Sunday, February 20, 2011

How Church can stop your worrying

Last night and this morning, my neurons have been firing at an amazingly rapid rate.  Strangely, this is something that happens to me often just before my period.  PMS for me may mean a little testy, but it also means very productive. Sometimes the rapid fire, can make me a little giddy / punchy so I hope that you will get a bit of a laugh at the comic that I created after listening to this morning's sermon.  Take the time to read the scripture and take it cum grano salis.

Here's hoping you can find the real message and worry not : )

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Best Love Scene in a Movie - Ever!!!!

I was watching He's Not that into You with DD the other day.  And I have to say that they movie has the best love scene ever.  It not one with sex or passion or any traditional love scene.  In fact, all they do is hug.  But there is a part in the movie, after Jennifer Aniston has given Ben Afleck an ultimatum about getting married and has moved out, her father has a heart attack and she is holding down the fort.  Her brothers and brother-in-law are at the house but paying more attention to football than anything else.  Jennifer looks exhausted.  She, holding a basket of laundry, asks her brothers if anyone has done the shopping.  They reply their fine, they have everything they need. She exasperated says "No, for Dad," but gives up before the words are even out of her mouth.  You can she has all but given up. Then she turns, looks down the hall, and who does she see in the kitchen doing the dishes but Ben.  He blurts out that he's already been shopping, picked up some healthy choices for her father, and reassures her that everything is going to be ok.  Jen hugs him relieved.  And that is it.  That is the best love scene I have ever seen in a movie.  True love at its best!  I won't ruin it for you, but . . . maybe they'll get married any way.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Creating a Valentine's Day Card from Scratch

Happy Valentine's to all of you! 

This was actually made by DS (14) during Sunday School.  He came down while I was teaching. Some how he took the simple mouse project and turned it into something extra special.  Certainly, no one else's mouse looked like this.  So we wanted to use it to wish you all a happy valentine's and remind you that today is not about the money you spend on your loved one; it is about taking the time to show them how special they are to you.  Showing them might only take a few cents.  This card for example is made from three sheets of construction paper, a glue stick, and a piece of recycled cording, but it's message is clear - you are worth my time.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Throwing a Sweet 16 Party

A sweet 16 to many girls is like a segment of the MTV show, Sweet 16

but it doesn't need to be like this.  Sometimes simple is more unforgettable than over the top (and frankly, way more affordable.).  We had DD's 16th at my cousin's tea room with 6 girls and 6 adults.  Four of these girls that have been together since DD was in pre-school.  This is our Girl Scout troop.  A group of friends that I hope will last long after they age out of the Scouting program.  I reminded them after the toast what a special group of friends they are and that they have something rare that I hope they will work to preserve.  They were certainly the perfect group to celebrate this special day.

Don't worry, this is sparkling cider, but just another touch that made the day super special.  What do the 16 year olds really want?  I think they just want to feel "adult".  They want to feel like a new section of their life has begun.  So this was a delightful way to celebrate the birth of my baby girl.  We had assorted yummies from cucumber sandwiches to American scones to hand made heart chocolates.  I think it all translated into an unforgettable day. 

This is the birthday girl and me at the celebration!  The only negative is that I think, based on a comment today, that dear husband (her father) felt a little left out.  I guess I need to learn to share my princess a bit.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Need to Know about how Physical Education Affects the Brain

During my exercise time last night I caught Need to Know on PBS.  Interestingly the topic was education (one of my favorite topics).  The story I picked up the broadcast on was this:

Watch the full episode. See more Need To Know.

Now obviously as a homeschooler, I'm not really too concerned about setting up a physical education program in my public school, but I think the basic science definitely crosses over to homeschooling.  First of all maybe this is one of the many reasons homeschoolers to score better because they are not glued to their seats for 6 -8 hours a day.  But I'm not looking to figure out why homeschooling is better, I'm looking to improve it and certainly this concept of physical education boosting scores and learning can be helpful.  We are pretty flexible as it is, but maybe I can encourage more breaks between lessons with exercise as the goal. 

Let me know what you think of this information and how you think we can adapt it to homeschooling?  Maybe you do already.  How does it work?  Specifically, how do you implement it?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

How Much More Snow are We Expecting?

