About our blogger: Charla

I am an elementary school teacher from Toronto who, for the purpose of enjoying my son's early years, runs a home daycare. I enjoy teaching children, and learning the lessons they have to teach me. I hope you enjoy sharing with me the ups and downs of parenting, and the adventures of teaching the very young!

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Posts by Charla:

January 6th, 2014

Snow Angels

The daycare is up and running again, after a wonderful holiday. However, with the deep freeze that Toronto was experiencing, we have been stuck inside for two whole days! Minus 25 degree or more with the wind chill is just not okay to trek out in if we don’t have to. And since Noah and B. are not yet back at school, we have had the luxury of avoiding it.

Read the rest of this entry »


November 5th, 2013

City Fishing

I forgot to add these to the last post. Kids have such great imaginations, don’t they?

October 18th, 2013

Early Fall

One day Thomas asked, “Can we go to High Park today?” I said, “No, we’re not going there today.” He paused, and then said, “Tomorrow? Can we go tomorrow?” This caught me off guard. He has grown! This a new stage in his development and shows more complex thinking. Read the rest of this entry »

October 3rd, 2013

Swing Kids

We have been hanging out at the larger playground after the big boys finish school, almost every day. Noah and B. enjoy playing with their classmates (since the playground is across from the school, and most of the kids drift over to it after class). Riley and Riko are quite skilled on the equipment, and Thomas is practicing and getting better every day. Read the rest of this entry »


September 2nd, 2013


One of our new favorite activities is peeking through the window at the construction site, at Pacific and Bloor. We push the wagon up to the wall, and hold it steady, while the kids climb up and get an amazing view of trucks at work.

I have to admit (whether it’s right or wrong to put a condo up there), watching the early stages of construction up close is pretty amazing! Leila is the only one who doesn’t appreciate the work. She’s still at an age where she’s frightened by loud noises. (She’s just now getting used to me using my Dustbuster at home – thank goodness!)

One day B. rode his scooter to the daycare. I immediately put it away for the day, since the little kids aren’t quite ready for that yet (even the Radio Flyer scooter Noah got a few birthdays ago is a little bit of a hazard for kids like Thomas). I did not, however, put the helmet away, and Thomas was all over it like white on rice! He would put on the helmet, grab the tricycle, and proclaim that he was riding his motorcycle. There was a lot of getting off and then back onto this “motorcycle”, and a full commentary of his actions each time. It was the cutest! I felt like a real heel when I had to put both the trike and helmet away in hopes that he would finally come to dinner. He forgives quickly though!

A lot of the meals I serve at the daycare I make on the weekends. I usually make as large an amount as I can, and then divide the meal into portions large enough for one dinner for our group. Then I place each portion in a freezer bag and store them until needed. This way, we have a variety of home-made meals, and I can spend less time in the kitchen and more with the kids (though sometimes it still feels like I live in the kitchen!).

Pizza is a meal that they have fun helping me make, so I included them as fellow chefs for this batch! B. and Thomas helped me with the initial stages of mixing the yeast, water, sugar and flour. When Riley woke up, she joined in.

I was surprised and yet delighted that Leila demanded to help! Okay, she probably thought it was dinner time, but she didn’t complain when I gave her a little dusting of flour to play with! I gave her nearly empty bowls to play with as well. It kept her busy. She stuck it out with the others until it was time to put the shredded mozzarella on: and there was the reward.

Riley had to leave early, and Noah was being showered with attention at his Oma’s for the whole week, so Thomas and B. worked extra hard to help me get the job done. I quickly made one extra pizza as well, since one won’t go very far!

I don’t usually like to take the kids to the High Park playground (the smaller one, not the castle one) in the summer, because I find there is little shade for them to find relief, if they need to. But we figured we’d brave it, just for a change.

Here are the girls hanging out together. Leila gives all the kids hugs these days, but Riley is the only one who consistently appreciates it, and hugs back.

This was Leila’s first time trying raisins, and Riley was giving her one or two at a time to work on. (At 16 months, Leila still has only 2 teeth, so we have to be a little extra careful!)

We put the numbers on the number line. I think it was Riley’s first time with this activity, so Noah showed her how to match the numbers to the amounts.

I was impressed with Riley’s and Thomas’s counting skills. They are really coming along! Little ones always need encouragement with one-to-one correspondence. They often will count up two numbers while pointing at only one object. I think we will try to do this activity more regularly, since the kids were really into it.

Riley came to the daycare this week looking like a beautiful little fashionista, in her frilly tutu! I had one of those moments, (as I have with all the kids at different times), where I just looked at her, shook my head and said “Really? Are you kidding me? Are you THAT cute?”

Really?! Really. AND, she is starting a new fashion trend that I don’t think has EVER been done before: mismatched shoes. How priceless is she?! I don’t know about you, but I’m thinking that if she’s sporting this look, it MUST be cool!

Here the kids are, having Jello popsicles, yet again. Now and then, if Noah is finished his meal or snack, and I leave my chair (where I read to the kids), he takes my chair, and takes over the job of teacher, and reads to them. I absolutely love this! He is such a good little reader.

In the photo below, he is causing trouble, and I’ll tell you how. The kids all constantly want to read a catchy little book by Spike Lee titled “Please, Baby, Please.” There is one page in which the baby is pictured throwing a bowl of Cheerios over her head, and it reads “Not on your head, baby, baby, baby, please.” Well, Leila’s favourite topic of conversation is her head. She always touches her head and very cutely says “head”. Sometimes one of the kids will talk to her about something else, and she will revert back to this, looking innocently at them, and proclaiming “head”. She will do this throughout the day, and each time with the same degree of wonder and awe, that that is indeed her head. Anyway, every time Noah reads this page about the baby throwing food on her head, Leila is reminded of how much she loves to talk about this. She hears the word “head”, and like clockwork, she touches her head and says, “head”. Except at snack time, her hands are covered with food (she is also the messiest baby ever), and each time she touches her head, she rubs more food into her nice long hair. So, in the picture below, Noah is being ever so helpful and reading this one page, over, and over, and over. Leila does not tire of it, and Noah thinks it’s hilarious! Little rascal!

We went on an adventure yesterday. First, we hit Runnymede Library. Noah is reading me out of house and home and I cannot keep up with him! We took out 30 books for him (mostly level 3) and loaded them in the wagon. He actually finished them all as of last night! What the heck? And yes, I did check for comprehension. I am astonished. And I am bragging. It is my right. And my blog. :) (This blog is really by way to brag about all the kids. They are so awesome.)

After the library, as we were heading over to Chapters book store in Bloor West Village, we came across a fire truck parked by the side of the road. The firefighters were so nice (they always are) and gave the kids all “Junior Firefighter” stickers.

Thomas even got to sit on the truck! I thought he’d be more enthused, but he just sat quietly, eating his rice cake. This photo just makes me smile.

Next stop was the book store. The kids played with the Thomas the Tank Engine train table, and looked at the toys and games. Thomas, for the most part, did this:

Isn’t that impressive? He’s not yet 2! He seems compelled to practice jumping and climbing skills at the playground every day too.

We finished off our adventure with Happy Meals from McDonald’s, because they’re fun (not because they’re healthy). Special treat! Have a great weekend, everyone!

August 15th, 2013

The Playground Crashers

In the past week or so, we have hit a few different playgrounds, rather than sticking strictly to Lithuania Park.

It has been some time since we have visited Baird Playground. It was a nice change for the kids! The sand is similar to the sand found on tropical beaches, and the kids were quick to rid themselves of their shoes. (And although I helped Leila rid herself of her shoes too, I soon had to put them back on. Turns out the sand was not only as soft, Read the rest of this entry »

July 25th, 2013

Sweet, Sweet Summer

So, first of all, an apology to any of my readers who attempted to visit the blog and got a warning message about malware. My site was not infected, but, I had a link to another site at the bottom of my page. This linked-to site apparently was also not infected. However, it may have linked to a site that was infected. Anyway, I have removed the problem, and saved my dear blog. :)

Here are the kids fishing in their little ponds. What a great little activity for a hot day! Thanks, Dollarama. Read the rest of this entry »


July 11th, 2013

Field Trip to the ROM!

B.’s mother generously offered to share her family pass to the Royal Ontario Museum with the daycare. So she, myself, B., Noah, Thomas and Leila went on a field trip! We had a blast!

B. is especially fond of dinosaurs. Read the rest of this entry »

July 9th, 2013

Rock Star Kids

This is Thomas’s all-time favorite toy at the daycare: the guitar that’s far too big for him. Actually, it’s too big for most of the kids. It’s often inadvertently used as a weapon when a child is carrying it from place to place; even more so during a ‘turn around’. I’ve thought of just putting it away for a while, but I can’t bear to break Thomas’s heart like this. Also, I don’t think he would easily forget the guitar, and I would have to deal with a toddler’s post-traumatic stress, probably for weeks. And since kids obviously have 100 times the stamina we do, I’d end up giving in, in the end. Read the rest of this entry »

June 11th, 2013

New Adventures in Daycareland

We have a new little girl at the daycare for the next few weeks! Her name is Riko and she is almost 3 years old. She has come all the way from Japan, with her mother. She speaks very little English, and so is quite the little warrior in a new land.

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