Well, Well, Well, tomorrow is Monday

Monday, Monday, back to school tomorrow.  My alarm clock has not seen 5:42am for almost 2weeks.  But tomorrow it is back to reality.  Christmas Break will be over.  Hold on I need to get a tissue…..sniff, sniff!

I have really relaxed this break.  It was so needed!  I got to enjoy lots of my favorite R words;

relax, refresh, renew, revive, reminisce, restore, and recharge.

Watched some movies, including The Three Stooges, and the classic The Sound of Music,  played Bananagrams with The Inventor (not sure if she is that good, or I am that bad!), played ping pong with SportTman, got addicted to Twitter, exercised some, went out to breakfast with Drums, started reading Sarah Palin’s book “Going Rogue”, watched more movies, and ate lots of junk food!

Yes it has been good, and a constant reminder to me to find time to relax and recharge.  It’s a crazy life we live, but it’s also important to simplify things, keep the priorities the main things and enjoy being a family!  My kids are embarking on those rocky teen years, and so far I really like them.  But I never want to loose the focus of family time TOGETHER!  Christmas break gave us all just that…TIME TOGETHER.

So tomorrow at 5:42am, as I struggle out of bed, into a cold house and make a beeline for my coffeemaker…….a small smile will envelop my face as I reflect on such a WONDERFUL vacation!!

Here are a few pictures from vacation………

My kitchen table, this is how it looked during SportTman’s 15th birthday party air soft gun party.

Me…after the party! Trying to look like the cool, air soft gun shooting  mom that I have become! 🙂

Our summer Fresh Air Fund young man got to come and enjoy Christmas break with us.  He lives in the Bronx and Greyhound brought him to us for a week.  He even got to come to our school with SportTman for a day!

Here are he and SportTman enjoying spaghetti in our basement!  And The Inventor with Sir Isaac ( that will be his blog name) out in the snow, after a fun snow ball battle!

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!  🙂

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

Why I love “You Tube”

In a random weird, crazy, fun mommy moment, I started to sing this song out of the blue.  My kids immediately  gave me “THAT” look.  You know the look, the “are you for real mom, get a grip and stop singing that stupid song” look!  But being the obnoxious, fun mom that I am, I continued to sing it.  I  then went to You Tube and suddenly I had the  video below!

I  was able to let my kids enjoy the song  loudly blasted through out the entire house.

Yep, that is the kind of mom I am!  🙂

Won’t you sing along with me…..”here’s the story, of a lovely lady”……… I know some of you know all the words just like me!

The Brady Bunch Kids Opening

Life Lesson to remember – Have  fun with your kids, be silly with them, even if they give you “THAT” look! 🙂

Things to do when stuck in a traffic jam

We had the pleasure of being stuck in a traffic jam for a whopping 3.5 hours recently!! It was due to a fatal accident on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. So in case you are stuck in a MAJOR traffic mess for endless hours in the middle of the summer. I thought I would offer you some tips……so as a super mom you will be prepared!

#1 – Play endless games of the infamous alphabet game….you know the one….where you find letters on signs, trucks, or on the back of the same car you have been following forever!

#2 – Listen to LOTS of music, and roll down the windows for all to hear your rockin christian music. Pretend you are a teenager again. Although your image will be tainted if you are driving a van like ours!

#3- As a mom it is important to demonstrate your physical strength and agility in such a dire situation. So climb over all the things you have packed, including your kids, and attempt to retrieve food from the back of the van. It is important to show your flexibility and stick your head way down over the back bench seat with your butt sticking way up. Sigh a lot so others will know how difficult this is, and then continue to stretch your arm down as far a possible to retrieve that must have food item. In our case, I was after the Oreo Cakesters, which I finally victoriously snatched from the depths of my van. They were ALL quickly devoured!

#4- Write a sign that says, “Honk if you have to pee!!” This provides endless hours of fun! BTW, LOTS of people honked their horns! 🙂 Sorry you can’t read the sign that well, I had to take a quick picture! I don’t have much experience taking pictures while stuck in traffic on a major highway! 🙂

Those are just a few of our tips! Hope it never happens to you! But if it does, you have the same choice we did….be miserable or make the best of it! 🙂

Sick mama slaves in kitchen to make special cookies for kids!


Check out these cookies I whipped up as a snack for the kids yesterday……while I was home sick. Before you think I must be feeling great to make homemade cookies…..or gosh, she must be trying to win the coveted “mom of the year” award, she made cookies while she was sick. Neither is true! Albeit, I do feel better, let me explain the steps involved in this process.

Step #1 – Walk to your freezer and pull out a bag of frozen homemade sugar dough ( made about 1 month ago). Pull out some red sugar, roll frozen dough into a ball, roll in sugar. Grease cookie sheet, put cookies on baking sheet, bake at 300 degrees for 10 min. At this point, you smile to yourself, since the house smells of fresh baked sugar cookies, and you have that content Martha Stewart feeling. The Inventor then comes home from school at the moment I am pulling them out of the oven, and proclaims, “Wow those look great!”

I quickly hide the baggie that had the dough in it so she thinks I am the greatest mom and slaved over the cookies, despite suffering from strep throat.   LOL!  Actually she remembered we had made the dough together awhile back.   We then enjoy cookies together!!



The finished product. I added a chocolate chip, because it’s always wise to add chocolate to anything! All wise moms know this.

Here is my silly daughter enjoying her snack!


Ancient Chinese proverb says – “Smart moms keeps frozen cookie dough in freezer”

Let it snow…let is snow…let it snow!

I have always thought family vacations are important times of bonding, and enjoying fun together. Even when I was a SAHM and we were quite broke, we still tried to take some kind of family vacation. We just thought it was a priority to get away together, spend time being a family, and savor time away from the stress of life.

