Monthly Archives: September 2013

Glue Ghosts Halloween Craft

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This is a simple and fun Halloween Craft 

GLUE GHOSTS 

Here’s What you need:
Glue
Foam paper
googly eyes 
wax paper

Here’s what you do:
cut felt to look like bow ties and buttons 
Lay out a sheet of wax paper
Squeeze glue onto it in the shape of a ghost
add googly eyes
add bow tie and buttons
Let Dry, when it is completely dry you can pull away the wax paper and have just the ghosts

After drying the ghosts will be a little more transparent, we hung ours in a window 🙂 

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She drew WHAT??? Am I…oh my..yes I think I am

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So last night I was tucking Miss C into bed when I noticed a paper on the floor.  I picked it up and it was a picture she drew, so I asked her what it was and she said she drew it at school. I must admit the picture had me a little confused:
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As soon as I looked at it funny she started to clear up the confusion:
C: Don’t worry Mommy I will put pants on you, Don’t look at that
Me: THAT’S ME?
C: Uhhh I told you not to look at it
Me: Wait what is that?
C: gets close to my ear and whispers “that’s your pee pee”
Now I have to confess my tired butt didn’t even see the lovely yellow part until:
C: don’t worry I will change that to water
Me: Wait What? AM I PEEING?
C: Uhh it’s okay mommy I will make a bowl and it will just look like you are pouring water

I wonder what her teacher thought of this lovely drawing of her mommy, or how many friends snickered when she said Mommy is peeing….and just look at that hoohaa I have…that doesn’t look right…I swear it’s a hoohaa…stop laughing people!
I also have to wonder who all the little girls in the picture are….and is that a radio with music notes? So if I have it right I was having a dance party, rocking out to the music and peed all over…

And this is how my daughter sees me? A party girl who can’t control her bladder….Thanks C Thanks…but that was many years ago 😉

The cat is always plotting something

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Since we came home Pippy (for those who don’t know that’s our cat) has been acting all needy and weird, which really isn’t like her at all, she constantly crawls on us and meows or stares at the door and cries.  I am pretty sure she misses the cats at my Dad’s house and she’s lonely and since we are moving soon getting a new playmate for her is out of the question, so I decided we should get her some new toys to keep her busy.

This is one of the toys I got from Walmart
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I was all excited because it makes noise and moves around and I thought for sure she will love this toy,  I brought it home and proudly announced to her that I got her a new toy,  Set it up, put it on the floor, and she wouldn’t even look at it.  So here I am on the ground like a cat batting at the little chirping ball and the feather, while she looks at me like I lost my mind, which in retrospect I probably should have video taped, it would have been quality entertainment.  No interest, not even a tiny bit, I think she sniffed the feather once. So we decide to just leave it there because maybe she will play with it later, maybe she just isn’t into an audience when she plays. 1 day goes by, nothing, 2 days go by, nothing, a week goes by and she hasn’t so much as looked at the damn toy I was excited about.  Well last night the husband throws it in our room to get it out of the middle of the living room floor.  At 1 am I had a small panic attack, when I woke up to the sound of chirping, Do you know the things that run through your mind when you are half asleep and your bedroom starts chirping in the middle of the night? None of it is good let me tell you!  I mean it’s not like I thought my bedroom was possessed or anything, because that would be crazy.  Of course the cat would wait until it was in the perfect place and at the perfect time to play with the damn toy….I think she plotted the whole thing, cats are sly like that, sure they look innocent enough, and they cuddle you when your sick, or in a bad mood, but that’s just to reel you in for the kill 🙂

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Lost inspiration, or just fluffing

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I haven’t been posting much lately   but it’s because I have been working on something special, something I am going to tell you guys about real soon, that and for 7 hours a day I have no munchkins and no husband home, this does 2 things:
#1 While I know this should give me more time to blog, I find myself doing all of the things I could never do before, like sleep, or paint my toenails, take a bath, the kind where I am not considering drowning myself because it’s the 5th time one of my munchkins has came in to ask where something was or if they could have something, or turn into a lazy ass and watch 3 seasons of the Amazing Race that I never got the chance to watch, okay it is more like every season of the Amazing Race that I never got to watch, and I want to feel guilty about fluffing on the things I should be doing but I kind of feel great, the thing is that’s where the guilt comes in I actually feel guilty for not feeling guilty…and how does that work?

