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Author: Tricia

I'm the only girl in my home, sharing activities, experiments and other fun ways for moms to connect with their kids

Alphabet Sensory Game

Sweet Pea found the letter magnets the other day and proceeded to put as many as could fit on the refrigerator. He was able to name all of them!

After taking many down he created a picture out of the alphabet for me. To be honest, I couldn’t tell what it was, but I gushed all over it anyway. He then started moving the letters around, stacking some on top of others until it looked like this!

Then he disappeared. I thought the fun was over, but he returned with a blindfold. We proceeded to take turns blindfolding each other and trying to find the letter the other called out, using only our sense of touch, feeling for angles and curves we knew were in the letter we were trying to find. I was pretty impressed he was able to find a few just by touch!

This was such a fun game, recognition through sense of touch!

Letter R is for Rochester Museum and Science Center

Sometimes when reinforcing a letter learned in preschool we take a little field trip to a place starting with that letter or in some other way related. When reinforcing the letter R, 5 year old Sweet Pea and I took a little trip to RMSC (Rochester Museum and Science Center). He loves that place! And evidently he really likes the letter R, because he keeps searching out items that start with letter R just about anywhere we go!


We spent a few hours checking out the exhibits, and after finding so many round items as part of the exhibits I asked him why we might be seeing so many. He thought for a minute and then said ‘Wheels and gears are part of this energy exhibit, Mommy,” and he was right.

We spent a lot of time at his favorite exhibit – making rivers in the sand and water tub…see the big picture at the bottom of the post! Who cannot love that exhibit?!

We began noticing that almost every activity within the exhibit exploring energy had a circle of some sort as a very integral piece. There were bike wheels, gears, cranks…all urging us to try to understand how energy is made or how it is converted from sunlight to power. Sweet Pea was intrigued. At least until he saw the next exhibit!

I’m finding that Sweet Pea is getting really good at his beginning word sounds. He’s also seeming to make the connection between saying it in the real world and recognizing it in writing, too, as evidenced when he was seeing the signs at the museum. He would point out the letters, and I would say the word. The way he repeated it with that first sound being stuttered…I could see the ‘ah-ha’ face sometimes!

Letter R at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com

Magnet spelling

Camp Slop had a great idea on their blog a while ago. I loved the idea and so did Sweet Pea! If you haven’t been to Camp Slop before you should visit – great ideas!

Based on their idea, I made cards with a simple picture on them and made outlines of Leapfrog Fridge Phonics magnets and the appropriate letters below. I started with the word families ‘at’ and ‘en’, and included words like CAT, HAT, BAT, DEN and MEN.

I simply showed Cutie Pie what I had made and put them by the fridge. He played with them for a few minutes, then went on to something else. However, him playing with them for that short a time was enough to get Sweet Pea interested!

Sweet Pea likes to play with these when we are in the kitchen getting dinner ready. As a five year old he knows his letters and he loves matching games, so this is just all around fun for him! Sometimes I cover up the picture to see if he can match the letters.

This is pretty simple for our 7 year old reader, but for now his occasional interest is enough to get Sweet Pea engaged, so it works!

This was so simple to throw together…give it a try for your emerging reader!

Silly Pictures (Sneak in fun fine motor work)

Hubby has some activity ideas that I would never have thought of suggesting, simply because I don’t have talent in the same areas.


The other night we had a few minutes before bedtime and all the boys wanted to do was wrestle with their daddy, but daddy suggested drawing together. A few minutes later I see them sitting at the table with their markers and pencils and their heads low in concentration.

Hubby has folded his 11×14″ paper just above center, then folded it again, sort of like an accordion fold. He draws a picture as if it’s one sheet of paper with no fold on it. Then he unfolds it again and finishes the picture in the center. (The above two pics are his creation.)

He tells the boys he drew something exciting and shows them the small picture. He says, “Want to see something exciting?” Then he pulls the top and bottom of the paper away from each other (opening the fold) and they see the surprise!

The boys are so loving this that Sweet Pea tries to make his own, complete with asking how to spell a word to add to it!

How can you not love this activity?

What activities does your hubby do that totally engage your kids in ways you can’t ever attempt yourself?

What are you wearing?

Have you heard of NoVae clothing? [Affiliate link] I love checking this website out when I need clothing, because they always have such a nice selection of modest ladies clothes that is perfect for a mom…not dowdy, but trendy! And it’s always full of items that are chasing-after-kids friendly!

I’ve purchased a few things from NoVae and have appreciated the price-quality ratio. The prices are low enough that I can afford cute items, and the quality is such that I don’t mind spending the money on something that feels like it will last!

