to make progress in this area.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Playdoh snake writing

Here is another activity that really will work better when M isa little older, but we did have a fun time with it today too.

I showed M how to roll playdoh out into skinny snakes. When we had made lots of snakes of varying sizes I took her magnadoodle and drew a large number on it. Then M and I worked together to place snakes along the lines of the number until the entire number was formed by snakes. Each time M was proud of the finished product. Fun and easy activity!

(This one also came from The Toddler Busy Book).

Monday, February 1, 2010

Clothes Pin Spelling

Yet another use for foam stickable letters. Spell simple words on the back of a paper plate. Stick the same set of letters on clothes pins. Let child match the letters one at a time to the letters of each word. Tell child that he/she has just spelled that word with the clothes pin letters.

This activity really was a little beyond M. (partly because she still has difficulty clipping clothes pins) I think I'll pull it out again in a few months.