Sunday, October 9, 2011

Church Training

At our church, there is no "sunday school hour", so the children just have "children's church" while the adults are in the service. While I appreciate this in some ways, I also feel like Eliana is missing out on some important training during the service. Sure, the sermon would be over her head at 5 years old, but I feel like she ought to be learning how to sit still, sing, and worship with us. So... for the past couple months I have been keeping Eliana in the service with me through the singing, announcements, offering, and prayer times, and then dismissing her to children's church for the sermon.

Sometimes she knows the songs and stands and sings with us. Other times she just wants to sit quietly while we sing, etc. I'm okay with that. I want her to see others worshiping God, and to know what it's like during "big people" church.

That being said, I also recognize that she is 5 and is not interested in the announcements, etc. I want her to learn how to sit quietly during a service, and that also means keeping her occupied. So with her Bible I also pack some sort of activity booklet for her to color while she's listening. Today she wanted to listen to the singing, not sing with us, so this is what she looked like:
From Instant Upload
She was quiet. She was still. She was engaged, and she occasionally stopped coloring, looked up, and focused on the words we were singing. I talked with her about some of the songs and what they meant. 

Then, she got some money to put in the offering plate as it went by. She put away her book and crayons, and we practiced closing our eyes and sitting still and quiet during prayer. Then she got to go back to children's church and join in with them. 

That's kind of how our Sundays at church go. What do you do with your kids during the church service? Does your church have a separate sunday school hour or do they combine sunday school with children's church?

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Cooking when you have a dairy free kid...

Eliana can't have any dairy (specifically casein) products, so sometimes that means that she has something different than we do for dinner. Or breakfast. Or lunch. Generally I like her to eat the same things we do, but a lot of what we eat has milk or cheese in it.

This morning Eliana and I made frittatas together, using this recipe as our baseline. We used our extra-large muffin pan (think Otis Spunkmeyer size muffins) and doubled the recipe. We made 3 frittatas for us and 3 frittatas for her. She enjoyed participating in the process, putting the mix-ins for hers herself. We added in chicken and cheese today.

Here's what was great about it...

  1. She got to help and be a part of the process. 
  2. One dish, one baking time, one meal.
  3. We didn't have to sacrifice taste and she didn't have to sacrifice allergic reaction.
  4. We loved it!
  5. She loved it!
Cooking when you have a dairy free kid can be tricky, but there's no reason you can't figure out ways around it without cooking 2 meals each night. 

If you want to see what I do for Eliana for dairy-free lunches, check out my Bento*riffic blog!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fun Sandra Boynton resource...

As Eliana gets older, we are just about out of the Sandra Boynton phase. Every once in a while, though, Eliana brings me one to read to her. They are fun, whimsical, and I still love them. I'm glad she does, too! Today she brought me "Personal Penguin"

I vaguely remembered there being a personal penguin song, so I followed the link inside the cover to this website. I did find the great song that goes with the book (sung by Davy Jones of the Monkees!). You can listen to it here. It's fun!

If you're a Sandra Boynton fan, I definitely recommend checking out the site.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Last year for her birthday, Eliana got a butterfly garden kit. It came with everything but the caterpillars. We finally sent off for the caterpillars and they arrived in the mail about a week ago. Very soon they should be turning into chrysalis and then becoming butterflies! In the meantime, they are eating, getting fat, and wiggling around like so...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Basket

data, originally uploaded by elizabethwickland.

This year I decided that Eliana didn't need an Easter basket full of candy or cheap toys. So... this year she got a small basket with a cute pinwheel and a jewelry set. Eliana has been more and more interested in "real" jewelry, so I decided she was probably ready for some. She got a Stella and Dot pearl bracelet with pink enamel flower and a necklace with 3 charms, including a matching pink enamel flower. She was absolutely delighted to wear her new jewelry today, which made up for the lack of a new Easter dress. ;)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Operation Christmas Child

One of the things we have done for the past couple years is fill shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child. This year, again, we are, only this year Eliana has much more of a say in the matter. She has suggestions for what to put in the box, as well as an opinion on the gender of the child. (girl, ages 5-9) She wants to give it to someone she knows, but we have been talking about the kids around the world who do not get gifts every year like she and her friends do, and how they would really appreciate someone caring enough to send them something.

I keep a stash of gifts on hand so that I am not stressed when a birthday party comes up, so the first thing we did was raid the stash for things the little girl might like. So far she has...

* a hello kitty tote bag
* 2 washcloths
* a bouncy ball
* a squiggly straw
* Elmo "Go Fish" game
* Sunglasses
* Small kite
* Pink and purple rubber ducky
* Stencils
* Dental Floss
* Toothbrush (I keep those on hand for guests)
* Notepads
* Princess stickers
* Mints

Then Eliana and I went through and made a shopping list of things she thought the girl would like to have in her box. So far the list includes:

* Pencils
* Sharpener
* Crayons
* Stamps and Ink Pad
* Coloring book
* Picture book
* Dolls
* Stuffed animals
* Slinky
* Toothpaste
* Soap
* Comb / brush
* Play jewelry
* Hair clips
* Shirt
* Skirt
* Socks

I am not sure that we'll be able to get all those things, or fit all those things in the box, but it is nice to get Eliana to start thinking about what other people would like. Sometime later this week (probably Wednesday after gymnastics) we will head to Target and see what we can find to finish filling the shoebox.

Eliana also wants to make a Christmas card for the little girl, and I think that's a great idea! Perhaps we'll include a picture of Eliana so the little girl knows who it came from.

We are also going to take advantage of the EZGive online donation this year, including the shoebox tracker! So this year we actually get to know where our shoebox is going and can track it online. I am excited about that!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Online Stories

When I was in Barnes and Noble the other day, I noticed a sign that said they had an online storytime and this month's book was Where The Wild Things Are, one of Eliana's favorites. We like to read this book in October, because it is sort of Halloweeny, without being too focused on the scary, spooky things. It's read aloud by the author, which is kind of cool!

They also have Olivia, Alexander and The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (one of my favorite poems from elementary school!), and a few others. How fun!