As a Christian mom I sometimes have a hard time finding modest clothing that fits nice, is affordable, and is easy to chase my boys in. These are the perfect reasons for me to share this company with you, because I figure since you are reading my blog we are probably in similar situations!

I’ve parked their button with a link to the website over there on the right, if you’d like to check it out!

Please note I am an affiliate with NoVae Clothing. I may receive compensation at no additional charge to you if you purchase through a link I have provided. The cost is no different than if you were to purchase directly by going to their website, however, it helps this girl make a little money to support this blog!

R is for Round

We searched the house for things that are round, because round starts with R!

This is something that happened all throughout our week. Whenever we saw something that was round, we shared it!

Like when we were painting (using toilet paper rolls to make Round circles on our paper) we used Round cups to hold our paint, and Sweet Pea let me know they were Round!

We also jumped on the trampoline a bit, because it’s been Rainy outside and Sweet Pea needed to blow off some steam. He let me know the trampoline was Round!

We Rolled, we Raced our little cars, we did a lot of Reading. We talked about left and Right. We did a lot of Running outside!

I love reinforcing letter sounds this way!

C is for Cars

I’ve been reviewing letters that Sweet Pea has already learned, just to make sure he keeps track of them! One way I am doing this is by coming up with words starting with that letter (which is something I’ve integrated into his letter learning all along)! Many times this leads to thinking about a certain activity, and it did this time, too!

Cars, car tracks, crash, catch, cat, can, cart, castle, cotton candy, cut, color, cousins

After letting Sweet Pea plan his morning one day we settled into playing with his Hot Wheels tracks and cars. He did a great job assembling a track and instructing me to build a curvy track. It was so fun to see his brain at work! There certainly were a lot of car crashes, but that’s part of the fun around here!
(Lots of talk about processes and sequences were discussed, too, while constructing our tracks and he was very good at giving me instructions!)
We also assembled a 3D letter C from Mr. Printables. As usual, we tried to think of something to physically attach to the letter C to remind us what it sounds like. Sweet Pea chose pictures of his cousins, since their names start with C and a cotton ball! Perfect!
I don’t think all the counting we did was necessarily attached to the letter C activities of the week, however, we did do a whole lot of it and several times ‘counting’ was brought up as a C word, which seemed to tickle Sweet Pea’s funny bone!
Other letter C activities: painting with cars, candy corn crafts (which we did around Halloween time), cutting practice, road letters
A fun letter C book: Construction Alphabet by Jerry PallottaThis post contains affiliate links

E is for Eggs

Since D is for dinosaurs and E is for eggs, it made sense to bridge the two with a little ‘egg hatching’ activity. Basically, I made baking soda eggs, but I added a little too much water, so they look a little funny!

Would you like to make these, too? It’s quite simple, and fun for any time, not just for learning letters D and E! We actually talked a lot about the letter B with ours, as I had hidden bugs and dinosaurs inside our eggs, even though we don’t usually find bugs in eggs.

Ingredients:Baking Soda
Water
items for inside the eggs
vinegar

Instructions:
Mix baking soda and a bit of water until you get a thick paste. Too much water and your eggs will be watery.
Form a ball and push an item inside, closing up the other side so it resembles an egg.
Place on a plate and set aside to dry – overnight if possible.
When you’re ready use an eye dropper to drop vinegar onto the eggs. They’ll be fizzy and when you use enough vinegar the item inside will be exposed! (this is the fine motor part!)

I challenged my boys by asking them what they thought was inside when we only had a peek at a body part of the bug or dinosaur inside. The boys would then add another drop and see if any other features were exposed and make another guess. They loved it!

(We did try this again with a little less water and the eggs came out great! Of course I didn’t get any pictures of that, though!)

What other ways have you been working with your child to reinforce letter sounds?

Letter R is for Roll

Five year old Sweet Pea and I are still reviewing the alphabet in various ways throughout the week. Letter R was especially fun and lends itself to some experiments! I did, however, remember to include making rainbow milk again! So. Much. Fun. for my kiddos every time we make it!

In the past, our letter R learning was centered around railroads and rainbows. We also did a very short Bible Story concerning the Rich and poor.

This time for a letter R activity Sweet Pea and I tried to discover what does and doesn’t roll and what the objects have in common. This was a really simple experiment to throw together and was fun, so it’s a good one to keep in your ‘rainy day’ arsenal!

Gather your materials – any objects of interest, making sure some will roll, some won’t, and some are cylindrical and some are spherical. (Great vocabulary words, right?)

Set up your experiment area – make a small ramp. We made ours by positioning wood blocks with one end on top of the other, creating a gradual slope.

Pose the question – Will these objects roll down the ramp? Or create a hypothesis about the objects with your child.

