Tuesday, July 22, 2014

curbside treasure

from this....

to this....

so, i was driving down the road one day when i saw this dresser sitting on the curb with a "free" sign on it.

i figured, with ten people, we could always use another dresser and well...free is free
provided it's not in too terrible of a shape.

we scooped it up and took it home.

i stripped it and sanded it
took all the old ugly hardware off of it
and then painted it black

i bought new hardware for the drawers and a knob for the cabinet.

however, i had a heck of a time finding hinges for the cabinet door.
they were a specific type and they only came in a few colors.

so i ended up buying some chrome spray paint and painted the old ones.

put it together and it came out rather nicely, i think

for a free curbside treasure.

i spent $22 for the hardware and $4 on the spray paint

total cost 26 bucks.

not too shabby, eh?

i think this old thing still has a long life ahead of it....i love how it turned out.

Friday, July 11, 2014

sunshiny rainbow mobile

i saw something similar to this on pinterest and thought it was cute,
so we made one too with our own spin on it.

all you need is a paper plate painted yellow and cut in half
clothes pins, painted yellow
google eyes
streamers (or crepe paper, whatever you call it)
a ribbon to hang it from

first paint the paper plates and clothes pins yellow
cut the plate in half.

when the paint is dry glue the ribbon and the streamers to the inside of the plates.
we doubled up the streamers so they would look fuller.

we turned them over and made smiley faces with google eyes and a marker

staple the two plates together and then place the clothes pins around to make a sun

super cute and easy.
the perfect summer time craft.
just a wee bit time consuming since we had to wait for the paint to dry.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

fizzy sidewalk chalk paint

we recently made some sidewalk chalk paint
and to make it more interesting
we made it fizzy too.

sidewalk chalk paint is super easy to make
and there are many ways to make it.
it's also super cheap and fun entertainment.

I like to take equal parts cornstarch and water and add food dye.
I make lots of different colors to make it more fun and interesting.

we use foam brushes too, but you can use any kind of brush or even your hands.

the fizzy part comes when spray it with vinegar.
the paint gets bubbly and fizzy and if you listen carefully, you can even hear it crackle.

some little one loved the spray bottle...

you can see the difference the spray makes if you look at the first (summer) pic,
which we did not spray....and this pic that was sprayed with the vinegar.

the lettering is more thicker here, than the other one.

fizzy or not....

sidewalk chalk paint will probably always be a favorite around here.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

sew what? selfie....

The Fat Quarter Shop recently launched their first ever Fat Quarter Shop T-shirt - Sew What? and to spread the love, they are hosting a Sew What Selfie Contest on social media!
The contest begins today, July 8, 2014 and to enter, all you have to do is take an awesome selfie with your Sew What shirt, hashtag  #sewwhatselfie, and tag @fatquartershop on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and/or Google+. Wherever you post, that will count as one entry, and they will find your posts by the #sewwhatselfie hashtag! 

Two winners will be chosen every month from July through September and the winners will receive a $100 Fat Quarter Shop gift card - how awesome is that?!?

So here's a recap on what you have to do to enter!

  1. Take a selfie with your shirt using your camera, phone, ipad, or whatever you would like to use
  2. Post your picture on your social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and/or Google+
  3. Use the tag #sewwhatselfie and tag @fatquartershop , so they can find your picture!
.....but first, let me take a selfie

What??? You don't have a Sew What T-shirt yet? 

Then order yours today! 

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Rainbow Milk Experiment

Nathan...."woahhh, this is awesome!!

you will need:
shallow dish
food color
dish soap
and a q tip

pour some milk into a shallow dish, add a few drops of food coloring to the sides of the dish

add a drop of dish soap in the middle and watch it swirl...you can also use a q tip dipped in dish soap to make things move around and swirl them more....Nathan loved it.

Nathan loved it so much that he did this over and over using different colors.

how is works....

