Attitude Of Gratitude

I’ve a pile of laundry sitting next to me that I should be folding but I keep getting distracted by what my little guy has done. This post is begging to be written down, if only to preserve this moment for his future.

I started noticing it a few months ago. We were walking into  doctor’s appointment and he noticed a landscaper weeding a flower bed. “What’s he doing, Mommy?” he asked. “He’s making it look pretty.” I responded. “I have to say ‘Thank you’.” He quickly ran over and thanked the shocked worker for helping to make things pretty.  Later that day we were walking into the mall and he spotted a custodian cleaning one of the directories.
“Wait, Mom. I have to say, ‘Thank you’.” and he quickly ran over and said. “Thank you for cleaning up the messes.” a few minutes later he spotted a security guard and ran up to him saying “Thank you for being a helper!” I was very pleased with him but not really sure what was going on or where he had learned this. While I try to make sure he says “Thank you” at home when someone serves him I’ve never pointed out all the sometimes invisible people who serve us in public.

When I mentioned it to my husband he quietly said “Honey, I do that.” Suddenly it all clicked. He’s right. My husband is an extremely wonderful about thanking people. In restaurants he calls the manager over to thank them for their service (even if we only received mediocre service) he says they hear enough complaints that a simple “Thank you.” can make their night. He always thanks the custodian and security guards at his office and inquires about their families. He stops and thanks police officers for their service. He always remembers the administrative assistants birthdays, even though no one else does; and he always thanks them with a small gift or card if they assist him on a project. As a former nearly invisible admin, I know just how huge that can be.

No wonder my little guy has been saying “I want to be like Daddy.” He is a pretty terrific guy. Apparently, the things daddy thought no one noticed were being observed and mimicked by his oldest son. So I just smiled and allowed him to run up to the policemen on security duty at the church nursery and thank them for helping. Then a couple weeks ago he elevated his thankfulness with an action that nearly made me burst with pride.

We had been at the park playing and it was HOT. We had decided that it was time to head home and have a rare treat of ice cream. When we pulled into our development we noticed the lawn crew was there working quite hard in the blistering South Florida summer heat. My little two-year-old sweetheart wanted to do something for them so he went into the freezer and pulled out a box of novelty ice cream cones we had bought with a coupon at our local warehouse store. The box was nearly big enough for him to climb into but he drug it out onto the front lawn and them pulled ice cream cones out of it and walked up to each gentleman on the crew and offered them an ice cream cone. It was an extremely cute scene and I was a very proud mama.

IMG_1006Today was lawn day again. When we got home from dropping Daddy off we saw the lawn trucks pulling in to start another day of hard work in the summer heat. As soon as he got out of the car my little guy ran in and filled the bottom shelf of our freezer with water & Gatorade bottles. Then when he heard the lawn equipment in front of our house he filled a little basket with the last of the ice cream cones, water and Gatorade and carried it out. There was only one person in front of our house at the time so he started walking around the complex offering every worker he could find a drink and ice cream. It took several trips back to our house for refills because he could only carry a few at a time but he was determined that ever worker should be offered ice cream and a drink. I followed behind with his little brother and kept an eye on him but this was his project and he was so delighted to do it.  An I just watched as hard working men got smiles on their faces, tears in their eyes and bend down to hug a little boy who had just touched their heart by saying thank you in a tangible way.

IMG_1005 (1)What really got me thinking was when one of the workers stopped me and said. “Of all the work we do, you guys are the only ones who ever say ‘Thank you’.” WOW! There are so many people who live in our complex and none of them say “Thank you.”? And what about all the other complexes that they manage? How many hundreds of people do they serve every day who never say “Thank you.”? But then, how many times have I neglected to say “Thank you.”? How many times have I been so wrapped up in my own world that the people around me who are serving me have been completely invisible?  I’ve started taking a lesson from my two-year-old and I’m looking out for someone I can thank for their invisible service. Will you?

