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Huge Back to School Sale @ TpT!

Teachers – mark your calendars!! There’s a big sale about to happen!

300 × 300

There is a HUGE #BackToSchool sale planned for Wednesday, August 20th over at TeachersPayTeachers – and MY STORE  will be marked down an additional 20% off for the entire day! ONE DAY ONLY – so don’t forget! :)


“No Junk” Easter Gifts for Children

Every year at Easter we put together a little scavenger hunt for our boys – but it’s a little different than most, since we really enforce the “no junk” rule.

"no junk" Easter Gifts for children

“no junk” Easter Gifts for children

While we make exceptions to what our kids eat, I’m just not a fan of bombarding them with tons of tiny “hardly real ingredients” chocolates. So the hubby and I started a fun little tradition years ago where we set up a treasure hunt of sorts, and the boys find little gifts left by the Easter Bunny on their way.

The Easter Bunny will of course bring 1 chocolate treat for each boy, but just one. Some of the “no junk” Easter Gifts for children the Easter Bunny likes to leave our kids include puzzles and art materials, but usually our kids each get one new Spring outfit, along with some other little goodies!  It’s a fun morning of surprises and our children know that the Easter Bunny only brings items they can use so we aren’t filling up the landfill with more useless “junk”.

Some great “no junk” Easter Gifts for children include:

  • Spring Outfit
  • Running Shoes
  • Rain Boots
  • Rain Coats
  • Sun Hat or Sunglasses
  • Bathing Suit
  • Art supplies
  • Books
  • Puzzles
  • Deck of Cards
  • Kite
  • Sand Toys
  • Bubbles
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • Gardening kit

Aside from chocolates, what does the Easter Bunny bring to your house?

If you liked this post – you might also want to read my post on DIY Natural Easter Egg Dyes!


Natural Egg Dye {DIY} #Easter

I really enjoy making natural egg dye at Easter with my boys. Of course you might be thinking why make natural dyes when you can buy traditional dye at any store. Well, to keep it simple – I’ll just say we don’t “do” artificial colouring in our house and I’d much rather make my own than buy it! :p 

natural egg dye

DIY Natural Egg Dye

That’s right – since we don’t use artificial dye in our home, we reach for real ingredients to dye our eggs – like blueberries, spinach (pictured above -left), paprika (pictured above -right) and beets. Before we boil our eggs, we usually draw or print on them with a white crayon or sometimes we just leave them plain. Half the fun is decorating them before hand, so I’d encourage you to be creative. Then all you do is boil your favourite veggie, spice or tea in a pot of water, along with your eggs. Adding a tablespoon of white vinegar will help make the colour a little more vibrant, so go ahead and pour some in.

We use all 4 stove burners when we make our natural egg dye - one colour per pot and hang out until the eggs are fully cooked – about 12 minutes. You’ll know when you lift the egg up in the air with a slotted spoon and it dries fairly quickly. Well, that’s what I do, anyways. Either way, when they’re fully cooked we either call it a day or leave the eggs in small bowls inside the fridge for up to an hour with the dye, soaking up a bit more pigment.

Once the natural egg dye finishes doing its magic, simply blot the eggs dry and store them inside the fridge until they are thoroughly chilled. Then crack them open to eat during Easter brunch. Why not give it a try – it’s something different, fun & the best part – chemical-free!

DIY Natural Egg Dye: 

1. Draw on whole eggs with a white crayon (optional) 

2. In separate pots, add your water and vegetables, spices, teas, etc., along with your raw eggs.  

3. Add in a tbsp of white vinegar (optional) 

3. Boil your eggs & natural colourant (food) for about 12 minutes, or until eggs are fully cooked.

4. Allow the eggs to sit in a bowl of the natural dye for up to one hour in the fridge to become more vibrant (optional) OR blot dry the eggs and allow them to cool in the fridge until you are ready to eat them. 

5. Crack open to eat! Enjoy! 

If you liked reading this post, perhaps you’d be interested in reading my article on “No Junk” Easter Gift Ideas for Children!  


Reading Kingdom reading & writing program for children ages 4-10

With numerous homeschooling websites these days, it’s actually pretty difficult to weed through them all, focusing on the best of the  best.  In my crazy long search for educational resources for my eldest (4.5 years old) I happened to have the opportunity to try Reading Kingdom…and boy am I glad I did! 

Reading Kingdom

Reading Kingdom is is an award-winning online program that teaches children ages 4-10 to read and write to a 3rd grade level. Based on the work of Dr. Marion Blank (from Columbia University, one of the world’s top experts on reading and language development), it is a program you surely don’t want to miss out on.

reading kingdom

My 4.5 year old has a lot of fun using the program. And unlike many traditional (cookie cutter) educational-based learning programs, as a parent I am repeatedly reminded not to help him out. This is so the program can assess his own strengths and then his work will be customized to his specific needs. As a mom, I really love that! 

The program is quite engaging for my son, and he will often ask me to let him ‘play’ (complete more lessons) longer than he needs to. Obviously that is saying a lot! ;)

reading kingdom

One feature that I also love is that I receive progress emails from the program, letting me know how my son is doing. As a parent that information is essential in his learning, and I certainly appreciate it! 

While we have taken some time this past month to “un-school” him, I am looking forward to jumping back into the program in the fall.  In fact, I can’t wait! 

Their is a membership fee to use the program, but I promise you it is worth it if you are in search of an engaging, quality reading program for your child. At just $9.99/month, I am so excited about Reading Kingdom and know that you too will love it. So what are you waiting for? Head on over to their website and start your free 30 day trial. You and your child will be grateful you did. Don’t waste your time on cookie-cutter programs that aren’t customized to your child’s needs. Happy learning! 

Want to learn more about Reading Kingdom? Check out their website and connect with Reading Kingdom on Facebook and Twitter too!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.


Gumigem Teething Jewelry – For mom to wear and baby to enjoy! (REVIEW AND DISCOUNT CODE)

I love natural teething remedies, and when you couple natural with something that is also fashionable, well I’m sold. Lately my littlest dude (6 months old) has been teething like crazy! Between his excessive drooling and his constant chewing, I knew he needed something more than just my knuckle to gnaw on. That’s why I am so happy to tell you all about Gumigem – a chewable necklace that I can wear and he can go to town on!

GumiGem

Gumigem recently sent me one of their beautiful Bubba bead necklaces ($29.95) to review.  At first glance I knew we would be friends – not only is it super adorable, but Gumigem’s products are all BPA, PVC, Lead, Latex and Phthalate free. Clearly I was in love from the start…

Here are a few up close pictures that help show you how every bead is individually knotted and each necklace has a safe break-away clasp.

gumigem

Super cute, super safe! gumigem

Not only is my little man getting the relief he needs from chewing, but I know that he is also doing it safely.  The best part is that each bead is almost 3/4 of an inch, so there is a lot of surface area to gnaw on! Long gone are the days when a mom had to worry about their baby hurting themselves on her jewelry!

Here is another picture, showing how stylish this teething necklace is, and how it can go with any one of my outfits!  I sure love versatility :)

gumigem

So in a nutshell – my son loves chewing on it & I love wearing it – making it definitely ‘Organic Mama’ approved!

Save 10% on all orders placed before 8/9/13 using my exclusive discount code: happygumi10 :)

Would you like to know more about Gumigem? Check out their website and visit them on facebook and twitter!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.