Love, Juliebug: October 2016
I think this website is a great idea! There is no such thing as too much information or support. 

Understood.org Learning and Attention Issues

We all want nothing more than to be understood. But for some kids, it isn’t as easy as it seems. Learning and attention issues are much more common in children than most people realize. It isn’t uncommon for parents to think that their children are just being lazy, need to work harder, or that they are in a phase that they will grow out of. Raising a child with learning and attention issues is a journey. And it’s one that’s full of ups and downs, successes and challenges, questions and decisions. Understood.org is a nonprofit organization that offers free online resources for parents of children with learning and attention issues (like ADHD or dyslexia). It is a resource that all parents, even those who have children who are undiagnosed, need to know about. It will help them understand what they are seeing, understand what their child is experiencing, and understand what they can do to help their children. Understood.org Learning and Attention Issues The #BeUnderstood campaign was created support of Learning Disabilities (LD) Awareness Month in October, and to raise awareness about kids with learning and attention issues. In the U.S., 1 in 5 children struggles with brain-based learning and attention issues that affect reading, writing, math, focus and organization. These issues are a lot more common than most people think, and while learning and attention issues may not be as visible as other health issues, they’re just as real. The goal of #BeUnderstood is to generate awareness about learning and attention issues and encourage people who are seeing or experiencing signs of learning and attention issues to visit Understood.org, learn about these issues, and take that crucial first step in getting their kids the help they need to thrive in school, at home and in life. Understood.org Learning and Attention Issues Understood.org is a safe online community that encourages parents to reach out to and learn from each other and a suite of specially designed, first-of-their-kind tools including: Through Your Child's Eyes: A series of interactive simulations and videos that enable parents to experience firsthand how smart people can struggle with a seemingly simple task when they have reading, writing, math, organization or attention issues. Tech Finder: Expert-approved apps and games searchable by a child’s grade and issues. Just For You: An opt-in system that provides additional levels of personalized content recommendations. (Parents don’t need to sign in to start getting customized recommendations on Understood; all they need to do to hit the ground running is check the boxes about their child’s grade and issues.) Parents who choose to complete a secure, confidential profile will receive recommendations for each child in their profile as well as for topics they’ve expressed interest in, such as siblings, travel and communicating with family and friends. You & Your Family: Actionable tips and understanding advice for unique challenges families face with learning and attention issues. Decision Guide: Key questions to help parents think through big topics, such as whether it’s time to request a formal evaluation, let a child start dating or decide which path to pursue after high school.

  Understood.org Learning and Attention Issues

Available in English, Spanish and read-aloud mode, Understood provides parents with clear explanations about learning and attention issues. It also offers practical advice for parents on everything from how to partner with their child’s teachers and help with homework to how to explain their child’s issues to friends and relatives and plan family gatherings that are less stressful and more fun for everyone.
It has been ages since I did a musical Monday post and I thought it would be fun. So, here is a song I am loving right now.


This song really has touched a place in my soul. It addresses something I try not to think about. Self-love. Now, I'm not talking about conceit. Not even talking about thinking I can take on the world by myself. No, I'm speaking to something much deeper. I'm talking about knowing my value in Christ.

It's something that God has been trying to get me to deal with for awhile now. And, it's finally starting to take hold and grow roots. I see me and see all my failures. My flaws. It's really easy to see ONLY those things instead of the things that God sees. I struggle most often with believing I am a new creation.

So, who are we in Christ? I found this printable on Pinterest and had to share it with you. Click on the image to be taken to the original page by Anita Huron. It's a great reminder to hang on your wall.


Which of these do you struggle with believing today?

I can't resist the urge to share pictures especially when it's Friday. Flashback Friday!


Okay, so this picture is a bit grainy but I'm so glad I have it. This captures a very typical moment with a newborn that I can't find very often. I was usually the one behind the camera so to have a photo like this is precious. She was two months old here.
This weekend we got to have some friends over for an Ice Age: Collision Course screening. The movie is super cute and we had a blast! I was also given some great products by Fox to help really party down. Take a look below! 

**Oh and before I forget- I am giving away a copy of Ice Age: Collision Course HERE! It does end tonight at midnight so head over to enter to win!**


We got a telescope, rocket, a backyard night sky book, glow in the dark start stickers, and my favorite...a planetarium projector! We had munchies and played with these fun toys by Smithsonian.


