Chore chart

Ahh summer! So fun for the kids to be out of school and to have a little break, but with the break comes a break down in schedules. In in effort to avoid that at our house we've established a visual chore chart. One pocket for each child (and one for mom) contains Popsicle sticks that list the chores. Everyday we check the weekday pocket for our popsicle sticks (color coordinated to match the pockets) to see what today's chores are. Then when the chores are done for the day kids can stash finished chores in a middle pocket!
First I got my tools:
popsicle sticks
glue gun and glue sticks
Thick cardboard backer (for chore chart)

Then I cut 6 days out (we decided to have Sunday be our rest day from chores)
and then I cut the capital letter for each day of the week
Then using the glue gun I glued the days of the week, a middle pocket, and 4 top pockets. Keep in mind, to make a pocket to only glue around the edges, if you glue in the center...it won't be a pocket. (I did for get this at first and we had to tear the weekdays off and try again)
Then using markers I colored the sticks to match each child and with a black felt tip marker wrote the specific chores for each child that they are responsible for.
I am also going to be creating reward cards for optional chores. (20 minute media cards, treat cards, 1.00$....)


Felt car track

I had two girls before I had a boy and really hadn't needed a felt car track (I'd say we're still a way off before we really need this...) but my oldest recently went to a birthday party where her friend was having a car themed party.  So we made him a car track!  At Walmart felt can be purchased in sheets, all plain white or multi-colored.  I got one with white sheets and one with colored to make all that I need here.  I used 3 sheets to make the track and one white sheet to be folded and compartmentalized for the car storage.

Step 1.  
Sew the three sheets together (one sheet [brown and green] sew the short ends together and the other sheet[green and off white] sew the long ends together.)   This makes is easier to fold the track up together for easy storage and portability.  

Step 2.
Take the white sheet and fold it in half.  Sew the edges.  Then mark 4 lines (with a pencil) that are evenly spaced apart.  (this is where you will keep the cars-hot wheels size)
Step 3.
Sew the whit half sheet on the edge of the off white sheet.
Step 4.
With a pencil or fabric marking pencil (you can use a permanent black marker but be sure not to make mistakes!) to mark out the road path on the off white sheet, the green sheet and the brown sheet.  I drew a map before hand on a separate paper so I knew more accurately what I wanted to draw.  Then paint on the road.  I used acrylic paint which was a mistake since it just soaked into the felt and took forever to dry.  Use fabric paint or just permanent marker.  The green and brown fabric is marker and the off white is paint.  If you choose you can also paint yellow dotted lines in the road.  
Step 5.
The brown sheet I used not as a road but a stop for the cars.  One is a car wash, one is a paint shop, a gas station, and one is a garage.  For the car wash I cut a large blue square and cut strips in it.  Then I cut two white strips that resemble bubbles of soap.  I used a felt tip marker to write car wash across the top and to add bubble detail to the white.  I sewed the blue and the white felt onto the sheet in a couple little places trying to make it look not too obvious with the stitching.  For the paint shop I cut 4 different colors (try to make them bright colors) and tacked them on with the sewing machine.  Then using a felt tip maker added details.  I cut two white signs for the garage and the paint shop then sewed them on.  For the garage I cut little brown strips to resemble parking spaces.  I considered making little pillows and blankets for the cars but decided that might be taking it a little too far.  Maybe next time.  Lastly the gas station.  I cut a large red square and used a marker to add detail and make it look like a gas pump.  Then I cut a black hose for the car to back up to and gas up.  
Step 6.
For the green sheet I made it a roadway with all the traffic signs.  I used yellow for warnings (Sharp turn), and red for the stop sign and the yield.  I used white to indicate the upcoming bridge and only sewed the bridge on one side so that cars can go over the bridge or under it.  The center of the green sheet is a parking lot, simply marked out with a felt tip permanent marker.
Step 7.  Lastly the off white sheet is mostly curving roads for the cars to play on if they just want to drive.  one off road leads to a dead end and the other off road has a sign indicating rocks on the road and then several brown rocks on the road.  These were tacked on with the sewing machine.  

The cars can be tucked into their compartments, the sheets folded, and the whole track easily carried around for long drives, church meetings or waiting at the doctor!