amberdover

The High King Lives

A Late Crafty Monday: Vintage TP Owls & a Pinwheel April 30, 2013

In this post: Vintage toilet paper roll owls, a colorful pinwheel, dandelion still life, & the fly swatter music game.

Hello dear ones! I hope you had a great weekend and Monday. I’m a bit behind.  Camp NaNoWriMo is ending today and I’ve been playing catch up.  Well, let’s get started. We’re still doing springy crafts over here.

Art

Vintage Toilet Paper Roll Owls

Mine is pink. Michael’s is blue.

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Easy peasy: paint, tp rolls, felt, googly eyes, and scrap material.

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I decided to give mine a scrap tummy. Michael wasn’t so thrilled, so these were my presents from him. I LOVE vintage owls! Next time we should put the eyes higher.

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Pinwheel

Directions here: http://www.momto2poshlildivas.com/2012/04/spring-craft-easy-kids-pinwheel.html

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We cut a little too much. I’ll have to tape it so it spins now.

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Cooking

I taught Michael my not so secret recipe for kicking spaghetti up a notch.

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Science & Creation Studies

Dandelion Still Life~Michael also labeled the parts of the flower. This went along with the Life Pac Plant study we finished last week. We found tadpoles Friday but I don’t have any pictures of our adventure. I was too busy keeping Tessa from dragging us in the water. Silly dog…tricks are for kids.

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We finished school early one day and enjoyed the park.

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Music

Fly Swatter game

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Found here: http://www.susanparadis.com/catalog.php?ID=SP811

The object is to swat the card with the note  that’s called out. If he got it wrong I’d say “buzz” and if he got it right I’d say “point”. I timed him. He got faster the third time. Then I switched the cards around so he wouldn’t just memorize where they were. 044

Math

Gallon House

I showed Michael how to draw this gallon house and then he tried. I’ll be honest with you. I didn’t have this memorized. I am always learning with Michael. I’ve forgotten so much and math was never my strong point. I think even I will remember these measurements now.

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I still like reading cute books to Michael. We especially enjoyed this story about a guinea pig living in a toy shop. It made us think of our Snowball. Though I doubt she has tea with the dolls when we’re not looking.

Little Whistle’s Dinner Party by Cynthia Rylant

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I found this awesome deal at Kohls this weekend. This construction kit is originally $40 but I got it for $8.

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The parts are heavy quality wood. Michael would rather make his own creations than read the directions. I’m amazed at his skill. Maybe one day he will design houses or space ships ;).

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For the most part Michael reads on a 4th grade level. I had a librarian show me how the accelerated reader numbering system works. It’s really simple 4 point something means 4th grade. Six point something means 6th grade. A 6.5 or higher would be closer to 7th grade.  Michael wanted me to get The Hobbit for him to read.  It’s a 6.6. I told Michael that it was much harder to read than what he’s used to. But he insisted that he could do it. While he’s reading 5 chapters a day in a 3rd or 4th grade book, he’s reading only one a day in The Hobbit.

Another issue is how Michael gets easily distracted. He stops every couple of minutes to run and share something with me. “Mom, did you know hobbits are the size of me?” “Do you know how Bilbo felt when the dwarves sang their song? He felt a mad love come up inside him.”

This also happened with the reptiles and frogs books. “Mom, did you know…”

I’m glad he’s enthusiastic but at this rate he’s never going to finish the book. I told him that if he actually finishes The Hobbit I will take him somewhere really special.

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We have a big library with several floors. We couldn’t concentrate in the kid section so Michael and I headed up to the reference area. I think it’s the most magical area. I love to write there.

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We sat next to the windows. I wish I could show you a panoramic view. It feels like the library in Beauty and the Beast. We’re in one of the four corners.

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I’m trying to read more YA fiction. I write for a younger audience (though I hope adults will enjoy my books as well). I’m very picky. Sometimes I have a hard time getting through best sellers even. It takes a lot to hook me but I try to read several chapters before I give up. That’s probably why I’m super critical of my own work. I don’t think it’ll ever be good enough for me.

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Well, God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

PS: What are you reading these days? What’s your favorite genre? What do your kiddos like to read?

 

My Family Rocks! Sunday: Cast Away Date Night April 28, 2013

Hello friends. Last week, Chris and I tried the Cast Away themed date night from Dating Divas. It was a blast. You can find all their ideas here: http://www.thedatingdivas.com/kiirsten/cast-away-date-night/. Now, on to how ours went.

Cast Away Date Night

The Eats

Chilled coconut water to go in our coconut cups. The ingredients for dessert….

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Honey Lime Shrimp with Yellow Rice

Shrimp recipe here:

http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2013/04/healthy-honey-lime-shrimp.html

The shrimp was a bit salty but the rice was too bland so they worked out together. The next time I make this I’ll hold back on the salt. It was still very tasty though.

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Garlic Bread Sticks

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Peach Ice cream Crumble

This is an original. Well, at least as in I came up with it on my own. I smashed several Chocolate Chunk White Fudge Chips Ahoy cookies and I mixed them into Peach Ice cream. Then I topped it with whipped cream. I gotta say it was DELICIOUS!. This is now one of my favorite desserts. I figured it was tropical enough and quick.  It had the perfect blend of fruit and chocolate.

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The Decor

Coconut cups from the Dollar Tree with umbrella straws.

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A tacked up blanket tent in the living room. A pallet of blankets on the floor. Chinese Lanterns from the Dollar Tree. Fake palm trees.

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I lit several candles and covered stools with a tropical looking plastic table cloth.

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We watched “Cast Away” while eating supper. Then we took a break half way to have some island fun.

We didn’t do everything the Dating Diva’s suggested but we had fun with what we did do.

1.  Make a shelter out of Popsicle sticks.

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2. Make your own Wilson using tennis balls.

If you’ve seen the movie, you know Tom Hanks befriends a volley ball and names it Wilson after it’s brand. Wilson gives him company on the island. I’d be terrified to have Chris’ Wilson staring at me lol! (on the right)

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3. Draw an island portrait of your sweety.

Chris’ drawing of me on the left and mine of him on the right. Gives me the giggles :).

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The date nights just keep getting better and better. Thank you Dating Diva’s!

Folks, I’d love it if you left me a comment…especially if you have date night ideas or you try this one. I truly hope this blog inspires you in your every day life and to have a romance filled marriage.

Other moments…

My guys washing the van. Michael’s learning so many new things. It’s hard to believe he’s already seven years old!

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I’ve been decorating our back yard a bit. A butterfly and dragonfly in the trees…

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I’m trying to grow a sunflower house but it’s taking a good while. I also planted a rose bush and strawberries. I have solar lights lining the path and a solar bird bath. It’s magical at night. I really hope all the flowers grow.

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Well, God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

Keep up with all my date posts:

Other Date Ideas:

 

Question: Does God Only Love The Elect? April 25, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — amberdover @ 6:57 pm

This is good. Thanks J.S.! Enjoy this reblog folks. God bless & remember the High King lives!~Amber Dover

 

Crafty Monday: An Elvish Door, Yarn Butterfly, & Earth Day Celebration April 23, 2013

In this post: Earth Day & Spring crafts, Lego math, and what curriculum we use.

Hello dear ones and happy Earth Day! Praise God for creating the world. He truly is an amazing artist. I’ve got a couple crafts to share with you today but first check out what we did last year at these links:

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/04/23/crafty-monday-peg-doll-creations-creation-tees-for-earth-day/

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/04/30/crafty-monday-spring-peg-dolls-weather-crafts/

Art

  • An Elvish Door~ found this idea on Pinterest. We used Popsicle sticks, old jewelry, moss, sticks found outside, and the hot glue gun.

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I glued it to the bottom of a tree. This reminds me of the moss cottages I used to make for squirrels when I was a kid.

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Cooking ~ I taught Michael how to cook  rice.  I want him to master the basics of listening to directions, cleaning after himself, and cleaning his hands before cooking.

Science & Creation Studies

Michael helped Chris plant seeds in our vegetable garden.

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Michael read about butterflies and we caught a caterpillar. Sadly it perished but it was going to be a moth anyways.

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I’ve been trying to get the guys to eat healthier snacks. I got these great plastic trays with dividers at Family Dollar. I cleaned the fruit and veggies with vinegar water then sliced them. We’ve done this before with mason jars but these divider trays are easier.  Now the good stuff is just as accessible as the junk food. Yaaa to healthy snacking!

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Math

Michael’s in second grade but we played around with Legos and easy addition. I’ll have to figure out Lego games with multiplication.  I need to sort through the Legos again. I can never find what I need. You could easily switch the pieces around for subtraction.

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We finished our library books. “I Wonder Why I Blink” was a neat book about the body.

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Earth Day Celebrations with our Homeschool Group

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They each got an Earth Day packet to color. It has ideas inside on how to be good stewards of God’s creation.

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Kathryn taught the kids how to look for the “recycle” symbol on products. She also told them ways they could recycle.

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Then the kids made bird feeders out of toilet paper rolls, peanut butter, and bird seed. I didn’t get a pic but we hung ours in a tree above a branch (so the birdies would have a perch while they ate).

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Look at this sweet picture Olivia made for Michael. She’s always giving him gifts.

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Next, the kiddos painted pots and planted flowers in them.

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Now I’ve had a few people ask me about our curriculum. I did a post at the beginning of the year with our plan.

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/08/05/my-family-rocks-sunday-curriculum-smores-cookie-date-night-food-fight/

But often we start the year one way and end it another. It’s a learning process and I want to go at Michael’s pace. Sometimes that means forging ahead and other times that means slowing down.

Example: I decided not to go ahead with 3rd grade math until this coming school year. After doing a couple 2nd grade books we took a break and focused on hands on math. Then I decided to use Horizons again and since the second workbook is a grade ahead we’re just finishing Horizons 2nd grade workbook one. We will do workbook 2 for Third Grade math since it’s technically a grade ahead.

Horizons2

We are still using Bob Jones 2nd grade devotional and love it!

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We quit using “Our Christian Heritage” for Geography and History. Instead we’re doing hands on studies. Maybe we will go back to that workbook in the future. I bought a couple books about the states and “Around the World” ideas.

Email Subscribers please come to my blog to see the links :).

Geography & History on Pinterest

We slowed down with the language arts curriculum and only do it once a week. Now Michael does typing once a week and focuses on hand writing practice. We took a break from cursive but the new handwriting book transitions into cursive at the end (A Reason For Handwriting). I’ve decided not to focus on cursive til third grade. I want Michael’s handwriting to be a bit neater first.

Handwriting

We also started a series of spelling workbooks by Christian Liberty Press (they have verses in them). We began at first grade level just in case we’ve missed words. I didn’t want to wing it anymore. Michael will be able to finish the 2nd grade spelling book the first half of the year and the 3rd grade spelling the last half. We homeschool year round with breaks here and there. So the spelling books don’t stretch the whole year. I LOVE these spelling books!

spelling

We basically finished Read and Understand Science grades 2-3. I decided to buy 3 Lifepac Science work books for 2nd grade on plants, animals, and colors. They’re super simple and colorful. So I went ahead and bought the whole 3rd grade curriculum too. We do hands on Science project with the work books.

Life Pac

Pinterest link for Science

Michael’s reading on a 4th grade level though he can read harder books just at a slower pace. I’m trying to balance what types of books he reads. Michael breezes through fiction but I’m throwing in more nonfiction. We’ve got a big collection of books but still take a trip to the library twice a month. I usually get enough books to last two weeks.

Music and art are basically the same but we don’t do as much. I’ve limited crafts to once a week unless they go along with another subject like Science or Geography. Michael practices piano every day but we’ve been focusing more on musical theory and games. I’m not too concerned with how much he can play at this age. I just want him to understand the music and to enjoy it.

Music Pinterest Link

I mentioned in this post:

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/12/17/my-family-rocks-sunday-cherish-the-moments/

that I want to slow down and enjoy school more. I’m already eclectic but I’m leaning more towards unschooling…just a bit. Work books are definitely the bones of our day and it works. Still, I’m open to simplifying and to plenty of hands on learning. So I decided to break things up a bit and choose one day each to focus on certain subjects. It’s been so much easier than trying to do it all every day.

Mondays~ Regular schedule plus art & cooking (really basic cooking)

Tuesdays~ Regular Schedule plus Typing and Science projects

Wednesdays~ Regular Schedule plus Math and Music games/projects

Thursdays~ Regular Schedule plus geography/history/social studies or reduced schedule plus field trips/ group time

Fridays~ Regular Schedule or reduced schedule (depending if we have group Thursday) plus Creation studies and or health and or language arts projects

Creation Studies Pinterest Link

Our Regular Schedule

  • Bob Jones Devotions (1-2  work book pages and Bible reading)
  • Spelling lesson in workbook
  • Math book (2 pages)
  • Handwriting book (2 pages)
  • Science book (twice a week)
  • Reading – 2-5 chapters depending on the type of book
  • Tests on Fridays
  • No math or handwriting on Fridays (sometimes Thursdays if there’s a field trip or group time)
  • Language arts books on Fridays.

We also do themes and that will determine our art and science projects. Our themes can be anything from Holidays (Christmas, Easter, Purim, Pentecost etc..) to what peeks Michael’s curiosity (Dinosaurs, reptiles, bugs, plants). We’ve did a study on the body and community helpers. Also on safety. We did a month long study in January on the 20th century and called it the time machine. Sometimes the studies are seasonal (snowflakes or falling leaves). You can see all the previous thematic studies on my blog Pinterest link. Check out the  Time Machine Study. It’s unique to this blog :).

Pinterest of my Blog posts

Well, God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

PS: Lord willing, I’ll post my 3rd grade plans later this summer ;).

 

My Family Rocks! Sunday: Hannah’s “Doll & Me Tea” Birthday Party April 21, 2013

   Hello dear ones! This past weekend Michael’s good buddy Olivia (who was born the same day) had her 7th birthday party. I asked her mom and my Best buddy Hannah to guest post. Maybe you can use her ideas for your own girly party. Just in case you didn’t see it last year, here’s the link to Olivia’s mermaid party:
Alrighty, take it away Hannah 🙂
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Hey!  Hannah here!  Amber asked me to guest blog about my daughter’s “Doll and Me Tea Party” for her 7th birthday.  Amber’s son, Michael, attended, and while I’m not sure he was thrilled with copious amounts of pink and dolls, he was the perfect gentleman and Olivia enjoyed having her buddy there. 🙂
Michael & Liam, Olivia’s brother
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Hannah & Amber
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The “Doll and Me Tea” theme was something I came up with to appease my daughter, Olivia, who was determined to have an American Girl party.
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See, last December, Olivia received a much anticipated American Girl doll for Christmas.  We had been receiving the catalogs for a couple of years because they somehow knew we had a young daughter who needed tempting and they just started sending the darn things!  I threw them out for the first year or so, but then she got her hands on one, and the rest is history,  So, for Christmas this past year, she received “Caroline” and instantly decided she wanted an “American Girl” party in a few months for her 7th birthday.  I told her that not every little girl has an American Girl and that they cost a lot of money, but she continued to ask.  So, after brainstorming a bit, I pitched the idea to her of having a “bring your favorite doll/toy” tea party, and she agreed. 🙂
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The next hurdle was that she absolutely just had to have pink and orange as the colors, and not just any pink– a very specific bubble gum pink.  I told her that I was concerned about these colors looking pretty together, but my mom– who was there for this conversation– spoke right up and said, “well, it’s her party!”  So off to Hobby Lobby we went.  There, in the front of the store, was a beautiful springy display of coral, pink, and magenta decor and dishes.  Thank you, Lord! 🙂  They were on sale, and I had coupons, so we made out quite well.  I got a couple of platters, a vase, napkin holder, and a few other decorative items.
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Next, we went to the party store and matched plates, table cloths, and more decor to the pattern from Hobby Lobby.  My favorite finds though came from online.  I found plastic tea cups with straws for the kids, and tea pot lollipops for the goody bags.  I also found a really cute tea pot pinata.
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The cake came from a local bakery here that never ceases to amaze us.  They were unsure about the orangey pink colors on the cake, but they did a fantastic job and my sweet Olivia loved the cake!  It all came together quite nicely.  We reused place card holders from our wedding to identify each child’s seat. 🙂
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The last part was setting the table for the dolls and toys!  My mom brought over the table and chairs I had as a little girl, and we added the set Olivia uses now along with some other small chairs and doll high chairs.  We set out plates, plastic tea cups, tea pots, and pretend treats.  As each child came in, they placed their toy in a special place at the little table.
Amber’s American Girl dolls came to tea also!
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Michael’s dog “Blew” that he got from his Papa that died & Liam’s Mr. Bean doll
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During the party, we took photos of each child with their doll/toy and my husband printed them out while each child decorated a tea pot picture frame to take home.
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Hannah’s Mom with the kids
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Michael made his an early Mother’s Day present 🙂
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We also had fun with the pinata outside.  It was the toughest pinata I’ve ever seen!
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The kids took turns hitting the pinata for a long time. Finally James, Hannah’s husband, put the pinata out of it’s misery!Olivia'sparty2013 089
I really was worried about making this party work because it wasn’t exactly what Olivia had asked for, but we learned a lot about compromise, which is always good.  We did end up with several American Girls at the party, but Buzz Lightyear and a plush Mr. Bean (that would be my son’s) also attended, along with a few other fun toys.  Many of the children dressed up, which was fun.
Olivia opening presents.
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Michael & Liam, best buddies.
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I really think my sweet girl felt special, and that was my ultimate goal.
Hannah, a wonderful hostess 😉 (says Amber).
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Now it’s time to get to work on my son’s birthday.  He will be 5 and hasn’t requested anything special.  Kids can be so different. 🙂  I suggested “The Lorax”  because he watches it so much, and he loves the idea, so hopefully I will be able to blog about that party, too. 🙂
Liam stole the show when he dressed up as Mickey, during present time.
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Thank you so much Hannah for the great post! We’d love to see more of your parties and you know we love truffula trees over here :). 
God bless everyone & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover
 

Virtual Friday: Almost Wonderland April 19, 2013

Hello dear ones! Today I take you to “Almost Wonderland”, a somewhat darker Wonderland but not too dark. The style is strangely beautiful. Wonderland has always been strange anyways. You may remember that I did a post on  Mimsy Manor: The Lewis Carroll museum (he wrote Alice in Wonderland) awhile back. You can read that post here:

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/03/09/virtual-friday-mimsy-manor-alice-in-wonderland/

I could’ve dressed as Alice again for this sim but I was having too much fun rockin’ my vintage owls.

Visit Almost Wonderland here: Visit Eldritch (182, 191, 24)

dark Wonderland

The neat thing about Wonderland sims are the special teleportation doors.

Almost Wonderland

I decided to follow the rabbit and down the hole I fell…

falling

The hall had some cryptic writing on the floor but nothing  real scary. It was filled with doors like in the book. Many doors had pages from the book in them.

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At the end of the hall there was a big door with several small doors inside it.

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This led to the room with the bottle labeled “drink me”. Of course avatars can’t really shrink in SecondLife. You click on the bottle and it teleports you to another room where everything is big. So you have the appearance of being small.

drink me

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From there, you crawl through another door and climb down a stack of books.

door

Overall, Almost Wonderland is a beautiful place. You can see the checkerboard on the hill.

plants

The mushroom plants are interesting.

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Lovely gems.

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Now, here’s where it gets creepy. These plants…

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follow you.  As weird as it is, I appreciate the genius of the person that created these. My husband (the computer dude) says it’s not that hard. But I think it’s just cool. See….the eyes are looking at my avatar. Weird but neat.

weird eyeballs

There is a tea cup ride.

teacups

I did get a little worried when I saw the spooky tea table. There was a skull on it and you can see in the background of this pic that there’s a grave. It’s for the March Hare. I’m not sure why. Maybe I missed something in the books. I’ve seen other Wonderland stories where the march hare died. Or maybe the grave was for the Door Mouse. Now I’m confused. Anywho, this and the eye plants were the creepiest things in Almost Wonderland.

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So while there are darker elements to this Wonderland, it is still an overall lovely place. I can appreciate the creator’s work. It’s art. You can buy Wonderland furniture in the store. I thought this set was cute. I like the hat on the chair.

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Here’s a close up.

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God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

PS: If you visit Almost Wonderland please leave me a comment. Thanks!

 

Inspirational Wednesday: Identity April 18, 2013

Where do we get our identity? How do we know who we are? Are you still trying to find yourself?

Maybe you get your identity from your family or your job? But should you?

WHoAmI

I am the mother of Michael. It makes me happy to have that title. I have a sweet boy. But should I find my identity in motherhood? What happens if my child dies or my child grows up and leaves the house? Where would I find my identity then?

I love to blog and people know me as an artsy person. But my identity isn’t in this blog or what I can do. The internet can be taken away from me. I could get sick and lose the ability to craft. I could become a vegetable. Does that mean I’m worthless? that I have no identity? Definitely not.

What about finding identity in your wealth? your country? your friends? Your taste in movies?

I hope you’re getting this. All these things are lovely but if you think that’s who you are then you’re mistaken. Because worldly things are temporal. People die. Cultures change.  And even kingdoms come crashing down.  One day if you live long enough, you’re going to be old, wrinkly, and most of the people you know will be in the grave. Who will you be when that day comes?

  • We are not God.  You did not create yourself and you can not prevent your death. Then why do we look to ourselves for identity? We are a mess of questions.
  • Others are not God. Your parents got together to have you but ultimately God started the whole process. He created the first humans and he makes sure everything works out in the womb. Take this from an infertile myrtle. God opens and closes the womb. If HE closes it then no amount of treatments will make a baby. Your birth was planned by God. You’re not a mistake or an accident. God formed you in the womb.  Everyone is made by the same being. So why would you find your identity from someone who is a mess of questions, just like you?
  • There is a God. His name is Jesus Christ and He made you. He also made the sun, the moon, and the stars. He made everything to be good and it was good before sin brought a curse to this world.
  • Jesus not only created you, He also became the sacrifice to break the curse. He loved you so much that He died for you AND lived for you. Three days later he resurrected so that one day you could resurrect too and have eternal life in Heaven.
  • If you take away all the temporal things and circumstances like wealth and family, we are all the same. We are all human. You may think you’re better than someone else but at any moment you can be humbled. Kings can become paupers in an instant.
  • Our creator should tell us who we are because He made us for His glory and His purposes. Good news! He WANTS to tell us who we are! It doesn’t have to be a mystery. You can find yourself right now :).

So who does God say we are? He tells us in the Bible. (PS: Wondering how we know the Bible is God’s word and how the Bible came to be? Check this book out for details: The Book of God, How We Got the Bible. You can even read it on Kindle right now. http://www.amazon.com/Book-God-Ben-Avery/dp/0984063838  )
Bibbia con rosa

After the fall of man (Adam’s sin) we became strangers to god.

If we give our lives to Jesus then we become sons and daughters of God. This gift of salvation is open to the whole human race but sadly many will reject it.  Beloved, you were mean’t to be a child of God. He wants to adopt you into His family. Sin stole your birthright. Jesus wants you back. He wants to redeem you. Here’s a detailed link about what that exactly means: https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2013/03/28/inspirational-wednesday-part-two-the-power-of-the-cross/

Jesus told a story about a father with two sons. One son stayed home and the other demanded his inheritance and squandered it all. This is called the story of The Prodigal Son.After losing everything the son comes back to his Father and begs to become his servant because he knows he’s not worthy enough to be a son. The Father welcomes the prodigal son with open arms and even throws a party. The Bible says the Father ran to his son and embraced him…even though the son had completely messed up.

You can read the story here: http://www.bibleresources.org/bible/KJV/Luke-15

Verses 11-32

Prodigal Son CHS cathedral

Picture By FranzMayerstainedglass (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

What I want to focus on is how the son forgot his identity. The prodigal was born a son to his Father but at one point he got confused in the pig pen. The boy gets work feeding pigs. He’s so desperate that the poor boy is ready to eat with the pigs.

Have you forgotten you’re a son or daughter of God? Are you trying to eat with the pigs? Imagine a prince acting like a pig. It doesn’t make sense! But we often forget who we are in Christ.

When the prodigal gets to His Father he doesn’t even deign to take his place as a son again. He’s ready to become his Father’s servant. But the Father forgives his son and reminds the prodigal of his true identity. It’s beautiful. You’re not a servant and you’re not a pig! You’re my boy and I love you!

Cochons1.4

By rosier (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

Someone dear to me once told me of a time in their life where they were in the pig pen. They had not been a Christian long and had allowed someone to drag them in the mud (sin). One day it hit them. They were in the pig pen. It was filthy and they did not belong in that mess.

I often remind Michael, my son, that he is not an animal so he needs to act accordingly.

Son, you’re not an animal. Don’t eat like one.

How often do I want to shout at the world: You’re not animals! Stop acting like it!

And there have been times that I myself realize that I’ve been pigging out on hog food when the King of Kings has set out a banquet for me. Get off the floor and sit at the table with the King. You’re a princess now!

You see, when the prodigal lost his money everyone starting treating him like trash.  What a lesson! The world may say you’re a pig but that doesn’t matter. All that matters is what the Creator says about you.

Sometimes I get confused about my identity. I’ve learned the hard way and I’m still learning. Once I put my identity in being a wife but the rug got pulled out from under me when my husband was sent to war. I was alone and depressed. It was a dark time but God reminded me to trust him alone.

A similar time came when my Father died. My Dad was a minister and had a special relationship with God. I too often relied on my Dad’s faith for answers. When Daddy died I wanted to die too. It was like all the air had been sucked out of the room. I didn’t have anyone I could talk to like Dad. I found myself going to my Heavenly Father and getting to know Him more. Often times of loneliness have drawn me closer to Jesus. I think that’s why Dad and God were so close. All that time Daddy was bedridden he could only look up and pray.

Me&DaddressedUp

And finally a small case of mistaken identity. I used to act in community theater. I have a few leading roles to my name. It was always exciting to play a leading lady. People gave me attention I never received before. It’s like for a moment I became someone important. It was just small time theater but I got caught up in it. It didn’t take long to realize that people were fans of my character, not the real me.  I remember this one guy that gave me a lot of compliments when I was in my stage makeup. He saw me at the store in my Mom clothes and didn’t recognize me at all. I was no longer glamorous or important to him. In a small way I learned not to put my identity into the things I do.

My prayer is that this blog will never become an idol in my life and that I won’t find my identity here. Yes, I have followers and there are people who like my content. But only God knows me completely and loves me for who I am. People are wishy washy. One minute they like you and the next they don’t.  Even those closest to us can forsake us. God is the ONLY one who loves us completely while knowing everything about us. God knows our past and our future. He still chose to send His son to die for us. That’s love!

Ezekial drawing

“Ezekial 16:8-14” by Amber Dover. Don’t copy.

This is my identity and it will be my identity for eternity: I am a Daughter of God. Who am I? I am His. What does that mean? I should be secure in God’s love. I have worth.  The world can call me trash but I am God’s Princess. My Daddy is the King of Kings. I am sealed by the Holy Spirit. When the Father looks at me He sees Jesus because I am in Christ. I should never settle for the pig pen when I’ve got God’s kingdom. Jesus is my home and my foundation. No one can take that away from me. So when my youth fades and  I lose this world I won’t lose my identity. Death, sickness, and poverty can not change who I am. I can become a vegetable and I will still have worth. I will still be God’s child. So I want to know what He thinks of me and what He wants me to do. I want to act like God’s child…not an animal. And if I stumble….if I go prodigal….I am still God’s child and His arms are open…just waiting for me to come back home.

So come on beloved. Get out of the pig pen. We’ve got a party to attend. The Father’s waiting ;).

fair

God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

PS: Here’s a great story to check out. Learn about Punchinello and the Wemmicks and the kind Wood Carver that made them. After you check it out, ask yourself: do the stars and dots stick to you?

You are Special by Max Lucado (remember email sub. to come to my blog to see the video link)

Who Am I ~Casting Crowns

 

Prayers for Boston April 16, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — amberdover @ 4:29 pm
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I just wanted to say that my prayers are with those who were injured and those who lost loved ones in the Boston bombing. I encourage my readers to  pray as well.

God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

 

Crafty Monday: Rainy Tulips & Flower Pot Music Game

In this Post: Homeschooling while sick, rainy tulips, flower pot music game, and Lego Club.

Hello dear ones, this will be another late post. I still feel icky but hopefully I’m on the upside of things.  Michael was sick on and off all week.  So we didn’t do many crafts or cooking. Here’s a bit of what we did get done…

Rainy Tulips

Michael drew the flowers with pencil. Then he made lines with a white crayon and painted over it with watercolors. It’s a pastel resist effect and it looks sort of like rain :).

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When little man is sick we don’t completely call off school unless he’s really bad off.  I think Michael had a sinus infection. We just slowed down a bit. He played video games and watched t.v. in between studies.

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We watched the new SuperBook dvd on Jonah.

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He also had lots of chicken noodle soup and herbal remedies.

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One of my favorites for a cold is elderberry.

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Last week Michael  read the reptile books we got from the library, after our field trip to our local nature center. Some of these were on days he felt better. I can’t imagine forcing Michael to sit still all day in a desk. He likes to read in many different places and when the weather is nice it’s great to read outdoors.

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Tessa likes to listen :).

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We had Lego club again. I was prepared this time. Michael got several Lego sets for his birthday so we had most of what we needed. It took me a good while the night before to sort through his collection and put the parts in baggies.

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Michael didn’t need as much help this time.

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The end result is this neat Lego playground. We had to improvise on some parts but it still looks great. You can see the slide, seesaw, and merry go round. If you’d like to join Lego club check out the clubs and classes section on http://www.currclick.com

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Music

I found this great book at the library called “The Musical Life of Gustav Mole”. I still enjoy reading to Michael. This was a sweet book that introduced several musical vocabulary words (instruments etc…).

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We played the Flower Pot Note Toss game found here:

http://www.pianimation.com/2011/03/30/flower-pot-note-toss/

We played the game two ways. First, I called out note names and Michael had to ring the flower pot with the same note on the flower. It got challenging when he had both treble and bass clef.

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Then I turned the flowers around so he could see the note names. Which ever note he rang he would have to run to the piano and play it.  I didn’t have flower pots so I used plastic cups and put rocks in them to give it weight.

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Michael’s actual birthday was Thursday. He felt better but we stayed home to be safe. I saw this idea on Pinterest and gave it a try. I covered Michael’s door with a syran wrap pouch and put balloons in it.

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When he opened the door the balloons fell on him :). He was surprised.Olivia'sparty2013 044

Celebrations were simple since he had already had a big party the weekend. I stuck a candle in his bagel.

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We got a nice surprise from Aunt Jenn (my sister).  She sent Michael some nifty presents. One of them is a Magnetic Science kit. We can’t wait to experiment with it. Thanks sis! Michael loves getting mail :).

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Math

Besides our normal workbook Michael did this GallonBot worksheet. It’s a neat way to teach measurements.

Link here: http://www.superteacherworksheets.com/pz-gallon-man.html

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So it was a slow week and a bit lonely because we were home so much. We made it for Olivia’s birthday this past weekend but then Michael got an earache and I got sick. He’s better and I’m recovering. Still, we had a couple days to enjoy the Spring weather.

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Our yard is a bit wild but the grass isn’t too tall and we’ve got a nice squirrel and several birds living in it. Here’s some lovely pictures from our wilderness :).

Wisteria ~ I love this flower.

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My fig tree has leaves on it. Yaaaa!

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These sting but they are pretty.

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Our yard is carpeted with these little yellow flowers. I think they are a bit prickly but I don’t really notice. I often go bare foot so my feet can handle them.  I don’t really mind that our yard looks like a meadow.  We have started a garden though and I’m trying to grow a sunflower house. I want the yard to be magical. Hopefully my flowers will grow and I’ll have lots of neat pictures to show you.

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God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

 

My Family Rocks! Sunday: Star Wars Birthday Party April 15, 2013

In this post: Michael had a Star Wars party for his 7th birthday. Enjoy the pics and ideas for games, snacks, and costumes.

Hello dear ones! I hope you are well. Last weekend, we celebrated Michael’s 7th birthday. He actually turned 7 on April 11th.  We had the party at Nana’s house (my Mom). Some of you may remember his Pirate party from last year at our house. Check it out if you didn’t see it:

https://amberdover.wordpress.com/2012/04/09/crafty-monday-pirate-party/

Here I am as Princess Leia. I actually don’t like Star Wars but Michael and Chris love it. Hence the party. I had to do some research to throw this party. In this pic I am literally wearing a bed sheet with arm holes cut into it. The belt is string and I braided yarn for hair and glued it to a head band. Voila! Leia’s hair!  Michael’s Granny made him the Darth Vader cape several years ago. It was a costume for the Fall festival. It still fit :).

