Speaking of which, thanks to Daryl we have our February look up if you want to peek. I took too many pictures of the girls yesterday and had to include one on the new splash page and one at the end of this newsletter. I love dress up days! :) The link to the Magical Childhood web site is at the end of this newsletter, as always.
you're having a fabulous week. And now, on with the newsletter......
If you're gonna have snow, you might as well have fun with it...
Here's some neat things
to do in the snow and ways to fake it if you're someplace warmer.
And this fabulous site
full of cool snow science
...with snow art, snow literature and more links at the bottom.
Let kids use flour tortillas and clean safety scissors to make edible snowflakes! For little kids you can cut them yourself and then let them assemble them into a tasty treat. Just fold and cut like paper ones. Possible ways to doll them up:
~Quickly fry them in a little oil and sprinkle with powdered sugar or cinnamon and sugar.
~Fry a whole tortilla and a snowflake one on medium heat. Turn both, top the whole one with shredded cheese and cover with the snowflake. Leave long enough to melt the cheese and serve.
~Make snowflake sandwiches
by filling with thinly sliced meat, cheese or veggies.
(Adapted from a recipe on About.com)
Other ways to fake a snowy day inside:
Two good quotes swiped from "sap spam" this week.....
to make your children obey is like using the horn to steer your car,
and you get about the same results.
To be in your children's memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.
Scratch & Sniff Watercolors:
1 Tbs. unsweetened
powdered drink mix
1 Tbs. warm water
several small containers (muffin tins work well)
Mix water & drink mix together in a small bowl. Repeat this step several times, using various flavors of drink mix to create different colors of paint. Allow to dry overnight before scratching & sniffing!
(Thanks to magical
mama Susan for sharing this one with me many moons ago)
We've been doing Valentines crafts like mad around here. We made homemade paper for the first time ever, with really neat results (and then with disaster results, G). I'll share the how-to on that in the next issue. We've been making cards for loved ones and pen pals, and the girls have loved receiving them too. We've been making lots of use of heart stamps, heart shaped doilies and anything red or sappy. I capitalize on any excuse for crafts. ;)
One project we did was we created a Valentines tree. I gathered up two fallen branches from outside and put them in an old plastic pot. I filled in around the base of the branches with some sewing patterns I needed to store somewhere <G> and then slipped the pot into the leg of some hot pink satin pajamas I was cutting up for scraps. Once it was snugly through the leg, I cut about 6" above and below each end. I tucked the fabric under bottom and around the top over the patterns (clear as mud?). The girls and I cut the satin into strips and tied bows all over the branches, then draped strands of beads and jewelry on for added glitz. It's sitting proudly in the window, the kids love it, and didn't cost a cent! Pants legs work perfectly to cover pots since the narrow parts fit around smaller pots and the thigh parts around larger ones. No sewing required. And that's a good thing. ;)
This site has lots
of fun Valentines crafts besides those tired old "color these valentines"
There are also Valentines
ideas on the Magical Childhood site, in the crafts section. Make
a note though-- I put the recipe up for face paint before our
own Valentines day last year and learned too late that you end up with
little girls with permanent red hearts on their cheeks for a day or two
after you wash it off! <VBG> We didn't mind but you might!
And now for something completely different....
Here's a great article on taking care of ourselves
And along the same lines, I've been reading Mitten
Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry and heartily
recommend it. Though I feel that she's preaching to the choir when
she tells me to slow down (her life is 10 times as filled as mine), I agree
so much with what the author writes and she words it beautifully.
There are wonderful thoughts on how to put your family at the center of
your life and do it in a slower, more peaceful and more rewarding way.
It's a must for modern mothers who feel pulled in too many directions,
and despite the title it seems written for all parents of all faiths.
"You must learn
day by day, year by year, to broaden your horizon.
The more things you love, the more you are interested in,
the more you enjoy, the more you are indignant about,
the more you have left when anything happens."
10 ways to make the day magical--
100 Wishes~ Okay, you don't need a hundred, but help the whole family come up with a whole mass of wishes, some silly and some serious and most for other people. Then make an adventure out of hiding them all over the house. Hide some so well they're lost forever (buried in the yard or slipped between floorboards). Tell the kids the wishes will work as you all go about your business, with a little help from them ("how do you think we could help this wish for Uncle Nick come true?"). When you find wishes later, see if they're closer to coming true. If not, hide in a new place.
