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The Easiest DIY Box Fort for your Toddler

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I can’t think of anything better than to bust out a box fort for your toddler when you’re trapped in the house during the cold months. I am not a big DIY person so this will be the easiest DIY box fort you can make for your toddler. 🙂 I would guess if you have a big box, then the rest of the needed items are easily found in your house somewhere!

We have an ice storm headed our way this weekend so I wanted to get some activities planned with Bubby (besides our faithful movie Charlotte’s Web!). I thought a fort would be fun but couldn’t afford one like this, so I started to do some thinking about what we had in the house.

I remembered we had these two huge boxes in our attic that we got from Home Depot when we first moved into our house and they’re just sitting in our attic because we didn’t want to get rid of them. They are of good size and we needed them for the move at the time. Little did I know that I would be using them this weekend to make a box fort for my son! Funny how life works out that way!

This post may contain affiliate links. See full disclosure here.

Easy DIY Box Fort to make for your Toddler. Toddler Box Fort. DIY Fort for your toddler.

 

ITEMS NEEDED:

  • Scissors or Box Cutters or a good Pocket Knife
  • Masking tape
  • and your Box or Boxes!
  • any other decor you might want to add to make it fancy, but we kept it pretty simple. 🙂

STEP ONE: CREATE YOUR DOOR
We had two boxes and wanted to side them up next to each other so he could crawl through both of them. So we created two front doors first.

  • Leave at least three box flaps on the bottom so you can have a base for the fort to help stay stable. We taped them together once we were done.
  • Keep it simple! We just folded the top of the box like you would any normal box to make his “roof.”

STEP TWO: This applies if you’re making two entry ways to your box or if you are putting more than one box together and need to create your passage doors.

  • Since you want to keep your three flaps for the base, make sure you don’t cut all the way through the bottom when you make your “adjoining” doors or extra entry way. See pictured below how we did it.

 

STEP THREE: MAKE THE BASE OF OF YOUR FORT

  • We put the single flap below the two aligning flaps so the fort had a smooth floor for him to crawl on. See picture below.

 

STEP FOUR: We added Christmas lights to his little fort. I didn’t want to make the lights a big deal because I knew we would be moving it around the house some, so I just fish lined them through the top middle hole, hung them around the corners inside (used a little tape to help hold them up there too) and then fish lined it back out the top to take to the second box. See picture below. If you want to add pillows or lights, go for it!


This was how I hung them on the inside of the box. I just added a little masking tape over the seam of the box to keep them stable enough, but easy enough to remove if needed!

STEP FIVE: Have fun and start playing!

When I started looking on Pinterest for box forts, I was surprised to find so many that seemed complicated to me or required more tools than I had on hand. The Christmas lights are even done simply and add a nice dim light inside for when he wants to read books. I found some online that punctured a hole all through the roof of the box and stuck them in there one by one. I ain’t got time for that with my toddler running around me! Plus, we wont always use the lights.

I’m not gonna lie, my idea to create this for him this weekend was to “trick” him into not being so sad to see his own little Christmas tree go away. We had his own, small tree set up in his room for the holidays and he just loved it. I figured this fort was a nice transition to say bye bye to the tree. Oh parenting. Don’t even get me started.

There you have it! The easiest DIY Box Fort you can make for your toddler!

If you want to see a few other toddler ideas, click here. Better yet, PIN this one for later and follow me along the process to stay up to date with all the toddler fun around here!

What other fun ways have you made a fort with your littles? I would love to hear about it below.
Peace Mamas,
Glo

My Favorite Must Haves for Toddlers to Help in the Kitchen

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Something happened when Bubby started walking when he was about 12 months. He had to be EVERYWHERE I was. And if you know anything about being home with a toddler, a lot of time can be spent in the kitchen fetching snacks, figuring out lunch, surviving meltdown hour until dinner time…

In order to avoid having my clothes tugged on until they were two sizes two big and milk spilled on my shoes, I decided I needed to change my game plan. I needed to help Bubby develop as my kitchen helper. So I did what any good mama does and started googling, looking for tips.

I came away realizing that having kitchen utensils that actually allow my toddling son to feel like he is part of what I’m doing would definitely outweigh the costs. I want him to feel comfortable and confident in the kitchen when we’re cooking. Here are a few of my favorite items!

(This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are always my own and unbiased. See full disclosure here.)

Items and Ideas for Toddlers in the Kitchen. Items for your Toddler to help in the kitchen.

Learning Tower
I absolutely love having a learning tower and I wish I would have bought one sooner. It is by far my favorite toddler kitchen item. If you start looking up learning towers, you’ll find lots of different options out there. I wasn’t too concerned about having one that he could climb in and out of by himself, but I did want one that was smaller and wouldn’t take up a lot of room in our kitchen. I found this one on Etsy and enjoyed that I could customize the colors.
img_0020 img_0041 img_0039The biggest thing I would complain about this learning tower is that at first, I thought I would like how narrow it was so I felt like he was safer while standing with me. After having it for a while, I wish I would have purchased one like this. Yes, it’s bigger, but it’s foldable and I think I would have liked that feature better.

