Yet another playground

Look: A friend recommended a local township park. The directions she gave had me wondering what it would be like. I was thinking it would be small and oddly placed. IT WAS AMAZING! They had two toddler friendly playgrounds and swings fenced in (good planning). There were tons of beautiful green playing fields and a nicely situated lake with a neat little bridge. Sprawling in and out of all these good things was a walking trail.
Learn: Always try the recommendations of your mom friends, they won't steer you wrong.
Love: This is my new favorite park and I will be visiting it at least once a week for playground and workout time!



Look: We needed to kill an hour before Daddy got home, so we headed to the library to pick up our reserved books. This was the first time I let C try the computer. In the past I've seen tons of kids her age using them, but wasn't sure if she'd enjoy them. And the result...LOVE at first click! It didn't hurt that it was Sesame Street on the computer. I let her play one game then I knew I wanted to go out to enjoy the weather at the township playground. She didn't want to leave, I had to hit exit and pretend the computer had no more games.
Learn: Chelsea's mind is growing faster than her little body. Simply put...she is a genius! Ha, a mother always thinks this!
Love: I love going to the Library and I hope we can get into one computer game each time we go!


Look: Today I made a racetrack on an old cereal box. We have tons of cute little cars and lately both of my kids have been playing with them more. We made a parade of cars, raced some and launched them off the end. After using the tracks we made the cars go everywhere, over the couch, table and across the floor.
Learn: I thought C would be able to follow a track, not so much! I even had made a harder track to try with the little cars but she couldn't keep the cars on the simple figure eight. This is something we'll revisit.
Love: Cars are fun, C and G get so excited to see them on our walks. I'm going to look for more ways to incorporate cars into our playtime!



Look: I threw a blanket over the baby gate and voila...a puppet show. I did a bunch of different songs and routines for them. Gavin could be heard squealing from behind the curtain. Chelsea kept talking to the puppets and trying to hug them. When I stopped, C asked to try it. So I put her on the other side and she imitated most of what I did. G was thrilled by this show too.
Learn: I didn't realize how many puppets we had around the house. I had 3 scrubby bath mitts that were actually puppets. As shower gifts I had gotten some cute finger puppets on the presents. Add these to our Elmo and Dog puppet and we had quite a show.
Love: Each time I stopped Gavin would squeal and Chelsea would yell more. What a great feeling that I was doing something so fun they were clamoring for it never to end.

Hiking in Hickory Run State Park

Look: Another great trip to the Poconos. We are loving finding new places near our vacation spot. On this day we hiked on some trails and found a terrific beach, complete with a dam, waterfall and stream. We even found some tadpoles in between the rocks.
Learn: Nature is the best! Yes, we love Elmo and cuddling on the couch...but there is nothing like being out and about seeing gorgeous sights!
Love: Although it made me sad, its clear that Chelsea loves our trips. She cried this weekend when it was time to come home and spent the first 20 minutes of the trip crying "Pocos, pocos" translated as poconos. Earplugs please!


Dinner Out in Jim Thorpe

Look: This activity was more for Mommy and Daddy. Because of C's allergies we hardly go out to eat. This means lots of cooking for me. But over the weekend we went out to eat! We found a neat little mexican restaurant and had dinner like civilized adults.
Learn: This is still very tricky to do. But I loaded up G and C's bag with dinner foods for them and Chris and I actually got a nice break. Both kids enjoyed looking around the restaurant and seeing all the festive mexican decorations.
Love: I always dread these sort of things, but then I end up enjoying it immensely. It should become a monthly ritual!


Gavin relaxing in a chair

Look: Another great day means more chances for us to play in the yard. Gavin has learned how to climb up stairs. He uses this skill to climb into little chairs. He spent a good half hour climbing in and out of this adirondack chair. Luckily C was busy elsewhere and didn't have a fit over him using it!

