Monthly Archives

July 2017

shark week playdate - free banner printable, chumming for sharks yogurt recipe, shark bait recipe, link to popcorn bucket printable and tons of other shark week ideas

Shark Week Playdate and Free Printables

We had our friends over for a playdate during shark week, so I of course used it as an excuse to have a fun, shark themed get together. I love little events like this because it allows me to be crafty and creative without all the work and stress of a full-blown party. I didn’t start making stuff or preparing until Monday (our friends came over on Wednesday) so this is totally do-able for busy or last-minute moms. 🙂

DECORATIONS

I started out like I always do, searching Pinterest for ideas and free printables. I found some really cute stuff to use as well as some fun ideas. I didn’t see anything I could use for a banner though, so I made one myself. I think it turned out really cute and I always feel like a banner makes the table look complete. You can download the free banner printable by clicking HERE. Just cut it out, punch holes in the corners and run string through it. Lately I have been using blue painters tape to hang up my banners then covering the tape up with cute washi.

shark week letterboard idea

I also used my letterboard for the occasion. It was a bit of a challenge creating the shark fin, but I love how it turned out.

SNACKS

Chumming for Sharks Yogurt

chumming for sharks yogurt - perfect healthy snack or breakfast for shark week or a shark birthday

I wanted to have a few snacks with at least one healthy option, but most of the ideas on Pinterest were not very healthy. Usually I am all about desserts, but we have been making an effort to eat healthier lately so I came up with my own snack idea by combining a few ideas from Pinterest. We ended up making chumming for sharks yogurt. The kids helped me make these, which was a lot of fun. To make these you will need the following:

  • Granola (optional)
  • Greek Yogurt (we used vanilla)
  • Blue food coloring (you only need a few drops)
  • Frozen Strawberries in Sugar (we bought this from the frozen section of the grocery store)
  • Plastic Cups
  • Mini spoons
  • Grey construction paper (to make shark fins)
  • Glue gun

We added a little bit of granola to the bottom of the cups, put a few drops of blue food coloring into the yogurt, scooped the yogurt into the cup, then topped it with the chum (the frozen strawberries). I explained to the boys that chum is what they dump in the water to attract sharks and then what do you know, a few sharks showed up and jumped right into our bowls. 😉 The kids loved it! I free hand cut out shark fins out of grey construction paper and glued them onto mini spoons. I also used a few sharks left over from the adorable popcorn buckets I made using a printable from My Printly.

Shark Bait

shark bait popcorn snack is easy, delicious, and perfect for shark week or a shark party

Of course, I had to do one sweet treat, so I made shark bait. It was so delicious and all the little sharks ate it up super fast! I spent Tuesday night driving from store to store searching for shark gummies. I feel like I always see them until the time I need them, then they vanished. I found gummy bears, worms, snakes, octopus, frogs, dinosaurs, alligators and lions! Literally every gummy animal ever made except sharks! Then I thought, why would sharks want to eat sharks, and decided that putting them in my shark bait didn’t make sense anyways. That is when I came up with the goldfish idea. Sharks love eating fish, especially delicious sweet ones. They have so many fun flavors now too that you could use, but I must say, the s’mores goldfish were perfect in this recipe. To make the shark bait you will need the following:

  • Sea Salt Air Popped Popcorn
  • Ghiradelli White Chocolate Chips
  • Blue M&Ms
  • S’mores Goldfish Crackers

I put wax paper on a cookie sheet, spread out my popcorn, sprinkled in goldfish and m&ms, then drizzled the melted white chocolate over it. I put it in the fridge until it cooled then broke it apart and put it in the cutest popcorn buckets from My Printly. These were so perfect for our playdate and I have been refilling the containers with shark bait all week so the boys can munch on it while watching Shark Week.

Ocean Water

ocean water - blue gatorade with a swedish fish makes an easy and fun drink for shark week or a shark party

For drinks, I kept it simple with blue Gatorade and a swedish fish on each straw.