I envision our dog wondering how he made it back to the Alps.  This is a picture just out our side door.  If it was a slightly wider angle, you would see that this pile is up to the lights on our lamppost.  I don't recall ever seeing snow like this before. We actually had to dig a path from our driveway to the oil intakes on the side of the house so that we can have oil delivered tomorrow.  Frankly,I'm thrilled to hear that the groundhog did not see his shadow, but I didn't think he would anyway.  We haven't seen sun in weeks and I'm not sure how he would get out of his den. With all this snow, I'm thinking that even if we don't get another flake, it may be a while before we see green grass.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Organize Your Food to Save Money

Buying extra food during sale time is a great way to save money, but not if you can't find it when you need it or forget that you have it at all.  Organization is really the key.  You need to be able to see the extra food that you have, and you have to rotate it so that it doesn't go bad.  Building or buying shelves that allow you to see your stores is a great idea.  DH and DS this weekend worked on ours.  Apparently you can buy the plastic end pieces that allow you to insert 2x4's to build these shelves.  The plastic pieces can be found at your local Lowe's and Home Depot.  It takes just a few screws to get everything put together.  I'm hoping to get a few more of these shelves, but this is a great start.

With suprises like this, I may leave my husband and son home bored more often.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Home Cooked Comfort Food - Chicken A' La King

Sometimes you have to look to your past for inspiration.  Last night I made a yummy roast chicken, but then ended up running DD down to CT for a UofH game for her birthday.  We were originally supposed to go and then yesterday was yet another miserable weather day in the Northeast so we weren't going to go, thus I stuck in the chicken; then it looked like it was clearing, so I left DH and DS to eat it.  We were supposed to meet my father at the game, but the driving was so bad, I ended up calling him and telling him not to come up. Instead DD and I had dinner at Ruby Tuesday (BTW thank you Ruby Tuesday for a surprise dessert - how did you ever know that it was her birthday?  Could it have been the tiara she wore?), and then headed over to the game.  Anyway, that all meant that we had roasted chicken left over to use for tonight's dinner.  For whatever reason, both DH and I had the same thought - Chicken A' La King.  It was somewhat funny that DS thought that Chicken A' La King had to be some fancy food since it had such a fancy name.  I told him that no, Chicken A' La King was a housewife's friend because it is cost effective and a great way to use leftovers.  Here is the recipe that we used, but remember that it is a recipe that is supposed to help you clean the fridge out so don't be afraid to add all sorts of things.  I particularly remember the Lima Beans in this, but you will find them missing from my recipe, and I would have added peas but DH hates peas.

Chicken A' La King

9 T cornstarch
9 T butter
1 1/2 tsp pepper
2 chicken bouillon cubes
2 c water
1 can cream of chicken soup
4-5 c diced cooked chicken
1/2 - 1 c carrots diced and cooked
1/2 - 1 c corn (canned or cooked if they were frozen)
1 can green beans, drained
1 cup milk

Melt butter in saucepan. Stir in cornstarch until mixed.  Add pepper. Mixture will thicken. Stir constantly. Dissolve chicken bouillon in 2 c water. Pour into butter mixture.  Continue to cook and stir until thickened again.  Add cream of chicken soup and milk (you can add more or less milk depending on the consistency that you would like).  Be sure to get out all of the lumps.  Add chicken and vegetables.  Stir to mix.  Heat until everything is warm.  Serve over toast.

I'm telling you that this recipe was sooooooo sinfully yummy.  DS loved it, and I can't seem to stop myself from sneaking little spoonfuls of my husband's since he's not back from his meeting yet.  Somethings from your childhood are meant to left there (yes, I'm speaking of those Lima Beans) and others are meant to be brought back and enjoyed.  I hope you take the time to enjoy this childhood favorite.

PS.  Here is the newly 16 year old celebrating at last nights UofH girls basketball game with the mascot, Howie.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Why New Mothers Really Don't Need Sleep

16 years ago today my baby girl was born.  It amazes me all that I didn't know that day.  Now she is taller than me (and possibly smarter than me - but don't tell her that).  No matter how much everyone tells you to cherish every moment, it is hard to internalize that when you are changing pooppy diapers, cleaning up spit up, and are completely sleep deprived; but truly, time moves in a flash and the next thing you will know that little baby will be getting ready to drive.  It is amazing to think that my baby will be leaving the nest in the next few years.  She's ready to get her driver's licence.  She is signing up for college courses this summer.  It is a far cry from that first night when I wondered what idiot decided to leave the hospital early as I could not settle her down and no longer had a call nurse button.

So skip the sleep and enjoy every moment.

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!