Girl Scout Fall Camp

Hi Followers,

Hope you had a wonderful summer. Both my daughters are in school now and I’m finding my way back to my blog that I love. It is so therapeutic to write and record our adventures. I enjoy reflecting on our past to keep track of tradition or find new activities.


Fall Day Camp


Recently I organized a Girl Scout Day Camp for 100 girls. It was a lot of work but I enjoyed every minute. The girls had the opportunity to earn 3 different badges including the new climbing badge released this summer.

Image provided by Girl Scouts

At the end of camp, I asked everyone what badge they enjoyed earning the most. Hands down it was the climbing badge where they learned climbing vocabulary followed by climbing a 24 foot wall.

I hope every girl had a great time and I have to thank all the camp volunteers for making the camp a success!! Thank you again!

Summer $1 Movies

I’ve been doing a lot of summer planning lately. One summer activity I love is taking my kids to the $1 movies at Regal Movie Theater called The Summer Movie Express. A prefect activity during those hot days that are too hot to be inside or outside. So an air conditioned movie theater is perfect and for just one dollar you can’t beat the price.


The Schedule


Each week during the summer, Regal offers 2 movies on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings at 10 am for just a dollar. Both movies plays both days. Here is the week by week break down* and Common Sense Media’s age ratings for each movie. If you want more information about the movie, click on the title and check out Common Sense Media’s website.

Week 1: June 25 and 26

  • Week 2: July 2 and 3
  • Week 3: July 9 and 10
  • Week 4: July 16 and 17

    Week 5: July 23 and 24

    Week 6: July 30 and 31

    Week 7: August 6 and 7

    Week 8: August 13 and 14

  • Week 9: August 20 and 21
  • Week 10: August 27 and 28
  • Week 11: September 3 and 4
  • * Movies dates are based in the Seattle area Regal Movie Theater for the summer of 2019.


    Recommendations


    In the past my kiddos love the movies with lots of singing like Sing or Trolls so those are two movies I am looking forward to seeing this summer with my kiddos. They stand at their seats and sing along to the movie with the other kids in the theater. Such a great time!

    Beware some of the movies sell out so go early.

    The 10 Essentials To Bring With You To Disneyland

    This last week my family and I went to Disneyland and it was magical. Mostly due to the kids excitement but a few key items made it more ‘magical’ and worry free for me aka mom.


    Happiest Place On Earth


    1. Sunscreen – being a mother of two small kids, sunscreen is a big one for me. I’ve had long conversations with my mom friends about what sunscreen if the safest and most effective. Some of my friends swear by the Honest brand while others are a fan of Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen. Neithe for me; I buy the CeraVe Baby Sunscreen Lotion for my kiddos with their sensitive skin.
    2. Lunchbox – with my kids’ feeding schedule of every other hour, I was worried my food bill would be huge at Disneyland. Most fast food meals for my family of four costed around $50 so one of my carry ons was a cooler bag filled with snack food and breakfast supplies. I’ll write another post on my tips and tricks of bringing food on the airplane.
    3. Phone lanyards – so I was surprised I didn’t see more people walking around the park with this type of lanyard but I loved mine. You use your phone so much checking line waiting times, reserving Fastpasses and linking pictures on the Disneyland app. Losing your phone at the bottom of the purse means losing time or a precious moment when your kiddos see Mickey Mouse for the first time. I loved having my phone easily accessible.
    4. Power bank – As I mentioned before I used my phone a lot and the power didn’t last the day. By about 2pm, I was trying to make that 1% last for emergency calls only. If you forget a power bank, Disneyland does have charging stations in just about every land.
    1. Poncho – this is only important if you plan on going on Splash Mountain and Grizzly River Run or if there is a chance of rain in the forecast. But picking one up at the dollar store or in bulk online is way cheaper than at the park.
    1. Power cord – so important if you want to charge your phone halfway through the day. I forgot mine the first day. Not a mistake I made twice.
    2. Small backpack – this was a common thing in the park. I noticed a lot of parents with a small backpack that was easy to take onto the rides.
    3. Reusable water bottled – there are a lot of water fountains at the part. We would start the day with juice in the bottle from the hotel room while we finished breakfast then switched to water for the rest of the day.
    4. Stroller – aka the napper. My toddler took a nap in the stroller on the first day which was such a blessing. Naps are so rare these days that when she takes one she usual stays up until 9:30-10pm. This is way past her bedtime of 7pm but with the fireworks starting at 9:30 she was able to see them before going to bed that day.
    5. Large pens – for the characters to hold while signing your autograph book. On the last day, we went to the Princess Breakfast Adventure and one of the souvenirs from the experience is a oversized pen. As soon as I saw it, I knew we should have gotten one for the whole trip. The characters have such big hands. I bet they would have appreciated it.

