Tag Archives: children

Stop Motion Animation: Hey Diddle Diddle w/Free Printable Coloring Pages for Kids

6 Nov

So here is the set up for our stop motion animation.  The lighting issue is far different than it is with shooting live shows with Bean, but thankfully, my husband rocks and sets it up for me.

Without further ado, here is our little stop motion short for Hey Diddle Diddle!

Here is the free printable coloring page, so that your child can make their own “Hey Diddle Diddle” picture!  coloring-page-diddle

A Preview of your coloring page!

Coming soon:  The Twelve Days of Christmas AND The Alphabet Song!

Nine Ladies Danging, Seven Swans a Swimming, Six Geese a Laying!


Bean Plays Outside! Let’s Play Cars and Learn the Lava Game!

17 Oct

Next week we’ll be back to ‘studio’ shows, but today through Friday, we’ll be having more “outdoors” shows.  Next week I hope to kick off with a new song about imagination that is really catchy and fun… hopefully Sylvie and I can get together this weekend and film/record it!

The kids had fun drawing roads and scenery for their game

When my kids were younger, they loved playing games like “The Lava Game”.  The game where you pretend that different areas of the floor or a room are lava and you have to jump from spot to spot without touching the “lava”.  It has been interesting for me this week… going back through memories of the kids playing when they were little and all of the imaginary things they played.  Bean, Abyni & Jay show the kids how to play the “lava” game, and if they already play this game, I think it will be fun for them to see that Bean plays it, too!

Don’t let the grass touch you!

The video also has Bean, Paris, Abyni & Jay playing with sidewalk chalk and cars on the front walk.   My boys loved playing with trains rather than cars (although they did like cars, they were far more obsessed with Thomas the Tank Engine:), and they loved drawing big long roads everywhere.  Including the time we moved to a rental house with light carpets… and they took their crayons and markers and drew roads all over their new bedroom.  *Sigh*  At least they were being creative, I guess?

Here is today’s video of Bean’s ‘Real Life’ playtime:  Playing with Cars and Playing the Lava Game!

Show me photos of your kids playing their favorite outdoors games on

Bean’s Monkey Business’ facebook page.

Read Aloud & Children’s Book Review: I’m a Shark by Bob Shea

8 Oct

Today *J* Stopped by to read a book with Bean.  Its called “I’m a Shark” by Bob Shea.

I just randomly grabbed this book off of the library shelf… and fell in love.  I loved the illustrations at first glance.  I love all sorts of illustrations in children’s books, and I appreciate the simple drawings in this book.  They are simple and yet full of character.  The shark is just hilarious and so childlike with his/her refusal to admit fear.

I think this is a fun and silly story, that brings the topic of fear up in a completely lighthearted way.  It gives parents the opportunity to bring up a discussion of fear with kids who might be struggling with different fears.  I definitely recommend this book for all kids.  I think it would be a good book for emerging readers as well!

Look at that FABULOUS shark!  I LOVE it!

Watch the video and Read along with Bean and Jay “I’m a Shark” by Bob Shea:)


What did you think?  Did you like the book?


Read Aloud: Skippyjon Jones by Judy Schachner

5 Oct


Reading together with Bean

Skippyjon Jones is a fantastic story by Judy Schachner about a cat who likes to pretend and use his imagination.  I thought it was the perfect book to start off our series on *Imagination*.

My local children’s librarian friend introduced me to this book and actually sat down with me in the children’s section of the library one day and read it aloud to her.  It was fabulous!  I was instantly in love with this little cat who pretends to be a chihuahua.  So, while Bean is in the middle of pretending to be a bumblebee, we took some time out for a nice story time.  You can watch the video and hear the story along with Bean here:  Skippyjon Jones by Judy Schachner

So, did you love the story as much as we did?

Stay tuned for more imagination fun and more videos starting bright and early Monday morning!


A New Perspective on our Children’s Hospital Visit Today (Thanks to my Husband)

3 Oct

The Author, my husband, chilling in the back yard on a rare day off.

Guest Post by my amazing husband, Patrick, who was my chair getter and gopher today for our hour and a half long visit this morning (And no, we didn’t get photos this time either.  I really really plan to do that next time:)  Here is a photo of the hospital… does that help?

We went to the St. Francis children’s hospital this morning with Bean to spread some cheer and bring a smile or two to some kids that need them.  Knowing my wife like I do, and having complete faith in her ability to interact with kids on almost any level, I was pretty well prepared for the end result – that kids who weren’t smiling before would be smiling and laughing after. That played out pretty much like I thought it would.  It’s the other things that happened that caught me off guard a little.  Namely, the effect that Bean has on adults.  My wife included.

It’s odd having this little make believe creature that shows up every once in a while.  I don’t think people realize just how much of a ‘separate’ entity Bean is from Byn.  It’s like flipping a switch when Bean goes ‘on’, and for the kids that’s always made it much more believable.  The fact that there’s technically an adult sitting there in plain view and obviously moving her mouth in time with Bean’s words is somehow….  overlooked.  When they do notice Byn, it’s more along the lines of, ‘Would you please get out of the way so that I can talk to this monkey’ kind of thing.

