Pretzel Log Cabin

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We’ve been enjoying a great book recently about Abraham Lincoln (from the Ordinary People Change the World┬áseries written by Brad Meltzer), which prompted talk about a log cabin. You can introduce your child to this style of architecture through classic toys like Lincoln Logs of course, but even more fun was putting together this edible version!

To construct the cabin, you need thick pretzel rods and your frosting of choice – we like the vegan vanilla from Wholesome Sweeteners.

Start out with a base, using the frosting as “glue” to attach the four corners.

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Travis loved smearing on the frosting with a plastic knife, but your child may find that a makeshift pastry bag (i.e. a zip-top bag with a hole snipped in it) is easier.

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From there, we spread our pretzels with more frosting (“cement”), and built up several layers.

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A little carpenter at work!

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It was tough to make the roof stay in the way we originally planned; if you have chocolate at home, it may be useful to melt some and use that to adhere two pretzel rods diagonally together. We managed to balance ours with generous globs of frosting, though it wasn’t particularly sturdy.

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Luckily, the cabin was meant to be eaten, not saved – what a fun snack!

If you make this craft in the wintertime, your child may want to sprinkle the structure with coconut “snow” before snacking, too.

Chalkboard Painted Block Puzzle

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Travis has been home sick from school this week, so we’ve been looking for quiet, indoor games. Puzzles are a fantastic way to keep a child entertained when under the weather, engaging their mind while letting their bodies rest. A little leftover chalkboard paint helped us make up a craft-y version, as well!

While Travis rested, I painted wooden cubes (available at craft stores) with chalkboard paint on all sides. For the least mess while drying, paint 3 sides and let dry, then flip over and paint the remaining 3 sides.

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Ideally I would have used larger cubes, but the small ones I had on hand worked just fine. Once the paint dries, take turns with your child making drawings in chalk, and having the other person assemble.

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To wit, I designed a car and flower for Travis.

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He was briefly into the puzzles, but more intrigued with the idea of chalking all over the squares.

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Even more fun was how easily they can erase with just a swipe of a wet paper towel, when you’re ready to change the design.

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Here he is making a puzzle for mommy – hope I can figure out the right way to put all those green squares together!

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The perfect activity for any time you need to lie low.