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Happy Birthday to a Man We Will Never Forget

POSTED ON April 20, 2014

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Of all Easters I’ve experienced in my life, this one is the most special to me.

On it’s own, Easter carries quite a bit of significance to me, and always has. It’s a time to reflect upon our lives and practice gratitude for the gift we have been given to be on this mortal earth. It’s also a time to practice gratitude for the possibilities that might be there beyond our life on this earth.

It feels like no coincidence that this Easter falls on the birthday of my late hero…my father. Funny how no matter how old you are, losing a parent is never easy. In fact, I feel like the more life you live with someone, the harder it is to let them go. That being said, my heart misses him so much. As much as it heals over time, it also experiences deeper longing as the days pass. I feel like an 8 year old girl sometimes that just wants her daddy :).

This Easter, I am practicing hope for and faith in a plan much greater than what I logically know to be true. Although my brain has a hard time comprehending life beyond this earth, my heart knows someday my family will be reunited with our amazing family leader.

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Dad, I love you. I am so grateful for the incredible example you were during your lifetime of unconditional love, gratitude, appreciation, selflessness, courage, strength, leadership, and family togetherness. Your daughter, your grandkids, your brothers and sisters, your parents, your kids, your wife, and your friends miss you…but we carry you with us each and every day. Because of your life on this earth, we are better people. Because of your spirit that still lives on, this world is a better place.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

Until we meet again,
Your daughter,

Heidi :)

Category: blog / family

Powell Power Flowers

POSTED ON April 18, 2014

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It’s crafting time again at the Powell Pack household and what more wonderful way to welcome in Spring, that with a handful of flowers! You’ll love this simple way to create some blooming “flowers” and my favorite part is that even Ruby could join Matix, Marley and Cash in on the fun!

What you’ll need:

How you do it:

Time to paint the flowers! First, I had Matix, Marley, and Cash paint a couple of white pieces of paper. We used heavier weight Finger Paint Paper but any type should do.  Matix was excited to paint a piece of paper for Ruby.

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Once the paint has dried,  trace each person’s hands on the painted papers.  Tracing both right and left hands will give you variety in your flowers. Then, cut out the traced shapes.

Next, attach an end of each skewer to the center back of each cut-out hand using the scotch tape to create each flower and stem.

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Cut your floral foam to fit in the bottom of your flower pot.  We upcycled and chopped up an old pool noodle to use as our foam. Stick the skewered “flowers” into the foam and arrange to your liking – varying the height and filling in with more flowers as needed.

Lastly, we topped off each  flower pot with some shredded green paper to hide the foam. If you used potting soil, you could skip this step.

I am LOVING how it turned out and how much fun they had making them. The kids love seeing their hand prints displayed for all to see! While I love fresh flowers, these handmade “flowers” are my favorite. :)

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Category: blog / Crafts / family

Fun Easter Activ-ities

POSTED ON April 17, 2014

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Spring is definitely in the air and all four of the kids are so excited for the upcoming Easter Weekend!  It’s Ruby’s first Easter and we can’t wait to gather with extended family to share in the fun of egg hunts, egg coloring and  lots and lots of candy activities!   Help curb the sugar and keep the kids moving with some of the Powell Pack’s favorite outdoor games and bonus  -  adults of all ages will enjoy these too! :-)

1. Easter Egg Hunt: Get a few extra steps in there for each child by having them hunt for a specific color of egg, and the child who finds all the eggs of that color wins. Since the kids will be looking for a particular color, they’ll run around a lot more! Bonus: the little ones like Cash can practice learning their colors. Hide one “golden” egg for each child to keep them hunting a little longer too!

2. Easter Egg Roll:  After or instead of an egg hunt, get everyone involved in an egg roll! The first one, or team, across the finish line using a spoon, their hands, their feet, or even their noses wins. This is a favorite of Matix and Marley!

3. The Easter Bunny Says:  Put an Easter twist on the traditional Simon Says, and watch everyone break out in fun and laughter as they all compete to be the last one standing.