I mean, really just look at this awesomeness. You can change the image in the middle and even have the stars moving. We also got a wonderful blanket to cuddle up in. My daughter doesn't want to get out of it because it is so soft.





He couldn't take his eyes of the movie. It has lots of fun and adventure like the prior Ice Age movies. I love that Scrat is in outer space in this one. It has a whole new twist. Have you seen Ice Age: Collision Course yet? 





A few years ago I made a post about 10 Halloween Movies That Rock. Now I still wholeheartedly back those movies but there are some more that I love as well. They may not all be appropriate for your family but here are my '10 More Halloween Movies That Rock'. Which is your favorite?

1. Nightmare Before Christmas



2. Harry Potter



3. Casper



4. Coraline



5. Gremlins



6. Ghostbusters



7. The Little Vampire



8. The Worst Witch



9. Corpse Bride



10. The Witches


Which movies would you add to this list?


Even though Abby is 8 years old, she still loves Peppa Pig! Peppa's newest DVD is just as fun as ever. "It's always perfect weather for Peppa Pig's amusing adventures. Not even snow, rain, or fog can stop the wintry fun! Join Peppa, George, Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig as they enjoy a most unusual trip to the seaside, a super ski day, muddy puddle-jumping and more!"

There are twelve fun peppa-sodes and it is being released on DVD on October 18th. To celebrate its release we are giving away a copy of Peppa Pig Sun, Sea, & Snow to one lucky reader! Details are at the end of this post. In the meantime we also have three fabulous printables for your kiddos.




I just think Peppa is adorable so I don't mind so much when it is played over and over again. And now for our giveaway! Wait for the rafflecopter to load below.







link up with us by clicking on the icon above.

This blog has teamed up with Bloggin’ Mamas for this amazing prize giveaway. We were not compensated for this posting.



Since 2005, Wonder Costumes has specialized in selling costumes and accessories for the whole family. Located in sunny Miami, Florida, the company ships to countries world-wide and are renowned for their excellent customer service and competitive prices. Whether you are looking for brave superheroes, enchanting princesses or spooky Halloween ghouls, Wonder Costumes has the selection to fit your needs and desires. Find your ideal costumes quickly and without hassle anytime throughout the year—for school plays, festivals, parties, or any themed event!



Halloween is one of my favorite times of year. There is something magical and fun about it. Wouldn't it be amazing to have a whole family of costumes to wear together? I'm not sure my hubby would go for this but I would! 
Connect with Wonder Costumes Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram Coupon Code for our readers: CostumesBM You will save 5% and receive FREE shipping. Now for the Giveaway! One lucky winner will receive $100 credit to Wonder Costumes with free shipping. This is open to US residents, age 18 and older. Sponsor responsible for prize fulfillment. Refer to Giveaway Tools for terms & conditions. Giveaway begins October 8th, 2016 at 9pm Eastern and ends October 13th, 2016 at 11:59pm Eastern.

Dis­clo­sure: Blog­gin’ Mamas is being com­pen­sated for man­ag­ing this give­away, but is not respon­si­ble for prize ful­fill­ment or ship­ment, nei­ther are any of the blog­gers involved in this give­away. This give­away is in no way affil­i­ated, endorsed, or asso­ci­ated with Face­book, Twit­ter, Pin­ter­est, Insta­gram, or any other social media out­let. All opinions are those of our own.
Making Home Affordable If you are a home owner you probably worked long and hard to get where you are. Years of work and savings poured into making those 4 brick walls and roof your family refuge. A home is where important life memories are made, where family and friends can gather, and where you can enjoy a sense of safety and comfort. Your home is something that you work hard to call your own and should never be in fear of losing due to unforeseen circumstances.

Foreclosure can be a very frightful thing and RIGHT NOW THERE IS HELP!



Making Home Affordable is a free government resource that can help make paying that mortgage easier. Help from MHA provides incentives and flexibility that you might not have otherwise. Through the federal Making Home Affordable (MHA) program, 1.8 million families have received much-needed help by reducing their monthly mortgage payments an average of nearly $500/month. Foreclosures can have a devastating effect on families and communities. There are still too many homeowners struggling to make their mortgage payments or facing the prospect of losing their homes. About one in 13 homeowners nationwide has fallen behind on his or her mortgage payments, putting them at a higher risk of foreclosure. Homeowners should not feel alone, but many do.

  Making Home Affordable

The deadline to apply for mortgage help through MHA is Friday, December 30, 2016. While the end of the program is quickly approaching, don’t worry—there is still time to gather your information and apply. Homeowners who submit an application on or before December 30, 2016 will still be considered! If you’re struggling to make your monthly mortgage payments, call 888-995-HOPE (4673) ™. Housing experts are available around-the-clock (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) at no cost. They will help you understand your options and design a plan to suit your individual situation. You can also visit MakingHomeAffordable.gov to access free resources and information to help deal with your mortgage problems and avoid foreclosure.

  Making Home Affordable

With less than 3 months remaining to apply for help through MHA, we need your help spreading the word to the approximately 1 in 17 homeowners nationwide who have fallen behind on their mortgage payments, putting them at a higher risk of foreclosure! Please help us spread the word. You never know who you know that might be struggling to pay their mortgage and could use this help.
I don't know about you but I am so glad it's fall and in Wyoming it really does feel like fall right now. Sometimes it even feels closer to winter temperature-wise. The changing colors on the trees, the cool air, and  pumpkin spice everywhere just makes me happy!

When this time comes I know I've got to soak it in as much as I can before winter really does set in. It is easy to do with Hallmark. Now, you can have a warm, cozy, yummy smelling home easily! Here are a few products I recently tried and loved.



Crafters & Co. Tabletop Wax Warmer

This warmer is beautiful and bronze. It's stunning and looks classy in any space. If you haven't had the pleasure of using a wax warmer before I will share a little about it. You simply screw the low-wattage light bulb in, put a block or two of wax melt cubes, and turn on the little switch. In a short amount of time the wax will begin melting and making your whole home smell fabulous. (Note: It does get hot so be careful about that with kiddos!)

Crafters & Co. Soy Based Wax Melts

These wax melts smell amazing. There are quite a few different scents available. I received Celebrate Fall, Pumpkin Spice, and Harvest Wreath. I can't even pick a favorite because they all smell so good. I am really impressed with how long the scent lasts in these tiny little cubes.

Crafters & Co. 16 oz. "Celebrate Fall" Jar Candle

I love candles. Love. They cast a warm glow and a lovely scent wherever you place them. This particular scent is a combination of buttery pastry topped with ripe, freshly sliced apples, sweet brown sugar, cinnamon and rich caramel. Essentially it's like you've baked all day without all those pesky calories. Also, small details go a long way with me so I adore the leaf charm that hangs on the jar. Isn't it adorable? It is so going to be re-purposed down the road as a piece of jewelry.



BOGO

I'm excited about this next tidbit because hello BOGO. From October 14th - October 23rd Hallmark will be offering a Buy One Get One deal on Crafters & Co. Jar Candles and Wax Melts at participating Hallmark Gold Crown stores nationwide! These products make wonderful gifts and you can even stock up for yourself!

WIN!


You know I love giving things away around here. I have teamed up with Hallmark to give one lucky reader a Crafters & Co. 16 oz. Jar Candle too! I hope you love it as much as I do.
This is a US only giveaway. Good luck!!




As a family we have thoroughly enjoyed the Ice Age movies. There's just something memorable and fun about them. We were so excited to hear that a new one had been released. In case you don't know, Ice Age: Collision Course is about Scrat’s epic pursuit of the elusive acorn. He accidentally triggers cosmic events that threaten the ICE AGE world. Now Buck, Manny, Ellie, Sid, Diego and the rest of the herd must work together on a hilarious journey filled with nonstop action and colorful new characters in order to survive the global Scrat-tastrophe! In other words...it's HILARIOUS. "Ice Age: Collision Course" collides on Digital HD September 30th and on Blu-ray, DVD, and 4K Ultra HD on October 11th.

If you would like to have some fun activities to go along with the movie, here are some printables. Be sure to also check out our craft below. (And, our giveaway!)




To celebrate the release we decided to make a fun craft based around the movie...Scrat-tastic Galaxy Jars. They are super simple to make.


What You Need:

A jar (whatever size you'd like)
3-4 colors of acrylic paint
Glitter
Holographic stars
Cotton balls

Directions:

1. Add water to a cup (one for each color) then add a couple of squirts of paint and mix. 

2. Gently pull some of the cotton balls so they are slightly stretched out. Place in jar to make a double layer.




3. Add glitter and stars on top of the cotton balls.


4. Slowly pour some of the first color onto the cotton balls, making sure you don't have excess liquid at the bottom. 


5. Repeat with remaining color and glitter.


She loves her Scrat-tastic Galaxy Jar and immediately put it in her room.



