The Best Christian Easter Ideas on Pinterest

I wanted to compile all of the Easter Activities that I could find on Pinterest in one place.  This post contains all of the Easter activities that are focused on the Resurrection of Christ not on just bunnies, chicks and eggs. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against the bunny.  I will have separate post for him.

The Real Easter Bunny Printable

Super Easy Paper Craft for the Resurrection

Easy Cross Craft

I am going to make these for my mom to
give to her Awana girls on the
last club night before Easter.

Jesus is Risen
Free Printable Coloring Page

Ella's Birthday Banner- Pintastic!

My sweet Ella Grace is turning ONE next week!  
I decided to make a banner for her first birthday.  I searched on Pinterest for ideas and there wasn't anything that I felt was right.  I did find a template and decided to design my own.  I cut each layer of the banner by hand.

I used three patterned papers
and three different colors

This is the template that I used

This is a photo of the entire banner 

I am not sure how long it took me to complete it since I worked in little bursts. I worked on it when I had a spare minute here and there.  It also didn't help that I had it half finished when Lucas got hold of a pair of scissors.  He destroyed most of it.   So I had to start all over.  I was able to salvage some of it.  

I used repositionable adhesive to attach the "1st" to the banner.  I am hoping to reuse the banner each year. I want to take a picture of Ella with it and document how much she has grown with each 

My Pintastic Effort

The Original Pinterest Example
I decided to try my hand at one of the St Patrick's Day Ideas that I found on Pinterest. I think that my version turned out pretty well! 

So how did I do it?

I used the template that was suggested in the original Pinterest post.  If you decide to attempt this yourself, keep in mind that you will need to shrink the original template in half.  I printed the shamrock "as is" and it was way too large.  

You need to find an old book to use as a background for the banner.  I had a bunch of books that I have been meaning to give away.  I used the largest one I could find.  In order for the shamrock to fit on the printed part of each page, I needed to shrink the original shamrock.  

I used the shamrock as a template and traced it onto scrap green paper that I already had in my collection.   I recently gave away a giant jar of buttons so I realized that I did not have white buttons to use.  I remembered that I had an old shirt upstairs.  When we have shirts that are stained or beyond repair, I give them to my husband or my dad to use as rags.  I  grabbed a white shirt and cut the buttons off before I tossed it back in the give away bag.  From now on I will keep the buttons before I "toss" the shirt.

The example on Pinterest featured twine and I did not have any that matched exactly so I searched my fiber collection and decided that white would be a good substitute.

Since I didn't have a green barn door to hang it on, I settled for the banister in the front entryway.

I think that my version turned out pretty well! 
My attempt plus a little intruder

30 Days to Organization- Day 9

Day 9 of  The 30 Days to Organization Challenge is supposed to be organizing my car.  I keep putting it off so I have decided to skip it and move on to the rest of the challenge tomorrow.  It is just too cold and wet out to be bothered with organizing and vacuuming my minivan. I know, excuses, excuses!

Messy Front Seat

Even Messier Back Seat

Maybe when the spring comes I will be more motivated!  The car really needs to be cleaned out,  dusted and vacuumed.  I will post pictures when I actually get around to it.  Now on to day 10!

Check out the original blog post where I have linked up the first 8 days of the challenge.

Thriving on a Tight Budget- Holiday Decor

I love to decorate my house throughout the year.  Since my kids are a whopping 1/8 Irish, I feel obligated to decorate the house for St Patricks Day.  Decorating can be expensive.  I love the look of the picture above but I can't justify spending money on something that is only out for a few weeks out of the year.

How do you decorate for a holiday when you want to spend little or no money?

1. Use Your Child's Artwork

Sydney made this in Preschool

There are two benefits to using your child's artwork as decor.  First, it is a completely FREE way to decorate.  Second, it is so fun to look at the artwork through the years.  Sydney loves it when I pull out her old work.  She laughs at how she used to color.  She gets excited when she see that she is a much better writer now that she was just a year ago.

She wrote this last year in first grade

When the kids make something at school, it usually comes home after the holiday is already over.  The teacher takes the artwork  off of the bulletin board and sends it home with the kids.  It is too late to hang it up for this year.  Save all of your decor in one place so that you remember to hang it up next year.   I keep all of Sydney's in those useless drawers in my china cabinet.

2. Free Printables

You need to make Pinterest your best friend.  There are so many cute and FREE printables.  It will only cost you the ink and paper that it takes to print them.  If you decide to frame the printable for a more classy look, I suggest looking for inexpensive frames at garage sales, thrift shops or use a coupon for a craft store.

3. Make It Yourself

This is my last resort since it takes the most time and effort.  Some projects are inexpensive but watch your budgets because sometimes making it costs more than buying it.  I can't say it enough, start your love affair with pinterest!

Good Luck Decorating on a budget!  Click on the pictures for the links.  Don't forget to share your great decorating ideas on Pinterest!  

Sisters, Sisters

How many of you have watched the movie "White Christmas?"  If you haven't seen it, you need to!  It is an old classic that was extremely well done.  One of my favorite parts is the song "Sisters" sung by Rosemary Clooney and Vera Ellen.  Yes, Rosemary Clooney is related to George Clooney, she is his aunt.

I am just 22 months older than my sister Becky.  Growing up we were two grades apart in school. About 6 years ago she and her family moved to South Carolina.  It was really hard not seeing her and the kids as  much as I used to.  I have come to accept that this is where God wants her to be. I still miss her but I am glad that she is following God's will.  I love having a sister and I hope that when Sydney and Ella grow up they will love that they have each other.

I am on the left and Becky on the right- 1980

Becky on the left and I am on the right
Seaside Boardwalk- 1979

My Sister Becky with the kids and me

Sydney meeting her new sister

Sydney and Ella at 11 months

Even though there are 6 years between them,
Sydney still loves playing with her baby sister.

The Terrible Twos

There is no denying it- my son Lucas is cute.  

Those dimples are irresistible! 
 Don't let them fool you!  Lucas is a handful!  

Here are a few examples that I caught on camera.

Standing on the kitchen table
 at 18 months old.

One his many injuries- 
He is so active!

He loves to get dirty.

His smile as he is told that
he can leave time out

Don't let the sweet smile fool you-
That is paper in his mouth!

Lately, we are struggling with his discipline.  He tries to push the limits as far as he can.  We went through the terrible twos with my daughter Sydney. She is also strong willed but it is so much different with Lucas.  

Does anyone have any suggestions that work with a 2 year old that you would like to share?  

Book Review: Miracle for Jen

Title: Miracle for Jen
Subtitle: a tragic accident, a mother's desperate prayer and heaven's extraordinary answer
Author: Linda Barrick
Foreword By: Joni Eareckson Tada
Genre: Memoir, Inspirational

Have you ever asked, "Why Me?" If you have, then you should read this book!  Miracle for Jen is a truly inspirational story!  It is written by the title character's mom, Linda.  It is the story of Jen's recovery after a traumatic brain injury that she received after their family's minivan was was totaled by a drunk driver in 2006.  Jen's mom, dad and brother were all injured in the accident but Jen's injury was by far the worst.

I am usually not a fan of memoirs.  I find that the author are often straining to find material to fill an entire book.  This was not the case in Miracle for Jen.  Her story is amazing and could fill the pages of three books!  I could not put the book down!  

Before the accident, Jen had a strong faith in God.  She couldn't wait to serve Him in any way that she was lead.  After the accident, it is her faith, family and friends that help her to have a successful recovery.  

The newest edition of the book includes an update that was written in 2012.  Jen is doing great and is using her story to minister around the world.  It is perfect that Joni Eareckson Tada has written the Foreword to the book.  Jen will be an inspiration to this generation of teens just like Joni was to my generation.

I would recommend this book to anyone that needs encouragement.  I think especially that all teen girls should read this memoir before they finish high school.  It will inspire them to seek out a closer relationship with God.

"If you have limited faith, God will do limited things in your life."- Jen Barrick (11 months after her traumatic brain injury)

You can read more about Jen Barrick on the family's website

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for free from the Tyndale Blog Network in exchange for an honest review.

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