Farm Clean Up Sensory Play

What’s Mila’s favorite part about spring, minus the flowers and nice weather? All the baby animals! This Farm Clean Up Sensory Play idea is a perfect way to talk about new baby animals AND have fun being messy too.

This interactive play was easy to set up and let her play for a long time. The best part… it’s completely edible too.

First, I want to say a HUGE thank you to Terra by Battat for gifting Mila these animals to play with. They have these big Bucket Sets full of different types of animals that are amazing. Terra by Battat sent us farm animals, marine animals, and a few other goodies that we love.

Their toys are super realistic and come in their own world. Mila has spent hours with both the buckets. The marine animals have became her favorite bath tub toys. I’ll be posting different ways we’re playing with them. You should still totally check Terra by Battat out though. Would make perfect Easter presents!

Anyways…

When I saw the country world bucket, I instantly thought of this fun sensory play. To further create this world, here’s what you’ll need:

The hardest part of this sensory play is the set up. It just takes a little time, but it’s worth it.

To set the scene, all you need to do is spread chocolate pudding in one part of your sensory tray. I also added some crushed kix cereal to make it look more realistic.

I also made sure to make the animals ‘muddy’ too. Honestly, I didn’t know if Mila would want to do that so it just made it a little more fun for me.

Then, I set up the cleaning area. This just consisted of a wash cloth, cleaning brush, and soapy water. It was nice doing the water in a bowl because Mila instantly thought it was a bathtub! Which works for me.

The next little area was where the animals dried off. I just used shredded paper and tissue paper.

After it was all ready for her, I just let her do whatever. When we do sensory set ups like this, I try not to give her too much direction. She immediately started cleaning off the animals.

It was so cute to listen to her too. She pretended she was a zookeeper and it was cleaning day.

After the first clean up was done, she made the animals muddy again and kept the process going. I loved watching how creative she was through it all.

I think this activity would have been even better outside with more space, but it worked well inside too.

The clean up for this activity was really easy too. All I did was recycle the paper. Then I just used water to clean everything else off. It was quick and simple!

I have a feeling we’ll definitely be doing this set up again in the near future. Until then, I can’t wait to show you the other fun activities we have planned with the marine world bucket. It was another hit with Mila.

Make sure to check out Terra by Battat and order realistic play animals that your kids will love.


What edible sensory play do you do with your kids? I would love to hear ideas.

DIY Leprechaun Trap

Are you looking for a little luck until next St. Patricks’s Day? Then it’s time to make a DIY Leprechaun Trap.

This fun trap was made out of items around the house and printables from Whimsically Wonderful. It also was fun to creatively collaborate with Mila and keep the magic of St. Patrick’s Day going.

If there was a classified ad for this DIY Leprechaun Trap, I think it would read something like this…

If you’re a weary leprechaun looking for a comfy place to rest for the night… or next year… You have to stay at The Rainbow Hotel!

Filled with a comfy bed, free gold, and magical decor, you’ll love your stay. You won’t miss The Rainbow Hotel because all you have to do is follow the rainbow exterior and the shamrock on the door.

Plus, it’ll only cost you a little luck.

Honestly, I’d want to stay in The Rainbow Hotel too. I just don’t have too much luck to give.

Anyways, here’s what we used for our DIY Leprechaun Trap:

Putting this together was really easy, but took some time.

It was a lot of cutting, gluing, and making sure everything looked cute in the right place.

It took us about an hour to cut and glue everything on, but it looked so cute. The best part of making leprechaun traps is everyone’s is going to look different and unique. I think this one celebrates how Mila and I are and view life.

Now it’s time to catch our leprechaun. You can only catch them on St. Patrick’s Day, so make sure you have yours ready!


Do you ever make leprechaun traps? If you do let me know how you made the next day special in the comments.

DIY Color Changing Shamrock Sign

The magic of St. Patrick’s Day keeps flowing, especially with this DIY Coloring Changing Shamrock Sign.

