Thursday, April 23, 2009
Wordy Wednesday

We were lucky enough to win a copy of We're Sailing to Galapagos by Laurie Krebs (if you are interested you could check out Michelle's site for Barefoot Books). It's another very rhythmic book, and Goose and Monkey like to sit in my lap and sail in my "lap boat". It throws out names of indigenous animals in the islands, and while there isn't much information to glean from the story, the back of the book has info about all of the animals. Of course this is one of Goose's favorites because of volcano images in the beginning and then the show stopper, LAVA CRABS! I think we've read their info fifty times. She is now making up songs where "lava crabs" is all she says to the tune of "if you're happy and you know it", cute, but not after twenty minutes in the car...

UPDATE: At a Whole Foods Earth Day celebration Goose stumped the face painter by asking for a lava crab. She then proceeded to describe in detail it's physical characteristics, stuff I hadn't even noticed! So maybe it's the power of the book, maybe it's her observation skills but nevertheless, she never ceases to blow me away.
posted by Lori @ 10:35 AM   1 comments
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Happy Earth Day

SO I didn't post on Monday and Tuesday mostly because there wasn't much to say. We've been doing crafts and recovering from the weekend (Earth Day stuff was awesome). These were a couple of the magazine crafts, though.

The paper flowers are cd cutout magazine pages folded and cut like when you're making coffee filter snowflakes (as most adults find themselves doing). Then pinned together with brad and taped to a rolled magazine page. This idea was from Family Fun Mag.

Then we've spent lots of time with letter recognition and making messages with cutout letters. It was good for Goose and she got the letters spot on as we searched. I might try cutting out words and letting her put together sentences next.

Oh, and we took our space ship, went into orbit and looked at the Earth. Goose is a great driver and Monkey was excited just to be able to board and unboard on his own--plus it gave me a chance to vacuum good and proper. We just pushed all the chairs together and then made stairs out of pillows. Goose had to bring a blanket because it's cold in space.
posted by Lori @ 3:31 AM   2 comments
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
It's A Sign of the Times

My mom is amazing. She might be the most correct, most well read, and beautiful woman I know.

Ok, wait, she told me to say that. I got a text from my mom today that she wants a nice shout out on the blog. My mom's so hip! It's weird having young parents that are apprised of the youthful goings on (although she does come home with words that I, nor my much hipper than me, brother use). I hope that I can stay up on the new trends and technologies when my kids get older and become adults if it can help us stay close (then we won't have to resort to Goose's "when I move out you can have sleepovers for the rest of your life" plan).

But back to my mom and my beginning statement. She is not the most correct person I know--I am. She reads a lot and does spur me on to read, even if she cheats at our book club and starts a book way before me. And she is beautiful, because heck, I hope I look like her when I'm her age (this is coming off like she's old, but she's not--remember I said that earlier?)(btw, Mom probably thinks I won't just because I don't take care of my skin, which she likes to point out)(I use copious amounts of parentheses and double stops--don't ya think?).

So there's your nice shout out, Mom. You are amazing as a Grandma and a Mom and I love you.

Oh, and Mom, go enter this giveaway for an EcoFlow shower head at Green Your Decor and if you win, share it with me, your fave daughter! Like how I did that?
posted by Lori @ 8:03 PM   1 comments
Friday, April 17, 2009
Fruitful Friday
We've been using lots of magazines in our crafts, and it's giving me a complex. Now, I don't mind that Goose can name the First Lady, and I'm pretty psyched when she can name exotic animals, but do I really want her caring about Beyonce? We keep flipping through magazines trying to find lots of color and there's all these ads and celebrities on the pages, and while she doesn't ask about who they are or why mouths are open in that way with bright red lipstick, I can't help but think that she's absorbing it all.

I remember watching a movie in my first class in college talking about how we're bombarded with ads even without tv, radio or print. And I want to put the super empowered woman magazine in front of Goose and make her look for pretty colors in that.

