Friday, October 4, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Days #7 and #8

Brenda's Activities - Cotton Ball Ghosts and Indoor Picnic

Yesterday, Brenda and I made Cotton Ball Ghosts to hang on our wall. I cut out the outline and the face and Brenda glued the cotton balls and the face on. In the middle of this, I had to leave Brenda to glue cotton balls on her own, because Dominick needed fed. She came over to me with the entire bag of cotton balls balancing on the cutout and said, "Mommy, I'm finished!" I'm glad she was so enthusiastic about this. 

Today we had a picnic in our living room. This has to be my favorite activity to date, because it was easy, fun, and I got to really talk to my daughter and spend time with her in a way that you just need a picnic for. I asked her what her favorite story was and she surprised me. I was expecting her to say that it was "The Little Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly", because for the past two months she has wanted me to read this book to her every night. She likes the last page and always says in a very serious voice, "She died, of course!" Instead, she chose "Goldilocks and the Three Bears", so I read that while we were eating.

Dominick's Activities - Mirror Fun and Tickle Spider

Dominick's activities were once again simple. For mirror fun we made faces at each other using a mirror. Tickle spider is a game I play with Brenda a lot. I use my hand to be the spider and I tickle her. With Dominick I walked my hand up and down him acting like a spider and tickling his tummy, feet and neck. I was hoping for another giggle out of him, but no such luck. He has only laughed one time to date and that was for his daddy.

Activity grades:

10. Cotton Ball Ghosts - A
     Brenda loved this. It was the most focused I've seen her in a while. It's an activity that is very simple for her to do.

11. Mirror Fun - A
     I got some fun expressions from Dominick with the mirror. That alone is worth doing this activity again.

12. Indoor Picnic - A+
    This is the first activity that Brenda has asked for several times again already. We may have to make this a weekly event. 

13. Tickle Spider - A
    Tickle spider will always be a favorite of our family for all ages. :)

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Day #6

Activity - Caterpillar Toes!

We used the leaf rubbings from yesterday and added toe prints on top of the leaves. Then, I drew in the caterpillars' faces and feet. We probably could have done this yesterday right after we did the rubbings, because this activity really only took a couple minutes. Brenda liked it. Dominick didn't care.

Green Toes!

Before I added the faces.

Activity grade:

9. Caterpillar Toes - A+++
     I LOVE this activity! It was quick, super cute and the kids liked it. There are many activities that involve handprints and feet prints, but you don't always get just the sweet little toes.

The rest of our day:

     We have a new tradition in our house on Tuesdays. We call it Turn-it-Off Tuesday. This is our third week doing this and so far the most fun for me. We have a screen free family day and try to use minimal lighting. No TV, computer, i-pad, phone, or video games until after the kids are in bed, so that we can focus all our time on our kids and things that need done around the house. 
      Brenda and I did our normal school activities. Two activities that we enjoyed were making a handprint sheep and making red circles with playdoh that ended with just playing with playdoh. The sheep incorporated cutting, gluing, and drawing. My favorite part was when I told brenda to draw a circle for the sun and she drew the circle and the sun beams. This is something I have never taught her to do. It amazes me how kids figure things like that out without being told.

Dominick enjoyed tummy time during the day and just being as cute as ever. Have I mentioned lately how much I adore my children?


Monday, September 30, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Day #5

Brenda's Activity - Leaf Rubbings

I was pleasantly surprised at how much Brenda liked this activity. She loved how the leaves would magically appear when she colored. 

Dominick's Activity - Baby Massage

Dominick loved me giving him a baby massage with lotion. It was a full body massage including legs, arms, and belly. My favorite part was the lotion smiley face on his tummy.
I think it surprised him a little bit.
I made sure to get his cute little toes, too.

 Activity grades:

7. Leaf Rubbings - A
      Brenda had fun with this. I know we will be doing this again, because I plan on having her do a lot of leaf rubbings when I teach her about different types of leaves when she's older. For now the coloring part is good enough for us.

8. Baby Massage - A
      Who doesn't love a massage?

Sunday, September 29, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Day #4

Activity - Baby Dedication

"I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him."
- 1 Samuel 1:27

 Ok, so it's not a typical "activity", but it is something that is super special and only happens once in a child's life. Today, Aaron and I brought our children to the church and before God to let it be known that we will be raising them in a Christian home. We are going to try the best we can to show God's love to them and teach them that Jesus is in fact "the way, the truth and the life." It was a beautiful dedication. One of the reasons I know we are right where God wants us is our church. It's been a long time since I have felt completely welcome in a church and these people made me feel that way from day one. I wouldn't have wanted our kids dedicated anywhere else.

Activity Grade:

6. Baby Dedication - A+
    This is an activity that I am so happy that we were able to do for our kids. It is also an activity that we won't be doing again. At least not for Dominick and Brenda.

The Rest of Our Day

   It didn't end there for us. It was also the churches anniversary, so they had a special lunch after the service. Then, Brenda had a birthday tea party to go to for one of her soccer friends.
Tea Please.

She got her face painted.

The girls were so cute at their tea party.

They even decorated cupcakes.

     Dominick was there, too. He didn't drink tea, but he sure was cute.

Was that all? Nope. After the tea party we met back up with our church friends at the lake for a baptismal service. It was a very fulfilling Sunday. Even with all the activity that was our day, my favorite part was hearing Dominick laugh for the very first time. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Day #3

Activity - No Mess Painting

This activity started with just Brenda, but I soon realized that it was something that Dominick could be a part of, too. I put paper in a ziplock bag with paint and taped the paper to the table. Brenda seemed to like it once she figured out that she could write letters in the paint and that the paint wouldn't get her messy. She hates getting messy when she's inside. Outside, she's in the mud puddles and dirt piles, but inside she likes to be clean. On Dominick's, I had him stand on it to get his feet prints and wrote his name on it. I was surprised that the prints stayed once I took it out of the bag.
We practiced letters and words in the paint.
Activity Grade:

5. No Mess Painting - B
     Once again, this was more fun for me than it was for Brenda. She was only interested in it for a couple minutes. I'm going to have to find some less artsy activities to keep her attention. Dominick didn't really care either way, but I got a really cool picture out of it. :)

 The rest of our day was good. We took Brenda to her soccer game, but it was quickly rained out. Then we went to lunch with a friend of ours and his beautiful little girl.

Friday, September 27, 2013

365 Days of Fun - Day #2

Brenda's Activity - Johnny Appleseed Hat

 Today we stayed with the Johnny Appleseed theme, because I thought Brenda would really enjoy this activity. Well, she enjoyed wearing the hat. Since she can't use scissors very well yet, I had to cut everything for her and I had to help her put it together. I basically did everything. The only thing she was really able to do was trace her name which I think she did an awesome job at. After we finished the hat, she watched the Disney cartoon about Johnny Appleseed.

 Showing off her new hat.

 Dominick's Activity - Tummy Textures

                                                                                                                                                         Dominick's activity was much more of a success. I gathered a bunch of baby toys and touched them to his tummy, so he could feel the texture of the toys

Brenda loved helping with this activity. I think she enjoyed this more than her own activity.
Dominick's favorite was the owl, because it vibrated. I'm guessing it tickled.

 Activity grades:

3. Johnny Appleseed Hat - D+
      The final product was fun, but making it was not. I think this would have been better for an older kid. I might try this again in a few years.

4. Tummy Textures - A-
      Another good activity for a 3 month old. It was simple and gave us a way to play with his toys before he can really play with his toys.

 My kids and I had a pretty good day. We did other things besides the activities. Brenda's favorite thing was hide and seek. We also pretended to be a cat and practiced hunting and pouncing on a stuffed bunny. Dominick is a total doll baby. Here are my favorite pictures of him today: