Friday, July 27, 2012

Los Pollitos (The Little Chicks)

Let's face it, there are really only so many times you can sing "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider" and "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" before mommy gets bored...  So today we're going to broaden your lullaby repertoire! This song is just so very cute; it's in Spanish, so it may be a little bit of a challenge at first, but I know you're up for it!!

This video has both the lyrics in Spanish and also the English translation too :)  Listen a few times and try singing along!


Los Pollitos

Los pollitos dicen "pío, pío, pío",
(The baby chicks say "peep, peep, peep")
cuando tienen hambre,
(when they are hungry)
cuando tienen frío.
(when they are cold)
La gallina busca
(The mother hen looks)
el maíz y el trigo,
(for wheat and corn,)
les da la comida,
(she gives them food,)
y les presta abrigo.
(and she gives them shelter)
Bajo sus dos alas
(Under her two wings)
(tucked in and snuggled tight)
hasta el otro día
(until the next day)
duermen los pollitos.
(they sleep all through the night.)

(These lyrics are slightly different from the version in the video, but this is the version that I like the best)

Try it out with your little one, you could even have your child make pictures or create your own hand motions to go with the song! 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

We're Going on a Bear Hunt!

Something y'all probably didn't know, July 10th is National Teddy Bear Picnic day!  A teddy bear picnic is exactly what it sounds like...a picnic with your teddy bears! We decided to do our own version of it, and actually go on a bear hunt. We read We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. 
To hunt for the bear, you have to travel through grass, a river, mud, forest, snowstorm, and then finally the CAVE!!! I thought it would be so fun for the children to actually find a "cave" that had a big bear in it.  I hid the cave in a darker hallway, and none of the kids seemed to notice it! That was my whole purpose, because I wanted it to be a surprise.  I made the cave out of a small side table and a large piece of black material that covered it.  I also happened to have some brown furry material that I used for the bottom of the cave, and I also taped large bear prints to the ground leading up to the cave.
Inside I hid a large "momma bear" and behind her, many little teddy bears that were generously hand-made and donated to United Way. The children actually got to keep them and take home.  They LOVED it! They were so excited to find them--its was like Christmas morning!

Next, our craft was making teddy bear puppets.  These are made with brown paper lunch sacks, coloring template for the bears' head and body,  which the kids then color, cut, and glue to the paper bag.
Here is what the teddy bears head looks like:
And this is what the body looks like:
The kids and parents thought this was such a fun activity.  It also inspired one of our moms to take her girls on a real teddy bear picnic after playgroup! This is just one of the many fun things you can do to alleviate some of the boredom that sometimes happens in the summertime. Trust me, kids would rather do something like this than watch their t.v. shows!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Pioneer Taffy

Pioneer Day is tomorrow!! Here is a tasty pioneer treat that you can make with your little ones!

Pioneer Taffy  
Yield: 12 pieces
Time: 40 min. cooking + 10 min. cooling + 10 minutes pulling
Recipe from The Lion House Cookbook

2 C sugar
1 1/2 C water
1 C white corn syrup
1 t salt
2 t glycerin (found at the pharmacy)
1 t vanilla
2 T butter

1. Place all ingredients but the vanilla and butter into a heavy sauce pan. You can find glycerin at most pharmacies. It is a very important ingredient. The taffy will not turn out well with out it.
2. Bring your taffy to a boil over medium high heat. Let it keep on a boiling until your candy thermometer reaches 258 degrees. This should take about 35-40 minutes.
3. Check the temperature of the taffy by dipping a spoon into the pan and then running cold water from the tap over the top of it. See how the taffy is kind of stiff looking?  That means it is ready to go. If you cook it much past this stage you it will be really hard when you pull it. If you under cook it...you may have a sticky mess. This water trick really helps. However, you can rely on your candy thermometer as well.
4. When your taffy is cooked take it off the heat and pour in your vanilla.
5. Add your butter to the pot and give the bubbling beauty a good round of stirring. Stir until the butter is all melted.
6. Butter a large cookie sheet.
7. Pour the taffy onto the sheet.
8. Let the taffy cool for about 5 minutes, or until it is cool enough to handle. The edges will start to set up a bit faster than the middle.
9. Pinch the taffy into 12 separate pieces.
10. When the taffy is cool enough to pick up, hand out a piece to each lucky participant. Then you can start to pull the taffy. The trick is the stretch it out......
.....and then fold it back together. Stretch and fold, stretch and fold.....
......until your taffy turns a beautiful white color. Or if some of your pullers are 3 years old, until they get tired of pulling. It still tastes mighty good, even if you don't pull it long enough for it to turn white.
11. Stretch the taffy into a long rope shape and set on a piece of wax paper. You can break the taffy into pieces by holding it in the palm of your hand and tapping it with the handle of a butter knife.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Pioneer Day Events!!

