Thursday, January 29, 2009

Play Dough Recipe

This recipe is from the WEE school curriculum.

Play Dough

Mix 1 cup of flour, 3 tsp of cream of tartar, 1/2 cup of salt, 1 cup of water and a few drops of flavoring (vanilla, peppermint, etc...). Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until stiff. Knead; store in airtight containers.

You can add color to this playdough with food coloring if you want to. Just seperate dough into handsized bits and place in plastic baggie with the food coloring. Seal the baggie and then knead the dough through the bag. You can even have the kids do this.

This dough will dry and harden if left out. So it can be shaped and sculptured. The oil has been omitted from the recipe to allow this to happen.

Another Play Dough recipe that includes oil is:

1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 cup water
food coloring

Mix dry ingredients. Mix oil in water and add dry ingredients to it. Stir and pour into pan. Stir constantly until dough pulls away from sides of pan. Empty onto wax paper and knead. Add color after dividing.

Enjoy playing with PlayDough!

Lesson Plan for 3 and 4 year old: The 5 Senses

Starting this coming Monday, the boys will no longer be going to WEE school. They will be home with Troy or I 24/7. So I decided I needed to get organized and create a lesson plan of sorts. I came up with a plan for the first 2 weeks of February using a little of some old WEE school curiculum and some of my own ideas. The theme will be "The 5 Senses". So this is what I planned for us to do.

Monday (2nd) -- Take a Nature Walk and talk about all the things we see, hear, smell and feel. I doubt we will taste anything while we are out walking. Unless of course we see an icecream truck or something. One can always hope.

Tuesday (3rd) -- Make a "Things I See Outside" collage. I am just going to let them cut pictures out of magazines and let them glue them onto a big piece of construction paper.

Wednesday (4th) -- Play a "Match the Sounds" game. I have filled empty film canisters with beans, rice, and pennies. Just 2 canisters of each. I numbered them 1-6 and made a chart telling me what each number has in it. (ex: 1-pennies, 2-beans, etc...) I will let them pick up one at a time and shake it and then try to find the matches.

Thursday (5th) -- Play with scented playdough. (Recipe for playdough in seperate post.)

Friday (6th) -- Read a story about senses with Mr and Mrs 5 Senses puppets. The puppets are paper plates with construction paper hands, eyes, ears, nose and mouth. The story is in WEE curriculum. Read a Devotion on Kindness from Fun Devotions For Boys Gotta Have God Ages 2-5 by Lynn Marie-Ittner Klammer.

Monday (9th) -- Play in the sandbox and talk about the feel of the sand when wet and dry. Sort objects such as buttons, bottle caps, and beads. Sort them by color, by object, by size, etc...

Tuesday (10th) -- Make chocolate pudding and then let them write in some on a tray. Then of course we will eat the rest.

Wednesday (11th) -- Have a "Tasting Party" where I will put out different kinds of food like banana, pickle, marshmallow, lemon, apple, etc... and blind fold them and let them try the food and see if they can guess which one it is and help them to describe it. (Sweet, Sour, Salty, etc...)
I will also put out my recipe books and let them look at those.

Thursday (12th) -- I will set out different bowls of liquids such as syrup, juice, vinegar, etc... and let them taste, smell and feel the different liquids.

Friday (13th) -- We will go on a picnic if the weather is nice and talk about our senses while we are there. How does your food taste? What do you see, smell, hear, feel? Also, read a devotional on Family from the same book mentioned before.

Well that is what I have planned for the first 2 weeks of February. We will probably also make Valentines at some point on Thursday or Friday. I brought some of their books that involved the topic of Senses downstairs for reading times. Books like Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? and Polar Bear, Polar Bear What Do You Hear? I found a website that has printable coloring pages of the animals in Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? and for Polar Bear, Polar Bear What Do You See?
Also, the first week is Letter A Week and the second week is Letter B Week. I am going to use some of the ideas given on the following website for incorporating these letters into our day.

