Saturday, March 31, 2012

Cheese Frames and more kitchen stuff with Dino.

Dino and his dad made this cheese frame with real cheese using a cheese slicer and then took pictures, they had a lot of fun with this!

Dino asked me if he could have a snack with oreos, bananas and milk......

He cut up the bananas and oreos and put them in milk......

Then he added some chocolate syrup......

and voila banana, oreo and chocolate cereal!

It looks really gross but I know he liked it because he has asked to make it again.

Dino continues to help out a lot in the kitchen, here he is making lipton's sidekicks noodles for lunch, I am so proud of him, he read the directions and followed them all by himself and it tasted really good!

Here Dino is preparing a trifle for his family birthday party.

Here is Dino with his Dad and the finished trifle and it was really yummy!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Boo and Dino....Best Friends!

I just love it when Dino and Boo spend time together!  Boo loves playing with Dino's lid collection.

Dino showing Boo how to smile for the camera.

Another favourite activity for Dino and Boo is when they push each other around on Boo's little car.  Dino helps a little by pushing with his feet when Boo is pushing him.

Boo showing her brother how to do her new magnetic bug puzzle. 

Boo really loves this puzzle and does it every day since we bought it.  The string on the net is too long for her so we wrap it around to make it a little easier for her.  Dino likes putting the magnets back in using the magnetic net but since this is too difficult for Boo, she uses her hands to place the pieces.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Playhouse and Puppets

I have been wanting to get this playhouse from Toys R Us for a long time and it finally came on sale, at half price I couldn't resist!  Daniel decided to use the window as a puppet theatre!  The girls really liked this and Daniel loves doing puppet shows.

Dino decided to join in and help his Dad entertain the girls with the animal puppets, they had a lot of fun together!


Boo loves her new playhouse.


She even cooked us supper!


We also bought the fridge and stove which were on sale also, they are really cute they open and even have shelves to put stuff on.


I am making this part of our dramatic play and imaginative play for Tot School with the girls.  I will be taking it down after about a week because I want to set up another dramatic play centre, that way the girls will have a variety and will not get bored with it.  I do the same things with the toys and tot trays.
Boo and the foster girls really love dramatic play, I would love to hear some of your ideas for dramatic play areas.

For other great Tot School ideas go to 1+1+1=1

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Dino's 8th Family Birthday Party!

I can't believe my first born is already 8 years old.  This year we decided to have two separate birthday parties for Dino, one with family and one with his friends because with our growing family we would be much too crowded!  Just with family we had 10 kids, and 9 adults, it was crowded but its these kinds of things that make the best memories!

Dino and Boo loved the birthday cake!

Dino blew up balloons for everyone and as you can see they were a lot of fun!


Dino chose cheese pizza for his birthday supper and then he went outside to play with his nieces!


I don't have a lot of photos because I can't put up photos of the foster children and they are in a lot of them, but we all had a lot of fun!  I will be posting pictures from Dino's birthday party with his friends on my next post!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Dino enjoyed our Fondue supper, he was even able to do it all himself this time!  I can't believe how independent he is becoming.

We had beef, broccolli, peppers, and a whole bunch of yummy sauces.

I can't wait to do this again, Grandmaman enjoyed it too!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Weekend Fun Time!

These are some of the things we have been up to this week, I am calling it weekend fun school because since Dino is home this week for spring break it feels like the weekend!  You will notice in some of these pictures Boo is covered in marker, she did this while coloring and didn't want me to wash it off so I decided it wouldn't harm anything to let her keep it on until bath time!

Boo really enjoyed hammering golf tees into some leftover styrofoam we found in the garage.  After awhile she put the hammer aside and started pushing the tees in with her hands, she worked really hard and when all the tees were in she took them all out and pushed them in the same holes over and over again!

She played with this for almost 40 minutes and was really upset when we had to put it away to wash up for lunch time.  I will definitely be bringing out this activity again in the next couple of days!

