DIY Photo Booth for Kids

workers

As the days get colder, your children are much less likely to want to play outside.  So what do you do on these frigid inside days to ward off cabin fever?

One of the first wintry days this year, I constructed a photo booth in the daycare room.  The kids loved it!  They would have spent hours letting me take pictures of them with various props.  Below are instructions on how to keep your own rambunctious little ones entertained.

DIY Photo Booth

Supplies

  • Plastic tablecloth (or other large piece of material, such as a bed sheet)
  • Masking tape
  • Props (these could be purchased or made.  I simply printed pictures from online, colored them, and had them laminated.  I taped them to popsicle sticks, and–voila!–instant props)
  • Camera

props

Directions:

  • Hang tablecloth on flat wall using masking tape
  • Allow kids to choose props and have fun
  • Take pictures!

kkreger

austinsummer

Top Ten Tuesday: Give Thanks

pumpkins

I know that it is cliché to list ten things for which I am thankful the week of Thanksgiving.

I’m sorry, but I am going to be that trite individual.

Paul wrote in I Thessalonians 5:18, “In all things, give thanks….”  I think that it is important to notice that he said, “In all things…” not “For all things….”  No matter what happens in life, there are some things for which we can always be thankful.

Ten Things for Which I can Always be Thankful

1. Jesus Christ has saved me and forgiven me for my sins.

2. My family loves me.

3. I am not short.

4. Oatmeal exists.

5. God’s mercies are new every morning.

6. I had an awesome childhood.

7. High heels come in every color imaginable.

8. Seasons change.

9. There are calendars to help me keep everything straight.

10.  The Holy Spirit acts as our Comforter and Intercessor.

 

Why are you thankful?

First Blogiversary

candle1

Taking one’s chances is like taking a bath, because sometimes you end up feeling comfortable and warm, and sometimes there is something terrible lurking around that you cannot see until it is too late and you can do nothing else but scream and cling to a plastic duck.
– Lemony Snicket

When I started this blog last year, I was definitely taking a chance.  To be honest, I am not quite sure why I started blogging.  I had thought about it for months–hypothesizing titles, planning posts, and researching the merits of blogging (what can I say? I deliberate everything!).  Then, November 24, I opened WordPress and made a site.

In March, I almost deleted this blog.  It been a few months since my last post, and I had no intentions of restarting my writing.  However, something stopped me from clicking the final “Delete” button.  A month later, I resumed blogging.  Since then, this baby has grown!  I absolutely love blogging, and I probably spend more time working on this blog than I should.  Even if I get nothing out of blogging other than sheer enjoyment, the risk has paid off.

Thank you for sharing in my nine lives :)

1candle

Now who wants cupcakes?

Before we get to the recipe, I have a disclaimer: you cannot judge these cupcakes until they are completely done.  I am not going to tell you that you can’t taste test the batter, but you cannot form an opinion of them until you have eaten a frozen cupcake.  The freezing is the key step to making these irresistible!

Strawberry Cheesecake Bites*

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup cottage cheese
  • 2/3 cup strawberry yogurt
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbs. flour of choice
  • 1/2 tbs. sugar (or more, if desired)
  • 2 whole eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberry halves

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Combine cottage cheese, yogurt, vanilla, flour, and sugar in a bowl and stir until smooth
  • Add the eggs and stir with a fork until everything is combined
  • Gently mix in the frozen strawberry halves
  • Line a 12-count muffin pan with  cupcake liners
  • Evenly distribute batter between the 12 wells
  • Bake approximately 30 minutes, checking regularly to avoid overcooking
  • Let cool in the pan, then place the cupcakes in the freezer for several hours
  • Eat and enjoy!

candle

*Recipe adapted from Blogilates.

Am I Indecisive?

decide

But if any of you needs wisdom, you should ask God for it.  He is generous to everyone and will give you wisdom without criticizing you.