#2 With my whole family gone most of the day I have a hard time finding anything to write about…I’ve lost my inspiration

But hey I promise I’ll start looking for it, like right after I finish the Amazing Race 😉

We <3 Autumn craft

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In honor of the first day of fall, I am sharing a mixed sensory, craft project using all those leaves that if you are not living where I am are falling in your yard 🙂

What you need:
Dry Leaves
construction paper
glue
fall stickers

fall craft

What to do:
crunch up your leaves
use glue to write We ❤ Autumn
Sprinkle crushed leaves over the glue, let dry then shake off any excess
Add stickers

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We ended up framing ours but didn’t get a picture of it like that

Autumn leaf crafts

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We love doing crafts and making decorations for the different seasons and holidays, and as many of you know Autumn is my favorite time of year, so of course we do lots of crafts to celebrate 🙂

The first one I am sharing is our Autumn trees.

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What you need:
Paper(I used white)
Pen or Pencil
foam leaves(I used the sticker kind so it was easier)

What to do:
Draw a tree trunk and some branches on your paper, then add leaves

Yep it is truly that simple, to mix it up a little I drew 2 different types of tree trunks and branches, 1 for each munchkin 🙂

The 2nd activity may be even easier 🙂

leaf magnets

What you need:
Large Foam Leaves
Magnets
Googly Eyes
Glitter Glue

What you do:
Glue googly eyes onto the leaves
Draw on a mouth with the glitter glue
Attach magnet to the back of the leaf

And Viola you have cute little magnets to hang on your fridge for fall 🙂

The war on bullying: This is my story

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I wasn’t going to do a post about bullying, mainly because so many other bloggers have already covered it, however my niece asked me if I would since it is a subject that is extremely important to her.

This is my story:

I was born a preemie, under 5lbs.  As a young child I was not overweight, I had a lot of friends, and I was happy and healthy.  Somewhere between 3rd and 4th grade I started gaining weight, and I gained it quickly. By the time I was 1/2 way through 4th grade I was 180lbs wearing women’s plus size clothing.  This didn’t seem to be a big deal to everyone else in elementary school, of course it mattered to me, I didn’t like being so heavy, I wished I could wear the clothes smaller girls wore, but my friendships and my overall life stayed the same, and I was still pretty happy and liked myself.   When middle school started things took a drastic turn, I became the “fat” kid. People were extremely mean to me, including some of my childhood friends.  I got called names, had food thrown at me, and some kids would even oink when I walked by.  There wasn’t a day that went by that I didn’t get picked on in some form or another.  I had people tell me I was worthless, disgusting, a waste of space, and so much more. It hurt, more than most people can imagine, I felt so sad, and I wanted to lose weight, I really did.  The problem was that the more sad I got, the more I ate.  The more I got called out and left out the more I stayed home and became inactive.  I would sit in the back of the class so people didn’t stare at me,  I skipped school on days where I was suppose to give presentations because I didn’t want to stand in front of the class, and I would come home every school day and cry.

There were plenty of days where I thought it might be easier if I died, but more often than not I just felt like crawling under the covers and hiding FOREVER.

During 8th grade I finally got up the will power to start dieting, I was eating healthier and I was working out after school, as the days went by I ate less and less, and worked out more and more.  By the summer following my 8th grade year I had almost completely quit eating, and I was working out for at least 4 hours a day, sometimes 8 or 9. I was losing a lot of weight, I eventually got down to 98lbs, I had an eating disorder, and you know what happens when you develop an eating disorder when you are heavy? No matter how much weight I lost I always saw fat when I looked in the mirror.

The crazy thing is people started telling me I looked sickly, I was too skinny, My skin wasn’t as bright.  All I could think was “Well it’s always something, I guess I will just never be good enough” And all the while these people were saying those things I was still seeing fat.

I eventually moved away to another state with my parents, where people didn’t know the “fat” me and I made a lot of friends.  After my mother took me to a doctor and made me start eating again, I put on a few pounds, I still didn’t eat a lot, but I was eating and I was healthier, but I still felt fat, after high school I still felt fat, and today I still feel fat.

Here’s the thing, and the reason I tell this story  I really do not think bullies understand the long term effects of their actions.  Sure I was fat, but until other people had a problem with it, I was still relatively happy, I could still love myself.  After being put down for years it became harder and harder to love myself.  I’m 31 years old now, way past the days of high school, and it’s still hard to love myself.