So our recent trip to Lake Placid, NY was no exception to the family fun rule! We had such a glorious, crazy, adventurous time together. I know some of you will think we are crazy, but we love the cold and snow…..yes I understand, some of you when you think of snow, you think, hot chocolate, homemade soup and a good book. My family thinks, SNOW, let’s go!!! We all built the snow fort below, it was around 6 degrees out while we were working on it. Due to my current over 40 body experiencing daily hot flashes, I kept quite warm! 🙂


We also tried cross country skiing for the first time. I really liked it. It is one heck of a total body workout, but skiing along the beautiful, peaceful snowy trails made it enjoyable.


Drums took the kids downhill skiing at Whiteface Mountain ( where the 1980 and 1932 Olympics were held). I can no longer downhill ski. I have a torn ACL in my knee. It’s been torn for years, but once I turned 4-0, I decided with the torn ACL I should give up skiing. 😦 But don’t worry about me……….. I enjoyed drinking coffee, and sitting in the lodge reading a Karen Kingsbury book my mom gave me. ( It was the first book of hers that I have read, thanks Mom!)


We also ice skated on the frozen lake, visited an amazing ice castle, took in the scenic beauty, shopped in downtown Lake Placid and enjoyed the hotel pool, hot tub, and steam room! It was so hard to come home! But we made some wonderful family memories.


Christmas Vacation FUN!!!

How many of you have used Photo Booth before? It is hilarious, wholesome, pee your pants kind of fun. We sure did have fun with this today. I thought I would honor you with some simply gorgeous, photos of my beautiful family. We were looking goooooood for these pics. The first picture is actually my lovely brother. I thought I would surprise him and paste his handsome picture on my blog for all to see! I am sure he will be thrilled to see his picture on my blog. Ha Ha Ha! Who needs Christmas presents when you have Photo Booth fun! 🙂  On the Christmas present note, one of our favorite gifts around our house this year, was Skype.  My extended family all got it, so now we can talk for free over the computer and actually see each other.  It is so cool!  My parents and brother and his family all live about 2 hours away and my other bro is about 5 hours away.  So Skype is a great way to stay connected!




A Few More Traditions

After a fun day yesterday making painted glass ornaments with The Inventor and a silly night out shopping with SportTman, I am getting back to down to the business of the week ahead. I just cooked chili and a family favorite, ham and noodle casserole to serve later this week. This way when things get crazy, I already have a nice, dinner DONE.

Just wanted to list a few more traditions.

#1 We do special family devotions the month of Dec. Each family member is responsible for leading the devotion. We have done plays one of the kids wrote, played a game of scategories with a christmas bible theme, played a homemade board game with Christmas bible related questions, hunted for objects related to the Christmas story etc…. Just last night The Inventor shared her Christmas devotion and built a little stage. She devised a role of paper on two wooden dowel rods, she pasted pictures that related to the Christmas story and then read the story as she moved the scroll with the paper to the bible verses. It was so creative, she even stuck 2 small flashlights into the box that would shine right onto her scroll. (Do you see why I call her The Inventor!) This has been a fun tradition and it’s so rewarding and heart-warming to allow the kids to come up with their own devotion!  I thought it would help if you could see a pic of her invention!  🙂


#2 – We have a countdown jar, we fill it with 100 pieces of candy ( 1 for each family member for 25 days) and eat a piece every night after dinner, it’s empty on Christmas day.

#3- We picnic in front of the Christmas tree on Friday nights.

Enjoy the Christmas season with your family!

So tell me, what traditions or special things do you do with your family at Christmas?

Christmas Traditions

Oh I am a traditionalist! I love my Christmas traditions and my children are now at a fun age to truly appreciate them ( SportTman is 12 and The Inventor is 10). MomRn2 is hosting a Christmas Traditions listing of everyone’s favorites. I definitely wanted in on this one. So with out further adieu I humbly present our favorite Christmas traditions.

  1. Every December we find time to watch the sappy, yet ever endearing movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” We snuggle up with lots of popcorn and watch this charmer of a movie every year. It just doesn’t seem like the holiday season with out it.
  2. I place a small gift box under the tree every year with a large nail in it, and write on the box, “The Greatest Gift.” It’s nothing fancy, just very symbolic
  3. When the kids were younger we would have them get in their jammies, slippers and grab a favorite blanket and go look at Christmas lights. I would bring hot chocolate and a few homemade treats along. They no longer get in their jammies to go look at lights, but we do still enjoy looking at decorated homes while enjoying the treats.
  4. We draw “special angels” the first Sunday of Dec. The family member whose name is you draw is now your special angel for the month. You do kind things for the person ( feed the dog for them on their day, leave special candy treats for them to find, do a chore for them), but you must remain anonymous. We reveal special angels on Christmas Eve.
  5. When the kids made a decision to accept Christ into their lives, we bought each of them a special Christmas ornament. We wrote the date of their decision on the ornament. Now every year they place their special ornament on the tree first, and discuss it meaning with us, and what Christ means to them personally. It has served as a great reminder of that personal commitment.

Ok that is all for now, …………I have more to post, but will have to wait until tomorrow night.

Merry Early Christmas to all!!


Crazy, Fun times – Wordless Wednesday

At our house we believe in having fun together….so my sweet, dear husband gladly volunteered to sacrifice his body for some good, clean fun. He even wanted to be duct tapped upside down, but I wouldn’t let him. 🙂 So the kids gathered outside, got all our duct tape, and plastered hubby to a tree. Everyone had a great time and a good laugh!

I thought you all would love the pic…… BTW, I truly think the neighbors think we are crazy!!!! 🙂