Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Vegan Bites: Apple Pie Parfait


The Peeler

Peels, cores and slices into spirals.
The info-mercial is just too easy for this clever kitchen tool.
We do go through bushels of apples in this house, so when Fram mentioned this free tool kicking around her quarters, we scooped it up!



We have done apple sauce (baked is best) a kazillion times, so I looked up idea's on Oh She Glows and found this doozy of a breakfast parfait!http://ohsheglows.com/2013/09/05/sugar-free-apple-pie-chia-seed-jam-breakfast-parfait/

We used grape juice in place of apple juice to amp up that sweetness in the Chia Jam.
The Chia seeds are remarkable binders and serve as a natural gelatin.

Apple Pie Jam

Parfait

To find a breakfast parfait sans dairy products is challenging. 
O loved the presentation and the taste reminded me of a sincere Scandinavian muesli with a twist.

Curious & Creative

Creative & Curious

Baby C noted some people (read: Daddy and big sis) snuck outside without her.
I proceeded to watch as the following events took place.

She called out at the safety gate.
No answer.
I let her know Daddy and O were outside and coming in soon.
Not soon enough.
She crawled over to the Fruit Stand (background), tore down all the baskets.
Then she pushed the dump truck to the safety gate, it's wheels rolling faster than she could walk.
She climbed in the truck, stood up and attempted opening the safety gate herself:)

How is this determined little sweetie only ten months old?

Preschool Picasso: Melting Ice Cream

 The Cone

Preschool Picasso offered an Ice Cream craft today.
The mixture is shaving cream and white glue in a ratio of 1:1.
Anything involving glue and O is in!

 Glitter

Glitter came next.
The boy seated next to us called it 'sprinkles' and then proceeded to eat some!


Then things got interesting with O.
She decided to cover the cone in the glue concoction.
When I asked what was evolving, she matter-of-factly informed me she was making a melting cone like the Frog & Toad story!

 Masterpiece titled "Melting Ice Cream"

Clever kid!

Erick Traplin & Hello Joe

 Bubbles

Our library hosted local talent, Mr. Erick Traplin for a free performance. 
I'm new to the kids circle in Canada, so it was a surprise to hear that Erick happens to be a native of Owen Sound. 
His energy was impressive and his original songs were a huge hit.
O stayed put while the bubbles came to her and later in the day, we found ourselves singing an oldie but goodie from the concert.

"Push this button with your tongue"

Hello.
My name is Joe.
I work in a Button Factory.
I have a wife.
And three kids.
One day,
My boss came up to me and said, 
"Hey Joe, are you busy?"
I said, "No."
"Then push this button with your left hand."
(repeat and add body parts.)

Extra Yarn: Pom Pom Play

 Extra Yarn

Playful Learning came to my inbox this week with a book and activity post. 
The activity featured was what we used to call 'god's eye's'; two sticks, yarn and a weaving technique.
The book featured is called Extra Yarn. 

The book was written on my list and happened to be on display at the library today.
What a fantastic read and the illustrations by Niagara Falls native, Jon Klassen, are enviable!
It's about a little girl who basically Yarn Bombs her community!
(What's a Yarn Bomb, you ask? 

 Fork Pom Pom's

Since 'god's eye's' are still a bit far-fetched for our fine motor skills, we took a go at pom pom-making.
In my Granny's lifetime, she may have made millions of Pom Pom's, to top tuque's or create funny-looking craft bazaar toys! Her method was two circles cut from cardstock.
Instead we tried Red Ted's Fork Pom Pom's http://www.redtedart.com/2014/07/14/make-fork-pom-poms/

 Wind it up

 Tie Tightly
 Trim (and fluff and trim some more)

It was a great quiet activity for O and I while Baby C was napping.
And by the time she woke up, she had a new treat to play with:)


EXPAND ON YARN ART
Huichol Mexican-inspired Yarn Art. Amazingly gorgeous creations using yarn in place of paint. http://artwithmrssmith.blogspot.ca/2010/10/huichol-yarn-painting.html

Hula Hoop Art. This is brilliant and big! http://spoonful.com/crafts/hula-hoop-rug

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Creating 'Curb Appeal' (& Garbage-Picking!)

Before

Between 
(After to come...later!)

 New windows are in and fab.
Old ornamental shutters removed.
Freshly painted fence gaining attention from neighbours.
Hunting for 'Curb Appeal' updates...on the cheap.
Dreaming of Adirondack Chairs when the Garbage Gods responded to my prayers:)

On a neighbourhood walk with O and C, I spotted a big, old Adirondack chair out with Monday nights trash. Being my fathers daughter, I went over for a 'light perusing', lest I look like a scrounging raccoon!
Sizing up the situation, there was no getting that monstrosity home with a baby attached to my chest and a three-year old carrying a bag of pears.
I sent out hubby to do the dirty work.


So, we have some repairs and painting to do;)

EXPAND ON CURB APPEAL
Vintage Mail Box. When we moved in, we ditched the homemade wooden mailbox, painted and weather-worn and purchased a simple vertical mailbox for less than $10. Here's the update it is about to receive. http://www.instructables.com/id/Vintage-Mail-Box-for-Kids/

 


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Meet the Framparents

 
  Framparents
 Baby C's sniffing Framps armpits, O mauling Baby C, 
Framps checking out Fram 
and Fram posing for pics, which she does not like doing! 
Nothing like a Framily Foto!

I absolutely did not receive PTP (permission to post!)
But these pics are very sweet and sum up a sunny afternoon with the FramFolk;)

Baby C & Framdaddy

 O & Framma





Daily Doodle: Fill-in-theFace

 Baby Bellies

Yesterday's Daily Doodle was inspired by the 'Sticky Easel' post from No Time For Flashcards.

I simply drew the 'bust' on our chalkboard wall and asked O to use her imagination.
It was the first time she went at it without asking me to initiate the process.
She began with drawing tiny 'C''s, forwards and backwards, within the face for ears.

Two minutes later I returned and found these stoic portraits!
She extended them from the neck, added facial features (including wickedly detailed noses!) and put little 'babies in their bellies'.


I wish I had her draw these on paper so I could frame them for the Gallery Wall in progress!


EXPAND ON PRESERVING ART
Gallery Wall. Our Library/Art Studio is set to have a Gallery Wall. Several frames that will house 'rotating exhibits'. There are many options for framing and display idea's on Pinterest. http://thegrizzles.blogspot.ca/2011/06/playroom-ideas.html
O plays both artist and curator by pasting her pieces to the wall with masking tape.
That works too!
Amanda Soule of SouleMama http://www.soulemama.com/soulemama/ suggests framing your favourite pieces and keeping them hung around the house with art you have purchased.

A Year of Work. This fantastic poster reduces a year's worth of images into one piece of art. http://diana212m.blogspot.com.es/2011/02/home-inspiration-displaying-kids-art.html 

Art as a Gift. Numerous companies (see Etsy.com) offer options for transferring your preferred pieces to giftware. Or you can get creative and sew your own replica.
Mugs. https://www.etsy.com/listing/74009665/your-childs-art-on-a-mug-personalized?ref=br_feed_54&br_feed_tlp=fathers-day-gifts
Jewelry. http://www.neimanmarcus.com/en-ca/Brevity-Custom-Drawing-Necklace/prod164870253/p.prod?ecid=NMALRFeedQFGLnEolOWg&ci_src=14110925&ci_sku=prod164870253skuGOLD
Tea Towel/Cloth Napkin. https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/191642208/your-childs-artwork-drawing-painting-on?ref=exp_listing
Keychain. https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/32078608/your-childs-drawing-on-keychain

Keepsakes. If you're handy with a sewing machine, you can transfer images to pillows http://iletait1xunetoile.tictail.com/ or dolls http://todayilearned.co.uk/2012/04/28/there-is-a-company-which-makes-toys-based-on-childrens-drawings/

Puzzle Peek

 Shapes Puzzle

...with a twist!

Simple, ingenious activities draw me!
Nurture Store is at it again. 
Simple. 

