Penny Pinching Peach


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Phonics Hunt Game

Phonics Hunt

Phonics Hunt

My oldest daughter is currently learning to read. She is doing an amazing job with her schoolwork, and has inherited my voracious love of learning. However, when we did our review work today, I spotted a couple of letters she was having trouble matching with their phonics sounds correctly. I decided that- instead of doing math today (which I don’t do daily with a kindergarten student, since she likes to do a lot at a time, anyway)- I would make up a fun game with multiple parts to help her get a better grasp on the sounds she was struggling with remembering. We needed some outside time to burn energy and get some fresh air, so I incorporated that in with our school time. (Gotta love homeschooling!! Learning happens everywhere!! Since I’m a second generation homeschooler, this is natural & normal for me, but I am seeing a whole different side of it now. Love it! 🙂 )

My Princess Pennypeacher was having trouble with the letters H and N. I handed her a grocery bag, and explained that we were going hunting for things that start with those letters, making the phonics sound for her. Our goal was to find at least three items with each phonics sound. She is very goal oriented, so she loved this!! As we went walking together, searching for objects, I kept repeating the letters and sounds and helping her come up with words starting with those sounds. We found a few things outside, then continued our search in the house. This kept her busily searching for a while, having a good ol’ time all the way, with her little brother following her around shouting the sounds with her without having any idea what he was talking about. 🙂 Once she found three items starting with the H and N sounds, we moved on to the next part of the game.

I had her sit down and choose two pieces of paper to write the uppercase and lowercase versions of each letter at the top of each sheet. Once she did that, I had her pull one item at a time out of the bag, tell me which sound and letter that item started with, set it beside the correct letter sheet and then I helped her write the words by breaking down the sounds in each word to see if she could tell me the matching letter. This was mostly to reiterate the sounds she was working on, but also to check for any other sounds she might be struggling with. This part was less of a hooray kind of fun for her, but she still enjoyed the challenge.

To finish up, we took a silly photo of my kindergartener, her project, and her loyal assistant! 🙂

Do you think your little ones would enjoy this game? It cost nothing whatsoever, so that made my pockets happy. It definitely helped her get a better grasp on the letters she was getting confused on, although I think we will need to do a couple of more fun reviews to make sure she really has it. I love having fun learning with my munchkins! 🙂


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National Preschool Fitness Day

Pretty Day At the Park

Pretty Day At the Park

Jan. 30 is National Preschool Fitness Day. I just learned about this particular day, but I definitely make a point of keeping my kiddos hopping. During nicer days, even if it’s cold outside, we get them outside playing, like this recent photo at a park. When we are stuck inside a lot due to cruddy weather outside, it presents more of a challenge and Mommy has to get creative! My children have to be active or they will go completely nutty, so it’s an absolute necessity to find ways for them to move those little bodies when we’re stranded indoors. I’m sharing the official page about the holiday and their ideas for keeping little ones fit, then some of my own little tricks for burning that energy indoors. 🙂

Fun ideas for helping your preschooler stay fit:

http://kid-fit.com/wordpress/?p=454

Free preschool fitness kit.

Bop the balloon. The object of this game is simple: Keep the balloon in the air by bopping it. My 2 1/2 year old and my 5 year old absolutely love this! Just make sure you have extra balloons ready, because they may pop and it won’t be pretty if you don’t have a replacement handy. 🙂

Chacha train. I have my kiddos line up behind me and we do our own version of the chacha in a choochoo train kinda way. It’s weird and wacky, but it leaves them giggling and gets them moving.

Hokey Pokey. We’ve all done this one as kids, right? You can do it with them or just sing the song and do the best you can while doing whatever you’re doing.

Simon Says. Simon Says: Hop like a bunny. Simon Says: Spin around. Simon Says: Do jumping jacks. Everything Simon Says is something active in this version of the game.

Dance party!! I like to put on some music and do crazy dances with my munchkins. If I am not feeling well and don’t feel like dancing myself, I’ll often sing a song and clap for them to dance. They LOVE it!!

The items below look like some really fun resources for physical activities for preschoolers, if you want some help in getting those little hineys moving! 🙂

303 Preschooler-Approved Exercises and Active Games (SmartFun Activity Books)

Preschoolers and Kindergartners Moving and Learning: A Physical Education Curriculum (Moving & Learning)

Sesame Street: Get Up and Dance

“Penny Pinching Peach is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com”

What kind of activities do you keep your little ones active with during yucky weather?


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Thanksgiving Turkey Craft

 

Upcycled Thanksgiving Turkey

Upcycled Thanksgiving Turkey

For our preschool the other day I decided to make it all about Thanksgiving.

First, I told my daughter the 4 year old comprehensible version of the first Thanksgiving and we had a discussion about the things we are thankful for.

