10.30.2013

Last Minute Halloween Fun!

 Hey guys!  I just wanted to quickly share two ideas that are SO simple, and so fun!  Whether you need a quick treat for a classroom party, or a festive last minute hair-do...you have come to the right place!

First up, our Eerie Eyeball Donuts!


It doesn't get any easier than this!  You just need a bag of powdered donuts and some candy eyeballs.  Use a dab of frosting to attach the eyes and you have a tasty, fun Halloween treat. 

Next up, we re-created this adorable spider hair-do that I saw over at Simple as That.


To get started I put half my little girls hair up in a bun.  Then I cut 4 white fuzzy sticks I recently received from the AWESOME people at Craftprojectideas!


Once I folded the fuzzy sticks and stuck them in the bun, I sprayed my little girls hair with our black hair spray.  The finishing touch was a black fuzzy pom with googly eyes for our spiders face.


The spider turned out adorable, and went with my little girls vampire costume and makeup perfectly.  It would also be so cute for any moms helping out at class parties or little girls that don't want a full costume.

There you have it, two quick ideas to add to your Halloween Fun!!

10.25.2013

Family Movie Night {The Wizard of Oz}

 Happy Friday my friends!  I hope you all had a lovely week.  Today I wanted to share something we've started in our family that you might like to try in yours...Family Movie Nights!

My kids are finally getting old enough that we can all sit down, and for the most part, enjoy a movie together.  We have been trying to introduce our kids to some movies that we loved when we were little, and the first one we started with was The Wizard of Oz.  Now you know me...the only way to make movie night better would be to have some yummy, themed treats :)


First up we had our Somewhere Over the Rainbow Fruit Salad. 

All I did was cut up strawberries, bananas, then add grapes, oranges and blueberries to make a tasty, colorful fruit salad!


Next up we had our Wicked Witch Chips and Dip.

Some homemade guacamole and tortilla chips were a simple, yummy snack the kids loved munching on.


Next up...Munchkin Carrots.

Yeah...they are just regular old baby carrots.  But everything is more fun to eat when it has a fun name, right?! ;)


Finally, my kids favorite treat...Yellow Brick Road Chocolates!

These are just Hershey Treasures, and man were they yummy!


The kids loved filling up their plates with some great snacks, snuggling up on their chairs, and enjoying one of my all-time favorite movies! 


If you are looking for even more fun activities to go with The Wizard of Oz, check out our Wicked Witch of the West Facials HERE


Or make your very own Witch Hat Headbands with a quick tutorial you can find HERE





10.23.2013

Bearing Each Other's Burdens {Alma Baptizes} Family Home Evening

 I cannot believe how long it has been since I have posted a family home evening!  

Slacker :)

I have a few to share, but I thought I would start with the one we did this last Monday.  It was very simple and provided a great visual for my kids to refer back to.

We continued our lessons from the Book of Mormon by learning all about Alma baptizing at the waters of Mormon.  We started off by looking at this printable I made with the lyrics from one of my favorite Primary songs.


We read from our Book of Mormon Stories all about Alma and the Nephites he baptized.  We talked about how when we are baptized we are clean, and we reminded the kids about the covenants we make at baptism.  I told them that for that night we were going to focus on the promise we make to bear one another's burdens and comfort those that stand in need of comfort.

To get started, we had to learn all about what BURDENS even are.  After I explained to my kids that burdens can be trials, sad moments in our lives, or hard things we deal with we talked about what it meant to BEAR one another's burdens.  My wonderful sister in law Cara shared a great idea she used to teach her kids about chores and sharing household responsibilities that I thought could be adapted perfectly to suit our needs.


To get started I grabbed a bunch of cans out of my pantry and then covered them with construction paper.  Then I wrote different burdens that we may already face, or may face someday.  Some that I did were:
Feeling lonely
Losing a loved one
Wondering if Heavenly Father really loves me
Feeling guilty about mistakes I make
Fighting with your mom and dad
Being teased at school
Feeling like I'm not good enough


Once I had all our cans ready I had the kids take turns.  Skylar started by holding an empty green bucket.  One by one we read what the cans said and placed each one in the bucket.  You could see her struggle a little more with each can we put in.  I talked about how sometimes in life this is how we feel...completely weighed down and overwhelmed with different burdens we face.  Finally when we had them all in I told her she needed to walk up and down the stairs.  The poor girl got upset and said there was NO way she could do that...she could hardly hold it standing totally still!

At this point we were able to show the kids...THIS is how important it is to bear one anothers burdens!  One by one the rest of us took turns taking a can at a time out of Skylar's basket.  As we took out each can we said a way we could ease that burden, maybe by praying, being a good friend, or serving.  By the time we had each taken 2 or 3 we all had helped ease her burdens and she was able to easily run up and down the stairs with just a few cans in her bucket.

I couldn't help but cry as I watched my kids rush to ease one anothers burdens.  I bore testimony of trials I have faced, and how others around me have served me and made those burdens seem bearable.  We have a sacred responsibility to keep our baptismal covenants...and there is no better way to do that than by bearing one another's burdens, especially those of our own family!

Thank you so much for stopping by today and reading.  It means so much that so many of you take the time to do that :)  Have a fantastic day!!

10.18.2013

Spooky JELL-O JIGGLERS!


If you are looking for a fun activity to do with your kids, or a simple treat for all those upcoming Halloween parties...look no further!  JELL-O has got you covered this year with lots of great ideas you can find at Jello.com.  We were inspired by their Halloween Cat Eyes JIGGLERS to create our very own Spooky JELL-O JIGGLERS!





These were incredibly easy and the kids LOVED making these all by themselves.

