Hoppy Easter!

Happy Easter Everyone!

Mini Thor was ready to see what the Easter Bunny brought him as soon as his eyes opened this morning

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He loved the Yoda basket! As well as the candy and goodies of course, but he sure was excited about that basket!

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We also had another Easter themed bath this morning by putting lots of empty eggs in the bath tub.

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He enjoyed filling them up with water and dumping them. He thought swimming and splashing around in them was “cool!”

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Now he’s full of Easter candy and is ready and excited for the rest of today’s festivities! This mommy can’t wait to see him hunt eggs!

-Kate

Egg-citing Bath and Peeps S’mores!

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Every holiday is full of excitement around here! We spend the time leading up to the actual holiday celebrating too. You’ll always find our windows decorated, we watch holiday movies, and we do holiday activities.

Check out one of our Easter activities……..
Glow-in-the-dark Egg Hunt..in the tub!

I purchased a pack of eggs at Walmart and some glow bracelets from the dollar tree

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To make your glow eggs, activate the glow sticks and roll them to where they will fit into the egg.

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Put the glow stick bracelets in eggs that match, (Orange glow stick in an orange egg, green glow stick in a green egg) for the maximum glow.
We had some dud glow sticks and there were a couple Mini Thor wanted to keep out so we ended up with about a dozen glowing eggs.

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Then I ran a bubble bath (using California Baby Bubble Bath) and let water into the eggs so that they would float below the bubbles.

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Mini Thor then hunted they eggs and lines them up on the bathtub ledge

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After he had found all the eggs he dumped them back in the tub and played for a good while!

You could also hide the glowing eggs throughout your house and have an indoor egg hunt before bed!

We also had some more Easter fun by making s’more kits for Mini Thor to take to school (and we had to eat some too of course)

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The inspiration came from this post by Live-Love-Pasta that gives directions on how to make s’mores out of peeps! (Mini Thor looooooves Peeps!)

Here’s the how to…
-Place chocolate on a graham cracker and top with a peep. We used blue bunnies.
-Microwave for 10-15 seconds.
-Top with another graham cracker.
-Enjoy the sweet gooey goodness!

We put the ingredients in bags with the instructions and a note saying “Hoppy Easter to my Peeps!” These would be cute additions to any Easter basket or gift!

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Happy Easter from us! May your kiddos find lots of eggs!

“Get the Wiggles Out” Dice

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It’s been one of those days where Mini Thor is a crazy ball of energy and I can’t get anything done, not even folding the towels! I needed something to for him to put is energy towards as opposed to wrecking the house haha

It was time to play a Get the Wiggles Out game.

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I wrote different things on each side of a foam dice, like “dance silly” and “wiggle your arms”

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Mini Thor rolls the dice and acts on what it says.

Dance Silly!

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Touch your nose then touch your nose!

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This activity helped him burn off some energy and let him calm down enough that he could actually sit down and eat lunch.

-Kate

Sick Day (again)

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Mini Thor seems to be a germ magnet, the past few months he has been sick more than he has been well! The past couple days I’ve been home with him and we’ve been pretty much quarantined in the house.

You probably know how it goes, most of the time he just lays around but sometimes when the medicines are all kicked in at the same time he has a little energy and needs something to do.

We’ve played a lot of Legos

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We built towers, houses, and all sorts creations!

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Lego Duplo are great for sick day play because of how easy they are to clean, just fill a sink up with water and vinegar and soak and scrub em’. You can also use a natural cleaner, like Babyganics Toy Cleaner. (I love babyganics products!). If your kiddo is down with something contagious, cleaning the toys is important to prevent the spread of germs.

Kid friendly broad games are also a fun way to pass the time on a sick day! We love the Toy Story edition of Yahtzee Jr., it says 4+ but Mini Thor, who is 2 1/2 years old, plays it just fine.

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The sad thing is, he almost always beats me!

