Bead Snowflake Ornament

While on vacation, my family took advantage of their winter activities which included this cute snowflake ornament made of pipe cleaners and beads.


Snowflake for Kids


To start this easy craft, take 3 pipe cleaners and twist them together in the middle then separate the end out to look like a 6 point snowflake. I had to twist it together for the kids before they added the beads to each end. This is a great eye hand coordination activity for the kiddos. My toddler was very focused on adding the beads.

When you get close to the end, you will want to hot glue or super glue the last bead on the end so the beads don’t fall off. On one end, tie a ribbon so you can hang it on the tree.

Viola the snowflake is completed. It is an easy and fun activity for all ages. For a complete diy video, check out Crouton Crafts’s YouTube channel here.

For older kids, I recommend making it more challenging by following a pattern to transform this activity into a coding exercise.

Compliment Cookies and Cupcakes

I feel like I talk about My Little Ponies a lot. I guess you are getting a little taste of what it is like at our house with pony craze. (Spoiler Alert) My kiddos and I recently watched an episode where Pinkie Pie was teaching her students about compliments with a cupcake exchange. I thought:

‘Wow that is a great idea.’


Girl Scouts Mari Badge Idea


My daisy troop recently earned their Mari ‘Responsible For What I Say and Do’ Badge. We started by reading the story of Mari the marigold. Luckily the story includes cupcakes decorating. Then the girls watched the first minute of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic, Season 8 Episode 12 “Marks for Effort,” where Pinkie Pie explains and shows her students how to pay a compliment for the exchange of a cupcake. Then we reviewed the compliments we saw in the show before decorating a cupcake for our exchange.

Today, we decorated cookies similar to the cupcakes. The frosting, sugar cookie and sprinkles were supplied to my kiddos. They might have eaten just 2 large spoonfuls of frosting before any made it onto the cookie. So yummy!!

I think I would call these cookies Rainbow Bam!! Every variety of rainbow sprinkle made it onto this cookie adding just the right amount of crunch. Enjoy!!

Dream Catcher Craft and History

Dreamcatchers originally created by the Native Americans but to be more specific dream catchers are believed to be from the Ojibwa Chippewa and Lakota tribe who lived mainly in Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Ontario. The Ojibwe word for dreamcatcher is asabikeshiinh which actually means “spider,” which I think is prefect since dream catchers look like a spiderweb.


Dream Catcher History


According to the Ojibwa history, the “Spider Woman” is the spiritual protector of the tribe, especially for children, kids and babies. As the Ojibwe people migrated out across the land, this spirit wasn’t able to protect and watch over all the members of the tribe because of their distance. This is why the first dreamcatcher was created. Traditionally, mothers and grandmothers would create the maternal keepsake as a means of mystically protecting their children and families no matter where they lived (Source: Legomenon.)

Dreamcatchers were originally made from leather and wood, but today we made one from metal and beads. Once the metal ring was complete with beads, tape the ring closed then tie the string to the ring and wrap it back and forth. Make sure the string is tight. The kiddos can wrap it as many times as they want then tie it off with a long tail to make into a loop. This way you have a way to hang it on a hook.

Last the kids add decorations like ribbon and snowflakes gems. Cut a couple ribbons and attach them to the bottom of the dream catcher. Then hot glue the gems like snowflakes.

Supplies:

  • Metal rings about 6-8″ diameter
  • 60-80 beads available at Dollar Tree
  • Colorful string (my girls prefer rainbow colors)
  • Gem snowflake or similar
  • Ribbon

One Dollar Canvas Painting

So I love the dollar store for craft ideas, party supplies and season decorations. The Dollar Tree is my favorite dollar dealer. They have a great idea section on their website and will ship to you when you buy in bulk. Great for a Girl Scouts craft or MOPS activity.


Valentines Alien


I love painting though I’m not very good at it. I don’t have the patience to be a good painter. Layering the pigment and letting it dry to add depth wasn’t my strong suit in school.

Painting is peaceful and I encourage my daughters to paint to bring peace in the house. They sat at the counter so quietly and focused on their little alien. I was so impressed by the toddler’s focus. Using every color on the brush at the same time. There was a lot of shades of pink and red on her canvas.

My kindergarten didn’t understand her little sister’s technique but I reassured her that everyone has their own way of doing things. Now that she is in elementary school, she knows “you color in the lines” and “don’t make the whole painting one color” (Her words). Both paintings are prefect depictions of their personalities that is why I love them so much. As ancient philosophers once said:

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

I have to thank my mom for this valentines gift. This cute kit could double as a card. Or the kiddos could give it away as a card when they completed the painting.

Also, I just saw the kit is available for Easter. It is a prefect addition to their bunny baskets. Dollar Tree, here I come.

Do you think Easter is in the store yet?

This adorable little kit includes:

  • Mini easel
  • 4 paints
  • Paintbrush
  • Canvas (4 different picture outlines are available)

Compli-Mat Activity

If you are looking for a fun and bonding experience with your family for Valentine’s Day, I recommend trying compli-mats at the dinner table.


Kindness and Writing Exercise for Kids


Do you know about Love Language? The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman is a self help book about how to express heartfelt commitment to your mate from 1995. Understanding your spouse’s as well as your love language is important but knowing your kids’ language is important too.

The five love languages are:

  1. Touch (hugging and snuggling)
  2. Quality Time
  3. Compliments
  4. Receiving and Giving Gifts
  5. Acts of Service

My love language is compliments while my daughters’ are quality time and compliments.

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, looking for activities to fill our love banks is my goal. I stumbled onto the kindness activity that fills my compliments love language as well as my kids.

