Monday, April 30, 2012

Spring Fairs and Carnivals

It's that magical time of year again when all the Spring Fairs, the May Day events and the Carnivals come into town.  This past weekend we enjoyed a full day of stopping at a few of the local events in our area.  First we stopped at a school fair and enjoyed face painting and some simple games along with lunch.
But the big attraction of the day was the local carnival that came to town.  Brianna spotted it one day while we were out doing errands and didn't stop talking about it until we went.

Little Clowny

I know a little clowny, going to the fair
A funny little clowny with flowers in her hair
Oh shake it little clowny, shake it if you can
Shake it like a milk shake and do the best you can
Rumble to the bottom and rumble to the top
Turn around and turn around until you have to stop

 She's getting much more brave with going on rides without me and Keira and Maia were able to enjoy some of the bigger rides since Brian and I were both there to split up when necessary. 
The carousel goes round and round
The horses go up and down
Up and down . . .round and round
I want to ride it, all day long
I think their favorite ride was the big slide... at first they asked Daddy to go along and after the first time, they were all set to do it themselves about 10 times in a row :)
We ended it off with some delicious fried dough.  A great time was had by all but bedtime couldn't come early enough for mom and dad for sure.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dandelion Tea

The children harvested dandelions from our playyard today so we could make Dandelion Tea together.
It is well-known that the root of dandelions have many healing properties.  A huge new grant has been put toward researching more about this beautiful "weed" after findings that dandelion root tea killed cancer cells.
 The children did not attempt to get the entire plants with roots but a very light herbal tea can be made by the flowers (and leaves) as well.  After gathering your dandelions, pull the flower petals out of the base of the flower and put in a colander to rinse well.  Please do not harvest dandelions from any area that uses fertilizers or pesticides. 

Gently dry your petals and place into a tea kettle with a few slices of lemon (don't overdo the lemon)
 Brew your tea and let sit for 5 minutes.  I then put our colander on top of a big pot and poured the tea through to strain out the lemons and flowers.  We added raw honey and YUM! 
Enjoy this Spring Treat!

Moving Onward

Dee's New Home

My girl has made her final decision on college.  Swarthmore College will be her new home for the next four years.  The campus is absolutely stunning and the school is just so amazing.  I'm so extremely proud of all of Dee's achievements to be able to get into such a prestigious school, especially this year.  She has worked so very hard and has overcome so much especially after losing her best friend Alexa right before entering high school. 

 And while there were more affordable schools to choose from, the moment Dee stepped onto the campus at Swarthmore it just felt right. 
The thought that my oldest girl will be leaving home and living somewhere far away without me near fills me with such bittersweet emotions.  I am so excited for her but so sad for myself. 

 I just can't believe this time has already come... I've thought about it since she was young and it always felt so distant and far away.  And now here we are...
We both made it.  Together.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Considering Celery

This is a very fun science experiment to do with children. Fill about 1/2 inch of water into a glass and add food coloring. Place a piece of celery with leaves still attached into the colored water and keep an eye on it for a day or two.
Watch how the water travels up the stalk to the leaf and changes color. As you can see, we had the best luck with the color red.
Cut the stalk across and show children where the coloring is showing the tubes that carry the water up the stalk of the plant. This is an example of capillary action.


Friday, April 13, 2012

Butter Making

Today we made homemade butter at daycare. This is such a simple and fun activity to do with small children.

First just fill a clean glass baby food jar half full with heavy cream and add a small amount of salt.
Then shake, shake, shake!!!!!! Shake for as long as you can - it will take up to 10 minutes until your butter is made.
Then watch their little faces when you open up the jars!

And enjoy your fresh butter on crackers or bread for snack!
Have fun!

Welcome Katelyn!

Yesterday the girls and I welcomed Katelyn to our daycare. She is just the sweetest little girl.
Brianna is especially helpful and gentle with the two babies - she loves teaching them new things and gains a sense of pride from being the big girl in the group. This is what I love so very much about mixed age settings in childcare and Kindergarten groups. How wonderful it is for the littlest ones to be able to watch and model the older children and what a gift to a child's self-esteem to be the older one being looked up to and trusted to help care for the smaller ones.
Lilah was fascinated by the dandelions in the yard. It still amazes us all that they are considered weeds as they are so beautiful and magical, especially when they turn into dandelion puffs and we blow them all over.
Fiona was very curious about Katelyn and had us all laughing so hard when she called her "doggie" when she was crawling around.
I have four daughter and currently a daycare full of girls!
Welcome to Katelyn! We're so happy to have you join us!


Thursday, April 12, 2012

Make a Parachute Toy

Parachute Toy

Supplies Needed:

Small Silk or Light Fabric for ‘parachute’

Four even pieces of yarn or strong thread

Small toy figure with flexible arms and legs

(we especially enjoyed using this dollhouse boy because each limb moves freely and the arms and feet were perfect for attaching our strings to – you could alternatively make your own bendy doll for this activity but the success may vary depending on the weight of your doll and fabric used)

Tie each piece of yarn to one corner of your silk or fabric attaching the other side of the yarn to your doll’s hands and feet. You will have to experiment and adjust the length of your string depending on the items you are using. When you drop your parachute toy from a high place you want for the wind to catch underneath so the toy floats down. Some toys will be heavier than others and may need a shorter length of yarn to make it work. We had to adjust ours a few times.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Came

In nature,
In family,
In color,
In anticipation,
In promise.

"Our Lord has written the promise of the resurrection, not in books alone, but in every leaf in spring-time." ~Martin Luther

Keira's 11th Birthday

My little Keira is 11 Years Old! And boy did she celebrate! All week long!
On her birthday night we took her out for dinner at our favorite Mexican restaurant.
A few days later - she celebrated with a few of her closest friends with dinner..

a movie... and a lot of craziness!
Then a special dinner out with family...
And another celebration with family on Easter...
Whew! Happy happy birthday to my sweet girl!

We love you!