Note: There is no wrong way to do this. Ours ended up a little dry for my liking (adding more stuff tomorrow, I think) and the colors were chosen by my 8 year old. I think it would be really lovely with the colors are a bit more dark with purples, dark blue, and maybe brighter pink as well.

Now, for our giveaway! One lucky reader (US only) will receive a copy of this movie for their very own movie collection. Good luck! 


Please wait for the Rafflecopter widget to load.

Even though I homeschool my daughter I believe that the following is true. Absences from school do add up. Kids learn so much in one day of school, it's amazing.

Chronic Absenteeism

Depending on where you are – your kids have likely been in school for a month or two already. Have they missed any days during that time? How many? Is that even something you think about regularly? When they did miss – you probably did everything you needed to do to ensure that they stayed caught up, right? Unfortunately, there are kids out there who do not have that luxury and they are falling behind. A student who misses just two days of school each month — 18 days total in the year — is considered to be chronically absent. However, many parents don’t realize that, even when absences are excused or understandable, absences add up and can greatly impact a child’s education. In the United States, more than 6 million children are chronically absent from school each year.

 
  Key Takeaways for Parents
  • Every absence matters.
  • Absences matter as early as elementary school.
  • Absences matter whether they are excused or unexcused.
  • Students who miss just two days of school each month, or 18 days in a year, are more likely to fall behind in reading, writing and math and less likely to graduate from high school.
Tips and Suggestions
  • Keep track of how many days of school your child has missed.
  • Figure out why your child is absent from school.
    • Are they dealing with a chronic illness like asthma?
    • Are they being bullied or struggling at school?
    • Are they staying home to help care for a family member?
  • Visit AbsencesAddUp.org to find help addressing the underlying cause of your child’s absences.
    • Ask teachers and community leaders for advice and specific resources in your area.
    • Don’t be afraid to reach out to other parents in your area to ask for help and share tips.
  • To prevent absences in the future, consider enrolling your child in a mentoring or afterschool program.
  • Understand the impact of each absence on your child’s future.
    • A student is chronically absent even if they miss only two days of school each month (18 days per year), whether the absences are excused or unexcused.
    • Chronic absenteeism can affect students as early as elementary school.
    • Children who are chronically absent in preschool, kindergarten, and first grade are much less likely to read on grade level by third grade.
    • Students who cannot read at grade level by third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school.
Chronic Absenteeism

One third of parents surveyed admit that they could do more to ensure that their child attends school every day. There are many reasons why students miss school when they don’t have to. Some are struggling in the classroom, while others may be having trouble with bullies, or dealing with challenges at home. Children who are chronically absent in preschool, kindergarten, and first grade are less likely to read on grade level by the third grade. Students who cannot read at grade level by the third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school. Your child’s daily, on-time attendance is critical to their success in school. And while some challenges to your child’s school attendance are unavoidable, it’s important to understand the impact of each absence.

  Chronic Absenteeism

SPREAD THE MESSAGE! The best way to ensure success for our kids? Get them to school every day. Visit AbsencesAddUp.org for tips #AbsencesAddUp Every day in class = 1 day closer to graduation. Learn more about ensuring our kids' success at AbsencesAddUp.org #AbsencesAddUp
This past week has been filled with many emotions. In case you didn't know, my sweet mother-in-law Rose passed away just over a week ago. We all gathered together in Oklahoma to remember her life. As I listened to everyone talk and share stories I was overcome with such joy. She will be missed for sure but there was such hope and expectation in the air that we will see her again someday in Heaven. 

We got to see family that we hadn't seen in a while.  I laughed more than I have in a long time. It made me realize all the more how blessed I am, It's easy for me to lose sight of that, you know. It's really easy to just get caught up in the every day routine of life and forget how precious it is.

I also had another revelation. My daughter needs way less stuff than I think she does. Honestly, we had a couple stuffed animals, coloring books, and a kindle for her instead of her room full of toys. She made do and used her creativity. She didn't watch very much television and just interacted with people. It was a breath of fresh air and has made me see that I want to change the structure of our days.

I'll close for now but it's nice to feel a pull toward personal blogging again. I've fiercely missed writing and look forward to talking with you again soon.
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