Monkey Bread

So if you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen these pictures already. I had planned to get this written and posted right away, but life happens and now we are here. 

My mini chef’s made Monkey Bread y’all, and it was amazing. 

Sure I did all the premeasuring, ut that was more for Hannah’s sake than Kenzie’s. It’s far easier to keep a keep a 4 year old interested when all she has to do is dump things into a mixing a bowl. 

She was not super excited about working the butter into the dough with her fingers though. If she can’t pound her hands in and make flour fly all over the kitchen, it’s just as much fun. 

Kneading the dough was far more up her alley. They may have worked it a little too much, because the bread balls were a little more dense than expected, so be careful if you make this with your littles. 

And what is the best thing to do after rolling dough balls? Attack Sissy of course! Poor Kenzie was a little caught off guard. 

Next step is rolling the dough balls in melted butter, and then covering them in cinnamon and sugar before setting them in the bundt pan. 

The cinnamon and sugar melt into a gooey glaze while the bread rises in the oven. It is also supposed to make all the balls stick together in a pull-a-part style loaf. 

Ours did not quite stay together when we pulled it out of the pan. Oh well. It tasted yummy and that’s what matters. We splurged and ate some while watching the cartoon version of Aladdin. Then Kenzie and Rob had a couple pieces the next day with their coffee. A couple days later my boys came over and finished it off for dessert. 

This recipe that we used to make the bread can be found on Taking the Florida Plunge. It also inspired our movie choice that evening. 

So tell me, what are your favorite things to cook with your kids? Do you just have them help you in the kitchen, or do you follow their lead and let them pick the recipes to learn? 

Thanks for stopping by. 

Kristie 

Preschool Octopus Week Day 1

Happy Hump Day Friends!!! Things over here are running at a crazy pace. Nothing this week has gone as planned, but I’m rolling with it. 

Cousins are the coolest

First we had impromptu family dinner at my parents house on Sunday. Even my boys came out, which is rare for me to be able to see them two days in a row. The kids spent hours in the pool with their cousins. Hannah isn’t quite sure about the water, but her cousins played on the rafts with her. 

Octopus or Alien Squid from the first Men in Black movie?

Monday we started Ocopus week. 

Circle Time

Table Time

  • Make a playdoh octopus like our story
  • Minnie Mouse Workbook: Trace the number five and the letters to spell the word five
  • The Ants Go Marching Instrument Parade
Her face is super creepy in this picture. All I can think of is that doll from Child’s Play.

O Is for Octopus

I cut the letter O and the body of an octopus out of pink construction paper. I cut tentacles out of pink glitter paper. Hannah glued them onto a piece of purple consstruction paper. She even glued some of the tentacles up so they had a 3D effect. Then she added a glitter mouth and googlie eyes. 

We ended the day with a nature drive. I was able to get a picture of these 5 deer in a field near our cousins’ house.

Tuesday homeschool went out the window. I had meetings at the high school to set up virtual learning for Kenzie and agree to the new rules so Aly can attend face to face. Then we ran to the meat market to get food for our camping trip this weekend. We are in full pack and prep mode.

I can’t wait to share our adventure.

Have a great week.

Kristie 

Preschool Shark Week: Day 5

Yesterday we found the right groove and were able finish shark week with flourishing success. I am accepting of the fact that some days will go more smoothly than others, and not everything will get done exactly as I planned. As long as my child is learning and enjoying it, I am doing a good job. 

That said, here is the schedule for Day 5: 

Circle Time

Table Work

  • We did the next page in our Minnie Mouse Numbers workbook. This involved tracing the number 4 and the letters to spell the word four. There was also a section to circle flowers with the number 4 on them. 
  • When we were done, we went on a nature walk to pick flowers.

Science

  • We ended the week by watching another episode of shark academy. This time it was just a quick video on the the Electrosensory system
  • Next we talked about how sharks have a skeleton, but it’s not made out of bone. A shark’s skeleton is made out of cartilage. 
  • We followed up by painting a shark skeleton light that I found at Michael’s. Hannah had to use glitter paint. It turned out pretty cute and will be a nice addition to her desk. 

Pinterest

I saw a picture on Pinterest of a giant chalf shark used to illustrate how massive a Great White Shark actually is. I took this idea one step further and had my daughter draw a shark across our driveway. Then she added a hop scotch board filled with fish to represent each number, as if the shark had eaten them all. 

She was so excited

Octonauts

I probably should have mentioned that all the Octonauts episodes we’ve been watching are available on Neflix. Today we watched Season 2 Episode 1: Great White Shark. 

I hope you have had fun seeing what we did for shark week. Next week we are moving onto Octopuses/Octopi? I’m not really sure which is correct. Maybe you will want to stop by. 

