Growing Up

Simple Christmas Garland for Kids

A super simple Christmas garland for kids to make. Use only one item from around the house.

Some of my favorite memories as a kid involved decorating our house for the holidays. Popcorn strings for the tree, oranges spiked with cloves for the dining room table, Christmas countdown chains!  There must have been a latent homemaker in my little kid heart from the beginning.  And now our girls are loving the process of getting ready for the holidays with decorations and activities leading up to the big day!

We do a number of things to try to get our house and our hearts ready to celebrate Christmas.  It has been such fun to create traditions with our girls.  One of our favorite things is our Christmas book basket.  I put it out on December 1st for the kids to dig into all month.  And every few days, I try to come up with an activity that goes with one of the books in the basket.

Our latest activity is actually based on two books that are both about getting ready for Jesus: Who Is Coming to Our House by Joseph Slate and Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson. Continue Reading

Devotion

Asking God to be your Teacher

You DO have time for Bible study - and you do have a Teacher. Asking God to be your Teacher is the key to unlocking exciting and insightful Bible study.

The sheer size of the Bible can be overwhelming when you approach it to study it.  Where do you start? How can you possibly know all of the information inside?  How can you begin to understand what men and women of God have pondered and debated for centuries?

And the answer could be discouraging:

You can’t!

You, in your own strength and with the power of your own brain, cannot understand this book.  It is too much for you.

Before you click away and go off discouraged from studying the Bible altogether, let me assure you:

there is still hope for you.

There is a way you CAN understand the Scripture.  But it is outside of you.  Understanding comes only from one source – God!  The most exciting part of the study of God’s Word is that He (the author of the book) comes alongside you and becomes your teacher!

Today I have some simple things to say about God, the Teacher of the Word.  I hope you will find encouragement to continue the habit of studying the Word of God.

Continue Reading

Growing Up

Baby’s First Year – A Simple Daily Schedule

baby's first year - a simple daily schedule to fill baby's first year with memories.

 

This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.

What a wonderful thing to bring a beautiful baby home!  The love we have for our kids is instantaneous and insatiable – we just can’t get enough of them.  But getting them home and getting them settled into their role as part of the family can be interesting.  When we had our first baby, after she was settled into a sleep schedule that was predictable, I became obsessed with filling her every moment of every day with activities and new experiences.  I was afraid that if I left any quiet moments in the air, I would be missing out on her development.  It took me a long time to realize that she was experiencing new things and growing each and every day, even when I wasn’t creating activities for her every waking moment.  And it took a while to figure out how to fill her days with memorable moments while not being exhausted.

After three babies, I have kind of discovered the activities that really matter in the first year.  The ones that fill our days and have created some of the most memorable moments for our family.  They create a sort-of schedule or a checklist that I can look back at when I feel like I have exhausted all the things a baby can do in a day.  And being able to check off the list helps me to know I have done my job as a parent, even if we haven’t left the house! Continue Reading

Devotion, Growing Up

Inductive Study for Kids – The Gospel of John, 1:1-5

Inductive study for kids - working through the Gospel of John verse by verse

As a lover of Bible study, one of my main goals in teaching my kids is to point them to a love of God, a love of others, and a love of His Word!  I want them to know there are answers in this Big Book.  I want them to know there are wonders.  And I want them to know God wrote it because He wanted us to know Him!

As I was preparing our homeschool choices for this year, I came across a great reading schedule for the Gospel of John.  It looked like such a perfect idea!  To work with G through one book of the Bible, a little bit at a time.  But as I started looking at it, I realized it was for a reading level above where she is.

I still wanted to read through the Gospel of John with her, though!

So, I simply started.  And along the way, I came up with simple ideas for teaching each verse to her.  In the short time we have been doing it, we have started to memorize some of the verses.  We have learned many new things!  And we have had lots of fun doing it! Continue Reading

Growing Up

Tips for A Simple After School Play Date

A Back to School Brownie baking Party - an after school activity. This post has lots of tips for hosting a successful after school party.

Since we officially have started school, we now get to plan after school activities!  And the possibilities are endless!  We have been considering a number of extra-curricular activities to keep our kindergarten kid busy during the afternoon.  And last week I decided to have a fun after school play date with her friends to celebrate Back to School.  It just seemed natural to bake brownies!  Our play date was actually simple to throw together and the kids had LOTS of fun.   I thought I would share with you our best ideas for planning an after school play date.

This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.  Continue Reading

Nest Building

Simple Ways to Be More Productive on Facebook

simple tips to become more productive on Facebook. Avoid the time suck!

I am in danger every day of getting sucked into a vortex which succeeds in pulling me under and releases me hours later, numb and feeling less-than accomplished.  This vortex has a couple of entry points: my laptop and my cell phone.  And if I am not careful, I can ruin what could have been a productive day in my home (and in my business, this blog) simply by turning on the portal to this vortex: Facebook.  Please, tell me I am not the only one!  I know I can’t be!

Well I have decided I am taking back my time and my productivity from this fiendish Facebook!  And I have a number of simple things I do to make myself more productive on Facebook in less time!  Since I have a strong feeling I am not alone in the Facebook trap, I thought I would share with you how to be more productive on Facebook.

My name is Leah and I write about meaningful homemaking without fussiness at Simple.Home.Blessings.  And I am NOT an expert on Facebook, but I have learned a lot about it because of my business.  These tips are for those who consider themselves experts on Facebook and for those who haven’t quite figured it out yet.  They are simple step-by-step strategies to get a hold of your time on Facebook.

Ready? Continue Reading

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