Friday, August 30, 2013

Amazing Miracle Cure for Sleep Deprived Toddler or Massive Unexplainable Coincidence - Vote Now!

Well. I've left it a few weeks to post now. Partly due to laziness on my part I admit. But also because last time I posted about sleep I was on Day Four of Sleeping Through and then that was it again for 3 months.  But this time tomorrow it'll be a month ...
More energy for laughing... and not just the bubba
So something miraculous has happened in that time. I would love to say it was 100% due to the cranial osteopathy. Because then I'd have a clear Line-in-the-Sand moment. I would become a tout or overly-aggressive promoter for the cause.
But the Sleep Though started the night before the osteo visit. Shucks. So I can't say for sure the massaging, pressure applications and soothing sessions were the whole reason for the sleeping. I do think they helped. Perhaps only my mental state, but that was pretty poor after 20 months of extreme sleep deprivation.
Even if it was a placebo effect, whereby my simply believing bubba was going to feel more comfortable and sleep through then so be it. Definitely worth forty quid....
Toddler-Chasing - requires Mama to be alert to potential washing-line related impending disasters
So if we were to have another bubba at some point, one who hated sleep and fights it all the way, has colic and/ or reflux, I wouldn't hesitate to give osteo another shot. Of course I wouldn't expect a tiny baby to sleep through... there's simply no getting away from those midnight feeds, and the 2am, and the 4am and so on...
But if it saves us from pushing another bubba up and down the seafront at 4am, being jibed by late night revellers, whilst wearing dressing gown and work shoes as they were nearest the door, it'll be worth at least another forty quid...
Easier to concentrate on Digging when you've had enough sleep

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Garlic Bread Pizza

On a recent trip to Pizza Hut my husband was complaining that they no longer offered their garlic bread pizza.  After thinking for a moment I thought, why can't we make some? And that is just what we did! We took the super easy route and bought frozen Garlic Texas Toast, but I am sure you could make your own garlic bread for the crust. I really liked how think the Texas Toast was though!

Place your garlic bread on a baking sheet and put on your choice of pizza sauce. 

Then add whatever toppings you want. Nathan wanted some sausage on his while the rest of us just had cheese!

Bake until the cheese is melted, and if you used frozen garlic bread, the bread is heated thoroughly. It seriously only takes about 10 minutes! 

We were all quite pleased with how they tasted too!  Just another fun little way to make pizza different, but still easy enough that anyone (other then me) can cook it!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Wild at the Zoo Review and Giveaway

When we were given the chance to review the Wild at the Zoo Adventure Pack by KidQuest Adventures, I was thrilled (we were given a copy in exchange for our honest review). It is no secret how much I love animals, and my kids are pretty fond of them too. This gave us another reason to go to the zoo!

At first glance, I was impressed by the amount of information covered, and how nicely it all flowed. I was also concerned my girls may be a little young for some of it,  but I was really surprised by how much they took in, especially the 4 year old!

The Wild at the Zoo Adventure Pack is divided into three parts: things to cover before your trip, activities to do at the zoo, and follow up activities. 

The section you cover before your trip goes over some basic classification of animals as well as specialized terms for what they eat. The classification part sunk in pretty well, but the more specialized terms for what they ate kind of went in one ear and out the other at their ages. At least they have heard the word, so it isn't completely foreign when they hear it again.

The next section contains some fun activities you can do at the zoo.  I actually looked through the activities ahead of time, so we could cover the information,  but we did not fill them out at the zoo for a couple reasons: the zoo was extremely busy and it kept sprinkling on us. Other then the general classification of the animals, they really enjoyed looking at the conservation status (endangered, threaten, etc) of the animals. The Wild at the Zoo pack also covered various people of the zoo. So anytime we saw a docent or a zoo keeper I made sure to point them out too!

Since we had spent the time covering the information at the zoo we were able to go back and easily fill out some of the at the zoo activities. It would have been a lot of fun to play the location bingo, but that is one things we did not get a chance to do this visit.  It would definitely be great with older kids (or maybe just without an extremely active toddler).

The Wild at the Zoo Adventure Pack was definitely a fun way to introduce some animal facts to my kids, and I am sure we will repeat it! This will allow my kids to learn each time we go to the zoo while still having fun! Even after this first experience I know they have internalized some of it since a couple weeks later at the Indianapolis Zoo my 4 year old yells out "Look warthogs are mammals!" 

The one thing I did notice that could cause some problems with the at the zoo activity is that some of the information given on zoo signs was incomplete. At least at the St Louis Zoo, where we were, we noticed that some of the current signs only gave the animals name while others gave all the information needed to complete the packet.  All the information is easily found through Google though!

This packet contains a ton of information which is wonderful, but also a lot for little ones to take in. If you frequent the zoo it would be easy to add a little each time to master the material.  We are a few hours from a zoo, but I still plan on repeating it when we get the chance! There is definitely something for every age!

You can purchase the Wild at the Zoo Adventure Pack (includes the download of the student workbook as well as the parent/ teacher guide) HERE! It is normally $9.00, but currently 50% off! This would be great for one last trip to the zoo before it gets cold!

The wonderful creators have also given me the opportunity to provide a copy to one of my readers!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Mom's Library Unique Outdoor Activities

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It has gotten hot around here again, but I found a few activities to do once it cools off a little!

My Outdoor Activity Features This Week! 

Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails shares a fun way to make an obstacle course with tires!

B-Inspired Mama is painting on a big scale with brooms!

Meaningful Mama is harvesting marshmallows! Very cute idea for little ones!

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This week we have two great giveaways for you!

The first is a cute book by Julia Dweck called Mary had a Sleepy Sheep! You can read the full review HERE!

The second is a lifetime membership to Enchanted Homeschooling Mom's Member's Only Website! Read a full review HERE!

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parents as teachers

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Poppin's Book Nook #6 - Fairy Tale Land


Welcome to the August edition of Poppin's Book Nook!  This month our theme was Fairy Tales. This was a very difficult theme for us, not because there aren't good fairy tales, but because there are so many! My original intent was to read The Little Prince, but I quickly found the language was too grown up for my kids. They just couldn't follow well at all. 

So I put it away for a later date, and we found a collection of fairy tales, The Golden Book of Fairy Tales, at the library. The girls were familiar with many of the stories, but it was nice to read a version other then Disney.

Then on a trip to St. Louis we came across a Fairy Tale exhibit at The Magic House!  Many books to read and fun stations to go along with them! They helped put together shoes for The Elves and the Shoemaker.

They climbed the beanstalk and slid back down as well as making music with the magic harp for Jack and the Beanstalk.

They played in a melon for Anansi and the Talking Melon.

And they took a ride in Cinderella's coach.

They also played with Thumbelina and Beauty and the Beast!  They enjoyed climbing the giant beanstalk that is a permanent part of the museum too!

because we had read so many fairy tales it was hard to choose one activity to go along with them. After a while I decided we should set up a Fairy Tale Land for the girls to play with! My gamer husband had the perfect medium to do it with too, Heroscape! 

He has collected so many pieces to this game, and now with kids he rarely gets to play it (although I am sure when they are a bit older it will come out again). But with so much variety it allowed us to create a land to house many fairy tales. Once the base was built we added some of the game pieces, some of the girls toys including people, animals, and lego houses, and some other little elements like jewel beads and a play doh rock with a sword (tooth) pick.

A closer look at the sections reveals a castle, a mermaid cove, and a fairy and pixie land. 

A mountain, complete with a jewel filled cave, guarded by a dragon.  A giant atop a beanstalk, and a fire swap (yeah the kids won't get that one yet, but it was fun for me to add complete with R.O.U.S.).

Some of the other fairy tale elements include a troll guarded bridge with 3 Billy Goats, three little pigs with their houses, the Beast and his rose, Cinderella's shoe and pumpkin, a spinning wheel, the Frog Prince with the golden ball, fairies, Aladdin's lamp hidden in a sand dune, and the Sword in the Stone. 

The girls were so excited to play with it. We took a look at all the fairy tales represented and summarized any the girls weren't familiar with. Then I encouraged them to use all the elements to make up their own fairy tales.  The girls quickly went about making up stories and arranging pieces. Even Eli got in on the fun making a sea serpent fight an alligator.

After a couple hours things didn't look anything like they started, but the girls had a great time playing with their Fairy Tale Land!  And they certainly enjoyed all the books! Check some of them out: 

This month we are offering a great giveaway to our readers as well! A copy of A First Book of Fairy Tales!

See all the happy endings: