Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
We decided that the Twist and Glue works really well for paper piecing and card stock, not as well for felt pieces, or for gluing large areas of regular paper (Tended to wrinkle....). We especially like the small tip for getting "Just the right amount" of glue on some of those tiny bits of paper! And..... when you get just a little too much on, it washes off very nicely, even on these nice cards! EXCELLENT!
$3.95 for this bottle, and it is still going strong...
Monday~ Chicken/vegetable chowder with easy cheesy scones
Modified from the above recipes
Tuesday~ Pasta with Al Fresco Sausage and Salad (And crockpot yogurt for breakfasts)
Wednesday~ Shepherd's Pie(?) or "Stuffed Meatloaf" (Potato filled meatloaf.. YUM!)
Thursday~ Indian-style chicken in the crockpot (I hope~ Utilizing some of that crockpot yogurt!)
Friday~ Sandwich Night~ racing from Oireachtas practice to AWANA
So there you have it... I am hoping to actually make the Tandoori Chicken, since I've "planned" to at least 2 times and haven't gotten to it... we shall see~ At least the chicken is paid for (That's part of the problem... it's in the freezer and needs defrosting.... )
Check out all the other Menu plans for this week at Organizing Junkie at get inspired to make some food and save some change!
Monday, June 15, 2009
BTW, those cold Chicken Satay Noodles that Laura has on her menu this week are yummy! We had them last week, and everyone liked! Check out her site for more great menus!
Monday Little League Playoff Game night: Chicken and Broccoli casserole with leftover chicken and broccoli from Friday
Tuesday Irish Step Dance Practice night: Crockpot Tandoori Chicken (Chicken legs/thighs are on sale for $0.69/lb this week!)
Thursday Little League Championship or Consolation Game night: pizza at the field!
Saturday: Oldest's Birthday....something "out" perhaps?
Sunday Father's Day: probably a cook-out sort of thing? or maybe Indian food? Have to check with our friends~~~ :)
Well, I'm missing a couple of spots here... I'll post for now, and fill them in when I get the chance! (Which means I'm going to go scout around a few other posts, and see what looks good!)
Monday, June 8, 2009
Monday: Cold-cut subs with leftovers from Sunday's church business meeting
Tuesday: Homemade pizza with leftovers from the porkchops on Saturday
Wednesday: Baseball game~ Hot dogs? Not sure on this one....
Thursday: Homeschool meeting~ Maybe the Cold Chicken Satay noodles that Laura referenced
Friday: Last regular Little League game of the season~ Rebecca's Tortilla casserole(From Honest Pretzels) with leftover chicken,
Saturday: Eek... I still have to work on my grocery shopping/sales this week
Sunday: leftovers or eating out... we'll see...
Pretty skimpy this week, not feeling as "planned", but I'm still trying!
Any help would be great!
Thursday, June 4, 2009
“This can be a quick one. Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you’ve read that will always stick with you. First fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.”
- The Bible
- Rose in Bloom(And others) by Louisa May Alcott
- Rivets and Sprockets by A. Key
- The Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder
- The Wizard of Oz books by Frank L. Baum
- The Moosepath League books by Van Reid
- Gladys Aylward: The Little Woman
- Madeleine L'Engle's "Meet the Austins"
- Living a Beautiful Life by Alexandra Stoddard
- Dark Horse by John Fischer
- The Body by Chuck Colson
- The Pecan Tree (by ??? picture book from grade school)
- Pocketful of Pinecones by Karen Andreola
- Heidi by Johanna Spyri
- The Black Stallion by Walter Farley
If you want to see what books have affected other folks, hop on over to http://btt2.wordpress.com/ and check it out. Feel free to leave me a comment or two, as well, if you'd like. ;)
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
For your more advanced artists, this is another good pick (Although I really *do* like the animals best...)
I'm going to look for some pictures to add as examples, but I'll post in the meantime.. just check back later, if you want to see what we've done. (I'm also going to look for a nifty Peter Rabbit chalk drawing that I did some time ago... )
This works for us!
Monday, June 1, 2009
Monday: Chicken Quesadilla's (With chicken intended for Shepherd's Pie) and raw carrots
Tuesday: Shepherd's Pie with the rest of the Chicken
Wednesday: Quiche (Possibly a rainy day, so a good day for baking), carrots, cucumbers
Thursday: Mussels in white wine with Garlic and Scallions and salad
Friday: Pasta and sausage, asparagus
Saturday: Pork Chops on the grill or in the crock-pot, with baked sweet potatoes
Sunday: ?? Not sure on that one yet.
So, here you have it.
Oh... a funny from last week.
Littlest's favorite vegetable is steamed broccoli, which we haven't had for a couple of weeks. When we brought it to the table on Friday, he started pumping his arms up and down, kicking his legs out, and chanting "o-cco-li! o-cco-li! o-cco-li!" It was just so funny, especially since I don't remember teaching him a "Cheer" for anything, much less his vegetables. Makes a mamma's heart sing to see something like that, tho'. :)
Friday, May 29, 2009
I will continue to add to this list as I find more:
Summer Reading Programs:
Check out your local library.... most of them have summer reading programs with fun prizes, etc.
BARNES AND NOBLE
Read 8 books and get a free pick
FREE/REDUCED RATES MOVIES
KIDS BOWL FREE
Music Festivals (searchable database)
Check out your local minor league baseball team for fun and inexpensive family entertainment!
Local to me are Lowell Spinners Games~ Tickets are $5-$8 dollars, so not free, but definitely cheap! ☺This just in~ (Thanks the gals at shopwithoutmoney.blogspot.com for pointing this out) Kraft has teamed up with minor league baseball for this promotion: Buy 1 ticket get 1 ticket free on Tuesdays, at participating ballparks.
Boston Area Activities if you are local to Boston, check this out. If you live somewhere else, you can search for local activities, check out your local newspaper "Calendars"
Hope this helps you especially if you are planning a frugal "Stay-cation" this year...
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Here's a snippet from their website about the name:
The name Pandora means "all gifted" in Greek. In ancient Greek mythology, Pandora received many gifts from the Gods, including the gift of music, from Apollo. She was also, as we all know, very curious. Unlike those Gods of old, however, we celebrate that virtue and have made it our mission to reward the musically curious among us with a never-ending experience of music discovery.
So, the basic idea is that you type in an artist or song that you like, and Pandora searches the "Music Genome Project". While you may not instantly hear that song or artist, you WILL hear a song with similar qualities. Then you have the option of rating it thumbs up, or thumbs down, and Pandora will continue playing songs, using your feedback to create your personal station.
I have an Alison Krauss station that is fantastic (With *mostly* Alison Krauss music, although I've heard JT, EmmyLou Harris, etc... and some new names that I'm enjoying getting to know).
I created a Josh Groban station for mellow music to school to, A "Boppin' Praise" station with the likes of Chris Rice and Casting Crowns, and a couple of folk stations. I have yet to create a classical station or two, but that's a thought, and I bet that I'll get a Christmas station going in the later fall!
I really enjoy being able to hear new music that is in a style that I appreciate. I think this is a great thing, and my kids are loving it too.
Check it out!
Monday, May 25, 2009
I hope that everyone had a good day, remembering and being thankful for those who gave their lives for the freedom of our country, and countless others, AND appreciating those who are currently serving.
I'm going to take a stab at menu-planning... we'll see how it goes. I really *should* get organized, because I now have two kids in activities, and both of them are 2-3 times/ week! ACK!
OK, so here we go:
Monday: Tonight we had left over Texas Roadhouse Pulled Pork sandwiches, potato salad, and corn on the cob.
Tuesday: Homemade Pizza and salad
Wednesday: Grilled sirloin tips and chicken, potato salad (Again... I made a big batch!) and corn on the cob.
Thursday: Pasta "bake" with leftover meat, raw carrots and cucumber on the side
Friday: Tandoori Chicken in the crockpot(From crockpot365), rice, and cucumbers.
Saturday: Salad with Roasted Chicken from the store, Hummus and chips
Sunday: Shepherd's Pie made with leftover Chicken and a bag of veggies from the freezer
So, there you have it.... hopefully I'll manage to stick to it! :)
We found in the stacks 2 books that we had requested, checked out, and returned about 2 weeks prior. Yes, I'm sure that these were the same two books that had visited our home. If we hadn't checked them out, and they weren't on the reshelving cart, would they have remained in the library for others to peruse and use? These were basic information, non-fiction books that went with a unit study on homesteading on the American Prairie.... kind of the type of book that one would prefer to see at the library, not taking up personal book-shelf space. And I don't think that there's much "updating" that needs to be done on history books like these. I suppose they look "Dated", but in my opinion, that's a GOOD THING.
Now for the other two that I considered, and wondered about... these are by a "current" author, AVI, and are in fantastic shape, great historical stories, very readable, and interesting.
Beyond the Western Sea, Book 1: The Escape From Home
Beyond the Western Sea, Book2: Lord Kirkle's Money
When I read that the author was inspired to write these, in part, based on the fact that so many kids were reading Stephen King novels, I feel two emotions. Profound disappointment that these books found their way to the discard pile at the Library....and Gratitude that there are current authors writing good literature without all the ick and gore, and that I found these books, and am able to save them for my daughter to read.
