🐸My Etsy Sh🌎p🐸

Sunday, January 27, 2019

For Christmas this year, I asked my dad to make me a lighthouse dollhouse.  I had a picture in my head of a family of peg dolls vacationing in a lighthouse on summer holiday or maybe even living there. What he came up with was pretty amazing.
 I admit that I had wayyy too much fun decorating this dollhouse. I have listed my resources and how to instructions on My Big World Playscapes Facebook page.
 I think the bunk room is was the easiest to put together.  I had a clear picture of everything that I wanted that room to be.  Bright, maps, full of toys and books.  The light was a challenge but came together beautifully.  The tiny fishbowl is my favorite thing in the room.

When 8 year old Greta saw the bunk room, she said, Maybe the lighthouse should be an orphanage for peg dolls who haven't found homes yet.
 The attic or top floor is the part that I wanted to be cluttered with books and things to cause wonder. The telescope and starry ceiling.  The fireplace and big comfy chair.  The books and globe. Starry ceiling, whale wallpaper (fitting for a lighthouse, right?), and nautical map floor.  All sort of magical and sparks the imagination.

 The master bedroom had to be a dreamy retreat for Mom & Dad.  I love seahorses, so when I found this seahorse foil scrapbook paper at Michaels, I just KNEW that it had to be in this room.  I couldn't find a bed that I wanted.  Dollhouse furniture is expensive and limited.  So...I made my own.  The side tables are blocks of wood painted white and distressed.  The pair of lanterns and coral are from the jewelry making section at Hobby Lobby.  (I spent a lot of time in Hobby Lobby scoping out all sorts details!)
 I have had a love affair with lighthouses for my whole life.  I have dreamed of living in a lighthouse for years.  This dollhouse kind of lets me live out that fantasy.  I thought a kitchen in a lighthouse should be cottage-ish, cozy, open-shelving, sort of English cottage.  I think it's my favorite room.  I picture the family gathering together, cooking meals.
 The lighthouse wouldn't be a lighthouse if it didn't light up!  Dad make sure everything works!

So the award for most elaborate staging of a peg doll family goes to...ME! :)  It is better than I imagined.  I think this peg doll family will be very happy here,
Me & Dad with my lighthouse dollhouse at Christmas.

Have a fun & playful day,

Monday, July 23, 2018

I have been that mom...

I have been that mom, taking a pregnancy test and being flooded with all the emotions ever invented (& some that haven’t).

I have been that mom being told that I am having a C-section and my recovery was horrible. I almost died due to hemorrhaging afterwards.

I have been that mom pacing the floors every hour of the night, singing every appropriate song that I can think of to put my baby back to sleep.

I have been that mom that physically felt My toddler’s pain as she tumbled trying to learn to walk.

I have been that mom of a toddler and taking another pregnancy test and thinking how am I going to do this?

I have been that mom still recovering from a second C-section, sitting in the hospital with my 5 week old baby who had a heart murmur with a toddler running around the hospital room because I didn’t have a sitter for her.

I have been that mom that lived with the unkindness of a husband for too long and showed my daughters that no one should be treated that way and left.

I have been that single mom, living in a one bedroom apartment, sleeping on the couch, living in peanut butter sandwiches, knowing that this was better than what I left.

I have been that single mom, dating and finding not only the right man for me but for my daughters.

I have been that mom, juggling work, Kids, and baseball or basketball or other extracurricular activities at my kids school.

I have been that Mom who volunteered on her lunch break, baked goods for the classroom party, and made customs for their spirit week.

I have been that mom that saw how mean girls can be to other girls, cried with them over their first (and second and...) broken hearts.

I have been that Mom who has to trust that extended curfew because of a prom will be okay.

I have been that Mom whose heart plummeted when I got the call, “Mom, I have been in a car accident, but I am okay.”

I have been that Mom who helps set up the college dorm room and had to drive home with the passenger seat empty.

I have been that mom watching her daughters college graduation, helping with practice job interview questions, make a life plan.

I have been that mom - tired and emotionally drained and stressed about money. I have been that Mom who has know unparalleled joy and happiness and pride from watching her daughters grow up into strong independent women. Each stage of their lives have been horrible and wonderful. Each stage has been stressful and amazing.  This crazy thing called motherhood is a roller coaster.  Just know that someone else has been where you are. You will survive it and I hope that you enjoy those beautiful moments along the way.

Have a fun and playful day

Monday, May 28, 2018

Official Kickoff to Summer

 Memorial Day Weekend is the official kickoff to Summer!  The National Parks Service is celebrating their 100th anniversary this year.  Let's go on a roadtrip!
 I love these vintage postcards that they put out to celebrate our National Parks.  It makes me want to travel to ALL of them.
 I have been to several National Parks.  Every year, my dad and mom would cram 3 kids, 2 adults, and one cooler into a Ford Topaz (small car!) and take a road trip.  Mostly, we went to Florida every summer, but there were other road trips to parks. I remember being a Melanie sandwich with my little brother on one side and my little sister on the other.  Oh, good times!
 When I became a mom and we took road trips, I became super organized.  Each child had a busy bag just for them full of things that they liked and would keep them interested.  I like to include maps, paper and pencil (crayons melt in hot cars! #lessonlearned), small toys, books, and some sweets.  That is my secret to keeping everyone happy in a car for 6+ hours.
Where are you going this summer?

Have a fun and playful day!

Sunday, April 8, 2018


 Last week in Ohio, we had a day where it was 70 degrees and the next day, it snowed!  Hopefully (all fingers and toes crossed), Spring is right around the corner.  There are sooo many learning opportunities in the Spring - plant life cycle, gardening, farm, baby animals being born.
 Just get outside and let the kiddos explore.
Have a fun and playful day!

Looks like a sensory table to me

Some people look at these and see side tables, but the preschool teacher in me sees sensory tables!  I know that I have a different way of looking at things, but can't you see this as a backyard sensory table for the littles?

Have a fun and playful day!

Color me learning

 Paint swatches are great for scissor practice.  They are colorful and FREE!
 The next time you are at the hardware store, pick up a handful and let the kiddos go wild with them.
They can also use paper punches to make shapes.  We plan to use these butterflies in a future spring art project.

Have a fun and playful day!

Scissor Practice - cutting herbs

 Cutting paper is fun.  Cutting fresh herbs is fun and stimulates the brain for learning.
  "Our sense of smell is the only sense that sends information directly to the brain...Researchers found that certain odors increase the ability to learn, create, and think" Pam Schiller, Start Smart 1999
 In this invitation to play, I added scissors, fresh herbs, and paint swatches.  Kiddos can cut the herbs, release the aroma, and color match the herbs to the paint swatches.
See previous posts for ideas on how we used the cut herbs to make soups and play dough.

Have a fun and playful day!