Posted in Girl Scouts

Girl Scout Cookie Safety Bingo

Each cookie selling season we go over safety rules for selling Girl Scout Cookies. The following Bingo Safety game is great for younger girls who are beginners in selling cookies and as a great review for our older girls who are now pros. This is one of the best ways we have found to teach cookie selling safety and is a free resource on Little Brownie Bakers.

Safety Bingo is an awesome way to go over safety rules in a fun way. The directions are found on the Little Brownie website and look like this.

For our girls, we printed out each of the cookie bingo cards – found here in color and on cardstock so they will be more durable (they look like the one at the top of this page). – There are 20 different cards. Every scout gets her own card as we discuss each of the safety rules.

To call out the safety rules, there are colored signs that the leaders can use. They are found here. We just printed out one copy and went over them as the girls covered their picture icons. You can use about anything as Bingo markers. I used the flat glass beads that you can get at Dollar Tree that are flat on one end.  Amazon has them as well. We have also used colored buttons in the past.

The best part about this game, is that each icon is located on every card, just in a different place. This is great for the Daisies and Brownies. By playing multiple games, we are enforcing each of the rules. The girls love it!

Click below to check out some of our other cookie games that we have used…

Or.. If you would like to check out a few Girl Scout Cookie Recipes, click on Menu at the top or just click one of the links below..

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Posted in Girl Scout Cookie Recipes, Scout Recipes

Girl Scout Tagalong (Peanut Butter Patties) Recipes

These are a couple of recipes using Tagalongs (or Peanut Butter Patties) Cookies from the Girl Scout website that I thought looked amazing! Nutty Caramel Turtles and Peanut Butter Trail Mix Fudge! I will be definitely be trying these out when our cookies arrive!

If you haven’t seen any Girl Scouts knocking on your door or seen any at the local grocery store, I am posting my daughter’s store below. (Her troop is saving for a trip next summer to Costa Rica where they will be participating in a Global Community Project.)

These amazing cookies are available online and she will be selling until March 25 ,2018! These cookies will come directly from the bakery to your house! https://digitalcookie.girlscouts.org/scout/madison1827

No matter where you buy your Girl Scout Cookies- Thank you so much for supporting Girl Scouts! AND.. if you get to try any of these recipes before I do, let me know how it turns out!

Nutty Caramel Turtles

Created by: Michele Kusma

Nutty Caramel Turtles is the Candies category winner of the 2015 National Girl Scout Cookie recipe Contest Sponsored by Taste of Home®. Congrats on a job deliciously well done!

Prep: 10 min. Bake: 5 min. + standing

  • 3 milk chocolate candy bars (1.55 ounces each)
  • 12 caramels
  • 60 pecan halves
  • 12 Girl Scout Peanut Butter Patties®/Tagalongs® cookies

Preheat oven to 250°. Break each chocolate bar into fourths. Place each piece 2 in. apart on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Top with one caramel.

Bake 5-7 minutes or until caramel just starts to soften. Immediately press one pecan half on one side for head; press four pecan halves onto each corner for legs. Place one Peanut Butter Patties®/Tagalongs® cookie over the top of each candy, pressing down to secure. Let stand until set. Yield: 1 dozen.

Peanut Butter Trail Mix Fudge

Created by: Kim Varner

Prep: 10 min. + chilling

  • 1 pound white candy coating, chopped
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 package (6-1/2 ounces) Girl Scout Peanut Butter Patties®/Tagalongs® cookies, coarsely chopped, divided
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped salted peanuts, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried cherries, divided

Line a 9-in.-square pan with foil, letting ends extend up sides. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt candy coating with peanut butter; stir until smooth.

Stir in 1 cup chopped Peanut Butter Patties®/Tagalongs® cookies, 1/2 cup peanuts and 1/4 cup cherries. Spread into prepared pan. Sprinkle with remaining chopped Peanut Butter Patties®/Tagalongs® cookies, peanuts and cherries. Refrigerate until firm.

Using foil, lift fudge out of pan. Remove foil; cut fudge into 1-in. squares. Store between layers of waxed paper in an airtight container. Yield: 2 pounds.

 

If you would like to check out a few other Girl Scout Cookie Recipes, click on Menu at the top or just click one of the links below..

Posted in Girl Scout Cookie Recipes, Scout Recipes

Girl Scout Cookies -Thin Mint Recipes

These are a few recipes using Thin Mint Cookies from the Girl Scout website that I thought looked amazing! Peppermint Cheesecake, Thin Mint Popcorn and Thin Mint Cupcakes! I will be definitely be trying these out when our mints arrive!

If you haven’t seen any cute Girl Scouts knocking on your door or seen any at the local grocery store, I am posting my daughter’s store below. (Her troop is saving for a trip next summer to Costa Rica where they will be participating in a Global Community Project.)

