Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Autumn Begins!

Magic Pumpkin Seeds
Preschool Rainbow

Pumpkin Seeds
Small Pumpkins


While your children aren't paying attention, decorate pumpkins and seeds with glitter.

Take kids outside, hand each child a pumpkin seed and inform them the seeds are magical. Make up a dance (we jumped on one foot and spun around in a circle) and have them toss the seed onto the ground. Give each child a small amount of glitter, explain that it's magic sparkles; if they sprinkle the "magic sparkles" on the seeds while saying the magic words, "bippity boppity boop", tomorrow when they wake there will be a surprise waiting for them.

After your children go to bed, gather the seeds up and put small pumpkins in their place.

Magical pumpkins and seeds

Magical pumpkins

"bippity boppity boop"

Magical seeds "planted"

Acorn or Marble Leaf Painting
Suite 101

Large sheets of paper
Paint– fall colors such as orange, red, yellow, brown
Large box, box top or container at least 1 inch deep and large enough (a box lid from a box of copy paper works well)
Spoons– one for each color of paint
Acorns, nuts or marbles

Cut out large leaf shapes from the large sheets of paper. Place one leaf shape in the box. Spoon a bit of different colored paint into each of the four corners of the box. Preschoolers place an acorn or marble into the box. Preschoolers hold the box and move the box around so that the acorn or marble rolls into the paint and across the leaf shaped paper. Allow children to decide how long they want to continue painting with the acorn or marble.

Autumn Leaves
Hello, Cupcake!

*Melted chocolate is HOT; little helpers need to use caution!*

Maple Leaves
1 cup Orange Candy Melting Wafers
1 cup Green Candy Melting Wafers
1 Cup Milk Chocolate Melting Wafers

Wash the maple leaves with warm water and pat dry on paper towels. Line several cookie sheets with wax paper. Place the orange candy, green candy and milk chocolate melting wafers into separate microwavable bowls. Microwave each bowl separately, stirring occasionally, until the candy is smooth, about 1 minute. Using a small, clean craft brush or your fingertip, paint spots in the 3 different colors of melted candy in an even layer (not too thin) over the top side of each leaf. While the candy is still wet, swirl the colors slightly to blend. Place the leaf on one of the collie sheets, coated side up. Repeat with the remaining leaves. If the candy becomes too thick, reheat in the microwave for several seconds, stirring frequently. Place the cookie sheets in the refrigerator until the candy is set, about 5 minutes. Carefully peel the leaves from the hardened candy. They come off surprisingly easily. Use a toothpick or clean tweezers to remove any small pieces of leaf that may remain. The leaves can be made up to 5 days in advance, covered and kept in a cool dry place.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Frozen Peanut Butter & Jelly

If your kids are anything like mine and love peanut butter and jelly but unfortunately end up wearing half the gooeyness on themselves, then do I have a wonderful little tool to share with you. Thanks to the wonderful people at Pampered Chef there is a solution to this problem without having to spend $$$ on Crustables; Cut-N-Seal® will allow you (or you child) to cut perfectly sealed PB&J sandwiches that can be thrown in the freezer. I pick up a cheap loaf of bread at the grocery store and pop out a couple weeks worth of sandwiches with the loaf.

Though I advice you to follow your doctor's advice on introducing peanuts and nuts to your child, these sandwiches make a great frozen teething relief. Hey- when your 2 year old "shoves" a spoonful of peanut butter in his baby brother mouth and there is no allergic reaction, that indicates to me he doesn't have a peanut allergy.

Grandparents Day

Our Grandparents Day craft originated at the playground, I took notice of fallen leaves and the gears in my brain began to turn. We gathered up leaves, took them home where I designed a tree trunk and branches on a 4.0625”x9.125” (fits into a #10 envelope) piece of paper. Wrote the name of each family member on a leaf with a black maker (example: grandma, grandma, mommy, daddy, aunt, etc) and Benjamin glued the leaves onto the tree. Our "family tree" was a HIT with the grandparents!

Teddy Bear Day

September 9th is known as Teddy Bear Day and since I’ve been busy with tons of other project I’m behind on activity posts…please forgive me.

The Origin of the Teddy Bear:
During the early 1900s, President Theodore Roosevelt was in office as President of the United States. He was a hunter. While hunting in Mississippi in 1902, he refused to shoot a small bear. The Washington Post picked up on this story, and made a cartoon of the event. Toy store owners, Morris and Rose Michtom, wrote to President Roosevelt for permission to call their stuffed animals "Teddy Bears". Teddy bears became wildly popular. Their company went on to become the Ideal Toy Company, one of the largest toy companies in the world.

Benjamin, {gasp} my soon to be three year old, has a beloved teddy bear named Bear; actually to be accurate Bear technically belongs to Hayden, {louder gasp} my soon to be one year old. A week or two before Hayden was born my husband and I took Benjamin to “Build A Bear” to make a teddy bear for his baby brother; Benjamin fell in love with the bear formerly Known as Bubbles.

Having a scheduled play date at the Hands on House didn’t leave much time for Teddy Bear activities but I did manage to find a way to incorporate it into our day.

Breakfast consisted of teddy bear pancakes

Teddy bear sugar cookies for an afternoon snack.

Incase anyone thinks I'm Martha Stewart...THANK YOU Pillsbury Dough Boy for making life slightly easier!

Because their so cute, I leave you with these.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Bubble Fun

Are you looking to put a twist on swimming? Add kid friendly bubble bath solution to a kiddie pool; as the kiddos splash around the more bubbles produced.

Another idea I’ve heard but have yet to try is filling a kiddie pool with blowing bubble solution; give a bubble wands to each child for them to blow bubbles using the solution inside the pool. To create a mega bubble, one at a time inside the kiddie pool, have a child stand inside a hula hoop; raise the hula hoop up over the child to make a giant bubble.

Friday, September 3, 2010

~CLOSED~ Giveaway ~CLOSED~

Though it is still a work in progress as I continue to add more products over the next month, I’m thrilled to announce the launch of my online store! After hours of research and love for all things design and art, I just couldn’t contain my excitement any longer and had to announce my site.

In celebration, I’m giving away a
Footprint Collage; I'll be choosing TWO lucky winners who will be chosen randomly on September 10th at 9am EDT

For one entry leave your first name, last initial, and your email address.
Name: Jane D.

For a second entry like Red Maple Design on Facebook.

For a third entry tell your friends about Red Maple Design; writing a blog post and send me the link.

Red Maple Design