Archive | KIDS

MINI MAKERS: KIDS BAUBLE NECKLACE CRAFT + DIY

Awhile back, I shared a fun backpack charm kids craft using painted wood beads and ever since I have wanted to paint more to make bauble necklaces for the girls. Well, over the weekend Tilly and I finally got around to doing it and they turned out so super cute we decided to take pics and make a post of it!

Painting with kids can be a bit messy but the steps and supply list for this project are very simple and totally worth it. Keep scrolling for the details…

YOU’LL NEEED:

  • wood beads (20mm beads pictured) these would be cute too!
  • craft paint (can’t get enough of the hand made modern paint colors at Target!)
  • small paint brushes
  • jersey knit fabric, cut to approx. 1-inch by 30-inch strips
  • fabric (or really sharp) scissors
  • wood skewers (like you use for kabobs)
  • upholstery needle or long nail (for poking the fabric through the beads)

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Cover your workspace with paper to protect from paint. Thread beads onto skewers leaving a little room between each and on either end. Paint beads however you and your little desires. Rest both ends of skewer on items that are of equal height… like two bowls or mugs. Let dry completely — about 15 minutes.
  2. Cut knit jersey fabric into roughly 1-inch by 30-inch strips. The fabric will roll naturally but might need a little help in places.
  3. Thread panted (and dried) beads onto cut fabric. Use needle or nail to help it along.
  4. Knot fabric necklace to size, trim excess fabric and you’re done! (disclaimer: be sure to supervise younger kids while they wear them.)

Aren’t they fun!?

Tilly was thrilled with how her necklaces turned out and decided to packaged some up to give to friends who have been equally excited about them.

:)

(Tilly’s red striped dress from Boden and on clearance)

Loved having a little assistant for this project! Although I’m pretty sure she thought I was the one assisting. Ha! The lighting was a little tricky for pictures (and usually is during the winter months around here) so we pulled out the white paper backdrop and set up a little studio in our kitchen nook which I think made it all seem more special than past projects she’s helped with. Can’t help but notice how easily she fits into this creative world.

Hope you had an amazing long weekend and most importantly, Martin Luther King Jr. day! What an amazing man and movement we get to celebrate.

XO, Rae

2

MOM HACKS: EATING OUT WITH KIDS

My kids are loud and messy and opinionated and I can’t take them anywhere without something ridiculous happening but they are also so fun and silly and taking them out and about is one of my favorite things to do! When our older kids were little though there was one exception. Eating out. It was takeout and drive-thrus for us thank you very much. Since those days I’ve changed my thinking and approach and it’s made eating in restaurants way more enjoyable — not to be confused with easy — without having to pack up a bag of activities.

Granted my kids and their age gaps are likely different than your’s, but hopefully you’ll find these tips helpful or encouraging anyways!

  1. EXPECT KIDS TO ACT THEIR AGE: I used to have this weird expectation that my kids could pull it together for an hour or so while we ate in public. Turns out there’s only one thing I should expect from them… to be themselves and act their age. So now, during any given eating out experience I expect there to be a spill or two, that someone will decide to take off their shoes, while another thinks its fun to climb under the table and everyone is bound to be starving and act like they’re near death. The good news is that it’s rare for all of these things to happen at one sitting so I usually walk away feeling like they did awesome, ha!
  2. KEEP MY GOAL(s) IN MIND: My hope is that my kids will do their best to be a good guest and considerate of others and especially their server. All of which are learned behaviors and one of the reasons I want to take them out. I also really just enjoy sitting for most of a meal and then not having to clean up afterwards! Usually makes the moments of chaos totally worth it.
  3. DECIDE ON A DINNER WORKFLOW: Having an idea of what and when we’re ordering (are we letting kids get sodas, ordering a basket of fries or other app first, etc.), and how you want to occupy the kids while they wait, before walking in the restaurant is a big help. Something that has worked for us when we have all of the kids is to order drinks, the kid’s meals, side salads for the grownups, and usually a basket of fries or hummus plate right away. While we wait for the food we chat with the kids – go through our highs and lows from the day, etc. Once their food arrives Johan and I order. We continue chatting and micromanaging until the kids are finished and then we let them share tech (usually our phones) while we eat and attempt a conversation. It’s not perfect or peaceful but it works :)
  4. HAPPY HOURS ARE MY BEST FRIEND: kind of a given but going before or after the breakfast, lunch or dinner rush makes a huge difference!
  5. STAY POSITIVE: and if needed switch things up a bit. Taking a kid or two for a bathroom break or to the car to grab something or telling a funny joke (the spoon on the nose trip works every time!) or anything that distracts them from annoying their sibling or throwing a fit is worth a try!

