The Life of Jennifer Dawn

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Sensory Activities for Kids and Weekly Link Party

It's link party time and this week's features are sensory activities that are perfect to try with your kids this summer. I know I'm all over the place with my features from week to week. One week might be recipes or DIY projects and the next week is something fun for the kids. This week's features happen to hold a huge personal interest for me, though. You youngest son has been diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder along with developmental delays in multiple areas. It's for that very reason that I'm always on the hunt for excellent sensory activities--not just for him but for all three of my kids!

My little guy has certainly presented us with some challenges through the years, but the blessings far outweigh any of the obstacles that we have faced or will continue to surmount. Perhaps I'll sit down one day and tell you all about it. For now, I'm sharing a fun sensory topic--sensory play! You can't go wrong with implementing sensory play into your child's routine! Below you'll find a list of simple sensory play ideas to try with your child. Not only are they fun, but they promote development and learning.

Although not all kids have Sensory Processing Disorder, ALL kids do have sensory needs. Let that sink in for a minute... They all have the need to explore textures, sounds, sights, and more! And kids learn best through play. Sensory exploration and play help with many facets of a child's development. Whether your own child has sensory processing issues or not, the activities shared below can help support the development of their sensory systems. And they are all activities that can easily be implemented in their playtime routines this summer!
1. Mini Aquarium in a Bottle / A Little Pinch of Perfect
Sensory bottles are a no-mess activity and can appeal to a variety of senses. And this mini aquarium is such a fun and creative idea for a sensory bottle!

2. Sandbox with Lid / The Country Chic Cottage
Summertime is the perfect time for loads of outdoor play. Here's a fun way to get the kids outside playing. Not only is it an excellent tactile activity, but it's also budget-friendly!

3. Interactive Rainforest Box / The Life of Jennifer Dawn
Here's an activity your kids will come back to time and time again. It's as fun to play with as it is to create!

4. Frozen Fractals Art Activity / A Little Pinch of Perfect
Here's a sensory and art activity all rolled into one. And the ice makes it an ideal outdoor activity for a hot summer day!

5. Ice Cub Tray Crayons / The Chaos and the Clutter
Colors, sorting, fine motor skills, creativity...this activity covers a variety of areas. Coloring is a great visual activity, but making your own crayons takes it to a whole new level. These chunky crayons are perfect for little hands that are still working on their fine motor skills.

Oh, and don't forget about sensory dough! You might also enjoy...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Recipes for a Summer Potluck & Weekly Link Party

Summer is the perfect time to gather family and friends together for an outdoor potluck. Whether you are hosting or attending, these delicious recipes have you covered. From grilled chicken to salads and even desserts, you're sure to find a recipe that will wow your crowd! Get ready to fire up the grill, mix-up a salad, and sample a delicious dessert at your gathering this summer.

Oh, and happy first day of summer! I hope the season is filled with tasty dishes, sweet treats, and even sweeter memories.
1. Maple Dijon Grilled Chicken / Simply Stacie
No backyard barbecue would be complete without something cooked on the grill. Here's a tasty way to prepare grilled chicken.

2. Watermelon Feta Salad / Simply Stacie
Who else loves watermelon during the hot months of summer! This salad has the watermelon chopped right in, and it looks so good!

3. Potato Salad / Strength & Sunshine
Here's a classic potluck staple! And this version is gluten-free and vegan. That makes it a winning recipe for a gathering of guests with diverse dietary needs.

4. Vegan Chickpea Salad / All That's Jas
This quick and easy salad recipe is a healthy choice for a summer meal. It has it all--color, texture, and flavor!

5. Chocolate Raspberry S'mores / Simply Stacie
The classic summer treat takes on a new twist with the addition of raspberry jam. What a delicious recipe idea!

6. One-Minute Garden Fresh Salsa / Little House Living
During the months of summer, I'm always looking for recipes that can be made from the vegetables I have growing in the garden. This one first the bill! It's a fresh and easy recipe for summer snacking.

7. Strawberries and Cream Sugar Cookies / Lolly Jane
Fresh strawberries and sugar cookies come together to form this scrumptious treat. I can't imagine them lasting long at a summer cook out.

8. Chocolate Chip Pancake Ice Cream / The Simple Sweet Life
What's a summer gathering without some ice cream? And this no-churn version looks amazing!

You might also enjoy...

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Frozen Treats for Summertime and Weekly Link Party

Our summers get hot here in the south. Is that true for where you live? Keep cool all summer long with these fabulous frozen desserts! From ice cream and sorbet to popsicles and bite-sized treats, you're sure to find a recipe you and your family will love.

Summers are for slowing down to enjoy the simple pleasures in life. These treats are the perfect way to gather family and friends together to do just that. Which scrumptious treat are you wanting to try? Hey, why not just try them all?!
1. Frozen Peanut Butter Pie / Simply Stacie
Chocolate and peanut butter are always a winning combination! Enjoy this classic flavor combo in pie form with this oh so good recipe.

2. Strawberry Basil Frozen Yogurt Pops / Somewhat Simple
Theses pops look delicious! And the basil gives them a fun flavor surprise!

3. Sundae Party / Gluesticks
Gather family, friends, and neighbors together for a Summertime Sundae Party. It's sure to be a sweet time that everyone will enjoy!

4. Coconut Lime Ice Cream Bars / All That's Jas
Two summer flavors--coconut and lime--come together to make these delicious, tropical treats!

You might also enjoy...

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Makeover Ideas for Every Room of Your Home & Weekly Link Party

I've stepped away from a bathroom remodel to put together this week's link party. I think being up to my elbows in paint and dust has me dreaming of beautiful finished spaces. I'll certainly be thrilled when the kids' bathroom remodel is complete. Hopefully it will look as lovely as these stunning spaces. Fingers crossed!

Are you wanting to give an area of your home a makeover? I'm sure these posts will give you as much inspiration as they've given me. From adding simple accessories to full renovations, here are several home makeover ideas that are sure to impress. There's something for each and every room of your home!

Although each of these ideas are unique, there is a common thread that runs through them. Each of the bloggers featured below combined the accessories, furniture, and spaces they already had with a little ingenuity and a ton of creativity to achieve beautiful results. Inspired yet? Don't worry! You will be! Just keep scrolling. Oh, and be sure to link up your own family-friendly crafts, DIY projects, recipes, and posts below.

I'm heading back to finish my own bathroom remodel. I'll be sure to share it when I'm done. Until then, enjoy this lovely inspiration!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Lavender Sugar Scrub

For a sweet smelling scrub that will leave your hands feeling soft and smooth, try this recipe that you can mix up at home. This Lavender Sugar Scrub makes a great gift, too!
I have been working out in the garden a lot lately. All of the digging and planting has not been kind to my hands. I looked down at them the other day when I was spreading some landscaping rocks and noticed how bad they were. I know! I know! I should be wearing gloves. I get busy tending to the garden and chickens and just forget to put them on.

Homemade scrubs are a great way to soothe and heal hard-working hands. Maybe you don't garden, but as a busy mom, I bet there are other things you're doing that take a toll on your skin. This scrub is an excellent way to help your hands and pamper yourself a bit. It's so relaxing to use, and you won't believe how soft and smooth your skin feels after using it.
Sugar scrubs can be made with any scent you prefer, but we're BIG fans of lavender here. Lavender is great for skin care, circulation, and relaxation--just to name a few of the health benefits. And the kids and I love the calming scent.

Ready to mix up a batch of lavender sugar scrub? Go ahead! Keep reading! You deserve a little pampering!