Sunday, February 26, 2012

Dinosaur Sensory Bin

Remember that little dinosaur obsession Eva developed two years ago?  Well it's still going strong.  It's amazing how much dino info a four year old brain can hold!  This past week Eva was pretty sick so we were home bound and getting a little squirrelly.  Hours upon hours of pretending to be dinosaurs and playing with dinosaur toys can get monotonous so to shake things up we created a dinosaur museum.
The sensory bin became a paleontology dig, filled with various dried beans, rocks and dinosaur skeletons.  (I found five different packs of two at the Dollar Store.)  Eva carefully digs them out and cleans them off.
Then she looks through her dinosaur cards (a Target Dollar Spot find a few years ago) and matches the skeleton to its info.
We also made a display that allows Eva to sort her toy dinos into groups- Sauropods, Theropods, Stegosaurs, Ornithopods, Ankylosaurs, Ceratopsians and Other Reptiles.
She also added some pictures she's drawn lately of dinosaurs.  
Now every morning, the first thing Eva does upon waking is setting up her museum.  Stop on by, she loves giving tours!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Valentines for the Birds

The other day (when there was still snow on the ground) we decided to make Valentines for the birds.  I cut out hearts from some cardboard and Eva turned them into treats by spreading shortening on them and then sprinkling on bird seed.

We added some ribbon for hanging and then went out to decorate a tree with them.
Eva helped by sprinkling some of the extra seed around the tree for the birds (and squirrels).
Seeing as they disappeared from the tree that night, either we have some very hungry (and strong) birds or some other critters got a little treat.  All that matters is there are a few less hungry animals in our neighborhood!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Snowflake Decor

We haven't had much snow here this year so the other day we decided to make our own snow- snowflakes that is!

I folded coffee filters and then Eva took snips out of them in various places.  Her favorite thing was cutting off the corners.  We even broke out the hole punch and made a few snowflakes using them.  After making a bunch I taped some yarn to them and we suspended them around our dining room window.  Now we can have snow even when it's rainy or sunny outside.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Outdoor Play Every Day

We have joined up with our friends at Greening Sam and Avery and pledged to get outside every day this year.  The weather has definitely been working in our favor!  The first half of January was extremely mild for us (especially since we live in the city that ranked number 2 in the nation for most snowfall each year!).  Eva has been riding her tricycle and even having snack outside.
We knew we couldn't avoid the snow forever and now that it's here, we are still out playing!  We've been taking hikes in our neighborhood park, sledding, and making tons of snow angels.
We even built a fire in our fire pit one night and toasted marshmallows by the light of the moon.
Want to join us in our pledge to get outside every day?  Stop by Greening Sam and Avery (today Abbie is hosting a link-up if you have some outdoor fun to share) and let's play outside every day!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Eva is FOUR!!!!

Time has been flying much too fast around here.  The other night I kissed my sweet little 3 year old goodnight and in the morning I was awakened by a charming little 4 year old!  She was thrilled to find that it had finally snowed, just intime for her birthday.
We celebrated Eva's special day with friends who were visiting from out of town and one set of grandparents.  (Her actual birthday party will be this Saturday.)  Eva was showered with all the things she loves- trains, dinosaurs, stickers, more dinosaurs, books and did I mention dinosaurs?
I cannot even find the words to describe how much I love this little girl.  Eva, you amaze me and fill each and every day with wonder, giggles and sweetness.  Your Daddy and I love you and cherish every moment we get to share with you.  I know as a 4 year old you will continue to grow, create, astonish and entertain us.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Craft A Day 'Til Christmas: Day 22: Nativity Scene

Isn't this the sweetest thing?  I wish I could claim credit for it but Eva made it at her Spanish class.  The tiny little figures were shaped out of clay made with white bread and glue (1 tablespoon of glue/ slice of crustless white bread).  Eva made the pieces one week and by the next week they were dry and she painted them.  Her teacher then hot glued them to a felt covered disc.  (To give you an idea of the size, the disc is the size of a cd.)  I love it!  Eva places it under her little tree.  Isn't that the cutest little Holy Family you've ever seen?
I am officially throwing in the towel on the last two crafts.  While Eva never takes a break from crafting, she has had no interest in doing mommy-introduced crafts and I'm not going to push it!

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and we'll see you in the new year!

Craft A Day 'Til Christmas: Day 21: Reindeer Feed

This is another annual tradition in our house- making reindeer feed!  Those reindeer get hungry pulling Santa's sleigh so we sprinkle some of this special food on our lawn for them to eat while Santa is busy inside.  There is no specific recipe- just mix together anything you have in your cupboards that is safe for critters to consume.  For ours we used oatmeal, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds and flax seed.  To get the reindeer the extra magic they need to fly, we also add some red and green sprinkles.  Stir it together and keep in a sealed container until you are ready to sprinkle it on the lawn on Christmas Eve.