Hurricane Sandy hasn't hit yet, but the wind is out of control.
Also, the kids are too, because there's no school today.
The instinct to let them (encourage them) to watch TV all morning was very strong because I felt like once the power went out (and we know it will, we're in NJ after all), we'd be extra bored. But by 10am, even the kid were sick of watching.
We had spent the whole day yesterday doing laundry and moving toys and clothes and furniture out of the basement and so when three different people asked me last night what
the schedule of the day for the hurricane was going to be, I thought they were a little nutty. I also thought they were making fun of my schedule of the day in the summer - which they were - but I like the questioners, so it was okay.
Hmmm, so a Hurricane Schedule.
Not a clue.
A quick little trip through pinterest found us some goodies.
And the first, from Momtastic, is washable window paint.
Mix some washable kiddie paint with a small squeeze of dish soap and you're done.
We mixed and we were ready.
And the results are so much fun and make the porch look so pretty and festive. Festive, you know, for the hurricane.
Baby wipes get the paint right off the window, so no worries.
In an effort to do more arts and crafts with the two-year-old and less watching of the tv - her new fave - we painted. In a Ziploc bag. Which, I have to say, was the best. Because there was no mess and no cleanup, save for throwing the bag in the garbage.
I wish I could say that the whole painting in a bag was my brilliant idea, but sadly, it was not. I first saw it on KiwiCrate's Two Ingredient Tuesday idea page, a page I love to visit.
We were looking out the window this morning, debating whether it was too chilly for a
walk, when my two year old noticed the leaves everywhere and commented about what a mess it was outside. What can I say, she likes a neat sidewalk. But she did like the leaves and all the colors, so a leaf project it was!
I gathered together some white construction paper, a black sharpie, a few resealable plastic bags and four paint colors of the little one's choice: red, pink, orange and green.
I drew a number of different shaped leaves on the paper and cut them out.
We then placed one or two leaves at a time inside the gallon sized plastic bag,
squirted a very little bit of paint inside the bag, sealed the bag and smooshed.
The little one really enjoyed moving the paint around with first one hand, then
both hands and then just the tips of her fingers.
One note: be careful with the amount of paint you add to the bag. Too much and the leaf paper will rip. That happened to us a couple of times. In retrospect, I would have used white cardstock or any thicker paper but we didn't have any around.
After each leaf was covered with paint, I removed it from the bag and added a new one. That part was a little messy, but I don't mind getting messy.
Allow the leaves to dry and then hang them up. We hung them on the front windows, but I could see these being pretty hanging from a mantle or on the molding around a doorway or even on a glass front door.
This Shabbat we read Parshat Noach, the story of Noah and the ark which ends with a rainbow acting as a symbol that G-d will never again destroy the world through a flood.
And all week I have been watching a flood of amazing rainbow themed recipes flow out of Pinterest, Facebook and many mommy-blogs. I really wanted to throw a rainbow themed something into the mix, but I have been trying so so hard (and it's so so hard) to stick to eating clean, and food coloring filled goodies just doesn't mix well with all the clean. I kept telling myself I'd make rainbow cupcakes or this rainbow cake that I made last year, and only give it to the kids, but:
1. we both know keeping frosted cake around the house is pretty much a direct line to finding yourself covered in frosting, alone in the kitchen at midnight, stuffing your face and
2. if I am trying to keep it clean for myself, shouldn't I avoid being the one to give the kids food-colored food? I know, mean mommy. But they get plenty of that in school; I should, in theory, hold back at home.
So I thought and thought and thought and decided to go with a rainbow salad, and not just any rainbow salad, but this rainbow salad, one I shared about six months ago and make all the time.
It's delicious, it's healthy and it's fun to look at. And not too hard to put together.
We're going to have some rainbow salad this Shabbat, but if someone were to, maybe, stop by with some rainbow cupcakes, we wouldn't ask you to leave. I'm just saying.
I did something and now I am thinking it might not have the best idea I have ever had, but here goes: I made an indoor hopscotch game. With Duck* tape. On the wood floors.
Anyway, the tape is now on the wood floors. I really really really hope it comes off.
