Category Archives: Kids

Quick & Easy Garlic Bread or Garlic Cheesy Bread

This recipe is just too easy and with just a few ingredients and minimal work you can impress your family and friends while taking an ordinary meal to an extraordinary meal. Really this is so good that a couple of guests said it was ‘the bomb’ the last time we had it and it is so easy a kindergartner can do it (with a little help when it comes to the oven).

The other great thing about this is that you can fix up a couple loaves at a time and store them in the freezer for easy additions to meals.

Quick & Easy Garlic Bread or Garlic Cheesy Bread

Ingredients:

  • 1 storebought French or Italian bread loaf (whatever kind you like, seasonings and/or seeds are ok too)
  • 1 stick melted butter or some spreadable butter
  • Garlic salt (we like Lawry’s Garlic Salt with Parsley and it looks really pretty too)
  • shredded cheese, optional (whatever kind your little heart desires)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350.

Split the bread in half horizontally or slice into thick slices.

Place on an ungreased baking pan.

Spread top sides with butter. I don’t put a lot on but you can choose how much you want.

Sprinkle with garlic salt.

Sprinkle with cheese, if desired.

Bake 10-20 minutes or until slightly crispy. **

Enjoy.

**If you want to freeze these for later then wrap them in foil before baking and place back into the plastic wrapper to store in the freezer. I usually write the baking instructions on the plastic so anyone can pull it out of the freezer and pop it into the oven.

**This post does contain affiliate links to products we use. We may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you) if a purchase is made through links. These links help to support our family, our blog, and our homeschooling mission. Thank you!

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Empty Tomb Rolls

via Empty Tomb Rolls

I may have forgotten to get the ingredients for the Chocolate Covered Eggs but I did remember everything for the Empty Tomb Rolls as my kiddos have been dying to make these again. They are so easy and make such a great way to teach your kids about the real reason for Easter.

Celebrate Earth Month With Green Kid Crafts!

We all know that April 22nd is Earth Day and just in case it has slipped up on you I have some great ideas for celebrating Earth Day in this post HERE. Why celebrate just one day when Green Kids Crafts is having an Earth Month Special?

With the summer vacation coming up on us fast many of us will be going crazy trying to keep the kids out of our hair! Trust me, I know! These kits will help to keep your kids busy and give them a healthy alternative to all of that screen time. Pssst… grandparents… these would make awesome gifts for birthdays, special events, or just because.

CELEBRATE EARTH MONTH WITH GREEN KID CRAFTS!

Get your green on this Earth Month and get 3 FREE STEAM boxes (a $60 value!) on any Green Kid Crafts subscription! Act fast to lock in savings on a longer-term subscription and get Discovery Boxes year-round for less than $15.00 / month. Use offer code PLANET12 at checkout to get $60 off any 12-month subscription. Go here to start shopping! Green Kid Crafts’ award-winning Discovery Boxes pack a lot of fun and learning into affordable and convenient packages. Each box contains up to 6 STEAM science and craft kits, extension activities, and a free STEAM magazine. Junior boxes are designed for ages 2-4 and Discovery boxes are great for ages 5-10+. Offer excludes sibling add-on options. Go here to start shopping!

**This post contains affiliate links to products that we use and love here at our home. We may earn a teeny weeny little commission if a purchase happens to be made through one of our links. Thank you so much for supporting our family, our homeschooling mission, and our blog!

Tigers, Gardens, and Portfolios… oh My!

Have you checked out the great products over at UnitStudy.com? What are unit studies? They are a great way to help kids learn about a topic in a fun way that they will remember.

My kiddos love unit studies and they have so much fun learning about so many different topics. Units studies have made my life easier as I can take things that my kids are interested in today and let them learn about it in a way that encourages them to keep learning.

Unit studies don’t have to be a ‘homeschool only’ kind of thing either. Summer vacation is coming up and maybe you need some fun ways to keep your kids entertained. By using unit studies you can help them to learn about new topics and help prevent that dreaded ‘Summer Slide’.

Terrific Tigers will be marked down to just $5 for National Zoo Lovers Day
 
April 12-14 – Gardens will be marked down to just $9 for National Gardening Day
 
And it’s that time of year to make your portfolios so check out those products too!
 
