Friday, July 22, 2011

Bird Watching Binoculars

This morning Asher and I made binoculars to watch the birds. It was a quick craft and since he was really needing extra mommy time this morning it was the perfect thing. This first week back from our vacation has been challenging getting back into our routine. I guess having a mommy for a week that doesn't have any daily chores plus a houseful of family to entertain and cuddle him makes the transition back to our normal schedule a little tough. So a little morning craft added to the day hopefully will add that extra special something to get through the day relatively whine's hoping!

The items needed for the craft are simple and most likely lurking somewhere in your craft drawers

  • Construction paper. Cut in half down the center. Can also use empty toilet paper rolls. Great reuse idea.
  • Stickers, Crayons, paint
  • Glue, tape or a stapler
  • Twine or string
  • Hole punch (or just use scissors)

How to:
  • Have your child decorate each piece of paper using what they choose.
  • Using a glue stick, glue one side of the paper to the other making a cylinder shape.
  • Glue the tubes to one another.
  • Punch a hole on the outside end of each tube at the same spot
  • Measure the amount of twine needed for each child and tie the ends to the tubes.

Viola! Bird Watching Binoculars

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

On the Road Again

This summer is all about travel. We figured up that we will have been somewhere every month since May through December. Whew! That is a lot of travel. Our most recent trip was to Missouri to see my niece graduate. What makes this trip even extra significant was that Nick could not go with us so I braved it alone with the two boys! That is 11 hrs one way with an almost 3 year old and a 4.5 month old. We survived and I must admit I feel pretty proud and confident now that its over. I thought I would share the things that made the trip easier and the things I learned along the way....the hard lessons.
Meet Me in St. Louis
1. Bring new toys and snacks that the older kids have never seen or tried. It's the novelty factor. I go with dollar stores toys because I can get a handful and if they get lost or broken on the drive it is not a big deal.
2.If you have a DVD player bring plenty of movies. I know letting your child watch hours of TV is not ideal but if you are in survival mode then I feel you can cut yourself some slack.
3. Don't try to have a set time to get to your destination. If the kids are screaming and melting down trying to rush to make a certain time is going to make the situation much more stressful! This was one of my tough lessons learned!
3. Have cash but pay for gas with card. It is much easier to use the card than pay cash especially when you unload the kids make it through the gas station after having to stop and look at each item to finally check out, a half hour later, load up the kids, get to the gas pump only to realize the clerk did not turn your pump on! Then you have to politely decline all the strangers that offer to "sit with your kids" ( they really do that!!, note to stranger: go inside and tell clerk the situation rather than think that a person wants you to stay with their children.) Now you then must unload the kids and take them inside the store and have them witness Mommy freaking out and yelling at the clerk.....ha ha....just day dreaming. I am not usually a violent person but after standing in the searing hot sun trying to get the attendants attention while counting down the travel minutes I will get before my baby needs to nurse again, does something to a person. This moment was when I really realized the need for tip # 7.
4. Have a backpack for the toddler that has a "tail" or leash on it. Admittedly I was weirded out by those before I had kids but let me tell you it was a life saver on this trip and many others.
5. Have a wrap or sling for the baby. The back pack and wrap combo helped me when I was needing to unload bags and check into a hotel room with out being able to leave my children. Typically with  Nick we can tag team the checking in and bag unloading but I didn't have that luxury this trip.
6. If you don't have a gps try and borrow one. It helped when I needed to know how far the next rest area/gas station was.
7. Most important tip: Breathe, relax and enjoy yourself!

Good Luck and Happy, Safe Travels

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Homemade Bath Tub Paint

Ashers store bought bath tub paint had ran out and not wanting to throw the bottles away I decided it would be a fun project to make our own. Plus side is that you know exactly whats going in it.

Body soap
Food coloring (or you can make your own natural dyes using food. ie, beets, blueberries)

Use 1/3 cup soap for each dye batch.
Add cornstarch until it is the right consistency
Add food coloring
Fill old tub paint bottles or buy clear ketchup and mustard type containers and using your computer and plain address labels create your own "brand". You can title soaps after your kids names for extra fun.

My first post. Yay!

All is quiet in the Pauley house, a rare moment. My husband Nick and my two little boys Asher (almost 3)and Cole (4 months) are sound asleep in our bed. So I am taking this opportunity to start my first post on my new blog. I was telling my bestie Anna from that Mommy Blogging is a sport! Take yesterday for example, I thought I had a few stolen moments to type a few things and I was pretty excited thinking about what I might get to write about. I sat down at the computer and on Que,Asher who somehow always knows when I am about to get on the computer, wakes from his nap to come and see what I could possibly be up to without his help. It is the same with a phone call, which I am betting all other parents know exactly what I am talking about. 

Now this is where the sport begins. Asher wants me to hold him, which I gladly do, except for some reason to hold him at the computer means he shifts from side to side. Making me dodge his body with each punch of the keys. I am leaning my head as far to one side as possible to see the screen while little arms drape around my neck in more of a vice grip than loving one. My hair begins to be tugged as I receive raspberries blown onto my cheeks with my almost 3 year old managing to giggle with excitement, yet topped with whining to really drive his point home. No Mommy at the computer, ever!!!! Starting to realize my attempts to blog may be over Asher hops down from my lap and sits on the floor. Giving me a second of hope, only to push the off button on the computer and shut the whole operation down. Mommy time 1 Blogging 0.

"Oh well" I sigh. The only reason I am wanting to write a blog anyway is to chronicle this amazing, special and lets be honest, sometimes challenging phase of life. Its moments like these that give me something to write about.

It all played out so perfectly and as I was explaining it to Anna later that night over laughs I realized maybe I like the idea of blogging better than actually doing it! I do know I am in awe of all the other amazing mommy blogs that are out there and usually am stumped at how they manage it all. Any tips?? Do tell, please.