- James 1:5 (NCV)

I am not certain, but I am pretty sure that I might be considered indecisive–maybe.  It’s so bad that I cannot pick out an outfit in the morning.  I have to plan my clothes weeks in advance because I would spend half of my morning just trying to decide if I should wear gray slacks or a black skirt.  Don’t even get me started on the decision of how to do my hair.  It gets stressful.

Needless to say, there are times in my life that I “lack wisdom.”  When I do finally make a decision, I often choose what is best in my own carnal mind.  However, James 1:5 gives us a great promise:  God generously gives wisdom to those who simply ask for it.  As we continue reading through James, we see that God’s wisdom is “pure, peaceful, [and] gentle” (James 3:17).  This fair, honest wisdom stands in stark contrast to man’s “jealous, selfish” wisdom (James 3:15).

So is it really that easy?  Is asking all it takes?  The plain answer is: YES!  You see, we already have the wisdom available to us.  According to Psalm 19:7, “The testimony of the Lord is perfect, making simple people wise.”  God’s Word is the inspired source of wisdom.  We need look no further.

James 1:6 continues, “but when you ask God, you must believe and not doubt.”  God is not indecisive.  Therefore, we should be bold when we ask for wisdom.  Col. 2:3 says that “all the treasures of wisdom…are safely kept” in God.  He knows what is best, and He is more than willing to impart that knowledge to His children.

Are you struggling to make a decision today?  Confidently ask God for wisdom and seek His Word; “He will direct your paths” (Prov. 3:6).

I’ve Got Sunshine

bananaupsidedown

When you are away from those you love, a piece of mail can make all the difference.  Even if you are able to talk to friends and family on the phone, via email, or using social media, there is still something special about receiving a thoughtful, tangible message in your physical mailbox.  One day when I checked my school mailbox, I was delighted to find an envelope with my house as the return address.  Upon opening it, I found a small pile of puzzle pieces.  I quickly put the puzzle together to read a verse that my mom had written down for me: “I cease not to pray for you.”  I taped the puzzle together and put it on display in my dorm room as a reminder that my family loves me and is praying for me.

letter

When skies are gray, bring your own sunshine.  Eat on a yellow plate.  Pick radiant flowers.  Make bright foods.  Read the cheery notes from your loved ones.

Upside Down Banana Mug Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana (1/2 mashed, 1/2 sliced)
  • 1/4 cup oatmeal
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • splash of vanilla almond milk

Directions:

  • In a small bowl, combine mashed banana, cinnamon, oatmeal, and milk
  • Spray a mug with nonstick spray
  • Line the bottom of the mug with sliced banana
  • Cover the sliced banana with the oatmeal mixture
  • Microwave on high 1 – 1.5 minutes
  • Let cool 1 minute
  • Place a plate upside-down over the mug and flip the cake onto the plate
  • Eat and enjoy!

upsidedown

What letters have meant the most to you over the years?

DIY Laptop Skin

laptop

When I bought my laptop in November 2012, price was my main concern, not appearance.  I must admit, though, I am a lover of all things girly, and my plain black laptop announcing the computer’s brand did not fit my personality at all.  For less than $1 and a few minutes, I made my laptop a unique Kat creation.

DIY Laptop Skin

Supplies:

  • Scissors (on hand)
  • Ruler (on hand)
  • Contact paper (on hand or $1 for a roll)
    • Total: Free – $1

Directions:

  • Measure the area of your laptop which you plan to cover with contact paper.  I recommend leaving a small border around the outside of your laptop lid.  Otherwise, the contact paper will easily peel off.
  • Mark the contact paper to fit the measured dimensions and cut.
  • Peel back one corner of the contact paper to reveal the adhesive side.  stick this corner on its desired location on the laptop.
  • Slowly, simultaneously peel off the rest of the contact paper’s backing and press the contact paper to the laptop lid with the ruler.  This will smooth the paper and prevent air bubbles.
  • Use the ruler to rub out any remaining air bubbles.
  • Show off your personalized, stylish new laptop lid!