Easter: Resurrection Rolls

{This is a repost from last year. We’re planning to make these on Saturday.}

“He is not here; he is risen!”   Luke 24:6

This is the one Easter activity my children think is mandatory. They did it in their Cubbies class in Awana, and thus it must be  performed every Easter, without fail.  Today is the Friday before Easter, and we just remembered, so when we went to the store to
get Easter egg dye and a salad kit for Easter dinner, we picked up some rolls and marshmallows too.


Get some yeast freezer rolls, the kind that have to rise for 3-5 hours.  Let them rise.  Once the rolls have risen, your kids can flatten them out hide a big marshmallow in the center of each one, wrap the roll around, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar and put it on a cookie sheet.

Isn’t this a great picture? I have no pictures of the finished product, so I looked online and found this at http://barbarah.wordpress.com/2007/03/28/works-for-me-wednesday-easter-treats/

Bake the rolls according to instructions on the bag. When the rolls are done, the marshmallow is gone! It symbolizes the empty tomb! These rolls are a great, easy, fun activity and can be served with the Easter meal or as dessert.




Here’s a link that shows doing it with Crescent rolls. http://savingdollarsandsense.com/resurrection-rolls-recipe.html Either type of rolls would work fine, and Crescent rolls are probably easier since you don’t have to wait for the dough to rise. We just have always done it with the frozen kind.

He is not here; He is Risen!


6 Tips for My Future Crafting Self

NOTE: This is a re-post from last year. Hope you enjoy it! This year we’ve been stitching hearts onto cardboard and it’s been going surprisingly well. My eight- and six-year-old love it and my three-year-old tolerates it for about twenty minutes before he gets bored.  I followed the tutorial here: http://www.redbirdcrafts.com/2012/01/sew-heart-valentine-tutorial.html
Valentine’s Day seems to bring out the crafty side of my  fellow stay-at-home moms. And while I appreciate the sentiment behind all those cute Valentine’s card ideas on lots of blogs right now, we are doing well at our house just to get through a construction paper and glue session and wind up with some crooked hearts without cutting someone’s finger off.

Craft day at our house is a big, fat mess every single time, but this time I thought I’d share some tips I am willing my future crafting self to remember. You know, for next
Valentine’s day. Or Easter-egg dying day (shudder).

Hello, nice to meet you. Would you like to shake my freakishly purple hand?

1. Put the toddler in the high chair before you start. Always. Always! How many times do I have to tell you this, self? Otherwise he’ll be running around with purple, inky hands saying, “I not poopy!” which means, of course, that he is
poopy, and you will have both an inky toddler and a poopy diaper with which to contend, and this is not a good situation for anybody.

Get behind me, Satan. (non-washable ink)

2. Make sure the ink is washable.  I mean, hello. I did notice when I got out the blue ink that it said, “washable.” Which the black ink did not say. But how hard could ink possibly be to wash off? Well, I’ll tell you. Very hard. So hard, in fact, that even after giving my two-year-old a bath for an hour, and using lots of soap, he still looked like he had a black eye and some oddly tattooed hands. Thankfully this should not be a problem next year since I threw the non-washable kind away and vowed to not let any other such insanity enter the house as long as I have young children.

Eye Love You.

3. Googly eyes are a hit! In fact, my five-year-old helped my two-year-old sit there and glue on googly eyes happily for at least twenty minutes. They didn’t really care about those cute heart stickers I bought, so next year I might as well just buy a couple extra packs of googly eyes.

4. I have to cut out other activities on craft day.
I’m doing better about this! Maybe writing posts will help me remember my own
advice. I remembered our sticky snow ice cream disaster and thought, wait! I
need to only do one thing at a time! And cut other things out! So, we just had
our Valentine’s Extravaganza on the schedule that day. I counted it for
handwriting and copywork (which it was).

We went to our homeschool Capitol Day earlier this week, and it was awesome. (If you’ve never been to your state’s Capitol Day, I’d encourage you to Google it, find out when it is, and go.) But because of that, and our Valentine’s Extravaganza, we got exactly zero math lessons done this week. But, I reminded myself, it’s okay. Better to do a manageable amount and not get stressed out, than to try to cram everything in and be yelling at my kids. So, that’s a praise! I didn’t yell at my kids! Thank you Lord!

Busy at work

5. It will get easier. Next year, my toddler will be three and a
half. Practically a man! So, I’m sure it will be easier next year. And if it
won’t, I don’t want to know about it, okay? I’m just going to keep repeating it . . . It will get easier . . . It will get easier . . . It will get
easier . . .

6. It’s worth it. Despite the mess, the clean up, the chaos, this is important. I want my children to make Valentines for family and friends and neighbors, to show their love and appreciation for their teachers and grandparents. I want them to learn that life isn’t all about them. And the sooner they learn that, the better.

Bar Keeper's Friend, you are a friend of mine

On a side note, my husband has been yearning after a certain Pottery Barn table for years. But can you imagine the stress of a gorgeous new table? At least this one is all dilapidated, so if it gets a little ink on it, it’s no big deal. Three cheers for old kitchen tables.  :)

Happy crafting with your kiddos. I’m sure at your house it’s much more orderly than at ours.

10 Second Autumn Leaf Bouquet

Do you ever gaze awestruck at the autumn leaves and have to
convince yourself they’re real? Maybe we’re all dreaming.

Sometimes in November I don’t understand how we aren’t all
lining up our lawn chairs in the driveway to watch the glorious show—the honeyed drops tumbling on the wind, the scarlet embers drifting down.

Here’s my attempt to capture a few sparks of their splendor, if only for a day.

1. Collect the best leaves you can find, the ones that make your heart skip a beat, as you walk down the street with your children.

Arrange them artfully in your fingers as you go, so as to be delightful.




2. When the time comes that you must go inside, wrap the stems with Scotch tape to hold them together.







3.Plunk them into a glass jar, vase, jelly jar or
anything you find. I added water in an attempt to slow the withering, but I don’t know if it will help.

4. Sigh in rapture every time you enter the room.


Note: I expect these will be withering by morning, but they are still nice and colorful as they dry.

This might be a project I give to the children on Thanksgiving morning to decorate up the house, if there are any leaves left by then. It’s a perfect project for a child—they can spend hours collecting their most special leaves, and the only adult help they will need is possibly to help them wrap the tape around the stems.

P.S. I have to just tell you the lovely green grass in the above picture is our neighbor’s. Ours is a nice crunchy brown.  Theirs is much more photogenic.


Tissue Paper Flowers

We were in Texas recently, where my grandpa is in an assisted care facility. I wanted to give him something that would brighten up his room, but not die like real flowers. These are not hard, and sort of relaxing to make, something you can do while watching the kids ride their scooters. Unless you have a baby who’s into grabbing everything. In that case, wait a year or three. These would be fun and relatively non-messy for your kids to make for Mother’s Day or Grandparent’s Day.

Step one: cut some tissue paper and stack it up. Contrasting colors look nice.






Cut it into a "8" shape.








Twist a pipecleaner around the middle; twist nice and tight.







Twist each "petal" up and around to make it flowerlike.







Poke holes in a coffee can lid and poke the pipecleaner through.







Put all the flowers through the lid and cover the can with tissue paper.




I don’t have a final picture of the can covered with tissue paper, but you get the idea. You just wrap it in a solid color of tissue paper, tape it in the back, and your child can write their name if they want. To: Grandpa From: your child.






Sweet little hands can help.







or use them for a fancy hat.








My aunt helped me string a garland of them.

This was for the light fixture over my grandpa’s bed. The room was so sterile, we thought it needed a little cheer.



And my son made this version, a poppy, in co-op.





I think the poppy is my favorite! Anyway, these are a fun spring or summer activity, and would be fun to make for a neighbor or grandparent, and I bet Grandma would love some for Mother’s Day. Not that we’re going to do that, as I’m getting ready for the Arlington Homeschool Book Fair and trying to finish up our school, but someday I’m sure we’ll do it again.

Easter: Egg Dyeing

This was after the eggs had been soaking in the dye an HOUR.

I don’t actually like dyeing eggs. Every year I say I’m not going to do it. But then, about two days before Easter, I just can’t help myself. I keep thinking it’s going to be great. Maybe next year, I’ll just do it myself with no children. Yes, I think that’s a good plan.


This morning, I hardboiled a bunch of eggs, realized I didn’t have any dye like I thought, so we went to Reasor’s, came home, and got started. I remembered my own advice and actually put my toddler in his high-chair this time, so that part went much better.

Then, the kids were fighting over who got to put in the vinegar, and they were all, “She put water in MY cup!!!” And, “He took my egg out of the yellow!!! That was my egg!”  Then, my daughter was all whiny and frustrated because, “They aren’t working. They’re not getting stripey! They’re terrible!” (Insert sobbing here.)And my arm is tired!”

And I’ll admit, that PAAS Easter Egg dye takes forever to dye the eggs. It’s not very bright. And it’s hard to make a neat design. I got that. So, I got out some glitter glue to let her paint a design on. No good. More sobbing and gnashing of teeth.


My eight-year-old son was actually doing fine, happily working away at his end of the table, and my two-year-old son was happily coloring on his eggs with marker, until he saw the paintbrush, then he wanted to do that too. Then he happily painted his egg, and his stomach.


The issue today was my daughter was so very sad about life. Looking back now, I think she’s exhausted. She’s been staying up too late and rarely takes a nap anymore, but she still sort of needs one. A good two-hour nap would probably help a lot.  And working on not whining.

Anyway, we (I) decided we’d just leave the eggs soaking in their dye, and the kids could go to eat pizza with their grandparents, and we’d finish tonight. We’ll see how the eggs look after six hours in dye.

Maybe I’ll clean everything up while they’re gone and pray they forget about it. But that’s unlikely.

{And that is my last post about Easter. Whew! It has occurred to me that in order to blog about holidays, I probably need to be thinking a few weeks ahead, which might be a tiny problem. We’ll see. }

How in the world do you dye eggs at your house? Is there a dye that works better? Do you put two dye tablets in a cup to make the colors brighter? Do you use paint or markers, or skip the whole thing all together? Tell me, what do you do?

Easter: Resurrection Eggs

I have three children, and at the time of this post they are ages eight (boy), six (girl), and two (boy).

A friend asked me the other day if we do any kind of Easter devotions, and I said, “No, not really.” But then another friend mentioned Resurrection Eggs.  Oh yeah, we do those. I forgot.



Then I remembered we usually also do Resurrection Rolls. And sometimes, a Passover seder dinner. And occasionally, dye Easter Eggs. Though I guess that’s not a devotional activity, but it’s a fun Easter activity.

It’s just that Easter sneaks up on me every year, and I end up pulling things out of our spring box in the pantry the weekend before Easter. I never feel prepared. Nonetheless, here are some of our favorites.

Yesterday was Thursday before Easter, and I needed an activity for my toddler’s “Busy Box,” something to keep him busy while I worked with my daughter on counting. (She was in the bathtub, so we drew chalk dots on the wall and practiced counting by tens up to 100. Highly recommend Math in the Bath. The kids don’t even realize it’s school.)

Anyway, I pulled these out for my eight-year-old to do with my two-year-old. It was great. My eight year old had to read the chart, tell the two-year-old what color to get out, and explain what it was, thereby reviewing the Easter story. My two-year-old was reviewing colors, learning about Jesus (maybe, not sure if he really got that), using fine motor skills to open and shut eggs, and playing with his big brother. It’s so nice to have big kids sometimes. It was so sweet to see my older son patiently explaining to his
baby brother, “No, buddy, that’s light purple. This is dark purple.” Precious.
(Things aren’t always so serene around here, so I really took notice. There’s a lot of screaming that goes on too. This was a good moment.)

We might go over the Resurrection Eggs again at dinner one day this weekend or next week (sometime it ends up being after Easter, but that’s okay), and really explaining each one, or having the kids see if they can explain each one. Some years my husband or I have read the Easter account from the Bible.

Anyway, this is a super-easy, fun activity that can be as involved as you want it to be. You could do one egg a day leading up to Easter if you were so inclined. I got these at Mardel and it’s not too late to get them this year, or I bet they’ll be on sale next week after Easter.  Have fun!

I was going to find a good Resurrection verse, but this is the one that was on Bible Gateway just now, and it’s perfect for today, Good Friday.  Isn’t that great? I think we’ll memorize it. We’ve been having severe fighting issues lately and could use some reminders of brotherly/sisterly love.

“This is how we know what love is : Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.” 1 John 3:16