La La’s Boutique

My daughters are becoming quite the little entrepreneurs.  They have started making duct tape hair bows and selling them.  I had a Jamberry Nails party at our house last month, so the girls set up a table with their bows. They made around $20! I was shocked!

So if you’re looking for a unique gift for a young girl in your life, why not buy a custom made hair bow? They can be attached to bobby pins or hair ties and come in a few different styles – small, medium, large as well as Dolly & Me. The girls have several patterns of duct tape and are updating their stock regularly. Here are some examples:

191 193 194 195 197 199 206If you’d like to order a bow from La La’s Boutique, you can leave a comment with your email address here or you can email the girls directly  –  lalasboutique3 [at] gmail [dot] com. My little businesswomen are hoping to make some money for Christmas shopping. Their prices are very reasonable!

{writing} What Easter is Not.

Today you can find me over here, writing about Easter and sharing a fun Easter freebie!

Easter is many things to me. The Resurrection of Jesus. A celebration of my faith in Him. A time for family to gather and share our gratitude for all He has done. Spring. New life. Easter baskets. A big family dinner. Laughing kids and adults lingering at the table with coffee. Easter dresses and white cardigans. Tulips and daffodils. My grandmother’s tablecloth, dyed Easter eggs and cinnamon swirl bread. Coordinating outfits for the whole family.

Click over to Homeschool Mosaics to read what Easter is not. Not for me, anyway…

{Review} See The Light

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As a homeschool mom, one of the subjects that get a bit hard to figure out when our children get older is art.  Younger elementary ages are pretty easy to handle, especially now with Pinterest! But teaching middle school and high school age students art?! A bit daunting. Wouldn’t it be great if there was an art program that a student could do at home, that incorporated Bible lessons and that fulfilled some of the high school Fine Arts credit? I wouldn’t have even know where to start looking for such a program!

Through Mosaic Reviews, I had the opportunity to review an art program called See The Light. See The Light covers half of the Fine Arts requirements in every state. Also, the publishers of See The Light include some excellent ideas on how to fulfill the other half of the requirements.

See The Light is a company created by Dave and Pat Holt. They’ve put together an amazing team of artists and musicians that all share the same goal. “The SEE THE LIGHT team is dedicated to bringing scripture and biblical principles to viewers in a fresh, engaging way. . . and promising to teach some exciting art skills along the way!” (source

We were able to choose one of the Art Project DVD’s in the See The Light Year 2 Collection. After looking through the choices, Lael (age 12) and Alyssa (age 10) chose the Sunflowers in the style of Vincent Van Gogh. It didn’t need a lot of special materials and the subject matter was something they were both interested in drawing.

For our DVD, we had to purchase large sketch paper and oil pastels. The total was less than $8 and both are items the girls will continue to enjoy. Each lesson is about 25 minutes long (for a total of about 100 minutes). The instructor, Pat Knepley, does a great job of explaining how to use the oil pastels. I also really enjoyed listening to the Bible lessons Ms. Knepley incorporates as well as the story of Van Gogh’s life.  I thought she did an excellent job with his life story, especially considering that Van Gogh did deal with mental health issues. It’s handled in a mature, grace-filled way.

Before the first lesson, the girls set up their art station in the living room. We tried to always do the lessons when the younger girls would be occupied or napping, as the oil pastels are a bit messy.

Lesson 1 had the girls diving right in and getting their first layer of color on the paper. We found that we did have to have the remote handy, as we had to pause it after each step so the girls could catch up. They enjoyed it so very much that they were begging to do Lesson 2!  Here are their drawings after the completion of the first lesson:

Lesson 1, Alyssa
Lesson 1, Lael

For Lesson 2, the girls were taught how to add details to the leaves and petals as well as the urn that Ms. Knepley was using for their inspiration. I loved how quickly their drawings were taking shape and really looking amazing! You can “see” each girl in their drawings. One wants hers to be exactly like the example and one is giving it a little extra artistic touch. Here they are with Lesson 2 completed:

Lesson 2, Alyssa

Lesson 2, Lael

 For learning how to fill in negative space in Lesson 3, my girls really started to show their personalities a bit more. One did it her way and one tried to follow the lesson exactly. I love how each drawing developed.  There was a bit of anxiety at one point. They were concerned about messing up the drawings. I loved that the instructor was reminding them at this point that they could take some artistic license and make it their own. Here’s Lesson 3 completed:

Lesson 3, Alyssa
Lesson 3, Lael

During Lesson 4, the girls learned how to add in shadows and light, blending colors together to create a more life-like piece of art. I’m so impressed with the quality these art lessons. We are not artists. I know that I like to look at beautiful art but I have no idea how to create it. The girls were able to create beautiful pieces of art and learn something about Vincent Van Gogh as well.   

Here are their finished products:

Finished product, Lael
Finished product Alyssa

See The Light has several different DVD programs available. The first teaches the basics of art. It is available as a full set for $99.99 or individually for $14.99. The second set is the art projects. Each DVD teaches a new style of art, based on the works of famous artist such as Van Gogh (as we studied), Winslow Homer, Georgia O’Keefe and more.

If you are a homeschool parent that is looking for an art program, this would be a great place to start looking! We enjoyed it so much!


map tablecloth

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Reposting a popular homeschool idea…

One issue homeschoolers run into at times is where to keep maps. Many programs really require access to a world and US map. Some homeschoolers are blessed with enough space to have a dedicated homeschool room. For those of us that do school at the dining room table, the living room couch or where ever we land – where do we display a map?

My oldest daughter suggested gluing a map to the underside of a clear tablecloth. Sounded like a good idea to me! Turns out it was the easiest project ever. We now have a sturdy plastic tablecloth to protect the table as well as easy access to a world map as well as a US map.

I purchased a large clear table protector, a World & US wall map set and clear Elmer’s glue.

First step, spread the whole plastic cloth out and line up the maps up the way you want them. Our table is large enough that we could have both maps shown at once.

Glue like crazy on the map side, then carefully flip it over so the map side is down. I used my rolling pin to flatten out the map to the plastic.

 Then I left the tablecloth out on the floor to dry for awhile.

And voila!

A tablecloth map. Or map tablecloth? Either way for about $10 I have a super useful and easy to store homeschool tool!


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I love table runners. They are quick, easy and come in handy when your toddler rips a big strip of veneer off the middle of your table. Here’s how:

1) Cut your fabric to an appropriate width. Mine is eh-looks-about-right X good-enough inches. Hem the two long sides. I just fold in the sides about a half-inch and pin it before sewing a straight hem. Then fold in half the long way.

2) Press the fold firmly. You really need that middle fold line.

3) (This is where we all remember that I’ve only been sewing for a couple of months. It should have been folded with the right sides together. It doesn’t really matter though.) Sew together the short sides. Don’t worry about folding in the yucky ends, it won’t matter when you’re done.

4) Open up the middle fold and flatten the hemmed ends against the back of the fabric, creating a point. Press very firmly again.

5) Flip it over and press. And you’re done!

Here is a photos of our new furniture and the pillows I made. There are more on my craft Flickr.