August 31, 2012

Adorable Adornments

Our church hosted a women's fellowship last spring called Grace Filled Expressions.  his was an opportunity for women to choose a class they wanted to go to in another woman's home and spend time learning a few tips on that topic.  Some of the classes included Gardening, Jewelry Making, Fitness, Sewing, Vegan Cooking, Coffee Roasting, Photography, and several other amazing ones I can't remember off the top of my head right now.

My self and another lady were paired to do Cake Decorating and Decorating your Home for the Holidays.  My portion of the lesson was called Adorable Adornments.  I spoke about how to choose a style and theme that fits your personality and we looked at various ideas for traditional holidays and celebrations throughout the entire year (not just Thanksgiving and Christmas).  We focused in on homemade decorations and inexpensive do-it-yourself projects (many found on Pinterest). To top off the fun, we shared some ways to incorporate a family traditions into holidays.

Because this event was held late spring we choose to make and use examples focused around the Fourth of July!  Here are a few pictures of the things we put together and made!

Two very simple paper wreaths.  We have two front doors with a wrap around porch and we left these up all summer since the Olympics were taking place.

Cookout table decorations.  Blue tablecloth, red napkins, different color cutlery tied with a ribbon and resting on the paper plate.  Add a star to the star and if you need a centerpiece or two throw some tissue paper in a clean vegetable can that you've decorated with scrapbook paper.  Easy peasy!

For a more elegant table setting use red chargers and candles to add a little pop of color.  Make the place cards our of blue and you're set to go.  I added a white paper rose to the place cards just because they were fun to make.

 This table was decorated in a very whimsical style.  We have a homemade center piece, napkin rings, and coasters but the most fun part was making the confetti rocket!

Here are a few family friendly items I gave directions on that we could make with our kids, including a scrapbook paper star wreath, pinwheels, and a windsock.

 We also painted bricks and made luminaries (just in case you're looking for a few outdoor decorations).

Finally, what's a holiday without some sort of yummy goodness.  We made a fruit pizza in the shape of a flag and then had our cake decorating lesson.  So much fun!!!

Favorite cakes

About a year ago my best friend from college introduced me to Pinterest and I quickly became addicted to pinning.  After a few weeks I realized my to-do list had grown exponentially.  I had craft projects I wanted to complete and recipes I wanted to try.  I created a list of supplies I wanted to start collecting and asked for many of those items for Christmas.  Since then I've a been able to complete a few of the projects, but not near as many as I still have on my list.  I've tried a ton of new recipes for dinner but like many of you desserts are my favorite. These are two cakes I have made that I will have to make time to bake again very soon.

This was a 5-layer raspberry lemonade cake!  YUM!

This was a chocolate chip moose cheesecake from scratch.  Ahhhhhh.... so good!

August 24, 2012

Busy Bag Swap Round 2

Just in time, more fun games!  I didn't get a picture of all of the activities, but here are a few pictures to get your creative juices going.

Uppercase and lowercase plastic spoon matching.
Clothes line hanging.
Lollypop matching game.
Number cards matching game.
Button threading.
Uppercase and lowercase ice cream cone matching.
Pipe cleaner and beads color matching.
Sensory shape bag.
Bracelet beading with colored pasta.

August 10, 2012

"You're starting preschool with a TWO year old?"

My sweet little girl is 28 months old and truth be told, she is smart as a whip.  You can't get anything by this one and, for good or bad, she doesn't forget a thing.  We started noticing this about her when she started saying words at six months.  She put words together at ten months, and started talking in broken sentences by her first birthday.  She could point out most animals and make their sounds a few weeks after that.   She knew most of her colors, shapes, letters, and numbers (under 20) before her 2nd birthday.  I say all of this, not to boast in her (or myself), but because I want to thank the Lord my God for the grace he has shown to us in developing her intellect.  In addition, I want to take a minute to explain why I am starting "preschool" with my two year old.  I've mentioned to some people and they look at me like I'm crazy. "Why are you pushing her so hard? She's too young.  She can't possibly do what you're asking of her."  These are just a few of the things that have been said to me.  Fortunatley, I know my daughter very well and I love her more than I could ever begin to describe, so I feel like I know what's best for her.  She loves learning new things and she behaves better in a structured environment.  My husband and I decided that we were not going to pay for a curriculum but that I would find one online that I liked.  I looked and I looked but there wasn't anything that I just fell in love with, so I've created my own with the help of mommy friends with older kids, several great books and about 30+ blogs.  Very few of the ideas in my curriculum did I make up on my own.  I welcome any ideas you have so if you see something you think I would like, let me know.  Hope you enjoy seeing what we do in our home.

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