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Stop and Take Notice to What Your Child can Teach You
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#Halloween - Happy Monster Family
Happy Pumpkin family an Easy Fun and Inexpensive #Halloweencraft
Happy St Pattys Day Enjoy some #Leprechaunmagic

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Haunted House Craft
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good old fashioned fun

It's #ThankfulThursday - What are you #thankful for? #Flowers -

Yesterday, my daughter and I decided to take a #naturewalk with some friends.  The two girls were going crazy stopping and picking every wildflower and #flower from every bush, plant and tree they could find.   It was a beautiful fall day and I was #thankful for the moment spent with my child and friend.  My friend and I delighted in watching our daughters enjoy the #naturewalk as much as we did. 

I didn't realize that my daughter had picked so many #flowers until we arrived home and I asked her to take them out of her back pack before they all died and wilted.  She asked me for a bowl to put them in water.  She took her time arranging each and every #flower as if she was working on a masterpiece.  I guess in away she was, her masterpiece, she took each #flower one by one and delicately arranged them in each bowl.  At one point, she told me she even wanted to be a florist as well as a vet when she grows up!

As you can see, she arranged them beautifully!!  We have set them out on our kitchen  table to enjoy!  I don't think my friend did, but that is ok....this is our "thing"  making something out of something to enjoy without spending any money.  Stopping and smelling the roses of life.  Taking the time and making the time together to create memories that last a lifetime.  Making us both better, #momskidsandfriends.  

We are fortunate enough to live, where there are still wildflowers and #flowers on bushes and trees.  If you live somewhere where there are no #flowers still blooming, still take the #naturewalk and see what amazing things you can find..... leaves, pine cones, rocks or unique branches.  Take a #naturewalk, enjoy the day with your child and friend, take a moment to  enjoy life, enjoy #mothernature, enjoy each other, enjoy this wonderful place we call plant #earth. 

It's #thankfulthursday What are you #thankful for?

All of my best,  Dyan

What we learned:  About different kinds of #flowers, bushes and plants,  not to pick #flowers from someone's yard - unless you ask of course!  Spending time with friends outdoors is refreshing and fun, more about our friends and what we have in common with others, arranging #flowers is fun, relaxing and makes a beautiful centerpiece for our kitchen table, having fun and learning does not need to cost money, putting down our cell phones is not only good for us but great for our kids!!  #nocellphoneforaday


What we shared:   A wonderful day together making memories, pictures of our #flower arrangements - we sent as a thank you note (w the picture) for the day spent w/ our friends.



















#HappyStPatricksDay


Saint Patricks Day is quickly approaching...I can't believe we are half way through March!  Hopefully you are planning some fun activities or some special surprises for your kid (s).  Please enjoy some ideas from the past!  #HappyStPatricksDay 


#HappyStPatricksDay or as my daughter still calls it Happy St. Leprechauns Day!!  

This year was a fun morning for her!!  Green toilets and all...I spilled some green food coloring on my hand, but some how she didn't notice (despite her very observant nature) as I made her lunch and got her off to school.  
This years #Leprechaun.
She was so excited to wake and see if the #Leprechaun ate his gold coin from last night and to see if he turned the toilets green and if the #Leprechaun left her any treats.  
This year she somehow managed to remember that she leaves actual coins for the Leprechaun and he leaves her a chocolate gold coin a day (every morning) in exchange for her coin (that she makes a wish with every night).  I told her I didn't remember it that way, but she insisted and she is having so much fun making wishes I couldn't resist playing a long. 

As she feel asleep last night we talked about the past couple years of St Pattys day, what it means and what the #Leprechaun did in our home.   It was fun to relive the memories with her, as she started to drift off to sleep, she wondered what this year would bring.  

#St.PattricksDay PicturesI decided not to go too crazy and found a green lunch bag, drew a lucky shamrock on it and put a bottle of green bubbles, green mints and gold coins in it for her.  Much, much simpler than years past.   She was delighted as the mints are her new favorite candy.  

She checked all the toilets (to see if they were green), it was a fun way to start her day, not to mention to get her out of bed on time and ready for school.  
On our way leaving our neighborhood, she noticed a Shamrock Farms delivery truck pass by us and said "Mom, it is going to be a lucky day!"  I love the fact that she is so positive, so observant and so reminiscent of my mother, who always believed in old wives tales and luck! May the luck of the #Leprechaun be with you this St. Pattys day!  
May all your wishes and rainbow dreams come true!  
All of my best,  Dyan


Practice #Patience with your kid - #Baking a good learning tool

Practice #Patience with your kid - Baking a good learning tool

We all need a little #patience, right?  I think there was a song about that…. If you are lucky enough to be a #patient person, I wish I was more like you!  One way that I practice #patience is when I am #baking with my daughter.  I love to #bake!  And this time of year is the best time to #bake.  It is like a switch goes off and my oven is in use all the time.  Something to do with the fresh cool air and the holidays right around the corner and my need to reconnect with myself and my family through good old fashioned #baking.  

My daughter and I have enjoyed this shared experience since she could stand up next to me in the kitchen (she even was my audience while still in her high chair).  Every time we #bake, I come to the same conclusion… I love creating things with her in the kitchen, I am a bit of a control freak (a this is how we do it kind of person - so is my daughter) and I have to be #PATIENT! 

This past week we did all things #pumpkin.  #Pumpkin pancakes – yum!  #Pumpkin cheesecake, #pumpkin chia seed pudding – yum yum!! (See Holiday page for recipe).

Filling cupcake holders.One way to practice #patience with your kid is to #bake.  I find that when I #bake with my daughter I have to practice patience, real patience.  She is eager to learn and create.  She loves to measure, mix and pour. She has always loved to create things in a bowl making some concoction or another.  I am a good baker, I always have been.  But I know that it takes patience, correct measurements, time and having the mix of the right ingredients. 

Since she was little I had to always take a deep breath to let her do the work, pouring, sifting, folding, stirring, measuring whatever the next step was, I had to take a step back and let her do it.  This simple small step has given me the ability to teach her and grow with her in the kitchen.  Even if it means, cracked eggshells in your dish, liquids spilled on the counter, flour everywhere, licked fingers in the bowl for the second, third or fourth time. 
I tell myself she is learning, growing and one day will be a good baker and it is OK to make the mess as long as you clean it up, right?  

Having fun learning and practicing patience!Over the past several years I am finding that I am finally becoming more #patient.  I am standing back and letting her have some control.  After all, there are so many valuable lessons, learning opportunities and quality time spent with #baking (I always want this to be something fun we do together), not to mention the delicious creations you can make!

#Patience with #baking is not only practice for you, but for your kid.  My daughter is always in the hurry up and pour, create and taste mood. She also likes to have complete control.  While #baking I take the time to tell her the importance of correct measuring, mixing and the many safety rules of a kitchen.  She has to practice #patience too, which is why this is such a valuable educational task for both of you.

Still don’t think you can be #patient?

If you cannot stand to relinquish the control…you can do what one of my friends does.  She gives some ingredients to her daughter including her own bowls and measuring cups and lets her make her own in her own bowl.  A good way to mix fun and learning without having to be so #patient.

All of us could use a bit more #patience.  In this time and age we live in, it seems everywhere I turn people are getting more and more impatient.  Standing in line at a store, traffic light, school pick-up, with your kids, your spouse….the list goes on and on.  I am just as guilty as the next and have really been trying to focus on being #patient in every aspect of my life, with everyone that I interact with on a daily basis.  Deep breathing, thinking before I act and now #baking.  Grab your favorite cookbook, google your favorite recipe, get your kid in the kitchen and spend some quality time #baking.  All of my best, Dyan

What I learned:  Be more flexible, lighten up and that messes and mistakes are okay.

What we learned:  #Baking improves many skills and is a wonderful learning tool. Depending on your childs age many things can be learned and/or introduced to them.  How to organize ingredients, counting, measuring properly wet and dry ingredients, pouring, cracking eggs, stirring, reading the recipe and labels on ingredients, teamwork, textures of the ingredients, patience, creativity, an everyday task has a plethora of educational value, introducing the concept of fractions, clean-up, kitchen safety the list goes on….what a great way to be with each other, create something delicious and special for yourselves and family.

Get up and bake time - pumpkin cupcakes...yum!What we shared:  A morning of fun, good old-fashioned quality time, laughs, good food, creating memories and practicing #patience together!!

#November a time to #bethankful


#November – a time to #bethankful.  As Halloween and October have come to a close, I look forward to the month of #November.  For me, it is a time to #bethankful!  Don’t get me wrong, I am #thankful for each and every day, this time of year though, I think, I am more aware or at least I try to be.  I have asked my daughter each day this month what she is #thankful for today.  So far, she has told me - family, her dogs (all 4 of them) and life!  I loved her third one – life!
I am #thankful for my health, so I can live each day to its fullest, for my family…my daughter whom I love dearly and who inspires me every day, for my husband, whom I love, cherish and am #grateful for his flexibility with me and the perfect fall day yesterday!  My daughter and I spent the afternoon at the park.  It was cool with a gentle wind, but sunny to keep us warm.  We played kickball, basketball (she made her first 3 basketball free throws ever...granny shots on a regulation net-pretty exciting for her) rode bikes and scooters, rolled down hills, did life size shadow puppets and blew bubbles and chased after them.  What an awesome day we had, we had not spent a day like that in a long time and it was wonderful just to relax, hang out and play.  Not to mention playing is great for you whether you’re 6 or any age!   