Then, have fun experimenting with the objects asking prompting questions during the play.

Activity extensions:
Have discussions about why some objects roll and others don’t.
Come up with a list of what each group has in common.
After we discovered what rolled and tried to roll the objects that didn’t roll a few other ways, Sweet Pea selected toys to try, too!

This was fun for us indoors on a small scale, but if you’d like to integrate gross motor into it, take it outdoors! Last fall we created a small, low ramp outdoors on our driveway with a 2 x 4 (with the 2″ being the height) and a piece of plywood. We tested our outdoor play toys, including rolling a scooter down the ramp (holding it with our hands, not riding it- that wouldn’t be safe!) a whiffle ball, a toy truck, a rock, a tennis racket, chalk, and a bike helmet.

I say this was gross motor, because it required a little more walking and running to get the materials to test, which the boys were happy to do on their own, and to chase after them when they rolled away. I challenged them to try rolling the objects in different ways to see if they could roll if set on the ramp in a different manner.

F is for Foil

Since we’re nearing the end of the school year I’ve been recapping some letters with Sweet Pea as we learn new ones.

Last week we reviewed the letter F. I pulled out the Foil and we made balls, covered bowls and made a foil F (which was subsequently destroyed before I got a picture of it!)

Sweet Pea loved crinkling it and molding it into different shapes. We also tried to paint it and poked holes through it.

Thinking of words that start with F led us to discussing how ‘ph’ can make the ‘F’ sound, so words like phone don’t start with an F, which of course thoroughly confused Sweet Pea!

This also brought up the word Feelings, so we’ve been talking a lot about what others might feel when things happen, but that’s for another post!

Easter Egg Hunting

Easter Egg Hunt at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com

A wonderful woman in our church opened her Christmas tree farm for an Easter breakfast and egg hunt a week or so before Easter. To say the boys had a great experience at their first Easter egg hunt is an understatement! I just had to share, it was so much fun!

http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
Sweet Pea in the maze

The family had converted their hay barn into a hay-bale maze and hid the eggs in all the nooks and crannies made by it. The highest point in the maze was 4 bales high, most of it being 3 bales high. Just high enough that Sweet Pea couldn’t see over the top, but he didn’t seem to mind! Some kids (mine included) loved climbing over some of the lower stacks of bales and investigating the carefully constructed tunnels. (Don’t worry, there were safety precautions taken and many adults around in case something happened – normally this would be a major no-no on a farm!)

Egg hunting at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
See all the eggs, Mommy!

Each age group was called in and given a few minutes to hunt before the next older group was allowed in. The look on the children’s’ faces was precious! I even got in on the action helping the boys find eggs as some were really well hidden. It was a fun morning for all of us!

I am so appreciative when people give so lovingly of their time and belongings. And I’m looking forward to more fun experiences like this with this loving lady! Thank you, Mrs. W!

Spring Break for us

Are your schools on Spring Break? Ours are. That means I’ve got my guys home with me all week (and last Friday, too!)

It also means you won’t find me on the blog this week. It’s no secret that I don’t post according to an editorial calendar or very far in advance, although that’s what I’m moving towards. It helps me keep the fun and learning I share current and real.

So, what’s current and real in our lives? Spring Break! You won’t find us on a beach, or at some huge theme park…that’s not our style.


You’ll find us at the zoo…

Learning to ride bikes….

And just doing everyday things like practicing our reading…

Enjoy your week, and have a wonderful Easter, however it is you celebrate our Risen Lord!

Ten Things I Love About You

*This post contains affiliate links which, at no additional cost to you, may result in my being compensated by your clicking on or purchasing through the links provided.

Ten Things I Love About You, by Daniel Kirk, is a new book in our library. So new that we were the first ones to check it out! The boys love it!

It’s a sweet book about two friends who really like each other. One has a hard time not interrupting the other while trying to make a list of reasons they like the other so much. It sounds aggravating, but the end is so sweet.


I had in mind to work with the boys making a list of Ten Things I Love About Daddy one day when he seemed particularly frustrated, but just wasn’t able to get time by myself with them to complete the task. I was feeling badly about it trying to figure out how I could weasel some time with them each alone, when 7 year old Cutie Pie came up to me and gave me his list of Ten Things I Love About Mommy. To say my heart melted is an understatement!

I just love the idea of this activity. This would be a great activity for the youngest kiddos (with a little assistance) all the way up to the adult reading it to them! Your list could be as few or as many reasons and for anyone, and would be so very appreciated!

Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about Hubby. We’ve got something else in the works for him!

*Mom is the Only Girl participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. By clicking on a link and making a purchase, at no additional cost to you, I may or may not be compensated for your purchase.

