Summer Fun! What do to when they scream “I’m Bored!!!”


As my kids are beginning the journey into their teen years, I find myself thinking back to the days before iPods, Rock Band, summer jobs, weightlifting, and babysitting jobs.  Days when summer meant taxing my creative brain to come up with activities/ideas to keep the kids from the constant complaining of “I’m bored!”

So this post is for you with younger kids, here are some of the simple things we used to do for fun on those summer days!

I used to fill cake pans with water and freeze them.  BUT, here is the fun part, I would slip fun little toys ( i.e army men, super balls, polly pockets etc) into the water before it would freeze.  Then the kids would chip away at the ice to get their treasures!  Sometimes I would even put coins in their, they could then keep the money.  I used a dinner spoon to chip away at the ice.  They loved this on a hot day!

We used to play LOTS of four square in our driveway.  I bought a playground/kickball and we would make the four square “court” with chalk on the driveway.  We had neighborhood competitions and family fun with that cheap activity.

Reading Hikes- Ok, this is such a teacher thing…….To encourage the kids to read in the summer, we would take find hiding places around the house, or outside, or even at a park on occasion, and read there.  Everyone loved picking the secret place to read.  The rule was once you arrived at the spot you had to read for at least 15 min.

The local track was also a great, free place to run off some energy.  The kids seemed to run longer, faster, and harder when they could run in the lanes at the track!  Remember to bring lots of water!

Squirt guns……need I say more!

A letter scavenger hunt.  When the kids were learning their letters, we used to walk around the neighborhood and look for something that starts with an A, something that starts with a B,…….you get the idea.  When we got through the whole alphabet, then the walk was done.

These are just a few ideas that come to mind.  I have LOTS more.  This is the kind of thing teachers do over the summer!  I am so used to thinking up lesson plans during the school year, I used to always think of fun summer “lesson plans!”

Enjoy your kids!  Before you know it they will be off driving to a summer job!  🙂



My kids are 12 & 14 and today we bought our first item at Aeropostale.  Actually it was the first time we even went in the store.

Aeropostale for those of you with out tweens/teens is one of the latest hip, trendy stores to come down the pike.  “All the kids” are wearing Aeropostale.  Except of course my kids…………. until now.   And actually they really didn’t care that they were not big Aeropostale ( or Hollister, or Abercrombie) consumers.

We went in the store while feeling frustrated at not being able to find a bathing suit long enough for SportTman’s ever growing long legs!  We were looking everywhere.  While in there we spotted this shirt on sale, 2 for $30.  SportTman was in desperate need of a nicer shirt, so I bought 2 for him.

So that is how we got our first Aeropostale shirt…..and for those of you who are still reading this… are wondering, so what?  What’s the big deal?aeropostale-2950Well to us it is a big deal.  Up until now we have resisted buying hip and trendy clothes for our kids.  We keep up with style trends to a certain point.  However we buy most clothes at Kohls and even WalMart.  And guess what folks, my kids actually have LOTS of friends even though they don’t wear name brand clothes.  ( at this point please detect my sarcasm)

We have stressed to our kids to be in this world but not to be ruled by this fading world.  It’s ok to be part of the world to a certain degree, but the problem for teens is when they embrace the things of this world with passion, excitement and obsession.  And they don’t embrace the things of God in the same way.  My kids are not ruled by fashion trends, they understand styles come and go, but it is who they are in Christ, that will never change!

Buying a simple shirt today, taught my teen/tween a  great deal on how they view this world!  It turned out to be a great lesson!

Works for Me Wednesday- Ice Cream

Several years ago I bought this Aritic Twister by Black and Decker for $15 at Ollies, for some unknown reason, I used it a few times, and then it was relegated to a top shelf to live a life a collecting lots of dust.  I got it down the other day, to consider throwing it out and thought I would give it one more chance.

I did and I LOVE it!!!!! It turns hard ice cream in to soft ice cream, and the best part is you can add things in like crushed oreos, fresh blueberries, cut up Resses Peanut Butter Cups ( my fav!), whatever sounds good to you.   It makes your own homemade, custom ordered Dairy Queen Blizzard.

The kids and I have been having so much fun with it….and I am probably adding thousands of extra calories to my summer diet.

But after all, isn’t summer all about ice cream! 🙂

Yummy ice cream with lots of creative mix-ins made, made in my kitchen, and enjoyed together on our deck….that Work for Me!!  For more Works for Me, check out We Are THAT Family.

Artic twister

M eating ice cream

The Creation Museum

Several of you left comments wondering about the Creation Museum from my last post.  So I wanted to post more information on it.

It’s in Boone County, Kentucky and it’s vision is part of the ministry of AiG ( Answers in Genesis) and lead by Creation Scientist and speaker Ken Hamm.

