Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Eva has never seen actual fireworks so we watched this video from New Year's:

Then we set to making our fireworks picture.  We used white glue, a loofah and glitter.  First, Eva dipped the loofah in glue and stamped it on a sheet of black construction paper.
Then I put some glitter in a cup for her to sprinkle on the glue.
We let that dry and then we were able to admire our own firework display.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

July Fourth Fun

This week we will be preparing for the Fourth of July with a bunch of patriotic activities.

Small Motor Activities
Musical Instruments- we'll bring out the instruments we made for Memorial Day to play along with patriotic music

Pattern Stars- we'll use red, white and blue stars to create patterns

Large Motor Activities
Marching- left, right, left, we'll be marching around the yard in our own little parade

Sparkler Twirling- we'll put to use the fire-free sparklers we plan on making

Sparklers- these sparklers won't ever burn out because they'll be made from pencils and patriotic garland

Glitter Fireworks- we'll loofah paint some glue and then add sparkling glitter to form these Fourth of July must-haves

Red, White and Blue Star Painting- we'll use star cookie cutters and star-shaped sponges to make an All-American collage

Condiment Finger Painting- nothing says the Fourth like hot dogs so we will honor that holiday tradition by finger painting with ketchup and mustard

Field Trip
Train Ride around America- okay we won't be going on a ride around the entire country but we will go on the train at the local children's museum and check out the giant postcards from around the U.S.A

Fourth of July Parade- an annual tradition!

(Image source-

Monday, June 28, 2010

Half Birthday Celebration

Today my sweet little girl is two and a half!  She requested an ice cream party so today has been all about ice cream.  We made ice cream cards- one for my great uncle who just had his hip replaced and one for the friendly man who owns the ice cream parlor down the street from us.  I precut cones from sand paper and scoops of ice cream and cherries from construction paper.  Eva glued everything together.
Then we drizzled white glue on the ice cream and added sprinkles.
One will go out in the mail tomorrow.  The other we took down to the parlor after dinner and Eva had a yummy half-birthday treat.
Good stuff!  We also cooled off during the afternoon in Eva's little pool.  Nothing neats the summer heat like a swim!
Now we are unwinding before bed with an episode of Eva's favorite show- Kipper (along with the balloon she picked out today).  I hope she had a great half-birthday.  I still can't believe my baby is getting so big!
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Sunday, June 27, 2010


I saw this popsicle matching game on Roots and Wings not long ago and decided to make a similar one for Eva.  Rather than matching colors I decided to make it a letter matching game.  Each popsicle top has a capital letter (I made twelve, using mostly letters that Eva knows very well and a few that sometimes trick her) and a sticker of something that begins with the letter on the opposite side.  The sticks have the upper case letter on one side and the lower case on the other side.  There are two ways to make matches- upper case/lower case or sound to letter.
Eva went right for matching letters to the sounds they make and was able to check her matches by flipping the popsicle over to see if the letters matched.
I ended up having to make a little notch in each popsicle top to make it easier for Eva to insert the sticks.
We also made some healthy yogurt popsicles for dessert.  We combined two cups of low fat plain yogurt and two cups of mixed berries along with a few squirts of honey in the blender and then poured the misture into popsicle molds.  Eva had fun inserting the sticks.  (Next time I'll only use a cup of each because this made more than what we needed to fill the mold.)
Yum!  Yum!  Yum!
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Friday, June 25, 2010

Strawberries (Part 2)

We used the rest of our strawberries to make strawberry freezer jam.  We followed the recipe given at ABC and 123.  It was very easy to make!  All you need is 2 cups of strawberries, 4 cups of sugar (gasp!  I didn't use full cups because that seemed like a ton of sugar), one box of pectin and 3/4 cup of water.  Eva helped cut the tops off the strawberries before we chopped them up in the blender and added the sugar.
She then combined the water and pectin in a saucepan and I brought it to a boil on the stove and let it boil for a minute before adding it to the strawberry mixture.
While the pectin was coming to a boil, Eva performed a quality control test on the strawberries.
After taking the pectin off the stove, we combined it with the strawberry mixture and let it sit for three minutes before ladling it into freezer jars.  The jars have to sit out at room temperature for 24 hours to set and then into the fridge or freezer they go.  Turns out the jars are fun for stacking.
We also made a sweet strawberry craft similar to the one itmom made, seen here.  To begin, I cut out a strawberry shape from red construction paper and Eva used the wrong end of a paintbrush to stamp the seeds on with black paint.
When the paint had dried she then painted the entire strawberry with glue that I had thinned out a little with water.
To make the strawberry smell sweet, we sprinkled strawberry gelatin mix all over it.
We let it dry overnight and finished it off with some leaves and a stem.  Looks, and smells, good enough to eat!
EDITED:  I was looking over this post and realized Eva looks like a wet rat!  I really do bathe her!  Before making our jam we were outside doing this:

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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Lemons and Lemonade

Nothing says summer like a big pitcher of lemonade.  Eva and I made one and a citrusy lemon slice to go along with it.
For the lemonade, we combined one cup of ultra-fine sugar with one cup of hot water and then stirred it until the sugar was dissolved.
Then we squeezed the juice out of five lemons to get a cup of lemon juice.  You may need more or less lemons depending on how juicy they are and how much your toddler dumps over his or her head- don't ask!
Combine the juice, sugar water and 4 cups of cold water.  Stir and chill until ready to serve.
For the lemon slice craft, Eva began by finger painting with light yellow paint on a sheet of white paper. I added some white paint to the yellow finger paint to lighten it.  I also tried adding lemon juice to make it scented but it didn't work out as the paint had too strong an odor.
We let that dry overnight and then I cut out wedges for Eva to glue onto a yellow construction paper circle.
We also tried out the ring toss that Eva's grammy gave her.  Eva wasn't into actually tossing the rings but she did match each ring to the color of the flower.

Strawberries (Part 1)

We went to the strawberry patch, or the "farm with no animals" as Eva calls it.  It was hot and humid but so much fun!
She looks like a pro, doesn't she?  Too bad she didn't pick a single strawberry!  She spent the whole time picking grass for the pigs (since the farm didn't have any animals, she had to pretend).
I was able to pick a few though.
So for dessert we had these:
A scoop of fat free ricotta cheese, some chopped berries, another dollop of ricotta all drizzled with honey.  It was so good (and good for us too!).
Part 2 will be up later.  Be sure to come back to see our strawberry craft and how we made strawberry freezer jam.