Whether the weather is uninviting, someone feels out of sorts, or it’s an inside play day, mommies sometimes need a “go-to” for an activity. I’m creating a jar of activity sticks, and they’ll be simple: craft sticks with a different activity handwritten on each stick.
Here is my list, a work in progress, that is primarily geared towards preschoolers. What would you add to it?
Activity Sticks Ideas:
ABC Mouse (online subscription)
Bath time / Water play
Bean bag toss
Build a fort
Hopscotch (on porch or painter’s tape on the kitchen floor)
I Spy – books, pictures, in the house
Movie and popcorn
Musical instruments bag
Play store (cash register, make play money)
Puppets, paper bag
Sing silly songs
Tape, double-stick (art collage, etc)
“Tinker” box (random collection of stuff)
You Tube (songs, nursery rhymes, animals)
I have a Pinterest board with many indoor activities. Please share what activities your little ones enjoy! 🙂
Ah, the joy of autumn: crisp leaves, bright colors, fall festivals, and more. It’s something I look forward to annually, so I requested a copy of The Berenstain Bears’ Harvest Festival by Mike Berenstain to review.
Full of colorful pictures depicting the beauty and fun of fall, the Bear Family attend the gathering at Farmer Ben’s where they enjoy apple picking, pumpkin picking, a hayride, and meal while giving thanks for the harvest and their blessings. Our 4-year-old son enjoyed the story and asked if we could “do that too” as the children picked apples and more.
Recommended for ages 4-8, I would say ages 4-6 as the story is nice but light. It is a good addition to seasonal readings and focusing on being grateful to God for the firstfruits and blessings of the day, but it isn’t a story I would add to our personal library to read often. The end of the book includes three questions to discuss and two activity suggestions.
In exchange for my honest review, I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Book Look Bloggers program.
April 8th used to be another day on the calendar to me. It was the day after my Grandma’s birthday, but held no other significance — until two years ago.
In 2012, April 8th was Easter, the day my “Cute Little Mama” moved on Home, and my “new normal” began.
My Dad has a healthy perspective to recognize her passing on Easter and not concern himself as much with the exact date. And, really, what better day than Easter? I agree, but my mind and heart hold 2 days since Easter changes annually.
I will not dwell here today on how much I miss her. Instead, in honoring her memory, I will share Part 2 of my list of things I’m thankful for about my mom. (You can read Part 1 here.)
Thank you for:
being excited about my surprise visits
raising me to help others
raising me to notice when others may need help
teaching me manners and expecting me to use them
teaching by words and example of how to be a lady
taking me to the library and encouraging my love of reading
attending ceremonies for all the important things and making me feel special for what I earned
celebrating my birthday every year…even in my 30s, offering to order pizza
being so excited when I told you I was getting married
helping me choose my wedding gown
taking me to Girl Scouts and helping me earn my badges
sewing clothes for me
giving me your opinion, upon request, knowing I’d probably choose the opposite
letting me go to Grandma’s for 5 summers in a row, across the ocean and then the U.S.A.
telling me stories
being overjoyed of my pregnancy and first holding your grandson
thinking of us and buying goodies
telling me you threw Gone with the Wind across the room when you finished it. (That freed me to do the same with a few, too.)
Fluttering wings, delicate landings, pretty colors – those are three things that came to mind about butterflies until a year and a half ago. I’ve always liked them, but they’re even more special now.
I started noticing many butterflies around me. It was April, so spring was here, and butterflies were expected. The number of butterflies, how often they arrived, and that they stayed with me (and us) represented something much more: Mom was sending butterflies. She had passed on earlier that month, but she made (and makes) her presence known through butterflies.
There are many stories I could tell, but this one is the most recent.
Two dear friends surprised me this Christmas with unexpected, touching gifts. At different times they presented me with a thoughtful keepsake I never considered looking for and purchasing: a butterfly ornament for our Christmas tree. They are lovely and touching. One is a deep purple, which is my favorite color. The other has many colors, but mainly turquoise, which was Mom’s favorite color. The fact that Christmas was Mom’s favorite holiday adds to the sentiment.
I cannot look at the ornaments without tearing up, but I’m thankful for the ladies who chose to unexpectedly gift me with them.
As many of you know, my dear, sweet, cute little mama passed on in April 2012. She was my best friend, and I miss her every day. Being in the middle of the holidays is especially difficult as Christmas was her favorite time of year. The missing is getting easier in that it’s not constantly raw, but sometimes the reality of my “new normal” slaps me in the face. I took some time the other evening and wrote a list of memories and things she did for which I am thankful. Here is part of the list in no particular order.
Thank you, Mom, for:
choosing to be a homemaker
letting me be myself
believing in me
being my best friend, especially as an adult
telling me “no”
letting me share your bed when Dad traveled, even though I probably hogged the covers
teaching me how to put together jigsaw puzzles
teaching me how to play Mah Jongg
enjoying margaritas, red wine, and strawberry shortcake
being a good cook
teaching me to cook
believing in the inherent goodness of people
being patient with me
understanding my emotions
reading alone and together
taking me to piano lessons every week for years and treating me to a Blizzard on the way
being happy to hear my voice when I called you
More of this list to come at a later time . . .
(Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net)