Why isn’t my name there

So, at bedtime last night we were reading a Bible story as we always do. This time it was about Jesus choosing his 12 friends. It went through and listed them all. Superman was so excited because his name was there. Then Batman got all upset because his name wasn’t there.

You can’t win them all.

Austin Zoo

So, last week one part of our super busy week was going to the Austin Zoo. The kids had a blast! It’s not my favorite zoo, but it was fun to go to.

Photobucket
Superman petting the goat

Photobucket
Batman trying to pet the rooster. It didn’t work so well.

Photobucket
Princess and Batman looking at snakes.

Photobucket
Funny story on the peacock. They were wandering all over the zoo, and my kids were having fun trying to catch them. At one point they had gotten one cornered by the bear cage. The next thing I knew the peacock had jumped up onto the top of the fence and into the bear cage. Then it proceeds to march over to the bear and is in within about 15 feet of it. All of the adults are thinking, do we need to distract the kids from the soon to be bloody happenings, but no, the bird just wandered around for a while enjoying the kid free area.

So, all in all, we had a blast at the zoo. It’s not your traditional zoo where you’ll see all the exotic animals. This is a rescue zoo, so you’ll see lots of big cats and monkeys because people keep thinking they make good pets. Then it grows up and they realize it’s a wild animal….. The sad part is the cages are hard to see the animals through. But, my kids were happy they found a “baby jaguar.”

Things You Don’t Expect to Say to your kids

I’m sure you’ve all had that moment. Your kid is doing something really weird/bad/unusual/unexpected, and you say something you never expected to say to your child.

Here’s my past ones:

Don’t stab your brother with the knife. (It was a butter knife)
Don’t cut your tongue with the scissors.
Don’t put the scissors in your mouth. (In both cases it was the playdough scissors, but still)

Oh, and safety scissors will cut t-shirts when used by an experimenting young boy.

But, here’s the one from today, said to my little princess…..

“Don’t hit your brothers with your hands, use the sword.”

Splash Park

I don’t know if you have a local splash park, but you really should look for one. I think there’s a couple in Austin, but this one is just down the street from us. It’s officially called the “Lake Brushy Creek Park,” but everyone just calls it the splash park.

Photobucket

There’s a pole on the edge that you push and it starts the water. My kids had a blast running through the sprinklers. Except Princess who doesn’t like water on her face, unless she pours it there.

Photobucket
Batman running for all he’s worth.

Photobucket
Truthfully, this was one of those days I should have cancelled the playdate, but we’d been trying to arrange it for a couple months. So, I took my very tired kids out to play. So, after a while they didn’t want to play in the water anymore so we went to the playground, and Princess was happy because she got to swing.

Don’t be too surprised if you get to see lots of pictures at this park come summertime. It’s a blast!

Zebras, giraffes, leopards, and a whole bunch more

This started out as just giraffes and zebras. Remember how last time I said to get a piece of cardboard or foam board, just something stiff and cover it in glue or foam sitckers? Well, here’s what we did:

Grab some animal pictures. We started with zebras. Peel all the paper off your crayons.

Photobucket
Place your picture over the texture board and rub the side of the crayon over the board, and it makes really neat textures.

Photobucket

As you can see, it turned out really cool, but it’s a bit over my kids skill level. They didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought they would. They just wanted to color their pictures and have me write the name of each animal on their pictures. So, recognizing that I needed to change my plans we did. So, I let them have a blast coloring with markers and crayons, and when they were done we put it in their sticker books in alphabetical order. They loved doing that.

Oh well, not all ideas can work like you want them to. Okay, this is my last post for the day, I wasn’t really planning to write all of these today, but I wanted to get these linked up to the other places…..

So, for more great “we Made it” activities, go to Ramblings of a Crazy Woman.

The poor poor pepper

Photobucket

I was so excited I went outside to water our plants, and we actually had something edible growing (okay, the herbs are edible, but I mean a vegetable). I ran inside to show the kids the pepper.

Photobucket

They all came out so excited. Then they wanted to touch it. Of course he stumbled and pulled the poor thing off. Well, now instead of being a nature lesson it became a science lesson.

Photobucket

We took it inside and passed it around as we felt it, then I cut it in half and let them look inside and see the seeds. This was fascinating for all of 30 seconds. But, they had lots of fun looking inside the peper and figuring out what it felt like and what the inside was like.

Oh, and all of the rocks lining the garden were pulled from the garden in the process of getting it ready. I think there’s one rock not from it.

Summer Picnic

picnic button

It’s funny. I really want to participate in this picnic post, but I am just struggling coming up with something interesting to say. But, I’ll tell you a little about my family.

Photobucket

These are my “angels.” This is probably somewhat close to their personalities

Superman is on the left (thank you Mom for pointing out I had it backwards). He’s most likely to notice if something isn’t fair or done right. He’s my perfectionist. He is currently obsessed with Diego, a fad I’m not thrilled with, but I admit most of my dislike of Diego has more to do with my pet pieves than any real reason.

Princess is in the middle. That’s how she likes it. If she had her way she’d be in the middle of everything. She does not understand she is younger. In her mind she is 4 also, and can do anything her brothers do. She is also incredibly stubborn, and any time I try to get her to pose for a picture she sticks her tongue out. Every dress she’s modeled for me has a picture of her tongue sticking out….

Batman is on the left, and he’s the ring leader. While Princess is the chief instigator of trouble, he’s most likely to be leading everyone in. He tells everyone what to do, and doesn’t understand that he’s not Mom or Dad. It can be very entertaining.

Photobucket

Me, I’m Ticia. The Pucktricks name you see on all my comments comes from the play Midsummer Night’s Dream, one of the main characters is a fairy named Puck. He’s a troublemaker, and I have a bit of a repuation for that. I used to teach elementary school and am now a much happier and healthier stay at home Mom. I have more hobbies than I have time in the day. That’s why all the pictures you see on the blog are close-ups, that way you don’t see the clutter so much. I love to sew, scrapbook, draw, write, embroider…… Ummm….. Pretty much every craft I’ve tried I’ve enjoyed, I just try not to do it all because then our poor house would be even messier.

Photobucket

My husband is Jeff. He’s a computer programmer, and anyone who knows about computers laughs at my attempts to explain his job, so I’ll leave it at that. He shares many of my interests. He loves to read, in particular sci-fi and fantasy books. We play World of Warcraft together on the computer, it’s a great way to keep in touch with friends out of town. We play together online and talk while we play. From time to time he even goes swing dancing with me!

I just had to brag on this

A couple of weeks ago I go this doll to make.

So, first I made some for my kids. I figured if I’m going to mess it up, do so for my kids. I made Dora, Diego, and Batman. Batman was the hardest.

Photobucket

Here’s the finished product. I’ve got the dolls all made for the orphanage, now I’m just making clothes for them.

Traveling with Tots

This is piggybacking on my post about Surviving a College Graduation with Preschoolers., but I wanted to expand on what I said for traveling.

Last year we took our then 3 year old boys and 18 month old daughter across the country to Columbia, South Carolina. Keep in mind we’re in Austin, TX, so that’s a long drive. It was about 3-4 days of driving for at least 4-6 hours a day.

Here’s the things I did to prepare:

1. For the months ahead of time I scoured the toy clearance sections, Goodwill, dollar stores, and the Target dollar aisle. As I had money and as I saw a great deal I would buy little toys. I found Thomas trains clearanced for a dollar. I found lots of stickers. I got coloring books, special Batman markers. A box of dolls from around the world for $3.

Shop the after holiday sales. Most every major holiday has special toys for them. So you find the Easter Kelly doll a week after Easter for $2. She’s cute and orginal. The box of cool Valentine sticker cards for 25 cents. I collected all of this into a giant box.

2. Haunt Half Price Books and garage sales and other places to get cheap books. My kids love books. This is a great way to distract them. If you have a supply of new books they will have the fun of discovering the new books. I love getting the clearance 50 cent books.

3. Have a special backpack appropriate to the size of your child. I found some great toddler backpacks that my kids can carry even when stuffed full of every toy they can think of. Make sure they know they’re carrying it (if you have more than one kid, it just doesn’t work to carry their backpack).

4. Get a large supply of snacks. I grabbed every single coupon I could find for individual sized snack bags (the 100 calorie bags are more expensive but the perfect size for little ones). and bought them all

Now, here’s what to do while you’re on the trip.

1. Know that you will be stopping often. So, work that into your schedule. Don’t think that little bladders can go for 4 hours between stops. Recognize and work it in.

2. Stop at the Welcome Centers as you cross state lines. This is a great cheap way to get entertainment. My Mom did this with us, and we loved to gather brochures for all the places we wanted to go. Your kids will love the chance to stretch their legs, and some of the better ones will have drinks to get (Thank you Mississippi!). You can also usually get a free map of the state, which can be very helpful.

3. Have a cooler full of juice boxes. I froze a bunch of juice boxes and water bottles ahead of time so that when we left I didn’t have to get ice as well. It keeps stuff cold longer, and forces you to not drink it all the first day.

That’s my tips for traveling, this Works for me! See more ideas here.