Easter Countdown 2016

This year, my 13 and 7 year old wake up every morning and hunt for an egg with candy in it. I hid one for each of them. (I stuck a plastic egg to the fridge simply by sticking a strong magnet inside!) I researched, gathered ideas and  pre-planned an activity for each day and printed them out on fun pastel paper. I cut out each day’s countdown in a little strip and roll it up to put into one of the eggs. Our activities include sweet homemade treats, fun crafts, games, and science experiments. I’ve found that in the hustle and bustle of getting ready for a holiday or vacation, having these little things planned to do together really give us time to enjoy each other, when we might not make the time for it because it’s busy. Here are some of my ideas from this year. You are welcome to use them, leave some out or change it to work for your family! Because we are just barely into this year’s countdown, I don’t have a lot of pictures of the kids doing things. So, I have looked up a lot of links so that you can click on them and quickly see how to do these things.

20+ Days til Easter Countdown 20 Days til Easter Countdown for my Blog

Day 1 Daily Devo/ Prayer Journals (Give them their journals, and explain that we’re going to be doing devotions together each morning.) http://thedeliberatemom.com/build-faith-with-your-children/

2 Easter bunny pancakes for breakfast IMG_5297

3 Read & Play Right Left Easter Story (they pass a chocolate prize every time they hear “left” or “right” & whomever has it at the end gets to eat it! Story included below)

4 Egg Science Experiments! ( Naked egg, sugar egg, water squirting egg) http://www.science-sparks.com/2011/08/29/shrinking-eggs/IMG_5491

5 Craft Day: paper rolling (Quilling)

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6 Reverse Egg Hunt (I changed this to work for my kids to do in the house) http://www.growingkidsministry.com/events/easter/reverse-easter-egg-hunt-great-for-older-kids-even-teens/


7 Fingerprint Easter cards http://blog.chickabug.com/2014/04/easter-bunny-chick-fingerprint-craft.html IMG_5403

8 Easter Hedbanz ( I made cards of characters from the Easter story, using coloring pages shrunk to card size)

9 Bunny tail buns http://www.pillsbury.com/holidays-celebrations/spring/how-to-make-bunny-tail-bunsIMG_5405

10 Easter corners (Look up the rules for the game, “Corners” and name the corners for Easter, like “Empty tomb, chocolate bunny, Egg…” We play this using the corners of our dining room table.)

11 Crown of thorns centerpiece (pin) http://www.waltzingm.com/2011/03/crown-of-thorns.html?m=1IMG_5402

12 Science! Growing Crystal bunny http://creeksidelearning.com/cool-science-experiments-growing-crystals/IMG_5427

13 Watch Veggie Tales Easter DVDs

14 Glowing egg hunt (put glow sticks in eggs and let the kids hunt them in the dark)IMG_5391

15 Resurrection Eggs (We bought this at a Christian bookstore. We use it yearly, as it reminds the kids of the reason we celebrate)

16 Yarn ball bunnies https://magnoliamarket.com/diy-yarn-bunnies/

17 Delicate bird’s nests http://bakeat350.blogspot.com/2010/04/sweet-birds-nests.htmlIMG_5487

18 Science! Jelly Bean tower http://thesciencepenguin.com/2015/03/easter-science-activities-with-jelly-beans.html

19 Easter Charades http://www.myteenguide.com/cool-easter-party-games-for-teens-tweens/

20 You’ve been egged! (Found on Pinterest! Surprise another family with an egg hunt in their yard!) We dressed in black and the kids really got into our covert mission! Somehow, both families we “egged” figured out that it was us though!

21 Egg dying

22 Egg hunt with cousins

23 Resurrection Rolls http://allrecipes.com/recipe/84289/resurrection-rolls/


24 Easter Sunday!

We didn’t complete the yarn bunny and didn’t play charades, but we did another fun activity, which required me to crack our eggs carefully for a couple of weeks, wash them out and fill them with paint. Then the kids threw them at a canvas and made an “egg-ster-piece!” They really loved this! IMG_5574

