Tag Archives: music lover

“Girls ‘Tainer Song”

Miss G is currently in love with this song she affectionately refers to as “Girls ‘Tainer (container) Song”.  She loves it so much in fact, that nobody is allowed to sing along.  If I absent mindedly find myself quietly humming along with the tune, I’m promptly reminded “No Mama sing. Just girls sing.”  Well okay then…

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Homemade Rain Sticks

Homemade Rain SticksAfter stumbling upon this post from The Imagination Tree a little while ago, I knew we had to try making rain sticks of our own.  We had a few really heavy duty cardboard tubes already on hand (two from rolled art paper and one from our Stuck on You parcel – review to come soon!) and since we’ve recently been collecting and making instruments for Gracen’s collection, it was the perfect project.

IMG 9780To get started, we collected a bunch of things from around the house…  An assortment of pantry goods (beans, rice, and popcorn seeds to be exact), a hammer and some small nails, these duct tape sheets Grae picked out on our most recent States trip,  some fluorescent dot stickers for decorating, and the cardboard tubes of course.  (We also got out a Sharpie, a pair of scissors, and a small tin can out part way through the project.)

IMG 9788Here’s a better look at just how sturdy our tubes were.  Like mentioned on Imagination Tree, ordinary paper towel and toilet paper rolls are not thick enough and won’t work for this project. Basically, you want your tube to be sturdy enough to withstand nails being pounded into it, and sturdy enough to hold the nails in afterwards.

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Although this next part was a little too tricky for Grae to do on her own, she sure enjoyed helping. Using flat-headed nails that were almost as long as the diameter of the tube, we pounded them into the cardboard roll at random intervals. What worked best for us was hammering the nails in together using a hand-on-hand technique or having Grae hammer nails that I’d already put halfway through.

IMG 9789Here’s what the inside of our tube looked like once we’d finished with the hammering job.  Of course, the more nails you add, the slower the beans or seeds will move through the tube, meaning a longer ‘rainfall’.

IMG 9799IMG 9801Next, we traced the end of our tube onto the backside of a duct tape sheet together two times and cut the circles out.

IMG 9802IMG 9803Then, using a small tin can, we traced and cut out two larger circles too.

IMG 9804In order to seal off the end of the tube without having our seeds stick to the duct tape, we placed the smaller circle in the centre of larger circle (sticky sides together).

IMG 9806Then carefully placed and sealed the larger duct tape circle over one end of the tube.

IMG 9811Next, my little helper chose her filling (popcorn seeds) and added a few handfuls to the tube.  (She wanted the tube to stand on its own without falling over and was having no luck, so she quickly went and retrieved this mason jar from the kitchen… Of course, being her mama, I thought this was quite brilliant.)

IMG 9812With our seeds added, we created another double-layered duct tape circle and sealed off the second side.

IMG 9813At this point, you could really decorate the outside of the rain stick with anything, provided you ensure the nails are covered and cannot be removed by curious little fingers.  We decided to use our duct tape sheets since they secure the nails and look pretty all at once.  The bonus was that they were also the perfect width to fit the length our small tubes, so all we had to do was cut them in half to avoid wrapping around the tube more than once.

IMG 9814I positioned the tube onto the duct tape paper and Miss G gave it a good roll.

IMG 9815And there you have it – a fluorescent pink and leopard print duct tape rain stick!

IMG 9817Of course, nothing in this house is complete without being plastered with stickers, so on went a bunch of fluorescent dots.

IMG 9821Here’s our finished collection.

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Eva, Eva, Eva

This song has been on repeat in our house for days now… Miss G calls it “Eva, Eva, Eva” and happily bounces around for the duration of the song every time it’s played.

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The Alphabet Song, by Grae

I know that this doesn’t mean that she can recognize all of her letters, or that she knows what they mean, but I just can’t help myself… I’m having a proud mama moment over here.  My baby girl can sing the entire alphabet song (save a little ‘R’ / ‘S’ confusion) all by herself now.  Here’s what I got to listen to all day long today…

Lucky me!

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Musicfest’s Family Day in VanDusen Garden

Today Miss G and I made our way to VanDusen Botanical Garden for Musicfest Vancouver’s Family Day.  It was the perfect morning for it too – not hot, slightly gloomy, but no rain.  The morning involved bouncy castle fun, face painting, flower sniffing, games, arts and crafts, balloons, a picnic lunch, making new friends, and watching both Charlotte Diamond and The Kerplunks in concert.  Needless to say, Gracen pretty much loved every minute.

