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Sunday, March 5, 2017

Elf on the Shelf


I publicly wrote here that I probably wouldn't be doing elf on the shelf.

EVER...

even though I really wanted to...

But wasn't going to for many reasons (we don't do Santa or elves watching anyone/behaviour monitoring, the time, the mess, the DAILY TIME!) even though I thought it was cute.

Well happy to report that since I found a mega cheap elf (not a proper elf on shelf brand) I thought this year I will give it a go. Since my kids are much older than the target group I thought I would get my older girls to do it for my younger (hmmm that lasted a couple days) as a special seasonal treat to get them all in the spirit and to get the olders giving a bit of sweet service to their little sisters.

I may have been cursing myself when on the VERY FIRST DAY... YES THE 1st DEC!
when we were out very late at a school function, coming home at 10pm and I think oh my goodness I have to do the elf!! And the first day needs to be good, my kids have no idea about the elf....the darn elf.. I was definitely regretting it already. ON THE FIRST DAY!

Then when the kids came out the next morning they shrugged, walked by and said

Mum... thats really creepy... He's ugly.

I think I may have almost wept.

HAHAHAHAHAH.


But I kept on and after a few days they loved it. They wanted to help place him - they did a few times but I did do most of it. They were interested in where will he be tomorrow... and by the end of December they said 'but we don't want Pepermint to leave!!!!!!!' and even had a few sads as they saw me put him away with all the Christmas decorations that get shoved in the roof for storage.

Since my kids are older now I think it provided a fun little daily seasonal outlet that gave them a bit of joy in the season. I am a little worried that it could become traditional then you would be stuck doing it forever (it is a bit of a job in an already busy time) but for this year I was glad we gave it a try.


Here is what our Peppermint got up to this season at our house:








Image may contain: one or more people, child and indoor


















Will Peppermint return next year?

Sunday, January 29, 2017

FHE Lesson {Pacific Area Goals 2017}




 Here is last years 2016 Pacific Area Goals FHE lesson.

Since the goals are similar, refer to both for ideas.


Watch the Pacific Area Presidency Message http://pacific.lds.org/2017-pacific-area-plan


While watching have family members write down any thoughts/goals that come to mind

As listed last year have small children draw or write ideas under four headings
Draw the following symbols
house/church - Honor Sabbath Day
praying arms - Increase spiritual self reliance
a picture of scriptures - share the gospel
temple 
Have children write or draw ideas in each column



Come up with individual or family goals that suit the pacific area plan that are individualised to your family.

eg
Choose something that can make the sabbath a delight for your family
- visit relatives, cook something to give each week, do family history together, encourage quiet activities, prepare on saturday so you are more organised on sunday, help the missionaries

Increase spiritual and temporal self reliance
- set a budget, choose a course of scripture study, choose a skill you will develop or get better at (eg musical instruments, sport, a subject, cooking etc) help a child pay tithing.

Hasten the Work of Salvation
- Be a better neighbour/friend, smile at others, assist someone in their calling, reach out, make a goal to meet new people, assist in church in extra helpful ways.

Temple
-Set a goal to attend the temple, invite someone else to go to the temple with you, do family history work, teach an fhe to children about temples.





I really like this idea of drawing a child's hand (reaching for the stars) and on the hand or maybe on the stars write the goals you are aiming for

Make multiple copies of this printable - (I will do ONE thing ...... Today) and each week for FHE write down the one thing you will aim for

Try a goal setting printable for kids to keep track of their goals.



Choose a few manageable goals for your family or self individually.
Write them down and keep them in a place that can be seen. Review goals regularly.


Monday, November 21, 2016

FHE Lesson {Advent}



There are lots of ways to count down till Christmas.
Our family has several.
It's great to do a spiritual one in the lead up to Christmas too.

This year I am hoping to do this one each evening for scripture reading:
Scripture Advent and candle


We just used our Christ Centred Advent from previous years tonight.
Daily life of Jesus Tag to hang up and a questions game for a FHE included


Or try the 4 Sundays (or Mondays) Advent one each week the month of December with an Advent wreath and candle. or Here


This year I am going to be using this service Flip Frame Advent
Each day the advent calendar will an act of service or kindness per day


Here are some of the acts of service that I liked 
{I wanted easy achievable ones for the month}

Give someone a compliment today
Smile at people
Make dinner for someone in need
Give cookies to friends
Leave a finished book you've read in a public spot for someone else to enjoy
Pick up rubbish in a local park/roadside etc
Mail a card to someone you haven't seen in a while
Leave coins at a laundromat/shopping centre ride ons/vending machine
Find a local home with best Christmas lights and leave a thankyou note
Give sincere thanks to a teacher and maybe a little gift {school or church or music}
Offer to babysit for a family that needs it
Write a letter to a loved one
Leave anonymous happy notes in public places
Invite a new friend out/over
Let someone ahead of you in a line
Leave stamps for someone to find at the post office
Leave happy chalk messages around your neighbourhood
Wash a car


Introduce what your advent calendar will be this year.

Tonight we went through the Church's 
Light the World Campaign and watched the Light the world video and went through the days on the advent calendar and the suggested activities. 
The children suggested some of their own ideas. 

We put up the pictures for each day found HERE on the computer.

Then we read out each saying etc "Jesus showed humility..so can you"   
'Jesus Healed the sick.. so can you'  then read out the suggested acts of service.

Tell the children that you hope to do some of the things listed on the Light the World Advent Calendar each day in December.

Light the world Advent Calendar found Here  (scroll down)

I love these little advent journals  Here  {these might work well with older kids}

Enjoy  this time to connect as a family and have a spiritual advent leading to Christmas.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Advent Calendar {Standing Frame Flip Advent}


















November means Advent Calendar making!

