Eat Your Heart Out -Pottery Barn Kids!

Place Mats

My plan was to chill today, but while cleaning my son asked to do “markers” and I decided to give him a piece of paper towel to color on. When I saw how cute it was I decided to spin it into a easy peasy craft that is useful too! The paper towel makes it look like cloth, I love how it turned it’s simple but a perfect craft for toddlers! Not to mention costs pennies compared to the Thanksgiving place mats at the above mentioned store!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need paper towels, markers, and contact paper. Oh and if you have them pinking shears or other shaped scissors make a great detail .
  2. Give your child a section of paper towel. What I love about this is I am the world’s worst straight line cutter, the paper towels are perfectly cut already.
  3. If your child is old enough to “get it” show them how if they leave the marker on the paper towel it absorbs the ink and makes a bigger mark.
  4. Cut the contact paper to size before peeling the backing off, then peel only half and add the place mat face down.
  5. Cover and press. Trim the edges with pinking shears if you have them.
  6. Now you are ready for the toddler spills at Thanksgiving dinner !

I am off to the library today, my home library is sorely short on Thanksgiving books, I will be finding some as well as a new batch of counting books to review!

Pilgrim Craft

Use cereal boxes to create a simple pilgrim craft. Re-using cereal boxes is one of our favorite ways to make crafts with what we have on hand.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a cereal box, something to color with , I am using pencil crayons but if you are doing this with a young child , I suggest paint. Glue ( I cheated and used double stick tape though- I think you should too! ) , googly eyes, scissors and a fine tip marker.
  2. Start by drawing out the pilgrim, you will need to cut open your cereal box and on one large side draw 2 shoes, 1 shirt, 1 pair of jaunty shorts, and a hat. All of that will be painted black so keep them together to make it easy. Do not cut out.
  3. On the next side of the box draw his collar and 3 long rectangles, these will be the legs and the white band around his hat. Color white.
  4. On the next piece draw his face and hair and a neck and 2 arms with hands, I forgot that step with hilarious results. Color peach and brown.
  5. On the last draw 2 small circles and 3 squares, one larger then the other two with a small square in the middle of each. These will be the buckles on his shoes and hat. Color gold , orange or yellow.
  6. Cut everything out. Here is where you will probably take over for your child, that’s ok.
  7. Start piecing together, I started with the shirt, adding the collar, then head.
  8. Next add the, hat , band on the hat and buckle.
  9. Next the legs, then shoes.
  10. I forgot the arms initially and when I tried to eyeball how big the hand should be I missed, I have to share my oops with you ! I think that hand is a bit too small….
  11. Add shoe buckles, shirt buttons , draw and face with the marker and add the eyes.
  12. If you want you can reinforce the paper doll with extra pieces of cardboard. I like doing this to make sure it lasts a minute or two in my toddlers hands!

We can all be Meteorologists !

Weekend RePost.
This is an old post from February that I added new book reviews and an additional activity to. My little helper is missing because in February he wasn’t able to play with cotton balls without eating them.Have a great weekend , there will be a new post up on Monday!

We are mixing things up today I am talking about a book first because ” It Looked Like Spilt Milk” by Charles G. Shaw goes perfectly with our activity. In the book all different shapes are shown and the children love to tell you what it is, an ice cream cone, a bird… but really they are all clouds! After reading I will ask students if they have ever seen a funny looking cloud and if they would like to make a funny looking cloud!You don’t have to use this book, you could just pop outside and find some clouds and talk about their shapes too!

Cotton Ball Cloud

  1. Gather your materials. I am used cotton balls, some card stock , a marker and white glue. Oh and don’t forget the scissors. If you don’t have cotton balls you can use tissue paper cut up or even toilet paper!
  2. Draw the outline of the cloud, I have made a very boring every day cloud but allow your child to make any shape they want and if they can draw it, let them. I would only draw the outline for very young toddlers.
  3. Cut it out. ( did anyone else have a flashback to Full House right there? )
  4. Put glue all over the cloud , and put on your cotton balls. Even really little guys love this part, but watch them they also love to pop them in their mouths.


What’s the weather?

What’s the weather ?
What’s the weather like today?
Tell me _(insert kids name)__ what’s the weather,
What’s the weather like today?
Is it sunny?
Is it rainy?
Is it cloudy out today?