4. Musical Chairs: Gather everyone around and pull out some fun music and let the competition begin to see who will get a chair first. Younger children like Cash can even be the music man.  If you have lots of children of varying ages, play in groups to ensure everyone has fun and little ones don’t get squished :).  Ruby is already strategizing with Chris on how to get the most people out the fastest!

5. Egg Relay Obstable Race: To add variety to the traditional egg relay race, have the kids transport multiple eggs (one at a time) during their turn, relay an armful of eggs back and forth between teammates, and go through, over, under, and around obstacles. If they drop any eggs, they have to start over.

6. Active Eggs: Write down different activities on slips of paper and put them in plastic eggs. Set a timer, have the kids choose eggs and complete the activities in the eggs. The child who completes the most activities before the timer rings wins. Here are some ideas: do 10 jumping jacks, do 5 burpees, hop on one foot 10 times, do 5 push-ups, do 5 sit-ups, do 5 crab walks, do 5 bear crawls, run around the yard once, etc.

We have loved these games in the past and can’t wait for this weekend to play again as we celebrate. Check out this video of some of our past Easter fun!

If you have any ideas for fun and creative Easter activities, share them in the comments below.

Category: blog / family / fitness

Easter Brunch: Apple Chicken Hash

POSTED ON April 16, 2014

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We’ve heard your feedback and know how much you are loving every recipe we’ve shared from the amazing Erika Peterson. Today, we’re sharing her healthy twist on a breakfast favorite – hash! You’ll love this cleaner version that lets you induldge in hearty, delicious flavors and it’s perfect for any guilt-free day. Check out more of her recipes on her new website, Clean Simple Foodie, or follow her on her new Instagram account.

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Apple Chicken Hash
by Erika Peterson, Clean Simple Foodie
Serves 6

What you’ll need:

2 medium sweet potatoes, cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 large or 16 small chicken sausages
1/2 yellow onion, chopped into big chunks
2 apples, chopped into big chunks
2 Laughing Cow cheese wedges
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

What you’ll do:

1. Boil sweet potatoes in a large pot of water for 8 minutes. Drain.
2. Drizzle olive oil into a large frying pan or skillet over medium heat. Transfer sweet potatoes to pan and brown for about 5 minutes.
3. Add apples, onions, chicken sausage, laughing cow cheese wedges, salt, pepper and any other spices that you’d like.
4. Heat together 12-15 minutes.
5. Top each one cup serving with a sprinkle of cheese. Serve.

What’s in it:

Each serving contains 289 calories, 16g protein, 23g carbs, and 16g fat.

About Me: 

Superman’s wife, Mother of 3, lover of family, fitness, and baseball tees and of course, anything that involves clean food (lots of it)!  AFPA certified nutrition and wellness consultant, certified TRX group fitness instructor and Clean. Simple. Foodie.  If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen!

Erika Peterson - Simple Clean Foodie - Guest blogger on http://heidipowell.net/5441

Want to connect with Erika? Find and follow Erika here:
Http://CleanSimpleFoodie.com
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Category: blog / food

A Bouquet of Roses Inspired by Celery!

POSTED ON February 15, 2014

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Thre is nothing more special that getting a handmade card from one of your children. Our nanny helped Cash make the cutest picture for us for Valentine’s Day featuring a big bouquet of flowers on the front.  It was so adorable. And get this, she used CELERY!

Perfect for not only Valentine’s Day, you could make a card featuring this celery-inspired bouquet of happiness for Mother’s Day, Easter, Grandparent’s Day, a get well card, even a just-to-say-I-love-you card. The possibilities are endless!

