Take a Real Rest: Matthew 11:28-30 Free Printable

I first heard Matthew 11:28-30 from The Message over a year ago at the dotMom conference and I just haven’t been able to shake it.

Yes, it is beautiful in other translations as well…

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” ~Matthew 11:28-30 {NLT}

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” ~Matthew 11:28-30 {ESV}

But The Message translation of these verses spoke to me in just the right way at just the right time…

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” ~Matthew 11:28-30

I can’t imagine a better group of verses to soak in, process, really meditate on this weekend.

Go to Jesus. Spend some time with Him and learn how REAL rest feels.

Grace. Light. Free. THIS is how He longs for us to live as we walk with Him.

Praying real rest finds you this weekend as you come to Jesus.

Matthew 11 Printable

I made up a 4×6 printable care of this verse for my Bible study this week and I would love for you to print off a copy for yourself and to share with your friends. Just click here to get the PDF with four on a page! Please use these for personal use only! Thank you!

Happy RESTFUL weekend, friends!



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O Holy Night Free Chalkboard Printables!

O Holy Night is my most favorite Christmas song of all time. I love lots of other ones – Sleigh Ride, Carol of the Bells, Silent Night – but O Holy Night is at the very top of my list.

This year I just had to have some O Holy Night in our holiday decor, so I made up a few chalkboard printables to frame. I think I could make ten more because I love so many lyrics from the song!

These three will have to do for now! If you’d like to print them for yourself, just click on each image to get an 8×10 PDF to download!

O Holy Night Stars Small

O Holy Night Love Small

O Holy Night Truly Small

What is your favorite Christmas song?

*Free rustic graphics courtesy of We Lived Happily Ever After

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Summer Mantel Free Printable!

I’m not totally finished putting together our summer mantel {which can apparently be spelled mantel or mantle and has me all bent out of shape trying to decide which way to go}, but I’ve shared a few bits and pieces including our summer tag banner and this little snapshot on Instagram the other day…

Summer Mantle


I wanted this summer to be about the sun and the Son, and these quotes and verses are keeping those two things at the forefront of my mind!

I put together that little chalkboard printable after hearing the song “I Can See Clearly Now” as we road-tripped back from my parents’ house a few weekends ago. It stuck in my head and made me smile, so it went up on the mantel!

And now I want to pass on this free printable to you! I hope it brings cheer and sunshine to your house as well! Just click on the image below to download the PDF!

Bright Day

And if you have a coffee table, you’re going to want to have this beautiful new gem of book on it share with everyone! {Get one even if you don’t have a coffee table. Trust me.}


My dear friend Beki from The Rusted Chain just released her first book, Sunflowers & Sweet Tea! YAY Beki!!! Everything about it is gorgeous and original, from her country photography to inspiring words. I’m just so super proud and I think you all need to go get one. The Pioneer Woman loved it, too. How’s that for an endorsement?!

Praying your weekend is filled with all things sunny and wonderful!


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Easter Week with the Jesus Storybook Bible

{As I’m posting this, the Kindle version of the Jesus Storybook Bible is still only $1.99! Please double-check before you buy as prices change without notice!}

Yes, we also use our most beloved story Bible for Easter as well!

We read through just five stories for this Easter week with the Jesus Storybook Bible, but they are just the right ones to focus our hearts in the right place – Jesus!

I have included a few VERY simple activities & discussion ideas to go along with each reading. Including reading time, you’ll be done in 30 minutes or less each day. There is a printable outline of the week for you to keep as a handy reference as well!


Here is our plan for the week:

Jesus Storybook Bible Easter Reading Plan

{Click on the image to print}

Tuesday – Read “Washed with tears”

{A sinful woman anoints Jesus, from Mark 14, Luke 7, and John 12}

The story of the sinful woman washing Jesus’ feet is just the best place to start this week. After reading, we will take time to recognize our sinful nature and get on our knees before Jesus to confess those sins and ask for His forgiveness. Our sin is what put Him on the cross, and repenting of that sin at the beginning of this week is cleansing.

Wednesday – Read “The Servant King”

{The Last Supper, from Mark 14 and John 13-14}

Many people do a foot-washing ceremony on Thursday to go a long with the Last Supper, but we will do ours on Wednesday along with this reading.

Thursday – Read “A dark night in the garden”

{The Garden of Gethsemane, from Luke 22, Mark 14, John 18}

If possible, read this story in the dark or by candlelight to symbolize the dark garden where Jesus prayed and was betrayed.

Friday – Read “The sun stops shining”

{The Crucifixion, from Matthew 27, Mark 15, Luke 23, John 19}

I really want our boys to understand that Jesus’ death on the cross meant for our relationship with God and the tearing of the temple cloth is what stuck out to me. I want them to know talking to God is not just for adults and pastors and priests – Jesus made a way for us to go right to throne of God. I am going to use a red piece of cloth {to symbolize Jesus’ blood AND the temple curtain} and have the boys help me tear it after we read this story.

Saturday – No reading

I chose to not have a reading on Saturday for a couple of reasons. First of all, in the Jesus Storybook Bible, there is no story between the crucifixion and the resurrection! Secondly, the days in between Jesus’ death were filled with uncertainty for his disciples. They were alone with their thoughts, their leader and friend having left them in a horrible way. Saturday will be our day of reflection – a day alone with our thoughts and a day to thank Him for His sacrifice.

Sunday – Read “God’s wonderful surprise”

{The Resurrection, from Matthew 28, Mark 16, Luke 24, John 20}

Forget waking up early to open up Christmas presents – THIS is the best gift to unwrap early in the morning! Easter Sunday is not a day to sleep in! Wake up early with plenty of time before your church service to read about the surprise God had in store and celebrate as a family! Sing, make noise, shout for joy – make it a party like none other because JESUS IS ALIVE!


There are a lot of plans and activities available for this season, so don’t add this to your week if you already have a plan and it is going to stress you out to add more! Usually around these holidays, LESS is actually better! But if you were looking for something simple and powerful to do with your family for Easter this year, I hope this is a blessing to you!


*This post contains affiliate links.

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Jesus Storybook Bible: Advent, Curriculum, Collector’s Edition, and More!

It’s definitely the favorite story Bible in our house. There’s no contest in that catergory.

I even hesitate to call the Jesus Storybook Bible a “children’s Bible” because it has been just as powerful for me as it has been for the boys!

The way every single story points to Jesus is just what we want our children to learn. And to live. Everything we do should point to Jesus. I feel like this Bible brings a new level of understanding of the Good News of the Gospel to all who read it.

I first wrote about the Jesus Storybook Bible two years ago after I learned about it at the Relevant Conference and then found an Advent reading plan using it. The reading of the first 24 stories in this Bible at bedtime during Advent has become one of my favorite family Christmas traditions.

I’ve put together this free printable for you to use if you are following the Jesus Storybook Bible Advent reading plan! You can print it out as one sheet and hang it somewhere, or cut apart each day {tiny strips – sorry about that!} and place them in/on your Advent calendar! Click on the image below to download and print this plan!

I’ve also found many more reasons to love the Jesus Storybook Bible since then…

There are several different editions which make great gift ideas in several different price ranges and packages!

The Jesus Storybook Bible original hardcover edition was what got us started. It is wonderful just as it is.

The Read-Aloud Edition is similar to the original, but larger overall, including bigger pictures – great for reading to groups or even your own children!

The newest edition is the Collector’s Edition

Just when I thought the Jesus Storybook Bible couldn’t get any better, this bundle came about and I swooned when I opened the package.

Included in the Collector’s Edition are the original Jesus Storybook Bible, three audio CDs with each of the 44 stories narrated by David Suchet, AND an animated DVD with every story! We can use this SO many ways!

Zondervan also just released a leather-bound edition that is gorgeous. What a beautiful gift or keepsake for a loved one!

Now, for those of you who teach Sunday School or homeschool or want to use the Jesus Storybook Bible for teaching in some format, I must recommend to you the Jesus Storybook Bible Curriculum Kit.

I am just blown away by the work that was put into this Bible curriculum for early to middle elementary age children. The 44 lessons are creative and well-planned, the activities are fun AND educational, and the introduction and instruction for teachers are very helpful! Included in the kit are:

  • 1 DVD-ROM containing 44 printable lessons (both teacher material and student handouts)
  • 44 bonus animated videos, promotional materials, as well as instructions for implementing the curriculum
  • 1 hardcover The Jesus Storybook Bible
  • 3 audio CDs containing David Suchet’s recording of The Jesus Storybook Bible

I will be using many of the lessons from this curriculum as part of our Advent study this year! We’ll be learning more about the Old Testament, prophecy, prayer, and so much more!

If you don’t own a Jesus Storybook Bible for your family yet, I highly recommend adding it this year! And join us in reading through it this Advent season!


*I received these products to review from Zondervan. I was not compensated in any way for this review, and all opinions are 100% my own.

**This post contains affiliate links.

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25 Songs of Christmas! {Free Printables}

Last year, I shared our family tradition of learning one Christmas song a day for the first 25 days of December. I absolutely LOVE Christmas music and I want our children to know and love these wonderful songs as well!

We learn how to sing each song, read about its origins, and listen to a few different version when possible!

This year, I wanted to make it fun and easy for you to do the same with your children!

I’ve put together three free printables, each with 25 Christmas songs to sing with your family! One includes only sacred songs, one only secular, and one mixture of both!

