The Real Love Game

The Real Love Game

Kristi F

I am an Oklahoman by birth, a Texan by current living situation, but claim the world as my playground.I love to travel and hope to someday soon take our family on adventures to far off lands, where we can share God with others and experience all the wonders He has created.

I am a mother of 5 crazy, homeschooling children ages 10 & under, wife to an amazing man, and daughter of the King of the Universe!I enjoy reading, making my kids laugh, cooking, all things natural, learning to play guitar and dusting off my piano skills.One day I hope to run again, but until then I’m learning patience.
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What is love?

In our house, we decided to turn learning about love into what I call “The Real Love Game.”

So many movies, books, magazines, songs, and TV shows have attempted to answer this question. Although some of the answers (like Saturday Night Live’s skit versions) are obviously not the right answer, there are many others that have added confusion to an already confused world.

The Real Definition of Love

That is why 1 Corinthians 13 is one of my favorite passages.  In black and white, it explains what love – real love – looks like.

Love is patient,
love is kind.
It does not envy,
it does not boast,
it is not proud.
It does not dishonor others,
it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects,
always trusts,
always hope,
always perseveres.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

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Every year when February rolls around and LOVE starts to fill the air and the store shelves, we try to instill God’s meaning of love in our hearts as well as our children’s hearts. We do this so that as they grow and are introduced to the things of this world, they will know the difference between real love and fake love.  

The Real LOVE Game & Different Ways of Teaching our Kids about Real Love

Now, stop for a second.  Did you notice anything really interesting?  If you’re a numbers person, you might…within verses 4-7 there are fourteen different descriptions of love.  One for every day from February 1-Valentines Day! A few years ago, when I noticed this, we made a point to make sure every morning when our children woke up a heart with one of these descriptions was hanging somewhere in the house.

There are so many different ways to play with these hearts:

  • For several years, we hung them on a Valentine wreath in the living room.
  • We’ve even given them to our children like Valentines from God, one a day from February 1st-14th.
  • Last year we hung them on our kitchen window, where we do our school work during the day.
  • This year, I decided we are going to play a game with it.  Every morning when our children wake up, they will go searching for love!  Because isn’t that what most of us have done in life? As we are growing up, aren’t we always on the look out for true love? Once they find the heart, we will sit and talk about what it means and memorize it.  Then we can add it to our memory verse wall so we can add to it daily and by day 14 we will have these three verses memorized.
  • I actually plan on having two sets of these hearts.  One set to hide and hang up and the other set to use as a memory verse scramble.  Every time we add another heart the kids will mix up the hearts and then put them in the correct order.
  • What immediately pops into your mind?

 

Let Us Know How Your Family Plays the Real Love Game!

If you would like to play this game with us or your own version, here are the fourteen hearts. We would love to see how you use them.  Share your ideas with us by posting to social media and using #CaGDRealLove

Real Love Heart Game

Real Love Game Printable

Not only do we want our kids to know what love is, but we want them to know where it is found: in Christ Jesus.  If we are letting Jesus fill our hearts with His love, then we will not be easily swayed by the world.  And we want them to know how to share his love too.

Craving God’s Love

There is a song by For King and Country called “The Proof of Your Love” that recites parts of 1 Corinthians 13.  So many people who have only heard this song and have never read the Bible have come up to them and said how amazing and beautiful those words are and how that idea of love just captivates them. You see, the world is craving God’s love and they don’t even know it yet!

As we play this game with our kids, maybe we could also sprinkle some of these hearts around our neighborhoods too.  Share God’s amazing love with our neighbors, with store clerks and with whomever we run into during the day.  Just for fun one day maybe you could go love on some cars by putting these hearts under windshield wipers in a parking lot.  You never know how that little heart just might open someone’s heart to God’s word now or later.

Lord, we thank you for loving us like you do.  We absolutely do not deserve it and yet you give it freely and without reserve.  Your mercy and grace are showered upon us daily.  Our hearts sing songs of thanksgiving and praise for all the love you have bestowed upon us.  Give us courage to freely share this amazing love with others. In the One who did not hesitate to show what true love is all about – Amen!

