Advertisements

Category Archives: Summer

How to Celebrate LEON Day! (6/25)


How to Celebrate LEON Day

Happy LEON Day! Leon is “Noel” spelled backwards and Leon Day, June 25, marks the halfway point to Christmas…just 6 more months!

Here are some ideas of how to make Leon Day special!

1. Celebrate a mini-Christmas: Get out some of the Christmas decorations, Santa hats, and Christmas books, movies, and music, put on those Christmas jammies and ugly holiday sweaters and get into the Christmas Spirit a little early this year!
(The easiest way to do this is to get some cheap, tacky Christmas decorations on clearance after the holidays and stash them in their own little box just for this occasion!)

2. Christmas Luau: To really celebrate a summer Christmas, have a Christmas Luau! Use silk poinsettia flowers in your hair, tinsel garland for leis and grass skirts, and hula away to Mele Kalikimaka.

Mele Kalikimaka Hawaiian Christmas Party @ Lynlee’s Petite Cakes
Also featured here

Mele Kalikimaka Christmas Freebie Tag @ Loralee Lewis

Tips on Hosting a Hawaii Theme Christmas Party!
Planning a Hawaiian Christmas Luau

3. Have a backwards day:
Since Leon is “Noel” spelled backwards you can have a backwards day.
(You can incorporate this with the Christmas stuff or do it alone.)
A few backwards ideas:
*Write backwards, read backwards
*Wear your shirt/clothes backwards
*Walk backwards, talk backwards, sing backwards
*Turn the furniture backwards or sit backwards in your chairs
*Backwards meals:
-Serve breakfast for dinner or serve dessert first.
-Set the dinner table with all of the plates, cups and utensils upside down or backwards (cups where plates would go, etc.)
-Serve food in a glass and drinks in a bowl or on a plate?! (Messy!)
-Sit on the floor and eat off of your chair.

How do you celebrate LEON day with your family? Let me know in the comments!
Enjoy LEON day and I can’t wait to see you back here
in about 5 months for some great Christmas posts!

How to Celebrate LEON Day

*Originally posted on June 25, 2011


cfotbemailsub_0

Advertisements

Guest Post: Making the Most Out of Every Day This Summer


This is a guest post by Theresa from Our Life in Words. Please stop by and visit her great blog!

My girls (ages 9 & 11) were only out of school for a few days when I heard, “Mom, I’m bored!”

My first reaction was what my mom used to say to me, “Is your closet clean and tidy? All your clothes hung up? Are your dresser drawers organized? Are all of your socks in the same drawer?”

As much as I never wanted to turn into my mom, summer is a great time to teach kids organization and how to clean up after themselves.

Summer is also an opportunity for parents to spend quality time with their kids doing all of those things they wish they had time to do during the year. It doesn’t have to take a lot of money.

Here are some fun *free* things you can do with your kids:
*Have a water fight; use the hose, water balloons, Super Soakers, rags & buckets
*Wash the car together – kids LOVE this!
*Make homemade play-doh together and play with it
*Go for a bike ride
*Go for a walk
*Play frisbee or catch
*Make a tea party for your little girl and use your real china & dress up
*Find a patch of lawn that doesn’t have any grass, turn the hose on and make mud pies with your son
*Make roads in the dirt with your boy, play with matchbox cars
*Check out what free summer programs your library is offering
*For more ideas on fun things to do with your kids for free over the summer, check out books or parenting magazines in your local library!

Work on school skills:
*Play Mad Libs – Kids LOVE Mad Libs and they are a great, fun way to teach parts of speech.
Google Free Mad Libs or check out Education Place.
*Play Math Bingo – I bought this game in the Dollar Store and my kids LOVE it!
*Sign up for summer reading programs at your local library
*Write a story with your kids. Start with a sentence and ask your children to each add a sentence. If they are too young to write, write it down for them. Have them illustrate it.
*Keep a journal with your kids of all of summer fun you have. Press flowers from your walks and glue them in. Or take photos of your fun and glue them in.

“The days are long, the years are short.” ~ Gretchen Rubin

Make the most of every moment with your child because childhood doesn’t last forever!

Do you have any suggestions for frugal fun this summer?

Theresa is a former teacher who spent nine years as a stay at home mom. She now works part-time as the Assistant Children’s Librarian at her local library. She blogs regularly at Our Life in Words and weekly at Three Thinking Mothers.

