Thankful Thursday

tt rolls Collage

It was a cozy, rainy thankful Thursday.  Hot chocolate.  Cinnamon rolls.  And, our favorite rainy day activity: drawing on the windows with dry-erase markers!

tt roll 1

I had the worst time trying to take pictures of this drawing.  Before I had time to get a white paper to tape behind it to take a decent picture, little Sierra decided to erase it.  I was truly bummed — this was a favorite of mine.

tt roll 2

You see, Natalie said she was going to draw a merry Christmas.  I was picturing the words, “Merry Christmas.”  Instead, it was the most beautiful and detailed manger scene I have ever seen.  (Well, from my family, at least!)

tt roll 3

Oh, well… perhaps I’ll catch it next time!

Button Christmas Trees

Argh, matey… what are we using these cones for?

ct allison scope

As soon as I saw THIS idea over at Blissful Blooms, I knew I had to copy it.  So simple, fun, and cute!

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Even though I didn’t have styrofoam circles, I at least had styrofoam cones on hand.  So, instead of ornaments we made trees! (Styrofoam cones came from the Dollar Tree!)

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I was especially excited when I saw this project because I knew I had everything I needed on hand, and wouldn’t have to buy anything.  Well… even though I had the pins, I went to get more from JoAnn’s.  After all, who doesn’t love a big sale at a fabric store?

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Added bonus:  even a 3-year-old can do it herself!

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So, what exactly is this project?  You take a styrofoam object, some buttons, and whatever other “bling” you have on hand.  Then you poke away…

ct buttons

Buttons WILL get spilled all over!

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ct n and s

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ct natalie working

ct sierra working

ct sierras done

I never did take a picture of the final projects.  But, here they are mostly complete.  These made me smile.  Happy styrofoam poking!

ct allison tree

Favorite Things

These are a few of my (current) favorite things…

1.  THIS devotion spoke to me so much, I couldn’t help but share it with my homeschool mom friends… and now with you!  Becky Crenshaw may be a mom to boys, but her devotions seem to speak right to me!

2.  I found THIS mantle on Pinterest and absolutely love it.  Wowsers.

3.  I discovered a new blog that has kind of rocked my world.  THIS lady has actually taken Jesus’ words seriously when He talks about taking care of widows and orphans and selling everything you have.  Yeah, I know… ehem… conviction!  From what I’ve gathered while stalking perusing through her blog, she and her husband along with their 3 adopted youngins’ sold their beautiful farmhouse to move to an inner city to love on people.  She’s a fun writer with great style.

4.  I must, must, must find a place to do THIS, (another great pinterest find!)  That is why I pinned it to my board, “Must do.”

5.  I found these candy cane straws at the Dollar Tree:  Guess how much they cost? (Ha!)

cc straws

6.  Forgive me for not remembering the link, but free Christmas printables like this one make me so happy:


..And those are a few of my favorite things!

Thankful Thursday

I got to cheat a bit today… we didn’t make a homemade snack for Thankful Thursday.  I had made some cakes-in-a-jar for my homeschool moms’ meeting Tuesday night, and had a few leftover.  The girls were drooling over them, so I told them that would be their Thankful Thursday snack!

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I was surprised at how moist and delicious they were even two days later!

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Such a simple, yet fun dessert!  I just took a box of yellow cake mix.  I added maybe a tablespoon of cinnamon??  And, a LOT of chocolate chips.  After all, there wasn’t going to be any frosting — it needed chocolate chips!  I filled the cans about half full and baked about 25 minutes (without the lids).  Oh, and I buttered the cans, first — not sure if that was necessary or not.   I didn’t wrap the cans until after they had come out of the oven and cooled.  Of course, I topped with whip cream.  I don’t want to confess how many I ate.  Let’s just say none of it went to waste.  ttcc Collage

And, just so you can see for yourself that my sweet boy has returned, here is proof:

ttcc lil guy

Thankful for the Season!

I was beginning to wonder if it would ever happen…

Would Malachi ever feel better?

Would I ever get done decorating my house for Christmas?

Would the rain ever stop?  (I love rain, but when your baby is sick and inconsolable, it’s nice to be able to step outside and feel the sun on your face!)

Well, it happened today.  I woke-up and my boy was back.  He did not wake-up once last night.  His rash was gone.  He was in his bed playing and giggling before I could even come get him!  The rain was gone, too.  It was as if I could hear the angels singing as I walked to the room to get my boy and the sun shone through the window!  I got him out of his crib, and put him on the floor and he went right to his toys.  He played and played, and I sat and watched and thanked God.  I was still exhausted myself, but such joy I haven’t felt in weeks.

