Merry Christmas!

Every year this day gets more magical as the kids understand more about Christmas.  This year, we spent Christmas in our new house.  It was fun to figure out where the tree would go.  It was fun to decide how to do the lights outside.  But what was super amazing was the comprehension these kids have about just how special Christmas is.  They have it down.  They’re not all about the presents.  They really get it.  They understand that the gifts are just a fun part, but that the real reason we celebrate Christmas is because of Jesus being born.  And it’s so precious to see and hear them talk about it….that is, until it came time to fall asleep on Christmas Eve.  Then all bets are off.  Santa is coming.  Nothing else exists and sleep becomes impossible.  DSC_7918 Continue reading

Earth Week

This was our first year recognizing Earth Day.  I checked out some crafts that we could make.  But it all seemed pretty silly to me.  Because why waste paper and time working on a project when we can be our there cleaning up our environment and learning through experience? Experiential learning is the best way for kids to learn anyway! And, rather than learn about Earth Day for just a day, we took an entire week and learned about our environment and the importance of keeping it clean.  We decided to clean up areas where we frequent, beginning in our own neighborhood!  We walked around our block, talked about litter, and cleaned up trash that had blown out of garbage cans and recycling bins.  The girls really enjoyed this, which might come as a surprise.  They each got a bag and happily walked around searching for trash.  DSC_0046 Continue reading

Good Friday ~ Crown of Thorns Bread

Teaching the kids about Easter and Holy Week has always proved to be a challenge for me.  But this year we had a lot of fun learning about Easter and all the important moments leading up to it.  While the Easter bunny can be a fun idea, I feel that Easter is too important to cloud it with the bunny.  Maybe that’s a little prudish, but the special moments that we remember during this week are so great in number that the secular aspects add a little more than seems necessary.  Aaand, since I bring the fun just about anywhere I go, we of course had a good time on our journey through Holy Week.  I’ve also gotten a lot of ideas for how to do it in the years to come.  But one thing I discovered that we had fun doing today was making our daily bread into the crown of thorns.  DSC_9562 Continue reading

{Tutorial} Easter Cross

Easter is such a special time and I love having something relevant to add to our front door.  My favorite door hanging is this Easter cross made out of sticks!  That’s right.  Sticks.  Which means that the body of this project is entirely free of charge, since most of us have tons of access to sticks.  And, if you have some other basic crafting supplies around, you might just end up making this one for free!  Which is exactly how it happened for me.  I made it several years ago, but it desperately needed an upgrade this year.  Easter Cross Continue reading

My Funny Valentines

Valentine’s Day began with a bang for us and didn’t fizzle out until bed time.  It began with our Valentine exchange, which was very cute.  I gave the kids a little gift–silverware.  Sounds super boring, right?  Well when you have two kids who fight over a spoon at each meal (yes, you heard me right.  A spoon.  A kind of fancy cocktail spoon that has has wire wrapped around the handle and sparkly stones wrapped into the wire.  It’s name?  The Diamond Spoon) So I found a set of super cute rainbow handled silverware.  In a set of 4!  Perfect. They loved them.DSC_7365 Continue reading

Decking the Halls

Christmas is here!  It’s time to decorate!!!  This year, much like the last two, we decorated the tree together.  I am always ready with the camera.  Scott gets some good Nat King Cole playing in the background, while the girls are ready to grab ornaments and decorate the tree.  While every year is much like the one before when we decorate, I know it is one less we will have with each child in our home.  They are growing so big!  My most favorite part is the excitement that begins on this day.  In our house it marks the beginning of the Christmas season, even if it’s been in the stores for months now.  The kids start to feel it swirling around them and from this moment until Christmas day, each little belly is filled with happy little butterflies, waiting until the Jolly Fellow visits our house.  We finish up our happy evening with mugs of hot chocolate and a special dessert.  I’m so grateful to be able to share this with these wonderful people.  I’m blessed to be a part of their special memories.  DSC_3537 Continue reading

Tree Farm

In Florida, we don’t have Christmas tree farms (that I know of).  You can get some pre-cut trees, but you can’t chop them down yourself.  When I was a kid we only cut them down ourselves.  And it was such a fun tradition.  We’d drive out to a tree farm about 40 minutes away, trudge up and down hills in the cold and sometimes snowy weather, looking for the perfect tree.  We’d look and look and find some great trees, and when we finally found the tree, my dad would get down on the ground and saw that perfect tree at the base while we held it up top so it didn’t fall on him.  Then we’d carry the tree back to our car and strap it to the top (although there were a few years in there when my dad had a truck and he’d toss it in the bed).  After that we’d go into the barn at the tree farm.  They had hot chocolate there.  Usually we got to get a cup of hot chocolate and we’d be so cold that we’d drink it too fast, and would of course, scald our mouths with it.  But it seemed worth it.  DSC_4514

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