Monday, April 18, 2011

Easter activities for the month

Sensory tub

lacing eggs cards

Spoon the pom poms and sort by color

pouring eggs

transfer wooden eggs with thongs

transfers chicks


beginning sounds eggs ( i have little objects in a tin and david has to put them inside the matching letter)

spring time memory game


i got this idea from here... david is interested in learning how to spell his name.. ;)

match the capital and the lower case

match the color with the egg

counting eggs - i put in the eggs gummy bears or jelly beans and they have to match the number in the egg

sort the egg by size


adding game.. (david is discovering that 2+2 and 3+1 and 1+3 is 4) by putting clothes pins convinations on the eggs


working on material to introduce continents and land to david..


passover bingo i made (ten plagues and seder contents)

passover books
passover memory game

seder puzzle

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

our disney world trip review with a 3 year old and a one year old!

- ARRIVAL/BUSSES; Since we arrived in the airport the service to disney was quick and really friendly... the bus system is quite organized, i was impressed by the fact that you don't have to pick up your luggage and lug it around... We had enough worrying about kids/stroller and hand bags!!! i think that should be an option in more hotels actually ...

- CHECK-IN - I would strongly suggest doing the online check-in; when we got in we didn't have to wait any time in line we went straigh thru the conocierge and she gave us our keys and a welcoming package. including our 'first trip to disney buttons' (wich i have to say my husband has been wearing since we got here!)
our bags were not here when we got to the hotel, but we wondered around... I had ordered some sandals and clothes from zappos and the disney store online and they were waiting in the lobby by the time we got here... we just had to call the front desk and they dropped them in our suite.

- DINNING - we purchased the deluxe dinning plan (wich includes 3 dinning meals a day and 2 snacks... ) the first day we were here we ate cafeteria food (all available at the all star hotels) and it was ok... i had a salad and a quesadilla.. i have to say though it was a really good QUESADILLA and comming froma mexican must mean something right?! portions are good.. but selection is limited... having purchased the deluxe dinning made me feel like we were wasting our points though, and i wasn't wrong!! today we had dinner at the 'tonys' restaurant in magic kindom and it was much better food than the quick service (hotdogs and hamburgers be had been eating the last day!) will def. make more reservations to try more sit down meals

- DOWNTOWN DISNEY - we went there 1st day to walk around ... it is impresive the amount of marketing this place has!! we were looking for hats for us (As hubby wanted disney caps for all of us) so we got them.. plus a pen and shovel for my son and a teddy for my daughter!!! downtown disney is a huge 'market' place.. you can make your own t-shirts (ive been families with personalized disney aparel and its great!!!) you obviously pay the price of buying stuff in disney.. but i have to say the disney store there is the biggest one i've ever seen... (almost too big to my taste)
also they do seem to have good restaurants but will try them on during the week

- MAGIC KINDOM - what can say ?! place is magical!!! it took us 2 hours to get pass the entrance!!!!! (no not because of line ups) but because meeting our disney friends... we saw pluto (who did a little dance specially for daddys camera) went to see mickey and minnie and the princesses... (note.. its worth going to the mickey theather to meet them!!) there is almost no line ups and you get to be in a private room with them!!! my daughter was too scared of mickey though!!!

birthday parade - this is a must!!! we nearly missed it (Cause we were eating lunch) but the music is GREAT!!! and at some point the characters stop to dance with the kids!!! so david got to dance hand by hand with woody!!! he had a blast!!!

Then we tried splash mountain - well my 3 year old son and my husband went in this ride as my pregnant belly and my infant child wouldn't allow me to go in one of my fav. rides!!! but i was impressed my son had a blast!!! he loved the water drop!! at this point (12 pm i started seeing a lot of tired kids!!! and tired parents.. i tought maybe a good idea to come back to the hotel for a nap but stuck it out and kept on going)

after we headed to fantasyland where my son wanted to try the 'dumbo' ride!!! i cant believe it took almost an hour to get to this ride!!! i was going nuts!!! speically cause its the kid of ride you can get at any carnaval or fair!!!

then we tried its a small world!! - great ride as i remembered!!! big line up but it goes fast!!!

we then went to the mickey philarmonic - i think its one of disney's hidden gems... (less than 5 min wait!) its a 3d movie with music from dif. movies!!! my son loveeed it!! he was singing along and loved the 3d effects

peter pan - this was a disappointing ride... we got a fast pass for this (almost 3 hours wait) in this fast pass!! and the ride wasnt that impresive!! def not worth that much

winnie the pooh! - they had the best line up entratanment!! they have a playare while you wait in line!! perfect to little kids!!! the ride was ok.. but i think DS didn't apressiated them much cause he dont read winnies' stories to our son that often!!!

Animal kingdom

Tuskers house – by far the best breafast we had!!! It’s a buffet style… when you walk in Donald duck receives you… and the whole fam takes pics with him.. then Minnie, mickey, goofy, and daisy duck make their way to the tables while having breakfast… at some point they give the kids some african musical instruments and make a line up with all the Disney caracters… that was a lot of fun!!!

· its tough to be a bug = this is a 3d movie… warning its really scary for little kids!!! At a point it goes all dark and there is spiders hanging!!! Its supposed to show how good bugs are in our life.. but my son was sooo scared!!!

· Festival of the lion king – this is by far one of the best shows we’ve seen in Disneyworld!!! It’s a musical in a teathre loveeed it!! And the music is incredible

· Kilimanjaro safari – this is a fun ride for kids and adults… I got binoculars for my son cause I had read in reviews animals can be a bit far but they we quite close for us to see…

· Flights of wonder – the auditorium was under renovations so they did the show outside.. we had to stand around the girl showing the birds wich was a bit uncomfortable and a boring for our kids…

· Maharajah jungle trek – loved the architecture there… the tigers were soo close!!! And the animals look great kept

· Kali river rapids – I didn’t go in this ride cause I’m pregnant but my son and dh went… my husband liked it… but said it was way too short…

· The boneyard – it’s a play maze with dinosaur fosils! Its great for little kids!!! Tons of sand, bones and runnin around

· Finding nemo the musical – this was ok not as good as the lion king one, and the seats in the theathre are the most uncomfortable ever!!!!

· Tricera top spin – its just like the dumbo ride .. fun for preschoolers though

· Dinosaur – this is a scary ride!!! Very well done!! The waiting area really contributed to the feel of the ride… one of favorites… I was impressed my 3 year old went though..

Diner at yak and yeti’s = delicious!!! Great location!! Not really crowded… superb service!!! We were lucky enough to catch the parade just out of it… husband ordered baby back ribs and were amaizing… I had steak wrapped around rice yummi!!!

TUESDAY – today was rainy and a word of advise it CAN get cold in april in florida!! So bring a sweatshirt!! We didn’t and we had to buy sweats for the whole family that morning!!

Magic kindom continuation

Breakfast at grand Floridian café (grand Floridian café) so far the most impressive Disney hotel.. people in there seem very well dressed up though.. made me feel a bit off tough… the breakfast was good… service good but a bit slow..

Pirates of the caribean – I have always lovveeeed this ride!!! Last time I went I was 17 years old and I still loveee it now at 30!!!

Jungle Cruise – This was a great relaxing ride!!! A lot of funny animals to take pics from!! Really well done just like all disney’s work

Magic Carpets of ALadin – another dumbo ride!!! My sonnnn just loooooooooveeeeeeeees these rides so he had to go on them!!! There is a lot of great shops around it though…

Tomorrowland transit authority – this is a relaxing ride across all the rides in tomorrowland…. Nothing thilling or really exciting about it

Buzz lightyear space ranger spin – one of my sons favorites!!! Its an interactive shooting game!!! My 3 year old loooovvved looveeed it!!! He wanted to go again when we came out..

Stich great escape… this was the most disappointing ride in all magic kindom….

Monsters inc laugh floor- really impressive!!! It’s a live show… the jokes are not made up automatic.. almost like a stand up show but with the caracters of monsters inc…

Dinner at cosmic ray starlight café – this is mainly quick service.. we ordered hamburgers and stuff… nothing really special…

Fireworks and electrical parade – the electrical parade is great but seems dated… there is none of the new caracters includes ‘pinochio, Cinderella, petes dragon, and mickey) the fireworks are great!! Bring a blanket as it can get chilly….. my daughter fall asleep 2 min before the parade started … but my son liked it… the fireworks were not impressive for him though.. we got him a halogen sword and he was just sooo over the moon playing with it that he forgot about the fireworks..


Epcot centre

I read about epcot being a ‘grown up’ park so our expectations were low but I have to say we came out super happy with the park! It was my fav. Park when I was a teen and it is still!!! Tons of things to do with kids!!! (I have a 3 year old and a 1.5 year old…

We started with breakfast at the akershus royal banquet hall – we had breakfast with the princesses (alice in wonderland, belle, snow white, sleeping beuty and Cinderella) my daughter loveess princesses… it was impressive all waitresses speak the language of the ‘part of the world’ you are on, so that added to the flavour of us feeling like we were in a castle in Norway!!! It’s a cold buffet at first… (really European… cheeses, hams, pastries) and then the waiter comes with the hot plate (a big plate with eggs, potatoes and if it wasn’t enough we were offered another plate once we were done..

Re-imagine spaceship earth – we tought it was a trip to space and since ‘d’ loves planets we went on it… ohhhh surprise!! It was about the history of humanity!! By far one of the best rides!!! We lovveed it!! Really educational too and well done!!! Will come back to this ride for sure!!

The seas with nemo and friends – this is a great ride for kids… our kids loved it!!! It has real fish!! Its an aquarium with virtual holograms of the nemo characters… at the end there is a walk thru aquarium with fishes and some play area with a big shark

Soaring – I didn’t go on it cause I stayed with leah who didn’t meet the height requirements.. but my sister and my husband said it was great!!! My 3 year old also loved it!!! Not scary at all for little kids

Capitan EO – it’s the old 3d Micheal Jackson’s video!! My son is a big MJ’s fan soo he loveeed it!!! My daughter was dancing all the time!!

Mexico Grand Fiesta Tour – lovely!! I am from mexico and I loveeed this ride!!! Its sort of like ‘it’s a small world’ style.. but about mexico!!!

Maelstrom – tour about Norway… it’s a good ride.. just really short… tells story about vikings…

Reflections of china – my sister has been to china several times as well as traveled aroud the world… and she was impressed by the accuracy of the replicas… specially china!!! Loved the little souvenier shops!!! And a great idea I saw a family going on a ‘interview’ to people from the country.. since everyone that works in there is from the resprective country… they had questions such as ‘do you thinkg Americans have misconceptions about your country’ or ‘how do you say thank you’ etc etc..

We had dinner at japan…a nd though sushi was good.. it wasnot a huge serving…

We had a snack in mexico and loveeed the churros but my favorite was the popsicles.. I loved themmm


We were going to go to typhoon lagoon but since ‘d’ doesn’t know how to swim we were not confortable taking him to the rides… and since its not really included in our base tickets we were going to pay 150 bucks for a kiddy pool?! So we descided to have breakfast at the Polynesian hotel (kona) and then hang at the pool …

It was a chill day for us we hung by the pool and went to downtown Disney for dinner and to buy some suveniers for the family back home…

It was a bit of a sad day for us as my sister had to fly back home! We miss her a bunch!!

For food we had B: Kona Café (Polinesean Resort) @ 9:20am – breakfast was great!! Good portions and a twist of Polynesian flavours

D: Wolfgang puck (Downtown Disney) @ 6:30pm – good food.. a bit expensive (good thing for the meal plan! Our dinner for 2 adults and a child came to over 120 american dollars)


(Hollywood Studios): B: Hollywood & vine – breakfast with handy many/ agent oso and little einsteins = the place itself was run down looked like a bit of a run down version of the golden griddle… breakfast not bad… standard American buffet, my son loovvveed meeting handy many and agent oso!!! And there was dancing for the kids with the imagination movers.. so great that way

in here we got a pleasant surprise.. honestly i was not expecting much to do for our little ones there... but wanted to try what they had..

the muppet 3d movie is amaizing!!! and they have a big playground for honey i shrunk the kids... david had a blast... its all a big version of things.. there is a big slide that is supposed to be film!... super cute! time to chill from long line ups

we did the brand new toy story midway mania... BIG RECOMENDATION get fastpass for this ride as soon as you get to the park.. we got ours at 10am and our fast passes were for 4pm!! they usualy run out of fast passes by noon... but let me tell you it is the best ride!! we had sooo much fun!! we would have lined up again but it was a 1.5 hour wait without a fast pass!!

the narnia ride is the biggest waste of time in the world!! its just a 10 min trailer of the movie!!! and there is no seats either..

voyage of the little mermaid- its really cute (singing show!!) re enactment of the movie!! after the lion king it was my fav. in disney

the magic of disney animation - this is a hall and we found mickey, lotso, mr and mrs incredible with no line up whatsoever!! good surprise!! :)

disney junior on stage!! my son loooveeed this... they have clubhouse disney, handdy many, jake and the pirates(my son new fav, and little einsteins)

beauty and the beast live... good show!

D: Hollywood Brown Derby @ 5pm – fancy but great service and great food

Saturday- B: cape may café ( beach club resort) - honestly I loved the location!!hopefully our next time we will stay there… the waitress was great and the characters came around more than once… the fod was American buffet.. lots to choose from

Today we went back to epcot to try the mj ride that my son missed cause he wanted to go to the washroom right before getting in! and when we came back they had closed it that day.. so we had to come back btw i must mention my son is a BIG mj fan!! :-)

D: Tutto Italia @ 4:30 at Epcot – one of the best if not the best food we had!!! Lovely place to eat…

Sunday- B: Omaha @ 10:55am at Polynesian Resort - we met lilo and stich there... as well as mickey, goofy, and minnie... my son just loveed goofy!!! the food was good...

D: Crystal palace @ 3:25 at Magical Kingdom - this was the worst place to eat at.. looked a bit unkept... they had winnie the pooh caracters.. and its a buffet style but its just like a cheap version of the golden griddle... so not worth 25 bucks per person! (good thing it was included in our dinning plan!)

Monday, April 11, 2011

1-2 years

Developing and activities for 1-2 year olds

Gross Motor: This year your child makes leaps and bounds in his gross motor abilities--literally. From a few toddling steps at 1 year to running all over the place by his second birthday, you will be breathless trying to keep up. Some things you can work on during the second year of his life are:

throwing a ball overhand and underhand,
climbing stairs.

Fine Motor: Learning to use a spoon and fork are important milestones for this year. You can also introduce your child to coloring with crayons. Simple puzzles with large knobs are excellent for both fine motor development and spatial awareness. Encourage your children to build towers with blocks as well.

Language: Your child will most likely go from saying a few individual words at one year to communicating in short sentences by his second birthday! He will gain new vocabulary from books, daily conversations, and new experiences. Stimulate his language development by immersing him in a word-rich environment! Point out the difference between the words and the pictures in a book and encourage him to finish off the sentences in familiar books. Read rhyming books and sing songs.

Cognitive Development: This is the dump-and-fill stage! Pre-toddlers love to dump things out of containers and fill them up again. As soon as your child is out of the oral stage (putting everything in his mouth), encourage this by creating a sensory tub using beans, rice, or sand. Put measuring cups and spoons in there and let your little one go to town!

Social/Emotional: Your child will enjoy being in the company of other children, but won't actually "play" with them quite yet. He will most likely engage in parallel play, where he plays beside another child without actually interacting in play together. Sharing will be a difficult concept at this point in time, so don't expect your child to come by this naturally. Separation anxiety will be in full force (if it isn't already) by the time he reaches 18 months and will most likely gradually taper off around his second birthday.

Self-Help/Adaptive: By your child's second birthday, he should be able to remove a few articles of clothing himself. He should also be able to feed himself with a spoon and fork.

Spiritual & Moral: Young children approaching their second birthday can start saying prayers, or at least portions of prayers. They will also start to remember favourite religious stories if this is a routine in your home. Naturally, children are egocentric and will think of themselves only...this isn't wrong, it is just a natural stage of development. Our job as parents is to encourage our children to be thoughtful of others by modeling it ourselves.

excerpt taken from