Monday, May 28, 2012

Caterpillars and Butterflies

We had our last preschool co-op for a while just a few weeks ago. Yes I know I am way behind. Anyway, we did caterpillars and butterflies. We did some activities together and I had the boys do a couple later on our own. Some activities were very specific to the butterfly like it's life cycle while others just used the caterpillar to teach patterns.

 I had the kids do three homemade worksheets. For one, they were given a cut out of a leaf with an egg, a caterpillar, a chrysalis and a butterfly. They had to complete the life cycle by gluing the pieces in order. On the second sheet, I used our dotters (like bingo dotters) to create caterpillars. I started a pattern and the kids used the dotters to finish them. Ollie needs some work on patterns! The last sheet had half of a butterfly with a capital letter on them. They had to match the lower case letter by gluing the other half of the butterfly on.

Our next activity was a snack. I cut colored peppers, cheese sticks and carrots up. The kids used them to create a butterfly. It was a fun and delicious snack!

Our final project came from this month's family fun magazine. We traced the kids hands onto thick white paper and had them cut them out. Then, the kids used watercolors to paint them. The result was a really cool butterfly! I can't get it to leave my picture landscape. durn program!

I had the boys do two projects at home. For the first, I had the boys put pom poms, glitter and tissue paper into a ziploc baggie. Inside we also put 2 Corinthians 5:17: If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. We twisted a pipe cleaner around it to make antennas. They turned out so cute!

For our final project, I wanted ollie to work on patterns. I cut out different shaped circles and we made caterpillars with different patterns. Meanwhile, Dawson glued circles to the paper and we talked about their colors.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Mini Impromptu Vacation

Bob had his one business trip a year last week. I was less than thrilled. It worked out that Ollie had been asking to go see his friend Rylie who lives in Leavenworth with some great friends of ours that we met in NC. Unfortunately, Rylie got hand, foot and mouth a day or two before we were to arrive. I was bummed and dreading the days. My parents both work full time and with Lilah having leukemia we couldn't go there either. So, at the last minute on Wednesday before Bob was to leave for Minneapolis, the boys and I decided to go. Bob was a bit apprehensive since he thought I'd be annoyed when we didn't get to see him. Luckily, I had realistic expectations going into the trip and so it was an amazing time!

We are so blessed! On Wednesday evening, we had dinner with a couple of old friends--Jamie (best friend from high school) and Holly (we lived together in England). Unfortunately, I didn't take a single picture! IT was so nice to catch up. It's been almost a year since I last saw them at Holly's wedding.

Thursday was my designated "let's just hang out and see what happens" day. For those of you who know me, you know I often say, "Let's just throw it up in the air and see where it lands." It's like my motto. Schedules make me feel constricted. (I do, however, keep the boys on a good eating and sleeping schedule.) The only thing I needed to accomplish was to go to a store and get some supplies. To cut down on costs, we walked to a nearby Target and bought lunch stuff, snacks and a few necessities we forget. I also brought cereal and milk.

After Target we went to the pool. I brought Ollie's life jacket which was awesome! There is no way I could of had them both by myself in the pool. Their favorite activity was jumping in. Dawson would say, "Jump. Splasssshhh." When we got out, the boys walked back to the room and experienced the shower. This became the next best thing to the pool. I had to drag them out or coerce them with snacks and tv.

I'm not a big tv person. We don't watch much but while on vacation, I decided that I was going to let it go. If we were in the room and the boys asked, I turned it on. They pretty much got whatever they wanted the whole time. I am paying for that now but it was worth it!

Lunch was had, naps were taken and then we ventured out to find a park. We actually found 3 playground within about 10 minutes. The boys played and played before heading back to get supper at the hotel.