So... what gives? Does anyone know? I so dislike going to the library and seeing shelves filled with more "Twaddle" than good literature for my children to read and digest. I'd love to see the Arthur Ransome Series, for instance, and they are actually currently in print!
Well, my "vent" is over... feel free to leave me a comment or two~
Monday, April 27, 2009
Skeeter and the Mystery of the Lost Mosquito Treasure~ It's About Being Unique By Max Lucado's Hermie & Friends
The story has to do with two brothers, Skeeter and Sinclair. Sinclair is debonair and something of a world traveler with a distinguished reputation. Skeeter is… a “homegrown” mosquito with a crooked stinger… lovable, but with a penchant for getting lost. The moral of the story has much to do with the fact that God created each one of us, just the way we are. We each have strengths and weaknesses, but if we focus on the strengths and work together to overcome our challenges, we are much more likely to reach a common goal.
My children* enjoyed the story, from the 21-month old(The animations kept his attention) to the 8 and 11 year olds(Who ended up thinking about the "Message", and it left us (Mom and Dad) with smiles on our faces as well. If you are looking for “Family viewing” that will entertain a variety of ages, including the littlest in the family, this could be a good choice for you.
*My kids are very happy that we were afforded the opportunity to review this DVD as a member of Thomas Nelson’s Book Review Blogger program http://brb.thomasnelson.com/
- Molly's Minute summarizes what you'll find in this month's Digest
- Begin with the Basics is a "Strawberry Primer" for May and June
- One Sale This Month tracks what typically goes on sale each month. I particularly enjoyed this section, and I even scored a new handmixer (To replace the one that died back in December...), feeling fairly confident that I got it for a pretty rock-bottom price~ worth the cost of the digest, and then some!
- Keeping It All Together covers some budgeting basics, that follow on the heels of previous digest "Assignments"
- Parenting that Pays is a sweet tribute of women sharing what they learned from their moms and/or mother-figures
- Feather Your Nest Frugally, Pull Up a Chair, Goal Getter Spotlight, Readers Write In, and Something Old, Something New all offer hints, tips and inspiration for frugal home-making (With topics touching on decorating, organizing, budgeting/cutting back on expenses, recipes, and celebrating special days)
- This month's feature~ Learning for Life~ Your Child's Education includes articles and interviews that cover parenting preschoolers all the way up to "post-high school". I particularly enjoyed hearing about the post-high school opportunities, and reading the interview with Paula Reetz and Sherri MacLean, co-authors of Preschool Activities in a Bag.
All in all, I enjoyed reading through, learning a few things, being reminded of a few things, and finding a few new and relevant online links to explore.
Andy Andrews’ inspirational new book The Noticer was my introduction to his writing, and a first rate first read. He tells the story of a small town filled with individuals whose lives are changed for the better due to the interest and observations of a man named Jones, whose favorite phrase is “Sometimes, all a person needs is a little perspective.”
How true that we all too often are looking at matters through a microscope, when we would be better backing off so that we could see the “Big Picture” clearly. Like the blind men and the elephant, we sometimes need someone to help us see our circumstances from a bird’s-eye view, and that is what Jones does throughout this narrative. Like Robert Frost, in The Road Not Taken, he points out that the choices we make affect not only our immediate circumstances, but those of future generations.
In a society where everyone seems to question the motives of others, but seldom search their own souls, are quick to cast blame, but anxious to avoid it, Andy Andrews has posed an introspective question: “What is it about me that other people would change if they could.” Jones suggests that the answer and one’s decision to act on that answer, or not, can be a source of magnifying one’s focus on the positive or the negative in one’s life.
Of course, the hope is that people choose to take positive steps forward, and make a positive impact on their lives, families, communities, states, countries, and our world. One way to do so, is to check out The Noticer Project, and take a little bit of time to publicly “notice” those who have had a positive impact on your life. It may be a small step, but sometimes that is all it takes to make something good happen.
*I am a member of Thomas Nelson’s Book Review Blogger program http://brb.thomasnelson.com/
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Friday, March 13, 2009
Our tulip bulbs and daffodils are "sprouting", and this year we're trying "Squirrel Stopper" spray, to see if we can save our tulip bud this year...
And... I noticed something I hadn't noticed before~ we have two lilac trees~ Two colors, and guess what? They have different colored leaf buds as well! The white lilac's buds are a light green, and the purple lilac has maroon leaf buds. COOL! :)
Just wanted to share~
My husband and I adopted our youngest daughter from Kazakhstan 2 1/2 years ago. We have always known that we'd like to adopt again, but didn't think that right now was the best time, since we are hopeful to move to WI sometime this year. Anyway, in Dec. the urge to adopt was hitting me very hard, so I asked the Lord to either remove it (until it was the right time) or show us that it actually WAS the right time!! Well, a week later, we received a phone call from our adoption agency and they asked us if we'd consider being a "test" family for a "pilot" program they were starting in Taiwan! I'd say that was an answer to prayer!!! (And luckily, so did my husband!)
