The Nadel family- Enjoy reading our everyday adventures!

Friday, April 29, 2011

DIY- Felt hair clips

Today, instead of a "Food Friday, I am going to make a post for "Frugal Friday"! Enjoy...

I was in a craft store recently and saw these cute felt hair clips. Immediately I said to my oldest daughter, "we could make these!" So we bought some metal clips, felt and got busy!

I have made pins with felt and my Sizzix Big Shot before, and it is very fun! That was a cute and simple Mother's Day gift last year! This year I made these for my little girls just in time for Easter, and I made a few pins for me too!

Here is what we used:
My Sissix Big Shot ready to roll!
 The supplies I used were: 2 colors of purple and 2 colors of pink felt; coordinating buttons (green, pink, red, yellow, blue); scissors, thread, Sissix Big Shot, flower die, and small metal clips.
Supplies used...
Showing more supplies, some cut and sewn, ready to glue...
Some sewn, some ready to sew buttons on...
Ready to glue.
(Showing the back& flowers stitched together)
Gluing pin back and clip onto flower...
With two sheets of each color (4 total) I made 8 flower pin/ clips! (One not pictured)
The finished product! 
So here are the rough directions:
1. Get out all supplies. Plug in hot glue gun.
2. Cut out flowers with Sissix and felt.
3. Match the colors you'd like to sew together with button. 
You can do all one color, or two matching colors of felt.
4. Sew on button.
5. Glue pin back or metal clip onto back of felt flower. Viola!
Cute, springy and fun!

Now I've got enough for six hair clips and two pins for me!:-D 
Let me know if you make this and what you think...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

American Girl tea party!

I decided to have an end-of-year tea party for the girls in my American Girl class, since I had missed one class when I was sick. My husband suggested having a party here at our home, and so I scheduled it and it worked! (A few of the girls missed the tea, but we still had 11 of the 14, plus moms from our class come!) A few of the girls brought their cross-stitch bookmarks that they finished, it was fun to see them completed. They did a great job!

I looked online and got some ideas from these two websites:


These were two pictures that I liked from a beautiful mosaic website:

I liked the napkins with pink ribbon on them, and I liked the pink lemonade. So we made pink lemonade in addition to tea, and put the lemonade and ice water in fancy pitchers. We also made scones, I found that recipe in my MOPS cookbook. My daughter used the Master Muffin recipe to make apple cinnamon muffins. 
Here is what we set up:

 Tablecloths on the table with a table runner, real tea cups (kinda risky with 8-10 year old girls!)
 They all sat around one table, even though I had a second table set up in the dining room with another flowery tablecloth on it...

 We made a small craft called a "Bilboquet" that I found in an American Girl craft book. It was easy and fun!
 One of the girls brought her horse, the foal from the last Felicity book, "Patriot". It was there on the table while the girls made their craft.
 The dolls on the couch while we had tea... :-D
 We had some extra time so we played some colonial games, from the same American Girl party/craft book. In the above picture, I'm explaining the game...
 It was called "Hide the Ring" and the girls had lots of fun playing it. We passed the ring behind our backs, and the girl in the middle closed her eyes. When I said stop, the girl opened her eyes and guessed who held the ring. (I loved all their dresses they wore!)
The last game we played was supposed to be "Hide the Thimble", only I didn't get out a thimble beforehand. So we used the ring again, and hid it around the room. 
The girls liked hiding and finding it too!

It was a very fun tea, and I'll miss the girls this summer! It was a great time to "have tea" like the English, since the Royal Wedding is tonight! I even wore my necklace with crowns on it! :-D

Oh, and here is my completed and framed cross-stitch sampler that I had stitched during this Spring of the Felicity classes. The girls enjoyed seeing my finished product too!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Baseball

Wordless- actually not so wordless, somewhat more wordful!
Baseball's here again!
Caleb is in Spring baseball again right now, and it's been really fun to watch him!
He is in a new level this Spring in the league- "Kid pitch", where the boys are learning to pitch. He has pitched several games so far and he likes it! He pitches about two innings and he has even struck out several batters! He's also played first base a lot, and gotten some great hits!
There he is pitching!
 His cousin Aaron #11 is catching!
Pitching again!

 And this is what the (5) little sisters do...
Get dirty playing in the dirt!
Also, please check out this one minute video of Caleb pitching and his cousin Aaron catching:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Baby loss/ "Held"

I have never lost a baby that I have known of, but I have a few friends and family that have miscarried, or had infants die when born too early. But last year, about this time, a friend of mine from MOPS had her baby, a sweet little guy, who was born with heart and brain problems. He lived only two short days. It just plain broke my mother's heart. My kids were sad for my friend too. We had all prayed for them, and then we mourned with and for them. As I thought about my friend in the months that followed, I kept hearing a song that seemed like it applied to her situation, so I told her about it.

The song I "gave" her was one that she had not heard before, and she later told me that it really spoke to her heart. I've given lots of tangible items to friends that have lost babies, such as a big box of kleenex, a baby blanket, a bag of forget-me-not seeds, a journal and pretty pen, bubble bath, and more, all in a basket. Several moms told me that they really appreciated that gift. But this is a song I could put in the basket too...

This song is by Natalie Grant, one of my favorite Christian artists. Here are the lyrics to the song, Held:

Two months is too little
They let him go
They had no sudden healing
To think that providence
Would take a child from his mother
While she prays, is appalling
Who told us we'd be rescued
What has changed and
Why should we be saved from nightmares
We're asking why this happens to us
Who have died to live, it's unfair
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was that when everything fell
We'd be held
This hand is bitterness
We want to taste it and
Let the hatred numb our sorrows
The wise hand opens slowly
To lilies of the valley and tomorrow
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was that when everything fell
We'd be held
If hope if born of suffering
If this is only the beginning
Can we not wait, for one hour
Watching for our Savior
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise was that when everything fell
We'd be held
[Repeat Chorus]

You can watch the video and hear the song here:

I'm so thankful that God holds us when we need it most. So today, hold and hug your kids a little longer, while they are here. In honor of my friend and her little guy that she had to let go. 
(Sorry if I made you cry, it gets me every time too!)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Dairy-Free Meals

A few years ago, we discovered that our youngest daughter Bethany reacts to milk and dairy products with an eczema type-rash. Poor baby! :(  So to this day, at over 2 years old, she still does not consume any dairy products. We discovered this when I was nursing her, so that meant that I had to cut out all dairy products at the time too. I found a great resource of friends on Facebook that also had kids with no-dairy diets. I've had to alter some of the recipes that we make, so this is a post all about what I learned and do for Bethany now.

One of my friends gave me a link to a hidden dairy "cheat sheet" that you can print out and keep in your wallet or one your refrigerator. (I did both!) It is very handy to have when you are in the grocery store and you need to know if certain ingredients are milk related or not. She also explains kosher labeling well on the card. It is business card sized, and you can find it here. The has other great resources too, if you have time, you should check it out! She is a lactation consultant and has lots of great articles. 
Bethany in her pre- dairy-free days, itchy skin!

Bethany still drinks soy milk, when I weaned her, she went straight to soy milk. Our favorite brand is Silk, and you can check out their web site and info about them here. We buy cases of three half-gallons at Sam's Club, and it lasts us a week or two. My hubby and I drink it too, the chocolate is yummy for hot chocolate and in coffee! You can even get a coupon on their website to get you started!

We use Silk in our recipes that we make for the family that have milk in them. These include pancakes, waffles, french toast, corn bread, muffins and more. It works well and you can hardly tell. The Vanilla soy milk adds a little extra flavor that is delicious!

One of my favorite websites for recipes that I found is They also have a lot of vegan  nut-free, and soy-free recipes too. One blog that I found that has some good recipes is here. Most of the time I can alter a recipe slightly so that Bethany can have a part with no cheese. When we make chicken enchiladas, hers has no cheese or sour cream. When we make desserts, sometimes I have a piece of cake or pudding just for her, and we buy her soy ice cream. We also buy chocolate graham crackers for her for a sweet. One of my friends makes dairy free cake mix (one of them is, can't remember if it's Duncan Hines or Betty Crocker) and freezes cupcakes for her kids. I think she even frosts them with powdered sugar & dairy-free cream cheese frosting! 

I found some tips here about going dairy-free while nursing your baby. 
 I found this recipe for dairy-free cream soup:
"To make a 1-cup "condensed" serving, melt 3 T margarine (or oil) in a saucepan. Whisk in 3 T flour, 1/4 tsp salt and a dash of pepper. Cook over medium heat until bubbly, stirring frequently. Slowly add 1 ¼ C hot milk substitute (or half-and-half milk sub & chicken stock for cream of chicken), stirring with a whisk to prevent lumps. Cook until thick, stirring constantly. You can add sautéed vegetables (i.e., sauté ¼ C chopped mushrooms and 1 T minced onion in the margarine before adding the flour for cream of mushroom; sub celery for the mushrooms for cream of celery), vary the liquid used (i.e. tomato juice for tomato soup), add herbs and spices, etc." She also says that Imagine sells a brand of "creamy" soups that are dairy-free. I may have to try them!

Here is another recipe for condensed cream soup: It would work best with diary-free margarine, and the only one is Smart Balance Light. We also like Fritos corn chips, we buy those for birthdays!

I have a recipe for dairy-free cake found on my blog here.
AND did you know that Oreo cookies are dairy- free? I wish I'd known that earlier!

Oh, and I tell Bethany now that she can't have certain things to eat, and she'll ask why. I usually say that it has "itchy milk" in it. She seems to understand that, and will even ask me, "Itchy milk Momma?" :(

It was an adjustment for us, as I am sure that it would be for you too.
I hope these tips and links have helped!

If you have any questions, let me know. I am happy to share what I've learned over the past few years!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Freebie Friday!

I am starting to run out of recipe ideas to post, so I am going to post a great place to get all kinds of freebies, especially for homeschoolers! Some of you may know about it, but I have gotten lots of great supplies, stories and resources from them, for FREE! And I LOVE FREE!

It is called homeschool freebie of the day, and when you sign up, you get an email once a week highlighting what their freebies will be that week. Then you just need to *remember* to go over there on that day and snag your freebie!

Usually they have resources that are related to the month or holiday coming up, such as Valentine's day, President's day, etc., This week they have resources related to easter, including Easter copy-work books you could download, and mp3 audio called "The Son of Man", and a learn to draw book. The hard part is that you have to retrieve your resource ON that day, or it is gone! I've missed some great ones, and sometimes they will offer it again at another time, but not always!

Sometimes they provide you with a link that you need to follow to get your freebie and download it from the secondary website. I've found some great resources that way too! They also offer low-priced subscriber exclusives too, if you subscribe to their site financially.

I've been a big fan of them for years, and have lots of items on my hard-drive ready to use, and some things I've printed out and used right away. There are some great old books and neat science texts from about year 1900 that are so fun to look through and learn from. :-D

So go check them out and sign up for their newsletter! Go, now! (If you haven't already...)

If that doesn't work for some reason, try this link:

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter song

We've heard this song on our Christian radio station a lot lately, and we've really enjoyed it, so we downloaded it for free last month from their website. It has become one of my favorite songs lately. The words are so powerful, and the idea about how death is conquered by death is quite intriguing. I have not listened to Matt Maher too much, but I have become a fan of his after hearing this song. This is an awesome resurrection song...

Here are the lyrics:

Christ is Risen- Matt Maher 

Let no one caught in sin remain
Inside the lie of inward shame
We fix our eyes upon the cross
And run to him who showed great love
And bled for us
Freely you bled, for us

Christ is risen from the dead
Trampling over death by death
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave!

Christ is risen from the dead
We are one with him again
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave!

Beneath the weight of all our sin
You bow to none but heavens will
No scheme of hell, no scoffer's crown
No burden great can hold you down
In strength you reign
Forever let your church proclaim

Christ is risen from the dead
Trampling over death by death
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave

Christ is risen from the dead
We are one with him again
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave

Oh death! Where is your sting?
Oh hell! Where is your victory?
Oh Church! Come stand in the light!
The glory of God has defeated the night!

Oh death! Where is your sting?
Oh hell! Where is your victory?
Oh Church! Come stand in the light!
Our God is not dead, he's alive! he's alive!

Christ is risen from the dead
Trampling over death by death
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave
Christ is risen from the dead
We are one with him again
Come awake, come awake!
Come and rise up from the grave

Rise up from the grave... 

[ Matt Maher Lyrics from

From the "Alive Again" CD, released Sept. 2009
(You can buy it on iTunes or

You can listen to it and watch him play it on a video here:
(you can just watch the middle if you don't want to hear them talk about it)

I love hearing them talk about it though, how our faith hinges on this truth of Christ's death. It is chant-like, has a catchy melody. My kids have been caught singing it walking around the house. :-D
I hope you enjoyed it as much as I do! And take time to thank God and worship Him, that HE'S ALIVE! OUR GOD IS NOT DEAD! He has triumphed over the grave- Hallelujah!!

You can find out more about Matt Maher here:

What Easter songs do you like? 
Any new ones that you've heard recently?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday!

(Well, almost wordless!)
wearing brother's hat
 Here are a few pics of Bethany potty-training the past few weeks. We've still got a way to go, but we're working on it. We've had lots of successes and lots of accidents too. We'll keep on trying, I know she'll figure it out soon. In the meantime, she's just too cute!

silly girl colored on her legs!

Linking up to Live and Love Wordless Wednesday
Linking up to The Paper Mama Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Discipline books

Whenever I have a tough day here at home with my kids, there are a few discipline books that I reach for on my book shelves. These are the books that are dog-eared, highlighted, underlined, have coffee stains, dirty fingerprints... well, you get the idea. Well-loved and well-used books, the ones that I don't like to loan out for too long, 'cause I'll miss them. Really, really miss them.So in no particular order and without further ado, these are my favorite parenting/ discipline books, in addition to the Bible.

Creative Correction by Lisa Whelchel
I love this book because the author Lisa Whelchel (from Facts of Life TV fame) has so many out-of-the-box, unusual ideas to use in your parenting toolbox. For example, the author says that when your child lies, put a drop of hot sauce on their tongue. We've used this also for swearing, or saying "bad" words,  and it works! I read that discipline needs to hurt to make a difference. Usually after a minute of letting the hot sauce simmer on their tongue, we'll extend a little mercy and give them some milk to cool it down. That was just one example of the many ideas and nuggets included- it is well-used!

Parenting with Love and Logic by Foster Cline and Jim Fay

This book has lots of common sense ideas for teaching children responsibility. They have lots of "parenting pearls", what to do in various situations, such as table manners, lying and dishonesty, peer pressure, pet care, sibling rivalry, fighting, temper tantrums, toilet training, and more. They have lots of love-and-Logic tips, where they discuss how to lock in love, how to discipline with empathy and not anger (one of my favorites!), and reasons for control battles amongst others. There is so many wonderful ideas and tips in this book, I can't tell you all of them in one paragraph! The book is not so "Christian" in its ideas, but it fits very well with Christian concepts of love, kindness and respect. I bought their book for Love and Logic in the classroom, and I'm looking forward to reading it this summer (I hope!) I like the part about the difference between thinking words and fighting words, i.e., "You sound upset. I'll be happy to talk to you as soon as your voice is as soft as mine is." (page 61)I could keep going... but I'll go on to the next one...

Don't Make me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman

 This is a wonderful book that was recommended by a speaker at our MOPS group. We also went through this book in a Sunday School class last year, and it spurred some GREAT discussion! Ginger Plowman talks about disciplining children in a godly way. She had read "Shepherding a Child's Heart" by Ted Tripp (which I have also read) and enjoyed it, but found that she needed more. So she contacted Mr. Tripp and asked if she could write a chart related to his teaching. (It can be found as "Wise Words for Moms" on She uses Bible verses to teach her children concepts such as why we don't lie, and therefore reaches their heart, not just their head. Hopefully by reaching the heart, we will experience true change and repentance in our child.

Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours by Dr. Kevin Leman

You may remember my post about the Birth Order Book, another one of my favorite books by Dr. Leman. He is also a wonderful speaker and can be found online and on Facebook. I've not seen him in person, but I've listened to tapes from a conference when he spoke, and he is witty, funny and has great ideas that work! We watched one of his DVD studies in our Sunday School about teenagers, and I really liked hearing what he had to say-- such a wise, Christian counselor! With his trademark humor, Dr/ Leman delivers again in this great book! He discusses reality discipline, which he shows you how to: get kids to do what you want them to do, foil finicky eaters, turn off temper tantrums, minimize sibling rivalries, set allowances, know when to "take the little buzzards by the beak" and put yourself back in the driver's seat as a parent! I had actually donated my copy of this book to our MOPS library at our church, and then realized I still needed it, so I bought another copy! That's how good it is! 

I found all of these books on, and they are my favorites! They all cost between $10-20 and they are worth every penny! Do you have any discipline books that you love? I'd love to hear what they are!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Got Joy?

It seems like as a parent, we try to teach our children lots of lessons. Sometimes the lessons come and smack ME in the face, as I need to learn it right along with them! We work a LOT in our house with kind words, talking instead of hurting others, and having a GOOD attitude. I know I struggle with having a good attitude at times, as all of my kids do, especially my son. I don't know if it is a phase he is in since he is 8, or if it is partly a conflict between the mother/ son relationship, but we struggle with his attitude pretty much daily. We've been trying to find a solution for his rudeness, disrespect and overall bad attitude. (He seems to be better since we talked about it that day, he still has his moments though... I did get a suggestion from a friend to give him a mark when he has a non-bad attitude day, and when he gets so many marks, he gets a treat. We may have to try it if we need it...)

We talked about JOY on Monday, and what that means. We sang, "I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart. Where? Down in my heart! Where? Down in my heart! I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart, down in my heart to stay." And the verses go on, "I've got the love of Jesus, love of Jesus down in my heart..."; "I've got the peace that passes understanding down in my heart..." That was a song from my childhood, and I found myself singing it for a few days!

Then later that Monday, I read my NIV Study Bible during my devotional time, and it talked about Acts 16, where Paul and Silas were thrown into prison, chained by their hands and feet. And what did they do? They praised God and sang songs to Him!

This was a lesson I found that related well to joy, and the NIV Study Bible says this..."What is more amazing is the joy and peace Paul and Silas experience during the entire course of events. What do they have to sing about? Where does joy originate? (Neh. 12:43; Ps 43:4) What produces joy in an unbeliever (Acts 14:17)? What produces joy in a believer (Acts 8:5-8, 16:34)? How is this joy produced in you (1 Thess. 1:6)? Joy is a fruit produced by the presence of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22). Jesus says an intimate relationship with him ("remain in my love") through obedience to God's commands is the way to complete joy (John 15:10-11). Is your relationship with Jesus intimate enough to produce complete joy? What can you do to receive this complete joy (John 16:24)? What happens to your joy when troubles come? How can you retain your joy in times of trial (Ps 33:16-22)? Jesus knows life is filled with trouble and suffering (John 16:33, 17:13-15). How is joy compatible with suffering (James 1:2-4; 1 Peter 1:6-9)? 
The struggles and tragedies of this life need not affect your joy as a child of God. True joy is based on the spiritual realities of who God is and what he had promised. God IS good and God IS faithful--regardless of your situation. Paul and Silas learn this truth, and they have much to sing about."

Another song that relates well to this subject is "Grape, Grape Joy" by Amy Grant. It's one of my favorite old songs! You can listen to it here.  Here are the lyrics:

Amy Grant Grape, Grape Joy Lyrics

I am a small and lonely grape,
Clutching to the vine,
Waiting for the day when I'll become my Savior's wine!

Oh, wouldn't French cuisine just yearn it,
I've eternity to ferment,
But knowing me I'd end up ripple
In a cellar of cheblis.

Are you a small and lonely grape
Clutching to the vine,
Waiting for the day when you'll become your Savior's wine?

Don't give up hope ye heavy laden,
You don't want to be a raisin;
There's a grape grape joy in Jesus,
In the vineyard of the Lord.

Do you have JOY in your heart today? Not just flittering happiness that changes easily with your circumstances, but true deep down joy? If so, praise God and give thanks! He is truly worthy of our praise! 

Friday, April 15, 2011

Blueberry French toast recipe

Another mom brought this to MOPS one time, years ago, and I liked it so much I asked her for the recipe. It takes a little prep work and fore-tought, but it is well worth the effort!

Blueberry French Toast              (I make this sometimes at Christmas, other holidays)

12 slices old white bread, crusts removed (Texas Toast is best)
2 pkg cream cheese (8 oz)
1 cup fresh/ frozen blueberries, strawberries or raspberries
12 eggs or egg substitute
2 cups milk
1/3 c syrup (maple)

Sauce: (I double this, usually)
1 cup sugar
2 T cornstarch
I cup blueberries
1 cup water
1. Cut bread into cubes. Place half of bread into greased 9 X 13" pan.
2. Cut cream cheese into 1" cubes, place over bread.
3. Top with berries and remaining bread.
4. In large bowl, combine egg, milk and syrup, mix well. Pour over bread mixture.
5. Cover with foil and chill overnight, or 8 hours.
6. Remove from fridge 30 min before baking. Bake at 350 for 30 min.
7. Take foil off, bake 30 more min, or until golden brown.
8. For sauce: mix sugar and starch in pan, add water. Bring to a boil for 3 min, stirring constantly. Add berries, serve over toast.


This is also another popular one at our MOPS group. One time I brought it and forgot the sauce, but another gal made it too, so it was ok, her sauce worked on mine! (regular syrup is ok too)

Let me know if you try it. My mom makes a similar one that doesn't have cream cheese in it, and it is good too. Send me a note if you want the recipe!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

American Girl class-Felicity week 6

This was our last class learning about Felicity before our co-op is out for the summer!  :(  We've had a very fun semester learning about Kaya and Felcity, from 1764 and 1774. In the fall, I hope to be teaching this class again, but about the American Girls Josefina and Kirsten. So I'll be busy planning that class this summer!

For snack we had Lemon Tartlets. I found the recipe here. Another mom brought some lemon cake too, and they liked it- several girls asked for seconds! 

 For our class today, we made sachets. They were easy, no-sew sachets. I gave each girl a piece of fabric cut out in a circle (I traced a dinner plate). I had the fabric at home in my extra fabric bin, so we just used that! I also gave each girl two pieces of ribbon that were 1 foot long. I got the ribbon in the Michael's $1 bins! So they each got a handful of potpourri (precise measurement :-D) and then gathered the fabric around it. They tied a ribbon (this took a little help from the moms and me) and then tied the 2nd ribbon by themselves. One of the girls got a cinnamon stick in the potpourri and sucked on it for a while...
Tying the sachets...
Showing me their finished sachets...
 We finished working on our cross-stitch bookmarks, and I let the girls take them home to hopefully finish them. This is an information sheet about cross-stitching that I found here, (I also like this one) that I forgot to print to give them!
Working diligently on their cross-stitching...

We also talked about slavery from the Felicity's World book and looked at pictures of Colonial Williamsburg that I found here and here. It was a fun day and I am sad that the class is over. But we will have one more FUN day soon, a tea at my home! (for a make-up class since I was sick!)

Also, in our book, Felicity was working on a needlepoint sampler. So I decided to make a sampler too, something I've never done before, and wanted to do! So I found two patterns and blended them togehter. Then I worked on it some each week and showed the girls my progress. I finished it this past week, so I got to bring the completed sampler to class! I hope to get it matted and framed soon! Here is the picture:
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