spreading happy

sadly, some people are a little too good at spreading junk. spreading ugly. spreading bad. to that, I say think happy thoughts (yo internet grandmas, that's a link. a good one). and then go be with happy people and do happy things and watch happy videos.

here are a few of my favorites:

in order shown, I'd rate them: 1-mesmerizing, 2-silly, 3-practical, 4-genius and 5-sexy and he knows it


the fact that we've already done lots of shoe scrubbing is a good indicator that we've started our summer off right. school's been out around here for 2 weeks and we're well into the lazy/crazy activities we want to do while the beautiful weather lasts.

like everyone and their mother, we put together a list. ours comes in the form of printed and cut-out squares pinned to a 2 by 3 foot bulletin board. we add a star sticker every time we complete a mission. happily, we've already done many more than are shown here.

I just made the squares myself in photoshop. picked the colors. added the white text and printed them out. snip snip and pinned them on. I admit, a major happiness for me is how perfectly they fit on this board. 
you totally should. I put the blank squares in a pdf document. so you can add your own white text on top if you know how. or draw right on them. or use a white paint pen. I bought the bulletin board at walmart. the document is just 8 pages of squares. a couple of each color. this board fits 77 squares so you just get to pick a handful of pages to print twice until you have enough. you should print at actual size, no scaling or anything.

we also have a little weekly mom schedule that we loosely follow. both my kiddos really like having something to look forward to and get excited about. our schedule has just enough to kick start a few ideas for the day but not too much that we can't just pack up and do something crazy instead. I'd just copied this chart a few times before I filled in what was for dinner. I usually write down ideas when we get them just squished into the squares. or wait and surprise my little people. oh summer, we love you.

love letter to my family

oh my little family, I love you so. right now we are just perfect. and by perfect I mean so so obviously flawed but we are working on it and choose to look at the good. and together we are so good. 

we are always good busy. our days are full but they are full of what we choose to fill them up with. lots of together. lots of celebrations for no reason. lots of reading and learning. lots of adventure times. lots of making things and helping. 

kids, you are amazing. summer is the best of bests because I get both of you all the time. max is a better max when lily is around and lily is a better lily when she's being a big sister. together you are kid-imagination-cuddling-giggling-magic. I keep catching you in those delight little moments I want to remember forever. I never knew this was such a great thing because I remember just being a punk to my own sisters. hopefully once in a while we had a moment. 

you are the perfect ages to try for a BEST SUMMER EVER. we've got the list going. we've got a basic plan. so far, so good. I think this is what I'll sit and think about when you are both older and have other stuff going on. we are purposefully unplanned with activities so we can fill our days with good, good stuff. 

I love being the mom in this family.

teacher appreciation week

Lily's school does a ton to show appreciation to the teachers and staff. what a great thing to demonstrate to your children. since I'm involved in PTA I helped with a lot of it.

PTA bulletin board inside the front door:
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I'll fully admit. my ocd side shone right on through with this one. I left it a little bit to the last minute. came up with the idea. once I figured out how to make it work I couldn't stop making details.

I found an iphone image like one of these and then just started cutting paper. used a traced plate to round the big edges and my corner cutter for all the apps. then just lots of cutting and layers paper and a few paint pens. the little app descriptions came after and I made those up in photoshop with photos of the buttons. I'll include them at the bottom of the post if you're interested.


school supplies with a riddle.

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oreo apple pops.


these came together far easier than any cake pop I've ever been involved in. I did it just a little differently than the lady on the blog I found it on.

my tips:

-used double stuffed (regular sized) oreos. held the oreo stable while I slid the popsicle stick in. most of the cookies cracked a little while doing this but since there was so much filling I just squished it all back how it should be and they were great.

-we had no need to chill the cookies at this point (some of the comments said to)

-GREEN GOLDFISH! my friend suggested this one and it was genius. far less work than snipping candies or anything and I think it's cuter.

-I wanted them left on the sticks so they're easier to eat. we found that just dipping them carefully kept the sticks nice and clean. also I skipped sticking then in styrofoam to dry. we just layed them flat on waxed paper and they worked out just fine. since it's a flat cookie (instead of an actual round cake pop) it really didn't make a different in how it hardened and looked in the end.

-used the little candy bags that I found by the cake decorating supplies. just slid them in and put a staple near the bottom.

such a cute idea! teachers loved them (so I hear)

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windshield washing. I myself was grateful for the people that showed up to help me get this done. even if one of them was rather short.

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we also send out a letter at the beginning of the week asking for thank you notes from the kids. we don't just want them for the classroom teachers so we put together a list of ALL the staff and their tiny picture next to their name. the kids bring letters in all week and drop them off in a mailbox. on Friday I get to deliver them! it was a great great week. 

I really actually do like blogging

now not only After School is over, regular school is over! but I still wanted to share our activities. with myself. because I don't imagine anyone thinks I'm still kickin. and sometimes already-used ideas are pretty good on a no-ideas kind of a day.

Cinco de Mayo

honestly seems like the mini tacos I put in the oven were the highlight. we only had 2 extra girls that day and those 4 kids finished off a whole box. we also:

-tissue paper flowers
-red, white & green beads
-make your own bouncy ball kit from w (it was a dud for us)
-face paint

(mariachi max was from something else)

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Smash Crash & Boom

-super friend brought over her circuit-building set (look up elenco snap circuits. they're awesome)
-we let the kids (safely) go to town on some dead electronics. old printer, space heater, calculator, cassette tapes. made them unscrew and pry whatever they could to find interesting components before we brought out the hammer. unwinding the cassettes was the surprise hit of the day
-built balloon rockets. we used taut clear plastic thread + straws + balloons + masking tape

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Artsy FARTsy

oh this was a fun one. here's proof:


everyone got their own whoopee cushion. our first art project was BUTT-erfly paintings. squirt paint. fold paper. place paper between 2 flat garbage bags. place whoopee cushion on top and sit on it. they could not stop laughing and actually came out beautiful!

then I told them they had to get the potty talk out of their systems so I made them all say BUTT 100 times. then FART 100 times. that was pretty funny too.

since it was right before Mother's Day we made bags for our moms. fusible interfacing on fabric and buttons with fabric glue.

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Secret Agent Man

seems like for this one we:
-made our own secret codes. A=4 B=17....
-popped black bomb balloons
-practiced negotiating laser fields
-secret messages with lemon juice
-had an outside-stealthy-walking-contest
-played outside (it was a really nice day)

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