Teacher Appreciation Perks


This week is Teacher Appreciation Week! I am glad to see that some places of business are honoring you and all the hard work you do. ūüôā

Chick-fil-A:  Some stores are offering a  free sandwich on May 2nd.  Check with your local store before ordering.

Chipotle: Teachers, Faculty & Staff get BOGO BURRITOS, BOWLS SALADS OR TACOS with valid School ID on May 2nd from 3 pm to close.

Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store: Sign up for a TEACHER REWARDS DISCOUNT CARD and save 15% on purchases, in store and online.

Loft: Teachers get 15% off regular priced items year round with their LOFTLOVESTEACHERS program.

McDonald’s: Check with your local store, many are offering free breakfast or lunch on set days during teacher appreciation week.  Dates and offer varies by location.

Michael’s: Teachers get 15% off your entire purchase in-store. See store associate for details.

Pizzeria Locale:  Teachers buy one get one free pizza on Monday, May 1 from 3:00pm to close. You just need to show your letter of excusal from the school.


Denim Bag Sewing Project

Looking for a sewing project that your children can do? How about a carrying bag? Recently I got out my sewing machine and made a bag out of a pair of thrift store jeans that I got for a quarter. I kid you not! I don’t know about you, but I am drawn to purchasing bags in which I can carry my school books, library books and and supplies.

I wanted a bag that I could put on the floor and not worry about if the fabric would get dirty. Jeans are the perfect material to use since the material is already pre washed and can take some rough handling. Best of all, this is a project that beginning seamstresses can make!


Instructions for Denim Bag (The picture above is not the bag I made, but it was so cute I had to feature it!)

Materials Needed: 

1 pair of jeans (the larger the jeans, the bigger the bag)


sewing machine and thread of any color


  1. Cut the pair of jeans straight across at the beginning of the legs- under the zipper.¬†Save the legs (you’ll need them later). Cut at least half an inch below the bottoms of the back pockets and below the zipper, for seam allowance. Jeans may be cut a little wider in back than in front, so line up the waistlines in the front and back before trimming.
  2. Turn the jeans inside out. Sew across the bottom to shut the leg openings. Also sew up the sides of the divider panel to secure it. Offset thick seams in the center, so they’re not right on top of each other. Sew a 5/8 inch seam allowance from the edge of the fabric.
  3. Cut a strip at least 2 inches wide and add extra for a seam allowance down the length of one of the legs to make the strap. The outside of the leg is usually a little bit straighter. Before cutting, hold the purse up to you and determine how long you will need the strip to be for your strap. Cut the strip that length plus an additional 1inch to allow seam allowances to attach to your bag.
  4. Turn the strip inside-out, so that you are seeing the wrong side of the fabric. Sew it closed along one side, trying to keep the seam as straight as possible.
  5. Turn the strip right side out and sew the handle to the inside of your bag near the hips of the jeans.  Reinforce the stitches since this is what will take the weight of what you carry inside your bag.
  6. Accessorize bag if you like. I added a velcro strip inside to keep the bag closed.

* I had a bit of help with directions from wikihow

There are so many different types of purses you can make that I wanted to refer you to a website that has 25 different types of purses and bags, practically one for each day of the month! To see all of the wonderful designs CLICK HERE or on the picture.


Happy Sewing!  ~Lisa


The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill


Winter is the time of year when I like to curl up in a comfy chair with a blanket and read books. I just finished a terrific book that I would like to share with you.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading the endearing story of Jane Fairmont Bell, a young widow, who is the central character in the first book of a trilogy, Tales from Ivy Hill, by ¬†Julie Klassen. ¬†Set in the early 1800’s when coaching inns were the place for people to rest along their journey and get a meal or refreshments, Jane is the proprietor of an inn that her husband had left to her upon his death.¬†Being at a¬†disadvantage since her husband did not include her in the operations of the inn, Jane realizes that she is in risk of losing it due to mismanagement and untold secrets from her husband’s past.

Jane is uncertain as to what to do and certainly needs help with managing and running the inn if she is going to keep it. ¬†Otherwise, not only will she lose her income, but also her home.¬†Who can she trust to help her? Will her brother-in-law with a shady past be someone that she can lean upon or does he have ulterior motives? Can Jane put aside her feelings of inferiority to ask for her mother-in-law’s help? What about the mysterious stablehand who seems to know much more than just about horses? Help comes from a variety of unexpected sources that make this story so interesting.

I was sad when the book ended because I wanted to find out what was going to happen to Jane and the people of the village where she lives. One of my tests of a great book is if I am still thinking about the book several days later and this was definitely the case with The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill. I am looking forward to reading the next installment of her trilogy.

61q3qqe98l-_ux250_¬†Julie Klassen loves all things Jane–Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. She worked in publishing for sixteen years and now writes full time. Three of her novels have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. Her book, The Silent Governess, was also a finalist in the Minnesota Book Awards, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year Awards, and Romance Writers of America’s RITA Awards. Julie is a graduate of the University of Illinois. She and her husband have two sons and live near St. Paul, Minnesota. Visit for more information.

I have received a free copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.



Ideas for Weight Loss

I have wonderful news… my youngest son is getting married! His fianc√©e¬†is wonderful and we are looking forward to having her in our family. She will have all the joys of spelling and saying our last name like I have!

Recently I began trying on¬†dresses for the “Big Day”. I don’t know how these pounds grabbed onto me, and if I had to choose a date for the wedding, I would say¬†a year from now so I could get skinnier. Well,¬†I have about a month to lose some winter poundage. Miracles can happen, right? I looked on the internet with my quest to lose weight and found 7 key points to help:

  1. Did it grow?¬†Fruit, vegetables, and nuts fit that category. However, I would have to say that maltodextrose ¬†does not. What is that anyway?? A colorless to yellowish syrupy mixture of dextrose, maltose, and dextrins containing about 20%¬†water,¬†used in confectionery, alcoholic fermentation, tanning, and treating tobacco.¬†Ewww!! ūüė¶
  2. 1 ingredient– No, I don’t have to eat just one thing, but rather ¬†food should be as unprocessed as possible.
  3. Did it have a mother?¬†Was it alive previously? Fish, beef, chicken all had mothers. However, ¬†I do wonder about pigs… ūüôā
  4. One pound= 3500 calories How long will it take to exercise off a donut? Motivation factor!
  5. Stay hydrated– Often we think we are hungry, but it is actually thirst. Also, water curbs appetites. Calories are being burned walking to the bathroom too!
  6. Eat every 4 hours– By eating smaller amounts our blood sugar remains steady, resulting in eating less.
  7. Move!¬†If I don’t have a partner to hold me accountable I am far less likely to exercise. A friend keeps me moving and motivated on days when I’d rather sit and eat some carbolicious snack.

Here is¬†to hoping to see progress soon. I haven’t lost any weight since I started yesterday (lol), but I am thinking thin thoughts… I’ll close with a recipe from¬†Fitness Magazine¬†that I am going to try. Care to join me?

Peach Milkshake (1 serving)

1 cup almond milk

1 cup peaches

1/2 cup pineapple juice

1/2 banana

1 teaspoon coconut oil (optional–may help burn calories)

Blend all ingredients until smooth.

*I like to add chia seeds or flax in addition to the above ingredients. Chia is rich in omega fatty acids and minerals. Flax is rich in protein and fiber.







Dressed for Death: a book review


 Sometimes we homeschool moms just need to slow down and take some time for ourselves. One thing I enjoy doing is reading.  Mystery,  justice, and romance are elements I love to see in a novel when I am reading for pleasure. Julianna Deering truly met these expectations with her fourth book, Dressed for Death. With many suspicious characters and several twists and turns throughout the telling of this tale, I was held in suspense until the very end. I look forward to reading more cases from Ms. Derring about her sleuth, Drew Fathering, and his encouraging and fearless newly wed helpmeet, Madeline. I believe you will enjoy this book as much as I did. 

If you would like to have a sneak peek about the book, read on… A Regency-era event turns out to be deadly when one of the guests dies from an apparent overdose of cocaine. Nothing seems to be as it appears as several guests are caught up in the web of death and suspicion. Drew Fathering, one of the guests and amateur detective, is in a race against the killer as one by one guests from the hosting house are being murdered. ¬†


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission‚Äôs 16 CFR, Part 255 ¬†‚ÄúGuides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.‚ÄĚ