First up you get out some bowls, and 2 different JELL-O flavors.  Don't forget...to make JIGGLERS you need 2 6 oz packages :)  Then I had the kids mix 2 1/2 cups of boiling water and 2 packages of JELL-O for 3 minutes until it was all completely dissolved.
 

Then they sprayed down a muffin tin with non-stick spray and filled each cup about 2/3 full.


After about 3 hours our JIGGLERS were ready to go!  We simply popped them out of the muffin tin, and using candy eyeballs and candy corn we decorated our Spooky JELL-O JIGGLERS.  The kids got such a kick out of them, and of course they tasted delicious too :) 




I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


10.14.2013

Monster Mash Snack!


 Happy Monday everyone!

Before I share our fun treat we enjoyed today I just have to say...this is my 600th post on Blue Skies Ahead!  I have never been super consistent with this blog, or very been good at the business of blogging.  I stink at social media, and I realized if I spent too much time on growing my blog I would miss out on time spent with my kids, creating all these fun memories.  Even so, I am always amazed at how many people look at my little corner of the blog world, and grateful for the kind comments and emails I always receive.  This blog has always been a place for ME, a place to look back on all the great (and some NOT so great) times raising my young family...but it makes my day when someone tells me they used one of our family nights, or did a fun activity with their kids that they saw here :) 

 What I am really trying to say is...THANK YOU!!!  

Thank you for joining us as we look for the good in every day.  Thank you for taking moments out of your busy life to share with me.  Thanks for supporting Blue Skies Ahead, I'm excited to see what the next 600 posts bring!

Now, back to the REAL reason for this post ;)

Today is my kids last day before they go back to school after Fall Break.  The weather has been cold and rainy so I figured we would be spending a good portion of the day inside.  To cure the boredom, I thought it would be fun to have a Halloween Read-A-Thon...with a cute Monster Mash snack to go along with it!


Disclaimer!  I am a huge believer in healthy snacks for kids...this is NOT one of those! :)  Luckily, I put this in individual-sized bags so it didn't get too out of control :)  Here is what made up our Monster Mash snack:
Marshmallow Ghosts
Bugles Vampire Fangs
Sour Patch Kids Zombies
Candy Corn Jack-O-Lantern Teeth
Whoppers Werewolf Poop
(I know, the last one is gross...but my kids loved it!)


I mixed all that goodness up in our favorite Halloween bowl...


And then scooped it into these darling chevron treat bags from Pick Your Plum.  These are the perfect size for kids and work wonders for portion control! 


Once I passed out the snacks we were ready to start reading!  I had the kids gather all of our Halloween books and bring down their bean bag chairs.  They snuggled up and we snacked on our Monster Mash and read through our favorite books.


Some of our favorites are Room on the Broom, Ten Creepy Monsters and Spooky Wheels on the Bus.



I love this picture.  I call them my mini-me...and my mini-mini-me :)


As you can see, a good time was had by all! :)

Thanks again for stopping by today and reading our 600th post here at Blue Skies Ahead!

10.10.2013

Spooky Service and Pumpkin Parables for your family!

 Hello friends!  How are you all doing?!  We are enjoying our first day of Fall Break.  And by enjoying I MIGHT mean just barely surviving ;)  Honestly, the kids have been a little stir-crazy today, and I am hoping tomorrow the weather is nicer so we can get out of the house!  

Today I wanted to quickly share with you 3 things we have done at our home around Halloween to serve others and learn some important lessons.  I love holiday activities that are not only fun for the kids...but help make lasting memories and strengthen our family!

The first activity we have done is a great service project if you have any new neighbors in your area!  We called it "Welcome to the Neigh-BOO-hood!" and we took around these cute ghost treats with a packet full of great info for new neighbors.  Check out the link for details HERE.


The second activity is one of my favorites!  We did a great family night called "The Parable of the Pumpkins".  This fun story talks all about two pumpkins, Perry and Patty.  One is nice and kind, and always says sorry when he makes mistakes.  The other is rude, obnoxious and never apologizes!  The kids get to take a look inside each pumpkin and see what they look like on the inside...an in turn decide how THEY want to be on the inside too :)  My kids STILL talk about this one...a great Halloween activity for sure!  Check it out with the printable story HERE.


Finally, a really fun way to throw some service into your October!  Take your kids Trick-AND-Treating!  The trick is performing an act of service...and then you leave those you served with a treat as well!  We have done this with my Young Women's group, and with my kids to neighbors or to Senior Centers.  Check out the full post HERE.

to 

There you have it...a few ways to spend some real quality time with your family and serve others around you too!  Thanks so much for stopping by Blue Skies Ahead today!

10.02.2013

Halloween Subway Art Printable

 Today I'm taking a quick break from our Leaves Week to post a cute Halloween Subway Printable I threw together last night as we put up our spooky decor :)

I love the printables trend...it is so awesome to be able to make something that matches your decor perfectly!  Feel free to right click, save and print for yourselves if you like!


Here's how the finished product looks, we all love it!


Have a great day!

10.01.2013

Leaves and Letters Matching Game

 This week we are learning all about leaves!!  Today I wanted to share a SUPER simple way you can play with your preschooler while teaching them a little something too ;)

My 4 year old is still needing a lot of work on recognizing his letters so I thought a fun way to work on that together would be to make our very own
Leaves and Letters Matching Game!


This is absolutely as simple as it looks.  This morning at WalMart I picked up a package of foam leaves.  I grabbed a permanent marker and wrote upper case letters on the back of each one, making sure each had a match :)


Then you just lay them out on the floor and play away with your little one.  My guy loved this game, and by the end was much more familiar with the 6 letters we played with.


You could also have your kids match upper and lower case letters, pictures to starting letter, and so much more!  The great thing about this too is once you make them...you have them forever!

Thanks so much for stopping by today, come back later in the week for a yummy fall drink and some crafts your kiddos will love!