make the time for your kids play kickball
make the time for quality time with your kidsmake the time with your kids play basketball                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
fun things to do with your kid at the parkFull size shadow puppets with your kids imagination at its best                                                                                                                                                                                    As we proceed into the month of  #November, I will relish each moment of time. Whether it is interacting with my daughter, husband, family, friends or following my dreams.  Take some time today to reflect on your life and everything you are #thankful for in your life.  #bethankful
 Talk with your kids to see what they are #thankful for, teach them the importance of #gratitude.  Remember to make the time and take the time to spend with your kids, loved ones or yourself this #November.  Create new memories, new traditions, follow old traditions and savor each and every one.  I have some wonderful ideas for crafts, recipes and to #bethankful, starting with what to do with those pumpkins that didn't get decorated or carved this year...so check back often.
 All of my best Dyan

Check out my songs for moms and kids page #childrensmusic

I have added a preview of a couple of my songs to my Songs for moms and kids page....get ready to get your happy on with Swing, Swing, Swing!  I hope you enjoy listening to the preview.  All of my best, Dyan
#childrensmusic

Being present with your kids - good old fashioned fun

Let's move on to more positive things shall we...like being present with your kids.  With the first month of school behind us, I am finding that I am finally getting into a routine.  As I look back at this first month, I have been overwhelmed with many responsibilities that I had to take care of and I am actually grateful for the time my daughter has been in school because it has been easier on both of us to juggle my time of getting things done and spending time with her.  While I miss the free days of summer...doing what ever we want whenever we want...I am realizing that the time I do have with her (outside of her activities and school) have become more precious than ever. 
Yesterday we had a good old fashioned play day with lots of activities and fun!  It was the best day I have spent with her in a while and I know the best day she has spent with me!  We started the day with making home made blueberry vegan pancakes, even though loaded with lots of good things like flax, fiber and antioxidants they were delicious, she even agreed!  You learn so many great things when you cook with your child.  How to measure, mix, fold in ingredients, pouring...the teaching opportunity is endless. 
We watched baby videos...one of her and my very special things to do.  It was a rainy morning which we don't get very often, so we took advantage by watching a few old videos laughing and enjoying her earlier years...of course I do get melancholy and reminiscent of the days gone by...but I am grateful for everyone of those videos and times I spent with my daughter. 
We went outside and splashed in the puddles and stood in the rain and then looked for rainbows when the sun came out.  Unfortunately, we didn't see one, but the point is we did get a chance to look for one. 
Went swimming, played keep it up, dived for rings and had seahorse races around the pool on our noodles. 
Inside to make a video card to send to her parents for grandparents day, a craft out of my favorite kids magazine,  High Five - (traveling tic tac toe -please see link), mango smoothies, hide-n-seek, finished up the day with a wonderful dinner, game of memory and reading 4 books to complete her reading log for the week.  Sound tiring??  I guess it kind of does, but it wasn't, not at all. 
It was a day that we both needed to reconnect and take advantage of nothing but our time together and a day of good old fashioned fun!  I loved it and so did she!
I was thinking about my day, as I always do before I go to bed, I was grateful for every second we spent together, every moment.  When I went back into her room last night to put her books away (after recording them in her book log for school), she said "Mommy, I love you," in her sweet little voice.  My heart melted as it always does when she says nice things.  I am sure she had been reflecting on the day herself as she was falling asleep and thinking of all the fun she had too! 
Take advantage of your time with your kids, they are getting older every day and it seems like our lives are in super sonic speed these days.  Make each moment of your time with your kid count, do something fun, learn something new, do things that they want to do.  Take the time and make the time to be present with your kid.  The smallest of efforts will grow your family bond and make everyone happy.  Make your next time together a day of good old fashioned family fun, turn off the computer, don't answer any phone calls and make it all about the family. All of my best Dyan
 
What I learned:  all of us need a day of good old fashioned fun, every moment I have free and my child has free should be used to create family bonds and wonderful memories, how good my daughter is at memory game, how nice it is to take a stress free relaxing day with family - an opportunity that should never be passed up!
What we shared:  fun, fun, fun, cooking-learning new cooking techniques like folding in ingredients, how to read fractions on our measuring cup, good healthy food, fresh air, love and strengthened our bond. 
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