We also do “feel better baths” at least once a day. This would be a bath using California Baby Eucalyptus Ease Bubble Bath, like in our previous sick day post. This stuff is amazing! We played with foam letters and numbers to keep him occupied so he would stay in the tub long enough for his fever to break and the aromatherapy from the bubble bath to work its magic.
He said that says “mommy.”

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We also tried out something new, “Be Kool” Soft Gel Sheets. These are handy! They are stick on gel sheets that provide cooling relief without having to be put in the fridge first. You know how sometimes when you are sick you put a cool rag on your forehead or the back of your neck, these provide that same effect (and comfort) with no mess.

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I cut them in half so they are a more suitable size for Mini Thor.

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You just peel of the clear sheet off of the blue gel side and place them on your little one.

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Mini Thor particularly likes them on the back of his neck, he says “ahhhhh” when I stick it on.

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These will be something we keep stocked in the medicine cabinet right along side the children’s Motrin.

Hopefully little mister will be better soon. I tell you what, breathing treatments every 4 hours is no fun!

-Kate

No Prep Stir Fry

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I’ve been craving Chinese food for daaaays, but I tend to eat my weight in egg rolls and rice if I hit the Buffett so instead I made one of my quick and easy low-cal favorites, No Prep Stir Fry! Two bags from the frozen food section, lite asian salad dressing, and some soy sauce, that’s all you need!

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Ingredients:
1 bag Stir fry vegetables with noodles
1 bag California style vegetable blend
2 tbsp Kraft Lite Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing
2 tsp Soy Sauce

How-to:
– Add the bags of veggies to a heated skillet and stir in soy sauce
– Cook until noodles are done
– Stir in sesame dressing

That’s it!
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Healthy, quick, and easy..that’s my favorite combo. I always keep these ingredients on hand for busy nights when I don’t have time to cook something elaborate….or when I get a hankering for Asian food 🙂

Enjoy!
-Kate

Oreo Banana Muffins

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Mini Thor goes through phases where he eats bananas all the time, but it never fails that when I buy a big bunch he quits eating them and I’ll have bananas turning brown. These sad, left behind bananas get put to good use though, usually in tasty muffins. The most recent banana muffin to leave my oven was these Oreo Banana muffins..

What you need:
2-3 overripe bananas
1 egg
1 box Betty Crocker French Vanilla cake mix
6 Reduced Fat Oreos (crushed in a food processor)

How-to:
Mash up the bananas with the egg

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(Pardon the pots in the background, mini Thor likes to “cook” while mommy cooks)

Add the crush Oreos (I used my amazing little Ninja chopper, I love that thing!)

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Put them in a mini muffin pan and bake them at 350 degrees until done. This makes about 30 mini muffins.

Here’s the best part… Only 50 calories for two mini muffins!!!! Plus, they are amazing. Lo-cal tasty breakfast for-the-win!!

-Kate

Bubble Pizza

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So I saw this thing on Pinterest..man how many times have I said that in the last year?! Anyway, I saw a recipe on Pinterest titled “bubble-up pizza” and just had to try it. I mean, really, how do you not try a recipe with BUBBLE in the name?! Mini Thor was pretty excited about the idea too. It’s an easy one (you gotta love that), although not so healthy it’s a good quick meal for a busy week night (we all have those).

What you need:
12oz Can Grands Jr Golden Layers Biscuits
10oz of pizza sauce
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese
Mini Pepperonis or other “topping” of your choice like sausage or mushrooms

How-To:
Pre-heat the oven to 375
Cut each biscuit into 6 pieces (I used kitchen scissors)
Stir together the biscuit pieces, pizza sauce, 1 cup of cheese, and your topping (we used half a package of mini pepperonis) in a large bowl until everything seems coated in the pizza sauce.

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Put your pizza mixture in a 2 1/2 quart baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray (like Pam). I used my Corning Ware, you know since this is such a fancy food and all.
Pop it in the oven, let it bake for about 30 minutes

Ta-Da Bubble Pizza!

Mini Thor gave it two thumbs up! He ate his whole plate full..and then asked for more, and that doesn’t happen often.

