Friday, August 29, 2008

more mistreatments...

I've had so much fun mistreating the windows in my house. The dining room windows have been on my "to do" list for a while now, but it seems like other things have taken priority. Well, this week I finally got around to making them.
One of my biggest problems was finding a fabric that matched my bright yellow walls. This fabric is also in my kitchen, but who says you can't use it in two rooms. I searched and searched for anther fabric that would go, but nothing looked right with the yellow walls. The other issue was that I only have this one window in my dining room and it's right up against the wall. I only did one panel because I was afraid that two might be too much!
I had enough fabric leftover, so I made a few pillows for my dining room chairs.
~Another project crossed off the "to do" list!!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

First Day of School

Tuesday we began our adventure of homeschooling! My Corban started kindergarten! We had a great first day. This week is a light week, but by next week all our extra activities will begin.

Our weeks will be busy, but it should be fun!

Here are a few pics from our first day of school...

Riley thought he was such a big boy sitting at his desk doing his "school work"!
My kindergartner!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy 75th Birthday, Grandpa!!

Saturday night we hosted a 75th birthday party for my Grandpa.

My Grandpa is such a special person in my life. When I was a little girl my sister and I would spend the night at my grandparents house almost every Friday night. They would pick us up and take us to dinner at the Olive Garden. After dinner, they would take us shopping at the mall. We would always end up at The Limited. My Grandpa could never remember the name of the store and he would call it "The Union". Not sure why, but it became our little joke. Dinner and shopping at "The Union"! My Grandpa would sit by the fitting rooms while my Grandma helped me and my sister pick out a new outfit. We would try it on and then we would model it for my Grandpa. He would compliment the outfit and tell us ... "It talks to me." That was his way of saying that he thought it looked good on us. He would buy it for us and then we would head back to his house for dessert and a game of Skip-bo! Friday nights were always the BEST!!!
My Grandpa still is such a special part of my life.

It's such a blessing to see him with my boys. They love him so much and enjoy spending time with him now too!

We had a wonderful time celebrating with lots of food, family, and friends.
Everyone brought a yummy appetizer to share, and we, of course, had birthday cake for dessert.

Corban made Grandpa a very special present that was just from him. He even wrapped it himself. He was very proud as he watched Grandpa open it!
We had a wonderful time and enjoyed making lot's new memories!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Where I've been...

Our home has been hit by one mean, awful, stomach bug. It's first victim was Corban. Poor thing! He was so sick for about two days. Then it chose to take me down too. Riley quickly followed behind. Can I just say how awful it was to get sick at the same time my two year old did. Trying to care for him when you feel like you have been hit by a truck is, well, impossible. We have managed though, and are recovering. Shane seems to be the only one in the house with an iron stomach. Or so he thinks??? Needless to say, I have nothing to blog about. We did nothing this week except lay around, drink ginger ale, and watch Noggin. Lot's and lot's of Noggin!!! Not. much. fun.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Take me out to the ballgame...

Saturday, Shane and my brother Timmy played in a softball league tournament at our church. It was a beautiful day for softball. Most of my family was there to cheer them on!!

My Dad and my sister "KK" (They were warned that this pic would be on my blog!)

My Grandparents

My Mom and my sister Al

Riley and me

They started playing around 10 am, and by noon they had won two games. They had successfully advanced to the championship game! The last game was close, but they managed to come away with the title of "League Champs"! YEAH!!!!!!

The boys enjoyed hanging out in the dug out with the team...

Shane up to bat...

The boys congratulate Daddy...

What a great way to spend a Saturday!!!!

Friday, August 15, 2008

A day with friends...

Thursday morning the boys and I met some of our neighbors at the movies. The movie theater shows free children's movies on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings during the summer. We saw the Veggie Tales movie, The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. I think EVERY mom and EVERY preschooler in the city was there too!! It was a packed house. We had a great time though. The movie was very cute!

After the movie, we picked up our good friends Luke and Abby for some end of the summer fun! They head back to school Monday morning. With the busyness about to begin, we know we won't see them much during the school year. This was the last slumber party of the summer. We had to make it a memorable one!

We spent most of the afternoon at our local park. Surprisingly for August, the weather was quite comfortable. Not too hot at all. We played on the playground, hiked around the lake, and built sandcastles in the sand. They got quite dirty playing, but were having a ton of fun.

Corban and Abby

Riley and Abby

Luke's "Too Cool" pose...

Notice Abby's pose too...Can you tell she has older brothers?

