Simple Thanksgiving Craft for Kids to Show Thanks

Can you believe it is already almost Thanksgiving?

Of course we should be thankful all year round, but this time of the year is a great reminder to talk about and show thanks for what we do have. For the past few years, my daughters and I have enjoyed creating a Thanksgiving chain and a Thanksgiving tree to display some of the things we are thankful for.

thankful chain

This year, I decided to create a thankful wreath with my daughters. It has been hanging on our wall for a little while now and is a great reminder that we have a lot of blessings in our lives.

Thankful Wreath

You can learn more about our kid-made thankful wreath to show gratitude on Hands On As We Grow here if you would like.

Do you have a special activity you do in your family to show thanks?


Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles · Ramblings

Happy National Pickle Day!

Will you be doing anything special to celebrate National Pickle Day today? How about visiting the Mount Olive Pickle Gift Shop in North Carolina?

Although I won’t be in Mount Olive on National Pickle Day, I was really excited to be able to make a stop there earlier this year with family while we were on vacation.

We successfully made it the the corner of Cucumber and Vine and found the gift shop. I was kind of surprised we had to stop at a guard station before entering the parking lot area.

Mt. Olive Pickle Gift Shop Signs

Another surprise for me was the size of the gift shop. I don’t know why, but I had envisioned a large store full of pickle themed items. It was probably a good thing the gift shop itself was smaller than I had anticipated because it still took me (and my daughters) quite a while to decide what pickle themed items we wanted to purchase – there were so many goodies to choose from!

We ended up buying t-shirts, an apron, postcards, cards and envelopes, a keychain, and a stuffed pickle toy (isn’t it cute?).

Mount Olive Ollie the Pickle Toy

We also picked up a bookmark and scratch ‘n sniff pickle stickers. So, yes, the gift shop was definitely big enough to hold plenty of pickle themed souvenirs!

Mount Olive Pickle Company Scratch and Sniff Stickers

It was also neat for me to see my book Pickles, I Like Pickles on a shelf for sale there.

Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles book cover

Did you see these 20 gifts under $25 for pickle lovers?

According to an informational sheet we picked up while at the gift shop, “Mt. Olive is the best-selling brand of pickles, peppers and relishes in the U.S.”

Mount Olive Pickle Company does not offer tours; however, if you stop in the gift shop, you can ask to watch a video about Mount Olive Pickle Company. Asking to watch the video is like a secret code to a backroom filled with jars of pickles and an area to watch the video.

My daughters and I had actually seen the video ahead of time while we were working on the course I created for Schoolhouse Teachers entitled Foods and Food Production.

Foods and Food ProductionYou can also watch the Mount Olive Pickles Tour video from the comfort of your own home here if you are unable to make the trip to Mount Olive.

Those who have the opportunity to watch the video at the gift shop will also get a chance to choose a jar of pickles to take home. My family decided to choose jars of pickles we hadn’t tried before. Thankfully, they all made the trip back home safely.

Mount Olive Pickles

I am so glad we had the opportunity to visit!

How will you celebrate National Pickle Day?



Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles

20 Pickle Gifts Under $25 for Pickle Lovers

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

Do you know what November 14th is? National Pickle Day!

In preparation of National Pickle Day, I have put together a list of 20 gifts under $25 (at the time of this writing) for pickle lovers. These would also make great Christmas gifts for those pickle lovers in your life (or yourself if you are a pickle lover)!

Check out 20 gifts under $20 for Pickle Lovers (posted for last National Pickle Day) and 20 more gifts under $20 for Pickle Lovers (posted for National Pickle Month in July) if you missed them last time.

These are all items I found by doing an online search and have not seen them in person. So, please do your own research before making a purchase to determine if it is truly what you want.

Pickle T-Shirts

These pickle t-shirts come in a variety of sizes and colors for men, women, and children. Which one is your favorite?

Just A Girl Who Loves Pickles T-Shirt

It may say “Just a Girl…”, but these shirts are available to fit men, women, and youth. There are a variety of background colors including slate, baby blue, heather grey, heather blue, and pink available.

Dancing Pickle T-Shirt

This dancing pickle t-shirt is available in select sizes for men, women, and youth. There are a variety of background color to choose from such as black, navy, royal blue, dark heather, and purple.

