Thursday, June 11, 2015

Get Jump Start on Father's Day

Father’s Day is June 21st. While you may have a plan in mind for your Father’s Day activities, think about the start to Dad’s special day. Do you make a special breakfast? Shower him with gifts? This year, help your kids show Dad how much he means to them with a special start to the day.

Breakfast in Bed
Just like Moms do on Mother’s Day, Dad appreciates a nice breakfast in bed- with a few small adjustments; Mom likes flowers and chocolate, but Dad would probably prefer bacon and black coffee. Get your kids involved by letting them help cook, or decorating a special place mat for the meal. Making Dad his own breakfast in bed is sure to be a big hit. After all, the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach!

Make Dad a Card
There are a hundred different ideas for Father’s Day cards to choose from. One option is to wish Dad a “Fishing” You a Happy Father’s Day Card.

What you will need:
  • construction paper
  • colored tissue paper
  • scissors
  • crayons or markers
  • glue

Use one rectangle piece of construction paper to be the base of the card. Depending on your child’s age, you can either fold the card in half, or just use the front of the paper for the card. On the front, draw the basic outline of a fish attached to a hook and fishing pole. Cut pieces of tissue paper in small shapes to use as fish scales; you can use squares, eye-drops, circles or any shape you like. Have your child glue the “scales” onto the fish. Draw an eye on your fish, or glue on a googley eye. Write on the front of the card “Fishing” You a Happy Father’s Day. The inside of the card is up to you; write Dad a special message, have your child sign their name, or add more fish on the inside.

Finger Paint Fun
Besides a card, there are a few different crafts you can try with finger paint to make a one-of-a-kind craft for Dad. Paint the entire hand, or just a few fingers to create some fun monsters. You and your child can make trees, hearts, animals, or just finger paint a picture for Dad. If your child is still small, try a “You are My Sunshine” sign for dad to hang up at home or in his office. Using a canvas board, paint the circle of the sun in the corner, then use your child’s footprints as the rays of the sun. Add your custom gift to his bedside breakfast tray.

Dad works hard for his family all year round. Father’s Day is the one day a year to really show dad how much you and your family care; whether with a crafty gift, a hearty meal, or a homemade keepsake. Get a little creative with your gift this year, and give the man in your life the best start to Father’s Day he could ever want.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Spring Cleaning tips-How to Get the Kids Involved

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Spring cleaning is a touchy subject that we don’t particularly like to think about, but eventually need to address. Make this year the year you call in reinforcements against those dreaded chores with a gathered team of energetic workers- your kids. After all, you didn’t mess up the house all on your own, so why should you be the only one responsible for cleaning it up? The real question is, how do you possibly get kids to clean? Here are a few ways to get your kids excited about cleaning. 

Don’t Overuse
Children have short attention spans- usually shorter if they are cleaning. Instead of assigning a lot of chores for them to do in a single day, assign them one big chore to do or a few smaller jobs. Giving less work helps guarantee more of a chance that the chore will be done correctly and with attention.

Make Cleaning Fun
You are probably thinking that there is no way that the words 'cleaning' and 'fun' could be in a sentence together without the words 'is not’ in-between them, but it is true! Here are just a couple ideas to help:  
  • Set a timer. Kids love racing, and what better way to have a race than to see who can pick up the most dirty laundry in 30 seconds, or clear all the toys from the floor?
  • Make up challenges- challenge your kids to try and see how many toys they can hold in their arms at one time.
  • Pretend- maybe you and your child are butlers or maids, maybe an evildoer has splattered the room in “radioactive” laundry that needs to be thrown in a special bin to save the bedroom floor and its residents. 

Parent/Child Duo
Imagine getting to work alongside your biggest hero- that’s what it is like for a child to get to do something important with mom or dad. Encouragement and teamwork between you and your child can go a long way. This also can be seen as a great way to teach your children certain cleaning skills and promote a clean lifestyle.

