350days since
    May 2nd "We love Homeschooling Day" (always the first Thursday in May)

    Holiday--St. Patrick's Day

    St. Patrick's Day Crafts
    "Crafting" is a well-used verb in our home. St.Patrick's Day gives us a great opportunity to bring out the creative materials.

    Leprechaun beards and shamrock crowns for St. Pat's Day

    I found these ideas on Pinterest!
    Check out ELFamily Academy's Pins

    Rainbow Sticks
        Fruit in all colors of the rainbow. For example:
            Red: Strawberries, Cherries
            Orange: Mandarin Oranges, Cantaloupe
            Yellow: Pineapple
            Green: Kiwi, Green Grapes
            Blue: Blueberries
            Violet: Grapes, Plums
        Long Party Picks

    Choose your favorite fruit to make Leprechaun Rainbow Snacks
    This is a great way to "eat the rainbow" today!


    We had lots of fruit left over from the Rainbow Sticks. So..we made a plate full of rainbow!
    Rainbow Plates
        The same fruit used for the Rainbow Sticks

    This is a great way to eat your rainbow today!

    1) arrange the fruit in a beautiful rainbow and snack on it throughout the day!

    I love nutritious snacks

    Shamrock Crowns
        Paper Plate
        Shamrock template
        Anything extra to decorate or color it

    1) Fold the paper plate in half. Trace the template (alter it as you wish).
    Trace the shamrock on the fold

    2) Cut around the template. DO NOT cut the bottom the shamrock. Stop cutting at the outer ridged edge of the plate.

    3) Fold up the shamrock at the base. Look at the picture of the girls wearing their crowns to see an example of how to fold it upward.

    4) Now for the part that circles the head: Cut along the ridged edge of the plate (cut 2" in for a small head, cut 1/2" in for a larger head)

    5) Decorate and wear!

    Use the template to trace a half shamrock onto the plate

    Leaving it folded, cut out the shamrock. Do NOT cut the bottom of the stem


    Shamrock Fruit Cookies

        Snickerdoodle cookie recipe
        Cream cheese "frosting" (recipe below)
        Assorted fruit cut into bite-sized pieces

    Dont use full size cookie balls--otherwise the cookies will be huge!
    1) Make the Snickerdoodle recipe as directed. Add drops of green food coloring during the final mixing. Roll into small balls--we used a small cookie/ice cream scoop AND cut those balls in half and rolled them in sugar.

    2) Place the balls in a shamrock shape on the cookie sheet. Lightly "squish" them with a flat glass--so they begin to meld together.
    Make shamrock shapes (and even some with four leaves) and lightly flatten 'em

    3) Bake them according to the recipe you chose.

    If you are preparing these for a party that's not until the next day--DON"T add the topping until a couple hours before (otherwise the cookies will get mushy). However, if they are for today, add the topping after the cookies have completely cooled.

    4) Cream Cheese "Frosting"
        3 ounces cream cheese (I use Neufchatel), room temperature
        1/2 cup powdered sugar
        1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

        Thoroughly whip together all ingredients.
        Spread (or pipe) onto the top of the cookie

    Add fresh fruit if you are serving the cookies that day
    5) Add bite-sized fruit on top of the frosting. We use mandarin oranges, sliced strawberries, and blueberries. Serve!

    Refrigerate leftovers (they become soft if not eaten soon)

    There they are--delicious treats to enjoy!

    Snickerdoole Shamrock Fruit Cookies

    Leprechaun Beard
        Heavy paper or cardboard (we used a cereal box)
        Orange construction paper--3 pages
        Long pencil (to curl the construction paper)
        2 long rubber bands (one for each ear)

    a cereal box makes a great beard foundation

    1) A cereal box provides a nice foundation for the beard. Slightly bend it (without creasing it) and cut a triangle shape for the mouth opening.

    Make a glue line at the bottom. Stick on the orange curls

    2) Begin at the bottom with a line of glue. Cut construction paper into strips. Curl the strips around a pencil. Glue them in a row at the bottom.

    Work your way up the beard. Adding glue lines as you go

    3) Continue working your way up until you get to the very top.

    4) Staple rubber bands on each top corner. Wrap rubber bands around ears.
    Staple a rubber band at each top corner. Wrap a rubber band around each each


    Leprechaun Popcorn
    This treat is always a hit!

    Lightly Coated Leprechaun Popcorn
    1 cup butter

    ½ cup sugar

    1 (3-ounce) box flavored gelatin—for St.Patrick's Day, we used lime

    3 tablespoons water

    1 tablespoon light corn syrup

    10-15 cups of popcorn (If you want your popcorn more coated, use fewer cups)


    Combine first 5 ingredients in a heavy 2-quart saucepan; bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.

    Cook stirring occasionally, until a candy thermometer reads 255º. Note: I’ve burned the gelatin because my heat was too high. Keep a close eye on it. Also, sometimes I only go until 250º and that is fine too.

    Place popcorn in a large bowl; pour hot mixture over popcorn, and stir until thoroughly coated. Spoon into a large roaster or baking pan. Note: I divide the popcorn into 2 bowls and dump half the mixture in one and stir. Then I dump it over the other and stir. This makes it easier to handle

    Dump on two over-sized jellyroll pans.

    Bake at 300º for 10-15 minutes (until crunchy), stirring twice. Transfer to lightly greased aluminum foil. Let cool and break into bit size pieces. Note: forget the greased foil; I pour mine right out on the Silestone counter and let it cool. It’s never stuck or burned.