Tag Archives: summer activities for kids

Sandy Salvaging

Taking a last beach vacation with the kids before summer is over? At Box Play for Kids we’re all about reusing and recycling so here’s a handy sandy salvaging idea for some inexpensive fun in the sun. Make a sandcastle using recycled plastic food containers.

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Instead of buying new buckets and shovels, just save (and rinse) your yogurt cups and plastic food packaging in the days leading up to your trip. All the cups and lids shown above fit into the largest container for compact storage. We even brought along some of our favorite Box Play for Kids travel companions. Our octopus and shark stickers make for perfect beach toys.

IMG_3776 Ok…so maybe our sandcastle looks more like a sand village, but we still had fun.

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And Ollie the octopus is feeling right at home.

My favorite part of this sandy project: easy clean up. No need to rinse out sandy buckets and lug them home. Just find a recycle bin on the beach as you’re leaving and you’ll have one less thing to pack in your suitcase.

Stir Up Some Crafty Fun

We’re stirring things up at our house by making our very own snazzy swizzle sticks. If you are anything like me, you’re guilty of a few too many trips to the local coffee shop and you always seem to have extra wooden stir sticks in the kitchen drawer. Here’s a simple craft you can do with your kids to repurpose those plain wooden sticks into sweet summer stirrers.

BPFK stir stick supplies

Just grab some construction paper, scissors, glue, a hole puncher, and any miscellaneous craft supplies from around the house and you’ll be spicing up stir sticks (not to mention your favorite summer refreshment) in no time. Our little one decided she wanted a ladybug (of course) and I decided I wanted a tropical pineapple.

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Whether you’re hosting a summer BBQ or just relaxing by the pool, these sassy swizzlers are sure to bring smiles to any occasion (and boy do they make this yummy lemonade taste even sweeter).

A Summer Music List That Has The Whole Family Groovin’

Summer Music Blocks

It’s gonna be 118 degrees in Phoenix this weekend. Ugh! So needless to say, we will be spending a lot of time indoors. Here’s a list of our current favorite songs that has us moving from early morning to just before bedtime:

1. Rise and Shine from Sofia the First: Once Upon a Princess

2. Do-Re-Mi a classic from The Sound of Music (my husband thinks this is one of the best songs ever written)

3. The Bare Necessities from The Jungle Book Original Soundtrack

4. We are Believix featuring Elizabeth Gillies (our kiddo is a singing and dancing fool to this high energy pop song)

and finally, my absolute top pick…

5. Barking at the Moon by Jenny Lewis from the Bolt Soundtrack

Music makes everything better. Get your groove on!

Summer Reading – Top 5

IMG_0713With school out for summer, I thought I would pick up some new books to read with my 4-year-old. Great for bedtime, perfect for a lazy summer afternoon, and, of course, the best way to gear up for kindergarten – here are Chloe’s (and Mommy’s) new favorite books.

 

The Snail and the Whale
A sweet story about an unlikely pair of friends – a snail that wants to see the world and a whale that is sure glad he met a snail. With its roll-off-the-tongue rhymes, this book is sure to lull your little one to sleep.

My Granny Went to the Market
Work on counting skills while following Granny’s adventures around the world. And this is another fun rhyming book, complete with bright and colorful illustrations.

Flora and the Flamingo
Although this book is wordless, it’s beautifully illustrated and has some fun interactive flaps. This is a great book if you have an imaginative child who doesn’t quite know how to read yet. My little one had so much fun looking at the pictures and telling me all about Flora and her friend, the flamingo.

The Pout-Pout Fish
A light-hearted book that is sure to put a smile on everyone’s face. The sing-songy, rhyming words and repetitive verses will have your little one reciting this story with you in no time.

Enemy Pie
While this story initially seems to suggest an icky recipe for warding off enemies, stick with it and you and your little one will be in for a super sweet lesson about friendship.

 

DIY Piñata Just in Time for Cinco de Mayo

What better way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo than with a round of margaritas festive, DIY piñata that your little one (and all the neighbor kids) will LOVE! With just some recycled newspaper, flour from the kitchen, a single balloon, and some craft supplies from around the house, you can design just about any kind of piñata your heart desires. I opted for a less traditional, but super-cute, beehive piñata for my little bumblebee. See our step-by-step instructions below, but BEEware – this may turn out cute enough to save from assault.

Supplies needed: newspaper, (1) balloon, flour, glue, scissors, yellow crepe paper, black pipe cleaners, medium-sized yellow pom-poms, small black pom-poms, ribbon or string.

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Step 1: Blow up the balloon. Don’t worry about the color…we will eventually pop it and throw it away.

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Step 2: Combine flour and water in a pot on the stove. Heat and stir until the mixture thickens into a paste.

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Step 3: Cut up strips of newspaper. You will probably want to lay out a newspaper work surface. Things are about to get messy!

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Step 4: Dip each newspaper strip in your paste mixture and coat the entire balloon, leaving just a little space around the knot. Repete this step until you have done 2-3 coats, letting your balloon dry in between coats. After the final coat, let your balloon dry overnight or until completely hardened.

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Step 5: Once your newspaper shell is dry, use a pin or scissors to pop the balloon and remove.

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Step 6: Decoration time! Starting with the wider end of your shell (opposite the hole), wrap and glue layers of yellow crepe paper to the newspaper. Be sure to overlap each layer slightly as you work your way up to the narrow end of the balloon.

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Step 7: Moving on to the bees! Just wrap a little piece of black pipe cleaner around each yellow pom-pom. Add little black pom-poms to make the heads. We recycled a coffee filter for the wings.

beehive.craft_6Step 8: Glue your bees to the hive and add some ribbon (or string) to the top by making holes with your hole puncher or scissors.

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Step 9: Add candy to the little hole at the top. Cover the hole with some crepe paper. Hang and hit or display in your casa. ENJOY!

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Unfortunately we can’t take all the credit for this unique piñata. It was inspired by a find on Pinterest that led us here

How to Build the Most Awesome Fort

It’s too hot to let my kids burn some energy off outside and I have a million things to get done today, so I turned to my favorite babysitter. The fort. And my secret for building the most perfect fort? Extra large binder clips and King-sized fitted sheets. The elastic in the fitted sheet gives it some ‘catch’ around corners of chairs and tables. And the binder clips help you pull the sheet more taut. Just pull the sheets to a nearby stool, chair, shelf, table, cushion, etc. and clip.
{Our princess likes to keep her crowns on the TOP of her castle.}
There’s a science to this, people. The better the fort, the longer the kids play in it, and the more I get done. My fort allowed me to to do three loads of laundry, pick up both kids’ rooms, watch an episode of Giuliana & Bill, and write this fine little post. You’re welcome.
Oh, and here’s an article I found about other binder clip uses. It will change your life. My favorite is the iPhone docking station.