Photo Dump -Summer Lovin'

Here's a load of photos from our recent camping trips and just hanging out as a family. The beauty here in Wisconsin is amazing when you stop, look, listen and take in all of it.

Our garden is coming along!

camping selfie
I meant to take some pictures of our meals but totally forgot! I will do that for sure soon. What have you all been up to this summer?


Alien Spaceships (Kid Craft)

My summer, so far, has been a whirlwind! We've been camping a lot and I also just had a huge yard sale that I had less than a week to put together. I usually have one every year and they are SO MUCH WORK! I'm glad we did though, because we made a good amount of $$ from it and in the process I decluttered my house which always feels really good.
I also watch 2 girls in our home part time during the week. We do a weekly theme and the other week our theme was "space and sky". We made these super adorable alien space crafts. Aren't they the cutest? They are fun too!
Alien Spaceships
You'll Need:
2 large paper plates
the bottom of a clear pop bottle
hot glue
small craft sticks
small circle aluminum foil
Put the plates together, serving sides facing each other, and with a knife make a matching slit in the center of each plate. The "alien" will later go in the slit. Give the kids the plates to decorate. Do-a-dots work nice for spaceship lights.

Staple together the plates, wrong-side up, all the way around.
Cut a circle from the aluminum foil to place around the center of the plates and glue it to the plate. Carefully hot glue the pop bottle bottom to the aluminum foil. It will melt the plastic a bit, but not bad. It dries fast! Draw a little face on your alien guy and insert him into the pop bottom from the bottom of the plates. The kids can use the bottom of the craft stick to hold onto the spaceship and fly it around. Fun!

Our snack was "moon" crackers and star fruit.

 Hope you all are having fantastic summers as well!


{Nature Magnets Craft}

I made these with Henry and friends the other day for Father's Day gifts, but I think they are really fun to make for any time of the year. The kids really liked doing this easy project. We started off with a "nature" hunt through some little forested areas around our house to find various flowers and leaves. They then each chose a favorite to use for the project. I used this oven-bake clay from Walmart:

The kids softened the clay by rolling it in their hands for a few minutes. Then we rolled it out for a bit with a rolling pin and used a small plastic knife to cut our desired shape. We laid the leaf/flower onto the smoothened dough and then used a rolling pin to softly roll over the leaf and impress the image onto the clay. Carefully remove the leaf.
Next I baked them for about 20 minutes in a glass dish and a 275 degree oven, and let them cool completely. The kids painted them with Tempera paints and then we used a cotton swab to softly rub other paint colors over the images to bring out the pattern. I then sealed it with a paint sealer and hot glued on magnets once dry. So simple!  We wrapped them in brown paper bags and made cards too.
 Fridge art!

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Week In Photos: Nature's Revelations

School's out. We've been hiding away camping and there, amongst pure and raw nature, I always find peace in my heart and the revelation that events in life do not have to be large and grande and fancy to be completely fullfilling. 
Hearing the loon's mysterious cry to it's partner across the lake...watching an eagle soar over the water looking for it's next meal....seeing my sons run and play with their arms stretched out in the sunshine... all of these things quiet down that voice in my head that says, "You need to do more in your life, accomplish more, have more, get more!" Go go go go go! That is our life and our focus, sadly, while all around us is this absolutely magnificent earth filled with liveliness and splendor than any of that other "stuff".  As I sit and watch I can feel the stress exiting my body and I literally change inside.
Being out in the elements amongst nature's finest is not for everyone, but it should be. I highly recommend it!

Rich found this nest in our yard after a windy storm. The inner layer is made out of our dog Sophie's hair. How cool is that? I just feel bad for the poor birds that worked hard to make the nest and lost it.
If you haven't tried PB2 (no, I'm not paid to talk about it!), do so! It's peanuts pressed into powder, therefore removing the fatty oils, therefore WAY less cals and yet awesome taste! I've been putting it in and on my oatmeal and it has me hooked. Delicious and good for the waistline ladies!
Don't forget to enter for the chance to win an LG Easy-Clean Double Oven of your own HERE!


{More} Printer Art ~~Spring and Summer

I was going through my basement and found a bunch of old frames. I have quite a bit of empty space on my walls so decided to try out some more printer art. What's printer art? Well, it's art that is free and easy and can be changed at any time because it's virtually just a piece of printer paper taped into a frame.
I am really cheap when it comes to art because I tend to get tired of looking at it after awhile and therefore want to change it. If I paid a lot of money for it I feel guilty doing that. So , I usually make my own or print it off.
I found a great site full of free printables called Vintage Printable  and printed off some pretty botanical images as well as a cool vintage flower pattern. I think it turned out very spring-like and pretty and now I have a completely free piece of artwork for my entry area!

There are several other really wonderful sites out there with free printable images. I browse them for hours sometimes. Just print, measure, cut, and tape!
Summer break starts Friday....I'm really excited! I always post more in the summer months due to more time. This summer I plan on doing a really fun weekly post on interviews with people who inspire me, fitness and healthy recipes, kids crafts, beauty and more. Hope you'll join me!



Photo Dumping Ground

I've decided that every Sunday I'm going to "dump" the iphone/Instagram pictures I took during the week here to share. I'm rejoicing in the beautiful weather today!
Spring Bloom!

My Loves!

Clean Banana, Cocoa, Peanut Butter Oatmeal drizzled with honey-ate this 3 times this week. Yum!

A good hair day before work

Sam's first prom...!


One more week until Memorial Day weekend.
Share your photo dump link in the comments if you have one!


{A Quick Rainy-Day Toddler Activity}

We just can't shake the sick bugs around here lately. We've all been sick and just when I think we're done, someone will get ill again. Rich and I have been taking turns staying home with Henry, who of course gets hit the hardest with the daycare germs.
Here's a fun activity we did the other day when Henry was holed up but feeling pretty good after a morning of napping. I hung a piece of line from one kitchen cabinet to another and gave him a basket of his socks and a bag of clothespins.
He spent over an hour playing with this! What a great activity for fine motor skills and hand eye coordination. He lined up all the socks and then counted them and even sang the ABCs with them. You could also have your child do a pattern or match all of the socks after doing the laundry. Very cheap and seriously the kids love doing this easy idea.
Do you like Henry's pajamas? He chose them himself. :)

Anyone else out there who can't seem to shake the sickness this season?