Chalk Walk & the Art of Playing to Learn

Chalk Walk & The Art of Playing to Learn

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Spring is here and between spring rain storms, we are enjoying the warm spring weather and lovely breeze.  Who wants to be stuck indoors learning when they could be out playing scooter, digging in the dirts and exploring nature! With that in mind, our little ones have ventured out doors to play and learn.

After a quick trip to the dollar store were we stocked up on a few containers of sidewalk chalk, we decided to have a good time building learning games on the driveway.  The first round, I created bursts of word families.  Using a hop-along pony our little one formed words and sounded out words as we raced to each finish line.

 

After the rain washed this particular game away, created a winding shoots and ladders style learning game.  With two pennies, the kids moved forward one space for each head and two for tails. Boxes along the journey had learning activities and exercise ideas for the children to preform.  On this track, they used their scooters to navigate the twists and turns.

 

Since the rain has now washed this game-board, the three are already planning their next chalk walk. This time they want to create a CandyLand style game with creative magical stops along their journey. This is what they’ve come up with so far:

  • Mud Swamp
  • Magical Room of Potions
  • Candy Flower Garden
  •  Troll Bog

Activities along their path::

  • Rhyming Words
  • Beginning Sounds
  • Rubber band words (stretching word sounds)
  • Simple Math Problems
  • Hopping on one leg
  • Pushups
  • Squats
  • Other Work Outs

Let us know what other creative ideas you’d like us to consider!  Or, do you have a picture of your own chalk walk? We’d love to see!

Our Weekly Menu with a Dose of Magic Created by a 8 Year Old!

Our Weekly Menu with a Dose of Magic 

 

This week our menu is going to take on a little twist. We follow the guidelines of Trim Healthy Mama developed by Pearl Barrett and Serene Allison and we encourage you to check out their websitebooks and various social media platforms.  However all of the recipes picked for this weeks menu are non THM.  Consequently we will make some adjustments to alleviate sugars, white starchy flours and to keep our fats from carbs. I’ll mention a few in the comments.  Our oldest wanted to plan the menu for this week and I figured, well, why not!!  So here is this week’s menu from an 8, almost 9 year old girl!

Menu

Monday: Irish Stew page 147 from  The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. ~ No Side and Substitute radishes for potatoes

Tuesday: Shepherds Pie and glazed carrots pages 136 and 129 from  The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. Substitute Cauliflower rice for potatoes.

Wednesday: Haggis with buttered peas pages 155 and 129 The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. ~ Substitue hot dogs or sausages for Haggis

Thursday: Classic Roast Chicken with french fries pages 155 and 128 of The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. ~ Cook in the Instapot

Friday: Low Carb Pizza, (c/o) crust made with Cheese bread sticks on page 310of the book Trim Healthy Table. 

Saturday: Beef Stew with Herb Dumplings page 65 The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook. ~No Side and Sub baking blend for flour

Sunday: Chicken Enchiladas (S) – I’m excited about this delicious meal choice!

Sweet Treats

Gorilla Bread:  This recipe was as huge hit! I even had couple with my breakfast the next morning.

Sugar Free Cinnamon Donuts * See Below!!

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts (S)

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 c baking blend
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ c natural sweetener
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ c greek yogurt
  • ¼ c nut milk (coconut or almond)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 T oil
Cinnamon “Sugar” Mixture
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup melted butter
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Mix dry ingredients, sugar and cinnamon
  2. Mix in yogurt, milk, egg and oil
  3. Stir well
  4. Fill greased muffin pans ⅔ full
  5. Bake @375 for 15 minutes
  6. Remove immediately from pan and roll in melted butter
  7. Combine cinnamon & natural sugar (Sweet Blend)
  8. Roll donuts in cinnamon mixture

Or look check out the Basic Donut on page 268 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook for a different recipe on THM donuts.

Our Weekly Menu with fun Recipes

Our Weekly Menu

 

This weeks menu is ready! We follow the guidelines of Trim Healthy Mama developed by Pearl Barrett and Serene Allison and we encourage you to check out their websitebooks and various social media platforms.

Menu

Monday: Spaghetti with low carb pasta (E/FP) Our sweet middle child is turning 7 and requested spaghetti with noodles for her birthday.  For the adults we’ll use spaghetti squash for our noodles.

Tuesday: Little Sweet little spicy drumsticks (S), page 221 of the book, Trim Healthy Table. For a fun little treat tonight, flavorful chicken legs with our favorite Brown “Sugar” Air-Fried Brussel Sprouts!*

WednesdayBBQ Bacon Cheeseburger Meatloaf, (S) rich with flavor, this quick and easy menu choice will be perfect for the first week of school.

Thursday: Chicken Pot Pie (S) with leftover chicken made with Mozzarella Bread 

Friday: Low Carb Pizza, (c/o) crust made with Cheese bread sticks on page 310of the book Trim Healthy Table. 

Saturday: Chicken Cordon Blue Casserole (s), Quick & easy, this recipe will be a welcome treat!

Sunday: Chicken Enchiladas (S) – I’m excited about this delicious meal choice!

Sweet Treats

Gorilla Bread:  This recipe was as huge hit! I even had couple with my breakfast the next morning.

Sugar Free Cinnamon Donuts * See Below!!

 

*Recipes*
Air Fried Brussel Sprouts
  • 1 Bag of Frozen Brussel Sprouts
  • 1 tsp xylitol
  • 1 tsp black strap molasses
  • salt and cayenne paper to taste
  • coconut spray

Line the Air-Fryer with foil.  Spray the Brussel Sprouts with coconut spray. Sprinkle salt and cayenne paper xylitol and molasses onto sprouts.  Mix and add to the air fryer. Cook for 15-18 mins until toasty.

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts (S)

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 c baking blend
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ c natural sweetener
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ c greek yogurt
  • ¼ c nut milk (coconut or almond)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 T oil
Cinnamon “Sugar” Mixture
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup melted butter
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Mix dry ingredients, sugar and cinnamon
  2. Mix in yogurt, milk, egg and oil
  3. Stir well
  4. Fill greased muffin pans ⅔ full
  5. Bake @375 for 15 minutes
  6. Remove immediately from pan and roll in melted butter
  7. Combine cinnamon & natural sugar (Sweet Blend)
  8. Roll donuts in cinnamon mixture

Or look check out the Basic Donut on page 268 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook for a different recipe on THM donuts.


Our Weekly Menu with Sugar Free Donuts

Our Weekly Menu with Sugar Free Donuts

 

 

This weeks menu is ready! We follow the guidelines of Trim Healthy Mama developed by Pearl Barrett and Serene Allison and we encourage you to check out their websitebooks and various social media platforms.

Menu

Monday: Blackened Salmon with Air Fried Okra (E) The blogger, Oh Sweet Mercy,  is one to follow with amazing Trim Healthy Mama options and delicious, easy to make recipes.

Tuesday: It’s Taco Tuesday so Slow Fajitas on page 53 in the book Trim Healthy Mama, is on the menu 

Wednesday: Pizza Chili * See Below

Thursday: Light and Fluffy Quiche * See Below

Friday: Low Carb Pizza, (c/o) crust made with Cheese bread sticks on page 310of the book Trim Healthy Table. 

Saturday: Insta Pot Honey Bourbon Chicken  In order to blend into our Trim Healthy Lifestyle, I will substitute glucosamine for the thickener and use Braggs Liquid Amino Acids for the soy sauce

Sunday: General Tso’s InstaPot Shredded Chicken In order to blend into our Trim Healthy Lifestyle, I will substitute glucosamine for the thickener and use Braggs Liquid Amino Acids for the soy sauce.  I’ll also replace the sugar with xylitol.

Sweet Treats

No Bake Cheesecake, just check out this amazing recipe again from Oh Sweet Mercy!

Sugar Free Cinnamon Donuts * See Below!!

 

Light and Fluffy Quiche

Ingredients:

  • Optional Pie Crust
  • 1 cup Shredded Mexican Blended Cheese
  • 1 cup mozzarella Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
  • 4 oz Cream Cheese
  • Green Onion
  • Handful of Kale
  • Cooked Sausage Bites
  • 4- slices Cooked and Bacon Crumbles
  • 8 Eggs
  • 1 cup Whipping Cream
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian Spice Blend
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Layer the Pie Crust or Baking Dish with Cheese, Kale, Sausage, Cooked Bacon and onion.  
  2. In medium bowl, combine eggs, milk or cream, and then add salt, pepper and Italian Spice blend . Beat until smooth and pour over cheese and meat.
  3. Place prepared pie in preheat oven (375 degrees F)  If using a crust you may choose to cover with foil to protect it. 
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until filling is set and crust is golden brown. Remove the foil, if used and continue to bake for 15 mins if the quiche is not set. 
Insta-Pot Pizza Chili
  • 2 pound ground turkey
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 2 cans RoTel Diced Tomatoes with Green Chilies
  • 2 cans of the following beans (Black, any kind of White & Kidney)
  • 1 – 2 Tablespoons chili powder (depending on how spicy you like your chili)
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin 
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • Himalayan salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup chicken stock low sodium
  • 3 ounce can of tomato paste.
  • 2 cans of sugar-free pizza sauce