But the flowers we've made have turned out pretty (no camera at the moment, no pics--sorry). And in honor of Mother Earth I bought some Freshaire paint from Home Depot to paint the trim on the dog house that my wonderful dad made. Low VOC paint doesn't smell like much, and maybe that's because it's outside (which I know since it's outside doesn't quite give me all the indoor benefits, but it's still nice not to have to think about taking it to a drop off). I'll post pictures of the house and the flowers once I get my act together.

Oh, and Hi Mom! Thank you for reading this!
posted by Lori @ 11:43 PM   0 comments
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Wordy Wednesday
I'm cheating. We didn't check this out at the library, it happens to be one of my favorite books, and I'm about to seriously espouse my love for someone other than Ziggy.

I'm cheating. We didn't check this out at the library, it happens to be one of my favorite books, and I'm about to seriously espouse my love for someone other than Ziggy.

I love Ogden Nash. Love. And even though there are plenty of puns in his poetry, which some may say is the basest of humor (what can I say, I like poop jokes, too) his points are witty. He can turn a phrase. He can write sentiment with perfect comedic timing (actually, much like my amazing husband can). "You, and Me and PB Shelley" has livened many a bored or trying moment for me and is currently Goose's favorite poem for me to recite to her before bedtime.

Which brings me to the collection called Zoo. Ziggy found it for me a few years ago for my birthday. It is a wonderful collection of animal themed poems that are great for adults and kids alike. And while Goose I'm sure doesn't get who Lawrence Welk is (someone who I even had to look up and from whom I doubt my ears will recover), the poems are funny on other levels.

Here's one that Goose can do by herself:

The panther is like a leopard
Except it hasn't been peppered.
Should you behold a panther crouch
Be prepared to say, "ouch".
Better yet, if called by a panther,
Don't anther.

If you're not familiar with Nash, you might think he's Shel Silverstein-esque, or if you're a bit more contemporary than him even, he has a Dean Koontz's children's poetry quality but, ho, ho! He began being published in the 30's and 40's.

If you can, check out Zoo or The Old Dog Barks Backwards for extra fun.
posted by Lori @ 11:49 PM   0 comments
Recycled Paper Revisited

This is definitely not a craft for the impatient! After the paper soaked overnight, we pulverized it in the blender and put it on the frame we made. We pressed the water out and decorated it, and that was nine hours ago! That's right, nine hours and it's still not dry! Hopefully by the time Goose wakes up in the morning we'll have dry paper.

So in the meantime, let me share how we did it.

I already mentioned that we ripped newsprint (you can use anything if it soaks long enough, you can even toss in dryer lint) into approximately inch squared pieces, then we let them soak in warm water overnight.

Since it's all about Earth Day and reusing things, I used what we had. We had some extra frames around and mesh that our neighbor wrapped some cookies in during the holidays. So we hot glued the mesh into the wooden frame. Other options are wire hangers or embroidery hoops with panty hose. When I was little we used screen door screen, which is great because it's so sturdy, but I don't have that around so no go.

Then came Goose's favorite--the paper milkshake. Scoop the paper out of the soaking tub and put it in the blender. Add enough warm water to cover the paper, then blend/pulse it until there are no paper chunks.

We did the next part (Monkey's favorite) outside. Set your frame in a basin of water, continue to remove toddler from water until you decide to remove his pants and let him have at it. Put the paper pulp into the frame and work it out to your preferred thickness. Then remove the frame from the water and let it drip excess water.

We then put the frame on a towel and put another towel over the top and pressed the water out. I was nervous about taking the paper out at this point because I didn't want it falling apart in front of Goose--you think the paper's fragile!

After it dried about ten minutes I flipped the frame over so that the paper came out on a towel. We decorated it with sparkles and pressed flowers and there it has been for a very very long time.