During Snack one day Dino decided to be a baby and wear a bib.

I even gave him a sippy cup!

Dino sorted pennies and we found a magnifying glass for him to get a good look at them.

Dino decided to make a porcupine for his snack one afternoon, he used toothpicks, an orange and blackberries.

He worked really hard at it!

Looks like the best part was eating it!

We took a bar of ivory soap and cut it in half and then put it in the microwave.  I found this idea here.

This was the result!

Boo liked to put toys in it, but was afraid to touch it.

Dino loved it!

Boo really didn't want to touch this, which is strange because usually she loves activities like this.

After the activity Dino asked what we would do with the dry soap pieces, I hadn't thought about this so we looked on the internet together and found out you can make liquid soap with dry soap.  We are planning to do this activity soon but I need to buy some glycerin first, so when we make liquid soap I will be sure to post some pics of it!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Weekday schedule including some tot school!

With a one year old and 7 year old of my own and a 2 year old and two 1 year old foster children, it is imperative I have a good schedule and routine!  I have been working on adjusting my schedule and routines and finally it is working quite well for us.  Of course with appointments and parent visits and things like that, we sometimes have to make adjustments but that is just a part of life.  I would like to share my daily schedule with you but keep in mind that even though it looks like everything is running smoothing in the pictures it is not always as easy as it looks.  I have to deal with temper tantrums, children not wanting to share, and many other problems that complicate the schedule and routine each day as I'm sure you all know if you have children of your own or work in a childcare setting!

So I guess I will start at 7:00am which is when we all wake up each morning.
These are the things we do in between 7:00 and 8:00:
  • Change Diapers
  • Get dressed
  • Wash up for breakfast
  • Eat breakfast
  • Wash up
  • Brush teeth
  • Do hair
Dino leaves for the school bus at 8:00, so we all give him hugs and say bye to him.
From 8:00 until 8:30 I let the 4 girls have free play time and I try to drink some coffee and get myself ready for the day.  I also give the girls some milk at this time as we drink water with our meals and snacks and sometimes juice with breakfast but not very often. 
By 8:30 the girls are ready to start Tot School so I start singing our tot school song and then they all join in the singing and know that we are going to do some activities together!  Our song is very simple, I just sing:  it is time for Tot School, Tot School, Tot School, it is Time for Tot School, we are going to have lots of fun!  I also repeat this in french afterwards because the foster girls don't know a lot of English yet.  It is so cute how they all try to sing along with me, I actually sing a short song before each and every activity we do because I believe this helps the children with transitions.  For example when we are going to brush our teeth, I sing:  We are going to brush our teeth, brush our teeth, brush our teeth, we are going to brush our teeth and make them shiny and clean, and as always I repeat it in french afterwards.
8:30-8:50  Here we do fine motor activities using our tot trays which are changed weekly.  Each Sunday I change up the tot trays and I usually make about six of them.  If I find that the girls really enjoyed one of the tot trays, I usually leave it the same or just change it a little bit because I know they are still interested in it. 

8:50- 9:10 Here we do gross motor activities such as bean bag toss, bowling, pretending to be different kinds of animals or cruising around on our ride on toys.

9:10-9:30 Here we do our letter binder, we are currently on letter B, but we also review the letter A.  We use our letter binder and dry erase markers and crayons to trace the letters and color the  pictures that start with the letter we are working on.  I print these letter worksheets at 1+1+1=1, they are great and Boo and the other girls are really enjoying them!  I sometimes bring out our various letter magnets and the magnetic whiteboard for the girls to play with.

9:30-10:00 Here we do a messy but creative activity such as painting, playdough, finger painting, or sensory boxes.  The girls really love these sorts of activities and I do one each day even though it is sometimes very messy and takes a lot of effort on my part to clean up afterwards.

10:00-10:30 Clean up and wash up for snack time.

10:30-10:50 Here we do more gross motor activities since the girls seem to have a lot of energy after eating their snack.

