Flower Prints

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As summer draws to a close, I’m working through a bucket list of warm weather projects before we move on to fall and autumnal activities! This fun idea from Barefoot Books Kids’ Garden kit lets you bring flowers indoors as a keepsake that will last all winter!

The first step of course was to gather our flowers. If you don’t have your own garden, find any pretty blossoms on a stroll through your neighborhood or a local park. Flowers that lie flat will work best, but we picked a variety just to test the results.

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Travis was very intrigued by the set up when we returned home. On the floor, place an old dish towel for traction, followed by a cutting board and then watercolor paper.  Place your flowers, petals down, on the watercolor paper after removing as much of the stems and leaves as possible. Finally, cover your petals with painter’s tape, being sure to cover the flower completely, but trying not to let pieces of tape overlap.

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And now for the fun part! Although adults will need to do most of the hammering, Travis got to take a few swings at the flowers under careful supervision.

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He then played along with his toy hammer while I finished the real work. You may want to peel back your painters tape a few times to make sure the color of the flower has transferred over to the paper, before removing the tape completely.

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Peeling off the tape was great fun, too, of course.

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Once the hammering was complete, Travis lost interest fairly quickly, but I loved the old-fashioned Victorian feel to the result. In a whimsical nod to the method by which we had obtained our prints, I “framed” them in additional painter’s tape in Travis’s room – a beautiful reminder of the fleeting beauty of summer’s blooms!

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PB&J Stuffed French Toast

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It’s hard to believe it, but already cool fall mornings are upon us, a little nip to the air as we’ve been rising! Make breakfast extra-special with this simple twist on French toast, and you’ll send the littles off to school with an extra spring in their step.

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana
  • 1/3 cup cashew milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon Earth Balance butter
  • 4 slices whole wheat bread
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jelly
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  1. In a blender, combine the banana, cashew milk, and cinnamon; process until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. While it melts, prepare two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to taste – we like ours with strawberry jam best!
  3. Dip the sandwiches in the banana mixture, then add to the hot skillet. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, until the bread is golden.
  4. Cut the sandwiches in half, and drizzle each half with 1 tablespoon warm maple syrup to serve.

stuffed french toast

Color Mixing

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I’ve recently discovered the all-natural, all vegetable-based food coloring from Watkins, which I am loving for their consistency and ease of use (no mixing required, as is the case with many natural pigments).

To have fun with the colors, we pulled out this simple game – it’s also a great way to discuss primary (yellow, red, blue) versus secondary (green, purple, orange) colors.

First we mixed our colors in 4 clear cups, one each of red, yellow, green, and blue. Add a pipette or spoon to each. Either one is good fine-motor skills practice.

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We used an upcycled egg carton for the color mixing, giving ample opportunity to make new colors in the multiple compartments of this one container. Place a little clear water in each compartment, then begin adding your colors and see what happens.

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I thought Travis might consider the game a little old-hat (we did something similar back in the spring) but he was so into his creations.

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Watching purple and orange form were big hits.

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He also was very interested in how he could make brown (which he says is his favorite color!), and intrigued when I said he could create it just by mixing all the colors together.

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An easy and fun diversion for a rainy afternoon.