Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter: Because of Him



This Easter is a particularly special one for me as our little family is anxiously awaiting the arrival of our baby girl who is due to arrive any day.  It is an incredible feeling becoming a mama all over again, and this time to a daughter. So many thoughts and emotions are churning within me and I feel overcome this Easter Sunday at the incredible blessings that are mine because of my Savior Jesus Christ. Most singularly on my mind is the blessing of being sealed to my family for time and all eternity. For those who have likewise experienced the breadth and depth and power of a mother's love, it is one of the most precious and sacred reassurances to have the knowledge that nothing can separate you from your sweet little ones. Though life's circumstances and trials may result in a brief pause in our ability to be together, as Elder Uchtdorf has said, "There are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings." Because of Jesus Christ, our precious babes can be ours forever-  forged, bound, sealed to us with a bond that cannot be broken, so long as we live faithful and obedient to our covenants.

This Easter, my family and I followed the discussion points and activities each day from my Christ-Centered Easter plan I put together last year. Check it out here if you want to know more.   We also decided to go very simple on the commercial side of Easter and keep the focus on its true meaning.  We didn't even do Easter baskets this year!! (something my husband really wanted us to try).  I have to admit that waking up in the morning and eating cinnamon rolls together and listening to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's Easter Program instead of putting the focus on Easter Bunny loot, made for a much more serene and reverent morning. My children may kill me, but I think I just might permanently ditch the whole Easter basket thing.


Here is a look at the couple of non-religious fun we had: 


MAKING PAPER-PLATE BUNNIES






DECORATING EASTER EGGS







 "EASTERFEST" EASTER EGG HUNT 
My husband's dental school puts on a huge Easter party each year with egg hunts, crafts, bounce houses, etc. 





There is nothing wrong with a little traditional Easter fun, but there are just so many great activities and crafts to help keep the focus on the true meaning of Easter that I'd rather put my time and attention on these rather than on the "Bunny side".  Below are some great resources and ideas (for future ref). And don't forget my Easter post (click here) from last year for lots of ideas too. 



A Christ Centered Easter Week (Source: mybellemichelle.com)  This is a great resource for activities  to do with young children each day of Easter Week (Holy Week).






30 Christ-Centered Easter Crafts and Activities (Source: beinglds.blogspot.com)




Why Do We Celebrate Easter Flip Book (Source: theredheadedhostess.com)



A cute little advent of activities and scriptures for young children. (Source: lds.org)



Lastly, just in case you have not already seen it, please check out this short but powerful video clip HERE,  about the true meaning of Easter. I promise, you won't regret it.



I hope you all had a fantastic Easter!






Monday, March 17, 2014

And a Happy St. Pat's To You!

My Chalkboard :)


We have had such a fun March! I hope you guys have too! For a look back at some of my family's favorite St. Patrick's Day traditions, treats and books - check out my St. Patrick's Day post from last year!


It's been so fun to see the difference just a year makes in my son's involvement and enjoyment of holidays and traditions! Now that he's two, he's starting to get so much more and be so much more involved in the activities we do- I love it!


First off, we had a really fun time playing with buddies at our playgroup's St. Patrick's Day Party at the Park! We all wore green and brought a green treat or snack and then let the kids play and eat to their hearts content. Beckam LOVED it!  





We had some shamrock decorating fun too with paper scraps, stickers and markers! 








I don't know about your kids but my son LOVES LOVES LOVES Play-Doh. We have to buy it in bulk that is how much he loves it. I can't even save money with the homemade versions because all I would be doing all day is making play-doh over a hot stove in order to keep up with his demands ;) It's so much easier to have it stocked up in the closet. So needless to say green Play-Doh with shamrock cookie cutters was a hit with him!






By the way, I found this awesome packet full of TONS of cute St. Patrick's Day educational activities for toddlers at oopseydaisyblog.com. It even has cute alphabet letter flashcards on green shamrocks that you can print off! Beckam and I had fun working on this packet together and doing some of the activities.  Download your own free copy of it HERE! 



We also did a Shamrock Hunt around our house which was really fun. I just hid paper shamrocks in each room and then we went hunting for them. Beckam was so funny every time he saw one- he would get so excited!








 On St. Patrick's Day morning Beckam woke up to a little mischief and a surprise gift from the leprechauns!

                    


His surprise was hidden behind our kitchen stools that had been knocked over by the leprechauns.



This pretty much sums up how he felt about his leprechaun loot :)




And then like so many of you, we had our green pancakes for breakfast!



So glad I got to celebrate the day with this goofball :)






Last but not least, we finished the day off with our annual Irish dinner. We were so lucky to have some of our good friends over to join us!




IRISH SODA BREAD



CORN BEEF

COLCANNON







HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY!!