She was especially thankful for her mommy, daddy, baby brudder, all her animals and food. 🙂

Next, I sent her into the yard to gather leaves while I got together craft supplies for her project of the day!

I like re-using random items in our crafts, so I grabbed part of a thing cardboard insert I’d been saving from a box of drinks  (an old cereal box would work) and cut pieces to make a turkey body and head, cut a slit in the neck and chest to be able to stick them together, trimmed an old Reeses’ candy eggs box, then laid them out with her crayons and markers so that she could decorate her turkey however she wanted, and got some googly eyes to glue on when she was finished decorating. She had a blast! When she was through, I couldn’t find any clear tape, so I just used masking tape to tape the cardboard pieces around the box “stand”, put the head on and helped her tape the leaf tail on the backside. It would’ve been prettier with clear, obviously, but Princess Peach is pleased as punch, and that’s what counts. 🙂

Thanks for Turkey?

Thanks for Turkey?

Once the turkey was proudly perched on our windowsill, I wrote out THANKS and TURKEY on two pages, had her point out all of the letters and we talked about the words. Then she did her best to copy the words out. She also made a picture with her two hands traced and the word THANKS at the top later that day, because she enjoyed her Thanksgiving theme so much and didn’t want to be finished with it. 🙂

What kind of fun Thanksgiving themed things do you do with your little ones? Try my Free Printable Thanksgiving Turkey Craft!



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Wear Something Gaudy Day

Movie Star Munchkins

Movie Star Munchkins

Want something fun to do? How about celebrating Wear Something Gaudy Day with us? The official celebration is today, October 17, and it’s the perfect holiday for the free spirited fashionistas among us!  This is a day my mom would have adored, since she loved wearing some far out outfits! My daughter is definitely a kindred spirit when it comes to her sense of style. She- like my mom- can look fabulous while wearing something that would just leave the average person looking funky! She’s training her brother well, by being his personal stylist, as pictured. 😉

What would you wear for Wear Something Gaudy Day? Have a crazzzzzzy outfit to share? Please go like my Facebook page below and share a photo in the comments of this blog post there. I’d love to see what kind of gaudiness y’all have come up with, as long as it’s a family friendly kind of kookiness! 🙂

https://www.facebook.com/pennypinchingpeachpage

Here is a link telling more about the history of Wear Something Gaudy Day:

http://www.examiner.com/article/wear-something-gaudy-day-wear-something-loud-and-stand-out-the-crowd


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Decorate Your Own Box Home

Peekaboo!!

Peekaboo!!

My children are like any other child I’ve known: fascinated by the worlds in their own imaginations. I am always looking to find things that keep their busy little hands and imaginations occupied without a lot of expense or mess. Something they’ve been having fun with lately is a huge box. I have given it to them as their own home within our home, to decorate as they please and have altered at whim.

They scribble on it at whim. I’ve put in window flaps and ceiling flaps and little eye shaped peepholes galore. They think it is awesome, and have spent hours and hours pretending it’s their castle, house, doctor’s office, art center, restaurant and who knows what all else. It’s their creative corner. I am thinking I should give them stickers to put on it, but I’ll have to supervise that one pretty well. 🙂

This is a simple, free activity that brings them endless fun. I’d encourage you to try it with your kiddos. 🙂

Decorate Your Own Box Home

Decorate Your Own Box Home


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Crafty Snacking

 

Smiling With A Smiley Face Cracker

Smiling With A Smiley Face Cracker

Crafty Snacking

My daughter loves all things cutesy and yummy. Combining those two loves, I sometimes make her snacks or meals in cutie patootie delicious forms.

Princess Peach loves peanut butter on crackers. I take large round crackers, peanut butter and either craisins or raisins. I spread the peanut butter on the crackers, then make faces, flowers or sun designs with the craisins or raisins. She loves it!

Flowery Crackers

Flowery Crackers

She also adores marshmallows, so that was an obvious one to make a crafty critter out of. I took eight small pretzel sticks, painted a smiley face on a flat side with one of the pretzel sticks dipped into a drop of Hershey’s syrup, then jabbed them in the sides of the marshmallow to look like spider legs. This would be a fun and easy snack for those who celebrate Halloween.

Happy Spider

Happy Spider

We often have sandwiches for lunch. Sometimes I’ll cut it into triangle shapes and put a large cherry tomato in the middle, all arranged like a flower. I’ll also take a cookie cutter and cut three or four pieces out of the sandwich in whatever shape it is.

Flower Sandwich

Flower Sandwich

There is an endless array of cool things you can do with food! I only do the quick, easy and cheap varieties myself, since I am actually chasing around the kiddos I’m feeding, but I’ve seen some “food art” that would break your heart to eat.

Does anyone else like to get creative with food for their munchkins sometimes for no reason other than making them smile? 🙂

For more great food for kids, check out After School Snacks!

 


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Another Award, Times 2!!

Liebsteraward2I was given the Liebster Award by two of my fellow bloggers- My 3 Monsters http://my3monsters.wordpress.com/ and WAHMs Live Green http://www.wahfamilieslivegreen.com/. Both ladies have blogs that run pretty true to what their titles hint at, and I’d encourage everyone to check them out. I’m truly flattered to be thought of for this award, and am nominating some wonderful and different bloggers myself this time around.  I tried to make this fresh, but some of the facts about me are just the same. 🙂

These are the Liebster Award rules; “When nominated, the blogger must list eleven facts about his/herself, answers questions given by the nominator, and come up with eleven questions for the bloggers he/she nominates.” The bloggers are also supposed to have under 300 followers.

Here goes something!

♥ Eleven Facts About Penny Pinching Peach♥

Hubby Training

Hubby Training

•I probably have one of the hardest working husbands in the world. He’s a firefighter/paramedic, and I’m very proud of the fact my husband is willing to save lives and help others for a living.

•My dream growing up was to be a mommy and…..whatever else. The only unchanging part was that I wanted to be a mommy. My two munchkins? Crazy little dreams come true! 🙂

•I come from a long & proud line of penny pinching peaches.

•I was peeling taters in the kitchen with my mom when I was 7. I’m passing on the helping-in-the-kitchen-early-on tradition to my little girl, who already puts up freshly washed silverware and crushes cans for recycling at the ripe ol’ age of 3 1/2.

•I was homeschooled, graduating at age 15 in the top 1% of graduating seniors nationwide.

•I lost my mom in 2006, and I miss her every day, but she lives on in the hearts of all who loved her.

•I love doing crafts, but haven’t been able to do as many crafts since having babies.

•I am a lifelong bookworm, but that is yet another neglected hobby of mine since having little ones.

Chicks and Chica

•I love cooking and baking. Feeding folks the vittles I stir up is just the icing on the cake!

•I taught myself calligraphy when I was in middle school. That seems like an obscure and useless skill, but it has come in handy to add a bit of pizzazz to the lettering when making cards.

♥Questions From My 3 Monsters♥

1.Why did you start blogging? Several reasons, one being that friends & family encouraged me to officially share what I’d been sharing unofficially forever.
2.What inspires your blog? My family, frugality and random things.
3.What is your favourite holiday and why? Christmas, because it brings my little ones so much joy.
4.What is an important tradition in your family? Right now? My daughter “trick or treats” for prizes when she goes potty. We’re still forming our lifelong traditions, though. 🙂
5.How many children do you think is the ideal number to have? I think it varies according to the family, honestly. For some, that number is none or one. For others, it is 5 or 10. I’m not sure what it is for us yet, but I hope it’s at least one more than we have. 🙂
6.What is your family’s favourite meal? Hmm… that’s a toughie! My family loves my chicken and dumplings. Ritz cracker chicken and chicken livers with mashed taters & green beans. A creamy chicken concoction I tried recently that the hubby called the “best chicken ever”. Chicken, apparently?? lol

I Cook Good, Mommy!

I Cook Good, Mommy!

7.Any suggestions for picky eaters? (This question is purely for selfish reasons!) My little ones generally eat well, but when my daughter goes through a picky patch, I get her input on meals. I’ll say “Shell noodles or curly?” or let her help mix things, dump ingredients in a bowl….pretty much anything to be involved with the meal. When kids help make something, they usually eat it. 🙂
8.What is your dream vacation? Happy, peaceful, warm, and without some weird agenda? lol
9.What kinds of music do you listen to? Country, rock, Christian worship/contemporary.
10.Coffee or tea? Sweet iced tea.
11.If you could offer kids one piece of advice for the future what would it be? ONE?!? Don’t let what the rest of society is doing or thinking dictate your morals and ideas.♥Penny Pinching Peach’s Liebster Award Nominees♥

•Mom’s Living Leaner http://momslivingleaner.com/

•Sobo Mama’s Tips & Tricks http://sobomama.wordpress.com/

•My Make Do And Mend Year http://mymakedoandmendyear.wordpress.com/

•Don’t Panic, Just Parent http://dontpanicjustparent.com/

•Simplicity By Choice http://simplicitybychoice.com/

♥My Questions for the Nominees♥

•What did you want to be when you grew up?

•You obviously enjoy blogging, but what’s a hobby you’re known for?

•What is your favorite way to save?

•If you could spend your weekend any way you wanted, what would you do?

•Do you have any pets?

•Which beauty item can you not live without?

•What is your favorite place to shop, online or offline?

•What two words best describes your personality?

•What is your favorite snack?

•Do you have any hidden talents?

•What would you like to be remembered for?

Congratulations to all of these fantastic bloggers!

I look forward to reading your replies and to continue keeping up with all of your fantastic  blogs! Please visit and follow all of these interesting bloggers. I know you’ll enjoy them as much as I do!