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I had forgotten how much Ada loved these Schleich animals when she was Josie’s age.  I am convinced the (very) anatomically correct creatures helped her learn animal names as some of her first words.  I like to rotate the girls’ toys and found our bag of animals at the bottom of the toy bin yesterday.  Josie spotted them immediately upon waking and was so excited.  She spent the day asking which was which and carefully putting each back on the table.  I could see connections being made between the animal photos in her books and the three-dimensional plastic versions.  (Oh the poor second child…I am sure I did this much earlier for Ada).  We usually get our animals from our friend Henry and they are one of our favorite gifts for kids.  We even made a giant ice cube full of animals for Ada’s birthday last year.  The animal iceberg floated around the pool and slowly melted to reveal new members of the menagerie.To make your own Animal Iceberg you will need:

*Plastic Animals

*Large Freezer-safe Bowl

1. Fill bowl about 1/4 full with water.

2. Place a few of the animals in water and put bowl in freezer.

3. Wait about an hour and repeat.  Freezing in layers will allow for animals to be uncovered at different times as the ice melts.

4. Float iceberg in a pool, kiddie pool, or just place outside in the sun and let your child watch the treasure emerge.

*Food coloring could be added in small amounts if you want to make some stripes.  Just be sure not to use too much with light colored animals.