The Love Bug

In an effort to make our holidays more meaningful, I have been trying to focus on Christ, and learn from the scriptures. So, what do the scriptures say about love? There are so many scriptures about love. I picked just a few and put them together in this fun little activity to help my kids learn about love and the scriptures.

I think sometimes we get destracted by all the hub-bub of Valentines Day, and for that reason, I know many people don’t like the holiday. We are all in different places in our lives, but we all love in one way or another. Most commonly Valentines day is a time for sweethearts to celebrate their romance. While that is a wonderful thing, I dont think we should forget all of the other wonderful loving relationships we have. We can love our parents, children, nieces, nephews, siblings, cousins, neighbors, those we visit teach, or home teach, friends, strangers, even our enemys. I find its a great time to remember our Father in Heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ, and their infinite love for us. I hope Valentines Day can be a day we celebrate their love for us, and try to share our love with those around us.

I really enjoyed searching the scriptures  to find out what they say about love. I learned a lot, and I hope you can too. These were some of the favorite ones that I found. What are some of your favorite scriptures about love? I’d love to hear from you.

There are a couple of ways you could do this activity. Last year, The Love Bug came to our house once a day for a whole week leading up to Valentines day. He would hide an envelope in a different place each day with a scripture and a little candy for my toddler to find. Once it was found, we would read the scripture, talk about it and enjoy a sweet treat together. This was a really fun way to do it, however I was not as on top of things this year. This time we will just do it all in one night for Family Home Evening. I will probably still hide the scriptures around the room for my kids to find one at a time. (This always makes it more exciting/interactive.)

If you do this as a Family Home Evening Lesson you can sing/listen to the songs Love One Another and/or Mother I Love You. There are many other Primary Songs, and even Hymns that are about love that would also be great for this.

I hope you and your family enjoy this activity! Happy Valentines Day!

The Love Bug- Valentines Day Scripture activity with kids!
P.S. I have been learning to use Adobe Illustrator in a class at the community college, so I thought I would create my own “Love Bug”. I think he turned out cute!

The Giving Tree

Over the past few years I have followed my beautiful cousin Aubrey’s journey in finding the Spirit of Christmas through service. Her ideas have given me inspiration to create better traditions for my family during the holidays. I hope that by sharing her story, others may be uplifted and inspired, and be able to make their futures bright. Here is her story about creating the #PaxtonGivingTree in green below.

I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!

   “Three years ago on Christmas day 2013, after all the presents were unwrapped and the day was coming to an end, I turned to my husband and said, “I still don’t feel like it’s Christmas.” I remember all month long waiting for the spirit of Christmas to come, and it didn’t. There wasn’t anything really different that year. Christmas was the same day it had always been. I’d listened to the same Christmas music and ate the same treats that I love, so I knew that the problem was with me.

 

It was a busy time for our family. We had just added daughter #3 to our ranks the month prior, and I’m sure I was exhausted and caught up in figuring out how to run a whole new family dynamic…let’s be honest, 3 kids is hard! But it broke my heart that, because of my attitude, I had not only taken the true meaning of the holiday away from myself, but in doing so I was doing a disservice to my children.

 

So when December 2014 rolled around I was determined to make our house feel the spirit of the holiday! And the best way that I knew how to do that was by serving others. That year a friend and I had come up with an adorable advent calendar in the shape of a tree. I called it our Paxton Giving Tree! I put a little treat and a service opportunity in each box for each day of December leading up to Christmas. My girls were so excited to have a fun new way to count down to the holiday and I was excited to get the spirit of the holiday in our home, and it WORKED! Christmas 2014 was the best Christmas that I could remember having with my little family! Not only were we thinking about and serving others, but we were EXCITED about doing it! I knew that this was the start of a very fun and exciting tradition for our family!

 

This year, as I’m sitting down and coming up with ways that my family can serve others in December, I can’t help but think back over the last two years and the many awesome experiences we’ve shared as a family.

I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!
Doing a litter walk around the neighborhood.

I think my very favorite one came just this last summer during July. All summer long the girls had been asking to do a bake sale. I suggested that we could maybe do one, but wouldn’t it be fun if we decided that with the money we earned from it we could put toward helping out a family this coming Christmas for our Paxton Giving Tree tradition. My kids responses made me very happy! This is how it went.

 

Madison (7): But why would we need money for that?

Me: Well buying things for Christmas costs money, and there are some families that don’t have enough to get extra things at Christmas time. We could help with that.

Madison: But mom you don’t need money to have Christmas…isn’t it just about love and family? That’s the important thing.

Kennedie(5): And celebrating that Jesus was born!

Reagan(3): And Santa! (Haha we’re still working on that one)

This was the best conversation ever! It was totally a mom win moment! I’m so grateful that my kids know what Christmas is really about…even in July!

I truly feel like my kids are learning not only what the true meaning of Christmas is, but also what it means to love and serve others. It has taught them many lessons about others who are less fortunate, and they have compassion for others that I know has come as a direct blessing of our tradition.

 

I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!
Supporting a local food drive by gathering supplies for those in need.

Like I said, this month I’m sitting down and making a list of things that we can do during our December service, but I would LOVE to hear any ideas that others may have! Please share! Also, if you want to keep posted about what my family will be doing this year, you are welcome to search the tag #paxtongivingtree on Facebook or Instagram.”

Isn’t this amazing? What a beautiful example Aubrey is to her kids about being Christlike. I love how involved her little children are in this wonderful tradition. Here are few more pictures and ideas for acts of service you could perform for your family’s giving tree.

I love this giving tree idea!What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!
Taking cookies and thank you notes to their primary teachers.
I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!
Leaving thank you notes for the mail carrier and trash collectors.
I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!
Placing quarters in all of the vending machines!

The possibilities are endless! Be Creative!

I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!

For more inspiration to come closer to Christ this holiday season check out this video in preparation for the #LightTheWorld initiative.

Merry Christmas, and God Bless!

PS: If you want to check out Aubrey’s cute shop for girl’s hairbows, check her out on instagram.com @the.happy.squirrel.shop.

I love this giving tree idea! What a great way to make the holidays meaningful again!

 

Sharing Time November 2016 Printables and Resources

November is upon us! I cannot believe how fast October flew by! Between Preparing for our ward’s primary program and preparing for Halloween, October was gone in a blink! Here are some new printables to help your little ones memorize the scripture and article of faith for this month. Repetition is key, and having it printed out makes it so easy to review these every day! I am constantly amazed at how well my 4 year old son is able to memorize these when we practice them consistently. Kids are never too young to be nourished by the good word of God! Enjoy!

Scripture:

Download and print this Scripture by clicking the link below.

scripture-matthew

sharing-time-2016-11-nov-scripture-printable

Article of Faith 1:

Download and print this Article of Faith by clicking the link below.

article-of-faith-1

sharing-time-2016-11-nov-article-of-faith

Pictograph Poster of Article of Faith 1:

Download and print this poster from A Year of FHE by clicking the link below.

aof01prev

Article of Faith 1 Pictograph Courtesy of A Year of FHE.

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

Sharing Time October 2016 Printables & Resources

Song:

In preparation for the primary program, you may want to use this month to review songs that the children learned earlier in the year. Here is a list of all the songs the primary in our ward has been preparing. I included the sheet music with each of them, but I also recommend downloading the free LDS Music App so you can sing with the music instead of acapella. For your convenience I included links so you can download the Apple App or the Android App.

  •  January Song: “If I Listen with My Heart” Sheet Music
  • February Song: “I Will Follow God’s Plan” (CS, 164–65) Sheet Music
  • March Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Stand for the Right” (CS, 159) Sheet Music
  • April Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “If the Savior Stood Beside Me Sheet Music
  • May Song:  “Praise to the Man,” verses 1 and 3 (Hymns, no. 27) Sheet Music
  • June Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Scripture Power” Sheet Music
  • July Song:  “I Love to See the Temple” (CS, 95) Sheet Music
  • August Song:  “The Lord Gave Me a Temple” (CS, 153) Sheet Music

Scripture:

Download and print this Scripture by clicking the link below.

oct-scripture

sharing-time-2016-10-october-scripture-printable

Article of Faith 7:

Download and print this Article of Faith by clicking the link below.

oct-article-of-faith

sharing-time-2016-10-october-article-of-faith

aof-7prev

Article of Faith 7 Pictograph Courtesy of A Year of FHE

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

Sharing Time September 2016 Printables & Resources

Song:

In preparation of the primary program, you may want to use this month to review songs that the children learned earlier in the year. Here is a list of all the songs the primary in our ward has been preparing. I included the sheet music with each of them, but I also recommend downloading the free LDS Music App so you can sing with the music instead of a Capella. For your convenience I included links so you can download the Apple App or the Android App.

  •  January Song: “If I Listen with My Heart” Sheet Music
  • February Song: “I Will Follow God’s Plan” (CS, 164–65) Sheet Music
  • March Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Stand for the Right” (CS, 159) Sheet Music
  • April Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “If the Savior Stood Beside Me Sheet Music
  • May Song:  “Praise to the Man,” verses 1 and 3 (Hymns, no. 27) Sheet Music
  • June Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Scripture Power” Sheet Music
  • July Song:  “I Love to See the Temple” (CS, 95) Sheet Music
  • August Song:  “The Lord Gave Me a Temple” (CS, 153) Sheet Music

Scripture:

Download and print this Scripture by clicking the link below.

scripture

sharing-time-september-2016-scripture-printable

Article of Faith 11:

Download and print this Article of Faith by clicking the link below.

untitled

sharing-time-september-2016-article-of-faith

aof11prev

Article of Faith 11 Pictograph Courtesy of A Year of FHE

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

Sharing Time 2016- Opening Excercises Overview

At the beginning of the year my son became a member of the Sunbeams class (Children age 3-4) in Primary. Every Sunday in Primary, the children participate in opening exercises singing and reciting a certain Song, Scripture, and Article of Faith. They rotate to a new set each month. All of these can be found in the 2016 Outline for Sharing Time. I decided that I wanted to be teaching my son these things at home as well, so this became part of our bedtime routine. As the year went on, we have realized that at bedtime our kids are cranky, and we don’t get as much out of it as we want to or we just skip it all together. We are going to try doing this as a family every morning before breakfast. I think this is a great way to set the tone for the day, but it is also a great thing to leave your kids thinking about as they go to bed.  It doesn’t really matter when you do it, but the more consistently it is done, the better your kids will learn. Repetition is key to learning and memorization.