We're going to cut it up and put it on an Earth Day card. Very resourceful. Very messy. Very fun.
posted by Lori @ 11:20 PM   0 comments
Earth Day: Local Stuff

With Earth Day coming up, and there being tons of activities, I really wanted to get a list together for all the activities here in the Roseville/Rocklin area.

Riley Library/Utility Exploration Center
in Roseville 10am-3pm FREE
Hi, you had me at Petting Zoo, but there's also a puppet show, bands, and organic food happening.

Michaels The Knack in Roseville 10am-1pm FREE
I worked at Michaels for three years in college and I got to do kids club which was usually fun but did have a few of those kids that made a teen never want to have kids. We haven't done the Knack yet, but I assume it's the same sort of deal, supplies set out, parents help while employee may spout words of encouragement.

STAR Eco Station
in Rocklin 11am-3pm $5/FREE for kids under 4 or 5 (I can't remember)
Should be dancing, tours, hands on activities.

Lakeshore Learning
in Roseville 11am-3pm FREE
Plant a sunflower seed and they always do great crafts, Goose loves sparkles and they always seem to have plenty. Plus, they have a buy one get one half off deal going on.

UP Steam Locomotive No. 844 in Roseville FREE
Down at the Roseville Railyard you can see this train. Should be good for budding train enthusiasts.

RC Willey has free hot dogs and drinks from 12-2.
Ikea is doing free breakfast Friday, Saturday and Sunday until 10:30

Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Carmichael 11am FREE (unless paying to park has resumed)
Puppet Show! I know that it's a bit of a drive for the Rosevillians and Rocklinites, but Effie Yeaw is one of my favorite places to take the kids. It has great trails for walking and exploring nature, but their nature center is great complete with turtles, owls, lizards and a rattlesnake plus tons of hands on learning exhibits. And where else can you get a honey stick for 25 cents?

Whole Foods' Kids Camp as usual starts at 12.

Rocklin, Roseville and Carmichael have Creek Weeks beginning on the 17th (Carmichael) and 18th (figure it out) which would be amazing to help instill cleanliness in the kiddos.

Anything I missed?
posted by Lori @ 1:52 AM   0 comments
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Tear-it-up Tuesday - Making Paper
One thing you should know about me is that I'm frugal. Heck, I'll say it, I'm cheap. Goose knows who the vice president is because we ordered a free pack of gum from him a few months ago (which I'm chewing right now, thanks Trident).

So that's why I haven't put batteries in the camera. We have a perfectly good camera on the Mac, why do I want to start wasting batteries if we're doing stuff that's in the house? Plus, it makes the picture a thousand times cuter.

See, Goose was taking a nap, a long one, like TWO HOURS, and I decided to get a jump on ripping up our newspaper. Monkey loved it!
He was talking up a storm in baby language while we ripped (we'll see how intact our books stay now) and he was throwing the paper like confetti. It was really fun for both of us. So I snuck off for the laptop and turned on Photo Booth and presto! Monkey, paper in hand gets super psyched by his video image of himself. In the three second countdown it gives, he went from paper pile to laptop. (Please disregard the unmade bed. My Grandma would be appalled.)

Since the paper has to soak overnight, I'll post more on this craft tomorrow.
posted by Lori @ 3:56 PM   1 comments
Monday, April 13, 2009
Master Plan Monday
What subject matter are we covering?
Preparing for Earth Day this weekend, we're going to cover the environment: nature, natural events, and issues.

What do I want Goose to take out of it?
I want her to have an understanding of why we need to conserve and protect our earth. As for Monkey, I'd just like him not to eat the Earth, that means no bark in mouth, no grabbing for dog poop, no up nose, etc. Gardening will be fun!

What crafts, projects, games, outings, stories, or shows will get me there?
We'll be planting our garden this week, picking out some nature themed books I'll cover Wednesday, and I'm working on a big list of events for the Sacramento area for this weekend.