ACTIVITIES

Shark Sensory Bin

shark sensory bin

I set up a shark sensory bin. What I love most about sensory bins is that they don’t always have to be fancy. I didn’t have time to buy anything (and to be honest didn’t really want to spend a bunch of money) so I just used what we already had. A bag of glass circle vase fillers, water and plastic sharks. That’s it! And you know what, the kids loved it and played with it for quite a while. Sometimes, I think we as moms get caught up in making everything Pinterest worthy, but kids don’t need much to have fun. They were getting so creative and having the best time! When you give kids water activities, you usually can’t go wrong.

Shark Slime

shark slime - perfect activity for shark week

We also made shark slime. For our first attempt, the day before the playdate, we tried to use a non-borax recipe, but the slime was so sticky. I watched a bunch of you tube videos and started adding everything they recommended for sticky slime, but nothing helped. So my hubby bought borax and like magic our sticky bowl of blue goop turned into slime. When our friends came over, we made a second batch using the borax recipe and it worked great. The kids loved playing with their sharks in the slime! I used this recipe to make the slime.

Shark Play Doh Mats

shark week playdoh mats free printables

I also had a little play doh station with our shark week playdoh mats, some playdoh and some cutters. My boys had already done this activity earlier in the week and the kids were all having so much fun with the other activities that we didn’t get to this. You can check the play doh mats out here.

Shark Cutting and Tracing Activity

free printable - shark cutting and tracing practice

I also made a fun little printable for Hudson. I printed one out and had it laminated so it could be used as a tracing exercise. Both boys had fun with that. Then I printed one out on regular paper so Hudson could also use it for cutting. Hudson loves cutting so this was perfect for him. You can get the printable HERE. *Graphics were purchased from Prettygrafik Design.

CRAFTS

I had a few crafts to do that I found on Pinterest, but we didn’t get to those either. Good thing shark week lasts an entire week so we can fit in all the fun we planned.

Clothespin Sharks

clothespin shark craft for shark week

I let each of the kids select one craft from Pinterest. Hudson chose clothespin sharks from Kix. This wasn’t an ideal craft for my kids’ ages so I pretty much ended up making these, but the kids did love playing with them.

Toilet Paper Roll Sharks and Paper Towel Roll Hammerhead Sharks

Luc chose to make paper toilet roll sharks. The one he selected was a regular shark, but his favorite shark is the hammerhead so I got really excited when I found a paper towel roll hammerhead shark on Pinterest. We are planning to make both, but so far have only completed phase one. I will update this once we finish the project.

Shark Hats

shark hats perfect for shark week

I was also planning to make shark hats, but the hats we selected required an obscure paper size in numerous colors that was not readily available (please tell me I am not the only one who spends tons of time driving from store to store looking for seemingly basic craft supplies that are actually impossible to find). Luckily, one of my friends, Danielle, from Mama Life Inspiration, who is an awesome blogger, posted an adorable shark hat idea. So we ended up making those instead and the boys had tons of fun finger painting their shark fins and tails. Of course they also loved running around in their shark hats. For more details on the hats and for the link to the shark fin hat template click here. Danielle also has a bunch of other fun shark week ideas on her blog so be sure to take a look.

As you can see, we squeezed a whole lot of Shark Fun into one week. My boys just love sharks so much that I couldn’t help myself and went a little overboard. You could easily pick just a few of these ideas to make your shark week a bit more fun.

I hope you have a fin-tastic Shark Week!!

shark week playdoh mats free printables

Shark Week Playdoh Mats – Free Printables

My boys are obsessed with sharks so Shark Week is kind of a big deal in our house. The boys had so much fun playing with the Playdoh Mats I made. They loved cutting out shark teeth, placing them on the shark and then pretending that the shark was eating fish. They also had fun creating underwater scenes with seaweed, fish and shrimp. Luc had a harder time with this one, but both mats kept the kids entertained for quite a while and since I laminated the printables, I know they will provide lots more fun in the future.

shark week playdoh mats free printables

Here are some of the things I gave the kids to play with (there are so many possibilities, you can easily just use what you have on hand):

Mini Cookie Cutters (we used the triangle for the shark teeth and one that looked like a fish)

Playdoh Set (Any playdoh set with a few basic tools such as a rolling pin, knife, shape cutters and shape molds will work)

To download the ocean play doh mat Click Here.

