Splash Zone

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Yes you can have water play in the kitchen without too much mess. These splashy games kept Veronika super-engaged while I prepped school lunches, and are a fun way to continue water play even as summer heads into fall. And clean-up was a breeze.

First, I sat her down on a towel with a shallow tub of water. I placed just a few bath toys in it, encouraging her to grab them as I made them float by.

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She loved scooping the toys up and out of the water, and just dipping in her little fingers.

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For added ease, I dressed her in a bathing suit. If it’s warm enough, there’s nothing wrong with doing the game in just a diaper!

Next, we got even splashier. I sat her up in the highchair, and carefully poured a small stream of water onto the high chair tray. This alone was delightful.

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She tested it out…

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…then discovered it was fantastic for splashing!

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Yes there were splatters, but the towel underneath caught almost all of it, and a quick wipe with a paper towel got the rest. And then up we went to change out of her bathing suit!

Four Senses Sensory Fun

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Today, Veronika and I engaged nearly all five of her senses with easy games. Can you spot which sense we missed?

Touch:

Instead of presenting Veronika with something to feel in her hands, it was time to kick with her feet! Tape a piece of tissue paper up on a wall, and lie your baby comfortably on his or her back.

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Baby won’t need any instruction before kicking away!

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Veronika seemed startled by the different position, but soon was busily kicking her feet. This one is also great for the sense of hearing, since the tissue makes fantastic crinkles.

And okay, she wanted to have at the tissue with her hands once upright.

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Sight:

To make a sight sensory bottle, I filled an empty water bottle with bold visuals: cut up plastic straws and bright pieces of Lego fit the bill.

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Fill until about 3/4 full with water. You can twist on the cap securely, or hot glue for added safety.

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Veronika loved rolling this one along the ground!

Sound:

To make a sound sensory bottle, I chose clickity clackaty items. Dried “little ears” pasta were perfect (though the double-meaning was lost on Veronika), as were plastic craft beads and a few buttons. Dried rice or beans would work well too!

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This one she loved shaking, especially if I sang a few lines of a favorite melody.

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Smell:

Break out the tea bags! I presented Veronika with an assortment of tea, all quite strongly scented: peppermint, chamomile, raspberry (or any other fruity blend) and ginger all fit the bill.

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Be careful, because her inclination was to grab the bags and taste, but I made sure these only made it as far as her nose.

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Some she seemed to enjoy, and others got a very confused reaction!

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So which sense did we forget? No tasting this time around!

“Owl Do It” List

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Fall is here, and with it a return to routines and responsibilities. If your child is having a hard time adjusting to the steps involved for school or sports or around the house, then you can put together this adorable chore reminder list.

To make the chart, I cut owl pieces from felt, using light blue for the body, dark blue for wings, yellow for beak and feet, and black for feathers and eyebrows. I used hot glue to affix all these owl parts, minus the wings, and then glued on wiggle eyes.

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For the wings, poke a hole in the felt and use a brad to attach them to the body. Now the wings can move up and down!

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Glue a piece of dark blue cardstock onto a cardboard rectangle. Add a smaller square of light blue cardstock on one half; glue the owl to the other half. Glue a post-it notepad on top of the light blue square.

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Now write in chores, reminders, or anything else that’s helpful for your child! Travis felt proud crossing off steps in the morning.

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If you like, glue a felt loop near the bottom and slide in a pen. That way your child will never have to go searching for one. You can also glue a magnet onto the back of the cardboard so the list hangs up on the fridge.

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Hopefully soon you’re hearing, “Owl do it myself!”