Have fun!
**This post does contain affiliate links for products that we use and love in our home.
We may earn a teeny tiny commission if a purchase is made through one of our links.
These commissions help to support our blog, our family, and our homeschooling mission.
-Thank you!

Puddin’ Cake Time!

We were gifted with some fresh juicy strawberries earlier in the week. After eating a couple bowls of them the kids wanted to make something special. I knew just the recipe to pull out… Strawberry Pudding Poke Cake.

Here’s a few pictures of all the fun they had making it…

They had a ton of fun poking holes with the wooden spoon handle:

Then they had to pour on the jello:

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Next comes the strawberries (I think a few didn’t make it into the bowl):

Now a layer of pudding and then cool whip:

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Repeat the layers and make it pretty:

 

I tried to catch a few of them eating it but they gobbled it up way too fast!

I’m thinking the next time I might just give it a try without the vanilla pudding as I think that might taste more like a traditional shortcake… yummy!

Do you need some inspiration on how to get your kids helping out in the kitchen? Check out the Kids Can Cook Real Foods website for lots of helpful ideas!

** This post contains affiliate links which help to support our blog and our family. We may receive a small commission if a purchase is made through one of our links.

Made From Scratch Monkey Bread

My kids love monkey bread and they love helping to make it! Check out the slide show for some pics:

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It’s so easy and those cute knives help them feel like real chefs will easing my mind. Those mixing bowls have been a life saver too and the lids make them perfect for this recipe. I can’t always find the 4-pack of canned biscuits (and I’ve been trying to make more things from scratch) so i have used our regular biscuit recipe at times. You just need to divide the dough into 1 inch balls and continue on if you decide to do make your own biscuit dough.

As you can see from the last picture, it goes really fast around here… so fast I didn’t have time to catch a picture of the whole thing!

Monkey bread

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2-3 t. of cinnamon
  • 4 cans biscuits or use this biscuit recipe (add 1/4 c. sugar to the flour before mixing in the shortening for a little extra sweetness)
  • 1/2 cup of butter or margarine, melted
  • 3/4 c. brown sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350.

Grease  or spray a 12-cup bundt cake pan. ** see below for alternate directions.

Combine the white sugar and cinnamon in a large bowl, bag, or container with a tight fitting lid.

Cut each basket into quarters and then shake the pieces in the cinnamon sugar mixture.

Place the sugar coated pieces into your greased pan.

Mix together the remaining cinnamon sugar, melted butter and the brown sugar.

Pour this mixture over top of the biscuit pieces in the pan.

Bake at 350 for 40 -45 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes and turn upside down.

Best served warm. The kids like to eat it with bananas… I usually make some scrambled eggs and grits to go along with it too.

** You can bake this in a greased casserole for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown.

For more ideas on how to let your kids help in the kitchen be sure to check out the Kids Cook Real Foods site.

Affiliate links for items mentioned in this post:

Elite Gourmet EBS-0012 Maxi-Matic

12-Piece Stainless Steel Colored Mixing Bowls with Lids,

7.25 Qt. – 6 Qt. – 3.5 Qt. – 3 Qt. – 2.25 Qt. – 2 Qt.

Tovla Knives for Kids 3-Piece Nylon Knife Set 

Now They Call Me Teacher

Here is the second part to our adoption story. If you haven’t read the first part check it out HERE.

First published August 9, 2018

Not long after the adoptions we were surprised again by another little miracle. Mr. Jacob came into this world in the spring of 2013. His arrival was a little bit rough as he was quite a bit bigger than his brother (both were 9lbs +) and we spent a little extra time in the hospital. Everyone was ecstatic to have their baby brother join them at home.

Not long after this joyous occasion was when my marriage really began to crumble. The stress of a large family coupled with the extraordinary needs of our special needs children was taking its toll on our little family and soon afterwards my husband walked out on us. He did eventually come back, for a little while, and then left again.

Round and round on that chaotic merry-go-round we went.  Then In the Spring of 2014 , just before Jacob’s 1st birthday, he walked away for the last time. It was a very hard time for all of us but once again we made it through. It took us a little bit to find our new ‘normal’ as I wasn’t really sure what normal was anymore.

