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Mommy and Me

4/16/2010

Activities for Parents and Children to do Together!
 
1. A Game of Balloonatics
You'll need:
   • a colorful supply of balloons, both long and round
   • two boxes, to serve as “goals”
   • colorful markers to decorate your goal box (optional)

What to do:
If possible, print out these directions. Read them through with your child before you begin.
With your child, gather everything you need.
Together with your child, color and decorate your “goal” box, keeping in mind this game will be played as though you were playing hockey with balloons.
Help your child blow up and tie two balloons per player, one round and one long for each.
Decide if you will be able to play indoors or outdoors, depending on the weather.
With your child, place the goal boxes at opposite ends of the room, or a reasonable distance apart if outdoors.
Stand, together, in the center of the room, with your long balloon poised as a hockey stick or tennis racquet, and the round one as a puck or tennis ball.
Ask your child to say, “One, two, three, go!” and try to get your round balloon inside your goal, without using your hands, before your opponent.
 
2. Fitness Card Game-
You'll need:
   • a deck of cards

What to do:
   If possible, print out these directions. Read them through before you begin. 
   Explain to your child that the card tasks are:
   Ace = Free pass
   King = 10 push ups
   Queen = 10 high kicks
   Jack = 10 jumping jacks
   Joker = Free pass
   Heart = That number of jump rope jumps
   Spade = That number of sit-ups
   Diamond = That number of push-ups
   Club = Free pass
   3 of a kind = Free pass
How to play:
   Your child deals a card to you. The card is face down. 
   You turn the card over and complete the task. 
   Now she deals herself a card and completes her task. 
   She will continue dealing the cards until all of the deck has been dealt.

3. Hot Grounders Baseball-

 You'll need:
• gloves
• baseball

What to do:
If possible, print out these directions. Read them through with your child before you begin.
With your child, gather everything you'll need always remember exercise safety.
Together with your child, decide on the length of the playing area. It should be long enough for each of you to have room to throw the ball overhand. You may wish to start at fifteen to twenty feet apart. Decrease or increase the distance according to your child's skills. 
   How to play:
Explain to your child that you will throw a ground ball to her.
After she catches the ball, she returns the ball to you using an overhand throw. Encourage your child to move as fast as she can.
She can score a point only when she catches the ground ball. If she misses, it does not count.
Continue throwing ground balls to her until you have reached 25 throws. Keep score as you go.
Now it is your turn to have your child throw grounders to you!
 
4. Fly a Kite-
Kites are cheap and kids love them. Stay clear of power lines and enjoy.
 
5. Bubbles!–
Make your own with water and a small amount of dishsoap and/or glycerin. Use straws or funnels for blowing the bubbles.
 
6. Fun with Cleaning –
Choose either windows (Kids love to squirt spray bottles), dusting, or tidying up. Make it fun with music, incentives (such as hiding money to be found when tidying) or prizes for getting all the windows cleaned.
 
7. Plant some flowers, vegetables or herbs-
 You can use an empty egg carton to start or buy some little starter containers. Once they are big enough, transplant them outside. It’s fun to grow your own plants!
 
8. Volunteer -
How about a visit to a local nursing home? Or maybe you could take an elderly neighbor on an outing with you, say to a bookstore or coffeeshop. Helping others is always a positive experience.
 
9. Star Gazing at Night –
Ask what patterns they see. Tell them about the constellations you know. What do they think of the stars. What do you think? What’s out there? How big is it?
 
10. Coloring -
Both crayons and magic markers are so much fun. Both free drawing and coloring books. The possibilities are endless.
 
11. Painting! –
Finger paints, brush paints, any kind. The only key here is to completely let your child express his/herself freely. Don’t guide too much except for instruction on how to use the paints.

12. Play Catch –
With little kids, you can start with catching stuffed animals that are easier for them to grab onto, then graduate to an actual ball.
 
13. Make Ice Cream-
 
Things You'll Need:
   2 tbs. sugar 

   1 cup of half and half 

   1/2 tsp. vanilla extract 

   1/2 cup of rock salt 

   Ice cubes to fill a gallon-sized ziplock bag 

   2 gallon ziplock bags 

   1 qt. ziplock bag 

   Bowls 

   Toppings 

   Spoons

Step 1-
Assemble all of your ingredients so that you can mix the ice cream quickly.

Step 2-
Pour the half and half, sugar and vanilla extract into the qt.-sized ziplock bag and reseal the bag with some air left in it.

Step 3-
Mix the ice and rock salt together in the larger gallon-sized ziplock bag.

Step 4-
Place the bag with your ingredients into the bag with the ice. You may want to consider double bagging by placing both into another gallon-sized bag in case the ice leaks at the corners.

Step 5-
Shake the bags continuously. Have everyone in the family get involved, as this is something that many kids love to do. You need to shake the bags until you can tell that the mixture inside has hardened.

Step 6-
Open the large ziplock bags and discard the ice, rock salt and used bag.

Step 7-
Empty the bag holding the ingredients into bowls and enjoy your very own batch of homemade ice cream. This recipe makes enough for 1 large serving or 2 small servings. Add your favorite toppings and you are set.





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