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Build Your Beach Party With Seaworthy Snacks

by Tania Cowling July 29th, 2014 | Food, Healthy Snacks
hawaii-244473_640Whether you are partying at the seashore, lakeside, or just around the family pool, beach-themed snacks quench an appetite with fun. Make sure to pack the cooler with plenty of juice boxes, bottled water, and a variety of sandwiches – but if you add a few of these snack ideas below, they will sure bring your party theme to life. So let’s get started building your beach party that may just become the family’s favorite theme of all.

Frozen Orange Cups – What better snack to cool you down than a nutritious orange filled with
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Kids’ Summer Birthday Party Themes & Decorations

by Tania Cowling July 22nd, 2014 | Decorations
file0001737528382Birthdays come every year and planning parties can sometimes be overwhelming for parents. But it shouldn’t be — it’s a memorable time for you and your child. The easiest way to go is with a theme. A central theme simplifies all the aspects of party planning — the invitations, decorations, food, games, and even the cake. Build a theme around something special to your child — a movie, superhero, a place, story; the list is endless. Let your child brainstorm theme ideas and together work out a plan. Summer birthdays, no matter your theme,
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Bookmark Birthday Craft For Kids Ages 6 and Under

by Tania Cowling July 21st, 2014 | Ages 6 and under, Crafts
Birthday Craft BookmarkersBirthday parties should have a variety of activities to entertain young children. Making party crafts has a dual purpose — as a party activity and a take-home favor. When working with children ages six and under, think simple and age appropriate. Creating a bookmark is perfect for summer parties, since we try to encourage our kids to engage in reading during the months of summer vacation. It’s always nice to have a pretty bookmark to mark your ending page. You only need a few materials to make this project, but challenge the kids to
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Multi-Family Backyard Camping Party

by Kimberly Hays July 18th, 2014 | Holiday Help
file0002101443875 Many people are opting for a staycation instead of a vacation due to high gas prices and other factors. Vacationing at home can become boring after a few days, but you can make it more fun by including one or more families. Set up tents in the backyard, invite some close family or friends, and plan a night, or even a weekend backyard camping party.

Planning – Planning is key because you will have to coordinate with the others to be sure everyone has everything they will need, including tents and camping chairs, as
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A Snowman CD Ornament Craft for Kids 7 and Up

by Kimberly Hays July 17th, 2014 | Ages 7 and over, Crafts
snowman craft (400x400)Summer is here, and in many places in the country it is sweltering hot! Thinking back to winter, it would feel pretty good to have a blast of cold air from Old Man Winter swoop through. It may not be cold, but we can still have a little winter fun in the summer. The kids can make this craft outside, which means that the mess will stay outdoors and not on your dining room or kitchen table. Instead, set the supplies up outside on the porch or patio, and have them make this adorable
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Winter in Summer Celebration With Fun Snacks

by Tania Cowling July 15th, 2014 | Food, Healthy Snacks
ice-chocolate-245475_640It’s ironic to think about winter during the hot, blazing days of summer, but why not tap into your creativity when preparing snacks to treat your family? And, think how refreshingly something cool on a summer day will tickle the taste buds. So, whether you yearn for something snow related or Christmas in July, think of ideas that transform ordinary summer snacks into a winter theme and enjoy your mid-year celebration.

Ice Cream Snowballs

Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper and prepare to stock your snowballs. Use a rounded scooper and dig into a container
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Melting Snowman Craft for Kids Age 6 and Under

by Tania Cowling July 14th, 2014 | Ages 6 and under, Crafts
Melting SnowmanWhile your children are enjoying their summer vacation with outdoor play and swimming, why not change the theme one day to “winter in summer?” It may be just a change of pace for residents in the northern states, but a true excitement for kids that live down South who do not truly experience a snowy winter. One of my favorite winter crafts is making snowmen. As Olaf, the snowman in the movie Frozen said, “Winter is a good time to stay in and cuddle, but put me in summer and I’ll be a happy
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Ocean in a Bottle Summer Craft for Kids

by Kimberly Hays July 10th, 2014 | Ages 7 and over, Crafts
DSC_0048 (2) (400x400)You can’t think about summer without images of the beach coming to mind and the waves of the ocean crashing on shore. This fun craft will bring all of those memories to the forefront, and the kids will have a lot of fun making their own waves. You most likely have everything needed for this fun craft on hand now, so go check your cabinets for the supplies below, and have your kids make an ocean in a bottle that they will play with for days!

Supplies Needed:

  • Plastic bottle with lid

  • Vegetable oil or baby oil

  • Water

  • Blue
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Sun Flyer Craft for Ages 6 and Under

by Tania Cowling July 7th, 2014 | Ages 6 and under, Crafts
IMG_2241Sunshine and a gentle breeze are synonymous with summer. This decorative sun flyer craft can be used outdoors on the front porch, patio, or hanging from a tree branch. My example is shaped like a sunburst, but you can easily convert this art into a beautiful flower. Furthermore, this project is bright, full of colors and textures. Young children will engage in painting, cutting and pasting with this craft and use a variety of materials. Never underestimate the value of doing crafts with your kids -- they promote the development of small motor muscles
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Summer S’mores for Outdoors

by Kimberly Hays July 4th, 2014 | Holiday Help
smore pdI recently had company, and they were enjoying the nice weather and wanted to spend a lot of time outdoors. I decided to grill out that evening so I went to the grocery store to pick up ingredients for a nice meal, and then needed to come up with something for dessert. Keeping the outdoors in mind, s’mores immediately came to mind. I decided to do a more  upscale spread of s’mores fixings that we could have fun making together outside after dinner. These would be great for a kid’s campout, birthday party, or
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July 4th Lantern Craft for Kids 7 and Up

by Kimberly Hays July 3rd, 2014 | Ages 7 and over, Crafts
this one (400x400)When the sun goes down on July 4th you can place these outdoors on tables to give a patriotic glow. Made from recycled jars, they are reusable, and a lot of fun to make! I kept a mayonnaise jar to make my lantern, but any jar will do. After July 4th, the kids can also take them to their room to use as a container for pencils or other small items. These can also be made for other holidays by using different colors of paper, like red and green for Christmas, or black and
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Straw-Blown Fireworks Painting: Ages 6 and Under

by Tania Cowling June 30th, 2014 | Ages 6 and under, Crafts
IMG_2221Up in the sky amongst the stars, Independence Day (July Fourth) fireworks are booming. Sparkling lights illuminate the night with beautiful colors. You and your child can create this illusion on paper with a straw, paint, and glitter. This hands-on project will need parental supervision as your budding artist learns how to blow a blob of paint across the page to create a splatter effect. This in turn can be turned into a fireworks display by adding glitter. Have fun with this artsy concept by day and then visit a real fireworks production at
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