Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"Olive" the Fire Truck Dog

Thursday, 7/12/12 - Little Gym's theme this week was Real-Life Superheroes, so police, firemen (and women,) and EMTs. Since I had just recently done a car-shaped lunch, I didn't want to do one again so soon, especially since I couldn't think of how to make it into a police car. And I wanted to save the car cutter, which could also work for an ambulance, for the next day, when they had planned to have EMTs come and let the kids check out their vehicle and gear at her Little Gym camp.* So for her class day, I made a fire truck!

*I not only forgot to pack her lunch the night before, so didn't have enough time to make an ambulance themed-lunch, but they ended up having a fire engine there instead. Oooo I wish I had made this lunch that day instead!

Fire Engine Dog Bento
PB and chocolate almond butter sandwich, cheese w/olive details,
sugar snap peas, raspberries and strawberries
The raspberries came from my sister's raspberry thicket plants, and the stunty little strawberries from the U-Pick place we went to with my sister and her kids. All the berries were picked by little Miss Z.

Since she started grumbling that the berries and peas had nothing to do with her fireman-themed lunch, I told her that the peas were fire hoses, and the berries were the flashing lights. She tried to argue with me, but I reminded her that she could either a) be happy with my explanation, b) accept that they have nothing to do with the theme, or c) never get another fun themed lunch ever again. (I was totally bluffing.) She stopped her arguing.

For the sandwich, I used the truck from my Lunch Punch Vrrrrm! set and used peanut butter to glue on broken spaghetti noodle bits into a ladder shape. Easy peasy! I used a small round cutter (I couldn't find my small circle, so I used the "O" from my alphabet cutters) for wheels, and cut a rectangle freehand to be a window.

For "Olive," the fire dog, I used a dog cutter on a slice of mozzarella. I currently have the small roundy mozzarella, rather than a brick, so I couldn't make a slice large enough for the entire cutter. So instead of worrying about giving her a behind and tail, I just tucked the dog in back and it kind of looks like she's riding on the truck!
I fished some broken chunks and bits out from my sliced olives and used them to make spots. One larger chunk looked a lot like an ear, and I cut another chunk into smaller bits to be the eye and nose. Since I was in charge of carrying the lunch, I didn't worry about the olives being jostled loose. But if I had been sending her off to school with it on her own, I would have used tiny bits of broken-off spaghetti noodle to secure each piece to the cheese (from under the olive bits, then jabbed into the cheese.)

 Mama's Lunch
Spinach salad w/golden kiwi, strawberries, almonds, mixed raisins, dressing;
cheese scraps and crackers, strawberries
Dressing in a Tupperware Smidget, fork from Dollar Tree, and I stuck in a dog pick just for fun. Plus I hate touching moist foods.
She loved her sandwich and dog, and stole my pick to use for her berries. She ended up eating most everything.

To tie in with our fire station dog theme, we read Clifford the Firehouse Dog, which I happened to win as part of an 80-book Scholastic books basket at her preschool's fundraising raffle; and Dot the Fire Dog, which we happened to have borrowed from the library because she wanted a book with a "cute doggie" in it, and that was the first one the docent found for us! What fun coincidences!

We also sang a few rounds of the Firetruck Song. You can hear the melody here, but the lyrics we know are different. We learned it as a hand motion-lap song when she was 1, where she sat on my lap and we both do motions to go along with the lyrics. So I'll list the actions in brackets next to the lyrics.
For bigger kids, they don't have to sit on your lap. They can do it all themselves. For the wee little kids, you can gently move their arms to mimic the motions, but be sure to grasp them by the elbows, not the wrists. If they fight you or aren't interested, just do them yourself in front where they can see. It's also fun to kick it up a notch, and do the whole thing faster and faster each time. At around 3 and up, if they're familiar with a song and the hand motions, it's a fun way to change it up and challenge them, and make an old song interesting again.** Plus they find it hi-larious watching you do it that way.

Hurry, Hurry Drive the Firetruck Song
Hurry, hurry drive the firetruck (you both make steering wheel motions with your hands)
Hurry, hurry drive the firetruck
Hurry, hurry drive the firetruck
Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! (both raise one hand up and shake like you're ringing a bell)

Hurry, hurry turn the cooooooorner (hold child tight on lap and lean to the left)
Hurry, hurry turn the cooooooorner (hold child tight on lap and lean to the right)
Hurry, hurry turn the cooooooorner (hold child tight on lap and lean to the left)
Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! (both raise one hand up and shake like you're ringing a bell)

Hurry, hurry climb the ladder (you both make ladder-climbing hand and arm motions)
Hurry, hurry climb the ladder 
Hurry, hurry climb the ladder 
Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! (both raise one hand up and shake like you're ringing a bell)

Hurry, hurry squirt the fire out (you each clasp both hands together and extend index fingers like a gun/hose, moving the hose side to side like you're spraying out the fire)
Hurry, hurry squirt the fire out 
Hurry, hurry squirt the fire out
Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! (both raise one hand up and shake like you're ringing a bell)

(slowly) It's okay the fire's out now... (both wipe hand across forehead in a gesture of relief)
Drive the fire truck back to the station... (both make driving motions)
Tired fire fighters go to sleep now... (clasp hands together under side of head and lean head sideways like sleeping)
(faster and louder) Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding! (both sit back up and raise one hand up and shake like you're ringing a bell)

**Note: Other ways to change up familiar songs are to make them "bigger/slower" (with a deeper voice) or "smaller/faster" (with a higher-pitched voice,) as well as louder or silently. These work especially well with The Itsy-Bitsy Spider, which is changed to the Great Big Giant Spider (with a slower, louder deep voice and bigger hand/arm motions,) the Teensy Weensy Spider (with a faster, quieter squeaky voice and tiny finger motions,) and the Very Silent Spider (where we just mouth the words and do the hand motions at regular speed.)

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Inspired by Family

Shibley Smiles

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