Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Staying Warm

The temperature has been steadily dropping around here.  During these times, I am always trying to figure out a way to stay warm without adjusting the thermostat.  This usually comes in the form of extra clothing and a few blankets.  But the girls have a better idea of staying warm, they love to make hot cocoa.  Last week, I happened to come across a copy of High Five, and in it was the cocoa recipe we made a few winters ago.  It was a nice suprise to find while cleaning the garage. 

Here is the recipe to make any winter day a little bit warmer.

Cocoa with Cinnamon Cream by Kathy Gunst (Dec. 09 issue)

Cinnamon Cream:
2/3 cup of heavy cream
2 TBS sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Place  all the ingredients into a container with a lid.  Shake the container until the cream looks like whipped cream.

Hot Cocoa

Heat 2 cups of milk over low heat for 5 minutes.
Add 2/3 chocolate chips and a little cinnamon. 
Stir until chocolate melts. We usually still have a few chips that did not melt at the bottom of our pot.

Pour cocoa into mugs, and top with the cinnamon cream.  The girls truly enjoy making and drinking the cocoa.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

This Advent Season

This is our first year incorporating Advent activities.  We are very excited to add this special time to our traditions.  Growing up, Victor nor myself, experienced many of the things our children are now able to take part.  Many times I wonder how would my personal relationship with Christ would differ if I had such things written upon my heart at an earlier time. Although I reflect on the what ifs, I am thankful that I have this time to learn with my girls and develop a stronger bond with our Savior.

To help us this year with Advent, we will use Truth in the Tinsel.  I found out about this awesome book from LaToya @ Christian Momma.  We have completed the first ornament, and the girls are looking forward to doing more. 

We also made an Advent calendar together.

We used an old picture frame, penny coin rollers, pre-stickable labels, ornament hooks, string, and glitter glue. It's not that fancy, but the girls and I really enjoyed making it together.



Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Me & My Blog: A Photo Memoir

Today during my periodic Facebook check, I noticed Carlie @ So You Call  Yourself a Homeschooler? status update.  She was sharing her Me & My Blog post.  I checked out her post, and decided "Hey, I want to get in on that!"

The original post at Finding Joy encourages fellow bloggers to take a photo with something they find joy. I find joy in blogging and my girlies. So I felt it was only right for me to let Ramya be in the picture when she made her request.

If you are a blogger, you can get in on the fun by heading over to Finding Joy.  You can click the button below, and it will take you to the site.

you & your blog at finding joy

Saturday, November 5, 2011

It's That Time of Year

All the stores I have been in lately are all decked out for Christmas.  I have been receiving catalogs from most of the children's stores.  I am not one to fret over gifts, but I love making our Christmas cards.  For the past few years, I have ordered our cards from Shutterfly. Our family and friends enjoy seeing pictures of the girls from throughout the year.

Here's one of the cards I made last year.

Front of card

Top inside of card

If you are a holiday card fan, give it a try. I am sure you will love your creation.

* In exchange for my post, Shutterfly will provide me with 25 free cards.  This post is based on my experience with Shutterfly's greeting card software, and in no way is my opinion altered by this exchange. Also, the above link is an affiliate link. Bloggers, if you are interested in receiving 25 cards of your own, use this link.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Back Home

Last year, I rented a small space for my tutoring business.  During that time I learned quite a bit about being self-employed and a small business owner.  I also learned more about myself.  I truly enjoyed having my own space, and pushing myself to achieve the most with my business. But, as a mother, I was feeling torn and pulled into so many directions.  There is only so much time in a day, and I know that there wasn't much left for myself or Vic.

This past summer I decided that I would not renew the lease on the office space, and would tutor from home.  I did not totally want to give up the business, but I did want to reduce hours.  Yesterday was my first day tutoring from home, and I truly enjoyed it.  I felt much more relaxed without the additional stress.

What is your approach to balancing family and working or other things that take a bit of your time?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Today I Learned...

I really enjoy tutoring from home.  The girls even proclaimed that it was cool.

Leaf Project

We created clay leaves after our leaf hunt.

If you would like to make your own leaves, below are the materials you will need.

Take a nice amount of clay to create a ball about the size of a baseball.  We flattened our ball by throwing onto the table a few times or you could use a rolling pin.  The kids enjoyed the throwing.  Once the ball is about an inch or so thick, place your favorite leaf on top.  You will use a rolling pin to press the leaf onto the clay.  Be gentle or the leaf will tear. After imprinting the leaf onto the clay, remove the leaf from the clay.

We used a self-hardening clay, therefore, we had to wait until the clay was dry to complete. We waited a few days. Once the clay has dried, the leaves are ready to paint.

I usually only purchase acrylic paint in the primary colors. I mix the colors as needed to get orange or any other color we may need.  I also purchased a bronze and the red we used had a hint of metallic. After the paint dries, spray with Mod Podge to seal.

Happy November!