Back to School Week Day 3(ish): Lunch Lists

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having back-to-school week. Scroll down to learn how to make lunch lists and then click here to find out what other awesome back-to-school activities we’ve done this week. I know:  I’m limping towards the finish.  I knew I wasn’t going to finish week 8 in one week.  Not even close.  But I am going to finish.  And so here you have it: This isn’t really even an activity… but it’s something simple you can do to avoid lunch packing drama.  Just get out a piece of paper and write the following categories on it: *  Fruits *  Veggies *  Proteins *  Snacks *  Drinks *  Treats (Or change the categories depending on what you pack.) Then have your kids write down the things they like in each of those categories.  Hang the lists on your fridge and viola!  you will have a list of things that are okay to pack them and what isn’t.  (Note:  If your kids are too young to write, have them draw their list or even dictate it!) (Note:  If you look really closely, you’ll see that my son wrote “HEMP” on one of his.  That was awesome.  I always put hemp seeds in his oatmeal and for some reason he loves them… and so under “snacks” he thought “hemp” would be a good idea.  So, yeah, that happened.)      ...

Back-to-School Week Day 2: School Spirit Ribbons

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having back-to-school week. Scroll down to learn how to make school spirit ribbons and then click here to find out what other awesome back-to-school activities we’ve done this week. I know these are supersimple (and for only girls) but they are so fun and my daughter loves hers so much that I thought I’d share. What you need: Ribbon in your kid’s school colors. Iron-on patches with your student’s school mastcot or letters. An iron A lighter (for you to use, not your kid) What to do: Clip the ribbon at an angle, use the lighter to burn the ends so they won’t ravel. Use an iron to iron on the patches. Use as hair bows!      ...

Back to School Week Day 1: Homework Drawers

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having back-to-school week. Scroll down to learn how to make homework drawers and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week.   For those of you who don’t know, we have decided to enroll our kids in a new school this year.  I know this is a big about-face for us– we really liked the public school they were in and the teachers they had were absolutely fantastic.  But, after realizing that our family time was superlimited during the school year on top of our concerns about class size and school size, we prayerfully made the switch to Veritas, a University Model school in town.  Our kids will be going to school 2 full days each week and then on 2 additional days, they will be doing work at home with me and my mom as their “co-teachers”. With this in mind, I needed an organizational system for all of their work.  So, I made these drawers (Thanks to my friend Mollie for the idea.) This type of a system is ideal for home school or University Model, but it would also work for full time schools as it is an easy way to organize homework and permission slips and papers and everything else. What you need: A set of drawers with enough drawers to fit your child’s needs.  If you have one...

Garden Week Day 5: Garden Tomato Salad

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to make Garden Tomato Salad and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week. I know this looks like a bunch of vegetables but my kids LOVE it.  Oh, and I love it, too.  It’s one of my favorite salads. What you need: 2 cups tomatoes (we use a mix of yellow, red and orange from our garden) 1 bunch asparagus 1 handful torn basil (again, from the garden) 1 avocado 1 cup Arugala blue cheese 3 tbsp sesame oil 3 tbsp rice vinegar 1 tsp. honey salt and pepper to taste What to do: Cut veggies into large chunks.  Add to bowl.  Stir in blue cheese. Mix sesame oil, vinegar and honey.  Add salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle dressing over salad. Toss and eat...

Garden Week Day 4: Homemade Peach Freezer Jam

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to make peach freezer jam and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week. Note:  Did you notice that I just kinda quit blogging for a week there?  Yeah.  I did.  Let’s just say I had a meltdown at work paired with a really busy week and I just stopped.  But I’m back.  And I’m going to finish out the Pintastic Summer.  This week I’m going to finish Garden Week and next week will be week 8.  Thanks for being so understanding. What you need: Peaches.  From your tree, from the store, from the roadside stand.  You’ll need about 4 cups so that’s about 8 peaches. 1 1/3 cup sugar or Splenda (I use sugar) 4 tbsp pectin 1 tbsp lemon juice What to do: Peel and cube the peaches Use a potato masher to mash them up. Add sugar, lemon and pectin Stir well. Let sit for 1-2 hours Spoon into ziplock bags and freeze. Take out 2-3 hours before you want to use.  Will store in fridge for up to 2...

Garden Week Day 3: Sun Sticks

  Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to make personalized pots and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week.                                 I’ve already confessed that I’m really good at killing plants.  So I loved this way to help kids (and me!) determine exactly what a plant needs. What you need: Popsicle sticks Waterproof acrylic paint Sharpie Planting label information from your plants (we saved our labels from yesterday’s project). What to do: Have your kids paint the sticks using the acrylic paint.  Let dry. Use a sharpie to draw the following symbols on your sticks: A sun for full-sun A cloud for full-shade A sun behind a cloud for partial sun A drop of water for water every day Two drops of water for every other day Three drops of water for plants that need water infrequently. Put the sticks in your plants and use them the track their care! Tweet it:  Are you a plant-killer like me?  Keep track of watering with this fun sun stick craft.  http://wp.me/p33YCp-uU Click to Tweet...