Sharing Time 2016- Songs:

Near the end of the year, the Primary Children present a Primary Program for the entire congregation sharing the songs that they learned throughout the year. Since the dates on the program vary from ward to ward, the fall semester tends to be a time to review the songs that need most attention. I like to print out the sheet music as well as play the music and sing along with the Free LDS Music App. You can download the Apple App or the Android App.  Here is a list of the Songs/Links to sheet music for the songs our Primary has learned so far this year: 

ldsmusic

 January Song: “If I Listen with My Heart” Sheet Music

February Song: “I Will Follow God’s Plan” (CS, 164–65) Sheet Music

March Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Stand for the Right” (CS, 159) Sheet Music

April Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “If the Savior Stood Beside Me Sheet Music

May Song:  “Praise to the Man,” verses 1 and 3 (Hymns, no. 27) Sheet Music

June Song: (Song of your choice from the Children’s Songbook) “Scripture Power” Sheet Music

July Song:  “I Love to See the Temple” (CS, 95) Sheet Music

August Song:  “The Lord Gave Me a Temple” (CS, 153) Sheet Music

September-December: Review the Songs Above according to need.

Sharing Time 2016- Scriptures:

January Scripture: “Feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do” (2 Nephi 32:3).

 February Scripture:“For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39).

 March Scripture: “What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, . . . whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same” (D&C 1:38).

April Scripture: “We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel” (Articles of Faith 1:3).

 May Scripture: “I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him! ” (Joseph Smith—History 1:17).

 June Scripture: “We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith 1:4). 

July Scripture: “Sacred ordinances and covenants available in holy temples make it possible for individuals to return to the presence of God and for families to be united eternally” (“The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” paragraph 3).

 August Scripture: “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? . . . The temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” (1 Corinthians 3:16–17).

 September Scripture: “This gospel shall be preached unto every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people” (D&C 133:37).

 October Scripture: “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” (James 1:5).

 November Scripture: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” (Matthew 22:37).

 December Scripture: “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works” (Matthew 16:27)

Sharing Time 2016- Articles of Faith

I have been surprised by how well my son has been able to memorize the Articles of Faith at such a young age! He doesn’t know them all word for word yet, but he is pretty good at filling in the blanks, and I am sure it will only get better next year. There really is something to doing it every night that embeds it into their brains, its awesome.

The order of the articles of faith are not listed in the Sharing Time Outline. The order is determined by the Primary Presidency. This year some of the scriptures selected in the Sharing Time Outline were Articles of faith, so the Primary’s Presidency in our ward decided to review them according to the topic of the month. Here is the order:

January: Article of Faith 8

February: Article of Faith 2

March:Article of Faith 5

April: Article of Faith 3

May: Article of Faith 6

June:Article of Faith 4

July: Article of Faith 9

August:Article of Faith 12

September: Article of  Faith 11

October: Article of Faith 7

November: Article of Faith  1

December: Article of Faith 10

I also found a wonderful blog A Year of FHE that offers Free Printable Downloads of Article of Faith Memorization Posters. We have also enjoyed using these posters in our Family Home Evening Lessons.

Articles_Of_Faith_Posters
Click Here for the Free Downloads.

Monthly Sharing Time Printables/Resources:

Check back monthly, or subscribe for free printables and resources for the current month including:

  • Sheet Music
  • A Scripture Poster
  • An Article of Faith Poster
  • Article of Faith Pictograph courtesy of A Year of FHE

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

Finding Dory Party

Finding Dory Party Spread:

We went to see Finding Dory for my son’s 4th Birthday, and decided to use it as a theme for his birthday dinner with our family. Since all the fuss was about him and his birthday, I tried to include him as much as possible in the preparations. He absolutely loved being included! I had to remind myself along the way that the main goal wasn’t to have perfect decorations, but to make sure he had fun, and that he felt special. He loved having a sense of authority, and he did an awesome job helping me out! I found many wonderful ideas on Pinterest. Checkout my Pinterest board here, and follow me on Pinterest for other fun ideas. We used these pins as inspiration for our Finding Dory Party.  Here is how it all turned out!

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Since I have an 11 month old that likes to eat everything in sight, I decided to place my coral reef streamer up and out of her reach. Also I used yellow because that was the color we had on hand, but I was really happy with how it turned out. I traced a fish cookie cutter on blue card stock to get these cute fish shapes.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Free Coloring Pages:

My son was super interested while I was searching Pinterest and making plans for the party, and when he saw these coloring pages, he really wanted to paint them! So I printed them out, set him up with paint, and got back to the Pinterest search. We loved how they turned out so we hung them up as part of the party decor. He was so proud to display them for everyone.

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for these free coloring pages here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas
He used scotch tape and hung them on the wall all by himself!

Welcome Sign:

Snag the free printable download of  my Finding Dory welcome sign below.

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Sign
Finding Dory Party Sign Free Printable Download

Free Printable Download of Dory Party Sign

Food Ideas:

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

I had planned to use the above idea to make fish shaped watermelon pieces for the party. I showed the picture to my son to let him know what we were going to be doing, and he got stuck on the star shape idea. We went with it and made both fish and starfish. He loved making these with me, and he did a really great job! It ended up being really nice to have a smaller star shape to use up the smaller scraps of watermelon. I was surprised at how much scrap we still had even after using the small stars.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas
We gathered all the scraps in a separate bowl to be enjoyed after the party. One large watermelon made one large tray of cute sea creatures and one large bowl of scraps.
Finding Dory Party Ideas
As we were using the cookie cutters to make the shapes in the watermelon, he said, “Everybody is going to love it!” He was so proud of the great job he was doing. Here he is enjoying his Fishy watermelon at the party!

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas
This kid is such a character, he can’t take a picture without making a silly face.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

 Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

We made purple Seaweed because my son picked purple grapes, and it was his Birthday after all. Again, the most important thing was that he was having fun, not that the fruit was the perfect color. He loved having he authority to choose the color of grapes. People ought to feel like kings and queens on their birthdays, and I think he did!

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas Click here to get the printable of these fins and tails from asthebunnyhops.com.

Execution:

I really loved this idea, but I decided to create dory’s eyes myself instead of using googly eyes. I printed them out on a word document and used a larger 1 1/2 hole punch to save time cutting. The fins and tails were quite time consuming to cut out. They were also very skinny making them hard to attach to the cup with the glue dots. In the end they were a big hit at the party so I was glad we did it. I also decided to just draw the mouths on with a permanent marker. This was mostly because I couldn’t find any black paper, but we made several different expressions, and they turned out pretty cute!

Finding Dory Party Ideas

 

Party cup Dory eyes Free Printable DownloadParyt cup Dory eyes Free Printable Download

Here is a link to the Free Printable Download of these Dory Eyes

Pinterest Inspiration:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Find the link for this inspiration here.

Execution:

I ended up forgetting about this one until after the hot dogs were cooked so I cut some up afterwards real quick. The tentacles didn’t curl up as well since I didn’t cut them before they cooked, but they were still pretty cute.

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

Original Ideas:

Blank Food Labels:

At first I was going to design these with words already on them. I never got around to doing it, and in the end I was actually glad that they were blank. Once I had the food in front of me, it was nice to have blank ones so I could write in what I needed to.

Finding Dory Party Ideas Finding Dory Party Ideas

Free Downloads for Finding Dory Food Labels

Custom Drawn Napkin Holders:

We got my son some Finding Dory Stickers from the Dollar Store for his birthday, and I thought this would be a fun way to use them. He colored paper orange to be wrapped and taped around the napkins and utensils. Then he thoughtfully placed one sticker on each one. This project kept him busy for a while, and he was very proud to share these with his guests.

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Bubbles… Bubbles… My Bubbles! (From Finding Nemo)

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Fish & Chips:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Fish Out of Water Popcorn Balls:

Finding Dory Party Ideas

Finding Dory Party Ideas
My son helped me make these popcorn balls. He had so much fun, and was so proud!

I think he had a pretty great birthday over all. I am glad he was so willing to help out! I still cant believe my little guy is four! Happy Birthday Big Guy!

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

2016-08-25 22.11.57

How to Choose the Preschool Thats Right for You and Your Child

You are Running out of time! The pressure is setting in. What are you going to do about preschool this year? July is more than half gone, and school starts back up next month! The craziest part  for me is that my son is old enough to go to preschool! He was just a baby yesterday right? Where did the time go?  I don’t want to even blink because before I know it, he will be driving a car and picking up girls for dates. For now though, he is my little ‘Big Guy’. I recently asked him if he ‘liked’ girls, and he responded, “Grandma is a girl, she is a lady!” I hope he stays in this phase for at least another 16 years! But alas, he is getting older, and he is growing up. It is time for him to start to experience new things, and grow as an individual and not just be my baby. So back on the age old question, What are we going to do for Preschool this year?

Getting Silly with preschool at home. One of the most valuable lessons mothers can teach their children is that they are important and loved.