I Love Pickles T-Shirt

This I Love Pickles t-shirt is available in select sizes for men, women, and youth. Background colors to choose from include black, asphalt, royal blue,cranberry, and purple.

I’m Here To Eat All The Pickles T-Shirt

This t-shirt is available in select sizes for men, women, and youth. Black, navy, asphalt, royal blue, and purple are the possible background choices.

Pickle Hats

Do you prefer sun hats or baseball hats? Either way, these pickle hats will have you covered.

Pickles Bucket Sun Hat 

Keep the sun out of your eyes with this pickle bucket sun hat that is available in one size.

“Basketball Playing Pickle” Sun Hat

For the pickle loving basketball player who wants to offer protection to the eyes from the sun.

Pickle Baseball Hat

This pickle baseball hat is available in khaki or white.

Dill With It Denim Baseball Hat

This particular hat only comes in blue; however, it appears there are other links to hats that have the same “Dill With It” and pickle design available in grey, red, and blue.

Pickle Bags and Packs

Check out these four pickle bags and packs to see if there is one just right for you.

I’m Kind of a Big Dill Drawstring Bag

Take a pickle drawstring bag with you on your next vacation, gym visit, or whatever else you may need a bag for.

Pickles Backpack

This pickles backpack is made out of recycled water bottles.

Dill With It Canvas Tote Bag

The description suggests using this pickle tote for things such as carrying books home from the library and wrapping Christmas presents.

Insulated Pickle Lunch Tote Bag

Keep warm food warm and cold food cold for hours (according to the description) with this insulated pickle lunch tote bag.

Pickle Towels

Choose between one of these pickle themed towel choices to be used in the kitchen, on the beach, or in the bathroom.

Pickle Hand Towels

This is a set of two pickle hand towels.

Just So You Know… I’m Kind of a Big Dill Kitchen Hand Towel

This kitchen towel measures 16″x24″.

I’m Kind of a Big Dill Hand Towels

This is a set of two matching kitchen hand towels with pickles.

Large Pickle Beach/Bath Towel

It’s may be too cold to go to a beach (at least in some places), but this large pickle towel can be used as a bath towel, too. This pickle towel measures 32″x52″.

Pickle Books

Even adults may enjoy a pickle themed children’s book!

Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles by Brigitte Brulz

Of course, I had to add this to the list! This is an item from this list that I have actually seen in person. Free coloring pages, activity ideas, and a teacher’s guide are available to go along with Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles on Fun Extras.

I Would Love you Even if You Were a Pickle by  Bucleigh Newton Kernodle

I would love you even if you were a pickle. I have ever told anyone that before.

Stop That Pickle! by Peter Armour

Why does someone need to stop a pickle?

Pickle-Chiffon Pie by Jolly Roger Bradfield

You could try to invent your own “pickle-chiffon pie” after reading this book.

What is your favorite pickle themed item?



Crafts and Projects · Writing Appearances

Pumpkins and Potatoes

What can grow in a garden, be turned into a variety of tasty foods, and be fun to play with? Did you think pumpkins?

It is October, which is a perfect time for pumpkins. And pumpkins do grow in gardens (like these two we grew in a pot this year).

pie pumpkins on deck

Pumpkins can be turned into a variety of tasty treats (like the pumpkin pie, pumpkin muffins, and pumpkin seeds my family has made and enjoyed).

Our Grand Pumpkin Experiment Results

And pumpkins can be a lot of fun to carve, paint, and read about. Check out these 22 children’s books about pumpkins if you missed it!

22 Children's Books about Pumpkins

But, another answer to what can grow in a garden, be turned into a variety of tasty foods, and can be fun to play with is…Potatoes!

Our family grew a lot of potatoes in our garden at our previous house. I loved having plenty of potatoes to enjoy ourselves and share with the local food shelf.

red potatoes

Potatoes are so versatile and can be made into many different tasty foods. Did anyone celebrate National Potato Chip Day this year?

lays dill pickle chips

Potatoes can also be a lot of fun to play with. Isn’t this potato creature interesting?

Potato hedgehog

And you can even be a scientist with an a-maze-ing potato experiment!

Potato experiment

But, have you ever thought of painting with potatoes?

Well, potato drop painting was the topic of the most recent post I had published on Hands On As We Grow. You can check out Messy Fun Potato Drop Painting for Kids (on Hands On As We Grow) if you are interested in seeing how my daughters created this masterpiece with potatoes and paint.

Will you try a potato drop painting?


For more posts about Hands On As We Grow writings, check out:

What Does Cotton Ball Transfer from Room to Room Mean?

Fine Motor Paperclip Activity

Science Experiments to Try at Home

At-Home Learning Activities

Themed Books · Writing Appearances

22 Children’s Books about Pumpkins

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission at no extra charge to you if you click on a link and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I greatly appreciate all purchases you make using these links. Thank you!)

Last month, I shared some apple books that had been listed in a course I created earlier this year entitled Foods and Food Production.

Foods and Food Production

This course, which was published on Schoolhouse Teachers, includes information about 26 different foods and how they are grown, harvested, processed, and used.

Well, now that we are in October, I thought it would be fun to share books based on another food listed in the course. Pumpkins!

pumpkins on deck

Within the pumpkin section of Foods and Food Production, I provided the following:

  • introduction questions for students to answer
  • links to videos showing a pumpkin plant time lapse, an explanation of how pumpkins are harvested, how they grow, and the life cycle of pumpkins
  • lists of books about pumpkins (fiction and nonfiction)
  • more reading about pumpkins with links to other resources
  • a list of the top ten pumpkin producing countries
  • a flag match worksheet with the flags of the top ten pumpkin producing countries
  • information and links to videos that show what products are made with pumpkins
  • three pumpkin recipes to try
  • closing questions for students to discuss what they had learned about pumpkins

Today, I am sharing the lists of books about pumpkins that were included within the course. I was able to check all of these books out from my library.

Fiction Books about Pumpkins

These are the books about pumpkins that were found at my library in the fiction section.

My Pumpkin by Julia Noonan

This book is a My First Reader book that includes a total of 48 different words. It shows a young boy planting seeds in the spring, pulling weeds, watching the pumpkin plant grow, seeing a variety of pumpkin sizes, picking a pumpkin, and going to a pumpkin show to win a prize.

Oh My, Pumpkin Pie! by Charles Ghigna

This is a Step 2 Step into Reading book. It is a rhyming book that shows the varieties, shapes, and sizes of pumpkins and different things that can be made from pumpkins.

P is for Pumpkin: God’s Harvest Alphabet by Kathy-Jo Wargin

This rhyming alphabet picture book goes from A-Z of items found in the fall such as apples, barn, and corn. It reinforces the fact that God made the Earth and everything. It ends with “…may you find every blessing that God’s autumn brings.”

Pumpkin Cat by Anne Mortimer

A little mouse shows Cat how pumpkins grow by planting seeds, watering, waiting, transplanting the little seedling outside, watching, making a scarecrow, picking a pumpkin, and finally making a jack-o-lantern cat. The end of the book provides instructions for how to grow your own pumpkin.

Pumpkin Countdown by Joan Holub

A group of kids is going on a field trip to a pumpkin patch. The book counts down from twenty to one in a fun way and has illustrations for kids to find more pumpkin information and orange items. The illustrations show how pumpkins grow, what bees get from flowers, and different kinds of pumpkins. The book ends with a song to practice counting backwards.

Pumpkin Day! by Candice Ransom

This is a Step 1 Step into Reading book. It is a rhyming book that shows a family going to a pumpkin patch and picking out pumpkins. At home, they turn the pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns.

The Pumpkin Patch by Margaret McNamara

This is a level 1 Ready-to Read book that is part of the Robin Hill School series. The class goes on a field trip to a pumpkin patch, and a little girl named Katie tries to pick out the perfect pumpkin. She chooses a small pumpkin, but she worries her pumpkin may not be perfect until her dad helps her turn the small pumpkin into a pumpkin pie to share with her class.

Nonfiction Books about Pumpkins

These are books about pumpkins I found in the nonfiction section of my library.

A Trip to the Pumpkin Patch by Jenna Lee Gleisner

This has simple text that talks about what you would see at a pumpkin patch including rows of pumpkins, people picking pumpkins, sorting the sizes of pumpkins, face painting, hay rides, and pumpkin treats. It also mentions that people take pumpkins home to make jack-o-lanterns to decorate for Halloween. At the end of the book, there are directions on how to paint a pumpkin.