Milk is mostly water but it also contains vitamins, minerals, proteins, and tiny droplets of fat suspended in solution. Fats and proteins are sensitive to changes in the surrounding solution (the milk).
The secret of the bursting colors is the chemistry of that tiny drop of soap. Dish soap, because of its bipolar characteristics (nonpolar on one end and polar on the other), weakens the chemical bonds that hold the proteins and fats in solution. The soap's polar, or hydrophilic (water-loving), end dissolves in water, and its hydrophobic (water-fearing) end attaches to a fat globule in the milk. This is when the fun begins.
The molecules of fat bend, roll, twist, and contort in all directions as the soap molecules race around to join up with the fat molecules. During all of this fat molecule gymnastics, the food coloring molecules are bumped and shoved everywhere, providing an easy way to observe all the invisible activity. As the soap becomes evenly mixed with the milk, the action slows down and eventually stops.
Try adding another drop of soap to see if there's any more movement. If so, you discovered there are still more fat molecules that haven't found a partner at the big color dance. Add another drop of soap to start the process again.

Check out Steve's website for other cool science experiments for kids.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Liquid Rainbow

rainbow in a jar

we found this book at the library

how to make a liquid rainbow by lori shores

you will need the following items:

1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup blue dish soap
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup rubbing alcohol
3 mugs
1 quart jar
red, blue, yellow and green food coloring.

Start by pouring a 1/2 cup corn syrup into a mug.  
stir in 1 drop of blue and 1 drop of red food coloring

pour the liquid into the glass jar

next slowly pour 1/2 cup of blue dish soap into the jar

mix 2 drops of green food coloring to 1/2 cup water

tilt the jar and slowly pour the green water inside.

next, slowly pour the 1/2 cup of olive oil into the jar

in another mug, stir 2 drops of red food coloring into a 1/2 cup rubbing alcohol

tilt the jar and slowly pour in the mixture

then, stand back and take a look

do you see the rainbow?

just a bit of a warning, you really do need to stand back or across the room.
if you look at the jar close up, you won't see it as clearly.

how it works...
liquids are made up of very small particles and how tightly they are packed together 
determines the density of the liquid.

for example, the dish soap floats on top of the corn syrup, because the soap is less dense.
you slowly poured the water in so that it wouldn't mix with the soap.
water is less dense than the soap, so it floated on top, etc.

pretty cool, huh?
we thought so too.

Club Mom

 It's that time of year where the boredom starts to kick in...
school's out
friends are on vacation
baseball season is over

If you are like me you are always looking for fun ways to entertain the kids...although back when I was a kid, we entertained ourselves ---- what the heck is wrong with kids today???

I remember when we got kicked out the door in the morning and didn't come back home until it was well after dark or we were hungry and thirsty...but most of the time we either packed a lunch of snacks and drinks or we ate at whatever neighborhood kid's house that had food.

We made up our own adventures of
riding our bikes,
splashing and wading through the creeks (or cricks?),
having lemonade (or koolaid) stands,
building forts out of old lumber and blankets,
rolling around in the grass and poison ivy,
playing ball with the neighborhood kids,
swinging on old rusty metal swingsets,
climbing on hay bales in a neighbor's barn,
drinking water out of and spraying each other with garden hoses

ahhh, the good old days.

at any rate, since today's kids aren't nearly as adventurous as their parents were...we continue to look for different and new ideas to entertain them, until they drive us crazy and we lock them outside ;) 

just kidding....

well, maybe

that's why I introduced my little kids to Club Mom.

We spend a few weeks here and there (usually not consistent, because we are always busy doing something) throughout the summer making crafts, doing projects, visiting new places, etc.

I call it Club Mom.

If you are looking for fun things to do, then be sure to check back often throughout the summer and see all the fun, cool things we have planned.

Last year's adventures can be found in a page tab on the sidebar.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Homemade Play Dough

we made some homemade play dough a few days ago.
the kids loved it.

it was pretty easy to make...
all you need is:

2 cups plain flour (all purpose)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup salt
2 tablespoons cream of tartar
Up to 1.5 cups boiling water (adding in increments until it feels just right)
food coloring

we doubled the recipe and made


  • Mix the flour, salt, cream of tartar and oil in a large mixing bowl
  • Stir continuously until it becomes a sticky, combined dough
  • Allow it to cool down then take it out of the bowl and knead it vigorously for a couple of minutes until all of the stickiness has gone.
  • add a few drops of food coloring while you are kneading the dough (yes, your hands will look like a rainbow for a few days - unless you wear some rubber gloves.
  • If it is still a little sticky, just add a little more flour.
  • store in an air tight container.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Hands off My Honey!

This spring one of my college courses was about teaching emerging literacy to preschoolers
As part of this class we had to design and present to a preschool class two lesson plans.

My first one was about retelling a story
I used the book
There Was an Old Lady who Swallowed a Fly.
(I blogged about this activity last month).

My second lesson plan was on listening (skills).

I chose the book Hands off My Honey!
by Jane Chapman.  Illustrated by Tim Warnes.

Hands off My Honey! is a fun book.
Bear has a giant jar of honey and he is NOT going to share it.
The hare brothers, mole, and mouse all plan a sneak attack to steal some honey.
While the mouse and rabbits are able to stay quiet, the mole keeps tripping and talking.
Bear catches them and while he is distracted by the mole,
the mouse steals some of the honey.

Oh No!
Does the bear get angry?
What does he do to the other animals?
Hmmmm, guess you'll have to read the book
and find out for yourself.  ;)

I read the book to the children and then we played a fun game.

I gathered the children in a big circle and chose one child to represent the bear.

The "bear" pretended to sleep while the children chanted the following...

"Isn't it funny 
how bears like honey,
buzz, buzz, buzz
I wonder why he does.
Go to sleep Mr. Bear
don't peep Mr. Bear."

While the "bear" is sleeping,
one of the children must sneak up and steal his "honey pot"

To make the"honey pot", I used a small coffee can.
I wrapped it with yellow construction paper
and wrote "honey" on it.
Then I placed a bunch of jingle bells inside the can.

After the child steals the honey pot,
they must shake it behind their back to make a noise.

All the children hide their hands behind their backs
and say

"Wake up Mr. Bear
someone stole your honey."

And the "bear" must remember where he heard the sound and find the jar of honey.

I really enjoyed this activity and I think the preschoolers that I worked with did as well.
Each child got to take a turn being the bear and hiding the honey.

They wanted to keep playing the game, because they had so much fun with it.

*Disclosure: I received a copy of the book Hands off My Honey from Tiger Tales for review purposes only.  The opinions herein are my own and were not influenced in any way.

**I got the idea for this activity from another blog (which I can't remember right now - sorry!), but the book I chose to go with it was my choice.

jelly bean art

Nathan and I read the book
Jack and the Jelly Bean Stalk
over Easter break.
(and yes, I'm just now blogging about it).

It's a sweet (literally) version of the original story about Jack and the Bean Stalk.

not everyone loves jelly beans...so what's a kid to do when someone gives them a bag of jelly beans?
they make a beautiful art mosaic.

just to be clear, Nathan does love jelly beans, but we used some for this super cute fish.

The book was written by Rachael Mortimer
and illustrated by Liz Pichon.

It follows the tale of the original Jack and the Bean Stalk, but it has a fun twist.
Instead of magic beans, this story has magic jelly beans.

The jelly beans have many delicious flavors (except for the smelly old sock one - blah).

chocolate chip
apple pie
cotton candy
chocolate pudding
french fries

Jack's mother is angry when she finds out that he sold their cow for the beans 
and she throws them out the window.

In the morning, Jack discovers the beans grew.
As he tasted the different flavors, he climbed the stalk.

At the top he meets a goose and eventually a giant.
Jack saves the goose from being dinner, by offering the giant some jelly beans

But the goose was hungry too and he stole some of the giant's beans
this made the giant very angry and he chased Jack and the goose down the stalk.

And of course the stalk broke under the weight of the giant.

Jack, his mother and the goose lived happily ever after
dining on yummy jelly beans.

Like I said, a sweet version of an old tale.

*Disclosure: I received a copy of Jack and the Jelly Bean Stalk from Tiger Tales Books for review purposes only.  The opinions herein are my own and were not influenced in any way.