I am (uplifting them)

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Here’s a wonderful project that I am so happy to see!

I am (uplifting them) is a new social media project that proposes to use social media to uplift our kids instead of to shame them.

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Page creator Stephanie says:

I am saddened by the amount of kid-shaming photos and stories I see all over the internet. My proposal is that we flood the world wide web with kid-positivity and uplifting stories and photos. So, grab a kid (preferably your own; if not get permission) and ask them to finish the sentence, ‘I am…’ Write down what they say (I guarantee it’ll be positive) snap a picture of them holding it and post it everywhere! Post them here as well and let’s see how many uplifting, positive things we can learn about our children!

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Want to take part?  You can join in on Facebook or Twitter and invite your own kids to celebrate how fabulous they really are.  :)

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I’m off to see what my kids want to put on their signs!

 

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10 Ways to Make Today Magical

Happy Monday!  I hope you’re staying warm in your little corner of the world.  They’ve closed the schools because of the cold here in Minnesota.  It is staggeringly cold!  With wind chills, they say it could get as low as -79.  That’s crazy business!

It’s a good day to stay inside and make some happy memories with the kids!  Or… if it’s lovely and warm where you are, it’s a nice day to go outside and make some happy memories with them — and enjoy it for me.  :)

Here’s a few ways to make a little magic this week…

  1. Start a paper chain of happy memories and accomplishments from 2014.
  2. If you have snow outside, bring some inside in some big tubs and let the kids play with it at the kitchen table.     
  3. If you’re lucky enough not to live in one of the freezing cold places right now, you can still have lots of fun with snow and ice!  Here’s a list of ten ways to make the day magical, warmer style for warmer climates.
  4. Sneak outside and do a bit of this. 
  5. If you can brave the cold, make some snowball art.  Aren’t these wonderful?  They’re done by textile artist Ceca Georgieva, who has lots of other wonderful stuff on her site too.     
  6. Make a list of 100 things you want to do together by the end of winter.  Here’s one of our old winter bucket lists.
  7. Yarn bomb something!  You can even yarn bomb inside objects like chairs and bedposts.  Here’s oodles of wonderful inspiration on Pinterest and here’s stuff I’ve compiled about yarn bombing in the past.

    Lovely yarnbombed tree via Pinterest. Original author unknown.

  8. Get glow in the dark paint and help the kids write secret messages and pictures on their ceilings.  The paint will be invisible during the day.  Paint onto poster board and tape it up if you don’t want to paint directly onto the ceiling.
  9. Make maple syrup snow candy! Here’s a bunch of recipes and instructions. You can use crushed ice if you don’t have snow.

  10. Find a few minutes to do something really nice for yourself.  Buy yourself a couple of truffles at the check-out and go enjoy them in a cozy spot.  Take a relaxing bath with a magazine.  Call a friend who makes you feel fabulous.  You get the idea!  Extra credit if you come back and tell me what you did!

And with that, chickadees, I have to go run the tap again so the pipes don’t freeze again!  And perhaps grab a child to give noisy kisses to, too.

Have a magical day!

 

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Weather Trees!

Weather Tree by Betsy Wetsy on Flickr

I’m in love with weather trees. 

I’ve admired them over the years and always wanted to start one with the kids.

Weathertree.com offers this one for sale from the UK each year…

And they also offer one that focuses on goals (weight loss, exercise completed, eggs laid by chickens and small business profits are some examples!) instead of weather…

And this gorgeous one is available on etsy.

I’ve had several pinned on Pinterest for a while now to inspire me to make my own.

Now with the new year and this free printable weather tree from se7en, we’re all set to go!

Some people just color them with one or two colors for sunny or cloudy, while some color-code the leaves for hot, windy, rainy and so on.  On some calendars, you can see people colored the leaves several colors to show changing weather or various elements of the day’s weather.

We’re going to do the weather (cloudy, rainy, snowy, sunny, etc.) for the main part of the leaf and outline the leaf to show temperature (hot, cold or mild).  Of course, here in Minnesota I think anything above zero counts as mild these days.  :)

Ours is printed and we’re filling in the first leaf tonight.

Happy 2014!

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10 Ways to Make Today Magical

Happy Monday!  I hope you’re staying warm and happy in your corner of the world. 

We’ve had some bitterly cold temperatures here in Minnesota lately (-19 without wind chill!) but it’s starting to warm up a little and I’m optimistic we’ll at least get above zero for a few days so we can properly take advantage of all of our lovely snow.

Here are a few ways to make a little magic with your kiddos this week…

1.  Print out some free toys! 

Made by Joel offers free printables of everything from a paper city Nativity scene to paper slotted animals to an oscillating bird and more.

We’ve also loved the toys at The Toymaker for years.

2.  Go sledding or ice skating in the kitchen!  Pull little ones around on towels, or have them put on socks and slip around the floor.  Older kids can pull the little ones and accidentally get some exercise in at the same time!  If you’re brave enough, give them a bucket of warm soapy water and have them “mop” the floor with their stocking feet.  My girls used to love to do this, though it can get pretty wet!

3.  Host a gingerbread house building party.  Magical Mama Tiffany has all sorts of wonderful recipes and fun ideas for hosting a gingerbread house making party here.