 

Be encouraged by these posts as well!

Unified Church Living Out Love on Valentines Day Family Prayer Wall Building Up Your Leaders

so-let-my-life-be-the-proof

When You Have Nothing Left To Give

When You Have Nothing Left To Give

Laura P

Hello. I grew up traveling the world as a military brat. I ultimately felt God's pull to Oklahoma Christian University where I met my husband. We now have 3 beautiful children and have settled in Mustang, Oklahoma.I am a homeschooling mom and with 3 kiddos it is a full time job! I am daily encouraged by God's great patience and grace in my life. In my free time I enjoy reading and crafting.
Laura P

It’s 3:30 P.M. and I am DONE with this day.  How in the world will I make it until Dad gets home?  The baby just won’t take an afternoon nap anymore, which of course means she will be incredibly cranky by 6:00, but that’s far too early for bedtime.  The big kids are in quiet time, but somehow I can still hear every single thing they do or say.  My quiet time is obviously nonexistent since the baby has decided not to nap.  Instead I’ll have a snack that I have to share.  Did I mention I am thirty weeks pregnant with my fourth child?  Or that I home school, so I am solely responsible for the needs of all of my children all day long?

OK, the baby is playing and reading books happily, I’ll get something to drink and catch up on Facebook happenings and my email.  Then I realize I’d better be sure I have everything I need to make dinner.  Speaking of dinner, what time will Dad be home tonight?  I’d better text him to find out.

Me: Hey, how’s your day going?
Him: Blah.
Me: I’m sorry.  Working late?
Him: I won’t be early.

Great.  Another late night.  Another night that my duties just don’t end.  It’s ok.  Deep breath.  Be thankful he has a good job that pays all the bills.

This is the moment my peace begins to crumble.

The big kids get done with quiet time and the battle to clean up their rooms begins.  Everyone is bickering or distracted.  Everyone is hungry and tired of each other.  Here’s the thing: I know what to do in these situations, right?  I mean, I have a degree in child development.  I have an arsenal of clean-up songs and games and quick activities that can give us all a break.  Except all of those things are lost in my pregnant brain…OK, prayer, right?  I can say a prayer; read a verse; have a breath of fresh encouragement to pull from.  Except who can say a prayer or read the scriptures when there’s a screaming banshee baby attached to my legs?

I’ll stop there.  As you can see this scenario is set up for defeat.  Mom is over-tired, over-worked, under-encouraged, and too pregnant!  Obviously not every day goes like this.  Some days the baby will nap, or Dad does come home on time.  Occasionally, everyone can manage to get along.  Some days.  But some days are just hard.  And in that moment, a mother can really start to spiral downward.  Especially when there is no one else there to provide back-up, relief, or just run interference for a while.  Single moms.  Moms of overworked husbands.  Working moms!  Any mom can find herself here.

But take heart, Momma!  There is hope.

Here are some verses I have found helpful and will be referring back to during these particularly turbulent days.

Psalm 120:1

I call on the Lord in my distress, and he answers me.

This is step one!  Call upon the Lord, He will hear you.

1 Peter 5:7

Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

Step 2.  Cast your cares upon him.  There is nothing too small or too insignificant for God.  He cares about YOU.

Psalm 46:1-3

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.


Oh my goodness, yes!  Isn’t it funny how the children’s fighting and the baby’s crying and the mother’s exhaustion can be so symbolically perfect with this verse?  It can so easily feel like the earth is giving way and the mountains are falling into the sea. This verse is a soothing balm to my soul because I know the Lord is my refuge during these times.  He is a safe place for me to rest, if only for a moment!

More Verses of Encouragement

Isaiah 1:10

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Step 3.  Do not fear.  God will strengthen you and help you.  He has not left you or forgotten you.  You are important to Him!

John 14:27

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Step 4.  You have peace.  After approaching God and casting your cares on Him, He will give you strength and peace to endure.  Praise the Lord for His promises!

