Category Archives: children

Time is Precious

One of these days, you’ll shout, “Why don’t you kids grow up and act your age!”

And they will.

Or, “You guys get outside and find yourselves something to do … and don’t slam the door!”

And they won’t.
You’ll straighten up the boys’ bedroom neat and tidy — bumper stickers discarded, bedspread tucked and smooth, toys displayed on the shelves. Hangers in the closet. Animals caged. And you’ll say out loud, “Now I want it to stay this way.”
And it will.
You’ll prepare a perfect dinner with a salad that hasn’t been picked to death and a cake with no finger traces in the icing, and you’ll say, “Now, there’s a meal for company.”
And you’ll eat it alone.
You’ll say: “I want complete privacy on the phone. No dancing around. No demolition crews. Silence! Do you hear?” And you’ll have it.
No more plastic tablecloths stained with spaghetti.
No more bedspreads to protect the sofa from damp bottoms.
No more gates to stumble over at the top of the basement steps.
No more clothespins under the sofa.
No more playpens to arrange a room around.
No more anxious nights under a vaporizer tent.
No more sand on the sheets or Popeye movies in the bathrooms.
No more iron-on patches, wet, knotted shoestrings, tight boots, or rubber bands for ponytails.

Imagine. A lipstick with a point on it. No baby sitter for New Year’s Eve. Washing only once a week. Seeing a steak that isn’t ground. Having your teeth cleaned without a baby on your lap.

No PTA meetings.
No car pools.
No blaring radios.
No one washing her hair at 11 o’clock at night.
Having your own roll of Scotch tape.
Think about it. No more Christmas presents out of toothpicks and library paste.
No more sloppy oatmeal kisses.
No more tooth fairy.
No giggles in the dark.
No knees to heal, no responsibility.
Only a voice crying, “Why don’t you grow up?”
and the silence echoing, “I did.”
-Erma Bombeck column
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This and That

I love Valentine’s Day. Not the commercialized version where you must go out to dinner and buy red roses, and be forced to be romantic one day a year. I am a romantic and I think it’s fun to celebrate the ones you love in little ways. Nathan and I usually order take out and rent a movie. This is enough for me. A cozy dinner and snuggling up to watch a movie is perfect. This year I think I might make a special dinner for my family. After all I love all of them not just my hubby! I will have to look for fun ideas.

I did see these and am thinking about making them with my kids so they can give them to their friends and teachers.

check out the tutorial here

I may need to make a little something for my friends too. Maybe a flower pin? Any ideas of cute friends valentines?

I made Lydia a really cute flower hairbow Sunday night. I will have to show you soon. I made it using pinks and whites and cut a felt heart out for the middle. I love it and so does she. I used this tutorial.

 

On a different topic I made this for dinner last night and yum, yum, yum! So good.

go here for the recipe

I used the homemade  Teriyaki sauce and made the Lime- Cilantro Rice with Pineapple for a side. It was not hard and super tasty. I also did feel pretty cool making my own teriyaki sauce (even if it was easy).

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A Fairy Tea Party

This is by far my favorite party we’ve done.  I don’t know if I can top it and I don’t know if I will ever have the energy to try. My sweet girl had a good time and that makes me so happy. When I asked her what her favorite part was she replied, “the cupcakes, gifts, scavenger hunt, and cupcakes.” So…next year maybe just a scavenger hunt and some cupcakes? 🙂

I just love this party table. Each place setting had a fairy, a fairy house, fairy dust bottle and a set of wings. The centerpiece I made using an old candelabra and tea cups and saucers. I can’t find the tutorial I used.

The boys got a guy fairy at their place.

Upon arrival each fairy found her own tutu hanging on the line. The tutu’s had a name tag with them. The boys found a peter pan hat with their name tags hanging on the line.

After finding their tutu and wings a visit to the Pixie Parlor was in order to get all fairy dusted up, pick out a flower headband, and a butterfly fairy wand.

Garland tutorial found here.

After visiting the Pixie Parlor our activities included filling a bottle with Fairy Dust, going on a scavenger hunt for things to decorate their Fairy House, and decorating the Fairy Houses.

Tea Party Menu:

Enchanted Tutti-Frutti Tea

Pink Princess Mini Cupcakes

Fruit and Muffins en Brochette

Bitsy Bacon and Cheese Rolls (not shown since they were served warm from the oven)

Fairy Princess Fruity Toast

all recipes came from this cookbook

Favors were the tutus, wings, headbands,fairy wand, fairies, fairy house and fairy dust. The boys took home peter pan hats, boy fairy pez dispenser, fairy house, fairy dust and in my nephews case his own set of “tooth fairy wings”.

 

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Party Planning

My daughter is turning 4 soon *sniff, sniff* and has requested a Fairy Tea Party. I have been planning and crafting  for awhile now and am having tons of fun with this theme. I can’t wait to see it all come together. I am hoping our home will be transformed into a dreamy place where fairies frolic and giggle.

 

This is my favorite tea party. I love all the vintage touches and am hoping the tea party part of our party looks a little like this.  I am planning on making my birthday girl her own tea cup cupcake stand. I am also loving all the tags  labeling everything. I have already made some glittery versions for our little fairies. Check out all the great pictures and inspiration here.

 

Now for the Fairy part of the party I have found inspiration in these great party photos.  I love these bottles waiting to be filled with magic fairy dust. I think I need to start hunting for vintage bottles. For more lovely party photos go here.


Here is another great fairy party with tons of inspiration and do-it-yourself ideas. We have already made some of the fairies to hang at our party and send home with the party guests and I think I will make the sparkly play dough for the favors.

Love this! Every little girl needs a place to transform into a fairy. I also like the flower headbands enough to maybe make them instead of ribbon and flower hair garlands. For more from this party check here. Notice all the indoor furniture brought outdoors. I love that! If only we lived somewhere warm year round…

I would really like to have these for the girls.  Hopefully I will have time and patience to try them out.

Whew! I better go and get busy on these projects still needing to be finished.

 

 

 

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Prayers

Here are some great prayer guides that I like to use. They are from John Piper’s blog.

For my children.

That Jesus will call them and no one will hinder them from coming.

Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands on them and went away. (Matthew 19:13-15)

That they will respond in faith to Jesus’ faithful, persistent call.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)

That they will experience sanctification through the transforming work of the Holy Spirit and will increasingly desire to fulfill the greatest commandments.

And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39)

That they will not be unequally yoked in intimate relationships, especially marriage.

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)

That their thoughts will be pure.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. (Philippians 4:8)

That their hearts will be stirred to give generously to the Lord’s work.

All the men and women, the people of Israel, whose heart moved them to bring anything for the work that the Lord had commanded by Moses to be done brought it as a freewill offering to the Lord. (Exodus 35:29)

That when the time is right, they will GO!

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)

When I feel the need to refocus on the Lord I pray these.

1. For the desire of my heart to be toward God and his Word.

Incline my heart to Your testimonies and not to gain. (Psalm 119:36)

2. For the eyes of my heart to be opened.

Open my eyes, that I may behold wonderful things from Your law. (Psalm 119:18)

3. For my heart to be enlightened with these “wonders.”

[I pray] that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened. (Ephesians 1:18)

4. For my heart to be united, not divided, for God.

O Lord, I will walk in Your truth; unite my heart to fear Your name. (Psalm 86:11)

5. For my heart to be satisfied with God and not with the world.

O satisfy us in the morning with Your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. (Psalm 90:14)

6. For strength in this joy, and endurance during the dark seasons.

[I pray that God] would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man. (Ephesians 3:16)

7. For visible good deeds and works of love to others.

[I pray that you] will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord…bearing fruit in every good work. (Colossians 1:10)

8. For God to be glorified.

Hallowed be thy name. (Matthew 6:9)

9. In Jesus’ name.

He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, will he not also give us all things with him? (Romans 8:32)

This greenhouse is just the place I would want to spend time in prayer. Just not sure if I would choose the couch or the chair…

All photos from Country Living.

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A Birthday Celebration

My son recently turned 2. There is a lot going on in our lives right now so I made the difficult decision to keep his birthday simple. By simple I mean not at our house, no friends, and a small budget. I had a fun theme already picked out, but I am thinking of maybe having a friend party in a few months when this busy time has calmed. There is no rule that says a child’s birthday must be celebrated in his birth month is there?

