Saturday, December 22, 2012

Taking A Break

I will be taking a blog break to spend more time with my family. Enjoy your holidays. I will be back in 2013. Here are a few random pictures of our holiday season, so far:

 
Merry Christmas!

2013 Christmas Card

Melted Snowman Cookie treats for teachers and school office staff.
 
Face painting at Boogs' 1st grade holiday party

At Nitro, stuffing stocking for the Children's Home.

At Nitro, wrapping gifts for the Children's Home

Cutesy's latest hiding place

Cutesy stayed there all night without falling out.



Friday, December 21, 2012

Cutesy Has Calmed Down

Our elf, Cutesy, has been very calm this week.

Cutesy put on a pirate mask and brought Boogs a pirate activity book.
 Boogs was a little nervous about approaching Cutesy in the mask.

Cutesy was just hanging around one morning waiting to deliver another Christmas joke.

Cutesy sat around for quite a while before Boogs found him near our front door. Boogs was excited to get a reindeer notebook. He said he will use it to write "private stuff for my eyes only". I love that silly boy.
Want to see more of Cutesy? Visit my Cutesy the Elf pinterest board or click on the "elf" label at the end of this post. Don't forget to check out my side bar for all of the wonderful sites I like to link to.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Lunches December 17th - 21st

Boogs' lunches are inspired by the books we read at bedtime the previous evening. Each night, Boogs reads one book to me and I read a book or a chapter of a book to him. I usually post his lunches once a week. Click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post to see lunches from previous weeks.

Yoon and the Christmas Mitten by Helen Recorvits
Yoon and her family have recently moved to the United States from Korea. At school, Yoon is introduced to the symbols and customs of Christmas. She very excitedly rushes home to tell her parents about Santa, Christmas carols, and stockings. Her parents tell her, "We are not a Christmas family. We will celebrate the New Year with family and friends." Yoon repeatedly tries to tell her parents about the importance of a stocking. She talks to her parents about being Korean Americans and taking in some of the American customs.  Yoon pins a mitten to her bedspread for her own stocking.  She is happily surprised when she receives a piece of the North Pole (candy cane) in her stocking and a gift of a new dress to wear on New Year's Day. Boogs and I have read about Christmas traditions and other celebrations around the world. Boogs was very pleased that Yoon got to have a little bit of Christmas like he does. In the Laptop lunchbox: Babybel Yoon wearing a salami red dress, flat bread with pesto mitten, candy cane, raisins, grapes, and salad.


We read a book about Bear's First Christmas. Boogs wanted to take leftover pizza for lunch. I started to try and make the pizza into a Christmas tree, but it did not happen. So he took a "regular" lunch to school this day. In the Laptop lunchbox: blackberries, raisins, pizza, broccoli, and yogurt.


Merry Christmas, Space Case by James Marshall
We read the Halloween book about Space Case. So, when Boogs discovered that Space Case was back in a Christmas adventure, we had to immediately bring this book home to read. In the ELB lunchbox: almond butter & jelly sandwich topped with alien cheese, Christmas tree candy, dried apricots, strawberries, and salad.

Pajama Day by Lynn Plourde
Boogs' class had a pajama day at school this week. We found this cute book about Drew A. Blank's pajama day and had to read it the day before Boogs' pajama day.  Drew was extremely forgetful but very creative. He forgot all about pajama day, wearing slippers, bringing a teddy bear, and having a breakfast snack. Drew did not want to be "the odd man out" so he made do with the supplies on hand to create whatever he needed to participate in pajama day. After reading this book, Boogs made sure he had a snuggly toy in his backpack and  slippers by the door so he would not be the odd man out in his class on pajama day. In the ELB lunchbox: pb&j confused Drew with carrot hair, Chex Mix books to read, bread pjs, teddy bear treat, blueberries, and veggie pancakes.


If you want to see three wonderful weeks of Holiday themed lunches, head over to Bento Bloggers and Friends Ho Ho Holiday Hop. 

 
Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by.     

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

More Adventures With Cutesy the Elf

Cutesy keeps coming up with ways to surprise Boogs every morning.

Boogs found Cutesy playing Zingo! with a few friends.
Boogs immediately counted all of the players cards to make sure Cutesy was winning. Then, he finished the game for everyone. Boogs cheered when when Cutesy won the game. 




 
Cutesy slid down the banister to leave another joke for Boogs. Cutesy found the elf jokes HERE.

Cutesy partially gift wrapped Boogs' bedroom door. He did not wrap the entire door because he was worried it would freak Boogs out. In the morning, I heard Boogs yell, "Momma, help I am trapped in my room." He figured out he could crawl under. He did not really like this elf trick until he was out of his room. Boogs left the wrapping paper up all day. At bedtime, he charged through it to get back into his room.

Cutesy hid on the top of the curtain in the playroom until Boogs found him.

Cutesy found the box of nursery rhyme felt pieces and our old felt board. 
Boogs enjoyed playing with it. He decided to look through the felt box and find all of the pieces to the Humpty Dumpty scene.

Ultimate Elf on the Shelf Link Party
Want to see more of Cutesy? Visit my Cutesy the Elf pinterest board or click on the "elf" label at the end of this post. Don't forget to check out my side bar for all of the wonderful sites I like to link to.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Dr. Who Birthday Card

I have a friend who is "slightly" obsessed with Dr. Who. I had to make her a Dr. Who birthday card. This is the result of my effort:
 

*Update: Basic directions -  I took an 8 1/2 by 11 inch sheet of blue paper and cut it in half. I took one of the half sheets (8 1/2 by 5 1/2) and folded both ends toward the middle to make it look like closed doors. I took the other half sheet and mounted it behind the "doors", I did not really measure it. I cut and sponged ink on 1 inch squares for the doors. I used a holographic snowflake scrapbook paper for the lighted windows and put blue strips across them to make them look more like windows. Then I cut several blue rectangles for the Police Box sign, the strip above the sign, and trimmed one for the curved part at the top of the card. All of this was mounted onto the paper behind the doors. I used the snowflake paper and blue scraps for the light at the top. I sponged the edges of every thing to give it some depth. It took a while to make it, but I eyeball everything instead of exactly measuring. Hope that answered your question.*


Not too bad. I had to phone Cristi for advice about what Dr. Who might say on a birthday card. Cristi, thanks for helping me out. The card was well received.


Here are a few other cards I have made recently:
Pink Birthday card using Stampin' Up's Beary Best Friends set.
 Skateboard card using Stampin' Up's Extreme Skateboard stamp.
 Too many candles card using Stampin' Up's That's Funny set.

I have not bought a new stamp set in ages. The majority of my Stampin' Up stamp sets have been retired.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Lunches December 10th - 14th

Boogs' lunches are inspired by the books we read at bedtime the previous evening. Each night, Boogs reads one book to me and I read a book or a chapter of a book to him. I usually post his lunches once a week. Click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post to see lunches from previous weeks.

I'll Be Home for Christmas by Hollie Hobby 
Toot goes to a family reunion in Scotland while Puddle stays home getting things ready for Christmas. Toot promises to make it home by Christmas Eve but then he runs into all sorts of trouble. Puddle anxiously awaits Toot's return while making all of the holiday preparations. Toot makes it back just in time with a little help from Santa. Boogs thought this was a sweet book. The illustrations are adorable. In the ELB lunchbox: Christmas tree made of ham & cheese in a spinach tortilla, Puddle on small piece of bread (he did not turn out very well), marshmallow snowman, gingerbread cookie, orange ornaments, and carrots.


Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett
We read Gingerbread Baby every year at Christmas. Boogs gets a kick out of the little piece of baked dough running around and singing, "Catch me if you can!" In the Laptop Lunchbox: salami and cheese gingerbread house, gingerbread cookie, blueberry river, salad, and yogurt.



Charro Clause and the Tejas Kid by Xavier Garza
 Boogs and I often check out books written in Spanish and English from our public library. This week, Boogs picked out Charro Claus and the Tejas Kid because of the bright and colorful cover. In this story, Vincent is visiting his Tio Pancho in South Texas for Christmas. Tio Pancho receives a surprise visit from his Primo Santa Claus. Santa asks Pancho to help deliver presents to children on the Texas/Mexico border. Santa uses magic dust to transform Tio Pancho's tight and worn out Mariachi clothes into a new and beautiful golden Mariachi suit. Four old burros are transformed into The Flying Burritos, complete with Lucha Libre masks, to pull a wagon full of toys. Vincent sneaks into the bag of toys and eventually helps Tio Pancho deliver all of the toys along the border. In the ELB lunchbox: pb&j Tio Pancho with Nutella beard, grapes on a Mariachi guitar pick (kind of), dried apricots, Santa candy, carrots for the Flying Burritos, and rice & beans. (Dina, thanks for the cute guitar and mustache picks!)
  


Peter Spier's Christmas!  You can see the details for this lunch on yesterday's Ho Ho Holiday blog hop post.






Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by.    

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Ho Ho Holiday Hop With Bento Bloggers & Friends


Bento Bloggers and Friends have joined together for another fun hop. We had so many friends in the group want to participate in the hop that we decided to break it down into three smaller hops. 
 
http://i60.photobucket.com/albums/h35/merrycrismess/BentOnBetterLunches/HolidayHoHoHop2.jpg

Boogs' lunches are inspired by the books we read at bedtime. For this hop, I chose a wordless picture book about the holiday season. 

Christmas! by Peter Spier
 This book has over 90 paintings by Caldecott Medal winning artist Peter Spier. With each turn of the page, Christmas scenes and memories are beautifully depicted. Boogs and I enjoyed searching each picture for interesting details. The book shows a family getting out the decorations, shopping, visiting, having family gatherings, opening presents, and continues on until the holiday is over.
In the ELB lunchbox: spinach tortellini Christmas tree with tomato trunk & lights, cheese ornaments, ham & snowpea present, and red & green grapes.

Here are a few of my favorite winter/holiday lunches from last year:
Polar Slumber/Sueno Polar by Dennis Rockhill
This is a beautiful wordless picture book about a dreaming girl and her adventure in the Arctic snow with two friendly polar bears. Wordless picture books are wonderful for encouraging little storytellers. At the end of the book the author has written a poem to go with the pictures. It is fun to page back through the book to match the poem's stanzas with each picture. In the lunchbox: Babybel dreaming girl under a marshmallow blanket, salami, sweet potato chips, carrots in hummus, snowflake pb&j sandwich, and grapes.


If You Take A Mouse To The Movies by Laura Numeroff
In the Laptop lunch box: PB&Nutella blanket and mouse sandwich ball, fruit leather hat, mitten & tree cheese ornaments, grapes & tomato ornaments, popcorn, pretzel sticks, and pears.


Snowman lunch inspired by the song "Frosty the Snowman".  PB&Nutella sandwich balls snowman (idea taken from here ), extra carrot noses, arm choices Chex Mix, mini marshmallow snowmen, snowflake cheese, and blueberry night sky.

Now, head on over to Mommy + Me Lunch Box to see her fantastic Ho Ho Holiday lunch.

After you've gone all the way through the hop and ended up back on my blog, click here to enter my Footsteps2Brilliance Reading App giveaway!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sneaky Learning Activities From Our Elf

Cutesy encouraged Boogs to read by leaving several sentences on the magnetic board. Then he made a self portrait of words. Boogs read the sentences with a little help. "Cutesy dreamed that the boy was flying in a blizzard of green candy," was Boogs' favorite one. Then Boogs added to Cutesy's picture.

Cutesy encouraged Boogs to write by starting a story for Boogs to complete. The story starter: "Once upon a time an elf named Cutesy went on an adventure. Cutesy followed a magic path to"
Boogs was kind of annoyed that the story was about Cutesy. He decided to put himself in the story: ...to Munchkinland. In Munchkinland he saw a house. It was my house not Dorothy's house. 

Then Boogs said, "Can I take a writing break? It takes tons of days to process my story before I can write any more." He can be such a little stinker.

Cutesy colored a picture and left one for Boogs to color.

Cutesy forgot to move until early in the morning so he quickly hid in the snowman display area.

Cutesy brought Boogs some slippers. He was not sure which size slippers to get. So, he is leaving both of them for Boogs. There is a pajama day at school next week and Boogs has outgrown his old slippers. Cutesy's timing for this gift is impeccable.
Boogs was very pleased when the Perry the Platypus slippers fit him so well. He can grow into the Spiderman slippers, they are a larger size.

Want to see more of Cutesy? Visit my Cutesy the Elf pinterest board or click on the "elf" label at the end of this post. Don't forget to check out my side bar for all of the wonderful sites I like to link to.

Ultimate Elf on the Shelf Link Party

Elf Linky Party

Don't miss my Footsteps2Brilliance giveaway. It closes on Friday, 12/14/12.