Monthly Archives: June 2012

2nd Annual Pirate Festival!

This Saturday, from 11AM to 5PM in the Tubman Garrett Riverfront Park, is the 2nd Annual Wilmington Pirate Festival.  We had a fantastic time last year and I would highly recommend going.

There are some fantastic pirates walking the park, TONS of exhibitors to check out. Here are just a few of the planned activities:

  • Face Painting
  • Boat Building
  • Sword Decoration
  • Treasure Hunt
  • Roaming Pirates
  • Music! Song! Dance!
  • Parade of Pirates and Best Pirate Costume Contest!
  • Tour of the Kalmar Nyckel

The only issue that you need to be aware of is that the Festival is quite pricey.  All of the activities have their own separate costs, and they can be expensive. If you can be strong and not give in to the puppy dog eyes that your child/children will most definitely give you, you can still have a good time and not spend too much money.

Even though the Festival says that it is over at 5pm, they start packing up early so here is my recommendation. If you can, go to the festival after you eat lunch (around 12:30-1pm). That way you can get around buying all the food to cut down on some of the cost. Bring LOTS of water since it will be warm out.  Be ready to deal with crowds and lines. The savings on lunch cost will allow you to indulge the puppy dog eyes for some of the activities.  And have fun!  The weather is supposed to be beautiful and it really is an interesting time.  Happy Adventuring!

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Noisy Letter Jump Phonics Game!

http://www.theimaginationtree.com/2012/06/noisy-letter-jump-phonics-game.html I saw this on the Imagination Tree Blog and had to share this fantastic idea. LittleM has the alphabet down pat so I’ve been trying to figure out ways to get her to learn letter sounds. This looks like something we’ll be trying soon! Anything to get us outside and moving, along with learning!

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Storytime or movie

If you’re looking for something to do tomorrow (Tuesday), there are 2 great options in Newark. The Newark Library has a really good Tuesday Tales storytime with a craft which starts at 10:30am. The other option is in the Newark Shopping Center at the Newark Cinema Center. It’s not a great theater but Tuesday is Buy One Get One Free ticket day. Also, the matinee price is only $6 so you can’t really beat it. Right now the kids movie choices are “Brave” or “Madagascar 3”. You can imagine which one we will be going to see with my little princess.

Happy adventuring!

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Squeezie Sidewalk Chalk

LittleM and I tried an experiment yesterday.  I saw a great idea on No Time For Flashcards blog for Squeezie Sidewalk Chalk and thought it was a great idea.  The directions are very simple but I couldn’t seem to get the right consistency for it to meet my taste.  It didn’t matter though because LittleM still had a fantastic time, and that is all that matters.  Here are some pictures of our playtime.

The ingredients that you need include- a box of cornstarch, food coloring, a big bowl and spoon for mixing, squeeze bottles.  I bought the bottles at the dollar store in a 2 pack, as well as the food coloring.  I didn’t have any food coloring left at the house so I got some at the dollar store instead of the grocery store saving me more than $4.  The cost of this craft then was about $4 for 2 sets of squeeze bottles, 1 box of cornstarch, and food coloring.

Pour the cornstarch into the bowl and add water, stirring until it is thin.  Now, here is where I had problems. When I thought it was thin enough, it only came out in dribbles from the squeeze bottles, then I would add more water and it was too thin.  So trial and error at this point.

After it is the consistency that you think is thin enough, pour into the squeeze bottles.  Here is LittleM showing off her picture taking skills.  She’s getting really good with the camera.

 

Next add a few drops of food coloring to each bottle, put the cap on, cover the squeeze bottle hole and shake to mix the color.  Now you’re ready to play!  Note that this can get messy so make sure you child is not wearing anything that can’t get dirty.

Let the fun begin!

So this picture perfectly shows my consistency problem.  The hearts that I tried to draw show how the cornstarch mixture was coming out in dribbles.  I tried cutting the squeeze tops to make the holes a little larger but that didn’t work.  I ran inside to add a little more water and then it became too watery and started running down the driveway.  LittleM was much happier with it being runny though because it came out of the bottles easier.  Trial and error people, trial and error.

LittleM then started mixing the colors.

And now two at a time!

Our Pup decided he would come to oversee the crafting and get a suntan at the same time.

The end result.  Once LittleM ran out of liquid in the squeeze bottle she starting putting her hands in the wet mixture to swirl it around.  It did dry fairly quickly though and easily washes off the driveway with the hose.

Now for the messy results. Remember how I said don’t let the kids wear anything that can’t get dirty.

LittleM’s toes got decorated while she was playing.

As for her hands…

Her hands stayed a little blue for a while after we washed up afterward.  It took going to the pool that afternoon until all the dye came out of her hands.

All in all, it was a fun morning and LittleM had a blast.  Hope you have as much fun as we did!

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I am so Smart; S-M-R-T; I mean S-M-A-R-T!

My Ode to the Simpsons Title celebrates something that I FINALLY figured out. Part of the reason that I started this blog is because I wanted to show people how there were so many options out there for people to take their kids to in Delaware.  My vision included a calendar for me to put tons of stuff on and then you could check that calendar whenever you wanted, without me having to post lots of information about it all the time.  And I FINALLY figured out how to add it!  Woo-hoo!

So, on the left sidebar at the top you should see a Calendar entitled “Events In and Around Delaware to Check Out”.  Most of it will be in Northern Delaware area but I will add anything that looks interesting.  If anyone sees anything that they would like put on the calendar, I would love to hear from you!  Please send me a message or comment so I can add it!  Yay technology!

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When the Going Gets Tough

In the eloquent words of a great friend of mine, “2012 Blows”.  Why yes it does.  The bureaucracy of trying to get unemployment checks started is starting to drive me bonkers.  AND we came home to a huge leak in the basement and have no idea how long it had been leaking, along with all the other stressful crap we’re trying to deal with.  But let’s take a step back to where we were to have to come home to a leak.

When my husband lost his job, we realized that we hadn’t taken time lately to be a family.  His hours and commute, and the hours of his previous job, made me feel like a single parent most of the time.  So we decided that it was time to pull closer as a family and spend some time together getting reacquainted.  My husband was able to spend a week and a half watching LittleM when I was finishing the school year and 2 days after I was done we got in the car to trek to Kentucky and Indiana.  When you’re about to lose your mind from stress, what could be better than visiting friends and family.

Thank goodness that LittleM is a good car rider because it took about 11 1/2 hours to get to Kentucky to get to my family but once we got there we were well taken care of by my aunt, uncle, and cousin.  While there we were able to visit the Kentucky Horse Park and relax by the pool. It had been a long time since I had visited Kentucky, and even longer since seeing my cousin so we had a fantastic time, and I feel very lucky to have been able to reconnect to that side of my family.

After spending a couple of days in Kentucky we continued our trek westward to Indiana to visit a great friend who moved there with her husband to take a job at the University of Evansville.  We spent a few days hanging out with them, visiting some of the nice spots in Evansville, including letting LittleM feed a giraffe.  That was, “SO Cool,” in the words of LittleM.

So, we were able to reconnect as a family while forgetting some of the craziness if only for a few days.  Hold tight to your friends and family, let them help you through the rough times, as well as the good times.  I don’t know of anyone who can do it alone, especially not me.  While 2012 does indeed blow for my family, and I don’t think I will ever have a lot of great things to say about 2012, I do appreciate all the support and love of friends and family.

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What Will This Night Bring?

LittleM has a weird habit (at least it seems weird to me). Every night we have our routine of stories, snuggling, then we say goodnight.  We make sure she is all tucked in and leave before she is asleep so that she will fall asleep on her own.  Sometimes we hear books falling off her bed because she is “reading” on her own, or quietly playing after we have left.  We have no problem with that.

What has become weird is that we never know what our child will be wearing when we check on her at night.  We leave her in pjs and go to her room to check on her before going to sleep ourselves asking eachother, “What has she gotten into tonight?”.

For a while we were finding her in snowpants.  Then she moved to bathing suits.  She has recently gotten a new and a few hand-me-down princess dresses so we have been finding her in those.  Every night.  And you all know how much fun it is to change the clothes of a sleeping child.

The other night we walked into her like this and had to close the door so we wouldn’t wake her up with our laughing.

Image

She is on her bed, in our laundry basket, and covered in her comforter.  I don’t get it.

So, is this very unusual?  Do any of your children do the same thing at night once you have said good night?  If so, I would love to hear that we are not the only ones!

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Separation Day

Our great state of Delaware didn’t exist before June 1776. I know! Why do we learn it as one of the 13 colonies if we weren’t technically a colony by ourselves? Oh well, that’s how history changes through the generations.

Well, to celebrate Delaware’s separation from Britain, Pennsylvania, and the Penn family, Delaware holds their annual Separation Day. Makes sense right?

Tomorrow (Saturday, June 9) is this years celebration of Separation Day starting at 11am with a parade. There are bands, arts and crafts, amusement rides, and the evening is topped off with fireworks.

The last time we went to Separation Day, I saw the best fireworks I have ever seen.

http://newcastlecity.delaware.gov/visitors-information/all-events-listing/separation-day/ 

Check the link for more information but it’s in Old New Castle/Battery Park from 11am until dark for the fireworks. Have fun!

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New Castle County Happenings Guide

Parents and Delawareans, if you haven’t ever taken a minute to look at the New Castle County Happenings Guide then you are doing yourself a great disservice.  This guide is put out by our County Executive every quarter to tell you about activities occurring through that season that you could be taking advantage of.  There are lots of free and payment required activities through Community Centers and the Libraries to keep you and the little ones busy until the next Happenings Guide comes out.

Just quickly looking at it, I found a dance class that I may sign LittleM up for in July.  They meet for 8 one-hour sessions and costs only $48 dollars.  I don’t think you can do better than $6 a class for beginning dance.

It also lists all the great programs that the Libraries run and during the summer our libraries offer some pretty great programs in New Castle County.  Story times with singing, story times with crafts, water fun days, bubble making days, creating your own sidewalk chalk, and puppet shows are just a few items to whet your appetite.  I am a huge proponent of the library, and we spend at least one day a week there, not just during the summer either.

There are also Adult only programs at the libraries.  Classes to learn about technology, knitting clubs, movie nights, and book clubs.  Lots of opportunities to get out of the house, meet people and get involved.

Some of the programs require registration so make sure to call to reserve yourself a spot for the event.

So I say again, being the very pushy person that I am, take a minute to look at the New Castle County Happenings Guide.  You’ll be glad you did!

Happy Adventuring.

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