Interested in helping your kids make their own? Here’s how:

Supplies:
-1 head of celery
-Sharp knife
-Paint Brush
-Paint
-Paper

Instructions:

1. Chop the head of celery about a third of the way from the bottom. This will be your rose stamp.#PowellPack #Craft #ValentinesDay #CeleryCraft #CashPowell

2. She used green paint and a brush to make the stem for the flowers.

#PowellPack #Craft #ValentinesDay #CeleryCraft #CashPowell

3. Cash dipped the third of the celery head into the red paint and stamped away. Check out how adorable it turned out! We LOVE it. :) #PowellPack #Craft #ValentinesDay #CeleryCraft #CashPowell

4. After all that stamping, Cashy needed a snack. Since the celery (chopped off the top) was already there and ready to go, he put it to good use. He loves celery! :)

#PowellPack #Craft #ValentinesDay #CeleryCraft #CashPowell

Category: blog / Crafts / family / living

Fun Easter ACTIV-ities

POSTED ON March 29, 2013

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Tis the weekend for Easter gatherings and family fun! Here are some great activities that will keep the kids—even the adult-aged kids—active and happy:

1. Easter Egg Hunt: For a variation on the traditional hunt, have each child hunt for a particular color of egg, and the child who finds all the eggs of that color wins. Since the kids will be looking for a particular color, they’ll run around a lot more! Bonus: the little ones can practice learning their colors.

2. Easter Egg Roll: The 135th Annual White House Easter Egg Roll will be held this year, so if you haven’t already done so, why not add this tradition to your Easter celebration? The kids can roll their eggs towards the finish line using a spoon, their hands, their feet, or even their noses.

3. Bunny Hop: In addition to the Bunny Hop we all know and love, try a Duck Waddle, or a Chicken Strut (make sure your ducks and chickens wiggle their tail feathers!), or a Jelly Bean Jiggle, or let the kids come up with some ideas.

4. Duck, Duck, Goose: Incorporate this well-known game into your Easter celebration. The kids will run around a lot, and the name is already Easter-friendly.

5. Easter Bunny: Put an Easter twist on the much loved Red Rover game by changing the traditional call to “Easter Bunny, Easter Bunny, send [child’s name] a running.”

6. Egg Relay Race: To add variety to the traditional egg relay race, have the kids transport multiple eggs (one at a time) during their turn, relay an armful of eggs back and forth between teammates, or go through, over, under, or around obstacles. If they drop any eggs, they have to start over.

7. Active Eggs: Write down different activities on slips of paper and put them in plastic eggs. Set a timer, have the kids choose eggs and complete the activities in the eggs. The child who completes the most activities before the timer rings wins. Here are some ideas: do 10 jumping jacks, do 5 burpees, hop on one foot 10 times, do 5 push-ups, do 5 sit-ups, do 5 crab walks, do 5 bear crawls, run around the yard once, etc.

Hopefully these ideas will add more fun to your Easter celebration and keep everyone moving and active. If you have any ideas for fun and active Easter activities, please let us know!

Easter Baskets Loaded with Fun, NOT Candy!

POSTED ON March 22, 2013

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Chris and Heidi Powell's Candy Free Easter Baskets - Learn more at http://HeidiPowell.net/971

Candy-free Easter Baskets filled with lots of activities and fun!

Easter is right around the corner! You know what that means…tummy aches for the entire family from WAY TOO MUCH candy. While we sure do love that furry little creature that hops around late at night to hide those protein-packed, decorated ovals, he’s always gotta totally counteract the goodness of the egg by leaving sugar-loaded baskets for all of us to gobble up.

What do we do about this? I say we help the Easter Bunny out  (as well as our teeth and blood sugar levels) by shopping for some sugar-free, but totally fun, alternatives to fill the baskets!

Here are a few fun things Mr. Rabbit will be dropping in our kids’ baskets on Easter morning…

1. Several sizes of Knobby Bouncy Balls ! Purple and Green knobby ones that are easy to grip and a smaller red one perfect for a toddler! There are so many games you can play with a ball that get the kids moving and burning off that energy.

2. Books filled with challenging Mazes Mats and Mad Libs – Keep them thinking and encouraging those creative minds!

3. Mechanical Pencils in fun patterns and designs – Always sharp and perfect for completing your activity books. These are a must have!

4. Mini packs of Playdough – Who doesn’t love playdough? These smaller containers allow you to take it on the go and not have such a big mess to clean up! Mr Rabbit found a Fun Dough Stack Pack 5

5. Rubberband Glider – Fun for all ages! You can assemble these glider planes and spend some time outside in the fresh air flying them around.

