Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tree Trimming x 12! (Feb.)

Tree Trimming x 12
   ♥ LOVE is ALL we NEED!

This months tree theme is, of course, LOVE!
We kept the snow because it's still snowy and cold here and then added our favorite
Valentine's from loved ones, handmade heart decorations, church bulletin, and even a red ribbon we had leftover from Christmas.

This is a great way to display those special mementos!
xoxo ♥
Happy Creating! ☺

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

LOVE Week - Home Preschool

As the title suggests, it's a LOVE theme this week!
We are actually heading to the desk to start today's lesson in a few minutes so I am going to make this short & sweet!
Great LOVE & Valentine's Day preschool activities:
Math & Reading
Art & Crafts
Hand Print Heart Card
Science Fun
Happy Learning! ☺ ♥

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Mardi Gras Fun

Just giving a quick "Hi"!  It's been a busy week!
We are expecting some snow/rain here in a few hours, nothing quite like what is happening out east though!!
Thinking about the upcoming week with Mardi Gras & Valentine's Day. Although we don't really  go nuts on Fat Tuesday, we sometimes just make fun meals or have a lil' party.  Here are a few ideas:
The "Dollar Tree" actually carried a lot of party supplies this year like masks, decorations and, even beads. If you didn't get a chance to grab some masks - no worries! It's a blast to make your own.
What you need:
Foam Rubber mask
(or foam sheets - just make a mask template)
sequins, feathers, gems, ribbon, sparkles
popsicle stick (for handle)
This year I decided to make a "Mardi Gras meal", mainly because I found the recipe on Pinterest and actually had all the ingredients!
It's a party so one must have dessert right?! Love these cookies from The Farmerette
(check out more of her blog too - great!!)
Don't forget to decorate!! This site has easy diy table settings and decor along with a crown template - something to keep the kiddos busy!
Bon Mardi Gras!!!
Here at our home we to throw a holiday parties even though, as Lutherans, we do not entirely celebrate Fat Tuesday, especially with all that it stands for today. We do rather celebrate Ash Wednesday, which marks the beginning of Lent.
For more information on both, check out these links:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


Prairie Hill Living
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Homemade V-day Decor

Valentine's Day inspiration from our home to yours!
A simple heart cut from red felt, using a pinking shears, adds lots of L♥VE to a shelf display!
Vintage buttons and an old key adorn tea-stained muslin on this hand sewn heart pillow!
Easy LOVE sign!  Scrap wood, acrylic paint & red button!
LOVE collage ArT!
FREE  LOVE  Printables

  For God so loved the world,that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life." 
John 3:16
1 Corinthians 13: 1-12
"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." 
 1 Corinthians 13:13


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Valentine ♥ Votive Jar

Valentine ♥ Votive Jar
This morning, after preschool, I had some time in the "art room" and decided to make a Valentine heart - votive holder.
This is a great reuse-it project! Gather up those odds n' ends from around the house.
 I actually have a drawer in the art room where I toss misc. metal, like different wires, keys, and screen; and also have a corner with lots of old jars (I cant resist those $1 boxes of 'em at yard sales!)
What you will need:
1 small jar
votive candle
metal screen 
(needs to be metal so it won't fall apart when it's cut)
heart template + marker
spray adhesive
(thin enough to fit through the screen holes)
Using a template, trace out heart shapes on the screen and carefully cut out.
Lay out on paper (to save your surface) and spray hearts with adhesive - add sparkles.
When the hearts are dry, string them onto the wire and wrap your jar with the heart-wire.

I ♥ the way it looks in a dark room and the sparkles give it great effect in daylight too!

 More great Valentine jar crafts!


Saturday, February 2, 2013

Ooey Gooey Toffee Bars (Cake Mix Recipes!)

And for DESSERT:

photo courtesy of foodaphilia.com 
Ooey Gooey Toffee Bars
1 box white cake mix
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbs. water
1 egg
1/2 toffee chips
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 small can sweet & condensed milk
cream butter and sugar
mix in water and egg
gradually mix in cake mix and toffee chips
pat 3/4 of mix into 13x9 pan
sprinkle on chocolate chips
crumble on remaining cake mix
pour sweet & condensed milk all over top
Bake at 350 for 30 minutes
 Let cool before serving.

Quick Chicken Stir Fry Dinner

After a long day of cleaning, organizing and keeping kids busy I did not want supper to be very complicated. Here's a rundown of tonight's meal, in case you're feeling the same way! 
Quick Chicken Stir Fry

add 1/4 stick of butter in wok over med. heat
1/2 head of green cabbage - chopped
4 carrots - use veggie peeler to make long, thin peels
1/2 onion - sliced
4-5 mushrooms - sliced
3 celery stalks - chopped
cook until veggies are soft - 10 min
boil 8 oz. of spaghetti noodles
add a bit more butter &  3 thawed chicken breasts
 to center of wok
 (veggies can hang out around the sides)
cook thoroughly
cut up chicken into chunks
keep all together in wok
add cooked noodles & 1/4 cup of teriyaki sauce
toss and heat for a minute
serve hot!
(toasted sesame seeds would be great )
Enjoy! ☺

Friday, February 1, 2013

Recipes for FUN!! Ice Cream Dough

Today we hit up the dollar store for some new, sensory, supplies. We scored a few boxes of cornstarch and baking soda plus some bottles of shaving cream and baby oil and even found water beads! Over the next couple of weeks we will be trying out some great sensory recipes and sharing our results.

Our first Recipe for FUN is ice cream dough!!
Oh my was this fun to make!!
We followed the directions in the link below:

Ice Cream Dough

One cone coming up!!

 For our first batch we wanted chocolate ice cream so we added one Tbs. of unsweetened cocoa powder to the cornstarch before mixing in conditioner.
Then we decided strawberry would be great for our second batch. We added a cap-ful of strawberry extract and a few drops of red food coloring to the cornstarch & conditioner before mixing.
I love how this turned out!! The food coloring doesn't mix in all the way and leaves little specks of red throughout the mix that resemble strawberry chunks and, of course, it smells amazing!! 
Any extract could be used (banana would be yummy!), even unsweetened drink mix would work well - just remember to mix dry together first then wet.  I also recommend using an unscented conditioner. (we did not have that on hand so our scents were a little bit off due to the existing, fruity scent of our conditioner)
Do Not Eat!! :)

Crazy enough, the dough actually feels cold and looks like real ice cream for awhile.
(It does start to turn quite dough like the more it's handled.)

We used play kitchen cups and bowls and some play dough supplies to create our ice cream shop.
This recipe took about 5 minutes to make and 10 minutes to clean up afterwards with a good hour of fun in between!
 Ok, so just in case you don't have cornstarch on hand or don't want to use up a lot of conditioner, here's a quick n' easy recipe that calls for baking soda & water:

Ice Cream Parlor Bath
Growing a Jeweled Rose

P.S. Sometimes when preparing meals I feel I have to say "no" a lot to when it comes to my littlest helping out. I do have him set the table and find ingredients but I limit most of it yet (the two older kids like to help as well and it becomes a lot of commotion by the stove) so with recipes like these I am free to let him "cook" all he wants. We do the measuring together and the pouring and mixing is great for him, it's ok to get messy, nobody gets hurt and no real meal is lost if some falls on the floor!

Happy Creating!! ☺