Thursday Crafts For Kids ~ Jingle Tube


For ages 5 and up.

Paper towel roll

1 sheet each blue and orange construction paper

Glue stick


8 feet yarn, cut into 4 equal pieces

6 jingle bells

White craft glue

Red, blue, and green construction paper cut into small squares

How to make it:

Place blue construction paper on the work surface. Cut the orange construction paper in half lengthwise. Lay half of the orange paper next to the blue paper. Overlap the orange paper about an each and use the glue stick to attach the blue and orange together. You should have enough paper to cover the length of the paper towel tube with some overlap at both ends.

Use glue stick to attach the paper to the paper towel tube, rolling it up until the tube is covered completely. Trim off excess.

Tuck the overlap into each end of the tube.

Thread 1-2 jingle bells onto each length of yarn, 2 bells on 2 pieces, 1 bell on 2 pieces. Tie a knot in each one to keep the bells stationary.

With the tube laying on the work surface, lay each length of yarn across the tube, alternating bells on each side. For example, lay the first length of yarn across the top of the tube, about an inch from the top with the bells on the left side. Place the next length of yarn about 2 inches below the first in the same fashion, only have the bells on the right. Secure the yarn with white craft glue and trim the ends when glue is dry.

Decorate the tube with small squares of blue, green, and red construction paper.

To use, hold the tube at the orange end and twist the tube left to right by moving your wrist left to right. This will cause the yarn and bells to swing back and forth around the tube.

Foodie Friday ~ Grilled Salmon With Vegetables


2 -16 ounces fresh salmon fillets

4 -6 cups total chopped vegetables, zucchini, onion, bell pepper, mushroom, tomato

1 tablespoon basil

1 tablespoon oregano

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/4-1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon seasoning salt

1 teaspoon lemon pepper

1 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese


Rinse and pat dry salmon filets. Season with a little lemon pepper and salt.

Oil large sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil.

Mix vegetables and remaining ingredients (except cheeses) in large bowl. Combine well.

Place filets on foil and cover with vegetable mixture. Place a few pats of butter on top. Sprinkle with cheese.

Cover with another large sheet of foil (also oiled to prevent cheese from sticking)and seal edges. Double wrap with foil (if using grill).

Grill 10-15 minutes per side at medium heat, or bake at 375 about 30 minutes.

Dish is done when fish flakes and vegetables are cooked but still firm.

Thursday Crafts For Kids ~ Juice Box Dolls



Ages 5 and up.

Empty rectangular juice box container

Construction paper in your favorite colors


2 large wiggle eyes (for each doll)

Felt scraps (for pigtail ties)

Black marker

Glue stick

Clear tape

White craft glue


How to make it:

Starting at the straw opening, carefully cut open the top of the juice box, but do not cut off the top.

Wash out the juice box and let it dry completely before moving on to the next step.

Cover the juice box container with construction paper using a glue stick. Try wrapping the box as if you were wrapping a birthday present! Tape both ends of the box if the glue stick will not hold.

Cut strips from construction paper for arms and legs, about 10” long for legs and 6” long for arms.

Fold strips accordion style then use glue stick to attach the arms to the sides of the container and legs to the bottom of the container.

Cut squares from black construction paper to make shoes and glue to the end of the legs.

Use white craft glue to attach the wiggle eyes to the front of the container.

For the girl dolls, cut yarn into 6” lengths. Put white glue all over the top of the container and center the strands across it.

Use small strips of scrap felt to gently tie (felt rips easily, be careful) sides of hair into pigtails. Trim ends of yarn so that they are even.

Cut ½” lengths of yarn for girl’s bangs and glue in place.

For the boy doll, cut yarn into short pieces about ¾” long. Put glue on the top of the container and add pieces to the glue, covering the container top.

Draw smiles on with black marker.

Monday Moments ~ Sometimes Ya Gotta Just Let Go

Let Go


You’ve been there. If you haven’t yet, someday you will be Mom.

You are frantically running through the aisles of Target, Walmart or the likes there of because you are completely out of baby wipes and toothpaste. This means taking the monkeys children with you.

So you pull your hair back in a ponytail, throw your yoga pants on and grab your coffee to go.

You make it to the store just in time to remember that you forgot snacks to entertain you montage so you let them out of the cart. When you let monkeys children out of the grocery cart, things like this happen.

You stand there frantic until you take a deep breath and simply say, “This is motherhood. She’s only going to be little once. If the manager wants to chase me down to make me purchase the bike that is now being ridden down the frozen food aisle, so be it.”

Give yourself a break, Mom. And grab a Diet Coke and monster size Snickers in the checkout line.

Like Nike says, “Just Do It.”

Foodie Friday ~ Caramel Chicken

Caramel Chicken

3/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/3 cup cold water

1/3 cup fish sauce

1/3 cup rice vinegar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

4 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, quartered

1/2 cup roasted peanuts

2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded and sliced

1 bunch green onions, chopped

Fresh cilantro sprigs, for garnish


Whisk brown sugar, water, fish sauce, rice vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and ginger in a bowl until brown sugar is completely dissolved, about 1 minute. Set aside.

Heat oil over high heat in a skillet. Stir in chicken.

Pour 1/3 cup of the brown sugar mixture over chicken; cook and stir until the brown sugar mixture has a syrup-like consistency, 6 to 7 minutes.

Pour in the remaining brown sugar mixture; cook until chicken is tender and no longer pink inside, about 5 minutes.

Stir in in peanuts, jalapenos and green onion; cook until warmed through, 2 to 3 minutes.

Garnish with cilantro and serve.