DIY Car Track

3. 2. 1. GO! 

Wall car tracks from Hot Wheels cost over $30. This project was FREE! 

If you are anything like me, I like free! Just by using a few things you have around the house you can make an awesome wall car track.

What you need: 

  1. 2+ cardboard tubes- wrapping paper tubes work or if you want stronger tubes, Joann’s usually has a pile of free tubes from fabric wrap which is what we used.
  2. Command hooks
  3. Ribbon
  4. tape, x-acto knife or box cutter, a ruler or something with a straight edge.

 

1st Tube:

Place it against the wall angled down, try a car out to see if you have a good enough slope.

Once you have your slope hang it with 2 command hooks and a ribbon on each. Place the tube so that the ribbon cradles the tube.

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2nd Tube:

Take the 2nd tube and align it with the bottom of the sloped 1st tube. Leave 4-5 inches to overlap and mark with a pencil where the 1st tube intersects.  Cut the tube from the end to where the pencil mark is.  My husband helped out =)

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The ruler was more for a straight line than for actual measurements.

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Next hang your tube just like you did the 1st but in the opposite direction.

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You might want to tape the ribbon to the tubes so that they don’t move as much.

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Action Jackson was tickled pink and had a blast!

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Ice Smashing!!!

This project is perfect in warmer weather, but since we live in Miami we can do it all year. 

Ice Smashing!  Everyone feels at some point in time if they just hit something they would feel so much better. Well children are the same way. They have to to release frustration, energy, or just think it is neat to break things.  This project is perfect for this.

What you need:

  1. Plastic mixing bowl – I use a medium to large but any size will do.
  2. Random toys- I use some Matchbox cars, alphabet magnets, dinosaurs. Things that don’t break easily when hit. 
  3. Hammer or Mallet. Depending on the age of you child and how you feel about you child playing with a hammer.
  4. Plenty of outdoor space or a patio so the sun helps melt the ice. ICE WILL FLY! 
  5. Optional:  Food Color, Glitter

Step 1:

   Fill your plastic mixing bowl 3/4 full of water. If you want to add food coloring and glitter now is the time to do it.

Step 2:

 Add your toys

Step 3:

Freeze overnight.  I usually cover the bowl with Press N Seal wrap.

Step 4:

  Go outside to the patio or where ever you plan on letting your child smash.

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Step 5:

 Place your bowl upside down and gently knock around the base to release the ice from the bowl.

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Step 6:

Have your child let their inner Hulk out and SMASH SMASH SMASH!!!!! 

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We did two bowls, a red and blue.

REMEMBER TO HAVE FUN! 

 

 

Front Yard Exploration

Every now and then, as a parent, we need to remind ourselves to slow down. Stop and take a look at what you miss every day on the way to your car or on the way to check the mail. Your front yard can be explored just like a park down the street.  Yesterday Jackson and I did just this.

We stopped. We listened. We explored. 

And you know what, we had a lot of fun. It was maybe only 15-20 minutes for exploration, but it was something different.

We 1st went out and had a seat on our walkway. He loves it when I get a blade of grass between my thumbs and make that high pitch whistle sound. He even tries to immitate. Even if he usually just ends up putting the whole piece of grass in his mouth trying to figure it out. He is still trying and learning.

I had him find some purple flowers. My mexican petunias are always in bloom so this was what he picked. I’m ok with that since they are everywhere lining the front walk.

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He started running out of blooms he could reach so he decided he just wanted to run from the door to me.

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Yes, I still have a santa wreath up. Yes, I will change it when I feel inspired to make a spring time wreath.

And then he stopped and stared at our spiders. I loathe spiders. But these guys don’t bother me much since they stay on one side of the walk. If they crossed the line then they would be goners.

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 While we still waited for daddy to arrive home we though we would play a little animal game. He showed me how kangaroos hopped, snakes slither, bears roamed and growled, and how a lion ran. Haha. And we were able to do that on the wet grass (Thanks Rain!) so he was sure to get extra dirty.

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Sometimes play is more than playing. It is learning, using your imagination, exploring what is around you, and just having fun!

Get out and enjoy your own yard and see what all you find!

Scribble T-Shirt’s!!!

I found this idea at Aesthetic Nest through Pinterest (of course!) several months ago and made Jackson a t-shirt with his initial on it.  Well the shirt was one of those basic under shirts that were too big so it was only a night time shirt because it was big too.

Well we are taking Jackson to the circus tomorrow. He loves the zoo so much, we hope he will love the circus just as much.  He loves giraffes and elephants. Since giraffes aren’t in the circus ( at least last time I checked they aren’t) I decided to make him a elephant scribble t shirt. It is still one of those basic under shirts but for tomorrow it can work.

