Sunday, December 21, 2014

One Special Christmas - Book Review & Craft

One Special Christmas was written by M. Christina Butler and illustrated by Tina Macnaughton.

This sweet book is a touch and feel book.  The red hat and thread feel like velvet.

When Santa gets sick on Christmas Eve, little Hedgehog is asked to help deliver the presents.
Little Hedgehog dons his red toboggan and sets off to help...
along the way, the sled crashes and Hedgehog loses all the presents.

With the help of his friends, he uses his little red hat as a bag to help gather up all the presents.
Once the friends and bag of gifts are back in the sled, they set off on an adventure.
The hat catches on a branch and it starts to unravel.

As the hat unravels, the presents start to fall out of the bag.

Luckily, their good friend Badger gathers the gifts with the help of the red string.

All the presents get delivered just in time for Christmas.

Little Hedgehog was happy to help Santa, but also sad that his new hat was ruined.

But, his little furry friends weren't the only ones who got a special gift that night....
Hedgehog did too...

a brand new red toboggan from Santa.

For this little craft you will need:
a toboggan/hat template
construction paper
red yarn

glue the template to a sheet of construction paper

Spread glue all over the template and glue the yarn to the hat 

easy and super cute craft to go along with the equally cute holiday book.

*Disclosure: I was given the book One Special Christmas for review purposes only.  The opinions and craft are my own and were not influenced by Tiger Tales.

Saturday, December 06, 2014

Christmas Elf Craft

nathan's christmas elf
made with scrapbook paper
you will need
several different sheets of christmas scrapbook paper
 one paper plate
pink or flesh colored paint
two wiggly eyes
one button
one pom pom
red yarn
scrap ribbon

we used a square for the body
and painted a paper plate for the face
we cut the inner circle of the plate for the face
and used the edges of the plate to cut out pointy ears
then, we used a sheet of scrapbook paper to make a hat
and a fun elf collar
we also cut two long strips of each paper
for the arms and the legs

we folded the arms and legs in a zigzag pattern

we painted the plate pink
and glued on the ears, the eyes, a button for the nose,
and some yarn for the mouth

then we glued all the pieces together

we added a pompom and a cute festive ribbon to the hat

and another small rectangle to the square as a belt

it came out super cute!!!

see, i just knew hoarding all that old christmas and holiday
scrapbook paper would pay off eventually - hehehe!

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Popsicle Christmas Tree Ornaments

easy peasy popsicle stick tree ornaments

we used various sizes of green craft sticks

and various odds and ends (beads, sequins, buttons, pom poms and ribbon

I think this is pretty much self explanatory - easy to make.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Painting Christmas Trees

We painted these Christmas trees with pompoms.

you will need:

Christmas tree cut outs
various paint colors
clothes pins
(attach the pompoms to the clothespin)

this was super fun
I made one too.

Dip the clothespin/pompom into the paint and dab on the paper.

we also printed out some candy canes and stockings to paint.

we got the templates at

We are off to a super fun start of a whole month of holiday crafty fun....
hope you'll continue to join us!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Holiday Traditions

25 Days - 25 Books
Tomorrow is December 1st, where did the time go? Honestly, it feels like we just celebrated Christmas a few months ago and here we are doing it again.
With the beginning of December on the horizon, I'm sharing one of my favorite holiday traditions.
We started doing this a few years ago and have been doing it ever since.
Gather all your children's Christmas or holiday related books
If you don't have very many, visit your local library and borrow some.  Every year, we have been buying new ones, so fortunately, we don't need to borrow as many.
Wrap them in some festive paper.

If you use a countdown to Christmas or an advent calendar, this makes a fun activity for your whole family. 
You can incorporate crafts or activities (such as light up night, or your town's Christmas parade, a family movie, baking cookies, etc.) and share some great story time with your children.

Each night have your children choose one book to open and read it together. 
Even though my children are old enough to read on their own, we still enjoy this little ritual.

Need some ideas for fun activities or crafts, check out the Kids Arts and Crafts page.
'tis the season!

Friday, November 28, 2014

**Sponsor Spotlight**

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They have 25% OFF the entire store for 2 days only!!

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Be sure to check out their awesome Christmas Cloth Store as well.....Christmas fabric, patterns and kits, all in one place to make it more convenient for you.

Happy Shopping!!!

*Terms: Coupon code not required, product prices will show at marked down price. Offer excludes clubs, programs, pre-orders and purchase of gift certificates. 

**Please note that I am affiliated with Fat Quarter Shop

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ten Books to Celebrate Thanksgiving with Kids

Here are some super cute Thanksgiving day books to share with your children.

Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes.  