(Received lots of questions about my sweater so shared outfit details with links at the bottom of the post :)

A few pics from our lunch date with Griffin + Poppy yesterday.

There were surprisingly no spills and I don’t think any complaints about being starving to death. Griffin however, did accidentally mistake his thumb as part of his cheese and let out a very loud yelp followed by major tears and Poppy spent a good chunk of time dropping things under the table so she could climb down and pick them up.

But in the end they earned ice cream.

Not really but it seemed like the perfect way to end our outing!

It’s my favorite when Johan can join us for an afternoon adventure in the middle of the week. One of the perks of being married to a firefighter. Lucky kids. Lucky me.

Happy, happy weekend you guys!

Oh, and loved reading all of the comments on my dining room post… thanks for playing along!

XO, Rae

ME | pink + orange stripe sweater, jeans

GRIFFIN | blue gray thermal (for the babes), red coat, shoes

POPPY | sweatshirt (+ for big girls), boots

3

THE BEST OF 2016

Happy day after Christmas you guys! I’m currently still in my jammies (at noon), listening to the kids play with their new toys, and have no plans of doing anything but eating leftovers, folding laundry and recovering from the (good) craziness that December brings.

Sorta sad that the holiday season is coming to an end but I’m excited for the fresh possibilities of 2017. It can be so easy for me to think about the past year and come up with a list of things I want to do better in the coming year but have found that it can be equally as inspiring and encouraging to reflect on my favorite parts of the past year and all the things I want to carry into the new one.

That being said, I thought it would be a good time to roundup a list of the most popular posts along with some of my personal favorites from 2016.

LIFE | a day in the life (working on a winter version!) | hook-nook refresh | living with kids (+ their toys) | first week of school | our disney land trip

FREEBIES | paper heart glasses | baby milestone cards | emoji lunchbox stickers | shareable social media graphics

MAKE | book bin diy | easy pom-pom basket | sailor hair bows | flower vases + arrangements

 

KIDS | woodland party + boot driveour favorite kid apps | diy binoculars | brown bag microwave popcorn | tin can herb garden

WEAR | that tied shirt trend | statement coat 3 ways | all things with love | WIW may

EAT | homemade pop tartssmoothie bowls + a meal plan | big batch chocolate chip freezer cookies | frozen yogurt dots

Gosh, what a fun year… that also happened to be soooo full of transition and trying to figure out what’s next for our family and business and I just want to say thank you for meeting me in this space. The online and social media world can be so much about the numbers and while that’s just part of growth and good business, it’s not what this blog is about for me. I appreciate and care about one visitor as much as I would one million. Thank you so much for sharing your time, thoughts, comments and encouragement with me and allowing me to share my family, life and creative endeavors with you. It means the world to me!

Hope your Christmas (and 2016) was everything you hoped for and then some.

XO, Rae

5

MINI MAKERS: MARSHMALLOW SHOOTER FRIEND GIFT DIY

rae-ann-kelly-marshmallow-shooters

This year instead of treats the kids have decided to package up these very cute and simple marshmallow shooters to give their friends. We put together a few samples yesterday and had a blast testing them out and sampling the ammo too. Poppy (2 y.o.) was even able to make the mallows pop which lead to the sweetest belly laughs ever!

