Apparently my 8 year old has decided that she would rather have a glass eye than the one she was given by God. I make this conclusion based on the facts of the past two days. On Friday my youngest daughter was looking for her DS and she decided to look under her sister's bed for it and while she was burrowing under the bed she got poked in the eye with a stick. Poor thing she was crying like crazy. Oh yeah let me insert here for those of you who do not know my mother is here for her once a year visit. Just what you want your mother to experience. LOL Ok so I know you are saying one stick in the eye does not warrant one to conclude that she is trying to get herself a new eye and I totally agree.Well, today Maddy was outside playing the her friend when she comes running in the house screaming and holding her eye!! The SAME eye as last night!! No way, I think to myself. Yes way!! Oh yeah and my mother had just walked through the door. I am not kidding. It turn out that my daughter stepped on a board and it made another board pop up and hit her right in the eye. I have to tell you here that I can totally picture the hilarity in this. Not only did she mess up her eye twice but, the ways that she messed it up. I told her that she is gonna have to wear safety goggles from now on. Here is a picture of her eye and one with her wearing her safety goggles.

I finally have a picture of my new kitty for you all to see. Her name is Marmalade.

I am happy to announce that we have some new games. We now have Taboo, Apples to Apples, Apples to Apples jr, and Bingo a really nice Bingo game. We had a really fun game night this week. I have wanted Taboo for a long time. What games do you all play?? Does your family have a favorite??

I know that a lot of my friends will be watching the super bowl tomorrow and I am wondering what will you be snaking on?? Or if you read this on Monday what did you make for your snacks?? I love new recipes so I am really interested in learning what you made for snacks. When ever I have an occasion to make snacks I really try to make something that my guests may not have had before. I love to try new foods and I really like to expose others to new foods as well.

I got new plates and cups and glasses and silverware this week compliments of Mom!! am so thankful. What a treat to eat on something not plastic. LOL We had company this week so I was able to use my new place settings as soon as I got them. Here is a picture of my new set and a picture of my Mom.

I would like to say how excited for Judy at benmakesten that her newest grandchild will be here this week!! We at our house wish the new mommy a safe delivery and quick healing.

Have a great super bowl Sunday. And never fear good citizens Safety Girl is on duty!!

Today I thought I would do some cookin' with the kids. In addition having my mother visiting, some friends of my husband are bringing Persian food to our house for dinner. I am so excited I love to try new foods. I will be making a large ginger peach cobbler for dessert and a nice salad with veggies.

All this talk of food made me think about recipes for kids. My kids love to get in the kitchen and help me cook. They also like to cook stuff on there own. So, I was thinking what would my kids like to learn to make so I asked. Pineapple upside down cake was the unanimous answer. Well, I wanted to make sure everyone got to make there own with out making three whole cakes hmmmmmm..... I thought and thought and I then it hit me, individual mini upside down cakes!! (recipe below)

I love our new winter P.E. routine. The two oldest are learning Tai'Chi (it is rather comical to watch my children try to do the moves without falling into a heaping pile of laughter). Or an even better event to watch is me doing Taebo.... Ok here is the story while living in base housing in Misawa I had heard several people talking about how much weight they lost doing Taebo so, I thought since I had a some baby weight from my last child to loose I would try it out. Well, one afternoon I was sweatin' it out and really putting my all into this work out when during a move my sneaker snagged in the carpet and I tripped and thudded rather loudly into the huge sliding glass door. The sound was defining and my body position was a full body plant much to the surprise and amusement of the Japanese nationals that were working in the area behind our house. They were laughing and bowing all at the same time.LOL I swear to you my cheeks were still blushing when my husband come home from work and my son who was waiting on the door step to be able to tell him was still giggling so much it was hard for my husband to understand what he had said.

