Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Finally Home!

Phew! We made it. In one piece. 1982 miles...give or take a few.  

Mile 102 - We were all immersed in a VERY competitive Cow Game. I lost. (I'll blog on that later)

Mile 504 - Yahoo was awake at 5 AM! "Child!!! Don't you realize this is vacation?? Sleep!!!"

Mile 631 - We checked out the St. Louis Arch and ate at one of my favorite restaurants in St. Louis, Morgan Street Brewery.  

Mile 780 - Finally! We made it to family who had a bonfire and hot dogs waiting for us. Yay! I think Yap's blisters will heal soon. For some reason he was fascinated with the burning coals the next morning. 

Mile 786 - We visited a place where DR took me on one of our very first dates, Merom Bluffs. The bluffs, in Indiana, over look the Wabash River and Illinois. The first time DR brought me here it was covered in a pristine blanket of snow. It's still lovely, even in dreary November. 

Mile 925 - DR and I did ended up in a huge argument (over something VERY stupid) on my sister's front lawn. (Sorry Officer!) I blame it all on not enough sleep and too much time in the car! 

Mile 1083 - I met one one very brave woman! My youngest brother's new girlfriend joined in our Christmas festivities. This was no small feat on her part. She faced my brother's grandmother, great aunt, parents, one cousin, five siblings, five in-laws, five nephews (two of which were puking) and two nieces...and a LOT of noise. Not only did she tolerate all of us but she did it two days in a row! Crazy or brave?? 

Mile 1094 - Sunday morning worshiping in the little country church where I grew up. Nothing had changed. Yet, everything had. I had tears in my eyes. 

Mile 1100 - Guns!!! What a tradition! Part of my mother's family gets together twice a year to eat and target shoot! 

Marvel Man and Officer (my BIL and Sister) brought TWO cases of handguns for us to shoot! How fun, of course they had to coach me in the right way to hold a pistol. It has sure been a long time since I'd been out on the range! 

Yip shot all afternoon, despite the weather being cold and rainy. He sure enjoyed all the help Papa gave him. The Hoosiers were tired of rain...I could have stood in it all day long.  

Our 6 day trip went by in a whirlwind and all too soon it was time to head back to Kansas. I don't say head home because HOME will always be Indiana! 

Mile 1453 - After two nights of sleeping on couches (no complaints!) DR and I finally got to sleep in the same bed. DR is a good cuddler but he's kind of a blanket hog. 

Mile 1704 - $7 Wrangler jeans for Yip and Yap! I love Outlet Malls!  

Mile 1977 - Yahoo FINALLY fell asleep after hours of being pretty darn slap happy. Five miles later we were home. 

I loved being home. I loved seeing family and friends, although I didn't get to see everyone or those I did for as long as I would have liked. I loved seeing trees and smelling and feeling rain again. But, I was sure glad to leave when we did. The 4-8 inches Indiana received a couple days later would NOT have been much fun! 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday Devotions - God's presence

My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest. Exodus 33:14

As you read this my family and I are probably driving somewhere. This Thanksgiving week we ventured out on the trip from Indiana to Kansas. Although I have been looking forward to going home for weeks, I can't say that I've been too fired up about the actual 900 mile trip to get there. 

I don't mind road myself, but traveling with three kids can be exhausting; keeping them entertained and preventing insanity within the confines of a car. No matter how nice the hotel, I never seem to get any rest and then, of course, the constant traveling from one destination to the next really zaps my energy. 

I'm grumbling about a six day trip. No wonder the Israelites complained...their trip lasted 40 years!! Can you imagine the kids on that trip? How would Israelite parents answer the question, "Are we there yet?" 

I think the most exhausting thing about road trips are the unknowns and the idea that we are all alone on the road. In the case of delays or problems, there often aren't friends or family close enough to call for help. But God's presence is with us all the time. God was with the Israelites the whole time, though they often forgot. Our family has been praying for God's presence and protection on this trip for at least a week. Although we're not on the road as I write this I've felt much calmer as I've prepared for this trip. Already I'm comforted that no matter what occurs God will always be by my side to protect my family and I. Just thinking of God's presence, no matter where I am, brings peace of mind. 

