Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category
Yesterday I posted about the gifts I put together for P2′s preschool teachers (click HERE to see them). Since there are four teachers I wanted something cute but that did not cost too much. We came up with Summer Survival Buckets and I can’t wait for him to give them out tomorrow!
For P1′s Kindergarten teacher I stuck with the same “Summer Survival” theme but on a slightly larger scale.
For this basket I used a straw tote I found in the Target dollar section ($2.50) and filled it with summer goodies. I tried to include things you would want for a trip to the beach or the pool.
I added a magazine, candies, 100 calorie chocolate cookie snacks, a box of individual drink mixes, a beach towel ($6), to go cup ($4), and bottle of sunscreen and lip balm ($6 for both~I had coupons). Just for fun I also added a beach ball
Tied off with a ribbon and thank you note it turned out really cute!
What do you get the teachers?
I’ve been racking my brain for the last couple of days on what to give the P’s teachers as an end of the year ‘Thank You’. Especially P2′s preschool teachers….there are 4 of them!
I didn’t want to do a gift card because it just seems so impersonal, and of course I procrastinated (it’s my middle name) and didn’t have time to make or order anything cute and personalized with pictures.
I also didn’t want to do some wall picture or handprint art craft because lets be honest, does a teacher really keep all of those?!
I had remembered seeing on a blog somewhere (don’t ask me where because I honestly don’t know the link) a while ago, a mom had given her child’s teacher a beach towel, magazine, and bottle of sunscreen and tied them together with a ribbon. I thought it was a great idea but I like to get a little more creative with my packaging….it can make even the most simple gifts look so much more thought out. And, since P2 has four teachers it was going to get a little $$$ to buy each of them a beach towel and bottle of sunscreen. So………
I found these adorable buckets in the dollar bin at Target and had an idea! “Summer Survival” gifts for each of them!
In each bucket I included a travel size sun screen ($1), a vaseline lip balm ($1), a plastic water bottle ($1), a candy, a bag of 100 calorie cookie snacks, and a few individual drink mixes from snapple and crystal light. Total I spent around $5 per gift and they were quick and easy to throw together.
We are doing something similar for P1′s Kindergarten teacher, but I’ll have to wait until after we give it to her on Thursday to post
“… today there are more than 1.2 million military children, and since 2001 approximately 2 million children have experienced deployment of a parent…” ~The National Child Traumatic Stress Network
There is one important thing to be noted of a Military child; they did not choose this lifestyle, they were born into it. An Active Duty servicemember makes a choice to enlist and those of us who are Military Spouses made the choice to marry our servicemembers. But our children had that choice made for them, they were born into military families and because of it are some of the most proud and resilient children I know! They go through all the trials of learning and growing with added stressors of moving, saying goodbye to friends, and spending months apart from their servicemember parent.
They are truly special children and we Celebrate them, our littlest Heroes!
“Established by Caspar Weinberger, the Month of the Military Child recognizes the important role military children play in our communities.” ~DoDlive.mil
***765,000 of our military children have Active duty parents, and approximately 225,000 have a parent who is currently deployed***
We, as a nation, take this month to recognize our military children and thank them for their unknown service to their country. Here are some great resources for those military families:
Please join me in thanking a Military Child today!
I am officially a ‘Soccer Mom’…this season both of the older P’s wanted to play soccer. Preston has been waiting and waiting until he was old enough to play on a sports team since he could walk and talk and Peyton loves anything that involves being physically active so we signed them up! Our season started a week ago and they are having a blast! And mommy is getting some very well worn out kids 3 days a week
Somehow I ended up Co-team mom for Bubba’s team (thanks a lot Cyndi! LOL) so the first week ended up being a lot more work than I had bargained for but oh well, what’s a mama for if not to be a team mom?! In about 4 days we had to set up a snack schedule, get the kids’ names put on their jersey’s, and make a banner…I’m new to this whole soccer thing and nobody warned me about the banner! It all worked out, our 4 year olds looked adorable and our 6 yr olds are superstars!
Miss P ready for her first game
My Bubba, getting so big
Peyton, the teeny tiny goalie
little dude in action
Our 4 yr old team banner…this thing took me 6 hrs to make!
Gotta have a Game Day hair bow!
What kind of Soccer Mom would I be without an obnoxious shirt to wear to my kids games?!
These are the things that we teach our children, when was the last time you read these books for you?
“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…”
Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”
Happy Birthday to You!
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!
“A person’s a person, no matter how small.”
Horton Hears a Who!
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”
“You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!”
Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
“You’ll miss the best things if you keep your eyes shut.”
I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!
“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow,
stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
“You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go. So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life’s a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.”
Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
Yertle the Turtle and Gertrude McFuzz
Tomorrow, March 2nd, is National Read Across America Day.
National Read Across America Day is a nationwide reading celebration that takes place on March 2nd, Dr. Seuss’ Birthday, every year. Schools and Libraries across the country will be be celebrating the joy of reading with fun games and activities and of course BOOKS!
There is know denying that reading is a gateway to learning. When a child learns to read it builds their confidence, opens their imagination, and educates them about the world around them. With a young reader in our house, and one that is right behind her, we are encouraging as much reading as possible. We keep their books readily accessible in the playroom, take them with us in the car and to appointments for entertainment (thankfully my kids don’t get carsick), and read books to each of them, every night, as part of their bedtime routine. With Peyton in school this year (and Reading!) she has been doing lots of activities in her classroom and I am trying to incorporate as much Dr. Seuss fun as possible into our home routine this week. Because, you know, READING is FUN!
So, how can you join in on the Celebration?
Read Read Read: Early in the week we visited the local children’s library and checked out several Dr. Seuss books to have on hand and today I found that Target has their hard back, Dr. Seuss books on sale 2 for $10! We got two more to add to our collection, Green Eggs and Ham (Peyton’s Favorite), and One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.
Community Events: Check with your local library, schools, book stores, and community centers to see if they have anything planned. There is also a list of Events posted on Seussville.com. Most Libraries and Barnes and Noble book stores host weekly story times for the kids, by doing a quick online search I was able to find several options for story time in our area.
Activities: There are so many fun ideas over on Seussville.com. Check out their activity section for lots of printable word finds, mazes, and color sheets. You may want to jazz up your wardrobe and make a paper Cat in the Hat tall hat or cut out Stars to wear on your belly like the sneetches. Maybe a Daisy headband to wear like Daisy Head Mayzie.
Fun Snacks: You can’t have a celebration without fun foods! Try one of these fun Dr Seuss themed treats.
- Cat in the Hat Parfait: layer fresh sliced strawberries with vanilla yogurt in a glass.
- Cat in the Hat Kabobs: Alternate Strawberries and Bananas on a skewer.
- One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish: Colored Goldfish Crackers~that’s an easy one!
- Green Eggs and Ham: Add Food coloring to your scrambled eggs, serve with ham, bacon, or sausage.
Over on Catholicmom.com she shares a childrens Lenten activity to do with the Jelly Bean Prayer. I loved this idea of earning Jelly Beans for specific good deeds or acts of kindness. However, for Peyton and Preston (5 and 3) it seemed like a lot for them to take on. And, anyone that knows Preston knows that Jelly Beans would not last in that jar all 40 days…at some point he would sneak in and take them.
We came up with our own way to earn Jelly Beans for good deeds throughout Lent that doesn’t involve the constant temptation.
To work on improving our selves with kindness and caring we have set out 3 jars. One is full of Lima beans and the other two were empty at the start of the Lenten season. From Ash Wednesday until Easter the P’s will be told to move 1 Lima bean to their jar every time I see them doing something for others. It can be anything from helping out with chores, sharing a special toy, or being kind to one another. On Easter, the beans that they have earned will be Jelly Beans.
Also known as Mount Vernon, George Washington’s estate is located in Northern Virginia. And it just happens to be about a mile outside the gates of Fort Belvoir where we lived a couple of years ago.
In honor of Presidents Day, I thought I’d highlight this great historical attraction that the kids love visiting. Whether you live in Northern Virginia or are planning a trip to Washington, DC Mount Vernon should be on your list of things to see and do.