These amazing cookies are available online and she will be selling until March 25 ,2018! The cookies will come directly from the bakery to your house!

https://digitalcookie.girlscouts.org/scout/madison1827

No matter where you buy your Girl Scout Cookies- Thank you so much for supporting Girl Scouts! AND.. if you get to try any of these recipes before I do, let me know how it turns out!

Peppermint Chip Cheesecake

Prep: 20 min.; Bake: 1 hour + chilling

  • 1 package (10 ounces) Thin Mints® Girl Scout Cookies, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted

FILLING:

  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 5 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 3–4 drops green food coloring, optional
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips

In a small bowl, combine cookie crumbs and butter. Press onto the bottom and 1 in. up the sides of a greased 9-in. springform pan.

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and cornstarch until smooth. Add eggs and egg yolk; beat on low speed just until combined. Stir in the cream, extracts, and food coloring if desired. Fold in chocolate chips. Pour into crust. Place pan on a baking sheet.

Bake at 325° for 50–60 minutes or until center is almost set. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 12 servings.

 

Thin Mints® Popcorn

Created by: Amber Szydlo

Prep/Total Time: 25 min.

  • 10 cups plain popped popcorn
  • 25 Girl Scout Thin Mints® cookies, coarsely chopped, divided
  • 1-1/2 cups white baking chips
  • 1 teaspoon shortening
  • 1 cup Andes creme de menthe baking chips

In a large bowl, combine popcorn and half of the crushed Thin Mints® cookies. In a microwave, melt baking chips with shortening; stir until smooth. Pour over popcorn mixture; toss to coat.

Immediately spread onto waxed paper; sprinkle with remaining crushed Thin Mints® cookies. Melt baking chips in microwave; stir until smooth. Drizzle over popcorn; let stand until set.

Break into pieces. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 3-1/2 quarts.

 

Thin Mints® Cupcakes

Created by: Crystal Oliver

Prep: 40 min. Bake: 15 min. + cooling

  • 2 packages (9 ounces each) Girl Scout Thin Mints® cookies, divided
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 package chocolate cake mix (regular size)

GANACHE:

  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

FROSTING:

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 4 to 4-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350°. Reserve six Thin Mints® cookies for garnish. For truffles, place remaining Thin Mints® cookies in a food processor; process until finely crushed. Add cream cheese; process until blended. Roll into twenty-four 1-1/2-in. balls.

Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners. Prepare cake mix batter according to package directions. Drop 1 tablespoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Place one truffle in center of cup. Fill two-thirds full with remaining batter.

Bake 14-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the cake portion comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

Place chocolate in a small bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream just to a boil. Pour over chocolate; let stand 5 minutes or until chocolate is melted. Stir with a whisk until smooth. Stir in peppermint extract. Cool ganache 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

For frosting, in a large bowl, beat butter, shortening, vanilla and salt until creamy. Beat in baking cocoa and milk alternately with enough confectioners’ sugar to reach spreading consistency. Frost cupcakes; drizzle with ganache. Garnish with reserved Thin Mints® cookies. Yield: 2 dozen.

If you would like to check out a few other Girl Scout Cookie Recipes, click on Menu at the top or just click one of the links below..

Posted in Christmas, Perler Bead Patterns

Easy DIY Christmas Perler Bead Ornaments

Want some easy family Perler bead patterns that can easily transform into Christmas ornaments?  Look no further, this family fun craft was easy to make and looks great on the tree.

Original pixel design was on friendship bracelets.net.    We used the pixelated images to create the designs on boards, melted the beads and attached a Christmas ornament hook at the top.  These hooks are easy to find around Christmas and Amazon has 300 of them for around $5.00.

Our results are below.

Christmas Bell with Holly

  Bells with holly Christmas ornament made with Perler beads   Bells with holly Christmas ornament made with Perler beads

Christmas Wreath Oranment

 

Christmas Gingerbread Ornament

 

Christmas Candy Cane Ornament

 

Christmas Holly Ornament

 

Snowman Ornament

original pixel design by 101deer.se

 

Our family loves making lots of Perler crafts.  If you would like to see some other designs, click menu at the top or the links below…

 

Christmas Ornament Perler Bead Patterns DIY

Posted in Math is Awesome!

10 Real World Math Mistakes – Perfect for students to find the mistake!

math pinReal World Math Sales that don’t exactly scream sale… I tell my students daily to check their answers- does their answer make sense, especially in the context of their problem? The following pictures are some examples of people who have not checked their answers in the real world. My students love seeing these, finding the errors and laughing at the mistakes adults made. There are a couple that have no mistakes but still don’t add up to a “sale.”