10:50-11:10 Here we do some kind of construction play such as duplex blocks, mega blocks, sticky blocks or our trio construction kit. 

11:10-1130 Here we do more fine motor activities using the tot trays again.

11:30-12:00 Here I bring something out for the girls to play with such as the puppets, books, or dolls and give them free play time so that I can prepare the lunch.  We wash up and start eating lunch at about 12:00, but sometimes a little bit earlier depending on how long it takes to prepare.
12:00-12:30 Here we eat lunch and wash up, the girls continue to have free play until I am done cleaning up in the kitchen.  I also give them some milk at this time.
12:30-1:00 Here we clean up from free play and have a quiet story time.  We do things like read books, play with and tell stories using the flannel board, and do finger plays.
1:00 is nap time, usually they all wake up by about 3:00.  During nap time I do my daily chores which change each day of the week.  Sometimes it is clean the bathroom upstairs or downstairs, dust the living room, wipe down appliances, sweep and wash the stairs, and different things like that.  This usually takes about 45 minutes each day and then I finally have some well earned me time!  Sometimes I choose to take a nap on the sofa, work on my blog, or just watch some TV and relax.   I do small daily chores when I get the chance during the day and sometimes the girls like to help me with doing laundry and wiping the tables and fun stuff like that.  The girls and I  always clean up the toys and supplies after each activity and after free play so that we don't have a huge mess to clean up at the end of the day.
3:00-3:15 I wake up all the girls and we have some quick cuddles and then wash up for snack time.
3:15-4:15 Here we go outside to get some fresh air and run off a little bit of energy.  I can't wait until summertime when we can go out in the yard and play on the swing set, trampoline and bikes.  Right now we have too much snow and the three one year olds can't walk in it.  I have tried it a few times but they just end up sitting in one spot and can't do much playing in the snow because of their mittens.  I sometimes take them for sleigh rides if my husband is available to help me.  I put Boo's little slide out on the balcony and some balls, so we go out there a lot and sometimes we even blow bubbles and play chase.

At 4:15 Dino's bus arrives at this time and so we all drink a glass of water, although Dino usually has his glass of juice at this time.  Boo and Dino's Grandmaman comes upstairs at this time to dance with the girls while I make supper or if my husband is home we make supper together or I do some chores while he makes supper.  Dino has his half hour of computer time, he sometimes plays on y8 or looks at videos on YouTube such as beyblades, dinosaurs or bakugan.  We have a laptop in the kitchen area where we can see what Dino is doing on the computer at all times.  So the girls dance and sing for about half an hour and we eat supper at 5:00 each day.
5:30 Next we wash up and the girls have free time while we tidy up in the kitchen, I usually give the girls a facecloth and they wash the chairs and tables!  Dino's job is to sweep the floor and help loading the dishwasher and sometimes drying the dishes.
6:00 Here I give the girls their bath and then put on their pyjamas, Dino takes his bath or shower after the girls and puts on his pyjamas.
6:30 I give the girls some milk and then we brush our teeth and read some books together to calm down before bedtime.
7:00 Bedtime for all the girls, Dino has a snack and brushes his teeth.  Sometimes we play a board game together or just snuggle or read a book before he goes to bed.
7:45 Dino reads or writes in bed.
8:00 Lights out for Dino.
Now I have some time to spend with my husband and I sometimes work on my blog.
This makes for a long day but seeing the happy faces on Boo, Dino and the girls makes it all worth the hard work!
I still haven't got into a good routine for the weekends when Dino is home but am working hard on making this work well for all of us.  I am going to put up this schedule when I finish it and have the time to post it.  I will have a lot of practice with the weekend routine as this week is spring break for Dino! I try to have one outing each weekend and I try to spend as much time as I can with Dino doing special activities, reading books or just listening to him talk about different subjects he loves, which right now is planets. 

Go visit Homeschool Creations for some great homeschooling ideas.