IMG 8555Sniff sniff.

IMG 8556Following the music.

IMG 8558Bouncy castle sliding.

IMG 8560Sitting still.
IMG 8562A little kitty.
IMG 8567Star decorating.
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Chatting with ‘Blue Bear’.
IMG 8570‘1, 2, 3, 4, 5 G’s!’
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Charlotte Diamond.
IMG 8580Dancing time.
IMG 8581Bubba and her balloon.
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Music-Themed Toddler Tray

After completing  bongo/shaker/güiro project this morning, Miss G and I quickly put together a drum (using a leftover Christmas tin and the same process as we did for our 3-in-1 instrument, minus the lentils/rice), and collected some of the instruments we had around the house to create this music-themed toddler tray. 

IMG 8178Besides the homemade instruments, her xylophone, jingle bells, train whistle, rhythm sticks, egg shakers, and a couple of spoons were included.

With a playlist of her favourite songs playing from the iPod dock in her bedroom, we had a little jam session and gave each of the instruments a shot.

IMG 8183IMG 8204While this wasn’t a sensory station she stayed engaged in for long periods of time, we left it out all day, music on, and she came back to it again and again, shaking or tapping her heart out for a couple of minutes at a time. 

It’ll definitely be something we leave out for the next little while too. I’m looking forward to more musical moments in the days to come… (Hopefully all of which are as passionate as the one in the last photo. ☺)

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Bongo, Shaker, Güiro All in One

Now, if you know me well, you know I’m not crazy about toys.  I’m not saying that I dislike all toys, but the more modern toys that you most often see lining the shelves of big name toy stores? They’re not my favourite. The flashing, blinking, noise making, spinning, beeping, moving, battery operated plastic contraptions of today just seem like such an assault on the senses to me.  That, and I guess I just don’t feel like they inspire creative, open-ended imaginative play.   

Toys I do love are the more classic ones…  The things we grew up with as kids and the things I love filling the shelves of my Kindergarten classes with…  Building blocks, felt puppets, wooden puzzles, dress-up clothes, and art supplies.  Besides those, I don’t think a child can ever have a library of books too vast or a collection of instruments too large. 

On the topic of musical instruments, I’ve bumped into this gorgeous blog several times before, but only had time to properly sift through the posts late last night {from midnight to one a.m. while I should have been sleeping, of course}.  The author has beautifully presented ideas that are simple, eco-friendly, and often music-based.  Before calling it a night, I pinned several of her ideas on my Toddler Activities board, one of which was this idea for making a balloon bongo, rice shaker, and güiro all in one.

Already having everything on hand, Gracen and I whipped up a couple this morning.

IMG 8150Here’s our collection of supplies… A couple of tin cans from the recycling bin, thick elastic bands, balloons, some wool, a pair of scissors, chopsticks, and a couple of little bowls filled with pantry goodies (Grae chose red lentils and sushi rice).

IMG 8155First of all, make sure your tins cans have been opened with can opener that leaves the edges smooth rather than sharp.  Then, put your lentils/rice/beans/couscous/pasta inside.

IMG 8156You can fill your cans as much as you like, but we filled ours about 1/6 of the way.

IMG 8158Next, snip the ends off of your balloons.

IMG 8159Then stretch the balloons over the tops of your cans. Be sure to make them tight.

IMG 8161Although the balloons stay on quite nicely on their own, secure them with a thick elastic just to be sure. No one wants a lentil explosion all over their floor.

IMG 8162If desired, cover the elastics with some wool, baker’s twine, jute, or embroidery floss.

IMG 8168Now make some music!  You can shake them…

IMG 8170Pat them…

IMG 8174Or tap them. The chop sticks can also be used to rub along the ridged sides of the can, producing a ratchet-like sound.

Happy music making!

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Mini Karminite

Miss G has been a Karmin fan for a long while now and I don’t blame her – they’re pretty awesome. Though her original favourite was Brokenhearted, these two songs have been on repeat so much during the last month that I’ve had to start putting limits on how often we can listen to them.  Inevitably, after the ration is up, I hear “Mor Boom Boom Baby, pleasch, Mama?” or “Mor Money Money Money, pleasch, Mama?”  in the sweetest little voice possible. Tough to resist, I tell ya.

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Peel Banana

Miss G’s very favourite song with actions.

I apologize for you having to endure a full 45 seconds of my singing, but I assure you, the cuteness of the actions and dancing is worth it. ☺

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I know that beds are meant for sleeping, but sometimes you just have to break the rules and have a good jump. ☺

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