Littles will be amazed watching blue and yellow make green! You can also use this sign to help trap those pesky leprechauns. They’ll be attracted to the magic.

Mila has been super curious in two different things: leprechauns and how to make colors.

To be able to give her both in one day, we did a magical craft that we’ll use to bait leprechauns. It’s really been fun to hear all her ideas of how to catch a leprechaun. She had fun making magic like them!

Plus, we love an activity with a simple set up! This one gives you just that with some leprechaun magic too! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Blue Paint
  • Yellow Paint
  • Black Paint
  • Gold Paint
  • Canvas
  • Plastic Wrap

All you need to do is pour some blue and yellow paint on a blank canvas. I actually had the canvas in a sensory bin to keep the mess at bay.

Then, I had Mila place plastic wrap on top and told her to mix all the colors.

For that part, I really had to tell her it was okay to get messy. She was really moving the plastic wrap around which mixed it up quicker. At first I think she was afraid of the messy paint!

Once it’s combined, take the plastic wrap off and let it dry.

To add a little more magic, I painted on a shamrock, ‘lucky,’ and splattered gold paint. I think it turned out as magical as a leprechaun would like.


What’s your favorite St. Patrick’s Day saying to put on signs?

Wooden Rainbow Stacker Play

If there’s one toy purchase I’m happy to have made, it’s this Wooden Rainbow Stacker. Not only is it colorful and meaningful to us, it’s a lot of fun for Mila to play with.

Packed with so many different ways to play, Mila spends hours with this toy.

I discovered this Wooden Rainbow Stacker in 2019. That was when I started buying more wooden toys instead of plastic ones. They’re so much better for our environment and they’ll last for generations.

When researching these toys, I found out so many different benefits to having kids just use their imaginations when playing. Since plain rainbow arches don’t give specific directions of how to play, kids can come up with their own ideas. Parents can also help guide play.

It’s also so beautiful. When Mila isn’t playing with it, it makes a perfect decoration in our playroom. Rainbows are so symbolic for us, so it has many purposes.

I figured I’d let you all know how we play with ours!

Learning Colors

When Mila was little, we used these arches to learn the different colors. It was nice that she could actually pick up the colors of the rainbow when she didn’t have the right words. We sang the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse rainbow song with this so many times to learn the colors. It was always a ton of fun.

As she grew older, I would have her find different objects that were the same color. She really liked this idea! It became a little scavenger hunt around the house for her.

We also would do matching or patterns with the arches too. Since there’s two of every color it made it fun to show her a combination, then she repeated!

Imaginative Play

Since these arches are so big, they make fabulous houses. Mila is always playing with her little dolls on these. I think it’s so cute to listen and see how her brain makes these wonderful play scenarios.

She also makes different shapes with them. It’s incredible to see what she comes up with and how she explains it.

One of my favorite times she used imaginative play is with her unicorns. They all raced through the different arches and even on top of them. It was like Mila came up with her own little world just out of this toy and her My Little Pony’s.

This is what’s so amazing about these plain play items; your child’s imagination will make them what they need to be at that time.

Stacking

Stacking is probably our favorite activity to do with this rainbow stacker now.

As I stated above, we LOVE to make different shapes with our rainbow. Mila loves to do ‘hearts.’ This is where we stack out rainbow like the picture below. We see how far they can balance until they all fall down.

It also is really cool (as an adult) to see how they fall too. It’s really satisfying to har the nose as they go down and just watching it too.

There are so many different shapes kids can make with this. While they’re figuring it out, they’re able to learn! It takes Mila a few times to stack up the shape just as she likes it, but she’s always proud of herself when she finally does it!

Extended Learning

Lately, Mila is at the age where she is learning how to spell her name and simple words. We use resin letters to balance her words on top of the rainbow.

We do little challenges of who can place the most letters on the rainbow arches or who can get their words to stay up the longest. It really helps Mila learn while she’s having fun. That’s really all that it’s about too!

I’m sure as she gets older there will be more and more ways to play with this stacker. It truly has been an investment in her future.