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The Food

Yoda Soda (Sprite), Jedi Juice (Hawaiian Punch), and Warrior Water. I found the labels online. I’ll put my Pinterest link at the end of this post. I made cheesy spinach artichoke dip to go with nachos. I came up with the dip’s name “Dagobah Swamp Dip“. Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of the dip.

Food

I made the cake  using two boxes of cake mix and two things of icing. I made two big layers. People asked how I got the cake to slant upwards. Well, it wasn’t on purpose lol. But it worked out. It does sort of look like the words are going up on a screen, like they do in the movie.  I thought the cake was a disaster because the icing on the words melted. I added black food coloring. I used white sprinkles to make stars. I guess the cake wasn’t so bad. It says:

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… a young  Jedi was born!

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Setting the Scene…

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I took a couple of poster boards and made a fighter jet. I had a steering wheel used for video games and put that inside.

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Games

Free Han Solo from the Carbonite

Han solo

It took a lot to drown Han Solo. I found this idea online and I printed a mini Han. Then I covered him in contact paper and taped him to a rock so he’d sink. I put him in the freezer all night. I made two so the kids could have a contest. Btw, I found the Angry Birds’ dry erase boards at Joann’s Fabric store. They were on sale.

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We gave them warm water and spoons but it was not enough to break the ice. Mom (aka Nana) had to split the ice in two or the kids would’ve been there all day. It kept them busy til the other guests arrived.

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Jedi Training

I got cheap dollar store bubble wands for light sabers. It was a lovely idea and the kids had fun blowing bubbles as well as fighting with these. I also printed out Storm Trooper masks for the kids to wear.

JediTraining

Jedi training involved keeping balloons from touching the ground. They had to use their light sabers. Unfortunately it backfired. They starting whacking the balloons and popping them instead. An older friend was able to keep his balloon up for awhile though.

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Darth Vader Duel

DarthVaderDuel

We had a Darth Vader head pinata. We gave the kids a light saber to have their “duel”. I had Darth Vader’s theme but I forgot to play it at that time. I had Star Wars music and other party music playing at the party.

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The pinata was broken by the second kid but the guys strung him back up and kids were beating it the rest of the party.

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Bowling for Storm Troopers a.k.a Save Princess Leia!

leia

So I didn’t have guns for the kids to shoot storm troopers. I wanted to keep the party cheap and simple. So I taped storm troopers to glass bottles and gave the kids a plastic ball for bowling.

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storm troopers

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Ring R2D2

ringR2d2

I made a mini R2D2 out of a dollar store trash can and paper. We used hula hoops for a large ring toss.

r2d2again

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Making R2D2 and origami Yoda

The kids actually did this first, right after Han Solo.

R2d2

Origami Yoda

Chris showed the kids how to make the above Origami Yoda. The Dads helped out.

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I printed off several R2D2 templates and then I cut out shapes for the kids to glue on. I had the R2D2 kits and glue sticks ready when they got there. Chris made a Darth Vader and Millennium Falcon origami. I had instructions out but none of the adults wanted to attempt them.

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Last, was Pin the Saber on Yoda.

Yoda

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Even parents had fun with the light saber bubbles :).

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Photo Poster

I drew Luke and Leia and made holes for faces. The poster says “May the force be with you.”

The kids didn’t really get into this but the parents had fun.

Our buddies Hannah and James.

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Me and my bestie Hannah

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Me and Chris

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Mom and Kim

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Mom and Chris’ Mom

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Me and the Hubby

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Present time…

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Olivia,  Hannah’s daughter, drew this nice birthday card for Michael. She was born on the same day as him and I will feature her party next weekend.

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I made Michael a Star Wars peg doll set but it’s not finished. Here it is in the works…

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One of Michael’s buddies stayed after everyone left. They played with Michael’s gifts and watched Star Wars. Michael was given several Lego sets to help with his collection for Lego club.

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It was a good day and lots of fun. It was simpler than the Pirate party but still took a lot of work. Thanks to Mom and Chris for helping so much. Mom you’re a trooper! (and not the bad kind lol).

Here is the Pinterest link where I have all my ideas. Remember email subscribers to come to my page to see the links.

Star Wars Party on Pinterest

Well, the party is over folks. Michael was sick most of last week and I’ve felt rotten since yesterday. Maybe we’ve partied too much or it’s the crazy weather…cold then hot then cold again. Sorry this post is late. I’ve felt as weak as a kitten today. I hope this helps you with your own Star Wars party if you have one.

God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover