Laughter is the best medicine

When your happy little campers are not so happy, try this idea.  Take an empty bandage container and fill it with strips of jokes.  Have your little ones take a dose of "laughter" by pulling out a strip when they need cheering up. 

Transforming a dresser into a TV stand

Have you noticed how expensive TV stands are these days?  I wanted a nice stand, but did not want to spend a lot of money.  After researching creative alternatives for TV stands, I came upon the idea of turning a dresser into a stand.  With this mind, I found a dresser on Craigslist for $20.00, which was more appealing than spending $200 for a stand. 
Before Picture
After the drawer pulls were removed and the surface was sanded, I primed the dresser.
 The dresser was then painted and the drawer pulls were replaced.  I bought 4 pulls at Lowes for $16.00.  Below is the inexpensive finished product. 

20% off Sale


Who doesn't like a Sale?  Right now, everything in my TPT store is 20% off through Monday, December 8th. 

Kid Made Ornaments

Every year, my children make ornaments for the Christmas tree.  Our tree is decorated mostly with their homemade ornaments.  Below are a few of the ornaments they have made.
Felt Hand Ornament
Use a bowl larger than your child's hand to trace a circle on felt.  Trace your child's hand on a different color of felt.  Cut the hand out and glue it onto the circle using fabric glue.  Use a hole puncher to make a hole at the top of the circle.  Add string and your ready to hang.
Beaded Craft Stick Tree
First, paint 3 craft sticks green.  Once they have dried, glue them together to make a triangle.  Cut an unpainted craft stick in half, then glue it at the bottom to create a trunk.  After it has dried, tie 3 elastic strings on the side of the tree.  String beads, then tie the other end of the string to the other side of the triangle to secure the beads.  Tie string to the top for hanging.
Craft Stick Tree
Place two craft sticks in the formation of an upside down V.  Cut the ends off craft sticks to make straight edges.  Glue a craft stick at the bottom.  Cut a little off another craft stick to make it shorter, then glue it above the longer craft stick.  Continue this process until it looks like the tree below.  Let it dry.  Next hole punch various colors of paper.  Empty the hole puncher and glue the colored dots onto the tree.  After it has dried, glue yarn to the back of it to hang.

Saving Some Bread

A tip for saving some bread (literally and figuratively) bread at a bread store or dollar store, then freeze it.  Several months ago, I went to a local bread store to see if I could save money.  There was a sale on Nature's Own bread (the kind I typically buy), buy one and get one free. To top it off, if you spent more than $5.00, you could get an additional bread item for free.  I also bought bagels for $.95. I left the store with 11 loaves of bread and 1 bag of bagels for $10.19.  After attempting to go back and get the same deal, I was unsuccessful.  I learned that this can be a hit or miss deal.  Fortunately, I found out that our local Dollar Tree store gets bread deliveries once a week and it's always $1.00/loaf.  It just so happens that it also has Nature's Own.  Yay!  Once a month, I go to the store and get about 10 loaves of bread.  They also have hot dog and hamburger buns.  FYI:  2 loaves of bread will fit inside Hefty's Jumbo freezer bags, which I put into our deep freezer.  I'm curious...where are the best places in your area to get bread for a great price?

Make a Fire Pit in 3 Steps

Step 1:  Clear the grass and rocks from the area and rake the dirt to make it even.

Step 2:  Pour 2 to 3 inches of gravel on top of the dirt.  We used 6 bags.
Step 3:  Place stones on top of gravels.  We used 36 stones (3 levels of 12 stones).


Changing a Chair Cheaply

I wanted to add some color to our kitchen without spending a lot of money.  I decided to paint our chairs and re-cover the seat cushions.  This is the second time I have painted our chairs.  After getting 7 chairs and a table (which we did not use) on Craigslist for $80.00 a few years ago, I painted the wooden chairs black.  I liked the ladderback style of chairs and a similar design of chair went for $250/chair at a particular high end store so this seemed (and still does seem) like a great deal.  This time around, I spray painted them red.  The cushions have been covered in an outdoor fabric that was purchased for under $3.00 a yard.  I like the outdoor fabric because spills wipe off easily, which is always a good thing with young children.

First step, remove the cushion.  In my case, it involved unscrewing the cushion from the frame.  Second step, spray paint the chair.  Make sure you choose a paint that is made for your chair material (wood, metal, etc.).  If this is your first time painting the chair, choose a Primer + Paint type of paint.  After it has dried thoroughly, paint over it with a sealant.  I painted outside before our grass was cut so the red paint would not be as noticeable after we cut the grass :-)

Last step, cut the fabric larger than the chair cushion.  Cover and attach it using a staple gun.  Screw it back onto the chair frame and you are done.  I wish I had a before picture to show you, but oh well!

Pew-tiful Bench

We liked the idea of using a church pew in our Living Room for extra seating, but did not want to spend a lot of money.  After regularly searching Craigslist's free section, I found the pew below.  Because I used paint we already had, this project did not cost us any money.  Yay!

Before Picture

Sand & Prime
 After painting the bench red, we decided that it was too bright.  
To remedy this situation, we mixed red and dark gray.  Because the cushion could not be removed, we painted the fabric with the same dark gray paint.

Finished Product!


A Dot's A Lot!

Have you ever handed your child a bottle of glue only to realize that he has used way too much?  Teach your little guy or gal this simple slogan, "A dot's a lot!"  You will be surprised at how this little saying will encourage proper glue usage.

Class Rules

When teaching young children, it is best to keep your classroom rules simple and to the point.  Choose a few rules that can cover everything.  My rules are:

Be kind to yourself (Don't call yourself names or put yourself down.  Don't chew on your clothes.  Take care of school supplies, books, etc.)

Be kind to others (Don't call your friends names, tease them, etc.  No pushing, hitting, spitting, etc.  Help friends whenever possible.  Say positive things to your friends.)

Be kind to your school (Clean up your things.  Don't write on or abuse the furniture.)

Click here to get your free 8 1/2" X 11" poster of these classroom rules.


Paper Plate Art

Fun paper plate crafts!
Use paper plates, paint, markers, and google eyes to make these great crafts. 
Glue cotton balls to make a fluffy sheep.

Lessons now available

You can now purchase lessons directly from this website by clicking on the "Back-To-School Lessons" and "Fall Lessons" tabs above.  Happy shopping!

Button Patterns

Use buttons to make various patterns.

Below are 3 types of patterns.  The first pattern is made with colors (dark green, light green, dark green, light green).  The second one is a size pattern (small, big, small, big).  The third line is a shape pattern (heart, circle, heart, circle).  


Awesome Aprons for Mom and Dad

Looking for a gift for Mom and Dad this year?

Trace your little ones' hands onto felt and cut them out.  Use felt letters to spell out a special saying.  Glue the felt onto the apron using fabric glue.  You can give the apron as a gift by itself or bundle it with a bottle of BBQ sauce and grilling utensils. 

Is it a "B" or a "D"?

Do your little guys and gals have a hard time distinguishing between lowercase b's and d's?  Try this little trick...tell them, "If you can add a hump at the top to make it into an uppercase B, then it's a b. If not, it's a d."

Scarecrow Patterns

Free Scarecrow Pattern Cards to help your kiddos practice making various patterns. Click here to get your free set.

3 Free Graphs

Use these "Favorite Graphs" in a group setting or individually. To use individually, give the graphs to your students and have them ask others to name their favorite items. This can be done within a classroom setting or at home by asking family members and friends. After their responses have been recorded, determine which category received the most and the fewest votes and how many voted for each category. Click here to get your 3 free graphs.

Free Scarecrow Lesson Plans

Free is good!  For the first time ever, I am giving away one of my thematic units/bundle of lessons.  Click here to get this free unit.

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