To download the shark play doh mat Click Here.

I hope you enjoy these mats as much as we do!

*Graphics for these printables were purchased from Prettygrafik Design. These free printables from thecreativecopycat.com are for personal use only, you may not sell, share or link directly to these files.

shark week playdoh mats free printables
Disney cruise - pre-cruise diys - magnets, countdown, scrapbook itinerary and more

Pre-Cruise Fun

If you follow me on instagram you know that we went on a last-minute Disney Cruise to Northern Europe. Since we’ve been back we’ve gone to San Diego, Mammoth and Lake Mead so life has been really busy, but oh so fun (so no complaints from me), but I haven’t had any time to catch up on laundry, let alone blog, so I apologize for the absence. Life seems to be calming down a little, so I am going to do my best to get some blogging done. If you have any specific questions regarding a Disney Cruise, a Baltic Sea Cruise, traveling with little kids, etc. please message me and I will try to answer them in one of my upcoming posts.:)

With only a few weeks to plan for our trip, in addition to all the regular end of school year activities, we didn’t have much time for pre-cruise fun, but I had to include a few things. We do chain link countdowns for everything and we couldn’t let this special trip go by without counting down to it. We used Disney themed colors and made Mickey ears on the black chains and Mickey pants on the red ones. (Thanks for the inspiration Mamas Like Me) This is such an easy activity, helps the kids with numbers and is a great visual way for them to see how long until the event occurs! To add to the fun, I asked each member of the family what they were most looking forward to and printed them up on Mickey ears. I plan to use these on a scrapbook page.

Disney Cruise Countdown and creative prompt - what we are most excited to do

I read repeatedly that magnets are a great thing to bring on cruises because the walls are magnetic. I didn’t want to bring plain magnets, so I made a few Disney magnets using Simple Stories Say Cheese scrapbooking paper, clear marble vase fillers, Ranger Glossy Accents, magnets and scissors. These are so quick and easy to make and worked perfect on our cruise to hold up our itinerary, daily activity newsletter and event tickets.

diy disney magnets to hang docs onto wall on disney cruise

I also quickly made this digital scrapbook page with our itinerary. I always like things that serve more than one purpose. I placed the two pages onto one 8.5×11 to print out and take with us. I hung it up in our room using my cute magnets. It was helpful to see what was coming up, how long we had in ports, what activities we had planned and to add notes when we did things different from what we had planned. Now that I am home, it won’t take much time to update these pages and order prints of them for my scrapbook.

Disney Cruise Itinerary scrapbook page - make this before to take with you as a helpful guide, then update it and add it to your scrapbook when you get home

We also requested a call from Mickey and Minnie, which can be done through the Disney Cruise website. The kids loved it!! It made them even more excited about the trip and really, who wouldn’t think it was cool to get a phone call from Mickey and Minnie?

Another must for the cruise were door magnets. I had read that people put fun magnets on their door and I immediately turned to Etsy to order some. We got them so fast and they worked great! I highly recommend CoCo Beans. It was so fun walking up and down the hallways admiring everyone’s doors and it also helped the boys find our door when they went running off down the hallway ahead of us. 😉

door magnets for disney cruise

If you are celebrating any special occasions while on board, you can use a form through the Disney Cruise website (I was told they are working to make an on-line form which will be much more convenient) to order a special cake ahead of time. I surprised my mom with this Mickey cake and a few other fun Disney goodies on her birthday. The cake was so cute and really delicious!! (One word of warning to anyone with food allergies, I was told this cake had nuts in it although no one was able to give me a straight answer on what type of nuts or confirm if nuts were actually an ingredient or if they just listed nuts because of cross-contamination concern. I didn’t taste any nuts in it, but to be safe we didn’t share any with the kids).

mickey cake on cruise ship is perfect for a birthday celebration