I’ve also decided that encouraging this attitude of gratitude in my boys is well worth the cost of keeping my freezer stocked with a box of ice cream novelties and plenty of water and Gatorade in the pantry. We emptied out our stock today but when we returned home from our last trip he called his daddy and asked if he would take him back to the warehouse store tomorrow to get more ice cream and drinks for next time the workers are here. A pretty proud daddy had no problem agreeing with that!

 

An Intentional Christmas

I’ve had several people ask me what we do to be intentional in teaching the meaning of Christmas to my little ones. I realized that we actually do a lot of different things that I hadn’t focused on until people started asking me. So I decided to list out all the things I could think of and share them here.

Some ideas we do consistently every year, others we choose based on the year and some I haven’t tried yet but they are in my files to attempt either this year or next. I hope some of the ideas will help you to have an intentional Christmas.

  • The Legend of the Candy Canecandy cane

This sweet little book tells the story of the candy cane and why it is such a special Christmas Candy. If you look at a candy cane upside down it is a “J” for “Jesus” who was born on Christmas day. Turn it right side up and it is a Shepard staff, the first people to worship Jesus. The red strips represent the strips of Christ blood shed for our sins and the white strips show that he can wash our sins clean. I have always loved this book and now my kids love it too. At the beginning of the Christmas season I find red & white, peppermint mini candy canes (mini’s help me limit the sugar intake). Each time we read “Candy Cane Book” the boys are allowed one mini candy cane. Joseph eats his up while we read but Daniel will hold his and follow along with each part of the story before eating his. And my two year old can tell you each aspect of the candy cane and what it represents! This is a great way for even a child to be able to share the gospel at Christmas time.

I’ve even found these little poems you can print out and attach to candy canes to pass out with a short explanation of the candy cane on it.

http://smile.amazon.com/Legend-LEGEND-Walburg-Sep-30-1997-Hardcover/dp/B007S7KP26/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1449232932&sr=8-2&keywords=the+legend+of+the+candy+cane

  • Adornments – Barbara Rainey’s Ever Thine Home collection20151208_150808.jpg

I love Barbara’s vision to make your home an embassy. We are ambassadors for Christ and our homes are a reflection of that. She is so wonderful about providing beautiful items that help intentionally share the message of the holiday (I actually stole the idea of intentionality from her several years ago). As a mother of six she know wha20151208_150758.jpgt will be safe around children. None of her adornments are glass or breakable but they are all extremely beautiful!

I’ve included a photo of out tree where we use the “Savior Names of Christ”, the “Christmas Names” and the “Adore Hymns” collections.

http://everthinehome.com/christmas/

  • The Christmas Keychristmas keys

When we were first married my husband found these Christmas keys. They are three decorative keys; the shepherd key, the Magi Key and the Christ Key. A little poem accompanied them that we read each year as we hang the keys. It’s a simple tradition but it explains the “Key” to Christmas as Christ coming to die for our sins.

https://www.leafletonline.com/christmas-keys-ornament

  • Crown of thornscrown of thorns.jpg

Another tradition my husband started, (I think because he was tired of fusing with angels and stars that wouldn’t stay on the tree correctly), was to hang a crown of thorns from the top of our tree. We still have angels and stars just in different locations because these do hold special significance in the Christmas story. However, we use the crown of thrones as yet another reminder that Christ’s ultimate purpose in being born was to die for our sins. When we hang it Daniel will find a picture of Jesus were a crown of thorns in one of his picture books and tell us that it was used to hurt Jesus but that his blood took away our sins. It’s a simple symbol we can use in teach that even our two year old can grasp.

http://smile.amazon.com/Crown-Thorns-Christmas-Ornamental-Authentic/dp/B000QWLL82/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1449414479&sr=8-7&keywords=crown+of+thorns

  • Why do they call it Christmas – Buck DenverDVD-Christmas-1000_1024x1024.png

This video by Veggie Tales Creator Phil Visor is so educational even Bible college graduates will learn something new but it is presented in a way that is interesting for the whole family and, once again, even a two year old can grasp the concepts. Some of the symbols and Christmas traditions that are explained are Why is it called “Christmas?”, Why do we celebrate on Dec. 25th?,What year was Jesus really born?, What do Christmas trees have to do with Jesus?, What about Santa Claus? Where did he come from? (Don’t worry it doesn’t spoil anything if you choose to allow your kids to believe in Santa), Which came first – Christmas or Hanukkah? And which one did Jesus celebrate?, What are the “12 Days of Christmas?”, How does the name “Emmanuel” explain the real meaning of Christmas?

http://smile.amazon.com/Whats-Bible-Buck-Denver-Christmas/dp/B0063FGFJ6/ref=sr_1_1?s=movies-tv&ie=UTF8&qid=1449414903&sr=1-1&keywords=why+do+they+call+it+christmas

  • When Christmas Came – Barbara Rainey20151208_153815.jpg

I love Barbara’s books because she designs them to be used from toddlers up through teens. I have her Thanksgiving, Easter and Christmas books and in each one she uses various font sizes. The idea is when you children are toddlers you just read the LARGE font and as they grow older you add in the smaller sized font. When Christmas Came uses John 3:16 to explain the meaning of Christmas one phrase at a time. Christmas is about: God, Love, the World, Giving, Jesus, Choice, Hope, Eternal Life, & Promise

http://smile.amazon.com/When-Christmas-Came-Barbara-Rainey/dp/1602002487/ref=sr_1_sc_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1449415385&sr=8-1-spell&keywords=when+christmas+came+barbara+riney

  • Fisher Price Little People nativity Little-People-Nativity

This was an idea I got from my cousin. Children learn by doing so why not give them a way to act out the Christmas story? We got the Fisher Price Little People Nativity from Family Christian and the boys love when I pack up most of their regular toys after Thanksgiving and bring out the nativity for them to play with during the Christmas season. They love arranging and rearranging the characters and especially love it when I allow them to listen to Luke 2 being read aloud from my Bible app while they play.

http://www.familychristian.com/little-people-nativity.html?gclid=CjwKEAiA1o-zBRDomsWasvKh4S8SJADSlZkqujm-rjWkMtHSKFkT8bU0n745E7Rs-rqObEY6JF7YVxoCRwnw_wcB&kwid=sitelinks-kwid^32018591x20548918386x326856546-slid^2199574074x20548918386x326856546-device^c-adid^84423489666@ADL1bba74b4db7b64c738311b55e456786d1

  • The 12 names of Christmas who Jesus is to me20151208_153841.jpg

This little book comes with 12 ornaments. Each with a picture symbolizing a name of Christ on one side and a verse on the other. Each ornament has a corresponding devotional in the book that can be read all at once when decorating the tree or one 20151208_153857.jpgeach day for the twelve days of Christmas.

Here are a few of the ornaments hanging on our tree.

https://shop.familylife.com/p-3931-the-twelve-names-of-christmas-ornaments.aspx

  • Advent Calendaradvent

In the interest of full disclosure I don’t have the advent calendar I am recommending. We got a late start this year so I’m modifying a simple grocery store version for this year. But my boys response has been so positive that I am already planning to purchase this more advance calendar next year. It comes with 24 magnetic figures representing different characters in the Christmas story. In each little door you can also place a small piece of candy and a bible verse to read with each character. It’s a great way to refocus our attention back to the reason for the season each day.

http://smile.amazon.com/dp/B0002TUVEO/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=1G2S0G1Q76EC1&coliid=IVRYNYO1J7J1D&psc=1

  • Service Outreachesshoebox

I can’t express enough how important service out reaches have been. From the time Daniel was 6 months old I have taken him to buy items for Operation Christmas Child’s shoeboxes. We have also taken bakery treats to the local public service departments. Purchased items for refuges and meals and gifts for single mom’s and their kids. I make sure to have him fully involved in choosing the items and delivering them. He has been able to show a good grasp of what is needed and what would be enjoyable and he doesn’t ask for things for hwpid-20141217_133159.jpgimself when we are on these trips because I explain how blessed we have been and this is a time to bless others.

