Thursday, April 25, 2019

CURRENTLY ENJOYING INSIGHTS TO A PROPHET'S LIFE


CURRENTLY listening to the inspiring snippets of President Nelson's life in 4  to 8 minute increments- Bruce Lindsay narrates the fascinating and real life stories of the life experiences and choices that ultimately are the makings of the man who guides Christ's church today!  We are so blessed by Russell M Nelson's life choices.  I'm so happy I downloaded the Deseret Book Store Bookshelf where I can now listen to some of these gospel Centered Centered publications that enrich my life. Click HERE to head to Deseret Book's website. 🖤

This below is the description:

"What kind of life preparation does the Lord give the men He will one day call to be pophet? And what are the lessons to be learned from such a life? From being raised in a home without the foundation of the gospel to the early days of his marriage and the stress of medical school to his last open-heart surgery in China, President Russell M. Nelson took advantage of every opportunity to learn and become more. In Insights from a Prophet's Life, Sheri Dew takes us through the life of President Nelson from childhood to the current day. This unique collection of life experiences is told in short episodes from the purpose of helping readers gain their own personal insights. For if we have much to learn from what a prophet says, surely we have much to learn from how a prophet lives."

Thursday, April 18, 2019

EASTER TREAT CLUB IDEAS



Welcome!  How's your day?   We've been enjoying Spring and lots of April Showers in our area of the Bunny's Garden this year.

 The following full post is a mix of an original post from years back and the new portion afterward which gives details on how to carry out making these sweet tweets! 🖤

SOME BUNNY "CARS" FOR YOU!


(Excerpt below is from family blog a few years back)  
I spent an hour with some of my favorite PEEPS this morning to make some Easter Treats for our kiddos.  We have a group of 8 of us that get together and bring different ingredients and ideas- we switch off.  It’s be such a fun thing to do for our kids the past few years on various holidays.  These treats today were SO simple to make.  We have apx. 20 kids combined between us.  I usually don’t have my camera with me to capture our mass of our end result.  We have LOVED pinterest for getting even more fun ideas.  But who doesn’t?! 
It is so worth it, seeing this cute little face each time she is surprised with something after school.  Tyson too!  Today, I happened to come home a few minutes after they did, and having camera in tow, was able to capture a fun expression on Lyssie Lou.  I know these days will go by so fast.  I’m grateful for the opportunity to let them know that in their NEST of the woods, they have some BUNNY that CARS for them!  EGGspecially their mama!  
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So- with that background- now you know where we started.  Here are a few fun ideas that your kids will just die over!  These are some super fun treats to put together for Easter for the kiddos- or anyone really.   This post is a little late in the month, but great for this weekends festivities or Easter gatherings.  We used these treats for Family Home Evening or after school once a weeks snacks.  They would also be fun for a Saturday activity or for Easter dinner dessert for the kiddos.





COCOA CRISPIES PEEP NEST
Items Needed:
1 box Cocoa Rice Crispies Cereal
1 Package Mashmallows
1 Cube Cube Butter
1 Package of Peeps any color
1 Bag of Jelly Beans

-----

1.  Make Rice Crispie Treats according to box instructions or use your favorite simple recipe.  Some add vanilla and or Marshmallow Creme along with the other ingredients listed above.

2.  Form Rice Crispie Treats into a small next about the size of your palms cradled.  Lay out of Cookie Sheet lined with wax paper sprayed with non stick cooking spray.

3.  Once nests are formed, add about 5 or 6 Jelly Beans into the nest.  Then place a cute little Peep right on top of those colorful little eggs!  SO EASY!  AM I right or am I right?!  These are a darling treat to take to neighbors, friends or family members.  Kids and adults alike love them!!

4.  Right click on image below and download cute printable that says Sweet Tweets






PLANTED DIRT CUP CARROTS
Items Needed:
1 package Oreo Cookies Crushed
1 box chocolate pudding
1 package Orange Circus Peanuts
1 package green gummy straws like airhead extremes or sour punch strips
1 package small cups

------

1.  Make Pudding according to box recipe
Pour into small cups.  Depending on the amount your making you will need to plan how many boxes of pudding to make accordingly.

2.  Crush Oreo cookies finely then add a generous amount on top of the pudding to look like dirt.

3.  Poke a small hole in the top of the circus Peanuts and insert 3 one inch strips for the top of the "carrot".  Then place the peanut carrot into the oreo pudding cup pressing it in enough to look planted.