Photo courtesy of Amazon

I love this exercise because it teaches my kiddo about kind words. We started by making a list of kind words to help her understand the difference between saying something nice verses mean. Here is the list that we came up with:

  • Loyal
  • Strong
  • Nice
  • Giving
  • Kind
  • Funny
  • Fancy
  • Honest
  • Brave
  • Friendly

This activity takes little prep. All you need is some paper and pens. I found this great free printable available at Teacher Pay Teacher. You will need to sign up for a free account to download the mat.

Once we had all the supplies and kind words list displayed in front of us, we passed the paper around the table. My daughter could copy the words in front of her. She wrote that I (and pretty much everyone) was friendly.

At the end, my daughter loved reading the kind things everyone said about her. Can you guess what her love language is?

Snow Day Activities Outside

It is snowing in the Pacific Northwest. A beautiful winter wonderland surrounds my eager and joyful kids looking forward to touching the snow.


Snow Engineering


My oldest daughter keeps going outside and sticking her finger in the snow to check it’s depth. She is excited to have it up to her knuckles. I’ve already gotten the call that school is canceled today. The excitement to stay home to play in the snow is exploding in my house.

The first order of business is to make a snow angel. My daughter plopped herself down in the middle of the front yard and started to wave her arms and legs.

After a few angels appeared, she set off to collect snow for her annual mini snowman. Whenever she sees snow, she has a strong desire to build a snowman. Side note, don’t try to sing the Frozen song ‘Do You Want To Build A Snowman’ because she will shut you down pretty fast.

The snowman is approximately 1 foot tall that is about all the snow we get around here. We found some rocks for eyes and sticks for arms. Mr Snowman turned out pretty well.


Science Behind the Snow


Why do we have snow?

National Snow and Ice Data Center explains snow as ice crystals (aka. snowflakes) that formed in the atmosphere surrounding the clouds. The ice crystals grow by absorbing surrounding water droplets. In many cases, the temperature on the ground level is warmer than in the clouds were the crystals form so as the crystals melt as it reach the ground. But when the temperatures are freezing outside (below 32 degrees), the crystals (snowflakes) stay frozen and creates snow.

Happy snow day!

Art on an Easel

Happy Monday Everyone!! Today I sit back and drink a cup of coffee while I watch my kiddos draw on an easel. Such a peaceful morning on this non-school day. Yeah!!


Chalk vs Dry Erase Markers


As the teacher get the mid-year report cards ready, my kids sit quietly drawing. Discovery 3-in-1 Tabletop Easel is wonderful. So grateful that my sister-in-law got this easel for the girls’ Christmas present.

The kit includes:

3-in-1 Easel

Paper roll

Oversized Clip

Dry Eraser

My SIL kindly included chalk and markers with her gift. I would highly recommend that if you are thinking about getting this pretty cool gift. You’ll need to pick up some drawing supplies like chalk and erasable markers.

The easel box clearly says for kids 3 years and older but my toddler can safely use the drawing surfaces too. There isn’t any small pieces and the easel is pretty sturdy. Thus my toddler can push pretty hard and it doesn’t move.

Here is my 5 year old’s drawing titled A Flower Growing On Top Of A Mountain. I love the happy face on the sun. Happy child equals happy life.

Octopus Activity and Book

It was octopus day at our house which was inspired by a trip to the local library. I love going to the library. You never know what you are going to find or learn.


Eight Arms


Today my toddler and I visited our local library and it inspired me to write this blog about octopuses. The librarian at storytelling spoke about the importance of introducing math to toddlers. Story time focused on practicing counting forward and backwards which helps build number sense and teaches children to see relationships between numbers.

Then the librarian suggested this book, My Octopus Arms by Keith Baker, which is pictured below.

The first page references the octopus’s 8 arms; otherwise, there isn’t any other reference to numbers. Though as we read the book, we would count the octopus’s arms on each page. Thus making the storybook a little longer (always trying to go over that 20 minute benchmark).

Did you know that the octopus has existed longer than dinosaurs? As well as octopus have arms; not legs or tentacles.

After we were done with the book, we created an octopus out of a paper plate and scrap paper. One of my daughters drew the face on first while the other scribbled a shape at the end. Either approach is fine.

Supplies:

  • Paper plates; cut in half
  • 8 strips of paper (preferably different colors and marked 1 through 8)
  • Glue
  • Markers

Counting the arms over and over again will help my kiddos with number sequence. I’m interested to see how long it takes my toddler to destroy the octopus’s 8 arms. She is notorious for ripping up paper.

Do you have a fun octopus craft or fact?

Please share in the comment field below.

Headband Craft

Today was a pretty chill day at our house. Ran a couple of errands followed by hanging out at the house. Im always surprised by how fast the little kiddos get bored within minutes of walking in the door. Having a few quick and easy kits get the creative juices flowing.


Melissa and Doug Craft


My daughter received this gift to make her own headbands. I’m happy the kit included two so each girl could make one. My youngest loves stickers and this is a wonderful project to develop concentration and focus.

Melissa & Doug has a great 3 pack of Design-Your-Own Jewelry-Making Kits that includes Bangles, Headbands, and Bracelets available on Amazon.

This headband kit is unique because your kiddos decorate a flat glittery strip of plastic with stickers before threading the strip onto a headband. It takes some coordination and strength to press the headband through the sandwich strips. These headbands quickly became crowns for our two princesses.

Each of my daughters would give this project a two thumbs up and it takes about 20 minutes to complete. This is a great project for a road trip or plane ride because it doesn’t take up a lot of space. Plus when the headbands are completed, the kids can wear them while the packaging is thrown away. One less thing to pack back into the stowaways.

Wherever your trip is this year, hope you have a happy and safe trip.

Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