Childcare Chronicles

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It’s been awhile since I gave you an update on the childcare front.  Things are going really good….except for a flu bug that flew through.  The little kids are finally getting a little older so I don’t have crying kids.  I can handle most anything except crying kids.

Here’s a little overview of some of the things we’ve been up to.  It’s in no particular order simply pictures of things we’ve done over the last few weeks.

Here we are making Puppy Chow (some people call it Muddy Buddies).  Recipe here.  When I did childcare in the early 2000′s I was very into doing all of our activities theme based.  I put in lots of time in on making activities that were very preschool like….truth be told, I was almost more of preschool than a childcare.  Now days, things are different.  We still do lots of educational things but now we do it in a casual way.

This picture is an excellent example.  The kids completely helped me make these.  They unwrapped the butter…We talked all about how it was SOLID.  We added the peanut butter and the chocolate chips.  We measured everything.  We counted everything.  I read the recipe to them.  We talked about how the chocolate chips were a SOLID.  We took turns.  We put the container with the ingredients in the microwave.  They pushed the numbers.  We watched the countdown.  We observed how the butter turned into a LIQUID when it got hot.  This was completely an off the cuff lesson about solids and liquids.  Most everything I do is off the cuff and simply part of our day.


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At nap time one day one of the girls woke early.  I was folding a batch of my laundry.  This girl really needs some language encouragement.  I talked to her the whole time I fold asking her to say pants, shirt, and socks as I folded.  She would try each word each time.  She loved it and it wasn’t a formal lesson….just every day life.

Ruby must be feeling better as she had another little of “puppies”.  No natter how sick she’s been she’s continued to love the kids.

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We are still enjoying visits from Denise at Fayette County Food and Fitness.  She’s so great with the kids…and a nice break for me too!!  Here she’s making Black Bean Brownies the kids.  They were actually really good.  Recipe posted on Saturday.

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My little kiddos are in a “dumping” stage.  They dump out EVERYTHING!  They don’t really play much with it all…Just dump.  It’s okay, it give us lots of opportunities to learn the concept of “in” as in picking up toys.  Without understanding “in”, they really can’t learn to pick up toys.  Carver is the master dumper.

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More dumping!!

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Here’s reason #4 (or so) why I love freezer on the bottom of refrigerators.

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With 2 school aged kids, 3 preschoolers who attend all day school 4 days a week, 2 full time little kids and 4 part time little kids, I always end up with a different bunch of kids everyday.  At first I thought I would hate that but I am actually really starting to enjoy it.  That leaves us playing different toys on different days.  The kids were so happy this day as there were no babies who would put things in their mouths.  That means we could play magnets this day.

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I have one little one infatuate with puzzles.  She will do puzzles for an hour each day.  I had trouble finding any at the thrift store then finally hit a jack pot day and found six 24 pieced puzzles for 25 cents each.  I bought them all and she was in heaven!!

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Check out this little one….She’s a quilter in the making. [Read more...]

I Did It! FINALLY

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Way back when I was doing childcare in 2003 or so I went to a childcare conference and there was a lady there that was selling home made props for circle time.  I spent my money and bought this barn.  I was so hesitant about buying as it was $30.  That was a lot for me to spend back then.  I am so glad I did though.  I used it a lot.  Then when I took a five year break from childcare I had debated about getting rid of it, but instead I bought a HUGE tote and put all of the things that I thought I couldn’t live without if I was ever to start childcare again.  This went in the tote.

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I’m so glad it did because I did start childcare again and it is one of the kids’ favorite things.  Right now I have LOTS of little ones that need to learn to talk….there are SIX of them!!  All with only a few words.  I’ve found that starting with animal sounds is a great way to get them learning to talk regular words.

The prop hangs around my neck like an apron.  The door opens and inside are farm animals.

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I’ve always wanted to make more farm animals….ALWAYS.  I’ve wanted to do this from the time I bought it but never did.  FINALLY I did it!!

I think I was nervous because I didn’t have a pattern.  Then I looked at the animals that came with the original barn and saw how simple they were.  I grabbed a scissor and started cutting the felt.  I was pretty happy with my progress.

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I did a quick simple seam around the outside.  I added a little stuffing and sewed them shut.  Then a little time with the glue gun and they were finished.  Here’s how they look…. [Read more...]

Childcare Chronicles

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We’ve had a couple good weeks of childcare.  The weather here has been fantastic!  Most days I have anywhere from 4-6 kids during the day and a menagerie of before and after school kids adding anywhere from 4-7 more!!  Happily I never have them all at once.  By the time the school kids come some kids that were here during the day are already gone and home with their families.  It’s all working out now and I feel really comfortable with how things are going.

For the most part I have kids that do a pretty good job of napping at the same time….well at least for 45 minutes or so and that’s really what I need to recharge.  Carver is the one that it’s hardest for.  At home if Kalissa has the day off he will regularly sleep a morning and afternoon nap.  Here everyone is too busy and there’s too much action for him so he doesn’t take that morning nap so by 11-ish he’s had it and wants a nap.  On the days he’s here we nap a little bit earlier as the other little ones prefer that too.

Here’s some fun pictures of what we’ve been up to.

All summer I’ve been showing the kids the apples on my tree and telling them that we can’t pick them until fall.  Well the day finally came.  We picked the apples!!!

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All of the big kids all got a chance to pick one.

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We took turns and it went really well.

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Thankfully there were some “up high” for the tall kids and some “down low” for the littler kids.  Here she’s grabbing an “up high” apple. [Read more...]

Childcare Chronicles: Two Little Culprits

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I have lots of little kids at childcare four of the days of the week.  They all range from 7 months to 20 months old.  They are a handful but we are gradually getting into a routine that is working for us.

Friday I had four of the kids here.  I was in the living room feeding a bottle to the youngest and looking at a book with the oldest at the same time.  Carver and the other little guy that’s his age were in the kitchen.  They were playing with the canning jar rings (a HUGE favorite of theirs).  After a bit I heard the dog bowl clank.  I was frustrated with myself that I forgot to put it up.  I stopped feeding the baby, went out to the kitchen and sure enough, the two had dumped out the dog water bowl and were playing in the water.  UGH.  Thankfully they didn’t get wet.

I went back into the living room and got everyone situated again.  The baby was drinking the bottle and I was back to looking at the book with the older girl.  Soon I realized that it was eerily quiet in the kitchen.  I went out there to check on the boys and found this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Somehow the two of them figured out how to open the latch on the cabinet.  They have NEVER done this before.  They got out a can of meringue powder and got the lid off.  They were happily playing in the powder.

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I don’t know if you know about  meringue powder but it’s SUPER light and fluffy and VERY fine.  The two were having a blast.  Me, I was cringing.

Carver got up to stand and almost fell as the powder is so fine and was really slippery on the hard wood floors…see? [Read more...]