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.





Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Summer's of the Midnight Sun

Side note:  I wrote this post in June but got caught up in the summer adventures so I didn't get to publish it until now.


My favorite time of the year is here in Alaska.  After the shortest day of daylight in December (the winter solstice) we have slowly been gaining more daylight every single day.  We gained so much that by the summer solstice at the end of June, the days are almost completely bright with sunlight 24/7.  The days feel so incredibly long and enjoyable when the sun is out for 20+ hours a day.  Many evenings we are outside playing and totally loose track of time and realize that it's 9 or 10 o'clock but the sun is still high in the sky.  Last night we got to take extra advantage of this.  When the day was coming to an end, after all the daily outings and kids activities were coming to an end, after watching two soccer games last night, after tucking the 5 littles into bed, Jason, my father in law and myself were able to head out hiking while my mother in law stayed home with the kids.  At 9:50 we set out on a hike up a mountain.  We were gone for only a couple of hours but we got to enjoy the peace that comes when you can relax after climbing the mountain and getting to just have your breath taken away as you look around at the scenery and get to enjoy the beautiful views as the day starts to come to a close and the sun starts to set.  It sure did my soul good to just get out and climb the mountain, enjoy some laughs and good company.  In the pictures it was approximately 11ish at night and you can see that the sun is starting to set.  The Alaskan midnight sun is something that your mind can conceive when described but honestly, it play tricks on your mind as you loose all sense of time.  It kinda reminds me of being a kid and having the feeling of days that last forever when you have all the time in the world.




Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Twingo

Yep I am the mom of twins, yep I have my hands full; but not this time hahahaha

Twingo carrier for the win!






 So although I am busy, my hands are free to grab the three year old who may or may not be running away on me!!