4.  Keep chilled until ready to serve.



BUNNY TAILS
Items Needed:
1 Box or bag of white powdered donut holes Small Ziplock sandwich bag
Printable Bunny Tail Bag Topper Labels

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1.  Place a few donut holes into the bagggies.

2.  Print Labels.  Cut and tape or staple to top of the bag.  Right click on image below to download and print



...And last but not least coming into the finish line we will finish what we started in first place...

Photo from sporkal.com

BUNNY RACE CARS
Items Needed:

1 box Twinkie Style Cakes (I'm guessing Zingers might do the trick too)
1 box of Marshmallow Bunny Peeps
1 bag chocolate covered pretzels
1 bag miniature marshmallows or even cheerios or fruit loops if you prefer.  Just something that looks wheelie round.  Ha.
1 small tube of frosting
1 bag m&ms for hub caps if desired.

---------

1.  Cut about a 1/4 in deep slit about 2/3rds from the front of your twinkie car.  Then do the same a little forward.  Just enough to give space to cut the chunk out in between where the Bunny will sit.  It's better to have it snug in there so he won't fall out while driving.

2.  Place the bunny in his seat.

3.  Cut another small slit for the pretzel steering wheel and push it in firmly.

4.  Secure your wheels with a bit of frosting and you're good to go!

Thanks for all the love!  Enjoy your Holiday-
🖤 Candy












PORTABLE TRAVEL EASTER BASKET


FAST AND EASY PORTABLE EASTER BASKET IDEA


One year our family traveled to California for Spring Break.  It was the same week as Easter.  I didn't want to hall the Easter Bunny's loot all the way down then, nor tey to hide it in a suitcase.  I decided to head out of town with nothing for Easter for my kids other that one thing- I purchased cute vinyl plastic holiday bags for them to put stuff in during our long drive.  I knew I could use these for their Easter "Baskets" and they wouldn't take up the room of a round wicker basket with a large handle.

We traveled with my Brother and Sister in Law.  She decided to purchase baseball caps for each of her children ahead of time and planned on turning them into their "Baskets" by displaying them upside down and filling them with goodies and a few trinkets.  Isn't that great?! And it sure was a hit!  

They left to go home a few days before us.  Our family was heading to another beach for a few days.  So this is what I did.

We took a trip to Target and I stocked up there!  They had darling foam boogie boards for the ocean for around $7.  So I grabbed those.  I found a darling paper "popcorn" tubs in the party section with fun stripes on them.  I grabbed a pack of plastic eggs for each kid, wood skewers and striped paper straws.  I knew just what I could do with those! 

I got each of them a bottled drink, beef jerky (cuz my kiddos LOVE their jerky) and a few other Easter chocolates and snacks.  Lip gloss and some fun wash haircolor chalk for the girlie and a frisbee and sports cards for the boy.  But the best part that made it fun to set up and really shine for the kiddos was the way it was put together and what was in the eggs... Money!  Money was in the plastic eggs!  Voila.  An extra wow for them and easy way to pack a bigger punch in the "portable" department.  

I put the purchased items in the striped paper buckets, filling it nicely.  Then I took the wooden skewers (picnic department friends!)  And threaded the paper straws for well, just plain cuteness.  I guess that and the straws did add support to the eggs as they sat on the tip of the skewers that were inverted into the small hole in the bottom of the plastic eggs.  (Most eggs will have a small hole- make sure to double check for that when purchasing)

Remember those Holiday bags I brought from home- yes?  Those were set out next to their baskets and that way the kids could put everything in those and have them in the car or hotel the rest of the trip.  DEFINITELY a plus!  When done- folded at home into a closet to use for some other year another time.  

Back to the money eggs.  My husband and I filled each egg with a dollar.  You could do as much or as little as you want.  The kids loved having a bit of money to spend for a tshirt or souvenir they wanted to take home from our vacation.  It worked out just right!  

Whoops!  One more thing... I fibbed.  There were actually a things I brought for Easter from home. The bags the kids traditional Easter Bunny's.  When the kids were young we bought them a stuffed animal Easter Bunny.  It has gone in their Easter Baskets every year as a tradition.

So there you have it.  A fun and easy idea on how to purchase a Portable Easter Basket while traveling!  Now what are you waiting for?  -Hop to it and get the show on the road!  And Hoppy trails to you!  🖤


Sunday, April 14, 2019

LEARN FROM THE PAST


"I plead with you not to dwell on days now gone nor to yearn vainly for yesterdays, however good those yesterdays may have been. The past is to be learned from but not lived in. We look back to claim the embers from glowing experiences but not the ashes. And when we have learned what we need to learn and have brought with us the best that we have experienced, then we look ahead; we remember that faith is always pointed toward the future."

