The Cloud in a Jar Science Experiment!

One of the best things about homeschooling is being able to do so many fun projects! I’ll also thank Pinterest for this gift as well. When I was in school, we did baking soda and vinegar in a volcano and that was the coolest thing ever! And now?! Now I know how to make weather in a jar! And it’s freaking cool!!!

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It’s also soooo easy! If you’d like to do this with your kids (or pets, or by yourself because it’s that awesome), all you’ll need is:

  • a glass jar with a lid
  • ice
  • boiling water
  • hairspray

Pour the boiling water into the jar. Spray some hairspray in the jar before you add the lid. Place ice cubes on top of the lid and watch the magic happen!

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Why the hairspray? Because it gives the water vapor a surface to condense on to.Thi

Man I love science! Is this cool or what?!? Now…if I can only make it lightning in a jar without burning the house down. Hummm…. #goals

Tag me on Instagram if you try this one yourself! And thanks for stopping by!

Easy Make Ahead Breakfast Ideas – Bento-box Style!

Anyone else besides me not a morning person? My wonderful children wake up every day at 5am. 5. A. M. Then they creep into our room and say those 3 famous words that every parent loves being woken up to…”Mom, I’m hungry”.

I’ve started making their breakfasts in advance and keeping them in the fridge. I love this because it’s better than cereal (my go-to breakfast most days because, again, not a morning person) and it buys me sleep. At this stage in life, I would pay for sleep. I would pay a lot of money for sleep.

I have found bento boxes to be the best thing since sliced bread when it comes to getting my kids to eat. I’m not sure what it is about the compartment thing, but they LOVE having their food separated. One of them doesn’t care to have her food touching each other, the other one is somewhat gross and mixes everything together, no matter what it is. I’ll let you figure out which is which…

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Silicone muffin liners….yes yes and yes! Everyday, and in pink, of course. Whatever makes life easier, right?Screen Shot 2017-08-29 at 10.23.03 AM

This oatmeal is so yummy and only has natural sugar in it! AKA…fruit! I’ve even made the “overnight” version, which is basically putting all of the ingredients into a mason jar and let it sit in the fridge overnight to “cook”. I like actually cooking it better, but that is always an option…

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And yes, that beautiful, cute little blue egg came from one of my own Easter Eggers. I’m not getting around a dozen eggs a day from 14 chickens…and we are almost eating a dozen eggs a day as a family of 5! Does anyone want a coop tour?

I LOVE granola…and I love the way it makes the house smell when cooking! This was so easy to make! It could definitely cook longer if you like it crunchy, but I prefer it softer myself. I cannot believe I used to pay (a LOT) for my granola! This is soooooo much cheaper! It makes a ton too!

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Screen Shot 2017-08-29 at 10.23.33 AMWell I hope this inspired you to make some goodness! I’m on a roll lately with videos and blogging so leave me a comment if there’s something in particular you’d like to see/read about! Thanks for dropping by!

The End of Summer…the beginning of YouTube!

I’m so excited about both of these things! Summers are not my favorite, and this year has been no exception. It’s been hot and sometimes miserable, and the ever-present excitement of the new school year has been looming over my head…in a very good way. Kindergarten starts this year for my 5-year-old, and so our first year of “real” homeschooling begins!

And because that’s not challenging enough, I’ve decided to start a YouTube channel…mostly because I’ve been inside all summer thanks to the heat watching DIY videos, and I’m pretty super-inspired. And fall is on the way and so is school and fun and fun and fun…and yes, I’m pretty excited!!!!

So school is starting for us tomorrow! After testing the water for 2 years of preschool, I’ve determined that in order to homeschool we’re going to have to be year-round people. AKA…mama needs a break every 4-6 weeks, so we’re just going to shoot for small goals and go from there. I’m notorious for trying to pack WAY too much into our school time, something that I’ve had to learn the hard way this past year while trying to do school with a new baby. 4-6 time slots give me just enough time to cram in a whole lot, while giving myself a breather to rest and recharge. I’m pumped!

So a good ending to summer was a trip to a Sunflower Festival…pick as many free sunflowers as you’d like! It was wonderful! And while I know that we still have a solid 6 weeks left of summer, my planting guide is telling me to go ahead and plant some kale and broccoli, and the craft stores already have out their fall spread. So I’m calling it…goodbye summer, HELLO PUMPKIN SPICE!

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Fish Week at Preschool!

This was such a fun theme for us! Last year I did an “Ocean” week, so I already had a lot that I could pull from to do our fish week.

We started out each day with a dance to get all the wiggles out. I found this awesome YouTube channel that I’m hooked on! They have great songs and dances for just about anything!

For our craft time, I busted out the dreaded paint (it doesn’t matter how cautious you are…if you paint with a 2-year-old everything must be washed or hosed down…thus, we painted outside). I cut out some Dollar Store sponges into the shapes of fish for them to use on their paintings. I kind of wish I had used a canvas. It actually turned out kind of cool!

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Our lunches consisted mostly of tuna sandwiches and fish sticks, of course. The girls did help me make a very easy tarter sauce for the fish sticks which consisted of:

  • 1 Cup Mayonaise
  • 1 T onion powder
  • 1-2 baby gherkin pickles, chopped (or sweet relish)

They got to mix all the ingredients together, which turned into them eating mayonnaise and very little else for lunch. But hey, what are childhood memories unless they’re sticky, messy, and full of fat?

Everyday we also sang the classic fish-biting song. Why? Because it’s fun to scare children while teaching them to count to 10.

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But what is fish week without getting actual fish? We recently put a small pond in our backyard, and I finally got the pH adjusted enough for some fish to survive. And did you know that goldfish cost a whopping 29 cents? So I splurged and got 4. Super-simple and cheap way to entertain the kiddos!

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But the highlight of the week was getting to visit the Virginia Aquarium! I’m pretty sure I was more excited than the kids! Before we left I made a very simple (very simple) aquarium scavenger hunt for my eldest, and was pleasantly surprised that she ended up doing it all on her own!

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The aquarium certainly did not disappoint! It was full of sharks, turtles, a sting ray petting area, hermit crabs, crocodiles, snakes, crabs, frogs, seals, and river otters. And they had a kids area for the littlest ones to play forest ranger! Between buildings was a beautiful nature trail complete with the most extensive zip course I’ve ever seen!

We ended each day with a book (or 2 or 3) about fish. We’re pretty big Rainbow Fish fans, obviously, though I think my favorite was Whale Shines. Below are 9 book ideas for your own Fish Week:

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I also found this great YouTube channel that helped me to explain a little better what gills are and how fish breath underwater.

For even more fish ideas, visit my Pinterest board:

Do you have any fun fish ideas? Leave them in the comments below!

Have a great week everyone!

 

C is for Container

I’m so excited to have gotten back into the schooling habit since the new year. The fall months of last year became just crazy busy with my business, the move, and the holidays. But I’ve finally set aside a few hours each week to plan and prep for preschool week. Ironically enough, it seems as though I prep MUCH longer than we actually “school”….but I suppose that might be normal…

Anyway, I’m trying to stick to the alphabet in order this time, as last fall I was going in order of themes. I’m still doing themes, but I’m doing them based on the alphabet rather than holidays or seasons.

Since I’m a little bit behind on documenting we’ll just start with what we did last week…the letter C for containers.

When I first saw the “container” theme in my book, I wasn’t super-impressed with the theme. But as I started reading through it and looking on Pinterest, i realized that this might be pretty fun after all! Because kids love containers…and my recycle bin was full…

 

First we started with Ziplock bag painting. Once we were done with our art, I hung these bags on the window in the girls' room. They looked so pretty when the light shown through them!
First we started with Ziplock bag painting. Once we were done with our art, I hung these bags on the window in the girls’ room. They looked so pretty when the light shown through them!

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Then we made some butter using a recycled glass jar and some heavy whipping cream. (This took a LOT longer than I expected it too....apparently to get butter you have to really REALLY shake that jar for a LONG time! I finally added a washed rock to it to help speed up the process and that did the trick!)
Then we made some butter using a recycled glass jar and some heavy whipping cream. (This took a LOT longer than I expected it too….apparently to get butter you have to really REALLY shake that jar for a LONG time! I finally added a washed rock to it to help speed up the process and that did the trick!)

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Next I made up a simple bulletin board. The boarder I got from the Dollar Tree. Then I used construction paper of different colors to draw different types of containers. I then cut them out at with the black construction paper at the same time. My preschooler then had to match the outline with the container. She nailed it, first try!
Next I made up a simple bulletin board. I got the Sesame Street boarder from the Dollar Tree (love their educational aisle!). Then I used construction paper of different colors to draw different types of containers. I then cut them out at with the black construction paper at the same time. My preschooler then had to match the outline with the container. She nailed it, first try!
I also got this recycling activity from the Dollar tree. It came with 2 sheets of stickers and she had to figure out if the sticker was compost, plastic, aluminum, or cardboard/paper.
I also got this recycling activity from the Dollar tree. It came with 2 sheets of stickers and she had to figure out if the sticker was compost, plastic, aluminum, or cardboard/paper.

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The girls LOVED this one! We made guitars out of recycled milk jugs.
The girls LOVED this one! We made guitars out of recycled milk jugs. I cut the holes out and they got to decorate with markers and stickers.
Then I filled up their "sensory bin" (aka a rubbermaid container) with old beans and peas and some recycled containers. This was immensely entertaining! My kids aren't very good at playing by themselves, but they managed to for quite some time with this bin!
Then I filled up their “sensory bin” (aka a rubbermaid container) with old beans and peas and some recycled containers. This was immensely entertaining! My kids aren’t very good at playing by themselves, but they managed to for quite some time with this bin!

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Next, we made Witches Brew for our science experiment. I'm finding out quickly that about 1/2 of preschool science experiments seem to involve bakings soda and vinegar. Thus, I keep massive amounts of it on hand! This experiment used food coloring, dish soap, baking soda, and vinegar. You fill a jar 1/2 way with vinegar, a squirt of dish soap, and whatever color you want to start off with. Then you add your scoop of baking soda and stir until it bubbles over. I had some containers of already mixed food dyes with vinegar. I keep adding a scoop of baking soda and a little vinegar/color mixture so that it continuously bubbled over. The girls loved it!
Next, we made Witches Brew for our science experiment. I’m finding out quickly that about 1/2 of preschool science experiments seem to involve bakings soda and vinegar. Thus, I keep massive amounts of it on hand! This experiment used food coloring, dish soap, baking soda, and vinegar. You fill a jar 1/2 way with vinegar, a squirt of dish soap, and whatever color you want to start off with. Then you add your scoop of baking soda and stir until it bubbles over. I had some containers of already mixed food dyes with vinegar. I keep adding a scoop of baking soda and a little vinegar/color mixture so that it continuously bubbled over. The girls loved it!

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For more ideas on the letter C, check out Pinterest board!

Follow Jesse’s board Container preschool theme on Pinterest.