Thursday, 29 March 2012

scavenger hunt

I was inspired by something my sister in law pinned today. Both kids love being outside and exploring. I was surprised at how challenging this simple little hunting game was for our boy. I love that it made him look more closely at his surroundings and also loved the look on his face when he found something. To set it up I popped outside for 2 minutes and gathered some things, took a photo and then printed it off. I attached it to a clip board and gave him a crayon to mark things off as he found them (which he loved doing). He did have tray to collect the things on but I don't think it's necessary to actually collect them- just finding them and making note of it is enough. While he was looking I gathered up more items for some more hunts. I'm off to a friend's wedding tomorrow so I thought the husband might appreciate me leaving some more hunts for them to do together- aren't I good to him? : )

Tuesday, 27 March 2012


I saw this on one the the blogs I follow, we have a few permanent markers floating about that are  from my teaching days. I don't like the kids to use them often as they really do permanently mark skin, clothes, walls and carpet! They enjoyed this, they liked the noise the foil made, how easily the pen moved on the foil and working with the shiny surface. To present them I flattened the foil pieces out a bit and sellotaped them onto square pieces of chipboard I had 'stored' in the garage...you should see our garage!

the ball shooting room at Chipmunks
a flower in my garden
a dinosaur with a spiky tail
love them!

Monday, 26 March 2012


One of my favourite blogs http://www.lilmagoolie.com/ has started setting colour challenges each month to add a bit of colour to our lives and encourage a bit of creativity. This is what I did for this month's green theme. Some grass grew 'accidentally' in our sandpit recently which gave me the idea. I grew some grass in a seedling tray and on a rainy day brought it inside for the kids to play with. They loved hiding their insects and dinosaurs in it- it keep them both busy for ages.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

play dough - love the stuff!

salt dough ( for hardening in the oven)
eyes and noses
cotton buds
pizza cutter
cup cake liners
garlic press

Friday, 23 March 2012

paper mache process

Most of the art/ craft things I do with the children take less than an hour to complete. They've come to expect that they'll have something to do, look at, eat, play with or show to dad every time. I wanted to show them that sometimes creating requires a patience and a process. I decided to show them how to paper mache ( there's a correct way to spell that but I can't be bothered looking it up). I knew they'd enjoy getting their hands a bit messy and it's not a tricky technique to learn. M has wanted a new wand for a while and yes you can get them at a $2 type shop but they'll just break like the first two did. I wanted to help her make something a bit more robust. T got one as well as he likes to cast a spell or two- my favourite being tonight's which was to turn dad into a frog and back to a dad sixty million times during the sports news! The photos show the steps which we completed over the course of a week. The paint glue was given time to dry between each step.

newspaper, watered down pva glue, bamboo sticks, brushes and black tape to cover any sharpish splintery bits on the bamboo.

make a shape on a piece of folded card, cut it out and tape it to the end of the stick. Tape the stick to the card too so it doesn't move around in there.

start applying glue and layers of newspaper, cover the stick as well.

paint white

add colour

add glue for glitter

spray with clear varnish

wave around and cast spells!

Thursday, 22 March 2012

loosing your marbles

I thought I'd post this idea for people who enjoy picking up after their kids as much as I do ( heavy sarcasam). It astounds me how much mess mine can make in a day! Anyway, this is an off cut of plastic tubing from hubby's work that we cut to length ( we wanted a big circle) and joined together with a short stick of dowel and some glue. We store it behind the boy's wardrobe for when he wants to play with his marbles. It saves us having to look under everything to find them and having them make that horrible rattly sound when they go up the vacuum.  I'm going to do an internet search for marble games now. I remember as a kid a group of boys played marbles at the back of the field and there were rules and 'special' marbles. T just lies and looks at them and uses his digger and dump trucks to move them around.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

dog shaped biscuits

My nephew turns 4 today, he loves dogs so I thought I'd make him some dog shaped biscuits as part of his pressie. I'm no baker but I'm always happy to indulge in a bit of silly cuteness! I found the instructions online. After making the dough, take half out for the faces and add bit of cocoa to the mix make darker dough for the ears. Use a heart shaped cookie cutter for the faces and turn the hearts upside down. Cut hearts out of the darker dough and cut each heart in half to make the ears. I used chocolate hail for the eyes and a pebble for the nose. Before balking I pressed a little mouth shape using a teaspoon. Some didn't turn out as well as others ( the pebble nose split open when cooking) so I'll keep those for us and he can have the best ones to share with his mum, dad and little brother. I think he'll like them.

before cooking
all done!

Saturday, 17 March 2012


We've been outside all day today as it's a gorgeous sunny day. The husband worked until 2 so after my little rest when he got home I thought we'd do some 'building' in the front yard ( so he could work on our woodshed roof in the back yard ). I found a cardboard box and went through the garage looking for bits and bobs. I found:

nuts, bolts and washers
bottle caps
milk bottle lids
old dresser handles
blue plastic string
some bits of wood from the wood pile 
metal attachments
black tape

we needed:

a drill
a surface to work on that we didn't mind getting banged about a bit ( an old plastic table )

I showed the children everything I'd collected up for them and asked what they'd like to build. I asked lots of questions like how to attach things, where bits might go, what features/ parts or moving bits they'd like on their creations etc. My girl was way more interested in the whole process, the boy just wanted to hammer nails in : ). I mostly used the hammer but when they wanted a try I showed them how to avoid squashing their fingers by holding the nail with pliers in one hand and using the hammer with the other ( like they're taught at pre school).  I was going to use a glue gun but couldn't be bothered with an extension cord and any other sort of glue from the garage would've been a bit dangerous and 'fumey' if that's even a word ( red squiggles tell me it's not!). I loved the time I spent with them, chatting about their ideas. My girl's creation is of herself wearing a blue skirt and the boy made his version of a panda- they make me happy when I look at them.