Encouragement For Women

Monday, December 1, 2014

Elf on the shelf!

Aiden saw his elf. Named her Ziva. Asked if she was pretend and is a little irritated that she can't talk to him. He said he's gonna touch her so she can't tell Santa he was naughty. I think it'll get more fun as the days go on and she moves around. We decorated the tree last night and she showed up on top of it. He was so exited to do the tree! He's been asking for a couple of weeks if we could get it, but I like to wait until after thanksgiving. Usually I put Christmas decor up December 1st, but this year we did it the night before because we wanted the elf to show up Dec 1. 
I wanted to do the North Pole breakfast but we decided to wait until next year, keeping her up higher so they didn't accidentaly touch Her and lose the magic right away. 
Steve got up with the boys this morning. (I didn't even hear them!) and I got woken up to a really exited little boy shaking me and saying there's an elf in our house! I followed him to the living room so he could show me and he explained the rules on the way since daddy read the book she brought! Helloooo Ziva!
Ziva showed up as our tree topper to remind us we need to get one!

He said "it's so beautiful under here!"
Carter doesn't quite understand the loop, he did a great job putting ornaments on top of branches. 
Aiden had a great night, and it was so good to be reminded of the wonder of children. Steve said last night that he never thought he'd be one to do all this, but kids make everything different. And they do. Everything is special with kids. Are you doing Elf on the shelf? Did your parents do it?

Thursday, November 27, 2014

November Projects

For these, we pressed footprints then the boys made feathers. Carter fingerprinted his because it covered more area in less time. I drew outlines for Aiden's and he colored them in with markers. He thought it was really fun when I made designs for him to fill in, like circles or stripes. 
1. Scarecrows made from craft sticks.  Have all supplies cut out and ready to go so LO doesn't get antsy. 
Put five craft sticks on a piece of cardboard to see how big a piece you need, and cut it out. You put glue on the cardboard and let LO place the craft sticks. You can help guide little hands so they're all somewhat straight. 
Put glue in a strip on brown craft foam that you've cut into a hat shape, and let LO place a strip of orange craft foam for the contrast on the hat. 
Put glue on the top of the craft sticks and place some straw from a hay bail (or you can buy this stuff but I have hay bails as decor for the season, so I picked some off) on the glue. 
Put a little glob of glue on the back of the hat, toward the bottom and let LO place the hat. 
Put tiny drops of glue where you want the eyes and nose (triangle cut from Orange craft foam) and let LO place them. 
Draw on a smile. 
Aiden was interested to learn what scarecrows do. 
2. Leaf rubbing. Collect a few leaves and tape them to your table. Tape corners of a piece of paper on top of the leaves, and color with crayons. Just fill in all the space. The veins in the leaves will show through and it ends up looking pretty nifty, especially when you use a bunch of colors. 
3. Turkey Jar. I put gold acrylic paint inside a small glass baby food jar and let Aiden shake it all up to coat the jar. Tighten the lid. Glue on Googley eyes and a craft foam nose. Trace hand on foam and cut out, use that as template to cut others out. I used two of Aiden's and two of Carters for our turkey. Aiden cut the leftover foam into "leaves" for the turkey to play in. We also put the acorns we painted with acrylics (7) in the bowl. 
4,5,&6. Treat Tuesday. We made fruit turkeys a few days because the boys loved these so much, cheesy leaf rolls from crescent dough, (Pressed seems together, cut out leaf shapes, sprinkled cheese on top, baked) and we made a pie for pastors family. 
8. Thankful turkeys. I cut a paper towel tube for the body. Colored paper made the nose and feet, Googley eyes, and paper feathers. I asked Aiden what he was thankful for, and asked what else until I had six. I guessed on Carters. Aiden enjoyed glueing his all himself.  

Happy Thanksgiving!

Our day started with turkey pancakes. A funny shaped one for the head on top of a round one for the body. Sliced bananas (Aiden sliced them himself.) for the feathers and nose, chocolate chip eyes. Aiden thought these were so cool. Carter didn't care what his breakfast looked like, but he sure did like those bananas. 
We watched some of The Sound Of Music-Carrie Underwood's live version. Aiden requested it, he loves her. I tried to get a nap but that didn't happen, so I did dishes instead. I made the mashed potatoes for our thanksgiving dinner. Steve and Aiden helped peel potatoes. It was mostly Steve. Thanks husband! Then we headed to my grandpa's house for dinner. I brought a couple of coloring activities for Aiden to do while we waited to eat, and we played apples to apples after dinner. Carter had a harder time, because I stupidly forgot to pack extra toys for him and their house isn't the most child friendly. We ended up leaving shortly after starting the game. We had fun while we were there, though. The day ended with sweet tea and possibly Malibu. (night's not over yet)