After a fun afternoon, we headed back home for a spaghetti dinner and BATHS! We did sneak back out after dinner to get doughnuts from the Dunkin'. What party would be complete without doughnuts after dinner?!?

We watched a little of the Olympics, but everyone was tired and ready for bed.
Luke slept in the guest room, but the rest of the clan spent the night under their tent they had built in the playroom.

We have another fun day ahead of us before we have to take Luke and Abby home. Maybe a trip to Monkey Joes, or maybe Ice Skating??? We will have to wait and see what the consensus will be.......

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Random, but interesting household facts...

There's not much going on this week that I would deem "blog worthy", so I thought I would share this list of interesting household tips I received in an email. You may never eat a banana the same way again!=)...Enjoy!

~ Peel a banana from the bottom and you won't have to pick the little 'stringy things' off of it. That's how the primates do it. Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store.
If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster.

~Store your opened chunks of cheese in aluminum foil. It will stay fresh much longer and not mold!

~Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating. Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking.

~Add a teaspoon of water when frying ground beef. It will help pull the grease away from the meat while cooking.

~To really make scrambled eggs or omelets rich add a couple of spoonfuls of sour cream, cream cheese, or heavy cream in and then beat them up.

~For a cool brownie treat, make brownies as directed. Melt Andes mints in double broiler and pour over warm brownies. Let set for a wonderful minty frosting.

~Add garlic immediately to a recipe if you want a light taste of garlic and at the end of the recipe if your want a stronger taste of garlic.

~Snickers bars make a delicious dessert. Simply chop them up with the food chopper. Peel, core and slice a few apples. Place them in a baking dish and sprinkle the chopped candy bars over the apples. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes!!! Serve alone or with vanilla ice cream. Yummm!

~Heat up leftover pizza in a nonstick skillet on top of the stove, set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza. I saw this on the cooking channel and it really works.

~Easy Deviled Eggs~
Put cooked egg yolks in a zip lock bag. Seal, mash till they are all broken up. Add remainder of ingredients, reseal, keep mashing it up mixing thoroughly, cut the tip of the baggy, squeeze mixture into egg. Just throw bag away when done easy clean up.

~Expanding Frosting~
When you buy a container of cake frosting from the store, whip it with your mixer
for a few minutes. You can double it in size. You get to frost more cake/cupcakes
with the same amount. You also eat less sugar and calories per serving.

~Reheating refrigerated bread
To warm biscuits, pancakes, or muffins that were refrigerated, place them in
a microwave with a cup of water. The increased moisture will keep the food
moist and help it reheat faster.

~Newspaper weeds away~
Start putting in your plants, work the nutrients in your soil. Wet newspapers,
put layers around the plants overlapping as you go cover with mulch and for-
get about weeds. Weeds will get through some gardening plastic they will not
get through wet newspapers.

~Broken Glass
Use a wet cotton ball or Q-tip to pick up the small shards of glass you can't see easily.

~ No More Mosquitoes~
Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.

~Squirrel Away!~
To keep squirrels from eating your plants, sprinkle your plants with cayenne pepper.
The cayenne pepper doesn't hurt the plant and the squirrels won't come near it.

~Flexible vacuum~
To get something out of a heat register or under the fridge add an empty paper towel
roll or empty gift wrap roll to your vacuum. It can be bent or flattened to get in narrow openings.

~Reducing Static Cling~
Pin a small safety pin to the seam of your slip and you will not have a clingy skirt
or dress. Same thing works with slacks that cling when wearing pantie hose.
Place pin in seam of slacks and ... ta da! ... static is gone.

~Measuring Cups~
Before you pour sticky substances into a measuring cup, fill with hot water.
Dump out the hot water, but don't dry cup. Next, add your ingredient, such
as peanut butter, and watch how easily it comes right out.

~Foggy Windshield?~
Hate foggy windshields? Buy a chalkboard eraser and keep it in the glove box of
your car . When the window s fog, rub with the eraser! Works better than a cloth!

Reopening envelope~
If you seal an envelope and then realize you forgot to include something inside,
just place your sealed envelope in the freezer for an hour or two. Viola! It unseals

Use your hair conditioner to shave your legs. It's cheaper than shaving cream and
leaves your legs really smooth. It's also a great way to use up the conditioner you
bought but didn't like when you tried it in your hair.

~Goodbye Fruit Flies~
To get rid of pesky fruit flies, take a small glass, fill it 1/2' with Apple Cider Vinegar
and 2 drops of dish washing liquid; mix well. You will find those flies drawn to the
cup and gone forever!