Psalm 16:8

I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With Him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

Step 5. Keep your eyes upon the Lord.  I frequently struggle with this step.  If I were able to keep a proper perspective in the beginning, I would not be so easily overwhelmed.  However, we know that the flesh is weak but in God we can be made strong!

hope-for-an-overwhelmed-heart

Encouragement on the Motherhood Journey

I hope that these verses can be an encouragement to you like they are to me.  I find myself dealing with an easily overwhelmed spirit as I enter the end of a pregnancy and exhaustion creeps in.  These verses are a great help to me in those times.  I hope these can be a help in whatever trials you find yourself struggling through during your motherhood journey.

What are some ways that you find renewal during the particularly tough days of motherhood?

What encouraging words would you give to yourself or another struggling mother during the hard times?

 

Be encouraged by these posts as well!

Your Purpose When Satan attacks Always looking for something better Unasked Prayers

Kids’ Craft: Thankfulness Tree

Kids’ Craft: Thankfulness Tree

Elizabeth P

I am a recovering Army brat who loves to travel and start new adventures. My handsome husband and I met at Oklahoma Christian University and he whisked me away to Kansas. So, I bought some ruby red high heels and made Topeka my home. I have a rough and rowdy Princess 4-year-old girl, amazing twin boys (almost 3) and a newborn baby girl who all make every day an adventure. We are grateful to be part of an amazing church in Topeka who regularly challenges and encourages our whole family. I have been both a full-time working mom and a stay-at-home-mom and/or both at the same time at one point or another. I am constantly seeking God’s wisdom on “balancing it all” and following His plan for my life, not mine.
Elizabeth P

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My dear friend Candace wrote a great blog here about being patient and encouraging your kids in love, especially when doing crafts with your kids.

She challenged me to do fun things WITH my kids more often even if it means it might not turn out Pinterest-perfect.  That little lesson has been tugging at the back of my mind as we approach the holidays with my almost three year old. This is such a magical age of understanding and excitement. How could I not capitalize on this finite time of being little and awesome? Well, I was not really one to enjoy group projects growing up, if you know what I mean. I’m a bit of a control freak. Guys, it’s a struggle!

BUT, I’m letting go and picking my battles because God is gracious to my ridiculousness and teaches me His ways instead. Slowly but surely. HA!

So, I’ve picked some specific crafts this year to do with my daughter throughout the season to teach and play and hopefully start some family traditions. I honestly can’t wait to include the boys next year. It will be so much more messy.

My first attempt was a Thankfulness Tree. I had grand visions of a home decor-worthy tree to accent our living room with sweetness.

Ha!

I knew I was going to have to let go and let her love the craft without taking over immediately.  Laying out the paper and sketching the tree got…sketchy. PLUS the construction paper pack I bought didn’t have brown (WHAT?!) so I guess we have a Birch Thankfulness Tree.

Anyway, this really is a easy craft to do, whether you keep it up for the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving, use it the week prior, or even fill it up on Thanksgiving day with the whole family!

Here is what I did, but you could do this in so many different ways!

I purchased a standard poster board from the craft store along with a big pack of construction paper in various colors. You will also need a pencil, glue stick, tape, and scissors. But THAT’S IT!

IMG_5789

First, I set out a few pieces of construction paper (in white, but if you are cooler than me, you can really play around with the colors) and taped them together in a general tree shape. Next, I sketched a tree and branches with a pencil (not too detailed) and cut it out.

I then let my daughter use the glue stick. Oh, my!

IMG_5790

It was actually fine.

See?

After realizing I have no skill at drawing leaf shapes, I googled leaf drawings and traced a few different varieties onto lots of different colors. TIP: Fold the paper into quarters and cut the leaf shape only once to get four. This size ended up being perfect.

IMG_5792

My girl even helped fold the paper and draw leaf shapes too.

We had a great time.

Finally, I found a silver paint marker and wrote Psalm 107:1 on the bottom: “Give thanks to the Lord for He is good. His love endures forever.”

There are a TON of great thankfulness verses! I chose this one because it was short and simple enough for my daughter to memorize.

TADA!