Planning rewards for the kids can benefit not just the children, but also you! Let’s be serious- you didn't happily give up your Saturday off to clean up the house. Schedule a treat with the kids for their hard work- things that you like also- and do something like ordering pizza or renting a movie! 

For added reward fun, try The Chip Shoppe's Toss a Chore Dice. The set of 2 dice has 12 different chore options, including “Set the Table” or “Empty the Trash”. After completing chores, kids can let the Roll a Reward Dice determine their reward. The 12 different rewards include Ice Cream or Free Play Time.

Just because they are called “chores” doesn't mean they need to be undesirable. Recruit your little ones for some added help- and possibly some added fun- next time there are chores to be done!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Chip Shoppe Spring Warehouse Sale 2015

The snow has melted, the birds are chirping and it is time for the Spring The Chip Shoppe Warehouse Sale!

The Chip Shoppe Warehouse Sale will be:

  • St. Cloud, Minnesota
4759 Heatherwood Rd. St. Cloud, MN 56301
    • Thursday, May 7th, 2015 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    • Friday, May 8th, 2015 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    • Saturday, May 9th, 2015 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

  • Jackson, Wisconsin
N169 W21177 Tower Dr. Jackson, WI 53037
    • Thursday, May 14th, 2015 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    • Friday, May 15th, 2015 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    • Saturday, May 16th, 2015 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

The warehouse sale will be filled with great items for you and your family. All food items are $6.00 and Gift items are 75% off! You can stock up on your favorite Chip Shoppe foods, like our famous Chip Shoppe cookie dough, gourmet soups, delicious cheesecakes, pies and braided bread.

We also have great gift items such as gourmet chocolates, trendy jewelry, kitchen items, candles and other household decorative items. Remember to get here early, once an item runs out, it’s gone!

Friday Special: Sausage & Cheese Egg Bake only $3.00 each

Saturday Special: Auntie Anne’s Pretzel Pockets only $3.00 each

As our gift to you, feel free to print the coupon below to receive 1 free gift item with purchase. We hope you find just what you are looking for at the sale. Be sure to like our Facebook page to keep an eye on any specials or updates we may have.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Little Curiosities; Science for Your Kid

Inspire, occupy, and incite wonder with these easy-to-do children's science experiments! From the colorful to the totally gross, head to your kitchen for a few quick lessons in science, sure to produce plenty of Oohs and Aahs of amazement!

The Color Changing Carnation
A pretty cool staple of children's science experiments, the color changing carnation experiment is a must-see for tiny nature lovers. Where does the water go when little hands help water mom's garden? Let your children explore the importance of water and the functions of roots and stems.
You'll Need: -6 white carnations  -Food coloring   -4 Plastic cups -Water -Knife (for parent's use only)
1. Fill the plastic cups half full with water. Add 15 drops of red food dye to the first cup, adding blue and then green to the other cups. The last cup should be left without coloring.
2. Cut each carnation stem at an angle, creating a fresh cut. (Tip: cut the stems under water to prevent air bubbles from filling the stem, which will not allow water to be carried through the stem.)
3. Place a freshly cut carnation in each cup and wait for the results

-May take up to 24 hours for the colored water to reach the white petals. Check back every few hours for results!

Magic Rock Candy

Test out a 'supersaturated solution' using a childhood favorite- sugar! In this experiment, the water and sugar mix creates a supersaturated solution in which the water is only able to absorb and hold the sugar while both are hot. During the cooling process the sugar is leached out of the solution, becoming a crystalline work of art on your skewer!