It’s a beautiful, modern museum with lots of interesting, interactive displays.  I was a bit disappointed that it did not have as much scientific data on the research and facts for Creation.  It had several informative facts on the formation of canyons and different landforms so  quickly after the eruption of Mt. St Helens in May of 1980.  It compares how quickly this change took place, to show that yes, change in geological terms can take place quickly.  There were several other displays along this line of thinking, but I wish there were more.  There was also a satirical movie, called “Men In White”, it’s  funny and it gives some interesting facts on evidence for  Creation and the need for a savior.  It also has some fun interactive stuff, like getting squirted in the face with water during a flood scene!  My kids loved it!

However, the museum clearly displays a fallen world and the need for Christ.   It makes a loud statement that we are all sinners in need of a savior and that savior is Jesus.

There of course is a lot of controversy and negative press surrounding this museum.  And since the Creation Museum is  the topic of this post I do expect to get some negative traffic/comments to this post like I did with this post about laminin. The comments from the post on laminin are interesting, if you read that post you must also read all the comments.

Enjoy the pictures and if you are in the Cincinnati, Ohio area anytime soon, stop by The Creation Museum, it is well worth the trip.  And may God use that museum for His glory!

Adam and Eve in the garden, with Eve’s long hair placed so carefully as not to reveal too much. 🙂

adam and eve

As a public school teacher, this really cracked me up!

students at museum

Great sign!

sign at museum

There was a really cool, rope/cable bridge outside in the gardens.  The kids LOVED running across this bridge and trying not to loose their balance.  You looked like a drunk when walking across this wobbly bridge….but my kids did not look drunk since they RAN across the bridge!  The 2nd picture is of  SportTman running full speed across the bridge chasing his cousin.

M running acroos bridge

T chasing Josh on bridge

Me and SportTman

in the garden with T

The Inventor LOVED the large and diverse feeding/petting zoo.  Here she is with her new BFF camel.

M feeding camel

The whole fam in the museum’s lovely outdoor gardens.  If you now notice in the picture The Inventor can’t stand in front of Drums anymore because she is getting too tall, she is 12 and is now wearing a size 9 shoe.  I see a growth spurt coming!  And SportTman now over shadows all of us at 14 he is 6″1′!  🙂

all of us in the garden

Friday Fave Five


What a week it has been!  We just arrived home from Ohio after a  nice, long visit with lots of relatives.  But I must admit it is nice to be back at our own home!  It is true, what dear Dorthy said in the Wizard of Oz…..”there is no place like home!”  And our home has 2 bathrooms, the home we stayed at had 1 bathroom and about 15 people sleeping over on it’s fullest night. 🙂  You can only imagine!
So my list this week will vary a bit.  For more Fave Five, click on the button above and visit Susanne.
Drums and I celebrated our 20th Anniversary on the 17th!! Wow, 20 years!  I still remember the day we got married like it was yesterday. 🙂  We did not do anything special since we were away, but we are working on a special night out.
The Creation Museum in Kentucky.  We visited this museum for the day on Wed.  I am planning to post tons of pictures  of the museum, the facts and information and the beautiful setting and gardens that surround the museum.  But for now here are  a few teasers.
SportTman taking out a dinosaur.
T and dinasour
Adam in the garden

adam in garden #1

The beautiful gardens
outdoor gardens
Shady Maple! This is an INCREDIBLE smorgasbord near us that we go to every year for breakfast as soon as school is out.  We take our time and act like real pigs.  And it’s wonderful!  I loved the sweet potato pancake I had and the cheesy hash browns.
Maps – It’s funny we have a great GPS that gets us every where we need to go.  But on our recent trip to Ohio, the kids had a great time following where we went with a good ole fashion map!
And I am LOVING ALL the fresh fruit that abounds this time of the year!  I live in farm country and there are farmer’s produce stands all over the place.

Not Me Monday

Fun times are here!  It’s time again for Not Me Monday…time to sit back and have a good laugh at yourself, after all laughter is a good stress reliever!


For more laughter visit My Charming Kids.

It was Not Me who bought a quart of heavy cream for a recipe The Inventor needed for a school project….but then she ended up not needing it.  So it was certainly not The Inventor and I that whipped up delicious, creamy, mouth watering whipped cream from the quart of heavy cream and dipped homegrown strawberries in it.  And it was Not Us who then proceeded to finish the entire quart of heavy cream in two days.  And then (gasp) it was Not Me who bought ANOTHER quart of heavy cream and more strawberries and served strawberry shortcake for dinner one night!  Mmmmmmmm!

