I am participating in Women in the Scriptures Five Things For Friday blog hop!
I like to design websites. I have been doing it for about 15 years, and I have always done it for fun. I really like creating spaces on the internet that are pretty and easy to navigate.
It’s something of a hobby that’s turned into a valuable service I have been able to offer for single moms, people who’ve lost their jobs and are starting something new, midwives who are kind enough to offer healthcare to women who have no income, and friends who are trying to do good in the world.
Over the years, I have found some things online that have really helped me to do the most good for the least amount of money (spending no money is my motto, actually!). I’ll share a few with you!
Best Site For Free Stock Photography (including high resolution photos): Stock Exchange
You just sign up and download free, beautiful photos for your website or computer. It is now owned by Getty Images, so I don’t know if that will change anything, but I have used it for the past six years and been very happy with it.
Best Site for Free Icons: Softicons
This is a great site for icons–from vintage kitchen to pirates, there is something for everyone here. They also have plenty of social icons (Facebook, RSS, Twitter, etcetera), if you are looking for something that is more you than the run-of-the-mill ones.
And here is a tutorial on how to replace your widget titles on your sidebar with an image in your Blogger blog.
I don’t really use a lot of extra resources in our homeschool. I am not crafty, and I cannot do all the beautiful lap books and homemade amazing manipulatives and educational awesomeness that is so prevalent among the brilliant mothers out there.
My children are so deprived.
So, it’s pretty rare that I even look for things online with regard to homeschool. Usually it happens by accident.
TLS Books: Free Downloads of worksheets for the elementary aged children. These I use mainly to keep my littler children occupied when I need to be paying attention to the older children.
Worksheet Works: This is a new find. My kids like to do the puzzle worksheets for fun. The Basic Mathematics worksheets are great, especially the visual multiplication.
Number 2: Free ACT/SAT/GRE Prep website, which has been rated among the best in Consumer Reports.
Read, Write, Think Student Interactives: Online resources for writing poetry, writing and publishing prose, and more.
Classics For Kids: Podcast, lessons, and more about classical composers.
Fonts and Prints Freebies
Being a web designer who also creates logos and branding for people and non-profits, I have found that something magical happens when you find just the right font. If any of you are interested in adding cute fonts to your collection, here are a few free download sites I have loved in the past:
Kevin and Amanda have quite possibly the cutest collection of fonts in the history of the internet.
Google Web Fonts has hundreds of downloadable fonts that can also be used in Blogger or on any website using the Google Font API (if you even know what I am talking about!) Even if you don’t have any idea what that means, you can still download all the fonts there and use them in your own projects.
Peonies and Poppy Seeds has lots and lots of free printables. I don’t do this sort of thing–but I love looking at this stuff, and wishing I could do it. I also love all my friends who can do those cute label things with the baked goods and stuff.
Simply Fresh Designs also has free printables and some LDS subway art.
I also occasionally do some printables for fun. Here is a freebie that I made for one of my dearest friends for Christmas (she wanted to give it to her mom after she saw me post it on Facebook). That is a perfect description of me, by the way. Just click on the image, and then right click on the larger image and save:
I am not a very good cook, but I know a good recipe when I taste one that someone else made! Here are some great places to get recipes for real food, not food product.
100 Days of Real Food: Some great ideas, and menu plans. Of course, I will never be able to stick to a menu plan, but I have such lofty ambitions….
Beyond Salmon has been a long time favorite blog of mine. Her Halibut Wrapped in Napa Cabbage is simple, yet elegant (and yet, when I made it for the kids, did they appreciate elegant? No, they did not. I ended up having to cut up the beautifully wrapped halibut and it just didn’t look the same after that).
Vegan Lunchbox is a great website to make you think, “Wow. Am I just lazy because I could never even think of all these vegan lunches, let alone package them in cute lunchboxes and turn sandwiches into rabbits and cucumbers into dragons?” I go there just to get some ideas on lunches that don’t involve meat. I promise you, though, I will never be able to make them cute.
Six Sisters Stuff just makes me feel warm and cozy, and it’s full of wicked Mormon treats that I could luckily never make successfully. But the pictures are amazing, and there are some really good recipes here.
Feel Good Freebies
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just want to find something that makes me smile, or inspires me to be better or get out of the doldrums. Here are some of them.
Positive Music and Downloads is a site that is run by my neighbor, the LDS composer Greg Hansen. He is so passionate about good, positive music. If you sign up for the newsletter, you can get free downloads from groups like Vocal Point each week.
If you enjoy political humor, you may appreciate Frank Fleming’s columns in the NY Post. They are pretty funny and clean. I have even laughed out loud when I read them sometimes.
Bored Shorts TV is the home of Kid History, quite possibly some of the funniest Mormons in the world. The following episode is about healthy food making you strong but candy making you rich. My kids, being the victims of healthy food experiments and mostly raw food living now love this one. “Here’s your perfectly normal pancakes!” Funny stuff.
And finally, my good friend, Vickey, who has been an EFY speaker for, well, ever–has a great website all about good called Goodness Matters.
Thanks, again Heather, for the blog hop! It only took me all day to finish this, but at least I am doing Five Things For Friday on Friday this week, so hooray for me!