Family Wall Gallery Printables

| Bliss, Decor, DIYs

If you follow me on instagram you know I recently replaced my gallery wall art. It was about time since it was all Christmas-themed.

I still loved the black and white with the gold. I created this Fruit of the Spirit print. I’ve seen a lot of “Family Rules” artwork but I like this reminder better. It’s for me as much as it is for the kids (especially the “patience” part). Alongside that I created a simple family crest with our four intials.

New art...thought it was time to replace the Christmas stuff

I also created a “Family” definition print and a piece with our geographical coordinates.


Want them for your own?

Download the Family Definition Print

Download the Fruit of the Spirit

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Celebrating Valentine’s Day with Kids

| Parties

A mommy friend recently mentioned that the average Valentine’s spending for a married couple is something like $35. That’s probably about right since we will be spending the holiday at home with carry out because two kids at a restaurant on Valentine’s Day = the least relaxing thing ever. But they sure are cute (this year’s school photos turned out much better than last year’s). Big brother   School picture

Both boys had a Valentine exchange at school so I stocked up on Dollar Store stickers and stamps for their classmates – I got everything for both classes for $5.

I also made some personalized cookies.

2015-02-11 15.09.26 copy


I don’t have as much time to bake as I used to but I like to still make these for special occasions. The most time consuming part is flooding them…

Evan got in on the decorating too. Noah didn’t do any decorating but he did do some taste testing.

"Cookie-ing" for E's party tomorrow

He made my husband a card that was going to be a “surprise” but he didn’t really understand the part about not telling Daddy so it would actually be a surprise and wanted to give it to him the moment he walked thru the door. :) It may be less “romantic” to celebrate with kids but it’s just as much fun.

Here are some other fun ways to celebrate with kids.

Raisin Valentines

Raisin Treat Boxes

Valentine's Day Pink Ombre Cake

Pink Ombre Cake

Toddler Coloring Card with Insert

Toddler Coloring Card

Hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

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Best Apps for Ages 2-4

| Mommy Life

I thought I’d written about this before but apparently not. Since some screentime is inevitable when I’m working and NO ONE is napping, I’m always looking for recommendations from other moms on apps they use with their kids. So here is a collection of MY personal picks for the best apps for Toddlers/Preschoolers.

1. Endless Alphabet

Synopsis: This one is recommended all over the place but it’s truly phenomenal. Basically it gives a word and a definition then has your child “spell” the word (matching letters to their spaces) while pronouncing the letter sound. Then it gives the definition and shows a short animation of the definition. The words are interesting and diverse and it’s extremely well animated.

Cost: $6.99. I was lucky enough to download it when it was free (about 2 years ago). I personally hate when apps aren’t free to try before you buy and unfortunately this one no longer is BUT I think it’s well worth the cost. My 3 year old started using it around 2 and still uses it. Plus they occasionally add new words so it doesn’t get redundant.

Links:  App Store ($6.99, Full access)  |  Google Play (Free Trial, $5.99 full access)

Also available for older children (my 3 year old does this one too) is Endless Reader which does the same thing with full words (and also has lowercase letters)

Links:  App Store (Free Trial – $4.99+ for add’l words)  |  Google Play (Free Trial – $4.99+ for add’l words)

2. Endless Numbers

Synopsis: Similar to Endless Alphabet this encourages counting along with number recognition. Each number will have some counting sequence (by ones, twos, fives etc) then include an equation. It doesn’t necessarily teach addition but it does help preschoolers begin to recognize numbers to 100.

Cost: Free. The first 5 numbers are free to try, then you can purchase 6-25 or 6-100 depending on your child’s interest.

Links:  App Store ($4.99+ for add’l numbers)  |  Not available for Android

3. Kids Maps U.S. Maps Puzzle

Synopsis: This interactive puzzle of the United States either identifies the state capital or a fun fact about each state as it appears. It doesn’t have “levels” or a way for it to get more difficult but the redundancy of doing the puzzle helps the information stick. My 3 year old can name about 21 states on a blank U.S. map and usually remembers the fact about them.

Cost: $1.99

Links:  App Store | Play Store

4. My Little Phonics Speller Workbook

Synopsis: This writing app provides kids with a “path” to follow to create both uppercase and lowercase letters. The nice part is that when they complete a letter the template disappears and you can see their tracing path so you can see how they actually wrote each letter.

Cost: Free. $1.99 removes ads.

Links:  App Store | Not Available for Android

5. Bebop Blox

Synopsis: This game is similar to tangrams. It has several puzzles that can be created with blocks. When the puzzle is completed it animates the image. It’s entertaining but a bit repetitive.

Cost: $1.99

Links:  App Store | Not Available for Android

6. Lego Juniors Create and Cruise

Synopsis: This is one of our “fun” games. Basically it lets you build Lego cars and collect coins and earn additional pieces. Since my 3 year old loves building it’s a good choice for him.

Cost: Free.

Links:  App Store | Play Store

7. Lazoo Squiggles

Synopsis: An interactive drawing game animates scribbles after prompting kids to draw certain items (a beard, hair, etc). It’s a unique twist on typical drawing apps since different drawings animate differently.

Cost: Free

Links:  App Store | Not Available for Android

8. Hello Crayons

Synopsis: This is our basic drawing app. It includes crayons, markers and paints. Kids can either color on a blank page or on several provided coloring pages.

Cost: Free

Links:  App Store | Play Store

9. Easy-Bake Treats

Synopsis: Bake cupcakes, cookies, cakes, pizza and more. Your child can decorate then eat their creations. They can even add candles then “blow” them out. There’s even a grey oven for the little fellows. My 3 year old loves this for fun playtime…plus no cavities from virtual treats!

Cost: Free

Links:  App Store | Not Available for Android

10. Color Band

Synopsis: “Color” with musical instruments then wave your hand or touch the screen to play them. Entertaining though not necessarily educational.

Cost: Free (additional “instrument” sets cost $0.99 each)

Link:  App Store | Not Available for Android

11. My Baby Drum | My Baby Keyboard

Synopsis: These are best for my 2 year old, mostly for quick entertainment (like in a waiting room or the carpool line). Simple musical apps.

Cost: Free. Ads are included but easily blocked with Guided Access.

Baby Piano – App Store | Baby Drums – App Store
Baby Piano – Play Store | Baby Drums – Play Store




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