Book Review: Thelma The Unicorn

Our tiny toddler has a bit of a unicorn obsession. She loves my little pony toys and is obsessed with unicorn related clothing. When we saw Thelma The Unicorn by Aaron Blabey at the library, we had to bring it home!

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Thelma the Unicorn by Aaron Blabey is an adorable book about one little pony’s dream to be some one special. Thelma had always wanted to be a unicorn. When she see’s a carrot on the ground, she gets an idea!

After strapping the carrot onto her head, she shows off her horn to her best friend. In an unusual turn of events, a truck full of pink paint and glitter spills onto Thelma.

Much to her delight, Thelma is now mistaken for a real unicorn. At first, she loves all of the attention. Soon the attention gets old though and she happily returns to her life as a pony!

This book is sure to be a favorite for both children and adults! The rhyming story is very well written. The way Thelma learns to love herself is a lesson that a young child can not hear enough! The books characters are so easy to fall in love with and the illustrations are amazing.

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Our Fall Must Do List

Fall is the favorite season in our house. Once the beginning of September hits, we enter fall mode quickly. Mr. Not So Crafty will be breaking out the fall and Halloween decorations any day now and we already have several fun fall family activities planned. There are a few things we must during this time of the year that we’d like to share with you all!

Decorate 

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We love to decorate for different seasons and holidays, but fall and Halloween decorations hold a special place in our hearts and in our storage room! We love to use pumpkins because they can stay up until November, but we have a lot of Halloween specific decorations too. Each year on November first, we go shopping for things on clearance! If you want to make some of your own decorations, this list is a great place to start!

 

Pick Out Costumes 

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We love Halloween costumes! There is just something fun about getting to play dress up and as you get older, the opportunities to do that become pretty rare. This will be our toddlers second Halloween. Her first Halloween was a little too cold to do much adventuring, but we do hope to at least stop in at a few family members houses this year! We may find inspiration from these adorable mother and daughter costume ideas or from this list of the best costumes for little girls.

 

Enjoy Seasonal Attractions

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We have so many fun places we love to visit in the fall. A pumpkin patch is a must. We live in North East Ohio and our absolute favorite fall fun spot is White House Fruit Farm. We get our pumpkin tere each year and there is just so much family fun to be had. Corn maze’s are another must do each fall. Locally, we have Maze Craze. Our last must do activity is one for just the adults. We love haunted houses! There was a time where we tried to visit four or five a year, but currently we only get to set aside a night to do one each year.

 

We hope you enjoyed reading about our fall must-do’s and would love to hear what is on your families to do list this fall!

Footprint Apple

As a general rule, most of the art and activities posted on here will be child guided, but today we are breaking that rule. This cute little footprint apple is a great keepsake. We made several of them to pass along to family and friends!

 

Materials Needed

  • White Paper
  • Red Paint
  • Green Paint
  • Brown Paint
  • Paint Brush

I start by putting red paint on a paper plate and getting ready plenty of wet paper towels to clean up the mess that I knew would follow. I decided to do this while Mr. Not So Crafty was at work, but I can tell you that it wasn’t the best idea. This would definitely be easier to do with two adults!

 

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I dipped one little foot into the paint, then pressed it on the paper. After that, I repeated the process with the other foot.

 

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After I cleaned up painted baby feet, I painted a little stem and leaf. Once that all dried, I cut out around the painting. This step is completely optional but I liked how it looked!

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Paper Pig

Farm animals are really popular in our house. This paper pig is super simple and turned out so cute! With slight modifications, this activity is great from kids between 18 months and 6 years old!

Materials Needed

  • Pink Construction Paper
  • Green Construction Paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Colored Pencil, Marker, Or Crayon
  • Googly Eyes

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The prep work for this craft takes under five minutes. Mr. Not so Crafty took toddler chasing duty while I cut out two circles (one bigger than the other), two rectangles, an oval like shape for the snout, two small triangles, and a tail shape. I am not good at drawing things, so your tail may be way better than my tail. If your little one is three or four, try just drawing the shapes and letting them cut it all out. If your one is five or older, then try telling them the shapes and letting them do the drawing and the cutting! This is great fine motor skill practice as well as shape recognition practice.

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After I finished the prep work, Mr. Not So Crafty brought the little one to her highchair so she could get to work on her pig! We handed her parts one at a time and she glued them on the paper.

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After letting it dry for a little bit, we helped our little one glue on the eyes and draw on a mouth and nostrils. The older your child is, the less help they will need with this step! After that, it was all finished! When planning this, we didn’t actually plan for it to hang off the page, but that is how it worked out. We encourage you to just let your little ones creativity flow, even if the results are different than you had pictured in your head.

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Shape School Bus

School has officially started everywhere in our area. Our toddler is too young for school, but she loves watching the school bus drive past our house. She loves pretty much anything that moves. We felt like this was the perfect time for this cute little shape school bus!

Materials Needed

  • White computer paper
  • Yellow construction paper
  • Back construction paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors

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As with most crafts, its easiest to start with the prep work ahead of time! For little ones under three, you’ll probably want to do the cutting. You will need one long yellow rectangle, one smaller yellow rectangle, three to six black squares (we cut out four but only used three), one long skinny black rectangle, and two black circles. If your little one is over three, just draw the shapes and let them do the cutting. Cutting is great fine motor skill practice!

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Next, just let your little one assemble the bus. We always try to offer as much freedom as possible when putting together shape based crafts and activities. The end product may or may not look as intended, but your little one will get the chance to learn and explore while creating something they will be very proud of. Our child is only 20 months, so we do offer a bit of guidance, but mostly just to make sure no parts of the project get eaten!

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If your little one enjoyed this shape activity, they may also love our Open Ended Shape Dinosaur, our Open Ended Shape Fish, and our Shape Truck Activity.

Great Things to Buy This Fall

Fall is coming soon and it is our family is so excited. If feels funny writing this as we sit in the AC hiding from the hot, humid weather outside, but September 22nd will be here before we know it. We have a few things that we think makes the transition from summer to fall more comfortable and fun!

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Fall Clothing

There is something therapeutic about putting away the summer clothing and breaking out the cooler weather clothes. In Ohio, we can go through all four seasons in a single week this time of the year, so we cant put all of our summer clothes away just yet, but we definitely enjoy doing some shopping for the upcoming season change!

Fall Décor

We love decorating for holidays and seasons. Fall is such a fun time to buy new seasonal decorations.

Fall Themed Children’s Books

We do a lot of reading in our house. We try to match a book with the activities we do, so soon, we will be breaking out the fall books! We try to keep our books organized by type so they are easy to find.

We hope these shopping suggestions help get you in the fall mood. If you are looking for suggestions for activities to do with your family, check out this great list from Everywhere With Ella.

We would love to hear from you! What is your favorite part of fall? Do you have a thing you must purchase each year?

Self Portrait Activity

Right now, we are working on teaching our toddler the parts of her face. This activity is great for toddlers and preschoolers. When I worked in early childhood education, each year the class did self portraits at the beginning of the school year. This activity was inspired by the one my amazing former boss did, but I wanted to make something toddler friendly to share with you all.

Materials Needed

  • Piece of White Computer Paper
  • Magazine Clippings of Noses, Mouths, and Eyes
  • Colored Pencils
  • Glue

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Start by taking your child to look in the mirror. Point out their eyes, their nose, and their mouth. Next, let your child pick out two eyes, one nose, and one mouth to use. I tried to give my little one a variety to pick from. After your child picks their face parts, let them glue the magazine clippings on the paper however they’d like.

 

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The face might take a little bit to dry, but after its done drying, draw an outline for the face around where your child put the facial parts. If your child is over three, try letting them draw it themselves.

 

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Next, let your child draw their hair and anything else they want. I helped my toddler with the hair a little bit, but then let her draw as she wished.

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After you little one is finished, don’t forget to date it! We laminated ours and will try to remember to do another one next year to compare. This simple activity was a lot of fun and is a great way to work on self image and body part recognition.

 

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