Cardinal Cottage has some great photos if, what else, cardinals. There are a few craft ideas and paintings as well.
Penny spinners look like a great craft for any time you need a fairly quick idea. I am going to file this away for an upcoming holiday shindig with a few other families.
I love how Two Peas And Their Pod took a simple tomato soup and with the help of a few simple additions too it to a more adult level. I found this right before making tomato soup for supper. I tried the addition of Greek yogurt, but forgot to measure. While it had to be thinned with some whole milk, this is one addition I am up for keeping up my sleeve.
In an effort to find information to support a point of mine involving siblings and arguing, I came across the following 3 links. While they all belong to the same website, the first really hitting home. I have been feeling that this is an underlying issue in our home, but have not been able to put it into words. While our kids deal with childhood trauma, developmental delays, speech issues, attention issues (due to trauma?), and other labels, there has been something as of late (building in the last 12 months or so) that has been holding us all back. I have started seeing it in how the kids treat and talk to each other, especially when they are mad. I was having trouble pinpointing it. After reading this it felt like someone went into my brain and decoded my feelings.
Update: I was able to talk with a professional about the first article, and the one from last week. This is a person who knows our family history and dynamics. It is always good to get an outside perspective on how things are playing out, especially if you tend to be like me – over analyzing and internalizing everything. This person said while part of the issues in our home are from Family Anxiety, which honestly is a part of every family and something we all have to learn to live with, that is not the main reason. Yes, the idea of it had been causing me anxiety. 🙂
I did use the reminders in the second two articles as encouragement. When it feels as if we are surrounded by neural-typical kids and trauma-free families, I need the encouragement to keep doing what I am doing. This is especially true when it feels like what I am doing looks like I am babying my kids or not being stern enough. This is why I held the hand of my 6 year old all through the second half of our field trip yesterday and let him stand on my feet while I swayed him back and forth and he hung his head and watched reflections in the puddles on the walkways. It was an action I would have done with a toddler, but it is what he needed (vestibular sensory activity, help with boundaries, staying on track, etc.). Yes, he wanted to run around with the older boys, exploring the edge of a pond 100’s of yards away from us, opening doors to see what was behind them, touching everything in sight, kicking poles to see what would happen, playing follow the leader through the group of people listening to the presenter … not exactly what you should be doing while visiting a maple syrup business and a commercial green house. So, as the parent I gave him what he really needed, even if he thought it would be more fun to “see what this does.” Boy, he does keep you on your toes.
Here are a few pdf’s and links talking about starting transplants at home. Just like listening to Christmas Carols all through December gets you in the mood for Christmas, reviewing information on growing transplants gets me excited to get started on my own.
Iowa State University Extension “Starting Garden Transplants At Home”
Utah State University “Grow Your Own Transplants At Home”
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension “Timely Tips on Starting Seedlings At Home”