This is my first year as a mother when I’ve actually felt on top of Halloween. And that’s 100% because I decided to not go all DIY.
I’m so glad I’m half-assing Halloween.
When Peeper said she wanted to wear a Cinderella costume, my inner feminist cringed—but then I hopped on Amazon and ordered her a damn Disney dress.
Kiwi is still too little to have much of a preference or even know there’s a holiday coming up. So I figured that hey, she has fleece giraffe-print pajamas, so why doesn’t she dress as a giraffe? #twoforonepajamas
Now I have to get out and show off these top-tier costumes. And if you’re like us, you won’t be spending all of Halloween at home, either, waiting to give out tiny chocolates to almost equally tiny Elsas and Pikachus. We’ll be taking the girls out to get their own candy (which we’ll quickly appropriate, obvi). So I wanted to set out a trick or treat sign welcoming the neighborhood kids to help themselves to the treats I’ll leave on the front porch.
And hey, so can you, because you can download this Halloween trick or treat sign for free!
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(Sorry, the free printable does not come with free candy.)
Five little monkeys jumping on the bed
One fell off and bumped his head
Mama called the doctor and the doctor said,
“For the love of all things holy I am not reading this book one more time!”
I have a love/hate relationship with the book 5 Little Monkeys. After about the sixth time of reading it, all that repetition makes me want to jump off a bed and knock myself in the head.
But the repetition is great for pre-readers: Books that have repeating sequences, like 5 Little Monkeys, strengthens a child’s neural pathways and primes them for learning to read later. For example, all that repetition helps kids add to their vocabulary faster, reports research from the University of Sussex in the UK. And the familiar rhythms of a repetitive book helps that child remember what comes next—a skill that later helps them predict or hypothesize what comes next.
I saw this all in action with Peeper and 5 Little Monkeys. I used to pass the book back to her while we were driving around. After a while, she would “read” the book to herself—including counting down the number of monkeys.
All that repetition really worked!
Turns out the repetitive motion of painting is a great parallel for this story. When I found Raising Fairies and Knights’s Monthly Crafting Book Club, I was in: I wanted to make a fun art project that went along with 5 Little Monkeys, too!
You may also know what a proponent of process art I am. So I didn’t want to create a craft that had a clear expectation of how the craft should look in the end. Instead, I created a project that let Peeper do her own thang while staying true to the spirit of the book. And with my hand-drawn download, you can, too!