I hope you will all join me in wishing my son a happy 16th birthday today!! I am so very proud of him. I am also secretly happy that he has no interest in driving yet. I have truly enjoyed each stage of our ever growing relationship. Each stage has been a joy to experience when he was a baby I truly enjoyed witnessing all of his firsts, when he was 5 I loved that he was a snuggler and loved to talk about dinosaurs,bugs, and sharks. Now we have great conversations about what he wants out of life and how he can accomplish those goals, we can watch documentaries and talk about them afterwards, he also watches boring adult movies with me. You also gotta love a kid who only wants speakers for his computer and to dye his hair green. He has always wanted to dye his hair green. I think he was 6 when he first asked and I told him then that when he was 16 he would be old enough to make choices like that. So here we are today at 16 and I will be true to my word and I will help my son dye his hair green. I guess he gets it from me I have had several crazy colors and several normal colors. Oh my stars one time I tried blonde lets just say that some people should not dye there hair certain colors. Tonight I will make some of his favorites: tator tot casserole and a homemade chocolate pudding cake with scratch chocolate frosting. The girls have made up songs to sing to him on the karaoke machine and little shows to entertain him/us. Do you ever sit around and think about all the incredible things that your children do,say or think I do especially around their birthdays.(remind me to tell you some time when my son age 7 blew up the car yes you read that right BOOM blew up the car not had a small fire base officials were so happy with us let me tell you. Please join me in singing:
Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday to you. Happy birthday dear Lukas. Happy birthday youuuuuuuuuu!!

Here is the recipe I talked about earlier. Individual Pineapple upside down cakes.

1 muffin pan or 12 well cleaned tuna cans
2 cans of pineapple rings (keep the juice)
1 jar of cherries (I don't like the cherry personally)
brown sugar
1 box of yellow cake mix

Prepare the cake mix according to directions except to use the reserved liquid from the pineapple can instead of water. Melt 1 stick of butter in a bowl in the microwave. While butter is being melted place one pineapple ring in the bottom of the muffin pan or tuna can then place a cherry in the center of each one. Pour about 1tbs or so on top of the fruit. Pack down 1-2 tbs of brown sugar into each muffin cup or tuna can. Now just add cake batter to fill 2/3 of your chosen vessels. If you used muffin pans just pop in your oven 400 degrees and bake till a tooth pick comes out clean about 20-25 mins if you used the tuna cans you can put them on a tray and bake in the oven OR you can cook them on the coals of a campfire or grill. (how cool is that) I have also used a solar cooker as well. So much fun!! I hope you all enjoy. Have a great day!!
Wow!! What a long day today has been. With a visit from Nana looming on the horizon our house was all a twitter with anticipation and frantic cleaning. LOL There was no use in trying to do school work today after all who can be expected to sit and concentrate on school work when their Nana will be available for hugging in just one day.

I hope you all like the new look of my blog. It was my first attempt at changing the look to something other than a canned template. Well folks, let me tell you in my attempt there were gasps of "oh my goodness I lost my profile" and "where in the heck did my followers go" and of course there was "Baby?? Are you busy I think I just ruined my blog". LOL I am happy to say that I learned a lot from the experience.

I got a new laptop!! Well, new to me at least. A family member gave it to us. It is a little slow compared to the one my husband has and I am used to but, it's mine all mine. Bwwaaahaaaahaaaaa Ok so I guess it's pretty evident that I am not a very good sharer. ;)

I just have to say how much I love the Netflix subscription that mother was kind enough to give us as a family Christmas present. We love the instant watch section. We have lots of fun watching the MANY documentaries they have a very pleasant addition to our Friday school schedule. My kids really like the cartoons (they even have ones that my husband and I watched as kids) and there is even a faith/religion section. I have had a wonderful time watching "keeping Up Appearances" and the "Munsters" this past week.

I just have to tell you a little more about our new kitty Marmalade. She climbed into bed with us last night!! She loves to be pet. She learned how to use the litter box in 2 days. She is funny as all get out when she plays with her toy mouse. I am really happy that we decided to take her in.

As you all know we will be moving soon. Well, my husband was pretty worried about what we were gonna do for an income. Today he called his boss and explained that we would be moving soon and that he would really like to keep his job and was there anyway that he could work from our new house (a 4 hour drive from where we are now). His boss said "funny you should ask that, I just got the word that the company wants our division to work from home". My husband was so happy. When my husband got off the phone with his boss and told me what was going on he said "Isn't it awesome how when you are doing what God wants you to do he takes care of all the details for you." I am so happy that the Lord is really giving us peace about this and that he is really putting all the pieces in place.

Well, thats all I have to say tonight but, I'll be back in tomorrow. ;)
I am so happy that my family are all safe and sound and home where they belong. We also have a new family member named Marmalade, she is a really sweet playful orange and white tabby cat. It is quite strange to us to have such a loving and playful cat since we are used to Ginger our anti-social non playful cat, who barely even lets us pet her. The meeting between the two cats did not go well. Let's just say that there was fur flying and band aides involved. Oh what fun we are gonna have with these two.

My son had his first permaculture class this past Thursday. He really enjoyed it. We had a lengthy conversation all about what he had learned in his first class. I have to say permaculture is really fascinating. If you would like to learn a little about this subject here is a website for you here. There are 7 homeschool kids in the class including him. I am hoping he will make a few friends. All the friends he had where we live have all moved away in the past few years so, he does not get to hang out with his friends to often. I am also happy that the completion of this course will give him a certification and science credit for the year. He thinks that I will let him skate on science since this is a year credit he is sadly mistaken bbbwwwwwwaaaaaahaaaahaaaa. (that is my evil laugh);)

It is official we will be moving closer to my in-laws as soon as our lease is up. I am happy that I will be able to be mentally supportive to my in-laws and that the children will be knee deep in relatives. They will learn how to fish, hunt, grow food, and just about any other cool country thing you can learn. We will have a little house with 2.5 acres. We are gonna have a garden and some animals. I was reluctant at first to be willing to move there. My husband has been trying to get me agree to move there for about a year or so but, with the passing of my sister in-law, I can see that we are needed there for a while at least.

My mother will be here for a visit starting Tuesday till the 7th of February. You know what that means don't you? Tomorrow we will scrubbing the house in lue of our school work. Hey, who can do school work when your Nana will be there the next day! We will be attending a lecture about the past, present, and future of the moon and moon travel. My youngest daughter is so excited that she will have the opportunity to meet several real astronauts at the reception after the lecture. Will be going to a wild game ranch. We will be celebrating my son's 16th birthday the main reason for her visit. In short the next two weeks are gonna be a whirl wind of action filled blogs.

I got my very first issue of the Old School House magazine today! I can not wait to read it from cover to cover.

I would like to take a few mins to say a HUGE THANK YOU to BENMAKESTEN for her wonderful blog post and thoughtful comments and her beautiful prayers that she and her family and friends all took the time to dedicate in honor of my sister in-law. You are a great friend and your heart is so filled with love and compassion. I know God will bless you all of your days for your willingness to show his love to others.

I would also like to say thank you to all of you who read my blog. Your kind words where a great comfort to me during this time. I love getting up in the afternoon errrrr ummmmmm I mean the morning and checking so see what you all may have written to me. ;) I also enjoy reading all of your blogs while, I might now leave a comment I am there rain or shine. Hey, I am even better than the post office I read them on Sundays too. LOL

Well, I am off to read "Cookie Monster and the Cookie Tree" with my sweet little one. Hmmmmm does any one know what nursery he got that tree from I really want a cookie tree. Ha ha ha.
Have a great night one and all. Love from our family to yours.
One day someone will ask you... Where were you or what were you doing when Barack Obama took the oath and made history as the first President of African/American decent.
So, where were you? What were you doing?
I will tell my questioner that I was at home in my living room and I watched it live on the internet. This will not be an answer that impresses them. It should though. You see they will have always known about the internet and it's enormous store house of knowledge.
There eyes will widen as I tell them that I had never seen a computer (except on tv, "what is tv?" they will ask for they will probably use the internet to watch tv, I do) till I was married. Wow! They will say. I will tell them that my husband sold his beloved computer for enough money to rent us an apartment. He really loved that computer but, he loved me more. I will tell them that we did not have enough money to buy a computer again for another 3 years. I will tell them about the thrill we used to receive when we heard the screeching noise of the computers talking to each other and the "You've got mail" voice of AOL. I will tell them that the internet was paid by the hour charges. I will tell them how excited we were when we switched to a company that offered unlimited internet access, oh the thrill. I will tell them about when Dsl was the latest and the greatest. I will tell them about cable internet. I hope that they will understand how incredible the day was for me.
Regardless of who voted for or why you voted for them, I respect your freedom and choice. That is incredible in it's own right. There was a time not long ago or even far away that this moment could have never happened. But, if you voted based on race then shame on you. If you voted because people told you about all about the candidates then again shame on you, if you voted with out spending hours in research and deliberation then shame on you. People, you have computers and the internet all the knowledge the world has to offer right at your finger tips.
If however you did do your research and deliberate about your choice then I tip my hat to you. In my house we call the computer "the Mystical box of infinite knowledge". When my children have a question and we do not have a book that has a satisfactory answer we look it up.
My hope which is my responsibility to make sure it happens is challenge people and make them accountable for their knowledge or laziness in obtaining knowledge that is freely open to them. We live in a country where our internet is not restricted to only things the government says it's ok for us to see or know. Wow! Go back and read that again please. How incredible is that. So America please stop playing games and flittering away your time every day that you awake alive make sure that take control make it your goal to learn one new thing per day. That will take you 15 mins or less per day.
My second hope is that Americans will stop blaming everyone else for their problems. If you loose your house because you can't afford the mortgage (not loosing a job) because you make 30,000 a year and you bought a 300,000 dollar home it's your fault you know you could not afford that. When the slick banker or real estate agent tried to talk you into it you could have gotten online and looked up your information. I am assuming you have basic math knowledge here but, it is very plain to see. You wanted to impress others with your possessions and now you are paying the price would it have been so bad to live in that 100,000 dollar house. You did not get duped you neglected to inform yourself. You are not fat because Mc Donalds or other evil entities (sorry I am a chef and we all thing food like this is evil) tricked you into thinking that the food sizes were correct or that some how their fried products that sorta resemble food were good for you. You knew that fried food was bad, you knew that eating 1/2 pound of meat was not good for you.
It seems today that people don't think. It's like the warning labels on products or foods, do I really need to tell you not to blow dry your hair while you are in the tub? Take some time and look up warning labels you will be amazed at just how dumb the government has come to believe we are.
So, my fellow Americans please let's not just have hope let's do something about the things we hope to change. Let's empower ourselves with knowledge. It's free, readily available, and easy to obtain. So, when my questioner asks me... I sure hope that I have lot's of wonders to share with him/her about how the world has changed in my life time. It will be a tragedy for America if I have no such changes to talk about.
Thank you for reading my soap box tirade. I appreciate all my dear readers you are all very special to me and I hope that you will have wondrous tales to tell your questioner. Also, it's 2 am as I finish this.
Today I feel the need for humor! So, today you are gonna get a dose of funny and weird stuff that makes my crazy little hamster go giddy up and keep my squeaky wheel spinning.

After getting all his luggage loaded in the limo, and His Holiness doesn't travel light, the driver notices that the Pope is still standing on the curb.
"Hey, Mr. Pope," says the driver in accented English. "Why have you not seated yourself in this excellent limo?"
"Well, to tell you the truth," says the Pope, "they never let me drive at the Vatican and I'd really like to drive."
"That is very much against the rules!" protests the driver, wishing he'd never left Calcutta.
"There might be something extra in it for you," says the Pope.
Reluctantly, the driver gets in the back as the Pope gets in behind the wheel. He quickly regrets his decision when, after clearing the airport, the Pope accelerates the limo to 105 mph.
"Please be driving not so rapidly, Mr. Pope," pleads the worried driver, but the Pope keeps the pedal to the metal. Then they hear the siren.
"Oh, my gosh, now I am surely losing my license," moans the driver.
The Pope pulls over and rolls down the window as the patrolman approaches, but the cop takes one look at him, goes back to his motorcycle, and gets on the radio.
"I need to talk to the Chief," he says to the dispatch.
The Chief gets on the radio and the cop tells him that he's stopped a limo going a hundred and five.
"So bust him," said the Chief.
"I think the guy's a big shot," said the cop.
"All the more reason."
"No, I mean really a big shot," said the cop.
"What'd ya got there, the Mayor?"
"Well," said the Chief, "who is it?"
"I don't know," said the cop, "but he's got the Pope driving for him."

Please check out this website, the artist is phenomenal artist, who get this “draws” on dirty car windows using the dust as his medium. Check out the gallery page.

O.K. So now you have had a cute joke and a pretty cool art to look at I just want to brag for a second about my soon to be 16 year old son. In this crazy world where the norm is for teens to reject the teachings of their parents and gasp for freedoms fresh air. My son has wrapped his arms around me and shown me what a man of moral fiber he is going to grow up to be. My husband and daughters went to East Texas, my son and I stayed behind. He has a class that he will be attending (that he got a scholarship). I was still pretty freaked out by what had happened and he knew it so he offered to camp out in my room. (insert awwww here) He has also watched countless old movies with me on Netflix. Movies I think most teens would have rolled their eyes at the prospect of having to watch such movies with their mom. Not my son he has willing done this. He has frequently come out of his room and asked me “whatcha doin' mom” or “want me to spend some time with you”. My bottle of water that I am constantly drinking out of keeps finding it's way to become full while I am in the bathroom. I am very grateful that he is showing what moral fiber he has. I have to say that he does these kinds of things all the time. But, it's time like these that it really makes me appreciate that he does them.
I wish all my dear sweet readers to have an awesometastic week.
In October my sister in-law came to visit us. We had a lovely time and shared many homeschooling and all kinds of other websites we thought each other would enjoy. To help us to be able to pass said websites to each other she signed up for an account. So today I decided that I wanted to share a site with her on stumble when I realized she would never get it. So I looked up her profile and was reading websites she had saved when I came across this site. I can not help but think did she leave this to comfort us......

Do not stand at my grave and weep

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glint on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you wake in the morning hush,
I am the swift, uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there, I did not die!

Mary Frye (1932)
I know that it's Friday and it is supposed to be freebie Friday but,My sweet sweet sister in-law has passed away yesterday afternoon under tragic circumstances.
She leaves behind two young children ages 7 & 9 her husband, mother, step-father,father,2 brothers, 5 aunts,countless cousins, nieces and nephews, and me.
I really love my sister in-law. When my in-laws did not like me when I first married their son my sister in-law did. She was the one in the family who calls everyone when ever an event happened and she always new all the details.
She was the kind of person who people could say I have no food or I have no place to live, I need a sitter, I need..... Her response was always to find, fix, or resolve your problem. She was this way with everyone she new not just family!
When mother in-law called and told us the news she left out all the details. Our immediate reaction was to call my sister in-law after all she will now what happened......
My sister in-law loved to play games weird cool games like pirates dice. She loved to tell me stories about my husband, like the time when she was four and he had to play with her and did not want to so he told her that he was gonna tie her to the tree and for her to wait there for him to rescue her................ needless to say he went off and played with his friends and came and got her when it was time to go in but, in her version you hear all about what happened to her while tied to the tree and she can spin a tale. She really had the story tale gift. She could weave a tale that would have you rolling with laughter, crying, or on the edge of your seat in intrigue.
I really feel for my in-laws you should never have to bury your child. I pray no one who ever reads this post will ever experience this tragedy.
I don't want to leave you with a heavy feeling so let me tell you a few things to cheer you up.
My sister in-law had a personal relationship with God, she was secure in her faith of God, so while here on earth we saw a tragedy happen, she entered into the presence of God! What a joyous occasion and how wonderful for her that she now knows all there is to know, and let me tell you she loves that she knows all! LOL
I am praying and ask for all of you pray as well that the children will be able to adjust and thrive and grow through all of this. Also, we are trying to convince their active duty military father that our home is the best place for them right now. My in-laws are trying to convince him of this also. The entire family feels this is the best option. He could continue to serve and provide medical and financial essentials for them while we help them deal with the mental effects of this and continue their homeschooling and provide for them a loving family environment. Please pray that God will show him and his heart what he has shown us.
Have a great weekend to you all!
I picked this up from my friend, Bobbi who got it from her friend Marky. Here's what you do: Copy and paste to your blog, facebook page, nook note, or any other social site that you use. Next indicate the things you've done by making the text bold, highlighting it, or even changing the color. I hope you enjoy sharing your experiences as much I will enjoy reading them.
1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an, cross stitch, quilting
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29 Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33 Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language.... several
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41 Sung karaoke...
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal in a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45 Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie...does a home movie count? LOL
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60 Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Gotten flowers for no reason
64 Donated blood, platelets, or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66 Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67 Bounced a check...yes, embarrassing
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood cabbage patch kid
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades....seen some of them but never took a tour
75. Been fired from a job... I am sure that I have I probably blocked out the trauma
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79 Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book.... I hope to be able to bold this by late spring early summer
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the paper...when I was young in a local paper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had the blizzard of 78'
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous.... The Monkeys, Elton Brown, Bobby Flay
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a lawsuit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Been to a foreign country

My fellow blogger over at Benmakesten wrote some questions to ponder on her blog for today and frankly, I loved the idea so I am going to do it too. Thank's for the inspiration. ;)

If knees were backward, what would chairs look like?
If lawyers are disbarred and clergymen defrocked, doesn't it follow that electricians can be delighted, musicians denoted, cowboys deranged, models deposed, tree surgeons debarked and dry cleaners depressed?
If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?
If Mike Brady was supposed to be this groovy architect, why did he force SIX kids into TWO bedrooms?
If one synchronized swimmer drowns, do the rest have to drown too?
If quitters never win, and winners never cheat, who's the idiot that said: Quit while you're ahead?
If superman can block bullets with his chest then why did he duck when a gun was thrown at him?
If Superman is so smart why does he wear his underpants over his trousers?
If the #2 pencil is the most popular, why is it still #2?
If the only thing to survive a plane crash is the black box, why don't they make the whole plane out of the black box?
If they're psychic and I need them so much, why don't they just phone me?
If we're not supposed to eat late-night snacks, why is there a light in the refrigerator?
If you ate pasta and anti pasta, would you still be hungry?
It's Tuesday gentle folk time to get out the aprons and get those kids cooking. I first had these cookies when I was about 10 my cousin used to make them for holiday gatherings. You have probably had these in your life time as well. These cookies are great for all skill levels. They are quick to make and require very little ingredients. So, without further ado:

No Bake Cookies

1 ¾ cups white sugar
½ cup milk (soy, rice, almond and reconstituted powdered milk all work)
½ cup of butter (I have used less when I had to and I have used margarine you use what you have)
4 tbs cocoa powder (confession time I once used cocoa mix)
3 cups of Quick – cooking oats
½ cup of peanut butter (to crunch or not to crunch that is your choice)
1 tsp vanilla

In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, milk, butter and cocoa stir till well combined. Bring this mixture to a rolling boil for 1 ½ – 2 mins. Please follow this part carefully if you boil for less then 1 ½ they will not set up and if you boil them for more than 2 mins it will be dry and crumbly. Remove from the heat and stir in peanut butter and dry oats. Lay out a sheet of wax paper and drop the mixture unto the wax paper. Let cool for about 20 mins. The last step is the most important.... you send the kids outside to play and eat to your hearts content. Ha ha ha ha Seriously though this recipe will make about 32 cookies. Enjoy cooking with your children.

Tuesdays are also craft days. This week I thought will all the snow and winter weather you would enjoy making this pen garden. They make great gifts. Today we are making pen gardens. No green thumbs needed. ;)

Materials you will need:

1 pkg cheapo pens
1 fake flower without stem for each pen
florists tape
1 small clay or terracotta pot painted or left plain or even decoupaged you are only limited by your imagination
Spanish moss
4 cups of pebbles or marbles or even pellets (I prefer the pellets)
glue you can use a good sturdy glue or a hot glue gun

To prepare the pot plug the whole in the bottom by cutting a small piece of cardboard or thick paper into a circle and cover the bottom. Fill pot with the filling you choose. Cover the filling with some Spanish moss.

Now you are ready for the pens. Remove the caps and the little “stopper” on the bottom. Next cover the pen with the florists tape be mindful that it stretches so pull tightly as you wrap. The tape is also very forgiving so you can peel it and “back up” to cover any pen you might see as you go. Once the pen is completely hidden by the tape, glue the flower into the hole left by the “stopper” that we removed earlier.

Now you just stand the pen up in the filling and viola you have a beautiful pen garden.

It's Monday!

Welcome to the trenches. LOL The best war you will ever fight. In my humble opinion any way.

So, on Mondays I write up my goals for the week so here goes.

  • Get the house straitened out. (we have all been slacking on our chores)

  • Watch our Spanish DVD 3 times or more this week

  • Sign up for the new foreign word of the day newsletter from “Transparent Language”

  • Practice with our T'ai Chi DVD three times this week

  • Introduce a few new recipes in home economics

  • Work on our RI reports

  • Have all kids finish their private reading books and start new ones

  • Have the kids turn in outline for book reports on Friday

  • Have Lukas hand in 1st draft of paper on the human eye

  • Work on Lukas' transcripts

  • Do some de-cluttering

  • Make a life size outlines of their bodies (we are gonna fill in the parts as we learn about them)

  • And of course keep our “school” on schedule

  • Do a family activity

  • Have fun!

Since this is Monday I also want to post our menu:

Monday- Cereal, Ramen, SOS,

Tuesday- French Toast, Grilled cheese and Tomato soup, Egg and potato tacos ( a friend taught me this 10 years ago it was love at first taste)

Wednesday- Cereal, Mac & cheese, Beans, greens, rice, cornbread

Thursday- Apple & raisin oatmeal, Humus and pita bread, Chicken N' dumplings

Friday-Cereal, Hot dogs & buns, Pulled pork sand, french fries and corn on the cob (Maddy's request)

Saturday- Eggs toast hash browns, Fried rice w/ veggies and chicken, Potato watercress soup and crusty bread.

Snacks – pretzels (the big soft ones), celery and carrot sticks, apple sticks, home made cookies, kiri tempo, home made soda, cheese and crackers.

If you want recipes for any of this drop me a note. I hope you enjoy new menu ideas as much as I do.

As you can see we don't eat a lot of meat, and our meals are fairly inexpensive and pretty healthy to boot. If you have any idea's or family favorites let me know I would love to try them. Also if you have a great but frugal meal I would really love to have it.

I hope you all have a great week in your school and in your family and in your free time.

Well, it's time to wipe the chalkboard, clap the erasers the bell is about to ring......................

The first site I am gonna tell you about is Squidoo.

You can join Squidoo and develop/post entries called a “lens”.

The link I have here is to their internal search engine. I have even searched for two subjects for you.

There are tons of subjects. Seeing how this is January you could look up “Chinese New Year” and tada there will be a very thorough lens all about it ready to teach you children. Want to learn more about making money online yup there is one for that too. all topics in this search will involve homeschooling this search covers lapbooking

You can search for what ever topics you want to search.

Topics on this website are called “lenses”

If you like these lenses then you might consider joining and making your own. Here is the link: This is a truly a wonderful and valuable resource for everyone especially homeschoolers and avid readers who unfortunately can not afford nor do they have room for all the thousands of books they love and cherish. Well now you can own thousands of books ready for you to read when ever you like. I was in nerdvana when I found this site.

One of great things about this site is that they also offer a large selection of books in other languages great for those of you or your children who study another language. They also ask for volunteers to translate books (great on a college resume) what great practice for you teen who is advanced in a language and you will be helping to contribute to this website.

OK, so this one is not educational but, hey we all have other interests right?? this site has a huge collection of old and new tv shows that you can watch for free. This is the link to the home page all you have to do is click on “how to” and it will bring you to a new page when you get there just click on “full episode player” and it will direct you to a large alphabetical list mind boggling large. Just click on the title of the show you want to watch. My kids have enjoyed watching the A-Team (I pity the fool who don't remember the A-Team).

Wow this week went fast. My husband will be going back to the office next week. I am kinda sad. I have really enjoyed him working from home for the past month and a half. While I am sad that he will be gone all day, I totally need my desktop back and we need to get back on schedule. Also, I know this sounds corny but I really love the little adrenaline of straitening up and cooking dinner so it is ready when he gets home. So long story short I am sad and happy at the same time.

This was our first week back after the holiday break. We had a pretty sludgy start the kids grumbled when we woke them up on Monday till they heard the call for French Toast! Then they shot into the kitchen wide eyed and ready for action. LOL.

We started a new P.E. Class this week. The kids are taking T'ai – Chi. I must admit that it is rather funny to watch three semi-uncoordinated children bump into each other and fall into a pile giggling. Oh sure there are “Get out of my way” “Oh yeah? Well, you're stepping on my foot,” but hey, these are real children not some kind of children of the corn.

We watch our Spanish DVD at least three times a week. The kids are starting to pick up the phrases and vocabulary already.

My Mother will be visiting our home at the end of the month! She will be here for the celebration of our son's 16th birthday!! WOW! I can't believe it. Time has just flown by. I have enjoyed it all though and having homeschooled him for all these years I can honestly say that I did not miss out on anything.

So with my mom coming at the end of the month we decided that our Geography this month would be to learn about RI (where my mom lives). The kids are really excited to be presenting their reports to her when she arrives.

For science right now we are reading a book called “The Kid Who Named Pluto” it is really interesting. We read one chapter three times per week and we talk about what ever science subject is brought up that day. For instance yesterday we learned about cryptography.

My son is in addition to the book writing a research paper about the human eye.

We of course did our daily math and language arts (the only two subjects that I actually have textbooks for) Maddy and Lukas are both excelling in this subject while Riss is getting all the answers correct it takes her a really long time to complete each lesson. On the flip side Riss is an amazing speller and language arts just easy as taking a breath for her. While Lukas and Maddy struggle through. It all evens out I guess.

That's mostly what we did this week for school. I hope you find time to check out the freebies. Talk to you all on Monday.

It is time to wipe the chalkboard and clap the erasers the bells about to ring......

Welcome to my homeschool blog! What you will find here is a glimpse into our "classroom" and our lives and in this post you will find what you can expect from this blog. I really hope you will visit often.

I get up with my sweet hubby and get him off to work. (though he tries to work from home a couple of days per week--I love it when he does.) After he is off and running I get on-line and have me time. At about 9:30 I knock on the kids doors and let them know that it is time to get up and have breakfast. (if it is Tues or Thurs then they have a hot breakfast waiting for them). After breakfast they clean off the table and at 10:00 reading time begins. During the 1/2 hour silent reading time I get my lessons ready and print off any worksheets and any quick cleaning. At 10:30 we begin our instructional subjects we do math followed by language arts, then based on our weekly schedule ( Mon - history & unit studies & spelling, Tues - handwriting & sewing & computer science, Wed - world history & foreign language & art, Thurs - country of the month study & health & music, Fri - science & testing of weekly knowledge & home economics and of course the kids favorite the "Random Subject Jar".)

The children cook and clean up after lunch on Wed, Thurs, and Fri. This means that we eat hot-dogs, mac&cheese, ramen, tuna, etc.--you know: meals kids can make. We have a selection of about 15-20 meals that they can make. My youngest is 8 and she can choose to make any meal on the pink list my next one is 10 and she can make from the pink list and the orange list and my oldest is 15 and can make a meal from the pink, orange, or blue list.

All three of them alternate in dish duty. The chores around our house are rotated on a regular basis so no one gets stuck. The house may not be as pristine as others houses but my children are proud of the job they do on their chores and to be honest I feel that I can live in a moderately clean house knowing that my children are learning how to contribute and make their home a place to be proud of.

I would also like to say that while our official time frame for school work is about 4-5 hours per day. When the kids are going strong I just let them keep going till interest is lost.

We school year round. I love this because we school for 3 weeks on 1 week off. It is so nice to "get my act together" every 3 weeks. LOL The kids also use the down time to finish up any projects and pursue their own activities/interests.

We spend about 2 hours on Sat. doing a thorough house cleaning. We make it fun all pick a room walk in it armed and dangerous and clean it top to bottom. (with 5 people even the messiest of rooms takes our team only 20-30 mins to clean) Then during the week if every one kept up with their chores we blow through the house in no time.

Just like my school days this blog will have some order to it but remember unpredictable is the world of the homeschooler so you never know what you will find here.

  • Monday- Our goals of the week and our menu for the week

  • Tuesday- Craft of the week, kids in the kitchen, and any homeschooling news

  • Wednesday- website of the week and a little humor to get you through the end of week

  • Thursday- recipe of the week, a book review (no telling what book or genre I will choose)

  • Friday- Sum up of the week and Free educational site of the week! Hey we all love freebies. Right??

Well, I really hope you will find something you like here and come here often.

Time to wipe the chalk board and clap the erasers the bells about to ring..........