Guest Post: Planting Flowers and Practicing Skills


This is a post from Amanda at Gratefully Growing in Grace who also brought us the Breakfast Basket guest post on June 7. Amanda has a great blog, so be sure to stop by for a visit!

Planting Flowers and Practicing Skills

My name is Amanda and I’m visiting again from Gratefully Growing in Grace where I write about baby, toddler, and preschool activities, crafts I attempt, recipes I manage to cook successfully, and as any good mommy blog includes, cute stories, photos, and videos of my children.

I’ve been blessed to celebrate three Mother’s Days and each year I have asked for the same thing: a mushy card, a photo of me with my children (I have a special frame for the photos), and flowers to plant. My only stipulation is that we all plant the flowers as a family. Doesn’t my husband have an easy job of thinking of Mother’s Day gifts and activities? This year was the first time my son could really help plant the flowers. He could dig the holes with me, choose which flower to put in the hole, place it there, pack the dirt around it, and water it. We had a blast and I can’t wait to have a home where we can plant more flowers and for my daughter to be able to help us – maybe next year!

We had so much fun planting flowers that I wanted to find a way for us to do it again and again. After reading an article (sorry, I can’t remember details because I usually read when my brain is tired to begin with) about preschoolers practicing hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills, I came up with an idea. I’m sure it isn’t original, but my tired brain thought it was brilliant at the moment.

I bought a small storage basket with holes and a few artificial flowers at the Dollar Tree. I rounded out my artificial flower pile by having my mom donate some of her extras. I used a wire cutter to trim the flowers up to be single stems without a lot of extra leaves and stuff on them.

I washed all the flowers in soapy water and let them dry because I’m a germophobe like that. Next, I gave the pile of flowers and the basket to Mini Me and said, “Let’s make a garden!” Simple as that, we turned the basket on its side and began using steady hands to poke the flower stems into the nifty holes. Tada!

The first time Mini Me did this is took approximately 2.5 minutes and he was off and running. I was crushed that my brilliant-but-not-so-original idea was such a dud. But… he came running back to it later after I’d taken the flowers out and wanted to do it again. Then the next day, he wanted to plant his garden again. I started making him put the stems in the smallest holes for more practice. One day he lovingly made a garden and presented it to me, asking if I could keep it on the table for decoration all day. Awwww… Mother’s Day lives on and my preschooler’s fine motor skills are being fine tuned!

Amanda is the author of Gratefully Growing in Grace where she blogs about baby, toddler, and preschool activities, crafts she attempts, and recipes she manages to cook successfully.

Show Us Your Town (Hop)…Link Up!


It’s time to Show Us Your Town! This week I’m showing you Living Treasures Animal Park in Moraine, PA that we visited back in April.

Your hosts are:
Me! Jenn from Coolest Family on the Block 🙂
Michelle from Heartfelt Balance Handmade Life
Bernadette from Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas
Michelle from Michelle’s Charm World

Link up all of the cool fun places that you’re visiting in your area this summer. Link up as many related posts as you like. The linky closes Saturday at Midnight.

If you link up to the hop we’d appreciate it if you grab our button and link back to one of the 4 hosts. You can right click and save the image below or grab my button in the left sidebar. Thanks!



Click below to add your link!

Powered by Linky Tools

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…


Coolest Family on the Block is committed to helping you find creative ways to have fun and make memories with your family all year-long. Don’t miss an idea, tip, or trick…subscribe and have updates sent directly to your email!

Guest Post: Top 10 List of Things to do with Toddlers this Summer


This is a guest post by Stephanie from Always Just a Mom. She has some great ideas for keeping your toddlers busy this summer. Be sure to stop by her blog and say hi!

Hi!  I’m Stephanie and I’m stopping by today from my blog Always Just A Mom!  I’m a stay-at-home mom to String Bean (3) and Biscuit (2) who are just 13 1/2 months apart, so we’re always doing something!  This summer has started off HOT!  I’ve had to adjust the way we do things around our home because of the heat and the fact that I’ve got two very active toddlers…so I thought I would share with you my…

Top 10 List of things to do with Toddlers this Summer!

