Chasing Cheerios

Friday, July 30, 2010

Making Homemade Bread and Butter

O and I have been reading books from the Little House on the Prairie series for the past month or so. We both LOVE the books, and I look forward to naptime and bedtime so we can read a few more chapters! Since we've been reading the books, we've been trying to do activities similar to those that Mary and Laura do (we play "Mary and Laura and Baby Carrie" ALL the time). Recently, we made homemade bread and butter. O LOVED the butter and was licking it off her bread and spreading more on. We were excited to read about Laura trying to catch minnows today, so we are going to try to catch minnows tomorrow morning (something we do often anyway!).

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Learning the Concepts of Big/Little

E was the official holder of the cucumbers while we were working in Guhguh and Grandpa's garden last week. Since one cucumber was significantly smaller than the other, we had a quick lesson on the concepts of big and little. I asked her to hand me the big cucumber several times and then the little cucumber. She LOVES doing this type of activity, and she catches on quickly!

I didn't realize that O was paying any attention to us until she asked me to "pretend that I don't know what big and little cucumbers are and you have to teach me." Silly girl :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Shaving Cream and Food Coloring Fun

Mixing shaving cream and food coloring is one of O's all time favorite activities. She loves to swirl the colors together to see what happens. We pressed a sheet of white cardstock onto the shaving cream and then wiped it off to make a pretty picture. Then O proceeded to cover herself in shaving cream. She had so much fun and made SUCH a mess! Luckily, we were doing this messy activity out on the screened porch! I brought out pitcher after pitcher of water and poured it over her before I let her come in the house :)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Straws Everywhere!

When we went on vacation a few weeks ago, we didn't take many toys. However, I did pack a bag of straws! O, E, and my niece had a fantastic time playing with the straws! O fixed my hair using the straws as decorations. They made straw soup. E crawled around grabbing and chewing on the straws,and the big girls sprinkled the straws on E. We connected the straws to make "the longest straw in America," and on and on and on... The straws provided the girls with tons of open ended, creative fun! Go grab a bag and save them for a rainy day!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Easy Peach Cobbler

O and I made this super easy peach cobbler for our July 4th celebration!

To make this easy peach cobbler, we poured a jar of peaches into a baking dish. O then poured a box of cake mix onto the peaches. We used the back of a spoon (and our fingers) to push the dry cake mix into the peach juice. We then scattered small chunks of butter across the mixture. I refrigerated the cobbler until we ate lunch and then baked it at 350 for about 30 minutes. It's not that healthy, but it is fast and easy and sometimes that's the most important thing! (especially since we only make this once or twice a year)

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Busy Baby

E is a crawler, and she'll crawl through and on anything...

through water

on grass

on sand

on an inflatable waterslide

Research shows a correlation between crawling and later reading ability...if that is true, then baby E ought to be a fantastic reader one day!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Summer Leaf People

As another activity in our backyard exploration, O and I collected leaves to make Summer leaf creatures. We laid them out on the floor and put hardback books on them to flatten them. After a couple of hours, we removed the books and made leaf creatures. I made a girl wearing a dress, so O made a leaf boy so they could get married. I love the face that she drew on her leaf boy :)

In the interest of full disclosure, I should admit that I enjoyed this activity much more than O did!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Tiny Toes

Found Object Art

During our week of studying our backyard habitat, I thought it would be fun to make art with found objects. O and I found the perfect board in our garage. Then we went into the lake to collect empty clam shells...there's never any shortage of these! After the clam shells dried, I drew the outline of a fish on the board. We spread glue on and in the fish outline and filled it with clam shells. This was a fun and easy project, and we were happy with the end result!

This project was inspired by a similar art project by my cousin, Anne. Anne collects rusty nails and bits of glass from the field where she rides horses. She then glues these bits of found objects to boards in the shapes of horses. They are amazing! Thanks, Anne, for the inspiration!!!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

E Loves to Swing!

After reading about how babies should swing in toddler swings everyday since it's such wonderful vestibular stimulation, I was motivated to get O's swing ready for E (the ropes were spiky due to sun exposure...I covered the ropes with duct tape, which worked perfectly).

E LOVES to swing (especially when O is pushing her)! Unfortunately, O's swingset is across the yard from E's swing, so I am constantly running from one to the other pushing them in their swings. Although, I guess that's a good thing...I need the exercise!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Find It Game... a Review & a Giveaway

The winner is Helpful Housewife! Congrats!

Find It Games recently sent us a game to play with and review. We chose "At the Beach" since blue is O's favorite color, and we love the beach. There are over 40 hidden items to find in this game, and we have had fun trying to find them! The top cap of the game has a list of the objects in alphabetical order, which makes it easy to incorporate phonics into the game. In this picture O is looking for an object that starts with "b."

The lack of loose pieces makes this game great for traveling and playing around babies... since you don't have to worry about them grabbing a small piece and putting it in their mouths (this is a constant concern around here since E is extremely fast and puts everything in her mouth). E also loves to crawl around on the floor while pushing the game and watching it roll.

I really like that through playing this game, O is learning to pay attention to details and to concentrate. This game also requires persistance which is something that most 4 year olds need to practice :)

Find It Games is offering a game to one lucky reader, so comment on this post to enter to win a game (US residents only please). I'll get my random number generator (O!) to choose a number on Saturday night, so please leave your comment by then. Find It Games is also offering a discount that is good through July 31, 2010. Enter FIGBLOG to get 5 dollars off your order.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Fun with Worms

O and her Daddy went fishing on Monday morning. They didn't catch anything, but they had fun. O especially had fun playing with the worms when they got back. She made letters out of them and lined them up for races.

She counted the worms and held them all in her hands. Then she insisted that I hold them in my hands. I wasn't excited about it, but I did it. She said "Aren't they wiggly and squiggly?" Yes, they were!

Monday, July 19, 2010


E occasionally gets stuck under chairs as she is crawling about the house. I usually try to let her figure out how to get out by herself as it is very good for her brain to do this type of motor planning. However, she was too upset this time, so we had to help her out. O lifted the top off the chair so that E could stand up, and I lifted her up. Poor baby.

Friday, July 16, 2010

4 Years Old!

O is 4 years old!!! I can't believe my baby girl is 4 yeas old! She told me tonight "I want to be 4 twenty times." When I asked her what she meant, she said "I like being a child..." I love her so much!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Creative Painting

O had a fantastic time painting with dry tempera powder a few weeks ago! I set up this art activity by pouring red, blue, and yellow tempera paint powder into 3 separate lids for her. I gave her several sheets of white cardstock to paint and cotton balls to dip in the paint. She applied the paint powder to the paper with the cotton balls and then painted over the paint powder with a paintbrush she had dipped in water.

Then she said she wanted to experiment...she dipped the cotton balls in water before dipping them into the paint powder, she sprinkled the paint powder across the paper before wetting it, she used q tips to spread the powder around, etc. She did everything she could think of and totally enjoyed herself. I love it when an art activity is so successful!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

E Loves Her O Ball

This O ball is one of E's favorite toys! It is easy for her little fingers to grasp and throw. She also loves to chew on it and plays with it in the water. Simple toys like this are the best! (I bought the O ball several months ago from WM for 5 dollars).

A Fun Math Activity

We have been doing very little "school" work around here lately, but when I saw these plastic shot glasses at The Dollar Tree a few weeks ago I couldn't resist buying them for this activity.

I wrote the numbers 0 through 10 on dot stickers and stuck one on each glass. O put the glasses in order and then put the correct number of toothpicks in each one.

One thing I like about this activity is that it takes up VERY little space!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Peek-A-Boo Baby

An empty kleenex box is great for playing peek-a-boo with babies and small toys. E loves to reach in the box to get her toys. It's a little easier to get the toys out of the kleenex box than the wipes container, and she seems to prefer this box to the container.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

O's 4th Birthday Cake

We started the tradition of having O decorate her own birthday cake last year, and she was SO excited to do it again this year! She picked out the decorations, icing, and candles, and she and my mom made her cake and icing on the day before her party. My mom iced the cake with white icing, and then O decorated it with supervision from me. I helped her press on the nozzle for the blue icing (we did hand over hand), but she did everything else on her own. She had a great time and was so proud!

O has had Cinderella on her mind since she had Princess Dance Camp a few weeks ago, so she decided she wanted to have Cinderella on her cake. I felt a little panicky when I overheard her telling her grandmother that she was going to let me help her decorate her cake so that I could draw Cinderella on it. Yikes! I told my mom about this, and she had the great idea to use O's Cinderella figurine. Phew!

O decided to put Miss Lilly on her cake, too, since Miss Lilly is a ballet teacher (and reminds her of her imaginary friend/dance teacher whose name is also Miss Lilly). If you've never let your child decorate a cake on their on, I highly recommend trying it! I love that there is no pressure on me to make a beautiful, creative cake, and I love that O is able to have creative freedom to create her own masterpiece!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Nature and Art

We have been learning more about the plants and animals that live in our yard this week. We've found dead bugs that we've inspected with a magnifying glass, and we've read books about lakes and lake animals (since we live at a lake). On Monday we took our paper and watercolor paints outside and painted landscapes while pushing E in her swing.

O and I took turns painting pictures, and she was a little upset when I painted my sky all the way down to the grass on my picture. She demonstrated and gave me instructions on how the sky should only be a blue strip at the top of the page. I remember drawing the sky this way and then having a sudden realization that the sky does not actually look like this. I asked O if she was sure if the sky should just be a small strip at the top of the page, and she was adamant :) Love it!

After we painted for a while, O decided to paint her foot, too.

I'm looking forward to more outside painting with O soon. I think it would be a lot of fun to go on the dock to paint, but we have to wait until we have someone to watch E since her little fast self would crawl off the dock in a second!