2.29.2012

Cat in the Hat Pancakes!

We had a fun breakfast yesterday morning that would be a great way to celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday...or just because! :)

Cat in the Hat Pancakes!!


Yes I know....these are like the millionth pancakes I have made with strawberries and whip cream...but when something works, it works!! :)

All you need to make your own pancakes are a condiment bottle filled with pancake batter, a bunch of sliced strawberries, and some whipped cream.

Once you have sprayed your griddle and it is nice and warm, just use the condiment bottle to freehand a hat shape.

Once your pancakes are cooked and cooled all you do is alternate rows of strawberries and cool whip, until you get these cute Cat in the Hat pancakes!


Britton was so excited he couldn't wait for me to quit taking pics to take a taste :)

Have a wonderful day everyone!! :)







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2.28.2012

Horton Hears a Who Activities

Hello again! :)


I wanted to share some fun Horton Hears a Who activities we did yesterday before we did our Horton-inspired fhe.


I had told the kids what book we were going to be focusing on that day, so when they got done with school and naps they knew exactly what these were supposed to be...

Oh yeah....Horton's pink clover!

These were SO easy and used stuff I already had on hand. I simply painted some thin wooden dowels green to be the stem. Then I took some small styrafoam balls and hot glued pink yarn around them. Then I stuck one end on the dowel and we had our own Pink Clovers :)


You may ask, "What do you do with a pink clover?!"

Why, you try and catch specks of course! :)


Luckily the weather was pretty nice yesterday so we went outside to see if we could catch some "specks" on our clover. I took a bottle of bubbles outside and blew to my little hearts content. The kids had a great time running around trying to catch our bubble specks on their pink clovers...you should have heard their screams when they actually did!

(Don't you love Britton's face in that picture? It's like, "Do I seriously have to hold this pink, fuzzy wand mom?!" :)






Once we were too cold to try to catch any more specks we came inside and had our Pink Clover snack.

Yep...pretty much as simple as it gets :) I used one drop of food coloring in a small container of cottage cheese and sliced 3 thin slices of celery for the stem. Here's the great part: My kids will NEVER eat cottage cheese...but once it was a fuzzy clover they gobbled it right up. The celery too! And they usually won't even touch that..even if I smother it in peanut butter! Thats one reason I love fun food...its amazing what kids will eat if it has a fun name ;)



Man, I love these kids!


Are you doing anything fun to celebrate Dr. Seuss this week? If so, please leave a comment or email me. I would love to feature some fun ideas and see what creative things you are all coming up with!




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Dr. Seuss-inspired Family Home Evening

Hey everybody! Long time no blog :)

Today I wanted to share a really great family home evening we did last night, inspired by Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who. This week we are doing all things Seuss at our house and I thought it would be fun to tie it into our family home evening as well.


Yesterday we did a few Horton activities during the day and read the book. It was the perfect way to set up our family home evening that night. The theme of our fhe was "A person's a person no matter how small."


To start off I read my favorite quote from Horton Hears a Who:


"Their voices were heard! They rang out clear and clean.
And the elephant smiled. 'Do you see what I mean?...
They've proved they ARE persons, no matter how small.
And their whole world was saved by the Smallest of All!"

Then we talked for a while about how Heavenly Father and Jesus feel about "small" people, or children. We talked about how important they are to Him, and how He taught that we should all try to be more like small children because of their purity and innocence. I wanted to drive home that even though someone may be "small"...they are NOT small in the eyes of our Heavenly Father and Savior, and by making righteous choices they can do great things.

For our activity we played a game called Who Am I? I picked out 6 examples from the scriptures and modern day prophets that, even in their youth, followed the Savior and accomplished amazing things. I just used the Gospel Art Kit pictures I had on hand and put them up on my magnet board. Then I had their names cut out and our theme above it. Here's what it looked like:

Then I would just read one clue and the kids would guess which picture and name I was talking about. They loved the game and I was surprised at how many of the stories they knew.

At the end I bore my testimony that EVERY single one of us matters to Heavenly Father...no matter how small. I couldn't help but cry as I bore witness to my children of the love our Father in Heaven and our Savior feel for them. And not only that they are important...but that through righteous living they CAN be an influence for good in this world.

I included all the printables I used in case anyone wants them...but their are a few disclaimers :)

On the quote from the book...I totally spelled Seuss wrong :) I realized it once I had it taped up last night and I was too lazy to do anything about it.

On the the Who Am I questions for some reason it has some spelling mistakes underlined. Weird...but again, didn't really have time to go back and change it. That's just how I roll over here at the crazy Johnson house :)



I am so grateful for the counsel to have Family Home Evenings. Aside from blessing and teaching my children, which I KNOW it does...it has immeasurably blessed me as well. I am always in awe of the knowledge that Heavenly Father truly knows ME. He knows my family and He knows what we need. As I go to Him in prayer, He gives me inspiration as to the things that my family needs and how my husband and I can best teach them those things. With time I am getting better at recognizing that inspiration, and I feel closer to the Spirit and a (little) more confidence in raising these precious children I have been given :)

Thank you so much for stopping by today :) I hope you are all having a fantastic week so far...and stay tuned! We have some really fun Dr. Seuss activities and treats you won't want to miss!



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2.22.2012

FUN Dental Health activities!

Did you know February is National Dental Health Month?

I think that is so fitting...considering all the treats we get at Valentines ;) What better time to focus on taking better care of our teeth...and mostly, passing that on to our children? This week our theme is TEETH and we did some fun activities yesterday that really helped the kids visually understand the importance of brushing and flossing. I got both of these ideas from The Imagination Tree...and then adapted them to use things we had on hand and to work with my kids particular ages and stages :)


First up we did a REALLY fun teeth brushing craft. All you need for this is some teeth cut out of yellow paper, some type of dark soda, paint brushes, old toothbrushes and white paint.



To get started we talked about how sugary treats and especially soda can be bad for your teeth. We discussed how these things can be ok in moderation, but when you DO have them you need to make sure you always brush really well after. I let the kids take paintbrushes and paint their yellow teeth with root beer. They were totally grossed out at how brown and splotchy they got...great teaching moment!! You could see them understanding what soda and sugar do to our teeth.



Once their teeth were all dry, we talked about how important it is to brush 2 times a day to get off all that yucky stuff and help our teeth be white and healthy. This is where the old toothbrushes and white paint came in :)


The kids loved transforming their yellow, stained teeth into beautiful white sparkling ones! Plus its always fun to paint with something different...like a toothbrush! :)

While the teeth were drying we did a GREAT flossing activity that visually showed the kids how important flossing is and gave them some really great practice.

All you need for this activity are some pieces of string, long white Mega Blocks and some playdough. I loved that we had some extra Chocolate Playdough left over from our Chocolate Playdough Valentines...it tied in perfectly and since it smelled like chocolate the kids could really understand what treats and sugar can do to your teeth.

You simply squish the playdough inbetween the spaces on the blocks and then show your kids the proper way to floss. They get to use the string to get out all the playdough and in the process learn a valuable lesson about the importance of flossing.

I really loved this activity. Again...you could see that they just got it. They were grossed out by all the brown stuff in the blocks, and definitely didn't want stuff like that inbetween their OWN teeth :)


So there you go! I hope you can use some of these quick, fun activities to teach your kids all about Dental Health! The timing for us was actually perfect since my daughter has a dentist appt today and has been quite nervous. It was great to talk about these things with her and help her feel a little more comfortable and show her how she can be in control of taking care of her teeth.

Have a great day!!



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Shamrock Cinnamon Rolls - Re-visited!

Well I promised you some St. Patrick's day fun...so here you go! :)

I made this fun, SIMPLE breakfast last year and it was a hit. I loved that I could make it in under 15 minutes and my kids totally gobbled them up. I give you...

SHAMROCK CINNAMON ROLLS!! :)

All you need to make some of your own is a can of premade cinnamon rolls (you COULD make your own...but in my life right now that is not really reality ;) and a small heart-shaped cookie cutter.




Then all you do is...


Then you...

Cook for 12 minutes at 400 degrees, cool and frost, and you are ready to eat!
I added ONE drop of green food coloring to the frosting just to be a little bit more festive. I love how these turned out and I cannot wait to have my kids wake up to them on March 17th!

Thanks so much for checking out Blue Skies Ahead today! I am always amazed that people are interested in some of the little things we do in our family, but I love having you and SO appreciate all the sweet comments and emails. Have a wonderful day!!




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