Sometimes it takes a little sickness to remind you to be thankful for your health!  Sometimes it takes a little rain to make you thankful for the sunshine.  And, a holiday set aside to worship Emmanuel, God with us, is definitely what it takes to break-up the mundane, every day stuff and remind you how much you need a Savior!  And, that’s what we’ve been doing.  I pinned a lot of fun activities this year to do with the kids.  My goal is just one a day.  I don’t have a fancy box or advent calendar this time around, and that’s ok.  There’s always next year.  We’re keeping it simple, and just happy to remain (hopefully) healthy!  Here’s a peak at some of what’s been happening:

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I let the kids decorate the tree… all by themselves!  They did a fabulous job.  And I was quite content holding a sick baby and watching.

fog foamies

Christmas foamies.  One large tub going on year 3… I wonder how much longer they’ll be around?!?!

fog nativity sort Collage

I got a lot of activities from HERE to use with Sierra during school time.  I can’t believe she is at the age to do these things, but she’s doing great!  It’s such a relief to have her happily engaged, and getting edumacated!  For this activity, she sorted small, medium, and large.fog precious

One of my new favorite memories of Sierra… she loves our snow globe, and I will catch her winding it up and singing jingle bells with the wrong words as fast as she can to try to keep up with it.  It is SO precious!  She does it over and over, each time more determined to keep up with the music   Love it!fog puzzle Collage

My puzzle girl… wish I could just sit down with a peppermint mocha and do puzzles with her all day!fog reindeer Collage

Today we did our simple reindeer candy canes.fog roll nativity Collage

This was another fun one; “Roll and build nativity”  Again, it was so great having Sierra participate with us.  It’s hard to believe she is already 3!fog shadows Collage

Cut and glue on shadows.  She did remarkably well.  (Well, better than I expected!)  Of course, I cut and she glued.

fog copywork Collage

And, some Christmas copywork.

“Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace among men.”

Peppermint Tea Party

December is here… yikes!

If October marks the start of all things pumpkin-flavored, then December marks the start of all things peppermint-flavored around here.  And, that means mashing-up candy canes.  If you want to keep a toddler happy, give her a hammer and a box of candy canes.  Just look at that face:

cc crisp hammer

Yes, I stood waaaaay back!  For our Thankful Thursday tea party this past week, we busted out the Christmas mugs and mashed-up candy canes. The crushed candy canes then got poured into a batter of chocolate-chip rice crispy treats:

cc crisp treats

They were divine.  Just about what I expected!  We used our peppermint tea bags for the tea, but bought our favorite Trader Joe’s candy cane flavored green tea for next week.

cc crisp nat

Hope you’re able to enjoy a warm cup of peppermint tea this month; Happy December!

cc crisp mugs


I didn’t look ahead when I planned my meals this week.  I had no idea the weather called for rain on Thursday when I put soup and bread on the calendar.  I had no idea my little man would still be sick and I would be needing some comfort food.  But, God did.

cf soup


To be honest, I couldn’t have even made the soup without my husband home to hold the baby.  Even then, it killed me to hear his little cries.  The poor guy is just not himself, and I have no idea what the problem is.  Is it the antibiotics hurting your tummy, little man?  Is it your ear?  Your throat?  Want some warm soup?

cf bread

The poor guy didn’t want soup.  Or bread.  (The girls sure did, though!)

cf soup and bread

We took turns holding him and eating, Daniel and I did.  When at last it was time to put him to bed all I wanted to do was crash on the couch and watch “Survivor.” (and eat chocolate, of course!)  I wanted to have a pity party, too.  That always sounds good when you’re exhausted.  But, it never is a good idea, really.  Quite selfish and unrealistic.

God brought to mind my Bible Study this fall… “Dear brothers and sisters; whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy…”

Then the phone rang.  Turns out our loan docs for refinancing were ready to sign, and the lady would be here at 8:00pm for us to sign them.  UGH!  I had been in my pj’s all day, and now I had to change out of them and put on make-up?  I was not feeling joyful.  No time for Survivor.  Not even time to go to bed early!  Daniel and I sat on the couch at 8:00pm, and prayed.   She was late.  Right when we said “Amen,” she came.  And, my mood had changed.

Fast forward to today.  Daniel is back to work, and Malachi woke-up with another high fever.  I called the doctor, and decided to take him in, again.  Thinking it would be quick, I didn’t grab snacks, books, toys — we just rushed out the door.  Waited at the doctor.  Got sent to do lab work.  Waited at the clinic.  Malachi got blood drawn.  Went to pick-up the prescription.  It got delayed… and delayed again… kids were going nuts because this ordeal took over 4 hours and it was now way past their lunch time and they were toast.  We stopped at Chick-Fil-A and made it home.

The ENTIRE time, I kept feeling this peace like I haven’t felt in the past couple weeks since he’s been sick.  He went right to sleep when we got home, and I sent the girls upstairs to play.  I sat by the Christmas tree and opened my journal.  All I could think was how thankful I was that God had allowed me the prayer time with my husband the night before.  It was not what I wanted; I wanted to veg.  But, our gracious God knew it was what I needed.  Lesson learned!

We never did get the prescription.  We left probably 10 minutes before it would have been finished, and I never made it back.  We’ll go again tomorrow.  Target on a Saturday in December with 4 kids… I think I’ll spend some time in prayer tonight, as well!  🙂