Bubble Birthday Party

Last year, bubbles were the baby’s favorite thing.

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I ordered a birthday shirt from Etsy shop, boutiquesewunique.

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We had bubbles as the theme for his second birthday party. We had lots of bubble gum, actual soap bubbles, bubbles made from gelatin, and bubbles made from slime, bubbles made from food. We had bubbles made of everything.

I tried to make the foods as circular as I could to resemble bubbles. I made a fruit tray and balled all the fruit. I made cake balls. I got cream puffs. I made cheddar balls covered in bacon. I made rice krispy treat-like balls out of Trix cereal.

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We made a slimy bubble solution out of glue and liquid starch. We then raced to see who could make bubbles out of it with a straw. This was hilarious because it was very challenging. Most of the children quit and then adults just kept going and going.

I can’t remember where I got the recipe originally, but this site has one.

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Nana was the first to get a bubble.1923

Lillian got one too!

We then made bubble art. I placed bubble solution and washable paint in several different cups. The children had to blow into the solution to make bubbles and then place their paper on top of the bubbles. Several of them looked amazing. It was very messy and definitely requires an adult nearby.

We also had a bubble blowing contest. We went two at a time. Then we got to a small group of winners and had a contest between them.

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Blowing a bubble under pressure is hard!

We had a huge bubble pool in the back. I got a kiddy pool. Placed lots of dish soap, glycerin, and a little water  into the pool. I used about a cup of Dawn, 4 tablespoons of glycerin and turned on the hose until it looked like enough water. A child would carefully step inside (it’s VERY slippery) and then two children would stand on opposite sides of a hula hoop and gently life up the hula hoop up the top of the child. If it worked out, the child was enveloped in the bubble. It was my favorite activity. When everyone had done it that wanted to, we then just made huge bubbles. I bought a huge pack of different shaped wands. There were bubbles everywhere!

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I didn’t get a single picture with the kids inside the bubble, because I helped every single one.

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We had a bubble trivia game (of course)

 

                       All kinds of BUBBLES Trivia

  1. How many sticks of gum does the average American chew each year?

(A) 200  (B) 300 (C) 400

  1. If all 5 piece packs of Bubble Yum ever chewed in the U.S. since its introduction in 1975 were laid out end to end, how many times would it circle Earth at the Equator? (A) 2 (B) 5 (C) 7
  2. What is the official bubble gum of Major League Baseball?

(A) Bubble Yum  (B) Bazooka   (C) Topps

  1. When was the first successful bubble gum invented? (A) 1891 (B) 1906 (C) 1928
  2. True or False: Soap Bubbles are always elliptical.
  3. Soap bubbles are “minimal surface structures”. This means that they always hold the gas or liquid inside them with the least possible surface area. The geometric form with the least surface area is ____________.
  4. True or False: If three soap bubbles get stuck together, they will have one common wall at 120 degrees.
  5. True or False: A soap bubble gets its color from the light waves reflecting between the soap film’s inner and outer surfaces.
  6. Susan Mont”gum”ery Williams is the Guiness Record Holder of the World’s Largest Gum Bubble. How big was it? (A) 19 in. (B) 23 in. (C) 27 in.
  7. True or False: Bubble Wrap was originally designed to be a wallpaper.
  8. About (A) 200 (B) 300 (C)400 Million dollars worth of bubble wrap is sold each year.
  9. A painting by Hanneman showing children playing with bubbles is from the year (A) 1730 (B) 1630 (C) 1530

13 True or False: Youngsters who blow bubbles are most likely to find learning language easy.

We had bubble cake. We made bubbles to place all over the vanilla cake. This was done by mixing gelatin, water, and food coloring together. The ratio is 2 parts cold water to 1 part gelatin. Mix until dissolved. We then took balloons that we’d blown up. We dipped them into the solution holding onto the part you blow. We then placed them into muffin tins mouth part down. We let them dry for about two hours, then dipped them again. Any part that was too thin, we used a paintbrush to put on more gelatin solution. We let them dry for 48 hours. Then we popped the balloon and handled them very gently and placed them on the cake. I thought they turned out so cute!

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We had a great time at LBD’s second birthday party!

Reading and Listening: Audiobooks

Since we use “real” books and not as many textbooks in our home school, we spend most of our days reading. Because two of my children are struggling readers and the books that they are “reading” are quite demanding, I usually read aloud. This is good for all of us; but there are occasions where I simply do not have the time or that they are just not listening to me because the baby wants my attention or they are just sick of hearing my voice. During these times, I have found it extremely helpful to use Audibles and LibriVox. Audibles is through Amazon and is a pay program. You buy the audiobook. I use it with my older child. She reads along as it reads it aloud. This was one of the recommended methods for her due to her phonological processing disorder.

