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A Fresh Start in a New Year

Posted by on Jan 3, 2018 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, Making Your House a Home | 0 comments

I find myself spending time reflecting this time of year. Moments to step back and take stock of the time that has past, the good and the bad, and to plan for the new year to come. We’ve just experienced Thanksgiving and been cognizant of the things we are thankful for and spent time celebrating our family and friends—and then Christmas came by in full swing. So it’s appropriate to start thinking now of a New Year and a fresh start. In light of the speed with which time is passing, I put together a short list of things to do as you begin the new year. Tips for Planning for a Fresh Start in the New Year 1. Purge Stuff, attitudes, and anything else in your home that no longer brings you happiness. With a new round of...

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How the Vikings Failed to Destroy a Treasure

Posted by on Dec 28, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, History by the Slice | 1 comment

The Vikings had no mercy. In the year 806, Viking invaders descended on the Island of Iona, just off the coast of Scotland, and they slaughtered 68 monks. That’s why the area became known as the Bay of Martyrs. However, those raids are the reason Ireland now has one of the most famous Bibles in all of history—the Book of Kells. After the raid on Iona, the monks fled to Kells in Ireland, where they established a new monastery. And this monastery housed and protected the magnificent Book of Kells. When my wife and I went to Dublin, Ireland, one of my greatest thrills was visiting Trinity College, where we got to see portions of the Book of Kells. This book is the most famous example of an “illuminated Bible.” They’re called “illuminated” because they are heavily decorated with...

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A Christmas Resolution

Posted by on Dec 22, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, From the Heart | 0 comments

“Can we sleep in front of the Christmas tree, Mama?” Their twinkling eyes reveal the anticipation in their hearts this Christmas Eve night. They gather blankets and pillows and snuggle down under the glow of the tree. Just before bed, my husband turns off the lights and the house settles into shadowy silence. It was a good season, but how did Christmas Day come so quickly? When I was a child, the month seemed like a year and the season so simple. Not so as a mom. A hundred “to-do’s” can squeeze out the holiday joy as I rush from one task to the next – shopping, baking, mailing, decorating, caroling, reading, cleaning… Sometimes remembering “the Reason for the season” can seem like just another item on my endless to-do list. If this all sounds too familiar, I invite...

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Share the Warmth of Jesus

Posted by on Dec 6, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, Smarts-n-Crafts | 0 comments

Welcome to Smarts-n-crafts, where you’ll find smart activities to do with your children—no matter what age—and fun craft projects for rainy days or just for giggles. You’ll be provided with step-by-step instructions, a variety of use ideas, approximate time of activity, and an age-tested skill level. Let’s get started! We’ve got just 18 summers to create lots of memories with our loved ones. With gift giving in full swing this month, let’s take the opportunity to share the most important gift of all—Jesus! What you’ll need: Hot Cocoa mix Miniature marshmallows Mini chocolate chips Small glass jars (I used Ball half-pint jars) Twine or Christmas ribbon “Jesus Warms the Heart & Soul” tags (downloadable) Skill level: Little Helping Hands, ages 2-5: Smaller hands will enjoy scooping the hot cocoa mix into the jars, along with the chocolate chips and...

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Displaying Thankfulness with a Pumpkin

Posted by on Nov 17, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, Smarts-n-Crafts | 0 comments

Welcome to Smarts-n-crafts, where you’ll find smart activities to do with your children—no matter what age—and fun craft projects for rainy days or just for giggles. You’ll be provided with step-by-step instructions, a variety of use ideas, approximate time of activity, and an age-tested skill level. Let’s get started! We’ve got just 18 summers to create lots of memories with our loved ones. This month, our focus shifts to people and things we’re thankful for as we celebrate Thanksgiving on November 23rd.  Today, we’ll create a simple but meaningful centerpiece for our holiday table that’s sure to be a hit with friends and family who are gathered around our table. What you’ll need: One or more pumpkins (try to find ones with a smooth skin) Two Sharpies, medium point Bible Skill level: Little Helping Hands, ages 2-5: Smaller hands...

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Decorate Me Thankful

Posted by on Nov 14, 2017 in A HAPPY HOME, Blog, Making Your House a Home | 0 comments

Thanksgiving Day is just around the corner and I’m feeling sentimental. Feeling all the thankful feels of this holiday season. Thanksgiving, above all other holidays, gently reminds us to count our blessings. And, so…I write on chalk boards, on plates propped on easels or on dry erase boards angled in corners of rooms. I write words like:   Blessed! Thankful! Welcome, Thankful Hearts! Thankfulness Welcomed Here! Be Thankful! Give Thanks! My Top 2017 Thanksgiving Creative Ideas Are: Pretty Thanksgiving table runners. Scatter small picture frames along your table with pictures of those you are thankful for this year. This is also a great way to remember those who cannot be with you for some reason or another—military duty, death, etc…. Scatter colorful leaves all about and votive candles, too. Print Scripture verses about being thankful in all things and...

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