Catch the Moment Week 49

Wow the year is really winding down.  Three more weeks to go and 2014 is history.  It’s hard to believe and yet it feels like it just began.  Strange how that is.  

Day 338/365

Christmas blur bliss
Project 365-Day 338

Day 339/365

Solo trip to Target happiness
Project 365-Day 339

Day 340/365

First birthday smash cakeProject 365-Day 340

Day 341/365

Project 365-Day 341Breakfast with Santa at school

Day 342/365

Santa XanderProject 365-Day 342

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Cereal BoyProject 365-Day 343

Day 344/365

We love Christmas
Project 365-Day 344

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Creating Holiday Memories: Preparing for a Party

This post is sponsored by Poppy Cat. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

The boys and I are getting ready to our holiday cookie baking extravaganza. This year we are having our very first Christmas party and can’t wait to bake treats for it.  In preparation for holiday baking, I have tasked Xander with the job of helping me put together our grocery shopping list. Now that he is starting to spell and read words, this is the perfect job for him.

Grocery shopping can be a bit of a snore but I have found a great way of making everyday adventures extraordinary with the Poppy Cat Cosmic Forces app. The app features Poppy Cat, a preschool series on Sprout which is based on the international award-winning books by Lara Jones. Poppy Cat is full of adventures and is a celebration of imaginative play. This time Poppy Cat and his friends are going to the market to prepare for a picnic. The vocabulary is presented in English and Spanish, making this app a great multi dimensional learing activity. Once Xander was finished shopping at the market with Poppy and his friends, we got to work writing our own grocery shopping list.   This was the perfect time to teach him about the different categories of food that are found in the store including frozen foods, fresh produce, and baking products.  

When we got to the store, I armed him with his list and a clip board.  We even dragged along our play shopping cart for both Xander and Noah to push.  Play shopping carts are pretty cute! The combination of the shopping cart and the list made the entire shopping trip enjoyable and a fun learning experience for Xander. shopping

Now that we are fully stocked up on the necessary baking ingredients for our cookie extravaganza, we are ready for a weekend of baking. Bring on the sprinkles, chocolate chips, frosting and sugar coma!

christmas cookies

Help your child grow his or her imagination with a holiday filled adventure. For ideas and a fun learning app check outPoppy the Cat on Sprout. You can also find Poppy on Twitter and Facebook.
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Our Love Of Bedtime Stories

Adrian and I are very passionate about sharing our love of reading with our boys.  Each night as part of our winding down routine, we read them a few bedtime stories.  My favorite part of this routine is feeling their warm little bodies in my lap.  I love to listen to their little voices as they comment or ask questions about the story.  Now that Xander knows many site words, it’s fun to have him “read” the book.  He often sounds out the words without me asking.  The pride he has for his new-found skill of reading is priceless.  

Oddly enough, none of them have a story they want to read over and over again.  Sure they have their favorites, but they tend to like variety.  One night we might read about superheros and the next about family of animals.  We were recently sent a copy of This House Needs a Mouse by C. Jeffrey Nunnally to review.  

This House Needs a Mouse

This House Needs a Mouse is a charming story about three families, one of which are rodents.  The illustrations in the book look as if they were done with markers.  I love the muted color palate the illustrator uses throughout the book.  The story begins with the main character of the story, the mouse, determined to build better life for himself outside of the pet store.  He works hard to clean up his cage to show that he can keep a neat house.  The human family in the story is fed up with their endless crumbs, so they decide that they need a mouse.  They choose the neat mouse and soon he happily scurries around his new house.  The family is very happy when they no longer have to deal with crumbs on the floor.  

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Of course the story does not end here.  The mouse is thrown a wrench when his happy family decides to move to a different, bigger house for their growing family.  When a new family moves into the house, the mouse is seen as an unwanted rodent.  He meets many obstacles while proving to his new family that he in fact is useful, including mousetraps and a lazy cat.  The mouse does not give up and eventually earns a spot in the family’s hearts and home.  

This House Needs a Mouse is beautifully written.  The text is full of alliterations, rich vocabulary, and a heart warming message.  The boys and I recommend this for any family looking for a new bedtime story.  It is now available on AmazonBarnes and NobleBig Tent Books.  You can also connect with the author on Facebook.

Catch the Moment Week 48

Christmas has exploded at our house. We are in the middle of decorating and there are red and green boxes, glitter, and Christmas lights everywhere. It’s a bit crazy. With Christmas unleashed, it feels like Thanksgiving was such a long time ago. Strange.

Day 330/365

Turkey eve preparations. This year we ordered a fresh turkey from a local farm so it was quite different to find the heart inside the bird.Project 365-Day 331

Day 331/365

Ryker’s second Thanksgiving and he loved the parade.Project 365-Day 332

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Old Town Alexandria is so pretty during this season.Project 365-Day 333-2

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The calm before the storm with these two. Best friends one minute and worst enemies the next.Project 365-Day 334

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Tree lover.Project 365-Day 335

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Bigger tree lover.Project 365-Day 336

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I love the pretty colors in a tree.Project 365-Day 337

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So Thankful

We enjoyed a small Thanksgiving dinner at home this year. Grandma came from New Hampshire and the boys enjoyed having her here. This Thanksgiving I am thankful for so many things. Here are just a few….

Little boy hands covered in paint…even when this leads to paint all over their bodies, my walls and floors
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Bubbles even though they throw them at the walls, pretending they are snowballs, covering my bathroom in bubbles and waterDSC_2518

His baby fine redhair even though it’s the reason for his temperDSC_2542

This loud mouth, even though he tests us every day with his wordsDSC_2514

This crazy, thick redhair, even though the child behind it, the middle kid, is wildDSC_2476

His crystal blue eyesDSC_2468

His dark blue eyesDSC_2469

Homemade apple pie, even though I didn’t finish it in one sitting, because these three boys kept me going.DSC_2615

This Thanksgiving I’m thankful for them.

I’m thankful for us.