Queen Esther Tea Party

queen esther tea party girls

So last week, the girls were REALLY in need of a break and some fun time with mom. They had been bugging me about a tea party I promised them for a long time and I decided that it was a great time to do that.  We had done a tea party with God last time and I really like having a theme like that.  Several things converged to make Queen Esther my choice for this tea party.   Here are some of the things we did.

Story of Esther

We read the story of Esther from our Brave Girls Bible Stories book (you can win a copy here until 11/3/14!).  You could also watch the Veggie Tales Esther movie or read it directly from the bible.  I liked the Brave Girls version because it did a fabulous job of touching on the fact that they took her and primped her for 12 months making her look gorgeous for King Xerxes, leading us to…

photo (9)

Spa Treatment

We had been reading a spa party ebook and my little girls LOVE to be pampered.  I decided to treat them to a foot soak and a hand scrub.  The foot soak, I had around for a while, but the hand scrub was a mix of coconut oil, brown sugar and vanilla.  It smelled heavenly!

After we were done, I painted their fingers and toes, and even used a little of the makeup they had gotten at the Bibbity Bobbity Boutique and we talked about several things:

  • how God was able to use Esther’s beauty to save her people.
  • whether or not the King would have picked her if she had been an ugly old hag (think Queen in Snow White).
  • taking care of all the gifts God has given us, including our bodies and our beauty so that God can use them.
  • inner beauty and outer beauty

Crowns & Scepters

If you wanted to “go in order,” you would have had them decorate crowns & scepters next.  We didn’t because we wanted to take advantage of little bro’s nap to prepare lunch and eat :).   We did have the girls decorate crowns & scepters after lunch.  I was at Jo-Ann’s the day before and bought foam crowns and wands that they decorated with glitter glue.   It would be super easy to make them from construction paper and we’ve done that LOTS of times.

tea sandwiches

Tea Party

Finally, we had our tea party.   Because this is a tea party with little kids, we weren’t “proper” at all.  We had just gotten the Pink Princess Cookbook and the girls picked out about every recipe.  Instead, we narrowed it down to three :).

As far as I am concerned, every tea party needs:

  • special drink (tea or otherwise)
  • sandwich assortment
  • fruit of some sort
  • a dessert

For our special drink, we tried a rainbow milk recipe with chocolate almond milk, bananas, vanilla and cinnamon.  Good, but I made more than we could drink.

I made three kinds of tea sandwiches, by which I mean no crusts and on white bread, which we don’t normally have around :).   We had pb & j, turkey, and a recipe from the book which was an open-faced sandwich made from strawberry cream cheese and sliced strawberries.  They fought the last but my oldest ate 3 of them!

We also made sugar cookies the day before and decorated them in the morning before the Spa Treatment so the frosting would get hard.  They were fabulous recipes — SO easy to work with that even I didn’t screw it up.  I even had 3 helpers with one who screamed for chocolate covered cherries.   You do what you have to do ;).

And finally, we had sliced strawberries.

photo (8)

Gift

We were all dressed up for our tea in dresses with hats and gloves.   While we could have gone all out and wore church dresses and the like, I decided not to this time.  The girls picked out their favorite play dresses very specifically that morning knowing that we were having a tea party that day.   I did have a special gift that I bought for them — a pearl necklace.  I shared the bible verse about a woman worth more than pearls (or ruby’s depending on your bible translation).

They showed them off to daddy when he came home from work.  That led to a discussion with daddy later about Tahitian Black Pearls that we didn’t buy when we were there over a decade ago — and then we found pictures and talked about how expensive a single pearl necklace is.  In fact, we just bought a new to us van a week or two ago and most of those pieces of pearl jewelry cost more than the van we just bought.

Act of Service

At the end of our tea party, we performed an act of service.  The girls bundled up a plate full of the cookies they had so carefully cut out and frosted and took them next door to daddy’s office to share with our employees.  We picked a good day because EVERYONE was there, even our sales guy who isn’t often there.

They also helped hand wash the china which totally counts, too, in my opinion :)

 

Overall, it was a FULL day of fun and the girls greatly enjoyed it.  Because of my liking for “fancy” things, we have a lot of the things we needed for pulling off a tea party without lots of preparation or shopping.  I would like some doilies and some more trays and things, but that can be built up slowly via resale shop :).

Do you have tea parties with your girls?  If not, why not?

Jen S.

If this looks like fun but seems overwhelming, check out this post:  Tea with God — In Under an Hour!

 

 

 

 

Print Friendly

Bible Bravery for Brave Little Girls {Tommy Mommy Review & Giveaway}

brave-girls-bible-stories-review-giveaway

I am so excited to share two of the newest resources for girls from Thomas Nelson and its not just because I love pink ;). My first book to share this week is Brave Girls Bible Stories. This is a beautiful hardcover book with quality pages that will withstand frequent use. Good thing, too! My 4 year old claimed it as hers and reads it & talks about it constantly.