Four Scavenger Hunt Ideas for Preschoolers

Yesterday I posted about a simple LEGO activity I engaged 5 year old Sweet Pea with last week. Today I’m sharing a few scavenger hunt ideas for the under 5 crowd.

A couple of years ago a mom’s group mom put together a scavenger hunt for the under 5 crowd.

It was basically finding certain spots along a paved path and stopping to place a sticker on that spot on the map. Then you followed the map to the next spot, which was the next spot along the path. 

It was very simple, yet exciting enough for the little ones. All of the clues as to where to stop were in rhyme and using a little pirate lingo. At the end was the treasure – pirate popcorn!

This was so clever. I know I never could have thought of something like this on my own, so thought I’d share! I wish I had a picture!

There are other simple scavenger hunt ideas for the under 5 crowd and here are just a few you can put together quickly with no maps needed (although you could print out cards, like I did up there in that picture):

  • Find x number of toys
  • Find x number of (color) toys
  • Find things that start with (letter)

Like I said just a few ideas for you to pull out of your hat when you need one! There are seriously so many different things you can include in a scavenger hunt!

LEGO Book-Character Building


*This post contains affiliate links, where, at no additional cost to you, I may receive compensation for your clicking on a link.

I remember a few years ago there was a blog hop of sorts that included doing a craft after reading a book with your child. Maybe it’s still going on?
The craft would be somehow related to a character in the book, or go along with the theme of it. I think I tried this a few times with my boys, but they were never really excited about it, which is probably why I cannot remember what the linky is called. Help me if you know it, I can’t for the life of me figure out what to search for to find it!
LEGO Story Character Building at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
The Little Engine That Could
Fast forward to a week ago. Five year old Sweet Pea and I read the book The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper. Then he wanted to watch the movie, too. Did you know there was a movie? We found it on Netflix. So cute!

After reading The Little Engine That Could and watching the movie, I simply suggested my LEGO lover try to build a train that resembled The Little Engine. Sweet Pea loved the challenge! (After hearing him repeatedly tell me throughout the week that he does not like crafts, there was no way I would suggest one!)

Reading books and following it up with crafts is great, (really, because I would love to do a book-based craft with him) but for someone who doesn’t like crafts, building story characters with LEGOs is a great alternative!

(It is also a great activity for working on fine motor skills, story building, and great for older ages, too!)

I would really love to see what your little ones create with LEGOs after reading a book! Please share if you do this at home!

*Mom is the Only Girl participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. By clicking on a link and making a purchase, at no additional cost to you, I may or may not be compensated for your purchase.

Ultimate Blog Party – Who am I?

Do you find yourself sometimes wondering who you are? A mom, a coach, a counselor, a referee, a friend, a disciplinarian, a sister, a church-goer, a Jesus-follower, a lover, a wife, a mountain-climber, chauffer, an exerciser?

There are so many words that can describe who we are and those words can change so many times throughout a day, maybe even minute by minute!

If you ask me who I am I’m not sure I could answer it correctly.
Wait, would any mom have a correct answer to that question?

Who is Mom is the Only Girl?

I consider myself a Christian wife to an incredible husband, mother to two adorably handsome and smart blond boys who light up my life and give me the material for this blog, daughter, sister and friend.

If you were to ask me more precisely what I do I would have to say I strive to love my husband as the wife God has placed me in his life to be, to love my boys and husband unconditionally, to raise my boys to love God and others, and to be the best friend I can be to my friends.

Do I succeed in all these aspects of who I am? No. A resounding no. However, I try. I try to love, I try to raise boys, hopes and spirits, I try to live as best I can, sometimes most of the time forgetting to lean on God and others as I should to get through every moment.

Why did I start Mom is the Only Girl?

Through this blog I try to encourage moms by sharing ways I weave fun learning into my boys’ lives and other thoughts that might strike a chord in attempts to say If I can do it, you can, too, and here are some ideas how! But we all know being a mom is much harder than we ever dreamed, and you’ll find a little bit of that sort of thing here, too.

Basically, you’ll find fun activities and ideas for the little ones, ages 2 through 7! I tend to concentrate on alphabet learning and science, but you’ll find a lot of other fun stuff around this little blog, too. You’ll notice I lean more towards the boy perspective of things, since there are two boys in my house, but most of the activities will engage girls, too! It’s about having fun!

Ultimate Blog Party 2014

If you are visiting from 5 Minutes for Mom Ultimate Blog Party, I hope you’ll stay a while and poke around. Let me know if you can relate! I’d love to become friends!

