Photo TV Choice Board

I'll admit kids watch entirely too much TV.  Until today, that is!

When I was a practicing speech pathologist, I made choice boards and picture communication boards for many of my students.  Since these devices work for children who can't verbally express themselves, I figured, "why not use one with The Noise Maker?" (who screams in frustration when I don't understand which show he wants to watch)...

How would this help cut back on TV-watching you might ask?  Because each kiddo will get to choose ONE show to watch in the morning, instead of me just turning on the TV and letting it play.  When their two shows are over, so is TV time.

Choice boards are very visual things...and my kids (as are most at this age) are VERY visual!  These can work for almost anything...snack time, play time/toys, television, and even basic wants/needs for the non-verbal child.

Supplies needed:

1. Old cookie sheet or other magnetic surface
2. Magnetic Tape (I got mine at Hobby Lobby)
3. Photos of desired shows (or foods, toys, etc.)
I printed these photos from Google Images, adhered them to carstock for durability, and then laminated them.

All you have to do is tear a piece of magnetic tape and adhere it to the back of each photo:

Then place the photos on a cookie sheet and either attach to refrigerator with heavy duty magnets, or place in a drawer to store.

I plan to keep mine in a drawer so that I can use the back of it to store photos of more shows:

To use, ask the child which show they want to watch and allow them to pull off the photo of the show, eliminating the need for a verbal response to communicate the need/want.  The words will eventually come, but until more screaming when I don't understand the Noise Maker's requests....AND I can easily teach moderation of TV viewing at the same time!

TA-DA!!!  :)


Happy Birthday Banner Card

The inspiration for this card came from one in Paper Crafts Magazine (Jan/Feb 2011) HERE.
I used my Cricut and the George and Basic Shapes cartridge to make the banner, and the Accent Essentials cartridge to make the frame for the sentiment.  The sentiment is a stamp set from CTMH (Card Chatter-Birthday).

Thanks for looking!

Lollipop Card...How "Sweet"!

Isn't this is sweetest card you've ever seen???  My sweet friend Robin over at Robin's Creative Cottage sent this to me and I just LOVE it...THANK YOU Robin!  If you want details on how Robin make this adorable card, you can check out the info and video tutorial on her blog HERE.

Robin is the creator of Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog (FCCB)...if you haven't already, please stop by and take a look at the amazing talent and inspiration over there!  From weekly challenges, tips and tutorials to cartridge highlights and scrapbooking articles, you're sure to find something new and exciting to fuel your creative juices!

THANK YOU're the "sweetest"!!!!  :)

Amazing Bluebirds...

Growing up, we called Blue Jays "bluebirds".  It wasn't until I moved to Texas that I actually saw a true Blue Bird.  How amazingly gorgeous they are!  My dad told me to put up a special "Blue Bird box" (got ours at Lowe's) and they'd nest in our yard.  And they did.  They eat bugs which I LOVE, so we now have three boxes spread out over the yard. 

This year, we added one over the back patio, mounted to the house.  I wasn't sure they'd nest in it, but they did...we've been patiently waiting and we now have baby Blue Birds to enjoy...
Truly amazing, aren't they?  Can't wait to see the little ones start flying and eating up those Texas-sized bugs!  :)

Easter 2011

Oh, how I love Easter!  For the obvious reasons...but also because I get to watch my children participate in the same traditions I did as a kid, and it's fun remembering back to when I was a kid!  I think the kids are a little young to fully understand the true meaning of Easter, but The Mess Maker is starting to grasp a little.

The highlight this year was getting to dye Easter eggs!  This was the first year we dyed eggs...we'd done the plastic ones before.  But I wanted to start the tradition we had as kids and dye real eggs, so we did!
The Mess Maker had a ball!  We waited until the Noise Maker went to bed, so that we could let Katie have her first dying experience without any drama.  :) 

The "Easter Bunny" hid the eggs and the kiddos found them in recod time!
The "Easter Bunny" carefully accounted for all eggs upon hiding and we still managed to lose one!  Oh well...hopefully it fed some little critter in the middle of the night last night!

Happy Easter everyone!


Lots O' Layouts!

I've been to two weekend-long scrapbooking retreats in the past several months and I actually almost completed the Noise Maker's baby scrapbook during those two weekends (only two pages away!). 

Here are the one-page layouts I've done:

"Laugh...It's Contagious"
"Bumbo Buddies"
"Splish Splash"
"Learning To Walk"
"1st Hair Cut"
"So Happy"
"My Little Monkey"
"All Boy"
"8 Months"
"Gone Bananas"
"Siesta Key Beach"
"Happy New Year"
"Dino Baby"
"First Trip"
"The Poop Face"
"Happy Father's Day...NOT!"
"Daddy...You Hung The Stars"
"Great Expectations"
"Baby Cakes"
"Sweet Dreams"
" I (heart) You"
A few of these have been inspired by some I've seen in magazines and online ("Happy New Year", "8 Months", "So Happy"), but most are my own!  :)

Here are my 2-page layouts:

"Who Loves You...Sissy Does"
"Happy Birthday Monkey"

And here is my "Flip Flap" layout:

The bottom photo is actually the front "page" of a series of photos, attached to page with CTMH's Flip Flaps...
Journaling is hidden behind!  All I have to do is cut a slit in my page protector, and you can flip through the photos while it's in the, huh?

Thanks for looking!  :)