10 DIY Christmas Ornaments You Can Make with Your Kids

Do you smell that? Mmmm...that's the smell of fresh baked sugar cookies and gingerbread men coming out of the oven. Do you see that? Wow! I can see twinkling lights and stockings hung by the fire. I'm daydreaming, of course, but it's Christmastime!! It's time to pull out the totes of Christmas decorations. It's time to dig through our favorite cookbooks and find those yummy recipes we make year after year. It's time to make memories with our kids and make some new Christmas ornaments for the tree.Today I've got ten DIY ornaments you can make with your kids. They're easy enough for all ages. So, pick your favorites, make a list, head out to the craft store and pick up the supplies needed to have an afternoon of ornament making. {You may already have the supplies in your craft closet if … [Read more...]

Family Activity: The Twelve Days of Christmas

I know what you're thinking, "Sarah, it's barely November and you're talkin' to us about Christmas already? Put your holiday spirit on hold until after Thanksgiving, please." Bear with me, though - because I've got a pretty awesome Christmas activity that requires a bit of pre-planning. You'll be grateful I gave you a head start here, I promise.If you read my post in the Relationships section, you'll know every year in the days leading up to Christmas my husband gifts me with The Twelve Days of Christmas. This means that each day he gives me a gift - nothing too pricey! - in the countdown towards Christmas.This year, I'm going to gift someone with the Twelve Days of Christmas. And my kids are going to help.Things you need to know:If you would like the last day to fall on … [Read more...]

Dear Parents, It’s Not Our Fault!

My kids tell me all the time when I embarrass them. I’ve got news for them – while I love them with everything I’ve got, they’ve also found ways to embarrass me, too!With reflection, it’s not my fault, and I don’t blame my kids either. The times we live in now are much different than when the parents of today were kids themselves. Digital technology has taken over nearly every facet of our lives, for us and our kids. Lost in the shuffle is the development of social skills and manners. Yet, these capabilities are still just as important as ever (ask any college recruiter, employer or someone new to your neighborhood)!Maybe that’s what drove me to write The SMART Playbook. It took years of researching and drafting, but I did it. I’m not an expert, I’m just a Mom – that is a Mom with … [Read more...]

The SMART Back to Basics Summer Project. Bring it ON!

I’ve spoken to hundreds of moms and everyone seems to have the same complaint. How do we get our kids off electronics and back to basics? How do we teach them to connect with people on a deeper level? How do we teach them to search for a solution using their minds and not just with a push of a button?Sometimes I just want to shout, “Stop looking down and take the time to look up, connect and enjoy the moment.” I am determined to teach them the amazing benefits of life unplugged!And voila, that inspired me to set up my summer of getting back to basics plan begins! It’s time to look up, connect and experience real feelings, real emotions, real people, real nature – everything REAL and NOTHING electronic.I’m calling it 'My SMART Back to Basics Summer Project'. The goal is to … [Read more...]

Rise and Shine with Wholesome Choices!

This post was Sponsored by ShopRite but the opinions are all my own. Looking for healthy food choices?I always tell my kids that breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day. With our busy lives, it’s tempting to skip breakfast. STOP! Don’t do it. Instead, find ways to fill your pantry and refrigerator with wholesome choices that make breakfast easy and nutritious!ShopRite is the perfect store to help you fill that pantry with oh so yummy healthy choices. First off, did you know that ShopRite has launched a private label called Wholesome Pantry? It’s fantastic! It has a mix of organic and non-organic frozen, private, dairy and snack products. Everything has no artificial additives flavors or preservatives. The organic foods are USDA certified organic … [Read more...]

5 Reasons to Color and Create with Your Kids!

Ah, the power of the great box of crayons and the ordinary act of coloring! Is there anything better than watching your children doodle and create. Coloring is not just a way to occupy the kiddos but also a great way to teach valuable lessons and so much more. Here’s what I have come up with as my top benefits to coloring:Unleash CreativityWhether it is a blank piece of paper or a coloring page, it’s a chance to get the creative juices flowing! An opportunity to see what you can make with your kids or to challenge them to create on their own. There're no rules. No limits. Only a piece of paper as a starting point and then you choose your direction. Your kids will eventually even learn that they can map out a plan as they decide colors and the order.Teach Valuable … [Read more...]