Homemade Wind Chimes

Lewis loves chimes. Whenever we hear them from the neighbor’s apartments when we play outside he gets excited and tells me “ding!” He also loves the ones hanging on the porch at Grandma and Grandpa’s house in Vermont, and this was the first thing he noticed when we pulled into the driveway there last weekend.

Today he was helping me unload the dishwasher and we noticed how the silverware makes a nice ding sound when knocked together. I commented on how it sounded like chimes, then asked if he thought we should make our own chimes. YES!

Of course he then wanted to abandon our dishwasher task and make some chimes NOW. I finished up with the dishes then told him I would go on my computer to look up instructions for making a wind chime.

He started shaking his head “no, no, no!”

“You want me to be creative and make up some chimes myself?”

“Uh-huh!”

Alright, so I put my thinking hat on and started brainstorming what we had and what we could use. We obviously would need something to hang the chimes off of (knitting needles? an embroidery hoop?), something to hang it with (easy – yarn!), something to make the sound (something metal – cookie cutters? crochet hooks!)

(Side note: I am loving his outfit today! He doesn't often give much input on what he wants to wear, but clearly when he does choose it is spectacular. )

(Side note: I am loving his outfit today! He doesn’t often give much input on what he wants to wear, but when he does choose it is spectacular. )

After poking around a bit I came across some popsicle sticks. Perfect, except now Lewis was demanding Booba milk popsicles. Sorry bud, we don’t have any of those.

I got out a few colors of yarn and started connecting two of the sticks basically using the method to make a “God’s Eye”I then simply tied pieces of yarn on the end of each stick with a loop tied into each piece of yarn and then hung a crochet hook off each. (Three size K hooks and one size J although I’m pretty sure there are one or two more size K around here somewhere.) Obviously if you don’t happen to have a surplus of crochet hooks lying around there are plenty of other things that could be hung to make noise, including the silverware we were putting away earlier.

I hung it up higher first but quickly realized it needed to be at Lewie-height or I would be holding him up in the air all day for him to jingle it.

I hung it up higher first but quickly realized it needed to be at Lewie-height or I would be holding him up in the air all day for him to jingle it.

Lewis loved his little chime and spent a lot of the day playing with it. We hung it up for a while but really he preferred carrying it around and especially spinning around while holding it.

The acrylic yarn I used turned out to be a bit slippy so the knots came untied a few times and eventually I added some masking tape to hold everything in place. This was a very quick and easy little toy to make, and I think Lewis will get many more days enjoyment from it!

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Photo Friday

Happy Friday! I hope everyone is looking forward to some nice warm weather this weekend! Lewis is trying to get outdoors every possible minute of the day and was very upset this morning when I said we weren’t going for a walk because of the rain. So instead we tried out his new boots and went out for some puddle jumping! 🙂

Snowy fun in VT last weekend. Our snow here is just about gone, only snow-plow piles remaining.

Snowy fun in VT last weekend. Our snow here is just about gone, only snow-plow piles remaining.

Two little monkeys eating bananas. Lewis loved having a friend to play with in VT!

Two little monkeys eating bananas. Lewis loved having a friend to play with in VT!

"Look, I can drink from Daddy's big glass!"

“Look, I can drink from Daddy’s big glass!”

"What color paint do you want?" "Dzzz, Bue, Dzzz, Bue, Dzzz." (ie. Green, blue, green, blue, green.)

“What color paint do you want?” “Dzzz, Bue, Dzzz, Bue, Dzzz.” (ie. Green, blue, green, blue, green.)

Oops, went for too long of a walk and put him to sleep in the stroller!

Oops, went for too long of a walk and put him to sleep in the stroller!

Ready for rain.

Ready for rain.

Puddles and sticks - what more could a boy want?

Puddles and sticks – what more could a boy want?

Photo Friday

Happy Friday everyone! We are looking forward to this weekend and a few days spent visiting my parents in VT. Nearly all our photos this week seem to have been taken on the same day, so maybe this should be titled “What We Did On Tuesday” instead of “Photo Friday.” Either way, I hope you enjoy the cuteness and mischief!

"I just love the packing material in this box that Grandma P. sent!"

“I just love the packing material in this box that Grandma P. sent!”

"Mom, I'm very upset that you put this bin in the wrong spot on the carpet!"

“Mom, I’m very upset that you put this bin in the wrong spot on the carpet!”

"Alright, I guess I can have fun playing with this here."

“Alright, I guess I can have fun playing with this here.”

Lewis' favorite thing to find outside: Poop!  At least he knows better than to try to pick it up.

Lewis’ favorite thing to find outside: Poop!
At least he knows better than to try to pick it up.

Sitting in a tree. :)

Sitting in a tree. 🙂

Sitting on his new chair, reading with Daddy.

Sitting on his new chair, reading with Daddy.

"These kitchen drawers are an amazing mystery grab-bag of treasures!"

“These kitchen drawers are an amazing mystery grab-bag of treasures!”

Happy Spring!

Lewis and I are very excited that Spring has finally arrived! It is still chilly out and there is still snow on the ground, but it is not as chilly and there is less snow. This is progress!

We have been spending as much time outside as possible in the past week or two. The sidewalks are finally consistently clear enough for daily walks, and daylight savings time coupled with warmer temperatures means that we once again have time in the day to both go for a walk AND go out to play. Hurray!

I can tell Lewis is enjoying his outside time because frequently throughout the day, including early morning and in the evening, he will go to the door and request that we go outside. Putting on boots and coats and mittens is still a bit of a production, so we can’t just go out at a moments notice like he would like, but we’ve been getting lots of nice time outside.

I had a walk planned for this morning and Lewis apparently had similar plans, so we got ready and headed out with the stroller around 10:00. Lewis has been loving seeing and hearing all the birds on our walks. Today’s highlight was a red-winged black bird trilling in a tree, which we stopped and watched for a while and tried to trill too. We continued on our walk and when we turned around and came back by that spot the bird was still there so we stopped and watched him some more. Lewis proclaimed him a Dada bird.

He also loves watching robins hopping around on the ground. We watched on for a while today and when we said goodbye to it to continue on our walk Lewis started signing “More. More.”  More robins. More birds. We heard plenty more in the trees but didn’t spot many others besides those.

We walked for 45 minutes today and sometimes I worry that Lewis gets bored in the stroller when we go on long walks. No such worries today! We got home and had just taken off our shoes and coats when Lewis began trying to climb back into the stroller and pointing at the door. 🙂 It was very nice out (despite being cloudy) so after a quick diaper change we put our boots on and headed back out without the stroller.

Lewis absolutely loves puddle splashing. We’ve ordered some rain boots which haven’t arrived yet, but his snow boots are perfect for now anyway since they are nicely waterproof and keep his feet cozy and warm. (On a side note, what’s with stores already having summer clothes, swimsuits, etc.? Springy things and rain clothes and such seem to already be out of stock everywhere!)

After a good while playing in puddles, exploring, and watching more birds, we headed back in to get ready for lunch. After looking in the fridge for inspiration I spotted some leftover pasta sauce and a lonely english muffin. English muffin pizzas! I toasted a piece of bread to use as an extra pizza as well.

I’ve been trying to involve Lewis as much as I can with my cooking, sprinkling spices, helping mixing, adding things to pans, etc. I laid the bread and english muffins on a tray and set it down on the floor with the jar of sauce and the spoon, then invited Lewis to help me. His first spoonful of sauce landed on his knee and the floor, but once we got that wiped up he very carefully scooped the sauce onto the pizzas and did an excellent job spreading it around with no more mishaps. I did have to help a bit with spreading it to the edges, but I was quite impressed with this as his first try. I then cut some slices of cheese which he placed onto the pizzas for us.

He was all set to eat them, but I explained that they needed to go in the oven to get warm and melty.

He was all set to eat them, but I explained that they needed to go in the oven to get warm and melty.

Once they finished we sat down to lunch together.

Yum!

Yum!

Cooking together is so much fun, and I love that he is starting to enjoy helping me. I’ll have to keep this in mind and be on the lookout for more toddler-friendly cooking projects.

 

Photo Friday

Intro to chopping: plastic tools and soft melon. Most of the melon got "chopped" with his teeth. Yum!

Intro to chopping: plastic tools and soft melon. Most of the melon got “chopped” with his teeth. Yum!

Coloring in a box.

Coloring in a box.

Look at me, I'm so cute!

Look at me, I’m so cute!

Spring preview day - playing in puddles. Too bad we are back to snow and cold temperatures again now!

Spring preview day – playing in puddles. Too bad we are back to snow and cold temperatures again now!

One of my sisters sent us a box which included some socks. Lewis immediately requested to wear them!

One of my sisters sent us a box which included some socks. Lewis immediately requested to wear them!

Scarf curtain on a box.

Scarf curtain on a box.

Peek-a-boo baby. He loved that he could sit inside the box and see me and Daddy through the scarf.

Peek-a-boo baby. He loved that he could sit inside the box and see me and Daddy through the scarf.

Big, Small, And Poop

Lewis has been having a bit of a language explosion recently! He seems to be adding a new word every day or two. I had read about this happening with other toddlers once they reach a certain point, and it is so exciting to see it happening now. A lot of his words of course are still not super clear, and many are probably only translatable by Chris and I, but he also has several that are very clear and easy to understand. We tried to list them all out a couple days ago and I think he has somewhere in the range of 35-40 words that he is now saying consistently.

Two of his most recent are color words. “Tan” which he says very clearly and adorably, and has now become obsessed with pointing out tan things wherever he goes. The other is “Brown” which is said as “Browm” which I love. He also has been pointing out brown things, though not as much as the tan. Another recent one is “uh-oh.” I have been waiting for this one since I know this is an early word for a lot of little ones. At first he was just saying it because he liked the sound, but he is using it accurately now. My favorite is when he purposefully knocks down a tower or knocks things off a shelf proclaiming “uh-oh!” Maybe that will wear a little thin after a while, but for now it is just cute.

Chris took a video of him about a week ago when he had first started saying tan and uh-oh:

A couple of his other “words” that he has been saying for a while now are his versions of “big” and “small.” Neither sounds anything like the word, but he has been very consistent in using them and pretty much always gets it right when telling us if something is big or small. The exception is usually only if there are two things the same size, because he still wants one big and one small, so he will often go back and forth between calling them the two. I took a video of him showing me big and small today. In Lewis language big is “Tha(t), tha(t)” said in a deep/gruff sort of voice. Small/tiny is “Tee tee, tie, tee, tie tie, tee” (or variations of similar sounds) said in a small high pitched voice like you might use to say something is “teeny teeny tiny.”

Unfortunately, not all of his words are as fun and cute. Another recent favorite has been “poop” which he says as “boof” or something similar. Since this word isn’t completely clear, I don’t always catch on immediately to what he is saying. However, he is happy to clear things up by crouching and straining and basically showing me that he is pooping, giving me a big grin once I decode his pantomime. He is recently obsessed with telling us that there is poop outside, and that it is poop from cats and other animals. He then holds out his hand, to indicate he would like to hold the poop. When told that this is yucky he mimes stomping on it, and when we explain that we don’t want get it all over our shoes he gets down and looks closely at the floor, to show that he can look at the poop but not touch it. He is certainly creative and finds ways to communicate his thoughts, but … eww! I thought we would have another year or two before the potty talk and poop obsession would kick in! We have lots of squirrels around outside and have encountered squirrel poop a few times, which he thankfully has not attempted to pick up.

Besides the poop talk, this new interest in language is a lot of fun and I can’t wait to see what new words he picks up in the coming weeks!

Photo Friday

[Happy Friday! It has been a drippy snotty week here with a still-coldy Lewis, but thankfully he is on the mend. His sleep has been a bit off from normal, but not too bad. Mostly just nap times have been weird. I’m sure the time change this weekend will just add to the already odd sleep times. The worst part of the cold has been being trapped inside since I didn’t want to take him out in the cold and make his cough worse. We’ve managed to keep plenty busy though, and today we finally got out in the slightly-warmer temps for some time eating snow and rocks in the sunshine.]

My drippy snotty drooly sick baby, coloring and hanging out with the awesome robot we made.

My drippy snotty drooly sick baby, coloring and hanging out with the awesome robot we made.

He is always fascinated when I use my sewing machine. I heard him being very quiet one day and peeked in to see him under the desk carefully stepping up and down on the pedal.

He is always fascinated when I use my sewing machine. I heard him being very quiet one day and peeked in to see him under the desk carefully stepping up and down on the pedal.

Worn out sick baby, finally napping.

Worn out sick baby, finally napping.

We love blanket forts!

We love blanket forts!

Helping me prepare the pizza. Yum - flour and a green pepper core!

Helping me prepare the pizza. Yum – flour and a green pepper core!

A boy and his carrot.

A boy and his carrot.

Under the umbrella fort roof.

Under the umbrella fort roof.