I hung it on the wall at about her height (mistake because her twin baby brothers have tried to destroy it, but it has survived.)

Now every night, we say the verse together. Then we write something she is thankful for on a leaf and tape it to the tree.

I’ve had to let go of the tree aesthetic–I let her choose where to place the leaves–but she loves it and is very proud of our craft.

IMG_5861

It has been so fun to hear what she is thankful for each day. To date, the list includes:

Apple juice, pants, lions, trees, Dad, Mimi, noses, pillows, and cars.

I encourage you to do this or something similar with your kiddos while they are small! It was SO EASY ! Even though I made it even simpler than I may have initially planned, I loved including my daughter in our craft. I think in the best ways, it is definitely Pinterest-worthy!

TIP: My mom had the idea to laminate the tree/background part so that it lasts for a few years. Then you only have to re-do the leaves. My mom is a teacher. Also, full disclosure, she made some of my leaves and hers look legitimately awesome. She has the gift. 

thanks tree

thankfulness-tree-3
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Toni D

Toni was born and raised in a small town in Oklahoma.She graduated from East Central University with a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Economics.After college, she returned to her hometown to marry her best friend, Charles.Toni is a stay at home mom to their three teens, two boys and a girl, whom God led them to homeschool.Her goal is to raise her children to love and serve the Lord.They live on a farm where they grow produce to sell at several farmers markets.She also plays the piano at church and teaches piano.
Toni D

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Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Yay!  Back to school!  Some consider the kids’ return to school the most wonderful time of the year. If you are a homeschooling mom, you may not feel that way.  I am by no means a homeschooling expert, but I have completed over thirteen years of home educating my children.  My oldest child graduated and is off to college so I guess I am what is considered a home school veteran.  So here are some of my survival tips to get through the school year.

1.  Put God first.

I know this should go without saying, but sometimes we forget.  Start each morning by having a quiet time with the Lord.  I know it can be hard. After a sleep-deprived night, all I want to do is send my husband off to work and then crawl back into bed.  I cannot tell you how many times I have fallen asleep reading my Bible or praying in the morning.  At some point in the morning, have some time with God.  It will set the mood for the entire day.

2.  Pray without ceasing.

I do this a lot.  There are those times when one child just is not getting it and the baby is screaming and another child is literally climbing the walls (Yes, my children climbed the hallway walls).  All you want to do is run away.  That is when you need to pray.  God gives us what we need if we ask.  All we have to do is take a deep breath and give it over to Him.

3.  Get organized.

I’m not talking about daily routines.  I’m talking about taking time away from everything and spending that time planning the upcoming school year.  You can go over material and familiarize yourself with it.  I have previously done this with a group of friends for a weekend.  We shared ideas and discussed materials.  I also have friends who have gone to a hotel for the weekend. If you do not feel that you can do this, home school conventions are great for getting away just for a little while.  This is also a great way to recharge.

4.  Don’t get bogged down by schedules.

This does not mean throw everything that you planned out the window.  Life happens.  Many of us are in the “sandwich generation” where we take care of children and parents.  This can be the cause of many unexpected events.  If something happens or one of the children get behind, remember, we home school.  We can always “catch up” later.  Be flexible.

5.  Start the year off with something fun.

We always start the year off with baking cookies.  I know this may sound strange but I think I got the idea from a home school convention.  What we do is I pick out a recipe.  I do not help with making the cookies, but I sit in the kitchen and tell each child what to get and what to do.  They must follow directions and work together.  If anyone fails to follow directions or do their part, they do not get to eat the cookies.  This really encourages and helps with listening skills and cooperation.  This helps set the tone for the year.  If you need to do it later in the year to get them refocused (or you just want the kids to make you some cookies), then do it again.  Oh, I almost forgot the most important part–they have to clean up, too!

6.  Make time for your husband.

Sometimes we spend so much time being a mom and teacher that we forget to be a wife.  Our husbands are just that: husbands, not children.  Be there for them and support them.  Make them their favorite meal.  Listen, really listen, to what they say.  Be supportive.