Do you have a rainbow stacker? What games does your kiddo like playing with it?

If you’d like to get a wooden rainbow stacker, you can find it here on Amazon.

DIY Ice Cube Painting

If your child (or you) love to paint and want to try a cool new way to do so, try this DIY Ice Cube Painting.

Mila paints all the time. Usually with acrylic paints on canvas, but a switch was needed. With a little prep, this ice cube painting activity was a morning full of fun and creativity.

Here’s all you’ll need:

Prepping for this activity was really easy. All I did was pick out a few of her go to colors. Then I painted them inside the resin mold.

I tried my best to get a lot in there. It’s be easier if it was squeezable paint bottle.

Before you put water in the mold, set on a baking sheet to freeze. It is near impossible to move a mold full of water without spilling it. This won’t be an issue if you’re using and ice cube tray.

When all the letters are painted, pour water in each of them. I would suggest using something that isn’t going to overflow the mold easy and mix colors. Honestly, I reused an old Starbucks iced coffee glass to pour.

Then, when they’re all filled, place it in the freezer.

When they’re done, you can place them in a tray for your child to paint. We personally used thick stock paper for this painting.

To warm up the ice, Mila dipped her brush in salt. Not only is this activity creative, she learned a little science as well. I just explained to her that salt melts ice and she thought it was so much fun.

The best part of this activity was it was easy to clean up.

I just threw the left over letters back in the tray. Then I put them in the freezer so we can use as after school activities this week! That means I only had to prep once for days of fun!

Using frozen letter cubes is a fun way to introduce more learning too. I used ‘lucky one’ since St. Patrick’s Day is coming. BUT you can spell out whatever to help them learn.

I’ll use the letters in her name to give her some more practice seeing and writing it.

This activity would be perfect in the summer too. You can battle the heat and see if the sun or your child ends up getting done with the ice first.

Either way, this Ice Cube Painting activity is a cool way to create.


What are some fun spring activities your child likes to do? Let me know in the comments.

10 Random Acts of Kindness You Can Do With Your Child.

It’s Random Acts of Kindness Week! There are so many ways to spread kindness and make others smiles. This has been something special to me since I had Jensen.

Now I get to pass it to Mila!

I believe by letting her know it’s important to share happiness, she’ll continue it in the future. Always striving to make her a great human.

Wondering where to start? Here are 10 Random Acts of Kindness you can do with your child and toddler.

Share a gift of love.

This year, Mila and I made these cute little notes for her dance friends. I found them on Sierra L Miller’s Blog and added a scrunchie. They turned out to be a cute little gift and helpful for a little dancer’s hair.

Last year, we made Lollipop Flowers that were a complete hit.

Write a thank you note.

I’m ALL about a classic thank you note. Writing a small note to someone you care about can mean the world. Anytime I send cards or notes now, I have Mila write a little something and sign her name.

Give someone flowers.

One of my favorite ways to spread kindness is being very random. In 2017, I started buying random bouquets of flowers and setting them on cars in parking lots. I never stuck around to see them get their flowers, but would leave a note of Jensen’s story so they could see the reasoning behind the kindness.

It was a fun way to make someone smile and share my Jensen too.

Send a nice video.

Mila LOVES making videos and sending them to our friends and family. One way to make someone smile is to do just this.

You and your child can tell someone how much you love them. It’s guaranteed to be a random act of kindness that they’ll love to receive. The best part, you don’t have to leave your home!

Leave a gift card as a surprise.

This goes along along with the flowers… but leaving random gift cards is a cute way to surprise someone.

Mila and I have left them in books at book stores or just sent them to others when we’re out to eat. You could even leave them at gas station pumps to help someone out.

Paint a rock.

Rock painting was so big and so many people still do it. Mila loves to paint rocks or just find them to give to her grandpa. Painting kind words on a rock and giving them to someone could be a small way to brighten their day.

Tip nicely.

I know a lot of people pay it forward, but it can cause some chaos. Instead of doing this, why not tip your barista or waitress nicely.

