I think he needs a name. Kitty wants to call him Sun Sun, but I vetoed that option. I need something better than whatever a three year old can come up with off the top of her head. So, I think we’ll have a “name the mascot” contest. Details will be coming soon, so get your thinking caps on!
My kids love video games, as does Super Dad. I have to admit though, that the games my kids play are not games made for kids, and we’re pretty liberal about what we allow. We have frank discussions about reality vs. the video game world and why behavior that is appropriate in an MMO is not necessarily appropriate in real life. We feel confident in the way we’ve raised Nate to be confident, to understand right from wrong and to look for non-violent solutions to his problems. We don’t feel like letting him play more mature games is going to suddenly change character traits we’ve been helping him cultivate since birth. (I feel that I should clarify that we screen all games he plays before he plays and that there are many titles that – even with his whining and begging – he is not allowed to play. So no GTA or Left 4 Dead for Nathan….
There are also many age appropriate games Nate loves. Scribblenauts, Drawn to Life, and anything with Mario are big hits. So when I was tasked with buying a video game for my nephew’s upcoming tenth birthday I thought I’d have it under control. It’s turning out to be harder than I thought.
So, dear readers here’s where you come in…what are your favorite video games for kids? Nephew has a DS and a Wii, would need something that’s no too reading/writing intensive (hence Scribblenauts being out of the running) and is relatively simple to play. Suggestions?
In November of last year a couple of my girlfriends and I took a class at Otion Soap Bar in Bellingham, WA. We had a very fun time learning how to make a variety of holiday gifts including salt scrubs and scented melt and pour soaps with cool effects. Without a doubt our favorite project of the night was making bath bombs. Trendy body care boutiques charged up to $6 for one bath bomb, and here we were learning that it takes about 50 cents worth of materials, about 5 minutes and some practice to make your own bath bomb!
It’s so easy, you can do it with the kids! And it’s a great lesson in chemistry! Acid + Base + Bathtime = Science Fun!
The hardest part of the whole process is procuring the citric acid. You can order it online at BrambleBerry – Otion’s mail order company, find it in the bulk section of some groceries stores, or at soap making supply stores. Here’s the recipe:
- One Part Citric Acid
- Two Parts Baking Soda
- A few drops of essential oil or fragarence oil of your choice
- Witch Hazel in a spray bottle
- Food Coloring or Powdered Colors from a soap making supply store
- Molds (you can buy bath bomb molds, use soap making molds that don’t have a lot of detail, I’ve had really good luck using a metal 1/2 cup measuring cup)
- Measure your baking soda into a bowl. Add your oil and color and stir with a whisk until it’s blended.
- Add the baking soda mix into the citric acid and mix very well with your hands until it’s completely blended and lump free.
- Spray 6 spritzes of witch hazel over the mixture and blend. You want it to be moist enough to hold together when it’s squeezed, but not too wet. It should look like this:
- If it’s still too dry spray it with more witch hazel, 3 or 4 spritzes at a time.
- Pack it into the mold. Put a little in, mash it in super well and then add some more. Keep packing until the mold is full.
- Let the mixture dry in the mold for a few minutes and then pop it out.
- Let it cure at room tempature for a few hours and then store it in a moisture proof container!
We made champagne scented bath bombs and I tried using a new 3D mold from Bramble Berry. As you can see it didn’t work out too well! Nate got frustrated with getting the halves to stick together so we gave up and made “domes”.
Anne-Marie, who owns BrambleBerry and Otion has some great tips and recipes on her site The Soap Queen!