~Get Rid of Ants~

Put small piles of cornmeal where you see ants. They eat it, take it 'home,' can't
digest it so it kills them. It may take a week or so, especially if it rains, but it works
and you don't have the worry about pets or small children being harmed!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

A Perfect Friday Night

After a VERY, VERY, busy week, I heard the words every busy mom needs to hear from her husband..."Don't worry about dinner, let's just take the boys and go grab something...You deserve it!" Yes, those were the sweet words of my precious husband as we were talking on the phone yesterday afternoon. After work, Shane came by the house and picked up the boys and I. We headed to Hickory Tavern, which is one of our favorite restaurants.

The food is always great and they give you so much of it that our boys can split a kids meal. After dinner, we surprised the boys by taking them to another one of our favorite hang-outs for dessert. They just finished building a Baskin Robbins/Dunkin Donut about 1 mile away from our house. They also have a great place to hang-out right behind their store.

The boys love to eat their donut (or icecream- depending on their choice) outside and then run around and play. It really is a fun little place. The weather was beautiful too. It has been REALLY hot here, but this weekend we're supposed to be getting a little relief.
Hope you had a great Friday night!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Tea time!

Today we finished up a wonderful week at Manners and More Sunflower Camp. We ended our week with a tea party fit for a princess. The girls had a great time decorating their own cupcakes and making placemats for the table. They got to bring a "fancy" dress from home to change into for the actual party! Parents were invited to join us at the end of the day, so they could observe some of the skills that were taught during the week and hear the girls sing a few of their camp songs. It was such a blessing to get to know these sweet girls over the course of the week.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


In order to keep up with our college kids from church, who will be returning to school, Shane (my husband) decided to create both of us Face book accounts. We do not have any experience with Face book, but understand it to be a great way to keep in touch. Shane had to called my sixteen year old sister and asked her to explain to us exactly what Face book was and how it worked. (This is how out of the loop we truly are...) Anyway, he came home last night and created our accounts. This morning I had about 6 emails from people I haven't talked to in years, asking if I would "Be there friend?"--- that's Face book lingo=)!! It was amazing! I haven't heard from some of these people in like five or six years. Most of them are from our old church where Shane and I met about eight years ago. What a treat is was to hear from them. It's been so much fun to see pictures and read about what's going on in their lives today. What a neat way to connect with old friends again!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Nothin' but girl stuff...

Guess what I'm doing all week? GIRL STUFF!!!! Yup, that's right! I am running a manners day camp for girls all this week. Nothing but fun, girly, prissy stuff each day!!! Today was the first day and it was great! I think the girls had fun too!!!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Frogs, Snails, and SNAKES!!!!

When we moved into our home a little over a year ago, we left a great neighborhood with GREAT families behind. I really thought we would never be able to find that same kind of community again. I was wrong. God has blessed us with some wonderful, Christian neighbors. Some of those precious neighbors are Randy and Rebekah. They are also a homeschool family and live just a few doors down from us. They have three boys and a sweet, little, girl. Their oldest boy Joel, and my Corban are the same age. They also have a son, Jayden, who is my Riley's age. Rebekah has been an encouraging person to talk with about homeschooling. She is a wonderful resource and a great support to me.

Our two families have decided to get together on Thursday mornings, during the school year, to do some type of unit study. We're not exactly sure what we are going to be studying yet, but probably something related to science.

Yesterday, we decided to take our clan on a nature hike at our local park. My boys were so excited and couldn't wait.

Jayden, Corban, Riley, Joel, Josiah

Would you believe that we hiked over 1 1/2 miles. I know that doesn't seem like a lot, but with five boys ( ten little legs) all under the age of 5 and a baby in tote, I thought that was a good distance.

The boys were having so much fun discovering the things around us, I don't think they realized how far we had hiked.

We saw some great things on our walk. We caught a few frogs, saw a DEAD snake (thank goodness!), picked up a snail, and discovered some interesting bugs! Now for those of you who know me, you realize that I don't do the live creature thing too well. As the mom of boys, I guess I should get better at it, but I am NOT GOING TO TOUCH A SLIMY, JUMPY, CREATURE! That's were my adoration for my friend Rebekah comes in. She was having as much fun as the boys were running around trying to catch a creature. She caught two frogs too! I happily stood back and held the baby for her while she chased and conquered the little creatures. We had a great time and can't wait until our adventure next Thursday!!!