It was Not Me that was so tired, and weary and feeling very unproffesional that I wore these shoes to school the last 2 days of school.  They were so comfortable on my tired feet! 31179517-250x250-0-0_Adidas_Men_s_Adissage_After_Sport_Sandal_by_AdidasIt was Not Me that in a spontaneous goofy mom moment, I ran out the door to tell SportTman to come in the house to study for finals with a BROOM!  In a  classic stealth manner I was able to sneak up behind him and hit him on the butt twice with the broom before he knew what hit him.  I feel certain the neighbors thought I had lost it running after him with a broom.  And it was Not Me that now has a lovely BIG bruise on my inner thigh to show where SportTman turned around surprised and accidentally jammed the handle of the broom into my mushy thigh! I will not be posting a picture of that bruise! 🙂

And it was Not Me  that thought I was tough enough to weed our pachysandra in the woods knowing there was a bee’s nest.  It was Not Me that figured I could out smart those dumb bumble bees!  It was Not Me that was stung 3 times including twice under my arm!

Happy Monday to all!

The $14.99 hairbrush

I pulled into a CVS the other day in between a baseball game and on the way to dropping off The Inventor at our church picnic.  The Inventor had just come from a swim party, and she had lost her hairbrush several weeks ago.  She had been using mine, and forgot to bring it for after the swim party.  I told her we could stop at CVS and get Gatorade for her brother and a hairbrush for her.  I was in a hurry, I made my purchases and was on my way. Then, AFTER The Inventor brushed her dripping, snarled, wet locks of hair, I thought to myself the total for the items I purchased seemed high.  While driving down the road, I quickly glanced at my receipt and realized we just bought a hairbrush for one penny shy of $15!!!  I thought the hairbrush was $5, but somehow in my hurry, I must have picked up the WRONG one!!

A $15 hairbrush!

The pricey hairbrush wonder promised faster drying time, and tourmaline that eliminates frizz.  Tourmaline according to Wikipedia, is a natural mineral.  So who thought to put tourmaline in a hairbrush, and who thought it would eliminate frizz??   After using my top dog brush for 3 hot, humid days, I can assure you tourmaline does nothing to  eliminate frizz!

So this  hairbrush escapade got me thinking about what women go through to stay looking good.  I spend extra money to buy a moisturizer that will also cut down on all those wrinkles, I buy lotion to get rid of the cellulite in my legs.  But, where do you stop, and do these products truly make a difference?  Can’t us women just age in peace!  So how about you ladies, how far to you go to look good???

Would you buy a $14.99 hairbrush with good ole tourmaline?  I tend to be more of a natural girl, and try to stay away from some of those products with such outrageous claims.  I figure if I exercise, try to eat well ( except for the 2 1/2 doughnuts I ate this morning to celebrate my last day of school!) take lots of vitamins and do what I can do to stay healthy.  That is the best I can do for my age! 🙂  And I am comfortable with that.

But I am also stuck with a fancy hairbrush that does nothing to make my hair look any better!

Your adornment must not be merely external–braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.”

1 Peter 3:3-4

Friday’s Fave Five


Please visit Susanne at Living to Tell the Story for more Friday’s Fave Five!

Hello for those who don’t remember me……I actually do have a blog, and actually enjoy reading other blogs.  But May has been a totally hectic month for us, so I have been MIA.

As you can clearly see I have had double the stress lately.

double the stress

I have been going a bit crazy!

going crazy

But alas, this wonderful Thursday evening has brought a degree of normalcy back to our lives and it has led me to think about this past week.

The week started with arriving home late Sunday night after SportTman’s team captured another championship after a long weekend baseball tournament.

T and M with trophy

Also this was one of my favorite pictures from the tournament.  SportTman and The Inventor hanging out TOGETHER watching another baseball game.  Excuse the blurring out of our last name on their sports jerseys.  And you must note that they both pick #6 for “their” number.  The Inventor had a soccer game, then we made our way to the tournament, so she still had on her soccer uniform.

kids watching game

Another Fav was The Inventor’s big track meet on Monday.  It was the District track meet for all the 6th graders, about 400 students.  The Inventor ran the 200m and the 400m.  And she got FIRST place in both events.  And let me tell you how this especially warms my mom heart to see her get first in the 200 and the 400………I used to run track in high school and college, and I ran the 200 and 400!!  🙂

Another interesting favorite………well this is kinda gross and a bit “too much information.”  But this is a mom blog, and I know you moms out there can relate!   The Inventor got sent home from school on Tues. with the beloved stomach flu.  She spent the next 24 hours throwing up every 2 hours.  But the best part about it is, she came home from school with this really cool “throw up bucket,” and man did she get her lots of good use  out of that freebie!!!!  It sure made the “process” a bit easier. 🙂

And my last favorite thing this week is THIS POST!!  Yipee I finally have some time to blog……I am sure I will be stopping by lots of blogs this tonight and the next few days.   Lots to catch up on!

P.S. To get me back into the blogging mode…..leave a comment and I promise to visit your blog and leave a comment! 🙂