    Bonus

    11. Pennies and Quarters – a great cheap souvenir. There are some great penny press machines throughout the park so remember to bring a coin purse full of shiny pennies and quarters to operate the machines in the parks. Each machine costs 50 cents plus a penny to press.

    Acting Class Review

    In the spring, my daughter has acting class. My hope is that the class encourages her self confidence and to speak her mind even if she feels silly. Also, improving her problem solving and creativity skills along the way. Maybe she will become a great leader one day.


    Magical Door


    This is the first time both my girls took the same class. My oldest daughter has taken classes at Seattle Children’s Theater and Redmond Academy of Theatre Arts.

    There are similarities and differences between the two classes but she had fun at both locations which is the most important thing.

    Similarities:

    • Both locations exercise my daughter’s imagination.
    • The Magical Door is the last activity at both schools (Pictured above at Redmond Academy of Theatre Arts).
    • Expanding their vocabulary with Theater terms.

    Difference:

      Seattle Children Theatre has different classes for specific age groups.
      Redmond Academy of Theatre Arts has a age range, preschool 2-5 years old then 5-8 years old and so on.
      I love the Storytime Drama class at SCT. Kids read a story then act it out. They also color in each class.
      At Redmond Academy of Theatre Arts, teaches different dancing techniques and terms.

    Both great schools for different reasons just depends on what you are looking for.

    (Magic Door at Seattle Children Theater.)

    Bee Craft

    To celebrate May Day, we made a bee craft and practiced our use of glue sticks. Without bees, there would not be flowers. They are so important in cross pollination and reproduction of flowers.


    Critical Skills to learn before going to Kindergarten.


    Gluing is a critical skill preschoolers should learn before going to elementary school. Some other skills according to Education.com included but not limited to:

    1. Writing

    2. Letter Recognition

    3. Beginning Sounds

    4. Number Recognition and Counting

    5. Shapes and Colors

    6. Fine Motor Skills (like holding a pencil)

    7. Cutting

    8. Reading Readiness

    9. Attention and Following Directions

    10. Social Skills

    A great tool that Education.com refers to a lot is Play Doh because it develops fine motor skills and is a safe object to practice cutting.

    Once the bee was assembled, my kiddos ran around the room pretending to be bees. They built a hive aka fort. After resting in the hive, they ran from toy to toy collecting pollen.

    I precut all the shapes so they just had to assemble the paper with glue.

    Supplies:

    • Yellow paper for the body
    • Black paper cut into strips, triangles, mini rainbows for the mouth and antennas
    • Parchment, tracing or velum paper for the wing
    • Glue sticks

    Easter Parade

    A family tradition during Easter is to go to the Easter Parade in Snohomish, Washington and this year my Girl Scouts Troop got to participate in the parade making it extra special for us. Plus it is the only Parade for Easter in Washington State making it special for everyone else too.


    Loads of candy


    One of the prerequisite of being in the parade was bringing candy to hand out as we walked the mile and a half stretch down 1st street.

    Last year when we were sitting on the sidelines, we gathered a whole basket of candy. So I knew I needed to pick up a lot of candy. I found Tootsies frooties assorted 5lb (2.27kg) from Amazon to be the best value because it offered over 700 pieces of candy for less than $20.

    Even with more than 700 pieces, my troop was so good about giving everyone a candy that it didn’t last the whole parade. Another troop was kind enough to share their candy with us. Now I know for next year.

    I am so lucky to have so many wonderful parent helpers in our troop. There was no way I could have watched all the girls handing out candy on both sides of the street. We all had a great time! Happy belated Easter!

    Tulip Field Tradition

    Every year my kids and I head up to the Mt Vernon to take our annual picture in front of the tulips.

    Did you know? Tulips are one of the only flowers that continue to grow after you cut the stem.


    Tulip Town or Roozengaarde


    Tulip Town and Roozengaarde are both great locations to see the blooms but here are a couple of differences:

    Roozengaarde:

    • They have a beautiful garden to the left of the entrance. The planning that went into the garden was impressive. Each bed has a gorgeous display of different tulips of early and late bloomers.
    • The food options are delicious with hamburgers/hotdogs and snacks like kettle corn.
    • 2 different stores set them apart from other locations. A specific tulip store with fresh cut and potted flowers.

