Friday, January 20, 2017

FREE Pray Always Printable

Friends, I'm feeling discouraged today.

It seems like there is so much hate in the world.  More than I ever remember witnessing.  I look at my beautiful children and pray that they feel safe and loved. That they will not face hatred because of their races (though I know that they will).  I pray that my anxious heart will be at peace and that I will be able to draw on the Lord for strength.

In an attempt to make the world just a little bit brighter today, I want to share this print with you.  It's hand-lettered and I hope it serves as a reminder of the ultimate source of peace and that our prayers helps us to draw closer to Him.

To download the print, click ADD TO CART below. You'll receive a zip file with both a pdf and a high quality jpeg of the print.  That way you can print it however you like.  Enjoy!  As always, I'd love to see how you use my work in your home.  Please tag me on Instagram @alivelyhope so I can see what you're up to.

Add to Cart
Read More »

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Swirly Snowman Free Embroidery Pattern

I received a request from a sweet customer who purchased both my swirly heart pattern and my swirly pumpkin pattern from my Etsy shop.  She loved the style of both patterns and was hoping I could design a snowman version. I loved the suggestion, but with the busy-ness of my life right now it took me a while to find the time to draw it up and get the pattern ready.  It's finally here and ready to go and I'm delighted to be able to share it with you today for FREE!

A little bit about my method:

To transfer my embroidery patterns, I use a light box (similar to this one, except mine was made from scratch by my talented and very handy husband) and a water soluble tracing pen to trace the pattern onto fabric.  I have never tried it myself, but I know a lot of people like to use transfer paper and then iron the pattern onto the fabric instead of needing to trace all those lines.  I usually use DMC embroidery floss.

This pattern is sized to fit an 8 inch hoop. Of course, you're welcome to resize the pattern and stitch it larger or smaller, if you so desire.

To download the free pattern, just click ADD TO CART below.  I'd love to see what you create! Tag me on Instagram so I can see your work.  

Add to Cart

 I love suggestions like this! It's so fun to hear from you and know what you'd like to see from me.  So, what else would you like me to make?

Read More »

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Winter Term Morning Time Plans

Over the past couple of days we've been absolutely slammed by a huge snowstorm. The view above is what it currently looks like out our back door.  There are probably 14 inches of snow on our table out there, and we've got drifts multiple feet high around every walkway and on either side of the driveway.

We've been snowed in for the past couple of days, and it's been so nice to have some extra time to read, play in the snow and work on getting the house back in order after a busy holiday season.

We're also back in the swing of official schooling this week and started a new term on Tuesday.  Here's what we're covering in Morning Time this term:

Memory Work

Hymn: The Lord is my Light
Scripture verses: The Beatitudes
Poems: My Shadow by Robert Louis Stevenson (Ethan, 8)
           Come In by Robert Frost (Ellie, 12)
           Stopping by Woods On a Snowy Evening (me)

Ethan is memorizing the Scout Oath and the Scout Law for Cub Scouts  as well as the Articles of Faith and Ellie is working on the Young Women theme.

Read Alouds

We're finishing up The Door in the Wall this week and then we'll move on to Robin Hood and His Merry Outlaws.  We're also working our way through the picture books on our Medieval History reading list.  I'm really excited to get to Heroines: Great Women through the Ages in the next couple of weeks.

We're also slowly working our way through the Book Trails series that my parents gave us for Christmas. It was the most meaningful gift I received this Christmas. My great-grandma (and our little Edith's namesake) had a set that I poured over as a child. My parents tracked down a full set for our family and for each of my sisters. I love that I get to share these beautiful stories and illustrations with my children.

Additional Resources

We're loving the Squilt Baroque Era music appreciation curriculum.  This is perfect for me! It's easy, quick and interesting.  Just the right about of information to expose my kids to some beautiful music without stressing me out or loading us down with too much information to plod through.

Draw Europe is something my big kids look forward to every day.  It's a simple, fun introduction to European geography.  So fun!  (And, again, easy for Mama!)  

What's happening in your homeschool?

Read More »

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

2017 LDS Primary Music Flipcharts

I am happy once again to be able to share flip charts for the LDS Primary Program songs this year.

I use these to introduce the songs to the kids in my primary and to help them remember the words for the first few weeks after we learn a new song.  They work well because they have all the words for the older kids who can read and pictures for those who can't. The graphics I drew are simple and black and white. (Ink is pricey!) You can color these flipcharts yourself if you want, or leave them black and white. I've used them both ways and they work well either way.

To download the whole set of flipcharts for free, just click ADD to CART below.

The download includes:

As A Child of God
I'm Trying to be Like Jesus
When I am Baptized
Stand for the Right
Choose the Right
I'll Walk With You 

I really enjoy creating these pages, but as you can imagine, drawing and designing them takes me many, many hours. I love to be able to share them for free with those who are in need, and I ask that if you are able please donate a small amount to help me continue to be able to provide resources like this.

If you'd like to pay a little bit for my time, click ADD TO CART.  You'll then be directed to a page where you can enter in the amount you'd like to pay.  I hope that if you find these helpful, and if you use them in your Primary, you'll support my work. :)

You can also find the entire master list of all the flipcharts I've created here.

Add to Cart

Happy Singing!
Read More »

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Cross Stitch Initials Ornaments

One of my favorite traditions at Christmas time is to make an ornament for each of my children.  Originally we purchased ornaments each year, but over the last couple of years I've switched to giving them handmade ornaments, and I don't think I'll ever go back.  I love the idea of these little bits of love moving on with my children when they move out and establish homes of their own.

This year I decided to make cross stitch initials.

Side note: Yes, as it happens, all of our children's names start with E. We did not plan this, and if you're familiar with our adoption story you'll know that it came about completely unprovoked.  The short version is that we named our firstborn (biological) Ellie.  After struggling with infertility and becoming a foster family, we were blessed to adopt Ethan as an infant. When we adopted our second boy as a newborn we felt like he couldn't be the only black kid in our family and not have a name that started with an E like his siblings, so we named him Elijah. We thought our family was done growing at that point, but when our surprise baby came along, we decided to keep up with the E pattern and named her Edith after my great-grandma who had a huge influence on my life.  So that's why I've made 4 ornaments with Es on them. :)

It's a simple project with a beautiful effect.


Print out of letter to correct size (for tracing) {optional}
Yarn for hanging


First, cut the cross stitch fabric to size.   

Trace (or freehand) the initial of your loved one onto the fabric, so it's centered in the hoop.

Start stitching around the initial, leaving the letter blank.  I used half cross stitches both because I had so many ornaments to make and because I liked the look it created.  You can do arrows and chevrons and other patterns with half stitches like I did on a couple of the ornaments, or just have every stitch face the same direction like I did with the other two.

Keep stitching until the hoop is filled.

Paint a harmonious color around the outside ring of the embroidery hoop, or leave it plain.  Which ever you prefer or have time for :).

Rinse off the water soluble marker and let the cross stitch dry.

Return stitching to the hoop.

Tie yarn or twine or string around the clasp of the hoop and you're done!
Read More »