How To Make Your Own Popcorn Flavor Shakers (7 Varieties!)

Two Christmases ago, we surprised our boys with this Vintage Popcorn Machine. It’s been super fun for family movie nights – but especially fun to use when we invite friends over.

popcorn machine

I’ve had it on my to-do list since then to make fun flavor shakers to go with our popcorn. (Not that coconut oil and sea salt aren’t amazing in and of themselves.)

Finally, I got the shakers made for my kids to enjoy a year later – in time for Christmas this year. Then it took another three months to type this out to share with you. Time flies when you’re eating popcorn.

So if anyone understands that it might take you until 2019 to make these, it will be me. But if you happen to find a few minutes before then, do try to whip these up. It doesn’t take long, I promise. (Neither does washing windows, but do I ever get around to that? No. Let’s stop talking about that and eat some popcorn, want to?)

popcorn-shaker-collection2

The beauty of these Popcorn Flavor Shakers is that they taste just as good, if not better than, the commercial ones you can buy at the store. But of course, when we make our own we will save money and include only healthy ingredients.

You may find it helpful to blend these ingredients together to make a fine powder for easier sprinkling.

7 Popcorn Flavor Shaker Recipes

Taco

2 Tablespoon dried minced onion
1 Tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin

Ranch

2 Tablespoons dried minced onions
3 teaspoon parsley flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

(These ingredients are the same as my Ranch Dressing Mix, so if you have that on hand, simply blend it and pour it into a shaker.)

Barbecue

3 teaspoons smoky paprika
1 teaspoon sucanat or brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Hot Chocolate

2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
3 Tablespoons sucanat or brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Salted Caramel

3 Tablespoons sucanat or brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Cinnamon Sugar

3 Tablespoons sucanat or brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Pizza

1½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoon oregano
1 Tablespoon dried parsley
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon pepper

make-your-own-popcorn-flavor-shakers

Want a printable that includes the shaker labels and easy recipe reference? Join our free newsletter list (we have a lot of fun together!) and I’ll send it to you!

popcorn-shakers2

If you’re already on my Heavenly Homemaker’s Newsletter List, I sent you an email yesterday with these goodies attached. :)

New Free Printable Packet! Color, Count, and Cook – for Early Learners!

We’ve got a new free packet available for all of you who have young learners at your house!

This one includes bright and fun learning activities to practice counting skills and color identification. Plus it offers some fun, healthy recipes you can make together with your kids!

Color, Count, and Cook – free printable

Color, Count, and Cook cover

 

There are 7 fun printable pages included. While they are geared toward Pre-K students, the recipes can be enjoyed by the entire family! Maybe, just maybe, they will make eating fruits and veggies more enjoyable. :)

Free Printables from Homemakers Learning Zone

It’s fun and it’s free! Simply sign up here and watch for instructions in your inbox. Joining our Learning Zone will provide you will a huge page full of freebies beyond this one, by the way. Wait till you see!

I’m excited to share that signing up for these freebies will connect you to our Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone. It’s free, of course. You can unsubscribe at any time, your info will never be shared or sold, and being on this list means that you’ll be the first to know of the other fun (yes, FUN!) educational tools we’re putting together!

P.S. If you are already subscribed to Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone, you should have received an email yesterday giving you instant access to this freebie. Look in your inbox for the subject: FREE Color, Count, and Cook Learning Packet!

“My State Study” Free Mini-Unit Printable For All!

In an effort to have my 6th grader do a little digging into what makes our state special, I created this mini-unit for him to work through. You can have it too!

This generic packet allows students of any age from any state to learn more about where they live.

My State Study free printable for all

Ways to use the My State Study packet:

  • Print and allow your student to work through a page or two each day for a small one-week unit.
  • Use it as a launch pad as your student digs even deeper into learning about the state where you live.
  • Print one set of these pages for all 50 states and have your student put together a United States study during this entire school year!

Want this and many more free learning printables?

Dozens of FREE School Printables

We’ve been creating and collecting all sorts of printable learning activities for all ages. These are free for everyone and will connect you to our fun Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone.

Enter your email address here, then check your inbox for download instructions. Print one, print them all, use them in whatever ways work best for your family!

If you are already subscribed to Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone, you should have received an email yesterday giving you instant access to this freebie. Look in your inbox for the subject: FREE “My State Study” Mini-Unit

Come Get Your “What I Loved About Summer” Printable

Here’s something I’ll assign my youngest during the first week of school. It’s simple, but a good way to get his juices flowing and make him think about all he loved about summertime.

Free Printable Summer Writing Prompt

Want this and many more free printables?

We’ve been creating and collecting all sorts of printable learning activities for all ages. These are free for everyone and will connect you to our fun Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone.

Enter your email address here, then check your inbox for download instructions. Print one, print them all, use them in whatever ways work best for your family!

If you are already subscribed to Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone, you should have received an email yesterday giving you instant access to this freebie. Look in your inbox for the subject: FREE Summer Writing Prompt

Free Printable Sight Word Cards (So Cute!)

Back in the day when I taught school (it feels like a lifetime ago) – one of my favorite parts of the day was working through a big stack of sight words cards with my 1st graders. I think it seems a little silly now that words on brightly colored cards were such a great learning tool, but it’s the simple things, right?

We made games, acted silly, did whatever we could to help those kids learn words that didn’t necessarily make sense phonetically (thank you, English language).

comesm

When I quit teaching in the classroom a few weeks before our oldest son was born (like I said, a lifetime ago), I took some of the supplies I’d bought or made myself. Among them were my sight word cards.

I had no idea then that I would homeschool my children. I just knew I loved and wanted those sight word cards.

Through the years, especially since we did decide to homeschool, I definitely got a lot of life out of those cards. I used them for all four boys as they were learning to read.

Ah, the good ol’ days of fun school games and brightly colored activities before these days of geometry and research papers took over. I’d say I miss those days, but I love this season in life just as much. But without a doubt, the books and activities aren’t nearly as cute.

I’m not even exactly sure what led me to this, but over the weekend I had a project in mind and went to find some graphics to help me complete it. Instead of finding what I needed, I found an adorable giraffe. I became smitten with the giraffe, and truly before I knew it, I started creating sight word cards.

Free Sight Word Cards

This is all good because many of you have children who are beginning readers and they need cute giraffe sight word cards. So please enjoy these fun cards to help your kids learn to make sense of the fact that s-a-i-d is pronounced sed. (There are just some facts that must be memorized. Sight word cards can help!)

Sign up here to get your free downloadable/printable sight word cards.

I’m excited to share that signing up for this freebie will connect you to our Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone. It’s free, of course. You can unsubscribe at any time, your info will never be shared or sold, and being on this list means that you’ll be the first to know of the other fun (yes, FUN!) educational tools we’re putting together!
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Quick!

Through May 30, 2017 only – you can get this set of Early Learning Digital Materials for 85% off. It is a fantastic set of books – including one I wrote (Learn Your Letters, Learn to Serve)!
There are hundreds more books to choose from in this year’s Build Your Bundle Digital Curriculum Sale, so look at this Pre-K package and all the others up through High School level too!

Early Learning Bundle - 85%!

 

Get it here before it’s gone!

What If Change Can Be a Good Thing?

A few weeks ago I did a phone interview for an upcoming online Christian Homeschool Summit. I wasn’t very sure of myself going into it and questioned why I had actually said “yes” to the invitation. Sure I’ve been homeschooling for over 14 years. But all that’s really taught me is that I have a lot to learn. Share my knowledge with others? What knowledge??

Therefore, I decided I needed to pray before starting this interview (because I hear that works sometimes). I asked God to let the Spirit work and for my words to be from Him.

What happened is that one of the questions I answered ended up being exactly what I needed to hear – and I realized immediately that the Spirit was indeed at work. After all, I was sharing words of truth that I had not clearly recognized before. It was this:

Always be open to change. Just because it has worked well for your family in the past doesn’t mean it will continue to work well now. Seasons change. Family needs change. Kids get older. Commitments and ministries and obligations and activities evolve through the years. If something that has been working for you suddenly is not working – that doesn’t necessarily mean you are doing something wrong. It might simply mean that it’s time to switch things up to make them work differently. To make them work better.

I very much needed to hear those words. It’s crazy how that prayer thing works.

What if change can be a good thing?

I’ve needed to embrace this truth as our kids have gotten older. My current parenting and teaching teenagers while working from home full time stage is different from my parenting and teaching little boys stage. Sometimes it feels harder. But what if it isn’t? What if it means that I’m trying to work with a system that used to work but no longer works? What if it means I need to make some adjustments?

Change can be hard. But what if some of the adjustments are slight and not even as hard as I think they’ll be?

And what if change doesn’t have to be hard? What if change is good? What if change brings peace?

If we are truly listening to the Spirit and letting God guide us with His perfect wisdom, what do we even have to fear? Anxiety and peace cannot coexist. Do we trust God or are we relying on self?

I love God so much. I love how gentle He is about drawing me back every time I slip back into worry and anxiety mode. I get so frustrated with myself because “I’ve done it again.” But God. He’s not even shaking His head at me. He’s just gently loving me as I once again surrender to seek Him better and to find confidence in His guidance.

I’m taking time this summer to pray and seek God’s guidance toward any changes I need to make in how I manage my time and energy. After all, I hear that prayer thing works sometimes.

