We had a wonderful time in Iowa and Southeast Minnesota. The kids got to explore caves (Victoria is hooked, the others liked some of them but found some of them scary, and I found out that Niagara Cave is a really bad idea at 8 months pregnant!), we judged salsa and tasted heirloom tomatoes and made ketchup at Seed Savers, we visited goat farms and much more. It’s still great to be home though. I tire out easily these days!
Enough of my yapping! Better late than never — Here’s a few ways to make some magic with your kiddos this week…
1. Go to another town and on the way make up totally different identities for yourselves. All day, call yourselves by your fake names and play along with your alternate life. Encourage the kids to really get creative for eavesdroppers.
2. Get some teacups, railings and glue or caulk and make up some teacup bird feeders like Rockie did at Something Wonderful. If you like, have the kids mix and match patterns or paint the outsides of the teacups with a whimsical pattern to personalize them. Then see who visits!
3. Take apart a bunch of old jewelry and try to make a new artistic creation together.
4. Make magnetic googly eyes and decorate metallic surfaces in your house with them. I love this idea from Play Create Explore!!!! :) Just be careful with very little children and choking hazards, naturally.
5. Make up a journal prompt jar and give your child a blank book to use. Fill the jar with hand written prompts to journal about or print out these free ones from Organized Christmas. If you like, make it into a “Mom and me” (or “Dad and me” or “Grandma and me”…) and have the book be a joint project where you each write your answers for each question.
6. Build something out of supper! Create a landscape, for instance, with a big mountain of mashed potatoes surrounded by broccoli forests and a log cabin fish stick house. Let kids cut your creation like a cake and eat their favorite parts.
7. Tape red streamers to a hallway wall and make a laser area for kids to try to crawl through (without touching and setting off alarms!) like spies or jewel thieves. Chicken Babies has instructions (plus tons more fun spy party ideas!).
8. Write and mail letters to yourselves.
9. Have dinner with all conversations in pig latin, in rhyme, in song or in the form of questions!
10. Take your child someplace beautiful. Is there a hill outside of the city where you can park and watch the lights below? A Japanese garden with peaceful spots to relax? Find someplace beautiful and just sit and talk. Bring a treat like a bag of fresh chocolate chip cookies or old fashioned root beer in bottles, and just unwind together.
And with that, my dears, I’m off to help make garden catalog mailing envelopes and pretend I know what I’m making for supper.
Kiss your babies, count your blessings, and don’t forget to take care of you!