Here's the thing, my kids love to play hopscotch, especially my middle two kids. And by the time school is over each day, the backyard is pretty chilly - and full of leaves that no one has bothered to rake yet.
So instead of going outside and being cold and slipping on leaves, we brought the game inside.
The how-to is almost a no-brainer. Just get some duct tape and a pair of scissors and you're in business. Notice how the boxes get bigger the farther up the hopscotch board you go. That was not intentional, it was more a function of not mapping out a plan first, so if things like asymmetrical boxes bother you, use a ruler first.
You'll also need a permanent marker to draw the numbers inside the boxes. My first thought had been to use the tape to make the numbers, but that turned out to be a lot of work so it was my trusty Sharpie to the rescue!
The only question is what will happens when I try to pull the tape up. Maybe nothing. Maybe the tape will just come off the wood floors flawlessly and all will be well.
Or maybe I should start googling "get duct tape residue off wood floors" now and file away the answers for sometime in the spring.
I'll have to let you know what I find.
What do you think? Will my wood floors ever be the same? Would you try this?
*I know it's actually called duct tape, but the brand name on this one is Duck tape.
Sometimes it's very hard to get back to real life after a holiday. But today marks the start of the first real full week of school that we've had in weeks and so I kind of feel like this calls for some reflection.
This morning I spend three solid hours putting my house back together after the crazy month that is Rosh Hashana-Yom Kippur-Succot, with what feels like about forty shabbatot thrown in. Anyone else feel like they have cooked 700 meals in the last month?
So the house absolutely needs a good scrubbing and some good organizing. I also kind of feel like I am still putting my house back together from the summer, a task which never quite got finished as school started so soon after we got back from vacation.
I wonder if anyone ever really feels like they are done putting their house together? Is it ever organized enough, clean enough, cheery enough? I'm gonna go with no, because it cannot be that I am the only one that seems to be drowing in housekeeping lately. Am I?
I think sometimes I forget that homes are supposed to look lived in, like homes and not just houses. And then I remember and I stop yelling about dirty socks everywhere and then we all fingerpaint something and everyone feels better. I like that.
Anyway, today's lesson of the day has nothing to do with keeping an organized house. It's about pumpkins. And knowing which ones to get, which is apparently a handy piece of knowledge to have.
We took the kids pumpkin picking last week, something we've done a few times before and an outing that is always fun. This time we went back to Kelder's Farm in upstate NY. Josh and I like this farm because even though the fields are huge and far apart, you can drive from field to field. The kids really like this farm because we don't make them buckle up as we drive from field to field. And, and they get to stand up in the van while we drive at one mile an hour to get to the next field. This is pure excitement for the under eight set.
As we drove down the road that seperates the fields, we noticed that there were two pumpkin patches. Well, at least I did. Josh really had no idea what I was talking about.
There was the sugar pumpkin patch and the carving pumpkin patch. And being me, these are the calculations that went through my head, while deciding which patch to visit:
The sugar pumpkins seem smaller that the carving ones.
The sugar pumpkins are probably cheaper.
The kids each want to bring a pumpkin back to school for their teachers, how will they carry a big carving pumpkin?
Sugar pumpkins it is.
In the back of my mind, I kind of thought, hmm, I feel like sugar pumpkins are for baking and I think they go bad pretty quickly. But, never mind, those big ones cost a fortune and we're here for the experience, not the size of the pumpkin and blah blah blah.
Well, shockingly, I was right on pretty much every account.
The sugar ones are smaller and cheaper. And they do go bad much quicker.
Sadly, those pumpkins did not last the week and so they did not make it back to the teachers.
Also sadly, I did not notice that they were going bad and so I didn't bake anything with them.
But at least we had the experience, right?
(I really wanna say blah blah blah here too, but I won't).
Happy Pumpkin Season!
We went for a pretty chilly little scavenger hunt the other day.
The mission? To find the colors of the rainbow, even though the sky was a very wintry gray.
Surprisingly, we found what we looking for. I am not sure I would have taken the time to notice all the colors of the rainbow had the kids not been with me on my walk.
And now, in a decidedly non-rainbow order of colors, here is what we found:
(Take a quick click on each picture to see it better.)
Are you a Mom?
Of course you are,
your shirt is dirty :)