1.  WATER:  Get them in the water and get them drinking water!  We have invested in a small inflatable pool (found on sale at Toys R’ Us for $69.99) but even if you don’t have the money for the pool get a sprinkler!  (I got a great ring sprinkler for $6.00 at Walmart the other day…perfect for toddlers because you adjust the height and strength of the water!)  
It’s also important to get them to drink water.  This has been a challenge so we invested in some fun CamelBak water bottles for the boys…they now reach for them in the fridge.  I let them pick them out (we had a 20% coupon from REI) and we carry them with us all the time now!  You can also get great reusable kid water bottles at Target ($3.00)!
2.  PARK:   Get up and go to the park.  The beds can be made in the afternoon, the dishes can get done later.  Get your kids outside before it’s super hot.  We are very lucky to have a park up the road…we can actually walk to…but pack some granola bars, some water and get to the park!
3.  PUDDING:  Make pudding with your kiddos.  This is great for your toddlers!  Get a Tupperware container, put the pudding mix in, add the 2 cups of milk, secure the lid and let them shake it until their little hearts content!  Then stick it in the fridge and they’ve made pudding.  It’s such a little thing and they will have helped make the dessert for that evening (add some whipped topping and a few bits of candy and you’ve really made something fancy for dinner). 
4.  GARDEN:  No you don’t need an acre of land or a green thumb.  Go grab a box of triscuits or wheat thins that have the plant the seed logo on the box.  All the directions are on the back and you can plant fun herbs in your house in a small pot (Terra Cotta pots are like $2.99 at Joanns).
5.  NIGHT OUT:  Let your kids be outside after dark.  This is really tough for a mom like me because I’m all about the schedule but I usually just let them sleep an extra 30 minutes or so on a day we’re going to do this, then let them run around outside as the street lights are coming on.  They love playing in the backyard with flashlights and chasing lighting bugs!  It’s just a change for them…it’s also fun to give them a yummy Popsicle or some other messy, cool treat.
6.  MAKE ICE CREAM:  Some of you are thinking…WHAT?!?  Make ice cream with toddlers…well not the ice cream maker ice cream.  Take some fresh fruit (strawberries), blend it with some ice and some milk, pour it into little containers, freeze for 20 minutes, add some craft Popsicle sticks and let them freeze for a few more hours…you made ice cream.  Yes…your toddler will think you are AMAZING!  (Remember they are impressed with very simple things!)
7.  TAKE PICTURES:  Take pictures of everything they are doing.  Let them have fun and pose and be silly.  Just try to capture all those summer events.  You can later make them into fun little cards/notes for family far away and share a little of their summer with them.  Very easy!  Don’t want to pay for printing pictures…just use your computer printer, print on regular paper, cut it out, glue to some fun cardstock or a card you already have and just let them “color” a little note.

8.  THANK YOUs:  My kids love to paint with those little water paints (little cup of water, get the hard paint color wet, make some pictures).  We use those for Thank You notes.  They paint them and then I hold on to them throughout the year to send as “thank yous” to family and friends when they receive a gift or have a special day with someone.  They have painted them, and then I write the words they want me to write over the painting.  It’s just a little more personal and it makes them part of the process!!!  (Who doesn’t want a cute little water color painting from a toddler hanging on their fridge door!)

9.  INDOOR PICNIC:  It’s HOT!  I hate the heat.  Summer is my LEAST favorite time of year.  Plan an indoor picnic.  Put on a movie, get some cheese, crackers, grapes, and juice cups and sit on a blanket in front of the TV.  Just changing the environment where they eat and getting to watch TV while they eat a meal (something we rarely do) is a noteworthy event!  This can be done for dinner with PB&Js just sayin’!
10.  PLAY IN THE MUD:  Let your kids play in the mud.  Although I have two very rowdy “BOYS” and they are all boy…let your girls play in mud.  You can put it in a little plastic tub and let them just put their feet in it…mud is fun!!  It’s messy, it’s a pain to clean up, it’s a picture you’ll cherish and it’s fun you can’t replace!

I hope you enjoyed my Top 10 and I hope you try a couple ideas!  These are nothing Earth Shattering but sometimes it’s the little things we forget to do!  Summer is here and like the lyrics say “There’s a 104 days to summer vacation…” enjoy these days and enjoy your little ones!!!  Have a great summer and thanks for letting me share a little bit of me with you!!!  Look forward to seeing you over at Always Just a Mom!

%d bloggers like this: