I had a terrible realization the other day that I've gotten out of the habit of reading to my five year old. A few months ago he went from wanting me to read him a bunch of books at bedtime, to his daddy reading The Daddy Book. They have a special way of reading it together by acting things out and singing. It's cute to watch. One reason I hated reading to him in bed at night is that his bunk beds made it so dark. So today I fixed that and added a clip lamp to his bed. Now we can shine the light right on our books. (I added the lamp after this pic was taken).
I also got smart and took his books out of the toy closet and put them on a shelf near the fireplace in the living room. This is where we hang out the most, and when they were in the closet, they weren't getting read. I was always afraid of our house looking crazy with too many kids things, but the fact is, I have kids. And having books in the living room is one of the best things I've done. And the poor kid was bringing his Legos (from his room) downstairs to play, then back up to put away every day. Now he has his own shelf.
I have a cabinet in the toy closet that I kept filled with craft things. I read in a homeschooling book to keep crafts you use in the kitchen, in the kitchen. I thought this was a great idea since I don't think my son ever really looked in the toy closet cabinet. I cleared out a drawer in our island and filled it with Play-dough, paints and fingerpaints and glue.
Old craft cabinet still has beads, wood, feathers, and lots of other fun crafts.
The other day Bug made his first lapbook. We kept it simple and did the letter A. He loved it and had a great time using sparkle glue color his ant in. I admit I was shocked at how well he stayed in the lines for the letter A. He usually hates coloring, but did a fantastic job.