Monday, September 26, 2011

Art and Trains!

The playroom is finally completely done! We worked pretty hard this weekend kind of unexpectedly. I started out by going to Toys r Us on Friday to use a great coupon and purchase one of Nolan's birthday gifts. I knew I wanted Nol to have a train set for his birthday and had decided it needed to be a small set that could completely pack away or a super large set that would be displayed. It didn't make sense to buy a full set at Toys r Us because the giant train set and table would be ridiculously priced. I didn't fall in love with any of the small sets so we left empty handed. That's where craigslist came in! We ended up finding an amazing set that had never been used for a fraction of the cost.

As you can see, we weren't going to have a giant train box sitting around until his birthday so he already has his train set! It took a bit of creativity but it's now stable and not easily knocked over which is what a rowdy almost 2 year old needs!

His art wall was completed this weekend too. My awesome Uncle made vinyl letters that we then hung on the wall. It all came together amazingly well. The pictures don't do justice but since you're not here to see it they'll have to do!

Nolan's TotSchool work is hanging on the wall! He walks by and points out "A" and "B" proudly.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Crappy start to a day

So on the way to our playdate this morning to which I am hauling a ton of stuff, Nolan takes off running and unbeknownst to me steps in dog poo. I throw the 20lbs of rice, water table, 0 boxes of macroni, and completed clay handprint tiles in the car and run to him. As I pick him up to put him in the car he squirms and carries on as usual. I manage to get him strapped in before I start to smell it. It immediately dawns on me that someones shoe is dirty. I'm praying it's me but know it's not.

That's when I notice the entire car seat is smeared. Yep, my 3 month old pleather interior has poo on it! I look down and of course my squirmy child has covered me in it too. I immediately get his shoe off, wipe the car down, and head inside. We both get clean, wash his shoes, and try again to leave the house. It's amazing we made it to our event!!

What a messy start to our day!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


It's official, Nolan has started school. TotSchool that is! TotSchool is a small group of mommas who joined together in a cooperative, are following a preschool homeschool curriculum at home, and meet once a week for a group activity or school day.

Our curriculum is lots of fun and is basically a way to help me make sure we get in educational activities each day. Lots of play, arts and crafts, and overall fun is involved. Since Nolan doesn't go to preschool or daycare he doesn't have the opportunity to interact in a structured environment with kiddos his own age. We do playdates, story times, and lots of activities with our moms group but things like circle time and sitting at a table with other kids aren't usually involved. In TotSchool though, he has to listen and follow directions from other moms when they are leading the class, sit still for short periods of time, and gets to interact with some slightly older toddlers all with mom!

Last week was our first week. We "studied" the letter A, color red, and number 1. We talked a lot about apples and had fun red apple snacks! Some of the fun things we did included painting an apple tree, playing hide and find the A, doing an apple toss, and reading fun books. Nolan was the youngest kiddo at the group class day but did great. He's now saying A and B and picking out the letter A from his magnetic alphabet.

This week we are on to the letter B and our group class will be on the beach!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Rainbow fun

This month my mom's group is focusing on colors. I decided to take an idea I saw on Pinterest and turn it in to a playdate. Next week we are going to be playing with rainbow colored rice. To keep the fun going I'm going to put fun little items inside so the kids can explore and dig through the rice much like they would sand.

This means lots of rice dyeing for me though! It turned out to be very simple and fun. While Nolan napped, I filled my oven with this!
It's quite easy to do. Just take 2-3T of rubbing alcohol and a few drops of food coloring. Add that to a ziploc bag with 4-5 cups of dry rice and shake until coated. Place onto cookie sheets and set in the sun or a really low over (~175 degrees). If using the oven, you might want to keep the door slightly ajar. As the alcohol evaporates the fumes are quite strong. It dries quickly with the rubbing alcohol which also sets the dye. Other recipes called for vinegar instead or the alcohol but although the alcohol smells while you're making the rice it evaporates quickly and is odorless. I think the vinegar might take quite a bit longer to dry! Next time though I'll wait for a sunny day and dry the rice outdoors.

I let Nolan explore the rice for a bit before packing it up for next week!!

Don't mind the dirty face! We were finishing up Black bean hummus snack time.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Family Fun

We had family in town for Labor day and took the opportunity to have lots of fun. We visited Sea World which was a first for both Nolan and Tim. Both had a blast! If you haven't been recently, the Manta roller coaster is amazing. If you want ot go sometime let me know! We have season passes for the next year now. Nolan visited the beach and St. Augustine too. Here are a few pics until I get back to blogging.

Big boy doesn't need help walking around Sea World.

Artic exhibit... right before camera batteries went!