Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Craft - Thankful Turkey Mobile

With Thanksgiving around the corner our focus tends to turn to being thankful. Today I'm happy to share a simple craft with you which you could make with your grandchildren to help them think about being thankful.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Your Thanksgiving Inventory . . .

Thanksgiving 2020 is likely to be different than previous Thanksgiving celebrations. The CDC just released their recommendations for Thanksgiving in light of covid (you will find them at this link.) Shorter dinners. Celebrating with fewer people. Limiting gatherings to people from your local area. Yes, for many Thanksgiving 2020 will be different than previous Thanksgiving celebrations. But, different does not mean our Thanksgiving celebration this year will not be a time to remember and celebrate our blessings - just different.

Having said this, Thanksgiving is just around the corner . . . so today, this post about being thankful is for you and is for fun! Are we truly thankful people? Do we get so "caught up" in the busyness of life we don't spend time "taking inventory" of all God's many, many blessings in our lives?  Take a moment to watch this skit about "Your Thanksgiving Inventory" from the skitguys - it is sure to bring a smile to your face . . .

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

grandma's cookbook - Butternut Squash Bread!

This is the time of year to look for, find, and use butternut squash. If you find one, here is a recipe to use it to make bread. You'll find the recipe at this link and I changed it in the following ways . . . 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

crafting with grandma - Crocheted Denim Purse!

I was browsing on Pinterest this morning and saw a pin for a great crocheted purse - using old denim jeans! It would make a wonderful gift and with Christmas just a touch over three months away, you would have time to make one for someone on your gift list!

Monday, October 12, 2020

Hand Down Confident Faith with Blue Dragons, Eyelash Vipers, Civets, Red-Lipped Batfish & More!

Well, it was a busy Summer and Fall around this grandma's house! My grandsons helped with the development of four books designed to engage children, teens, young adults, adults, and help grandparents/ parents hand down a confident faith. They tested a water-balloon launcher, made "bugs" and then spent time shooting them off plants outside with water-guns, tested recipes, enjoyed science projects, made tie-dye shirts, created hover-crafts, participated in an egg drop activity and many more activities chosen to engage children/teens/adults and help make the message of our books "stick"! Most importantly, we have been able to have important conversations about why we are able to believe in God and trust Him with confidence.

Saturday, October 10, 2020

crafting with grandma - Unique Map Gift Idea!

 I was browsing on Pinterest this morning and found one of the funnest ideas I've ever seen

. . . a photo map! What is a, "photo map" you ask? Well . . . it is where you take a photo in every State (or country) you visit and cut it to the shape of the state (or country) then glue it on another map! I LOVE this idea! What a fun gift this could make and what a fun way to show and remember the places you have visited! You'll find all the details for making this at the following link.

Book Four is Available - Red-Lipped Batfish, Giant Purple Squirrels, Kakapo & More!

 I am very happy today to let you know about a new book in the Life on the "Goldilocks Planet" series . . . book four - Red-Lipped Batfish, Giant Purple Squirrels, Kakapo & More! In this book/curriculum tool for grandparents/parents, you will find twelve unique animals with full-color photos, fun facts, activities, quotes from scientists, and questions to get you talking - all designed to enable you to hand down a confident faith.

Monday, October 5, 2020

grandma's cookbook - Mini-Apple Pie Cookies!

Fall is kicking off here in West Michigan - my maple trees are turning deep red, bright yellow and orange and the local apple orchard has fresh-picked apples available for sale! Yes, Fall is here!

Friday, October 2, 2020

crafting with grandma - Make a Crocheted/Rope Basket!

I was browsing on Pinterest this morning and found a link for directions for making a rope basket - I thought this might be a great item which you could help your granddaughter make and then fill with special treats for a great gift she could give her mom, parents, or friend this Christmas! Or, you could make a few and then have your grandchildren fill them with treats for their parents, a teacher or an elderly neighbor! 

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Civets Show us God's Design

 A couple months ago I was looking at unique animals on-line and came across one which from the back looked like it had to be part tiger. It's middle looked like it was a leopard, and its front looked like it was a raccoon. I thought, "What on Earth is this?" Well, apparently it is a little animal known as the Civet which is found in Africa and Asia. I knew it had to be part of book three in my "Life on the Goldilock's Planet" curriculum/book series. I learned some really interesting things about the Civet - such as, they are one of the only mammals which are able to eat toxic termites and millipedes. 

grandma's cookbook -Cinnamon Sugar, Soft, Pumpkin Pretzels

The leaves on my trees are beginning to turn the most beautiful shades of red, orange and yellow! Fall is definitely on it's way!