Then that fall William moved schools. That was a major catastrophe! He did not adjust and we just didn’t know what to do to help him make the adjustment. The teachers couldn’t handle him so we would go to the doctor. The doctor would prescribe more medications.

The medications would make him sick or have crazy side effects. Then we would go back to the doctor to eventually find something that worked.

The problem was that each medication would only work for a short period of time before it needed to be increased or changed out. The side effects were scary but I trusted the doctors and their knowledge.By Christmas of 2014 I was worn to a frazzle from the impending divorce, the issues William was having at school, and then Caitlyn was experiencing some behavioral issues and was put on medication as well.

Momma was one crazy mess! In fact everyone was a crazy mess. It was at this time I began to experiment with essential oils to help calm and relax everyone. We eventually got everyone squared away and over the Christmas break I had decided to do a ‘medication vacation’. I discussed it with the doctor beforehand and he encouraged me to make an appointment if I needed him for anything. I think he was a bit curious as to what the outcome would be.

Surprisingly enough everyone did very well and the oils seemed to help at least until school started back.The kids started back on their medications after I received several notice from the teachers about their behavior. I had made appointments with the doctor and we both felt that they ‘needed’ the medications to go to school. Read the last part of that sentence again… they ‘needed’ the medications to go to school. Yeah, when that hit me I realized that I wasn’t the one having the issues when they weren’t on medications.

However when they were on medication I had to deal with the mood swings, tantrums, and everything else that they had been holding in all day long! No wonder they were so grumpy with me after school. In January of 2015 I made the decision to pull William out of public school with his doctor’s support. (There were several reasons that the decision was made as he also had dietary restrictions that weren’t being adhered to at school as well as the reactions to the medications.)

The change in him was instant. He was back to being his fun loving little self again and that made my heart happy.Now trying to teach him was another matter but after doing a TON of research we finally figured it out. We found so many resources that have helped us along the way and we are so thankful for each and every one of them. There was some trial and error though but with every failure we were learning what did and didn’t work.

By Spring he was off all of his prescription medications and doing wonderfully! This change encouraged me to make the leap and pull the girls out of school before the school year ended. I still didn’t really feel like I knew what I was doing at all but I kept trying. Half the battle is won by just showing up and every morning I showed up ready to try again.

Part of the problem we weren’t having the results that I expected was because I didn’t know that homeschool looks different for every family and every home. I was trying to recreate ‘school’ at home and that didn’t work for us. It was at this time I really started getting involved with some of the groups on Facebook and taking advice from more seasoned homeschool Mommas. Boy did we see a change in our attitudes around the house.
Everyone was having fun! The biggest problem I had was affording the materials that we wanted to use. Luckily I stumbled across the Easy Peasy All-In-One Homeschool. It was just what we needed. The lessons were simple and already planned out. You really didn’t need to do much of anything except print out a few things here and there.
That fall big sister also decided she wanted to homeschool much to my surprise. She was able to help out with the younger kids as well. This allowed me more time to research other things that I hoped to incorporate into our learning experience. Again I kept running into the MONEY issue. That’s when I remembered the Florida Gardiner Scholarship I had applied to earlier in the year. It has been such a lifesaver for helping to purchase materials and supplies to help William have an exceptional educational experience right here at home where he is most comfortable.
With new materials and a new zeal for teaching we started on our homeschool journey which is going on its fifth year here and has seen one graduate already. Over the past few years I have grown in leaps and bounds in my knowledge of homeschooling. We have also learned to homeschool through the good days as well as the bad. Every day is a learning experience and we can make the most of every minute that we have,
We have also had several life changes over the past year which have resulted in the addition of 3 new family members, Mr. Awesome and his two sons, and a move where we did a drastic downsize. In the midst of all the chaos, which can often times spell DISASTER in our home, we try to keep calm and carry on. We do this with some simple, and not so simple, routines that I started way back when my nine was only four.
We have also found a lot of resources, tips, life hacks, and gadgets to help us get through those tough times and keep school entertaining. Some of these tools are so much fun the kids don’t have a clue that they are actually learning and they would probably still love them just as much if you told them Momma’s trick.
I encourage a lot of ‘free learning’ so we are always looking for new resources. I am excited to share these with you and your family so you too can provide your children with the most personalized and exceptional education to fit their needs.
I look forward to sharing a lot more with you all in the days, weeks, months, and years to come. Maybe, just maybe, we can help someone else’s walk down this path a little easier.

