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Choose the Sprite gift tags

 

I like the way my “Choose the Rite” logo tag turned out so I’m sharing it here. It’s meant to be attached to a bottle or can of Sprite! I am using one that is black and white printed on yellow card stock (clean and cheap, just the way I like it).

There’s a full size version PDF below (if you want the jpeg, just right click on the image above and save it, sweetie). There’s also a full page version with nine of these images per page that you could easily cut into nine separate tags. Easy.

Are you into the full color? It’s available below.

We give a small token gift to our Primary kids on their birthday! In 2014 we did pencils and silicone CTR rings. Last year we did these fun whack-a-pack self inflating balloons. This year every kid is getting a vinyl CTR sticker in one form or another. I ordered them from Heather at JDM Designs. They were inexpensive (about $25 for 100 vinyl stickers). Email her for more info: heather@myjdmdesigns.com.

My original idea was to give everyone a block with the CTR sticker on it. Something decorative you could put by your bedside or at your desk–something that would just show up around the house and remind kids to choose the right. But when my 11-year-old saw the vinyl sticker he wanted to stick it on his phone, on his mirror, on his notebook. Basically he was way more interested in the vinyl sticker and way less interested in the block. So I quickly switched gears and decided to give the Senior Primary the vinyl sticker itself… with a small can of Sprite, just to make it fun.

And that’s why I have “Remember to Choose the …rite” gift tags 🙂

 

2016 Cub Scout Updates

Cub Scouts just revamped their whole program. Fun!

Below you’ll find updated tracking sheets as well as a “Welcome to Cubs” booklet. It’s designed specifically for LDS Cub Scout packs, so there is no Tiger tracking and there is Religious Knot and LDS Faith in God info too. If you’re interested in a one-page Faith in God printable, I created one that is available here.

The biggest difference is that there are 3 fewer adventures required during the Webelos/Arrow of Light year, but they also shifted and reorganized almost all of the other requirements for every adventure in all three dens. Why not? The details are here and the FAQ’s are here.

Just to be clear, though, the ENTIRE program is now different. For example, check out Call of the Wild for Wolves, old compared to new. You can’t say to your den “Complete Requirement 6 in Call of the Wild.” They are completely different with this revamp. I would say about 80% of the requirements and advancements have been reshuffled and changed. I don’t think the changes will feel very different to the boys–the activities they do at den meetings will feel about the same. But the organization and tracking is VASTLY different. All the printed materials are obsolete. This is not a minor shift. Heads up.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-5-13-27-pm

Here’s the one-page update. This one page could follow one (LDS) child through his whole Cub Scout career. Assuming that the Cub Scouts don’t revamp the entire program again in one year. There’s also some space for various electives at the bottom. Click to get the printable below.

2016-individual-cub-tracking

Then I’ve got one sheet for each pack: the Wolf and Bear dens have three tracking boxes per page. The Webelos/Arrow of Light pack has two per page. These are better suited for use with a whole den. You could fit 2-3 boys per page.

I like the simple pamphlet I put together for our pack. It explains Cubs in very broad strokes. It’s updated with the new details. It’s designed to be printed in color, two-sided, and then folded in half. I like to use this at our Baptism Preview.

2016-welcome-to-cubs

welcome-to-cubs-interior

Good luck!

 

My Gospel Standards printable posters

my-gospel-standards-printable-postersI pulled the images and format from the My Gospel Standards printables into three sizes of black and white posters. The first one is just standard letter size–easy to print and photocopy. The other sizes should all be inexpensive and easy to print at your copy shop–we’ll be using the black and white on a bulletin board in my ward!

The 24×36 size should be printed as an “engineering print” and should be about $4.

My Gospel Standards Full Color Printables

In 2017 the worldwide Primary theme is “Choose the Right.” I love it! The CTR shield is so iconic and we’ll be using it in many ways all year long.

We’ll also be using My Gospel Standards as the framework to discuss how to choose the right, month by month. If you aren’t in Primary, you may not be familiar with these! They are part of the Faith in God program, a goal setting program for Senior Primary. They are sort of like For the Strength of Youth but simplified for a younger crowd. We’ll use these 13 mini-subjects as the theme for bishopric visits and more during the year. I was also delighted to hear that The Friend will be offering a CTR Challenge every month in 2017 that correlates with the My Gospel Standards subjects.

my-gospel-standards-free-full-color-printables

I’m sharing this all to explain that our Primary is going to be spending time with each of these 13 gospel standards next year. Because of that I wanted to make them easy to understand for children as young as the Sunbeams! So I paired up each standard with a simple, easy to understand icon, as you can see above.

The first printable is a sort of mini poster and is available below in full color in tabloid (11×17) size.

I also made each of these standards available as individual letter size, full color printables, like the one you see below. You can print these at home on a color printer if you want. Printing all 13 would make an easy bulletin board and would only cost about $7.

gospel-standards-follow-heavenly-fathers-planThere are 13 standards, plus a couple of extras below. First a kind of cover page:

gospel-standards-front-pageAnd the I am a Child of God postscript:
gospel-standards-i-am-a-child-of-god

I also made an easier to print poster–you can print it on two sheets of regular, letter-size paper if you don’t have easy access to a print shop that can print 11×17 sizes.

gospel-standard-easy-to-print-poster gospel-standards-easy-print-poster-2

So with these four extras plus the 13 gospel standards, there are a total of 17 full color pages available in this Gospel Standards packet.

I think this is all I will offer of the full color variety, but over the next week or so I’ll post these icons and formats in an easy to photocopy black and white version. I also have a poster size (engineering print) in the works… stay tuned!

2016 Service Advent

2016-advent

About five years ago I put together this super simple Service advent for my family and posted it on my personal family blog. I still really like it. It is so simple and every single activity is inexpensive (or free) and quick. Because at the beginning of December I have lots of energy for extra festivities. But by the end I am just hanging on, getting the essentials finished up.

This calendar is perfect for busy families because it is so simple. I thought carefully about each day’s service activity: I think each one can be completed by a child (about 8+) with very little help from an adult. More importantly, I think the small but meaningful service activities could really add to the spirit of peace and giving that we are all striving for at Christmas time.

It would be perfect for a Primary class, Family Home Evening, and even useful with the Young Women or Young Men.

Free Priesthood Preview printables

One of the first projects I shared on The Mormon Home was our ward Priesthood Preview–about two years ago! Those printables were overdue for an update and I really like the new look I’m sharing here today. Feel free to use for your ward, print, and share!

priesthood-preview-packet-free

The main look is the same across the printable set and there are several options. First the invitation. An email or Evite works well, but I am always a fan of printing something on paper to be sure everyone has the relevant information. There are two options. One is four per page, a sort of post card, made to copy front to back. You fill in the Date, Time, and Location with a pen. Old school!

pp-postcard

The second is also mean to be copied front to back and then cut and folded in half. More like a standard invitation.

At the Priesthood Preview, I usually make the agenda or “program” that is handed out at the door. I made a super simple letter head style see that you can fill in with your own agenda. I included ours below so you can see how we run our Priesthood Preview. The PDF you can download is blank (like on the right side) except for the top black letterhead section.

priesthood-preview-programs

I like to give this handout to the boys. These are five “To Do” items that are found in the Faith in God booklet. They are meant to be completed in preparation for priesthood ordination. These handouts are two per page, meant to be cut in half. We also give the boys a For the Strength of Youth pamphlet, a True to the Faith booklet, a Duty to God booklet and sometimes a Preach My Gospel mini-book.

Preisthood Preview Handout

Finally, I added something new! A bunch of quotes and scriptures about the Aaronic Priesthood with the same “look.” They would make a great backdrop behind the refreshment table or at the front of the room. You could hang them from a string, banner style. There are 6 that are standard letter size and four that are tabloid (11×17). You’ll probably need to get the 11×17 ones printed at the copy shop. I think they would look great in a sort of puzzle together.

pp-printable-pdf

 

 

Feast Upon the Words of Christ

This year I had one single goal for our Primary: more scripture study. To help the Primary kids and their families finish strong, I put together a new, simple reading guide that I hope will encourage them all to read through the end of the year!

Just for context, we’ve been working on scripture study for all of 2016. We started off with the Feast Upon the Words business cards, re-emphasized this program in June with new bookmarks, and celebrated memorizing the books of scripture in August. Additionally, each child was able to redeem their business cards for some kind of treat throughout the year: for every 30 days of reading they earned a treat. These have been varied, starting with buttons, replaced by squishy stress toys (a favorite) and now we’re using food-themed erasers.

feast-place-setting

But we’re all getting pretty tired and I think we need one final push to get us through the end of the year. I also think that the one focus that has been missing with the earlier “Feast” scripture program was the latter part of the phrase “upon the words of Christ.” So for the final months of the year, I made a reading chart with 30 scripture passages related to Christ, if not actual words that He said. I’m hoping our families will read one passage per day, mark off the circle and then return the completed page for a treat, as per our earlier 30-day agreement.

feast-4per-copy

In an unusual move, I’m printing these in full color. I almost always just do black and white because it is so much less expensive to photocopy. But I want this last scripture study push to have some extra sparkle. So I’m paying extra for full color. There is one available in a full page size and then some that are four-per-page. I’ll probably print about a dozen full page versions for parents and then give a quarter page one to each child. I’ll be printing these on white card stock.

Happy Feasting, friends!

2017 One Page Planning Calendars

I am neck deep in planning for our Primary in 2017! I’m very excited. I really love these children and I’m looking forward to the theme next year.

Microsoft Word - 2017 Primary Planning Calendar.docx

Last year I put together these one-page calendars to help with planning. It is really helpful for me to see the whole year all at once! I thought I would share them. I like to have the theme and scripture for the month as well as a few basic dates (bank holidays and General Conference–I add our stake conference dates too).  It’s available below.

Microsoft Word - 2017 Generic Planning Calendar.docx

If you’d like a much more general calendar, with bank dates but no Primary details, it’s also available below. I’m handing this over to our Cubs as they begin planning for their year. It would be great for Activity Days leaders as well.

Fall 2016 General Conference Coloring Page

kids-page-fall-conf-2016I like to print a one page conference coloring sheet for my Primary kids. I have mixed feelings about packets, but I think a one-page take home sheet works well as a reminder for families to engage with conference. This year, I put together a new one that correlates with the Primary “I know the Scriptures are True!” theme. I chose the King Benjamin image for the front because of the parallels between his address to the people and our current, latter-day conference 🙂

The activities and coloring centers around The Book of Mormon, all pulled from the new coloring book available online.
fall-conf-coloring-page-interiorIt’s designed printed on both sides of normal paper and then folded in half (a sort of booklet). The liahona and title of liberty both cross the fold line because I think it looks cool!

Book Review: Our Heavenly Family, Our Earthly Families

Go Buy This Book!

My Mormonism runs deep in my bones: it is the faith of my fathers. My life’s work–my children–is bearing the fruit of this faith. Undeniably one of the more unique aspects of my religion is the doctrine of family. A child of divorced parents, a great-great-great-grandchild of polygamists and pioneers: my understanding of family has been subject to a mature interpretation of Mormonism itself. Capturing the clarity of our doctrine on family while simultaneously allowing room for the complexity of true family life is this lovely book by McArthur Krishna and Bethany Brady Spalding, the authors of Girls Who Choose God.

Families Counsel Together

 

The book is not a narrative story: it’s organized around fifteen key ideas that would easily lend themselves to lessons for Family Home Evening, Primary Sharing Time or Visiting Teaching. Short paragraphs support these key ideas, reinforced by quotes from leaders. Similar to their earlier books, each key idea also includes questions that provoke discussion and thought. For example, in the section titled “Families Creat and Celebrate,” the questions include: How do you create with your family? What is one of your favorite family traditions? And, what tradition would you like to start? The quote is from Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Our birthright… is to seek and experience eternal happiness. One of the ways we find this is by creating things….Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before–colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter.”

Families Work and Play

It’s hard to over exaggerate how lovely the illustrations are, all by Caitlin Connolly. Each one is imbued with rich symbolism and imagery that complements the key idea at hand. The art is a stark departure from much recent work for LDS children. It is so much more brave and opinionated. It reminds me of the kind of art work in My Turn on Earth: memorable, evocative and bold. Highly stylized, but purposeful. I love it.

Our Heavenly Family, Our Earthly Families is exactly the kind of book I am happy to support in every way and will treasure in my home for years to come. Pick up a copy online or at your local church bookstore.

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