This year I've combined the Standing Ikea Frame Advent Calendars idea with
Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendars Here  Here  Here Here


Needed:
Christmas scrapbooking papers
number stickers
Tags, ebellishments
Double sided Tape
30mm Index Card Ring
Tolsby Standing Frame


Collect up craft paper and card and embellishments you like.
I would have liked my calendar to be a bit cuter
{but hey all those awesome embellishments add up $$} so I just used 10 for $1 gift tags.
Good news is it will be easy to change/add to if I want in the future

Measure the inside of the IKEA frame.
The paper needs to flip over so needs to be smaller than 4x6 inside frame
I underestimated how small this would be, some of my embellishments were too big! wah!

Cut 12 {or 24}rectangles approx 13x8 cm
Cut 12 {or 24} rectangles 10x8
Make sure you have one large and one small rectangle in the same paper for each 'day'

Using double sided tape stick the shorter rectangles onto the front of the larger rectangles leaving the tops open {so it forms a pocket you can slip a tag or card into with your advent activity/act of service/ scripture/ christmas joke/ whatever you want.}

Decorate with Christmas embellishments/tags. Add number stickers {mine from Riot}

Hole punch a hole in each card.

Attach to the tolsby frame using a index card ring (mine is 30 mm flip chart rings from Daiso}


Display and flip over each day for a new activity/question/act of service for the month of December.






***


Here are some of the acts of service that I liked {I wanted easy achievable ones for the month}

Give someone a compliment today
Smile at people
Make dinner for someone in need
Give cookies to friends
Leave a finished book you've read in a public spot for someone else to enjoy
Pick up rubbish in a local park/roadside etc
Mail a card to someone you haven't seen in a while
Leave coins at a laundromat/shopping centre ride ons/vending machine
Find a local home with best Christmas lights and leave a thankyou note
Give sincere thanks to a teacher and maybe a little gift {school or church or music}
Offer to babysit for a family that needs it
Write a letter to a loved one
Leave anonymous happy notes in public places
Invite a new friend out/over
Let someone ahead of you in a line
Leave stamps for someone to find at the post office
Leave happy chalk messages around your neighbourhood
Wash a car


On some days I might pop in another tag with questions from Last Years Advent Calendar . {confession : I've left it up all year! We've used it as a noticeboard for motivational photos/posters /sayings the girls collect}I've still got these tags tucked away ready to be bought out again. I love these questions and think they will go well tucked in the pockets of  this Standing frame Advent.






Past Years Advent Calendars:

Wooden Tree, vintage photos, family question time Advent
Lolly String Advent Calendar
Sewn Brown Paper Advent
Christmas Book a Day Advent
Bon Bon Advent
Pocket Bunting Advent
Religious/Life of Christ Advent Calendar
Poke a Cup Lolly Advent
Sewn cardboard houses Advent
Envelope Activity Advent
Quilted, Hang an Ornament Advent


I'm excited cause I just ordered 3 of these German Paper Window Advent Calendars
so pretty. Don't worry about the $20 tax. It doesn't appear at the checkout in the end. It was freaking me out. Wasn't there last purchase.



Monday, November 7, 2016

Camping {Bestbrook Mountain Retreat}


Since two family members recently did a long distance walking and basic camping trip and probably couldn't face another so soon we decided to Glamp for ease and comfort.

We booked a cabin and horseriding at Bestbrook mountain retreat




 Bestbrook Mountain Retreat - Maryvale.

Pro's
Lovely people. Those running the animal feeding, damper making, horse lessons etc were very friendly and approachable and kind to the children and adults alike.

There is a small restaurant there if you forget something/ too tired to cook. We had hot chips twice!

Cabins were well appointed. We forgot clingwrap for a picnic and matches and cooking oil - all there. Every cooking item needed - provided. Had electric frypan, saucepans, slowcooker, bbq etc.
Beds were comfy with good quality sheets and doonas.

Horseriding available for extra cost.

Free daily animal feeding and damper making class.
We got to keep the fresh eggs the kids collected daily. YUM.

Campfires allowed in firepits. {A must for our family}

A creek to muck around in. Sadly wasnt very much water in though.


We took a scenic drive to Queen Mary Falls. This was great - the falls are close to the road and only a short walk to view.

A cattle dog adopted our family. He followed us up a mountain trail walk and stuck by our side and stopped when we stopped then came back to our cabin and dutifully sat outside the entire night. He didnt bark or do anything but let the kids love on him and sit silently by us. I asked the employees and they said that dog always finds one family out of all the campers each week and will choose them and stick to them. It was lovely.


Cons

Lots of horses around. IF you dont like horse poo beware!

Camground was a lot more hilly than I expected from perusing website.
Bring bikes for kids to get up and down to animals and main house.
Be prepared to walk alot or drive your car back and forth.

Campsite was a bit too close to the highway for my liking.
Our spot was just far enough away but could still hear traffic occassionally.

Cabins are what I would describe as 1960's scout camp. So definitely an old feel.
Felt they were a tad more expensive than the budget I would prefer, but had everything you need.

Not much shower/toilet amenities for those camping.
There is some but bit of a walk depending where you are camping.





^^ After a 1km steep climb up a dirt road you come to a couch and lookout :) Much appreciated lol

Animal Feeding







Near by locations - Queen Mary Falls.






Horseriding. Kids must do a lesson before being able to do a trail ride. So you have to pay twice :)
Our kids first time on horses. The teachers and horses were gentle and kind.







Other camping reviews:

Wivenhoe Dam
Neurum creek
Flanagans Reserve
Elanda Point

Somerset Park

Sharp Park Riverbend

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