Play

Whether playing outside in nature, playing games, or playing with experiments, these activities will engage children’s curiosities and promote creative and critical thinking…mindsets that support children as they grow into a world that values independent thinking.

Magic Potion Party


Magic Potion Party

Remember when you were a kid and your mom let you use some of her lotion and baby powder to make potions in her bathroom? Or maybe you did this without her permission (like a certain person I know). I remember these secret mixology experiments like it was yesterday. It might be one of my top five happiest childhood memories.

Recently, I went to meet Rachelle of Tinkerlab at a book signing. I love her new book! It’s filled with all sorts of nuggets about parenting, education, art, tinkering, and creativity. When I got to the section on potions, I felt as excited as my 8-yr old self! I knew that the kids had to do this with their London cousins, who were over for a visit. It was going to be the most awesome, messy, beautifully-scented potion party that ever was.

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your support!

Here’s what you’ll need for your potion party:

~ Lots of old, half used bottles of lotion, creams, baby powder, shaving cream, salt, sand…and any other materials good for mixing.

~ Clear glasses from your cabinet (be prepared to use every last one because the kids won’t stop mixing until the cabinet is cleared out!)

~ Liquid watercolors (you don’t need this whole set, just a few colors ~ they are great to have around for painting) or food coloring, mixed down with some water (1/2 and 1/2 mixture) // I tried to keep the colors in the same family so that it didn’t end up making brown.

~ Droppers (these are kind of important for mixing so get yourself some! Remember to squeeze first, then put the dropper in the liquid, then let go…this technique will be learned quickly as they go.)

~ Funnels (optional, but kids love putting things in funnels).

~ Stirring spoons, we used craft sticks .

~ A pitcher of water, make it a small pitcher ~ you will have to keep filling it up, though, but this way they can pour themselves.

~ Collection of leaves, flowers, twigs, or anything found outside around your house

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

There are no directions to a potion party. Just let them mix!

empty cabinet after making magic potions

I love how I neatly put out one glass for all of them (thinking back to my minimalistic childhood). As if! In the end, they were climbing up to the top shelf to get the wine and beer glasses. They refused to be finished, it was just too much fun!!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

They stirred, poured, sniffed, whisked, touched, and even tasted their potions. They made their own colors, perfecting the shades with each new mixture. The littlest one first started out making very dark colors, then she realized if she added shaving cream (white), the colors would become pastel. What a discovery!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

When they finished making their potions, I had them each tell me about what they made, and what they might name their concoctions. This was such a fun last step, they really thought hard about their names and then had some good giggles. Here are some of their names:

Aridex Foot Ointment // Aquamarine Skin Care //  The Broken Joint // Blueland // Mr. Penguin // Purple Masterpiece // Relaxation Sensation // Pinky Winky Bath Soap

If I’d thought ahead a bit more I would have made them little labels for their potions. What a fun birthday party idea!

kids love mixing potions ~ let them also name their concoctions and you will be astonished by their creativity!

I insist that you let your kids have a potion party. It really is a mess, but contained to one table. It’s basically just a lot of dishes. It’s so worth it, though. I think they will remember this day forever.

xo, Bar

 

 

Rhode Island Summers


Rhode Island Summers

My husband’s parents have a house in Westerly. We’ve spent every summer there since my oldest daughter was born. I love it there for so many reasons, but the biggest reason of all is the time my kids get to spend with their grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. It’s a week where they don’t fight with each other because they are too busy running into the ocean waves with their cousins, or playing massive games of whiffle ball, or scheming about how to get one more morning of donuts for breakfast. On cloudy days we go to the water slides in Misquamicut, on rainy days we go bowling and out to our fave pizza place. Mystic Seaport is half an hour away…a place where you can go back in time and make candles, or visit the aquarium and see the cutest sea lions.

A walk down the beach brings us to the best climbing rocks, and a walk across the parking lot gets us to the big pond where the water is still like glass, and warm. If the boat is working, we can go tubing, or just park it in the middle of the pond and jump off the sides. Watch Hill is a 15 minute drive. We go here sometimes for a little shopping, to check out the beautiful homes (Taylor Swift’s place is pretty amazing), and to visit their favorite candy shop. The Ocean House just got rated one of the top five hotels in the country. Someday I want to spend a night there!

Rhode Island holds years of memories for all of us. My oldest said to me on this last trip that she loves it so much she never wants to go on any other vacation ever again. Only Rhode Island. It feels like home, she said.

These photos are from my Instagram feed. Follow me and say hello!

xo Bar

 

Art for Littles


Art for Littles

Good morning! Today I am sharing yet another killer collection of simple art & play ideas for your little ones.

From top left: Spin art sun catchers from Meri Cherry // Rainbow color mixing from Simple as That // Credit card art from Housing a Forest // Hole punch art by Learn with Play at Home // Monster blow paintings from Raising Sparks // Styrofoam sculptures from The Artful Parent // Play with fabric scraps from Paint on the Ceiling // Easy weave bracelets by Willow Day // Clothespin caterpillars from Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom // Scrap paper collage from Art Bar // Watercolor art from Blog Me Mom // Kandinsky egg carton art from Whatever

Have a great week! xo, Bar