Little C was eager for an activity she could call her own.
At least I thought it was time to create an activity that was solely for her!
This puzzle peek was enjoyed by both girls.
O helped me pick out some pictures from our giant photo box....and Baby C liked throwing all the shapes off to reveal the surprise beneath!

Vegan Bites: Stuffed Peppers

 Chopping

Summery salad in a veggie cup, these stuffed peppers could be eaten cold in the summer months or warmed for the winter. Either way, they're simple to make, packed with protein and colourful veggies. 
A perfect lettuce-less salad for leafless vegans!


Stuffed Peppers
~1/2 cup quinoa
~2 cups water
~purple onion, diced
~2-3 cups colourful peppers, diced
~1/4 cup sundried tomatoe, sliced thin
~2 cloves garlic, minced
~salt & pepper
 ~handful of favourite fresh herbs
~drizzle of olive oil

Cook quinoa and half of onion in water.
Boil until quinoa is translucent and simmer until water is absorbed.
Add veg, herbs and spices.
Spoon into hollowed pepper cups.
Bake at 300 until golden.
Drizzle with olive oil.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Waterloo Petting Zoo

Blushing!

O was tickled pink to see pigs on Sunday.
She is bent on having a pig for a pet. 
It could be part in parcel with the classic Charlotte's Web. 
On occasion, O studies the picture where Fern nurses the piglet with a tiny bottle.
I definitely remember that feeling as a child, of wanting something of my own to care for.

 
Patting Bacon

There were two pot-bellies at the Petting Zoo we visited, named 'Bacon' and 'Eggs'. 
When O heard they were there, she couldn't get to them fast enough, she referred to them as 'hers' and when we finally said 'good-bye', one was scolded for not getting up to see her out!

Miniature Horses

The park was filled with extensive caged area's housing miniature horses and donkey's, sheep, goats, geese, turkey, peacocks, deer & chickens. 
O took time to love everyone up, but she couldn't stop talking about the piggies!

Naaaaa

Burrito's

Make Your Own: Dough Ornaments

 Soft Starch

At the library, we found a book titled Make Your Own Gifts http://cn.dk.com/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9781465414199,00.html?MAKE_YOUR_OWN_GIFTS_DK_Publishing
DK publications are generally fabulous, but this was page after page of clever, trendy DIY projects to share.

We chose the Dough Ornaments, as we had all of the supplies on hand and it turned out to be an amazing sensory experience. Not to mention, a no-fail recipe.

 Goopy Glop

Long ago, when O was teeny, we did a sensory play bin with water and corn starch. The corn starch is so soft and sifts easily through the fingers. Add a little water and it alternates between silky and solid playdough; a very unique sensory experience.

 Cookie Cutters

After hand mixing, I heated the mixture to turn it into dough and O proceded to cut out shapes to bake.



Dough Ornament
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cup baking soda
1 cup water
Mix dry. Add water and mix.
Stir constantly over med high heat until mixture thickens.
Remove from heat and cover with damp cloth until cool.
Knead well, roll and cut. Poke hanging hole with skewer.
Bake at 220 for an hour, flipping shapes at the half hour.


Pretty Pendants

Once dried, we can paint and thread with ribbon (as pictured in the book's shot above) to add to jam jars or use as holiday decoration.

EXPAND ON HANDMADE GIFTS 
More Idea's from DK's Make Your Own Gifts. The pictures below are taken straight from the pages of the book.

Pendants with bead chains

Happy Bird-day Foil Plate Cut-Outs

Here the book notes using tin plate cut-outs and a soft backed surface to etch designs with a ball point pen.

Pop Art Cupcakes

I had no idea there's such thing as 'roll-out icing'. 
Can you believe these are cupcakes!? I thought it was felt circles!

Stamped Gift Tags & Paper

Plans are underway to design our own miniature stamps with lino tiles. 
I love the blue birdie pictured with corresponding gift wrap!

Heart Decor

The kitschy garland....the rainbow strips heart...the layered greeting card....

Tin Can Mouse

Hands down, this would have been my choice as a kid!
We might have to sub-in a teacup piglet for the gray mouse!

Sugar Roll

The recipe for these coconut rolls included 9 cups of coconut and icing sugar with condensed milk!