This completely adorable picture book, which won the Bronze Medal in the 2017 Wishing Shelf Book Awards, stole my heart the moment I viewed its first pages. Goodnight Wishes! is about a mouse family who has to relocate when the farmhouse they live in is torn down. It’s a beautiful story of hope and wishes coming true.
Your littles will completely fall in to Leea Baltes‘ watercolor illustrations which reflect the author’s love of Beatrix Potter. I can’t put into words how happy the illustrations made me as I read about Mama Mouse and her little babies. And when you see the craft I have to go with this gem of a book, you’re totally going to swoon.
Goodnight Wishes! Mouse Activities
Leea Baltes provided me with a free copy of Goodnight Wishes! and compensated for me for my time, but the opinions and ideas are entirely my own.
In Goodnight Wishes!, Mama Mouse makes a wish on the Heavens for a new home for her and her little ones. She wishes with all her might, and the moon answers her. A box full of dollhouse toys falls off a truck just as the moon illuminates a tree hollow that would make a perfect home. Mama hides her babies under some brush and spends the whole night fixing up the hollow and making it beautiful and comfortable. After she and her babies spend a perfect day in their new home, she teaches her little ones to make their own wishes to the Heavens. But they have everything they need, so their wishes are that other people will be as blessed as they are.
Can you even? What a wonderful lesson about prayer, appreciating what you have, and caring for others.
So the activities for this book have to be very special.
Ms. Baltes uses such lovely language to tell the mouse family’s story. Some of the words may be unfamiliar to your kiddos, so I’ve made up a fun and easy vocabulary printable to help them learn some of the gorgeous new words.
This seems like a perfect time to learn more about field mice. Grab my free printable Field Mouse Unit and teach your kids more about the tiny creatures.
What could be better than making your very own dollhouse? Especially when it looks like a tree hollow? Well, nothing!
Tree Hollow Shoe Box Dollhouse
Your kiddos will have a blast making this dollhouse from found items for their own imaginary mice.
What you need:
- Shoe box
- Craft sticks (number will depend on size of shoe box
- Extra cardboard (I used the shoe box lid, but a cereal box would do)
- Brown craft paper
- Paper rolls and other found items such as thread spools, scrap cloth, acorn caps, and anything else that sparks your child’s imagination
- Double-sided tape (optional)
What you do:
- Cut a piece of craft paper that will wrap around your shoe box and is at least twice the height of the ‘house’
- Use double-sided tape or glue to attach paper to box
- Fold top of paper to resemble a tree trunk, leaving a hollow middle and tape or glue at front
- If your shoe box still shows, cover the top with some extra brown paper
- Cover the bottom of your house with glue
- Line craft sticks on the glue to make the floor (just like Mama Mouse does in the story)
- Use your found items to make furniture
- To make the table, I used an old thread spool. I cut a small circle out of my extra cardboard for the top and covered it with a scrap of cloth, then glued it on the thread spool
- I used found acorn caps for bowls, filling them with fake berries I had laying around
- To make the chairs, I cut a paper roll into 1-inch pieces and glued fabric scraps onto them, then glued lace around the out edges
- To make the bed, I cut a rectangle from the extra cardboard and scored three sides about 1/4 inch in. Then I folded down the sides and glued white tissue paper onto it for the sheet. I topped it with a fabric scrap and a pillow
- To make the pillow, I cut the shape from the extra cardboard and glued a fabric scrap onto it
- I even cut a picture from a magazine to ‘hang’ on the wall
- You could use small rocks to glue a fireplace onto the wall or make a cardboard shelf… the possibilities are endless. Let your children use their imaginations to decorate their Tree Hollow Home
Mama Mouse feeds her littles baked cheese in a bean, so obviously my immediate thought was… Oh. Yeah. Cheesecake.
Simple Summertime Strawberry Cheesecake
This quick and easy recipe will seriously make you wonder why you don’t make this stuff every day. I mean, if you didn’t care about your weight or your health. Your kids will love it, and you don’t even have to tell them it was almost effortless. (I know, I’m usually all old-school and from-scratch about these things, but every once in a while, even I need a gimme.)
What you need:
- 1 graham cracker pie crust
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 3.5 oz instant vanilla pudding
- 1 cup milk
- 15 oz strawberry pie filling
What you do:
- Beat cream cheese in a mixer until fluffy
- Add pudding and milk and beat until smooth
- Transfer mixture to pie crust
- Pour strawberry filling over cheese mixture
- Refrigerate until ready to eat
Nah. I’m not making this up. That’s all there is too it. And it is Divine. I barely snapped a pic before my savages wolfed down the entire cheesecake.
Hey, they saved me a piece.
I don’t know who will love it more–you or your kids.