Since we went to a play place with grandparents I made my motto, just because it’s at a play place doesn’t mean it has to be ugly. Although the table tops were tacky, the carpet yucky, and the walls too bright I think I made it work for our small group.

Our table had a table cloth, a picture of the birthday boy, a number 2 and of course the cake. Simple and personal.

Favors were sugar cookies shaped like stars and the number 2.

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Doll Party

In November my daughter turned 3. We had a doll themed party in her honor. It was so cute! I had such a blast planning out all the details and making all the decorations. I tried to keep it simple and inexpensive. Here are the details for you to enjoy.

Her special birthday mantel. I made the banner out of scrap book paper. For the flower shapes I traced a cookie cutter. For the letters I printed the words with the font enlarged and traced them onto the paper. I used stickers to embellish in between the words, made the slits with scissors and slide a ribbon in them.

For the framed number 3 I drew the number by hand on scrap book paper and attatched it to another piece of scrap book paper cut to fit the frame. I painted the frame with pink spray paint I found on my shelf and added a cupcake and balloon sticker. The frame was one I had in my storage space. Really cheap and easy decoration. I found the inspiration for this project here.

These are the invitations we made. They were a lot of  fun but very time consuming! I do think they turned out so cute. I printed the template here from Martha Stewart’s website. I traced the template onto pink cardstock then cut out dresses from more scrap book paper. My daughter and I embellished with buttons and jewels we bought from the craft store (Hobby Lobby). I felt like they needed an extra touch so I added some lace trim from my late Grandma’s sewing supplies. Definitely the perfect finishing touch.

The goodie bags and party hats. I picked up a pack of simple goodie bags at Hobby Lobby and had wanted to add a cut out paper doll shape to the front with each girls name, but ran out of time. I made the party hats by buying a pack of cartoon themed ones (all I could find) and covering them with scrap book paper (surprise!). I then added a pom pom to the top. I had the pom poms from last years party. Very cheap and easy! Oh, I also added a sticker to the front of each one that had a simple pink 3 on it. To make those I printed the 3’s onto round labels.

Princess and I had fun making these marshmallow pops the night before. I found a tutorial here. Ours were not as fancy as these, but they still tasted good! Plus Princess had so much fun making them. I couldn’t find pink m&m’s so I used strawberry whoppers on dark chocolate and strawberry marshmallows. We stuck them into a piece of floral foam in a trifle bowl and filled it with extra whoppers.

Loved how the cupcake tower turned out! I hot glued ribbon around the edges. I found ribbon at Hobby Lobby for 50 percent off while I was buying all the paper for the party.  I also bought the wooden 3 there and attached scrap book paper to it and secured it to the top of the tower with stick-um candle adhesive. Each party guests cupcake had a little wooden girl in it. I painted a dress onto them and glued on yarn hair.  Adorable! Here is the recipe for the cupcakes which were very tasty. And here is the recipe for the frosting which is awesome!!! There was some pink added to both the cupcakes and frosting of course, since that was the request of the birthday girl.

The other food served was PBJ’s shaped like dolls (gingerbread girl cookie cutter), fruit and veggie tray, and chocolate covered pretzel rods with pink sprinkles.

That same night we celebrated with family.  I used the same cake and frosting recipes and made a cake. I was really inspired by this picture so I bought some wooden dolls at, you guessed it, Hobby Lobby, and painted them myself. Now, don’t look too closely and see the flaws! I do think they looked very sweet on the cake.

Umm…is that not the cutest little doll ever? My friend’s little sister hand made enough dolls for each guest and they got to stuff their own doll. I found foam hearts for them to put in the dolls too. So cute! I think they really enjoyed making a doll and my friend was there to stitch up for us. Our other activities were bracelet making, coloring a paper doll to take home and playing with their personal dolls brought with them from home. We brought out the kitchen set and all the doll stuff for the girls to play with. I found a paper doll template online that I had printed on card stock.

Here was the special doll themed birthday dress my Mom made. Thank you!

This party was easy and very homemade just like I like. It does take time to make everything and I had to get especially creative since there isn’t really much out there on doll parties. My favorite party so far for sure!

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