Mila loves tipping and this is a fun way to pretend she’s paying!

Make a craft.

Just like getting a thank you card, I love receiving crafts. When I’m making different things, I try to make three extra to give to family and friends. They always smile when seeing Mila’s artwork or something special we made together.

It’s a fun way to share the love when you’re already creating!

Cook someone a meal.

There are so many families that could use the extra help with meals. One friend of ours ordered us pizza one night and it made the whole night (and week) go a lot more smoothly with having it done for us already.

If you usually have leftovers, it would be a beautiful idea to share. I know this has been my favorite on the receiving end.

Kids love cooking and baking too! A perfect way to get them involved as well.

Smile.

The smallest thing you can do with a BIG impact is smile. You never know… it could be their first smile they have seen all day.


I hope you can find something on this list to do with your child for someone you love. Let me know in the comments some acts of kindness you’ve performed.

Toddler DIY: Rainbow Heart Bird Feeders

Looking for ways to spread love and enjoy your local wildlife? Try making these Rainbow Heart Bird Feeders. They’re a great way to have fun with your child and show them the importance of the world around us.

Plus, they turn out really cute AND it doubles as a snack time for your little. A total win-win for every being involved!

This easy DIY Rainbow Heart Bird Feeders only need three items to make create. Here’s what they are:

  • Pipe Cleaners
  • Fruit Loops or Cheerios
  • Yarn

To begin making these, there’s just a simple prep that won’t take too much time at all. All you need to do is pour some fruit loops in a little bowl. Then, twist the pipe cleaners into v’s. Once you do this, your child will be ready to start threading.

Mila and I had talked about making bird feeders before we started this activity. So, she knew what she was supposed to do. We also have threaded with pipe cleaners before too.

If your toddler has never threaded with looped cereal before, I would suggest showing them, thread together, and then they’ll be able to pick it up by themselves. It’s such a good skill for them to have and tremendously helps with their fine motor development; which is beneficial for so many reasons.

Once they have threading down, you can challenge them to do different patterns too.

For Mila, I lined up the Fruit Loops in the order I wanted her to thread. We just did a simple rainbow patter for one of the hearts. This challenged her to find specific colors and to keep the pattern.

When the pipe cleaners are filled with cereal (or your child has snacked on the rest of it), all you need to do is twist the ends of the pipe cleaner together. Then, pinch where the two heart bumps would be at the top. I had to move the cereal around so I could do this and form it into the shape it needed.

After, we just tied yarn to the tops of the heart. We headed outside to find the most perfect tree that our birds fly too.

Mila was very proud to see her Rainbow Heart Bird Feeders on the tree. Then she played out in the snow afterwards too. We love connecting with nature and being outside as much as we can. Thank goodness spring will be here soon!

This bird feeder was a fun way to play and help the animals we love so much. We hope that you’d love to make one too for Valentine’s Day or spring.


Have you ever fed birds before? What’s your favorite way to do so? Let me know in the comments.

DIY Valentine’s Day Cards: You Color My World

Is there anything more nostalgic than a school Valentine’s Day Party? The rush of having a cute card box and picking out the perfect Valentine’s Day card for your friends. They’re little reminders to show your friends that they are loved.

Since this is Mila’s first year at school for the big event, we decided to make a DIY Valentine’s Day Cards.

It’s been so much fun creating for Valentine’s Day. If we hadn’t had so many snow days, I’m unsure whether or not DIY cards would be in the picture, but I’m happy they are.

Mila and I talked about different Valentine’s Day cards and gifts. We decided we liked the phrase, “You Color My World.” Mostly because I pushed it really hard because I was already thinking about crayons

A lot of the elements in these Valentine’s Day cards should look familiar!

On the front of the cards, if you can remember to a few blog posts ago, Mila had already painted the tops of her cards. All I did was take the dry pages and cut them out into small rectangles. Then, I wrote “You Color My World” with glitter markers over it.

For the back, I cut the same size rectangle with white card stock and taped them together. If the back of the painted paper wasn’t messy, I would have skipped this step.