I love doing  preschool with my son at home. He is at the age that he loves to learn, and often asks me if we can do Preschool together. I think he enjoys the one on one Quality Time we share together. My goal when we do preschool activities is to create an exciting and safe space where he can learn and gain self confidence without fear or judgment. I try to keep it fun, and if the lesson becomes frustrating for either of us, I try to change gears. At home, I want him to have good memories and feelings towards me, and towards learning. We are not very structured in our preschool at home, which can be good and bad. It is good because he has a loving environment at home to learn in, but bad because the learning is not very consistent. No matter how hard I try, we do not do preschool everyday. That being said, we will be using a hybrid method between home schooling and schooling away from home for Preschool starting this fall.

How to Choose the Preschool Thats Right for You and Your Child
Little Stars Learning Program at Hollywood Kids Academy’s Henderson Location.

He will start attending Hollywood Kids Academy “Little Stars Learning Program” for a couple of hours a few days a week. I am hoping this will help him transition easily into kindergarten next year. I feel that it will be a great way for him to gain independence and individuality. He will be able to socialize, learn, grow, and I think he will love it! I have been very impressed with this company. Hollywood Kids Academy offers more than just preschool. They offer classes in Musical Theatre, Dance, and Vocal for ages 3-19. They are now based out of 3 locations including their newest Summerlin/Southwest location at 4145 S. Grand Canyon Suite #106. My family and I have been to several performances, and are so pleased every time. Hollywood Kids Academy is a noncompetitive atmosphere where kids have a safe space to learn and gain  self confidence while developing their skills at whatever level they may be. To read more about their mission click here.

hka logo

My goal as a mother is not to raise the next Genius, Olympian, or Billionare, but to raise kids with good Character. I’m not saying that it’s not possible to do both, but rather that my focus is geared more towards instilling integrity, honesty, hard work, self discipline, charity, leadership, organization, etc. If the next generation is raised to have these characteristics, we will have a bright future. A person with character can accomplish anything! I feel that the environment at Hollywood Kids Academy will help reinforce the values that I teach my son at home. I am trying to establish a house for my family that is pleasing to the Lord as taught in Docterine and Covenants 88:119:

Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing; and establish a house, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God;

We will still continue to have our unstructured ‘learning moments’ together at home. I don’t think we will ever stop. There is so much to be learned throughout our lives. You may even be suprised at the things that your children teach you. Creating that safe space at home can make it easier to teach the hard lessons in life. My house is, and always will be, a house of learning.

2016-07-06 11.33.04

Whatever decision parent’s make regarding their children’s education whether it be public, private, charter, or home school is personal.  If homeschooling is going to stress you or your child out, or add tension to your relationship, it might not be worth it. It can be so different in each household with each child and their unique needs. This hybrid method is what we have decided is best for our son at this time. His needs may change over the years in which we will need to prayerfully adapt. We may make a different decision for our baby girl, or other children we may have in the future based on their individual needs. I hope that mothers will be blessed with inspiration on what to do for their children’s education. I hope they will have the courage to see what is best for each of their children rather than yielding to the ‘norm’. Mother’s who pray regularly with, and for their children, can receive divine guidance for their well being. As for us, we are excited for this new opportunity to grow! Best of luck to you and your little one(s)!

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

This post may contain Affiliate links. To read more about what that means, click here to see our Affiliate Area.

Become a part of the Happy Housewife Blog Community by liking our Facebook page.

Subscribe on your smartphone using the pull down menu, or on the sidebar on your computer.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

A Day in the Life of a Stay at Home Mom

Is anyone else having trouble catching up after the holiday weekend? I tell you what, today has been rough. We usually put the kids to bed at 7:00 pm, but we all stayed up way too late last night doing fireworks for the 4th of July. It didn’t get dark outside till about 8:30 pm so by the time we got started with fire works, it was already an hour and a half past our kid’s bedtime. It was so much fun, but we have definitely been paying for it today. Tired kids really means, cranky, irrational, emotional kids.

As I sit down at the end of the day to write this, I take in a deep breath and sip my lemon water. Now that the kids are both asleep, it is time to unwind from the chaos that was my life today. I am not complaining, because I truly love my job as a Stay at Home Mom. I am telling this story because I want you to know that I am human. I make mistakes, lose my patience, get behind on housework, and let my kids watch TV etc. Hopefully as you read this you will be able to relate.

Let me take you through a day in the life of a stay at home mom:

The baby is crying, It’s morning already? Wow I am tired! I better go nurse her. I’m going to run to the restroom real quick first. Oh good, Anthony (my husband) is going to get her. Hopefully he was quick enough and her crying didn’t wake up her big brother. I rock her back and forth as she nurses. I hope she goes back to sleep, I am still exhausted. I’ll just close my eyes for a minute while she eats. Zzzzzz…..

Now she is done nursing and bright and smiling! It doesn’t look like she will go back to sleep, but how could I not love that face?

2016-06-16 08.10.15-2

Wait, is my shirt wet? Oh man! I’ll change her diaper then put her in bed with Anthony while I change my shirt. Awe they look so cute cuddling over there in the bed. I want to cuddle too! I hear footsteps! Sounds like big brother is awake. Anthony gets up with the kids and takes them downstairs and lets me lay down for a little longer. I have the best husband! Maybe I will just check Instagram for a minute and post some cute pictures from yesterday. Wow look at the time! It has already been a half hour! Ooops, I better get dressed and get things rolling.

Where are all my clothes? I have nothing to wear! I need to work out more and get this baby weight off. I feel like nothing fits anymore! Maybe I just need to do some laundry, I know some of my clothes fit. How can there be more laundry to do when I already have three clean baskets of laundry waiting to be folded at the side of the bed? Oh well, I will just get another load started real quick, then get dressed.

Wait, there’s a bunch of dirty clothes in our suitcase from this weekend. I better unpack so that I can get those clothes in the laundry too. Oh and there is laundry in the kids rooms, and some on the stairs.

Okay all the laundry is gathered from all parts of the house, and is now sorted. I’m all ready to start a load. Is there still laundry in the dryer? How did I forget about that? Okay its in a basket, headed to join the other three baskets of clean laundry. Wait, the laundry basket wont fit next to the others until I clean up all these empty water bottles on the floor. I better gather those and toss them in the trash. Okay, now the trash is overflowing. I might as well take out all of the trash upstairs.

I hear my husband say that the oatmeal is ready. Eeeek! “Okay I will be down in a minute!” I have the best husband. I don’t know how I would have gotten all this done without his help with the kids and breakfast. I better gather the trash quickly and get dressed. There’s some yoga pants I just unpacked from the suitcase, I will just throw those on. A mom bun is going to have to do today. Thank goodness for my Creaseless Hair Ties.

2016-05-29 17.45.32

 

Okay, time for some breakfast after I take the trash to the dumpster.

“You even fed the baby? I love you! Thanks honey! Thanks for making me breakfast too! I’ve got the kids now so you can go get ready for work. Thanks for all your help.”

Wow our floor is dirty! I better sweep and mop in between bites so that the baby doesn’t eat everything that is on the floor.

Why is it such a fight to get toddlers to eat? “Please eat three more bites before you clear your bowl.”He gets up an walks away.”Please don’t leave the table until you are done eating.”

The baby starts whining. “Sorry baby girl, I am almost done mopping, then you can get down from your highchair and explore.”

2016-06-23 13.37.58-1

The toddler eats his food. “Good job! You took three more bites! What a good eater!”

The baby whines some more “Oh don’t cry, I am almost done I promise! Here are some yogurt puffs to eat while you are waiting. I love you!”

“Thank you for taking your bowl to the sink! What an obedient boy!” I say with a crazy smile as he tracks oatmeal across the freshly mopped floor from the table to the sink. Sometimes it is more work to have him help out, but I know it is good for him, so I’ll just smile through it so he can’t see my frustration. Sometimes we just have to laugh so we don’t cry.

“Mom, can I watch a show?”

“If you unload the kid dishes from the dishwasher and get dressed for the day, you can watch one show, then we are going to do an activity!”

“Sorry sweet girl, I will get you out of your highchair as soon as I get this oatmeal cleaned up!”

Okay, the floor is finally clean. “Do you want on the floor to explore, or are you too cranky now? Why don’t you come cuddle with my while I search online for an activity for your brother.”

“Mom can I watch a show now?”

“Yes! You did such a good job with the dishes and getting dressed! “His shirt is on backwards, but I don’t care, cause he is so proud of himself for getting dressed on his own.

“Okay baby girl, you are getting tired, let me print this out real quick before we put you down for a nap, I don’t want the printer waking you up.”

“Okay bud, I am going to go upstairs to feed the baby and put her down for a nap. You can watch one more episode and then we will do an activity when I come back down.”

The washer is done running. I better forward the laundry real quick so I don’t disturb her while she is sleeping.

Finally nursing and cuddling. This is the best! I wish I could just rock you all day. “Sorry It has been such a crazy morning, lets cuddle for a while and sing some songs while you fall asleep.”

“Okay bud, the baby is asleep, lets do an activity. Today we are going to learn about the months of the year, and the days of the week etc. Once he had heard enough, I set him up with some crayons. “Okay here is a coloring page for the month of July for you to color While I do the dishes.”

2016-06-07 10.02.48

“Mom I am hungry!”

“Okay, why don’t you finish your drawing while I finish loading the dishes, then we can make some lunch together.” He breaks down crying irrationally. “I don’t want lunch, I want a snack!”

“Sorry honey, It is about time for lunch, so we aren’t going to have a snack. Why don’t you put away your crayons, and then we can make some lunch together.” He calms down and cleans up. We make and eat lunch with out much fuss.

“Mom, what is after lunch? “Things are going pretty smoothly now, maybe we can do another project together before the baby wakes up. He had so much fun counting down for the 4th of July with our Scripture Straw Rocket Activity. I bet he would love to make a paper chain to count down to his birthday next month. I could have him paint some paper for the chain.  “After you clear your plate, maybe we can paint!”

2016-06-25 11.50.40
Click here to read more about this activity.

“Okay, I am done!” He clears his plate and helps me get the paint all set up. We decide to use celery pieces as stamps for the paint. He is having such a good time. I feel like a good mom, we are having some good quality time.

2016-07-05 14.12.39

“Mom, can I use my hands to paint?” “Ummm, are you done with the celery? You wont be able to use the celery very well after you us your hands because the paint might get mixed together.” “I’m done with the celery.” He starts mixing all the colors together with his hands and putting finger prints and hand prints on his papers. He is having such a good time.

“Mom, I want more paint.” “You already have a lot of paint, just use what you have.” Then the crying began. “Mom, it is too hard!” Trying to understand what a tired toddler wants is one of the hardest things. Emotions are exaggerated and it’s hard for them to communicate what they want. I finally figure out. He wants to separate the colors from each other again so he can stamp with the celery again, but it is “too hard”. It’s a hard lesson to learn. “The colors won’t separate once they are mixed. I don’t want to get any more paint out when you already have so much on your plate. You can either use the paint you have, or we can be all done.” After a complete meltdown, he decides to do some more finger painting with the remaining paint. Just as he is about to finish the baby wakes up.

What a tender mercy that she slept through all of that. “Okay, lets wash up real quick so we can go get baby sister.” We wash up and get her out of her bed. “Oh wait, you can’t cuddle her yet, you need to take off your paint shirt so you don’t get her dirty!” Another melt down… five minutes later I have forwarded the laundry and his paint shirt is in the wash with some other clothes. I pick up the baby again and she has blown out! Wow! Now both kids are crying! I feel like crying too! I think it is time for some more cartoons while we all calm down.

After she has been changed and nursed, we get some good cuddles and playing in. I cannot believe how brave she is getting. She is using everything in sight to stand up, and starting to let go! She is having a good time so I let her play independently while I finish our every dollar budget for July and pay some bills.

My husband gets home from work and plays with the kids while I finish up the budget. It is 5:00 already? Time to get dinner going! What should we have for dinner? We have no bread or milk. I really need to go grocery shopping. I will have to go tomorrow. There is no more time today. We have some over ripe bananas, peanut butter and eggs. Lets make some Gluten Free Peanut Butter Banana Pancakes and turkey bacon.”Where is my big helper? Lets make pancakes!”

2016-07-05 17.48.39
Thats right, there was only one fried egg. We all shared it. I really needed to go to the grocery store!

Dad finishes loading the dishes that I never got back to, and my son and I make dinner. Sweet baby girl just bounces away in her jumper watching us work. On crazy days like today, it sure is nice to all come together for dinner.

After dinner we all work together to make my son’s birthday countdown chain. It really is nice to spend time together as a family every night before the kids go to bed.

2016-07-05 18.25.34

Then it’s up the stairs for family prayer. Time for bed! What a day! I have a billion baskets of laundry waiting to be folded, but I think I will just work on the blog to help me unwind.

A day in the life of a stay at home mom. The most monotonous, peaceful, chaotic, loving, frustrating, fun, boring, yet exciting day all in one. All this and we didn’t even leave the house! At least I get to do my work with the people I love most. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

This post may contain Affiliate links. To read more about what that means, click here to see our Affiliate Area.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

How to Watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood

⇓⇓⇓Updated information in RED below.⇓⇓⇓

When I found out that Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood would only be available on Netflix until July 1, 2016 I was so sad! I know it may sound silly, but Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood has sentimental value to my family! It really is a part of our lives and a part of our hearts! Season 2 came to Netflix at just the right time! Episodes 1: The Tiger Family Grows and 2: The Baby is Here were just what we needed to help our son adjust to his new baby sister. Throughout the pregnancy we watched the episodes and talked about the changes that were about to happen in our family. I had a Scheduled C-Section planned so the day that we were going to go into the hospital to have the baby, we watched these episodes together. He even got his new baby sister a present and painted her a picture just like Daniel Tiger did for baby Margaret. When ever my daughter touches my son’s hand he says, “Look mom! She is holding my paw, just like Daniel Tiger!”

Help your toddler be excited about the new baby in the family by having them pick out a gift for the baby.
My son holding his present for his new baby sister while he watched Daniel Tiger on the day she was born.
Painting a picture for his new baby sister helped my toddler adjust to this change in our family. Daniel Tiger made a picture for his baby sister too!
Here he is painting a picture for her. I love how he sticks his tongue out when he is concentrating.
Siblings, and best friends meeting for the first time. Doesn't get cuter than that!
This was when he first met her at the hospital.
"She is holding my 'paw' just like Daniel Tiger!"
My mom helping him hold his sister. He was holding her “paw.”

Aside from our emotional connection with this great show, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood teaches kids how to deal with everyday situations. The cute jingles in this show create a fun environment that kids respond well to. We sing at least one if not more every day! Some of our favorite jingles are:

  • One more time and then we’re done.
  • That was fun and now we’re done.
  • Stop and listen to stay safe.
  • While you wait, you can play, sing or imagine anything.
  • Use your words, use your words.
  • When you feel so mad that you want to roar, take a deep breath and count to four. 1-2-3-4.
  • When you got to go potty, Stop, and go right away.
  • Flush, and wash and be on your way.
  • You can be a big helper in your family.
  • When you’re sick, rest is best, rest is best.
  • You gotta try new foods ’cause they might taste good.
  • Grown ups come back.
  • Thank you, for everything you do!

