The Grand Old Duke of York

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On the heels of Humpty Dumpty, I was looking for more fun movement rhymes to play with Veronika. I remember doing this particular one every time Travis and I attended a class at Gymboree when he was little, and realized I hadn’t yet done so with Veronika. Time to amend that!

Lie on your back, with your child facing you, and holding them securely.

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Now recite the words:

Oh the Grand Old Duke of York,

He had ten thousand men.

He marched them up to the top of the hill

And he marched them down again.

And when they were up, they were up.

And when they were down, they were down.

And when they were only halfway up,

They were neither up nor down.

On every up, your child goes up…

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…and on every down they go down.

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And then of course quick up and downs on that last fun line.

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It’s a shame that I had to enlist family members to take pictures, because her smile at me was absolutely beatific, but the camera never quite caught it. Either way, it felt great to make her giggle with glee, and we’ll be doing this one often!

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Apricot-Gingerbread Oatmeal

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We woke up to snow this morning! Which meant it was the perfect morning for a loaded bowl of oatmeal to warm us up.


  • 2 cups oat milk
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Combine the milk, oats, apricots, walnuts, cinnamon, and ginger in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and stir in the molasses and vanilla.

Serve warm and be cozy!

Snow Skeeball

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Finally! It took until March for us to receive our first real snowfall of the season, and we were so ready to play. Last weekend we were indoors at an arcade, so today we decided to replicate one of our favorite games in snowy form.

I fashioned a ramp out of the snow, making it lower at the bottom, and higher up top – good thing we had perfectly packable snow.

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We wedged three buckets into the snow at intervals, and then I handed Travis a few golf balls.

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Time to toss! We decided the first bucket was worth 1 point, the second was 2 points, and the third was 3. We even had tickets to use from a pretend-play carnival game!

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The game was admittedly hard – next time we’d use bigger buckets. (Note: we’d also use colored balls, for rather obvious reasons!).

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So here’s hoping for one more storm before spring. We’ll be out there playing skeeball… or should I say “ski ball”?

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Textured Painted Fish


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Travis and I haven’t played with clay in some time, so he was really excited when I pulled out a fresh pack of it this morning. Pretty soon, we came up with great under-the-sea fun, and added texture in two unique ways.

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First, we shaped the clay into little fish. Travis needed some help with this, but sort of got the hang of shaping an oval body and pinching the back to form a tail.

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More so, though, he made his own variations on sea creatures, which was just great to watch; he thought this looked like a perfect seahorse!

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Next we painted the fish, and he loved mixing colors to help them “camouflage.”

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Now for the texture fun. I pulled out a mesh bag, and we placed it on the wet clay. Cover with a rag (to avoid dirty hands!) and press down.

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Now our fish had scales!

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Travis loved it! Some glitter paint was the final shimmery touch for the fish, but Travis wasn’t done yet, so added “coral reefs” (which got lots more glittery glue).

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Finally, our fish needed an ocean to swim in. We painted a piece of poster board blue, and added texture in another fun way – by running a comb over it for ocean waves and currants.

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In sum, this was a great art project, with lots of fun elements, new ways to make texture, and opportunity for creativity.

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