Target Practice

Been trying to get the Happy Buddy potty trained over here.

We are SO CLOSE.

But boy won’t even think about going No. 2 in the toilet.

He will literally hold it for days until he has an opportunity to go in a diaper!

In our potty training efforts, many have suggested tossing a few Cheerios into the water for the Happy Buddy to aim at as target practice – a fun way to spice up the whole potty process.

It got me to thinking of other great ways your Happy Buddies can get some Target Practice this summer…

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A stack of cups and a dollar store water pistol gives your Happy Buddies hours of outdoor, cool and refreshing fun!

Check out Inner Child Fun for this great Water Pistol Target Range.

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Blue Skies Ahead drew some targets on the walls of their Happy Home’s shower using a dry erase marker.

Hand your Happy Buddy a Nerf Gun and let them go crazy!

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Take your cups and your Nerf Gun from the first two ideas and create this idea from Busy Kids = Happy Mom.

I like the added addition of Lego men. :-)

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Grab some toilet paper rolls, decorate with colored masking tape and Sharpies, head outside again and set them up.

Shoot them down with your water pistols!

Check out the fun at Pink and Green Mama.

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Free Kid’s Crafts laid down some painter’s tape in the shape of a target.

Whip up a few paper airplanes and toss ‘em to see who can get the most points.

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Parents featured this fun Pool Noodle Target Practice game.

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Sarah Nielsen had a group of Happy Buddies at a birthday party use these awesome Marshmallow Shooters to practice shooting at a target.

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Finally, a little chalk and some water balloons will bring a whole lot of fun to a hot, summer day.

See this fabulous Water Balloon Target Practice Idea over at Motherhood on a Dime.

Oh, and then there’s this Target.

The hubs thinks I do a little too much Target Practice there.

Happy Target Practice-ing! :-)

Cereal Box Crafts

One of my favorite things to do every once in awhile is to have a bowl of cereal before bed.

Unfortunately this little ritual gives me crrrrazy dreams, but it sure is delicious.

All of those empty cereal boxes don’t belong in the trash, though!

These fun Cereal Box Crafts will keep your Happy Buddies busy this summer.

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Check out this fun Cereal Box Marble Run from Made by Joel!

Or how about a stylish pair of Cereal Box Sandals like these from Jenny K.?

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The Happy Buddy would go nuts for these Cereal Box Guitars from The Fraker’s Acres.

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How’s the Summer Reading going?

Find renewed inspiration by making these Cereal Box Bookmarks from Plum Pudding.

While you are at it, make a few for a friend!

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Speaking of friends, is there special person you know who could use a Cereal Box Postcard?

Infarrantly Creative has a super simple tutorial to make someone’s mailbox happy!

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Blissfully Domestic suggests turning your old cereal boxes into a Memory-style Matching Game.

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Set your Happy Buddy up during quiet time with a Cereal Box Puzzle like this one from Artzy Creations.

What a piece of cake to make!

You could even cut out several different puzzles and have your Happy Buddies race to complete theirs in a certain amount of time.

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Design a few puppets and a special Shadow Puppet Theater from your recycled cereal boxes and put on a show for your Happy Home one night this month.

Hop over to Squidoo for the easy instructions.

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And, finally, the Happy Buddy went from being obsessed with trains to being crazy for cars overnight.

This Cereal Box Parking Garage from Frugal Fun for Boys is just what we need to encourage his creative play.

Will you join me for a late night bowl of cereal?

I raise my spoon to you!

Happy Cereal Box Craft-ing! :-)

When Life Gives You Lemons…

Make a Lemonade Stand!

Your Happy Buddies are going to love this popular summer activity.

Here are some tips to help make their business venture an easy and super successful one.

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Tip #1 – The Invitation: First things first.  You need to get the word out about your totally awesome lemonade stand.

Go door to door and drop off one of these FREE Printable Lemonade Stand Invitations from Random Thoughts of a Supermom.

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Tip #2 – The Attire: When hosting a lemonade stand, wearing something cute might score you a few extra bucks.

A sweet yellow bow tie like this little dude from Fiskars or a happy yellow apron should do the trick!

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Tip #3 – The Signage: You’ve got the word out to the people in your neighborhood, but what about the lucky folks who happen to drive by your lemonade stand on their way home from work?

Use this FREE Printable sign from One Charming Party to reel ‘em in.

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Tip #4 – The Curb Appeal: Personally, my idea of a cute lemonade stand is a card table, a tupperware pitcher of the refreshing yellow drink, and a kid-drawn poster with the ‘e’ of lemonade written backwards.

But there’s no denying the eye-catching draw of this Vintage Lemonade Stand (with a great tutorial) by Lil’ Luna.

If your Happy Hubby is itching to get his hands dirty with a project, sign him up for this one!  Now the whole family is involved!

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Tip #5 – The Product: Wow your customers by kickng plain old lemonade up a notch with this recipe for Pineapple Lemonade Punch from Froggy and the Mouse.

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Tip #6 – The Fluff: A good store owner knows that it’s the upselling that brings in the real dough!

So make sure you throw in a few extras like small bags of freshly popped popcorn, this recipe for the BEST BROWNIES EVER, Lemon Cheese Bars, or these tasty, tasty Pink Lemonade Cupcakes from Real Mom Kitchen.

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Tip #7 – The Extra Touch: Add some of these adorable FREE Printable Lemonade Stand Labels to cups, cupcakes, treat bags, etc. to impress customers with your professional packaging.

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Tip #8 – The Charity: You can use a lemonade stand to teach your Happy Buddies about the gift of giving.

Choose a local charity and then donate all of the lemonade stand’s profits to it!

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Tip #9 – The Lemonade Stand Spread: Send out a box in the mail to someone you love and spread the joy of lemonade!

Fill the box with a few simple supplies for them to host their own special summer Lemonade Stand.

The Crafting Chicks have the best FREE Printable for that HERE.

PLEASE make sure you invite me to your Lemonade Stand if this post inspired your Happy Home!

The Happy Buddy, Happy Baby, and I would looooove to visit.

Happy Lemonade Stand-ing! :-)

Easy Olympic Crafts

This summer is all about the 2012 Olympics in London!

I sat down with the Happy Buddy yesterday to try and explain what the Olympics are and halfway through my lengthy explanation of athletes, various sports, medals, etc., the Happy Buddy said, “Mommy, could you please stop talking?  Can we go play with my cars?”

Ah, well.

Here are some great Olympic-themed crafts that your Happy Buddies will love if you had a better time explaining to them what the Olympics are than me. :-)

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Grab some paper plates and some paint and you can create a neat Olympic Rings decoration for your Happy Home!

Check out Learn Create Love for the how-to.

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When I saw this idea early this morning, I literally dove into our bathroom trash can and fished out all of our toilet paper rolls to make this great Olympic Rings Craft from The Mother Huddle.

The Happy Buddy had so much fun stamping the colored toilet paper roll rings all over the page.

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Whip up a batch of easy M&M Olympic Ring Cupcakes from Parents.

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The Idea Room has terrific directions to make a simple Paper Towel Roll Olympic Torch for your Happy Buddies to parade around the house.

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Metallic gold paint, glitter, and patriotic ribbon gives you the coolest Olympic Medals from HERE to award your little Olympians for their Olympic-crafting efforts.

Do a few of these crafts every couple of days and your Happy Buddies will be ramped up for the games to begin at the end of July!

Happy Olympic Craft-ing! :-)

*Looking for MORE Olympic Crafting Fun?  Go HERE for the mother load of ideas!*

Pinch Pinch

The Happy Buddy and I woke up feeling kinda crabby today.

Not in the moody sense of the word, but in the crustacean sense! :-)

So we did something about it along the lines of these crab-tastic inspirations…

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This cute Crab Hat from Parents is made with a painted bowl and some clothespins.

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The Happy Buddy asks me at least 34 times a day if we can make cupcakes together.

Maybe these Crab Cupcakes from Meet the Dubiens will be our next baking project.

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Pinch me!  These Crab Bags from Craftalicious are sooo adorable!

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Sink your teeth into this awesome Crab Croissant from Catch My Party.

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This Googly-Eyed Crab from Learn Create Love is just what your Happy Buddies need for a fun summer afternoon craft!

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Feast on this easy-peasy Crabby Lunch from Kitchen Fun With My 3 Sons.

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And, finally, if you love handprint crafts, then this Happy Handprint Crab from Daily Dose of Sugar Mama is for you!

Hey, why does the ocean roar??

Because it has crabs on its bottom! :-)

I hope if you were feeling crabby today this post made you smile.

Happy Crab Craft-ing! :-)

Rainbow Fruit Kabobs

Some of you may remember the gnarly (and slightly evil-looking) Mr. Fruit Head my mom made last year for our Family Reunion.

This year she decided to make Rainbow Fruit Kabobs.

How beautiful are these?!

You will need…

  • Raspberries
  • Mandarin Orange Segments
  • Pineapple, cut into chunks
  • Green Grapes
  • Purple Grapes
  • Blueberries
  • Skewers

Thread fruit onto the skewer in the order shown.

Serve at your next summer cook out!

They will make everyone happy. :-)

Happy Rainbow Fruit Kabob-ing!

Summer Science

I have a whole list of posts planned to help your Happy Home have the best summer ever, so when I can, I will be getting those up for you!

The Happy Buddy and I have been enjoying time at home with the Happy Baby.

When he is napping, we have fun experimenting with some of these super cool (and simple) science projects.

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Did you know that if you fill a Ziploc bag with water, seal it up, and then poke some sharpened pencils through it, the bag will not break?

Sally J Shim gives the low down on this fun Pencil Vs. Ziploc Bag experiment.

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Here is a great Discovery Jar idea from Pre-School Play.

Fill a plastic bottle with cut up pipe cleaners, then use a magnetic wand to move the pieces around.

This would be a fun thing to pop in the car for a long road trip!

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Wow your Happy Buddies with Martha Stewart’s magic of filling up a balloon without blowing any air into it.

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A neat lesson in temperature – Hot Car Crayons from Come Together Kids.

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You will never guess that that giant mountain of fluff is an exploded bar of Ivory soap.

All you need for this awesomeness from Our Best Bites is soap and a microwave.

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Whip up a little Magic Potion with your Happy Buddies and watch their eyes get wide with amazement!

Find the easy peasy how-to at Not Just Cute.

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Did you know that if you put a Skittles candy in water the ‘S’ will literally float to the surface?!

The Happy Buddy and I did this yesterday with an M&M and it was so rad.

Check it out at PreKinders.

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A simple balloon can be transformed into something electrifying over at Classic Play.

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Happy Home Fairy shared these super fun Kitchen Fireworks last July.

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And, finally, attending a summer birthday party?

Why not spend an inexpensive $20 on a Homemade Science Kit with FREE Printable Experiment E-Book to make a gift that will keep on giving!

I Can Teach My Child has everything you need to be the coolest present-giver ever.

So now you know what to do when the kids are getting restless and you want to wow them with your mad scientist skills.

Happy Summer Science-ing! :-)

Summer Bucket List Ideas

Sometimes August rolls around and you look back over the summer and think, “Where in the world did the time go?!” and “What exactly did we do (besides sweat)???”

I’m all for making a list of ideas at the beginning of the summer so that you actually get to DO some fun things as a Happy Home.

Here are a few fabulous websites that have made it easy for you to be intentional about treasuring each and every moment under the summer sun!

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The incredible Crafting Chicks created the above Summer Activity Jars for extra awesome summer fun.

Go HERE to check out the idea as well as the FREE Printable lists of ideas to put in each jar.

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Tatertots and Jello came up with a bunch of neat ideas for her Happy Home’s Summer Bucket List.

You’ll love her suggestions to play flashlight tag or take dinner to a neighbor.

Snag that amazing FREE Printable HERE!

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I love how Delia Creates transformed her Summer Bucket List into a Bingo Game – complete with FREE Printable for you.

If her Happy Home completes six activities in a row, then they can go out for ice cream!

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Similar to the jar idea at the beginning of this post, Over the Big Moon crafted one, too, and makes sure you can create one as well with another great FREE Printable!

I love all of her ‘Pin’-spired ideas and think you’ll be seeing a few of them on Happy Home Fairy in the months to come. :-)

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Instead of a massive list of ideas, Somewhat Simple organized her Happy Home’s summer into this Weekly Schedule.

Totally doable and will help establish a predictable, yet fun routine for your Happy Buddies.

My favorite is THURSDAY!

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And, finally, I’d be remiss not to include Happy Home Fairy’s Summer Bucket ListThe What Can I Do? Can!

This set of FREE Printable cards will have your Happy Home capturing the best moments of summer in a way that will give you a lifetime of memories.

Want to make a more personalized list?  Check out THIS GREAT POST with step-by-step instructions to creating your very own Summer Bucket List.

Want even MORE Summer Bucket List Ideas?  Go HERE immediately.

What’s on our Happy Home’s Summer Bucket List??

Well, the Happy Hubby got some new scuba diving gear for his graduation, so he’s going to be at the bottom of the ocean most of the summer.

The Happy Buddy doesn’t know it yet, but he will be experiencing some serious Potty Training Boot Camp this summer (suggestions welcomed). :-)

And me?  My Summer Bucket List is simply to get the Happy Baby home!

Happy Summer Bucket List-ing! :-)

How to Make Summer Reading FUN!

Holy cow, I couldn’t WAIT for summer time when I was a little girl!

Call me a nerd, but I would literally walk to our little town’s bookstore on a hot summer day, head inside, and camp out in front of my favorite book series.  I’d read and read and read until I knew someone would be wondering why I wasn’t at the dinner table.

Now, while books are amazing and wonderful, most kids often find the lure of the sprinkler or the lure of the swimming pool supersedes the lure of reading.

Here are a few great ways to encourage your Happy Buddies to keep their sunscreen-covered noses in a book this summer!

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How Does She? offers an amazing FREE Printable Summer Reading Star Game that will have your Happy Buddies BEGGING to read!

Seriously, I can’t even explain how much fun this printable is (coupon incentives, golden tickets, BINGO style excitement) – you must go check it out!

I kind of want to do it myself this summer. :-)

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Brown Paper Packages also offers a neat Summer Reading Program.

Print the adorable FREE Printable circles (see pic above) that your Happy Buddies will drop into a bucket after completing the task.  At the end of the week you can count up how many circles your Happy Buddy received and reward him/her with something awesome (like a sleepover in the living room with unlimited access to S’mores ingredients).

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Simple As That has a super cute FREE Printable Summer Reading Log to document your Happy Buddy’s hard work!

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Keep things simple with this creative Pick a Spot Jar from Shady Tree Diary.

Brainstorm a bunch of fun places your child can read a book (like in the bathtub).

Jot them down on craft sticks and add them to a container.

When it’s time to read – pick from the jar and follow orders!

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I am loving these FREE Printable bookmarks from lisa storms.

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Speaking of fun places to read a book…

Tatertots and Jello teaches you how to make this awesome Summer Reading Tent.

You might just end up with every kid in the neighborhood wanting to read at your Happy Home if you stick one of these in the backyard!

Looking for more Summer Reading Ideas?

Alphamom has 5 great suggestions (looooove the one about the library card) to spice up summer reading.

And Saving Dollars and Sense has a terrific round-up of several FREE Kids Summer Reading Programs that are available in your community (hello FREE tokens to Chuck E. Cheese).

I hope you will use one of these great Summer Reading Ideas so that all that precious intelligence your Happy Buddy gained from a whole year of school doesn’t drip out of his noggin’ like a melting ice cream cone.

Happy Summer Reading-ing! :-)

*Stay tuned for a post featuring the Happy Buddy’s (and my own) Summer Reading Suggestions*

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! :-)