Here is what I don’t understand, the suicide statistics for children, teens and young adults who have been bullied are astounding, What is so different now that so many of these young people are turning to suicide?  Bullying has been going on for years and years and years, but suicide numbers are on the rise.  I want to know why.  Could it possibly be the importance that society and media puts on image, looks, and talent?  The lack of parental involvement?

I see a lot of anti bullying campaigns reaching out to children and teens, and I think that’s great, but I think the real people to reach out to is adults, I think we must first start with the people who are or will be parenting these children and teens, because let’s be honest bully’s are not born, they are raised.  As long as some adults continue to bully or be mean, children will follow suit, the cycle will continue.

I have seen it often, people like to pinpoint young people and say that is where the bullying issue lies, but it goes far beyond, I see bullying in college, as a military wife I see bullying in the army and within army wife communities, I see bullying at grocery stores, and on the street outside of my apartment, and then we wonder why the children of our country bully and pick on each other.

It is sad to me that adults still feel the need to be so hateful. I fully believe bullies are the way they are either because they were raised to be that way or they feel the need to put others down to make up for their shortcomings,

I am on the fence when it comes to charging and sentencing children and teens for bullying when the person they bullied committed suicide, the reason I say this is because on one hand as a mother if someone was bullying my child and they committed suicide I would of course want some type of justice, however again as a mother it is hard for me to rationalize ruining another child’s life, especially in a case where the child is only acting on what he or she has been taught.  I think we need more support for children, both bullies and the children being bullied and we need to start holding some of the adults in this country accountable.  I believe that a form of boot camp if you will, with a psychiatric team involved would be better suited to a bully than a jail cell, where they will probably only learn to be a bigger bully or learn to be bullied.  I think adults need to start playing a more vital roll in their children’s lives, I understand that some people have to have both parents working, or single parents must work, I am not saying not to work if you are a parent.  I am saying when you come home from work be present, and not just in the same house, or even same room present.  I see so many parents both working and stay at home who only have conversations with their children while surfing the internet, and posting on facebook, parents who spend their whole days on the phone or in front of a TV, I want to see more involvement because I do think that is a large part of the issue, children do not get as much genuine quality time anymore, they are handed off from person to person or from Tv to game console, and it’s sad.  We can’t expect the children to grow up properly if they lack guidance.

You know what else needs to happen? Society and the media need to stop idolizing only the beautiful, or talented, we need to stop worshiping drug addict movie stars and we need to show our youth that being famous or beautiful is not what makes you a successful human being, We need to start idolizing people who make a difference or have made a difference in this world, people who stand up for their beliefs and walk their own line.  People with morals, and ethics.

And finally we need to stop being hypocrites, be the change we want to see in our youth, because otherwise all they see is talk and no action.

I will leave you with a video that my niece shared with me, that I think is pretty powerful, enjoy and please feel free to share your thoughts, you know I love to hear them

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Nature Bin

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The other day the munchkin was bored and asked if I could make her a bin, and that’s how these simple little bins came about. She had tons of fun playing with them and there was very little mess when she was done(always a bonus)

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I used fake moss, pine cones, birds nests, our tree blocks, some fake leaves, and a few animals
Almost everything was purchased from the dollar store including the bowls, the only things not from the dollar store are the tree blocks(My husband made these by cutting a regular tree branch) and the pine cones which we found at our local park.

50 of our favorites from the Dollar Tree

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Around here we like to do crafts, sensory activities, and baking together, but we don’t like to spend a ton of money if we don’t have to, who does right? It may come as a surprise that a lot of the things we get for those activities are from the dollar tree.  Today I decided to share a list of our favorite things to buy from the dollar tree and what we use them for some of them you could probably guess and some may be things you would never really think about:

1. Hair Gel- We love hair gel, we use it for our Glitter Bags and also for sensory bins(dyed blue for water), I spy bags, and our Sensory Balloons

2. Dried Beans- We can usually find brown, white and red, and we love them all 🙂 We use these for sensory bins as well, we love the brown for rocks in the bottom of a nature bin, we also use them to make maracas, in our Sensory Balloons and for counting activities

3. Pipe Cleaners- You can use these for so many things, one of our favorites is flower rings which I am hoping to post about soon, but you can also string beads onto them, use them to make critters and so much more

4. Clay- They usually have the multi color packs, A loves to use that to make figures form video games and C loves to make shapes