Have a great weekend.

Kristie

Preschool Shark Week Day 4

This week I learned that Thursday is our slump day. It is the morning that we struggle to wake up. It is the day with a slow, picky breakfast time and a distracted learning adventure. So we adapted. We skated in our socks in the kitchen and cleaned the bathroom. Then we did circle time and table time, before watching an episode of Octonauts and calling it a day. 

Circle Time

Table Time

Today we worked on following a pattern with LEGOS. We found a super cute How To on Little Bins for Little Hands. As always, Hannah had to make a rainbow shark, but she’s 4 and using her imagination is important. 

She was showing Loki the shark’s fins.

We finished off our day with Season 1 Episode 25 of Octonauts, Dwarf Lanternshark. 

According to The Discovery Channel, shark week is actually next week. So if you are running your preschool lessons along with them, I hope this helps you with your planning. 

Have a great weekend. 

Kristie

Preschool Shark Week Day 3


Guess what? I am still running late. Yesterday’s homeschool seemed to last all day. It might be because my pain levels are rising. Monday needs to get here so I can see the doctor and hopefully get some relief. It might be because my mother in law had a 24 hour EEG and sleep study, so our day was interrupted by removing electrodes, giving her a shower and dealing with the LATE technition who came to pick up all the equipment. Or it could be because we went “looking” for sharks on the lake, because Daddy’s boat is finally ready to use. 

Either way, we did actually complete all of our activities. It just took longer than our normal 2-3 hours. Here’s that schedule. 

Circle Time

Table Time/Imagination Play

  • Workbook: The #3 – Tracing and writing the word.
  • Roll yarn balls and help our stuffed kitties chase them. Make  sure the kitties remember to share. 
Not sure why she had to wear a party dress.

Kitchen Time

Today we made a pudding ocean full of swimming gummy sharks. Hannah got to whisk together the pudding mix, milk and food coloring. Then she placed her sharks and let it set in the fridge. 

Science

For science we continued to watch episodes of the Shark Academy. Today it was Shark Hearing

Pinterest

Today we made Shark Binoculars. Hannah decided to finger paint her toilet paper rolls. We had some random beads she could string onto the binocular necklace. I think they turned out super cute. 

She changed into her swimsuit for shark watching.

Thank you for being patient with me. I hope all these links help you plan shark week activities for you preschooler. 

Have a great day. 

Kristie 

August Workout: Body Shaping

I am so sorry guys! I feel like I am slipping this month. Normally I try to get my workout post done on the first of the month, but UGH! Life! 

My autoimmune disorder is in full on flare mode right now. My hands hurt so much that I couldn’t even open my bedroom door this morning because it hurt to grip the door handle. I have a crazy red rash across my face, and don’t even get me started about this fatigue. I have become the queen of naps. 

So this month I am returning to the 7 minute workout. WeBurn offers a Body Shaping, full body workout. The exercises are: 

  • Jumping Jacks
  • Wall Sit
  • Push Ups
  • Crunches
  • Butt Kickers
  • Squats
  • Dips
  • Plank
  • Running High Knees
  • Front Lunges
  • Half Burpees
  • Side-Moving Plank

At the easiest setting, one 7 minute workout burns 85 calories. For me it may have been a little less, because I have to modify some of the moves due to the pain in my hands and wrists. I do the push ups and planks against the wall. I do the dips on the edge of a kitchen chair, and skip the half burpees.

Even if you are suffering from an autoimmune flare like me, I still encourage you to try this routine or any other modified one that peaks your interests. All of my research says that doing so can anti-inflammatory compunds to help minimize your symptoms. It also helps improve circulation and produce chemicals that enhance brain function. 

So let’s sweat it out together. 

Have a great month. 

Kristie 

Shark Week Day 2

I hope you all don’t mind these homeschool schedule posts. They hold me accountable for making sure I am meeting Hannah’s needs. Plus I hope they help anyone else who is feeling as stuck as as lost as I am with our new school routine. 

Circle Time

Table Time

  • Minnie Mouse workbook – number 2
  • counting bows

ScienceShark Buoyancy: Oily Liver Experiment

We don’t have water bottles, but Hannah’s old baby bottles worked in a pinch. The pink capped one was filled with oil and the yellow capped bottle was filled with water. Hannah was able to see that the one with water did not float as well as the one with oil. 

Of course our “Baby Shark” family had to come play too. I used them to explain how if a shark stops swimming (being played with in the water) it will die (float upside down).

We did two episodes of Shark Academy today: 

Pinterest

Feed the Shark

I am definitely not an artist. We used an old pull up box and just drew a shark onto it. Then I cut out a mouth with a box cutter. The tiles are just the letters to spell shark taped onto Target $1 area toys. 