Learn: It's so neat to watch a child do something over and over when you have the time to really enjoy it. By the end of the time he was a pro at going up and down!
Love: I loved seeing his little face light up each time he got into the chair. The sense of accomplishment made his little cheeks glow!


Ball Pit

Look: Finally something for Gavin to do! I blew up the baby pool (several times actually) and threw in a whole container of balls. He spent time trying to eat each and every ball. Then he worked on moving them around by pushing his little fists under the balls and shaking vigorously. Finally he sat for over five minutes (heaven for Mommy) taking balls out and putting them back in.
Learn: I have a friend who did this for a playdate back when Chelsea was almost one. She loved it! I need to revisit those activites that made her squeal because I'm sure they would delight Gavin as well.

Love: Most of the toys in are yard are for both kids, but Gavin doesn't get the full enjoyment. This special activity was really tailored for him! (But as you can see his sister liked it too)


Chelsea in the Garden

Look: It has been beautiful this week, so we're out every chance we get. I have a ton of gardening to do (if you saw my yard, you'd say it's more than a ton). So a few times when G man was napping, I snuck outside with C to get some stuff done.

Learn: Equipment is key. I have kid sized shovel and watering can which thrilled my little girl. I ended up getting a lot done.
Love: I love watching Chelsea play and mimic the things I'm doing. She was a good little garden helper! But there is still a lot left to do.


Play Dough!

Look: Today we broke out the play dough for the first time. We waited until G was napping (because he'd surely think this was a snack!). C really enjoyed rolling it, squishing it and pushing objects into it. She didn't really understand how to use the toys, but she enjoyed it none the less.
Learn: Play Dough must smell like food, Millie ate a big blob of it. Mental note...put dog inside before playing with the dough.
Love: This was one of my favorite toys when I was little so it was especially fun watching C play with it!

Making Salad

Look: I've started to let Chelsea help with more cooking things. I took out a few great cookbooks from the library for kids and it showed a ton of ways that kids can help in the kitchen that I had never thought of. We had a lot of fun ripping the lettuce, washing it, spinning it and then serving it.

Learn: Toddlers can help a lot. This activity even got Chelsea to put salad willingly on her plate. But she did not eat it, but permitting it on her plate is progress!
Love: I love the pic of her with the salad, she was so proud to serve it and show Daddy and Gavin!


Cutting Fruit

Chelsea got these velcro plastic fruit for her Birthday. It came with a cute knife to pretend to cut with. She plays with them a lot. In the video its just before bed time and she is having a blast with them.


Race for the Cure

Look: It's Mother's Day! I can't think of any better way to celebrate than walking through the city to raise money for Breast Cancer. Cancer has truly affected my family in so many ways, so this walk was great. We brought Grandma along for the 5k walk. There was beautiful weather and we all had fun. C and G were very good sitting in their stroller for the entire thing! At the end we sat and had a mini picnic in front of the art museum.

Learn: I need to do more things downtown with the kids. I used to be such a city gal until I moved to the burbs. The thought of going into Philly had made me nervous, but this race renewed my desire to get out and see all the city has to offer.

Love: I loved walking the race with my family.



Look: Okay, another playground post. On this day we were just able to sneak out for a little bit after naps. The weather wasn't the greatest, but we saw the chance and jumped on it!
Learn: As you can see C really thinks she is a big girl. She wants to walk everywhere these days. Getting her back in the stroller is the tough part. G is getting quite big too now, he wants to try the stuff he sees his sister doing. Kids really do grow right in front of your eyes!
Love: I love that spring is here!

A Run

Look: Today was the rainy, wet Broad Street Run. I have been training for it since February, but was still very nervous about finishing and running in the rain. We also weren't sure if Chris was going to bring the kids because of the weather. But as you can see in the pics. Chelsea and Gavin came to the race and I finished it!
Learn: Running this race was very confidence boosting. I set a goal and reached it!

Love: The best part of the race was seeing my family near the finish line!