What You Need:

  1. Basic color shirt. White works best. 
  2. Fabric markers
  3. Freezer paper
  4. Applique pattern.
  5. Hot Iron, X-acto Knife, and Cardboard for in between the shirt.

Step 1:  Find an applique pattern you like.  There are many free ones out there. I got my elephant pattern from Homemade Gifts Made Easy which can be found here. Just make sure to get one that can fit on your shirt and will fit where you want it on the shirt.

Step 2: Freezer Paper. Place your pattern under the freezer paper and trace it onto the rough side of the paper. After you trace your pattern use your X-acto knife to cut it out. Be careful not to cut yourself!

Step 3: Iron.    Place your freezer paper smooth side down on to your shirt, where ever you want it.  Make sure your iron is hot. Iron the freezer paper onto your shirt. This will take some pressure. Make sure all of your edges are iron down.

Step 4: SCRIBBLE!!!!!   Give your little one some fabric markers and let them scribble all on the inside of the freezer paper.  I outlined my elephant this time but didn’t with his “J” shirt. The more scribbles and different colors the better. Once you are done making art peel off the freezer paper.

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Step 5: Iron. I iron a second time just to seal everything.

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Finished product!  I like it!

I hope you and your little ones have a blast making some one of a kind t-shirts!

 

 

**Updated 09/18/13**

Craft day with mom’s group

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Playtime Adventures

In this house we really like the Muppets. My husband went to NYC on business around 3 years ago when our son was a few months old. Well he came home and surprised us with a Build Your Own Muppet at the Muppet Whatnot Workshop. You can do them at FAO Schwartz or online here.

Every now and then Jackson will come out and start to pretend play with our Muppet (who still does not have a name! Any ideas?).

Today we just played for a little while and my photos are kinda crappy since they are Iphone photos. Excuse the quality.

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When I 1st saw it I thought it looked similar to my Dad (I love you). The hair, glasses, and he even has a hat that he wears. Plus he is wearing a NY jersey. My dad loves the Yankees. Even though it is supposed to be NY Pigeons.

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The Muppet just wanted a smell.

 

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Your hammer really doesn’t belong in his mouth, but we will play along anyways.

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Big Hugs

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Jack wanted to show him off

 

 

Mind Jar

I have been seeing these Mind Jars floating around Pinterest for a while now. I finally decided to make one. Perfect calm down tool now that Action Jackson has graduated to a 3 minute time out. These mind jars take between 2-3 minutes to settle down. I can’t wait to really try it out with him and see how it works.

I got the recipe for it from My Crazy Blessed Life‘s mind jar right here.

I used a Ethnos bottle 3/4 full of hot (near boiling) water. My Crazy Blessed Life used a Smart Bottle. Either one will work. The bottles have a small smooth circumference  perfect for little hands to hold. And they are plastic since more than likely they will be dropped by little hands.  There are other Mind Jars on Pinterest made out of actual glass jars. I just don’t trust my 3 year old when he is upset to be holding glass.

I also used a full bottle of CLEAR Elmer’s glue, white glue will NOT work. It will turn your water white where you can not see the glitter. I then mixed the clear glue with the hot water in the bottle. Give it several shakes so it dissolves.

Then mix a tube  of glitter glue ( any color) and a tube of fine glitter into the water bottle. This would probably be best is they were the same or similar colors. We used red. Since it was the only color I had both glitter and glitter glue.

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Adding the glitter

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All shaken up.

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All settled….

I hope that this will work with your little one becomes a cranky butt and just needs to calm down.

 

Fireworks in a Jar!

Science can be truly fun. In my opinion it is usually the experiments that are my favorite part of science.  Experiments for kids open up a whole new world full of wonder and excitement.

Fireworks in a Jar would be great to teach kids ages 2+ about how oil doesn’t mix with water.  I got this idea from I Can Teach My Child.  Action Jackson loved it so much we did it 3 times!

What you need:

  1. Clear jar or glass of warm water
  2. Small dish or bowl with about 1-2 TBSP of oil (Veg. oil works just fine)
  3. Food Coloring! At least 3 different colors
  4. Fork to stir

 Step 1: Fill your jar or glass 3/4 full of warm water.  Add oil to your small dish.

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Step 2: Add your food coloring to your oil. About 3-4 drops of each color. We used 6 colors on the 1st go round. Eventually will turn your water black. If you want to be able to see fireworks better, use maybe 3-4 different colors. 

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Step 3: Gently mix food color and oil using your fork.

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Step 4: Slowly pour your oil into your water, something your child can help you do. 

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Viola! A quick science experiment where your child can do at least 90% of it!