February 6, 2016

EASY SUPER BOWL IDEAS

Time is flying by, like always, and here we are at Super Bowl Weekend already. We don't normally go all out for this "holiday," but we usually do a little something special here at home. Even though I just set up a shin-dig for my family, I thought I'd pass on a few fun ideas on how to make your own football weekend special...for a crowd or just your own crew.
Want to have some fun for Super Bowl, but don't want all the fuss? Here's a bunch of super simple Super Bowl ideas.
this post contain affiliate links...thank you for supporting this blog!

Easy Super Bowl Ideas

We all know Super Bowl is all about the food and the commercials. Who's playing again? Oh, and maybe the half-time show. But it's mostly about the food. Here's a couple seriously simple ideas for a great spread.
  • Chili Bar Everyone loves chili and there's a million ways to make it.
  • Sub Sandwiches Buy some French bread and several kinds of meats and cheese. Make these up the day before and keep in the fridge. Slice right before the game.
  • Chili Dogs Make your favorite chili recipe and grill some hot dogs. Set it all up party bar style so everyone can make up their dog the way they want.
  • Baked Potato Bar Another super simple party bar option where everyone can make up their plates the way the prefer and you have minimal prep-work.
  • Pizza Takeout I'm serious. Order some pizza and wings. Make a veggie tray and a dip. Throw some chips in a bowl and call it a party.
  • Yummy dips Super Bowl isn't complete without some delicious dips. We love a good Buffalo chicken dip or a taco dip with tortilla chips.
  • Football Brownies This is pretty much the simplest Super Bowl dessert ever aside from going out and buying one. Make some boxed brownies, sprinkle the top with powdered sugar, cut into squares, and with each square, cut away the corners, creating a football shape. Boom. Football brownies. You could also pipe football laces on them with white icing if you're feeling extra enthusiastic.

Super Bowl Party Extras

I don't ever go all out, but I like to do a few little things to make it seem more like a party. This year I made football cones to hold snacks that could also double as megaphones if your kids are so inclined, which if they're like mine, they probably are. Maybe I shouldn't have made these, on second thought. 

Anyway, gather brown construction paper, clear tape and white athletic tape. 
Want to have some fun for Super Bowl, but don't want all the fuss? Here's a bunch of super simple Super Bowl ideas.

My athletic tape was too wide to create the "laces" so I had to cut the width in half. 
Want to have some fun for Super Bowl, but don't want all the fuss? Here's a bunch of super simple Super Bowl ideas.

Fill these fun cones up with popcorn or pretzels. For extra fanfare, add some M&M's in team colors to the popcorn! (popcorn + M&M's= my favorite!)

Want to have some fun for Super Bowl, but don't want all the fuss? Here's a bunch of super simple Super Bowl ideas.


More Simple Super Bowl Ideas

  • Pick up paper products in the teams' colors--no doing dishes for you!
  • Cover your table in a green tablecloth for field grass...green felt would work too. I have also used plastic "grass" to cover the table too. You can find it in rolls at your upholstery store.
  • I loved this idea of just painting two tin cans brown and adding white paint for laces.

For so many great party ideas, check out Party Bars: Creative Ideas for Easy Entertaining by Leah Nieman. This book is full to the brim with simple ideas that anyone can do. I love simple. And I love parties. Win/win. 




I hope this helps inspire your own little Super Bowl party. And if not? Have a great night watching Downton. (That's probably where I'll end up...the halftime show will be over, after all.) Have a great weekend!

February 1, 2016

TAKING STOCK: FEBRUARY EDITION

I haven't done a post like this in forever. It felt like it was time. Being a new, fresh month, I'm taking stock...February style. 