If you are a regular reader, please leave a comment and let me know you stopped by. So many times we read something and find it interesting or tuck it in the backs of our minds, but seldom let the author know we appreciated what we read. I’ve been trying to let others know when I stop by and I hope you will as well!

Chalkboard Letter Learning

Have you ever watched your kiddos drawing on the chalkboard and all they do is scribble all over it and erase it over and over? Sweet Pea loves to do that!

One day I saw an idea of putting clear tape onto the chalkboard and letting your child draw all over it then pull the tape off, sort of like resist painting, but with chalk. I didn’t want to try this for fear our cheap tape wouldn’t come off, so I replaced the clear tape with masking tape. (I tried to find the original place I saw this idea, but I couldn’t. If you know the link please let me know and I will update this!)

When Sweet Pea was once again scribbling all over the chalkboard making a dusty mess, I put some masking tape on it. He was totally confused at first, but once he helped me remove the tape after scribbling on it he was hooked!

This was great and then he started to put the tape on himself, trying to make it in the shape of his name!

What a great activity for fine motor work as well as a little gross motor drawing!

Scavenger Hunt Map

Seven year old Cutie Pie has been working on drawing a scavenger hunt map for Hubby, Sweet Pea and himself for a couple of days. It’s quite detailed with obstacles to avoid (like a T-Rex chase in his bedroom) but no real house-landmarks. He amazes me with his creativity when he comes up with these things!

Even though his map doesn’t include things like chairs and corners, the guys can clearly tell where they are supposed to go because of the visual cues (sometimes words) he placed on it.

Of course, when pretending to go from spot to spot in a boat you never know when a colossal squid will get hold of it and keep you from finding the next clue and ultimately the treasure!

Great fun practice writing and drawing. His spelling is still phonetical, but he’s working on it! I love watching him progress educationally! This has proved to be a great way to Encourage Writing!

O is for opposites

Love these signs at The National Strong Museum of Play

O is for opposites.

Sweet Pea is really good at coming up with opposites. He’s also really good at trying to act them out or finding them around the house. (Try to imagine that if you can!)


Hard – soft
Up – down
In – out

This is also a good challenge for when we need to keep the boys occupied for a few minutes…we call out a word and they have to come up with the opposite, or we sneakily ask them to call out the first word that comes to mind when we say a word. That’s always interesting!

This idea sort of piggybacks on the similar or different ‘game’ we played the other day. I’m not sure why, but it seems our boys have fun with thinking games….

What kind of games do your kids like?

Similar or Different?

similar or different at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com

The boys were playing around with their lovies this morning when Sweet Pea remarked “Hey, we’re similar!” in his little lovies’ voice. I jumped right in with “How are they similar?” and they began listing the ways. “Both are big, furry, and have black eyes. I know! They both have tails!”

Sometimes it just takes paying some attention to their conversation to get a little learning in, interjecting with simple questions to get them thinking! Simple fun for a preschooler and first grader to do together!

Maple Sugaring Time

If you live in the north/northeastern United States you are probably right in the middle of the normal season for maple sugaring! Of course, it has been so cold that the maple isn’t really flowing, but in a way that can be a good thing – Jack Wax!

A year ago I posted about making Jack Wax with my kiddos. It’s simply fresh, clean snow in a bowl, with maple syrup over it. So delicious. But a very special treat is fresh, fluffy snow with fresh, warm maple syrup over it! This doesn’t happen very often because the conditions have to be just right to have fresh snow and newly boiled down syrup!

I’m almost hoping for the right weather conditions this coming weekend for the maple sugaring festival we are going to, but only to put a positive spin on the fact that we are still getting snow in late March!

Other posts about maple sugaring:

Maple Sugaring Festival
Maple Sugar Treats
Maple Syrup to Your Liking

5 Senses and the zoo

Last winter we took a field trip to the zoo to test our senses. The boys, of course, had fun as we always do at the zoo. I think it was even more fun since it was a cold day and we think we were the only ones there! I’m thinking of doing this again soon with Sweet Pea, to see how the observations he makes change over the course of a year.

Here are the pics and what we did last year to give you some ideas of early spring zoo fun!

The boys love walking around the zoo and looking at the amazing animals! (sense of sight)
We listened to the birds, and were engulfed by the smell of the room. (sense of hearing and smell)
We watched the otter and talked about what the fish it was eating might taste like. (sense of taste) As well as if he could feel the coldness of the water.
The boys tried to make noises like sea lions and then we went outside to hear them. (sense of hearing)
There were a couple of places where the boys could feel the fur of a polar bear, but my camera ran out of batteries so you can’t see the proof. (sense of touch)

They really seemed to enjoy this different perspective of the zoo. It was much more fun for me, too, engaging my own senses in order to talk about what they were experiencing!