Garden Week Day 2: Personalized Pots

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to make personalized pots and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week. I love planting flowers.  I often kill the flowers I plant but I love planting them and enjoying them nonetheless.  And so, today, I let my kids get involved in something I love by choosing, planting and learning to take care of their own plants. What you need: Go to the garden store and let each of your kids pick out: *  A pot (ceramic or plastic) *  A plant (my son chose herbs, my daughter flowers) *  Potting soil *  Gardening tools *  A small watering can. *  Glitter and acryllic paint (optional, if your kid wants to decorate his or her pot) What to do: 1. Decorate your pots (if you want) with paint, glitter and ribbon. 2.  Have your kids pull the card out of their plant and read the instructions.  Ask them if their plant needs sun or shade, how much water, etc. 3.  Plant the pots using soil. 4.  Help your kid come up with a good location for it (ie. sun or shade, etc.) 5.  Remind your kid how to take care of his or her plant. Tweet it:  Teach your kid about a love of gardening by making a personalized potted garden that fits his...

Garden Week Day 1: Wormy Dirt Cups

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to make wormy dirt cups and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week. Full disclosure:  I’ve tried really hard to make most of the recipes I’ve shared this summer healthy.  Really, I have.  But, I’m also (don’t.hate.) not afraid to give my kids the occasional junk food.  And this one… well, it’s junk food.  So it’s a treat. What you need: Chocolate pudding (I made mine homemade but you can easily use instant!) Chocolate cookies (I used Milano Vanilla Creme) Gummy worms. What to do: Have your kids put two or three gummy worms in the bottom of their cup. Cover their worms with “mud” (a.k.a. pudding) Cover the mud with “dirt” (a.k.a. crushed cookies) Eat and enjoy! Tweet it:  Make totally delicious (and totally unhealthy) wormy dirt cups to celebrate your summer garden.  http://wp.me/p33YCp-uH  Click to Tweet....

Welcome to Week 7 of Pin-Tastic Summer: It’s Garden Week!

Welcome to Pin-Tastic Summer Week 7. If you’re just joining us, please click over to read the Pin-Tastic Summer intro post and then join us for some summer fun. This week’s theme is: We’ll spend the week doing tons of totally fun garden-related activities with our kids. Here’s what’s on tap: Here’s what we’re doing: Monday:  Wormy Dirt Cups Tuesday:  Personalized Pots Wednesday: Planting Labels Thursday: Peach Freezer Jam Friday: Garden Salad   Here’s your shopping list: Monday:  Wormy Dirt Cups Chocolate cookies (I used Milano vanilla cream) Chocolate pudding (I made my own but you can use Jello-O Instant Pudding or whatever) Gummy worms See-thru cups Tuesday:  Personalized Pots Terracotta or plastic pots Plants (let your kids pick out the colors/types they like) Ribbon or paint (optional, for the pots) Wednesday: Planting Labels Wooden craft sticks Acryllic paint Thursday: Peach Freezer Jam 4 pounds peaches (use from your peach trees if you have them!) Instant Pectin (get it in the baking aisle) White sugar or Splenda Lemon juice Friday: Garden Salad Cherry tomatoes (multiple colors if possible) Arugala Avocado (1) Asparagus (1 bunch) Sesame Oil Rice Vinegar Honey Salt Pepper Blue cheese...

Counting Week Day 5: Collect 25 Cents

Welcome to The Christian Mama’s Guide Pin-Tastic Summer! If you’re just joining us, click over to our intro post to find out what we’re doing and to see what other crafts, activities and projects we’ve done. This week, we’re having math week. Scroll down to learn how to play Collect 25 Cents and then click here to find out what other awesome math activities we’ve done this week. This is a fun math game I learned from my son’s teacher but my son LOVES playing and it helps him practice with money.  It can be really simple for younger kids and get more complicated.  For example, I had Will collect pennies and I had him count them while I had Joey collect odd numbers like 67 cents. What you need: A bunch of change Two dice a hard surface What to do: Have player 1 roll the dice.  Have them take as many cents as they roll.  (For example, if they rolled a 3 and a 4, they get to collect 7 pennies.) The first person to get 25 cents wins. If you want to make it more difficult, play “collect a dollar” or “collect fifty cents” and always make sure they trade up for the highest denominator.  For  example, if an older kid rolled a 3 and a 4, they would have to trade five of their pennies in for a nickel.  If someone gets caught with two nickels instead of a dime, then the person who catches them can take their money. Tweet it:  Play this fun money game and teach your kids about how to count...

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