    Tulip Town:

    • As you walk through the gates, there is a wonderful indoor display of different tulip types. If it is raining, this is a wonderful option for kids.

    • Similar to Roozengaarde, they have a beautiful garden to visit. Their flowers are fenced off to protect them from the grabby kiddos.
    • The fields aren’t fenced off and have a tractor that will take you around the exterior. Great hay ride for the kids.

    Both locations are great options for that annual picture in front of the colorful tulip fields.

    Bowling Fun

    Bowling on a rain day. It was a lot of fun. We rented a lane and shoes which was more that I thought it would be but I feel bowling is a right of passage. You have to try it once.


    Bowlero


    We went to Bowlero in Lynnwood. Each lane had it’s own large tv and ours was playing the Minion movie which we didn’t really have time to watch. After one game, all our wrists were tried. I didn’t really know we were going to exercise our arms when we went out there. It was a good workout.


    Fun for the Whole Family


    My toddler helped me with my turn. The bowling lane included a ramp that she could push the bowling ball down onto our lane. I had to hold the ramp because she would push it with all her might.

    My 5 year old daughter didn’t use the ramp and actually got a couple of spares. Totally on luck. She won’t watch the ball going down the lane. She would walk back then wait until the pins fell before turning around. It was pretty cute.

    With every pin that fell, there was adding and subtracting to learn or just counting. How many pins are left? Counting for the toddler and kindergarten.

    Hope you find a fun outing for those raining days. Summer is almost here. I’m counting the days.

    Animal Interactions

    Looking for something fun to do during spring break. I recommend the Outback Kangaroo Farm located in Arlington, Washington. They have tours at 10am, 12pm, 2pm and 4pm from Thursday to Sunday. Be sure to show up 20 minutes before the tour because you aren’t allowed to see the kangaroos otherwise. The tours always start on time in my experience.


    Outback Kangaroo Farm


    Beautiful peacocks welcomed us in the parking lot. I haven’t seen peacocks with such prefect tail feathers before.

    The first half of the tour, we visited the different kangaroos on the property. It appeared to be 3-5 different types of kangaroos available to pet. The kangaroo are so soft.

    There were an set of albino kangaroos. Mother Nature Network has an awesome article on 22 different albino animals. They are so rare. Check out the article here for the full list of animals.

    The second half hour we visited and fed the other animals which included alpacas, donkeys, goats, emus and lemurs. I think my husband was about to adopt a lemur. They are so friendly and active.

    Did you know? Lemurs are lead by an alpha female. Sorry King Julian.

    My toddler laughed every time an animal ate out of her hand. She loved it and kept demanding more animal food. So sweet.

    Their address is:

    10030 State Route 530 NE

    Arlington, WA 98223

    United States

    Rhodes River Ranch

    One of the best kept secrets in the outskirts of Arlington is Rhodes River Ranch. Every meal comes with a show.


    Dinner and a Show


    The Restaurant at Rhodes River Ranch is located in the beautiful foothills of the Cascades. Offering a unique dining atmosphere for casual gatherings, the restaurant overlooks an indoor horse arena.  The food is delicious. My favorite thing is the candied bacon. If it doesn’t come with your meal, I recommend ordering it on the side.

    There was a herd of beautiful Palomino horses being trained as we ate. Palomino have a gold coat with white mane and tail. If I owned a horse, I would love a palomino.

    So happy to have completed my kindergarten’s first Spring Break. I hope it was one to remember. As a mom, I was worried about making this week special even though we didn’t go out of town. Our stay-cation was just what we needed. Happy Friday!!

    Putting Down The Golf Green

    My daughters and my dad went to the mini putt putt golf course today. Beautiful outside and beautiful course at Snohomish Valley Golf Center. Win win. Here we are at hole 9 overlooking the pond.


    Adding at Every Tee


    This 18 hole mini golf course has a bridge, two ponds with a waterfall and vista of the Cascade Mountain Range. It is super busy on the weekend but they have extended hours with their new overhead lights. Also, there is a wonderful covered picnic area. Prefect for birthday parties or your next picnic outing.

    Thanks to grandpa for helping the toddler with her form. She had a lot of fun. Whether she putted, threw or pushed the ball into the hole.

    My favorite hole is number 5 where you can literally putt your ball into the pond if you aren’t careful since there isn’t a rail between the edge of the green and the pond. Luckily we didn’t take a swim today but very inventive for a mini golf course.