As you can tell, the width doesn’t hinder him from being able to enjoy what he helps me cook with! 🙂

Toddler Weaning Table
This toddler table or as many call it, “weaning table” is definitely my second favorite item. We keep it stashed in corner of our kitchen, and I love how I can just slide it over by the cabinets so he can work on whatever he is “cooking” while I’m cooking. This is especially helpful to have if I’m doing something that is hot over the stove and need him to be occupied with his own task. I can just set him with something easy (like sorting pasta or rice, he LOVES doing that!) and get supper going!
img_0043I also love this table because as he is getting older, he can carry his snacks over to the table by himself and eat on his own. We practice some Montessori in our house and this table helps with that a lot too. I love the versatility it brings and the independent training it offers too! Plus, once you start looking at toddler tables, I felt the price point was decent.

Toddler Approved Kitchen Utensils
I keep a draw like this just for Bubby’s stuff. I can easily grab what I need if we’re cooking a certain item so he can start helping me right away. Here is a list of regular go-to items that you’ll find in his drawer. I bought most of these from Wal-Mart and Amazon too!

  • Silcon spatulas–Wal-Mart has a great selection of these mini sized cooking utensils. As you can see I stalked up on spatulas, whisks and tongs!
  • Baking Utensils are kept with all my other baking supplies. I absolutely love this set and Bubby particularly likes the rolling pin. Right now he sort of whacks the counter with it, but you know, he’ll get there. 😉
  • Strawberry Slicer–Some folks might think this is silly or unsafe, but as he has gotten older and more in control with his motor skills, this slicer has been the bomb. He LOVES pushing down on it and watching the strawberries squish through! And bonus, he can eat what he slices!
  • This hand held fruit and veggie chopper made me nervous at first. But as he has grown, he loves cutting bananas with it. Again, this is one of those skills they develop and if you know anything about Montessori, you know this isn’t unusual to see toddlers use these kinds of utensils.
  • One of my other top favorite items is this tater masher. I used to use beaters to make our mashed potatoes, but now Bubby gets a big kick out of smashing them for us with his own masher.

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As you can see, I keep a jar with a lid and a small bowl of pasta so he can do his little “sorting” game he does. This is one of those of quick items I grab when I’m cooking something hot and I need him to be independent from what I’m doing.

Toddler Apron
If you’re going to be doing all that cooking, then you can’t go wrong with this laminated Toddler apron. It didn’t even occur to me to get one until a friend of mine kind said one time, “uh you know they make kid aprons, right?”. This one works just right for us and I like that I can wipe it clean.

Alrighty, mamas, let’s hear it. What would you add? What are some of your favorite items to have in the kitchen with your littles? Let’s chat in the comments below!

Peace,
Glo

45 Daily Activities to Do with a PreToddler (12-18mos)

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What are some daily activities I can do with my pre-toddler (ages 12-18  months)?

I wake up with my coffee and think to myself, “What should I do with my boy today?” What activities do we have available to do with my 12 month old pre-toddler? Then I realized I should ask YOU GUYS what you do with your pre-toddlers and compiled some great responses.

If I am being honest, there have been times when I twiddle my thumbs trying to think of things to do with my 12 month old boy. I tend to be the obsessive kind who is always checking to see if I’m “stimulating” his development appropriately and all that nonsense. Thank God for my patient husband who is there to humor me when I get this great idea to model rubbing my tummy and patting my head and recording my singing voice so Bubby can hear it when I’m not there. OK, maybe I don’t go that far…or do I? But nevertheless, I needed a simple, basic list to reference for our daily schedule at home and it dawned on my that I should just write down what we like to do and post them in the house. Then, anytime Husband or I or a sitter need a quick idea, BAM we got one. We have plenty of blank space too so we can add more as he grows.

45 Daily ActivitiesPIN

I am sure I will make another one as he gets older and his abilities change, but for the short season of pre-toddlerhood, this list works just dandy in our house. Feel free to print this off for your household or Pin it for later!

I would LOVE to hear other ideas from you guys so give a shout out in the comments. 


PRINT THE LIST HERE. You can see the printable form below to see if it’s something you should have around the house. Cheers!

*Go to the pool.
*Play make believe with stuffed animals
*Walk on some trails nearby.
*Blow bubbles.
*Play-doh!
*Look at books.
*Go for a walk.
*Go to the park.
*Sidewalk chalk.
*Pack a picnic lunch in the park.
*Picnic in the backyard!
*Play in the water outside.
*Sing songs. Clap with baby. Act them out with baby. Raffi is my fav 😉
*Go to the local library.
*Rec classes for babies.
*Sort blocks.
*Stack cups.
*Use non-perishable food for sensory activity bin (beans, pasta, etc).
*Flour in a bowl for sensory fun!
*Play hide and seek.
*Put clothes in the basket and take them out, repeat.
*Rotate favorite toys to keep them favorites!
*Play with any of these favorite toys OUTSIDE!!!!
*Play in the grass! Feel the leaves and trees!
*Pull baby around on carpet in laundry basket.
*Bring the pool into the bathtub on the rainy days!
*Pick baby’s favorite book, make your own cut outs and act it out. Or just act it out!!
*Make a pillow fort!
*Play with puzzles. Chunky puzzles are the best for little’s  hands!
*Crunch alllll the paper!
*Organize toys.
*Color.
*Make an obstacle course in the house.
*Make cookies.
*Play Dates!
*Play peek a boo.
*Did I mention dancing???*Stickers are fun!
*Roll a ball back and forth.
*Finger paint.
*Race cars in the kitchen. (These ones with lights are pretty awesome!)
*Bouncy balls on the floor.
*Sort craft pom poms in muffin pan..
*Sort anything, anywhere!
*Build with blocks.

DailyListforPretoddlerJEG