Friday, April 30, 2010

Happy Birthday, Sunshine Girl!


We love your spirit, your energy, and your warm heart!

Happy 8th Birthday!

Love,
Momma, Dad, Peanut, and Little Man


ps. Looking forward to your Monster Mash this weekend!




And to my readers- next week I'll post photos of all of our Monster fun- decorations, games, and activities!

Take Care,
Jen

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Great Giveaways!




Here are a couple of great giveaways that I entered today!







Family Frugal Fun Blog is giving away a copy of Laura Numeroff's new book-
The Jellybeans and the Big Book Bonanza.



J.Leigh Designz is giving away a copy of Sesame Street's Bert and Ernie's Great Adventures.

To purchase- go to the WB shop!

Hopefully I'll win or at least one of my readers! Good Luck!

Jen

Featuring Imagination Soup!


Okay, it took me about 5 minutes to fall in love with the blog- Imagination Soup!





Imagination Soup is written by Melissa Taylor: writer, teacher, and parent.

She hopes that her website will give you plenty of ideas to keep your kids learning everyday.

Her latest blog post shares ideas for planning family artist dates. She writes that a family artist date is "a playful time for creating, imagining, dreaming."

Well, my family is in! Who doesn't love to do all of these things? To learn more about artist dates, be sure to visit Imagination Soup. If you choose to join in on the fun, let me know. We will be sharing our own ideas on Creative and Curious Kids for our own artist dates this summer!

Take Care!

Jen

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Little Slugger










Oh- my little man isn't so little anymore! He'll be 4 months old tomorrow- sob, sob..... and he weighs almost 15 lbs. Don't you think my little slugger looks adorable in his baseball cap?
For more Wordless Wednesday, be sure to visit 5 Minutes for Mom!
Happy W.W!
Jen

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Baby Times! 4th Edition


How important is it to communicate and interact with our babies? According to research very important. Just this week, I read an article in babytalk magazine that stresses the importance of such. William Sears,M.D. writes that the way we talk to our babies can actually help boost brain power and future learning ability. Motherese, the talk in which we raise our voices, talk slower, and exaggerate sounds, is actually helpful to our babies. And it's not just for mothers. I notice my older kids and Daddy doing it, too. Wait until they find out that they are helping the baby develop neural pathways.
Dr. Sears writes-

"Every time you speak to your infant, those new pathways build the tot's mental foundation for learning other things. The more neural pathways that are developed-and maintained-early on, the more your child will be able to learn later."
My husband and I started interacting with our baby right away and I remember the girls asking me why if he didn't understand or couldn't respond. Now they see that the more we interact with him, the more he develops and responds. While changing his diaper or dressing him, I talk to him about what I am doing. Another idea is to talk to the baby while folding clothes- name the items of clothing and/or the colors of the items.

As he got older, I would pause to give him time to react. This actually lays the foundation for conversation and gives the baby the opportunity to vocalize even if it is just coos and goos. In today's video, I captured some interacting time between Daddy and baby. You'll notice how my husband gives the baby time to participate and boy does he!

video

For more information about this topic, visit:

Experts: Talking to your baby can build language skills

Developmental Milestone: Talking

Baby Talk-Wikipedia

Have fun talking to you baby!

Jen

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Great Outdoors Challenge


Pebble throwing,bubble blowing,feeding the ducks- we've been outdoors this week! It's been great being outside with the kids everyday. Even little man has been enjoying the great outdoors. Thanks 5 Orange Potatoes for encouraging us to enjoy nature everyday!



















It's not too late to join the challenge and get outside everyday with your kids!

Jen

SURPRISE!


We baked this for you, Daddy!


Daddy loved his cake and his surprise!


He also loved our homemade cards!

Happy Birthday, Daddy. We are so glad that you enjoyed our surprise visit. We love you!

Jen, Little Man, Sunshine, and Peanut!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Happy Birthday, Daddy!



Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday, Dear Daddy, Happy Birthday to you!

The girls baked Dad a cake today, made homemade cards, and then we are off to surprise him at work. The photo above is the result of his older sisters torturing their baby brother. Poor kid! I'll post b-day photos of the girls' cake, etc. later.

We are very excited to be celebrating Daddy's birthday in the Creative and Curious Kids household! (Oh and we can't forget Uncle Denny.(Dad's identical twin)
Happy Birthday, Uncle Denny!

Enjoy your Friday!

Jen

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Recycled Creatures? Happy Earth Day!

A couple of days ago, I posted a photo of a bunch of recycled creatures. I wanted to see if you could guess what we were going to do with these little guys. Well, they are actually for an activity for my daughter's Monster Mash birthday party: Foaming Monsters!



The activity came from a great book from Usborne- 100 Science Experiments.

Here's what you need to create your own recycled foaming monster-

Materials:
plastic bottle
craft materials from around the house or $ store to decorate: craft foam, google eyes, etc.
vinegar
dish washing liquid
baking soda
tissue
food coloring

Directions:
1. Decorate plastic bottle. I used a glue gun and I chose foam instead of paper to decorate so we could keep monster after doing the experiment.
2. Half fill the bottle with vinegar.
3. Add a good squirt of dish washing liquid.
4. Next, add a drop of food coloring.
5. Gently swirl the bottle to mix. (on baking tray or dish)
6. Put a tsp of baking soda in middle of a small square of tissue. Roll it up and twist ends.
7. Drop the tissue in the bottle and after a couple of minutes- foam will come out of the monster's mouth.