Is God walking or riding with you today? 

Today, dear Jesus, my feet will carry me to many places. I treasure your presence, and I long for the rest only you can give. Work in me....Amen. (God's Promises to a Woman's Heart)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

I Don't.....

I Don't.... drugs. Yes, I'm an art teacher, and no, that doesn't automatically make me a pothead. Art teachers CAN be normal. 

.....have any yearning to read or watch the Twilight series. Vampire Romance? Didn't Buffy cover that already? 

.....have any tattoos, though I think they can be really cool. Though the belly button piercing and shotgun saga is well documented. 

....ever have enough time to visit all the people I'd like to when we return home to Indiana on visits. If it weren't for Facebook I'd have lost track of lots of friends and family long ago. 

....know if I will survive a six day, 1800 mile trip with my husband and my kids. The family closeness may just kill me. Pray for us! 

....have a clue what I want to do when I grow up, or at least when Yahoo is in school all day. I have a couple of things I'd like to do when the time comes but I don't know if any of them are feasible. 

....don't miss high school but I sure miss college. 

....ever want to live in a large city. Even Indianapolis is too big for me. the color pink or sparkles. 

....look forward to the day when Yahoo asks me to make Barbie clothes. 

....think that my couch will be able to survive Yip and Yap bouncing and wrestling for another 6 months. 

....remember the last date DR and I went on. Would it still be considered a date if we hired a babysitter just so he and I could take a nap? 

...feel as old as I am...most days :) 

...I don't have a clue what God wants out of me...I kind of wish he'd clue me in. 

...regret that I grew up the oldest of 7 kids. There is a lot to be said for big families. 

...don't want to have 7 kids! 

...don't know where I saw this writing prompt for "I don't..." but I think it was a nice blogging twist. 

Happy Saturday, 
Prairie Mother

Friday, November 25, 2011

Foody Friday - Gooey Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

I found this Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe and I don't think I'll ever make chocolate chip cookies again. I absolutely love cooking and baking that cuts down on doing dishes afterwards. And this...this cookie only dirties one skillet. Whoop! 

Gooey Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie

1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla 
1 egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in an 8 inch cast iron skillet set over medium-low heat. Stir in sugars and vanilla and remove from heat. Let rest until pan is warm, but no longer very hot, about 5 minutes.

2. Crack an egg onto the butter and sugar mixture, and use a fork to whisk it well into the mixture. Place flour, baking soda, and salt on top, and very carefully stir into the mixture until smooth and well-mixed. Stir in chocolate chunks. Place in the oven for 15 minutes, or until starting to turn golden on the top and around the edges, but soft in the center. (I baked it for 20 minutes to get rid of some of the gooeyness.) Serve with vanilla ice cream. 

Or serve warm on the end of spoon, no ice cream required! 

Thursday, November 24, 2011



by Lizelia Augusta Jenkins Moorer

Let us give thanks to God above,
Thanks for expressions of His love,
Seen in the book of nature, grand
Taught by His love on every hand.

Let us be thankful in our hearts,
Thankful for all the truth imparts,
For the religion of our Lord,
All that is taught us in His word.

Let us be thankful for a land,
That will for such religion stand;
One that protects it by the law,
One that before it stands in awe.

Thankful for peace o’er land and sea,
Thankful for signs of liberty,
Thankful for homes, for life and health,
Pleasure and plenty, fame and wealth.

Thankful for friends and loved ones, too,
Thankful for all things, good and true,
Thankful for harvest in the fall,
Thankful to Him who gave it all.

Happy Thanksgiving to All where ever and how ever you may be celebrating it! 
Prairie Mother 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Vote on my Christmas Card Magnet!

DR and I started a Christmas tradition when our boys were only toddlers. We send a wallet sized family photo on a business card size magnet along with our Christmas cards. It's been pretty popular with family! I've been to a few people's houses where our growing magnet collection is on their fridge! And of course once we started Grandma expects it every year and I can't disappoint Grandma! 

For months I have been trying to get a good family photo for our magnet! Yip and Yap seem to think normal smiles are over rated...gggrrr. 

