Quiet time


 
A few months ago while driving in the car my daughter said she was bored and wanted to watch a DVD. I suggested that instead of watching a DVD why not try to sit quietly and listen to the thoughts inside her head. I explained that it’s important for kids to learn how be with their own thoughts and reflect on what’s going on in their world and use their imagination. She agreed to try. After a long pause she had brought up some interesting thoughts about previous experiences she had while playing with her friends. It led to great conversation and in that moment I became aware of how we are always eager to fill empty time for children with electronic devices and constant background noise, taking  away opportunities to develop their own thoughts, opinions, questions and imagination.
 
Since then she often tells me what she’s thinking about, therefore creating thought provoking conversations between us which give me an opportunity to learn more about her and her dreams. It’s so enjoyable to hear her stories and talk about them together.

So, instead of TV, electronics and other noisy distracting devices, give your child their own time for quietness and the opportunity to explore their thoughts and ideas that are constantly going through their own head. 

Balancing School and Play


Balancing School and Play
 
As we are heading into another school year I know many parents will be paying close attention to their child’s academic progress, keenly interested in how they are mastering the concepts of reading, writing and math. It might be easy to overlook the necessity of play and how it contributes to our child’s education. Play contributes to very important aspects of learning such as language skills, math skills and creative problem solving. In fact it is the balance between structured learning and free play that allow a child’s whole brain to be engaged daily to maximize learning potential.
 
In Kindergarten children are given daily opportunity within the classroom to engage in free play activities, intermittent with their experience of learning academic skills. But by the time they reach grade one and two the time for play is being restricted to short break times and the focus shifts to academics. My daughter commented during the second week of Grade 2 how much she missed being in Grade 1. When I asked why Grade 1 seemed so much better she said ‘because there is just no time in Grade 2 to play.’
 
Now that children are in the process of adjusting to the routines and expectations of going back to school the free play of summer is quickly becoming a distant memory. What happens then to daily play time? Recess and lunch time does offer some opportunity for movement and free play but the time is short. Physical Education class again offers the benefits of movement however the experience for children is still that of a structure activity with adult imposed expectations and rules. For play to offer its full set of benefits to children it must truly be playful!
 
As parents we need to commit to making time this year to for our children to just play outside of school hours. No schedules, no teaching, no expectations or pressures, just time to play. This is one of the most effective ways we can support our children’s education and ensure that their whole brain is engaged in the process of learning.

Going into the winter season, it may become a bit harder to get kids outside and playing freely so help them out a bit and give them some inspiration that will keep them busy and use their creativity.  Why not create a mud pie play kitchen outdoors, send them off on a bug hunt, set up after school outdoor play dates, get the kids involved in outdoor chores, enjoy your dining time al fresco, even go as far as bringing their indoor toys out and see what happens.  Break the rules, let them get dirty and have fun!  Their growing brains need it.

 
 
 
 

tp roll CROWNS


This craft is perfect we all have toilet paper rolls to recycle and this is much more fun than putting them in the recycling bin! It is also super simple and great inspiration for some make believe play.

SUPPLIES

Toilet paper rolls
Scissors
Hole punch
Elastic
DECORATIONS: Paints, felts, glitter glue, gems ect.

STEP 1

Cut out your toilet paper rolls into crowns. These can be as detailed as you like. I drew mine on first.

STEP 2

Decorate your crowns; I used paints, glitter glue, gems and pom-poms, the options are limitless!

STEP 3 

Punch a hole in each side of your crowns and put some elastic through to keep them on! 
TA-DA you’re done! Happy crafting!

Craft-A-Day

This week I came across a fantastic crafting book: Craft-A-Day by Sarah Goldshcadt which comes out on October 2nd.  This book has a simple handmade project for everyday of the year, 365 days of ridiculously cute crafting. This book has weekly themes to spark your imagination offering easy projects with no need for fancy crafting tools. Below are some images of some of the activities in the book.




You can pre-order your copy today on amazon and be ready to craft for fall! These ideas look like a great way to keep your beans busy with indoor activities.
I am definitely going to be purchasing this gem myself for some rainy days! 


diy temporary tattoos

 So I was pretty excited when I came across this company called silhouette... Because they sell  printable temporary tattoo paper! AMAZING! You just place it in your regular printer, print out whatever you like on it and you have your own custom temporary tattoos! You can buy the paper from the silhouette website or on ebay and start creating!


Another fun and stylish temporary tattoo alternative for children and adults are the designs from tattly. A company started in July 2011 by a mom in New York who was tired of the poorly designed options available. These quirky tattoos are created by a group of all-star designers and illustrators. Take a look at the cute and quirky designs they sell, which are also great inspiration for your own creations! 

tattly
Both options are fun for all ages and the ideas are endless! I can't wait to get my hands on some of this paper! I am also quite taken with some of the original tattly designs available. 
+ tattly knows how important play is!
From the

In honor of Gratitude Day






"In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy"

 

Every day we are given many opportunities to make someones else's life a bit brighter, but we don't usually recognize it at that very moment.  It's truly amazing how just the smallest kind gesture can capture's a person's heart and put a real smile on their face, but we are often so busy needing to get where we are wanting to go that we forget how many people we need to pass in order to get there.  So for this week, in honor of World Gratitude Day on September 21st we are launching the Peekaboo Beans Pay it Forward Challenge.  Lets remember... simple things leave lasting impressions. 
 
Print our Pay it Forward Challenge and see how many of these small kind gestures you can can get done this week.  Keep us in the loop by posting your comments below.  Perhaps we will highlight your good deeds and share with the world the bit of sunshine you are bringing to the people around you. 
 
 
Download your printable copy HERE and be sure to pass along to family and friends
and keep the kindness going!
 
 

lolli stick bracelets


WHAT YOU NEED

  • Popsicle sticks or the larger “craft sticks”
  • Jars or cups to form the bracelets
  • Paints + Brushes
  • Decorations: glitter, sequins, rhinestones ect.


DIRECTIONS 

The first part of this craft is for mommy or daddy!

STEP 1

Boil a large pot of water. You need to be able to fit all your sticks in the pot and enough water to boil them for 20-30 minutes. Place sticks in the pot and boil for 25-35 minutes, stirring them around occasionally.  They will look waterlogged and quite soft when ready.

STEP 2



Using tongs remove sticks one at a time and form while still warm around the outside or inside of your glass or jar- they cool down enough to hold in 5-10 seconds. 

I found two ways that worked well:

*If the cups stack into each other form stick around the inside of cup and then place another cup inside to hold its shape.

*Form the stick around the outside of a smaller cup or jar and then placed it inside a larger cup.

TIP: Smaller cups make a rounder/smaller bracelet and the longer you boil them the longer they take to dry.

Let sticks form overnight and they will be ready for decorating the next day!

STEP 3


All that’s left next is to paint and decorate!  Boys can enjoy this activity too by creating a watch or perhaps a control bracelet for their robotic or super powers! 

Here's what I came up with, definitely a fun craft for adults as well. We’d love to see what you and your bean's came up with!


    Happy crafting!




lille huset houses



While perusing blogs for spring 2014 inspiration I came across a unique dollhouse company called lille huset, which I’ve grown a little obsessed with. This company crafts simplistic houses from paperboard and reclaimed Baltic birch wood that children can make their own. I can’t imagine how excited I would be if I had this house as a child, I kind of want my own now. The website has DIY ideas and downloads to decorate your house as well as inspirational houses to provide ideas for your house.


On the online store you can even purchase a set of 6 xs houses that are individually wrapped for party favors. I think this would be a wonderful keepsake and idea for a birthday party and a great craft activity to keep your little guests occupied.

lille birthday party!

These houses are not just for girls! They are a blank canvas so boys can have just as much fun personalizing their own house. With the various designs you can create a small town with roadways and various DIY projects.


I couldn't wait to share these houses with you! Such a great way to fuel your child’s imagination and provide them with a toy that will reflect themselves. Best part is, if the walls get full you can purchase replacement paperboard ones and keep your wood wall.
This post by guest blogger Rachel, our...


Today is Grandparents Day!

In honor of Grandparents Day today, we bring you little poem and a fun printable. 

Grandparents and grandchildren,
Together they create a chain of love
Linking the past,
With the future.
The chain may lengthen,
But it will never part.


Find a cozy spot and fill this in with your Grandparents. What a wonderful keepsake it will make. 


Have your kids fill them out with their Grandparents for a fun activity. Print yours HERE
 
Find a local Play Stylist near you and earn Free Beans! Click HERE
or Shop On-Vine HERE

Back to School Picks


For most of us here on the West Coast school was back in session as of yesterday and through all the chaos and reworking of schedules we hope you can take a moment and enjoy this week.  Aside from being full of craziness, it's also a very fun and memorable week for lots of us and we thought it would be great idea to share with you some of our favorite back to school picks, everything from treats to gear!
 
Visit our Back to School Pinterest Board to see them all.