7.  Take care of yourself.

As moms, we put everyone else ahead of ourselves.  It is hard for us to not take care of everything and everyone and take a moment for ourselves.  Take a bubble bath; go shopping; have lunch with a friend; read a book.  If we do not take care of ourselves, we will not be able to take care of our children.

8.  Have fun.

Spend time playing games, singing together, dancing silly, taking nature walks.  These can be fun and educational.  Education is not just working through books; it is also experience.  Anything can be educational.  Homeschooling is not school at home.  It is educating the entire child.

We must remember that we only have 18-19 years with our children and it will be gone before you know it.  Spend that time having fun.

Do you have any other tips to make back to school the most wonderful time of the year? 

school-year-survival-tips-1

Land of the Free, Home of the Brave…

Land of the Free, Home of the Brave…

Toni D

Toni was born and raised in a small town in Oklahoma.She graduated from East Central University with a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Economics.After college, she returned to her hometown to marry her best friend, Charles.Toni is a stay at home mom to their three teens, two boys and a girl, whom God led them to homeschool.Her goal is to raise her children to love and serve the Lord.They live on a farm where they grow produce to sell at several farmers markets.She also plays the piano at church and teaches piano.
Toni D

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We hear and sing these words all the time, but do we really think about what they mean? Most people in the United States of America never give these words a second thought. We often take our freedom. We do not see freedom as a God-given right for which others dream and for which people fight and die.  However, my mother raised me to understand what these words meant.

My mother started out life as a child of privilege. Her family had a cook and a maid. Her father was a Korean government official before the Korean War.land-of-the-free-home-of-the-brave-pin

My mother does not speak much about the war because of the painful memories.  I do not know all, or even most, of what she endured. I cannot even imagine what her family lived through.  When war broke out, her father had to go into hiding. Because he was a government official, he was wanted by the Communists.  He lived in a hole in the ground and her brothers sneaked food to him when they could. I am sure it was worse than we could imagine.

By the end of the war, they had lost all their worldly possessions, but they had their lives and their freedom.  Gone were the servants and all the luxuries. They had all survived.  There were still a lot of restrictions in post-war South Korea.  The government restricted travel, and they monitored speech.

Years later, my mother had a chance to come to the United States, where she met and married my father.  This country afforded her more than she could imagine as a child growing up in a war-torn country, things we take for granted.  She could do what she wanted, when she wanted.

My brother, sister, and I were born in this country. My mother raised us to love the United States and what it stood for. As a child, I did not fully appreciate what my mother had taught us about her life.  As a homeschooling mom reading the Declaration of Independence to my children for the first time, it truly hit me what the signers of that Document gave up for us. They declared their freedom from a tyrant so that we might live in a free country.  They risked their lives for a cause in which they believed.

I am so grateful, even with all the turmoil in our country now, that God allowed me to be born and live in this country.  For now, we still have freedoms that most people cannot even imagine.  When this country is all one knows, it is easy to take it for granted. It’s easy to not realize how fortunate we are that God inspired our founding fathers to take that leap.

I have seen my mother cry when The Star Spangled Banner is sung.  She is so grateful to live in a country so free. Just as my mother is thankful, we too should be grateful for our God-given rights and freedoms. We must work to protect those rights so that our children may also live in a free country where “land of the free, and the home of the brave” are not just empty words.

We still have the freedom to worship God, who sent His Son to die for our sins so that we could have FREEDOM from death.  

My prayer is that all who read this have or will accept Him and be free.  There is nothing like freedom through Christ.

From what types of bondage has Christ freed you?

Do your ancestors have similar stories of why they came to the U.S.?

romans-6-14

Celebrating Easter with Babies and Tots

Celebrating Easter with Babies and Tots

Kristin J

I am a girl who loves to sit with a cup of coffee and daydream. I am most passionate about Jesus, my family, and family ministry. My husband and I live in Oklahoma with our two precious daughters. I spend my days with my girls, discovering and growing alongside them! You can usually find us either in our sunroom, the park, or taking long walks through Target. :)
Kristin J

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Easter is such a fun time with little ones! Although they might not be old enough to participate in egg hunts and coloring eggs, it’s still a wonderful opportunity for our babies and toddlers to experience God’s creation and to be introduced to the story of Jesus.

