Nature Bracelets

wrap duct tape around your child's wrist, send them outside and let them decorate their 'bracelet' with items they find in nature! I LOVE THIS!

I was poking around through the Happy Buddy’s Happy Activity Bag the other day and we came across this idea to make Nature Bracelets.

nature bracelets1All you need is a giant roll of masking tape.

*Pardon the bucket on the Happy Buddy’s head.  He insisted that it was critical to the success of this blog post.*

nature bracelets2Wrap a piece of tape around your Happy Buddy’s wrist.

nature bracelets3nature bracelets4Then head outside to collect items from nature and stick them to the tape!

The Happy Buddy added leaves, pieces of grass, broken sticks, and those furry pine needly things to his bracelet.

He wanted to put an entire tree on there, but we had to be realistic.  I have no idea how to uproot a tree. :-)

nature bracelets5This was a really fun little activity that required hardly any effort or materials!

It was just what we needed to pass a lazy summer afternoon.

Happy Nature Bracelet-ing! :-)

*Adorable Boy’s Tie Shirt from HERE*

No Cost Fun – Pom-Pom Spooning

I have been trying really hard to be intentional about spending good, quality time with the Happy Buddy each day while the Happy Baby takes a nap.

I think the poor lil’ guy was a bit shocked at first when his brother came home and suddenly his primary playmate (aka me) became unbelievably preoccupied.

So when I saw this idea HERE, I thought, “We can do this!”

Simply grab some pom-poms and toss them on the floor in an open space.

Give your Happy Buddy a spoon (and give one to yourself).

Whack the pom-poms with the spoon back and forth across the room.

And that is it.

The Happy Buddy had soooo much fun with this.

Every time we hit a pom-pom we shouted, “BAM!”

One day the Happy Buddy will be mad at me for plastering his Percy-the-Train-covered-hiney all over my blog. :-)

But, for now, I (and all you dear readers) get to bask in the cuteness of it!

*This cute picture cost me two M&Ms. :-)*

Happy Pom-Pom Spoon-ing! :-)

No Cost Fun – Elevators

One of the things I have always prayed for the Happy Buddy to have is a sense of wonderment for life.

A delight in celebrating the little things!

Well, I am happy to report that one of those little things that brings the Happy Buddy so much wonder are elevators.

Seriously.

If we are near one, we will inevitably end up riding it for at least 15 minutes.

I’ve been so thankful that the hospital has a plentiful supply of elevators.

Some that ding, some that are huge, and some that have mirrors.

The Happy Buddy has found great comfort in his elevators this week.

So much so that he decided to recreate the elevators in our own home.

We cut out a few circles, drew some arrows, and taped them to the molding around our sliding closet door.We added floor numbers to the top of our elevator.

We pretend they light up and tell us what floor the elevator is on as we wait for it to pick us up.

And buttons on the inside so that we get to just the right place.

The only problem?

Make sure the paint on the molding around your closet will not come off because of the tape you used to hang the buttons.

(Oops.)

When we aren’t riding the hospital elevators, you can find us on our very own Happy Home elevator.

Hours of free entertainment!

Happy Elevator-ing! :-)

A Strainer and Some Pipe Cleaners

The Happy Buddy and I needed some sort of calming down activity to do for the 30 minutes before his nap the other day.

So I pulled out a trick I found on Pinterest!

All you need is a strainer and some pipe cleaners.Hard at work – just look at his concentration!

The idea is to have your Happy Buddies stick the pipe cleaners through the strainer’s holes.

Brilliant, right?!

By the time he was done I kind of thought the whole thing would turn into a UFO and return to the planet where it belongs!

But, boy, did the Happy Buddy have a great time.  It’s the little things, huh?

P.S. Do you notice anything magical about our strainer?? :-)

AND…

Speaking of strainers

Since the holidays are just around the corner…

Here is a fun and cheap Christmas gift idea found at Today’s Fabulous Finds!

Click Image for Instructions

The tag reads, “We couldn’t reSTRAIN ourselves from wishing you a very Merry Christmas!”

Head on over to Today’s Fabulous Finds for 14 other cute and affordable holiday gift ideas.

Happy Strainer and Pipe Cleaner-ing! :-)

The Crash Pile

The last couple of days with the Happy Buddy have been kind of rough!

He started school last week and within one day of attendance, picked up a really bad cold.

So the Happy Buddy hasn’t been very ‘happy.’

After an afternoon of sad whimpers and general discontentment, I got the idea to pull out something that always cheers the Happy Buddy up.

The Crash Pile.Nothing cries “This is Fun” like a giant mountain of pillows and couch cushions.Stand back several feet from your Crash Pile.

Count to 3 and then take a flying leap.Face Planting is necessary for Crash Pile success.Crash Piles are guaranteed to make you forget that you aren’t feeling very well.

I’ve also included a ten second video (click link below) for you to experience our Crash Pile LIVE.

Happy Crash Piling! :-)

Icebergs in the Tub

It may be summer, but in our Happy Home we are pretty chilly.

(No, Happy Hubby-if-you-are-reading-this, we did not accidentally turn the air conditioning down to 65 and leave it there all day long again.)

We decided to put our freezer to work and make a few icebergs for some bath time fun.

And not just any icebergs – these icebergs had toys trapped in them!

Here’s what we did…Let me introduce you to the Happy Buddy’s best bath buds.

Guys 1, 2, 3, and 4.

I am not even kidding – those are their names.  When he loses one he shouts, “4! 4!” or, “2! 2!”I put Guys 1, 2, 3, and 4 in four separate plastic cups and filled them halfway with water.Since these guys float, I froze them halfway in the water and then poured more water on top and froze again.

This way the guys were stuck in the center of the iceberg.Then the treasure-filled icebergs were added to the Happy Buddy’s tub time!He was a little uncertain about the fact that his favorite toys were trapped in what appeared to be a solid mass of freezing-ness – This is the Happy Buddy’s nervous face.This is him trying to climb out of the tub to get away from them. :-)But then when the ice melted a bit and he realized that his Guys were coming back to life -He LOVED it!

Free at last!

When everything had melted away, the Happy Buddy asked me about 100 times if we could put them in ice again.

Stay tuned for more Ice-tastic ideas coming tomorrow!

Happy Iceberg in the Tub-ing! :-)

Play Dough Monsters

They’re only the greatest craft invention known to man.

Googly eyes.

You can always find googly eyes around our Happy Home.  In fact, I think the Happy Hubby found one in his lasagna one evening after a particularly crafty afternoon with the Happy Buddy. :-)

So when I saw this idea HERE, I thought – BRILLIANT!The Happy Buddy got a giant set of Play Dough for his birthday.

He is quite ecstatic about it and every morning after breakfast you will find us on the kitchen floor playing with the ever popular non-toxic reusable modeling compound*.

*I didn’t want to use the word Play Dough too much in this post, so I went to Play-Doh’s website and that is apparently what the pros call it.  I tell you this because it’s important to share these fun facts with your Happy Buddies. :-)

The other day we thought we’d kick the fun up a notch by adding some googly eyes to our Play Dough creations.There was quite a bit of giggling as our Play Dough Monsters came to life.We thought this would be a fun surprise for whoever opened the green can next.And I was stifling some serious laughter because the Happy Buddy had that on for a good 20 minutes before he realized that his foot was keeping an eye on things.

Plus, I knew you all would want to see a picture of those cute, chubby feet.

Happy Play Dough Monster-ing! :-)

Sidewalk Water Painting

Yesterday the Happy Buddy and I went outside to play.

We were sooooooooooo hot.

I thought, “We need to cool off AND have some fun, so… let’s paint with water!!!”

Painting with water is super easy – your Happy Home will love this activity to help beat the summer heat!

First, fill up your Mickey-shaped bowl with lots of water (doesn’t everyone have a Mickey-shaped bowl?) and grab some paintbrushes.

Then start painting!We literally painted with water for over an hour!!!  The Happy Buddy couldn’t get enough of it!The Happy Buddy was working so hard on his masterpiece.

He wanted me to share it with you… :-)

See that face?  He is up to something!  Little did I know that I had it comin’…This is what the Happy Buddy did 1 second before his little hand smacked the water and totally drenched me!!!

What I didn’t realize until a reader pointed it out later is that the Happy Buddy’s shirt says (very appropriately) – Warning! I Make a Splash!

Happy Water Paint-ing! :-)