Wednesday, August 31, 2011

U is for Umbrella

Today with other bloggers we are celebrating the ABC's of preschool with my friend Deborah and her awesome blog Teach Preschool She is celebrating 20,000 fans on her Facebook page!!!  Each blogger celebrating is taking a letter from the alphabet to celebrate the ABC's of Preschool!  Click here to check out all the other ABC's of Preschool! I have chosen "U" for Umbrella!  My daughter Cassie Loves umbrellas (opening and shutting hers) and enjoys playing with them and going on rain walks!  If you have never gone on a rain walk with your children... you definitely need to soon! Here is a drawing that my daughter Cassie made of her and her umbrella in the rain!!! We used crayons,  a blue water based marker, water, and a paint brush to create this! Keep reading to find out the steps!

Draw a picture of an umbrella and you in the rain with crayon! (make sure they are not washable crayons----just regular crayons!)

IMPORTANT: Use a a water based blue marker to add the rain in short lines!

Then, take some water and brush and paint over the blue water based blue marker with water.  This will give it a fuzzy rainy look! So easy and fun! C loved this part!

Here is her finished Umbrella Rain picture again! Beautiful!

Going on a rain walk with your umbrella can be great FUN and just MAGICAL!  Grab your Umbrella and some rain boots and you are good to go! Splashing in the puddles can be so much fun!  It is such a valuable lesson to teach children to be positive in the midst of a rainy day....which most people hate!  Walking in the rain is such a wonderful sensory experience too! Feeling and listening to the rain!

Jumping in puddles and maybe finding some toads or worms along the way can really add to the FUN!  I hope you bring your children on rain walks!  It is a family tradition in our household!  Be sure to have the tune of "Singing In The Rain" in your head and you will be guaranteed to have a Wonderful time!

20,000 FANS!!!
If you aren't already a fan become one here today!!!

Check out some great Umbrella related posts from around the Web!

Beautiful Art Using Actual Umbrellas:

Umbrella Art Installations from Crooked Brains

Beautiful Google Images Page of Umbrella Art---Gorgeous!!!!

Preschool/School-age Activities with Umbrellas:

Wonderful Umbrella Art Activity from No Time For Flashcards

Umbrella Themed Activities from Preschool Express

Rain and Umbrella Ideas from Step by Step

***Be sure to check out all the other ABC's of Preschool by clicking on the button below!!!***

ABC's of Teaching Preschoolers

This post is shared with:  It's Playtime

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Rock Tower Bakery

Rocks have been our chosen art medium for the past few weeks.  In one of our last posts titled  Coffee Table Rock Art  we created with rocks and we've done some rock creations in our Land Art  post too!  I predict even more "rock" themed posts in the future!  We actually have a whole bin of rocks that we have collected that have been placed right next to our blocks and other building toys!  This time Cassie has been been creating Rock Towers! They remind me of the towers you would find when you are on a hike. These smooth flat rocks found in our nearby lake make the perfect building materials!  If you like neat and clean projects... these can be done right in your living room without any mess! Our coffee table was our place to build once again!

Having fun building!  These are all "ice cream cakes" according to Cassie! 

She really had a lot of fun! When she saw the pictures of her work it inspired her to build some more!

Here is a sampling of all the different cakes C created! I sure LOVE these!  Vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate brownie cakes with frosting!  I love this girl's imagination! Hooray for Imagination!  Where would we be without our Imaginations????

I'm sure we will be revisiting this again and again!!!

What have you been making with Rocks?
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Monday, August 29, 2011

Our Caterpillar Journey

We collected this caterpillar about two months ago and we've been watching it ever since.  I believe it was a Spotted Apatelode caterpillar.  It is now in its chrysalis and we are awaiting its transformation into a moth. The moth that it changes into is called a Spotted Apatelode Moth (I think?).  It was fun collecting the leaves for it to eat each day and just watching it eat!  It was a great pet and Cassie loved taking care of it each day! Here are some pictures to share.

The caterpillar ate more and more each day!



Here the caterpillar has changed more of a brown color.  This was right before the caterpillar changed into the chrysalis! It was much fatter too!

Awaiting the next transformation...Stay tuned!!! Will it be after Winter???

What are your experiences with caterpillars and when they change into a moth or butterfly?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bath Crayons or Not???

We had so much FUN making these Bath Crayons!!!! Unfortunately,  they never really worked very well when writing with them!!! ) :  They left very faint marks and made Cassie totally disinterested! If anyone has anyone input....let me know what I could to improve them?  I tried it twice....first with Ivory soap, and then with a Glycerin Soap....both FAILED!

First the directions were to grate the soap and C absolutely LOVED this part! Her hands even got tired!

Mix one cup of soap flakes with 2 tablespoons of hot water.

Divide mixture into 6 parts.

Add the food coloring and mix! Then roll into cylinders. Let dry for a few days!

They looked really Beautiful,  but again they did not show up very well.  I tried more food coloring and it still did not seem to make a difference!

