Monday, July 25, 2011

Finger Painting

I busted out our vinyl mat and smocks this morning and set the kids up to finger paint. I taped the corners of their paper down and also taped the small paper plates to the mat.  Paint covered fingers get quite slick and everything has a tendency to move around if not properly anchored.

This is messy. So, of course, Gabe loves it.

Ana daintily uses just her fingertips.

Addie smears the paint everywhere then makes designs with her fingernails.

Washing up in the bathroom made as much of a mess as the actual painting.  Lots of little hands splashing and rubbing sent dirty water all over the mirror, walls and floor.  It's just water though, and after wiping it all up the bathroom was cleaner than when we went in.  I'd say that's a plus!

Clean up time meant I wasn't snapping any more pictures, though.  Otherwise you would have seen the paint on the chairs, the chair rail, the door frame, the sink, the bathroom walls, and their clothes. But this is why we use washable paint.  It wipes off with a damp cloth in just a few seconds. I'm all for an activity that causes the house to be cleaner at the end.  It's a good practice of patience and letting things go.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Who needs a nap?

 This afternoon the girls put up a fuss about taking a nap, so we told them they could play quietly in their room. This is what we found when we went to get them.

Passed out together in a fairly smooshed tent.

This never happened when the twins were sharing a room.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Surprise Blessing

I am very happy to announce that we are expecting a baby this December!  We are so blessed by having Addie, Gabe, and Ana in our lives and this baby is such a wonderful gift. Our hearts overflow with love for our children and we are so excited to meet this little butterbean!
Addie and Gabe are especially excited.  They give my belly rubs, pats, and kisses every day saying, "I love you, baby!"  We're reading books about having a new baby in the house but Ana doesn't seem to grasp the idea yet.  Maybe as my belly gets bigger she will start to make a connection.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


I've been wanting to do some stamping with the kids for a while, but we haven't had any stamps to work with. We have some sponge shapes but they soak up a ton of paint and are easy to smear.  Today I was looking through my kids craft drawer and came upon a large assortment of foam stickers. I had heard somewhere of these being used as stamps so I decided to give it a go.

I grabbed a handful of craft sticks (bought in packs of 100 at the Dollar Tree) and started applying the stickers. I used glue to help them adhere really well and glued a second layer of sticks on the back for added strength and thickness.

These pictures were obviously taken after our stamping adventure.  We used washable paint that we applied with paintbrushes.  A stamp pad would probably be neater and give a clearer image, but we didn't have any washable stamp pads. Addie loved painting the stamps though and Ana was happy to simply paint with a brush on her paper. It worked out well for us this way.  The images come out well if you don't slop on the paint (definitely don't dip the stamp into paint, it will smear everywhere.)

This was a great activity that everyone, (even Mommy!), really enjoyed doing.  

Monday, July 11, 2011

A New Favorite

We took the kids to a playground this past Saturday.  It was a little out of the way but so worth the drive.  There was a nice sized play structure, a picnic area, a couple of swings, a large sand area (complete with awesome water feature), and the best part... a sprayground.  I had never been to a sprayground before.  I had never even heard of one until a couple of days ago.  But it's awesome.  Really, really awesome.
On stiffling hot days in the summer there is no better way to take the kids out to play and be sure that everyone can cool down, too.  When the parents got too hot we simply sat on the wall around the sprayers and let the wind carry the mist to us.  Heaven!
Aside from the sprayers the most popular activity was the sand and water area.
The stone fountain allows the water to flow like a river down to the sand.
Collecting for a while in the sand, allowing for building castles, making dams, or simply a little foot splashing.
Ana played here for almost the entire two hour visit.  She had a wonderful time!
She did venture out a couple of times to try out the swings. She was too little to use them on her own but found an acceptable solution.

Friday, July 8, 2011


Addie loves to dance. It's rare for a day to pass without her leaping, twirling, and tapping across the floors.  She likes to watch Angelina Ballerina sometimes, too.  Picking up the introduction from that show, she has started asking us to announce her before she dances into the room, "Introducing... Addison Ballerina!"

One day, she picked up one of Ana's blankets and held it in front of her face as she made her own introduction then dropped it immediately after.  Her version of a big reveal.  Ana watched her do this a few times before picking up her other blanket.  She walked up next to her with blanket held high and dropped it down as she joyfully squealed, "ME!"

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Berry Good Morning

We headed out to a U-Pic farm this morning with some friends.  The biggest farm of this kind that I've been to, they have a huge selection of produce.  Currently, you can pick blackberries, blueberries, and tomatoes.  Soon peaches will be available, too. We started with the blackberries first, 
heading down the long rows, marveling at the sheer size of these gorgeous berries.
The twins did really well with picking. They had never eaten blackberries before and were a little unsure at first, until they tasted them... then they were really excited to search the rows.
They did a great job of selective picking and got most of what they picked in their buckets.
Juliana did not have a bucket.  What she found she ate. 
Very excitedly. 
We also picked blueberries but didn't get any pictures. The kids were more interested in eating everything they picked.  They had buckets but never filled them.  They mostly ran giggling around the bushes as they popped berries in their mouths, making occasional pronouncements of, "Dis is yummy!  Bwue-bewwies are my favowite." We ended up with 20 lbs of berries after our hour and a half trip.
We all had a great time and we're now in the process of rationing out our stockpile. Several pounds are chilling in the freezer, some we will eat fresh or with pancakes, and I'm looking forward to making gobs of jam!  Possibly some fruit crisps, too. One thing we're sure of, we will be going back.  Often and with friends.