Here is my favorite story from this year’s trip:

Every year I do a little project with the boys and usually the talk before hand goes like this “We are going to go buy some things for little boys and girls who don’t have nice things.” Daniel says “Ok” and then picks out some things he thinks another little boy would like. This year the conversation wasn’t as easy. He asked a lot of “why” and “what happened?” questions that required a lot more thought and explanation on my part. Since we were doing a project for single mom’s and their kids I explained that God had given us a good daddy and given daddy a good job so he could provide nice things for his family but not everyone has a daddy or they might not have a job so they don’t have money to buy nice things. This seemed to satisfy him until we got to the store and I asked him what he wanted to pick out for the little boys and girls and he said “I want to buy them a Daddy to take care of them.”

  • Nativity picture booksnativity book

This one is pretty simple, each week we make a library trip and get at least one new “Christmas Story Book.” The pictures might change a little but the basic message is still the same and it helps reinforce the message of Christmas each time they bring me the book and ask me to read. Which happens about 20 times a day. That is another reason we use the library for this…the variety keeps mom sane.

  • A Birthday Cake for Jesushappy-birthday-jesus-cake

This is another idea I took from a family member. When her children were little she had a happy birthday to Jesus Cake each year. I think we are going to try it. It will help drive home the point that we are celebrating Jesus birthday.

Enjoy your intentional Christmas!

 

FodMap Friendly & Toddler Approved Rainbow Salad

In our quest to learn more about nutrition we have learned that we need to eat foods in each color of the rainbow because each color contains a different nutrient that our body needs. This was also reinforced by Daniel’s new pre-school curriculum that had a lesson about rainbow salad. In the lesson a little boy helps his mom make rainbow salad. We decided to do the same thing, so I got my trusty list of FodMap friendly foods to make sure everything we got was okay for Dad to eat and we headed to the Farmers Market.

It was lots of fun finding fruits in each color of the rainbow. We found

  • Red – Raspberries
  • Orange – Seedless Oranges
  • Yellow – Pineapple
  • Green – Kiwi
  • Blue – Blueberries
  • Purple – Grapes

When we got home Daniel pulled up his step stool and climbed up to make rainbow salad. I gave him a safety/butter knife and let him cut on a slice of pineapple while I diced the rest of it into bite-sized pieces.

I peeled the orange and let him separate the segments and add them to the bowl. He pulled the grapes of the stem and added them to the bowl. He got to push down on the slicer I have that sliced the kiwi.

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Finally we added the raspberries and blueberries and he drizzled the tiniest bit of honey over the top.

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YUMMY rainbow salad, beautiful and nutritious and made almost entirely by an 18 month old!

Healthy Lunch for Toddler AND Mom

Unfortunately I didn’t learn much about nutrition or proper meal planning when I was growing up so I have been trying to teach myself all I can in order to provide nutritious meal for my family.

Recently I decided on a very simple solution for myself, a large salad. I make a killer, everything on it salad so I actually ENJOY eating just a salad at lunch. Hubby not so much but he gets leftovers from dinner the night before so he is taken care of. But since I started doing this I have worried about what Daniel was eating for lunch. He is such a “monkey see, monkey eat” little kid that if I offered him something I wasn’t eating he wouldn’t eat it either. I can’t feed him a salad for lunch, he chokes on the lettuce & doesn’t quite have the whole salad concept down. But he does like all of the elements I add to my salad.

During his nap today I stole a few quiet moments while I was nursing Joseph to read a bit of a nutrition book I am trying to work through. Since my reading time is limited to about 10 minutes a day I jumped right to the chapter on feeding your toddler. The authors (Dr. & Mrs. Sears) explained that toddlers need to have food presented differently in order to match their lifestyle.

Toddlers are always on the go (ESPECIALLY boys!) and exploring their world but their stomachs are only the size of their little fist. Because of this they need nutritionally dense food, such as eggs, cheese, olives, avocado, etc.) They also need it presented in a way that accommodates their need to explore & snack as they get hungry again. They suggested a snack tray, filled with different nutritionally dense foods as well as some “fun food” presented to the toddler at their level that they could snack on through out the day. I decided to try that today for lunch.