----Jeffrey R. Holland, Created for Greater Things/ Ensign Jan 2010

This is a beautiful talk about renewal, repentance, faith and forgiveness.  Worth taking some time to read or listen to.
♡♡♡♡♡♡♡

To read his talk, click
HERE

Saturday, March 30, 2019

SODA-LIGHTFUL TAGS AND CONFERENCE WATER LABELS

GENERAL CONFERENCE 
SODA-LIGHTFUL TAGS AND WATER BOTTLES LABELS



It's always fun to add a little extra to the atmosphere of our home when getting ready for General Conference weekend.



An easy way to do that is to add a fun label to drinks we will have for the day.  For family home evening one year, I made a simple label for our water bottles that would add a little reminder of what the spirit can do to our hearts when we watch the general authorities speak about the gospel.

Here are the Water Bottle Labels.  If you right click on the image you can download to your device and print from where you would like.  This graphic should fit nicely on an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper.  Print out and cut between the 4 labels.  Then wrap the paper around the waterbottle and simply secure with scotch tape.  It doesnt need to be fancy.  






I have also included photos of when I quickly made the first ones for my family.  It was more about the message.  Let's not forget- it's always ok to do something simple.  Let's also realize doing something like this can reinforce lessons to children and ourselves as we strive to live and learn the gospel.  Always intentional.  Always on purpose.  That is a motto we try to follow here at Home Centered Living.


So grab yourself and your loved ones a favorite bottle or can of refreshing Cherry 7 up,  Fresca, or Red Cream Soda for a light and cheery treat while enjoying one of the afternoon sessions.

We also think this is a great idea to print a few extra soda tags or water bottle labels and send them over to your ministering family!  So simple- and so easy to do.  Don't forget this is great for any of your primary or youth kids you might teach or have in activity days or scouts!  There are 2 versions of the soda tag printable.  One is a little older and more generic colored.  The newer one is a fresher and more feminine we think.

Just right click on the image itself and then click download to your device to copy and print the amount you would like.







KEEP MARCHING






Tired teenagers filled our home a few nights ago.  Contention was moving in and my witts were going down hill fast.  I left our family room, walked up stairs and plopped on my bed feeling like throwing my hands in the air. "Do we really need to be at war tonight in this home?  Can't we have some peace for the night?", I uttered in my mind.  I finally plead to Heavenly Father in a short prayer to help provide a way the spirit could be in our home for the evening.
After a few minutes I proceeded back downstairs to the kitchen.  Things had calmed a little, but attitudes were still sketchy.  Trying not to poke the bears- I sat down and reached for a Book Of Mormon laying on the table.  I split the pages open to read something.  Anything in the scriptures would be fine at the moment. 
My eyes landed half way down the page on Alma 58: 26.  Where I read:  26 Now it came to pass that when it was night, I caused that my men should not sleep, but that they should MARCH FORWARD by another way towards the land of Manti. 27 And because of this our march in the night-time, behold, on the morrow we were beyond the Lamanites...
I knew at that moment seeing those words March Forward on the page where there was no rhyme or reason to land upon that scripture, that God was answering my prayers.  He was saying I see you.  I have you.  You're ok.  You are right where you need to be.  Your efforts matter.  Keep MARCHING FORWARD...
It took another few minutes for the kids to come around and for the atmosphere to switch up for the night.  But it did.
The following day I read Alma 58 to see what the story was in actual context.  Long story short- Helaman was directing some of his men to not rest through the night, but rather get up and March Forward toward their destination earlier than they would be expected- which turns out to be the thing that allowed the take over the city Manti from an army of Lamanites who had a multitude of soldiers compared to a small number of Helaman's brethren. 

God reminded me that having faith to continue on our journey- even in the night (during trials) when it's more difficult than in daylight (calmness) that's when we might conquer the most.


ALMA 58:26 

26 Now it came to pass that when it was night, I caused that my men should not sleep, but that they should march forward by another way towards the land of Manti.

To read the whole chapter- click HERE

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

MARCH FORWARD 2019


2019



We are inviting you, yes, you...to join us here at Home Centered Living on our quest to March Forward! 
What does that mean exactly?  Well- let us tell you- it's a bit of a back story- but here's our 'short version'. 

March happens to be a month where we remember and celebrate birthday's of two heavenly angels we have known in our lives.  A sister named Natalie (Natty) to one of us, and a Mother named Suzanne (Suzie) to the other.  Not only are both these women angels in Heaven now, but were both angel's in their own right here on this earth.