On Friday, we hit the Como Zoo. It is free! I love that. Ollie wanted to see two things: polar bears and wolves. Unfortunately, the wolves were hiding in the woods and those we couldn't see. He correctly identified the pygmy marmosets. Who knew? Dawson was thrilled to watch the "Moonkees and the mingos (monkeys and flamingos). On the way out, I told them each they could pick a toy. Ollie wanted an Andrewsarchus. Really kid? Where am I supposed to find that?! For those of you who don't know, an Andrewsarchus is a prehistoric carnivore with huge jaws. We didn't find one but he was satisfied with his crocodile and Dawson with his penguin. Luckily, they are young enough to steer towards a particular area so we kept the total under $10. After the zoo, we walked back to the car and ate lunch in the beautiful park. Then the boys played on the playground along with about a million other kids from some local schools. I was thankful for the bright shirts I had put o the boys!

Saturday was my favorite day. We were supposed to be meeting my parents with my niece Bella but unfortunately Bella got sick and they couldn't make it. Although the boys were thoroughly disappointed, we powered through. We had to check out of our hotel by 12 noon. We hit the pool one last time and then I packed us up and we headed to the Minnesota Children's Museum. It is fabulous! I absolutely love it. I was nervous because we couldn't pick Bob up until 5. I wasn't sure what to do about Dawson's nap. As luck would have it, he feel asleep on the way there and slept in the stroller for about an hour. They had so much fun. Ollie and Dawson starred in a music video, shopped at the grocery store and pet a rat. The rat really grossed me out but Dawson laugh and squealed and danced around he was so excited.

 Ollie made a friend while we were in Earth World. He and Johnny ran around and pretended to be every animal possible while Dawson splashed in river and played with a pretend salamander. They also both World Works. They pretended to work at a factory and sent blocks up the conveyor belt and stacked them on the truck. They also loved the water area. The worst part about the museum was leaving! It was too much fun.

It was such a great week. I love spending time with my boys and I hate the thought of them growing up. I don't want to miss a single moment.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Ollie's First Performance

Last Wednesday Ollie had his awards for Bible Buddies. Then sang a few songs and each got a certificate. In true Anderson (Mom's maiden name) fashion, I did not get him getting his award on video. My video camera ran out of space right as the teacher said Ol. That's right. Epic FAIL! Anyway, I do have him singing and of course he is the cutest one up there! Ha!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


So, I've really neglected the blog lately. My apologies. It's a busy life & I am dog tired. Because I've been neglectful, I have a plethora of activities to share. I'll share a few today and a few sometime soon, I promise!

Ollie and I did a Pterosaur measuring activity. We compared his wingspan to the wingspan of a Quetzalcoatlus &  Pteranodon. The Quetzalcoatlus has the largest wingspan of any Pterosaur
(or flying creature ever) measuring at 52 feet! The Pteranodon measures at 20 feet. To measure it we laid out a measuring tape and ollie ran yarn back and forth until we had the measurements. Then we measured his. We talked about wingspan and what that meant. Then we went outside and laid the yarn on the sidewalk. Holy Cats! Those guys were huge!

Dawson also gets activities although I am not as good about it as I was with Ollie when he was Dawson's age. It's tough with two though. Dawson does go to story time and do lots of art and a million unplanned activities so he isn't getting the shaft entirely. Here Dawson is sorting balls. I gave him several balls and containers. He experimented by putting them into the different containers. Eventually, it turned into throwing them at the containers but I say MOTOR SKILLS!

Quite often I modify one activity so both of the boys can do it. For Ollie I drew some big shapes on a piece of construction paper. He had to cut them out. His fine motor skills are really improving. It's exciting to watch! After he cut them, he decided to make a house from them. I had no intention of him doing anything other than cutting but I'm glad his little mind saw something in those shapes. He even took a scrape and made a flag!  For Dawson, I precut shapes. We talked about the shape and it's color as he glued them onto the paper. He loves to glue. Mostly he loves to shove his finger in them and pull out a wad of the stuff. 

I have a few more but I am ready to be off this computer! There is dinner to make and I believe I hear Dawson already!