 

Chocolate Covered Eggs

Updated on 4/20/19 to include a few new flavor varieties!

This is one of those recipes that I could’ve sworn was posted at one time but I can’t find it anywhere. With the Easter holiday quickly approaching I have been asked a couple of times for the recipe and just now took the time to look for it… hence the reason for this post.

You can cover these with white chocolate or any chocolate that you prefer if you like. I can remember my Mom using the ‘leftover’ chocolate scrapings that my dad would bring home from the Hershey factory when we lived in PA. That was so good! We have also used the candy coating that you can find in the baking aisle but mostly we use chocolate chips now.

While the most popular shape for these candies is the egg shape you can also shape them and decorate them in a variety of different shapes, sizes, and colors for whatever the holiday or occasion. I try to decorate the eggs differently to identify the filling inside because it gets quite confusing when you make several different flavors.

We also like to try out different flavors and variations so there is a base recipe that you can adapt and experiment with. I have also seen some variations with candies like M&Ms and Reese’s pieces mixed into the filling… yum!

Just have fun and let the kids help with this one! I have many fond memories of helping to make these as a child. We also made these in high school for many fundraisers and sold out every time.

Chocolate Covered Eggs

Ingredients:

Base recipe:
  • 1 pack cream cheese
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 – 2 1/2 pounds of confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla, optional
  • 2 c. chocolate chips (you can experiment with other flavors like white chocolate, peanut butter, or really any flavor you find)
  • 1 T. oil, optional

Ingredients for other flavors listed below.

Directions:

  1. Mix the first four ingredients together until they resemble play dough. The dough is fine to use as is or you can divide the dough and add flavorings, as desired. (The amounts listed at the bottom will work for 1/4 of the dough. You can adjust the amounts for your taste.)
  2. Line a couple of cookie sheets with wax paper.
  3. Once the dough has been flavored it is time to shape them. You can shape them into balls, hearts, eggs, or anything your little heart desires. For some of the stickier doughs, it is also helpful to have a little bit water to wet your hands with as you shape the eggs. At this point, I usually set them on a wax paper lined cookie sheet and place them in the freezer for 20-30 minutes.          

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  1. Melt the chocolate over low heat on the stove or in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stir often until smooth. You can add the oil at this point if desired.
  2. Carefully dip the chilled balls into the melted chocolate and place on the wax paper lined sheet. Chill in the refrigerator at least an hour.  57882614_10218527865611494_8293455778400960512_n
  3. Decorate them with icing, sprinkles, drizzled chocolate, or crushed candies (this is easier to do when the chocolate is soft), and/or drizzled chocolate as desired. Trim the excess chocolate from the edges, if desired.

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Makes 50 – 100 candies depending on size.

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Optional Flavors:

  • Almond Creme: Add 5-8 drops of almond extract to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Chocolate Covered Cherries: Roll the base dough into small balls and flatten. Roll the flatten dough around a maraschino cherry. Go to Step 4.
  • Chocolate Creme: Add 1 c. unsweetened cocoa powder to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Coconut Creme: Add 1 c. flaked sweetened coconut to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Coffee Flavor: Add 1-2 T. (or more depending on your taste) instant coffee powder or Dandy Blend.
  • Lemon Creme: Add 5-8 drops of lemon oil to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Maple Creme: Add 4-8 drops of maple flavoring to the base dough. Go to Step 2.
  • Marshmallow Creme: Add 1 c. marshmallow creme to the base dough and mix well. You may need to add a bit more powdered sugar to make the dough a little stiffer too. Go to Step 2.
  • Nutella/Hazelnut Creme: Add 1/2 – 1 c. Nutella to the base dough. Go to Step 2.
  • Orange Creme: Add 5-8 drops of orange oil to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Peanut Butter Creme: Add 1 c. creamy (or chunky) peanut butter to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Peppermint Creme: Add 4-8 drops of peppermint oil to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Strawberry Creme: Add 5-8 drops of strawberry oil to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.
  • Vanilla Creme: Add 3-4 teaspoons of vanilla extract to the base dough and mix well. Go to Step 2.

