Sep 27

Potato Stamps

by Hannah Holt »


This classic craft is always fun. See the end of this post for other food based stamp ideas.

Print these directions.

What you’ll need:

  • Potato
  • Knife
  • Paint
  • Paper

Step1: Wash and scrub the potato.

Step 2: Halve the potato. Make a clean cut as each half becomes the surface for one stamp.

Step 3: Cut a design into the potato’s face (about 1/4 inch deep).

Step 4: Cut the surrounding potato away from the design. Be extra careful around corners and small pieces of the stamp.

Step 5: Press the potato into the paint and then onto the paper. Repeat!

Other Fun Produce Stamps…

  • Celery Bunch Roses

  • Apple Daisies
  • Bell pepper clouds with mushroom and asparagus trees

  • (Any firm fleshed vegetable can become a stamp.)

Dec 09


by Hannah Holt »

one comment

Today I had one of those nice round numbered birthdays. The passing of another decade makes me thankful…

for freckled skin,

Milan, Berlin,

Off Broadway plays,

warm summer days,

the leaves in fall,

old music halls,

shared wordless looks,

tall stacks of books,

the one who left,

the treble cleft,

dancing alone,

the telephone,

my family,

a framed degree,

my first career,

that crazy year,

“and. oh. my. gosh!

that. guy. named. Josh!”

our wedding bells,

low priced motels,

soft baby’s breath,

comfort at death,

Josh graduates,

our clan moves states,

the nurse says “TWINS,”

my husband grins.

My birthday wish-

more days like this.

Mar 12

Lightsabers for Renn

by Hannah Holt »


A special boy named Renn is back in the hospital for another round of epilepsy tests. This post is part of a blog party to encourage/entertain him during his hospital stay

Hi Renn,

When my daughter was younger, we went to a hospital in Denver, and scientists studied the electrical pulses in her brain.

Char sleep study 1

It didn’t hurt her. In fact, her job was to take a nap. She was good at her job.

I’ll bet you know a lot of different ways that doctors can study the brain. Some of the machines have fancy names. I think it’s fun to learn about all the tools doctors have to help us. Do you?


But I also know it can be boring hanging out in the hospital all day. Another time while my daughter was staying in the hospital, she was bored and kept pulling off her oxygen sensor. Every time she pulled it off, little lights would blink and machines would beep. She may have been small, but she really knew how to keep those nurses running!


You must be very brave and strong and patient to handle all the different tests. But then again, I hear you are training to be a Jedi.

Well, even Jedi Warriors need a little fun now and then. So I made a lightsaber paper craft for you. In the end, you’ll have a finger-sized lightsaber, like this:

free lightsaber printable

I made a few options for you because I’m not sure which might be the most powerful in a hospital (Instructions are included on each sheet.):

1. Luke Skywalker Lightsaber

2. Yoda Lightsaber

3. Obi-Wan Kenobi Lightsaber

4. Darth Vader Lightsaber

My daughter is now a bubbly two-year-old, and thankfully she’s as healthy as can be. Sometimes I wish she and her sister moved a little slower…

babies in flour

I could use a good Jedi around here to convince them they “don’t need to play in the pantry.” Ah, well. Keep practicing and maybe you could do your tricks long distance for me some day.

May the Force be with you, Renn!

-Hannah Holt

Oct 16

Five No Carve Jack-o-lanterns

by Hannah Holt »


Sharp knives and preschoolers don’t exactly mix, but my four-year-old loves jack-o’-lanterns. We’ll carve a pumpkin or three this year of course, but I’m not going to let him wield the knife… yet.

In lieu, I wanted a few more hands-on pumpkin opportunities for him. Here’s what we did instead.

1) Painted Jack

Supplies needed: Paints (we used acrylics) and brushes

2) Masquerade Jack

Supplies needed: A paper plate, paints, sequins, feathers, tape or glue (I did the cutting for him)

3) Crafty Jack

Supplies needed: Wiggly eyes, a pom-pom, a button, tape or glue

4) Modelling Clay Jack

We both had fun with this one.

Supplies needed: Modelling clay (It will stick to the pumpkin.)

5) Chalkboard Jack

Supplies needed: Chalkboard spray paint, chalk

My son had fun with all of these, but I asked him to pick a favorite. He chose the modelling clay activity (and that was the easiest to do). So there you have it. Easiest is best. Happy pumpkin season!

Nov 14

Job Jar for Tots

by Hannah Holt »


My children went through a phase a while ago where all their speaking vowels became extra extended. It sounded something like this: “I waaaant peanut butter. I doooon’t like tuuuuna.”

And this, “I waaant to plaaaaay. Plaaaay with meeee nooooow.”

It was driving me crazy, so I created a job jar for whining.  Every time a child came to me with “the voice,” I sent them to pulled a popsicle stick from the jar. The sticks had a variety of tasks written on them. They included things like:

  • give someone a hug
  • pick up three toys and put them away
  • draw a picture for Grandma
  • find two pieces of paper on the ground to recycle
  • pick a toy to share with your brother

The tasks were all simple things that 1) required almost no supervision on my part and 2) redirected their behavior. After a child understood their job, I had them put the stick back in the jar to use again later.

I’m not sure whether or not the job jar made this phase shorter, but it made it easier for me to pass through it. And that is a small victory in itself.

Me = 1, Whining = 0