Get out your bonnets and cowboy hats, it's time to celebrate Utah's pioneer heritage!  There are lots of activities around the state to keep your family busy and get you into the pioneer spirit!!


Spanish Fork Fiesta Days
Spanish Fork City
There are celebrations all during the month of July for Spanish Fork's Fiesta Days!  On July 24th there will be a craft fair, parade, carnival, outdoor quilt show, rodeo, entertainment, and fireworks at 10:15 pm!  There is so much going on, you're sure to find something that tickles your fancy!  For more information on events, times, and locations, click HERE!

Mapleton Pioneer Days
July 24
Mapleton City Park
35 East Maple Street, Mapleton
This is a free event. There will be local entertainment (including poets, and music and singing), an awesome firework show (it's supposed to be their biggest ever!), games, and a parade!  If you're near Mapleton, come check it out!! Click HERE for more info!

Provo Pioneer Day Extravaganza
July 24 from 9am to 2pm
North Park 
500 North 500 West, Provo
Come check out the museum and see real pioneer buildings! On top of that, there will be craft and food vendors, an antique car show, live entertainment, a Native American village, and mountain man encampment.  Come see Native American dancing and go inside a real tipi.  There will be tons of free games and crafts for the kiddos! If you haven't come to this event before, you're missing out, don't miss it this year! Click HERE for more info!

Days of 47 KSL Parade
July 24 at 9am
Salt Lake City, Route starts at South Temple and State Street running east to 200 East, turns south to 900 South, then turns east to Liberty Park at 600 East
Who doesn't love to celebrate with a parade?  Come see the one of the largest, oldest parades in the USA!  There will be awesome floats, bands, clowns, horses, and more, all to celebrate our state holiday.  Lots of people camp out on the streets the night before to get a good seat for the parade, but if you don't want to venture out in the crowds, you can snuggle up on your couch at home and watch it on KSL!  This is a great way to start your Pioneer Day celebrations!  Click HERE for the details!

Have a happy Pioneer Day with your kiddos!!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Wasatch Wellness Run

For those of you who are interested in running and being active, here is a great opportunity for you!
The Wasatch Mental Health "Wellness Run" will be August 4th at 8:00 am in Provo.  Afterward there will be a family fun fair with games and lots of good info!  Check it out at www.wasatchwellnessrun.com!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Donation Spotlight!

Every once in awhile we like to spotlight some of the great donations that come into Welcome Baby.  We are always blown away by the cute baby items that are donated!  

Many local religious organizations like to do large service projects activities.  Making simple baby item like these are a perfect service project!

 Look how cute these texture balls are!  These are great for babies to play with as they start discovering their senses. 
 Adorable baby blankets
Cute crochet baby booties

We also had another group donate bags and bags of baby items.  Each blanket was just filled with love!

We've also had some great Eagle Scout book drives come in.  Recently we've had two great boys gather books in their neighborhoods, totaling over 500 new books!

We are so grateful for all the wonderful donations.  It reminds us each time of the great community members who want to help those around them.  Each donation is filled with many hours and lots of love.

If you would like to donate, contact us at 801-691-5320.

We are always looking for these items:
-New children's books
-Receiving blankets
-Burp cloths
-Plush baby toys

Friday, July 13, 2012

Understanding Your Child's Emotions

As adults, we are pretty used to the way our emotions work and we're used feeling lots of different, often conflicting, things all at once!  But just like you wouldn't expect your two-month old to walk across the room, or your two year-old to perform an intricate tap-dance, you can't expect your little one to have or express the same complex emotions that you do.

When we watch our children grow and develop physically, it is easy to see the many huge changes they are making as they happen!  Your child will get bigger, more coordinated, and she will move through milestones--from rolling over, to sitting up, to standing up, to walking.  The same process of development is happening with your child emotionally, it just might be a little easier to overlook.  It's our job as parents to help our children understand their emotions better, become more sensitive to the emotions of others, and to help them find ways to manage the many emotions they feel--but that can be hard to do unless we understand what's is going on with their emotional development!

Children develop their emotions starting with what we call "primary emotions": joy, anger, sadness, and fear.  All other emotions stem from these.  The set of related emotions that eventually develop from those primary emotions are called "emotional clusters" (see the cute little chart of clusters below!). 


One of the first emotions a baby will develop is joy, you can see this one at around six weeks when your baby first starts purposely smiling at you.  Joy will eventually develop into emotions such as surprise, affection, pride, and empathy, (other emotions in the cluster) but it takes months and even years for these emotions to emerge.  Anger will develop next around 3 to 4 months, and sadness and fear around 5-7 months.  As your child gets older and more advanced in other areas of development, her emotions will get more and more complex.

