We are an Amazon Prime loving family. I mean you just can’t beat free 2 day delivery, basically anything you could ever want to buy, and bargain hunting! As an unschooling family, we find lots of educational goodies on Amazon. As a mom, I’m also always looking for things that make my life easier. Aaaaand I buy myself the occasional “treat” or two as well.
We tend to batch buy things about once a month, after “crushing on” it for a while. Here are some of our favorite purchases so far this year
THINGS FOR K:
Kids Bluetooth Wireless Headband / Sleep Mask
K’s SPD often amps up at bedtime, when every little noise is heightened. She’s consistently bothered by small house noises, the threat of thunderstorms, trucks going by on the road, the threat of smoke detectors going off (which they recently randomly did for no reason at all. Checked the batteries, they were fine.), etc. etc. She tried using her hardshell noise blocking ear muffs but those are, as you can imagine, incredibly uncomfortable to sleep in. So off to Amazon I went and found this gem! It’s a soft headband that covers the ears and can cover the eyes too – that has bluetooth wireless capability! SCORE! We linked this to her “music box” tablet (old tablet repurposed to just play music in her bedroom) and she loves it! The addition of the music helps block more noise, it’s soft and comfy, AND it helps block out unwanted lights. This has really helped her settle down and get to sleep faster!
Assorted Tumbled Rocks
This product is a GREAT price for the amount of rock chips you get. These are NOT large tumbled stones, but rather small 1cm ish chips. They would be good for decorating projects, art projects, math manipulatives, etc. We use them to represent the things we are thankful for each night and collect them in our “Thankful Jar”. This also gives us a daily opportunity to work on identification of each rock. While they are small, you should still be able to easily identify each of them, as the assortment seems to contain several of the most popular stones. I.E clear quartz, amethyst, lapis lazuli, citrine, carnelian, etc.
Rock on! Geology Game
Since we have been using the assorted rock chips for our thankful jar, K has wanted to know what each one is and has been getting very interested in various gems/stones. And like I said above, we’ve been working on identifying the ones in the assorted batch we purchased. But sometimes we find one that I don’t know what it is – or can’t remember. We’ll look it up of course, but I bought this game so that we can work on even more rock identification in an even more fun way! I’m hoping it will help me finally recall the name of that weird light pastel green rock K loves (haha).
Piano for Kids
As I mentioned in our recent Unschool Life Update, K has been working on learning basic piano. She got a keyboard for her birthday in February. I did a LOT of research on various kids piano books and this one really seemed to take the cake! I’ve been really happy with it so far! It’s easy to understand and progresses nicely. It teaches correct finger position and two-handed play from the very beginning. But above all, it makes practicing FUN!
My husband and I both speak Spanish as a second language. I actually currently teach Spanish for our homeschool co-op – it was my minor in college. Hubby has family that are native Hispanic. So one of the things we really have wanted to teach K is Spanish, from a young age. Language learning is much much easier for young kids than it is for older teens and adults, unless they just have an affinity for languages. K LOVES learning new Spanish words and actually uses them appropriately. One of the ways we include Spanish in our unschooling life is to read bilingual books together. The below books are some that we LOVE! Notice that The Story of Ferdinand has a separate book for the English version and a separate book for the Spanish version. We actually like having two copies of books like this because then one of us can read the Spanish version and the other can read the English version – so both parents can be involved in storytime!
CONFESSION: Hubby and I often battle over who gets to read the Spanish version, because we BOTH want to!
Things for me:
The Complete Medicinal Herbal
One of my 5 year goals is to obtain an herbalist certification. I’m looking into and planning to participate in a reputable course as soon as I can work it into the budget. But since we’re also trying to finish up a million home improvement projects to get our home ready to sell, enrolling in an herbalism course is going to have to wait awhile. So in the meantime, I’m self-studying and working with herbs on my own. This book is one of my favorites so far! I’ve bought a couple others from half-price books but they haven’t arrived yet….
Adjustable Book / Tablet Stand
I really bought this for K to use as a music stand when she’s practicing keyboard, but I’m definitely going to be using it too. No more flat tablet on the countertop when looking up a recipe. No more flat textbooks when I’m studying! The stand easily folds flat and has several adjustments for various viewing angles. It’s made of a study thick plastic that doesn’t feel cheap!
Leaf Shaped Ceramic Mini-Dishes
As I’ve mentioned, I’m getting into herbalism and as part of that I’ve been making our own incense recently. I actually prefer to use loose incense on these Starlight Charcoal Rounds, so I had to search for little bowls or plates for burning the incense. I wanted something with a depth so we could layer sand, charcoal, incense. These cute little dishes, which are technically appetizer or sauce dishes, caught my eye! I love that they are leaf shaped and so kind of go with the whole herbal vibe and they come in 4 lovely colors! Great price and quality.
Dymo Label Maker
Since I am a serial craft supplies collector… I mean you never know when you’re going to need 50 buttons for some art project and as unschoolers our supply of cardstock, stickers, white paper, paint, crayons, etc. must be stocked at all times! So much art and crafting happens in our house – SO. MUCH.
The problem is that my house has very little storage space. And craft supplies have traditionally been stored all over the house. Some in my closet, some in K’s closet, some in the office, etc. They haven’t had one collective “home” since we’ve lived here. Part of that is the lack of storage space and part of that has been my lack of organization because it’s really really daunting to organize as much art/craft stuff as I have.
However, since we’re preparing to move and since I’ve grown more and more fond of a minimalist-ish lifestyle – I’ve been facing the organizational problem head on. The first thing I did was to purchase a bunch of plastic food containers from the dollar tree. The second thing I did was to purchase this label maker form Amazon. BEST PURCHASE OF MY LIFE.
I’m nowhere near done with my craft supply organization project, but we now have stickers, crayons, colored pencils, glues/tapes, watercolor paints, paintbrushes and sponges, etc. all in their own labelled storage containers. The containers make it super easy to pull out the desired supplies and put back all nice and neat with the lid secured so things don’t get spilled or mixed up. The labels make it super easy to quickly visualize what is in each container.
Since doing this, hubby can now get K set up with paint supplies quickly and easily -because he can actually FIND them now. Whereas before I was the only one who knew where x,y, z supplies were hidden.
I’ve also been able to use my handy dandy label maker to organize all my new herbs into my apothecary closet! What was once a ragtag assortment of bagged/jarred herbs is now nicely and neatly arranged and labelled so I don’t have to go digging through a box to find what I need!
i know I know, this all sounds like basic organization 101, and it is. But for me, someone who is busy and just hasn’t made the time (up til now) to organize, this has been life changing!
Clothing Organizer Bags
One of my other organizational projects has been to clean out and tidy up our walk-in closet. Which isn’t exactly the most well designed closet in the world. While it’s technically a “walk-in”, it has weird angles and hard to reach places. And there’s shelving that was added that just doesn’t make sense… it’s been kind of a trainwreck.
I finally decided enough was enough and ordered these clothing organizer bags, which stack up nicely once they’ve been filled with folded clothes. I’m using them to store our out of season clothes and some of my husband’s more formal button up shirts, that he doesn’t wear very often but still needs to keep in case he has a face to face work meeting or has to travel for a business thing.
These have freed up a lot of space in the closet and keep clothes from being shoved to the back of the closet where they just get forgotten about. When not in use, they fold flat and take up very little space.
Makeup Train Case
Still on the topic of organization… I have been struggling with my makeup storage for years! At first I simply tossed everything into a makeup bag, but caps and lids would come off and everything would get coated in sticky eyeliner goo or silver eyeshadow powder, etc. So then I bought a countertop organizer that’s clear and has various compartments/holders for brushes etc. But even though I’ve drastically reduced the number of eyeshadows and lipsticks I own, I still have too many makeup items to store neatly in even two organizers.
So I finally gave in and purchased a dedicated makeup case, with dividers and shelves and a brush holder, and a mirror too! I haven’t actually gotten this in the mail yet – it should be here this week, but I’m super excited to 1) get all the makeup off the bathroom counter and clear up some visual space and 2) not have to lump everything together into one catch-all bag. Plus the case I bought is super stylish 😉
So there you have it! Our family’s favorite Amazon finds from February/March!
Affiliate Disclosure: If you see something you like from our list, we do receive a small commission from Amazon if you purchase from our links – but this is at no cost to you!!