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One of these days I’ll try making mini bubble pizzas in those cute little corningware pieces that I never use. I have an ever growing list of “things I want to cook/bake.” I’ll get around to t all eventually right…yeah, that’s what they all say 😉

-Kate

The Dirt Box

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Mini Thor amazes me with the progress he has made with regards to his “sensory issues,” he has come so far with his texture sensitivity. One of the ways to help children overcome or cope with sensory issues is through sensory boxes. I have made a few that we cycle through, but one of his favorites is what he calls the “dirt box.” I made it using what is commonly called “cloud dough.” I first saw cloud dough on Growing A Jeweled Rose, she has tons of sensory ideas on here site, check them out here.

The first time I introduced cloud dough to little man he couldn’t stand it. Eventually, after having the box out several times, he put his hands in it. He would go wash his hands several times while playing but eventually he got to where he loved digging and playing in his “dirt box”.

I recently made a fresh box of cloud dough..here’s the how to..

What you need
– 2lb bag of flour
– 1/2 cup of baby oil
– A container with a lid
– dropcloth or newspaper to put under the box if a little one will be exploring indoors

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Dump the flour into your container and add the baby oil. You kind of have to cut in the oil with a fork like you would butter in a crumb topping, sorry that’s the only thing I could think of to describe it haha (I’m a goofball)

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Then add some toys and something to dig with and let the fun begin. (I put an ice cream scoop in there with some trucks and a few little animals from the dollar tree)

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I let him play with his dirt box in the living room, I put a garbage bag under the box to catch some of the mess but this stuff vacuums up really easily. For me, it’s easier to vacuum it up out of the carpet than to get it swept up in the kitchen.

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The cloud dough runs through fingers just like flour but is moldable because of the oil mixed in, making it a great material for sensory play!

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If your feeling brave you an let them explore with their little toes too!

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He loved that part, haha. Needless to say, we needed a bath after this fun 🙂

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Play-doh Prints

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Little man loooooves play-doh, me not so much, but hey sometimes you gotta let kids be kids right? This morning he wanted to bust out the play-doh out and I thought we’d do something different.

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I pulled out the bucket of dollar tree and happy meal toys and grabbed a few cars as well and we had a little experiment.

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We looked at the bottoms of each toy and than made prints with them in the play-doh.

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Mini Thor was excited to see what kinds of prints we could make. I loved seeing him experiment and discover.
(For older kids, this could be used to teach the scientific method, have them make a hypothesis of what print an item will make and then test it)

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We also made prints with different vehicle toys and compared the tracks they made.

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And of course Mini Thor had to see what kind of print he would leave 🙂

It’s amazing how a few items you have laying around can led to a little science experiment and tons of smiles 🙂

-Kate

Strawberry Cookies for Spring

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Mini Thor had a case of the grumpies yesterday evening so naturally I had to do something about that. See, grumpies can be contagious so they aren’t allowed in my house haha. In order to get rid of those grumps we made some spring cookies using some new cookie cutters we had recently purchased.
Here’s how we made out super easy, delightfully soft, strawberry cookies…

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You just need
– One box Ducan Hines Strawberry Supreme cake mix
– One Stick of Butter, softened
– 2 Eggs
– Strawberry Icing & Sprinkles (optional)

I always forget to leave my butter out to get soft. I put it in the microwave for 10 seconds and it seems to be soft enough for mixing.

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Mix all of the ingredients together until everything is well combined.

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Refrigerate the dough for 2 hrs.

Now you are ready to roll it out and cut out your cookies

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Bake @ 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes. Just enough that they look done and are just barely starting to golden on the edges.

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That is what our baked cookies looked like.

Once they are cooled you can decorate! We used Strawberry Icing and a variety of sprinkles 🙂

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Mini Thor always loves making cookies and these are some of my favorites! They are so delicious and they stay soft even after they have cooled (and for days!).

Shhh, don’t tell anyone, but we ate some for breakfast this morning 😉

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(Photo edited with the “Halftone” app for iPhone, cool right?!?!)

-Kate