Is it snowy?
Is it windy?
What’s the weather like today?
Additional Activity

One of my favorite activities to do with children after reading this story is to take a blue piece of construction paper, and white glue and make fold over clouds. It’s super simple and fast , so you might want to have a few pieces of paper for each child. You simply add white paint to one half of a blue piece of paper, fold , squish and open it up. See if there is a hidden image, we once found a piece of pepperoni pizza in one!



” Cloudy with a chance of meatballs” by Judi Barrett is a fantastic book for Pre-K and up, if your child has a long attention span I would try it earlier , but the text is long and complicated for most toddlers. My son won’t sit for more than a few pages if I am lucky. The story follows one Grandpa’s tale about the town of Chewsandswallows where the weather comes in the form of food! All was well in Chewsandswallows until the weather took a turn for the worse! I loved teaching with this story, and kids love it too!

” Weather” by Pamela Chanko and Daniel Moreton is the perfect little non fiction book about weather for toddlers and young preschoolers. It’s short and has big interesting photos depicting different weather. Don’t be fooled, it looks like nothing, but trust me little guys will ask you to read it again and again. It’s important that children get read a variety of things, not simply fiction, so don’t be afraid to get your child a simple little non fiction book like this one!

” The Itsy-Bitsy Spider” by My First Taggies Book is a fun little book with the ever popular tags which add an extra level of sensory experience for your little one. The pictures are cute, the rhyme familiar and I liked traveling with this book when my son was little, because of the tags it was a double duty, book and touch toy!

Paper Plate Turkey Craft

paper plate turkey craft for kids

After seeing my foam turkey after from nap my son asked to make one , which means he said ” urkey yeah yeah, urkey pease pease” but I knew what he meant. So I grabbed a paper plate and made a more toddler friendly version of a Thanksgiving Turkey!

  1. Gather your materials. You will need a paper plate, some markers ( crayons, or paint would work too) , s few colors of tissue paper, glue and scissors.
  2. Have your child color the paper plate, my son did not want to move on past this step, coloring is where it’s at at our house lately. He colored 2 other paper plates while I tried to convince him that glue was cool too.
  3. While they color cut out some feathers from the tissue paper.
  4. Cut the plate in half, and cut a small triangle off of the discarded half, this will be your turkey head.
  5. Add glue to the inside lip of the paper plate.
  6. Add your feathers, at first my son was refusing to do this, so I let him keep coloring and soon enough, he was asking to do it after watching me.
  7. While they glue, make a face on the “head” .
  8. When all the feathers are on glue on the head. Let dry .


A Plump and Perky Turkey by Teresa Bateman is such a cute and funny book about a town that needs a turkey and the lengths they go to to find one. The town is sadly outwitted by the turkey and end up eating shredded wheat for thanksgiving. The illustrations kept my little man interested even though the story’s humor was above his head.

 Thanksgiving is for giving thanks by Margaret Sutherland is book that explains what Thanksgiving is, and gives lots of examples of things to be thankful for. I like this book although I could go without the page where the narrator is thankful for lollipops, all the other things are wonderful like a teacher’s encouragement, grandma’s hugs, and sunny days and to me the lollipops sorta fall flat. Easily skipped over if you are not keen on it but the book as a whole is valuable teaching tool about thanksgiving.

Turkey Craft

turkey craft
This Thanksgiving turkey craft has stood the test of time. I made it with my son in 2008 and just unpacked it 5 years later and it still looks great! If you are working with a toddler like my son was when we made it do the cutting for them but they can help glue and layer the hand prints. If you are going to make this into a magnet like I did make sure to use magnetic tape or a magnetic sheet because little magnets and little kids don’t mix.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 5 sheets ( some can be scraps) of foam, brown, light brown, red, orange and yellow. Googly eyes, glue , scissors and a marker.
  2. Trace your child’s hand on one piece of foam.
  3. Stack two more sheets under it and cut out.
  4. Cut out a long 8 shape in yellow foam and one in orange that is slightly smaller, I don’t have a picture because I did it in red then decided orange would be better.
  5. Cut out a small triangle for the beak and a small tear drop in red for the gobble ( what is that thing really called ?).
  6. Cut two small rectangles for legs.
  7. Glue the two brown hand prints one on top of the other so the fingers ( feathers ) are staggered.
  8. Add the red one.
  9. Add the yellow body.
  10. Add the orange on top
  11. Glue the beak , gobble and eyes on.
  12. Add the legs and Let dry. If you want you can add a magnet to the back .