Inspirational and fun Christmas Advent Calendar for Kids

My two year old loves Curious George and on the Christmas episodic the man in the yellow hat makes a count down to Christmas for George. I instantly loved the idea, then while scrolling through Instagram I saw small shop mom boss Stephanie Hathaway post about her her freebie of Christmas flower themed advent calendar tags she designed. Stephanie is a fellow homeschool mom who creates these amazing lessons and bundles for your home. I recently bought her  Daily rhythm bundle and weather bundle to use for the  boys chore charts and morning lessons! Cant wait to share that with you soon.

Anyway Stephanie had an awesome idea that instead of a gift advent calendar she made more of an inspirational advent calendar using the beautiful cards she had made. She simply printed out the cards and on the back wrote something inspirational for her son on the back! So for our advent calendar I wanted to combine the gift calendar and non-gift calendar.

Here is what I came up with. 

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  1. I printed and cut out Stephanie’s cards that can found in her freebie section in the link below.

https://www.stephaniehathawaydesigns.com/freeprintables/christmas-advent-freebies

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2. I wrote an inspirational thing to say to my boys OR something Christmas themed for us to actually do! I took events from our printable Christmas bucket list! You can find that in this post.

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3. For the little baggy behind the card I just simply put a piece of chocolate for each of the boys inside and pinned it to some twine to hang on our wall!

4. I ended using some tiny ornaments and a gold star we had bought last year from Walmart for a little tree the boys decorated to hang with the calendar for a finishing look.

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So far this Advent Calendar is perfect for the boys to see how many days left till Christmas AND to see how much we love them and how proud we are of them each day.

Christmas Bucket List

The fall season is almost over, that means Christmas is right around the corner and if you’re like me you have already started decorating for the holidays and playing the most wonderful music ever. So this year I wan to do some of the extra Holiday / Winter type activities with the whole family so I made a list and printed it off to hang on our fridge. Each one we get to do I’ll have one the boys check it off!  I made this list printable for you all too! I’m going to update which things we check off over on our Instagram . Fingers crossed we get to do each one, but living in Florida the snow activities will be a challenge to complete.

Click on the link below to download our Christmas bucket list!

Christmas Bucket List

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30 Weeks with Madeline

Finally able to update on our little bundle of joy coming this January. The past few weeks have been crazy, I have been having some breathing problems doing about anything. My doctor referred us to a cardiologist which had me do a Echo cardiogram and a heart monitor for 24 hours to find out I have a mild case of Cardiomegaly which leads to shortness of breath and hopefully will be gone after I have Madeline. . I’ve also been having some family emergency’s going on, So updating on here as been on the back burner.
Highlights: 
  • Decorating her room and getting everything ready! 
  • Madeline is looking great on Ultrasound! 
  • Her Heartbeat is strong! 
Lowlights:
  • Restless legs when I’m trying to sleep is the worst
  • Having Braxton Hicks almost daily. 
  • Cardiologist says I have Cardiomegaly (Enlargement of the heart) 
Weight Gain/Loss:  13 weeks: 170 17 weeks: 165  27 weeks: 175 30 weeks: 180
Sleep: Wake up constantly
Best Moment This Week: 
Finally got into Dr. Smith which is the Doctor I had with the boys and I feel so much more at ease!
Movement: Madeline has been kicking me like crazy right before bed.
Food Cravings: Sweet things like fruit.
What I Miss: Having any kind of energy.
Mood: Emotional and cranky
Upcoming Appointments/Events: Coming up I have start going to the doctor every 2 weeks starting the 18th. We have a lot of Events going on this month with Bentley’s  birthday and were hosting a Friendsgiving dinner and hosting Thanksgiving  this year.

What I look forward to:  This whole month of fun and family time!

Thanks for reading
Jessica

DIY Madeline Book Banner

Were finally getting our girl, and I have always adored the name Madeline from the books as a child. When James agreed to the name I was ecstatic! Unfortunately there is not a lot of Madeline rooms out there that I could find. Finding some decor ideas was a bit of a challenge, I did however see a recent picture of someone who was selling a vintage book banner and it gave me an idea for her room! I previously had an old ripped up Madeline Book and just never felt the will to throw it away.

What you will need:

Madeline Book

Scissors

Pencil

Whole punch

Twine or ribbon

Directions:

1. Carefully take all the pages, and pick out the pages that you feel will look best!

2. I decided to cut down the pages to all one size , I chose a page that was the perfect size I had in mind and use it as a template to cut out the rest of the pages down to its size.

3. After you have traced and cut, Put the pages in desired order that looks best to you! I put mine in semi order what how the book went.

4. Then take the whole punch a place one whole on either side of a page at the top.

5. Take your twine or ribbon a feed it through the whole punches wholes in desired order you had laid out.

6. Hang up the banner and enjoy!

Honestly super simple project, and it’s the perfect fit for a Madeline inspired nursery, or any book inspired nursery.

One more to adore!