These things happen

Sweet Pea had quite the scary run-in with the open toy box, creating a divot in his forehead [that bled – a lot.]

I was upstairs and heard the sickening crack, came downstairs as fast as I could to see Hubby huddled over my precious 5 year old, who was laying on the floor crying his head off with blood trickling down the side of his head. Poor Cutie Pie was so scared….we all were.

It wasn’t a matter of playing more calmly, a matter of needing better coordination, simply a misstep. A scary trip! He is fine. It was more of a tissue bruise, no concussion. He has a nice little ‘T’ on his forehead, though, which I hope doesn’t scar.

It wasn’t until much later that night that I realized how scared I was and that I hadn’t flipped out like the before-kids me would have. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or not. Sometimes being scared into a reaction can be a good thing. Right?

What’s the scariest thing that’s happened to your kiddos and how did you handle it?





These things happen

Sweet Pea had quite the scary run-in with the open toy box, creating a divot in his forehead [that bled – a lot.]

I was upstairs and heard the sickening crack, came downstairs as fast as I could to see Hubby huddled over my precious 5 year old, who was laying on the floor crying his head off with blood trickling down the side of his head. Poor Cutie Pie was so scared….we all were.

It wasn’t a matter of playing more calmly, a matter of needing better coordination, simply a misstep. A scary trip! He is fine. It was more of a tissue bruise, no concussion. He has a nice little ‘T’ on his forehead, though, which I hope doesn’t scar.

It wasn’t until much later that night that I realized how scared I was and that I hadn’t flipped out like the before-kids me would have. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or not. Sometimes being scared into a reaction can be a good thing. Right?

What’s the scariest thing that’s happened to your kiddos and how did you handle it?




Child Exercise

Sometimes I sit here at the computer when my boys are in the living room just because I can see them. I think I can hear them better from here, too. (Especially when they whisper!)

Right now I’m listening to them talking about how exercise is good for your body and am watching them ‘exercising’.

Seven year old Cutie Pie is trying to teach 5 year old Sweet Pea how to do a burpee. Sweet Pea thinks it looks a little hard, so he wants to do a sit up instead. Cutie Pie has completed 3 burpees and just said ‘These are hard. I think they are making my body hurt. I’ve definitely exercised.’

And just like that they are on to being Luke Skywalker and some unnamed person on the Millenium Falcon.

The way these boys play the coordination ability required for each activity is definitely up there!

Child Exercise

Sometimes I sit here at the computer when my boys are in the living room just because I can see them. I think I can hear them better from here, too. (Especially when they whisper!)

Right now I’m listening to them talking about how exercise is good for your body and am watching them ‘exercising’.

Seven year old Cutie Pie is trying to teach 5 year old Sweet Pea how to do a burpee. Sweet Pea thinks it looks a little hard, so he wants to do a sit up instead. Cutie Pie has completed 3 burpees and just said ‘These are hard. I think they are making my body hurt. I’ve definitely exercised.’

And just like that they are on to being Luke Skywalker and some unnamed person on the Millenium Falcon.

The way these boys play the coordination ability required for each activity is definitely up there!

Let the Light in

There are some mornings I want to open the shades, let all the light in. It feels clean, bright, fresh.

Other mornings I’d rather keep the shades drawn. Hunker down. Stay warm. Alone.

Still others I feel like I want to chase the gray skies away by turning on all the lights in the house, even though I know the gray remains.


I think in a lot of ways this is how we are with our faith. Some mornings we want to invite God in for the day. In fact, we can’t wait for a visit.

Other days we’d rather not even acknowledge Him, maybe even without reason, or realization. Then there are the other days when we yearn for his presence, but cannot feel it.

One thing I know, God is there every day, whether I greet Him anxiously, or not. I know, because after the gray is finally gone I can look back and see the whole picture, not just the part with me opening the shades, putting food on the table and getting the boys to bed. I see how I made it through the day with smiling, happy boys. I see it in knowing a friend received good news.

These may be simple things, but I know I am important to God (after all, he has counted the hairs on my head…why else would He do that unless He loves me?) and if I’m important to God, He must be at work doing something in the peripheral of the picture, the part I cannot see.

And that I am anxious to look back upon and see clearly.

Let the Light in

There are some mornings I want to open the shades, let all the light in. It feels clean, bright, fresh.

Other mornings I’d rather keep the shades drawn. Hunker down. Stay warm. Alone.

Still others I feel like I want to chase the gray skies away by turning on all the lights in the house, even though I know the gray remains.


I think in a lot of ways this is how we are with our faith. Some mornings we want to invite God in for the day. In fact, we can’t wait for a visit.