You’ll Need:
-2 to 3 cups sugar
-Wooden skewer or chopstick
-1 clothespin
-Tall glass
-1 cup water

1. Clip wooden skewer at the top, between the clothespin (this will hang down into the glass, held in place by the clothespin).
2. An adult should bring 1 cup water to a boil. Add 1/4 cup sugar to boiling water, stirring until dissolved. Continue adding sugar to boiling water until no more will dissolve. The process of dissolving will take a bit of time, don't give up!
3. When no more sugar will dissolve, remove boiling water from the burner and allow to cool for 20 minutes.
4. Pour sugar solution into the glass, almost full. Place skewer into the solution so that it hangs without touching the sides of the glass.
5. Take a few guesses as to what will happen! Allow the glass to sit undisturbed for 3-7 days, and watch your rock candy form! (Tip: for colored rock candy, add food dye to sugar water)

Watch Bacteria Grow!
Your kids have been told time and again to wash their hands; bring this simple lesson to life with a petri dish, and some guesses about germs! Are there really germs on your hands? Is your cat's mouth cleaner than a human's? What's really living on your toilet seat?! Let's play with some microorganisms, and find out! (Hint: your petri dish and warm conditions provide the optimal place for bacteria to flourish into colonies; which samples produce the largest amounts of bacteria?)

You'll Need:
-Cotton swabs
1. Using a separate cotton swab for each petri dish, swab a door handle, the floor, or the bottom of your shoe. Choose your own area to test for germs- maybe places you child needs to be reminded to clean
2. Rub the cotton swab gently over the agar in the petri dish, and seal when finished. Repeat steps for each new test you wish to complete.
3. Place petri dish in a warm area for 2-3 days, and observe as your bacteria begin to multiply!
4. Once finished with your experiment, leave petri dishes tightly sealed, wrap in newspaper, and discard.

A Secret Message

Enter spy mode with this secret message maker. Diluting lemon juice in water allows the mixture to be undetectable when written with on paper. Because that handy kitchen lemon is an organic substance that oxidizes (becomes brown) when heated, adding a little heat to your secret message will reveal it to wondrous little eyes!
You'll Need;
1.Half a lemon
2.White paper
3.Lamp or light bulb
7.Cotton swab

1. Squeeze lemon juice into a small bowl, and add a few drops of water. Mix with spoon.
2. Dipping cotton swabs into the lemon juice mixture, write out or draw a secret message on white paper. Allow juice to dry and become invisible.
3. To reveal your hidden message, heat paper by holding it close to a light bulb and watch what appears!

Inspire some curiosity in your kids with some of these science experiments. Not only is it fun for you and your children, but your kids will learn a thing or two along the way. School is nearly out for the summer- keep your child’s brain stimulated and their imagination buzzing this summer!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

How to Plan a Kid's Birthday Party

Is your child’s birthday soon approaching, but you have yet to start planning their party? Not to worry, here is your guide to a birthday bash that your son or daughter and their friends will remember for years to come.
Follow these simple steps to create an awesome kid’s birthday party:

The first step you want to make is to find a theme for your party. Whether you choose Disney princesses, SpongeBob or any other themed party, make sure the ultimate choice comes from your child. Do they have a favorite cartoon or animal? These make for an obvious choice that your kid is sure to love.

The first step in choosing a venue is knowing whether or not you want a handful of sugar-filled kids running around your home, the local community center, Chuck-E-Cheese or another location. If you choose your home, you need to decide if you would like it to remain indoors or in your yard. Be sure to give yourself time for clean-up to make sure your home is safe for fun and games.

Although you may think that invitations should be the first step on your list, it is important to include the theme and address of your event along with any items the party guests may need to bring (ex. swimsuit). Don’t forget to include the date and time of the event and send it out at least two weeks in advance so they receive their invitation in time to plan around your event.

With choosing decorations for the party, you can go all out or keep it simple. A great option is to go to your local dollar store or party center and get amazing party supplies at a fraction of the cost.

There are many inexpensive and easy-to-make party snacks, entrees and desserts to choose from. Just search one of our Snack Time, Quick and Healthy Supper Ideas or Desserts Kids Will Love Pinterest boards for fun and delicious ideas. Don’t forget the cake and ice cream!

