Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Family Fun!

We spent much of the weekend carving pumpkins, roasting pumpkin seeds and making carmel apples.  I found the perfect pumpkin seed recipe (see below)!   Yummy!

 Neither of the kids were very fond of cleaning out the goo......
 so Mom and Dad did!

 This was such a fun activity with Crew this year. 
 He was able to do so much of the tracing and carving on his own.
So proud
 And now to roast the seeds.  Yes, that's butter!
 And a pinch or two of salt.
 Here is the recipe we used this year.  Definitely going in the cookbook!


  • 1 1/2 cups raw whole pumpkin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons butter, melted
  • 1 pinch salt


  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
  2. Toss seeds in a bowl with the melted butter and salt. Spread the seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown; stir occasionally.
And now on to carmel apples =)  No special recipe for this one.  Granny Smith apples and the carmel sheets from the produce section.
 Washing and drying the apples lead to a conversation of organic fruits/veggies and pesticides.  Crew is always so curious and loves to get into discussions about..... well anything.
 Great family memories made =)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Small Town Halloween Fun!

Nothing beats living in a small town!  We enjoyed Halloween festivities like Trick or Treat on the Street this week downtown.  So fun to see a town come together for the little ones.  It was a beautiful Fall day and we enjoyed every minute of it.

The firehouse was open to all the kiddos with candy and some exploring of the engines!

Many of the shops opened their doors to all the little trick or treaters!

What a beautiful town!

 From rock to rock across the creek downtown

 Yes, Goose chose to be a monkey today instead of Batgirl.

Taking a break to enjoy a treat!

Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Easy Spider Webs....Hours of Fun!

I am not kidding when I say hours of fun!  The kiddos loved this super simple craft. 

Materials Needed:

White paint
round pan
black paper
Step 1:
Cut out a black circle to fit inside the pan.

Put a square or dollop of paint in the center of the pan.

Step 3:
Roll a marble back and forth through the paint!  Crew and Goose did many spiderwebs over and over.  They loved to manipulate the marble by moving the pan around and see their spiderwebs appear.

After we let them dry.....

Step 4:
We glued two back to back and cut the edges to resemble a spider web a bit more.

What will they be for Halloween???  Batman & Batgirl!

We are enjoying all the crafts, decorating, and stories!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Fun Beginning Readers!

Crew's favorite part of each day is his D.E.A.R. (Drop Everything And Read) time.  (Okay, mine too!  It is super quiet and so peaceful to just have everyone reading quietly =) )  And starting yesterday he loves it even more!  He has always loved books; being read to, looking at the illustrations and reciting the stories through his picture walks.  Well, now that he is REALLY reading (as he calls it) independently he asks for more and more D.E.A.R. time.  He has found his first favorite series.  This is exciting to me as a teacher!  I always loved when my students really got into a series of books and just went with it book after book.

Crew has discovered "The Fly Guy" books by Ted Arnold.  These are cute books about a boy and a fly who meet and become great friends.  The different stories take you through their silly adventures with colorful and fun illustrations.  Check them out on Amazon...... 

Other favorites are any of the Clifford books.  Good old reliable Clifford!

I was a school teacher for several years before I had my own kiddos and used a great program called Accelerated Reader.  For those who are not familiar, it is basically a program where students read a book (at their level) independently and then take a comprehension quiz on the computer.  My students always loved this time during the day and were so super motivated to read.  Though Crew is already super motivated to read, I came across a free program called "Book Adventure" that is similar to what I was using in my classroom.  

 Book Adventure is a FREE reading motivation program for children in grades K-8. Children create their own book lists from over 7,000 recommended titles, take multiple choice quizzes on the books they've read, and earn points and prizes for their literary successes. Book Adventure was created by and is maintained by Sylvan Learning.

Parents can monitor book levels, scores, etc.

In two days, he has read and taken 7 quizzes on different books.  And yes, they have quizzes for some of the Fly Guy series!  He LOVES it!  It is super exciting to see him grow as a reader and we are cherishing every moment. 

Goose got her very own book box for D.E.A.R. time tonight at the dollar store too!  She says soon she will be able to read like brother =)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Today....Twirly Curly Pumpkin Craft!

The kiddos decided they wanted to make a pumpkin craft today, and I found a great one at Kaboose !

This craft was definitely more time consuming than yesterdays but was well worth the effort. Very few materials needed.  The kiddos didn't make a peep half the time, because they were concentrating so hard!

  • 1 sheet orange construction paper

  • Scrap strips of brown and green construction paper

  • White glue

  • Pencil

  • String

  • Scissors

  • Steps:
    1. Cut orange construction paper into half-inch strips.
    2. Wrap strips around a pencil. Remove from the pencil and glue the end of the strip to close the circle. Repeat for as many circles as you need to create your pumpkin, we made 22

         3. Lay the circles on your work surface and arrange them into the shape of a pumpkin.
         4. Glue the circles together

        5. Cut three green strips about three to four inches long. Curl the end of each strip around a small paint    brush or simply roll it up to get a tighter curl. Glue the straight end into the top of your pumpkin to create the green leaves.
    6. Cut a brown strip of paper about two inches long. Fold in half and insert into the top of the pumpkin to create a stem and secure with glue (see image).

      7. Once everything has dried, you can tie a piece of string through the pumpkin stem and hang.

    Happy Crafting!

    Monday, October 18, 2010

    Fun & Easy Halloween Crafts

    We have enjoyed some super cute and easy Halloween activities.

    Crazy Crumpled Spiders! 

    Materials Needed:
    black construction paper  (1 piece of 12 x 18 for the body and 1 piece of 9 x 12 cut into 1" strips for legs)
    2 orange or purple pom poms
    2 googly eyes
    hot glue gun
    fishing line to hang when done

    Step 1:
    Get busy crumbling your paper (12 x 18)

    The spiders body!

    Step 2:
    Fold 8 black strips accordion style for legs.

    Step 3:
    Staple legs on!

    Step 4:
    Hot glue gun googly eyes onto pom poms and then glue pom pom eyes onto spider.  (You can use regular white glue.  It will just take longer to dry in place.)

    Step 5:  Hang from ceiling =)

    Super Cute!

    Decorating Pumpkins

    Ever since we visited the pumpkin patch the kiddos have wanted to carve their pumpkins.  After explaining that they would be rotten by Halloween, I came across these foam stickers at the Dollar Tree.

    Very few materials needed =)  Pumpkins and Foam Sticker pack

    They were so super excited to put their pumpkins out on the porch for all to see!