6. Mega Bloks – Skylanders Giants – Get your kids off of the video games and playing with their hands with complimentary toys to their favorite games. Megablox (similar to Legos) has fun activity sets for one of Madix’s favorite games, Skylanders.

7. Mini LEGO Packs – For just a couple of dollars, you’ll find all kinds of fun Lego packs perfect for stuffing inside an egg or just tucking in the basket. Lots of varieties for both boys and girls!

8. Coloring Books – Ideal for spending time at home or taking along on the go. Just add crayons, Sparkly Markers or Colored Pencils. For Cash, we also found Washable Triangular Crayons perfect for young toddlers just learning to write.

9. Crayola Color Wonder Disney Cars Coloring Book and Markers – If you panic at the thought of turning your child loose with markers, you’ll love Color Wonder products! They only work when you draw on the special paper, avoiding the extra markings on your countertops and tables. And, you can’t go wrong with anything from Disney’s Cars Movie for little boys!

10. Mickey Mouse ClubHouse Board Books – Help your little ones learn their numbers, colors, shapes and more with fun sized board books. This 12 pack has them perfectly sized  for tucking in a diaper bag too!

11. Red Foam Ball – Smaller and bright. Ideal for an almost 2 year old to play along with the family!

12. Easter eggs filled with Goldfish crackers – We found some larger eggs and put a treat of Goldfish crackers in there. Look for more healthy alternatives of your sugary or fatty snack favorites. We picked BAKED Goldfish crackers.

13. Bubbles – You can never have too many of these! They’ll ensure hours of fun!

14. Barrel of Monkeys – Look for compact games that can do double duty! We love that you can play this game with 1 person or with several.

15. Magnetic Alphabet – Great for helping little ones learn their letters and new readers learn to spell. They’re also great for leaving a surprise message for someone special on the kitchen fridge! :-)

16. Sidewalk Chalks – Another easy and inexpensive way to get the kids outdoors and playing. Not only can you color pictures, but you can draw a hopscotch, 4 square and more to play games with the neighborhood.

17. Quick draw/erase board – We love this small portable size. It’s great for traveling in the car and you never run out of paper!

18. Discovery Journal – Loved this darling journal (From Michaels Craft Store) that comes complete with a compass (great for learning how to tell directions on our family hikes) along with a tracker for animals and other wildlife you see on a walk. You could even make your own trackers for things in your neighborhood.

19. Critter Case, Butterfly Net and Magnifying Glass – 3 must haves for exploring nature!

20. Angry Birds Uno Card Game – Fun twist on an old favorite. Card games are great too for taking along on a car ride without taking up a lot of space.

21. Glow Sticks – Loved these fun glow sticks that included a little Easter topper. They’re perfect for turning an evening hike into a fun adventure as the kids carry their glow sticks. Mr Rabbit also discovered the fun packs of Glowsticks Bracelets that also are perfect for playing night games in the backyard.

22. Dressing up with your favorite Disney Princess or character – Gloves, a Purse, some jewelry and such will keep Marley entertained for hours and feeling like a princess!

23. Nail Stickers – Fun little accessories for girls! Stick-on fingernails that give instant color and patterns without worrying about nail polish spills.

24. American Girl Self Inking Stamps, Sticker Pad and Glitter Pens – So many great things for little girls to learn from the American Girls characters. These will be a definite hit.

25. American Girl Craft Kits – The Kit Kittredge Fabric Flower Style Set one lets you create headbands and hair accessories while learning a few basics of sewing and assembling. Craft kits come in so many varieties and are a fantastic way to get kids off the computer and using their hands and minds and then they have a finished project to be so proud of when they are done.

26. Veggie Tales “Jonah” Video – We love Veggie Tales and the lessons on character and values they teach. For $5 you can’t beat this!

27. Little Einsteins Videos – Help your toddler learn as they watch one of our favorite series, Little Einstein.

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