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Happy Mother's day to all of you amazing mom's out there! In our home, a holiday becomes a reason for us to celebrate. On Mother's Day, we usually spend time in the kitchen, beginning with breakfast morning and ending the evening with homemade cookies and family time. Sometimes we pull out the craft box and create decorations if we are hosting a Mother's Day brunch or dinner for the moms in our family.

They will always have a "pizza" my heart!

Motherhood is such an amazing gift, and while it's no easy task (we moms are on call 24 hours and day, seven days a week, 365 days a year), and somehow we manage it all!

I wonder where my strength and patience come from, and then I remember, "Oh, yeah, my mom!" I also honor her today, as she inspired me to become the mom I am today for my children.

Throughout it all, I am thankful for the gifts of motherhood and grateful to have a day where we moms remind each other how special each of us is.

I wish you all a wonderful, memorable Mother's day this holiday! Share with me how you plan to celebrate in the comments on Instagram or Facebook!

Stay crafty,

Jaime

Ahhh, the sunny days of May prepare my family and me for Summer! School is almost out for the children (thank goodness for no more homework or trying to relearn fractions!), and this is the month where I begin to plan family activities. 

What's on your summer reading list?
What's on your Summer reading list?

I love the Summer holidays, giving us a reason to celebrate, and who doesn't want an excuse to gather together. One holiday that gears us up for in summer mode is Memorial Day! Usually, our home has been decorated with summer colors and vibrant plants.

Usually, by Memorial Day, the house is decorated, the grill is cleaned, and we gear up for the end of the school year, leaving us ready to spend some time in our backyard to play board games and bond with one another. Summer sunsets and early evenings are reasons the upcoming season fills me up with joy. Walks along the beach picking sea shells or spending time creating bonfires (roasting marshmallows, of course!) is another opportunity for bonding without the rush school responsibilities.

Here are a few other ways I gear up for Summer:

Reading list:  While Summer reading may have an elementary feel to it, as a family we like to create a summer reading list. I believe it's important to read even one book together as a family. It's a different avenue of bonding and another topic at the dinner table as a family. 

Outdoor games/sports: Who doesn't love outdoor fun!? Backyard scavenger hunts are a favorite in our household. Scavenger hunts are great for all ages, and you can customize them any way you wish. You may or may not see a scavenger hunt in an upcoming kit! 

Summer foods: Food off the grill screams summer to me, grilled chicken, grilled vegetables (kabobs!)  as well as homemade lemonade, and fun attempts to whip up a flavored ice cream together. I also love the fruits that are in season, everything from blood oranges, watermelon to cherries! 

What are some ways you gear up for summer pre-Memorial Day weekend? Do you have any favorite foods or fruits you tend to enjoy more? 

Please share with me on Facebook or Instagram, and don't forget to use #CraftyHolidayHelper!

Stay crafty,

Jaime

We love celebrating Valentine’s Day with the family as it’s a way to shower our children, family, and friends with love and joy while spending a meaningful day together. Plus, who doesn’t love a day with chocolate, candy, and flowers? We’ve planned out a special day for you and your kids, including some of our favorite activities from our latest blog: 24 Valentines Day Activities for Preschoolers. 

Breakfast

The most important meal of the day is breakfast. Why not serve a heart-shaped breakfast as a family treat?And, maybe some heart-shaped strawberries to add an extra touch of love. 

Activity 1: Arts and Crafts

Activity 2: Baking – Cupcakes & Cookies

We found this easy cupcake and cookie recipe you can do with your kids. Our kids love decorating cookies and cupcakes so let them get creative. Remember: no frosting is too much. Try to save these treats for dessert as you don’t want to spoil lunch or dinner. 

Lunch

Edible bread painting for lunch. Make lunch exciting with cute sayings or heart designs for Valentine’s Day. 

Get Active: Chose one or complete all three

Game 1: Walk Around Neighborhood

It’s always good to get some fresh air and go for a family walk. Since it’s Valentine’s Day, play a game of “I spy” something red or pink in the neighborhood. Another fun idea you can do with the kids on your walk, take some of Valentine’s Day cards and distribute them to your neighbor’s mailbox for a pleasant surprise. 