From Pumpkin to Pie by Lisa Owings

This book tells when pumpkin seeds are planted, how the pumpkin plants grow, when pumpkins are harvested, how pumpkins are prepared for baking, what part of the pumpkin is cooked, and how pumpkin is prepared to make pumpkin pie.

Grow a Pumpkin Pie! by Jane E. Gerver

This book is a Hello Reader book that shows the process of planting seeds and growing pumpkins to make a pumpkin pie. The end of the book provides a sorting activity, matching activity, pumpkin patch maze, rhyming activity, and drawing activity.

Grow It Yourself!: Grow Your Own Soup by John Malam

This book talks about what a pumpkin is, different kids and sizes of pumpkins, how pumpkins grow, steps to plant and grow your own pumpkins, taking care of a pumpkin plant, and a recipe for pumpkin soup and pumpkin seeds.

Harvest to Home: Pumpkins by Lynn M. Stone

This book talks about what pumpkins can be used in, the variety of pumpkin sizes and shapes, pulp, pumpkins being processed for pumpkin paste, growing pumpkins, pollen, bees helping, and harvesting pumpkins.

How Did That Get to my Table?: Pumpkin Pie by Emily J. Dolbear

This book talks about how pumpkin pie requires pumpkins that grow on vines. It discusses how the seeds are planted, when they are harvested, what happens at the factory, how pumpkin pie is made, and how pies get in stores.

In a Pumpkin Shell: Over 20 Pumpkin Projects for Kids by Jennifer Storey Gillis

This book offers 20 pumpkin activities to do with kids such as making your own pumpkin patch, painting a pumpkin, making a pumpkin seed necklace, carving a pumpkin, and cooking various pumpkin recipes that are provided.

Life Cycle of a Pumpkin by Ron Fridell and Patricia Walsh

This book talks about what a pumpkin is, different stages of pumpkin maturation in step-by-step details, pollination, ripening, pumpkin problems, pests, harvesting, possibilities for pumpkins after they are harvested, the pumpkin life cycle in pictures, and pumpkin facts.

Pumpkin Circle: The Story of a Garden by George Levenson

This book offers actual photographs instead of illustrations. It discusses seeds and the pumpkin plants as they grow. It shows closeups of the large leaves, twisty tendrils, flower buds, little hairs, blossoms, and a bee, spider, and grasshopper on the pumpkin plant. After picking the pumpkin, it shows a pumpkin with seeds rotting into the ground and producing a new pumpkin plant. The end offers more information on how to grow pumpkins.

Pumpkin Harvest by Calvin Harris

Simple text that talks about fall being pumpkin season and shows pumpkins growing, vines drying, farmers picking pumpkins, and pumpkins being turned into jack-o-lanterns and pie.

Pumpkin Pumpkin by Jeanne Titherington

Simple text talks about a young child who planted a pumpkin seed and watched it grow until it produced a large pumpkin. The child picks the pumpkin, carves a face, and saves some seeds to plant another time.

Seed, Sprout, Pumpkin, Pie by Jill Esbaum

This book goes through the steps of pumpkin plants growing starting with seeds being planted and leading to pumpkins of many colors, shapes, and sizes. Even giant pumpkins you can sit inside! It also tells what pumpkins can be made into.

See It Grow: Pumpkin by Jackie Lee

This book shows a seed progressing into a pumpkin plant with vocabulary words such as true leaves, seed leaves, shoot, roots, and nutrients. It also has pumpkin facts such as “a pumpkin vine can grow 30 feet long.”

The Pumpkin Book by Gail Gibbons

This book has illustrations instead of actual photographs and talks about the different shapes and sizes of pumpkins, how fields are prepared, what seeds have within them, how seeds are planted, what is needed for the seed to grow, the different stages of the pumpkin plant, the parts of the flower, pollination, the amount of time it takes to grow, history of pumpkins with Pilgrims and Native Americans, a history of Halloween, how to carve and decorate pumpkins, and other pumpkin facts.

The Pumpkin Patch: Story and Photographs by Elizabeth King

This book talks about and shows pictures of the work done in a pumpkin patch before pumpkin seeds are planted, where pumpkin seeds come from and what they look like (coated with a pink powder), how the plants grow, how they are harvested, and what pumpkins can look like.

For more fun with pumpkins, check out Our Grand Pumpkin Experiment from last year.

If you would like to look at more books with themes, check out these posts: