Childcare Chronicles

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.


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.


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.


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.


More dumping!!


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


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.


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!!


Check out this little one….She’s a quilter in the making.She is the girl that loves quilting best.  She wanted to quilt one day so I had her help me count pieces.  I knew she was learning to count by 10’s.  I had her put the pieces into piles of 10.  Then I had her count by 10’s to figure out how many pieces we had.  This is a prime way of how I teach at childcare.  I want them to see that math is relevant.  I want them to practice what they are learning.  She has a great time.  She is going to be so happy when she sees that she is getting one of the Zuckerwatte quilts I made.

I have the nativity out on my old pump organ.  The kids love it.  I have a plastic one that they can play with too.  They just beg to play with my good one though.  I have several children’s books that tell the story of the nativity.  The kids often tell the story using the book and them manipulating the props to tell the story.  As much as I don’t want my good set to get broken, I want more for them to know the story and understand the true meaning of Christmas.


I have the small Christmas trees out.  The older kids decorate them after school and then the next day, the little kids undecorate them.  It’s a continual cycle.  I have lots of plastic ornaments.  I encourage the kids to make patterns or only two kinds of decorations on a tree.  They enjoy this.


I have a new little guy in care.  He’s awesome and I’m so glad he was able to join us.  He’s showing off one of the crafts we recently did.

I bought some fun chalk markers.  I traced a cereal bowl onto black construction paper.  I made a square at the top.  I hole punched the top and added a piece of yarn for a hanger.  The kids decorated the “ornaments” using the chalk markers.


Both young and old kids enjoyed this.  If you have school aged kids I highly recommend it.  On my refrigerator-the one the left done by a Kindergartener…the one on the right done by me.  This is a simple low cost activity to provide for kids.

We also made these 3-D trees.  I gave them the chalk markers and some stickers.


They were really cute in person.

All you need to do is cut out three Christmas trees that are the same size.   Fold them in half.  Layer them on top of each other.  Staple at the seam.   Have the kids decorate them.  another simple craft that works for multiple ages.


Some of my days are quiet…these two still aren’t talking a lot.  They love baking though.  Here they are in charge of putting chocolate chips on the cookies.

Most days after they all go I feel a lot like Carver is in this picture!!  The days when I have all the little ones, I’m exhausted!!


We have the WORST time keeping TWO socks and TWO shoes on this kid.  In fact as I write we have two pair of shoes here but can only find one shoe of both of them.  It’s time to pull off the couch cushions and go all out to find them!!

I am thrilled that we got over the small baby hump and are turning a new page from babies to toddlers.  When school started I kept telling myself that having all the little kids would be hard, but if I could make it to Christmas it would be so much easier.  Well here we are closer and close to Christmas and it’s so true.  Day by day it gets easier and easier.  The other day one of the girls that’s 22 months indicated that she had to poop and she did it on the toilet.  It truly does get easier each day!!  I’m so glad that I stuck it out.  I’m having a good time with these guys!!





5 thoughts on “Childcare Chronicles”

  1. Wow you are so busy with the kids! I use to substitute teach and had a week of a kindergarten class when the teacher had the flu! It was one of the most exhaustive weeks of my life and I was in my early 20’s then! I don’t know how you do it in your 50’s!!!! You provide great teaching opportunities and it isn’t just sitting the kids in front of the tv or watching movies all day like some places I have heard of! I love the picture of Ruby with her puppies!!! I hope you will post pictures of the two girls getting their pink quilts!!! Merry Christmas Jo!!!

  2. You are the dream daycare provider! The parents of these beautiful children are so very blessed to have you. The children are all so cute but I’m drawn to the little red head with the glasses. It has to be difficult for parents but I just love little one’s wearing glasses. I honestly don’t know how you get everything done in day’s time! Merry Christmas to you, your family and your daycare families!!

  3. What a warm and wonderful home you give those kids in your care, and all of those simple learning experiences will be helpful as they go onto school. I love how you made the ornaments to color with chalk, so creative. Could Ruby be any cuter with her puppies? or Carter with his missing shoe? Wishing you healthy and happy Christmas season Jo.

  4. My daughter worked at a day care and one day one of the ambitious kids opened up ALL the puzzles when she was helping a child with their stuck zipper. Yikes!
    She brought the bag of pieces home and we put everyone together, then promptly numbered each puzzle piece as we put them in their boxes. (puzzle #1 was #1, Puzzle 2 #2 etc).

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