Handprint Dishtowels

Handprint Dishtowels | simplykierste.com

There is just something about handprints that I love.  They capture a moment in time that is so precious, and I treasure them as tangible pieces of their childhood.  What's even better is when you have a reason to look at those adorable handprints all of the time? I created the cutest Handprint Dishtowels that are perfect for proudly displaying in your kitchen, and they're also perfect for Mother's Day, which is right around the corner! SO cute! I made a set of six dishtowels--one for each of my kids.  I just keep staring at those cute little fingers, I love them so much. I can't wait to use them in my new kitchen! This is a very quick project, and you can change the colors and … [Read more...]

DIY Outdoor Tree Baby Swings

DIY Outdoor Baby Tree Swings | simplykierste.com

We made these swings nearly five years ago, and they ended up being one of our very favorite things in our yard! I decided it was time to re-share, and it's a perfect spring project for the yard.  I wish I could retake pictures with a lot of different angles, but we no longer live in this house...or state.  We can't wait to do it again in at our new house, once it's built! With six kids that all love to swing, there just isn't enough room on our play set to accommodate everyone--especially needing two baby swings.  So I came up with a plan! How about taking advantages of the trees in our yard to add more?  A few 4x4 posts and a little hardware was all we needed to make these adorable and … [Read more...]

Save, Spend & Share Jars for Kids

save spend share savings jar for kids | simplykierste.com

Something we feel really strongly about as parents is teaching our kids about money--how to save it, spend it, and share it. Raising financially stable kids starts is a process, and these simple Save, Spend & Share saving jars are a really great way to start! The value of teaching your kids about money is immeasurable, and will have life-long effects. It teaches them what money is worth--what things cost, and what it really takes to pay for things you need or want.  It also reduces the sense of entitlement, which in this day is a constant battle.  As they get older, it also prepares them for real life--to be able to leave the house and be financially responsible as a young … [Read more...]

Expecting twins? Check out this list of my twin must-haves!

Expecting twins? Check out this list ofTwin Must Haves! | simplykierste.com

I vividly remember the moment I saw two little babies on the ultrasound screen, and we found out that we were expecting twins. So many emotions ran through my head--everything from pure joy to absolute terror.  Not that they weren't wanted, but just that we had no idea what to do! We had waited such a long time for another baby, and so it was mostly on the joy side of things, but thinking about TWO babies at one time? There was so much to think about and plan for, and we started right away trying to figure out what we would need for these two beautiful baby girls that would soon join our family.  We learned so much over the next couple of years, through much trial and error, so when our … [Read more...]

What I wish I knew with baby # 1…truths, tips, and ideas

what I wish I knew with baby #1 | simplykierste.com

Looking back over the years since I've had my first baby, there have been countless lessons learned, wisdom gained, and knowledge acquired--and I'm still learning.  There have so many times I've muttered to myself "I wish I knew that the first time!", and with some things, wondered why in the world no one ever filled me in beforehand! So...I'm going to do that for you.  Six babies later, I'm sharing not only some of the truths I've learned, but also tips on some baby basics and advice for new moms, and maybe--hopefully-- you'll glean a little something that will help you on your motherhood journey. And while you're in the thick of it, you'll know that someone else has been there, and … [Read more...]

Washcloth boo-boo bunny

washcloth boo boo bunny | simplykierste.com

Last year my baby spent a lot of time in the hospital. Within seven months, she was admitted to ICU five times, and it was an incredibly difficult time.  We were blessed with really wonderful doctors, and exceptional nurses who took great care of her, and  when you're spending weeks in the hospital at one time, you get to know them pretty well.  Caroline was between 15-21 months during this time, and being old enough to walk but young enough to be confined in a crib was a challenge, and I was constantly looking for ways to entertain her.  She also had a lot of shots, IV's and treatments and watching your baby go through it is pretty terrible.  The nurses were definitely the bright … [Read more...]

Monogrammed backpack tags

Monogrammed Backpack Tags | simplykierste.com

My kids love having something on their backpacks that identify it as "theirs".  I created these super cute monogrammed backpack tags that are perfect for the new school year! I prefer using monograms instead of their full names for safety reasons, plus initials are really just adorable! My darling boys (yes, they're twins!) are heading off to kindergarten this fall (sniff, sniff), and they are SO excited about their backpacks and tags. On my girls' tags, I added a bit of ribbon. I think I could add even a few more pieces, for a fuller look, and it would be darling! These are SO easy to make...you need just a few items and you can make one for each of your kids! … [Read more...]

Cheap & easy DIY outdoor wooden blocks

Cheap & easy DIY outdoor wooden blocks | simplykierste.com

My husband and I are outside quite a bit building and working on different projects now that the weather is nice, and it's wonderful!   The kids will play outside in the yard while we're working, and one of the things they love to play with are all the wood scraps that we seem to have an endless supply of.  This past Saturday they were stacking the scraps, building towers, making roads, pretending all sorts of things, and even coloring them with their sidewalk chalk.  It kept them busy for a long time, and they were having a ball.  I decided to use all of our scrap wood and make them their own permanent set of outdoor wooden blocks to keep outside all the time, knowing they would be a huge … [Read more...]

How to make an easy & adorable quiet book

How to make an easy & adorable quiet book | simplykierste.com

Make an easy & adorable quiet book for your toddler or preschooler using plastic name badge holders and this darling free printable! I adore name badges, and I've used them for so many projects.  Not only are they inexpensive, but they're the perfect portable size.  I made my twin boys quiet books several years ago using them, and this week I decided it was time for my baby girl to have one too! Since we're working on our numbers and shapes, I created a darling set of  printables that I thought would be perfect for the quiet book.  Caroline absolutely loves it, and it tucks right in my diaper bag or purse to use in the car, at church, or while we're waiting … [Read more...]

7 things I learned from being stranded in the airport with kids

7 things I learned from being stranded in the airport | simplykierste.com

Early last Wednesday morning I left for the airport with my three girls after spending a glorious week with my parents.  I had no idea that it would be a long two and a half days before we would finally get home. We happened to arrive at the Chicago airport just as a major storm was making its entrance, and due to a deadly tornado that was crossing the state, many flights needed to be delayed and cancelled. With no luggage, no way to get home, and three little girls counting on me, it was an experience I won't soon forget. I've flown many times before, but I'd never even come close to being stranded. Somehow everything had always been very uneventful, so I had no idea what was in store … [Read more...]