Just click on the picture of the version you like to get the PDF to download and print!

Sacred songs only…

Secular songs only…

A mixture of sacred and secular songs…

I tried to pick well-known songs for all three, but some of your favorites may be missing! Maybe there are some new ones you’ll learn along with your children!

We’ll be starting our 25 Songs of Christmas this Saturday, December 1st! Will you join us?

If you enjoy these free printables, would you mind sharing them with your friends in some way? Twitter? Facebook? Pinterest? I would be so grateful! You’re the best!


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Raising Gentlemen: Chores and a Manners Printable

Your response to the “Raising Gentlemen” post from last week kind of caught me off guard – in a great way! I didn’t expect others to be so excited about the prospect of teaching our boys manners, but I’m so glad to hear many of you are feeling the same way!

Raising gentlemen has much to do with manners and chivalry, but there are other parts as well, and one of those parts just seemed to click with the boys these past two weeks:


During 31 Days of Family Ties, I talked about sharing the workload with your family and how I have struggled with delegating in the past. In the past two weeks, I’ve made a concentrated effort to get the boys more involved with jobs around the house on a daily basis and on cleaning day.


They love it!

Big J was counting down the days this week until he could scrub the toilets. I am NOT kidding.


The boys teamed up to rinse the dishes and load the dishwasher every day after lunch this week. They both did several jobs on cleaning day, including dusting and vacuuming. Every Wednesday, the boys help gather the trash from around the house.


I never anticipated them being excited to help around the house and maybe that’s why I didn’t ask before now: I didn’t want to fight them on it. It hasn’t ended up being a fight at all!

Sure, they still grumble when I ask them to clean up their toys at the end of the day – they’re not perfect. I asked Little J to put a stuffed animal away from off the table so we coud eat and he crumbled into a sad pile on the floor. Oh the drama…

But we have made HUGE progress in raising helpful gentlemen!

{The Happy Housewife has a great printable with age-appropriate chores for your kids! Definitely check that out!}

And we also had a great first week learning about WHY we use manners. The Manners Made Easy workbook is a fabulous resource so far! We’ve discussed how we get manners, the different kinds of manners, and how manners can help us in life!

There was a great quote at the beginning of lesson one that I just had to make into a coloring page for the boys. Coloring pages a great way to keep busy hands occupied while you read and discuss a lesson – my boys pay much better attention when they are doing a little coloring while listening!


And I’m adding that coloring page as a free printable just for you!

Just click on the image or here to download!

And have a happy weekend with your ladies and gentlemen!


*This post contains affiliate links.


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31 Family Ties Printable List!

You asked for it, and now you’ve got it!

I had many people ask about a printable list of all 31 family ties to keep somewhere in their home as a visual reminder – you guys are so smart!

The list is just the main idea of each family tie, but if you’ve already read through them, I think it is enough to jog your memory!

An ebook of this series may be in the works at some point, but right now I’m focusing on the FAMILY part and letting the writing happen when time allows!

For this week, all you need to do is click this link or the image above to get your free printable list! After this week, it will only be available to subscribers, which I, of course hope all of you are or will become right now {hint, hint}!

And if you find this printable useful, would you please tell your friends about it?! Tweet it? Facebook it? Pin it? Thanks – you’re the best!

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In case you’re in survival mode…

There are days, weeks, months, even seasons of our lives as mothers where it is an accomplishment to have everyone make it to the end of the day in one piece.

It’s when we go into survival mode.

There is a new baby in the house. You’re moving. A job change has happened. You’ve embarked on the potty training journey.

Many things can send us into survival mode. And during such times, we allow those things we said we would never allow and do those things we said we would never do as a mom…

Cookies for breakfast and cereal for dinner…

The TV as a “babysitter” so you can get even a moment worth of relative quiet…

Letting the laundry pile up or the floors go unmopped or that project go undone…

Guess what, friend? I have something to say about those times when you feel bad about being in survival mode:


Give yourself some grace and a pat on the back.

We all have these times. You do whatever you can to get through those days. And they won’t last forever.

You’re doing a good job, my dear. And things will get better.


What does survival mode look like for you? How do you get through “those” days?

Let me know if I can pray for you through a “survival mode” time as well!

{Click here or on the image above for your free printable!}

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Let Him Carry It On, Mamas! {Free Printable}

God began a good work in you when He made you a mother.

He will carry on that good work of motherhood in your life until it is complete.

Stick with it, mama.

Have confidence in Him and what He is doing in your life, family, & home.

He’s not done with you or your children yet!

{And I’m pressing on right along with you!}


Please enjoy this free printable to encourage you today! Just click on the picture above to download the free PDF!

Linking up with WLWW!

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