The internet has so many resources and I am sure that I will be utilizing it frequently for their lessons. I am looking forward to teaching and spending time with Joshua and Caleb. More lesson plans to come for the rest of February!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Troy and I painted one wall of our bedroom black. We are slowly working on having a fully decorated bedroom. I really like the black wall and I am looking forward to seeing what the headboard I am making for our bed will look like up against it. It is not a professional paint job by any means but I think we did a good job. I will blog about the head board and how I make it later on.

Starting a Public Weightloss Journal!

Melissa Henderson
Age: 29
Weight: 181 lbs.
Size: 16/18
Height: 5'7"
Emotion: Embarrassed

Weightloss Goal: 40 lbs.

Ok, so this may start out a little embarrassing but will hopefully become something that I can be proud of. I want to start with the reality of the situation in hopes that it will keep me honest with myself. Also by making it public it puts pressure on me to keep at it.

I weighed myself on Monday the 26th of January. Boy was that depressing! Anyway, my first day at the gym (Aerofit) was yesterday and my goal is to go at least 3 times a week. My experience in a gym is limited because in the past I excercised by walking around the neighborhood or playing tennis. There was an occasional home work out video but those never really lasted very long.

So I went to the gym yesterday and I thought that it would be good just to start with some cardio. I like the treadmill but every single one was occupied. So I climbed on the eliptical trainer. It is freakin' hard for an out of shape fatso like me! I could only go for like 10 minutes and I looked like one of the people on the treadmill that had been running for 30 minutes. I noticed there was a treadmill open at that time so wobbled over there. My legs felt like jello! I started on a "Weightloss Program" on the treadmill. I think it switches in and out of elevation levels and speed. I only walked for 15 minutes on there. I had to stop because I started getting lightheaded. I checked my pulse and it was at 171! No wonder. So I learned that I need to start with a little less "intense" of a workout.

I feel good that I am making a choice to stop making excuses about my weight. I am learning to make healthy choices. I want to set a good example for my children, not only with what comes out of my mouth but with what I put into it also. They need to see their Mommy and Daddy eating fruits and veggies!

So hopefully you can encourage me with advice or healthy recipes or just an encouraging word. And if you need to lose some weight than hopefully my blogging will encourage you to take the first step. Be Happy and Healthy!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Review of Twilight Saga

ATTENTION: The opinions expressed in this book review are my own and I am not affiliated in any way with the author or publisher of these works. Also, this is my first book review that is not for a class in school. So please be kind.

The Twilight Saga contains four books, or should I say novels, because they are each rather lengthy. However don't let the length intimidate you, the books are captivating and are worth every minute. You will find these books in the Young Adult section at any bookstore but if you try to check it out from your local library I am sure you will find it missing. They are just so popular right now! Again there are four books and they are titled: "Twilight", "New Moon", "Eclipse" and "Breaking Dawn". These books are works of fiction and they are written for a teen audience. However Twilight has gained a much broader following.

I was aware of how popular they were but until my sister Melinda, who is 24, told me how good Twilight was I had no real knowledge of the series. I borrowed the first book from her over New Years and with her recommendation fresh in my mind I started it immediately. I could not put it down! I have now read all four books and I am very impressed with the author. Ms. Meyer has created a bestseller series because she was able to relate to all ages. Much like the Ms. Rowling with the Harry Potter Books.

Don't worry I am not going to spoil any of the story for you but I will share with you a little bit of what Twilight is about. Basically it is a love story but there are other action and suspense aspects of the plot that make it less sappy. Yes there are vampires and other fictional type people. It is FICTION which means it is not true, it was made up. The story is told by the main character, Bella. She is a mature 17 year old who falls for a vegetarian vampire. I really don't want to share any more about the story for fear of ruining it for you but I recommend you find out for yourself just how great these books are. For more information on the author and her books you can go to her official website and check it out.

Just a side note: I went to see Twilight the movie and it was pretty good but not as good as the book. Which sadly, always seems to be the case.

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