Left Right Easter Story
There were only two days LEFT before the Passover the chief priests wanted to find the RIGHT way to arrest and then kill Jesus. RIGHT then, Judas Iscariot went RIGHT to the chief priests to offer to hand Jesus over to them. They were delighted and as he LEFT they promised to give him money. So, Judas waited and watched for the RIGHTtime.
On the first evening of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, Jesus and His disciples met for the Passover meal. RIGHT while they were eating, Jesus told them that one of them would hand Him RIGHT over to His enemies. This LEFT the disciples in a state of sadness.
When they finished their meal they LEFT to go to the Mount of Olives. Jesus told His disciples that all of them would leave Him, but Peter argued that He would stay RIGHTwith Jesus always. Jesus told Peter that RIGHT that very night, before the rooster crowed twice, He would deny Him three times.
At the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus instructed His disciples to keep watch while He LEFT to pray. Jesus fell RIGHT to the ground, praying that the hour might pass RIGHTby Him.
When Jesus returned to His disciples, Judas appeared. Judas, was about to hand Jesus RIGHT over to His enemies. Judas went RIGHT to Jesus and kissed Him. The men grabbed Jesus and arrested him RIGHT there. Jesus was taken RIGHT to the high priest and Peter followed.
The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin wanted to put Jesus RIGHT to death, but they could not find anything to use against Him. Many told lies about Him, but JesusLEFT all of their questioning unanswered. The high priest asked Him if He was the Christ and Jesus was LEFT to answer the only thing He truthfully could, “I am.” RIGHTaway, they found him guilty of blasphemy and said he must die.
At the time, Peter was RIGHT below in the courtyard. He was asked three times if He knew Jesus, but three times he denied he did. RIGHT away the rooster crowed for the second time and Peter broke RIGHT down and sobbed.
Early in the morning Jesus was tied RIGHT up and handed over to Pilate. Pilate was LEFT amazed at the character of Jesus. He didn’t feel RIGHT about harming Him, but the crowds shouted that they wanted Jesus put RIGHT to death. Pilate wanted to satisfy the crowd so he ordered that Jesus be whipped and nailed to a cross RIGHTaway.
The soldiers LEFT with Jesus RIGHT away. They put a purple robe on Him and twisted thorns together to make a crown to put RIGHT on his head. They hit Him and spitRIGHT on Him. They made fun of Him and then forced Him to carry a cross RIGHT up Golgotha Hill.
They nailed Jesus RIGHT to that cross. Then they divided up what was LEFT of His clothes, casting lots to see what each of them would get. They crucified two robbers with Jesus. One was on his RIGHT and one was on his LEFT.
At noon, daylight LEFT and darkness covered the land for three hours. At three o’clock Jesus cried RIGHT out in a loud voice, My God, my God, why have you LEFT me? When Jesus took his last breath the temple curtain was torn RIGHT in two from top to bottom.
As evening approached, Joseph went RIGHT to Pilate and asked that Jesus’ body beLEFT for him to bury. With Pilate’s consent Joseph took the body RIGHT down from the cross and wrapped it in linen. He LEFT the body in a tomb cut out of rock. Then he rolled a large stone RIGHT against the entrance of the tomb.
RIGHT on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome LEFT to go to the tomb. They LEFT just after sunrise. They were going to apply spices RIGHT to Jesus’ body. When they arrived they were LEFT in shock. The very large stone had been rolled RIGHT away. They entered RIGHT into the tomb and saw a young man dressed in a white robe. He was sitting on the RIGHT side. He told them not to be afraid because Jesus had risen and had already LEFT the tomb. He instructed the women to go RIGHT to Jesus’ disciples and let them know that Jesus had risen.

Disney New Year’s Resolutions

1. Visit Disneyland!

2. No parent arguments at Disney this year

3. Make Mickey Mouse shaped beignets for our Disney Countdown

4. Do a park related Scavenger Hunt while at Disney http://welltraveledwife.com/2014/08/guide-to-disneyland.html

5. Get some books that are Disneyland related to read to the kids

6. Plan to Disneybound at least one day during our visit!

7. Have a Mint Julep

8. Eat at the Blue Bayou

9. Think of a great way to say, “Thank you” to CMs

10. Keep the Disney Magic alive all year long!





Disney Through my Kid’s Eyes/ Trip Report, Fall 2015: Last Day

Day 12:
We got up and finished packing. Went to breakfast in France. B is enthralled with the Eifffel tower there. The food wasn’t good for us, but it was sooo good! We enjoyed it.

Then we went back to our resort, checked out sadly, and headed for AK. IMG_3077It was so very crowded at AK! IMG_3089We rode the train to Conservation Station, and knocked out 5 badges in the Wilderness Explorers books. But that was all we had time for.

