DIY- How to build a balance beam

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My daughter has been doing gymnastics for the last year. She really wants to improve to go up a level and in order to improve she needs to practice. One of the two pieces of gym equipment she has been asking for was a balance beam. Sturdy balance beams start around $180-$200 on the web. I couldn’t find any nearby on Craigslist. During my research … [Read more...]

Kids’ games and activities quick reference guide

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Winter break is here and we all know that after a day of high of no school and no homework, kids will start falling into the bottomless pit of boredom. In order to help them find alternative ways to keep busy, I prepared this quick guide filled with game ideas, toys in our house, arts & craft activities we do and physical activities. You can … [Read more...]

Snow activities for children in Instagram photos

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We try to make the most of the long, cold winter with kids. I have been chronicling our activities with snow, indoors and outdoors. Here are some of them, for kids to have fun and keep busy. Simple snowman. Or fashinable snow kitty. Ice sculpting. Just leave a water filled bucket out overnight. Put the ice it in a tray. Let your young artist … [Read more...]

Adler Planetarium Astro Overnights

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We attended Adler Planetarium's Astro Overnights for kids, the first week of November. Even though we visit Adler at least once every year, neither I nor the children have visited Adler after dark. It was an evening well spent. Everyone including adults had great time and learned stuff that we didn't know. The weather was very mild that evening. … [Read more...]

Easy butterfly wing cape for children

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I had no plans to sew a butterfly wing cape for my daughter, until I came along with this amazing fabric at Hancock Fabrics. It is a sheer fabric with eye catching rainbow colors. All my materials were rainbow colored, including fabric, ric rac border and the thread. Materials:  3/4 yards sheer / light fabric (60" width) Ric Rac … [Read more...]

Geocaching: A Modern Day, Global Treasure Hunt

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Happy Earth Day! Last year, during summer, our local public library held a small workshop on geocaching. I’d heard about it from few parents but didn’t have time to research myself. We learned what geocaching is, downloaded the app and searched and found our very first cache during the workshop. It sounded really fun, mostly for kids but … [Read more...]

Fun activity ideas for long rides and flights

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We've completed yet another successful long flight to Aruba and back. I am quite experience in entertaining children in long flights and road trips, as you can read in this post titled, Preparing for long flights and trips with babies and young children. Good news is it gets easier, as attention span of children grows by age. Parents or caregiver … [Read more...]

DIY – LEGO table and storage

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Our new LEGO table or workstation was really easy to put together. Main item is the large IKEA Linmonn table that gives enough space to work on for 2 children. We have 10 x 10 plates but I don't have any plans to glue them down. IKEA Adde chairs are better fit than their old IKEA Mammut chairs. (On the table: Organizing LEGO instruction … [Read more...]

Redesigning our playroom

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I have been working on a lengthy project in our basement, which is our children's playroom.  It's been quite a while since we set up for early learning, then preschool and kindergarten, while my son already outgrew a lot of stuff, including games, toys and furniture. This summer, I decided to take on a complete overhaul and update the … [Read more...]

National Robotics Week at the MSI Chicago

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National Robotics Week started on Saturday, April 6 with many showcases and activities running throughout the day at the Museum of Science and Industry of Chicago. Roboweek will continue until Sunday, April 14. We could not miss it because my son is crazy about robots and my daughter is influenced by her big brother. we recently got our … [Read more...]

Repurposing old mattress as a trampoline

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We used to own a little toddlers/preschoolers trampoline when my son was about 2.5 years-old. It was relatively safe with less bouncy center and two padded handles on each side. After my daughter started to get up and cruise, she played with it a lot as well. Then they outgrew that trampoline. However, living in Chicago we still needed an indoor … [Read more...]

How to detangle dolls’ hair

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This post can be a great subject for "First World Problems" meme. My daughters doll's hair is tangled. What do I do? Well, there is a solution for that, believe it or not. You need: Woolite (You can also use fabric softener as well. I don't use softener and woolite works.) What is called a wig brush Water. Mix half a cup of water … [Read more...]

Winter Activity: Snowflake / Snow Crystal Observation

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Just in time for the winter activities, provided by Chicago Public Library, it started to snow on Christmas Day in Chicago. Chicago Public Library has very well-thought holiday and vacation programs. Like the "Reading Program" during the summer, they had the Winter Learning Program" for the winter break. We have a really nice Children's Librarian … [Read more...]

Organizing LEGO instruction booklets

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I've written how I tried to contain the LEGO parts mess by storing them in ziplocs by color in this post. Since LEGO’s are both of my kids' the favorite toys and the toy that they spend time playing the most, we are continually accumulating new models. After I organized the parts and pieces, the instruction booklets started to become a bigger part … [Read more...]

Halloween activity – Skeleton puzzle

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This is one of the kids' favorite activities around Halloween. I was inspired by Chasing Cheerios‘s building skeleton post. I downloaded the printable skeleton from this address and printed them on cardstock. Then I laminated and cut them. The set has a visual guideline. I am planning to let my son play with it as a puzzle for a while. Then maybe I … [Read more...]

Toys, games and activities Rolodex for kids

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Kids' playroom is organized in a way where they can easily see and reach their toys and materials. Everything has a place. I rotate some of them in order to reduce disinterest due to ADD and stimulation overload. I decided to create a toy, game and activity Rolodex as a reference guide for them as well as myself, to refer to, when we scratch our … [Read more...]

Cheap Cheap

I got hooked on craigslist.com, dollar and thrift stores. This happened because I saw on other mom blogs and homeschooling blogs, moms creating inspirational playrooms or classrooms , shopping from dollar and thrift stores. I got amazing deals for furniture and other stuff. I got these shelves for $10 each. … [Read more...]