Since many of the nutritionally dense food they suggested are items I already put on my salad each day I started by pulling out all my salad items and then threw in a few “fun food” items that I thought he would like.

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Here is what I had:

  • crackers with cream cheese*
  • yogurt dip*
  • mozzarella cheese (any cheese will do, I am just using up leftovers from Christmas’ cheese plate)
  • artichokes
  • olives (I had kalamonte b/c we all like them but you might want to try black if your toddler isn’t used to such strong flavors)
  • hard boiled eggs
  • Fresh Market bacon (Fun food is OK is small quantities, for mom & toddlers)
  • lettuce* (for me not the toddler)
  • parsley (mostly for me but I did put a few leaves in his tray to see what he would do with them)
  • carrots
  • tomatoes
  • peaches
  • dried blueberries
  • dried cherries
  • avocado
  • banana*

*I actually ran out spaces in my tray so I didn’t use these items for this tray but might next time I make it so he has some variety.

My little helper woke up before I had a chance to do more than cut the lettuce for my salad so he came in the kitchen to help me finish making our lunches.

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An he started snacking a little early.

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Having him “help” actually worked out great because he saw that I was putting the same items in his tray that I was putting in my salad bowl so he was more inclined to eat them. He even started polishing off the carrots first, an item that I normally cannot get him to eat!

Here was the final tray:

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As you can see carrots and blueberries took quit the hit before it even left the kitchen.

I placed the tray on a chair at his level and allowed him to graze at his leisure.

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And when we got ready to go to the park or grandma’s I just slipped the snack tray into a gallon ziploc bag to go with us.

So far this has worked well for us and I can expand the list of items so he always has new foods to explore.

 

 

No-Bake Cookies and a Visit to the Fire Station

Daniel, like all boys, is fascinated by fire trucks and there is a fire station just 1.5 miles from our house.  We frequently see the firemen in our development and they always let Daniel see the trucks and give him a plastic fireman’s hat. We wanted to do something to thank them for their service but it had to be something Daniel could actually participate in. Standing in line at the grocery store last night I got a brainstorm. Why not make no-bake cookies? I hadn’t made no bake cookies since I was too little for my mom to trust me with the oven but now they are perfect for me to do with Daniel.

I settled on two no-bake cookies. There is some prep that requires a stove but once that is done little ones can help with the rolling, stirring , pouring, cutting, etc.

 wpid-20141215_194218.jpg

Cathedral Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (60z) chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 3 cups pastel miniature marshmallows
  • 1/2 cup nuts
  • 1 cup flaked coconut

Directions

  1. In a heavy saucepan, melt chocolate and coconut oil over low heat, stirring occasionally. Stir a small amount into the egg, then return all to pan. Cook and stir over low heat for 2 minutes. Pour into a bowl; let cool for 15 minutes. Gently stir in marshmallows and nuts. Chill for 30 minutes.
  2. Divide the dough in half. On a sheet of waxed paper, shape half the dough into a log. Place coconut on another sheet of waxed paper. Gently roll log over coconut to coat sides. Wrap up tightly, twisting ends to seal. Repeat with other half of the dough.
  3. Freeze for 4 hours or overnight. Remove waxed paper. Cut into 1/4-in. slices. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

wpid-20141215_132540.jpg

No Bake Chocolate Cookie Balls

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (6 oz) semisweet chocolate
  • 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups crushed graham crackers
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons honey

Directions

  1. Melt chocolate chips; stir until smooth.
  2. In separate bowl combine the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla wafers, walnuts, orange juice and honey. Add the chocolate and blend well.
  3. Shape into 1-in. balls; (if you have trouble getting the balls to hold together add a few more tablespoons of orange juice.) roll in additional confectioners’ sugar, colored sugars, jimmies or peppermint sugar. Store in an airtight container.