4.  Make the kids a “Yes” tree.  Do you have little ones who love to fuss with the ornaments on the tree?  This is another wonderful idea from Tiffany, who says, “I made the kids a ‘YES’ tree that they can decorate and undecorate to their heart’s content!!”

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5.  Cancel something you didn’t really want to do.  Go ahead.  The world won’t end!  Do something that sounds fabulously fun (or completely lazy!) instead.

6.  Make Santa strawberries or other healthy but delightful treats.  Here is a round-up of ten whimsical (healthy) holiday treats to make with kids.

7.  Have an inside snowball fight!  Crumple up oodles of paper from the recycling bin and give each player a laundry basket full.  Find some good launching spots (behind the couch, behind a table…) and commence flinging!

8.  Have fun with boxes.  If you’re getting lots of boxes coming into the house right now, why not let the kids put them to use?  Let them use them to make robots, tunnels, playhouses, you name it.  You can be fancy and help out, like the ultra-creative mama at Life as a Thrifter

Or just let the kids loose to make up their own fun!

9.  Compliment each other, balloon style!  Pick someone in the room to focus on and toss a balloon up in the air.  Everybody else has to keep bopping the balloon up and keep it from hitting the ground.  You can’t bop it without calling out something fabulous about your subject though!  Think quick! See how long you can keep it up (and how many wonderful things people can think up about each other!).

10. Make a paper chain of happy memories and accomplishments from the past year.

Want more ways to make some more magic with your kids?  Here are 50 ways to make the holidays magical from my examiner column a couple of years ago. 

And with that, I’m off to make a little magic of my own.  Have a magical week!

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A Little Festive Fun

Want to have a little online holiday fun with your kiddos?  There are some really sweet sites that let you virtually decorate trees, make gingerbread houses, cut snowflakes and more.

Technology Rocks. Seriously has a fantastic roundup of gingerbread man fun storyboards, activities, interactive sites, printables and so on like these:

Then there’s the snow round-up of fantastic activities like these:

There’s the Christmas tree decorating roundup with fun links like these:

And oodles more! 

Be sure to check out the rest of the site for all sorts of great printables, educational games and other fun.

Happy Wednesday!

 

 

 

 

 

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Your Assignment….

… Should you choose to accept it, is to do one or more of the following:

1. Cancel something you didn’t really want to do.

2. Cuddle on the couch or bed with your kiddo(s) and read a pile of wonderful books together.

3. Make something tasty together.

4. Occupy the kids long enough to buy yourself time to soak in the bath.

5. Wear jingle bells on your ankles.

6. Call someone who makes you feel happy.

7. Buy yourself a Christmas present. Open it right away.

8. Give a hundred hugs today.

9. Tell us a joke in the comments. :)

10. Do something today that you’ll remember 10 years from now with a smile.

Extra credit if you do more than one!

Extra, extra credit if you tell me about them!

Happy Tuesday!

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10 Ways to Make Today Magical

Happy Monday!  I’m popping in from the midst of our chaos to jot off a quick list of ways to make some memories this week, and to once more give myself a nudge to start posting more often.  After a dozen or so years of doing this I tend to get a bit lazy at times!  ;)

In any case, I hope you’re having a magical December so far.  Here’s a few ways to add a little magic with the kiddos…….

1.  No snow where you live?  Head to the beach and make an adorable sandman instead.  I love this lovely pic from Zontini Studios!

2.  Make some homemade gifts together.  You can try your hands at some DIY beeswax modeling clay or a felt board busy box (with a baby wipes container as a base!) or homemade watercolor paints or some wonderful edible treats.  Check out my homemade toys board or my handmade gifts board on Pinterest for some of my favorite ideas.

3.  Cut up a zillion paper snowflakes and decorate the house.  Paint them with watercolors to make them extra special.  Coffee filters make it even easier.

4.  Give each child a small amount of money and go shopping for the food shelf.  Let them choose what they buy, reminding them to look for stuff they’d want to eat but also that they can get a lot more by buying inexpensive items and they should aim for healthy too.  Go together to the food shelf or drop off spot.

5.  Turn a box into some sort of awesome hideout.  You can make a bear den or a cave or any number of other sweet little cubbies.  Add a reading light and a pillow, and it becomes a fantastic place to bring a pile of books!

 

6.  Make real sugarplums.  These are so much fun and healthy too!  Just fruit with a bit of orange juice pulsed together, then rolled in sugar, coconut flakes or something similar.  Here’s the instructions.

7.  Start a nightly read-aloud.  This time of year, we always gather and read “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever” as a family over the space of a few nights.  Make some time to read aloud besides just at bedtime, particularly from books that suit all ages.

8.  If you get some snow, try snow dyeing.  Isn’t this the most beautiful effect?!

 

9.  Try making some LEGO holiday creations.  Here’s some ideas and help finding patterns.

 

10. String cranberries, popcorn and other edible goodies on trees outside for the birds and squirrels.  Be sure to put them near a window where you all can watch them being enjoyed!

And with that, chickadees, I’m off to make a little magic with a few kiddos of my own.  Have a wonderful week and don’t forget to take care of you!

 

 

 

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