Monday, September 28, 2020

crafting with grandma - Crocheted Dolls!


I LOVE having three grandsons - they make my heart happy and I absolutely would not trade them for anything or anyone in the world! I love making up "boy" stories about monsters, aliens, and yes, even giant robot spiders! I know there will be no stories about flowers, butterflies and sweet, cute things . . . unless the monsters are stomp, stomp, stomping on them! Grandsons are great fun and a true delight! 

International Coffee Day - Enjoy!

Tomorrow is International Coffee Day! I enjoy a nice cup of coffee in the morning - my favorite is Costa Rican from Magnum Coffee which I enjoy very much!

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Curriculum to Help You Hand Down Confident Faith - Our Most Important Job

 I'm very happy today to announce the release of book three in

the new "Life on the 'Goldilocks Planet'" curriculum and book series - Civets, Tree Kangaroos, Batoids & More!  This book will equip you with the tools you need to hand down confident faith. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Peanut Butter Bars!

 Peanut Butter Bars! Mmmmm! Just the name has me thinking about the supplies I have and if I need to buy anything to make a batch! After all, what's not to love about chocolate and peanut butter?!!! I was browsing on Pinterest and found a recipe for peanut butter bars, so I thought I'd share it with you.

Saturday, September 19, 2020

grandma's cookbook - Cinnamon Roll Apple Pie

Cinnamon Roll Apple Pie:As I was browsing through Pinterest this morning I saw a recipe which looks interesting . . . fun to make . . . and which is likely to be very tasty! Cinnamon Roll Apple Pie!!!! Even the name is delicious sounding!!!

Friday, September 18, 2020

Celebrate Your Grandchildren

The other day was "Wonderful Weirdos  Day" - a day to celebrate the non-boring, interesting and unique people in your life. Now, to me this sounds like a great way to describe us all, so I look at it as a fun day to celebrate the people in my life, and so is every day!

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Curriculum to Help You Hand Down Confident Faith

I am often asked by grandmas (and grandpas, too) how they are able to do more to hand down confident faith than pray and invite

their grandchildren to go to church with them, and my answer is always to watch for unexpected opportunities for conversations which connect life with God, be sure we live what we say, and plan special opportunities to have those important conversations. It is typically the third of these three things with which they find the most challenging, so today I'm going to walk you though a new curriculum written to help you plan these special opportunities.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Granny Square Purse for Grandma!!!

I had some granny squares on hand, I thought I'd take them and make a new purse . . . 

Be Equipped to Influence the Ones You Love

I have wonderful news . . . I have finally been able to reduce the cost of the print books for the "Life on the 'Goldilocks Planet'" curriculum/book series! I am limited by the printing costs, but have been able to reduce the price for the print book by $4.50 for the Amazon book and by $5.00 for the print copies I sell in my bookstore by reformatting them and changing the size! The content is still the same.

Friday, September 11, 2020

crafting with grandma - Crocheted Upside-Down Doll!

Cenicienta2_mediumWhen I was a child, my family often vacationed in the Smokey Mountains. One year on our trip, I was browsing in a "souvenir" store with my mom and saw an Upside-Down doll. It was something I had not seen before and my mom said I could have one. The doll became one of my favorites; what's not to love about two dolls in one???!!!

When my daughter was little, I made an upside-down bunny doll for her . . . one side was the awake doll and the other was the sleeping doll. I was pretty happy with how it turned out and Tiffany liked it, too!

So, the other day I was browsing on Pinterest and saw a link for a free crochet pattern for an upside-down Cinderella doll! one side she is dressed to work and the other side she is dressed to dance at the ball! If I had granddaughters, I'd definitely be making them for Christmas!

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More! - the Tool You Need to Hand Down a Confident Faith

Yesterday we received our print copies of book two in the "Life on the 'Goldilocks Planet'" series - Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More!  Obviously three of the twelve animals in this book are Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, and Pangolins, but today I'm happy to let you know what the other nine animals are . . . the Cassowary, Sunflower Sea Star, Large Blue Butterfly, Mantled Guereza Colobus Monkey, Golden Poison Dart Frog, Sun Bear, Hawksbill Sea Turtle, Tufted Puffin, and Archerfish.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

grandma's cookbook - Toffee Butter Cookies!

You're just six ingredients away from these glorious, melt in your mouth, Toffee Butter Icebox Cookies! Deliciously buttery and perfectly rich, this easy cookie recipe is the perfect dessert for any day! | MomOnTimeout.com | #cookie: Get ready to start gathering ingredients and baking totally delicious cookies . . . this morning I was browsing on Pinterest and found a link to a recipe for Toffee Butter Cookies! Now, my husband - and grandchildren - enjoy toffee and Josiah is particularly a fan of butter cookies . . . after all, what isn't there to LOVE about butter cookies???!!!

Monday, September 7, 2020

Equip & Engage Families for Just $1 Per Family

As the new school year begins is your church restarting their ministry to children and families? With covid still claiming lives across our country and so many schools trying to open, only to close due to outbreaks, most churches are not yet trying to offer on-campus Children's Ministry. But this does not mean your church is not able to do something with the families in your church. Take a look at what they are able to do for just $1 per family . . . 

Sharpie Tie Dye

Learn how to make Sharpie Tie Dye T-Shirts and turn it into a color mixing experiment as well! Three years ago, two of my three grandsons participated in the Mud Run - my third grandson was two years too young to run through the mud with his brothers. As you might imagine, he was quite sad about not being able to get in the mud with his dad and brothers. So, we told him he had a very, very important job to do at the Mud Run - the job of "Look Out"!

He spent time on his poppa's shoulders and other time with me watching for his dad and brothers, so we would be able to get lots of photos of them. Plus, whenever they were near, he shouted, "Run faster! Get Muddier!" While he would have preferred - much preferred to run through the mud, he took on the job of "Look Out/Spotter" and helped us keep an eye out for his dad and brothers. 

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Live a Life of Love & Faith - It Makes a Difference for Generations

For the past few weeks I've been a bit distracted on posting - I've re-used some of my older posts, which, on its own is fine as new readers may not have had the opportunity to read these older posts and even if you did read them a few years ago, you may not have remembered them. But, I have been reposting  - or not posting - due to being distracted, because we were expecting my dad to leave this life - which he did in the wee hours of this morning. So today, I want to post about him. (Yes, this photo is of my parents, husband, children, grandchildren, and me - it was taken a few years ago.)

Thursday, August 27, 2020

It's Thoughtful Day!

Today is Thoughtful Day! A day to be focused on being thoughtful to those around you. Of course, every day should be, Thoughtful Day, but since there is a special day to focus on being thoughtful, I thought it would be fun today to think about ways you can engage your grandchildren in being thoughtful on purpose!

Do the Most Important Thing - Hand Down Confident Faith

Do you know what a Cassowary is? Have you ever heard of a Sun Bear, Sunflower Sea Star, or an Archerfish? What do you know about Pangolins? These five animals, and seven more, are included in my new book - Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More! and not only will you be able to use this book to share full-color photos of the animals and fun facts about them with your grandchildren, but you will also learn how each of these animals were designed "just right" to have the things they needed to be able to survive. When you share these things with the children you love, you will be able to show them "why" they are able to believe in God - the Designer - with confidence.

If we are serious about handing down the faith, we need to share with the children we love not only what to believe (although this is important), but also why they are able to believe with confidence. The day will come when they will be faced with people who do not believe. If we have not equipped them with the "whys" for their faith, the ones we love may join the increasing numbers of young adults who walk away from their faith. It is vital for us to teach our grandchildren and children the "whys" - and this book will help you do so.

Look what people are saying about this book . . .

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Hand Down a Confident Faith with "Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More!"

Today I am very happy to let you know about a new book - Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More! This book is the second book in the new "Life on the 'Goldilocks Planet'" series and will equip you to hand down a confident faith to the children you love. It is available on Amazon at this link and in our bookstore at this link. If you order it through our bookstore, you will save a couple dollars and will receive an autographed copy.

This book will equip you to engage your grandchildren, have a great time learning about the amazing world around us, and see how God's design is everywhere we look - and shows us why we are able to believe He is real! I am so humbled and thankful for this endorsement from Tim & Darcy Kimmel for my new book series - they said . . .

Thursday, August 20, 2020

grandma's chuckles - "What Do Frog Legs Taste Like, Anyway?"

Today I'm remembering a few years ago when my grandsons were at my house for a couple days and nights and a special conversation with my then five-year-old grandson and me - "Did you wash your hands after catching the frog, before eating supper?" Grandson - "No, but nothing tasted like frogs." Then he looked thoughtful and asked; "What do frogs taste like, anyway?" I know, I should have been sure he washed his hands before he ate, but I was distracted and forgot (bad grandma), but I guess he will survive!

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Make Your Own Pillows!

Yesterday my sister shared on her facebook, a fun and simple idea for making pillows and today I'm sharing it with you! All you need are old t-shirts, pillows and scissors . . . very, very easy!

grandma's cookbook - Caramel Apple Slices

I live in West Michigan - otherwise known as, "Apple Country"! Just a hop-skip-and-a-jump down the road from my home is an apple orchard . . . and there are orchards all throughout the county in which I live. But, in all the years I've lived in this area (I was born here), I have never even heard of Caramel Apple Slices . . . except for this morning when I was browsing on Pinterest!

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Be Equipped to Hand Down a Confident Faith

In most conversations with grandmas (and grandpas - and parents, too) when we talk about handing down a confident faith, they nearly always tell me they would like to do this, but have no idea how to go about doing so. Most books for grandparents (and even parents) focus upon praying for the children we love (absolutely essential thing for us to do) and teaching them what the Bible says (also absolutely essential for us to do), but there is little in the way of resources available to grandparents and parents which will equip them with the tools they need to hand down a confident faith.

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Ask Your Church to Equip You During Covid & Beyond to Hand Down a Confident Faith

At all times, but especially now with covid changing so much about how our churches connect with families/ children, if we have not already done so, we need to be focused upon asking the leaders in our churches to equip parents/ grandparents so they are able to hand down the faith and teach the "whys" - why we are able to believe God is real and trust Him with confidence - at home. In most cases, if churches do not step up to equip and encourage parents and grandparents when it comes to handing down the faith and teaching the "whys" for a confident faith, this is something they will leave to the church. It isn't because parents and grandparents don't want to do this - most often it is because they do not know how to engage the children they love and connect with them in meaningful and memorable ways. So, if they are not handing down the faith and teaching the "whys", and the children they love are not able to go to church, then there has been five months since they were able to be involved in at least learning what to believe. Five months.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Lay the Foundation AND Teach the "Whys" - It Matters

More and more often we hear and read about leaders in the church around the world who are renouncing their faith. And not just leaders in the church around the world, but many of us have children, grandchildren, siblings who have turned from a walk with God. What is happening?

I read a post on Cogent Christianity which made me think. George Brahm said; "Most of us have attended churches where apologetics is never an issue of focus. And what Marty’s case reveals is that a lack of apologetics-training in the local church can often be what causes a young person to apostatize, either when they are still young or later in the future." He goes on to say we tend to tell children what to believe, but do not ever tell them "why" they not only "should" believe it, but "why" it is the truth. Take a few minutes to follow the link above and read this article.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Teach the Whys & Help Your Grandchildren Develop a Confident Faith

Okay, I know I have been posting a fair amount about my new book - Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More! Please bear with me today as I share a bit more about it - and a way for you to save money on the book or even get a digital copy for free!

As I wrote on my other blog today (grandmaswithheart.blogspot.com)- it absolutely is essential for us to tell the ones we love the "whys" - why we are able to believe God is real and trust the Bible with confidence. If we do not, we run the terrible risk of the day coming when they turn away from their faith. This is happening more and more to families across our country - maybe even to your family. If we do not equip the ones we love with solid reasons for why they are able to believe, when difficulties come there way they may turn from their faith. But, when we equip them with the "whys", we are helping them develop a confident faith.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

"A Great & Powerful Tool" to Help You Hand Down a Confident Faith

As you know, I recently released a new book designed to help your grandchildren (and you) develop a strong, confident faith in this world where a growing number of young people are leaving their faith and becoming atheists and agnostics. When we look at creation, we see God's design - design means there has to be a Designer. 

Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More! is more than just an animal picture book - it is a tool which will help you hand down a confident faith! As Cavin Harper, from the Christian Grandparenting Network said; "I LOVE this little book you have created. What a great and powerful tool for shaping young minds to see and acknowledge the truth about God's creation. Well done. Every parent and grandparent ought to have this tool in their toolkit to teach the truth about creation and evolution. This is a marvelous tool I want to let every grandparent know about. Thank you for taking time with your grandsons to create this extraordinary piece."

Monday, July 27, 2020

Grandma "Ellies" Matter & So Do We

I just completed, and made available, a new book for children and families to enjoy which will help them develop a confident faith as they learn about really interesting animals. (You will find Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More! in the bookstore at this link.) So, I have begun the work on book two in my Life on the Goldilocks Planet series - this one is entitled, Eyelash Vipers, Pygmy Elephants, Pangolins & More! As the title says, one of the animals in the book is the Pygmy Elephant and yes, there are pygmy elephants in Asia and Africa!

Saturday, July 25, 2020

Creation Shows God's Design & Gives Us a Confident Faith

My grandsons love animals. They have so far throughout their lives. So, when I wanted to come up with a way to help them learn to see and remember the truth about how God is real, it made sense to me to look at His creation. After all, Romans 1:20 tells us - "God's eternal power and character cannot be seen. But from the beginning of creation, God has shown what these are like by all he has made. That's why those people don't have any excuse."

Friday, July 24, 2020

crafting with grandma - Sand Bowl

DIY: Sand Bowls- just sand mixed with glue and dripped over a bowl until it hardens. Perfect for holding your summer seashell collection
I was browsing Pinterest last night and found an interesting, unique and simple craft I thought I'd share with you all. It looks like something my grandsons might like to make - I hope it actually turns out, because if it does, it would actually be pretty cool! I had to look on-line to find a site with actual directions - which you will find the link below.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More is Available & I'm Giving One Digital Copy Away!

I am so happy today to announce the release of the new book - Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More - in our Bookstore and on Amazon. This book is a unique book which children will love - it is filled with photos of unique animals along with fun facts about each of these animals. In addition there are activities - crafts, recipes, games, and science projects following each animal to help children remember the fun and important things they learned.

Most importantly, and the reason for this book, is how it is designed to help grandparents and parents equip the children they love so they are able to see, recognize, and believe the truth about how God designed and created the world upon which we live and everything in it. You will find quotes from scientists which reinforce how science clearly shows everything on this world was designed to be as they are. This means there has to be a Designer and gives us so many reasons to believe God is real!

Look what people are saying about Blue Dragons, Red Pandas, Hoopoes & More . . . 

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Help the Ones You Love See the Design & Believe in the Designer

As a grandma who believe the Bible, when it tells me God created the world upon which I live and everything on it, I believe. There are reasons I believe . . . first of all, I believe the Bible to be true. Secondly, when I look at the world, and everything on it, I see design, purpose, intention - for it all to have happened from chaos or chance seems impossible to me. I believe, and I want the ones I love to believe as well.

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Summer Reading Book Review - Sam Wu is NOT Afraid of Spiders

Apparently, unlike me, Sam Wu is not afraid of spiders . . . or so it claims in the title of this new Sam Wu book for young chapter readers. My grandsons have enjoyed previous Sam Wu books, so I'm happy to share this new one with you today.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Summer Reading Book Review - Monster's Big Day

When I was a child we had a pop-up book which I loved. It was so much fun to not only read the story, but see the pictures pop up as each page was turned. Today I'm so happy to share with you a fun new pop-up book . . . Monster's Big Day.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Be Continually Amazed

God created the world in which we live so it is "just right" - as a place for us to live and in regards to us and every living thing on this planet. He knew what He was doing and when we look at creation we ae left amazed, continually amazed at the wonder and beauty of His creation!

Not only are we left amazed by creation, but it shows us over and over again how God designed it all "just right", which helps us know we are able to believe in God with confidence!

Summer Reading Book Review - invent-a-pet

Do the children you love have a pet? Perhaps a dog, cat, or maybe a goat? Would they enjoy the opportunity to "invent" a pet of their own? Something unique and special? Well, the new book "invent-a-pet" may be a great pick for them!

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Summer Reading Book Review - Nerp!

NERP_cover_smI love picture books - and I love sharing them with my grandsons.  With the boys being half way through Summer it is a great time to remind them how important - and fun - it is for them to read. How better than with a fun new book! Sterling Children's Books sent me several of their new releases and I will take the next few days to share them with you.