Something fun for you

Not that caterpillars aren’t adorable (and fuzzy and squishy) and a wonderful part of God’s creation, but my preference is to enjoy these creatures once they’ve made their transformation into a butterfly. What if?? What if change for you and me can be like that? What if we’re fine(ish) as we are, but God has more for us? What if He wants to transform us, leading us through changes that make our lives into something more beautiful?

Cheesy illustration? Sure. But I like butterflies and the transformation they represent. I like how butterflies prove that change can be good!

Free printable butterfly coloring pages

I recently discovered that I enjoy Grown-Up Coloring Pages. I created these butterfly-themed pages, complete with Scripture Truth about how we can completely trust God through any changes and transformations He walks us through.

Help yourself! Consider these scriptures and the truth they represent about how we can and should trust our loving Father.

Download the Butterfly Truth Coloring Pages here

Leave a comment to share about a time you experienced a good change.

Bread, Recipe Card Craft, Service Ideas, and More – All Less Than $1.00

I’ve got more “make it for less than $1.00″ ideas for you today! If you missed yesterday’s list of ideas, go check them out. It’s fun sharing all these super inexpensive ideas with you this week!

$1.00 or Less Recipes, Crafts, Gift Ideas, and more!

First, the simplest craft idea ever:

Remember when I posted about how to make these cute Recipe Card Holders? These are incredibly fun and cute and EASY. The cost for each is about 20¢. Read the details here, and read other ideas for how to use these. (They’re not just great for holding recipes!)

recipe card holder6

Want to teach your kids to cook this summer?

The Kids Cook Real Food eCourse will be open next week. But for this week? Sign them up for the go check them out Malachi (our youngest) learned so much from these (and the entire course). Seeing as $FREE$ is much less than even $1.00, go check them out.

Homemade 100% Whole Grain Bread for a Buck

You can’t buy a loaf of 100% Whole Grain bread for $1.00 – or at least I sure can’t. You also can’t beat homemade bread. This Stir-and-Pour Bread recipe is just about as easy as it gets because you don’t even have to knead it. You can make this so quickly!

stir and pour bread loaf 5

Bread Mix in a Jar – Make it for a Gift!

You can either bake some of the Stir-and-Pour Bread to share with someone, or you can follow these directions to make the mix-in-a-jar to give as a gift. Either way, what a fun way to love on someone! You can also use the free printable gift tags (found on this page) to go with your jar.

Stir-and-Pour Bread Mix Gift Jar with Free Printable Gift Tags

More fun bread variations – all for $1.00

Use the basic Stir-and-Pour Bread recipe to make these too:

Watch for more “less than $1.00″ ideas coming up tomorrow!

This Week at Heavenly Homemakers: What You Can Cook, Read, Serve, and Craft for a Dollar or Less

Over the weekend I had a fun idea to highlight some of my fun money saving ideas for you. So this week, I’ll be posting:

  • Meals you can serve your family for a $1.00 or less per plate
  • Crafts you can make with your kids for $1.00 or less
  • Ways you can serve/bless others for $1.00 or less
  • Random $1.00 or less tips
  • Freebies

It’s going to be kind of hodge-podge because I’m trying to keep you on your toes. Or maybe I’m just unorganized. (Hey, I’m working on it.)

$1.00 or Less Recipes, Crafts, Gift Ideas, and more!

First a fun craft and service idea for around a dollar or less

You all know I’m not the craftiest gal among us. But I can cut and glue, so there’s that. I had fun making these fun Owl Gift Sacks a couple years ago. You’ll find the free printables for this project here. Print ’em off, cut, glue, and fill the sacks with a treat to share. Get your kids involved. Have fun!

Owl Gift Sacks Free Printable

Now how about a recipe?

It’s the perfect time of year to put Garden Veggie Chicken Skillet on your menu frequently. This is a one-dish meal. It uses many vegetables, you can make it to your family’s liking, and it doesn’t cost much to make. I’ve calculated that it costs $1.00 or less per plate!

Garden Veggie Chicken Skillet 2

Want more inexpensive recipes?

You’ll get this eBooklet for free when you sign up to be a part of the Homemaker’s Savings Club. That’s the newsletter where I keep you up to date on all the best homemaking deals I find!

Top 10 Money Saving Recipes cover

Stay tuned all week for many more fun $1.00 or less ideas!

Subscribe here to make it easy to keep up!

The running list:

I’ll continue to update this post all week with the newest links to $1.00 or less ideas shared!

~ Tuesday: Bread, Recipe Card Craft, Service Ideas, and More

~ Wednesday: All Chocolate, All the Time

Burning Barns, Talking Spiders, and Loving Literature With the Kids

I’ve loved the Charlotte’s Web classic book since I was a little girl. I wanted to get my own baby pig and find a cool spider in my own barn. (I also wanted a pet monkey, thanks to Curious George.)

As it turns out, I actually did have pigs, which turned out to be – something else. But we’ll stop there. I mean, should we even talk about what happened with our barn? (Really. It’s fine. I’m over it.)

And that's where the barn was...

Just last week my brother took his kids to the property where he and I grew up.
My sis-in-law later posted this pic to Facebook and tagged me with the caption,
“And that’s where the barn was…”
I can’t stop laughing at this.

(What? You don’t know my barn story? Go read this.)

Seeing as my pigs were not cute, nor did they talk, and the actual spiders in our barn (may it rest in peace) creeped me out – I lived vicariously through Fern, Wilbur, and Charlotte. Did you, too? Did you love this book?

Do you still love this book?!!

Ahhh, Charlotte’s Web

I have read this book to my kids several times through the years. Last summer, I picked it up again to read to Malachi. He saw the cover – with a girl and a pig on it – and he was like, “Meh. I don’t think I’m going to like this book.” I told him to give it a try with me and see if he didn’t change his mind. I’m pretty sure I had him hooked about three sentences in.

Main point of this post: Read with your kids, enjoy books with your kids, love experiencing life through books with your kids. But now back to Charlotte’s Web

wilbur and charlotte

We had so much fun reading this book together that it wasn’t long before we started creating projects. Then games. Then snacks. Then I thought of some learning activities he could do as we read. (There are some great vocab words in there. Malachi uses the greeting, “Salutations!” regularly now just because he loves the word, thank you, Charlotte.)

Activities and projects and games and “recipes” and crafts turned into 43-pages of family fun and learning. We decided to put it all together in a book and share it with you. This is THE BEST way to make learning fun.

Charlotte's Web coversm

Since creating this book was quite a labor intensive project – and turned into 43 pages worth of educational fun – I can’t give this to everyone for a $0.00 price-tag like I’ve been able to do with several of the learning packets I’ve created the past few months. (I’ve got more of those freebies in the works, by the way.) Instead, we came up with a better idea, in which you and I both win!

Peek Into Charlottes Web

 

Charlotte’s Web ~ Learning Through Literature
$7.95

Charlotte's Web ~ Learning Through Literature
43 pages of learning activities, games, crafts, recipes, and fun! Use this eBook to encourage creativity and learning while you read Charlotte's Web with your family.
Price: $7.95
Quantity:  

P.S. I’ve started getting requests for more learning packs like this Charlotte’s Web packet. I’d love hearing your literature suggestions! In the works so far: Boxcar Children; James and the Giant Peach; Indian in the Cupboard; Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Your ideas?

Arbor Day ~ Learning About Trees FREE Activity Packets

Nebraska is famous for….corn? Wind? Weird weather? Husker football? All of the above. You’ll find that many of us wear red in support of our Huskers’ teams. What can we say? We just don’t have much else in this state to brag about.

Just yesterday I found Husker shirts on clearance at the store and grabbed one for myself. I’m wearing it today, so since we’re talking about my fabulous state I will bless you with this awkward and distorted selfie so you can see my new Nebraska shirt.

nebraska shirt

Here’s what you may not know about Nebraska: It is the home of Arbor Day

Yep – take that all you states and countries with beaches, mountains, oceans, and huge cities. We have trees.

(This might be why we get so excited about our Husker shirts.)

It’s actually kind of neat that a guy moved here when Nebraska was barely a state, saw that it was mostly prairie, and decided to plant thousands of trees. He spend much of his life working to educate people about the importance of trees and here we are over a hundred years later celebrating a day that honors this wonderful resource.

Just in case trees and Arbor Day were somehow slipping your mind this year – I am happy to inform you that Arbor Day 2016 is April 29. (Only 16 days to get ready!! I’m here to help.)

Arbor Day April 29, 2016

For years we’ve been intending to take our family on a field trip to Nebraska City, the home of Arbor Day. This year we’re making it happen. In preparation, I created some activities for Malachi to work through so that he would be more aware of the importance of trees, the variety of trees, and the beauty of trees.

Arbor Day Study About Trees K-5 Free Activity Packet2

I’m making this activity packet available to all of you, too. Plus I made one for your Pre-K kids to enjoy!

Arbor Day Tree Study Free Activity Packet PreK2

Click here to sign up and grab the “Learning About Trees” freebies!

 I’m excited to share that signing up for these freebies will connect you to our new Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone. It’s free, of course. You can unsubscribe at any time, your info will never be shared or sold, and being on this list means that you’ll be the first to know of the other fun (yes, FUN!) educational tools we’re putting together!

P.S. If you are already subscribed to Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone, you should have received an email yesterday giving you instant access to this freebie. Look in your inbox for the subject: FREE Arbor Day “Learning About Trees” Activity Packets!