So, having seen this particular oddity in action before, I was prepared for the kid’s reactions.  We got to see several more kids this time than last (I think about 10 or so), and they all were left smiling at the end.  The first little boy we saw was the oldest.  I think the nurse said he was 13.  He was also the hardest sell.  He obviously didn’t think that it was ‘cool’ to talk to a purple monkey so he tried (albeit ineffectively) not to smile or interact much.  Despite his efforts he did crack a few smiles here and there and exchanged a few short sentences.  The funny thing is that as our visit kept on and we went from room to room, this particular boy sort of followed us around.  He was hooked up to an IV and had some sort of shunt into his sinus cavity, so along with him came a full cart of gizmos and doodads, as well as a nurse to make sure things didn’t get tangled or anything.  I kept watching him out of the corner of my eye, and he was really enjoying watching Bean interact with the kids, laughing over things being said, etc.  A couple of times I looked directly at him, at which point he got all serious again and headed back toward his room.  Then, we’d get to the next kid’s room and he’d show back up to peek in on Bean.  It was really interesting seeing his inner child at war with his ‘big boy I’m a cool cat’ self.

We came across three Hispanic kids, two of which spoke no English at all, and one of which spoke a little.  It’s really amazing that Byn can still interact in ways with these kids that brings smiles to their faces without the use of any words.

There was one little girl, 5 years old I think, who had full head bandages on.  The nurse said she’d suddenly started having seizures and they had done some sort of brain surgery to try and alleviate them.  She enjoyed Bean the most of any of the kids I think.  LOTS of laughs playing peek-a-boo and exploring the similarities between Bean, her, and her little stuffed monkey that she had there with her.

So the kids I expected.  I know Byn’s talent enough that even seeing her bring a 13 year old ‘I’m all cool’ boy out of his shell didn’t surprise me.  All of the adult nurses and doctors and parents though….  that caught me a little off guard.  I mean, I know that I enjoy Bean, that Bean makes me smile and laugh, but I guess I always just assumed I was pretty weird like that.  It IS my wife, after all.  None of the other adults there who lit up like freaking Christmas trees happen to have that excuse though.  And light up they did.

Several of the parents of kids who we’d already visited found a reason to leave their kid’s rooms for minute and then just happened to swing by the room at the end of the hall with Bean’s voice coming out of it so they could peek in the door.  The nurses and doctors were the same.  I can’t imagine working in that environment all day every day.  I know it’s got to have it’s rewards, and some moments of genuine joy and fulfillment, but there’s bound to be an awful lot of stress involved to.  I applaud them all for dedicating themselves to something I’m honest enough to say I don’t think I could handle on a daily basis.  It shows in the general atmosphere of the place.  They make a real effort to decorate the entire floor in cheerful colors and lighten the place a little bit, but it’s still obviously a hospital.  For kids.  Kids who are really ill and really suffering.  The strain was showing on the staff’s faces in slight but still detectable ways, especially when they came out of a child’s room and there weren’t any kids around.  They would visibly ‘slump’ a little bit.  I could tell they were putting a lot of effort into being as positive and cheerful around the kids as they could be, and it cost them some little bit of themselves when they were out in the hall away from the patients.  Until they heard Bean, that is.  I think by the time we left I’d seen every nurse at least three times.  They just happened to have things to do that took them by the room we were in 🙂  It was really nice seeing them smile too.  A pleasant surprise.

It’s also really nice seeing the effect that trip like this has on Byn.  She really ‘recharges’ from this sort of thing. I appreciate this quality about her more than I can say.  Gosh, I love my wife!

Check back soon to meet our new friend *J* AND see new Bean videos for our Imagination Month.

Tim’s Puppet Pals Contest Entry!

27 Sep


Kids can help Bean solve the mystery of WHO ATE ALL THE COOKIES?

A fellow puppeteer has a channel called Tim’s Puppet Pals.  Last month I noticed that they’d posted a contest for their viewers… and I got really excited:)  Abyni and I went through and watched (and rewatched) our favorite videos of theirs, trying to decide what to make as a sequel.

We finally decided to do a sequel to this video.

Abyni helped think of a plan and a script and we got to work filming!  Let us know what you think of our entry, and go check out Tim’s Puppet Pals!

Bean’s Monkey Business:  Entry for Tim’s Puppet Pals Give Away Contest.

SO… Did you LIKE it???  It was REALLY fun to make!

Thanks for watching!

Flutterby, a Butterfly Lullaby for a Restful Naptime

25 Sep

A wonderful musician friend of mine offered to let us use this song that she wrote last year. The second that I heard it, I pictured butterflies, made of paper, gently fluttering in the wind.  The image was SO clear, that I immediately started working on the artwork.  I used pages from an old book, cut into the shapes of butterflies.  We mounted them with fishing line to some dowels and went outside to film.

One downside to living in Oklahoma, its hard to find a beautiful CALM spring breeze.  Over the next week, it seemed that the only time we had time to film, the camera was down, the wind was blowing too hard or it was too dark.

*Sigh*  As life happened, my vision for the video failed more than a little… and then we moved.  Sadly the paper butterflies didn’t make it, and never got to see the light of day.

Fast forward to yesterday, as I listened to the song again and got inspired again.  Unfortunately, it took several tries, several failed attempts, literally over 300 photos that wouldn’t work… we finally ended up using beads.  Nearly 2,000 beads, countless HOURS sitting and moving them by little increments, until I had over 400 photos… creating this as the end result.  I hope you like it, and that your child is mesmerized and ready for a nap afterwards!

My work space (I spent WAY too many hours at this table!)

Take a look at what we came up with.  Its a stop motion animation and I know you’ll love this song as much as we do!  A lullaby video for naptime!

Thank you to Sylvie Lynn!!  You can find her other music on her Myspace Page.

%d bloggers like this: