Little Passports ~ SALE

We will begin our adventure with Little Passports after the new year.  Our suitcase has arrived and our first country is in the mail.  Little Passports

They currently have an awesome deal, which is the cheapest I have seen it {monthly}.  I got ours for a little over $10 per month, this deal breaks it down to 8.25 per month ~ $99 total, which is over $32 off!  You have to pay for the entire year upfront {called the Globetrotter Subscription} to get the deal AND use coupon code: LPGLOBE. Be sure to double check your order.  I put in a mock order to show you what the shopping cart should look like when you place the order if you want this particular deal, you enter the coupon code AFTER this!


The coupon expires TONIGHT Dec. 7, 2011 at midnight PST. It’s a fast deal!

If you don’t want to pay for the year upfront, or if you missed the above coupon deadline, you can use the following coupon code: WORLD10 to get 10% off of any order.  That’s what we used and got the recurring month to month subscription, meaning they charge me when they send it. We decided to give Little Passports a try after hearing great things about it from Jolanthe

They also had this advertised, which is good news!


~yes these are affiliate links, thank you if you use them!!!!

12 Days of Christmas ~ Christmas Fun Notebooks

I made my children some Christmas Fun Notebooks for them to work through over the next few weeks.  The idea stemmed from Ladybug’s Tot Time Notebook, but I thought the boys might like a special notebook too and I was right! Christmas Activity Notebooks

I filled each child’s notebook {1/2” 3 ring binder} with fun activities based on their skill level and interests. I use heavy weight sheet protectors and only Expo dry erase markers and everything erases with very little effort-even Ladybug can erase her own notebook.  I made a pdf file of the image on the cover in various stocking colors for you to download if you’d like to use it also!  Just pick a color for each child, print and write in their name {or have the child write their own name}.

Download Stocking Covers here!

Ladybug’s has the A-Z Christmas sheets, and a few pages from the Nativity Printable Pack

Christmas Activity Notebooks

Christmas Activity Notebooks

I printed loads of fun worksheets from Activity Village for Krash and Pac Man, also some from Family Fun.  The boys love mazes so many of those! You can see many of the sheets I printed pinned on my Christmas pinterest board!

Here’s a very easy place to gather free Christmas printables for your notebooks…



Specifically for Krash, I prepared a few of the wonderful games from Walking by the Way’s holiday game packs.  I put them in his notebook so he can flip through and choose one for us to play!  He also has several sheets form the Nativity Printable Pack.Christmas Activity Notebooks

These notebooks have gone over VERY well, and took little effort to create.  I may be using this concept more with themes in the future for the little 2.  Much cheaper than laminating and printing over and over again!


Christmas Gifts for Jesus


As much as it was to share gift ideas for tots, preschoolers, boys, and moms…it is even more fun to share gift ideas for JESUS!  It is HIS birthday after all!  Recently I read a book called, Christmas Is Not Your Birthday, and it was an awesome reminder of several key points.  My husband and I both read it and agreed it was a simple book with many powerful messages that we need to be reminded of year after year.

There are many ways to give gifts to Jesus this year, many families have some wonderful traditions.  In this post I am going to share a few tangible ways you can give to “the least of these” and in turn give to HIM.

35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’

~Matthew 25:35-40

This year I am honored to support The Mercy House, which was founded by Kristen Welch from We Are That Family. image I met Kristen at Relevant and also purchased this awesome t-shirt for myself, and also one as a Christmas gift.  You can buy this shirt here, for yourself or for a gift.  imageDon’t need a shirt?  They have many other products that are hand made by the girls who are living in The Mercy House!  There are so many fabulous products that you can give as gifts while also giving to this amazing ministry!

We have sponsored a child through Compassion for over 10 years and we recently added another little girl as our “child” also!  I am sure many of you have a sponsored child or children also, but did you know that Compassion also has a Gifts of Compassion gift catalog?  You can see it here and see the many giving options. 


We personally do a majority of our Jesus gift shopping through the World Vision Gift Catalog

imageWe sponsor a child through World Vision also, and always enjoy the impact this catalog has on our family.  It is a yearly tradition for our family now.


This year we gave to the Maximum Impact Fund and chose a few tangible gifts to give along with a card to the recipient telling them all about their gift.  A few we purchased this year: The Hole in Our Gospel, The Little Drummer Boy DVD, a toy race car, and The Story CD.


Another awesome ministry we join with is Samaritan’s Purse. You can see the Samaritan’s Purse Gift Catalog here.image

Another wonderful ministry I learned about this year while at Relevant is One Verse. This year you can give someone the gift of translating a Bible verse into another language that needs the Word desperately!image

If you aren’t familiar with this ministry, please watch this amazing video which we were shown at Relevant and I also shared with my boys who were greatly affected by seeing other children watch the story of Jesus for the first time.IMG_7061

I know there are many, MANY more ministries and options for giving to Jesus this Christmas.  These are just a few that we have experience with. Merry CHRISTmas!!!


I am participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…

12 Days of Christmas ~ Christmas Book Printables

We have a few favorite Christmas books, I shared 10 of them here. Reading is one of our favorite things, especially at Christmas time when these wonderful books come out of hiding for their special month on display!  I chose a few of our favorite books and made some story prop printables to use in retelling and while reading.  My kids, all 3 of them, love when we use story props.

Here are the 3 books I chose, you can click on them to see more about each on Amazon  Under each book are the story props included in each set, you’ll need to download the pdf files here on the website.  I used real photos when possible, especially of animals!


Bear Stays Up Bookimage


One Baby Jesus Bookimage


My Merry Christmas Bookimage

You can use any printables from other printable packs as story props too, just print out the 3 part card pages and trim around the images.  Most of Homeschool Creation’s packs have a specific book to go along!

Download the Story Props for these 3 Christmas books here!


I am participating in a 12 Days of Christmas blogging series along with 7 other bloggers, see more 12 Days of Christmas posts using the links below…

Tot School ~ Letter Xx

~Ladybug is currently 31.5 months old~



Tot School Printables X is for Xylophone

Letter: Xx

Object: Xylophone

Vocabulary Development Theme: Instruments

Tot Book Extension: Little Einsteins

You can find the printables for this unit here on the Tot School Printables webpage.

I can’t believe we are so close to the end of Tot School Printables!  It is coming at a perfect time.  She still likes them, but not as much as she did in the beginning.  She is ready for something new.  We will be completing the units before the new year and starting something fresh in January when we return from Christmas break! I will be writing a post soon to share what my plans are, I just haven’t had the time yet!

We made play dough letters…IMG_7527

Coloring xylophones…IMG_7531

Putting stickers on the dot-paint sheet…IMG_7646

Letter Xx printables here!

Fun Books & Toys for this unit here!Tot School Printables Toys and Books Letter X

The theme of instruments made me think of one of Ladybug’s favorite shows, Little Einsteins.  I created some extra activities for her, which as you will see she LOVED! Download the Little Einsteins Tot Book for free here!

Little Einsteins Tot Book

She loved the mini book!IMG_7534

We slipped the dot paint sheets into sheet protectors and she squished play dough balls on the dots.IMG_7564

Then she asked to write their names.  Her tracing seriously amazes me.  Her simple desire to trace amazes me to be honest!IMG_7570

We made the shapes with dough too…IMG_7574

Then she dot painted a few of them…IMG_7576

We used dot stickers on some too!IMG_7580

She worked on her rocket colors book over a period of several days.  The other printables also came out numerous times!IMG_7642

Tot-Trays26222222222222   Learning-Toys_thumb2_thumb_thumb_thu[2]

I remembered to take a photo of her shelves this week!  Nothing too great, but here they are……IMG_7512

Didn’t take many action shots, but got this one of her stringing her beads!IMG_7653

She loves that Laura Carrot sings.  This is the same manger in the book, The Stable that Bob Built-which she is loving right now!IMG_7710

The instrument box was a hit!  One day we turned on our Laurie Berkner DVD for some movement!  She was shaking her Boca Beth Egg Shakers to the music!IMG_7655

Her Tot Time Notebook {which has only ABC sheets in it right now} gets filled in almost daily-she gravitates towards it on her own and will often sit and work through every single page!IMG_7515

The new Play Dough Box has been a HUGE hit.  She has asked for it daily, almost to an excessive point!IMG_7557

We have been reading a few gingerbread books and there are gingerbread cutters in the box…which has provided TONS of fun for her and the boys!IMG_7694

Moms-Favorite_thumb2_thumb_thumb_thu[1]One night when the boys were at church with Daddy, she begged me to do another Truth in the Tinsel bag.  Instead, we painted another crown craft, and then she didn’t want to stop, so we kept on painting!IMG_7590…and painting…IMG_7595

…and painting!IMG_7601

After a few normal painted sheets, she decided to turn it into finger paint {with my approval}…IMG_7603

IMG_7613She LOVED it!  IMG_7634

Remember last time she painted and painted her arms?  She was starting to do it again and I decided to put the limit on her this time and said just her hands.IMG_7627This was her sorrowful response.  The girl does not like to be told NO!  She listened though, very sadly {and a bit loudly}.IMG_7639

We had such a fun time together, since it was mostly giggles and smiles!  The tears only lasted a few minutes!