Next, I wrote “to” and the name of Mila’s classmate. Then, I had Mila write her name under the “from.” I think it’s important she keeps writing her name and actively participates in helping with these DIYs.

On the back of the card, I made space either on the side of their names or above for a little gift. Since we were doing “You Color My World,” we had to make personalized crayons.

Last year, I wrote a blog post on how to make these letter crayons.

The short version…

Preheat your oven to 250°.

Then, you need to either buy unwrapped crayons or unwrap a lot of them. When that’s done, you chop them into small pieces to put into a letter mold.

After, pop them in the oven until they’re all melted and wait until they’re hard to get them out of the mold.

The absolute hardest part is getting them out of the mold.

Take your time and you’ll be fine!

To literally wrap these DIY Valentine’s Day cards up, I took different colored yarn and secured the letters on them.

I love how the yarn makes them a little extra special too.

Personally, I think these turned out adorable. It took more time to and effort to make instead of buy, but I think it was worth it!

Mila said she loved them and that’s all that really matters.

Fingers crossed her classmates will feel the same.


Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever made your own Valentine’s Day cards.

Valentine’s Day Painting Activities

Pinks, hearts, and love all around. Valentine’s Day is the perfect holiday to craft and create. To start off the fun, we played around with Valentine’s Day Painting Activities that will be helpful for our crafts all February long.

Even if you’re not ‘crafty,’ you’ll love these easy painting ideas and your kids will have fun with it too.

I think it’s a little obvious that Mila (and I) love painting and being creative. Usually Mila’s go-to colors are pinks and purples, so it just makes Valentine’s Day prep a little more fun.

Since we’ve had a lot of snow days lately, we’ve been experimenting with different ideas of how to express ourselves. All of these listed are simple, BUT they can get really messy. I just like to state that beforehand. I highly suggest putting something down underneath your painting area and putting old clothes on your kids.

That way everything stays safe and clean.

We used four different types of painting styles and I’m going to save our favorite for last. Here’s all the supplies we used for the entire day:

  • Stock paper
  • Paint
  • Bubble wrap
  • Cotton Balls
  • Toilet paper rolls
  • Shaving cream
  • Kraft paper
  • Tray

Bubble Wrap Painting

One fun way to add texture in painting is to use different supplies. Mila and I used bubble wrap last year for a heart garland, so we wanted to redo it again. I actually loved the little dots it creates. It sort of reminds me of honeycombs.

This year, we used WAY too much paint and didn’t get the honeycomb effect. I love the way it did turn out though.We also popped the bubbles too, which was fun for Mila. It made the paint explode out, so beware of that. I think it just looks like a big swirl, but we had the most fun using this method.

With the extra paint, I put it on another piece of craft paper. We’ll use that for wrapping paper.

It’s also a great way to reuse bubble wrap instead of just throwing it away. Always looking for ways to reuse, reduce, and recycle.

Cotton Ball Painting

With toddlers and preschoolers, using anything but paint brushes makes painting way more fun. Cotton balls are a perfect stepping stone for them. Although Mila just used her hands, you can easily add them on clips to make it less messy and easier for kids to grab.

This one seems a little typical to add, but I want to share the reasons I love using cotton balls for painting.

The circle shape is so cute and stays consistent. Mila talked the entire time how she was making circles and was very proud of them. It also holds the paint really neat. It soaks it up and if you mix colors, it gives a cool ombre pattern. Usually I don’t let Mila mix her paint to avoid making brown, but you can do it with cotton balls. You can tell which colors she mixed together.

Even though this is simple, kids activities do not have to be extravagant to get a cute outcome filled with fun.

Toilet Paper Roll Stamp

I promise I won’t go on and on about reusing things around the house, but here’s another example of it. Most people have empty rolls so they’re accessible to use for Valentine’s Day crafts.

The best part, you can easily shape them into little hearts. All you have to do is push down in the middle to get the indent in the top of the heart and press the sides in. It’s super simple to do! I think they’re the cutest little hearts as well.

