January's Service Project: Mini-craft Bags for Children's Hospital {Serving with young children}

Today we wanted to share with you a really fun service project that we put together last night!  It is always kind of hard to find something that our whole family can participate in, and also something that the kids can really get passionate about...this service project was fun, simple and the kids loved every minute of it.
A while back one of our sweet nephews had an accident and ended up at Primary Children's Hospital.  It was pretty scary for a while, and we were just in awe of the amazing people that took care of him.  When we went to visit we were able to go to this amazing craft/playroom they have for patients and visitors.  Aside from all the really cool, fun toys they had an amazing arts and crafts area.  My kids are STILL talking about the silly putty they made there :)  I was really touched and asked the volunteer there if they accepted donations.  She told me the majority of what they are able to provide comes from donations, and I have been thinking about that ever since! 
I finally decided to get my bum in gear, so for our Family Home Evening last night we put together these simple, mini-craft bags to donate to the children's hospital.
The fun thing about this service project was the kids got to make all the crafts and then assemble all the different pieces in bags.  After that I made instructions that we printed out and stapled to each bag.  We made about 10 bags of each of the 3 crafts, and we were able to stay under $15, also using supplies we had on hand, for the entire project!
These are most of the supplies we used to make our 3 fun crafts!

For our Beaded Hearts we just used red and white pipe cleaners with white, red, and clear pony beads.  Print out the above instruction sheet and you are good to go!
 Our heart chain craft was really simple as well, all you need for this one is strips of red, white, and pink construction paper and a stapler :)

Finally, my kids favorite, were the Love Bugs we made :)  I find the inspiration for these HERE, and I think they are just adorable!  For these you need clothespins, poms in pink and red, googly eyes, and pipe cleaners. 
Now we have our craft bags ready to go and we will be delivering them to Primary Children's tomorrow night!  If you are interested in doing something for Primary's too feel free to check out the information HERE...there are some great ideas and things that CANNOT be donated as well.
Thank you so much for stopping by today...and please share!  What are some of your favorite service ideas for families with young kids??


Johnson Family Theme 2015!

Hello, hello!  I am so happy to finally be getting another blog post up :)  It seems like no matter how good my intentions are, I just cannot seem to find the time to sit down for a few minutes and compose a few scattered thoughts into a blog post.  However, as soon as I do, I remember how much I enjoy this little place of mine to share a few rambling thoughts and pieces of our lives. 

Today I wanted to share with you what we have chosen to be our Johnson Family Theme of 2015!  (Doesn't that have a nice ring to it?;)

Deciding on a theme turned out to be a really cool experience for my husband and I.  I mentioned that I wanted to pick a theme, and asked him to think and pray about what he thought our family needed this year.  I told him I would do the same, and we went on our separate ways for the day.  That night, before bed, I asked him if he had any ideas that he felt strongly about.  He said that one thing kept coming back to him, that we needed to teach our kids more about SERVICE, and the hymn Because I Have Been Given Much.  The interesting thing was, I had been having similar thoughts, about service but also about different types of giving as well.  I kept having a scripture come to me, where King Lamoni's Father is praying to Heavenly Father in the Book of Mormon and he says "I would give away my sins to know Thee".  From our two thoughts and the guidance of the Spirit we came up with our theme:

I just LOVE this theme!  In the short week that we have shared this with our kids we have already seen some great things and small blessing every single day.
We introduced our theme on Monday night for Family Home Evening, and did a fun activity to go along with it. 
I decided we needed simple ways to help the kids serve in little ways every, single day.  To help them get in that habit, we created a Simple Service Jar! 
All we did was tape this printable around a mason jar and fill it will slips of paper.  On every slip we wrote small, simple acts of service we can do for one another.  They were anything from giving 3 compliments that day to helping mom with the baby while she makes dinner.  Shoveling a neighbors driveway to writing letters to missionaries from our family and ward.  The whole point of this jar to help the kids see that serving can become a way of life, that a little bit of effort on our part can greatly bless the lives of others. 

I am happy to say we have already pulled 4 or 5 papers out of our service jar when the kids are bored or grumpy, and it really is amazing how doing something kind for someone else can change the attitude and spirit in our home! 
Going along with our theme of Giving this year we will be doing monthly service projects and as many other things as I can possibly think of.  Hopefully I will be on top of it enough to share some of those things here ;)  Thank you so much for stopping by and please share: do you do a family theme in your home?  If so...what is your family theme for 2015?!


Primary Balloon Birthday Gifts

Happy Monday everyone!  I am still lucky enough to get to serve in our wards Primary as chorister, and we did something new for birthdays I thought I would share today!  These turned out so cute, and when we did them for the first time yesterday the kids seemed to really love them.

I actually saw this cute idea HERE, but I made my own balloon printables to include lyrics from our favorite Primary birthday song.  Once I had my balloons printed and cut out I just taped them to the top of a silly straw and they were ready to go!

I just went to my local dollar store and was able to get a six pack of silly straws for $1, not too shabby!  In our ward we also have the kids show their balloon to the bishop after church and he gives them a treat as well. 
Feel free to right-click, copy and print away with these balloons and make some Primary Balloon Birthday Gifts of your own! :)