    Both the kiddos helped move our balls into the holes. I think we all were under par on each hole but it doesn’t really matter since my oldest was in charge of the scorecard and beat us by at least 10 putts. I came in second so I can’t really complain. Lol.

    This week I’ve been making a point to ask…

    What their favorite moment of the day was? My daughters loved playing golf today.

    Another good day! Happy Thursday!

    Ceramic Easter Eggs as Kids Craft

    As an Easter tradition, we go to the ceramic painting studio and each kiddo paints their Easter egg to add to our collection on the dining room table. I love reminiscing about their techniques and color choices. As a baby, my kiddos did handprints on the eggs.


    Color Me Mine


    What an interesting name? I love them because the paint is non toxic and washes off clothes. Every Tuesday is 2 for 1 studio fee or Wednesday is 1/2 price studio fee for kids.

    This year my oldest daughter is interested in having everything Easter color theme. If you can see her fingernails in the picture, they are a rainbow of bright pastel colors inspired by Easter and her egg matches.

    My youngest daughter chose banana yellow, charcoal and pink. Very interesting but I think it will be beautiful. Great color combo for a sitting or living room.

    Did you know? If you read in a yellow room, you hold your focus and absorb more of the book. Interested in the other colors, learn more at Kaplanco.com.

    Sorry off topic… we can pick them up after Friday at 6pm. So excited to see their cute creations. Happy Wednesday!!

    Free Event at the Local Libray

    Day 2 of spring break was full of fun. We started at the pool for preschool splash time. Then went across the street to the library to build blocks while we wait for the special event presented by Sno Isle Library.


    Museum of Curious Things


    The Museum of Curious Things was visiting the library. It is a travel museum in a cool Airstream travel trailer. With a quick look inside, I knew It wasn’t for my kiddos. There were animal skeletons inside. I’m sure it was educational but I’m not ready for my kids to grow up that quickly. I know I’m being selfish so I googled what is an appropriate age to discuss death with my kids? It sounds like talking about death is good for kids based on Psychology Today‘s research.

    Also, Lesson Learnt Journal has a lesson plan to teach preschoolers about skeletons and their functions. Now, I kind of feel bad we didn’t check it out… Next time.

    Inside the library’s conference room, there was a display of the different animals in resin. Each animal had a different fun fact.

    Did you know? Starfish have no brain and no blood.

    To end the day, my daughters picked two different bug embossed prints for their crayon rubbing. Crayon rubbings is a great gross motor exercise in holding the paper still so the crayon can reveal the bug below. I helped hold my toddler’s paper still so we could recognize the ant print. I didn’t do the best job. I need to work on my gross motor skills. Also, remind the kiddos to use the side of the crayon instead of the top otherwise the picture isn’t as clear.

    What do you think? Do you think talking to preschooler and/or show them skeletons is too early? I’d love to hear your feedback.

    Board Games with Math for Kids

    To kick off spring break, Amazon dropped off our monthly subscription to their STEM club. Board games that promote math by adding and/or subtracting as your pawn moves through the game. These games we played with Alexa, whom kept my 5 year old honest and me too.


    Math is Fun


    We started with Ocean Raiders, a game designed for 2 to 4 players and ages 5 and up. My toddler and I teamed up against my 5 year old daughter but we couldn’t beat her lucky streak rolling the dice. She was able to move her blue barrel to the end without landing on too many whirlpools that suck you back to the beginning.

    The second game in our Amazon box was Cloud Hoppers which is my favorite of the two. The objective of the game is to lead your two aliens to the ground level of a planet to retrieve a beautiful flower. By using subtraction, your aliens start at their spaceship on tile 50 and you have to subtract your dice rolls to make it to the planet’s flower on number 20. This is designed for kids over the age of 6 years old but with my help my girls loved playing this game too.

    I look forward to sharing our spring break adventures with you tomorrow. Happy Monday!

    Paint a Pony

    Yesterday, my daughter had a play date and when they started to get bored of running around the house I broke out this cute My Little Pony 3 piece painting kit. Peace and calm finally settle across the house.


    My Little Pony Craft


    I love this set because my 2 daughters and a friend were all able to paint their own plaster figure. Surprising no one wanted the same figurine. My oldest daughter loves Twilight Sparkle while my youngest daughter loves Pinkie Pie and happily our guest wanted Fluttershy. What luck.

    My oldest didn’t want me to take a picture until her Twilight Sparkle was completed but her need for perfection caused her not to finish by the time for the play date to end. She will have to finish painting tomorrow. Nice 2 day activity for the price of one.