Making : a menu for the week
Cooking : coffee...give me more coffee
Drinking : well, coffee
Reading: The Nightingale. I just finished The Lake House on Friday and it was soooo good! The Nightingale is also super good too! So much good reading happened in January. 
Wanting: a massage...badly
Looking: for clothes for the kiddies...they grow out of everything so fast!
Playing: Super Mario Bros. on my old Game Boy
Deciding: What to do for all the birthdays coming
Wishing: for like 2 more hours during the day
Enjoying: Periscope
Waiting: for library books to come in
Liking: quiet mornings
Wondering: when my sister will have her baby!?!?!
Loving: so many books right now
Pondering: trips to take this year
Considering: purchasing an oil diffuser
Buying: chocolate
Watching: Mad Med final season, Downton Abbey, and House of Cards
Hoping: for a blizzard
Marvelling: at the sunshine
Cringing: at all the poop jokes told in my house
Needing: a haircut...Wednesday's the day!
Questioning: whether or not to keep the bangs or grow them out
Smelling: Fresh Balsam candles
Wearing: all the stretchy pants
Following: the news--it's an election year!!
Noticing: how much my oldest and youngest kids are changing
Knowing: a mother's heart is made to be broken...and overflowing all in one moment
Thinking: about everything
Admiring: mothers...all the beautiful mothers out there
Sorting: socks
Getting: beeswax candles for the kids
Bookmarking: how to make my own candles
Coveting: more reading time
Disliking: all the presidential candidates...can we start over with all new ones?
Opening: new science kits
Giggling: over Jack's made-up jokes
Feeling: unprepared for Morning Meeting
Snacking: cashews
Helping: with writing projects
Hearing: Little Einsteins theme song....all the time. 

January 29, 2016

OUR FAVORITE CHILDREN'S POETRY BOOKS

This month I've been sharing about our Poetry Teatimes that have been happening almost every single week this school year. We owe this new tradition to our friends at Bravewriter for introducing us to teatime. Our (my) desire for wanting to incorporate more consistent poetry into our days has finally found it's comfy place in our home. It's nothing over-the-top, nothing that take me hours--or even minutes--of planning, but it's been a beautiful block of time in our weekly agenda that can so often get so loud and hectic.

So far we've covered the how-to of teatime and how to incorporate fun themes too. But I've saved the best for last--the books! This week I'm sharing our favorite poetry books and if you read all the way to the bottom, you'll find the information for a giveaway that can get you well on your way for starting your own Poetry Teatime. (the giveaway has ended.)


Learning how to love poetry isn't hard if you have the right books. Here's a great list of our favorite children's poetry books.

This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting this blog!

There are tons and tons of poetry books out there and they're probably all fabulous. The only thing I am pretty insistent on when choosing poetry books for our family is that they are children's poetry books. I love Mary Oliver, but choosing poems that were designed for children can make the process of reading poetry, that doesn't always translate well in comprehension, that much easier. That's really my only stipulation. 

Some of our favorite poetry books: 


*These books were given to me by my friends at Candlewick Press. Thanks guys!

Candlewick Press has beautiful taste in children's literature. Their books are high in quality content. They're pretty much my favorite. Their Pinterest boards offer a ton of great book choices in different subjects. Their Scribd page also offers a ton of great resources. Follow them on Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter. 


Learning how to love poetry isn't hard if you have the right books. Here's a great list of our favorite children's poetry books.

Learning how to love poetry isn't hard if you have the right books. Here's a great list of our favorite children's poetry books.

I hope this list helps gets you started collecting wonderful poetry books for your family. To help you out, Candlewick Press and I are offering a giveaway for one lucky mama! Enter below and I'll pick a winner next Wednesday--that's five days from now. The winner will receive Classic Poetry, A Foot in the Mouth, A Kick in the Head, and A Poke in the I--all from Candlewick Press and a box of Tazo tea--our personal favorite. 

Good luck--and happy poem reading! 

Learning how to love poetry isn't hard if you have the right books. Here's a great list of our favorite children's poetry books.


Learning how to love poetry isn't hard if you have the right books. Here's a great list of our favorite children's poetry books.