Five years ago- Candy got news that her mother had Terminal Brain Cancer and her best friend, Shelby, had Breast Cancer.  Candy's mom, Suzanne, passed away less than 2 months after her brain tumor removal.  A few short months after that, Shelby was nearing the end of her year long battle to conquer her cancer.  With in a week of her last Radiation treatment, her dear sister Natalie was diagnosed with stage 4 Colon Cancer.  While Shelby is now Cancer free going on 5 years (Wahoo!!) Natalie peacefully passed away 20 months ago.

SO- with a few years of perspective on the trauma and learning to live through the grief of losing such dear women in our lives- we have found one of the ways to celebrate who they were and what they taught us both, is to continue Marching Forward in this beautiful messy life we live!!  

Another reason we have chosen to celebrate Marching Forward is because of some of the other tender vicissitudes that have touched our lives in one way or another.  Collectively a few things we have known are Congenital Heart Defects. Autoimmune Diseases. Cancer. Divorce. Type 1 Diabetes. Spina Bifida & Paralysis. Adulthood Targeting & Cyberbullying. And so forth....

As we journey upward and onward through our faith in Christ and His matchless gift of the Attonement- we know we cannot allow our faith to become stagnant.  We know we must exercise our muscle of faith for it not to atrophy.  

So today we are candid.  We are two life long friends, sisters at heart, vulnerable in growth and renewal, as any of us who have delved through the valleys of trauma, we know when we look up- the mountains are high!  But OH!  The drive to climb them returns and onward and upward we strive or we die.  
So today we keep climbing.  One step at a time.  We are conquering small peaks, while we rest along the way to catch our breath.  Or simply to enjoy the view.  We continue...continue to March Forward.

We have so much to give and are ready to share our journeys.  Hopefully this gives you an insight to a bit of the content we will share from time to time.  Sometimes heavy- sometimes lighthearted, but always always always wanting to celebrate life and love while staying firmly on the path toward heaven.

Finally- the invite. (If you're still here.)  The challenge if you will is to think of 2 ways you can improve your light.  Improve sharing it with others.  For us we do this for Natalie and Suzanne.  We think what they would be doing and how they would share their love and light if they were still here.

A few things we are committed to this year are to:

1. MARCH FORWARD in HONOR of those I love, for those beside me on both sides of the veil.
2.  MARCH FORWARD in CHARITY. I want more of the pure love of Christ to extend to others on my journey.
3.  MARCH FORWARD in SELFWORTH to remind myself and others to thank Heavenly Father for our unique gifts and talents.

4. MARCH FORWARD in SERVICE with an attitude of gratitude for the opportunities to help others along the path.

What are YOU going to focus on as you MARCH FOWARD this year?! 

Here is a printable sheet for you to use.  Isn't it bright and cute?!  Just right click on the image and select copy or download image to your electronic device to print.  Also below are other printables with our personal March Forward commitments this year if you would like to join us with those.















Sunday, March 24, 2019

MARY OF MAGDALA


All I know is, 
Mary Magdalene must have been revered. 

From time to time I've pondered upon her relationship with Jesus and really wish I could have been there with them.  I've pondered what it would have been like to live on the shores of Galilee, in one of the few small fishing villages along the sea.  Magdala is one of those villages which still exists today.  That is the picture I have here.  Scroll to the end of the post to see the original photo.  This is a picture I took looking down upon the city of Magdala from Mount Arbel.  The Sea of Galilee is on the right side of the valley below the cliff.  I wonder if Christ ever walked up to this location to look out over the fields- the sea- the villages.  I wonder what his thoughts were as he taught and ministered to the simple people of the land.  I wonder what his casual daily conversations were with them?  Especially with Mary.  I feel that she knew him in a way that was familiar and familial.  Whatever relationship that may be.

Mary Magdalene.
Mary of Magdala, Out of her went seven devils (Luke 8:2). SHE WAS NEAR THE CROSS  (Matt. 27:56; Mark 15:40; John 19:25); SHE WAS AT THE BURIAL l (Matt. 27:61; Mark 15:47); SHE WAS AT THE TOMB IN THE MORNING (Matt. 28:1; Mark 16:1; Luke 24:10; John 20:1, 11). JESUS APPEARED TO HER. (Mark 16:9; John 20:14–18)


...I also find myself pondering on the experience Mary had as she wept at the empty tomb in the beautiful garden.  Jesus, now surely Christ our Savior, appeared and asked "Woman, why weepest thou?" And after calling her by name, saying "Mary", she responded with a title of Rabboni.  Isn't that beautiful?  And loving?  And simply awe inspiring?  For such an intimate and emotional moment in the midst of her devastation and ultimately realization, Mary chooses to utter respectly the meaning of Lord and Master.  Her Lord and Master.  Our Lord and Master.

I find myself personally grateful for Mary and the service she gave to Christ during his mortal life and ministry.  I am grateful for am example of a woman who was near the cross.  Who was at the burial.  Who was at the tomb in the morning.  Who was the type of deciple who Christ showed himself to first.

♡ Candy


Sunday, March 17, 2019

LIVING APOSTLES






I have felt an overwhelming love and strength this week in knowing that we have living apostles here on this earth today.  Apostles who have the same guidance and authority of priesthood keys that the original twelve were given when Christ chose them.
I've loved listening to each of their sure testimonies regarding the gospel, our Savior, and the Temple this past week while they attended the historic Rome, Italy Temple dedication.  I believe there is significance yet to be seen of the opportunity given for the Apostles now, as a whole, to physically gather together in the land where Peter and Paul left off so many years ago. 
My heart is full.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

TIPS FROM A GAS STATION LEPHRACHAN


HELLO!  We're so glad you wandered over to our home today.  Let's take a look below at all the great things we have to show you.




OK all you Leprechaun Ladies and Gents! Really, thanks for stopping by.  Here's how to easily pull off a few extras that are easy, fun and creative for St. Patrick's Day!  I mean- just look at how cute and simple this little guy is below.  What's better in a kiddos mind than a rainbow of skittles and a few golden nuggets of chocolate and carmel?


Add this bright and colorful bag topper to it and you're all set!  Or print it, punch a hole and tie it to your treat as a darling tag.   Just right click on the image and press download to your device.  Easy as Pie! 



Then there's this little guy!  It's big juice from the gas station.  Not my favorite as an adult- but for kids, they drink it up!  And did you know... if you print out the label below and tape it on- the bug juice magically changes into Lephrachaun juice made with real four leaf clovers!!!  Can you believe that?!  😀


Again- just right click on the image below and press download to you device to print.


×××××××××××××××××××××××××××××××

The rest of this post is going to be a little scattered, or more like a bowl of potpourri if you will.  We didn't want to let St. Patty's Day come and go this year without sharing some of our past years of fun with you all!

Let's be honest though, some years are busier than others.  Some months and days and hours are too.  That's just life!

One of our goals here at Home Centered Living is to not focus on perfection- but focus on Prospering.  On Patience.  On Peace.  And with that being said-  we are going to share these fun photos from past years hoping you enjoy them and get inspiration from any or all of them.

As we continue through the months, we will add more depth behind the fun ideas and how we celebrate holidays and traditions and our reasons WHY we do the fluff and the fun stuff- for now we will continue to share as much as we can as we grab from the past while we have our sites focusing forward.

Two tips we do want to share today are these...

1.  CLEAR CELLOPHANE BAGS!  Use them!!  Go buy a small version and a larger version.  We have come to LOVE our Cello bags!! They are universal and can fit anything from a pair of socks to a dish towel to a stack of oreos neatly packaged ready to adore with ribbon and tag for any occasion.  They can be stapled.  They can be tied.  They can be hung on a door know with a rubber band.  One of our favorite ways to package.


2.  DOLLAR STORE TINS and BUCKETS!  Use them!!  Go buy a small version of a pail and a larger version.  We have come to LOVE our Tins!!  The best colors besides black, white and metal are GREEN and TURQUOISE.  Here's why- both can be utilized for multiple holidays.  GREEN can be used for St Patty's, Easter, Summer,  Birthdays, Halloween, and Christmas.  TURQUOISE can be used for Valentines Day (oh yes it can!),  Easter, 4th of July, Summer, Birthdays, Halloween, Thanksgiving (oh yes it can!) and Christmas.

-When giving younger family members items for holidays in tins, they usually don't care about keeping the tins.  We collected them back from their room in a day or two and put them in our closets for the next time we use them.  If the tins are used for friends gifts for friends, neighbors or grandkids- being only a $1 or 2 they are easily replaced for the next gift giving event without breaking the bank!

Alrighty- here you go... below is our Mishmosh Medly of Sweet Green Treats and a few fun ways to present them.  OH, and we almost forgot.  There is a 3rd quick tip- DOLLAR STORE ROUND SILVER BAKING TRAYS.  You'll be surprised how often you can grab one of those puppy's out to use.




















AND for good measure we'll put this little Irish Leprechaun with his pointy little ears (and jagged little hairs) here below to round out the cuteness.

ENJOY!