The flavor variations are endless and you can try your own with different flavorings and substitutions. You could even combine a couple of the ones above to make some unique creations of your own. You could add chopped nuts, fruits, candies, or mini chips to the base dough as well as different flavorings and spices to make these unique. You could also add a little bit of food coloring, if desired, to help identify the different flavors.

Do you have any other flavors that you have tried? If so, let me know in the comments and we can add them to the recipe.

Celebrate With A Birth Date

We all have one and so do our kids, parents, friends, and other family members. Around here we have more than others or at least we celebrate more than others. However this is one topic I’ve failed to post a lot about… birthdays.

I recently read about the ‘new minimalist’ birthday trend called ‘Fivers’. I laughed a little as the article explained the trend and how it worked. Basically, according to the article I read, you have a birthday party and ask the guests not to buy a gift but they may give a card with $5.oo, if they like. This money can then be pooled for a larger gift of the child’s choosing, used for an ‘experience’, or saved for a later date.

Sounds great and I’m so happy to see so many people jumping on board with this idea. I just thought I’d share how we do birthdays here which is how we’ve done birthdays for awhile now. Now don’t get me wrong, there is NOTHING wrong with the way anybody celebrates birthdays but we do things a bit different than most.

When my older kids were younger we did do the traditional parties… cake, ice cream, and gifts. Sometimes I would have two parties instead of four as they had birthdays close together and sometimes we would just do one big party.

Most of our parties were just for family and a few very close friends and they were never very big. The biggest one we probably ever had was in NC. We held an ice cream party for all four of my older kids. That was so much fun! We had everyone help to make homemade ice cream and then we had a variety of toppings. There was plenty of other food too but everyone always remembered the ice cream and how good it was.

There have been many times were I would plan a semi-elaborate themed party like the Sock Hop party we did several years back. It was so much fun and the kids really enjoyed it.

Nowadays we keep things simple. One reason is because William (and Caitlyn at times) has a very difficult time with birthdays. We have tried a variety of ways to help him but he always seems to have a MAJOR meltdown when someone else celebrates a birthday or receives a gift. It has been a crazy ride these past nine years… wow, I really can’t believe it has been that long since they first came into my life!

After discussing this with his doctors and trying SEVERAL approaches (we had plenty of opportunities to experiment with ideas) we decided the best thing was just to quit having parties… which wouldn’t have really been fair to everyone else so we came up with a compromise. Now we have a simpler ‘Birthday Routine’.

When a child has a birthday we always have it marked on the calendar so there is plenty of time to prepare for it which is important for William. He likes to know what to expect and when to expect it. He DOES NOT like change and a birthday means that someone else will be getting a little extra attention that day (ex: calls from relatives, cards, etc.) and that is a CHANGE for him.

On the day of their birthday I usually try to let the birthday child pick out a special dinner and we will have some cakes, cupcakes, or other special dessert. We sing ‘Happy Birthday’ and blow out candles too. We don’t normally have anyone other than just our family but on occasion some of their older siblings may show up but normally William is OK with this as he knows what to expect on a birthday now.

Check out this post HERE for some of the fun cake ideas that we’ve come up with.

Each child will get $5.00 from me and $5.00 from Mr. Awesome. We also try to take each child out to eat for their birthday. We will go to whatever restaurant they choose which is usually somewhere like Dairy Queen or Steak N Shake. They really like to get a special treat like a milkshake or a hot fudge sundae too. After we eat we will go somewhere so that they can pick out a gift with their birthday money.

Our ‘Birth Date’ may not be on their actual birthday but we try to aim for the  same week whenever possible.

This gives each child some special one on one time with me and gives them a chance to do things that they might not get to do when we are together as a group. They really look forward to our ‘Birth Date’ and they are planning out where they want to go months in advance. As they are getting older they also try to save up their money so they have more to spend when we go out.

Sometimes their older sisters or brothers will ask them what they want and they will get them something small that they have requested. They also get a small gift from grandparents and occasionally their dad brings them a small amount of money.

For the past few years this has been our ‘normal’ for birthdays and it has worked rather well. It might change in the future as the ‘social side’ of me has been dying to have a HUGE party… maybe I’ll just put that energy towards our first Polar Express Party in the cabin later this year?