LibriVox is a free program. People volunteer to read chapters or whole books. The books in this program are all public domain, so only certain books are available. We used it with Burgess Animal Book. I felt like the girls listened along much better and we were able to pause or go back and repeat if we needed to do that. I like both programs and would highly recommend both to anyone who enjoys listening to stories.

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Please continue to keep The Freckled Fox family in your thoughts and prayers.

Purple and Teal Baby Shower

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I threw a baby shower for one of our nieces and she wanted a purple and teal color scheme. The colors look so pretty together and she was going to decorate the nursery in those colors so it seemed like the perfect idea.

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I bought the gumballs and grape sticks from Oriental Trading.128

We got the wooden monogram from Scrappin Plus. We also decorated with paper balls and fans. The orchids matched perfectly.

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I got the cake and cupcakes from Publix bakery. Those glass balls are antique fishing balls that just happen to match the theme. They are among my favorite things.

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This was a bow headband making station. I bought all the supplies on Etsy. I also got the purple bow holder from there as well.

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We also had a block making station. I bought wooden blocks from Amazon and then different purple, teal, and gray scrapbook papers and cut them to fit. We just decoupaged them on with Mod Podge.

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This was an insert in the invitation. I think this is a sweet idea for any baby shower.

We played a Price Is Right game with baby essentials and then gave them to the mother-to-be.

We served brunch. We had a make your own Belgian waffle table and some egg casseroles. We also had a cinnamon roll casserole and chicken salad with croissants since those were the mommy’s favorite. We also served fruit, coffee, orange juice, and mimosas for the non-pregnant people.

Overall, we had a very nice time with a simple color themed party.

Celebrating Earth Day

The kiddos woke up to an Earth Day breakfast. I thought that Earth pancakes sounded so cute. image

They were not the hit I’d hoped they would be. Only one of my children would even try them. Good thing I knew that was going to be the most probable outcome and made the rest of the batch normal.

Later, we read The Lorax by Dr. Seuss and the two little girls did a couple of worksheets pertaining to the book.

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After some school work, we made seed paper out of old catalogs. We tore paper into about 2 to 3 inch pieces and put them into a blender filled about halfway with water. After blending, we took the pulp outside and used an old screen to press out the excess water and mold them into shapes. Then we added marigold and hollyhock seeds. We plan on giving these away once they dry.

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We even had a Lorax themed dinner and an “earthy” dessert.

I got the coloring sheet printable from Dawn Nicole Designs. Olivia loves to color and after we read The Lorax, she was so excited to color and frame her work.

I made bow tie pasta (the Lorax’s mustache) with broccoli (truffala trees) with homemade low carb Alfredo sauce with Keto fried chicken. For dessert, the kids used chocolate pudding, smashed Oreos, and gummy worms to make their “earthy” dessert.

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I hope you had a nice Earth day too.

The Little Duke

One of the books we read for school this year is The Little Duke by Charlotte Mary Yonge. It is a great story and very well written. It has some dated language and some of the names are hard to pronounce, but we enjoyed it nonetheless. There were definitely things I had to stop and clarify, but I think this is a benefit. It allows for better comprehension and it makes the story more relatable if they truly understand what is going on and can put themselves in the story. If the records are accurate this is their 34th great-grandfather, so it makes it even more special to learn about someone in our own family.

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This true story is about Richard the Fearless, the Little Duke, who became the Duke as a child. The description of the back cover of the book says,

Richard the Fearless, the great grandfather of William the Conqueror, became Duke of Normandy at just 8 years old, after the assassination of his father. The Little Duke tells the heroic tales of his trials at home in Normandy and at the court in France where he was a prisoner.

My children would beg me to read more, but as we got close to the end they begged me not to finish just yet. They were sad to be done with the story.  This historical novel makes history come alive for children. They get the opportunity to “get to know” a figure from the past. They get the chance to see that kings and dukes were once little children too. One of my favorite parts of the book, was when they found a chest that contained Richard’s father’s  (William Longsword) “treasure”. The priest explained to Richard and the men why the contents of the chest were his father’s greatest treasure. It is a beautiful story, and it shows why Richard would become the kind of man that he was.

We truly loved this book and I’m looking forward to reading it again someday with my little boy.

Magnetic Slime

Over the past couple of weeks we have been learning about magnetism for school. Magnets are truly fascinating and there are many experiments that can be done using them. This is one of them.

To make magnetic slime you’ll need:

3 to 4 oz. Liquid Starch

1 bottle White School Glue

3 Tbl. Synthetic Iron Oxide (I got ours from Amazon)

We used gloves, masks and a plastic tablecloth when mixing this. It turns everything black, so be prepared to get messy.

