Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Play School: Christmas

Due to our Advent Calendar, we aren't actually doing organized Play School this month.  Instead we are doing an advent activity each day as I've talked about before.  The boys are having a great time with it so far and they are eager to "do the calendar" each day.  :)

Many of our calendar activities make for great "play school" though.  Here are a few we've done this month so far.

DIY Build a Indoor Snowman - This snowman is made of craft foam I bought at the craft store.  I just traced the circles and cut them out along with a few other snowman features.  See the full tutorial where I got my inspiration here.

Aaron in particular loves any activity that involves a spray bottle so this is right up his ally.  The boys just spray our large sliding glass door in the kitchen with the water, spray the pieces, and stick them right up.  This toy is great for identifying body parts, shapes and size sequencing.

Insta-Snow Sensory Tub - oh my this was a hit.  Since we live in sunny Las Vegas snow is quite the rarity here.  I decided to buy some Insta-snow for the boys and they love it!   The stuff is just cool.  One little scoop mixed with 2 ounces of water immediately puffs and fluffs up into a very snowy looking substance!  It feels slightly wet and cold too, very neat.  The boys played with it for a long time the other afternoon.  So long, in fact, that Mr Pears and I got slightly less vigilant about supervising only to find two little boys covered in "snow".  Luckily, with the help of the vacuum, clean up was super easy too.  Since this stuff supposedly lasts a while I am looking forward to bringing this one out for the boys to play with again soon.

Decorating the felt Christmas Tree - The boys are very good with shapes and colors and love showing off their skills while decorating their own little tree.  

To make the tree I just bought a large piece of green felt from the craft store and a pack of smaller felt pieces from the dollar store.  I cut out the tree shape and stuck it to the wall in the living room with some double sided tape.  I cut different colored shapes out of the smaller felt pieces for the ornaments.  I found inspiration for this here.

Handmade Clay Ornaments- I want to make a tradition of the boys making a Christmas ornament each year for Grandparent gifts and for our tree here at home too.  I want the ornaments to really be made by the boys (not me!) so our options this year were limited. Luckily the classic "salt dough" (we used this clay) ornaments were perfect for them to do almost on their own. 

 Aaron and Alex both dumped in our ingredients (just baking soda, cornstarch and water!) and mixed up the dough.  Mommy cooked the dough on the stove.  Then the boys helped roll and cut the dough into trees.  I baked the ornaments and then the boys painted them the next day with tempera paints. Once they were dry I wrote their names and year on the back and sprayed them with a sealant to help the paint stay nice.  I also added a string to hang the ornament on the tree with. I think they came out really well.  It is so sweet to have our first child-made ornaments hanging on our tree.  I think the grandparents are going to love them too.

So that is about it for now.  We are visiting Santa tonight...I have no idea if they will actually sit with Santa but we'll see.  

Sorry for the abundance of kid posts and lack of new recipes lately.  We aren't starving over here or anything but our focus has definitely been on the holiday season and we are having a great time.  I promise to try and post something yummy soon!

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