Thursday, April 27, 2006

Time for a little cheap entertainment....

What can we do with bread know those silly plastic clips that come on bread, rolls or english muffins...stuff like that. Here is something that is kind of fun. (I'm easily Break or cut one of the closure tabs of the tie. lay them on a smooth surface, I think the floor or a table top works best. Take your finger and give the remaining tab a quick flick....and away it goes, spinning across the surface. fun huh.

You can put a masking tape line on the floor and try shooting the tie across the line or even knock your tie across the line by bumping them. The ties come in different colors or brands so it is easy to divide them up. If you don't want to mess with tape, use a seam line on the tile or a board on your hardwood floors.

See who can spin the farthest...who can spin the longest...the options are endless.

OK, the downside to this is that you are going to find these puppies everywhere...under the stove, the table...everywhere. If I were you I would number them with a smudge proof magic marker and make a game out of it. At the end of each round of spinning, you have to account for each and every numbered tie. Listen, on a rainy WILL thank me for this one.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Ocean in a bottle

You can have a calm ocean even if you can't go to the beach What you need:
  • Clean, clear plastic bottle with cap
    Baby oil or mineral oil
    Blue food coloring
    Small sea shells or plastic fish (if you like)

Here is what you do:

1. Fill the plastic bottle halfway with water.

2. Put three to four drops of the blue food coloring into the water.

3. Put the cap on the bottle tightly.

4. Shake the bottle to mix the color into the water.

5. Take the cap off of the bottle.

6. Pour the oil into the bottle almost to the top but leave some space. (Add the shells or fish if you have them.)

7. Put the cap on the bottle tightly.

8. Rock the bottle slowly from left to right.

9. It looks like the waves in an ocean!

Lickety-Split Lip Gloss


1 Tblsp solid vegetable shortening

  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 packet (.13 to .23 oz, or enough to make 2 quarts) unsweetened flavored powdered drink mix, such as Kool-Aid
1/4 teaspoon hot water

Step 1: Combine the shortening and honey in a small bowl.
Step 2: In a separate bowl, stirr together the drink mix and water until the powder is dissolved.
Step 3: Stir the water mixture a drop or two at a time into the base mixture, until the gloss is colored and scented to your liking.

Tips: To save the lip gloss for another day, refrigerate it in an empty lip gloss pot or other clean container for up to three days.

The Hunt Game

I almost forgot about this game! I invented it one morning when the weather was nasty and I had a house full of kids with WAY to much energy. I sat down and quickly made a few cards like the ones on the left. I put a picture of something and a few quick words for an extra hint. It is nice when kids are learning to read. What you put on the cards really depends on your home. Below is a sample list of the cards I made: (Click on the picture to the left for a larger view of the card examples.)
  1. freezer
  2. calendar
  3. door knob
  4. water faucet
  5. clock
  6. chair
  7. picture frame
  8. ping pong table
  9. sock
  10. pillow
  11. microwave
  12. stereo
  13. remote control
  14. plant
  15. fake flower
  16. rug
  17. drawer
  18. window
  19. spoon
  20. light bulb
  21. tooth brush
  22. bird cage
  23. phone
  24. crayons
  25. mirror
  26. key rack
  27. apple- (fridge)
  28. can of corn
  29. towel rack
  30. alarm clock
  31. answering machine
  32. tissue box
  33. TV
  34. electric outlet
  35. basket
  36. stairs
  37. candle
  38. toaster
  39. broom
  40. piano

Your list can be longer or shorter, depending on how much time you want to spend hiding the cards. The last card should be highlighted and say "THE END- thank you for playing!" The kids will want to run through the house like maniacs finding the cards but I made a rule that if I caught them running, that person would have to sit out for two card searches. That was pretty tough to do, so they slowed down. The most important thing for you to tell them is that they CAN NOT pick up a card that they are not looking for. If they see it early, they must leave it or the game will not work. They just have to remember where they saw it. One card leads you to another, when you find it, that card will lead to another....until the last card is found. Also, if any rooms are off limits, announce it and stress there are no cards hidden in that room. They must keep all the cards they find together so you can hide the cards again if they want to play some more.

Hiding the cards. (This is where your workout begins!)

This can be a little tricky until you get the hang of it. Pile up the cards in a random order, with "THE END" card on the top of the pile. Now lift up the "THE END" card and look at the card under it. That is where you will hide that card. For example. If the card underneath is a SOCK, you will hide "THE END" card in a sock drawer. Now lift the card under the SOCK card. Lets say it is an APPLE card, that means you hide the SOCK card in the spot you keep your apples. The card under the APPLE card is a TOOTH BRUSH card, so you hide the Apple card by the tooth brushes. ECT, ECT, until you are left with the last card. That is the beginning card for the HUNT.

Some of the cards with have pictures that have multiple hiding places, for example...the light bulb card. Remember to put the card near the bulb but make sure it is not a light that will be turned on. We don't want the bulb to be hot if kids are going to be searching near it. I often tucked the card on the side of the lamp shade so they really had to look for it. On the outlet, I would tape it over an outlet that had child safety covers. You get the point. Remember to make them move from one room to another....we want them to wear themselves out! I used to go from the basement to the second floor bathroom, to the kitchen, back upstairs then to the basement, ect. Sometimes I would put the next card in the same room to throw them off. I made sure that you could see at least a tiny bit of the card if you really looked all around the hiding spot. If they were finding them to quickly, I would hide them completely.

The goal is to follow the cards in ORDER so you are lead to "THE END" card. If you hide the cards correctly it will work. So, if they have a CHAIR card, they have to look around all the chairs in the house...under them, under the cushions, behind them, ect. When they find the card hiding under the chair they will look at it and see it leads to an tissue box...ect, ect. If you want, you can give them points for the number of cards they return to you and subtract a minute for each minute it took for them to find a card, to give them a final score, you may. I found that wasn't necessary because they enjoyed the hunt more than the scoring.