Posts Tagged ‘toddler’

Daddy’s Helper – Raking Leaves

Sunday, February 26th, 2012

I love it!  My two men working hard out back.  Oliver likes helping out, especially when it involves his daddy, the outdoors, and a shovel.

Kids want to feel useful and contribute to their families.  If you give them the “tools” to succeed, it’s amazing what they will accomplish.  In this case, we gave Oliver a real short-handled shovel and a milk crate to fill with leaves.

He worked hard, until his face was red and his nose was runny, and he filled his milk crate to the brim.  He was so proud.

He was busy for a long time and enjoyed himself.  Even better, it didn’t cost anything for all this fun and the yard got cleaned up!

Toddler Play: Fun With Rice

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

Want to keep your toddler busy for 30 minutes or more?  Give him a container of rice, some miscellaneous containers, scoops, and funnels and watch him go! 

This is a great sensory and fine motor activity for kids.  They get to squish their hands around in the rice and listen to it ping into the different containers.  He got a lot of practice pouring from little containers to big ones and vice versa using a funnel.

I highly recommend doing this activity on a baking sheet!

I have a Rubbermaid tote where I save random bottles, canisters, egg cartons, cardboard tubes, etc. for the kids to have fun with.

My little scientist had so much fun.  He was totally absorbed in his work for at least 1/2 an hour.  Dumping and filling.  Scooping and pouring.  Next time, I’m going to use food coloring to dye a cup or two of rice and let him experiment with mixing colors!

Clearing Away the Bricks

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Now that the brick path project is winding down, we can finally start getting rid of some rubble.  I am so happy to get our driveway back after 3 years!

Oliver loves helping out, especially when it comes to his daddy.  We let Oliver help out with chores when he can.  It’s a great way to get some free exercise and he just loves feeling useful.  I know that it may take longer to teach him to do something.  He also moves slower and is sometimes in the way, but it is so worth it to watch him concentrate so hard on his task and light up like the sun when he gets it right.

The hubby said that for the first time ever, he didn’t recognize Oliver today.  He says that Oliver is all grown up and not a baby anymore.

Oliver got a good workout!  He steadily loaded the van with broken bricks in 98+ degree heat.  I’m glad the hubby finally has an enthusiastic helper for his projects.  :-)

Do your kids like to help you around the house?

Happy 2nd Birthday Oliver

Saturday, June 4th, 2011

My baby is turning 2 this upcoming week.  It feels like yesterday that I wrote about his first birthday.  Since then, he has grown before my eyes and yours too. 

In honor of his love of trains, we threw a Thomas the Train themed party.  Luckily, Thomas is a party favorite for little tots everywhere and Target had a Thomas line of birthday items. 

To save money, we only bought a few Thomas items and supplemented with generic party supplies.   The tablecloth and cake plates screamed Thomas the train.  I brought out some generic red paper plates that I bought at a massive discount after Valentine’s day and plain old napkins and plasticware.  We used up the rest of the helium tank from his first birthday and blew up a few fancy mylar balloons that we had saved from last year.  Did you know you can reuse them year after year? 

For food, we bought a sandwhich platter and then cut up our own fruits and veggies.  Add some chips and dip and you have a party!  I did buy a Thomas cake from Food Lion, but got a discount for ordering it on a Thursday.

The kiddos got little goody bags full of organic snack size packages and an awesome echo microphone that I picked up at Toys-R-Us.  Everything was going great until we brought the cake out. 

Just as we finished singing Happy Birthday, Oliver decided to grab the train off the cake.  At the very last second, his hand swerved and he grabbed the candle wick instead.  Ouch!!! 

After a few minutes, Oliver was a-ok and finally got his train off the cake.

Meanwhile, Evelyn couldn’t wait to get her grubby paws on the cake herself.  One good swipe and she discovered the joys of whipped icing!

Evelyn was right there to gobble up all the wrappings after Oliver opened the gifts.

We had a great time with family and friends and Oliver handled the crowd well.  Evelyn was thrilled to be surrounded by such fancy paper (her favorite snack is paper) and couldn’t wait to eat more cake. 

When everyone went home for the night, he laid down on the floor and put his head in my lap.  A baby no more, but just as precious to his mommy.

Playing Together and Learning to Share

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

Some of my best times are spent with my kids just watching them play.  Evelyn is mobile enough to get around and is in full baby discovery mode.  She has no concept of good or bad, yours or mine, and sharing or taking turns.  On the other hand, Oliver has reached the age where he IS aware of those differences. 

This is a classic photo!  Oliver spent so much time carefully building up his towers on the pegs.  Evelyn scooted over and much to Oliver’s chagrin, began pulling off his blocks.

My little man took it like a champ though.  After a few tears, he was back into the game.  He never hit his sister or yanked the piece away.

Oliver went back to playing and Evelyn found a new toy to chew on.  She was just happy to be near her big brother and Oliver even share some pieces with her in the end.  This was an hour well spent.  Fun and Free!

Do your kids get along with each other?  Any tips on teaching them to share with other children?

Love the Flexible Flyer Swing Set

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

Last week, Kmart had super sales on old fashioned Flexible Flyer metal swing sets.   This simple set was $120, reduced by $50.  He loves, loves, loves to play outside and he has totally outgrown his simple plastic slide.  He could play outside for hours on end if we let him.

He is a still very shaky on the regular swings, so we attached the Little Tykes swing chair to the swingset.  We bought the toddler swing at a consignment sale last year for $3 and never found a place to hang it up. 

The first thing he did was climb up the ladder and slide down the slide.  After the first ride, he squealed and then ran right back to the ladder and did it again! 

I’d say the swing set was worth every penny.  Now I’ve got to figure out how he can use it into the summer after the mosquitos swarm in.

Do you have a swing set for your kids?  Is it metal or one of those new fangled wood fortress types?

Apple Thief Caught Red Handed

Thursday, March 31st, 2011

Apples beware!  If you come to my house, you risk being gnawed at and hidden underneath a coffee table, chair, or pillow to wither away to nothing…

For the past few weeks, we’ve come across a variety of mutilated apple corpses hidden all around the house.  Some have their skin nibbled off.  Some have only the butt left – no seeds, no stem.  The rest of them have been generally nibbled and gnawed and left for me to find behind some chair or under a pillow.  The only culprit, based upon the tiny teeth marks, is my son and I couldn’t figure out how he was getting the apples from the fruit basket.

While feeding Evelyn one day, I happened to catch Oliver in the act!  He was oblivious to us and climbed on top of a Rubbermaid container to get to his treasure. 

What’s even funnier is that I have also found an orange with 4 little teeth marks scraped across the skin that he tried to eat and put it back in the basket. 

The best is the rotten banana that I threw away.  The banana had rotted from the middle outward.  Upon closer examination, he had bit clear through the skin with his upper teeth in the middle of the banana.  Not able to get the banana out, he put it back in the basket where it rotted from the bruising.

Our son is sneaky, sneaky! and too darned cute.  :-)

How to Cut Hair with a Weedwhacker

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

No, I didn’t really cut my son’s hair with a weed whacker – though it looks like it from most angles… Normally, I cut his hair with scissors.  Lately, he has been screaming bloody murder when I get near him with the scissors.  Oliver doesn’t seem to mind the electric clippers though, after watching Daddy cut his own hair with them.

This was my son 2 days ago.

This is only half the hair we ended up cutting.  I probably should have stopped at this point!

This is the after!  He wouldn’t let me get near his ears with the trimmer, so I’ll have to go clean those up with the scissors after he stops having nightmares.  The top is 1 inch long and the rest is 1/2 an inch. 

The hubby was shocked and a bit horrified from the sound of his voice when he saw the pic I sent him at work.  He says it makes Oliver look like a Vulcan.  He then asked me not to cut Evelyn’s hair…

I think that after a few days it will look just fine… I must say that it is much cooler for him now that the temps are rising.  The poor guy was always sweating with the mop from before.  As he grows, I might bring him to get it professionally cut someday, or maybe for a special event like his birthday.  Otherwise, this is the 7th trim I’ve given him since he’s been born.  That’s $175+ in our pockets.  With all that money saved, I can buy him a baseball cap to wear until his hair grows out a bit!  :-)

I can’t be the only one doing home haircuts out there!  Anyone have a hair raising story they want to share? 

Laughing Baby

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

My youngest is 4 months old now and has started laughing.  It’s such a sweet little laugh, more like a chuckle.

She laughs the most at my son.  He is 22 months old and is starting to play with her more often.  He loves swinging her in her chair and she just laughs and laughs.  Whenever he is around she lights up.

I can sit for hours trying to make my kids laugh.  It’s the sweetest sound in the world!

Project 52: Glimpse Into Motherhood

Fingerpaint and Cookie Cutters

Friday, March 11th, 2011

One morning it was cold and icky outside.   With cabin fever looming I searched for an easy pick me up for the both of us.

What could be easier than finger paint and cookie cutters?  I have a box of 101 plastic cookie cutters and searched for something St. Pattyish.  Of all the holidays that they included they didn’t include St. Patrick’s Day.  Not a four leaf clover in the bunch! 

We settled for some green finger paint instead and a few random shapes.  I smeared the paint onto a plate so it would stay wet longer and then taught Oliver how to dip the cutters and press onto the paper.  It didn’t take much encouragement and he was off!

He only had a small dab of paint on his bottom lip this time.  He’s getting better at not eating his craft supplies!  The fingerpaint is very easy to clean and now I’m wondering what else we could use it for around here.

Tell me, how have you used finger paints with your little ones?

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