Archive for the ‘kids’ Category

Potato Printing Story

September 1st, 2011 by zoe 2 Comments

The boys like to get messy with paints – when we can, it’s more fun for all of us to do it outdoors. Potato Printing is always a fun way to make marks and really get INTO the paint! Today the boys had a new take on it and started to tell a story while they stamped. It was really cool to listen to them create the story together while they stamped houses and painted roads to make a town!

This is their Potato Printing Story -

There was a boy who lived in a town with lots of roads. This boy had SO MANY cats. One day a ghost came and the ghost turned out to be friendly and really LOVE cats.

We used tacks to keep our paper from blowing away and washable watercolor paints so the next rain will carry off any messes. Next time I think I will throw down an old sheet because the paint brushes kept rolling through the cracks in the deck – oops.

Magnetic Fun

August 15th, 2011 by zoe No Comments

Rain has moved in this week and we are remembering what it’s like to play indoors most of the day!

I bought this magnetic mechanics tray and threw in some nuts, bolts & washers. The kids love building with it – stacking the parts up,  seeing how tall the towers of metal will get before they topple. I found it for just a few dollars at my local overstock store but they have them here too with the same basic design. Fun stuff, and it gives a new use for some of those piles of bolts that I got in my $1 tinkering box awhile back. The magnets are SUPER strong and really grab onto the metal, just feeling the force of the magnet pull is kind of cool!

I fantasize about painting some bolts and hex nuts all kind of rainbow colors.

But I kind doubt with all the piles of work I have to do that will REALLY happen!


Make Marker Cap Finger Puppets

August 13th, 2011 by zoe 8 Comments

Down at the bottom of the art bin we found some old dried up markers. I love creating craft projects and toys from garbage, packaging and containers that would normally go straight to the dump.

These little finger puppet people were made from old dried up marker caps, some yarn, masking tape and glue. Somehow those markers are always getting separated from their caps and drying out!  The boys really like to wiggle their fingers and get their hair flapping, making it pretty hard to photograph!

It’s also pretty fun to start with really long hair and give them hair dews and haircuts!

We used the colored masking tape that we used in this project awhile back but plain old masking tape is just as fun. Oh, and yes, I did hide that fancy pretty washi tape and now can NOT remember where I put it!

To print and save this project for later, click project sheet, save to file and print.

We are working on another variation of this that we cant wait to share next week!


Goods Friends Coloring Sheets

August 12th, 2011 by zoe No Comments

We are learning a lot about being kind and gentle friends.

Big friends helping little friends…

Loving one another….

Sharing with one another!

To print your own Happy Friends coloring sheets click picture, save to file and print.

To get the best sized image allow your computer to scale to best fit the page.

Garden Psychology

August 11th, 2011 by zoe No Comments

What I really meant was Garden Reverse Psychology!

We actually aren’t trying to grow vegetables, we are trying to grow pigweed and crab grass!

Shhhh don’t tell the carrots, beans or the squash – they don’t perform well under pressure! They are hiding out under mountains of weeds just doing their thing, happily growing without a care in the world.

Now on the other hand, the tomatoes and swiss chard have completely thrown in the towel, they prefer an adoring audience and have withered in obscurity, heart-broken that fame and fortune did not find them.

Sometimes you can get caught up thinking you can do it ALL. I was talking with some dear friends last night about how you have to make choices if you are going to live a bit more peacefully. Find time for your passions but perhaps let a few things go – release yourself from perfection in every direction!

I love beautiful flowering fruitful gardens but right now I have way too much on my plate to make it happen. And that is just fine with me.

The vegetable garden is a lawn of weeds and oddly enough …

By a small miracle we grew some carrots!

And some beans!

Some years, we really have had a full and bountiful garden, but this year ….

it looks like this!

Of course if you look carefully, growing right there in the middle is a happy healthy child.

A fine garden indeed!


Make Kids Berry Baskets

August 6th, 2011 by zoe 2 Comments

As a child I always loved the story Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey. I fancied myself as Sal.

Out past the blue gate we have quite a large patch of wild blueberries, high bush and low bush berries grow all over the hillside. Some years the harvest is large and we can freeze enough to eat our very own berries through the winter. This year has been slim but the boys love to take a break from playing and pick a snack right out of the yard.

Yesterday as we headed out to the pasture I was looking for containers for my little guys to collect berries in and I got this quick idea.

It a hands free berry basket made from an orange juice container with a belt made from some braided strips of old t-shirts. Off we went berry picking. Kerplink, kerplunk, kerplop went the berries into their little baskets. Gobble gobble went those berries into their little mouths. And sure enough they clambered up to my basket and tried to scoop them all up. In fact every time I looked over at Oliver he was shoving piles into him mouth – yum!

Pretty simple, we cut the containers with a high back and used a hole punch to make holes to thread our braided rope through. We punched some holes and added a rubber band so we could fold the top over and secure it shut. The boys were pretty happy to be able to use both hands to pick and we spent A LOT more time out in the field because they were tickled by their “berry belts”. Luckily there were no bears to get all mixed up with!