Sunday, February 23, 2014

Photography Love

Hello, lovely readers. Today I am highlighting two beautiful photography projects that are currently inspiring me.

[1] Clara's Photo Project = fabric back drop + white onesie + photoshoped #

The photographs show a time lapse of Clara from birth to present day. Her parents outline the details of the project here. It is bright and beautiful. These are some of my favorites.

[2] The Animal Print Shop = Real Live Animals + White Back Drop + Amazing Photographer

Sharon Montrose is the photographer behind The Animal Print Shop. I originally saw her work on a bedroom makeover featured on A Cup of Jo. From there, I found her website and have been swooning ever since.

At first I thought these beauties were illustrations, but they are actual photos of real life animals (many of them rescued). Purchases from the series help out several animal organizations. I mean....come on.....own a picture of a baby giraffe to help a baby giraffe. If I was a millionaire, I would own every one. Here are JUST A FEW of may favorites....because really, I love them all. Click on the image to take you directly to the photograph details.

I will be ordering one of these when I decide on which one I can't live without :)

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

I'd Know You Anywhere, My Love by Nancy Tillman

Today I bring to you one of our favorite books at the moment.

This beauty, by Nancy Tillman, would be a perfect gift for a birthday party or in your little one's easter basket.

I'd Know You Anywhere, My Love - is a story written in the voice of a mother speaking to her child.

Her child, like many kids, likes to pretend to be different animals.....

And like every mother, this one recognizes her little one - no matter the disguise :)

[F] especially loves this book since we visited the zoo recently....his favorite page is the one with his favorite animal....the giraffe :)

Vivid illustrations and a sweet story. We love it and hope that you do too.

Check our more recommendations on my Kid's Books Page.

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

January 2014

If I had to pick one thing to remember January 2014, the snow we had would certainly come to mind...but what sticks out the most are my two boys becoming companions.

When I was pregnant with [B], I seemed to run into so many older moms, with 2 boys now grown, who would tell me how close they would become....especially when they heard how close in age they would be.

In January 2014, my boys began to find a closeness. [B] is catching up in height and weight :) and now they are more physically matched.

Don't get me wrong, there are lots of disagreements between the two - often resulting in tears.

But most of their time is spent enjoying each other's company and for that I am thankful.

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Free Valentine Printables Roundup

Valentine's Day is Friday!!!!!! :)

If you still are looking for ideas on what to give friends, family, loved ones - here are a couple of FREE printables I found that might work.

Links to original sources can be found below each image. I have tested all of these downloads. They are safe and work well :) Enjoy!!!

This beautiful set of Valentine's Day greeting cards from Paper and Stitch would be perfect to print --wrap in a bow and hand to a friend as a 'little something'.

Have a school age child and need last minute valentine's for the class? These colorful Valentine Arrow Printables from Sweet Muffin Suite are sweet 'non-candy' gesture :)

How cute is this printable wrapping paper from 30 Handmade Days?!?! I thinks this is just the thing to wrap a present for your favorite man.

A mama elephant and a baby elephant = pure sweetness. This lovely True Love Printable from Entirely Eventful Day would be the perfect gift for a new or expecting mom.

Finally, this set of Printable Valentine Garland from Whisker Graphics is a great way to leave 'love notes' around the house for your family.

I hope you have found something here you can use to make this Valentine's Day extra special. Leave a note and let me know which is your favorite.

p.s. All that you see above are pinned to my Valentine Pinterest Board.

This post is part of....

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Heart Stamp Valentine

Happy Friday! and not just any is Heart Health Awareness Friday :) All day I have been grateful for my Heart Health but also praying and thinking about many who are fighting so hard everyday to live with Congenital Heart Disease.

This is the last kids craft for Hugs and week I have a few other things planned to share with you for Valentines. Hopefully, you have found something to do with your littles among this week's daily posts.

If you have searched Pinterest for Valentine's Kids have probably seen this one. So, I won't be telling you anything new......but we had fun with this and I thought I would share the results :)

Here are the supplies......

1. finger paint   2. scissors   3. pen or marker    4. paper plate   5. card stock   6. toilet paper roll (several)   7. tape

Make a heart shape with your toilet paper roll and tape. I would make a couple extra because they get really deformed and soggy pretty quickly....that way you are ready and not leaving your toddler unattended with paint (like I did :).

Squirt paint on a plate and let them have at it :)

As usual, my oldest (34 months) was neat and tidy.

And my youngest (18 months) was a mess :) At one point he had a mouth full of red paint :)

I love how they turned out....they look like mini pieces of modern art.

I hope you guys have fun with this one. Don't forget to let me know how it goes if you try it.

Also - the day is still young, there is still time to put on something red in support of all the sick hearts out there.

This post is part of....

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Craft Punch Valentine

It is day four of Valentine crafts here on Mama Bee No E and today I bring to you.....Craft Punch Valentines :)

When we started this activity, I wasn't sure how it would turn out. I was inspired by a hole punch valentine I saw on Wait 'Til Your Father Gets Home but wasn't sure if my littles were strong enough to handle a single hole punch.

So, I got the supplies that we had on hand and came up with a plan.

I had these two craft punches that had been given to me by a dear friend a couple of years ago that I had never used.

Originally, I was going to have them punch holes in card stock but that was WAY to thick for their little arm muscles :) So, I went with a very thin bond of paper - even thinner than printer paper.

I happened to have these Valentine Printed Papers from a couple of years ago that did the job  (see, I never throw out a craft supply.....NEVER...I reuse gift wrap, magazine ads, anything that I think is pretty - and that keeps me from blowing my budget to do crafts with my kids).

So, if you don't happen to have Valentine Printed Paper ;) use old tissue paper, wrapping paper, cut up an old gift bag that has a pretty print....or dive into a magazine to find a beautiful image (interior magazine/ads are great for this).

If you don't have a craft punch, use a three hole punch or single hole punch. See how this works? Use what you have and usually, it comes out better than you expect :)

So, on with the crafting. Here are the supplies (I had major mama brain and didn't include all of them in the photo :) See full list below.

1. Card Stock  2. Thin Printed Paper  3. Washi Tape (optional)  4. Craft Punches or Hole Punch of some sort  5. Glue  6. Scissors  7. Pen

We started by punching holes in the printed paper. My 18 month old punched with my help and then sat their playing with the punched pieces for the remainder of the time :) gosh, he is a sweet one :)

He felt included and 'big' and that is all that matters to me. I want him to feel like he is a part of our craft time - even though he is little :)

My fiercely independent older one (who is nothing like me ;) was insistent that I not touch him, guide him, or help him in any way :) HE was going to punch those holes, no matter what.

And he did, even though it was tough....he did :) This was great practice in fine motor skills and developing hand strength.

I cut out individual punches and he helped me glue them on....with the big boy glue. This was a moment where I had to let him do it - even though my controlling self was screaming on the inside "that is too much glue!" :).

I had to let him...because every time I gave him a new paper to glue, he would say "I am doing this with YOU, mama." And he felt so proud of himself :)

And this is the result of our time together. I think they turned out pretty cute. There are so many ways you could take could even use the punched out part for a valentine.

I hope this post inspires you to stretch yourself when it comes to crafting with your kids. You never know how great it will make your kids feel and how wonderful it may turn out :)

This post is part of....

Thanks for reading.

- brook.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Love Monsters

Today's craft, Love Monsters, was probably the favorite for [F] my 34 month old. In fact, he is still making these little guys everyday and lining them up on our kitchen window sill :)

[B], my 18 month old, didn't make any of these. He had too much fun arranging the pom poms into stacks :)

You will need the following stuff for this activity.

1. Hearts cut from felt (large and small)   2. Glue   3. Googly Eyes  4. Scissors  5. Pom Poms
6. Pipe Cleaners (cut to desired length)  7. Pen  8. Slips of Paper

At first I had [F] use the glue stick to adhere all the parts, but once I 'let go' :) and let him try the liquid glue....he actually did quite well.

[F] designed every monster and glued all the parts together. I did help him secure the antennas and glue the messages into place. As I type, I am still shocked at how well he did with these.....the first time we worked on these he worked for a solid hour straight.

Josh requested one with lots of eyes and this is what [F] came up with :)

Have fun with these....we sure did :) and don't forget to let me know how it goes.

Inspiration for this craft came from Pinterest.

This post is part of....

Thanks for reading.

- brook.