To DIY, YOU’LL NEED:

  • Mini marshmallows
  • Paper cups
  • Standard sized balloons
  • Scissors
  • Packaging (if giving away as gifts)

HERE’S HOW:

  1. Poke a hole in the bottom of the paper cups and remove.
  2. Cut off the skinny part of each balloon. (See bottom right of picture above ^)
  3. Stretch balloons over the bottom of the cups.
  4. Fill cups with marshmallows and wrap up as a gift!
  5. To shoot marshmallows, place one or more in the cup. Pull down on balloon like a slingshot and let go!

I’m sure my mommy friends will love me for this one, but the marshmallows are actually really easy to pick up as long as they don’t get wet (i.e. – licked by a toddler or pet) before shooting. :)

rae-ann-kelly-marshmallow-shooters-4291

Can’t wait to watch the kids deliver their handmade prezzies!!! Their excitement over the littlest things this time of year is the absolute best.

Happy Friday friends!

XO, Rae

4

FAVORITE STOCKING STUFFERS FOR THE KIDS

Come Christmas morning, our stockings are mostly stuffed with gum, chapstick, socks, and starbucks gift cards, but I always love including a few special surprises too. Since we’re doing the 4-Gifts again this year it also leaves a little wiggle room in the stocking budget. Here are a few potential stocking stuffers (and a couple gifts) that have caught my eye lately.

stocking-stuffers

one | Pillowfort zebra head from Target. Love the bear one too. Actually, love them all!

two | Blue monster beanie from Crewcuts.

three | Star Wars Doodles book from Amazon.

four | Emoji bobbies from Crewcuts.

five | Toy army guys from Amazon (or just about anywhere). Perfect for target practice ;)

six| Stainless steel teething keys from Kleynimals… We’ve outgrown the need for teethers, but love these and they make great baby shower gifts too so had to share! 

seven | Pizza purse from Crewcuts. 

eight | Colorful xylophone from Land of Nod.

nine | Pro wrestling dolls for the win! Too expensive for a stocking but such a fun gift.

ten | Wood fridge play food from Land of Nod. They have a pantry set too.

eleven | The cutest knee-high socks from Bobo Choses.

Years ago, in the middle of the night on Christmas Eve, my mom realized she had totally forgotten about buying stocking stuffers. Like any good mom would do she rallied, headed to Rite Aid and filled a shopping basket with deodorant, toothbrushes, drugstore underwear and the like. From that year on (and now even as an adult), our stockings always included a slightly upgraded version of my mom’s Rite Aid finds and I don’t think anyone would want it any different! Funny how traditions sometimes get started.

Do you have any stocking stuffer traditions?

XO, Rae

0

LOVE DOES, ADVENT ACTIVITIES + PRINTABLE

rae-ann-kelly-love-does-advent-printable-1

There is a mile long Thanksgiving to-do list sitting next to my keyboard as I type this, but there is so much that happens between Turkey day and Chistmas, it’s hard not to jump ahead a little. One of my favorite upcoming traditions is our daily advent calendar (25% off at Land of Nod) and this year we’re stuffing it with trinkets, sweets, festive activities and simple service projects.

Looking forward to spreading love and cheer this advent season. Hope you’ll join us and download the printable below or pin for safe keeping!!!

rae-ann-kelly-merry-and-bright-service-advent-2736

Sign me up for this advent activity!!!! And Poppy’s adorable faces.

rae-ann-kelly-merry-and-bright-service-advent-2746 rae-ann-kelly-merry-and-bright-service-advent-2779

(PSARyan and Wren clips are a fave… perfect for stocking stuffers and holiday outfits!)

