July 28, 2011

Little Red Barn

I really love a traditional, all American, big red barn! Even though we don't have red barns as part of our South African landscape, Little One easily recognizes this as part of a traditional farm setting and I have always wanted to add one to our box of animals. Charlotte's Web was also one of the first full-length movies that he ever watched and he has always loved it .

Store bought barns are hard to come by and when you do find nice, good quality ones,  they are usually really pricey. Aaah, but then I remembered my favourite I-can't-throw-away box...the Lipton tea box!! 

To make the barn, I glued the lid closed, cut out the entrance, and stuck a row of craft sticks to the front and back of the box. The main reason for adding the sticks to the back was to make it a bit stronger and it definitely did! The rest of the sticks were cut to size, glued on, and I then added a coat of red paint and the final white touches. Some of the Lipton labeling shows through on the sides - my cousin (who lives in the States and has been here on holiday) said that it adds to the authenticity, as a lot of barns have old advertising on them :). COOL!

Once the barn was done, I created the little farm scene, along the lines of the movie, hoping it would grab Little One's attention. Did you notice Templeton the Rat on the roof? Wondering where Charlotte is? In the barn of course ;).

Although Little One loves the barn itself, the sensory box wasn't a big hit with him. I have come to realize that my great ideas aren't always received with the enthusiasm I'm expecting. I've been thinking of creating a felt farm scene instead...I'll share it with you as soon as it's done.

To view some beautiful photos of traditional red barns, visit here.
PS. Linking this to It's Playtime (Pop on over and join the fun!)

July 26, 2011

Water Photo Challenge {iheartfaces}

An oldie, but a goodie. Little One, 6 months old,  floating so peacefully in a porter pool. The photo challenge this week at iheartfaces is "Water"...I couldn't resist entering.

July 22, 2011

Fun with Oranges

Who knew that some oranges could be so much fun?

Oranges for cheeks?

Oranges for ears.

Happy oranges...

Juggling oranges!

Cute oranges...

Moody oranges!

Counting oranges...

 In winter, in Cape Town, bags of oranges colour the street corners...it always makes me happy.

Thank you oranges...for these oh so happy pictures!

PS. Photography inspired by Katherine Marie
To see Katherine's veggie faces, click here
Speech bubble created at Superlame

July 18, 2011

Three Little Pigs

When Little One was in hospital recently, this became his favourite "new" book. We read it over and over!

When we were back home, I made these houses from some big juice boxes, added the finger puppets (bought at a local craft market) and we played out the story. As you can tell, it's fun being the wolf and huffing and puffing!

I really like this particular version of the traditional story and highly recommend this book, if you can get hold of it - It's part of a Walt Disney collection of story books.

Do you have a favourite book of this classic story? I'd love to hear about it.

"Who's afraid of the big bad wolf, the big bad wolf, the big bad wolf?
Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Not I, not I, not I!"

PS.  Linking this to:

July 15, 2011

Spider Party

A while back we were invited to a little friend's birthday party and were very surprised to find out that the theme was SPIDERS. You see, this little friend is a very petite, sweet, girly-girl and loves all things pink and pretty! So I thought, it must be a cute spider party ...yeah I know, spiders aren't cute, but you know what I mean. However, much to my surprise, this turned out to be a realistic ugly eight-legged hairy spider kinda party!!

Check out the cake!

Don't you love this super spider accessory for the birthday girl's hair.

 There were super games at this party. 
Being wrapped in a spider cocoon...

...or being stuck in a spider's web!

I was inspired by these over at Silly Eagle Books and decided to add a cute bottle top spider to our gift. I really love how she turned out...yip it's a she...can't you tell?

Have you ever had a Spider party. If you have, please leave a link in the comments below. I would love to come and see!  

PS. Linking our spider to 
Fun for Kids Friday

July 13, 2011


The basic recipe:
2 cups of corn flour
1 cup of water

You can vary this recipe slightly to get a thicker or thinner version.

This is great fun and of course a fantastic sensory experience - I couldn't help but play too!

I really love how Little One spontaneously decided to stand in it...this is in contrast to my older son, who does not like the texture and won't play with it at all.

Do you know that some children are sensitive to touching certain textures and that it may be part of a tactile dysfunction. This, in turn, is one type of sensory processing disorder
To read more, the Out-of-Sync child is a great website with some fantastic articles on the subject.

Can you recommend any other great books or links about this subject? If you can, please leave a comment in the box below, so that other readers can find these resources. :)

July 9, 2011

Make a Colouring Book

Have you ever made your child a colouring book? I recently made one for Little One and he loved it. In fact, when he was done colouring, he said, "That was so much fun." I smiled from ear to ear. For this book, I printed only pictures of
"Things that Go".

I found nice pages at these websites:

These very nice chubby triangular crayons were given to me a few years ago by an occupational therapist. I have never seen them to purchase anywhere, but they are wonderful for little hands. It got me thinking about the best first writing tools for toddlers. In my search for more information, I found a wonderful website called The Motor Story. There is a great article on drawing here, where it is recommended that large markers are used as first writing tools. The reason given, is that the markers glide easily over paper and the thumb moves away from the palm of the hand, thereby enhancing the thumb strengthening process. In comparison, crayons write with more resistance. If you do give your toddler crayons though, preferably give them the chunky larger size. I would love to here any comments on this subject.

Till next time...

July 7, 2011

you are my happy.

what could be better on a cold winter's day, than lying on a sunny bed, reading books and being silly ...

                                                                                  ... nothing. :)

July 5, 2011

Let's Build it! {Tot Packs and Puzzles}

One of my favourite things about blogging is the wealth of wonderful ideas shared by other like-minded Moms. I also love finding free resources and today I am going to share a few great spots to find Tot Packs.(These packs are also called  File Folder Games or Lapbooks.) What are they? In a nutshell, the idea is to take a flat cardboard folder or file and to glue a variety of activities, centered around a particular theme, on the inside of it. You can really create a pack about any subject under the sun! My apologies for not having a photo of the pack we created, but if you visit any of the sites below, there are lots of pictures available.

First stop is Carisa from 1+1+1=1. Carisa creates wonderful free printables for homeschooling Moms, including Tot (and Preschool) Packs. In her packs, she might include colouring pages, shadow matching, sequencing, patterns, and alphabet and numeracy activities.  Carisa has created a Handy Manny Pack and a Big Machines Pack, both perfect to include in our "Let's Build It!" mini theme. To print out both of these, click here.

In my search for more packs, I also found a fantastic Tools Tot Pack at Our Little Monkeys. I printed out the puzzle pieces (see photo)  and decided to stick them onto some Mega Bloks. I wish I could say that this was my idea, but it is simply my version of lego puzzles created by Jenea at I can teach my child. (Great idea, don't you think?)

If you like these packs, be sure to also check out these from Homeschool Creations. A big thank you to Carisa, Dawn and Jolanthe for creating these wonderful resources and sharing them.

This was the last of my Let's Build It! theme posts. Knowing my little boy though, I'm sure that this will not be the last about construction related and tool time activities. :)

Till next time...

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