We headed back to ride Everest, and J rode twice, once with Mom,IMG_3095 once with Dad. IMG_3097B has been saying he was going to try it all this week, but he decided not to ride.

It was so much fun!

The lines for FP were longer than we have ever seen them.

Then we went to ride Dinosaur and J thought it was bumpier than normal. Its crazy that B loves that ride so much, but mom always has, too.

Then we went to eat lunch at Restaurantsarus and were herded into the restaurant like sheep! It was so crowded that we had to eat outside, but it was shady and we had a seat with a breeze. It was just so crowded and this was the park that was recommended to go to! Insane. A lot of the cars in the lot were from Florida though. Sadly, we couldn’t do any more Wilderness Explorer activities today, because we had to leave already. IMG_3087We parked in the garage (that was new) at Downtown Disney (Disney Springs) and it felt so different there in the shopping district. It was crowded there as well. We stopped at the toy store, World of Disney, and of course Goofy’s Candy shop. IMG_3106 The CM at Goofy’s was so sweet that she put on gloves and handpicked mickey sour patches out for B, since he’s allergic to red and really wanted them. Only at Disney! We shopped and then left for home. IMG_3105

Thankfully, we had an uneventful drive home and are glad to be back, even if we miss WDW so much. B isn’t happy to be home. He just misses WDW. Jolly (our dog) was happy to come home with us and has done little but sleep ever since! Mom figured out how to make the Peanutbutter chocolate chunk cookies just like the ones at Disney, so that should hold us until next time.IMG_4289

Disney Through My Kid’s Eyes/Trip Report, Fall 2015, Day 11

IMG_2922J’s Day 11: MK & Epcot:

Taken by J

• What I wore today: fairy godmother DB

The moment the Fairy godmother realized we matched! She was very sweetly surprised.

• The biggest surprise was: seeing the SpagnolasIMG_2994
• …because: we didn’t know they were at Magic Kingdom, too!

• Something new we tried: breakfast buffet at Crystal PalaceIMG_2942
• …and what I thought about it: The Pooh’s puffed French toast was reeeeeally good

• The most magical moment and what made it magical: Seeing the park before everybody was in it because it was emptyIMG_2924

Empty MK, taken by J

• The bummer of the day and why: not meeting the real fairy godmother. (but she was still a good one)IMG_3005
• The funniest thing: not being hungry until it was dinner
• And why it was funny: because we didn’t eat lunch and breakfast was holding us over until dinner

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Our day at the Magic Kingdom
• I don’t want to forget: the pool because it’s big

In the middle of the day, we waved good-bye to the castle and rode the monorail to Epcot. We walked through and relaxed a little at the Beach Club, before walking back to spend the evening at Epcot.

B’s Day 11:

What I wore today: BuzzIMG_3015

Woody & Jesse are so funny playing with Buzz Lightyear Duffy.

• I don’t want to forget: Seeing the castle. Cuz it was our last time.IMG_2992

With all the rides at WDW, it’s funny that the kids get so much entertainment from riding the elevator in our resort.

They lead the way back to our room.
• Something new we tried: Living with the land
• …and what I thought about it: I thought it was a boat ride. I liked it.IMG_3052

• The most magical moment and what made it magical: Test Track

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Mom notes: We also rode Space Mountain. One thing we messed up on, and only just learned. Since B didn’t ride Space Mt, when he and I went to get FP to meet Mickey, we couldn’t because it was saying we still had a FP to use! The CM there told me I would have to wait 45 mins, til our FP expired. So I ran back and got in the huge FP line for Space Mt, just to scan his band. By the time we got back to the kiosk at Stitch’s, all the FP for Talking Mickey were gone. SO that is something to remember,
It also would have been cool to have brought a book to read B, as well as a stool and a hanging curtain on an extension rod for the doorway so we could dress easier.

We roasted marshmallows over the fire at our resort beach. This was the first time we’ve ever done this at Disney, and it was fun!

Disney Through My Kid’s Eyes/ Trip Report, Fall 2015, Day 10

J’s Day 10: (age 13)
• What I wore today: Patriotic Mickey

• The biggest surprise was: How cute my Shellie May was (paper World Showcase Duffy)
• …because: she turned out better than I thought she would

Created by J (pic taken by J)

• Something new we tried: The Lumber Jacks and Refelections of China

…and what I thought about it: The lumberjacks were kind of funny, and the China movie was interesting

Try the Beverly! (We got someone to to try it!)