This recipe makes a ton of cookies but that is good when your little helper wants to eat as many as he rolls in the sugars.🙂

I supplemented the no-bake cookies with some oatmeal cookies and fudge I made after Daniel was in bed and we had a nice little tray to take to the fire station.

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The firemen were so nice and gracious to show Daniel around the fire station.

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They turned the lights on the truck which was fascinating!

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They showed him their gear inside the truck.

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And they let him sit in the truck!

Thank you Delray Beach Fire Rescue for a wonderful time! And thank you to all of our service men and women for your service to our country and communities.

Edible Finger Paint and an Adorable Christmas Card

I’ve made these finger paints a couple times with the kids and it is great fun. They can paint away and I don’t worry about how many times the little finger go in their mouth because it is completely safe!

The first time was for Father’s Day. This time I was really smart and stripped the kids down to their diapers, spead a plastic table cloth outside and put the paints and construction paper out for them. When they were done clean up was simple, I just hosed them off! (which they thought was great fun by the way)

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I’m looking at this at Christmas thinking “they look cold” but this picture was actually take in June in Florida so the temp was probably in the 80’s or 90’s this day and babies in nothing but diapers were perfectly warm enough.🙂

20140613_093143

I started out with a cup for each color of paint but that seemed to hard for them to access so eventually I just dumped the cups into different sections of a disposable tray for them.

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This made it much easier for them to access the colors they wanted and actually made less of a mess since before they were about to dump the cup of paint on themselves or each other.

Here is how I made the paints.

To a saucepan add:

2 Tablespoons of sugar

1/3 cup of flour

1 teaspoon salt

Mix with 2 cups of water and whisk until smooth. Turn on the heat and stir continually until the mixture thickens. Make sure you whisk the whole time otherwise you end up with little flour lumps in the finger paints.

Pour into your plastic cups. (You’ll need one cup for every color of paint you’d like to make.) Mix in a couple drops of food coloring and stir until completely dissolved. Let cool completely before allowing kids to start painting.

I recently mixed up another batch of paints to make footprint Christmas cards. Sorry no pictures of this process, it took two adults just to hold the baby, dip his foot in paint then press it on the Christmas card! It was a bit of work and only 7 cards were produced but it was adorable.

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Limited edition, once in a lifetime Christmas Card. This busy mom only had the time and the ability to make seven cards so if you receive one count yourself lucky. And if you are a busy mom don’t feel that you have to “do it all” or feel guilty about what you didn’t get a chance to do this Christmas. Just enjoy the season with your family!

 

 

Headbands

One of Daniel’s best buddies has gorgeous curly hair that she won’t keep a hair-clip in but her mom told me that she like headbands. I decided to see if I could come up with a few cute headbands that I could make for her. The first one was a simple puffy pink bow. Daniel called her name as soon as he saw it and couldn’t wait to give it to her.

Here is how I made it.

First I cut six 4″ lengths of ribbon from eight different colors of ribbon.

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Then I folded the ribbon in half and threaded it onto my needle.

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I kept repeating the pattern until I used all the ribbon.

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Then pull everything tight and knotted the thread several times.

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Fluff out the ribbons.

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Then I started working on the band. I used babyville’s yellow fold over elastic that I had measured to the length of her head.  I folded over one end slightly to eleminate rough edges and matched the two ends togther.

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Then I sewed the ends together.

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I put hot glue on the unfinesd ends of the puppy ribbon ball.

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Then quickly press it into the seam area of the head band.

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Beautiful headband for a beautiful girl!

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Thanksgiving Turkeys

I just made these adorable pine-cone turkeys for Thanksgiving place settings with my son. They double as a favor for grandparents to make the size of his hands this year.

Start by tracing his hand on three different colors of paper. Make sure you have one hand print in each color for each place setting you need (I needed 6 place settings so I  did six hand prints in each color).

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Once you have all the prints traced cut them out.

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Then draw oval shaped faces on another color paper and cut them out.