If you have had success with making your own Bath Crayons...please let me know!
I'm excited to find a recipe that will make crayons that work!!!!!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Coffee Table Rock Art

Cassie and I collected some Lake Worn Rocks at the beach the other day!  We never had a chance to do any Land Art on the beach, but I inspired her to create some "Coffee Table Rock Art" one day!  I created a  huge spiral on our coffee table with the rocks and that instantly intrigued her to create her own "Rock Art."

Rock Person!

Here is the same "Rock Person" with arms and holding a newspaper!

Another Rock Person...with a BIG smile!!!!

Artist doing some serious work!!!!

My FAVORITE!!! The Flower!!!

We'll be going back soon to gather more rocks or to build some sand sculptures!!!

If not sculpture....Swimming!!! This girl LOVES the water!

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Do You Think I Deserve a Vote? is asking its readers to vote for their favorite blogs.  I think I deserve to at least be in the Top 10!  If you think so, then go on over and vote right here! Thanks and don't forget to vote for all your other Favorite Blogs too! There are some great ones on the list!  Click on the button below and it will take you the right place!

While you are still here, what are some of your favorite posts from The Chocolate Muffin Tree?  What would you like to see more of? Just needed some input? I appreciate the feedback!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Plastic Lid Sun Catcher

I have a thing for sun catchers if you haven't noticed yet! If you have been following me a while you would know! Here is yet another sun catcher project done with a clear plastic lid and colorful permanent markers! Here is C's fabulous flowery sun catcher! (notice the ants too?) This girl is still obsessed with Ants! (Ant Art Projects post)  Love how this turned out! Too simple!!!

First, gather some plastic lids from berries, vegetables, or bakery.....or whatever you can find. The tricky part is finding a lid without any stickers or labels.

Grab some permanent markers,  and your ready to draw!  I found it was easier to see what the Artist was doing if a white piece of paper was placed underneath the lid!

Here is the artist working hard!  It helps to draw the picture in black marker first and fill in with color to make the drawing stand out better!

The Artist finishing up!

Lastly, punch a couple of holes at the top and string a ribbon and then it is ready to hang!!! Easy and beautiful!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Green Kid Craft Review and Giveaway!!!

Penny from Green Kid Crafts contacted me to do a review of three of her crafts from her subscription based company.  I am also doing a giveaway for a three month subscription from Green Kid Crafts which includes 3 crafts per month or a total of 9 crafts (a $45.00 value!).  The details will be included at the end of this post!  We received three Awesome crafts from Green Kid Crafts and Cassie was completely excited about getting these crafts and making them too!  We did them all in one day!  It was exciting to get these crafts in the mail and could only imagine if we received three crafts each month of the year! The company is great too because the crafts are earth friendly and include everything you need except for glue, markers/paint, and scissors.  We received 3 crafts:  The Great Horned Owl Mask, Wood People Puppets, and Canvas Puppet Craft Kit.  I will show you how much Cassie enjoyed each one.  She was very focused and had fun too.

Here is The first Craft: The Great Horned Owl Mask:

What Kid does not Love a Mask??? This was her Favorite of the three! Here C is working diligently!

Here is the second craft: Wood People Puppets

Cassie diligently working again!

The third craft kit: Canvas Puppet Craft Kit

Again,  C working so intently!

As you can see,  C really enjoyed these crafts and I think any child would enjoy these!
One lucky reader will have a chance to win 9 kids Crafts (A $45.00 value!) You would receive a 3 month subscription!

Giveaway Information for 9 Craft Kits:

For your chance to winGo to Green Kid Crafts Website here (or their FB page here) and tell me what your favorite Craft Kit is in the comment section below.

Also for extra entries:
Blog about the giveaway on Twitter and tag chmuffintree
Blog about the giveaway on FB and tag The Chocolate Muffin Tree
"Like Me" on Facebook here.

Winner will be chosen at random and will be contacted by e-mail.
Giveaway ends Tuesday,  August 30th 2011 @ 8:00 pm EST.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Snowmen in August!

We revisited our ice sculptures again! In case you missed our post on this check it out here Colorful Ice Sculptures.  This time I froze a bunch of balloons filled with water to create many fascinating orbs of ice for Cassie to work with and it was a success!  C called these ice sculptures her "Snowmen Sculptures".  As you can see,  they do look like snowmen!  Again,  we used spoonfuls of salt and eyedroppers filled with liquid watercolors and food coloring.  It was very challenging stacking the ice,  but they did stay!

Cassie was so serious!

More color added! 

A spray bottle was fun to add water to the salt and color! The snowman was getting smaller!  

And smaller! A lonely snowman!

If you haven't tried this with you should!  For a more colorful inspiration and information check out our post: Colorful Ice Sculptures!

We will probably be revisiting this again in the Winter! Check out our Snow Posts below:
Click on the picture or title for more information!

Winter will be here before you know it!!!

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