Monday, May 31, 2010

A Juicy Weekend

I haven't been keeping up with my blogging this weekend, as I have been doing this:

Juicing stuff with my new juicer, sitting on the back deck enjoying the sunshine, reading a book that sucked and a book that doesn't (so far). 
In my juice:
  • spinach
  • cucumber
  • basil
  • apple
  • pear
  • ginger
  • lime
  • JOY.
So, Menu Plan Monday didn't happen.  I don't have a plan yet, but I am sure we will not starve. 
See you tomorrow, if I can tear myself away from the juicer. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

Two for a Dollar?

The Husband:  Tiny, let me see those loose teeth.  I will just give it a little wiggle.
Tiny:  Okay, Daddy!

The Husband:  Hmmmm, let me just give it a little tug.
Tiny:  Okay, Daddy!

The Husband:  *jerks on the tooth*
Tiny:  DADDY!!!

Out came the first tooth.  Proudly displayed gap-grin:

The Husband:  Tiny, let me stop the bleeding and give the other one a little wiggle.
Tiny:  Okay, Daddy. 

Tiny:  OUCH!

The Husband:  I think we are all done here. 
Tiny:  *sob*
The Husband:  I guess we better get ready for the tooth fairy.

Crazy little consumer, capitalizing on life's inevitabilities. 
Where is my purse?

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Fishing, Roo, and Haircut, too.

Just a little rhyme to start the day.
Sunday afternoon we went out to the in-laws to let the Woolly Mammoth out to graze. 
The girls wanted to do some fishing, and the Husband was happy to oblige.

It was HOT. 

Why is Tiny Love wearing a life jacket when we are fishing on the dock? 
Because Tiny Love is a little unpredictable, and Mom is a little paranoid attached to her.
Someone else is a lot more trustworthy.

Curlyjo caught, with her little Barbie pole, several giant, ugly catfish.

And Tiny Love thinned out the smaller fish population.

It was a good day.
Today is a good day, too.  Why, you ask? 
The Roo is on the couch, contemplating the mysteries of Elmo while trying to focus on Dinosaur Train.  He has already filled his diaper twice, refused four different breakfast options, and guzzled two cups of chocolate milk.  Oh, and stolen my heart.  :)
In other news, I have done it again...I let my hair grow out until it was exactly chin length and at the peak of hideousness, and gave up.  I got it cut.
It looks the same when I get up as when I went to bed...for better or worse. 
I don't know if it looks better, but it can't be worse. 

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Simple Woman's Daybook

To participate in The Simple Woman's Daybook, go here.
FOR TODAY:  May 25, 2010

Outside my is a little cloudy and hazy, and it looks hot out there already. 

I am thinking...about my Mom, hoping she will be released from the hospital today. 

I am thankful for...the Holy Spirit, who is speaking to my heart today about my selfishness.  I am so thankful that God doesn't leave me as I am.

From the learning rooms...I am finishing Stepping Heavenward by Mrs. E. Prentiss.  The girls have the day off of school today!
From the kitchen...I just had my morning bowl of Banana Oats.  Apparently my breakfast rut is back.

I am wearing...PJ bottoms, t shirt, no socks.

I am creating...laundry piles.  I have four loads to fold and put away. 

I am take Curlyjo to piano lessons today.  I am also getting my hair trimmed today, but I really just want to shave it all and start over.

I am reading...the book of Proverbs.  I need some wisdom (see the above statement).

I am hoping...that through this current trial, my family will be stronger, and I will be less interested in myself.

I am hearing...Curlyjo and her friend giggling upstairs.

Around the the evidence that my mind has been distracted the last few days.  Things are disheveled and making me crazy.

One of my favorite things...fresh strawberries, local and in season.  One of my dearest friends gave me some, and it did just brighten my day.

A few plans for the rest of the week:  Catching cuddles from my nephew (who is spending the night tonight),  keeping the garden watered, lunch at the park with friends, missing my sisters (who are traveling to Canada to see my parents).

Here is picture for thought I am sharing:
If you see these two ladies at the airport, be sure to tell them that the air in Canada is "so FREEEESH." 
It will make them smile :)

Monday, May 24, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Whew!  It has been Monday all day, if you know what I mean ;)

So, I did the Aldi shopping this week, and it felt good to leave the grocery store with a HEAPING cartful for $160!  I stocked up on some staple items, too.

Monday:  Grilled burgers, macaroni and cheese, roasted veggies (Brussels sprouts/broccoli)
Tuesday:  Chicken Sausage Pasta, salad, garlic bread
Wednesday:  Chicken Wreath, frozen veggie
Thursday:  Beef Stroganoff, egg noodles, green beans
Saturday:  Pizza, salad
Sunday:  Leftovers

I will post the recipe for the Chicken Sausage pasta once I am done making it up :)
The Chicken Wreath is a weird Pampered Chef thing that is seriously the Husband's favorite food.  Brother loves it too.  Us girls, not so much.
I have already pre-cooked some lentils and quinoa to have through the week, and I boiled some eggs for a protein source for us vegetarians.  Looks like we will be relying pretty heavily on the beans this week.
I think I will close this post with a couple of random pics that reflect where my mind is right now, because it's my blog and I'll be random if I want to.
She has been in the hospital (far, far away), and I wish I could get to her.

Tiny Love. 
She went to spend the night with a friend, and I miss her.

The Roo, my nephew.
I just haven't seen enough of his sweet face lately.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Home Sweet Home

Yesterday, while waiting to go have dinner with some of my lovely friends

and heading to a Stampin' Up card making party,
(humidity hair and more black clothing)

I stopped at my house, wandered through it, and generally missed it.

I admired my favorite tree,

reminisced about my children climbing their favorite tree,
I also spent some time wondering why, if we don't live there right now, there is so much junk of the Husband's stuff out by the barn. 

I admired my little herb garden,
which seems to be getting along happily without me.  On the left is thyme, on the right, sage.

I sat on my back steps and admired my irises, which have bloomed in my absence.
And I relished the thought that it won't be long before my family and I (and my parents) will be
home sweet home.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Let me begin by saying that I have shuddered at the thought of doing a "lapbook" with my children ever since I began homeschooling.  I simply didn't think I could deal with all that detail!  Lapbooks are an awesome why to learn, just not for me.  Until Tiny Love began school.

Tiny Love cannot sit still.  During read aloud time, she must have Silly Putty to play with (or Legos, crayons, something).  She can read, but doesn't like the lack of ACTIVITY that reading entails.  If she could only figure out a way to read while riding her bike, I am sure she would do more of it.  (Someone is just the opposite.)  So, at the homeschool convention, I picked up a lapbook kit by "In The Hands of A Child."  It scared me, but I was brave and desperate to find something to appeal to Tiny.

She loved it. 
She asked to do it.
She didn't know it was school. 
*cue angels singing, clouds parting, sunlight shining on my blessed homeschool*

It totally freaked me out, what with all the cutting, pasting and lack of uniformity in the placement of items in the folder, but such are the sacrifices of a homeschool mom :)
We are all finished now, and Tiny is enjoying playing with her little project, showing it off to family and friends.  And it worked in other ways, too...she can read even better after doing the lapbook!
So, as Tiny is my last "beginning reader," I would like to pass the fun on to another family!

If you have a beginning reader and would like to have this lapbook guide to do with them, just leave me a comment below.  Make sure to include your email address, which I will not publish.  This would be a great summer project for kids who are not homeschooled also! 
 I will choose a winner tomorrow... that is if I have one or more people comment for it!  LOL
I will get an address to mail it to when I have a winner. 
Lapbook, anyone? 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Computer Made Me (Not) Do It

I am working on this not being true. 
For me, the following things also mean a broken computer:
  • a kind temperament when my children need something.
  • morning Bible reading that is uninterrupted
  • school work that is done...smoothly, happily, and timely.
  • time spent listening to, responding to and praying for others--especially the Husband.
Maybe the computer isn't your struggle.  I find that it can distract me and pull me from what is really important.  I am trying to be more wise in this area. 

Do you think you spend too much time on the computer?  How much is too much?  How do you know?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

To participate in Menu Plan Monday, visit

Monday again!  This week I am trying to use up some pantry items, so I am making things that will allow me to not purchase anything but a little produce until Friday.  Then I have a plan...more on that at the end of this post!

Tuesday:  Bean Tostadas and Salad (I may make a little taco meat for the carnivores)
Wednesday:  Veggie Quiche and Homemade Bread
Thursday:  Spinach Enchiladas and Mexican Rice
Friday:  Meatloaf, mashed potatoes and corn.  I may try a lentil loaf also.
Saturday:  Leftovers or out?
Sunday:  Homemade Pizza and veggies

I will post other recipes as I try them!

So, a friend of mine sent me an interesting link last week.  The site claims that you can buy 90% of your groceries from Aldi and save a lot of money. 

The benefits of shopping at Aldi:
  • no coupons are necessary
  • limited stock means fewer impulse purchases
  • the prices are pretty hard to beat, even with sale ads
  • the selection does get better all the time
Drawbacks of shopping at Aldi:
  • not many name brand items
  • not all products are available all the time
  • not all Aldi brand products are as "good" as the name brand
  • you have to bag your own groceries
  • they don't carry specialty food items (tofu, veggie burgers, protein powder, etc.)
Still, you know how I love to save money!  I enjoy the couponing, but I find that on food items, Aldi is hard to beat.  I like most Aldi products, so I think I am up for the challenge!  So, for a month, I am going to menu plan and shop for food using Aldi items. 

Exceptions to the rule:
  • I buy eggs from a local source.
  • If I can get milk cheaper than Aldi, I will.
  • I will buy things that I have coupons for only if I can get them free or almost free!
I can't wait to see how much I can save this month!  When I am frugal with the grocery budget, I feel like I am still contributing monetarily to our family while I stay at home.  Plus, I like to be trustworthy with the home budget, and the Husband likes it too :)
I will post a grocery shopping recap on Friday, and I will plan an Aldi menu that will be up next Monday! 
Are you ready for Aldi adventures? 

Saturday, May 15, 2010

In the Closet

Where are my kids?

They are in the closet.  They have no intention of coming out.
Though you can't tell, due to my camera flash, the closet is dark.  They have flashlights and are using them to "make stars" through the blanket they are under.
Tiny Love took over the closet yesterday and has rarely left since.  It is her "secret hiding place." 
Not so secret.
Today she shares her hiding place with Curlyjo.
Yesterday she smuggled Daisy Dog into the hiding place.  Her other guests included Baby Elyse and her twin.
You know what isn't in the utility closet?
The vacuum.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Oh, the Things I Will Do...

for free coconut oil!  My favorite coupon website shared a contest recently.  All I had to do was create a recipe using coconut oil, submit it with a picture, and I might win 2 free quarts of coconut oil! 

cooking + free stuff = good day

Vegan Coconut Banana Bread

1 1/4 c. unbleached flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Egg Replacer equal to 2 eggs (you can also just use 2 eggs)
1/4 c. coconut oil
1/4 c. natural applesauce
1/3 c. sugar
1 c. oats
1/4 c. sliced almonds
1/3 c. shredded coconut
3 ripe bananas, crushed

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray, or just rub more coconut oil inside it.  In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon.  Set aside.  In a large bowl, mix together the egg replacer according to the package directions (or just whisk up the eggs).  Add the coconut oil, applesauce, sugar, and crushed bananas.  Mix well.  Add the flour mixture and stir until moistened.  Add the oats, almonds, and coconut.  Mix lightly.  Pour into loaf pan and bake for 55 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Let cool for 15 minutes before slicing.  Enjoy!

Yeah, I already ate those two slices...and the crumb.

The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today...May 14, 2010

Outside my is cloudy again.  On the back deck there are eight cats waiting for me to feed them their breakfast. 

I am thinking...about my Bible study that I read this morning.  I saw Abraham and Isaac a new way, and it was wonderful. 

I am thankful for...Jesus Christ, and His love for me.  And the Husband, who used his over-time money to buy me a new bike.  He is the most self-less guy. 

From the learning rooms...Today I fully intend, if I get nothing else done, to read the Bible with my kids and practice our memory verses.  If raising my children in the fear and admonition of the Lord is the most important reason that I homeschool, why do these things come AFTER Math, reading and writing? 

From the kitchen...Norman made himself an omelet for breakfast, of which he was so proud that he made me look at it before he ate it.  I plan to bake bread today, though it may be a bust as it is so humid.

I am wearing...the husband's boxer shorts and my Walk for Water tee.  Bare feet.  I am not moving very fast today.  LOL

I am creating...a giant mess on my desk, a serious stockpile of body wash in the bathroom cabinet, and a recipe that uses coconut oil.

I am going...well, I am not going to the gym.  My legs are too sore and tired to even walk normally.  I need a rest day.  And a ride on my new bike.

I am reading...Walden with my book club.  I am also reading The Peacemaker by Ken Sande, which is so awesome that I wish I would have read it about a year and a half ago.  It would have helped immensely.  Last, I am reading Home Education by Charlotte Mason. 

I am hoping...that it will not rain today.  I need some sunshine.  I am also hoping that July comes really fast, because I get to see my parents and go to Florida!

I am hearing...the ceiling fan humming, the clock ticking, the birds singing, and chores calling.

Around the house...there are signs that little girls live here:  baby dolls, strollers, little flip-flops.  There are also signs that a teenage boy lives here:  opened bags of potato chips, socks on the couch, toothpaste splattered on every bathroom surface.

One of my favorite  I think I love it too much.

A few plans for the rest of the week:  Well, it is the weekend.  So I hope to have dinner with my cousin and her husband, get some cleaning done, and have a nice Sunday dinner with my family.  I also hope to see my mom on the webcam soon.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...
How many cats do you see?

Want to do a "Simple Woman's Daybook" of your own?  Visit this site.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

I Like Free Stuff

What is all this stuff on my computer desk?

Today's freebies!  I got all this stuff free with the help of coupons.  I did use a couple of internet coupons, which I probably won't be getting anymore.
My favorite freebie today came in my mailbox:
Oh, how I love coconut oil.  I love it on toast instead of butter, I put a little in my protein shakes, I cook veggies in it, the possibilities are endless.  It is super healthy, mild-tasting, and sometimes FREE!  You can also use it as a skin moisturizer, but I recommend you get a separate jar for that task ;)

Today, between Walgreens deals, coupons, and price matches at Wal-Mart, I saved...
That's how you get high on life, people.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Deep Thoughts

My computer got a virus for Mother's Day, and I got a bill for $175 to fix it.  Nice.
Meanwhile, I have been over-thinking everything very insightful lately, which has led to many great realizations.
1.  God makes way prettier food than man.
No contest.

2.  My little Tiny Love is growing up. 
She learned to ride a "big girl bike."
And she discovered a "wiggly" tooth.
Note the snaggle on the bottom, your right.

3.  "Farming" can be a relative term. 
The guy across the road farms:
My mother-in-law "farms."
I farm.
Daisy Dog does not farm.  She just likes to take all the credit.
I better go.  I just had a shocking realization about the dishes...if I don't wash them, they won't be clean.