LOVE DOES, ADVENT ACTIVITES, PDF I made one sheet editable so you can fill in with your own ideas and traditions. Simply open in Adobe, click on the text box and type. The font I used is BEBAS (it’s free to download) or use a current favorite. Let me know if you have any questions!

rae-ann-kelly-merry-and-bright-service-advent-2796

Some activities are super simple while others are more involved and I’m sure we won’t complete them all, but I do hope it’s a fun addition to our advent calendar that sticks around for years to come. And that my kids will see that L O V E   D O E S. It shares and serves and gives, celebrates and encourages, and is incredibly resourceful and creative. And without it, all the gifts and glitter of the season don’t matter too much. It’s a good reminder for me too!

Now time to get back to my Thanksgiving checklist…Happy Monday!

XO, Rae 

 

3

TILLY’S 8TH BDAY + EMOJI PARTY

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1894

The last week of October is full of Birthdays in our home with Tilly going first, then Ozzie, and finally myself on Halloween. I usually try and squeeze a party in for Tilly early but our Disney Land trip made me think a belated celebration for her might be best. Of course we had festivities and family get togethers in between, but last weekend we ended her very long Birthday week with an emoji party with her friends at a gymnastics center. Tilly helped a ton with all the party planning, designs and decisions (so proud of her!) and was very happy with how everything turned out.

Sharing more details and party sources below!

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1900 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1909 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1890 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1920 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1956 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1994 rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-1998

kids-bathroom-refresh-sources

CAKE: Tilly had been dreaming up (and bugging me) for a tiered cake since before her last Birthday. I have zero cake baking or decorating skills and didn’t necessarily want to splurge on a custom cake, but her persistence and excitement about the possibility could not be ignored. So Tilly and I spent a few minutes on Pinterest getting ideas and then reached out to Christina of 4kids Cakes to see if she could whip up something delicious and adorable (and of course tiered) with sprinkles on one layer and hearts on another. Thankfully she agreed and then blew us away with how it turned out and the chocolate “8” topper she added. It seriously made Tilly’s day! That and her friends of course. (*Served with wooden spoons.)

BALLOONS + CONFETTI: Since we were partying at a gymnastics center, there wasn’t much point in spending time or money on decorations, so we kept it simple and ordered emoji and a number 8 balloon.

PARTY FAVORS: We filled glassine bags with confetti, and emoji stickers and gum balls. Then sealed them with washi tape and #YAY stickers you can click to download HERE.

SNACKS + DRINKS: Our party started at 3pm so we grabbed some favorite kid snacks from Costco, filled 8oz. beverage bottle (or here!) with milk, bottled waters, and LaCroix for the mamas and papas. Click to download “#DRINKS” and “#SNACKS” signs HERE

TILLY’S OUTFIT: Sweatshirt (50% off!) and leggings from Peek and boots from Target.

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-2007

T w i n n i n g (! ! !) with a bestie.

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-2027

There wasn’t much of a chance to take pictures before or during the party with the entire crew of kids and parents. But, you know those people that just don’t want to leave a good party? That’s how we roll and these are our friends who do the same thing. And I’m so grateful they did so we could get a few pics to remember the day with! Of course we love and missed the ones that had to scoot out earlier.

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-2030

(Johan sneaking in one of the older brothers :)

rae-ann-kelly-kids-emoji-party-2036

Oh my goodness how I love celebrating my people. Just look at that face! 

All in all, her big day went smoothly and I’m not sure who had more fun — the kids or parents — which is always a good sign! Let me know if I missed any details.

Happiest hump-day!

XOXO, Rae 

0

HALLOWEEN HEADBANDS WITH THE LAND OF NOD!

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-headbands-0592

We’re so excited (and just can’t hide it!), because this Saturday, Oct. 29th we’ll be crafting these cute Halloween headbands at all of the Land of Nod stores (Seattle, Costa Mesa, Chicago, + Oak Brook) . Well, I only get to be at the Seattle store (in University Village) with a side kick or two, but have sent supplies and a couple treats to all the other stores as well.

If you live in any of these areas I would la, la, love for you and your little(s) to join us, but if not you can head to the Land of Nod blog for instructions and a handy template to DIY at home or a party.

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-headbands-0626rae-ann-kelly-halloween-headbands-0578-2rae-ann-kelly-halloween-headbands-0568

Happy, happy almost Halloween! 

XO, Rae

0

ARROW PROJECT: LUMBER JACK + JILL PARTY + BOOT DRIVE

lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party

I’ve been waiting forever (almost a year) to share this fun arrow project — a lumber jack and jill turned woodland party and boot drive! To accommodate for nap times and the weather, we served breakfast, played dress up as well as a round of pin the beanie on the bear, and then wrapped things up with some yummy treats. So excited to share all of the pics, but fair warning, there are a lot of them! Also including links and party details at the bottom of the post, so keep scrolling to see it all!

lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-2lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-3lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-4lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-5lumber-jack-and-jill-party-and-boot-drive-244lumber-jack-and-jill-party-and-boot-drive-250lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-6lumber-jack-and-jill-boot-drive-party-7

All in all, we had a great morning of eating, playing, and collecting boots for families that could use a little help. Wishing I could have found a weekend this fall to host another party and make it an annual thing… Maybe next year!

WOODLAND PARTY DETAILS

PHOTOS / Stacy Jacobsen

FOOD / Mini flap jacks, sugar cone parfaits, apples, bunny graham crackers, raisin boxes, + apple juice boxes

DESSERT / 4kids Cakes

DECOR / Blankets + pillows from Up North Market, Land of Nod and Tiny prints, Trays and bowls from Target

FELT MASKS, BEARDS + CROWNS / Opposite of Far

WOOD SIGN/ A Pinch of Pretty

PAPER GOODS / Tiny Prints

ACTIVITY / Pin the Beanie on the Bear (link to freebie coming soon)

2

FAVORITE INDOOR ACTIVITIES FOR RAINY OR COLD DAYS

favorite-rainy-day-indoor-activities

I appreciate a day or two of being cooped up and hunkered down with the kids due to weather, but it’s not long before everyone (myself included) starts bouncing off the walls! Since the forecast is calling for rain-magedon over the next week in the Pacific Northwest, I figured it was time to get reacquainted with some of our favorite rainy day activities. Here are the ones that come to mind:

  1. READING! Other than at bedtime, it usually takes making a fun reading space with cozy pillows, a snack, the fireplace on and/or a fort to get my kids to buy in and settle down, but once they do, it’s the best.
  2. OPEN GYM – at our local gymnastics places.
  3. KID’S MUSEUMS + OTHER LOCAL INDOOR ACTIVITIES – always asking friends or scrolling through red tricycle and parent map for ideas, events and pop-ups.
  4. COFFEE SHOP DATE – trying a new place is always fun!
  5. MATINEE MOVIE – much like reading, a daytime movie can feel like a special treat when there are yummy snacks, family room forts, and lots of snuggles involved.  Looking forward to the days when everyone can go watch (and actually sit) at a movie theater!
  6. BALLOON VOLLEYBALL – or anything involving not letting the balloon touch the ground.
  7. HOT LAVA – if you haven’t played before — lay pillows and oversized stuffed animals strategically around the room and jump around, being careful not to touch the ground.
  8. FORT BUILDING
  9. BAKING or CRAFTING – a few favorites, t.p. binoculars, god’s eye, animal charms, straw windpipes, candy wrapper bracelet, and rain maker.
  10. INDOOR SNOWBALL FIGHT – using foam balls, ball pit balls or balled up socks.
  11. GO NOODLE or other kid exercise activities like yoga on youtube. Clear the furniture in the family room, layout yoga mats and get the wiggles out!
  12. SENSORY BINS
  13. PLAY DOUGH, PUZZLES, + BOARD GAMES – all classics, but boardgames don’t usually happen unless I can sit with them the entire time and Poppy is napping :)
  14. CARDBOARD BOX DECORATING
  15. MAKE FUNNY VIDEOS or TAKE SILLY PICTURES with tablets
  16. HOST A PLAYDATE
  17. GET CAUGHT UP on CHORES
  18. LOOOONG TUBBIES
  19. SCAVENGER HUNTS or EGG HUNTS

rae-ann-kelly-rainy-days-0497 rae-ann-kelly-rainy-days-0486rae-ann-kelly-rainy-days-0490

I tend to handle indoor days better when I have a running list of activities to draw from and would love any ideas you guys have to add!

Long live the weekend… even if we do end up being cooped up!

XO, Rae

0

EASY HALLOWEEN COSTUMES + A TV SEGMENT

easy-halloween-costumes-rae-ann-kelly-1

If you are still in the market for Halloween costumes, I’m sharing some totally cute and super simple ideas below and on KING5 today at 4:15 if you are in the Seattle area! These 4 were so fun to put together and took almost no time or money. Get the DIY tips below!

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0147

(Espen as a Pizza Delivery DUDE and Tilly as Rosie the Riveter)

COSTUMES FROM THE CLOSET

When it comes to dressing up, often times it doesn’t take much more than going through closets. Think of favorite characters or people from books, movies, history, or pop-culture. The possibilities are endless! (costume details below)

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0168rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0336

ROSIE / jeans and jean jacket, but denim shirt would be more accurate / boots / power tool — minus the battery / red and white piece of fabric, scarf or bandana / red lipstick or wax lips

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0080rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0359

PIZZA DELIVERY DUDE / message or raglan tee or sweatshirt / broken-in jeans / headphones / backwards cap / pizza box

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0200

(Poppy as grapes and Griffin as an emoji, because he is actually a walking emoji in real-life)

COSTUMES FROM CARDBOARD or BALLOONS

No profession DIY skills to make these costumes. Just a few basic supplies and less than an hour of time!

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0266rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0367

FAVORITE EMOJI FACE / 2 presentation boards (the thick foam kind) or cardboard / yellow butcher paper or craft paint / felt / hot glue / wide ribbon / X-Acto knife / double stick tape

Draw a circle onto your boards using a string (shown here) then cutout with an x-acto knife or razor. Repeat with yellow paper and cut with scissors. Use double stick tape to add paper to cardboard. Cut face details from felt and hot glue in place. Add ribbon to the inside of the boards for straps… It helps to have child around while adding the straps to make sure everything lines up and child’s head can fit in-between the ribbons!

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0222 rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0340

GRAPE CLUSTER / balloons in shades of purple or green / generous sized tee or hoodie / coordinating bottoms and shoes / green felt / hair tie or beanie / hot glue

Lay top front side up on a flat work surface, plug-in the hot glue gun, and blow up balloons to appropriate size depending on the costume wearer. Poppy is a petite two year old so I blew the balloons up a little less than halfway. Add hot glue to the tied end of the balloon and press onto shirt until glue has cooled. Turn over and add balloons to back of top if desired. I still wanted to be able to  pick Poppy up easily so only covered her front side. Cut a long strip of green felt trim so the middle is thin and both ends have a leaf shape and tie to a hairband OR cut a couple leaf shapes from felt and hot glue to a beanie or the hood of a sweatshirt.

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0375

MIX + MATCH COSTUMES

Who says you have to pick just ONE thing to be for Halloween!? Try mixing costume ideas instead! A few examples I grabbed from our dress up pile at home — super hero alien and princess gorilla — but again the possibilities are endless.

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0379

rae-ann-kelly-halloween-costumes-0178

When it comes to tradition and pure fun (as opposed to faith and meaning), Halloween is right up there with Christmas and 4th of July in my book. Plus I’m a Halloween baby which makes the day even better for me because there is always a party or something going on, and the attention is rarely on me for more than the minute or two. Just the way I like it!

For more cute costume inspo, head to this pinterest board.

Happy hump day you guys!

XO, Rae

1