Other days we’d rather not even acknowledge Him, maybe even without reason, or realization. Then there are the other days when we yearn for his presence, but cannot feel it.

One thing I know, God is there every day, whether I greet Him anxiously, or not. I know, because after the gray is finally gone I can look back and see the whole picture, not just the part with me opening the shades, putting food on the table and getting the boys to bed. I see how I made it through the day with smiling, happy boys. I see it in knowing a friend received good news.

These may be simple things, but I know I am important to God (after all, he has counted the hairs on my head…why else would He do that unless He loves me?) and if I’m important to God, He must be at work doing something in the peripheral of the picture, the part I cannot see.

And that I am anxious to look back upon and see clearly.

Snow Day Fun – dinosaurs

snow day paper play fun - cutting and drawing at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
cutting out dinosaurs!

We had two snow days this past week. The first we expected as a blizzard made it’s way through western New York State. The second day was unexpected, due to the storm not racing through our area quite as soon as anticipated, delaying when the roads could be cleared safely for buses filled with children.

Hubby and I tried to keep the kiddos from going stir-crazy on the second (and bitterly cold) day by providing some art materials. I had also come across a dinosaur song on Made by Joel and played it for Cutie Pie, who was completely intrigued by the way Joel illustrated the song continuously on one long piece of paper.

First, Cutie Pie wanted to make the paper pieces from Joel’s website for the song and got busy with Sweet Pea cutting them out almost immediately after he saw them. As soon as he finished that, though, he was on to trying to draw what Joel did, the same way he did!

I love that Cutie Pie was so inspired to try drawing a little more out of the box than he is used to! I was also pretty shocked that he drew what Joel drew for the song, but in miniature and with only watching the video once!

You’ve really gotta check out Made by Joel for some neat paper-based play ideas that you can print and play with!

Snow Day Fun – dinosaurs

snow day paper play fun - cutting and drawing at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
cutting out dinosaurs!

We had two snow days this past week. The first we expected as a blizzard made it’s way through western New York State. The second day was unexpected, due to the storm not racing through our area quite as soon as anticipated, delaying when the roads could be cleared safely for buses filled with children.

Hubby and I tried to keep the kiddos from going stir-crazy on the second (and bitterly cold) day by providing some art materials. I had also come across a dinosaur song on Made by Joel and played it for Cutie Pie, who was completely intrigued by the way Joel illustrated the song continuously on one long piece of paper.

First, Cutie Pie wanted to make the paper pieces from Joel’s website for the song and got busy with Sweet Pea cutting them out almost immediately after he saw them. As soon as he finished that, though, he was on to trying to draw what Joel did, the same way he did!

I love that Cutie Pie was so inspired to try drawing a little more out of the box than he is used to! I was also pretty shocked that he drew what Joel drew for the song, but in miniature and with only watching the video once!

You’ve really gotta check out Made by Joel for some neat paper-based play ideas that you can print and play with!

Winter brings peace in spring

original poem by Tricia at Mom is the Only GirlThe sun greets us in the morning, pushing the gray far from sight.

Winter’s snow melts as the warmth delicately, hesitantly, spreads over it, at times so bright.

I shield my eyes or look away.

Small streams of ice-cold water trickle down the drive, little lines exploring.

Longing to leave winter coats, hats, mittens behind, but warmth hasn’t engulfed me yet.

Agitation, cold white stillness, slowly replaced.

First by brown, soon pokes of green leaves, purple.

Peace of color. Yellow rays of sun cradling us in its warmth once again.

Original poem. Property of Tricia at Mom is the Only Girl. Do not copy.

Winter brings peace in spring

original poem by Tricia at Mom is the Only GirlThe sun greets us in the morning, pushing the gray far from sight.

Winter’s snow melts as the warmth delicately, hesitantly, spreads over it, at times so bright.

I shield my eyes or look away.

Small streams of ice-cold water trickle down the drive, little lines exploring.

Longing to leave winter coats, hats, mittens behind, but warmth hasn’t engulfed me yet.

Agitation, cold white stillness, slowly replaced.

First by brown, soon pokes of green leaves, purple.

Peace of color. Yellow rays of sun cradling us in its warmth once again.

Original poem. Property of Tricia at Mom is the Only Girl. Do not copy.

How fast does snow melt?

How fast does snow melt experiment at http://www.momistheonlygirl.comYou know how cold it’s been lately. That means the snow is still sticking around. Are you as tired of the cold as me? And if you are reading this from some nice warm place, please comment so we can all live vicariously through you! And hopefully we’ll see some green grass soon!

Here’s a simple science experiment that you can do with any age – preschool up through mid-elementary would probably find it interesting and stay interested.
Since we have lots of the white stuff I thought it might be fun to do a little science experiment with the boys one recent Saturday when it was bitterly cold. I grabbed 4 cups and filled them up with snow.

I asked if they thought the freezer would keep the snow just as old as the outdoors, and what would happen to the snow if we put it in other locations, too.

We set one cup on the table, put one in the refrigerator, put one in the freezer, and one outside after marking on the glass the level of the snow (using dry erase markers).

The boys thought something would happen to the snow in the freezer, that it might not be cold enough. They thought the other cups would just have ‘melted snow’ in them after a few minutes.

To test their hypothesis, we set a timer for 10 minutes. When it went off we checked the glasses of snow in each location and talked about what we observed, then set the timer for another 10 minutes. We continued the process until the evening, talking about our observations each time.

The boys were surprised by what they saw happen with the snow in the freezer. Will the same happen for your kiddos when they do this little experiment?

It was very simple, but kept the boys interest. They were determined nothing could keep the snow cold like the conditions outside.

If you do, or have done, this with your child comment and let us know your results! (And if it’s warm where you are, let us know so we know there is hope that spring really is coming!)

How fast does snow melt?

How fast does snow melt experiment at http://www.momistheonlygirl.comYou know how cold it’s been lately. That means the snow is still sticking around. Are you as tired of the cold as me? And if you are reading this from some nice warm place, please comment so we can all live vicariously through you! And hopefully we’ll see some green grass soon!

Here’s a simple science experiment that you can do with any age – preschool up through mid-elementary would probably find it interesting and stay interested.
Since we have lots of the white stuff I thought it might be fun to do a little science experiment with the boys one recent Saturday when it was bitterly cold. I grabbed 4 cups and filled them up with snow.

I asked if they thought the freezer would keep the snow just as old as the outdoors, and what would happen to the snow if we put it in other locations, too.

We set one cup on the table, put one in the refrigerator, put one in the freezer, and one outside after marking on the glass the level of the snow (using dry erase markers).

The boys thought something would happen to the snow in the freezer, that it might not be cold enough. They thought the other cups would just have ‘melted snow’ in them after a few minutes.

To test their hypothesis, we set a timer for 10 minutes. When it went off we checked the glasses of snow in each location and talked about what we observed, then set the timer for another 10 minutes. We continued the process until the evening, talking about our observations each time.

The boys were surprised by what they saw happen with the snow in the freezer. Will the same happen for your kiddos when they do this little experiment?

It was very simple, but kept the boys interest. They were determined nothing could keep the snow cold like the conditions outside.

If you do, or have done, this with your child comment and let us know your results! (And if it’s warm where you are, let us know so we know there is hope that spring really is coming!)

Letter P week activities

Letter P learning ideas at http://www.momistheonlygirl.com
Play Plumbing

Pray, Pierce, Pie, Pumpkin, Pringles, Pop, Punch, Pride, Push, Pin, Pinch, Poke, Pudding, Plane, Penguin, Pajamas, Picnic, Peanut butter cookies, Prince, Plan, Planetarium, Paint, Playdough, Picnic

We had so much fun working with the letter P this week. Some of our Letter P activities for the week follow:

  • Picnicked indoors
  • Painted a lot on a variety of Paper
  • Made Playdough
  • Played with two different kinds of homemade Playdough – poked lots of holes
  • Searched for the letter P at The Strong National Museum of Play
  • Looked up Panda bears to learn a little about them
  • Played with my crafting hole Punches
  • Enjoyed a snack of Pudding
  • Spent a day in our Pajamas
  • Thought about making Peanut Butter cookies (but I didn’t have enough peanut butter)
  • Played and played
  • visited Rochester Museum and Science Center and played with the plumbing area of their new construction jobs exhibit

To reinforce forming the letter P and recognizing it in print we:

  • Created the letter P in shaving cream
  • Covered a letter P in stickers of things starting with the letter P
  • Tried to create letter Ps with Playdough – with one kind it worked, with the other it didn’t
  • Painted a letter P printout
  • Created a letter P with paint and a Paintbrush
  • Searched for the Letter P on signs at every store we visited
  • Searched for the Letter P in every book we read

What we could have done, but didn’t:

  • Played with pom-poms – games, crafts
  • Played at a Park (except it’s winter here, so we didn’t)
  • Pencil drawings
  • Learned about Princes – had them make crowns, learn about being a child of the King
  • Pretend Dr. play – being a patient

For some of the activities we’ve done in the past to reinforce and learn the letter P check here:

Mama’s Week in Review – Letter P (When my boys were younger!)
P is for Painting
P is for Prince
Milk Plastic

What other ways are you helping your preschooler learn the letter P?