Game 2: Valentine’s Day Musical Hearts

For your at-home dance party, this game will get the heart pumping. Layout a bunch of hearts with different phrases to dance out like “walk like an Egyptian,” “move like a robot,” “do the moonwalk.” When the music stops, each player grabs the nearest heart and dances out the phrase. To make sure your kid doesn’t dance around the same one, take away the used hearts every round. Keep going until all the hearts have been completed.

Game 3: Pin the Arrow on the Heart

Each person will have an arrow. Blindfold each player, turn them around 3x, and have them try to pin the arrow onto the heart. 

Free Time

We included some free time for you and your family to choose or to take a one-hour nap for those with preschoolers. There is nothing wrong with taking a break and resetting before dinner!

Dinner

Whip up a simple dinner where the kiddos can assist you in the kitchen. Turning cooking into a family activity will certainly be a lot of fun especially when its something as easy as taco night! Of course, compliment your meal with the Crafty Holiday Helper Valentine’s Day Table Setting. Lastly, don’t forget dessert – there is nothing sweeter than ending a family dinner with a tasty dessert with some laughter.

End the Day

We love to end the day watching a family movie together. One of our favorite family films is Shrek as it's full of funny moments to get the family laughing with a hint of romance to get everyone feeling the love on Valentine's Day!

Stay Crafty,
Jaime

Want to surprise your kids this summer with some Christmas spirit? Send your child a Postcard from their elf in SUMMER. My kids always count down the day until our elf comes to visit in December. Last summer, at the beginning of August, a postcard showed up letting my kids know that he missed them and he couldn?t wait to see them in December. My kids were SO SURPRISED! I was pleasantly surprised at all of the offers of help around the house, the clean rooms and the kindness to each other that followed the postcards arrival. Head over to Crafty Holiday Helper to get your FREE download of the Christmas Elf Summer Postcard. Print out the page in color then fold along the bottom of the photo and glue or use double sided tape to secure the sides. Address the postcard to your kids and pop it in the mail! If you are worried about your kids knowing your handwriting, ask a neighbor or friend to write it so it doesn't look like your writing. To take it even a step further...place your postcard, with your address and stamp already on it, in a bigger envelope and mail it to the following address:

North Pole Postmark
Postmaster
4141 Postmark Drive
Anchorage, AK 99530-9998

This post office will then take your postcard and have it postmarked ?North Pole? so you don't have to field the question ?How come this postcard came though our town??. Amazing!!!! Feel free to reach out to me if you want me to email you a version that you can edit if you wish to personalize it for your kids and make it from your elf or add anything else!

Stay Crafty,
Jaime

Can you believe Christmas is less than six months away? The PRE-SALE for the ever-popular Christmas Elf Kit is back to create magic for your kids every day of the Christmas Season with no effort at all!

Surprise your little ones with a special gift to bring all the extra magic this Christmas before they sell out like last year. Very soon, I'll post on social media the release news on this upcoming kit!
Oh, and this year only, the first 150 orders will receive a FREE ELF DOOR! (Yes, you heard that correct, an actual wooden Elf door that opens, has a doorknob and a knocker!) Now you have an actual answer for when your children ask how our elf reports back to Santa each night? It comes with removable foam adhesive for the back panels and can be stuck anywhere for the duration of the Christmas Elf season.

Don't miss out on this amazing FREE GIFT with a pre-order of the Elf kit. See photos below for Elf door. * Second photo to give you a size reference.

The Magic Elf Door

The kit includes everything you need to have the most magical twenty-seven days of the Christmas Elf Season! An arrival letter, magical glove, an Elf travel container, and more. 

Each scene is individually packaged for a simple setup right after the little ones are asleep. Setting up only takes a few minutes packaged in unmarked boxes for easy and secret storage!

Teachers, do you have a hard time getting your students to pay attention during the Christmas Season? A Classroom Christmas Elf Kit was added this year. With the help of this kit, you can create magical memories for your students and maybe get them to listen to this Christmas. The scenes are geared towards the classroom and school activities for your child's teacher to incorporate with their lessons and also have some silly fun! Purchase your Classroom Christmas Elf Kit which are available to ship anywhere in the United States! Please note that this kit does NOT include the actual Christmas Elf. The Christmas elf will need to be purchased separately!

Stay crafty,

Jaime

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