I'm so thankful for my life. I really don't have much to complain about, and when I think about it - those things will pass and don't really matter anyway. 
I'm thankful for:
•My husband, Steve. He's always supportive of me and loves me no matter what. He thinks I'm a good mom and doesn't hold back telling me so. Which is good because I need to hear that once in a while. 
•My sons, Aiden and Carter. These boys help me see beauty every day. They are wonderful, caring boys, always there for each other, Aiden always ready to offer to smooch a booboo, Carter learning to say "book". 
•The girls. My mom, Denise. I know she always wants to protect me and I know how hard it is to step back and let your kids make mistakes and learn for themselves. My awesome sisters. Alyssa. Starrlee. Lilli. I'm proud of all of them and grateful to have them in my life. My mother in law, Tina, who taught me all of Steve's favorite dinners. 
•Grandpas. My sons have the best grandpas kids could ask for!
•Books. I'm thankful that I can get lost in the beautiful worlds created through the written word. How deeply these words can touch me. How much they make me feel for people I've never met (but I feel like we're best friends) and aren't really real (but they're real to me). 
•Coffee. Specifically the Autumn Harvest Blend. When that warmth flows through me, all the way down into my belly, it makes my soul happy. 
•Good music. Thank you, Miranda Lambert, for creating Platinum. My family loves to shake it to that whole album. 
•Blankets. Snuggling up in a cozy blanket. (Sigh) it's just good. 
•My favorite shows. Gilmore Girls. Reba. Grimm. Americas Next Top Model. 
•Washing machine. I'm so glad I don't have to do all that by hand. 
•God. He's good. I'm thankful that I never have to worry (though I often do) because He knows what's up and I know I can trust Him (though sometimes I forget). I'm thankful for His love and grace, His strength and mercy. 

What are you thankful for?

Friday, November 21, 2014

Chicka chicka boom boom

Written by Bill Martin, Jr. and John Archambault
We love this children's book. Today, while were reading it, I had the fun idea to use it for the fridge letters. The boys love it. All I did was cut a piece of construction paper in half lengthwise, with one half slightly smaller, for the trunk. I folded green in half lengthwise and cut two leaves from each sheet. Two coconuts from a sheet of orange. I didn't have brown. They don't care. I taped every seem so Carter wouldn't rip them off and voila. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

D. O. R. K. Steve's shocked I wore this today!

Sometimes he still gets surprised at how big a dork I am. It's a good thing I have a nice butt. ;) I didn't realize my mom had my face in the picture, I thought she was just getting my sweatshirt to show my lil sis. So? I'm not great at photos. It's ok with me. I was woken up for the day at 4 by my two rambunctious boys, I'm way too low maintenance to wear makeup and do my hair every day, and AF decided to show up this morning. I've earned those tired eyes, dang it. 

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Work it! Shake it! Move it!

Ahhhh the exhilaration of pushing your body to its limit, then pushing past that limit. There's nothing as relaxing. These last few pounds have been sticking around, so I've been pushing harder this week, and you can tell. I have that awesome soreness in my abs and I've done so many squats I feel like my buttcheeks are going to fall off. YES! That's exactly what I want those annoying ten pounds to do. I love my body, I love all that my body is capable of. I love the way I feel when I exercise, especially when I look good. Cute and comfortable. My outfit from fabletics for November is the one in the middle. I have the breast cancer awareness top paired with black yoga pants, and the Tao print top paired with gray yoga pants. I like to have my workout clothes paired up so I have everything I need ready to go. If it's fast to grab I'm more likely to put it on and move my tush. Here's my link to Fabletics. If you're interested in signing up, please use my link. http://www.fabletics.com/invite/54348116/

Monday, October 27, 2014

Jar crafts

We had to do these! They're just too cute, and I happened to have a bunch of jars in the garage. Project cost was for free since we had all the materials needed. 
Dump a little paint (we used acrylic and craft paints) in the jar. Screw lid tightly. Let your kiddo shake it up. Shake it up. Shake it like crazy. Until the inside is coated with color. You'll want to remove the lid so the paint can dry or you'll just end up with a wet mess in there and a bunch of paint on the bottom of the jar (if the paint is runny). One of my paints was runnier, and I had to "roll" the paint around in there a few times while it was drying, so it didn't puddle the bottom. 
We did a monster, a pumpkin, and a ghost. I painted the lids accordingly. Aiden picked some stickers to use for the ghost's eyes and monster's mouth, we added Googly eyes to the monster, and I drew a face on the pumpkin and a scar and bolts on the monster with a fat permanent marker. We had fun with this super simple idea I got from a fellow mom. Thank you!