Everyone knows that Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks.  This book is such a perfect book to share with your children.  Children will learn to be thankful for turkey, hugs, and more, but most of all their family.  Thanksgiving is the perfect time to for children to express and share gratitude for the people and things in their lives. 

A Turkey for Thanksgiving by Eve Bunting

Mr. and Mrs. Moose invite all their animal friends for Thanksgiving dinner and the only one missing is Turkey. When they set out to find him, Turkey is quaking with fear because he doesn't realize that his hosts want him at their table, not on it. 

10 Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston

"Looky!" says a silly turkey swinging from a vine.  Gobble gobble wibble wobble.  Whoops! Now there are nine."  Girls and boys will gobble up this hilarious counting story about ten goofy turkeys roller-skating on a fence, doing a noodle dance, and more.  A delightful counting book for children.

Thanksgiving is for Giving Thanks by Margaret Sutherland

In this colorful book, a child shares his list all the things for which he is thankful, especially at Thanksgiving.

The Night Before Thanksgiving by Natasha Wing.

Follow along as the feast is prepared, cousins are greeted, and everyone gathers around the table for the fabulous Thanksgiving dinner filled with yummy food and wonderful family time.

Balloons Over Broadway by Melissa Sweet.

This is a story about puppeteer, Tony Sarg, the inventor of the huge helium filled balloons that everyone loves to see at the Macy's Parade.   In brilliant collage illustrations, Caldecott Honor artist Melissa Sweet tells the story of Tony Sarg, capturing his genius, his dedication, his zest for play, and his long-lasting gift to America.

T is for Turkey by Tanya Lee Stone.

Join in as the elementary school puts on a play that tells the story of the first Thanksgiving from A - Z.  Kids will celebrate Thanksgiving from Harvest to Pilgrims to Turkey and enjoy the colorful pictures as they read along.

Cranberry Thanksgiving by Wende and Harry Devlin. 

Maggie and her grandmother each invite a guest to their Thanksgiving dinner.  The dinner includes Grandmother's own cranberry bread, made from a secret recipe. 

The book even includes Grandma's secret cranberry bread recipe...yummy!

I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie by Alison Jackson.

A fun Thanksgiving take on a classic tale (I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly).  The old lady swallows a pie, a squash, a turkey and more....she grows bigger and bigger with each thing she swallows.  Kids love the rhyming verse of the story as well as the bright, colorful illustrations.

One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims by B.G. Hennessy

A great counting book for children.  Ten little pilgrims and ten little Wampanoag children are getting ready for their first Thanksgiving feast.  The pilgrim children hunt for geese and ducks, while the Wampanoag children gather berries and nuts and dig for clams.  When dinner is ready, all the children enjoy turkey, pumpkin, cornbread and cranberry stuffing.  Before they eat, they give thanks.  This story has a wonderful rhythmic text and beautiful illustrations (by Lynne Cravath).  Perfect for young children learning about the history of Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 14, 2014

14 on the fourteenth.

1.  I'm afraid of heights, sometimes the dark and the boogey man.

2.  I love subbing and thought I would be okay with subbing once I got my degree, but the more I sub the more I'm itching to have my own classroom.

3.  It's no surprise that when I was a child I loved playing "school" and pretending to be a teacher.  I would line my dolls and stuffed animals up and teach them.

4.  Even though I'm not teaching yet, I've been building up my hoarding stash of school supplies.

5.  I often have a hard time accepting compliments from people - why? I have no idea, but it probably has something to do with thinking I wasn't good enough when I was a kid...and my low self esteem.

6.  I am seriously afraid of failure.

7.  I see a therapist....and I'm not ashamed to admit it.  It's good for the soul.

8.  I love my church, there are so many activities for all ages...the worship service is wonderful and the praise band that plays and sings each week is incredible.

9.  I really, really, really hate math.

10. I have horrible organizational skills...seriously! One would think a mother of many would have organization down to a science...but, uh, not me.

11. I have ADHD - which might explain the lack of organization and the potential hoarding ;)

12. I have so many post-its that my post-its have post-its and yet, I still forget stuff.

13. I swear A LOT, but I try not to.

14. I hate surprises:
            I always sneak to the last few pages of a book for the ending
                      I read spoilers about my favorite shows
                                I always debate fast forwarding a movie to watch the ending
                                         I'm a big time snooper when it comes to presents

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

festive fall tree

this tree was so fun to make.

you will need:
white construction paper
brown paint
a paint brush
red, green, yellow, and orange paint
four shower puffs

first paint your child's hand and arm (up to the elbow)

then press down on the paper....this will be the tree.

next dip one of the puffs into the orange paint
and dab it on the paper (at the top of the tree for leaves)

continue using all the different colors of paint.

you can even use some brown paint too (since fall leaves are also brown)

this was such a fun project.  it came out great and looks fabulous too.