Archive of ‘Seasonal’ category

Mother’s Day

While we’re bringing you more seasonal links, we’ve also added Firecracker Poops for Independence Day picnics and parties and New Parent Poops (fun little items for your next baby shower)

Mother’s Day is right around the corner and the little ones will be eager to make personal gifts for mom. Here are some great sites for young children

Register for Free at Crayola.com for these free crafts

For us “bigger” kids, here are more advanced projects:

Easter Fun

Register at Crayola.com for access to lots of seasonal projects for young children through teens. Current featured project include:

  • Flower-Top Box
  • Irresistible Egg Centerpiece
  • Flock of Feathery Friends
  • Eggs in a Basket
  • Freckled Frog
  • Passover Seder Plate
  • String-Painted Basket

Signup to receive their newsletter for notices when new seasonal projects are available.

Looking for new ideas on making spectular and fun Easter Eggs? Visit FabulousFoods.com for instructions to create a fun assortment for any basket:

  • Abstract Eggs
  • Dinosaur Eggs
  • Marbled Eggs
  • Spatter Eggs
  • Help from Stickers Eggs
  • Banded Eggs
  • All Natural Onion Skin Dyed Eggs

Looking for something a little less messy, have fun decoring these online Easter Eggs. My only wish list item for this one is that you could reuse the designs. You can also paint an egg while you’re there. Just print and cut out when you’re done.

The M&M’s website is among my season favorites too. For those with a bit of time and patience, you can create these fabulous centerpiece in plenty of time for the big family dinner.
Egg Tree Topiary or simply have fun in the kitchen with younger decorators with Baby Animal Cupcakes.

St. Patrick’s Day Fun

225_10401_shamcookie.jpgShamrock Sugar Cookies from McCormick’s

Bring a touch of the Emerald Isle to your home with these dazzling Shamrock Sugar Cookies, decorated with icing tinted with McCormick® Green Food Color.
Makes about 4 dozen or 22 (2 cookie) servings.

Allrecipes.com has a variety of Irish recipes for your authentic meal.

Children’s Games
Hide the Shamrock 9 (preschool)
Green construction paper
Scissors

Cut a shamrock out of green construction paper. Choose a child to be “it.” While the other children hide their eyes, “it” hides the shamrock within a designated area. Everyone then opens their eyes and tries to find the shamrock. The finder gets to be “it” for the next round.

Try this for more games to play all year: Preschooler’s Busy Book: 365 Creative Games & Activities To Occupy 3-6 Year Olds

Crafty moms offers a wide selection of kids crafts for St. Patty’s day.
http://www.crafty-moms.com

Kids Domain is always one of my favorite sites for kids crafts any time of the year
http://www.kidsdomain.com

More sites for St. Patrick’s Day Projects, recipes and crafts.

Last minute valentine’s gifts

still looking for that something special? Do something romantic without looking bad.

– Make a music CD. With downloads available for less than $1 a song, it’s easy to put together a great romantic playlist of son’s that your significant other will love (and love you for). Legal downloads can be obtained from many sources including itunes.com, Walmart.com and many others. You probably have everything you need (an ipod or cd burner) to create romantic sounds.

– Rent a movie. Children in the house? Find a baby sitter if the kids are old enough for some uninterupted entertainment.

– Dinner. Order in or take out if you don’t have the skills or desire to cook a meal. Candles with some great “mood music” can make even McDonald’s seem like romance on a tight budget. Add an inexpensive bottle of red wine if you’re staying in.

Do remember, love isn’t just for one day of the year, surprise your valentine now and then any time of the year.

25 Inexpensive and Romantic Ideas for Valentine’s Day

By Jamie Jefferson

You can be romantic this Valentine’s Day without spending too much. All it takes is a little creativity and forethought. The key lies in personalizing your celebration and letting your loved one know how special you feel each ordinary day that you are together.

Here are 25 ideas for celebrating your love this February 14th, and throughout the year.

1. Make a memory jar. Take simple slips of paper and write a favorite memory on each one. Be specific, and try to record as much about the occasion as you can. Tuck them into a jar or wooden box, tied with a bow.

The time you spend reminiscing and recording these memories will contribute to your own romantic mood, and what your partner thinks is a plain old box of chocolates will instead be a treasured gift for years to come. Plus, you can add memories to the box for future birthday, holiday, or Valentine’s Day celebrations.

2. Build a romantic fire. Host your own indoor picnic, complete with a bottle of champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries.

3. Recreate your first date together. What were you wearing? Where did you go? Do you remember what you talked about? Spend the evening reminiscing and reflecting on how far you have come as a couple.

4. Spoon.

5. Choose a book in which you are both interested, fiction or nonfiction. Read a new chapter each night before bed. This cozy tradition will allow you to spend some quality time together and often makes for thought provoking breakfast conversations.

6. Make a tape of the songs special to your relationship. Include “your song,” songs from your wedding, songs from favorite movies. Add a personal voice dedication and leave it in his briefcase, Walkman, or car stereo.

7. Turn off the TV and play a game of Scrabble or Pictionary.

8. Write about the feelings you experienced when you first met your mate. Write about the first time you knew you were in love.

9. Frame a new, special photo of the two of you and display it in your home.

10. Have you been holding a grudge against your partner? Today, forgive it and move on. Witness how much power the act of forgiveness injects into your relationship.

11. Kidnap your spouse. A friend of mine had a lot of success with this one. She knew her husband had always wanted to get married in Vegas, but he had agreed to a large, formal ceremony hosted by her family. So, after they had been married 10 years, she surprised him at work with a packed suitcase. They caught an evening flight and renewed their vows before an Elvis impersonator in a Vegas chapel. Years later, they are still talking about it.

12. Travel to another town, where no one will recognize you. Check into a hotel or Bed and Breakfast.

13. Jot down 20 things you love about your partner and slip it under his dinner plate.

14. Cook her favorite breakfast.

15. Choose a book you both will enjoy, and read it aloud together.

16. Have a scavenger hunt. Write a few poems, wrap candy kisses inside, and hide them around the house. Each poem should be a clue to finding the next one. Make sure the final clue lands your mate someplace you want to end up for the entire evening. A romance package, including a bottle of champagne and new lingerie, is a nice touch.

17. Write down fifty favorite memories of your life spent together so far. Invite your partner to add to the list, as well as to share special ideas for the future.

18. Leave a message on her voicemail with a silly, romantic poem. (Roses are red, violets are blue . . .)

19. Make a CD featuring the songs that have been important in your relationship. Slip it into the CD player of her car.

20. Bring homemade cookies or brownies to his office with a simple love note.

21. Surprise her with some bath salts and her favorite magazine. Then take the kids out of the house for the evening so she can enjoy some time alone.

22. Stash a love note in his shoe.

23. Spend some time talking about all the goals you have been able to accomplish during your time as a couple. Reflecting on the things that you have been able to do with the strength of the other, including the challenges, can really help you to remember and to celebrate the depth of your relationship and how you have supported one another through it all.

24. Serve her breakfast in bed.

25. Plan a special weekend getaway. Check online travel sites for prices on weekend romantic getaways, or plan a simple trip to a neighboring town.

Use your imagination to create your own romantic memories today.

Jamie Jefferson writes for Momscape at http://www.momscape.com Visit today for the latest online Coupon Codes including coupons for discount travel.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jamie_Jefferson
http://EzineArticles.com/?25-Inexpensive-and-Romantic-Ideas-for-Valentines-Day&id=426415

Valentines activities from Crayola

Crayola offers a variety of coloring pages and cute crafts for kids (and they’re crayons). You must be registered to view the pages, but it’s free. Sign up for their newsletter while you’re there (the option to receive the newsletter is part of the registration). 

Nice photos and easy to follow directions are included with each project.  The parents section of the site includes party ideas and an arts and crafts search. The only thing they’re really missing is a suggested age range or skill level required.

 

 

Touch the heart of the one you love

Spend Less, Give More 

Valentine’s day is almost here and many of you are still struggling with holiday bills. Luckily, telling someone how much you care is free, and shouldn’t be reserved for just a few times a year.

For the Grownups


Kid’s Projects

Remember, it really is the thought that counts. Money is one of the top causes of marital arguments, so the less you have to spend, the more creative you can be and the more your gift needs to come from the heart and not the wallet. You are the gift and so is your significant other.

Take Credit For Energy Improvements

Unlike a tax deduction, which reduces the amount of income subject to tax, a tax credit directly reduces the amount of federal income tax you pay.

(NAPSI)-Uncle Sam is ready to give you credit for the steps you take to reduce energy consumption in your home. The Energy Policy Act of 2005 provides valuable tax credits-as much as $300 to consumers who purchase qualified high-efficiency heating, cooling and water-heating equipment.

These new tax credits took effect in January 2006. Unlike a tax deduction, which reduces the amount of income subject to tax, a tax credit directly reduces the amount of federal income tax you pay or increases the tax refund you receive.

The new energy legislation defines the type of equipment and the amount of the credit in this way:

• High-efficiency gas, oil and propane furnaces and boilers: $150

• High-efficiency central air-conditioning units, including air-source and ground-source heat pumps: $300

• High-efficiency fans for heating and cooling systems: $50

• High-efficiency water heaters, including heat pump water heaters: $300.

Manufacturers and retailers should be able to tell homeowners whether a specific product qualifies for a tax credit. Qualifying efficiencies identified in the bill include:

• Furnaces and boilers: Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) of 95 or higher

• Air-source heat pumps: Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) of 9 or greater, Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) of 15 or higher and Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 13 or higher

• Central air-conditioning units: SEER of 15 and EER of 12.5.

In addition to providing tax credits, these high-efficiency products also offer homeowners lower home energy bills, increased indoor comfort and reduced air pollution. That’s because this new equipment employs technologies that make new heating systems much more energy efficient than the furnace or heat pump currently warming your home.

The maximum credit for all taxable years is $500 and is applicable to other home energy-efficiency improvements, including the installation of new windows, insulation, doors and roofs. To qualify for the tax credits, homeowners will need to verify the efficiency of the equipment and the date when it was placed in service. The equipment must be installed between January 1, 2006, and December 31, 2007.

Coleman® heating, ventilation and air-conditioning products manufactured by Johnson Controls meet the efficiency specifications set forth in the new energy bill. To learn more about the energy-efficient Echelon™ Series of air conditioners, heat pumps and furnaces, visit http://www.colemanac.com.

 For more infomation about potential energy tax credit, visit

 

Gift Card Fraud

Sometimes, chain emails go around that actually have truth in them. Recently I received an email that warned against Gift Card Fraud.

 

Well the crooks have found a way to rob you of your gift card balance.
If you buy Gift Cards from a display rack that has various store cards
you may become a victim of theft.  Crooks are now jotting down the card
numbers in the store and then wait a few days and call to see how much
of a balance THEY have on the card. Once they find the card is
activated, and then they go online and start shopping. You may want to
purchase your card from a customer service person, where they do not
have the Gift Cards viewable to the public. Please share this with all
your family and friends…

There are several news sites that list articles describing actual cases of this involving large chains. While some have made efforts to prevent this from happening (we can’t say for sure that it’s not possible). It certainly doesn’t hurt to purchase gift cards from customer service rather than off the rack.
Here’s to a fraud free Christmas.