    My toddler decided Pinkie Pie should now be navy blue. Now I wish more ponies on the show were a dark color like Princess Luna. It was perfect for her.

    The kit includes 6 paints, a brush and 3 pony plaster figurines. Here is a link to a similar set available on Amazon called Paint Your Statue. Hope you have something like this in your house to add peace and quiet time.

    ABC Puzzle

    I once heard if you do activities with your children that you love, your children will have a joyful memory of the activity as an adult. I’m not sure why I love these ABC wooden puzzles but we can play with them everyday.


    Melissa and Doug Toy Review


    Melissa & Doug Self-Correcting Letter Puzzles is a wonderful toy to start to learn about letter sounds. We start by mixing up the tiles then I grab a letter and ask my toddler to find the matching picture. For example, Butterfly goes with B and so on and so forth.

    Only matching letter and picture puzzle pieces fit together. Letter pieces feature both capital and lowercase while picture pieces labeled each image with the word below it.

    My toddler was so proud when she found matches. Well, I was proud of her too.

    Girl Scout Thank You Postcards

    Girl Scout cookie sales are almost done. One more day. As we come to a close, I want my daughter to send her customers a thank you note so they know how appreciative we are for their support. We made postcards from the empty cookie boxes that are littering our house.


    Postcard Craft


    So a postcard can be cut from every cookie box except Toffee-tastic. That box is too small. Since we already have the boxes to make the postcards, we just have to pay for postcard postage which is cheaper than regular mail at 35 cents. For more info, check out usps.com.

    Postcard size:

    Min: 5” x 3.5”

    Max: 6” x 4.25”

    If you don’t have cookie boxes, here is a link to a free Girl Scouts printable thank note.

    This could be a great project for the Clover or Gloria Badge. Happy last day of cookie sales!!

    Kite Craft for Toddlers

    Today, my toddler and I were in charge of the play group at our church. It is a great way to meet other moms and for the toddlers to run off some energy. My toddler took a nap afterwards which is rare these days.


    Kite Craft


    As part of the play date, we supply a craft for the toddlers. This time they made kites with paper, string and ink bingo dobbers.

    I precut a 8×11″ paper into a kite shape. Then let the kiddos dab the ink wherever their heart desired.

    Sometimes the toddlers splattered the ink but it was pretty cute. My daughter only used pink, purple and blue. I love seeing her personality show through her choices. Once she was done adding color, I hole punched the two sides and tied a string. With her completed kite, she ran around the room holding onto its string to let the kite fly.

    Supples:

    • Medium weight paper
    • Ink bingo dobbers
    • String or yarn
    • Hole punch

    Paper Bag Puppet

    On Thursday last week, my daughter’s Girl Scout Troop invited a firefighter to visit. He gave an awesome presentation about fire and car seat safety plus ran them through some drills. Words can’t describe what an awesome job he did. Thank You Everett Fire Department!!


    Firefighters Craft


    After he left, I planned a craft for the kids to make out of a paper lunch bag. Each girl got to create a puppet firefighter to take home with them. I hoped this would spark a conversation about what the firefighter spoke to them about but they were so excited I’m not sure I needed to do a craft too.

    Anyways, the project is pretty easy. I precut the basic shapes for each girl so they just needed to make a couple cuts and glue the pieces of paper onto the bag. I made a board with step by step instructions. Here are the steps:

      Add hands and arms
      Add white shirt
      Add outfit
      Add hat
      Add boots
      Add details (so they can personalize them)

    At the end of the meeting, the girls got to take home their cute little puppets and knowledge of fire safety. It was a great meeting. Hope they don’t ever have to apply their knowledge but happy the girls now know what to do.

    I’m in love with Chick Fila’s New Toy

    At our recent trip to Chick Fila, my kiddos got this adorable forest diorama. This toy is a smaller version of a pop out and play set available at PetitCollage.com which may be my new favorite educational toy manufacturer. It comes in flats sheets with stickers of paw prints and tails. My toddler loved piecing it together and adding the stickers across the board. The animal tracks appears to have the animals all huddled in one corner for awhile.

    In addition to the animal puzzles, there are mushrooms to match on the board. So much fun. Other pop up and play sets available on their website are outer space, mermaids, pirates and zoo. I want to buy them all.

    I could see combining any of these toys with a fiction or nonfictional book so the kiddos can physically see what the story is about.

    Is there an educational toy you love?

    I’d love to hear about in the comment field below. Happy playing!

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