Fun Friday – Carnival Day

Carnival day can be a fun activity to do towards the end of summer when children will be starting school or at the end of a school year, or just for the fun of it. Invite another family or two over and let them help with planning it. Decide when you want to have it, in the morning or afternoon.
Plan on some games you want to have (bean bag toss, knock the cans down, drop the spoon or clothespin in a container, or anything else you can think of). If you have older children let them help make the games.
You can make tickets and play money or if you only have a few children just let them play the games without them. You can do face painting. Watercolors work well if you don’t have any face paint.
You can make some popcorn, pretzels, or other snack and put them in baggies for a prize or have it so the children can “buy” them. Fans from construction paper can be made for everyone. You might want to purchase/collect small toys or stickers that can be used for prizes.

Foam Blocks Shaker Bottle

I purchased some colorful foam blocks at the Dollar Store. I wasn’t sure yet how I was going to use them, but I wanted to have them. When my youngest grandson was over he saw the blocks and immediately tried to put it in his mouth. I didn’t want him to choke on them and also I didn’t want any chew marks on them so I decided to put them in a plastic bottle.

Materials needed to make foam blocks shaker bottle.

Materials needed to make foam blocks shaker bottle.


I had an empty clear plastic bottle from juice that I used. The blocks fit great in them. I decided to add some bells that I had so when he shakes it, it will make some noise. After putting the blocks and bells in I hot glued the lid so it won’t open and the contents won’t fall out.
Foam Blocks Shaker Bottle

Foam Blocks Shaker Bottle

Paper Cups

Are you thinking – paper cups – what can you do with them to make a fun activity for children? A number of years ago when I had my preschool I purchased a box of 5 ounce Dixie cups. I’m not sure if I saw this somewhere or came up with the idea on my own, but children can have a great time building with cups.

I purchased these cups at Walmart and I chose the 5 ounces instead of the 3 because the cup was a little sturdier. If you have several children you may want to check a store like Costco or Sam’s Club to get a larger package.

5 oz. cups

5 oz. cups

One day when I was visiting my grandchildren, I brought over the cups. I gave them each a stack of cups and told them they can build something with them. I did give some ground rules – such as no smooshing the cups, if you knock them down, do it so the cups won’t get dented and don’t put your mouth on it. They had a great time building with them and at one point they decided to build something together.

Building with cups!

Building with cups!

Tower of cups!

Tower of cups!

Something else you can do when your children are building with cups is to have little people or animals available. This just adds to their creativity of what they can make with cups. Is there anything that your child does with cups besides stacking them?

Leftover Paint – Don’t Throw it Away

A few weeks ago I had 3 of my grandchildren over. Since they spent most of the day at our house, I wanted to have some things for them to do. They love collecting rocks, so I let them choose 3 or 4 smooth ones. I had some paint leftover from a prior project that they could use.

I put the paint on paper plates, so they could each have their own. I didn’t have enough paint brushes handy for each of the colors so I gave them q-tips to use. This worked great for painting the rocks and they were able to use a q-tip for each color.

Grandkids painting rocks!

Grandkids painting rocks!


Painted Rocks

Painted Rocks

The two older ones kept their paint colors separate. The younger one decided to mix them all up after a while.
I kept the two paper plates that had the colors separate and let it dry. I put it in a cabinet and it sat there for over a week.

Dried Paint

Dried Paint

I decided to try and see if it would work like water colors – where you dip the brush or q-tip in water and then the dried paint. It worked great! This is a great way to use up the dried paint instead of tossing it out.

Painting with dried paint.

Painting with dried paint.

If you don’t want to use paper plates, you can use a plastic plate or pie tin. This can then be washed when done and the plate can be reused again.

E-book Published!!

I am happy to announce that my e-book -Summertime Sanity for You & the Kids(A variety of activities for preschoolers thru elementary) is now available on Amazon for $2.99. Take the time to check it out. It has a lot more ideas than in my blog. It is great for summer and during the year.