Chasing Cheerios

Sunday, December 29, 2013

A Year of Family Fun

While traumatic, our family's experience with Elliott's brain tumor and subsequent craniotomy during the Winter/Spring of 2012 was a reminder that nothing is more important to us than spending time (and having fun) as a family.  With that in mind we decided to give our girls a year's worth of trips and experiences for Christmas last year.  This was a HUGE hit with our girls (and us!), so we did it again this Christmas.

I've been working in a list of things to do and places to go for months, and after the girls went to bed on Christmas Eve, I quickly made these certificates.  Some of the certificates were paired with books (a castles book with the Medieval Times certificate and an art book with the Van Gogh certificate).

These trips will last throughout the entire year with the last trip being to Great Wolf Lodge during December of 2014 (we went this December and had a fantastic time being there during the Christmas season).  Both girls were thrilled with these certificates for our upcoming year of fun trips and experiences, and we can't wait to get started with our first trip next week!!!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Melted Crayon Ornaments

Several friends told me about this melted crayon ornament idea, and it sounded simple and fun enough to try!

First, we shaved crayons (using a pencil sharpener for small shavings and a small knife for larger pieces).  We put the crayon shavings into clear glass ornaments.

Then we heated the shavings within the ornaments using a hair dryer (the ornaments are too hot to hold, so they are hanging from the snowman's hat).
This was a simple and fun activity, and the ornaments are beautiful!


Friday, December 20, 2013


Our girls are so excited and proud that their Grandpa is one of Santa's helpers!


Monday, December 16, 2013

Our Ballerina

O(7) was a Land of the Sweets Candy Cane Attendant in a recent performance of the Nutcracker Ballet.  She was only onstage for about 30 seconds, but it was a great experience and she loved it.

Both of our girls LOVE The Nutcracker Ballet, and several of their advent activities/gifts have revolved around this ballet.  We frequently read our Nutcracker books, and they have loved watching the dvd recently.  They also love the Dover Nutcracker coloring books.

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Sunday, December 15, 2013

Our Gingerbread House

The girls and I are continuing our Christmas tradition of opening a Christmas book and doing a Christmas activity as our countdown to Christmas.  I'm not nearly as organized with this as I was last year, but it's just as much fun when it's thrown together :)

About a week ago, we built and decorated our gingerbread cottage.  It's a Christmas miracle that it didn't fall down!  We propped it up with magnatiles until the icing dried.  It looks a little rough, but we had fun making it and that's all that matters to us!

We love the book that always goes along with our gingerbread cottage activity, Cookie Count.

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Melissa and Doug Unit Blocks...50% Off!!!!

Melissa and Doug Unit Blocks are 50% off today at Amazon!  These are some of the BEST toys ever, and every child should have a set!!!  We've had our blocks for about 6 years, and both girls still LOVE them.  I'm tempted to buy another set since this is such a great deal :)

Links to Amazon are affiliate links.  Thank you for supporting Chasing Cheerios. 

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cash Register for Kids

Our girls and all of their friends LOVE this cash register!  My dad gave the girls this cash register for Christmas 2 years ago, and it is one of the most played with toys that they have.  Kids of all ages (from 1 to about 10 years old) seem to just gravitate towards this cash register  when they come over to play.

We use the cash register in our school room for math.  It has several built in games that are great for learning to identify coins and to practice addition and subtraction.

Both of our girls had movie night sleepover parties for their birthdays this year, and we used this cash register in the concession stands.  Setting up the concession stands and "selling" the treats was their favorite part of both parties.   Being able to use the cash register was a pretty big deal, and most of the kids wanted a chance to run the concession stand.  Fun times!

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

It's a Good Thing She's Homeschooled!!!

It's a good thing that my sweet O(7) is homeschooled because she spends much of her school day dancing, spinning, twirling, cartwheeling, back bending, skipping, scootering, climbing, and jumping!

I'm so happy for her that she has the freedom to move as she learns.  She loves to dance as she recites poetry, and she'll often choreograph dances to go along with specific poems.

As a School Psychologist, I spend a lot of time screening kids for ADHD, so while I'm 100% sure O doesn't have ADHD, it wouldn't surprise me if she were referred for an evaluation if she were in typical school.  (Although she's pretty much a ruler follower, so it's likely she would sit still and quietly throughout the day if she were in a typical school).
So, there's another reason why we homeschool!  "Why?" is a frequently asked question, and the reasons are numerous!!!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

A Glittery Fun Math Work

I recently introduced this Kindergarten Math Activity Bag to E(4), and she LOVES it!

E(4) was dressed as a "Princess Ballerina" on the first day that she did this work, and she thought this was the perfect work for a Princess Ballerina.

E(4) counts the beads as she slides them onto the appropriate pipe cleaner.  While she's learning to count and identify numbers, she's also developing hand/eye coordination and fine motor control.  Best of all, she's having FUN!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Goobi Magnetic Construction Set

Since it's almost Christmas, I thought I would highlight a few of our favorite toys over the next few weeks...

The girls received a Goobi Magnetic Construction Set for Christmas from their grandparents last year, and they LOVE them!  They build and create with them several times per week.

They love to make stars...

and houses.

It's fun to make spinners and then spin them as fast as possible.

My girls and I highly recommend the Goobi Magnetic Construction Set.  It's a little pricey, but definitely worth the money as I'm sure they'll be playing with them for years.  The pieces are so durable that, as long as we don't lose the pieces, the set will be around for my grandkids :)

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Sunday, November 24, 2013


Congratulations to the winners of the PURE goodies!  You've been commented via reply in the comments section of this blog.  I hope you enjoy your goodies!

Monday, November 18, 2013

PURE Review and Giveaway!!!!

I recently purchased several Pure products, and we all really love them.  I've stopped accepting items for review, but I asked if I could review these products since I love them so much.  In addition to using the Pure products, the girls and I got to help pour and stir to make a few things!  It was so much fun, and the girls were proud to help.

After helping mix and pour to make lavender/lime lotion bars, we made our purchases.  O(7) brought her own money and was proud to buy a vanilla scented lotion bar and several bars of soap.  We also bought lavender and sweet orange liquid soap.  We bought several bars of soap, and we had Amy (co-owner of PURE) save 5 of the lavender/lime lotion bars for us to buy and give as gifts to our family and friends for Christmas.

Here is a description of the liquid soap from the PURE website...

"Enjoy all the benefits of natural, moisturizing, handmade soap in a liquid form.  Great for guests, or restrooms in public locales – Or just for those who prefer the liquid option!  This soap is gentle, highly cleansing, and great for your skin.  Made with Olive and Coconut oils, and Potassium Hydroxide.  Vegetable glycerin is added to enhance the moisturizing properties of this soap.  This soap is extra emollient, moisturizing and great for dry or problem skin. A naturally derived preservative which is ECOCERT approved for organic use is added to extend the shelf life of your soap and ensure the best quality product available. Try it once and you’ll never go back to “store bought” liquid soap!"

"PURE handmade artisan soaps and skincare products are made in small batches using only nature’s purest ingredients including sustainable, plant based oils and butters, locally sourced beeswax, all natural micas, clays and botanical additives and essential oils. Our products are tested on each other- not animals."

"We buy as many supplies locally as possible and are always on the lookout for great local ingredients. We love to recycle and encourage customers to reuse their containers by offering them a discount when they bring their package back to be refilled. PURE products are free of synthetic colors, fragrances and chemicals so they won’t compromise our water system, lakes or rivers. All natural ingredients mean a luxurious product that leaves skin soft, moisturized and healthy."

Since we don't use artificially scented soaps and lotions in our house, it is nice to be able to use scented products without all the nasty chemicals.  Our girls love scented lotion and soap, so they are thrilled that they are finally able to use these things :)

I plan to purchase most of my Christmas gifts for our family and friends from the Pure website, and I'm so excited about that!  I love that I'll be supporting hard working, kind individuals who are making a great natural product that is healthy for my family.  

We have been using the lotion bar on the 2 stubborn spots of excema on E(4)'s cheeks, and it seems to be helping.  The best part is that she LOVES it!  She used to wipe the excema lotion off her face, but she loves it when I put the lotion bar on her cheeks. I haven't tried it yet, but I'm planning to buy the healing balm to use for both of our girls.  

Here is more about the lotion bars from the PURE website...

"A solid long-lasting lotion push up bar, 100% intense moisture protection for your skin, no water or drying additives. Contains unrefined beeswax, grapeseed oil, shea butter, mango butter, avocado butter, non-GMO corn starch, Vitamin E and essential oils. Rub into your palm and spread on or apply just where you need it. (No liquids to worry about in the airport!)"

O(7) and E(4) LOVE lip balm, but I don't like for them to use products with chemicals and additives in them.  I'm planning to buy each of them several tubes of PURE lip balm that I'll wrap and hide in our Christmas tree for them to find on Christmas morning.  Here is a description of the lip balm from Pure...

"A smooth, luxurious lip balm that seals in moisture and protects from the elements. Made with all natural butters, grapeseed oil, locally sourced unrefined beeswax, stevia based sweetener and essential oil. Contains no additives that dry your lips."

Now, here's the fun part...go to the Pure website and take a look around.  Come back to Chasing Cheerios and leave a comment telling me what your favorite Pure item is, and that will enter you into the giveaway.  Then go to the Pure Facebook page and like it.  Come back to Chasing Cheerios and tell me that you liked the Pure Facebook, and you will be entered for a second chance in the giveaway.  Two numbers will be drawn randomly on the night of Friday, November 22.  The first winner will receive their choice of a bar of soap and a soap deck.  The second winner will receive their choice of lip balm and a lotion bar.  

This review reflects my honest opinion.  I was not paid or given items in exchange for this review.