Saturday, June 27, 2015

Nana Cousin Camp 2015--Movie Night Edition

This is the first summer that our
grandchildren have really been big
enough to all sit for a Movie Night and it
was such a fun night.
They loved the book, even though
it has a Christmas theme.
And, oh my goodness, if you have never seen
this movie, or haven't seen it in a while,
it is such a treat.  Kelly remembers that when
we had out of town company once when she was little
we decided to have movie night and watch this.
She was not at all interested.
According to her (and I don't remember this)
I told her that she didn't have
to watch anything more
than the first several minutes.
At that point I told her,
she was welcome to
leave and do her own thing.
Of course, she was hooked.
You cannot have movie night without popcorn.
These are giant, Texas Sized bags.  The boys
got popcorn and Cora had mini marshmallows
in hers.  
Of course, you have to have a ticket
to be admitted.
I usually just tell the parents when
Nana Cousin Camp will be or at
the most send an email invitation.
This time, I made a printed invitation
and it was a huge hit.  Kelly said that
David went to the refrigerator
and read it over and over and over.

He informed me on the phone
a few days prior to Movie Night
that he was having trouble
sleeping because he was so excited.  
You might wonder about the sheets covering
the furniture.  Well, we did have buttered popcorn
which makes greasy fingers, and we were
sitting on good furniture.
This is not this Nana's first rodeo!
Caleb and Aaron brought
their PJ's and stuffed animals.
Great idea!
Everyone was enthralled with the movie, including
little Cora, who I had thought might not last long.
She did abandon the movie
for a while in the middle to have
Decca read her some of
her favorite books.
That was possibly Ducca's
favorite part of the evening.

Before the movie started,
there was an oldie Donald Duck cartoon.
I wish I had gotten a shot of the
Swiss Family Robinson movie itself, but
I was too engrossed in the film to remember.
Another shot of the movie goers.

What I couldn't capture in pictures:
CORA:  Where's the tiger? Where's the tiger?
AARON:When are the pirates going to come?
CALEB:  Huge belly laughs every time the youngest son
outwitted the tiger, the pirates, etc.
CALEB:  Eyes closed in disgust at the kissing scenes.
DAVID:  The snake is the scary part, guys!
(He was the only one who had seen it before)
DAVID:  Picking out a Marco's Pizza shirt
on his own to wear because he knew I was ordering
Pizza from our favorite Pizza Restaurant.
ALL THREE BOYS:  Jumping up and down
as The Swiss Family Robinson outwitted
the pirates and then asking me to
replay that scene so that they
cold reenact it.  (Lots of jumping
around and yelling was involved.) 

Oh, and lest I forget, the menu was:
Root Beer Floats
Popcorn (and Marshmallows)
Nana believes in healthy snacks. :)

Ducca and I had a delightful
Friday night at the movies
with four of our favorites.
Hope you enjoyed your weekend as well.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Nana Cousin Camp 2015--Digging Edition

The second Nana Cousin Camp
happened today.

Our backyard has the greatest
spot for digging, so we focused
on digging with 
the great classic by Ruth Krauss
illustrated by Maurice Sendak

We also enjoyed the fantastic book

 We had 3 extra guests
today. Two were friends
of Caleb and Aaron,
Jackson and Halle.

Because of the extra kids
we also had Aunt Mandy
as a visitor.

She taught the kids the Hokey Pokey
featured in DIARY OF A WORM,
but for some reason it won't load on
this post, so you'll have to 
check out my INSTAGRAM
to see how great the kids
(and Mandy) were.

Group hug 
You gotta love a great book.
David and Cora are hidden
behind the book.
Now you can see everyone.
After we learned about digging
holes and all about worms,
it was time to explore the great

The highlight was when
Halle found a worm.  The
even bigger highlight was when
the worm pooped on Halle's finger.
Ducca had hidden "jewels" in the dirt
for the little diggers
and they had a blast finding them.
Before long it was time to move
to the under-the-deck swings.
Thanks Jeremy for creating this
fun spot several years ago.
David has graduated to
standing up in the swing.
He's five after all.
Caleb was the swing pusher
for Halle.
Cora would have swung all day
if someone hadn't gotten
too tired to push her more.
Aaron likes twisting the swings
and letting them fly.
I'm not sure why I didn't get
more pictures of
Jackson except that he
was very busy exploring.
I wish you could hear the voice
as it drifted down to me...
"Hi, Nana.  Hi, Nana.  Hi, Nana."
Caleb created a special picture
to commemorate the day.
Each person is featured in
the details of the picture.
I almost forgot to mention the
snack.  Little David was really concerned
thinking Nana had lost it and was feeding
the grandchildren real dirt.
Click HERE for the
Pinterest recipe.
There are
several other book related
ideas on this site as well.  
Finally, a shout out to Ducca who
loosened digging dirt and "planted"
lots and lots and lots of jewels for
little people to find.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Nana Cousin Camp--Sea Turtle Edition

I love having Nana Cousin Camps
during the summer although
I am not as brave as some of
my Nana friends such
as Debbie Gardner who
does a week long sleep-over camp.

This year I decided that
each day camp would have
a book theme, a book themed craft
or activity, and a book themed snack.

KISS (Keep It Simple Silly)

I checked out 3 Sea Turtle books
from my fantastic local library.
Sea Turtles by Judy Wearing
Sea Turtles by Samantha Bell
Sea Turtles by Gail Gibbons

The kids were super cute about learning about sea turtles.
Of course, the 3 boys taught me and Cora
information we didn't know because
there had been a sea turtle episode on
Wild Kratts, their favorite show.  
Each of them made an air dried
clay sea turtle.
Caleb is pondering his
lump of clay.
Aaron's creation as it evolved.
David created a Palmer Park
Mountain with a cave.
Don't ask me how that
correlates with Sea Turtles.
I have no idea but it made
perfect sense to him.

Caleb's Sea Turtle
The only tools needed were
clay, straws, toothpicks
and lots of imagination.
Cora was very serious about her
creation.  Her pretty dress was
removed to keep from having
clay all over it.
Bird's Eye View
You Gotta love that red hair.

Proud Artist
The snack was also a sea turtle.
The only supplies needed were
a waffle, a banana, and two chocolate chips.
Why do 5 years olds hate to
smile for the camera?
Yes, even a two year old can make
a waffle sea turtle.

It tastes even
better when you add maple
syrup and strawberries.
One of the reasons for the simple
planned activity is that the most
fun is had "just" playing.
Caleb and Cora played cars and grocery store.

David and Aaron played
outside in the digging hole.
You might have noticed
that David (by his own
admission) dressed up in
sea turtle colors.  He
said he was an undetermined
It is sometimes a challenge
finding things that both a
two year old and an eight year
old will enjoy.
One thing is always certain--
they enjoy each other. 
There was even a little screen
time at the end of the day.
Sweet brother and sister.
All in all it was a 
GREAT first Nana Cousin
Camp for Summer 2015.

Stay tuned for future editions.  

Pinterest is a Nana's Best Friend
Click Here for Clay Sea Turtle
My library did not have the book
associated with this craft
but yours might

Click Here for Sea Turtle Snack

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Thing 1 and Thing 2 Birthday Party

 Last weekend, I went to Houston to attend
the first birthday party of my 1 year old
twin nephews.  
Boy, can my niece and nephew-in-law
throw a party.
They would be the first to say
that others, like MawMaw and
Aunt Stacie pitched in to make
it a success.

I hope you enjoy the wonderful pictures of all
the details that made the party so much
fun for children and adults alike.  



Popcorn in cute bags with Dr. Seuss sayings.

Smash cakes.
I had not heard that term
before but these were the cakes that
Thing 1--Alex
and Thing 2--Nick
smashed and ate.

Assorted sweets all in the blue and red theme.


"Real" food too and even a cheese tree.

Everywhere you turned, there were more decorations.

Wreaths with pictures of the boys during
their first year.
This is Alex.

This is Nick.

Each boy had a book
for the guests to sign so they
would one day "remember"
who was at their first
birthday party.

Drinks in a cute color coordinated tub

A welcome to our party arrangement

Fili's parents had these
cute Thing 1 and Thing 2
pinatas made.

Picture garlands

 Mom and Dad

A great caricature artist who was a huge hit.

The stars of the show
They were so, so cute
and such troopers though the whole party.

The Pinatas were a huge
success with the cousins.

Nick got a shot

Alex gets his turn.

Cousin Graham got in on the action.

Aaron confiscated Thing 1's
foot when it finally fell off.
The birthday boys were worn out
by the end of the day and needed
read nourishment.

So thankful that I am able to
travel to Texas for special
occasions like these.
Happy Birthday, Nick and Alex.