Felt Circle Wreath


Nothing beats this time of year. I am mildly obsessed with Christmas and I always look forward to the first of December when I can put up the tree (although Jordan let me put it up before Thanksgiving this year - it's a Christmas miracle!) and this wreath:

I followed a tutorial found here and let me tell you, this is not a task for the faint of heart. In all seriousness, this will take several hours. Your hand will ache. Tears may be shed. Okay maybe not, but if you attempt this without a circle cutter you probably will cry.

Although I spent hours cutting out circles and massaging my hand, I don't regret making it for one minute. I love this wreath! And I love that I can swap out the ribbon and use it for other holidays too.

FYI: I bought a circle punch thinking it might be able to cut felt, but I was wrong. I took it back and bought this. Not as easy, but MUCH MUCH easier than tracing and cutting out five billion circles. If anyone knows of a circle punch that is magical enough to cut through fabric as thick as felt, please tell me. I need one in my life.

Also, this is a great Christmas video. Everyone should watch it. The end.

Hope you have a great holiday! Merry Christmas!

Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes


Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes is such a fun book! When I first read it with Tate a year or so ago, he LOVED it. We looked up the free song that goes along with it and sang as we read it over and over, per his request. It is a perfect book for talking about colors and cause and effect. I also love that it teaches a little lesson about having a good attitude, too. Rather than whine about his shoes changing colors or getting wet, Pete keeps his head up and stays positive! It’s the perfect lesson for kids at this age when whining really hits a peak. (Or is that just my kid?)

Karli had a little Pete the Cat coloring page for the boys to color as we came in. Then we listened to the book here

After that she did a color activity with the boys. They each had a printable with different colors of shoes on it. She showed them pictures of different objects and asked the boys what color their shoes would be if they stepped in each one. For example, she held up a picture of mud and asked what color their shoes would be if they stepped in it and they pointed to the brown shoe. Super cute!

Then she had the boys act out the story as she read it. She taped newspaper together in a square and at each corner there was a plate with paint in it (one plate just had water for the part when Pete’s shoes get wet.) The boys took their shoes and socks off, rolled up their pants, and got to step in each color as Pete did in the book. They stepped in the red when Pete stepped in strawberries, blue when he stepped in blueberries, etc. The boys got braver as time went along so what started off as a hesitant toe-dip turned into them marching around without blinking an eye each time they got to a new plate.

Long story short: they loved it. And Karli is a trooper for setting this up/being okay with the boys doing this in her living room.

Toddler-Friendly Scripture Study: Chapter 9


Chapter 9: A New Home in the Promised Land
If you haven't read my initial post, read it here. It explains the scripture study plan in a little more detail and gives more information for how to teach it. 

Song: Book of Mormon Stories, p. 118
Book of Mormon stories that my teacher tells to me (hold hands open like a book)
Are about the Lamanites in ancient history. (index and tall finger held up and placed behind head, like feathers)
Long ago their fathers came from far across the sea, (swerve hand up and down like waves of the ocean)
Giv'n the land (right hand held outward) if they lived, (left hand held outward) righteously. (right hand brought over to touch left elbow, left hand cross over to touch right elbow [arms should be folded now], bow head)

1. Coloring pages: Laman and Lemuel coloring page here and Nephi coloring page here.

Optional Activities: (for the over-achiever!)
1. Play this game.
2. Using Play-Doh, sculpt the settlement as described in this chapter (tents, animals, trees, plants, tools, etc.) with your child. (For young toddlers, they could use animal cookie cutters, make “gold” out of yellow Play-doh by tearing out small pieces, roll out brown for the ground and poke holes with a toothpick for the seeds to be planted, etc.)

Scripture Study Outline
Again, if you haven't read my initial post, read it here. My outline is very brief, so this explains the scripture study plan in a little more detail and gives more information for how to teach it. 

1. Preview the chapter with a picture walk. (Explanation found here.) Introduce the song by listening to it a couple times.

2. Read the story from the manual. Ask questions and take time to look at the pictures as you read. Take as many days as needed to read the whole chapter.  End each day by singing the song.

3.  Have your child color one of the coloring pages while you read sections of the story from the actual scriptures. Take as many days as needed to read through the passages. End each day by singing the song.

4. Watch the scripture story video for this chapter. End by reading your favorite verse from the story. Read it once and then have your child read it with you the second time.

5. (If you want to do one of the optional activities, now would be the time!) Read another favorite verse (or the same one as yesterday) two times and have your child read it with you the second time. Summarize the chapter and share your testimony about an important lesson learned. End by singing the song.

Where Is the Rocket?


I really wish this book existed when I was teaching fourth grade. Where Is the Rocket? is perfect for teaching prepositions! While it may seem a little intense to try and tackle prepositions with a two and three-year-old, positional/directional words are HUGE at this age! I am constantly using prepositional phrases with Tate…

“Lightning McQueen is under your bed.”

“Your shoes are in the ottoman.”

“The ball is behind the chair.”

“You can put your toy on the table while you eat.”

Sometimes Tate understands these phrases and knows where to look/what to do. However, I think the other words in the sentence are a big giveaway. For example, if I say “shoes” and “ottoman” it’s not hard for him to know what I’m talking about.  “Put” and “toy” and “table” also send a clear message, no preposition needed.

Next to, under, above, below, in, out, on, etc. are all examples of words that we could use a little practice with. When I read this book for the first time I knew it would be perfect to do a lesson with, especially since it’s space-themed!

We started off with pattern blocks. I found a rocket printable online and outlined the shapes in the coordinating colors to make it easier for the boys to find the right ones.

I read the book to the boys then I gave them their own little rockets. We went through the book and practiced the positional/directional words using the rocket. We practiced each word a few times and now they know all the words perfectly! Just kidding. We obviously need to revisit this and practice a little every day, but it was a fun way to have them practice following instructions using these tough prepositional words/phrases! 

After that we played a little space-themed Bingo. Then we did an ABC rocket match-up. Chase is still practicing his upper-case letters so he matched his upper-case magnets to the upper-case rockets while Tate used mini, lower-case rockets to match with.

We finished with a fun activity using their rockets and straws. I saw this idea somewhere online and followed the directions exactly but the rockets were not shooting out of the straws like they should have. The boys were struggling and even I was getting light-headed trying to get Tate’s rocket flying. Karli had the genius idea to double up on the toothpicks so there wasn’t as much space for the air to escape. This worked wonders and the boys had fun making their rockets “blast off”.

Sorry I don't have links to the printables I used. I'm not trying to steal ideas or anything, I just can't find the websites and don't even remember what I googled to find them! Mom brain.
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