The Bindscheattel family has some exciting news! If you are follow our Instagram or Facebook page, you are already caught up with our great news.

So to get you all caught up, In January of 2020 we are expecting another little Bindscheattel to arrive! I’m currently 17 weeks and this has been the worst pregnancy, between the sickness and loss of energy, it has been a big difference from the last two. So like I did with Leo, I’m going to do updates every few weeks on how everything is going with Baby! This is also a great way to document everything going on for the future!

Highlights: 
  • Found out the gender! 
  • Baby is looking great on Ultrasound! 
  • Heartbeat is strong! 
Lowlights:
  • Haven’t had an appetite 
  • Barely getting sleep
  • Doctor is sending me to a Cardiologist for breathing troubles.  
Weight Gain/Loss:  13 weeks: 170 17 weeks: 165
Sleep: Wake up constantly
Best Moment This Week: 
Finally got into Dr. Smith which is the Doctor I had with the boys and I feel so much more at ease!
Movement: Haven’t felt any movement yet.
Food Cravings: Nothing
What I Miss: Having any kind of energy.
Mood: Emotional
Upcoming Appointments/Events: Coming up I have to get a lot of blood work done, and a few ultra sounds to see why I’m having back pain and to see how the baby is developing.

What I look forward to:  Hopefully getting some energy back.

Thanks for reading
Jessica

10 Amazing Homeschool field trips to go to in Florida

One of the best parts about homeschooling is the endless amounts of times you can take your kids on a “Field Trip”. Going out of town and on vacation? Turn one of multiple days “Field Trips days”. Florida has a lot of great places to take the kids and learn something new! Today I wanted to share with you 10 amazing places to take your homeschooler in Florida!

U.S Air Force Armament Museum

Located in Okaloosa County Right off of Eglin Airforce base this museum has planes and I don’t mean one or two, the parking lot is surrounded by all sorts of Military Planes. Admission is free and donations are always welcome. Both my boys had a blast here, its a great place to show the kids what our MIlitary does. We sat down at the picnic table and did a history lesson!

Pioneer Florida Museum

Teaching the kids about the Civil War? If you go here on Civil War Day you can see an awesome Civil War reenactment, you also can learn about how things used to be during the Civil war, see Pasco’s first “School Bus” visit beautiful old homes, a schoolhouse and more! Admission varies from $5 for students to $10 for Adults.

Tampa International Airport

I recently found out the TIA gives guided tours / educational programs for children of all ages! Have a co-op group and have kids who love Airplanes? Contact them to set up a tour! This is definitely on our bucket list!

Full Moon Honey

Learn all about how bees work and make honey here at Full Moon! What started as a way to help their daughter get over a fear of insects turned into a love of bees!

Glazer Children’s Museum

We are planning on going here for our next field trip! A hands-on place JUST for kids! Learn about being a Firefighter, Police Man, Store Clerk and so much more! There is so much for kids to do Build stuff, get into stuff, and even destroy stuff! EVERYTHING is kid oriented!

Kennedy Space Center

Who doesn’t love space right? One of the must-sees in my opinion for kids is the Space Center, While it is more on the expensive side ranging from $47 to $57 per person you can learn so much! Take a tour to see old rockets and shuttles, learn more about NASA  the list goes on and on. We plan on going here after we have finished our Good and the Beautiful Space lesson. Call and see what offers they might have going on or see if they give discounts to homeschool groups/ Families!

Tallahassee Automobile Museum

Have a child that loves cars ( Leo is obsessed with them right now ) this museum is geared all towards old and new Automobiles! Admission varies from $8 to $17.50! They also sometimes have a cool event going on, a great way to learn about some History!

Florida Aquarium 

This one is definitely a must! Learning about Marine life? This is one of the best Aquariums in North America. They even have programs just for homeschoolers where you can go each month and learn something new from scientist or people who work at the Aquarium. Dive in and fall in love with over 8.000 different animals and plats throughout the whole area!

MOSI

Another awesome place that has homeschool programs, each month is a new theme and is really hands on! If you want to go for a day MOSI is a science Museum just for kids, they have some fun exhibits, rope course and so much more! Admission starts at $7.95 for kids up to $12.95 for adults.

Walt Disney World

I know what you are thinking, “how can Disneyworld be educational for homeschoolers?” but stay with me here, Disney has some awesome places to learn about some cool stuff and plus Disney is amazing! Go visit all the animals at Animal Kingdom, go to Epcot during the Flower and Garden Festival and learn all about the beautiful flowers! Come back and see my next post on great tips for a day of homeschooling at Disney!

There are so many more great places for a field trip for your homeschooler! Like State Parks, Beaches, Gardens, and Farms here in Florida! We would love to hear if you have been to any of these places or have been to somewhere else that wasn’t on this list!  Leave a comment below and tell us!

 

 

New Family Addition!

Hello everyone! Today I’m excited to tell you about the new addition we made to our family!

Meet Waffles! 