Somehow when you sing these jingles, amazing things happen! It can turn sticky situations into a game. It is like magic, really! We love the show. It will be really sad to see Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood leave Netflix. So When I found out, I thought, “Where else can I watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood?” Here is what I found out:

I did the research so you don't have to. Find out where you can watch Daniel Tiger now that it has been removed from Netflix.

  1.  I searched on Amazon Prime Video, and sure enough it is there, but it is only available till June 30, 2016 so that doesn’t do us much good. This morning my friend let me know that Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is still available on Amazon Prime Video! When I checked a few days ago it said Seasons 1-5 were included with my prime membership until June 30. While this was true, it was a little misleading. I thought that this meant that Danel Tiger would no longer be available after June 30.⇓ 2016-07-01 07.29.10 When I checked it out today, this is what I found! I am so glad I was wrong! ⇓ 2016-07-01 07.37.12 Not only is Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood on Amazon Prime, but they added Season 6! This is great news! Since Amazon Prime is a valid option now,  here are some details on becoming an Amazon Prime member. Amazon Prime membership is only $10.99 per month and includes Prime Video, free two day shipping on all Amazon Prime products and more. My family has really enjoyed having this service. You can click here to sign up for a free 30 day trial . ⇓
  2. Of course there is the obvious, watch it on PBS. PBS is a free local station available to you on your TV if you have an antenna. You can get one here. Unfortunately we live too far away to receive a signal for this station. We live way on the edge of town so I think our circumstances are pretty rare. This may very well be a viable option for you.
  3. DVDs: There are several Daniel Tiger DVDs available on Amazon. I might have to buy the Big Brother Daniel DVD for my son.
  4. There are a couple of online forums that have Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood available, but in many cases you have to watch them on your phone, which drains your battery. Also your phone use is limited when your child is using it, which can be annoying. I have everything on my phone, my grocery list,  budget, To Do list, email, podcasts etc. I really do not prefer this method, especially since screen time for my toddler means I better be getting stuff done. For example, since my grocery list is on my phone, it kinda defeats the purpose of  distracting him with a quick show (on my phone) while I get it organized (on my phone). Too bad it can’t be in two places at once.  You could let them watch it on your computer or laptop, but then you have to worry about them pressing buttons they aren’t supposed to, or accessing sites you didn’t want them on. My solution to this problem is Chrome Cast. We got a Chrome Cast as a Christmas gift from my sister and brother in law a couple of years ago, and it has completely changed our TV watching experience. It just plugs into the HDMI port on the back of your Flat Screen and is powered by a USB. From your phone or iPad, you can ‘cast’ Netflix, Hulu Plus, YouTube, and several other streaming sites to your TV. You can also cast ANY WEBSITE from your computer directly to your TV. All you have to do is use Google Chrome Browser instead of the other popular browsers such as Internet Explorer, Safari, or Firefox. When you use Google Chrome, a Casting option appears in the upper right corner of your browser, you just click on it and select the TV you would like to cast it to. Your phone or computer doesn’t even have to be in the same room as the TV. If my son has completed all of his morning tasks and I am still getting ready for the day, I can cast a show onto the TV downstairs for him while I finish my make-up upstairs. I can even use my phone for other things as it casts in the background. Your streaming experience is so much better on the TV than on a tiny phone or iPad screen, and you don’t have to worry about your child pushing buttons they shouldn’t on your computer or laptop. If you don’t get this now, I recommend buying it for a family Christmas gift. It is so worth it!
  5. PBS Kids website – As far as I could see there are only about 4 full episodes available at a time. They also have short clips in the PBS Parents page.
  6. Hulu Plus– This is a good option except it only includes Season 1, but it is better than nothing. The cost is $7.99 per month. which is comparable to the $8.99 that Netflix charges a month.
  7. YouTube: Full episodes are available here, but are $1.99 per episode. There are a couple of playlists that look worth checking out. Keep in mind, content on YouTube is constantly changing so what is available one day, may not be the next.

After all of this research, I think we will probably end up using our chromecast to watch playlists of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood on YouTube. seasons 1-6 on Amazon Prime Video.  I may buy some DVDs of our favorite episodes on Amazon. DVDs are always nice for road trips too where streaming is not available. I hope you found this information helpful!

If you would like to share my content, please provide a link back to my website. Please do not use my images without permission.

This post contains Affiliate links. To read more about what that means, click here to see our Affiliate Area.

Sharing is Caring! Please share this with your friends using the Social Media Buttons below.

We love Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood! Why did they remove from Netflix? Glad to have this resource to see where else it is available.

“Thank you, For Everything you do!”