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Tag: katy

I admit I am not much of a cook. My failed cakes I blame on our high altitude (9000 ft). But I am going to try! With each FIAR rowing, we’ll make a related food item. This week is Frosty Snowballs dessert for Katy and the Big Snow rowing.


Frosty Snowballs

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup sifted powdered sugar
  • Edible sparkles or colored sugar


  1. In a large mixing bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the granulated sugar; beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in water and vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Using a wooden spoon, stir in any remaining flour and the chopped pecans.
  2. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
  3. Bake in a 325 degree F oven 20 minutes or until bottoms are light brown. Cool completely.
  4. Place 1/3 cup powdered sugar in a bowl. Gently roll and shake cooled cookies until covered in snow. Sprinkle with colored sparkles or sugar.

Various sized "snowballs" entering oven

Various sized "snowballs" entering oven

Here’s Chef Satori licking her hands of yummy powdered sugar after rolling the snowballs in “snow”! We sure wish Daddy was here to help us eat these!


We’ve extended our Katy rowing a few more days to study compasses and blizzards and finish our Katy and the Big Snow lapbook.

Thanks to Hands of a Child, we had a few Compass lapbook entries to add. After working with all the paper plates earlier, I decided to make a compass for Satori, using of course, a paper plate as the compass. Satori then wrote in the letters for directions. She knew where to put “N” for north, and knew the rest of the letters, but not where to put them, so mama had to help. We colored one end of a stick red to point to North. I manually drilled a whole in the center of the stick, and then using a little brad, pinned it to the middle of our compass. (A cardstock compass needle would be an easy option.) Now, Satori can spin the compass dial and point it to North herself!


Then I attempted to explain blizzards. I told her about the “Storm of the Century” (the March 1993 one) in which I went to Florida via bus for spring break, but got stuck in that scary blizzard. We talked about the Schoolchildren Blizzard in 1888 (tomorrow we will read a book on this).

Another creative inspiration hit me.

Vehicles Stuck in Snow

  • Construction paper of different colors, including black
  • Circle paper puncher (or cut out circles yourself)
  • Ziplock bag
  • “Snow” – white sand, white glitter

We took a scrap of black construction paper and had Satori paper-punch round circles out. I then cut out vehicle shapes and had Satori glue her black tires on them. Here we made a fire engine, ambulance, and sports car. Satori placed them in our zip bag.


I happened to have some sparkly white sand handy, so we filled the bag with the sand. I then taped it shut.

Satori got a kick out of trying to “plow” out the vehicles in the snow!


We’re almost finished with our Katy and the Big Snow lapbook. Tomorrow we’ll wrap it all up and start our next FIAR rowing!

Katy and the Big Snow Lapbook

Katy and the Big Snow Lapbook

In celebration of Katy and the Big Snow, and our own snowy week, Satori and mom had fun with snowflake crafts today! Before we started, I tried to get her to learn a little about snowflakes, but she was too excited to get started. 😉 The coolest project involved a bit of a chemistry experiment.

Crystal Snowflake

Make beautiful, permanent crystal snowflakes!

Crystal Snowflake required items

Crystal Snowflake required items

You will need:

  • Pipe cleaners – white or other color “snowflake” you want
  • String
  • Wide mouthed jar
  • Borax (20 Mule Team Borax Laundry Booster only)
  • Pencil or stick
  • Blue Food coloring (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Water

Take the pipe cleaners and form them into a primitive snowflake. Use your imagination! Test to make sure it will fit inside your jar.


Boil some water and pour into the jar. Add Borax until super concentrated (until you see undissolved borax on the bottom). A guideline is to add 3 tbsp for every cup of boiling water.


If desired, add a few drops of blue food coloring to make the snowflake look super “cool”. Tie your snowflake to a pencil or stick and lower into the jar.


Leave overnight for the crystals to form when water cools.


Paper Cutout Snowflakes

While we wait for our crystals to form, we started our next project. We couldn’t resist making a snowflake out of cutting paper, Satori said she’s never done this before.


The snowflake closest to camera (on right) is Satori’s!

Snowflake art

Snowflake art

For Language Arts FIAR day, today we dramatized the story of Katy and the Big Storm by Virginia Lee Burton. Luckily, I had Miss Mayor Satori to help me plan out the city.


This is our second time using a compass for FIAR, and this time Satori knew exactly what a compass was for, and what the “N” means. We used our compass key to layout the map of Geoppolis, which isn’t exactly straight up and down for north.


Together Mayor Satori and I built the city of Geoppolis, complete with roads, signs, buildings, a water tower, ice pond, and the city vehicles.


And an aerial view. (Click the picture for bigger detail.)


One day it started to snow. and it went on all day. Looks like a Big Snow! Everyone and everything was stopped, except KATY!


She plowed out the city of Geopolis. In doing so, Katy helped the police protect the city, the postmaster deliver the mail,  the Telephone and Electric Company repair their poles, the Water Department fix the water main, the doctor help the patient get to the hospital, the fire chief put out a fire, and so on… Katy helped save the town!


Finally the town could move again. In the process, as we traveled to East, West, North and South Geoppolis, we also got nice practice with our cardinal directions. FIAR rocks!


After we determined the city was safe and sound, Mayor Satori decided to have some fun in the snow!


After mopping and a shower, we also learned the literary device of personification – where Katy was a hard working snow plow that was given human qualities. And as always, we learned some new vocabulary:


Tomorrow is Art day so mama has to quickly research up some fun and cool snow crafts!

Just as predicted, we woke up today to a cold, blustery day with SNOW! The power even went out a few times, making our first rowing of Katy and the Big Snow even more relevant. At first I was a little worried about Satori not enjoying rowing this book 5 times, it being about a snowplow, but I have a whole week of fun things planned to bring the story alive for her. There was much more to learn in Social Studies than I imagined, so we might have to break this up into two parts.

After our first reading, we colored our lapbook cover page and then did a few lapbook entries. Here is a description of what Katy does in the summer (repair roads) and winter (plow roads). Satori has always enjoyed filling in the letters, and she has improved a thousand-fold since she first attempted copying letters in February.


Next we learned about important jobs in a typical city, what makes cities run smoothly. Hospitals, fire station, post office, school, library, etc… Both the community helpers (people) and their buildings and vehicles all play a part. If one goes down, it can spell trouble for a city.


Then we learned about different road signs and as we drive around this week, I’ll be pointing out typical road signs. I also want to show her the power lines that “connect” a city with electricity and telephone service. We made cute little signs and stuck them in clay piles. Tomorrow they should be dry and we can use them in our Katy and the Big Snow reenactment!


Then we filled out the map of Geopolis. This will be a good review for Math Day, as the book has all its buildings by number on the map.


Satori enjoyed herself and did not want to stop her “learning”. 🙂