IMG_0560Whether at a parade, having fun in the back yard or watching the fireworks these ribbon wands are sure to provide your Little Pnut with loads of festive fun just in time for the 4th of July.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What You Will Need:

  • White foam board, cardboard or heavy card stock (we used white foam board from the dollar store)
  • Bbq skewer or other similar stick
  • Star shaped cookie cutter (optional)
  • Hot glue
  • Red, white & blue paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Scissors/exacto knife
  • Red, white & blue ribbon
 

Get Ready

Either by way of using a star shaped cookie cutter or freehand, draw and cut two stars out of the white foam board. Note: If you are using foam board scissors will work but I found I got much cleaner edges when using an exacto knife. Once the stars are cut out have your Little Pnut paint one side of each star using red white and blue paint.

Assemble your Wand

When the paint is dry you are ready to make your wand. First, hot glue the skewer to the unpainted side of one of the stars (pointed side of the skewer facing in for safety). Then using more hot glue, cover the rest of the star and sandwich the two unpainted sides together. You will have to press down a bit or squeeze them together for a few seconds for the glue to dry and hold. Once the hot glue has dried and your wand is secure cut ribbon into various lengths and tie to your wand.

Play

Hand the wand over to your Little Pnut and watch what happens! Good chance they will be instantly captivated and may break out into parade themselves.

Variation

For some extra sparkle try covering the stars in glitter!

Happy Playing!

Developmental Milestones:

This activities focuses on the following Developmental Milestones for your Little Pnuts: Imaginative Play, Creative Play & Co-operative Play, Learning shapes,

—Jennifer Haas, founder of Plain Vanilla Mom.

 
 


Hunting for Leprechaun GoldPlay doesn’t have to be elaborate or complicated to be fun and rewarding for both our Little Pnuts and ourselves. Sometimes the simplest of activities are the biggest winners. This leprechaun treasure hunt is an example of that. My Little Pnuts would do this activity over and over again and it couldn’t be easier to set up and execute.

 

 

 

 

 

What You Will Need:

  • Plastic cold coins (available this time of year at your local dollar store, craft store, or party store)
  • A good imagination
  • A few hiding places
 

Get Ready

Have your Little Pnut wait for you in another room (like their bedroom) while you hide gold coins all over the house.

Hunt for Gold

Help your Little Pnut hunt for the gold coins! Use clues like hot and cold if they need a little extra help.

It’s that simple! I promise, your Little Pnut will have loads of fun and their imagination might even kick in a little bit. My Little Pnuts even spied a few “leprechauns” around the house when we were hunting for gold.

Variation

Try a few variations of your treasure hunt: Hide the gold coins in mounds of play dough for a quiet time version of this activity or take your hunt outside if weather allows. For a little extra learning have your Little Pnut count the coins after they have collected them. Hide a different number of coins each time and tell your Little Pnut how many you hid so they know how many they need to find.

Happy Playing!

 

Developmental Milestones:

This activities focuses on the following Developmental Milestones for your Little Pnuts: Imaginative Play, Creative Play & Co-operative Play

—Jennifer Haas, founder of Plain Vanilla Mom.

 
 

IMG_0559Valentines Day isn’t just for friends and family! Show your love for animals and nature with these darling Heart Shaped Birdseed Feeders your favorite feathered friends will love. 

 

 

 

What You Will Need:

  • 1c birdseed
  • 1/3 c. water
  • 1 pkg knox unflavored gelatin (there are usually three individual packs in a box so one box could actually make you three batches of these birdseed hearts).
  • heart shaped cookie cutters (4-6 depending on size)
  • 2-3 straws
  • ribbon or twine
  • mixing bowl
  • spoon
  • cookie sheet
  • parchment paper (or wax paper)
 

Get Ready

Have your Little Pnut help you line a cookie sheet with parchment paper, lay out your cookie cutters on the paper and cut your straws into thirds.

Make Your Birdseed Mixture

Measure 1c of birdseed with your Little Pnut,  have them dump it into a mixing bowl and set aside. Boil 1/3 cup water in the microwave using a microwave safe measuring cup or bowl. Immediately remove the water from the microwave once it begins to boil and stir in 1 pkg of knox unflavored gelatin until it’s completely dissolved. Then, pour the water mixture into the birdseed and stir until combined.  Your Little Pnuts will love to help with this part but use caution, it’s hot. In the end, the mixture should be very sticky.

Form Your Hearts

IMG_0169Using a spoon, have your Little Pnut fill the cookie cutters with the birdseed mixture. You will want to help them pack it down so it’s nice and dense.  Then, stick the straw pieces into the birdseed cakes wherever you would like to create a hole for hanging. It’s VERY important to do this step while the birdseed hearts are still wet. Once all your hearts are filled and the straws are in leave everything to dry. This can take a few hours. (Maybe you could get your Little Pnut to help you clean up).

When the Birdseed Hearts are Dry

Very carefully remove the straws and cookie cutters from the birdseed hearts. The cakes are fairly sturdy but will break with too much force so make sure your Little Pnut knows how to be very gentle if they help you with this step. Cut some twine or ribbon to your desired length and use it to tie the bird seed hearts to a tree outside. Then, sit back and do a little bird watching with your Little Pnut. Your Little Pnut will feel so proud to do something so kind for the birds!

Variation

Try different shaped cookie cutters. We do this activity many times throughout the year using many different shapes of cookie cutters. It never gets old and my Little Pnuts from age 2-12 love it every time.

Happy Playing!

 

Developmental Milestones:

This activities focuses on the following Developmental Milestones for your Little Pnuts:

Fine Motor Skills, Focus and Concentration, Shape Recognition, Hand-Eye Coordination, Creative Play, Imaginative Play & Free Play.

—Jennifer Haas, founder of Plain Vanilla Mom.