Handprint & Pop-Up Heart Valentine

your-little-one-will-love-making-this-handprint-valentine

My son absolutely loves having his hand traced, so when this idea caught my eye while browsing through Pinterest, I knew we had to make them!

Here’s what you need:

  • Cardstock paper or thick construction paper (color is your choice)
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Markers or crayons

How to make it:

  1. Start by folding your paper in half. Have your little one place their hand on the paper with the heel of their hand near the folded seam. Trace their hand. valentine-tracing-hand
  2. Cut out the hand print.
  3. Cut out a heart on a different color of paper.
  4. Let your little one color the handprint.
  5. Then, using your thick paper, cut a small strip about 1″ x 1/4″ thick. Next, you will want to bend the strip to where it looks like an accordion.valentine-how-to-accordion
  6. Glue one end of the strip to the middle of the heart and allow to dry. valentine-hearts-with-accordion
  7. Once dry, glue the other end to your handprint.
  8. Write a cute saying on the front and the inside.
    •  “Happy Valentine’s Day!”
    •  “We love you!”
    •  “You stole my heart!”
    •  “I heart you!”

I think it’s super cute to replace word’s like “heart” and “love” with the cut out pop-up heart! cute-pop-up-heart-valentine

Give to Mama’s, Daddy’s, Grandparents, etc. for Valentine’s Day. They will love and cherish this  keepsake valentine!

Tater Tot Casserole

tater-tot-casserole

Ever get home after a busy day and think, “what in the world am I going to make for supper?” Well, this meal is fairly quick to make, very filling, and you will have plenty of  leftovers for tomorrow!

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 bag mixed veggies (carrots, green beans, corn, peas)
    • you can use fresh or canned
  • 1 large can cream of mushroom
  • 1 bag frozen tater tots
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. Brown ground beef, drain fat.
  3. Cook mixed veggies according to directions on bag. If you use canned veggies, they won’t need cooked. I personally like the frozen mixed veggies that you can just pop in the microwave and steam for 8 minutes.
  4. In 9×13 glass baking dish, add meat, veggies, and cream of mushroom. Mix well. Spread the mixture evenly in the pan and add a layer of  tater tots on top. You can add as many or as few as you like. This is what mine looks like:tatertotcasserolebeforecheese
  5. Bake for 35 minutes of until tater tots are golden brown.
  6. Add cheese on top. Bake for another 5-10 minutes. When your cheese is melted, it’s ready!
  7. Enjoy!

If you like this recipe, feel free to comment, like, share, or pin!

Stop the baby talk!

No more baby talk!.png

Okay. I just need to vent for a minute.

Parents, when your children become toddlers please, please, please, STOP THE BABY TALK!

No, I am not an expert on language development, but as a Mama of a very smart 2-year-old, I have a little bit of personal experience.

I know that baby talk is beneficial to infants for language development, but at some point, it needs to stop.  My son started talking around 16 months, and that is when we no longer talked to him like a baby. He just turned two in October and he can carry on a conversation.

So, what do I mean?

Today, I went to visit some relatives and they have a four-year old. He was a late talker–not til he turned three. But, they still talk to him like he’s an infant and it drives me insane.

They call the refrigerator a “schridge.” Or, when a word should start with the letter “S” they completely omit it. For example, today the kids were putting stickers on paper plates.  Instead of calling them stickers, they called them “tickers.” So, of course he started doing it too. I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t want your child to learn the correct words for things.

Maybe I am being too harsh on them, but if you have a choice wouldn’t you want your child to talk properly?

I think that my son talks so well for his age because we don’t talk to him like he is a baby. I suppose I could be way off base, but that is how I feel.

 

Toilet Paper Roll Snowman

toilet-paper-roll-snowman

I don’t know about you, but we go through SO MUCH toilet paper. The crafty side of me decided to keep these empty toilet paper rolls and do something fun with them!

These little snowmen are so cute, and my toddler had a blast making them! Please let your child choose what color pipe cleaners, eyes, etc.to use. Hopefully this can be used as learning opportunity as well. We focused on colors (he just turned two), and his hand/eye coordination.

Here’s what you will need:

  • hot glue gun
  • decorative fabric for a hat (I used an old Christmas sock)
  • pipe cleaners
  • crayons or markers
  • white paint
  • Elmer’s glue
  • fake eye balls (afterthought: you could also use those little puff balls)

This craft will take a little bit of prep work from you. Or, if your child is old enough, have them help!

Here’s how to make them:

  1.  Paint all the rolls white. whitetubes
  2. Cut large triangles out of your fabric about 1 1/2 inches per side. Next, hot glue two seams together. Be sure to flip the fabric inside out before you glue! Once the glue was dry, flip your fabric right side out so that you no longer see the glue seam. You now have hats!snowmanhat
  3. On the roll, cut two small slits on each side at about the half way mark. This is where the pipe cleaner arms will go. You may need to cut your pipe cleaners in half. Let your child put the pipe cleaners in the holes.
  4. Cut a small slit in the middle front of the roll, about an inch down for the pipe cleaner nose. Cut some small pipe cleaner pieces for the nose. Again, let them put the nose in.
  5. If your child is handy with glue, mine is not, let them add the eyes and buttons. If you are in control of the glue, put a dollop where the eyes and buttons go and let them add those pieces. snowmaneyes
  6. Have your child put the hat and scarf on the snowman. I had to glue the hat down in order for it to stay on. The scarf is just a pipe cleaner wrapped around the tube.
  7. Draw a snowman smile.

At this point, the snowman is complete. If your little one wants to give it some pizzazz by coloring it, let them!!

Have fun!!!

 

 

 

 

 

Fire Starters – Easy DIY!

diy-fire-starters

 

Need to start a fire?  I have the perfect solution to help you get one started!  These DIY fire starters are so simple to make, and you probably have the stuff to make them just lying around the house!

Whether you have a wood stove, a wood burning fireplace, or just want to have an outdoor bonfire these will help get your fire to take off!

Here’s what you need:

  • Cardboard egg carton
  • Dryer lint
  • Candle Wax

Directions:

  1. Stuff your dryer lint into each egg slot in your carton until its full.
  2. Melt candle wax and drizzle the melted wax over the lint. (Use as much wax as you prefer.)
  3. When the wax has hardened, cut out each individual egg slot using scissors or box cutters.
  4. Throw into fire pit and light on fire. Then cover with dry kindling/wood.

I found that one fire starter (one egg slot) burns for about 5-10 minutes. As always when dealing with fire, be safe!

Please like, share, or pin this post!

 

 

 

 

Tartar Sauce –  Only 3 Ingredients! 

homemade-tartar-sauce

My husband is super picky about his tartar sauce. When we first started dating, I remember he didn’t like the store bought tartar sauce, so he made his own. Nine years later, and he still makes his own!

I have to give him credit though, this recipe is so easy and so much tastier than the store bought!

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/2 Cup Mayonnaise  (I like the mayo made with olive oil, but regular will work too!)
  • 1/4 Cup Dill Relish
  • 1/2 Tbsp Mustard

Directions:

  1. In a bowl, mix all ingredients together.
  2. Enjoy!

See? Super easy! Please like, share, and pin this post if you enjoyed it too!

Snowman Painting – Sensory Play

snowman-painting

 

Since it is way too cold to go outside and play today, I thought  we would do some arts and crafts. I love to paint (although I’m not very good), and I want to share the joy of painting with my kids.

I have a large tote of craft supplies, so I grabbed some white and blue paint, cotton balls, and blue card stock paper. Of course, my son came with me to get supplies and saw our stash of fake Easter eggs. He wanted an egg, so I figured I would let him get a bit creative with it!snowmanpaint

On a paper plate, I poured a dollop of white paint, and one of blue. I gave him a handful of cotton balls and showed him how to dab it in the paint and put it on his paper.

I helped him build his snowman by dipping his plastic Easter egg into his paint. We gave  him a face and some buttons.He finished the painting by adding some white and blue snowflakes! (Don’t be afraid to let your little one be  creative and do things on their own, just buy washable paint!)

We had a lot of fun creating his snowman masterpiece!

I hope that you and you’re little one will enjoy it as much as we did! Please like and share this post if you did!