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Spring is in the air and I have been busy sorting through all of my craft supplies and beginning to get my craft room organized! Yup! Spring cleaning is underway and it feels really good to get cupboards cleaned out and to make space for new things (ha ha) and to get rid of the dust and cobwebs of winter. I must say, getting my craft room into shape is a great motivator!
I decided that a trip to Target was in order to see if they had anything that would help give me an extra Spring pick-me-up. So, I gathered up my granddaughter and we went on a shopping trip to see what we could find. So, for Friday Faves today I am going to show you the favorite things that we discovered! And, best of all was that no single item was over $5.00! If you want to find the same deals, you are going to have to click or go quickly because many of these things are seasonal or on sale this week!
The first place I always stop is The Spot, that used to be called the 1 Spot because everything was $1.00. Now it is called the Spot because some of the things are $3.00 and $5.00. I tend to try to stick with the $1.00 items. There were so many cute things this time!
Look at these cute Easter themed bubble wands! The tube of bubbles is nice and long for a lot of bubble enjoyment. These would be great in an Easter Basket! They are only $1.00 in The Spot. I wish that I could mail them to all of my grandchildren, but since they are liquid, I am not going to risk it. I am going to take some with me next week when Emily and I go and eat lunch with her cousins Spencer and Amelia. I know that Spencer loves bubbles and the weather is great now for bubble blowing. I can't find the Easter themed ones online, but here are similar ones without the Easter motif.
Can you believe that these adorable cupcake pedestals are only a dollar in The Spot? I think that for $1.00 I can afford buy one for every place setting at a party table, (or the Easter table) to set everyone's cupcake on! So cute! I can't find these online, so you will have to find these in the store. After this purchase, I had to run home and bake cupcakes to try them out!
Whenever we have an extended family dinner, my sister-in-law Karen is "expected" to bring deviled eggs. She is the best at making them and they disappear in no time. When we have dinners with just our kids and Karen won't be there, it falls to one of us to make the eggs. Lindsey shared a recipe with you on this post. To store and serve these delicious deviled beauties, I found this awesome tray for just $5.00 in the special Easter section of the store. It is the Spritz brand that Target uses for their party supplies. This tray isn't on the website, so you'll have to run in to get it. It comes in pretty pastel colors and I think with its snap on cover it will be perfect to store the eggs in the fridge in until serving time.
One thing that I have been realizing for awhile now is that I need is some new potholders!
I've had to throw some away because they were getting so raggedy that sometimes there would be a weak spot and I would burn myself when using them! I know that I should just make myself some, and I will get around to that. But, while I was walking through Target, in the Hearth and Hand with Magnolia section, I happened to walk past these!
Look how fluffy and thick these Heart and Hand potholders are! One of them has a pocket to slip your hand in. They are marked at $8.99 for the 2 of them, so that is actually only $4.50 per potholder. They have a nice leather hanging loop on them and they look stylish as well as work wonderfully protecting your fingers. (I know this because I used them to pull the aforementioned cupcakes out of the oven.) These would be a great bridal shower gift, or like I did, a gift to yourself! I know that they are going to make me happy every time I use them!
Finally, I picked myself up an Ava & Viv brand Tee for only $5.00! How could I pass that up? I love the spring flower print! I bought it in the Women's section, but the tees are on sale in many sizes. I purchased 1 size bigger if you are wondering why it looks big around the hips. I did this for length on my long torso and also to allow for shrinkage. Hurry and click to order because the sale is only for this week!
I was able to get out of Target spending under $30.00 and I feel so happy with what I purchased! I was going to look at a couple of other things, but Emily started to fall asleep in the shopping cart, so we had to head home for her nap time. But, below are a couple of picture links to some of the other Spring time specials they have going on! Let me know what you find!
This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. Thanks for your support!