Waffles is a Lionshead Dwarf Rabbit! We do not know if Waffles is a boy or girl just yet, which we will be bringing Waffles to the vet very soon to find out and to possibly get him or her fixed.

Fun Fact: Did you know that Bunnies really shouldn’t have a lot of carrots? They are high in sugar and really are not good for their digestion! Bugs Bunny fooled me!

Having a Bunny is a 10-year commitment and they are very high maintenance! So please make sure you do A LOT of research before you get a bunny of any kind! The boys have been helping me every day, clean his home and feed him! He does live inside, and roams throughout the house during the day!

Honestly, Waffles is the perfect fit for our little family! Does anyone else have a bunny? Let us know down in the comments!

DIY Harry Potter Christmas Tree

Hey Witches, Wizards, and Muggles! The world of Harry Potter is so magical, and what better time to make some magic then Christmas time? We had an extra old White Christmas tree from when we lived in our apartment a few years ago. Our main tree is Disney themed and I thought why not have a Harry Potter themed Christmas tree as well? I wanted to share with you how I made our “Pottertree!” It’s extremely easy and fun to make!

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Here’s what you’ll need:

  •  White Christmas Tree
  • Rust-oleum “Navy Blue” Spray paint
  • Rust-oleum “Marigold” (Yellow) Spray paint
  • Rust-oleum “Claret Wine ” (Red) Spray paint
  • Rust-oleum ” Hunter-Green” Spray paint
  • Protective gloves

*Tip: Whatever houses are going to be at the bottom make sure to get at least one more can of each.

Also, Don’t forget some awesome Harry Potter Christmas Tree ornaments and tree toppers to go with it!

Here’s What to Do:

Make sure to get the House colors, we used Ros-oleum, it was about $4 a can and you can get it at Walmart.  We matched as close as we could. Don’t forget depending on how large your tree is you may need more spray paint to cover the sections.

If your tree is pre-lit like ours, wrap each light with blue painters tape. Yes, it’s time-consuming.

Figure out the way to you want your House colors on the tree. Being a Hufflepuff I put Yellow on top, then green for my Husbands house (Slytherin) then Gryffindor, and last is Ravenclaw which is Blue.

Then separate the tree into four sections for each house.

My tip is, start spraying from the top then move down till you get to the bottom, section by section so that if the paint were to drip it could be covered up by the next color.

Let each section dry for at least 20 minutes in between.

After applying each color let it dry overnight just to make sure. Then pull off the painter’s tape if you had a pre-lit tree the next day and decorate! We found the cute doe at Walmart as well for $15!

That is basically it!  Decorate it however you like, we are going to be adding some handmade Potter ornaments and some House scarfs as well! We hope you enjoyed and make your own Harry Potter tree!

Homeschool Room on a Budget

When I first even thought about homeschooling Bentley I immediately thought I needed an epic amazing top notch homeschool room. I looked up homeschool room ideas every day for a week. I watched mostly Vlogs of Angela from This Gathered Nest and a few others on how they set up their rooms or spaces. Obviously, something I noticed is that nothing was perfect, and every homeschool space was different. Your homeschool space doesn’t have to be the best it just needs to work for your family. You can use whatever space is open around the house, the dining room table, a spare bedroom, or even the floor if that’s what you want. It is your space to enjoy and do what you want to do with what you have.

We had an extra front room in our house that we dedicated to homeschool. I wanted a space just for school where Bentley could really focus and not watch tv and listen to what is actually going on. I just wanted to show you guys that you can have a great homeschool space without breaking the bank!

That small tote is from the Dollar Tree that I used for Easter one year and didn’t want to waste it, holds our daily workbooks. Also, all of our books are from the library! I could never stress enough about how the library is honestly your best friend, saves such a great deal of money by borrowing the books instead of buying them. If you love a certain book then you can buy it and add it to your bookshelf, It’s a great way to weed out some books the kids just aren’t feeling into.

Whiteboard

We bought our whiteboard at lowes for maybe $15, it isn’t magnetic but works perfectly! You can get a larger size as well and ask them to cut it for you.

Shelves 

Our cubed organizer is from Walmart along with the Fabric organizers but I found similar ones on Amazon as well. Just click here.  I keep all of Bentley’s curriculum other on top or in the fabric organizers, along with all of the extra supplies like flashcards, Manipulatives, and Supplies for anything we need that day.

Maps/ Posters

My mom went to a thrift store and found our large map for us for extremely cheap along with a lot of supplies, I also check the Dollar spot at Target right before school starts to find any teachers supplies that might come in handy!

Our Table

This is honestly my favorite thing to talk to you guys about. I found this table on the marketplace on facebook for $35 and its perfect. It’s basically just a wooden dining room table. It has a little sprucing up to do, like sanding the top and restaining, but It was such a deal it was hard not to say no!

TIP: Look around, shop in different places like Goodwill, Salvation Army, and little Thrifts stores, you honestly have no idea what you can find that can turn your homeschool room into is a perfect fit for your family!

Also, your homeschool room or area will NEVER stay clean… here’s mine after a good days work!