Monday, March 26, 2012

Fun Crafts and Books with Snow!

Even though I hope we don't get any more snow, we are going through a cold spell in the 30's, so I thought I'd share some snow related things the kids and I did in February.   (These cold temps are a bit of an adjustment since having temps in the 70's and 80's the last couple weeks!)

We first read a couple books that had to do with having fun with our imaginations in snow (Razzle-Dazzle Ruby) and another dealing with a snow storm (One Winter's Day).
Then we had some fun with a mixture of salt, flour, baking powder and water.  I got the idea from Inner Child Fun.  SO simple and it only takes 30 seconds to dry in the microwave!  (They puff up too!!)

Morgan's snowflakes
Blake's snowflakes
And I had to try it too....of course! :-)

We then went on to read about some sledding in "Ten on the Sled"
Then watched a little video put together from the book "Red Sled".  (Would have loved the book, but didn't think to look for it ahead of time.)  I got this video and the craft idea combination from Brimful Curiousities.

I ended up using hot glue to put the sleds together, so the kids weren't able to do it all on their own.  They then used permanent markers to decorate their sleds, but if we had some puffy paint I'm sure they would have LOVED using that instead :-)

It was nice being able to do some snow related activities, since we actually didn't get a chance to actually play in snow this was a very mild winter and we didn't have much snow and if we did it didn't last long enough for the kids to play in.   I'm not going to complain though-it was nice not having to try to drive in it! :-)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

St. Patrick's Day 2012

St. Patrick's Day was really a fun day for us this year.  Blake and I started the day before by making a Simple Irish Soda Bread.  I didn't happen to have any buttermilk so I just used regular milk, which made the dough a bit thin, but it still turned out tasty!  (Especially toasted with butter on top!!)  We didn't make any more Irish food besides the bread, but we did have Lucky Charms and Lofthouse Sugar Cookies (decorated for St. Pat's day) to help us celebrate :-) 
I also did a little decorating using projects the kids and I made previous year. I even got a little extra creative and used many of the necklaces/beads from past parades to decorate our light fixture :-)
Of course, the Leprechaun had to come and hide his pot of gold in our house again this year.  He left numbered clues for the kids like in the past.  Once they found all the clues, put them in numercial order and turned them over, they discovered where the pot of gold was....
In the toaser!  The Leprechaun even thought to unplug it first just to be safe. :-)
We made a couple craft projects as well.  The kids LOVED doing them and giggled the whole time their hands were being painted because it tickled :-)
I think these are adorable!  The kids even drew their own faces once the paint was dry. :-)
The last thing we did for St. Patrick's day was go to the local parade.  We were surprised to see that my nieces were in it!  They were walking for the local Irish shop and dressed super cute!  I had forgotten my camera, but my nieces' mom had hers' and took a picture of the cousins together...I borrowed the picture from facebook. :-)
This was definitely a memorable St. Patrick's day.  Besides the fun times I mentioned, the weather was great  (and still is...over 30 degrees above average lately) and Morgan played her final basketball game for the season.  The kids also got to go to their Grandma and Papa's house to stay the night.  Plus their 3rd cousins were up from Virginia so they were able to play with them too!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Only a month late: Our Valentine's Day 2012

I don't know where the time has gone, but Valentine's Day doesn't seem like it was a month ago already!  I'd still like to share the love that we shared with each other that day :-)

These are the Valentine Planes Morgan made for her class.

A close-up of one.  The sayings on the little banners were "You're just plane cool!", "Fly high, Valentine!" and "You make my heart soar."  We had planned on making these Valentines for about a month and from the start Morgan didn't like the last little saying on the banner, "You make my heart soar."  I didn't realize until after Valentine's day that she thought that 'soar' was 'sore' meaning 'hurt' wonder she didn't like it!  LOL!
Our Valentine's breakfast of French Toast.

Morgan's Valentine's lunch.

Blake helped me decorate this big chocolate chip cookie and we cut it up and sent it to his class.  We also made Peanut Butter Blossoms to send to Morgan's class for their Valentine's Party.

Blake's Valentine's lunch.

Our Valentine's Day dinner...if you haven't noticed, we love our bread/carbs!  LOL!

Morgan with her Valentine from Rich and I.

Blake with his Valentine :-)

Rich and I also went out to dinner the following Saturday and did a little shopping for much needed date night.  I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's Day as well! :-)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Different View Photography: 100% of Proceeds Going Cure Cystic Fibrosis

Many of you probably remember my friend Amanda. She is doing well, and has recently started working with her friend, Sean Purcell, developing his photography business. I couldn't be happier for her in this new venture and as you can see the photography is beautiful! I'd like to share what Sean wrote on Different View Photography's website as to what his photography means to him:

"Welcome to Different View Photography! We all move through our world at a break neck speed these days and I’m no different. Every now and again we slow down, or are forced to slow down, just long enough to see the world around us. This little respite is often just what we need to remind us that it is a big world out there. It's larger than us as individuals and larger than the worries we may be dealing with at the moment. These different views keep us anchored and give us a sense of perspective when we get wrapped up in the daily race. Photography gives us the opportunity to take these views and memories with us to keep that feeling close. I hope you enjoy."

I definitely enjoyed looking at the beauty of Sean's views and am honored to be able to post a couple of the pictures here...this little blog doesn't get to see such beauty very often ;-)

Now, unfortunately, there are some ugly things that linger amongst all the beauty, as many of us know. Sean is very well aware of this ugliness too as he has someone very close to him who struggles with Cystic Fibrosis.

For those who don't know, or need a refresher of what Cystic Fibrosis is:

"Cystic fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that "affects the lungs and digestive system of 30,000 children and adults in the U.S. (70,000 worldwide). A defective gene and its protein product cause the body to produce unusually thick, sticky mucus that:

•clogs the lungs and leads to life-threatening lung infections; and
•obstructs the pancreas and stops natural enzymes from helping the body break down and absorb food."
(borrowed from the Great Strides website.)

In an effort to help cure Cystic Fibrosis, Sean and Amanda have generously decided to donate ALL proceeds from Different View Photography to Ayla's Army during the Great Strides fundraising event (through the month of March.) As the Different View Photography site says "Beautiful views of our world for you and one step closer to finding a cure for extraordinary children like Ayla...does it get any better than this?"

Here are some ways you can help:

*Purchase a print from Different View Photography. (100% proceeds go to Ayla's Army.)

*Make a direct donation to Ayla's Army.

*Spread the word through any social networking site about Cystic Fibrosis, Ayla's Army and/or the efforts of Sean and Amanda at Different View Photography.

*Of course prayers for those who a struggling with Cystic Fibrosis are more than welcome :-)

If you feel moved to do so, and have the resources to help in any way, please do! :-)

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