I want to share with you some ideas for celebrating Easter with your baby or toddler. Hopefully, you will find something fun for your little one’s Easter!

Read books that tell the Easter story. 

my very first Easter bookThis is one of the easiest ways to keep Easter focused on Jesus. Perhaps you have some books already, but if you don’t, here are some suggestions.  My Very First Easter by Juliet David & Helen Prole has been our favorite board book to read about the story of Jesus. The text on each page is brief and the pictures are colorful and diverse. This is a good book for when you want to stay focused on the story. It’s great to read year-round!

The Story of Easter bookAlso,there are books which blend the story with thoughts for today, which is nice! We have some books like that as well. Our favorite of this type is The Story of Easter by Patricia A. Pingry. This book has beautiful illustrations and brings together how spring time is so fitting with Easter. The text is not too long, so it will hold your little one’s interest. This book is a treasure!

 

 

You can find out more about these books here:

My Very First Easter

The Story of Easter

 

 

Make an Easter Story Discovery Basket. 

Let your little ones experience the Easter story! Gather up items which represent different parts of the Easter story. Make sure the items are safe for your child to play with (under your supervision). For our basket we used:

  • Silk palm leaf IMG_4542
  • Toy donkey
  • Toy grapes (to signify the last supper)
  • Plastic cross
  • Strips of white fabric (optional: spray with perfume or drops of essential oils) to signify that Jesus was wrapped and prepared for burial
  • A small decorative “rock” to represent the stone in front of the grave (use a real rock if you have one!)
  • Purple fabric to signify that Jesus is our King
  • A pink foam heart because God loves us so much that he sent his son to save us
  • Our Easter story book

Discovery BasketUse whatever items you can gather up to help tell the story. It doesn’t have to be the same items we used! For example, you could add some silk flowers because Jesus prayed in the garden before he was arrested. Read the story in the Bible and see what you have around your house!  Place the items in a basket and let your child discover the different textures of the items. You can talk about their meaning as your child plays with them. I liked reading the story to Kate and pulling out items that correlated with each page. If some of your items were not designed for baby/tot play, remember to supervise your little one while they play with their discovery basket. This is a fun activity to do together!

This idea was adapted from Spell Out Loud

Make Spring Time Sensory Bottles. DSC_0305

Our little girl loves sensory bottles. They are a great way to expose babies and tots to the wonders of creation! We like to use small water bottles (with the cap glued on), but you can use clean peanut butter or applesauce jars, or if you’re brave, a glass jar. Kate loved her sensory bottle last year, but she still plays with it now too! These will last you a long time. Here are some different ideas for filling your sensory bottle:

  • Water and silk flowers
    • Here is a little song we sing about flowers: (Sung to “Mary Had a Little Lamb”)

“God made all the beautiful flowers, beautiful flowers, beautiful flowers.

God made all the beautiful flowers.

Thank you God for flowers.”

  • Fresh coffee grounds (NOT used) and toy insects
    • (Sung to “Mary Had a Little Lamb”)

“God made bugs to crawl in the dirt, crawl in the dirt, crawl in the dirt.

God made bugs to crawl in the dirt.

Thank you God for bugs!”

  • Easter basket “grass” with small craft Easter eggs  
    • (Sung to “Have You Ever Seen A Lassie?”)

“Do you see the Easter eggs, the very pretty eggs?

Do you see the Easter eggs?

They are hiding for you!

 

Have an Easter Photo Shoot. 

OK, so this one is more for you than your child but I promise it’s worth it! I’ve never been a fan of the life-size Easter bunny, and it really wasn’t in our budget last year to do that so I set up a little photo scene at home to do on Easter! DSC_0395I’m an amateur by ALL means. Ideally, it would be great to do this outside, but we had a rainy Easter. I tucked our daughter’s baby quilt into the top shelf of her changing table. Then I opened the blinds to let in what little bit of natural light we had in our apartment on a rainy day! This was MUCH easier than waiting in a long line at the mall! DSC_0370

 

 

 

 

 

Fill that Easter Basket! 