• The most magical moment and what made it magical: getting extra fast passes from Chelsi (because we made friends with her while we waited a half hour for Test Track first thing in the morning. See below!)
• The bummer of the day and why: Test Track was broken and we were at the front of the line

Pretending to be super upset that Test Track isn’t running

• The funniest thing: Bev
• And why it was funny: because she brought over her friend to look at our Duffys

We had a little rain.

• I don’t want to forget: To close my eyes whenever Figment does that crazy boom thing because it’s annoying and it’s loud.

Balancing her bag on her head to keep the rain off.

We walked to the Boardwalk to ride a surrey bike. Lots of work, but fun! B sat in the middle & he was disappointed because he couldn’t pedal. He couldn’t reach the bell from where he was sitting, either. Lots of people waved and said hi.

B’s Day 10: (age 6)

We had a magical moment in Mission Space this morning! Cornelius measured Penguin and joked that he was too short to ride!
What I wore today: Patriotic Mickey

• The biggest surprise was: Seeing Mickey at the Garden Grill IMG_2870

• …because: we were moving and we got to see Mickey while we were moving

• Something new we tried: The Lumber Jacks and Refelections of China
• …and what I thought about it: The Lumber Jack show was just OK, thought the China movie was boring and didn’t like the fact we had to stand
• The most magical moment and what made it magical: the snails (at the entrance to Epcot),IMG_2800 and seeing the Tower of Terror from that height (Epcot)
• The bummer of the day and why: losing my tooth (on the walk back to our resort!) and also Test Track was broken and we were at the front of the line

• The funniest thing: Watching Mickey Mouse cartoons (in our room) and Donald Duck sang


• I don’t want to forget: Riding Test Track

Mom’s Day 10:

I have appreciated the Cast members so much this trip. I always want our experiences with them to let them know that we are appreciative of the magic they bring. When they make my kids feel special, I really want to make them feel special, too. They are all so happy when they get a Baymax.*

It is such a simple thing, but they are always excited about it. I like to make them happy and the kids like to give them out, and it’s so good for them to interact with the cast, and learn to be appreciative. *We made little Baymax cards, and the kids cut them out and signed them. Then they stuck a band-aid inside. This is just a little way for us to say thatnk you when a CM spends a little extra time with us.


Disney Through My Kid’s Eyes/Kid’s Trip Report/ Fall 2015, Day 9

J’s Day 9: Fall 2015IMG_1919
• What I wore today: Captain America, jean shorts


• I don’t want to forget: Lisa, (the lady who walked us to Toy Story mania and let us ride first)IMG_2714

It was a magical day! It started out great. When we got to the rope drop, the CM there was all by herself and B went and stood next to her and held his arms out like he was going to help her hold back the crowds. We talked to her for awhile and when the Toy Story people came out, the lone CM told one of the Toy Story CMs about B holding back the crowds and she loved it. She took his hand and said that he was going to set the pace for the walk to Toy Story Mania! She held his hand and J grabbed his other hand and we all went to TS Mania. And she had us be the very first people to ride, all by ourselves! Boy, did we feel special!
• The biggest surprise was: When there was a little girl in a tunnel @ Honey I Shrunk the Kids Playground snuck up on me.
• …because: I was surprised

Looking through the looking glass!

• The most magical moment and what made it magical: When we got to go to the front of the line for Toy Story Mania

The Great Movie Ride (taken by J)

• The bummer of the day and why: Not getting to answer all the trivia questions at the pool because it was raining and I missed the first part

Taking a dare at Epcot…


B’s Day 9:
What I wore today: Captain America

Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular

• The biggest surprise was: Leading everyone with Lisa to Toy Story Mania

• Something new we tried: Toy Story Pizza Planet
• …and what I thought about it: I liked the pizzaIMG_2750
• The most magical moment and what made it magical: Being 1st on Toy StoryIMG_2761
• The bummer of the day and why: last day for Hollywood Studios and mom and dad rode on Tower of Terror
• The funniest thing: When I was Singing in the Rain at the hot tub

IMG_2732We met Mike and Sully (B told Mike, “I’ve got my eye on you.)
IMG_2741And one of the best things was riding Star Tours! Our B was the Rebel Spy! So we had to rush out and buy a tshirt so that he and his sister will both have one. (She got to be the spy last year.)
• I don’t want to forget: Watching Illuminations (He held his ears and squinted his eyes up, but he loves the show; we all do! It just seems too short!)

Taken by J