Taking it easy!

Hi all! I wanted to drop a note to say I am taking a break from blogging for a few weeks. Now that beautiful weather has arrived, I can't make myself stay inside for long enough to even have much to say. Also, I am taking a summer class, and have VBS in a few weeks. Have a great summer!

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+*
Ps 72:17 His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed.
Ps 74: 16, 17 The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun. Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and winter.
Ps 104:19 He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down.
Ps 113:3 From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD'S name is to be praised.
Ps 148:3 Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.
Rev 21:23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.

Easy Crafts for Small Children

VBSMonday
As a Vacation Bible School teacher, sometimes it is hard to come up with fresh ideas for crafts. So on Mondays I post any craft ideas that I come across that might work. Join in and pass the word! ~ April

Recently, a friend asked me for some party craft ideas for small children, that could possibly be
done in a restaurant. Most of these could be prepared ahead of time, with little assembly to be done by the children. Most involve paper that can be cut
out ahead of time, so that there is minimal work for the kids.
These would be great VBS crafts or even Sunday School!

Paper bracelets
http://www.ourbigearth.com/2008/08/08/inspire-creativity-handmade-paper-bracelet
s/


Printable Paper Dolls
http://tpettit.best.vwh.net/dolls/pd_scans/betsy_mccall/index.html

Lollipop flowers
http://shimandsons.typepad.com/shimandsons/2008/02/marthas-idea-my.html
martha's version:
http://www.marthastewart.com/portal/site/mslo/menuitem.3a0656639de62ad593598e10d
373a0a0/?vgnextoid=4e1dd0f19132f010VgnVCM1000003d370a0aRCRD&vgnextfmt=default&ln
c=b1a9cf380e1dd010VgnVCM1000005b09a00aRCRD


Cookie pouches (have cookies ready, let kids decorate envelope with
markers/stamps/crayons/etc)
http://norththreads.blogspot.com/2007/01/crafting-with-kids-valentines-cd.html

Lollipop Butterflies
http://www.skiptomylou.org/2009/02/03/printable-valentines/

Lollipop Flowers
http://www.skiptomylou.org/2008/02/08/how-does-your-garden-grow/

Paper alligator
http://www.skiptomylou.org/2008/02/06/id-snap-at-the-chance-to-be-your-valentine
/


Paper party hats
http://mayamade.blogspot.com/2008/07/party-hats_22.html

Newspaper party hats
http://www.skiptomylou.org/2008/12/31/how-to-make-newspaper-party-hats/

Paper fortune cookies (ahead of time, cut out, and have "sayings" printed)
http://www.oncewed.com/index.cfm?postID=290

Paper pinwheels
http://www.craftideas.info/html/paper_pinwheel.html

Flower Pot canisters (would require gluing, maybe not so good for restaurant)
http://www.maizehutton.com/flowerpotcanisters.html

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* Hebrews 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,

Record Bowls

VBSMonday
As a Vacation Bible School teacher, sometimes it is hard to come up with fresh ideas for crafts. So on Mondays I post any craft ideas that I come across that might work. Join in and pass the word! ~ April


photo courtesy of Thriftyfun's Record Bowl

This is a great quick craft that will definitely take some adult supervision. I actually did this for VBS as a one night craft. The girls loved it! The record gets very soft and pliable when heated in the oven, and melts into the shape of a "bowl".

You will need:
~ old vinyl records, which can be found at any thrift store pretty cheaply
~ oven - more than one in your church kitchen is great!
~ cookie sheet
~ oven proof bowl

Here are lots of different instructions below, even a video,
or just google "record bowls":

Instructables Record Bowl

Wikihow Record Bowl

Metacafe Record Bowl Video

Thriftyfun Record Bowl

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* Psalms 119:138 Thy testimonies that thou hast commanded are righteous and very faithful.

Yankee Pot Roast Dinner WW

Find more Slow Cooker Thursday recipes here: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
SlowCookerThurs

Yankee Pot Roast Dinner
Weight Watchers

2.5 lbs boneless bottom round roast, trimmed
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp salt
2 lg onions, sliced
1 3/4 cups water
1 1/2 tbsps balsamic or red wine vinegar
1 (1oz) envelope dry onion soup mix
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
1 3/4 lbs red potatoes, quartered
1 lb baby carrots
fresh thyme sprigs for garnish, optional

This recipe was not originally a slow cooker recipe, but I made it this way:
Brown the outside of the roast in a skillet. Spray the inside of the slow cooker with cooking spray. Add all ingredients, I place potatoes first so that they will by toward the bottom. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Serving size: 2 slices beef, 1 cup veggies, 1/4 broth
Points: 6

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* Psalms 73:25, 26 Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

Flower Pens

VBSMonday
As a Vacation Bible School teacher, sometimes it is hard to come up with fresh ideas for crafts. So on Mondays I post any craft ideas that I come across that might work. Join in and pass the word! ~ April


photo courtesy of CampArtLady's Tutorial

Flower Pen

This is an old idea, I think we even made these way back when I was in VBS. But it is still a good one! You can make them with or without a flower pot. Some versions have foam in a small clay pot to hold the pen up. The photo above has beans, but you could use rice or coffee beans as well. You could even make an entire flower arrangement.
I think this would also make good Sunday School projects, maybe for Valentine's Day or Mother's Day.

Here are some tutorials and ideas:

CampArtLady's Tutorial

Fluffy Flower's Flower Pen Tutorial

youtube video instructions

Polkadot Pineapple's fabric version of the flower pen

Ready.set.craft's version

DIY's version

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* Psalms 73: 22 - 24
So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee. Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand. Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.

Baskets

Find more Frugal Friday tips here: Life as Mom
FrugalFriday

Thrift Store ideas ~ Baskets

2009_0314(008)

I found the above basket at Goodwill for $4. It is huge, about 2' x 3'! It fits on the edge of my fireplace filled with extra throw blankets and a pillow. Of course it has to be moved if we have a fire going in the fireplace, but that's ok.

This is not really a before & after, just an idea or suggestion. Thrift stores are the best place to find baskets. Baskets are those classic things that never go out of style. Sure, there are some styles that are dated, but mostly they are are simple. Here are a few of my ideas for baskets:

~ Use them as flower pots, this is especially great if you are carrying the plants inside/outside. And if you have "critters" that knock them over, they won't break.
~ Use them for organizing anything: office supplies, craft supplies, etc.
~ We have an emergency "power outage" basket in our closet full of things like flashlights, batteries, lighters, matches, candles, and our battery operated portable DVD player.
~ We have a basket on the top shelf of our coat closet full of scarves and mittens.
~ Make a grouping of baskets coordinate for a desktop or such, by spray painting them all the same color.
~ Roll up some bath towels in a basket for over night guests.
~ Use a basket instead of a gift bag or gift wrap.
~ In the summer time we set a small basket on our porch with bug spray and sunscreen for convenience.
~ Use a basket in the kitchen to hold a stack of cookbooks.
~ Use a basket at your bedside for night-time reads like magazines, mail, or books.

The possibilities are endless. Let me know what you use baskets for. And when you see a nice basket at the thrift store, buy it! You'll find a use for it, trust me.


Also, here are a couple of printable coupon likes I have received from friends this week:

Kashi printable coupons

SoBe lifewater coupons

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* Matt 10:39, 40 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.

Chicken Cacciatore WW

Find more Slow Cooker Thursday recipes here: Diary of a Stay at Home Mom
SlowCookerThurs

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore
Another WeightWatchers recipe!

1 lb chicken cut into 1 in pieces
1 14.5 can crushed fire-roasted tomatoes
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 green bell pepper; sliced
1 onion chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup dry red wine or reduced sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1. Place all of the ingredients in a 5 or 6 quart slow cooker
2. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, 5-6 hours on high or 6-8
hours on low.

Weight Watchers
Serving size: 1 cup
Points: 4

Be sure to check out my VBS Mondays, Slow Cooker Thursdays, and Frugal Fridays!
far3
*+*+*+* 2 Tim 4:18 And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.