Primary emotions can be very intense in the early years (which you may have noticed if you have any experience with toddler tantrums!), and can change very quickly.  As your child gets older, her emotions will change much less rapidly and she will express herself in different and more complex ways.  Instead of just screaming, she may pout, whine, or express her feelings in words.

Another thing that is important to note about emotional development is that young children only experience one emotion at a time.  When they are happy, they are completely happy.  When they are angry, they are angry through and through!  Although these emotions can change very quickly, your child is only experiencing one emotion at once.  This is how children experience emotions until they are around 5 years old.  From about 5 to 7 years old your child will start to feel more than one emotion towards the same thing, but these otions will be from the same cluster (such as being happy and excited about a birthday party).  Then, from ages 8-10 your child will begin to be able to feel emotions from different clusters, but they will be in succession.  For example, your child can feel anxious (fear) and excited (joy) about the same event, but these feelings will seem to come one after another, rather than feeling both at the same time.  It's not until about 10-12 years that children begin to feel "mixed emotions".  At this point your child will begin to realize that she can feel two very different, very conflicting emotions about the same thing.  This can be distressing for children when their feelings are suddenly "fighting" with each other and they may need support as they figure things out.

Your child is developing in so many areas all at once (it's so tiring being a kid!!) and she needs support in every area to become the happy healthy child you want her to be.  With a little bit of information you can be prepared to help her grow and understand what she's feeling!

Info taken from: Guiding Children's Social Development & Learning.  Kostelnik, Whiren, Soderman, Gregory

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Good-Bye, Stacey!

We are saying good-bye to a very important part of our Welcome Baby team this week!

Stacey Mitchell has been an integral part of our program for quite some time now, and we are going to miss her terribly!  She was an intern with us for 2 semesters and became a VISTA for our program at the beginning of this year.  Stacey has done everything from home visits to updating our database to working one-on-one with our volunteers.  She has been so much help with the new interns, with volunteers, and with every aspect of our program!  She is so much fun to work with and to have in our office.  We are so grateful we've had her for so long and for all of her hard work!

Stacey's husband is in the military and they will be moving to Nevada this coming week.  We will miss her!

Thank you Stacey!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

And the Gold Medal goes to......

The summer 2012 Olympics Games start soon! July 27-August 12 in London, England.  Fun fact: did you know that the trampoline is an Olympic sport?! Our little friends could be Olympic athletes with all their practice on the trampolines! Just keep practicing those front flips :)

In the spirit of the games, we decided to have our own little Olympic competition.  What kind of competition can you have with kids under 5 you ask? Obstacle courses and relay races of course!
We made the start and finish line with masking tape. Then the kids had to divide up into 2 groups.  They had to race to the finish line and back doing different challenges, such as: hopping on one foot, crawling, somersaulting, running backwards, etc.  We even mixed it up with hula hoops. They were to run to the finish line, hula hoop, then run back.  The kids LOVED it!

We made our obstacle course using chairs and hula hoops.  If we were outside, you could use the park, benches, or running around trees, etc.  There are so many different options.  For summertime, using pools and sprinklers would be a great idea.  Kids love anything to do with water and getting wet!

After we were done with our Olympic competitions, we had our kids make their own gold medals.  I printed off a gold medal template, and had it copied onto yellow card stock.  They then got to color and cut it out.  We punched holes on the top, big enough to get the 1" rainbow ribbon through it, and stapled the ends together. 
And here is our finished product....
And here is two of our mini Olympic Gold medalists....Pablo and Lizzy!
This is just one great idea for birthday parties, or to get your kids active for the summer.  Kids love being physically active and should be for at least 60 minutes per day.  Activities should be easy and age-appropriate, but yet will still challenge them.  You would be surprised at what your kids can do if you give them the opportunity!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Speech Development

Learning to talk is a difficult process! There are a lot of sounds that are a challenge to figure out, and sometimes we really don't give our kids credit for the hard work they are doing. As parents we are very eager for our children to speak well and clearly, and it makes us anxious when it takes too long for them to learn new sounds. Does your 4 year old say "pot" instead of "spot"?  Are you worried about his speech development?  Well here is a nice chart that can help you know what's normal, and when to worry!

Speech Sound Developmental Norms

Below is a chart reflecting speech sound acquisition. The upper range indicates when 90% of children have learned that sound. For example, 90% of children have acquired the “n” sound by the time they are 4 years old; 90% of children have learned the “s” sound by the time they are 7 years old.
2 years
3 years
4 years
5 years
6 years
7 years
8 years



















th (thumb)

th (that)

zh (measure)