Saturday, June 30, 2012

Pots and Pans Drum Circle: Let Them Be Loud!

I think every mom has a few "mommy remorses," and maybe even a few a day! I know that is certainly true for me. One thing that I have noticed change in our life since baby B was born, is that I find myself telling L to "be quiet" way more than I ever had before. I never cared about how loud L was until my sanity depended on my 2nd baby getting a good nap. Telling L to "be quiet" is something I regret doing every day and try to work through. Baby B is now almost 11 months old and is an amazing sleeper. This has let me finally relax a bit when it comes to noise at naptimes when L is still awake. However, I just can't help but feel like most of this past year was spent "shushing" L, which is just one of those "mommy remorses" I have that I need to accept, and let go of. I can't beat myself up over it, but at the same time, it's something I do need to work on.

When both children are awake, I make sure L has the freedom to play as his heart and body desire! Sometimes that means LOTS of noise and jumping and running and banging and crashing...and THAT's OK, wonderful even! I often encourage a little EXTRA banging and clanging like with the setup above. An array of metal and plasic pots, pans, and bowls to make lots of different sounds... 
a perfect drum circle!

He not only free plays, but we often take turns doing a "simon says" sort of game where I make a patterned rhythm tapping on specific pots or pans a certain number of times and he has to copy it. Then he does the same for me. This was very difficult for him at first, but he's getting much better at it! It's a game of following directions and paying close attention with both eyes and ears!

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Baby Sensory Bin: Noodles, Rice, and Shapes

I'm a firm believer that babies can enjoy most of the sensory materials and bins that are created for older children. You may be reluctant to let your baby play with smaller material, but with a parent or caregiver watching ever so closely, babies can explore a large variety of sensory materials. Yes they will probably try to eat, but be there to intercept and inbetween those tries, you'll see that your little one is playing and exploring, and more than likely enjoying the experience! 

So far, baby B has had a birdseed sensory bin, a waterbeads sensory bin, and today I put together this simple pan of large noodles, rice, and plastic shapes. I never took my eyes off of him and he did try to eat it twice, but the rest of the time was spent enjoying this new sensory experience! This simple sensory bin was played with longer than he's ever played with any of his battery operated toys.
On my hardwood floors it was a simple cleanup with just a quick sweep, but if you have carpet, set your bins on a plastic table cloth for easy cleanup!

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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Shaving Cream Rainbow Slip-N-Slide

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So this is the 2nd time we've made a shaving cream slip-n-slide, but since we NEVER tire of shaving cream play, I put a rainbow twist on it this time. I just LOVE rainbow stuff!

I spread a layer of shaving cream on a plastic table cloth and then sprinkled powdered tempura paint in a rainbow for lots of messy, slippery, colorful fun! Even my 14 year old stepson couldn't resist this colorful and messy invitation to play! I even got a smile or two out of him--BIG YAY!

LOL oh how I love this boy!

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Friday, June 15, 2012

How to Capture and Preserve a Spider Web

For the past few weeks L and I have been searching for something I usually avoid like the plague... Spiderwebs! The PERFECT spiderweb actually, and with the intention on capturing it on paper with as much of the web intact as we could. I found this activity in an old nature activity book I have (which of course now I cannot find).
 I am stupidly scared of spiders but I couldn't resist this neat activity!

All you need is baby powder, hairspray, black construction paper....

and the perfect spiderweb!
(unoccupied and completely intact)

Powder the web as much as you can with the baby powder. Try powdering both sides for better results. It looks pretty awesome when it's all white. You can see all the magnificent detailing!
spray your black paper very generously with the hairspray and before it dries (and it quickly will,) lay the paper gently on the spiderweb. You may have to carefully tear a few connecting web pieces around the paper to get it to release from where it's holding. Sorry, no pictures of this part. No one was around to handle the camera but me and this part takes two hands.

Our first attempt
 The spiderweb above was our first attempt. We did end up with some web, but not the result I wanted. I of course wanted the whole web intact and I was not going to be satisfied until I got it! I realized we didn't use enough hairspray and we also let the paper dry too much before laying it on the web. Still, Lawson was really intrigued and wanted to feel the webbing!
 I mean he sure didn't care that it was perfect, only his crazy momma did!

Second attempt
A few days later we tried again but I didn't move slow enough and I tore the web before it stuck.

3rd time's a charm!
The next week we tried again with amazing results!

Isn't it beautiful!?

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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Our Life in Pictures

Our Life in Pictures

Lots of fishing

and days spent at the botanical gardens

and having many outdoor adventures with friends and the Creek Kids Outdoor Playgroup!

Don't worry animal lovers, we don't keep our found critters more than a day at a time...if at all :)

Have you ever taken a turtle for a walk? lol.

Visiting local State Parks. This is Devils Den.

Picnics and trying new things.
A friend of mine made pineapple mint water so I tried it and it was delicious!

Lots of extended family time

Watermelon for supper

Daily nature walks down our country road.
We always discover something new, but our favorite discovery has been.....



to get to fun places like....

Legoland and Sea Life Aquarium in Kansas City, Mo

Silver Dollar City Theme Park in Branson, MO

Gentry Safari and Zoo in Gentry, AR

A Mermaids and Pirates birthday party

Always being thankful my boys get to play like THIS

and never ceasing to be amazed by God's light in our lives

New Pets

Pure and simple a bucket :)

and on a sheet

Creating spontaneous laughter in our home.
sticky back googly eyes.
I place these randomly around the house without telling anyone and it is so awesome to hear L laugh histerically out of the blue and come running to tell me that his "sink has a face!"

Loving my boys!

and kind of getting the hang of this mommy of two thing.
Which by the way has caused me to embrace my naturally curly hair!

and after ALMOST losing the entire 80 lbs I gained during pregancy,
 finally feeling brave enough to turn the camera around.
Oh, and being thankful for the days my husband has off to allow me to get reaquainted with my makeup and hair straightener! Hello old I miss you!

and this pretty much sums up what every end to our days have been.
Running around half naked in the yard till it's time for bed.
Ohhhh I love sweet summertime!

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