This approach to birthdays may not work for every family but it does work for us. It is also a great way to help manage clutter around the house. We don’t get a lot of toys so the ones they do get are usually ones they have chosen and they enjoy them a lot more. We also don’t have any more birthday MELTDOWNS!

At one point when we first brought the middle three kiddos to our home we tried to make everything extra special. Maybe we were trying to ‘make up’ for things they never had or things they had never experienced. In the long run we have learned that, even without the traditional parties, we have given them so much more.

Now they know what to expect, when to expect it, and they are prepared for it. They also know that they are loved and that they are each special in their own way. With the routines that we have created and continue to improve we are helping them have the sense of security and safety that they never had before.

It’s all about creating memories that they will look back on and cherish. Even though we don’t celebrate in the ‘traditional way’ we do make sure each one of them feels loved and gets a little extra special attention on their special day.

Making Time For Devotions

If you’ve been following along with my blog you probably have seen that we are really trying to make some positive changes around this little cabin. I will be the first to admit that towards the end of last year I was not a very happy Momma. We were in the midst of a very rough parenting phase with my two special needs kiddos who are 16 & 11 (going on 30)… their attitudes and behavior were at a point that I really doubted my parenting skills and abilities. Something had to change, actually a lot of somethings had to change.

Personal Devotions

One big thing that I had gotten away from was my daily devotions. I wasn’t having my ‘quiet time’ in the mornings before the kids woke up which meant I wasn’t having any one on one meetings with my LORD. Boy have I missed those sessions!

Well, 2019 is the year for me to stop wishing for CHANGE and to start making it happen! I’ve been posting a lot about some of the things we’ve been working on and one of those the past couple of weeks has been to start making time for devotions.

Not everyone may feel the same as I do but I really do need some time to myself. I need time to plan, to organize my thoughts, and talk to my LORD. I also have things I want to do like blog, arts & crafts projects, and I have a ton of reading to catch up on.

First things first though is making time for my daily devotions. I’ve been trying to get back into the habit of getting up early before the kids so that I can have my ‘quiet time’. I’ll admit that this hasn’t been easy especially on cold mornings like this today. Then yesterday I got up early but I had issues with the coffee maker and ended up not getting to my ‘quiet time’. I like to get comfy when I study or read so I like to have a drink with me. Sometimes I will snuggle up with a warm blanket and other times I might like to sit outside on the porch just depending on the whether and how I feel.

I also keep a notebook with me to jot down notes and also to keep track of different things I am praying about or people/situations I am praying for. One of the really important things I really try to include in prayer is our homeschool journey because without GOD’s help I can’t do this. This is a good way to keep myself organized and I can look back through my notebook to see just how much GOD has done for me and my family through the year.

Before we moved I had transformed part of my closet into a place where I could find some ‘quiet time’ even in the middle of the day. I kept my BIBLES, devotionals, and prayer journal in my desk there. It was so easy to ‘find’ time because I had everything organized. However here, in this little cabin, I don’t have a dedicated space so it has been more of a challenge for me.

Secondly, I never seem to know where to start when it comes to reading my BIBLE. Sometimes I’ll go through a phase where I just open it up and read wherever and then other times I try to follow along with a book like one of these here:

First Light Women’s Daily Devotional & Journal

Starting Your Day Right

I have started both of these books at different times but have never completed either one of them… sad but true. This year I am determined to finish one of them!

**This post may contain affiliate links to products and/or services that we use. If a purchase is made through one of these links we may make a small commission which costs you nothing extra and blesses our family so we thank you! For full affiliate disclosure please click HERE.if a product is purchased through one of our links.

I also like to keep some of these FREE booklets in my bags so that I have something to read when waiting at appointments or such:

Our Daily Bread

In Touch

There are also a wide variety of email devotionals and apps that you can use from your phone which make it so much easier to do this on the go. I have also found this site HERE which has many plans to use and I am going to try to read through the BIBLE this year… even though some of it may be more listening than reading. This is a goal I have had since I was young and I’ve never completely read through the entire bible yet. The site has several other FREE plans to help you with your spiritual life and you can even join as a group with friends to encourage each other.Y

Many people think that devotions need to be an in depth study but that’s not true. Your devotions should be what feels right for you. The LORD will lead you to more in depth studies when HE knows you are ready… and HE will make it all POSSIBLE.

