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    December 19, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Fun Gift Wrapping Inspiration
    http://www.dailymotion.com/videox2czg0k

    I love this! I’m absolutely miserable at wrapping presents. Maybe this will help me look like I know what I’m doing!


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    December 16, 2014
    DIY Gift Idea From Kids- Sharpie Mugs

    When you have very young kids, getting gifts for them is easy. You can give them a bunch of crap from the dollar store and they’re happy. Heck, you can give them toilet paper rolls, trash, and socks to play with, and they will– happily. My nephew prefers napkins and cardboard over his expensive baby toys anyway. What’s difficult is getting them to give gifts to their parents. Sure, you could just buy your spouse a nice, store bought item, write “From Baby” on it, and be done with it– but I think that having the kids make something is much more meaningful, and the parents will love it. Check out this idea from Lynette at Cleverly Simple for an adorable “From Kid” gift– a DIY Sharpie mug:

    You need:

    Mugs
    Sharpies (Sharpie Oil Based Paint Pens )
    An Oven

    -Let the kids go wild!

    -Let them dry overnight.  The next day I placed them in a COLD oven and turned the heat on to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  I let it “cook” for 30 minutes and then turned the heat off.  IMPORTANT:::  Let the oven cool before you pull out the coffee mugs.

    Photo Credit: Emily May 


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    December 11, 2014
    Keeping The Holidays Stress Free

    I know that almost every post I’ve written this week has been holiday centered, but I just can’t help it! Like I said, I caught the Christmas bug. However, while the holidays are super fun, they can be some of the most stressful times of the year. Between shopping, watching kids, cleaning, cooking, decorating the inside and outside of the home, and following up with winter traditions– it can seriously pile up, and add to an even larger pile of stress. However, I think this post by Erika at Urth Mama has the secret to keeping the holidays simple. Her answer? Pick out your priorities, get them done, and forget the rest.

    I think the best thing about Christmas is finding traditions that work for your family and not worrying about what other people are doing.

    Traditions we love to make a priority over Christmas are:

    -Decorating a Christmas tree

    -Building a Gingerbread House

    -Learning about Jesus’ birth, Christmas traditions, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, and other traditions around the world.

    -Going to the Nutcracker Ballet

    -Making (or buying) a few meaningful gifts for each family member.

    So there you have it! Get together as a family, make your own list of traditions that are important to you, and stop trying to stretch yourself so thin! 

    Photo Credit: JN 


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    December 9, 2014
    Holiday Themed Sensory Activities

    It’s official- I have caught the Christmas bug. I’ve been blasting Christmas music, we’ve already put up our tree (this is early for us!), and I’ve bought, made, and wrapped all my gifts. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice, or another winter holiday- this season is extremely exciting! It’s a time of celebration, family, faith, friendship, and fun. That’s why I don’t think it’s wrong to wedge some holiday cheer into every aspect of life, and why I love this post by Kim at Blessed Beyond A Doubt. She has listed several Christmas themed sensory activities for kids (that could be easily adapted for another holiday, or just for winter fun in general). I also love sensory activities because they let young kids explore the world with their own hands. Check out some of her ideas:

    -Gingerbread play dough.

    -Christmas sparkle slime (I love this! It looks like a Christmas tree exploded, haha. Pictured.)

    -Magnet Science Sensory Bin.

    -Peppermint scented Christmas sensory bin.

    Photo Credit: Little Bins For Little Hands 


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    December 8, 2014
    Sentimental Gifts For Kids

    The best gift I’ve ever gotten from my Mom was a few Christmases ago. Every day for a year, she wrote in a journal about things she loved about me, and included photos. Somehow, she kept it hidden from me all year and gave it to me on Christmas. I cried like a baby, and it has become one of my most prized possessions since. That journal beat out expensive gifts like phones, cameras, and other gadgets as “best present ever”. It really just goes to show that sentimental gifts from the heart mean so much more. With the holidays fast approaching, you may be looking for unique gift ideas of your own. If so, check out this guide by Alison at Pint Sized Treasures. Some are objects that your children will treasure forever, others create memories that last a lifetime:

    -Parent/Child Journal

    -Hope Chest.

    -Personalized Trinket Boxes 

    -Craft book with tons of supplies- crafting together is a great way to build memories

    -Classic board games for the family to play together

    -Bikes for all- for the family to ride together

    Photo Credit: Steven Depolo 


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    November 27, 2014
    Happy Thanksgiving!

     

    I absolutely love this idea! It’s a fresh twist on an old Thanksgiving tradition, and it gives everyone time to fully think about their answers.

    Photo + Idea from Typhanie Peterson 


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    November 24, 2014
    “Are We There Yet?” Road Trip Rescue

    I love road trips. I can ride for hundreds of miles just staring out of the window, listening to music, reading books, and talking with my family and friends. However, it wasn’t always that way. I, like most other kids, hated them when I was younger. Most kids simply do not have the attention span to sit still and reasonably quiet for a few hours. And with the holiday season coming up, most of us with kids will be traveling. Be prepared by reading this post by Jacquie Fisher at kcedventures for boredom busting road trip lifesavers:

    -Have a roadside assistance membership. A flat tire, empty gas tank, or dead battery will ruin a trip in 0 seconds flat, especially if you don’t have a backup plan.

    -Travel buckets- Here are all the details for making your own travel buckets and totes for your next trip!

    -Have plenty of snacks and water ready.

    -Play car games

    -Talk about what you see out of the window

    -Coloring and activity books

    Photo Credit: State Farm 


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    October 31, 2014
    Happy Halloween!

    Photo from Babble


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    October 29, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Door Decor

    Photo from Good To Know


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    October 16, 2014
    Halloween Costume Idea for Kids: Easy Zombie Makeup

    When I think of easy, cheap costumes- I prefer things that can be made with items I already have around the house. A few of my favorites? Fortune tellers (just throw on a bunch of scarves and jingly jewelry), pirates (similar, but with bandanas and an eyepatch), and thrift store pieces put together. Another very simple costume idea? Zombies! All you need is a little bit of makeup, and some old clothes that you don’t mind ripping up. Here’s how to apply zombie makeup, by Rachel at Madame Deals:

    -For an extra gross effect, apply ripped up toilet paper to the face to create a “wound,” then go over it with makeup

    -Add black eyeshadow all around the eyes

    -Use gray makeup on the rest of the face. If you want, you can use fake blood around the mouth as well.

    Photo Credit: Mislav Marohnic 


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