10 Amazing Tools to Inspire Fantastic Table Manners!

Calling all parents with kiddos that care about good table manners! We spend so much time focusing on teaching our kids how to talk, to read, to write, to count and more. But do we know enough and spend quality time teaching our kids basic table manners? It all starts with moving them away from using fingers to introducing utensils. As a mom of three kids, I’ve seen it all and I’ve learned that the earlier you start working on the basics, the easier it will be! The first step is to expose them to flatware.  Start with a spoon and fork. Then you move on to the knife and how to use them together.  Using utensils can be compared to riding a bike. If your balance is off, it won’t work very well. Food is less likely to launch off the table or spill onto clothes if your kids know how to … [Read more...]

5 DIY Chore Charts for Kids

Every year I feel the need to re-assess the current chore assignments, or the chore charts, in our home. With five kids, if done correctly, our family could have a tidy home on a daily basis.  Of course, I keep all of our chores age appropriate. My twelve-year-old does things like cleaning the bathrooms and starting laundry, where as my seven-year-old works on his bedroom or sweeping off the back porch. I also don't want to overwhelm them. Each child has 1-2 chores per day. In the last couple of weeks, I've been on the lookout for a chore chart that would be both easy to follow AND fun for the kids. I've come across a few that I think are both practical and fun. I think you'll agree. /1/ Family Photo Magnetic Chore Chart - Create magnet tags with chores and place them on or near the … [Read more...]

Tips to Help a Child with Impulse Control

Are you trying to help your child with impulse control? Impulse control is the ability to stop and think before acting. It’s one of the executive functions children need in order to control their thoughts and actions in family, social, and school settings. It’s important for parents to remember that young children are not expected to consistently control their impulses or their thoughts and actions. They rely heavily on adults to help them control themselves. As kids mature, we expect them to internalize rules and to develop better and better self-control so that they are not at the mercy of their impulses. However, not all children develop at the same pace as their peers in this critical area. If you have a child who exhibits any of the behaviors below, she or he could benefit from … [Read more...]

16 DIY Valentine’s Day Cards for Kids

Do you remember the excitement you felt when you were a kid as you carried a goody bag into the classroom filled with homemade Valentine's Day cards for all of your school friends? You surely had butterflies as you passed each card out to your classmates...and maybe that little boy you had a crush on. Homemade Valentine's Day cards have come a long way. When we were kids we gave cut out construction paper cards or store bought cards with our favorite cartoon character of the decade {Garfield and New Kids on the Block were my faves!}. Today I've got sixteen DIY ideas that are super fun!!! From preschool age to big kid, there is sure to be one your child will love to make for his class. /1/ Fish Bowl Valentine's Card - You could fill this cute Valentine with Swedish Fish or Goldfish, … [Read more...]

How to Make Felt Coffee Cup Sleeves

If you're anything like me, you're indulging in a lot of hot beverages during these winter months. Instead of using disposable paper sleeves for your to-go cups, why not make a Felt Coffee Cup Sleeve to use again and again? It's a quick, easy, and useful craft that allows your creativity to run wild! I'll share the basics and then suggest some fun alternatives. DIY Materials: Felt (available in many colors for about 25 cents a sheet) Hot glue gun Scissors Pen or marker Disposable coffee cup DIY Instructions: 1. Remove the paper sleeve from your cup. Place onto the felt you want to use, and trace around it. 2. Cut out the felt sleeve. Then, if you want to use more than one layer or color of felt and want the first layer to show behind it, cut another sleeve slightly … [Read more...]

3 Upcycle Sewing Projects That Are Great For Beginners

When I got started sewing in my teens, my grandma encouraged me to work with old t-shirts and pillowcases. Let me tell you – I thought she was being silly, but it was so smart! I made a mess of so many projects back then and I’m very happy that I wasn’t using my babysitting money to buy fabric! For those of you who aren’t familiar with upcycling, it’s simply the process of reusing old things to make better new things. Upcycling is great, especially if you’re new to sewing. You’ll be able to make neat, useful things while spending little or no money on materials. The other great thing is that if you make mistakes, it’s no big deal since you didn’t have to invest in the materials.  Today, we’ve collected a few simple upcycle sewing ideas to get you started. You'll need a few old … [Read more...]