Once we mixed the three ingredients, it became a very nice thick slime. We then used magnets from hard drives to play with the slime. It actually will move and dance with the magnet. The children really enjoyed this.

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Mardi Gras

I hope this Mardi Gras was a good time for everyone. It is one of my favorite days to celebrate. Having spent a couple of years living in New Orleans, I learned to love the whole season! Ever since my oldest was a baby we have had a party. She would ride around in her little yellow and red car and throw bead necklaces at her grandparents. Over the years we’ve made masks and King cakes and homemade necklaces. We’ve had the grandparents over and we’ve just had our little family for the celebration.

I love that even as the years go by we still celebrate this day in our own way.

Happy Mardi Gras y’all!!

Rock on

Maybe I’m just a big weirdo, but I seriously LOVE rocks. I have since I was a little bitty girl. My mom always had to check my pockets for rocks before she washed my clothes. I’m still likely to pick up a rock I like and put it in my pocket. I have asked for rocks as gifts.

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This is petrified wood. A Christmas gift last year.

This trait must be genetic because my Granny loved rocks too. She hunted for them on her farm in Kentucky. I always remember looking at those rocks when I’d visit her. To me, they were like fancy jewels. She kept the prettiest ones in a curio cabinet. It made them seem even more special.

When she passed away I brought some of those rocks to my house.

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Just as I’ve written about it before, like the little chair she made,  I look at the rocks she found and imagine her searching for them.

My girls have the same love of these little gems as my Granny and me. They will search the yard or wherever we are out and about. Then they’ll come in and scrub or examine their rocks with magnifying glasses to see what treasures they’ve just discovered.

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This is part of a huge rock in our yard.

Yesterday, they broke open geodes for science. The excitement of what it was going to look like on the inside was real for each of us. The hard work (and small injury of a hit thumb) of cracking them open was so worth it when the interior was revealed. They are just beautiful. I am amazed at how something that looks so ordinary from the outside can be so stunningly beautiful on the inside.  However, this is not only true of rocks, is it?!

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I think that may be why we love them so much. There is something about looking for the special, beautiful, and wondrous in ordinary things. It’s a gift to be able to look beyond the outside and look inside or even to look at all.

Teacher gifts

I always like to give my kids teachers some kind of gift at Christmas to let them know how much we appreciate their time and effort with our children. This year the Wednesday night choir and mission teachers got Bath and Bodyworks hand sanitizers and small chocolate candy bars. My children will be handing out homemade Sugar Scrubs to their Sunday school teachers tomorrow.

We make these in small Mason jars. It’s simple but I love it!

All Natural Sugar Body Scrub

1/4 cup sugar

melted organic coconut oil

4 drops of essential oil of choice (we used grapefruit)

I put the sugar in the jars, pour in the oil and the essential oil. Stir and add more oil to get the perfect consistency. It should be soft enough to apply without losing a lot in the transfer from jar to body. You have to play around with it until it seems right to you.

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We are crafting, creating, baking, and wildly cleaning around here!

Gift Giving {Books}

There are two books that I love and want to share with as many people as possible. I give these books to every child I buy gifts for and recommend them to adults with little ones. At the last baby shower I hosted, we requested that people bring books instead of a card and I gave these books.

The first book is The Jesus Storybook Bible. It is the very best children’s Bible I have ever seen. It weaves the Bible stories all together to make the message of the Bible more transparent.

Goodreads says,

The Moonbeam Award Gold Medal Winner in the religion category, The Jesus Storybook Bible tells the Story beneath all the stories in the Bible. At the center of the Story is a baby, the child upon whom everything will depend. Every story whispers his name. From Noah to Moses to the great King David—every story points to him. He is like the missing piece in a puzzle—the piece that makes all the other pieces fit together. From the Old Testament through the New Testament, as the Story unfolds, children will pick up the clues and piece together the puzzle. A Bible like no other, The Jesus Storybook Bible invites children to join in the greatest of all adventures, to discover for themselves that Jesus is at the center of God’s great story of salvation—and at the center of their Story too.”

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The second book is The Selfish Giant by Oscar Wilde. I love this story so much and I usually get teary at the end. Oscar Wilde has a number of children’s stories and they are all really good; but this one is my favorite. I don’t want to spoil the book because the end is the best part. Just trust me.

Goodreads says,

“This magnificent new edition of Oscar Wilde’s beloved tale tells the story of the selfish giant who built a wall around his beautiful garden to keep children out. It was always winter in the garden, for no other season would venture there. Then one morning…..”

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If you’re looking for books to give as gifts, these are great ones to consider.