Sunday Scoops: Encouraging, Motivating & Rewarding a Child’s Good Behavior

Sunday Scoops |

We go to church for three hours each Sunday, and the first hour is spent together as families.  When you're little (and even when you're big) it's hard to still still for that long, and being quiet at the same time.  I bring plenty for them to do, but the wiggles can set in, and helping them sit still can be a challenge. With six kids sitting next to each other, they also *might* be known to take their wiggles out on the person next to them.  To help motivate, encourage, and reward their good behavior, we use SUNDAY SCOOPS! I've learned that kids really respond to visual cues, and this does that--it shows them what they've earned, what they've lost, and they can more easily connect it to the … [Read more...]

Footprint Stool

footprint stool |

I made this footprint stool four years ago, not too long into my blogging career.  To this day, it has remained one of my most popular posts, and I have to say, it's one of my favorites too.  I decided to update the post for a couple of reasons, but it was definitely time for better pictures.  ☺ It's amazing what you learn in four years!  I also wanted to share it with my newer readers, especially with Mother's Day coming up. I absolutely love this stool, and now that I've had another baby, I'm trying to figure out how to fit another footprint on there! I had a wooden stool that had been a staple in our house for years, but it was needing a little face lift. I thought of all the little … [Read more...]

Washi Tape Chore Chart

washi tape chore chart |

Families are a work in progress, aren't they?  It's all about trying to find what works--sometimes you hit it right on the head the first time, other times it takes a little bit of experimentation before it clicks.  When it comes to chore charts, I've been in that experiment stage for a little while, trying to find that one that "clicks".  What I've discovered is that we need EASY.  As in super easy. We also need it to be small, not take up too much space, have too many components, and not take very long to check things off.  When my kids get older, that may change, who knows, maybe we won't even need chore charts anymore, but for now...this is what's working. First of all, this took less … [Read more...]

{how to buy brand name clothes for kids on a walmart budget}

brand name clothes on a walmart budget |

As the mom of six kids, buying clothes can be EXPENSIVE!  I love finding and buying not only cute, but high-quality clothes that last, but I'm on a I'm sure you can all relate. Over the years I've figured out how to buy my favorite brand name clothes without breaking the bank.  It does take some work and planning, but it's totally possible.  I'm excited to share my strategies list, and hopefully it will help you save some money too! And before we continue--I have absolutely nothing against buying clothes from Walmart, nor am I saying that you shouldn't. I'm only using it for the purpose of comparing cost, since they are known for their low prices. Everyone has a different budget, … [Read more...]

15 Favorite Chapter Books & Series For Boys {ages 8-12}

favorite chapter books & series for boys |

 I posted my 20 of my favorite girls' chapter books a few weeks ago, and now I'm excited to share my favorite chapter books and series for boys!  It's most definitely not just for boys (nor is my girls list just for girls), but these are books that generally appeal to boys. This age range is vital for boys and reading--it can really set the tone for how they feel about books going forward. I think the key is to find a series or genre that they can get into, and often it will take a few tries until you find one that clicks. Whether they like adventure, action, mystery, or fantasy--it's on this list!! I decided a long time ago that I would read the books that my kids were reading, so not … [Read more...]

{20 favorite chapter books for girls: ages 8-12}

favorite chapter books for girls |

Oh, how I love to read, and have since I was a small child.  I was lucky to be surrounded by a lot of good books, and a mom that was willing to take me to the library.  A lot.  I've always been a fast reader, so those 10 books that I was allowed to check out on my junior library card only lasted a couple of  days during the summer.  I just couldn't get enough! The tooth fairy even brought books to our house instead of money--and I LOVED it. By the time I was nine or ten I had read dozens of the classics, and some of my favorite books were Little Women, David Copperfield, Jane Eyre, and Oliver Twist. That love of getting lost in a book has remained with me to this day, and I wish I could … [Read more...]

{barn door baby gate}

barn door baby gate |

Baby Caroline started crawling (sniff, sniff) a couple of months ago--much earlier than I expected her to.  It's so funny--with my first baby, I couldn't wait for him to crawl and walk, but by now I realize that mobility comes at a price.  :)  We have stairs in our house, right in the kitchen area, and where we spend the majority of our time.  At the bottom of the stairs is tile, and if she fell, it would really not be good.  I want her to learn how to do stairs--I think it's important-but only if I'm right behind her to catch her. was time for a baby gate, and what could be cuter than one made from a barn door? Yes! I love love love it! You'll see the black ties around the … [Read more...]

{5 tips to create a nursery + $100 gift card the home depot GIVEAWAY!!}

1 crap i've made nursery

 Disclosure: This post is sponsored by The Home Depot. All opinions are 100% mine. ----- One thing that I've looked forward to almost the very most when having a baby is putting together the nursery.  I love the thought of creating a space that's bright, full of natural light, but soft, cozy, and beautiful.  Each of our nurseries have been very different, as we've moved through parts of our life.  The first nursery was created on a very tight budget--we were students, with not much money, but so excited for our first baby.  The next two nurseries were for two babies, and it required a whole different plan.  This last nursery was created in a very small space out of necessity, and although … [Read more...]

{striped growth chart}

striped growth chart |

This post brought to you by FrogTape brand painter’s tape. All opinions are 100% mine. ----- I have been wanting to make a growth chart FOREVER. School is now in session, and fall is most definitely painting season, so I went for it! I love stripes, and I thought it would be a really fun way to divide the board into sections. I used our playroom colors, and I LOVE LOVE how it turned out! The truth is, stripes can sometimes be a little tricky. There is nothing worse than paint leaking out under your painters tape and creating an uneven line! It's happened to me when painting walls and other projects, and it makes me crazy. That's why we LOVE FrogTape painter’s tape at our house. … [Read more...]

{do you have a family blog? tips to safeguard your family’s online photo safety}

online photo safety |

I started writing a family blog many years ago, mostly to update my family and friends that lived far away with daily anecdotes and pictures of our family.  It soon took the place of my scrapbook, and I loved being able to write in so much detail, and include all of our favorite photos.  I started publishing them each year, and they are our treasures...our family history. I use blogger, and I've always had it set to be "public", meaning anyone with the link could access and view it.  I never really figured that anyone besides my own family and friends would have any interest in it, and if it wasn't public, the feed wouldn't be available to be viewed in Google Reader, or any other reader … [Read more...]