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Fun in the sun Thursday!

Today the weather was absolutely gorgeous here so we went to a park with a neighbor and her 2 grandsons, the younger is the same age as Cutie Pie. It was fun being outside playing and watching Sweet Pea climb all over everything as this is the first time we’ve been to a park since winter set in, so the first time he could test his abilities on something other than our furniture! He was amazing! It was interesting watching Cutie Pie. He is just beginning to actually play with kids rather than next to them. At times he seemed so much older than 3!

We also colored our Easter eggs and talked about the meaning of Easter in relation to dying an egg, as well as the colors mixing to form interesting combinations! Cutie Pie seems to grasp some of the concepts of Jesus coming to earth to save us and being resurrected, much more than I thought he would at this age. I wonder sometimes what goes on in his little mind when we talk about Jesus dying for our sins and being raised the 3rd day since he hasn’t experienced death of a loved one yet. The last few days leading up to this weekend have really made me think about how to relate this wonderful story to him and I do hope he understands at least a little of it.

Maniacal Monday

What a strange Monday! Cutie Pie must be feeling better from his cold as he seemed to want to do everything and anything this morning without a moment’s rest! Sweet Pea was, of course, right there with him!

Where to start? I had initially wanted to finish the frozen paper art we started last week (I totally do not remember where I found this idea), but CP didn’t want anything to do with it and quickly became engrossed in something on his own. I decided to cut out egg shapes for Easter cards from the paper the boys scribbled on with colorful crayons and colored pencils last week and once the paper was on the table both were immediately there wanting to be involved.
We ended up making car track paintings on the reverse of the before mentioned artwork after saving some to make the cards later. We had done this car activity before and it is something CP loves to return to. (I found the idea at www.firstpalette.com weeks ago!) From there we cleaned the cars off in the sink (a VERY wet activity here), changed clothes and CP set to work “cutting pieces of salad”, which is his phrase for practicing cutting construction paper of any color. Then, with cars still on the mind, we ended up racing the cars that propel themselves to figure out which was the fastest. All the while CP and I were talking about what the differences were, how to tell which one won, and even how the track marks were different when painted on the paper. Throughout all of this SP was trying to eat everything he could get his hands on and even got his belly all paint by trying the table crawl while CP was painting. Way too much activity in one morning for a mom recovering from this nasty cold! It’s always interesting to see where our mornings take us!
BTW, I did take photos at some point today and will have to post them if I ever figure out how!

Flowers for Great-Grandmother

Great-Grandmother visits once a year from California. We love it when she comes because we love family! This year the boys were old enough that we could actually make something for her that was nice and especially, made by them, not me from them!

I looked around a bit on the internet for ideas and saw several ideas for making flowers from egg cartons. Although I gleaned from these ideas, the end product isn’t necessarily like what I saw on any of the pages I just linked to (yes, there are 3 different ideas, so check them all out). We had two cardboard egg cartons to work with and no pompoms available. I sort of wanted to try using food coloring for the color, I’m not sure why, but it didn’t work very well.

First, after explaining to the boys the process of how we were going to create flowers, I cut out the bowl portions of the egg carton and poked a small hole in the bottom of each. Cutie Pie counted how many ‘flowers’ we had and counted out the same number of pipe cleaners to use as stems.

Then, I rounded the corners and tried to make each ‘flower’ a little different from the next. I thought about cutting each into petals, but working with a little 2-year-old made me hurry along and not do it, but next time I might try it.
Next, Cutie Pie and I placed each flower bottom into a puddle of watered down food coloring (placed in a cup of cupcake tin). While each soaked in its own color, we used eye droppers to drip different colors onto the petals. Unfortunately, the color didn’t soak in very quickly so the colors were pretty muted. This was a great science lesson reinforcing how colors combine to make new colors, though! Sweet Pea was really into this part of it and by the end, all of our flowers were a tint of brown. It was also a great fine-motor exercise for both boys!
Finally, after the flowers were dried on paper towels, Cutie Pie and Sweet Pea poked pipe cleaners through the holes (more fine-motor), bent them into funny shapes to hold them in the flower and stuck them all into a vase.
Here’s the end result, although, like I said the colors turned out muted, so they show up even less in the photo.


Next time I think I will try using straight food coloring or a bold paint. I also think making the stems green would make it look nicer, and might also play around with making actual petals. But, for working with a 2-year-old with a short attention span and wanting this to be a project made (almost) completely by the kiddos, I think this turned out great! Great-Grandmother loved them!