This was a Friday Faves that we published two years ago in September for National Literacy Day. But I am updating it today in honor of Beverly Cleary who just celebrated her 102nd birthday! It seems appropriate that on What to Read Wednesday we talk again about some great children's literature since Beverly Cleary has definitely been a notable contributor to the Children's Lit genre. Last week my mother turned 96 and I talked about a favorite series of her's on this post. It is time to recognize another woman who has seen much and influenced many in her lifetime.
Happy National Literacy Day (*and now Beverly Cleary's Birthday!), and welcome to Friday Faves #32 and What to Read Wednesday! (Ha Ha, both at the same time! This is confusing!) We can't let a celebration of literacy go by without talking about some of our favorite books. And since we become literate on children's books, we decided to pay tribute to some old favorites today. Be sure to join in the fun and remind us of the books you loved as a child in the comments section!
What were your favorite children's books?
If you know me at all, you know that books have always been a huge part of my life. I wanted my children to love books as much as I do. I believe that your children are never to young to read to. I read to mine before they were born. I read to my grandchildren whenever I can. Books open up a child's world and imagination and the more a child is read to, the better reader he will become. My mom gave me that gift as a child. She loves to read, too! When I was young, she would take me to the library and recommend books to me. I loved them all. Today I chose my favorite because of those memories I have of my mother. One of my all time favorites is Winnie-the-Pooh, by A.A. Milne. I read the original book of stories first, and then later came to love the Disney versions and movies as well. All of the best quotes come from Winnie! I made a picture frame for my little grandson when he was born prematurely and tiny. I put this quote from Pooh on it.
"Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."
You can still get the original version of Winnie-the-Pooh by clicking the link below. I love the illustrations in the original.
I also just learned of this book, Finding Winnie, that is about what inspired the Winnie-the-Pooh stories! I feel like I need to read it! It is a Caldecott Medal winner!
*Update! If you have Netflix, check out the Disney movie "Christopher Robin". It is a live action story about when Christopher Robin is all grown up. He has almost forgotten his time in the 100 acre wood, but Pooh hasn't forgotten him. He comes back into Christopher's life just in time to help him save his family and to remember what is important. It reminds me of "Hook" and the story of grown-up Peter Pan. I am a lover of Winnie-the-Pooh and I thought this movie was sweet and funny. Eeyore stole the show for me. (You can also rent or buy it onAmazon.)
I decided that for this Friday Fave, I needed to ask not only my children, but my grandchildren about what books they enjoy reading. On Tuesdays, I go eat lunch with my grandson Spencer. (He is the one reading with his daddy in the collage above.) His parents tell me that his favorite books are The Little Blue Truck by Alice Schertle and Where's Spot by Eric Hill. Two great choices! I was introduced to The Little Blue Truck by my grandson Adrian, and Where's Spot I read with some of my own children. They are fun books to read and interact with.
Alicia and her little Adrian chose Goodnight Goon by Michael Rex. It is described as a petrifying parody of Goodnight Moon, although Alicia says it is not petrifying at all. The rhymes are so cute and the illustrations are funny. It lends itself so well to interaction with your child. There is a part about tummies when Alicia will rub Adrian's tummy, and the characters lend themselves to different voices and you can count while reading to encourage that skill. (My grandson is quite good at it!) And now, Adrian will get the book and "read" it for himself!
And, PS, Goodnight Goon would make a great toddler Halloween gift!
My 5 grandchildren who live in Wyoming have tons of books between them. Some of their favorites are Go, Dog, Go, by PD Eastman and the Little Critters books by Mercer Mayer. I have a fondness for the Mayer books as well. The illustrations really tell the story in those books! Here is a good one.
Lindsey has always loved Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. She says she loves it because of the language in it. It's like it is coming straight from Max's imagination. He was a wild thing that day and got in some trouble for it, but he still had an adventure that helped him see that home is a good place to be, and his mom still loves him even though he was being wild in his wolf suit. LIndsey has decorated the nursery for her her baby girl in the theme of Where the Wild Things Are because even if Emily is wild sometimes she wants her to know that her supper will always be waiting for her, and it will still be hot.
Madalynn chose something a little more for a first or second grade reader. She says that she always loved the Junie B. Jones books by Barbara Park. A lot of school teachers will use these fun chapter books as read alouds in their classrooms. That encouraged Madalynn to read more of them on her own. She said that since she was about the same age as Junie, it was fun to imagine herself getting herself into the same situations that Junie did. I have read these aloud to many students over the years as I taught school and they are always a lot of fun and enjoyable for the children. The chapters aren't too long, so an emerging reader can feel a great sense of accomplishment as they finish a chapter.
That brings me to Beverly Cleary and her Ramona Quimby Series! There are many books in this wonderful series about a girl named Ramona who goes through all of the kid relate-able growing pains of being a in school and a part of a family. Some of her experiences are heartwarming, some are funny and some are just downright embarrassing! It is said that Beverly Cleary used her own childhood as an inspiration for these stories.
Some of Beverly Cleary's other books that you may recognize are:
You can go to this website to learn more about Beverly Cleary, to see all of her books that are available, to see character descriptions, to play games and to find helps for educators!
Of course, as I type this post, so many more books come to mind and I wish that I could share many more with you. There are a few great resources to use that will recommend great children's books when you are looking for something new and worthwhile.
So, if you are looking for some good reads for your kids and yourself to enjoy together, I hope we have given you a start! There are so many great choices out there, so lets all grab a book and celebrate National Literacy Day! Be sure to tell us about some of your favorites!
Other posts about books that we have shared:
This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking them, we will be compensated, but there is no additional cost to you. All opinions expressed are our own. Thank you for your support.
I have posted in past articles about making and using sprouted wheat flour. While this process seemed overwhelming to me at first, I am a total convert to sprouting wheat and making flour and I am always on the look-out for ways to incorporate it into my baking. (Also here, here, and here!) You can click on the previous links if you want to know more about the process and see some great recipes.
One thing that everyone who grinds their own flour knows is that you should grind enough to use right away and just grind it as you need it in order to keep the nutritional value in the final product. So, recently, I found myself with some excess sprouted wheat flour that I needed to use up. I had yet to make cookies with sprouted wheat flour, so I decided that the day had come to see how the flour worked in some of my husbands favorite oatmeal cookies. I was out of raisins, but I did have Craisins, so that is how these cookies were born.
The test was a success and these cookies were crispy with just the right amount of chewiness.
It never ceases to amaze me how much lighter the sprouted wheat flour is compared to regular whole wheat flour and how the warm, nutty flavor does not overwhelm like it can in regular whole wheat baked goods. As a matter of fact, I couldn't really tell that these were made from whole wheat rather than regular all purpose flour, although if they were side by side, I believe that these would have the richer flavor.
And yum! I love Craisins in an oatmeal cookie!
Have any of you tried the sprouting wheat for flour method? How have your results been and tell me what you have used this flour for. I would love to hear and try new things.
Do you eat ham for Easter Dinner? Snake River Farms is a great source.
Okay guys, lets talk Alfredo. Lets talk Chicken Alfredo. Let's talk Chicken Alfredo Parmesan.
This is a rich dish that I don't usually make because I feel immense guilt eating my entire daily allotment of calories in one meal, no matter how tasty it is.
Like, alfredo sauce is so creamy and decadent isn't it?
Well, I can't tell you that this sauce doesn't include butter and cream cheese and half and half, because it does.
But, if I can make you feel better at all, I swapped out the pasta for spaghetti squash.
And it is the little things guys. Those little hidden veggies that your kid will eat because they're coated in alfredo saucy goodness.
It's feeling like you've made one step towards healthier by including a veggie instead of a carb.
Those things give us a win. That is why this tasty, creamy, decadent Chicken Alfredo Parmesan Spaghetti Squash is a win. Not only does it taste deliciously wonderful, and a little sinful. It has a veggie. Instead of a pasta.
Now you can go win a little bit more in another area of life. Because we are all winners here. This Chicken Alfredo Parmesan Spaghetti Squash is a true winner.
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to eleven! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!