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Once everything is cut out start assembling the turkeys. Draw or glue eyes and a small “beak” on the faces and hot glue it to the narrow end of the pinecone. Take one hand print in each color and fan them to create a “tail”. Hot glue this to the wide end of the pine cone.

wpid-20141126_130150.jpg

An adorable family of pinecone turkeys! Finish them off by writing your guests names on the tails.

Happy Thanksgiving.

 

Music from a Thankful Heart

I apologize that this blog has been quiet for a little while but there has been very good reason, here is the biggest/smallest one:

Brothers

Brothers

Joseph Mark was born 15 days early via emergency c-section amid a whirlwind of other life altering events. He and big brother Daniel have been occupying all of Mommy’s time.  In fact I am trying to type this blog one handed while alternating little boys who want to sit on my lap while listening to their Thanksgiving Music Playlist.

Daniel has a fascination with music and while I love Cedarmont Kids, Praise Baby & Veggie Tales for him I can only listen to the same handful of songs a certain number of times before I go stir-crazy. I think we passed that point about six months ago after the one billionth time listening to every one of his kiddy dvds!🙂

He dances and signs along when his dad or I are listening to our “grown-up” music so I decided to continue on the theme of teaching him Thankfulness (he will now say “Thank you” with almost no prompting!) and create a Thanksgiving playlist that I can put on for him when he asks for music. These songs won’t drive the adults up a wall and I want to teach him the words to praise hymns while he is young. When I was a child we had to memorize hymns and the words to those songs have stuck with me my whole life and carried me through many trials.

I put a lot of work into compiling these and thought some of you might enjoy being able to grab one of the songs or the whole list. I hope you find it encouraging and if you have a favorite Thanksgiving song please leave it below in a comment.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Thanksgiving Music Playlist

Because Of Your Love
Better Than Life
Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
Come Ye Thankful People Come
Doxology
Enough
Everything that has breath
For All You Are
For All You’ve Done
For These Reasons
Forever
Give Thanks
Grateful Heart
How Great Thou Art
How To Worship A King
I Thank You
It is Well With My Soul
Love You So Much
Made Me Glad
O Worship The King
Praise To The Lord The Almighty
Thank You For Loving Me
Thank You For Saving Me
Thank You Lord
Thankful
What the Lord Has Done in Me
When It’s All Been Said And Done
Worthy Is the Lamb (with In the Cross and Crown Him With Many Crowns)
You Are Good
You’ve Been So Good

 

Wholesomely Delicious Whole Grain Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins

I was looking for something yummy and tempting to make for Daniel a few weeks ago. I found a recipe for Peanut Butter muffins which I thought he might like but they had a jelly glaze. Anybody with a one year old knows that you don’t feed them anything glazed unless you are prepared to deal with extreme messiness afterward. Then I had a brilliant idea. Why not put the jelly inside the muffins? I decided to spice the muffins up a little as well to add a little flavor. Here is what I came up with.

Wholesomely Delicious Whole Grain Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins

2 1/4 cups whole wheat, white whole wheat or whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
4 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup peanut butter (smooth or crunchy)
1 Tablespoon Vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon almond extract
2 large eggs
3/4 cups buttermilk

Filling:

Favorite flavor of jelly

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375. Line a mini muffin pan with paper cups.

Mix dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.

Cream butter & sugar then add peanut butter, extracts, eggs & buttermilk. Add dry ingredients and mix until moistened.

Scoop one Tablespoon of batter into muffins cups.

 

 

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Put a heaping 1/4 teaspoon on top of the batter.

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Scoop another Tablespoon of batter on top of the jelly.

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Bake until golden brown 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven & allow to cool before feeding to your hungry monster.

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They must have been good. He ate 6 of them as soon as they had cooled and everyday at noon he begs for them. This batch made 3 dozen mini muffins and has lasted me several weeks of lunches and snacks.

Since they are wholegrain & a good source of protein I have no problem with him eating them as often as he wants. I’ve been told they are the perfect food for picky eaters as well. Picky eaters isn’t really an issue I have at my house  but if your kids are try these muffins. They are Daniel endorsed.