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My three year old is obsessed with all things grown up. She follows me to the bathroom each morning when I do my hair and put on a bit of make up, always asking to use the blush brush once I finish. She likes when I let her rub a bit of chapstick or deodorant on herself and always exclaims how nice it smells. So, I knew she would love the simple Valentine's Day activity I put together this morning, a scent and color mixing perfumery!

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Categories: lifestyle,


I've never been a big fan of Jello, the taste of it anyway, which is why Aurora and Gray have never even seen the stuff before. So, when I made up a bin full of green "slime" as Aurora called it, and shoved some snakes and frogs in it, she was convinced it was completely inedible! This may have been the first actually tasty (if you think Jello is tasty) sensory bin I've made for the kids, but it took quite a bit of coaxing to get them to try a bite of the Jello pond!

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Categories: lifestyle,


One of my New Year's resolutions was to be more intentional each day about making one on one time for each child for preschool. We do a lot of guided sensory play and free play already, but I wanted to add a bit more structure in to our routine. One of the things that has been working well for us is the introduction of "tot trays." The simple explanation is that I set up a learning focused activity on a tray and the kids each work on their own tray while I supervise. For a more thorough explanation, check out 1+1+1+1's article on the basics of tot trays. 

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Categories: lifestyle,


I recently had a friend ask me for some tips on how to get started with sensory play. Her son has a motor disorder and the doctors tell her that sensory activities would be good for him, but she isn't sure where to start. It can be overwhelming. Searching "sensory" on Pinterest will generate a wealth of activities, but even more than acquiring a new to do list, sometimes it's best to start with inquiring about the importance of this "new fad" and the 'how to' will follow. I've laid out this article in terms of frequently asked questions that a lot of people have when they hear sensory play mentioned. I know I had a lot of them before we delved in, so take your time and learn about why sensory play is important and how to set up these fun experiences for your kids!

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Categories: lifestyle,


I'm super excited to share the activity we did this morning, it combines the best of science, art and sensory play in to one activity! We had so much fun painting, molding, and exploding this dough, I can't rave about it enough! We began with a simple recipe for faux snow, a two ingredient sensory dough, and added a little bit of chemical reaction magic to it!

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Categories: lifestyle,


My kiddos love to cook. Anytime I'm in the kitchen preparing a meal, you can be sure to find them underfoot or hauling a chair in from the dining room so they're tall enough to help! They don't generally care what I'm making, so long as they get to participate, but I think if you're going to cook pretend food, then it ought to be something fun! So, we decided doughnuts would be fun to whip up, and I wanted to use foam dough for this project since a few blogger friends are also featuring this dough this week!

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Categories: lifestyle,


So, I heard the majority of the states experienced a "polar vortex" last week. It's been cold here, but not that cold, I feel for you all! To take our minds off of the chilly temps, we decided to make a desert small world and envision ourselves stretched out on the sand getting tan... Well, maybe that last part only applied to me! We made up a batch of moon sand and set off exploring the great Sahara!

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Categories: lifestyle,


As we welcome the new year, many of us reflect on our lives and think about ways we want to improve or areas where we want to focus more attention. Some of us create New Year's Resolutions filled with ideas and goals for the coming year. For many, these goals often include exercise, organization, eating healthier, finishing a long-term goal, or just taking that difficult first step.

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Categories: parent-stories, lifestyle,


One of the things I wanted to start doing this year was to have more intentional "school" time with the kids each week. I haven't quite mapped out a plan for our days yet, there are so many things I want to teach them, but I don't want to overcommit our days and wind up with cranky kids and a cranky mommy who didn't accomplish all of her goals. I'll be continuing to fine tune the details, but I know for sure that I want to do more tot trays with the kids. They're great for us, because I can prep them in advance, I can have one activity that the kids both do, or prep two trays with separate activities, and they're so easy to clean up afterwards!

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Categories: lifestyle,


If you've been following our epic saga of the lost blacklight flashlight, then you'll know that back in October, I hinted at a very exciting, glowing project that we were working on. Then my two year old "misplaced" our flashlight and the project has been delayed for many months. Finally, I'm excited to unveil our very belated, Halloween small world! Yesterday, I showed you the process we used for growing our glowing crystals, and today I'll show you how we played with them!

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Categories: lifestyle,


Here's a throwback Thursday, remember about three months ago when I decided that October would be "glow month," and we would do all of these awesome activities like make glowing bubbles and a glowing ocean and swamp sensory bins. About halfway through that glow-rific October, Aurora and I started working on this glowing crystal project and then when we went to get the blacklight flashlight and discovered that a certain naughty toddler had hidden it. Well, after many months of looking for the flashlight, I broke down and bought a new one so we could finish our super awesome project!

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Categories: lifestyle,


We've been decking our halls the past few weeks, and here are some of the projects we've been working on! I love crafting at this time of year, and there are so many ideas on Pinterest, so I chose a few seasonal crafts that have become traditional favorites that we do every year, and a few others that were new to us but spoke to me because they were easy for kids to make while still looking classy. 

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Categories: lifestyle,


Yesterday, we spent the morning cooking up some of the scents of the season in our 5 Unique Holiday Play Doughs, and then over nap time I put together our first "tot tray" for them to play with when they woke up. Tot trays are based on schooling the Montessori method, in which students are exposed to early learning skills in ways that help develop independence and foster their own interests. 

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Categories: lifestyle,


Play dough is one of our favorite go to sensory materials, it's so cheap and easy to make, and its play value is unmatched! I prefer to make my own because Gray still occasionally likes to taste test anything that remotely resembles candy, and these recipes are completely kid safe. Each dough is a variation of a basic recipe with added colors and scents. I was thinking about all of the smells I love at Christmas time, and these are just a few of my favorites we were able to replicate!

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Categories: lifestyle,


December is a wonderful month full of nostalgia, family and events, but it can also be one of the busiest with so many good things that we're supposed to do. Take a deep breath as we enter December, and make a list of things you want to do with your family. What memories do you want to make with your kids?

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Categories: lifestyle,