I've been making custom made bags with all proceeds going towards our adoption. This month I am raffling off a custom bag (it'll be custom made to the winner's liking!), tickets are only $5.00 each. All bag styles and sizes are on http://denicescreations.blogspot.com/ .
Since we are the first family to go through this new program, everything is happening at a very accelerated rate! VERY FAST!!! I know that Lord will provide, just kind of freaking my poor husband out! (And I guess me a little too!)
Thanks for taking the time to look! And any prayers would be greatly appreciated too!!!
If you feel led, please contact Denice...
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Due to frantic Friday evenings getting out to AWANA, last year was the year of the frozen Schwann's pizza. This year, in trying to "Save some dough", I decided to try making my OWN dough. I searched for a recipe for "Quick Pizza Crust" and found this . I have played with it and modified it over the months, so what follows is my version of quick and easy and TASTY pizza, with no preservatives, and only whole wheat goodness! (Editing to add in another variation that we like right now!)
Friday's Fabulous Fast Fixin's(aka Speedy Pizza)
This recipe makes enough to fill two large rectangular bar pans from Pampered chef(I suppose it would work for two round pizza stones, too, but I don't have any of those, so we eat rectangular pizza!)
- 4 1/2 tsp yeast
- 2 tsp sugar(I used Florida's Naturals)
- 2 cups warm water
- 5 cups whole wheat flour OR 2 cups whole wheat flour, 2 cups white wheat flour, and 1 cup cornmeal (This is our current favorite crust combo)
- 4 Tbs olive oil
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup shredded cheese(Optional)
- 2 tsp dried basil OR 1/4 cup Sesame Seeds (Optional)
- extra olive oil
Dissolve the yeast and sugar in the warm water. Set the timer for 10 minutes.
Mix the flour, salt, cheese, and basil in a medium sized bowl, while the yeast is "activating".
When the timer goes off, the yeast mixture should be "creamy", if it is,
Add the yeast mixture and the oil to the dried ingredients, and beat until smooth.
Split in half (I save one half in an airtight container or ziplock baggie for another night)
Let the dough "relax" for 5 minutes, so that it will be easier to roll out.
Shape your pizza, and brush with the extra olive oil, then add the rest of your desired toppings. My kids aren't fans of red sauce, so we tend to go with some combination of the following:
(We always have cheese and sauteed onion slices)
- meat of some sort (leftover meatballs(sliced), rotisserie chicken, slices of Al Fresco chicken sausages, etc...)
- sliced grape tomatoes
- roasted red pepper strips
- slices of calamata olives
- sauteed mushrooms
- steamed broccoli
- minced garlic
Pop it into the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes. Be sure to let it cool a couple of minutes after baking, so that nobody burns the roof of their mouth.
So... this is what works for us, and I thought I'd share! :) You can find out what works for other families at We are THAT Family which is hosting "Works For Me Wednesday" posts
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
*With my other blog, Acorns~ Or Homeschooling Nuggets of Gold which has reviews of homeschooling products
*Heading up my local Homeschool Support Group
*Helping out at AWANA as a leader, with my husband, providing music for "council time"
*Helping to lead music every 3rd Sunday at church
*Keeping up with my new toddler
*Carting my oldest to Step-Dance classes 2x per week
*Oh, yes, and homeschooling my oldest two...
We recently attended an educational opera production of Mozart's Magic Flute, put on by the Boston Lyric Opera~ it was great fun, even if Littlest only lasted through 1/2 of the performance before the size of the hall got to him... Oldest and Middlest found it interesting to note the differences from the performance they had seen 4 years previously.
Littlest had his first sledding experience a couple of weeks ago, and he enjoyed himself once he got to sit in his siblings inflated Tube sleds, where he appeared to feel safe and secure, cradled by rubber. ;)
We're planning on taking the kids skiing/snowboarding for the first time ever next week, as well as our traditional maple sugaring tour at the Audubon Sanctuary.
All in all, we're keeping quite busy!
Hopefully I'll be able to update a little more often, and I may even have some literature reviews(non-homeschooling related) to post here... we shall see.
And if I can get my Canon camera fixed, or my "stop-gap" Kodak Easy share(Not so "easy-to-share" I'm finding... :( ) to actually upload to my MAC, I might even make this blog more "pretty" with new photos.