To bring each story to life, the book has 5 real girl guides (click link to read about them all!). Each has a distinct personality all her own. There is Hope, a down to earth farm girl, Glory, a girly girl whose parents just divorced, Honor, a brainy animal lover, Gracie, a girl who didn’t grow up with a faith background who found an awesome youth group & now sings at church, and Faith, a homeschooled girl who’s a bit of a perfectionist.

brave Girls bible stories - inside - review

The bible stories are all centered around a brave girl in the bible and each one is led by one of the guides. The header tells you where to find the story in your Bible and a bible verse related to the story (not necessarily from that book in the bible). The brave girl guide draws a parallel between a real life situation and the girl in the bible story to follow. Once the story is done, the guide returns to share more insights about the story and life. There is a short prayer at the end to ask God to make you more like whoever.

brave girls bible stories review inside

Brave Girls Bible Stories is aimed at girls ages 4-8. Sometimes, I think the guide commentary for the story is a little older than that age group, but kids are growing up quicker these days. I try to keep my littles, little. Nothing concerning, but I just had to explain some things, like beauty pageants.

Overall, this is an awesome book. My youngest adored it! My 6 year old would come while I read it aloud but didn’t read it on her own. I think the illustrations are gorgeous and learning about all the brave girls in the bible led to lots of talks on different ways to be brave. My youngest has even tried to BE more brave so yay! If you have young girls, I would totally recommend this book for them.

Interested in winning a copy of Brave Girls Bible Stories for a little girl YOU know?   Use the widget below to enter.  Please note that a comment answering the question is MANDATORY!

 

Good luck!

Jen S.

Print Friendly

3 Date Ideas for Busy Parents – October 2014: Fall Fun {Serve Your Spouse Saturday #32}

Date Ideas for Busy Parents - fall fun

I feel like I’ve been living in a cave for the last few months!  Between the vacation, recovery from said vacation, and the fact that my meds were off, dating has NOT been on my radar.  It’s a shame cause hubby rocks and there are some awesome fun fall things to do together!   With that being said, the date ideas for busy parents theme for October is Fall Fun.

For Free

Sort on cash?  Go for a hike or a bike ride and admire the fall colors!   There are still some fairly nice days, even here in the frozen tundra :).   You could pack some apples or donuts and a thermos of warm spiced cider before you come home.

For Cheap

If hiking isn’t your style and you have some spare change, try a u-pick apple orchard.   Often they will have apples to try.  You could even buy a small bag to take home and make an apple pie.

Another frugal idea is a corn maze.  We have several options in our area and while the kids hated it, I would love to wander through and sneak a few kisses ;).

Our local radio station has a daily discount and we got hayrides, cider & apples for 1/2 off.  I found tickets for the haunted lighthouse and corn mazes, too.  If you can’t find a local site like that, try Groupon!

For Fun

If have the budget for it & a sitter, fall is an awesome time for a getaway.  Some hotels may charge more during color tour, but I bet it will still be less than summer rates, so book an overnight trip.

Find an awesome place to view the changing colors and spend the night. Go out for a hardy seasonal meal, enjoy some beer or spiced cider, and sit in front of a warm fireplace.  If you can find a room with a fireplace AND a jacuzzi, it won’t matter if you missed the leaves or not ;).

serve-spouse-saturday-v1

I think fall might be my favorite season and I always have more to do than I can fit into the 6 weeks of fall we get.

What are your favorite fall date ideas?

Jen S.

 

Print Friendly

3 Fall Cleaning Tasks You’ve Put Off Too Long

 

fall-cleaning-put-off

The weather has started to turn cold already and while I’m still hoping for an Indian Summer, I’m not counting on it. Now that we are back from our vacation, we are in full on winter preparation mode. Here are 3 fall cleaning tasks that you may have put off too long.

1. Furnace Tune Up

Have you EVER done one? If you haven’t, I would schedule one before the furnace guy’s schedule fills up. Why? Think of it like going to the dentist. It’s better to get a filling done before it gets so big that you are prepared to get pliers & pull the tooth out yourself (or pay emergency heating rates). They will check for corrosion, gas leaks, to be sure you fan motor is working properly and more. When you call to schedule, ask for a list. And the $30 Groupon check is NOT going to be the same as the $200 check.

2. Vacuum Ductwork

Have you ever vacuumed out the heat ducts? Me neither. But I have 3 kids. So join me in giving them a good vacuum this fall. I hate to dust, so if I vacuum out the ducts, I can reduce the dust, at least in theory. You hate dusting, too? Replace your furnace filter monthly. It will help your furnace run more efficiently, too.

3. Windows & Screens

Maybe you are more on top of things than I am and clean your windows regularly, but chances are its been a good long while since they’ve had a good deep cleaning. Are the inside sills clean? How about the screens? Have you washed those lately? Now that there is no more pollen flying, it would be a great time to get the windows & screens cleaned to let what little winter light there is, in! Since you won’t be opening windows in sub zero temps the sills will be clean for long enough to feel good :). While there, check for drafts and fix any you come across.

 

Fall Cleaning List

 

Feeling ready to take on more seasonal cleaning?  You can download the complete list by clicking the image above.  If you are short on time, visit my post at Homemaker’s Challenge — Quick & Easy Fall Cleaning Tasks.

Jen S.

Print Friendly

Merging Fitness & Technology {Me…Elsewhere!}

Over at Catholic Mom.com last month, I talked about 4 ways I’ve used technology to help with my fitness goals.

exercise-technology

I’ve been meaning to get back to an exercise routine all summer. Now that I’m not outside all day with nice weather, I need to be extra diligent about it. On Labor Day weekend we went to visit my family and were sent home with a Wii & an EA Active 2 that my dad had won from work. I’m excited to start using it now that we are back from our vacation. My question for you is:

How do you use technology for exercise?

Go to CatholicMom.com to read all about the 4 ways I Merge Exercise & Technology and share yours!

 

Jen S.

Print Friendly