I'm going to be sure to test this out before I do it at the birthday party, but don't you think the guests will love this? In honor of Earth Day's 40th Anniversary, I've been decorating with recyclables as well instead of buying monster decorations-turning formula bottles into monsters!

Have fun celebrating Earth Day with your kids!

Jen

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Creative Picnic Table






Inspired by:

FILTH WIZARDRY- have to stop over and see the creativity going on over there! Wow!

5 Orange Potatoes- joining them in getting outdoors everyday!


For more Wordless Wednesday, be sure to visit 5 Minutes for Mom! Also, check out our Wordless Wednesday at God's Shining Stars- little man praying- so cute!

Take Care,
Jen

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Paint By Number Cupcake Pop-Art Review and Giveaway!

Do you know how excited I am to be able to review and give one of my readers a Paint by Number kit from Faber-Castell? So excited, because we adore their products, especially the Creativity for Kids line. You can find scrapbooking to pop up book kits in our craft stash! This week, my girls were eagerly anticipating their creative project time. They were so lucky to have the opportunity to test out Paint By Number Cupcake Pop-Art .



I'm impressed with the quality of this product when compared to other paint by number sets that I've seen. Made of sturdy canvas and a frame for mounting, the kids will be able to keep their art safe for years to come. The kit comes with 8 different paints, but gives you a guide for mixing more pastel like colors. We used a paper plate to mix the colors. My girls enjoy mixing paint, so this wasn't an issue for us. Faber-Castell has a variety of Paint by number kits available from tree frogs to fairies.(Suggested for ages 6-10)



The Cupcake Pop-Art was our selection because I wanted to introduce my daughters to this type of art. As an extension, I'd like to take a trip to the Warhol Museum.



The suggested age for this set was 8 years old, although my 6 year old did very well with it. It was tedious due to the details, but she actually was more skilled at painting in comparison to her 8 year old sister. So instead of age, I would suggest thinking about ability when purchasing this product.



This would be a good long-term project to work on because of the detail involved. My older daughter prefers more open-ended art and kept asking me if she could please just choose her own colors, etc. I did have her follow the paint by number for some of the painting, so I could assess how she would do with following the directions. I think with the Cupcake Pop-Art, parent supervision and guidance with the number chart is helpful. Other sets that they carry may be easier to follow.



I highly recommend this product and will be keeping some of the other Paint By Number sets in mind for future birthday gifts. I love to give the gift of art!



Would you like to have fun painting with your children? Well, today may be your lucky day! Faber-Castell has provided one Paint By Number Cupcake Pop-Art for me to give away to one of my readers.

To enter:
Visit the Faber-Castell/Creativity of Kids website and comment about another item(s) that you think your child would enjoy.

For extra entries:
1. blog about this contest and link back: 2 entries
2. tweet about this contest/link back (1 entry)
3. join my blog frog community (1 entry)
4. follow Creative and Curious Kids (1 entry)
5. Creative and Curious Kids on your blogroll? (1 entry)
6. subscribe.(1 entry)

Please leave a separate comment for each entry and a way for me to contact you- via blog or email address. This contest will end Monday, May 3 at 12:00am EST. (US/CAN)

Good Luck!
Jen

Disclosure: I was provided with two Paint by Number Cupcake Pop-Art sets for the purposes of this review. The opinions I have given are mine and may differ from others but were not influenced by the company or the free product provided


RandomResult.com Numbers

Pick numbers beetween and . Distinct:
Sequence=1
Draw stat: sum=6, avg=6.00
Draw date: 2010-05-04 15:56:04
6

The Baby Times! 3rd Edition


Welcome back to The Baby Times! This week, Sunshine shares a finger play using a puppet with our little man. Getting the kids involved with the baby seems to help with feelings of jealousy. It helps them to bond and to feel part of taking care of him. Enjoy the simple finger play- Ten Little Bunnies!


video

Other ideas for counting finger plays-

Ten little bumble bees go BUZZ, BUZZ, BUZZ!(bumble bee puppet?)

Ten little bubbles go POP,POP,POP! (blow bubbles for your little one)

The book pictured below looks super cute! Haven't read it yet, but it looks like it would tie in nicely with this activity.

"One little bunny drumming.......Boom! Boom!"

Enjoy your Tuesday with your little ones!

Jen

The Baby Times! 2nd Edition
The Baby Times! 1st Edition

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Interview with an Animal


Lately my girls have been getting into creative writing, especially my six year old. She loves making up stories, writing menus, etc. and I'm so glad that she isn't hindered by her invented spelling. So many kids get stuck on the spelling that they don't let the ideas flow.

Anyways, I've been thinking about how much fun it would be for the girls to write an interview for an animal that they are interested in, but don't know a lot about. They can pretend that they are newscasters on a television show like the Animal Planet. In order to write the interview though, they are going to need to research their animal first. What questions do they want to ask their animal?

Okay, my eight year old just came in and is looking over my shoulder as I write.
"Can I interview our new hamster?"
"Don't you already know a lot about hamsters?"
"Yes, but I want to pretend that it can talk back to me."

Funny,we don't even have our new hamster yet. Now how can I tell her no. She wants to be creative and pretend a hamster is talking to her and she wants to write. So now there you have it- another creative writing idea. Have your child write an interview to his or her pet- just for fun, just to be creative!

Fun ideas for publishing the interview-
*newspaper or magazine article
*act it out with props(table, microphone,poster, etc)
*puppet show (puppet making ideas! )

More writing fun:

Writing Activities for Kids at Home

Great Places to Research Animals:
National Geographic Kids
Animal Planet
Enchanted Learning

What animal do you think your child would like to interview?



Enjoy your day!
Jen

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