The month of April was, sadly, our last month to participate in our Billings playgroup. The first April gathering we had was an Easter-themed playdate at our home. By the time everyone arrived and got settled, the kids were hungry for snack, so we started in the kitchen. We were happy to include a couple of the older siblings that day, since it was a non-school day, so we had a good crew of kids. (Be sure to notice two of the littlest playgroup members in the high chair and booster at the end of the table.)
For our Easter snack, I had put a variety of finger foods into different colored eggs. The kids first had to collect one of each color egg from a bowl. The hardest part was waiting to open the eggs until all the kids had a full plate of eggs! Some of the kids tried to shake the eggs and guess what was inside.
Each color of egg contained the same type of food (that way, I could be sure that each child received all parts of the snack).
As the kids opened the eggs, they found strawberries, carrots, craisins, pretzels, grapes...
...and these fun Easter flowers. I LOVED how these turned out, and they were super easy to make. Place white chocolate melts atop a pretzel (the square pretzels worked best), melt in the oven, and then stick on the M&Ms. These tasty treats went fast!
Jenna planned egg races for our activity. The kids used paper plates as fans to move plastic eggs across the floor.
As you can tell by the pictures, the older kids (above) could keep control of their eggs a little more easily. For the younger ones, the eggs went everywhere. It was hilarious! Both groups seemed to enjoy the effort.
Samie brought the craft for the morning. The kids assembled their own chicks & eggs using a variety of foam decorations.
Cody and Jaden requested my help during this activity, as the sticker backs were a little difficult for them to remove on their own.
We loved seeing all the unique designs that the children came up with!
Isn't our little chick family precious? :)
Our last April playdate was a Earth Day/spring/planting theme. Because the weather was starting to get much more pleasant, we planned the gathering at a park. Most of the playdate, then, was just free-play on the playground, but we did have a couple of planned activities. Ruth made the snack SO fun for the kids! She started out by talking about planting and asking the kids what items they need to plant flowers. Then, she brought out the "dirt" (chocolate cake crumbles) and added "fertilizer" (crushed oatmeal, nuts, and I believe a couple other healthy items). Some of the kids weren't quite sure if these items were going to be edible or not! She scooped up a serving for each child into a cup, and then added "water" (actually a small bit of milk).
Some of the kids looked a bit tentative about their cup of dirt. But when Ruth brought out the "seeds" (jellybeans) they were supposed to plant, the kids looked much more comfortable! I'm not sure any of the seeds actually got planted into the dirt before they were devoured. :)
The real treat was when Ruth brought out the worms!
It was a little hard for me to get great pics of this, as my little boys needed Mommy by their side much of this morning. Unfortunately, a park employee had picked this particular day to mow all of the grass at this park. The large, loud mower was a little intimidating for Jaden and especially for Cody (for as much as they love vehicles, they do NOT love being close to loud ones!). Poor Cody's expression in this pic showcases his mood for much of the playdate, unfortunately!
After snacktime, the kids happily played on the equipment and in the park's large sandbox (as long as the mower was far away, at least!). Unbeknownst to me, the other ladies were secretly having the kids work on a craft at the same time....
Before we left the park, my friends presented me with this beautiful canvas picture. Each flower contained the name and fingerprint of every child in our playgroup. What a beautiful going-away gift for our family!
Finally, we gathered all the kids together for a final group photo. We were excited that we could actually see everyone's face... and no one was wailing!
|Jaden, Hannah, Wes, Cody, Kenzie, Micah, Abby, Ryder, Evelyn|
This playgroup was such a wonderful blessing, both to my boys and to me, during our time in Billings. Thank you to Samie, Ruth, and Jenna for all of your creative ideas and for making this group a priority each month. You are all wonderful mommies and dear friends.
Love you and miss you!
Love you and miss you!