Every Day is Earth Day πŸŒŽ

Crafts & DIY, Motherhood, Uncategorized

I hope you had a Happy Earth Month!

In our family, we celebrate the Earth every day, but for national Earth Day (& month) we are going to make sure to celebrate a little extra!

We wore our flower headbands to be extra festive on Earth Day on April 22.Β 

Not Our Trash, but it IS Our Earth

One of our very favorite outdoor family activities is plogging: picking up litter while jogging. Since my kids are pretty little, we mostly just walk briskly rather than jog, but it’s still exercise for our bodies and it’s still cleaning up our Earth.

We tied a trash bag to our stroller. The park is on the other side of the train, so all of the trash collected at this point was from our walk from our home to the park alone.

I want my children to know that it’s up to them to change the world. They cannot wait for someone else to do it for them. It is our duty to leave the Earth a better place than we found it.

By the end of our walk, we had filled our entire bag.

We ended up going back out the next morning with Niko + the older girls as well. We walked back to the park, a different way, and picked up more litter. When we got there, there was actually a Community Park Clean Up going on which was really cool! They were handing out free gloves and trash bags for people to volunteer to clean up the park. I was unaware that our park offered that, but I love it!

Dirt Dessert

We made “Dirt cake” which we decided to rename “Dirt Dessert” instead since it wasn’t exactly a cake.

It was really yummy and everyone gobbled it up! This is definitely a dessert that I will be remaking with different themes throughout the year!

We talked about the Earth & why worms are good for it. In case you didn’t know, worms are decomposers!

Drive Less, Walk More

This month our weather has really started warming up, so we have began walking to the bus stop to pick up Ella & Mia and then walking home. We bring a trash bag with us each time we walk.

Nature Art

Mia drew a face on a piece of cardboard we cut from a box. Then we poked lots of holes where we wanted her hair to be.

We walked around the beautiful flower garden at Ault Park looking for flowers to use as our hair. We tried to use only flowers that had already fallen, or weeds that we thought they wouldn’t mind us picking for them.

Even though the playground distracted the kids & we didn’t end up filling all of our holes, I still think that it turned out really cute.

5 Easy Ways You Can Be More Eco Friendly!

1. Stop using plastic bags. Instead, opt for reusable insulated tote bags & mesh produce bags. It makes carrying groceries in from the car WAY easier too!

2. Use a refillable cleaning solution (like Thieves Household Cleaner). Thieves is non-toxic, plant-based, & can replace literally EVERY single cleaning product you currently own. (You can order Thieves HERE).

3. Shop at a second-hand store first before buying new. Chances are, a second-hand store will have what you are looking for at only a fraction of the price.

4. Utilize your local library. Libraries go WAY beyond just books. There are so many activities and classes that they offer, as well as information on local resources. It is a great place to bring children as well (just kindly remind them to use their inside voices.)

5. Use what you have before buying more. This goes for food, hygiene or household products, decor items, anything & everything. It helps cut down on waste & clutter as well.

🌍 I hope you had a good Earth Month. What did you do to celebrate the Earth this month?

I can’t believe tomorrow it will be May! Mothers Day is coming up as well as Moses FIRST BIRTHDAY!! How the heck has it already been a year?? Then after that it will be SUMMER BREAK β˜€οΈ! So many exciting things coming up! Don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss out on any of it!

Have a beautiful rest of your weekend 🧑

Ukrainian Pysanky πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¦πŸ₯šπŸ£

Crafts & DIY, Motherhood, Uncategorized

Ella came home from school last Friday with a new school project: Economics Market.

All of her classmates will be opening their own “shops” at their desk where they will be selling a paper item that they make. They will be decorating the shops, telling a bit of information about the shop/what is being sold. Ella will be selling Pysanky, otherwise known as Ukrainian Easter Eggs.

Ella is Ukrainian- we all are. Her grandfather, my dad, is a Ukrainian immigrant. Needless to say, even though we are living in America, I feel the deepest connection to this war currently happening in Ukraine.

I’ve always been extremely proud to be Ukrainian, but the amount of pride and gratitude I have for my heritage now is immeasurable. I grew up being taught that Ukrainians are strong people; the strongest in the world. I had no idea that I would ever have to witness the magnitude of their strength in my lifetime.

My dad & I on his birthday last year (April 2021) after celebrating with authentic Ukrainian cuisine including pierogies & borscht.

I know that we are very lucky to be living in America, yet I feel the strongest yearning to be there. If my dad never came to America, this war would be our lives right now and that is a scary thought. Yet I still for some reason feel as if that is where I belong. 

That isn’t possible at this time, however, so for now I’ll just continue to embrace the culture at home with my family, even more so now. We’ll become fluent in the language and carry the traditions. One day, when it is safe for my small children, we will travel there. Today, we will make pysanky.

Pysanky

Pysanky is the word for Ukrainian Easter Eggs. Pysanky are believed to hold great power for peace & love in the world. They were originally used in Spring ceremonies to thank the glorious sun for warming the Earth after the cold, hard Winter.

The designs and symbols that are decorated on pysanky have significant meanings- usually a wish of good fortune for the person you are gifting your pysanky to. On Easter Sunday, you would gift your pysanky and kiss the recipient on each cheek for good luck.

There is an old Ukrainian folk tale that Evil (a vicious monster)  is chained to a cliff. Each year his helpers go around the world and report back to him the number of pysanky that have been decorated.

If only a few eggs are made, his chains loosen and evil flows throughout the world. However if many eggs are made, his chains tighten; allowing love to conquer evil.

With all of the evil going on in the world, we are going to need a LOT of eggs.

Setting Up Shop

First, we found pysanky coloring pages on Pinterest then printed them out. Ella colored each egg and then wrote a wish for each egg on the back of them.

Next, we colored the pages for her shop and we cut them out and assembled them.

“At Ella’s Ukrainian Eggs, you can find Ukrainian Easter Eggs which are believed to hold great power for love in the world. Each egg has a special wish for you. Ella made these to support her Grandpa from Ukraine.”

“If you love ❀️ Ukraine, you should get one of these Ukrainian Easter Eggs. Plus they’re great for Easter and it is to be believed that these Eggs hold great power for love ❀ in the world 🌍.”

Her shop turned out SO cute! I’m very excited to hear how her project and “shopping” day goes. I am also excited to hear what the other children made for their shops. I really loved doing this project together with Ella. I loved that we were able to incorporate our heritage and culture to make it more meaningful to share with her friends at school.

Easter Celebration

My dad’s birthday coincided with Easter this year (the day after) so we went over to my parents home to celebrate both Easter and his birthday with an Easter Feast from the Wodka Bar. They offered a special, limited Easter menu which was perfect.

The pierogies & kolachi were SOOO yummy! I cannot wait to try more food from there from the regular menu! I also am going to learn how to make delicious kolachi at home so I can eat it alllll the time!

Mia also made a pysanky for each of us. I loved mine so much!

Overall, this was a lovely Easter weekend and my heart feels very full & blessed. We got to spend time with both sides of our family. We did an Easter egg hunt for the kids and they received nice spring time gifts. We had lovely food that I didn’t have to prepare or clean up. We truly are so blessed in this life on Earth.

Happy Easter y’all.