Once the rest of the party starts coming together, it is time to start planning the fun part... games! Whether you go with the traditional pin the tail on the donkey or piƱata, or decide to outdo yourself with more creative ideas, remember that this is the part that the kids enjoy the most. Make sure to choose games that aren’t too complicated and keep the kids laughing and having a good time.

Party Favors
Although games are fun, having a goody bag filled with toys and candy or a prizes for game winners will make it even more fun! Just be sure to make the games equally balanced so that no one gets left out.

We hope this helps you to plan an unforgettable birthday party for your child. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for more fun crafts and activities to do with your kids. If you have any other fun birthday party ideas, we would love to hear them in the comments below!

Monday, March 16, 2015

St. Patrick's Day Leprechaun Crafts for Kids

Ring in St. Patrick’s Day with these fun Leprechaun themed crafts for the kiddos! Most of these crafts can be made by using things around the house and art materials you may already have on hand. Once you have gathered your materials, roundup and the kids and let the fun begin.

Leprechaun Craft

What you need:
  • Cylinder (Toilet Paper Roll)
  • Orange Pipe Cleaners
  • Green Paint
  • White Paint
  • Black Marker
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Green Construction Paper

First, paint the entire cylinder green. Once this is dried, paint a half circle around the center of the cylinder, this will be the leprechaun's face. Curl the pipe cleaner into a beard and glue it to the bottom of the half circle. Next, use the green construction paper to trace your leprechaun's feet and glue them to the bottom of the cylinder. Now it is time to get creative. Using a black marker, draw a face, belt and line indicating the legs of the leprechaun on the cylinder. Finally, trace a medium size circle with a small circle in the middle on the green construction paper. This should look similar to a donut. It is important to use the end of the cylinder as a guide for the small circle in the middle. Once this is done you can pull the cylinder through the middle of the circle. This will be the leprechaun's hat. Congratulations, you created a cute leprechaun craft that your kids can be proud of!

Hand-Print Leprechaun

What you Need:
  • Brown Construction Paper
  • Green Construction Paper
  • Black Construction Paper
  • Tan Construction Paper
  • Black Marker
  • Scissors

First, place your hand flat on a sheet of brown construction paper and trace your hand. Once you have successfully traced your hand, cut around the edges. Next, trace a perfectly round circle for the face and bumps on each side of the circle for the ears on the tan construction paper. Use the green construction paper to cut out a rectangle for the hat and the hat brim. Use the tan or brown construction paper can be used for the belt on the hat. Don’t forget to add the buckle. Finally, glue it all together and draw the face. Get creative with the face drawing and this will be a fun craft to look back on!

Leprechaun Wind Catcher

What you Need:
  • Green Construction Paper
  • Black Construction Paper
  • Yellow Construction Paper
  • Orange Construction Paper
  • Black Marker
  • Stapler
  • Scissors


Start by folding a 9 inch x 13 inch sheet of green construction paper in half. Make a line 1 inch along the end of the paper that does not have the crease, so you know where to stop when cutting your fringe lines. Make 1 inch cuts from the crease of the paper up to the mark you made, do not cut all the way to the ends. Next, unfold the paper and roll it into a long narrow tube, stapling the ends together. Using a separate piece of paper, cut out two long strips about and inch thick to make the leprechaun's arms. Fold the strips at 1 inch intervals in opposite directions to make a fan effect. Then, staple a tan circle to one end of each strip for a hand, and stape the other to the top of the lantern. Cut a third tan circle larger than the hands to use as the leprechaun’s face. Cut out and attach orange hair and a black hat to the leprechaun’s face. You can add a yellow bow, freckles, eyes nose, and a mouth with bits of paper or a marker before adding the face to the lantern.

We hope you enjoy these fun crafts with your kids. At The Chip Shoppe, we love to see families enjoy bonding with their children through crafts and activities! Stay tuned to our various social media platforms for other ideas: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+ and Blogger.