BIG Changes!

This summer is full of changes for me and my family.  We sold our house, moved to another state, and are about to embark on building our dream home.  We successfully got 100% out of debt and now we move on to phase 2 - build our own home and live off the land. My hubby quit is job to make building our home his full time occupation.

This new adventure started as soon as we said goodbye to our old home.  We sold most of our furniture, put the rest in storage, bought a camper trailer, and now live in it as we build.  I'd say we are at the agonizing stage of it all (thought I really don't know because I've never done this before).  The kids and I are homesick and are trying our best to adjust to living in a cramped camper trailer.  We have our property we want to build on, we have our house plans in hand, but now we have a list we must check off before we can actually start building. So it's the waiting that is the most agonizing.

Still this is very exciting! We are having fun with our new surroundings. So when things pick back up I will be back to share.  Until then,  TTFN -- Ta Ta For Now! 

Summer Daily Checklist FREEBIE

Ok, I'm guilty.  I let my children have WAY too much screen time.  The winters are pretty brutal where I live and the kiddos tend to stay in front of video games, or the TV more than I would like.  I take away the video games during the summer, trying to encourage them to play outside more, but they find a way to still play games using the computer, phone or just sit and watch TV.  I get a little un-nerved about this.  But, I admit, I get lazy myself after a while.  I get tired of telling my kiddos to shut off the screen and go play.  The longer summer goes by the longer they stay in front of screens.

But this summer I don't want to fall into that rut.  I created a summer daily checklist to make sure my kiddos do some important reading and playing before they become Zombies in front of a computer screen.  I made a checklist for my son and my daughter.  The checklists includes things like, reading for so many minutes per day, playing outside, treating others with kindness, doing something creative, and getting their chores done.  When all of these are checked off they are allowed to have LIMITED screen time.  I stressed that the time in front of the screen would be limited.  So they can't stay on there a majority of the day.

Since I was taking the time to make these checklists I thought I would share them with you FREE.  In the download I include the checklists I made for my kiddos and blank ones you can personalize.  

I have included two ways you can check off the items on the download.  I have included little circles that have check marks or say "done" on them.  Laminate and attach to magnets.  If you display your checklist on the fridge, the magnets would be a fun way to check off each completed task.  The child would just place a check mark or "done" magnet on the circle they have completed.

Another way to use the checklist is to laminate it and make an X or check on each circle task with a dry erase marker.  My kiddos are fond of this.  I just wipe it clean for the next day.

You can download the Summer Daily Checklist printable in my NEW Teachers Pay Teachers store -->  HERE.

I'd love to here your feedback on this as well.  So if you download it please leave a review.  I hope to add more to my store and would like to hear what customer want.

Thanks for stopping by!

Recycle Themed Art Basket

And along came April...

 We celebrated Earth Day this month so I thought it was fitting to create a recycle themed art basket.  The art baskets are still pretty popular in my home, so I am keeping them going.  This month's was probably the easiest to put together.  I just grabbed some random items around the house.  

Here are the items in this month's art basket:
  • Toilet paper rolls
  • cupcake wrappers
  • macrame twine
  • pieces of cardboard
  • printed paper scraps
  • pipe cleaners
  • silk flowers
  • colored cardstock
  • scrapbooking stickers
  • hole punches
  • flower paper punches
  • scissors and glue stick
  • stencils
Below is a pic of the stencils I added to the basket.  They are pretty simple.  I just wanted to see what my daughter would do with them. So far she hasn't touched them.  She seems more interested in the toilet paper rolls.

My daughter has been very creative with this basket. Check out my FACEBOOK page to see what she has created with this basket.

For now, here is a pic you can pin with.

See last month's art basket --> HERE

To learn more about how we use the art baskets and what the heck they are go -->  HERE

Thanks for stopping by!

Rainbow Themed Art Basket

March almost got by me...  Almost!!  I had to share our next art basket with you.  The first one we tried (the Valentine themed one) in February was quite the hit.  So I was ecstatic about creating a new one for my little one.

She has been playing with this one for a couple weeks now.  This week we had a cousin come over and the first thing they did was dig into the art basket.  They spent hours making abstract pictures and rainbows.  I was perma-smiling all day.

This month's kit was a comprised of lots of texture and color, keeping the rainbow in mind.  Here is a list of what's in the basket:

  • Construction paper (blue, green, yellow, orange, red, pink and black.  Not sure where the purple is.  Did I forget it?  Hmm....  Well, I did add black because I was keeping St. Patty's Day in mind. So black could be used for the pot of gold.  But it's entirely up to my little artist.)
  • Gold glitter sticker paper
  • Vellum
  • Strips of colorful tissue paper
  • Cotton Balls
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Cookie cutter (to use as stencils.  I thought this was genius, but my little one has yet to even touch them.  So, either not so genius or I need to take the time to teach her how to use them as stencils.  I see a family art project in our future.)
  • Ribbon of different textures and colors
  • Sequins ribbon
  • Circle and heart punches
  • Watercolor cake paint
  • Water brush

I also supply markers, colored pencils, regular pencils, glue stick, and scissors on the side.  Sometimes this gets switched up depending on the artwork.  I noticed my daughter grabbing the crayons off our shelf a lot this time.  So perhaps I will include more coloring choices next time.

Below is a pic of the watercolor paints and water brush.  If you haven't seen these nifty little tools let me just say how AWESOME they are.  I use them all the time in my artwork.  I decided to experiment a bit, so I took one of my old ones to see how my daughter handles it.  It's tons easier than having a cup of water on hand, and tons less messy.  Simply fill the bottom part of the brush with water.  The bristles wet themselves with a gentle squeeze of the bottle part.  Wet the paint cakes and paint.  Keep a paper towel on hand to clean the brush between colors.  Sometimes my daughter would forget that step, but that was OK. Not much paint mixed.

If you want to know more about what the heck an art basket is and what I am talking about, see my first post about our Valentine themed art basket.  And if that doesn't answer your questions, just leave a comment below and I will answer it.  

One more thing just to keep in mind...  I certainly don't limit my daughter to just the art basket each month. We do lots of other art activities both structured and unstructured.  I don't believe art should be limited.  The art basket is a rotating blend of artistic tools for my daughter to play with on her own time.  It is set out for a few weeks (or until she is tired of what's in the basket) and changed up with new materials, textures, and tools.  I noticed as I prepared this basket that she was super excited.  She kept asking me when she could play with it while I was taking all those way-to-many-pics.  So, that makes me smile.  :)

Want to pin it for later?  Here's a pic for you.

Thanks for stopping by!!