Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Pizza Oven

For father's day we bought Jason a pizza oven attachment for his charcoal barbecue.  Honestly we were out and about and had company so much this summer that we kind of forgot about it.  This weekend we spent a day just going out hiking and enjoying some family time and we decided that homemade pizzas were the perfect activity for dinner.  In the morning we all sat down and chose what toppings we would like on our pizzas and then we went to the grocery store and picked them up.  The kids (and us adults too) had a blast making pizza dough in whatever shape we wanted and with whatever toppings we wanted.  The kids played out in the leaves and on their fort while the pizza cooked.  Let me just say it was absolutely delicious and something we will be doing more often in the next few weeks!




Sunday, October 2, 2016

Balance Beam

Earlier this summer we were going through my Pinterest boards and building/making some of the things I had put on my 'to do' list.  A super simple project was the balance beam.  The girls are still pretty young to have good balance so we didn't even lift the board high off the ground yet but all the kids had a good time walking the length of it.  The older boys do harder tricks on it but the young ones have a lot of fun just the same.  We have been working on balance walking forward, backward and sideways.  I think we might sand it down and put it in the garage to store so that on those long winter days when we haven't been outside for awhile, we will just set it up in the family room for a little bit of fun.



Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Learning about Leaves

Well the fall weather has been around for a few weeks now.  The summer heat is gone but I honestly have to say that the fall colours, smells and views are my favorite.  I love when the leaves have started to change and you are surrounded by greens, yellows, reds, oranges and even browns.  I love fall hikes with the sounds of the crunching leaves, the fall smells and the fresh air that is crisp but not yet cold.  A few weeks ago we went on a family evening walk to collect leaves.  We were on a mission to collect leaves of all different shapes and sizes.  It was just fun watching the kids running through the woods picking out the perfect leaves.




I then laminated the leaves and today the three youngest and I read some leaf books and set up the fall leaf station at their little learning table.  They absolutely loved it!




They looked at the leaves with the magnifying glass and microscope.  We compared the sizes of the leaves, the colors and the shapes.


 

It surprised me that they came up with the idea of putting the laminated sheets of leaves up against the patio door to looks at the leaves with the sun shining through.  It was a very fun activity that we will leave out for a bit for them to examine on their own.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Sandbox

Our older boys have always loved to play in the sand.  They love to make castles, dig, play tractors and just get dirty.  I remember that little tractors were a permanent fixture in the back of the van for many years (just in case we came across a park with perfect sand :)  ).  I kind of forgot about all the sand playing until this summer when Joshie cannot get enough of sand and tractors.  You can often find him and his brothers trying all to cram into the little sandbox to play tractors and dinosaurs.  At the beginning of the summer we decided that it was time to build a bigger sandbox so they could all climb in together.  We scoured Pinterest and found a design that we liked and set out on a family outing to Lowes to buy all the supplies.  The boys enjoyed helping Jason build the actual sandbox.  Mathew especially showed a lot of interest in the measuring/cutting and actual building.  So much so that he has asked to help with future projects.  "Why yes Mathew, I can come up with more projects that dad can build with you!"  Sweet more Pinterest pinning for me :)

Honestly I just wanted a fun colour of paint and this perfect red was in the 'made by mistake' mixed paint section and only cost $2.50 woohoo!



We filled it with sand are are making a cover for
it!

The kids have gone crazy over this new sandbox!  I can't believe all  the laughter and adventures that occurred in our sandbox this summer :)


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Sensory Table

I have always had a love-hate relationship with sensory bins.  I love that the kids have a great time playing in them but have always hated the amount of work that is involved in the setup and put away of the activity.  A few months ago, a friend of mine was heading to Ikea and I asked her to pick up a child's table for us.  I didn't want to spend a lot on the table because the girls still colour off their pages and I didn't want to have to worry about them ruining the table.  This is where this fantastic find comes in!  Ikea has now come out with a table that has a cover for two sides of the table to give it a solid top but you can open them to store supplies inside.  I decided to turn these containers into sensory bins for the kids.  It's the perfect solution!  When I want them to play with the sensory activity ,we open up the bins and they have a great time; but when the activity is done we just put the lid on and use it as a regular table!  For the past few months the big boys and I have been searching through Pinterest and coming up with great sensory play ideas.  The older boys are actually quite interested in helping with the set up and purchasing of all the items for the different themes.  They also like to play with it first to make sure it's set up right for the little ones :)


Mathew and I changed both bins out this weekend.  We set up a Halloween themed side and an autumn side.

The Halloween side is just a mixture of beans with spiders, pumpkins and measuring spoons that can be used for scooping.




 


The autumn side has some treasures that Mathew hid amongst the bird seed for the little one's to find.  There are leaves and fall treasures hidden in there as well.  We also decided to put a little pouring pitcher and some additional spoons for scooping.

Joshua has used the new set up for the past few days but it was the first time I let the girls play with it!  They absolutely loved it!  All three littles were laughing and shrieking with excitement and the mess stayed rather contained (we vacuumed up some beans afterwards of course but it was quite minimal).
















I now have to come up with a storage idea to store the contents of the sensory bins that we have rotated out hahaha.







Love this picture of their little feet trying to go up as high on their tip toes that they can to reach better :)

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Sleeping RV

We love camping.  We love the adventures, the hiking, exploring, biking, fishing, campfires etc... Despite all the fun stuff, I have to say, one of my favorite times camping is when the RV is just starting to wake up.  When only some of us are awake and we are being quiet to let the others sleep.  That's when you see moments like this :)


Saturday, July 30, 2016

Kenai River Float

I honestly never thought our family, with young very children, would be able to participate in a Kenai river float. After a little research and with family in town, we made it happen.

We are now officially starting our last year in Alaska so we have been working on making sure that we are getting out, exploring and not missing anything that we really wanted to do while living here.

I am glad our family will have the memories of the 9 of us hopping on the raft with the guide and we learned about the Kenai area of Alaska and just got to enjoy each other's company in the beautiful scenery that Alaska has to offer.