Carbon Footprint Calculator

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We have a family tradition of heading out on Earth Day to pick up trash, whether just as a family or by joining a group, as we did today at a local preserve. I’ve posted the details in the past, so here’s just a quick blog today on a quiz we received from Raddish Kids.We loved the way this made us think about how we can do even better for the Earth in the future.

First, Travis learned what a carbon footprint is, and how carbon dioxide contributes to the warming of the planet. We went through the quiz and answered questions like how we get to school (a car – our worst answer, at 4 points!) and what we mostly eat at home (vegetables – yay, we scored a 1).

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After tallying your score, you can zero in on areas for improvement as a family. For example, our new goal is to reduce the number of trash bags we take out each week.

What will your family do for the Earth this year? Please share in the comments!

Form an Impromptu Band

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I love musical play with babies – they take to it so readily! Today, we struck up a band for Veronika as a family, using two types of instruments: real ones that we’ve accumulated over the years, and some improvised ones, too.

Because what is a pot and spoon if not a drum?

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Or a rolled piece of paper if not a horn? Big brother Travis loved the way this one sounded.

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We got jamming and handed Veronika instruments to play, too.

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Travis found a new way to play on this pot – with a kazoo as the mallet!

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Then we shifted our focus from playing the instruments to dancing to some tunes.

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Wiggling is such a funny thing for babies both to see and feel. Set your music player to Music Together’s “Wiggle” and, well, wiggle! I wiggled my fingers, my arms, my legs.

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Travis got into the moves wiggling his whole body.

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By the time we wiggled Veronika’s own toes and fingers, she was giggling with delight. Wiggle your hands all over baby’s body, too, for more giggles.

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Don’t forget to just pick up your baby and get your whole bodies into the rhythm. We danced from room to room.

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Now that she’s older, the dance moves can be more active than those with a newborn; we went up and down, spun around, stepped back and forth, you name it. Dance it up!

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Got leftover plastic Easter eggs? We’ve got you covered! This cute little gardening project will use up any spares you have lying around.

We borrowed a real egg carton from the festivities at a relative’s house, and took it home to set up the project.

Twist plastic eggs until the top breaks off. Discard the tops and draw faces on the bottom. I gave Travis free reign for this part, and loved seeing the “expressions” he came up with.

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Next, we scooped potting soil into each egg. Cover your work surface because this part might get messy!

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Sprinkle a little grass seed into each egg.

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Now place them somewhere sunny and wait! Be sure to water daily. I’ll update this post when our “eggheads” sprout “hair”!

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Update: Our heads have hair! How adorable are these little eggheads?

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Pot o’ Gold Scrambles

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It was another rainy day here which meant another day where our heads were on a swivel for a rainbow.

It had us talking about the mythical pot of gold at the end of a rainbow, which made it the perfect day for this recipe from Raddish Kids!  The original was an egg-based scramble but the company suggested this fantastic vegan version.

Crumble 1 (1 pound) package firm tofu into a large bowl. Travis was impish and wanted to gobble the tofu plain – yup, I have a good vegan on my hands!

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Pat dry with paper towels.

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Sprinkle the tofu with 1/4 teaspoon turmeric, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and stir to combine.

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Cut the stem from a head of broccoli, and divide the florets into small pieces. Travis liked tearing up the “tiny trees.” Chop 4 to 5 slices vegan ham (such as Lightlife).

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Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the broccoli and ham; cook for 3 minutes.

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Add the tofu mixture and cook for a final 3 minutes. Thanks to the magic of turmeric, it really did look like our scramble was turning gold as it cooked! Sprinkle with 1/2 cup shredded Daiya cheddar.

To finish our pots of gold, I divide the mixture evenly among 4 ramekins. Draw a rainbow on paper and you can delight your child when they come to the table!

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As we dined, we talked about the origin of this myth, and also read the recipe’s feature on oven safety. This included a great suggestion to let kids practice opening and closing an oven when cold.

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Travis was thrilled he got to do such a grown-up kitchen task!

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So all-in-all, a great day in the kitchen!

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