Tag Archives: toddler

Halloween Crafts with Toddlers: A Primer

Doing crafts with toddlers is one of those things that sounds sweet and wholesome in theory, but in practice is aggravating and messy.

Nevertheless, I decided this year that Hazel possessed enough rudimentary motor skills to attempt a couple of cheap, easy Halloween decorations. Now I will share the wisdom of my experiences with you.

Step one: Wait until 5:00. Pour yourself a drink. This makes the toddler crafting process 100% more bearable.

Step two: Pick something simple. I chose this ghost windsock and this candy corn garland. They’re so easy that there aren’t any instructions. Hamsters could pull off these projects.

Step three: Be flexible. Your project will look little, if anything, like the pictures. Embrace the abstract imperfection of it all.

Step four: Repeat step one as needed.

We started with the candy corn garland. I had to buy cheap white paper plates (about $2) but already had orange and yellow craft paint and twine. Hazel and I each painted a few plates and let them dry overnight.

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I cut each plate into eight wedges and hot-glued them to a long piece of twine. Hazel supervised. I hung one string on the stair rail and short strings over the windows in the kitchen.



Done and done. Next up: ghost windsocks. I didn’t have any tin cans, but I did have some empty toilet paper rolls. GOOD ENOUGH. I had white craft paint, and bought a roll of crepe paper streamer for about $2.


First we painted the toilet paper tubes, then drew ghost faces on them. Then I glued some 12″ lengths of streamer inside the bottom, and hung them up on the porch using fishing line.

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I find Hazel’s (on the left) to be far creepier than mine.

I also attempted some DIY decorations of my own. This Boo sign turned out substantially similar to the one I spotted on Etsy:


There will be MOAR Halloween to come, including the return of the bats. I’m psyched.


Filed under Holidays, Home, Kate the Chicken, Projects

I’m calling it

Hazel continues to grow up at an astonishing rate. Since we moved, she has outgrown bed rails, her high chair, and diapers.



When we moved, the prospect of laundering cloth diapers with only intermittent power was daunting, so I decided to go ahead and potty train Hazel. It was fine – like all other potty training experiences, it was occasionally gross and got better over time. I don’t think anyone needs a play-by-play.

The most important lesson I had to impart to Hazel was that it is VERBOTEN to wipe yourself and then use the same toilet paper to blow your nose.


I didn’t start this post to talk about potty training, per se. I set out to talk about cloth diapering – specifically, how I feel about it now that it’s over.

Cloth diapering was one of our best decisions, and I would do it again in a heartbeat. I mean, yes, there were days when I just did not feel like washing the same d@mn diapers for what felt like the millionth time. But the cost savings and environmental impact were worth it.  We had several brands in our arsenal, but our clear favorite was Charlie Banana. Unlike FuzziBuns and BumGenius, the Charlie Banana inserts load from the front. That means that if your baby has pooped, and the poop has migrated up her back, you don’t have to touch it to get your insert out of the diaper. It seems like a small thing, but in parenting, the small things matter. These diapers also seemed to work better on Hazel after she became mobile.

Like everything else in modern life, the internet can be a valuable resource in the world of cloth diapering – but it can also be a land of treachery and deceit. Many people made cloth diapering out to be a lot more complicated and snowflake-special than it needed to be. For example, I never stripped my diapers with bleach. I also never used special, expensive cloth diaper detergent. I followed the care label on the diaper (how novel!). I used regular powdered Tide and dried them in the sunshine when I could.

So, now that Hazel is all grown up, I am in possession of a ton of cloth diapers and cloth diapering accessories and am looking for a buyer. I have at least 30 diapers (mixed brands) with inserts, a diaper pail with two large wet bags, diaper liners for older babies, and everything else you need to cloth diaper a baby for two years and three months.

If you know someone who is interested in trying cloth diapers, please put them in contact with me. I would love to help!

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Filed under Home, Kate the Chicken