About Me

I'm a teacher turned stay at home mama. I love finding things to make and do!


Monday, February 28, 2011

New art tools

We got A a mini-packet of Crayola Color Explosion paper, stickers and markers for Valentine's Day.  I wasn't sure what to expect, but the results were so cool!  The markers work on any paper, but when used on the Color Explosion paper, the colors pop!  It reminds me of what bleach does to fabric.  I was really impressed.  There are different colors on each side of the paper and the mini-pack will last us awhile.  A had a lot of fun with the stickers and markers and the result was really neat.

Friday, February 25, 2011

A colorful centerpiece

Here is the latest activity on our shelf.  It's a beading activity.  I got these giant bubble tea straws at Bed Bath and Beyond, and a sugar shaker at The Dollar Tree.  I cut the straws in different sizes and put them into a bowl.  A takes the pipe cleaners, puts them into the shaker and then beads the straws onto the pipe cleaners.  It takes a bit of determination as the pipe cleaners are wobbly!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Leprechaun Play Dough!

Last month we made pink Valentine's play dough.  This month we made green, peppermint, St. Patrick's Day play dough.  I used a different recipe this time.  The ingredients were pretty much the same.  The big difference was that you don't have to cook it on the stove top.  You just put all of the ingredients into a bowl, and instead of adding cold water, you add boiling water!
It really all comes together when you are kneading it.  At first, I thought it was going to be grainy, because it didn't feel like the salt was dissolving.  However, after kneading the dough for a while, everything came together great!  
I did read a tip on another blog that said to wait until the dough is cool to add coloring and any scent.  They said the dough will take on the smell and color better.  I've never done it this way, but will try next time.  I got the original recipe here.
No Cook Play Dough
-2 Cups Flour
-4 Tablespoons Cream of Tartar
-2 Tablespoons Cooking Oil
-1 Cup of Salt
-2 Cups of Boiling Water
-food coloring, glitter, any type of extract for smell (all optional)

*Put all ingredients into a bowl and mix.  Turn out onto table and knead.
*Update*  I opened up the play dough after a few days and it already feels grainy and doesn't have the smooth texture I love.  I am going to stick with my all time favorite recipe but maybe try the no cook method with the ingredients.  I'll let you know how it turns out!

Best Play Dough EVER
4 cups flour
1 cup salt
4 cups water
4 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup cream of tartar
Mix all ingredients in a sauce pan. Cook and stir over low/medium heat until play dough is completely formed and no longer sticky. Allow to cool slightly before storing in an air tight container or zip lock bag.
Final Update--I tried my favorite recipe without heating it on the stovetop and it didn't work.  BUT--it was totally worth the 3 minutes on the stovetop for the smooth texture I love!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Heart food

I got these tiny little shape cutters from my mom for Christmas and I LOVE them!  I've mentioned before that A can be a very picky eater.  Well, maybe a year ago we were out with friends and the kids needed a snack.  She pulled out a baggie of tiny heart shaped peanut butter sandwiches and offered one to A.  You know what?  She ate it.  So when I got these shapes I knew exactly what to do with them!

Now, I must say, this is not something that works every time, and A still won't eat peanut butter or jelly or sandwiches...but she is way more likely to eat a turkey heart than just plain old turkey.  Thanks, Brooke!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Flying with a toddler

We are back in action!  A few weeks ago, I mentioned we were going on a long trip...on two airplanes.  I also shared our activity bag ideas.  Well, our flights were super!  Grandma and Grandpa were there to help out, but A was certainly kept busy with the activities in her carry on.  Her favorite was the piece of felt that she put animals on and took off (over and over and over).  Another big hit was Daddy's ipad, which he loaded up with games, songs and videos for A.  I really recommend making an activity bag if you are going on a trip or need to keep your little one busy!  It makes a big difference!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Home again.

We are back from our vacation and just settling back in.  I'll be taking most of this week to get back into the swing of things, but plan to be back on Monday! 

Friday, February 4, 2011

Heart sticks

I found these glitter hearts on a stick at The Dollar Tree.  I put it on top of A's shelf and she simply takes all of the sticks out and puts them back in.  Many times, the hearts are at the bottom, rather than the top, but she enjoys arranging them.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Heart Monster

This was last year's Mama-made gift for A for Valentine's Day.  I made it out of two very long socks I got from JoAnn Fabrics.  I thought it was perfect for her, because she liked to growl at the time.  She still growls when she sees it.  :)

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Message in a cookie

These cookie cutters are so great!  I couldn't find the photo of the cookies I made with them, but they are so easy to use!  They are from Williams-Sonoma and were unavailable for quite some time.  It would be fun to make Valentine's Day treats for friends using the heart cutter.  You can add your own message to the cookies.  If we weren't going on a big trip, we might have made them.  They come with a sugar cookie recipe, but really, any will do. The recipe they have is a crisp one.  I'd recommend using your favorite sugar cookie dough recipe. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

heart ice cube tray

I got a set of heart shaped ice cube trays and little heart gems in the dollar section at Target.  A takes a heart, one by one, and places them into the tray.  This is one of the activities I keep closed and on a high shelf, so I can always supervise.  Those gems look too tasty not to try and eat!