5. Aluminum Pans- Baking with less clean up, to freeze the ice bricks in our Ice Brick Building Fun Post, making mud pies, to make special bubbles

6. Bubble Bath- There’s works surprisingly well, we love them in the bath and in the pool and to make the special bubbles I linked above

7. Pecans- They can be pricey in the grocery store but you can find them usually in a small bag at the dollar tree and save quite a bit, I wouldn’t buy them to eat plain but they are great for baking things like this Caramel Apple Pecan Pie

8. Glitter- which you may or may not want to use, I know some people consider it the herpes of the craft world, but if that’s herpes well we love us some lol, Glitter is too fun not to play with in my opinion, I am not sure there isn’t a way to use glitter, and we may have glittered far too many things in our days of fun

9. Ribbon- The ribbon I used in my DIY bow holder was actually from the Dollar Tree

10. Bubbles- because who doesn’t love bubbles?

11. Sidewalk chalk- which also works on black construction paper if you do not have sidewalks

12. Cotton balls- painting, doing nails, making Santa’s beard, fake snow, in our sensory balloons linked above

13. Stones- Sensory bin play

14. Water beads

15. Buttons

16. Instant coffee- dirt, mud, and in our coffee play-dohn

17. Measuring cups and spoons- for sensory play, water play, measuring, pouring, mixing, and as holders for paint and other small items

18. Construction paper

19. Glue

20. Craft sticks- so many things including crafts sticks letters

21. Drop cloths- to put under messy sensory play

22. Plastic animals- In many sensory bins, and play mat play including our jello ocean sensory bin and our Dinosaur play mat

23. sea shells

24. Fake flowers- we use them for mostly nature play like our Gardening bath tub

25. Beads

26. Balloons

27. Glowsticks- glow in the dark hunts, baths, and Balloons , light shows

28. Epsom Salt – A variety of options for sensory bins such as the dinosaur and ocean themed bins we made

29. Pasta- dry colored pasta bins, pasta necklaces, introductory cooking, and of course our Messy colored spaghetti pit

30. Food coloring- besides normal things we like to color bath water, epsom salt, and rice with it

31. Baking Soda- For a fun activity try out our Clay Volcanoes

32. Stickers

33. Coloring Books

34. Poster board- besides painting and coloring we like to use them as play mats after we decorate them

35. Vinegar- which is also needed for the volcanoes linked above

36. Glue sticks for glue guns(we even once found a glue gun there)

37. Picture frames- framing artwork or ideas like our 4th of July fireworks craft

38. Googly eyes- for making all types of fun creatures, including our rock friends

39. String, and yarn

40. Paint

41. Gems

42. Foam paint brushes and paint rollers

43. Bowls, and buckets- for sensory play, mixing, and storing

44. Cookie Cutters

45. Foam Sheets- not only for crafting but they make great bathtub toys, you can cut them to whatever shapes you want and they stick to the bathtub walls and eachother

46. Spices- we have used these as grass on a play mat, and for spice painting

47. Felt

48. At Christmas time- garland, jingle bells, mini ornaments, cookie trays, fake poinsettia plants

49. At Halloween time- plastic bugs, bats, ghosts, pumpkins, and gourdes

50. Feathers- for nature, sensory, and light table play

Do you have any Dollar Tree favorites?

Caramel Apple Pecan Pie

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This is one of my favorite pies to make at Thanksgiving.

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What you need:
1 9 inch deep dish pie crusts, you can use your own recipe or buy the frozen crusts at the store

FILLING:
61/2 cups of sliced apples, I like to use Granny Smith since the rest of the pie is so sweet, but you can use any type you like
3 Tbsp of flour
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon

TOPPINGS:
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup flour
8 TBSP butter

1/4 cup Caramel Sauce(you can make your own or use jarred caramel sauce( I prefer to make my own, but it is definitely easier to use the store bought)

WHAT TO DO:

Preheat oven to 375
Prepare your pie crust
Put your apple slices in a large bowl then add the rest of your filling ingredients tossing it to make sure all of the apples are coated
Put your filling into your pie crust
In a large bowl mix your sugar, oats, and flour then cut in the butter, the topping will be crumbly
Spread your topping evenly over the filling

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Bake for 25 minutes
Take pie out and sprinkle pecan halves on top

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Bake another 25 minutes (You may want to cover your edges with aluminum foil at this point so they don’t burn)

Remove from oven, while still hot pour the Caramel over the top

Let cool so that the caramel hardens some and serve!