Finally, Sunday morning before church I dragged everyone outside for a photo. Bbbbrrrr, it was in the 40's and cold and I was in no mood for any funny business. We were going to do this quick! I had seen this idea from a professional photographer, posing a family reading books. Since we are big readers I thought it would be cute! Well, we rushed it and couldn't get a photo of Yap with his eyes open but I did manage to narrow down our options to these two photos. 

Option #1 

Option #2

Yap's eyes are closed and this is Yip's version of a smile.
*sigh* least they are natural I suppose. 

So, help me out. 
Tell me in the comments below which photo we should send with Christmas cards! 

Monday, November 21, 2011

Marker Monday - Handprint Calendar Gift Idea!

To my Mother and Grandmother, 
unless you want to ruin the surprise of your Christmas gifts STOP READING NOW!


.....that should be enough warning for them! 

My wonderful friend Melissa who runs our playgroup had a big workshop day, 7 hours long, where she had different stations set up for us to do 12 different paint hand prints with our toddlers. After they were dry she cut them out, added details and and a poem, and we attached the hand prints onto a calendar for a Christmas gift for grandparents!! 

They turned out so well I just had to share. Maybe you have enough time to do something like this with your kids. Melissa was kind enough to set this up early for me because our family Christmas is next weekend in Indiana. 

This is the cover made from two handprints. 

The first page. I wasn't able to fit all three kids handprints on every page but we rotated so there were two per month. 

Then with every month Melissa put a matching poem.I won't put them all up because there are poems all over the Internet you could use but for example, January's says;

These aren't just five snowmen
as anyone can see.
I made them with my hand 
which is a part of me. 
Now each year when you trim the tree
You'll look back and recall 
when my hand was just this small. 

Melissa also had a lot of options if you didn't like the handprint she had for a particular month. There were also strawberries, octopus, firemen, ghosts, lobsters, and some that you could do with your feet too! 

Fish and flags for July?
 Yes, odd but my boys didn't want to do the flags! 

The apples turned out perfect if you only paint the palms. 

These are such a cool keepsake for grandparents, I can't wait to give it to them this weekend! This makes me wish I ran a daycare, wouldn't this be a cool thing to do with your kids all year long and surprise their parents with? 

What kind of homemade gifts are your kids making this year?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Devotions - Looking forward to Death

I Corinthians 2:9  ‘Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.’"  

I recently read the book, Heaven is for Real, the story of 4 year old Colton's visit to Heaven. In the book, his father Todd relates how after his son's heavenly experience he had trouble getting Colton to be safe. He tried to explain to the little boy that if he wasn't careful around the street, for example, that he could get hurt and die. Which the little boy replied joyously, "Then I could go back to heaven and see Grandpa!!!" The thought of death was exciting for Colton. It was something he looked forward to because he had already been to Heaven and he KNEW it was a WONDERFUL place! A place to look forward to going to. 

But honestly, don't we all fear death just a little bit? Not often do we hear someone wanting to speed up the time they have on earth. Shouldn't we though. I mean, Heaven is beyond what we can imagine! We can't fathom the grandeur of what God has in store for us, but we know it's going to be great. 

John 14:2-4

In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.  You know the way to the place where I am going."

Revelation 21:4-8

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."  He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true."  He said to me: "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.  He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.  But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars--their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death."

Have you ever heard the song There Are No Band Aids in Heaven? 
I love that song. It's just another reminder that we shouldn't fear death because by accepting Christ we have also accepting the great things he has in store for us. 

Dear Heavenly Father, Although I know You don't want us to go looking for death help us to overcome our fear and anxiety of it.  Help us, as adults, to learn to view this world and the world you have in store for us with the trust and innocence of a child. Amen. 

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Footloose; the TRUE Oklahoma Inspiration.

I don't remember when I first saw the movie Footloose but I've always liked watching it. I'm not planning on seeing the remake though. Guess I'm a snob. I always wanted a pair of red cowboy boots like Ariel. I didn't realize till later that she probably wasn't the best character to dress like. 

Growing up I always heard from my dad that the movie Footloose was about my cousin Kim's high school in Oklahoma. Nah, I always thought, it must be somewhere similar. 

But last weekend we were in Oklahoma visiting Kim for an early Thanksgiving dinner (She's so organized with her Thanksgiving dinner notebook!) and after we were all stuffed with turkey and pie we couldn't do much else but sit and talk and we got Kim talking about her prom. 

In 1980 she was a sophomore in high school and the students wanted a dance but the law forbid public dancing. The laws were written back in a time to prevent dance halls, a 100 years before. So the principal and the students went before the town council to get the law changed. Kim remembers going and thinking somebody was going to get into a fistfight over it. The most opposition against dancing was the local ministers. 

The law ended up getting changed and the students were able to have their first dance and my cousin Kim got to go. They had a banquet dinner before the dance at their school. The problem was that this little Oklahoma town not being allowed to dance had made national news and the night of the prom there were all kinds of reporters outside the school. The cafeteria area where they were going to have their dinner had a wall of windows at one end that had to be blacked out with dark paper so the students could have some privacy. After their dinner the students went and changed, the dark paper was taken down and the reporters were allowed in but were kept back from the students at a respectable distance. 

Kim went on to tell us how all the students were just standing up against the walls because, "Well, we'd never had a dance and who wanted to dance in front of a bunch of reporters?" Then the junior class president and a junior girl started dancing which broke the ice and everyone else joined in. One reporter climbed halfway up a set of stairs and filmed the whole time. Another found the janitor's 8 foot ladder and set it up in the middle of the gym and shot footage down from above. Kim remembers thinking, "What's the big deal? We're just dancing."

Kim's little sister was watching tv that night when a picture of Kim came on the national nightly news. Her sister thought for sure Kim was going to hell because there she was dancing....without any shoes on!! Kim even made the front page of the Chicago Tribune without shoes on...heaven forbid! (I'd sure love to see that photo.)

Now even I wasn't sure just how much of Footloose was inspired by my cousin's school until Mountain Man showed me one of the special features on the Footloose Collector's Edition. And there is footage of the little town we were just a stone's throw from and my cousin Kim getting interviewed all about her prom in 1980. 

The inspiration for Footloose. What an interesting high school memory that must be? 

Thanks for sharing your story Kim! 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Foody Friday - Golden Breaded Pork Tenderloins

A while back I won the Gooseberry Patch Cookbook Fast Fix Meals  from my friend Lana over at Walking the off-beaten path. It has a great bunch of simple recipes and this one has quickly become a favorite in our house! 

Golden Breaded Pork Chops

1/2 c. dry bread crumbs
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1 T. dried oregano
1 t. dried marjoram (I didn't have this; substituted sage. yum)
2 eggs, beaten
5 or 6 pork chops
1/2 c. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Mix bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese and herbs in a shallow bowl; set aside. Beat eggs in a separate bowl. Dip pork chops into egg, then into crumb mixture. Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium low heat. Cook chops for 5-7 minutes on each side until golden, adding salt and pepper to taste. Serve with sides of your choice...fried potatoes and green beans! 

These were so good. I'm really glad I used sage instead of marjoram, it added a great flavor! And 6 chops will feed our family for two nights...this recipe is a keeper! 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Wheelbarrow

I love my mom. (duh)

But I'm especially thankful for her sending me this photo. I was complaining on Facebook the other day how homesick I was for Indiana leaves so she stepped out the back door and snapped this to send me. 

At least she wasn't as cruel as to box up fall leaves and actually send them to me. Mom did that to Mountain Man a couple years ago. That sure didn't help his homesickness!

Although I love the leaves I was happy to see the wheelbarrow. This belonged to Grandpa, I don't know how old it is, and I grew up hauling load after load of wood from the barnyard to the house for our wood burning stove. In the summer it wasn't stored away. No, this was the most comfortable lawn chair we had. It reclines at the perfect angle with the handles as feet rests. 

What you see here is actually the second wheelbarrow. When I was growing up the wood was rotting and falling apart and when my younger brother was a teenager he replaced all the wood parts and kept the metal fixtures. It's still great. 

Too bad I can't steal it and haul it back to Kansas with me. 
I could use a really comfortable chair on my front porch. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Oklahoma Thanksgiving

Other than my brother I have family who have lived in southern Oklahoma for over thirty years. And although, growing up, I didn't spend a lot of time with this side of the family we still keep in touch and visit whenever possible.

My cousin Kim called a couple weeks ago and said they were planning a Thanksgiving dinner this past weekend since that was the only Saturday my brother and her son both had off work. So in a whirlwind, we drove down for dinner.

I love family dinners because although I only brought mashed potatoes it was a feast of wonderful food that I didn't have to cook!

Family dinners crack me up because, like every family, there are always a few characters that make you smile! 

Like this wonderful guy Jake. He is a wonderful guy but he annoys me to no end! Mostly because he runs and hides when ever I try to take his picture! 
Goal for 2012: Get a good picture of Jake! 

This wonderful smiling little buddy is David. I love David because he is a camera hog! Ha, everytime I come around he'll gladly pose for me. He was especially proud that we were able to get a pic of him jumping off the swing. 

Now my boys and David and his little brother Charlie love spending time with one another. On Friday in fact, while we were driving, David convinced his teacher that he had to call home and MAKE SURE he hadn't missed my boys arrival! Ha, what a wonderful teacher he must have. 

Although it was a fast trip and I was sick and exhausted the whole time it was worth it. I got to see a family and friends I don't remember seeing since I was in elementary school. 

I don't think I could ever get tired of family dinners! 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Visiting Mountain Man and TREES!!!!

Over the weekend we traveled 5 hours to southern Oklahoma to visit my brother Mountain Man who moved there over the summer.

What a wonderful view he has from his back door!! 
His landlord runs cattle on a 100 acres behind the house. 

I have missed trees so much that being in Southern Oklahoma reminded DR and I a lot of Southern Indiana. Although Indiana trees are bigger than Oklahoma trees. 

There was a big fallen down tree in the pasture that Yip and Yap spent A LOT of time playing on! You wouldn't believe how filthy they got playing on it! I loved it! I love when my kids get so dirty playing; I honestly believe it's healthy for kids. 

"What's this Uncle Mountain Man?"
"That's raccoon poop boy!" 
Ah, a wilderness education! 

I've heard people call Oklahoma "God's Country" and it sure seemed that wonderful this weekend. 

I have to admit I'm pretty jealous that Mountain Man gets to live in such a beautiful place but I'm sure happy he's my brother so I can come visit him! 

Friday, November 11, 2011

Foody Friday - Traditional Peanut Butter Pie

Oh. My. Goodness.

I have just gained five pounds just LOOKING at this pie. 
I'm not telling how much of this delectable pie I actually ATE! 
An embarrassing amount though.

Peanut Butter is one of my favorite foods. 
I think it deserves its own food group...right next to chocolate. 

I found this deliciously sinful pie recipe in A Foxfire Christmas. 
Are you familiar with the Foxfire Books? It's a great story of a teacher, his students and the people of the Appalachian mountains.
 Got a minute? Check it out!! 

But back to the pie.

Grandma's Traditional Pie from Emma Sue Carver

My grandmother has been making this pie every year on Thanksgiving and Christmas for as long as I can remember. She is the only one in my family or anywhere that makes it as good as she does. I got this recipe from one of her recipe cards, but I had to get her to translate if for me because she had written it down so only she could read it. So here is how she told me to make it: 

Combine 2/3 c. sugar, 2T flour, 1T cornstarch, and 1/4 t. salt in a heavy, deep saucepan. Gradually add 2 1/2 c. milk to the mixture; cook on medium heat, stirring constantly. then, beat in 3 egg yolks; add to remaining hot mixture, stirring constantly. (About 10 minutes) Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Remove from stove, and add 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter and 1/2 t. of vanilla extract. Stir until peanut butter melts. Add 1/2 c. chocolate chips. Then pour mixture into a baked store-bought or homemade pie crust, let it set out at room temperature for 30 minutes, and gently swirl the top of the pie with a knife to give it a "swirling water look." Then it is ready to eat. But don't eat it all in one sitting.

I was VERY tempted to eat it all in one sitting! It is so creamy and yummy! And I'm sure very fattening...ah, who cares! Bring on the pie!! 

Combine 2/3 c. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Draw of the Tumbleweeds

Rollin', rollin', rollin...
see those tumbleweed rollin'
Rollin', rollin', rollin' on by!

Tis the season of the tumbleweed!
See all those bushy like things out in that field? Well those are the curse of SW Kansas. Russian thistle.

They may look nice and green most of the year, I wouldn't know, drought you know, but this time of year is when they dry up and get blown all over. To give you an example; last weekend I was driving and for about a mile stretch tumbleweeds were constantly blowing across the road. I bet I saw at least 50 blow across the road in that one mile. DR and I have a game we play this time of year when we drive. We try to time it just right to hit the tumbleweeds as they roll across the road. It's quite a sight to see them obliterate! The chain link fence at the high school football field is covered with tumbleweed that has been blown in these last couple weeks!

For my boys tumbleweeds are cool! Of course they are cool to them. They've only seen them the last year and they've associated them with cowboys. I imagine their affection for tumbleweed would be similar to a Kansan's fascination with Indiana Morning Glory. Cool to look at, a pain to deal with.

The locals already think we are strange with our Purdue Boilermaker gear so I'm sure they thought this little scene was hilarious to them. The boys took off for about 30 minutes and came back with a long row of tumbleweeds tied to one of the bikes!

Oh my. And they are coming straight to our house with all those tumbleweeds! I can hear all the neighbors giggling right now,
"Those crazy Hoosiers!"

Yep, you can't see it but Yip there is pushing his bike attached to all those tumbleweeds right into our front yard.

Ha! It took those two silly boys a good half an hour to get the rope and tumbleweeds off their bike. They only work this well together when they are making a mess. Namely spreading a weed all over my front yard.

When I asked them what they were going to do with it they said, "We don't know...maybe we'll make a tumbleweed snowman out of them." Of course, since we don't get snow.

Now wouldn't that be a sight. Maybe I'll get lucky and stiff wind will blow the tumbleweed away before they can get to work on that project!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

More Christmas Gift Ideas

A couple of weeks ago I blogged about some of the Christmas shopping I've been doing and shared some links with some of my favorite toy finds.

Sarah commented, "Thanks for sharing! Anymore good ideas? Nothing too exciting that is new in the toy department this year I feel like and I don't want to start the video game thing yet."

I am the oldest of 7 siblings so you can probably imagine the chaos that ensues for my Christmas family get togethers.  A couple of years ago my sister (who has kids around my kids' age) and I asked our siblings not to buy our kids toys because they already had so many. (Great grumbling ensued from said siblings and therefore the request has since been revoked.) There are plenty of gifts my kids have received that weren't toys that they enjoyed very much. 

1. SPROUT  Kid size furniture is nice. My kids never received any Sprout furniture but I found this site and sure wish my boys had some of this furniture when they were smaller! All the furniture snaps together, no hardware and stores flat when taken apart. If that's not cool enough, the different furniture pieces are interchangeable so you can create your own designs. Neat! 

6 Cubby OrganizerKid's TableKid's Rocker

2. Gloves and mittens! It seems my kids are always losing or growing out of winter gloves and hats. I for one enjoy it when they've received these in the past. 

3. Consumable Art supplies! My kids and I go through so many art supplies and I think they are great gifts for all kids. Especially if they receive an art supply Mom and Dad don't usually glitter glue or play foam...something that's just a little exotic is always a hit. 

4. Magazine subscriptions 

Kids coverLittle Kids cover

My mother in law buys my kids magazine subscriptions every Christmas. It's great because it saves her shipping big packages to Kansas and the kids get mail. And what kid doesn't enjoy getting mail? In the past we've chosen magazines from National Geographic but my favorites are Ranger Rick and Animal Baby from the National Wildlife Federation.  And these have been great magazines. My kids are always pulling out old copies, even if I can't sit down and read to them there are simple words and great photos they can enjoy on their own. 

It seems like every year it becomes more difficult finding good gifts for my kids that they'll really enjoy, appreciate and won't be broken a week later! 

Do you have any more Christmas gift ideas to add to our list? Christmas will be here before you know it!! 

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