The following are a few that I have used in my classroom and are some of my students’ favorites. Click on the pictures to go to the original sites.

Real World Math Errors and Fun for Students

Posted in Christmas, Perler Bead Patterns, Super Mario Patterns

Super Mario Perler Bead Christmas Ornaments

Capture

Our family is a huge Nintendo fan and our kids have grown up playing all the Super Mario franchise games. This year, the kids had their own tree to decorate and we decided to make some Perler beads ornaments. We are looking forward to making lots of ornaments this holiday season.

Mario and Luigi in Christmas Stockings

Mario in the stocking original design came from dinandehn. After making Mario, I changed the red to green to create Luigi. When ironing, we left one of the top beads open and not too melted. This allowed us to put a Christmas hook into the hole which helped it fit easily on the tree.

  Super Mario and Luigi Christmas Ornaments Perler/ Hama Beads

 

Red and Green Mushrooms

Original design by dinandehn. Same as above- once made, we melted everything but the top bead to allow for the ornament hook.

Super Mario Mushrooms Christmas Ornaments Perler/ Hama Beads

Star and Mushroom Tree

Mushroom original design by dinandehn and the star original design by jekrus. Don’t forget while melting to leave room for the hook.

Super Mario Mushrooms Christmas Ornaments Perler/ Hama Beads

 

Yoshi Christmas Wrapped Egg!  

Original design by beadsmeetgeeks – this Christmas wrapped Yoshi Egg was super easy to make and looks great as a Christmas ornament.

Super Mario Perler Yoshi Egg Christmas Ornament             Super Mario Perler Yoshi Egg Christmas Ornament

Mario Santa

Original design by beadsmeetgeeks- turned out super cute!  Made with sand, black, white and red Perler beads.  Will also work for Hama or just plain melty beads.

Super Mario Perler Santa Christmas Ornament Hama Melty       Super Mario Perler Santa Christmas Ornament Hama Melty

If you would like to see some other Super Mario patterns, visit menu at the top of click the links below.

 

Posted in Book Reviews, Young Adult Books

Countryside #2- Tears of Adina Book Review

Counntryside - The Tears of Adina- Book 2Countryside: The Tears of Adina by J.T. Cope IV

From Goodreads:

“Luke Rayburn has spent summer vacation running up and down sandy beaches with his family. He’s explored hidden coves, learned how to write invisible letters, and even met an ocean nymph. But his friends write to tell him of strange happenings in Countryside and he’s anxious to get back.

When Luke returns, he finds that much has changed. Mischievous gnomes are spreading chaos across the valley, a lone wolf haunts the forests, and Mayeem, one of Luke’s new teachers, just happens to be a mermaid. And then there’s the hunter, a man with golden eyes, only part of a soul and the belief that Luke has hidden something he wants—something he’s willing to destroy Countryside in order to get.

Hounded by blackhearted men and soulless creatures and with darkness luring him in, Luke must gather his wits and ferret out his true friends. But as he draws close to finding what it is the hunter seeks, he will learn that there is more at stake than he understands. He’ll learn that it’s not the hunter he should be afraid of and that, once done, some things cannot be undone.”

My thoughts after reading this book…

Personally, I really enjoyed this book. Probably even better than the first time.  After “getting to know the characters” out of the way, the story was able to pick up not too long after the first book and it kept going strong. I love how the main character is taught respect for adults, and uses “sir” and “ma’am” even if he disagrees with someone.  

There are lots of elements of magic even though there were similarities to some Harry Potter. The magic was written well enough to stand on its own.  In this book, the students learn about the water discipline as well as trying to keep the Tears of Adina from falling into dark hands.  The settings were very easy to imagine with lots of great descriptions without being overly wordy and the magic was very enjoyable.  The book is beautifully written.

The book is targeted at fantasy readers, upper elementary and junior high, who enjoy series like Harry Potter,  Narnia, and Percy Jackson.     

 As a middle school teacher, I often read books designed for 4th-7th graders so I can recommend books to my students. This is a book that I will definitely recommend. However, any age fan of fantasy and magic would enjoy this story.  

Amazon currently has this book for purchase as a Kindle ebook for $3.99, hardback and paperback also available.  

For the Nook  Barnes and Noble currently has the ebook also for $3.99 with paperback and hardback available as well..

With both Amazon and Barnes and Noble, you do not have to have an E-Reader to purchase the book.  You may also download their free app to any phone or tablet and read the book from there.  Use the links above to set up your account and purchase the books while enjoying them on the go with your phone, tablet or E-Reader.  

Please use the menu bar above to find out about other great books, or click the links below.  

 

Posted in Birthday Parties, Minecraft Party

Minecraft Birthday Party

For my son’s 9th birthday, he decided he wanted a Minecraft theme. This was a lot of fun to make and he was so excited!

For the cake, we used Rice Krispy Treats which the kids thought was super cool. Due to his food allergies, we made ours from scratch but you could also buy a Rice Krispy Sheet or tray that is already made for easier prep. The best thing about making them from scratch or using a tray is that you can cut the squares any size that you would like. We used a 9 x 13 in pan, blue jello for the water, plain Rice Krispy treats for the sand, and Cocoa Rice Krispy treats with green icing for the dirt and grass. Add a few Minecraft Mini Figures like Steve and some Cows or Zombies and done!

My friend actually made this giant wall decoration made from light green, green and black square party plates. We used left over plates for the kids to gather their supplies (aka food).

She used hot glue to glue all of the plates to foam board which she also glued together. The result is in the picture. It was a great addition to the party.

Now for the awesome food!

minecraft party 4.jpg

I wish I could tell you how my friend made the super cute signs, but I’m not totally sure. I believe she used Google Images to cut and paste them together. However, I can tell you how I made the food.

We used..

  • Carrots – baby carrots
  • Sticks – pretzel sticks
  • Cookies – small chocolate chip cookies
  • Trap Doors- Window Pretzels
  • Diamonds – Blue hard candy (we bought ours at Party City, but attaching the Amazon link here in case you need a lot of them)
  • Emeralds – same as Diamonds, except in green
  • Iron – Hershey Nuggets
  • Gold- Hershey Nuggets
  • Mushrooms – these were fun, white jumbo puffy marshmallows topped with red icing and white chocolate chips.
  • Watermelon – watermelon taffy

Add Sprite bottles with labels peeled and turned into Creepers with a sharpie, and green party cups and a party was made!

If you would like to see some other themed birthday parties, click menu and birthday parties or click any of the links below.

Posted in Pokemon Patterns

Pokemon’s Pikachu Perler Bead Project

This super cute little guy was based off a pixelated image created by Kandi Patterns and was made by a nine year old.

She used the pixel image to count and drop the yellow, white, black and red Perler beads into place to form Pikachu.

We used the masking tape method (see Perler for more info) to tape off sections when the project was ready for ironing. Using a large piece of cardboard and ironing paper, we were able to get him melted. (Unfortunately, she was ironing it on a table that was old and had some indentions in it) However, overall he still came out pretty great!

Drop me a comment or picture if you try this cute pattern out! Would love to know see your project!

If you would like to check out some additional Perler Bead Patterns or Projects, click on the Menu at the top of the page or click some of the links below.

Posted in Book Reviews, Young Adult Books

Countryside #1- Book of the Wise Book Review

Countryside: The Book of the Wise by J.T. Cope IV

From Goodreads:

“You have a power within you, one that is within everyone…It’s the same power that fills that building, that keeps that tree alive…and the same power that has attracted your attention…I know it’s all a bit strange to you, but I assure you it is quite real…” Eleven-year-old Luke Rayburn has never seen a skyline without skyscrapers or fallen asleep to anything but the sound of traffic. But his life is about to change in ways he never imagined. When his father leaves for a year of military service, Luke and the rest of his family move into their grandparents’ home in the remote town of Countryside, a place like no other. Reachable only by a mysterious traveling tunnel and horse-drawn carriage, centaurs roam the landscape and shadowy wraiths slip among the trees. There, Luke will be drawn into a centuries-old quest for an almost-forgotten book whose secrets will determine the fate of the world. He will have to reach deep to discover the power within him as he battles the forces of darkness and an alliance of sinister men who seek to destroy any who get in their way. Luke’s only hope is to find the book before they do, but to do so he’ll need help from someone he never expected as the forces of evil come to bear on the magical world of Countryside

My thoughts after reading this book…

Personally, I really enjoyed this book and have already purchased the second book in the series. It started off a little slow at first, as readers were introduced to several characters but picked up very quickly. I became invested in Luke and enjoyed watching him grow and learn throughout the story. Lots of elements of magic which I loved, even though there were similarities to some Harry Potter and some Narnia traits. Overall, the magic was very enjoyable and the settings were easy to imagine with lots of descriptions.

The book is targeted at fantasy readers, upper elementary – junior high, who enjoy series like Harry Potter, Narnia, and Percy Jackson.  Though any age fan of fantasy and magic would enjoy this story.

As a middle school teacher, I often read books designed for 4th-7th graders so I can recommend books to my students and this is a book that I will definitely recommend.

Amazon currently has this book for purchase as a Kindle eBook for $3.99, hardback for $24.99 and paperback for $10.97.

For the Nook, Barnes and Noble currently has the eBook also for $3.99 and paperback for $10.99.