Press Sauté button and add butter and onion and ground turkey. Once the onion and turkey has been cooked, turn off Sauté mood and add the rest of the ingredients. Close lid and pressure cook on chili at High Pressure for 30 minutes, followed by Natural Release. Open the lid carefully.

Another Sweet Treat for this week

Cinnamon Sugar Donuts (S)

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 c baking blend
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ c natural sweetener
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ c greek yogurt
  • ¼ c nut milk (coconut or almond)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 T oil
Cinnamon “Sugar” Mixture
  • 1½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup melted butter
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Mix dry ingredients, sugar and cinnamon
  2. Mix in yogurt, milk, egg and oil
  3. Stir well
  4. Fill greased muffin pans ⅔ full
  5. Bake @375 for 15 minutes
  6. Remove immediately from pan and roll in melted butter
  7. Combine cinnamon & natural sugar (Sweet Blend)
  8. Roll donuts in cinnamon mixture

Or look check out the Basic Donut on page 268 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbookfor a different recipe on THM donuts.

A Rainbow of Fun

A Rainbow of Fun!

 

 

 

A little touch of Easter a flavor of spring. My little preschooler was fascinated by rainbows on this particular day and kept keeping these magical arrays in everything we did. So for a fun extra projects we found this easy science lesson to blend colors to create a rainbow effect. Give it a try for yourself and see what you think!

Rainbow Walking Water Science Experiment 

For our experiment, we set up the cups, added the water, color and then paper towels.  The walking color didn’t magically appear right away so we decided to head to art class. Upon our return the it really did look wonderful!!

While at art class, Jackie, Cayden’s teacher at Aberdeen Bead and Brushes had a variety of projects with rainbow’s as well!  Check out this fun science lesson with jelly beans and skittles!! Tuesday Mornings at 10:00am in Aberdeen, there is toddler art for $5.00. Cayden always has a fun time creating and meeting out with friends! So, if you are in the Sandhills area of Southern Pines/Pinehurst, come and join us!

 

So how do you recreate this rainbow of colors?  Grab a white disposable plate, a bag of skittle or jellybeans and a small cup of water. Line the ring of the plate with your candy, poor a little water and watch the magic happen.  Additionally, Cayden create a chalk egg project that same day!  So much to do so little time!

 

Our Weekly Menu

This weeks menu is ready! We follow the guidelines of Trim Healthy Mama developed by Pearl Barrett and Serene Allison and we encourage you to check out their websitebooks and various social media platforms.

Menu

Monday: Butternut Squash Soup (E) Hearty with an added curry flavor, I’m excited to try this soup!

Tuesday: Twice Baked Spaghetti Squash (FP) Another zero fat/carb recipe for this week.  This one looks amazing!

WednesdayJalapeno Chicken Bacon Chowder (S) from Darcie’s Dishes. My oldest daughter is really into soups and this delicious recipe is a favorite of hers.  I do adjust the dish so it’s not spicy for my three children.

Thursday: Butter Poppy Seed Chicken Casserole (S) page 56 of Necessary Foods.  The picture in the book sold me on this recipe.  I’m excited to try however, I know my kids won’t be thrilled with a casserole so I may put some chicken aside for them.

Friday: Low Carb Pizza, (c/o) crust made with Cheese bread sticks on page 310of the book Trim Healthy Table. 

Saturday: Eggroll in a Bowl (S) It’s been a while since we this meal made it to the dinner table.  Easy, delicious and quick, this is a crowd pleasing meal for the whole family. Found on page 63 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook with our own added additions such as water chestnuts and sprouts.

Sunday: Piggies in a Blanket (S)  Another favorite for my little ones. Who wouldn’t love this low carb options.

Sweet Treats

These Mint Brownies (S) look delicious and easy!

Cinnamon Rolls