I do have a couple of Proverbs 31 studies that I’ve bookmarked to work on this year as well as some others that I’ll share as we go through the year. I don’t want to overwhelm anyone with too much information. If there is something specific that you FEEL led to study then you can always do a GOOGLE search on the subject (ex: becoming a proverbs 31 woman bible study) and find many options to choose from.

If you aren’t sure how to set up your prayer journal you can find lots of useful ideas and printables HERE or some more great ideas HERE.

Family Devotions

I feel that not only do I need to do my personal devotions but I probably need to start including more time for family devotions as well. Now we do have some BIBLE studies and such worked into our homeschool routine but sometimes we may need to add to it.

We may try to start having a scripture reading at a designated meal time or maybe just have a certain time of day to read scripture… I’m not really sure about my plans for this addtional devotion time yet but I am working on it. Sometimes we have BIBLE discussions in the van when we are going places so really it could happen anytime and anywhere.

I have found a few different ideas for family devotions HERE and HERE. If you don’t like either of those you can check out this GOOGLE search. My kids and I really enjoyed using this book here too:

Our Daily Bread for Kids: 365 Meaningful Moments with God

Couple Devotions

This is another area that I think is important but we don’t really do this yet. We have discussions on occasion but never anything set or intentional. Now for this to work it has to be something that we both can agree on and something we can work into our schedules.

Many other people may find it difficult as well but remember that you don’t have to physically be in the same place at the same time. You can decide to them via phone, FACETIME, or SKYPE or maybe just have a designated time each day to spend on your devotions.

I’ve found a few ideas for couple devotions HERE and HERE.

Not married or don’t have a partner? You can always spend a little time praying for that special person. I know I prayed for Mr. Awesome before I even met him and I am so glad I did. I loved these books HERE and HERE for this.

In the end I don’t think you will regret any time you spend on your devotions. You should definitely start out slowly and work your way into this new routine. It takes a little while to get a new habit started and if you happen to be like me this will be a habit that will grow on you and get easier as time goes by. This one habit can make such a BIG difference in your whole LIFE… I know it does in mine.

If it seems that you are having trouble getting it started then pray for GOD to lead you in the way you should go. Maybe you are trying to do too much? Or maybe what you are trying to do just isn’t what is best for you or your family.

Have a blessed weekend!

Join Me At The Toxic Mold Summit

I’ve really been trying to make 2019 the best year ever here in our little cabin. One thing that I’m always hearing about is toxic mold… how scary does that sound? It sounds terrifying to me so I’m really wanting to learn more about what it is and what I can do to protect my family from it.

--->>Click here to download your free eGuide: Got Mold, Now What?

Did you know it could be mold toxicity if you are, or someone you know is suffering from sinus infections, bronchitis and migraines; weakened by gut issues, brain fog, fatigue, neurologic symptoms; constantly challenged with sleep issues; enduring terrible mood swings, anxiety and/or depression; reacting to chemicals, smells, foods, medications and more!

All reasons not to miss The Toxic Mold Summit, online and free from January 28 – February 3, 2019!

Join Me At The Toxic Mold Summit by Reserving Your Spot HERE !

A New School Routine For The New Year

This was our first week back to school and as I mentioned in this post HERE we started a new school routine which has worked out rather well so far. We will be doing our Group studies on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays with Mondays and/or Fridays being left for their independent studies and/or completing assignments they didn’t finish with the group.

We are also using Mondays & Fridays to do the majority of our household cleaning & chores, running errands, etc. This has helped out so much being able to dedicate a big chunk of time on projects that I’ve been wanting to work on and just haven’t been able to get to lately. This included getting our house back in order after the holidays… it was such a MESS! If you don’t believe me you should see the pics in this post.

After getting the bulk of the organizing finished up on Monday we were FREE to FOCUS on our school work with minimal interruptions. No pausing to check laundry which normally meant a 15-20 minute interruption. No waiting for stragglers to quit lollygagging around with chores as we have a set time to get them finished or they just wait until the school work is finished. I mean a few dirty dishes or crumbs in the floor won’t kill anyone, right?

Continue reading A New School Routine For The New Year