Thursday, June 27, 2013

Weekly Portrait Project {Week 1}

I have been following the Solar family over at The Happy Family Movement. One of their weekly posts is a portrait project where they post a weekly portrait of their children. They are collecting weekly portraits for their children for when they graduate! I am not sure if I can keep up until the kids graduate but, I'd love to try. I think it's a great idea. So here starts the 1st installment of the Giggles & Grass Stains family weekly portrait project!! If you decide to join me post your link below, I'd love to see your photos!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Semi Wordless Wednesday: Summer Bucket List #4: Fishing!!

The boys went fishing with their dad and pappy! They caught tons of fish!

I had to share looks much worse than it was. He cried only for a little while getting it out. He was fine after. He went to cast his line and he did not reel it in before casting, it went out and came back at him hooking his face.  He was very lucky not to get his eye and it didn't hook in enough to make it bleed. He's a trooper!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Summer Fun doesn't have to break the bank!

Since making our Summer bucket list, I have had a lot of people telling me they can't make a bucket list because they don't have a lot of money to spend this Summer.

This Summer our family has decided to try and save as much money as we can. Last year, we spent a lot on trips, gas, and treats. We wanted to prove to those people it can still be done.

I have already mentioned some free programs and low cost activities already in the past month. Dig into Reading, Library visits, Park Quest, and Slip n slide fun. Some more that we enjoy are lake visits at a local State Park, Swimming, crafts, water balloon fights, playing in the creek, chalk drawing, park visits, free bowling, and so many more. There are a ton of ways you can still be budget friendly while having fun this Summer.

Last weekend, we tried out another free program for the first time. The Build and Grow program that Lowes puts on at their stores. They hold these workshops on specific Saturdays throughout the month. During your visit you are given all the supplies to make that weeks activities and a patch of completion. At your first visit you are also given a certificate, an apron and safety goggles. My boys had a fantastic time and were begging to go back. Everything is free but, you do need to go online and register for a spot at your local store.

My boys made a Monster's University wooden treasure chest. Then, they decorated them with stickers. Their chests both turned out amazing!!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Rainy Day Activities

So it's finally Summer Vacation time! Only one problem it's raining. We're not letting it get us down,  I've asked my favorite 4 yr old and 8 yr old to help me with this post. Our favorite rainy day activities!

Carson's favorite activities (4.5 yr old)

*Go to inflatable jumping place
*Build a fort with our Fort Magic
*Play games on my Nabi: I love angry birds, Where's my Water, and Cut the rope.
*Read books with my mommy
*Baking with my mommy
*Have an indoor picnic
*Watch and play with Transformers

Conner's favorite Activities (8.5 yr old)

* Board Games: My favorite board game is Mancala!
*Go to the Library
*Read books: Loves Magic Tree House and, Black Lagoon Series
*Go to the batting cages
*Play my Ipod: My favorite apps are; Minecraft, Blockhead and, Amazing Ants.
*Watch Video's on Youtube (Mostly Minecraft video's)
*Playing card games
*Watch Kicking it.

What's your child's favorite rainy day activity?

Park Quest #1: South Mountain/Weverton Cliffs

We finally had time to go out on our 1st Park Quest of this Summer.  We chose the South Mountain quest that listed in the description, would be a 2 mile hike to the Weverton Cliffs. We were going with another family who also had a smaller child Carson's age. We were hesitant about making the full 2 mile hike up to the cliffs because we were told it was a hard hike. In the Park Quest book it describes it as a not for the faint and a 4 "Hat" difficulty. We decided we would hike to as far as we could and come back down.

We were pleasantly surprised by the young ones. They never once complained they were tired or wanted to quit. The older boys were super stars leading the way and even leaving the parents in the dust. The 2 mile hike taught us about the Appalachian trail, thru-hikers, about erosion and, switch- backs. The Cliffs overlooked the Potomac River, CSX Railroad, West Virgina, Virginia and, Maryland. It was such a beautiful view. 

We ended our quest with a trip to South Mountain Creamery which has some of the best ice cream! The boys both opted for mint chocolate chip while I got caramel sundae!

What a great 1st Quest! We can't wait for the next one!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Last Day of School Fun!

For the last day of school I wanted to do something different. We usually go swimming and take the boys out for dinner or ice cream. This year, Conner got out of school 2 hours early and had his 2nd baseball tournament game later that day. I didn't want to tire him out from swimming for his game so I wanted to plan something different.

I decided to hold a mini neighborhood party for the kids. A welcome Summer party! I made a banner for them to crash through, had popsicles and ice cream and let them play games outside. It was a lot of fun! The kids were surprised when they got off the bus.

After the mini party we went to Conner's game. This game was 1 of 2 games that night to determine who would be playing the championship game. I was super impressed with Conner and his team. He caught an amazing pop up and had a couple RBI's!  Unfortunately, his team did not advance to the next round. He was sad that his season had come to an end but, I reminded him that we had a ton to do over the Summer and after the Summer we'd be back for baseball.

After the game we celebrated Conner's good grades for the term, his amazing game and, the end of the school year out at dinner!

It was a fun day!

End of Baseball Season and School year goodies!

With all the celebrations this week, I have also been busy doing some crafting.

Conner wanted to give goodie bags to his friends on his baseball teams as a way to say thanks for being a great team.

For Conner's team we opted on a bag of baseball goodies.  Cracker Jacks, baseball cards, Double Bubble gum, and Little League eye black stickers! I think they turned out pretty awesome and, they were pretty easy to throw together too. I used a free tag I downloaded from The Room Mom Extraordinaire. (I love her site)

I also needed something for Conner's classroom party for his classmates. We gave those cool punching balloons/balls. It was super easy and very inexpensive. I threw it in a bag and tied another free tag on it and signed Conner's name!! What fun!! The tag is from here.


For Conner's teacher we gave her a beach bag full of goodies she could use while relaxing on the beach. Beach towel, magazine to read, a Frisbee, a water bottle, lemonade mix and, some snacks. I tied it up with my own hand drawn tag of a sun and beach chair! I got the words off another project I found on Pinterest!

All the goodies were super easy to put together and didn't cost too much!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Summer Bucket List #3: Library Passport

As I have mentioned previously, the boys are signed up for a local Reading program through the Summer. It is a free program being offered though our public library.

As bad as it sounds we have a library right down the road that we have never visited before. We used to be members at a library in another county where we lived but, since moving we haven't been to a library. We decided to take the boys to the local library down the street to get them their own library cards. We wanted to show them how to be responsible for the books and be rewarded by getting new books.

The boys learned where the children's section was, that they had fun computer games to play, Conner read Carson a book in a cool play house and, we checked out some fun books. I was very surprised to see that Conner wanted history books!?! He wanted to learn about different world history. No idea where that came from but, he is enjoying the book so far. Carson chose a shark book while, I chose him an alphabet book, counting book and, a shape book!!

While we were there we got our passport stamped for visiting the 1st of 8 libraries in our area. The boys also got to pick a prize from the treasure chest for completing their 1st of 3 lines on their "Dig into Reading" book.

They had a great time and can't wait to go back! I see lots of visits to the library in our future!

To read more about the program see my previous post here!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Baseball and more baseball!

We have been extremely busy with baseball coming to an end. End of season parties, picnics and, tournament games. I am hoping this weekend to finally get a start on Park Quest. We are also hoping to make our 1st stop on the library passport later today.

It is also the last week of school for Conner. He has a classroom party today, awards tomorrow, and a "beach" day on Friday.  We can't wait for our Summer Fun to get started.

I wanted to share a couple pics from the past week!

The boys have both really loved playing baseball this season. We can't wait for the next one! :)