Take part in the Great Backyard Bird Count~ Between February 15 and 18, North American volunteers are needed to spend 15-30 minutes (one day or more) counting birds. This site will tell you all you need to know to help your family be a part of this project. http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc/toc_page.html
Bubble magic~ Head outside with bubbles and wands and make wishes or say prayers as you blow bubbles. If you do this on a really cold day (below zero), the bubbles will freeze! But it will still be fun to watch their wishes go off in the world if they act normal too. :)
Dress for dinner with the queen~ Pull out prom dresses, velvet wraps and the fake jewels! Go all out and fashion bow ties and fake mustaches, tiaras and the best manners.
Mail someone good luck~ Think up a handful of loved ones and mail them glitter, confetti or a small strip of paper saying something like, "This is good luck sent straight from ___ and ____ because we love you." Add some instructions like blowing the confetti out of a hand when the day needs improvement, a silly guarantee, and a disclaimer that all is null if the loved one doesn't believe!
Start a wax bottle~ If everybody has been stressed and hectic lately, this simple centerpiece will work wonders at calming you. Find an old bottle from wine or root beer and start collecting candle stumps in all different colors. Look for candles that drip, since so many are dripless nowadays and ruin the point of wax bottles. <G> Ask folks to save their candle ends and look in thrift shops and drawers for assorted colors. Then just start burning candles whenever you're together and watch the wax drip down the bottle. Plan color combinations and experiment with ways to make it run down the right side, drip more (blowing and lightly carving channels work well), and transform your masterpiece in individual ways. This is strangely hypnotic, relaxing and addictive, and you create your own family work of art that never stops evolving... until you start a new one.
Foot art~ Feel like being totally silly??? Before bed, create magic marker masterpieces the soles of each other's feet! In the morning, slip socks on them and head off to school, day care or work (G) with their secret silliness from the family tucked under your shoes! They can write sayings, draw pictures, you name it. You can use washable marker if you don't want to stain the socks, but really, how worried can you get over staining the inside of a sock? ;)
Start a jar of pride rocks~ Fill a glass vase or mason jar with pretty rocks, one for each time your children do something you or they are proud of. Use a different jar for each child. Let them pick the rocks out and then use a marker or paint pen to artistically name the accomplishment. You can summarize with a word, like "Reading" or "Bicycle" or a code like "dark" for conquering a fear of the dark and sleeping with the lights off, or "card" for the card they sent to cheer up their grandmother. Make pride rocks often, and let your kids do their own when they're proud of themselves, too. When a jar gets filled, use the rocks on the tops of houseplants or in a special place in the garden and start a new jar. Make sure to celebrate the occasion with a special time and make a big deal of the child filling a whole jar with good things!
Crescent Goals~ Make up some crescent rolls, from a can or homemade. Using a toothpick, write a goal (funny or serious) on the widest part, then roll up as normal. Find a way to mark whose are whose by twisting into initials or carving the tops with toothpicks and then bake. At supper, munch up your goals! This is especially effective when goals involve scary things/people to tackle.
how much they're loved Fill one of the walls of their bedrooms
with hearts or stars, and on each one write the name of someone who loves
them. You can use glow-in-the-dark stars or just make paper decorations,
whatever suits your mood and budget. Help kids add new ones as new
loved ones enter their lives, and remember to put them up for loved ones
who have passed away too. Their love continues.
Finally, I wanted to share this lullaby with you that Daryl wrote while the girls and I were in New Mexico last month. He wrote it for the dulcimer, an old fashioned stringed instrument, but you can hear a piano midi rendition of the tune at the link below. Victoria helped him compose the lyrics.
Alicia's Scottish Lullaby
Hush, my wee baby,
close your eyes,
dream of the flow'rs in the meadow.
Dream of the sun
and the clouds in the sky,
moving about where the winds blow.
Dream of the river
that runs through the dell,
dream of a wish from the wishing well.
Hush, my wee baby,
close your eyes,
dream of the flow'rs in the meadow.
And with that, I'm off to tuck Annalee back into bed (she's asleep in my arms as I type this) and crawl into bed myself. There's so much more I wanted to write this time but I'm tired! <G> Until next time, kiss your sweeties, remember the important stuff and don't forget to take care of you!
A Magical Childhood
Copyright 2002, Alicia Bayer
A Magical Childhood Newsletter is just something I throw together because I love children and those who love them. To subscribe, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. We do not use ads. It's not about money. :)
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