What supplies do I have?
We have our plants and I've noticed that magazines are piling up around here, so we'll do a reuse craft with them. Also I have a bunch of newspaper, so we may make our own paper.

What supplies do I need?
I'm trying not to drive much this week since our city is doing free buses for library cardholders, and Goose thinks a bus is glamorous, SO we won't be running out to get much, which helps promote the reduce, reuse recycle concept--go me!
posted by Lori @ 4:11 PM   0 comments
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Happy Easter!

posted by Lori @ 7:28 AM   0 comments
Friday, April 10, 2009
Raising a Drug Dealer

I'm sure that I should be psyched that Goose has such a great memory and unmatched reading comprehension skills, but I wonder what the teacher is going to think when Goose comes up and says, "Miss Kathy, do you want some drugs?"

We have this book from the seventies that was recently reprinted in Click Magazine called Germs Make Me Sick. It says that if you get sick with a virus/bacteria a doctor will probably prescribe "some drug" to make you feel better. Fine, it's true, but Goose keeps trying to give me drugs now!

Goose giving Mommy some blocks.
Goose: Here Mommy, have some drugs.
Mommy: No, Gooose. I don't want any drugs.
Goose: Have some drugs. They're really good.
Mommy: Goose, I don't like drugs. I like to let my body feel better naturally.
Goose leaves. Comes back with a bigger block.
Goose: Mommy, do you want some juice?
Mommy: Yeah I do! Drinks.
Goose: It's drug juice.

I really love that she wants to play doctor, but really honey, let's keep the drug thing to ourselves.

This morning she woke up and as we were going down the stairs she said, "maybe my heart disease is back".

Hey Ziggy, I think we need to up the deposits into Goose's 529 if we're going to be able to cover med school.
posted by Lori @ 10:03 AM   2 comments
Fruitful Friday: More Easter and Spring Crafts

Check it out! Our silly eggs started growing spinach hair just in time for Easter! Goose's grew way faster than mine, despite all the propecia.

We had some extra pinecones hanging around so we painted them and cut out shapes from the mountain of magazines I've been waiting to recycle for eyes and beaks. We used pipe cleaners for feet, wings and ears. And although Goose wanted to make the bunny look like Oreo, the ready to adopt pet at the rabbit rescue at the local pet store, she did insist on a pink tail. She's Pinkerbelle!
posted by Lori @ 9:54 AM   0 comments
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
The Best Activity Possible
Last September when we moved in to our new home, I finally realized what we had been missing. A backyard!

A family can only do so many crafts in a day. So as I'm cooking, and I hear Goose ask, "Mommy, can I go play out in the backyard?" I don't know that it is possible to answer with a more emphatic, "yes!" I love that she gets outside and plays with the dog.

The problem is, there's not much to do out there. We've never had a backyard before now, so we're lacking in entertainment.

Which is why Dad Blogs is trying to save us by giving away a is super cool swing set from Kids Creations! We don't have the money to buy something right now, what with the saving up for window coverings and all, so it would be amazing to win this!

Goose will be so sad if this doesn't happen! She could, as she likes to say, "cry for the rest of [her] life!"
posted by Lori @ 10:23 PM   0 comments
Wordy Wednesday
Do you know the book, The Egg Book by Margaret Wise Brown?

It's pretty classic. I remember it from when I was little. In fact the copy we have was Ziggy's when he was baby Ziggy (imagine paying 1.29 for a Golden Book! We miss you 1980's--the prices not the hair.) It's a story about friendship and has some pretty sweet illustrations. We combined the book with Easter crafts and here's what we got...

Hatching eggs! Complete with elephant, bunny and boy! Goose decorated some eggs. Then we cut zig zags through them and attached them with a brad to a paper with her hand imprints of the animals. Now she can hatch Easter eggs!
posted by Lori @ 12:57 PM   0 comments
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Here are some of the crafts we've been doing lately, continued...

