Wednesday, September 30, 2009

We Made it! - Yarn Jack-O-Lantern Windsock

This weeks Unplugged Project theme was: "J"
We choose to have our "J" stand for jack-0-lantern--just perfect for the autumn season.

First, I kept the little kids busy gluing together these cute jack-o-lanterns which I printed and cut out for them.
I wish I had the exact link for these, but I didn't save the link and when I tried to search for it, I came up with many, many different printables.
Don't worry, Kimmy's jack-o-lantern isn't scared, she says that it is a mustashe on the pumpkin's face!
I asked Luke to look like his jack-o-lantern and this is the face he showed me!
Our "big" jack-o-lantern project was a yarn, windsock type jack-o-lantern.
You need:
orange yarn
a syrofoam ball --ours was 6 inches--I wish is had been quite a bit smaller than this
black fun foam (or black felt)
Cut about 100 pieces of yarn 42 inches long.
If kids are doing this, there will be a knot problem!
Gather them up neatly and fold these in half, placing the syrofoam ball in this midway point of yarn.
Try to spread the yarn all around the "head"--this was tricky--use another piece of orange yarn to tie the yarn together tightly at the base of the ball---this is the "neck"
Make facial features out of black fun foam or black felt. Mark really wanted a scary jack-o-lantern, that is the reason for the downturned mouth--I wish he was smiling!
Use a big yarn needle to thread a piece of yarn through the top gathers of yarn. Tie together to make a big loop for hanging.
Hang up and enjoy!!
I plan on making a bunch of small jack-o-lantern windsocks to decorate outside the house this October.
Stop over at the Unplugged Project site to see everyone's great activities.
Next week's Unplugged Project is: WEATHER

Wordless Wednesday-A Boy and his dog

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

stART--Ten Apples Up on Top--and yarn apples

I found this new weekly theme at A Mommy's Adventure and thought that "this is something we are already doing"!
What you do, is to share a story with your little ones and then do an art project inspired by the book.
This week we have been enjoying apples, and the especially the book:
For our art activity to go along with this book we made yarn apples.
I saw this at one of my favorite craft sites: Make and Takes. At this site you will find very clear and easily understood directions for these cute apples---much better than I could produce.
All you need for these are:
pipe cleaners
heavy cardboard
We cut a piece of cardboard about 2 1/2 inches thick. We then wrapped yarn around the cardboard. About 100 times around made a nice sized apple. Cut the yarn off leaving a little tail.
Bend the cardboard slightly to get the pipe cleaner under the top half of the yarn. Wrap the pipe cleaner tightly around the yarn. Make sure to check out Make and Takes because their direction are much clearer than mine.
Repeat this process on the bottom of the apple. Make the top into a stem and add a little green pipecleaner leaf.
On the bottom, tightly twist the pipecleaner and then trim and bend the pipecleaner into the bottom on the apple making a little "apple blossom" spot.
I think we made ten apples in about 15 minutes.
Perfect for the book, Ten Apples Up on Top.
The kids also enjoyed making apples with peanut butter this afternoon for a snack while I read the story for the, uuummmm, 100th time.

We tried to see how many apples we could get "up on top". For most of us, it was only one, and the child that did manage to get 2 to stay on his head, wasn't fast enough to get his picture taken.
It takes a lot of concentration to keep an apple on your head and read a book at the same time, as Luke found out.
They were actually happy to try and keep real apples on their heads, even though this picture makes most of them look like it was agony, or maybe that is just concentration!
Gracie then took over reading and had some of her "friends" help out in the "apples on their heads" role.
Who's is stuffed and who is real?
Seven apples on top seemed to be the record. I think we might need a bigger couch to achieve "Ten Apples Up on Top"

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Makes my Monday--Late September

What makes my Monday?
Learning about Johnny Appleseed!
red maple leaves
boys that love autumn crafts
homemade apples!
What "Makes your Monday"?
Share with us over at Twinfatuation

Tot School

Kimberly is currently 40 months old
Another week, another week of Tot-School learning here in "the little house".
Everyone has been enjoying puzzles recently, included Kimberly who seems to like to concentrate on one puzzle for a week or so until she has master it completely.
Dora the Explorer was the favorite of this week.
Our Pre-K Weekly Reader was all about the 5 senses this week.
We colored these fun letter N's for nose.
After coloring these, we glued tissues to the letter N nose to help remind us to blow our noses!
(We all have had colds)
Of course, this also fits in with the 5 senses theme.
I found these sequencing apples at the link.
We also aquired a new little family member, Lady! This is an education in itself!
We talked a lot about our 5 senses: what they are and how we use them. We also read a few picture books on the subject (they are at the end of this post)
One way we practiced using our 5 senses was to investigate a little pile of popcorn---using our senses.
First we used our eyes to "see" the popcorn--it was white and yellow and bumpy.
We used our nose to "smell" the popcorn---"very yummy"
Our hands "touched" the popcorn. It was "soft and hard (?) pokey(?) and slippery. (It did have butter on it!)
Our tongues "tasted" the popcorn---again the response to taste was "yummy"!
Finally we used our ears to "hear" the crunch of the popcorn. I asked how it sounded and they said "crunchy and smooshy".
This was a fun way to get the kids to understand about the 5 senses.
Kimmy helped me make Sunny Peanut Butter Chews.
We also learned about Johnny Appleseed (more about this to come) and I made these cute yarn apples. Stay tuned for books and activities to be used with these apples.
We also had fun this week with our friends at the annual church picnic.
Our favorite books of the week.
Make sure to check out all the Tot-School posts at 1+1+1=1

Saturday Night in Syracuse

Gracie in the highest seat in the dome!!
We have to thank our dear friend, Angie, for the tickets to the Syracuse University football game last night in the Carrier Dome.
It was a first for us, and boy was it fun!

I just had to snap this picture as we drove into Syracuse. This SU flag flies over one of the tallest buildings in the Syracuse skyline.

We were warned to arrive plenty early to make sure we found parking and our way around the dome. We did arrive about an hour before kick-off time. We even had time to pose with Abraham Lincoln.

These were the family members old enough and healthy enough to make the trip.
I also had to be real corny and get everyone an orange SU shirt.
I told Grandma to look for us in the stands, we would "be wearing orange", but for some reason she couldn't find us.
An hour before kick=off and way up high!
Here comes the team
This is what it looks like 45 minutes before game-time.

Gracie was absolutely amazed that the marching band could make an "s"
She really couldn't believe it when they made New York State.
She kept saying, "How did they ever figure that out?"

It was a very exciting game
Gracie was very careful to follow the directions on the scoreboard. I think she screamed and jumped up and down for about the entire 5 hours we were in the dome.
An awesome view

Our first game and it was a Syracuse win!!!
Thanks again Angie, for a night we will always remember.