This was definitely Mila’s favorite painting. She’s obsessed with hearts and draws them constantly. Being able to paint them just made it a little sweeter.

One issue that we ran into is the heart not being even when you press down. If you don’t get them just right, you have to show your child how to get the stamp fully down. For us this time, we just had to rock it from the bottom point then tilt it to the top arches. I only had to show Mila one time how to get a complete heart and then she was all over it.

We’ll 100% be using this technique for a future craft. I’ll make sure to share and link back here just in case you’d like to keep up and see.

Shaving Cream Marbling Art

Out of all of these methods, this is the only one we’ve done for the first time. I’ve been eyeing this technique for a long time, but didn’t think Mila was ready for it. Now we have peaked in our painting. The outcome of this is my favorite, but it was the messiest of the bunch.

For this, all you have to do is put shaving cream in a tray. I used Mila’s sensory one. Then, Mila poured acrylic paint on top of the shaving cream and mixed it around with a paint brush. She might have swirled it a little too much, but the pattern was perfect no matter how she did it. After you have it the way you like, you push the paper in it. Make sure all of it is covered or you’ll have blank spaces. Peel it off the top and use a popsicle stick or old card to scrape off the remaining shaving cream on top. After, let it dry.

We ended up using the same pattern for three sheets of paper and could have easily done more! It was the quickest way to paint and is so unique.

I personally got a ton of shaving cream and paint on my hands through this. Mila saw how messy it was and dipped pretty quick. I would just suggest having wipes close to you or doing this technique by the sink.


Painting with these different styles was a lot of fun and gives us so many opportunities for future projects too. I can’t wait for you all to see what we’re making with these sheets too! Try to guess in the comments what you think we’re making.

Also, I want to say I know I’ve been a little quiet on the blog this month. I’ve been posting more on Instagram and Facebook the last few weeks, but it’s been nice to have a little writing break. We have a ton of fun recipes, activities, and crafts for the rest of this month and February to bring you though! One of them is about our trip to Florida and DISNEY! Let’s just say Mila keeps asking to go back.

For now, I’d love to hear what your favorite crafts and activities you do for Valentine’s Day are in the comments… and again, let me know what you think we’re doing with these sheets too.

Looking for other fun Valentine’s Day activities? Check these out:

Snow Globe Sensory Bin

There’s so much magic when a person gets to shake a snow globe. It’s a whole work in your hands. Snow Globe Sensory Bins are even more magical and fun to explore.

If your child loves snow globes, they’re going to love this play idea.

Mila has a slight obsession with snow globes.

On her first Christmas, she got multiple ones from different people. We still have all (but one), that are all set up in her room. My parents also get her snow globes from every place they visit. To say we have a mini snow globe collection is an understatement.

No matter the time of the year, she loves to shake and look at them. To continue that love, I thought this sensory bin would be a perfect fit.

I was right!

As with a lot of my sensory bins and play ideas, I used elements I had around the house or from past bins. Here’s what we used for this one:

  • Fake snow
  • Sensory bin
  • Rainbow bottle brush trees
  • Different sized jars
  • Extra accessories
  • Spoon or mini shovel

This sensory bin is full of fun activities. All I did was set it up like this and Mila made it her own.

She filled up the jars with snow and saw how many trees she could fit in each jar. I watched her make the snow globes pretty too.

We talked about the colors of the tree, had them count, and we did small to big comparisons with the jars. Learning has no boundaries. You can talk about whatever with your child. They’ll soak up all that information.

Even though I originally just set up the mini trees, Mila brought in mini toys to play with and put in the snow globes too.

I can easily see opening up play with her by making the snow globes more themed or adding different seasonal elements in the future. Again, the opportunities are endless when it comes to sensory bins!


Hopefully you and your child enjoy this sensory bin as much as we did. We want to make snow globes sometime this winter and need all the tips we can get! I’ll update when we make them.

Have you ever made a snow globe before? What liquid do you use for the inside?


Then… check out these other fun indoor winter activities too!