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Holidays, Homeschooling, Uncategorized

December Homeschooling

It’s that time of year when the magic of Christmas meets the requirements of homeschool and I attempt to find enchanting ways to bring them together.


Perhaps I could teach lessons while wearing Christmas antlers, but I haven’t bought a pair….yet.

In the meantime, here are some ideas we are trying this season:

December Homeschooling: Games

We add a few new board games to our game collection every December. In the past, we opened one a week, but this year I just pulled them both out right at the start.

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Gifts, Holidays

Gifts for a Teen Girl

Need a few thoughtful and original gifts for a teen girl in your life?

I was at a complete loss when it came to Christmas for my teen girls.  I started searching online and asking friends for ideas.

In the end, I am thrilled about the options I found for the 13 and 15-year-old girls in this house.

Now I will pass on some of the great gifts for a teen girl that were given to me.

Make gift giving easy with this life of gift ideas for a teen girl. Continue Reading

Holidays, Homelife, Parenting

Confessions of an Imperfect Mom: Christmas Edition

Hey Mommas.

It’s easy to feel like a complete failure sometimes, isn’t it?

Hashtag “Momfail”, right?

I suspect it is even easier to feel like a failure during the holidays because the expectations of the season make the bar feel so high.

And scrolling through social media doesn’t help.  It usually pushes that hypothetical bar even higher. Everyone else appears to be doing life beautifully while you know the reality of your own situation.

Well, I am here to assure you that for every pretty picture of Christmas lights hanging in the kids’ bedrooms, there are realities that weren’t captured for the world to see.

So as this season of giving comes to a close, let my final gift to you be a few of my #momfail stories this December.

It isn't always picture perfect. I am an imperfect mother and I am learning to embrace who I am.

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Holidays, Homelife

Stocking Stuffers that are Worth the Money

Checking out at the store register, I am surrounded by stocking stuffers.  Lots of silly and goofy items trying to tempt me to fill up stockings for my children by purchasing them.

I am not tempted.  I can’t stand useless stocking stuffers.  Who needs a bunch of stuff that is just going to be taking up space in the landfill by New Years?  Not this momma.

And my guess is you don’t need items that you’ll want to throw away by New Years. Continue Reading

Holidays, Homelife, Uncategorized

Wrap up Your Year and Write New Year Goals

{{{THE UPDATED FORM for 2017-2018 can be found on this post.}}}

I love the feeling of a fresh start.

The sun comes up and a new day begins.  Yesterday is washed away and a clean slate awaits.

There are times that I deeply appreciate the feeling of a new school week. I am ready for five new school days to plan adventures and improve upon the week before.

When I tear a month from our wall calendar and see the fresh one before me, I feel a sense of accomplishment and anticipation.  What do I want this month to look like?  How do I want it to feel?

Finally, there exists the mother all fresh starts: New Years Day. One year comes to an end and the next 356 days are waiting to be lived!

Click for your free PDF to wrap up the year with your kids and look ahead with plans for a new one!

Reflecting on Last Year

The end of December is a time to reflect and re-evaluate the events of the previous twelve months. As I look ahead to the next twelve, it is a time of wonder, planning, and dreaming.  Everything feels like it gets a fresh start.

I love to take my children with me on their own journeys of reflecting and dreaming. To help them evaluate and plan, I print out a single page, “A Year in Review”, for them to complete.

Click for your free download for New Years: A Year in Review

It begins with a snapshot of who they are right now as they record a few of their favorite things.

Then we look back. We sit around the table together, sharing memories of the previous year. I love to hear what they remember.

Remember when the boys got stuck in the bathroom at the Grand Canyon?  Yeah. And after mom rescued them she told the next boy in line, “Try not to get stuck!”

I loved tubing at Zion.  And climbing Double Butt Cheek Arch.  (laughter erupts)  NOTE:  That would be Double Arch.

Did we go to Sliding Rock this year or last year?

These conversations about our previous year do my heart good. Sometimes I can be hard on myself, but as I listen to my kids’ laughter and discussion, they remind me of the many good memories that they will take with them.

Writing New Years Goals

Want to reflect on the current year? Find your News Years Goals sheet for 2017-2018 in this post.

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Click here for a free "Year in Review" PDF to use with your kids. Perfect for the new year!

You might also enjoy:

Click here for a seriously simple weekly Bullet Journal Layout.

Holidays, Homelife, Uncategorized

Begin a Jesse Tree Tradition

It is evening during the season of Advent.

Our family gathers in the family room and plugs in a small, lighted tree.  Hot drinks and yummy snacks serve to make this purposeful Advent tradition even more special.  Someone reads the designated scripture passage and we discuss its meaning.  After a brief discussion, an ornament is hung on our Jesse Tree as a reminder of the scripture passage we read that evening. Continue Reading