The Plantation is nearly 50 acres and includes his Mansion, a working blacksmiths shop, farm, and beautiful gardens. You can tour the inside of the Mansion and visit his tomb. The grounds of the plantation are set up just as they were in George Washington’s lifetime and include costumed characters fromt that time period daily from 10am-12pm and visits with Lady Washington Wednesday -Sunday from 12pm-4pm.
You can literally spend hours here enjoying the scenery and soaking up the history. The plantation is very ’kid’ friendly as most of the grounds are outdoors and there is so much to catch their attention. On your way out you can visit the Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center which inludes many more artifacts and exhibits along with theaters and a children’s education room.
Located just at the exit, you can grab lunch at the Mount Vernon Inn Restaurant or Food Court and browse the gift shop.
For more information on “George Washington’s House” visit www.mountvernon.org. You can also find a list of special events and tours located on their page.
After living on the East Coast where the kids could have snowball fights in the front yard and to go sledding all we had to do was cross the street, we moved to Southern California. The kids miss the snow. Can’t say that I blame them, sometimes I miss a good Snow Day too.
Last year we discovered that there is a place, right here in San Diego County, where we could get our winter fix. Complete with snow, sledding, and hot chocolate and pie.
Julian, Ca is know for their famous pies but what we love about it is that it’s only about an hour away, off highway 78, and often snows during the winter.
The kids and I took a trip up there yesterday but unfortunately the couple inches they had gotten the day before had melted away except for the parking lot snow piles. We weren’t able to do any sledding but still enjoyed stomping around in puddles.
When the snow does stick, it is a great winter day trip!
(photos below from Feb. 2011)
A great place to take those snow saucers is Jess Martin County Park, located about 1/2 mile south of town on highway 79. There is a perfect hill on the back side of the park that is public.
And when your done with you snowball fights check out Julian Pie Company on Main Street for some delicious pies and hot chocolate!
This will actually be the first year since I’ve been married that my husband will actually be home to spend Valentine’s day with us. In the past 5 years, though, he has been gone and I have turned Valentine’s day into a hugely overdone ordeal for my P’s. Although my husband will be home this year, the day is still all about the kiddos in my house! So here’s what we have planned…
I made these adorable shirts for the kids to wear to school. The best part, I had just about all the materials at home to make them and didn’t have to buy anything but the pink shirt for Peyton (which I found on clearance at Target) and the pink/red paint.
1. Pixi’s Shirt: Using a shirt she already had, a heart shaped doily, and some fabric paint this is what you get! So cute! Visit FamilyFun.com for full instructions.
2. Miss P’s Shirt: I used a different doily for hers that was slightly bigger and added some rhinestones. That girl loves her bling!
3. Hair Bows: Valentine Korker bows from Too Tutu Cute
4. Bubba’s Shirt: For this shirt I used a plain white T-shirt (that we already had) and a heart stencil from Michael’s. I added the googly eyes and used puff paint for the smile and arms. He was very adamant about his shirt reading “Hug Bubba!” It turned out great and totally fits his personality.
1. Marshmallow Candies for Playgroup: These are ridiculously easy! I melted pink candy melts, and then dipped in large marshmallows and rolled them in sprinkles. I put a couple in a cute Valentine’s bag and tied them off with curling ribbon.
2. Oreo Truffles for the teachers: Again, another super easy recipe. But they were a little time consuming. Combine one package of oreos (crushed) with one 8 oz package of cream cheese (softened). Mix with an electric mixer until thoroughly combined. Chill dough for about an hour. Roll dough into 1″ balls and dip into melted chocolate (you can add your choice of sprinkles or leave them plain). Refrigerate until hard. I packaged them in these cute little containers found at Michael’s craft store.
The Class Valentine’s
1. Preston’s Preschool Valentine’s
2. Peyton chose these pencils and erasers to give to her Kindergarten classmates
To see more Candy-free Valentine’s for kids click here.
The Scavenger Hunt tradition
Last year I hid the kids Valentine’s. I cut out a bunch of paper hearts and wrote simple clues on them. They had so much fun searching for their Valentine’s that Peyton asked me weeks ago “Mommy are we going to hunt for our Valentine’s again?” Why yes you are! Right after we eat our heart shaped pizza for dinner