First up, bunny hand prints. I've seen these on a few craft blogs and sites. They're super easy to make, and great for adorning on cards for family. Paint the palm and two fingers, then draw or paint on the face. Goose did get a little frustrated with me on the eighth one--nothing a little hot chocolate couldn't fix!
She loves putting stickers on things, too, so that's her handiwork (sticker peeling is good fine motor skills. I'll have her on a knitting/crocheting production line in no time!)

Next up was home made window clings. We did a few names, a flower and a heart. They came out pretty well!

You take fabric paint and draw onto a non-stick surface (I think styrene blanks work best, but wax paper should be ok for those of you who don't just have those lying around...)

Wait for it to dry. Peel; stick and Voila! Cheaper and cooler than Target's!
posted by Lori @ 4:20 PM   2 comments
Monday, April 6, 2009
Fruitful Friday--via Monday

We've done a few Spring themed crafts. I saw this Very Hungry Caterpillar idea over at Just for Fun, and we put that together on a massive scale so it is now a part of the playroom. I'll be posting other crafts we've done shortly...
posted by Lori @ 8:37 PM   0 comments
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Thoughtful Thursday
Decorations are coming along nicely. I'll post some pictures tomorrow. And our sprouts are coming along really well. Goose loves coming downstairs to see them every morning (she actually scared the bejeezus out of me this morning when she walked into the kitchen and sucked in her breath and it sounded like we were standing on a tarmac!)

I had an epiphany today while I was searching for my keys prior to Goose going to school--I have two adorable excuses in my arsenal! I've always been forgetful, but now I have reasons. I don't know why I didn't think of this before! Can you guess what my excuse for not knowing where my keys were?

Thanks, Monkey. No one can be mad at you for making Goose late for school. I love you.
posted by Lori @ 8:58 PM   0 comments
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Wordy Wednesday

Up, Down and Around by Katherine Ayres

Goose keeps asking for this one, and more than likely it's due to the physical aspect of the story. I love it because it ties in great with spring and all the planting and gardening we've been doing. She loves it (and Monkey, too) because there is ton of actions in it.

I'll give you three guesses as to what those actions are...hint: take a look at the title. So it talks about how the different plants in a garden grow: up, down or around; then they reap the rewards of harvest. The kids love that I let them sit in my lap and as we read I lift them up with my knees, or slide them down, or, you got it, rock them around.

The illustrations are good, but they like the repetitions and actions the best. It's a very good picture book for the 1-4 crowd.

What stories have you read recently?
posted by Lori @ 10:32 PM   0 comments
April Fools
I hate this day. We have our standing playdate and company coming over, and all I want to do is hide out in bed! I may be the most gullible person in the world!

Happy April Fool's Day to those of you who like it! Don't do anything so mean as saying your daughter's hair is falling out, or turning purple and get everyone in a salon to agree, including your best friend...
posted by Lori @ 8:59 AM   0 comments
Tear it up Tuesday

To the untrained eye, this might just look like a mess that I decided to take a picture of.

To the Mommy Vulcanologist, this is a volcano!

We pulled all of the pillows out of all of the rooms and off of the sofa and mounded them up, covered it with a brown blanket, then a white one (for snow, because Goose wanted it to be a violent explosion of a dormant volcano, specifically the one near Uncle J.) Then a red lava blanket went down the side--and you thought this was just the way our house looked!

Immediately they jumped on and started playing. Goose started warming up her bum on the lava, before she decided to put her brother in lava jail, which we had to pay to get into (she's so much like her dad!) So we took her admission prices and made it into a math game. How much money would she have when Monkey and Mommy gave her the admission fees!

If you ever want to go to lava jail, avoid Goose's. Her prices are a bit usurious--$50 bucks per person!
posted by Lori @ 8:50 AM   0 comments
About Me

Name: Lori
Home: Sacramento-ish, California, United States
About Me: I want to make things better.
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