Last year I had to think really hard about what to put in our daughter’s basket. Obviously, candy was out of the question for a baby! We kept things super simple by purchasing a small basket, but I have plenty of ideas for things to put in your basket, no matter the size!

Books

It’s hard to narrow this list because we’re addicted to children’s books in our house. Here are some of our favorites! Click on the titles for links to purchase. 

Pat the Bunny–You can’t go wrong with this darling classic!Pat the Bunny book

 

I Love You, Honey Bunny–The rhymes are the sweetest!

I Love You, Honey Bunny

Jesus Loves Me! This book is perfect for Easter, not just because the song is appropriate, but the illustrator gives subtle hints to the Easter season throughout the pages. This is one of our favorite books in our whole library.

Jesus Love Me!

Where Are Baby’s Easter Eggs?Your tot will love lifting the flaps!

Where Are Baby's EAster Eggs

Tickle, Tickle, Peter!–With different textures to feel on each page and short text, this book holds my daughter’s attention! This book is quite large. It might not fit in your child’s basket, but it will be lovely right next to it!

Tickle, Tickle, Peter

A Chick that Peeps

Hold the chick in your hand and listen to him peep! I found ours at Hobby Lobby. I can’t wait to see what our eighteen month old thinks of this one!

Chick that Peeps

 

Bubbles

Can you really go wrong with bubbles? Get ready for the giggles!

Bright Starts Giggling Eggs

These are so much fun! Perfect if you have a large basket you are trying to fill. You can purchase them here.

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Crayola Egg-Shaped Crayons

Perfect for little hands. Even if your baby is not ready for them now, they will be before you know it! You can find them here or look for them wherever Crayola products are sold.

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Bath Toys

Rubber ducks or other spring-themed bath toys make a great addition to an Easter basket!

Melissa & Doug Slide and Seek Egg

This is perhaps my most favorite basket item yet–so cute! Because it’s a quiet toy it’ll be great for our church bag. It is double-sided, with a hatching bird on one side and hatching chick on the other. You can find out more info here. The toy is currently out of stock from the manufacturer’s website, but I picked one up at Mardel. You can also find it at Amazon, but at a higher price.

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Small Stuffed Animals or Puppets

We love to sing songs with our stuffed animals. Kate’s favorite is her bunny puppet. We sing the following to the tune of “Grump Went the Little Green Frog”:

Hop, hop went the fluffy white bunny one day.

Hop, hop went the fluffy white bunny.

Hop, hop went the fluffy white bunny one day.

God made the fluffy white bunny! 

Here is the one we have: Bunny Puppet

Empty Eggs and Filled Eggs

Yes, I know empty eggs sound boring, but honestly our daughter loved playing with them! I used the decorative kind that don’t come apart.

This year I’m going to fill a couple of eggs! Here are a few ideas for filling those eggs since jelly beans might not be in your tot’s diet!

  • Socks
  • Annie’s Bunnies (It’s like they are made just for Easter or something!) You can choose cheddar bunnies, graham cracker bunnies, or even fruit snack bunnies. You could also use goldfish, or whatever special treat your child likes. Even fresh fruit!
  • Play Dough–Homemade would be really fun! Just squish it into one side of the plastic egg.
  • Stickers
  • Egg Shakers–Fill eggs with rice and use decorative tape to keep closed. (Supervise your little ones with these.)

Remember the Meaning of Easter

I hope you’ve found an idea or two to use as you celebrate Easter with the babies and toddlers in your life! It’s easy to get overwhelmed with trying to create the perfect holiday for your children, so don’t feel pressured. Do what works for your family and don’t feel guilty if someone else seems to be doing more!

Remember that Easter is about the forgiveness and grace lavished on us through Jesus. Take time to worship God, and remind your kids how much Jesus loves them. Many years from now, that is the best memory your child could ever have of Easter. 

What things have you done with your little ones this Easter season?

 

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