Other posts in this series:

   





January 27, 2016

OUR HUGE LIST OF MIDDLE AGES HISTORY BOOKS

We're in the middle of our second year in a row in the Middle Ages. History is always our biggest area of book-collecting--I am always on the lookout for good ones. I realized that you probably are too, so I sat down with my laptop, a cup of coffee, and typed up a list of all of our Middle Ages books on our shelves. There's a lot of books here, so I hope you find a few that you and your kids enjoy! 

If you need a great resource for Middle Ages books, you've come to the right place. Here's a HUGE list of books for your Medieval Ages studies. Enjoy!
This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting this blog! 

Biographies from the Middle Ages

Chapter Books about the Middle Ages

Picture Books about the Middle Ages

Shakespeare Books for a Middle Ages Study

Non-fiction Books about the Middle Ages

Middle Ages Activity Books

If you need a great resource for Middle Ages books, you've come to the right place. Here's a HUGE list of books for your Medieval Ages studies. Enjoy!

January 25, 2016

WINTER BUCKET LIST

A lot of you just got a ridiculous amount of snow. Some of your pictures are blowing me away--cars are covered in snow, the snow piles for playing and sledding are out of this world! But I know when all the excitement of a big storm wears away, all that is left sometimes is dread for the white months to follow. I made a pact with myself earlier on in fall that we were throwing negativity to the wind (no pun intended) and deciding to enjoy winter, rather than merely endure it.

I know that summer is bright and sparkly and endearing with fun thing after fun thing to do and see. In fact we even make summer fun lists to get excited about it. So why not winter? In fact, because of the weather, winter might be an even better reason to make a list and hype it up. So we did. We sat down after Christmas and made a huge list of things we wanted to see and do this season. It was so much fun to create together that I encourage you to do the same!

Sit down with your kids and brainstorm together. If you don't have little kids, just make one for yourself! How fun does that sound!? Think of things that are close or local destinations you want to check out. If you can afford weekend getaway that is close-by--do it now! Write down books to read, movies to see, recipes to make, projects to finish. Pretty soon you're going to have a big list and you're also going to see your weeks and days filling up with things you're excited about doing--enjoyment.

Here's our list. (We couldn't fit it all on the chalkboard though ;))

Want to enjoy winter more this year? Make a winter bucket list! Here's ours!

  1. Ice skating
  2. Build a snow fort
  3. Sled
  4. Snowball fight
  5. Big Thrill Factory
  6. Ski
  7. Snow board
  8. Go to a big sledding hill
  9. Russian Art Museum
  10. Swedish Art Institute
  11. Minneapolis Institute of Art
  12. Walker Art Institute
  13. Como Park Botanical Gardens
  14. Snow shoe
  15. Bell Museum of Natural History
  16. Study snow and winter weather
  17. Read The Long Winter
  18. Zoo
  19. Snowy Day production
  20. St. Paul Winter Carnival
  21. Ice Castle 
  22. Centennial Lakes skating
  23. Make snowflakes
  24. Eat grilled cheese and tomato soup
  25. Make snow cream
  26. Go maple sugaring
  27. Winter animal exploring
  28. Wood whittling (boys)
  29. Watch Little Women
  30. Play chess
  31. Winter getaway weekend
  32. Noah birthday
  33. Sophia birthday
  34. Valentine's Day
  35. St. Patrick's Day
  36. MLK day
  37. Start Wars movie
  38. Drink Cocoa
  39. Make chili
  40. Super Bowl Sunday
  41. Study India in geography
  42. Bake bread
  43. Go for a moonlit walk
  44. Winter Boy Scout camp
  45. Have family nights on Fridays
  46. Ice fishing
  47. Basketball games
  48. Puzzles
  49. Weekly library visits
  50. Gym time
What's on your Winter Bucket List?


If you're struggling with winter this year, I hope you'll join me over at Matchless Winter, my new winter course. You can get all the details on this post. I hope to see you there! 


Related Posts with Thumbnails