As Hannah tossed the letters into the mouth she read them. If she missed we started over. If she got the letter in, we moved onto the next one. Once she got all 5 letters in, we did the “I spelled shark dance.” (Think the We just figured out Blues Clues song but spelling shark.)

Our final activity was watching Octonauts Season 1 Epiosode 8: The Cookie Cutter Shark

If you are participating in a prescool shark week as well, I would love to see your ideas. 

Thanks for learning with us. 

Kristie 

Preschool Shark Week: Day 1

After weeks of watching the news and the uptick of COVID-19 cases in our area, ,we have decided that sending our 4 year old to preschool is not the right option for us. Seeing her friends but not being able to share and play could create too much fear for her. So we are going to do preschool at home. 

I decided to do an Ocean Theme for the month of August. Hannah decided that should start with SHARK WEEK! Having her excited to learn is all the encouragement I needed. 

Circle Time

This week, our songs will repeat daily, but the story will change. 
After Circle Time, we did a page in out Minnie Mouse Number workbook. I bought it from the Dollar Tree. She traced the number 1, practived writing the number on her own, and then trace writing the word one twice. 
Science

Today we colored a Shark Fact sheet for science. She started out using greys and blues, but ended up making rainbow sharks. 

Then we watched the first episode of Shark Academy: Shark Coloration

Pinterest Project

Our final project today was making a Shark Suncatcher. I free hand drew the sharks on silver glitter paper, because Hannah wanted glitter sharks instead of construction paper sharks. Since I didn’t have clear contact paper, we used a glue stick to attach the sharks and tissue paper squares to clear textured shelf paper. Then we taped it to the sliding door. Simple, easy and fun. 

Before rest time, we watched Season 1 Episode 7 of Octonauts on Netflix. The second half of the episode is about the Whale Shark. I love this show, because it teaches about ocean creatures in a way that is easy for her to understand. 

Yes, I am using a lot of videos in our lessons this week. My hands are flaring and I don’t want to take on more projects than I can handle during this flare. Plus if schools end up going virtual everyone will be in the same situation, so I don’t think this will hold us back. 

I hope you enjoy our homeschool ideas. 

Thanks for stopping by. 

Kristie 

Happiness List 30: Random Compliments

Happy Monday! I want to start this week off right, and spread some positivity. That means it’s time to share week 30 of my Happiness Journal

Random bunny is not excited about Monday, but he’s still cute.

Here is a list of random compliments to start your week. 

  • You’re so smart. 
  • Your smile is contagious.
  • I’m proud of you. 
  • You have the best laugh. 
  • You are glowing. 
  • Good job!
  • You have a great sense of humor. 
  • I love that color on you. 
  • I bet you sweat glitter. 
  • You’re making great progress. 
  • You’re stronger than you know. 
  • Your child has beautiful eyes. 
  • Your are beautiful both inside and out. 
  • I love that idea. 
  • You’re great listener. 
  • Cute puppy. 
  • You inspire me. 
  • That was very thoughtful. 

I’m sure you realize most of my compliments are things I would say to my kids, coworkers or parent friends. They are the only people I see now a days. 

I would love for you to add to this list in the comments and share some love this week. 

Wishing you all happiness and postitive experiences this week. 

Kristie 

A Day at the DIA

For those of you who don’t know, here in Michigan, DIA stands for Detroit Institute of Art. They have one of the largest and most impressive collections of art in the United States. Residents who live in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties always receive free admission. Due to COVID, it is currently free for all visitors. If you are in the area, it would be a shame not to take advantage of this experience. 

Even the outside of the building is gorgeous. There is outdoor seating perfect for people watching. There are also sculptures and a waterfall in front of the Woodward Avenue enterance. 

This was Rob and Hannah’s first visit to the museum. I’m not sure how my husband has never been here before. We both grew up in Wayne county. 

Normally the museum is crawling with people. Usually there is a ton of noise from field trip kids here for their summer camp. Now you make a reservation online, and stroll at your leisure. Here were some of my favorite pieces. 

We spent four hours at the museum on Friday, and somehow were only able to see about half of the collection. My favorite is the European: Medieval and Renaissance section. Maybe it is my Catholic upbringing, but there is something that speaks to me when I see the images of the Madonna and Child. Unfortunately, Hannah had my phone, so I didn’t take any pictures in there. 

Rob enjoyed looking at the ancient weaponry throughout the museum. Kenzie fell in love with the Great Lakes display. She took a picture of the hashtag so she could add her own photography to the project. 

I would love to know your favorite parts of this museum. 

Happy exploring. 

Kristie