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Archive for the ‘Preschool Activities’ Category


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I’ve never seen my son this excited about story time. I think he’d be completely happy if we just looked at the maps together all evening…but to actually read the story? Oh, rapturous day. He is crazy with joy, interrupting every few minutes to repeat incredulously, “The dwarves are going to win real gold? They’re going to win it from a real dragon?!”

This is a special experience for me. My father read books aloud to me every night all through my childhood, beginning with The Hobbit when I was about D’s age. I am positive that my ability to read and write grew out of those thrilling nightly adventures.

I hope that I do the story justice. I hope that my kids can get lost in the fantasy the way I did as a child. And…I hope those dwarves do win the gold from the real dragon!

I’m finding that all the best books are at least as appealing to me now as an adult as they were the first time I encountered them, twenty years ago.


Written by GRSeim

April 8, 2012 at 4:37 am

Active Beauty

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Have you seen this article, about how nearly 50% of kids don’t spend time outside each day? And, sad but not surprising, little girls are far more likely to spend their days indoors than than little boys.

Not at my house.




P. S. yes, she did eat the dandelion. 🙂

Written by GRSeim

April 6, 2012 at 10:53 pm


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Today was the first day of Spring, and we slept in and ate frozen waffles for breakfast because we really can’t be bothered to cook right now.

We went for a walk around the neighborhood together in the sunshine, and once we were sure the weather was going to hold we met up with some friends at the beach. Jon chased the kids around and made them laugh while the other mom and I discussed our vacation plans for the summer. We’ll be heading to Boston this year. They are off to Japan. I swear, I will get a passport one of these days. I will do it. I am going to travel if it kills me.




The wind picked up in the later afternoon, so we took the kids to our favorite local burger joint where we’ve developed a “divide and conquer” routine that has evolved into an art form: Jon orders our usual assortment while I stand next to a booth full of people dawdling over their meal, waiting to claim the table
literally the second it goes up for grabs. Born and bred in the deep South, it still feels rude to me to stand in line for an occupied table like that, but it’s the only way to get a seat at a place where the lunch line wraps around the block so I’ve learned to just go with it. And I must admit, I feel like such an insider when I swoop in and get the cozy corner booth before anyone else gets a crack at it.


Condiment cups are the best toys ever.

Once the kids were subdued with nice warm tummies and plenty of fresh air and exercise, we meandered home to play a few rounds of Pajaggle (which is rapidly becoming D’s favorite game) together while I read a chapter of “The Wind in the Willows” aloud. We snuggled into bed a little earlier than usual because the chilly weather has left us feeling drowsy and the kids can’t read clocks yet.


I wish this week would never end.

Written by GRSeim

March 21, 2012 at 4:21 am


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What do bananas, tangerines and babybel cheese wheels have in common with one another?


They keep my kid busier than a puppy with a peanut butter jar. 🙂

Written by GRSeim

March 2, 2012 at 10:34 pm

The Mitten

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We have been reading “The Mitten” by Jan Brett on repeat for the last week or so. If I am not currently reading it, Darren is off in a corner somewhere, cuddled up with his beloved story mouthing the words to himself. He even insisted that we bring it along with us to the farmer’s market yesterday.


It’s a great story. 🙂

Written by GRSeim

January 30, 2012 at 6:28 pm

Pet raisins!

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My son has a soft spot in his heart for nearly anything even remotely huggable. I have to be careful about taking him out on wet days, as we can (and have) easily end up spending our afternoon building little twig-and-leaf hotels for all the worms we find wriggling around on the sidewalk.

Unfortunately for Darren and his warm, gooey marshmallow heart, our apartment building is pet-free. This weighs heavily on Darren, so I was especially excited to share this activity with him!

To make pet raisins, start with the driest, thinnest, wrinkliest raisins you can find, and a gallon-size glass jar.

Fill the jar about 2/3rds of the way with water and white vinegar. (I am not careful about the proportions. It is easy enough to keep tweaking it as you go.) Next, add the raisins to the vinegar solution, and then slowly add baking soda. Watch as the vinegar fizzes and bubbles like soda pop, and explain that the baking soda and vinegar are reacting with one another to make these little bubbles of CO2. These are no ordinary bubbles! Watch as they collect on the surface of the raisins and slowly lift them to the surface!

Darren and I had a blast watching our raisins swim around in their jar. They kept moving around for at least an hour, until the raisins became to soggy and heavy to float anymore. We were sad to see them go, and can’t wait to try this activity again with friends!


Petting our raisiny little friends!


Written by GRSeim

December 20, 2011 at 10:09 am

Smelly bottles

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I really enjoyed my project in Darren’s classroom today. I found some yogurt smoothies that came in very small bottles at the grocery store and couldn’t resist buying them -those bottles look so gosh darn versatile! 🙂

After my husband and sister finished drinking the yogurt for me, I cleaned the containers out, removed the labels and put a cotton ball inside each one. Then I added drops of some “smelly” things I had laying around the house: vanilla, lemon oil and rubbing alcohol. I also used tea bags for some of my smelly bottles. I made sure to make two bottles of each type of scent.

Once I had all the kids gathered, I let them smell one of the bottles and then told them to smell the others and try to identify its “stinky match.” The kids had a blast sniffing the bottles and trying to identify the scents!

If I did this activity again, I would skip the rubbing alcohol and opt for all nice smelling bottles. None of the kids wanted to get stuck with two bottles that smelled that yucky, and it caused some tension! The teabag added an interesting twist to the activity, though. The unique smell was difficult to identify, and that made it much harder for the kids to find its match!


Written by GRSeim

October 5, 2011 at 4:07 am