Monday, June 29, 2009



It's that time of week again. It has been kind of hard for several reasons, the least of which is that I'm always on the go and it seems like Mondays come faster than every 7 days. LOL! Do you ever feel that way?

For those who are getting cookbooks....I will be able to get those in the mail on Friday. We are, shortly after this post, going to a hotel for a few nights to play, swim, horseback ride (hopefully) and other fun, vacation-y type things.

I have a lot going on in the house. A lot of projects started and planned. One thing that I did this week is finish my holiday journal. If you will remember one of my last posts, I shared my favorite website: This is the site from where I got the "innards" of my journal.
I spent a few hours getting everything printed and organized. If you follow the journal, then you will start August 30. So, you know, there is not a moment to lose.

Here is a picture of the completed notebook (outside), a picture of just some of the inside, and the book that follows along with the planner. The book was fairly inexpensive, if you should consider buying it.

I have all of the inside pages for my notebook in page protectors. Some of these pages can carry over from year to year. Some will need to be reprinted each year. My next project involving this will be to make a "master-copy."

Some of these printables (and these are all free, BTW) include: address section, calendar pages, recipes to try, party planner, weekly meal planner, budget list, gift list, ornament storage chart....pretty much every room that is involved in the holidays will be covered in this notebook.

If you love organization, you will LOVE:


Friday, June 26, 2009


This is going to be my last FTF!

I'm not mad or anything. I just forget to do it. Every now and again, I'll post a fave, but not under an actual set schedule or anything.

In light of the fast-approach of the holidays, I would like to share one of my favorite sites.

How much do I love it?

I check it on the 25th of every month for the "Rudolph Club Meeting."

I have my own holiday organization to organize it.

I can get lost and spend hours on that site. I could, but I don't. It makes me feel very anxious. Because I'm just not organized enough. I do hope that, in time, I will be organized enough (at least where the holidays are concerned), so that I can just follow the monthly reminder and not have my normal meltdown(s) concerning all the stuff I want to do. celebration of my FAVORITE TIME OF YEAR (from the opening of the Great State Fair of Texas till January 2nd) I have been working on my own notebook.

I have the printables mostly done (working on that, as we "speak"). I have enough copies of my Christmas card list made. I just need to fill those in. I have gone through last year's cards to see who should, or should not, be scratched off my list. (Yes...gone are the days where I make and send out 125-150 cards when I only receive about 50.) Makes me sad, really. I just love doing cards. I know that not everyone is into cards...and I try to keep that in mind. YOU will get one, but if you used to send us a card and then you just went bat**** crazy on us (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE) and stopped sending us holiday greetings, then YOU, my friend, are SCRATCHED OFF MY LIST!!! I have no doubt that there will be some names added to my list as I receive cards and remember that I really do like you, but I gotta get it in control......OK......breathe.....just breathe!

*ahem* (insert embarrassed chuckle here). All that to say that today's FAVORITE THING is the aforementioned website. You can jump around the site to non-holiday things....organizing the home or other holidays. There are ideas for frugal decorating, getting the house cleaned well before the onslaught of guests, gift ideas, ideas and instructions for homemade gifts.....just a lot of fun stuff. I hope you will check it out.

SO MUCH FOR THE BIG DEAL much for the big give-away. Hardly anyone wants anything. I will get the claimed prizes out next week.

Go down to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for a listing of the other books. I have Alicia, Catey, Jeri, Amy Q, Theresa and Lisa (BlessedwithGrace) asking for a book....and only Amy Q has sent her addy. I know I have Catey's....need the rest. Please get this to me.

This is the last call for the books. I will be donating them by the end of the week.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


I know you know this, but it is with the utmost panic that I remind you that today....TODAY is a mere 6 months until Christmas.

You only have 3 months until the holidays start. Did you realize that?

Of course you did...why? Because you read my blog. You read and you are always looking to the side bar at those very important countdowns....countdown to Christmas, the countdown to The
Great State Fair of Texas, and the countdown to Harry Potter. Well, that hardly has any bearing on the holidays, but still.

Today, my hubby is gone, so he will be reminded the same as reading this. However, I did remind my kids and my 2nd (just like his daddy) rolled his eyes and shook his head. You know? When October rolls around and I have most of my Christmas cards made and ready to go, they will thank me......I'm pretty sure.

And now, I leave you with this:

Go here to keep your holidays organized. Join us on the 25th of each month for the Rudolph Club Meeting.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

You see? Even they know it!


I love you and am so proud of you!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


OK. Some of you know that my hubby and I went to our high school class reunion. 20 years. Wow. I feel old....well, no, not really. I feel like I should feel older than I do.

Anyway, it was interesting to say the least. I grew up in a small town. We only had something like 65 people in our class. Out of those....maybe 30 made an appearance? I didn't count.

We got t-shirts with our school colors and school mascot. Some parts seemed like a giant mid-life crisis event. It was truly something to behold.

Thursday saw an unofficial start to the festivities. Those who had arrived in town were already settled into a hotel. My hubby and I didn't stay around too long, as we had the kids. And there were certain goings on that we didn't want the kids to have to witness. Protective? Maybe. I won't go into details about this night for the sake of some of my dear, dear friends. Suffice to say, it was a bit wild and crazy.

Friday - some of the guys got together and played golf. One of my friends and her 2 children came to where I was staying with the boys. Once lunchtime rolled around, we went to our classmate's mother's restaurant. Later that night, we went back to the hotel where the last night's friends, and more friends were gathered. My hubby took me to my favorite "sit down" joint to eat. It was yum!

We didn't stay as late as some. We had our own plans. I certainly won't go into details here. Let's just say that we had a hotel room and a babysitter for the boys. *HUBBA HUBBA*

Saturday saw the actual, organized event. We checked in to get the t-shirts. We went to the high school for a tour. How fun to see see the place I spent over half of my high school career....the band hall. After, we all met to have a lunch of hamburgers and hot dogs. We ran around to kill some time in the afternoon. That night, we had a dance. And in true *small west-Texas town* fashion, most people stood around drinking and yelling at each other and only started dancing about 11:00 p.m.

The reunion was much more interesting than it sounds. I got to reconnect with some old friends. I got to confirm (with some) why I never was their friend to begin with. I got to know some and wish I knew them better in school.

I saw some truly happy people. I saw some truly sad folk, too. I wanted to ask some of these people why they were the way they were. Being the preacher's kid, I guess I was a bit sheltered. But, I just can't imagine the "demons" that seemed to harass some of these people who were just returning to their hometown for the weekend.

I gained a new respect for some. I was disappointed in others. I felt sorry for those who seem to have not gone anywhere in their lives. I'm not talking about leaving town. There are many who are thriving in that same, podunk environment in which I was raised. However, some appear to be curled up and slowly dying.

There were some who were supposed to attend and didn't. Some who refused to attend because "so-n-so was mean to me." Really? I'm sorry. I don't get that. I mean, granted....maybe someone was mean to you. But, 20 years has a way of causing one to mature. Get over it.

Some of the people were still caught up in high-school cr@p. That is just sad. There was gossip. There was name-calling. There was booze....a whole lot of it. There *might* have been drugs...I have my suspicions. There was hookin' up and makin' out. Some people fawned all over others. Some people snubbed others.

I'm glad I went. I'm glad I'm home. I am thankful for the friends I do have....I plan to keep them. It was a great reality check.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Hey, y'all. IT'S TUESDAY!

Tuesdays are a fun day to post. My friend, Lisa, hosts a blog-carnival in which many link up to share recipes, kitchen tips and hints. It's a lot of fun. Go on over and link up.

My entry is:


So many people discount the regular tossed salad. I can understand why. I can remember going to the diner and asking for a dinner salad. All you got was so NOT green, wilted lettuce, with a chunk or 2 of green tomato and a big glop of greasy salad dressing. Yum.....NOT!

If you went to a nice restaurant, you got kind of green lettuce (always iceberg), some pink tomatoes, bacon bits and croutons.....and a big glop of greasy salad dressing.

Tossed salad is easy to throw together and is wonderful to eat. It is an easy way to get in your full-serving of fruits and vegetables. Every time I take this to a function, it is really popular.

The beauty of this recipe is that you can add or NOT add whatever you want. You can add pretty much anything. The vegetables that you have only ever had cooked? Give 'em a try raw and in the salad.

Here is what I put in my BIG salad:

iceberg lettuce
red leaf lettuce
baby greens (including arugula, spinach, frisee, radicchio)
Swiss chard
cherry or grape tomatoes
sweet red peppers, yellow peppers, green peppers
thinly sliced red onion
summer squash (cut into rounds, then quartered)
zucchini (cut into rounds, then quartered)
sugar snap peas

*to the side*
cheese crumbles
bacon (real....not the fake crap)
sunflower seeds
pumpkin seeds
toasted pecans


honey mustard (especially good if you add craisins)
homemade ranch
balsamic vinaigrette (very easy to make)

There you go! (I apologize for not having a picture of my is on hubby's computer....HONEY? Would you email me those pics? I will update when I have them.)

In the summer, I love to make a big batch of this and store it in a large container. (Be sure to put a paper towel in the bowl.) If it is prepared, I'm more likely to eat a heap with my meals.


I guess I don't have too many readers to justify a drawing, so let me just remind you of the books I have left. If you haven't been notified of one (see yesterday's post) please let me know what you want. First come, first serve.

365 Foods Kids Love

The New Woman's Day Cookbook

Necessities and Temptations


Dear Daughter

The Lady and Sons

Chili Cookbook

many magazines (Cook's Illustrated and Cook's Country)

Monday, June 22, 2009


Not today.

We got in late last night. My home is in absolute chaos....not too happy. I need to catch up on laundry. Put my kids on their laundry-training duties, get my hubby packed and out the door, clutter picked up. Basically, there is a lot I NEED to do, it just hasn't happened yet. I'm sorry.

Also, I missed the Friday thing because we were out of town. We were at our 20 year high school reunion. I will post on that, later.

I hope you guys will bear with me as I get into a summer posting schedule.

Before I forget, here is what I have for the cookbook items:

Catey - Everyday Chocolate
Amy Q - From My Mother's Kitchen
Lisa (BlessedwithGrace) - Meals Like Mom
Theresa - Southern Living Slow Cooker
Jeri - Country Cooking

If you ladies would please send me your mailing address, I will get these out to you as soon as I can. (My DH flies out tomorrow until Saturday, so it might be next week before they go out.) Just leave a comment with these addresses...I will not publish that information.

I hope you enjoy.

Tomorrow, I will post the remaining titles as well as what you need to do to be put into the drawing

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Hey, y'all. Keep those comments coming! My regulars...what do you want?

Just so ya know, I will be leaving town tomorrow until Sunday evening. There is a GOOD chance that I will not get on my computer. I hope to see lots of comments saved and ready to be moderated when I get back.

Either Sunday, or Monday, I will have a post with whom (of the regulars) got what and then announce what is left for the drawing. (As I'm not TOO popular with readers, I'm sure the regulars can me entered into the drawing, too.) to see what all of my highschool classmates have been doing for the last 20 years. YIKES!


Hey, y'all! It's Tuesday....time for TEMPT MY TUMMY TUESDAY! You all remember my friend, Lisa? Well, she and her twin, Lana, co-host this blog carnival in which so many people link up and share recipes, tips, and ideas dealing with the kitchen. It's a lot of fun. I hope you will pop on over and join us.

I have been hinting at a cookbook give-away for a few weeks now. And yesterday, I PROMISED that there would be something great today. it is.


Here are some pictures:

They include:

365 Foods Kids Love
The New Woman's Day Cookbook
Everyday Chocolate
Country Cooking
From My Mother's Kitchen
Necessities and Temptations
Southern Living Slow-Cooker
Dear Daughter
Meals Like Mom
The Lady and Sons (Yes....a Paula Deen book)
Chili Cookbook
29 magazines and inserts (these are mostly Cooks Country and Cooks Illustrated) do you get one? Well, May 29th was my 3rd Blog-versary! That, alone, is a good reason to have a give-away. First, I would like to thank my faithful few. Some of you have been "with" me since the beginning of this little hobby of mine. Some of you joined in later. To those of you who read AND comment consistently (no...not every single post, but I don't have to jog my memory as to who you are) then I would like to guarantee you something. Now.....this number is less than's closer to 6. If you are one of those...and you know who you are...then leave me a comment with your top three choices. I will then get back to you as to what you are awarded. Since there are a few that will be more popular than others, then the first one to respond with their first choice gets it.

After that is claimed, then I will open up the remains to an actual random drawing. Sound good? I hope so. You don't know the pain I feel in giving these away...please love them!
ETA: I will not be mailing anything until next week. I am leaving town tomorrow for the rest of the week.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Hey, y'all! Hope you are having a good beginning to the week. We are. It's just hot hot!

So, before I forget, I will try to activate Mr. Linky.....but he hasn't been cooperating with me lately. SO, you may, or may not, be able to link up. If it's not up, please leave a comment!

A lot of you already know what I do here, but I suppose there may be a few new readers....either to this blog-carnival or to the blog, in general. I started this blog-carnival as a way to hold myself accountable. You know....pride can be a powerful ally OR a horrible enemy. I have chosen to use it to work on my house. I tend to get a little lazy. But, if I put something out there, then I will do it. Otherwise, I might just think about it and never get it done.

The purpose of (hopefully) allowing everyone else to link up is the same. My hope is that this blog will encourage and inspire others to do something in their homes.

So what is a happy home? A happy home doesn't have to be spotless. Heaven help us if it does. LOL! It does need to be clutter free and well-running. I find that if there is an area of my home that doesn't work well...either it is cluttered, ugly or dirty.....then I need to remedy that somehow. When I do that, I'm happier. My hubby is happier. My kids are happier.

Please join me. Find an area of your home that needs to be cleaned, organized or beautiful. Take pictures if you can. Share them with us. This is a long process. One that, sadly, will never be DONE. It is a work in process. I hope you will join in on that process with me.

SO, without further adieu, I will share what I did for Making a Happy Home.


Do you remember a few weeks ago when I had the teaser about my cookbooks? Well, it is coming together, so be sure to tune in tomorrow for some BIG NEWS!

For today, let me show you the before and after.

I keep my cookbooks above my bar in the cabinets. Above my bar, on the counter, on the hearth, by my bed, in the FTU, on the sidebar, in the floor, on the kitchen table...the point is, my cooking library has exceeded the capacity for that space above the bar. That will probably not change. I can't give up more kitchen space because, well.....I cook and need that space. I don't want to keep it on our bookshelves in another room because that just seems wrong to me, somehow. :)

I have too many books. Specifically, I have too many cookbooks. (We'll talk about regular books later.) There are some cookbooks that, no matter how much I may or, may not, use them, I will never part with. There are some that I have looked through once and that was it. I'm sad that I invested the money into these and didn't use/keep them. I think my hubby understands, I hope so....otherwise, I'll never get another cookbook. :p

Here is a before picture of the area with my cookbooks.

Here is the after. Not too bad, huh? Just wait till you see what you might could get!

**HINT HINT** You REALLY need to leave a comment.

Saturday, June 13, 2009


I have been so slow in getting my stuff up. Well, it's not just my blog.

I do love you all and have tons to say, as always.

I'll just give a little rundown of what is going on so far. I have my Monday post planned. I will also be taking pictures of those cookbooks today....I promise, today!

I hope.

We have been busy busy with summer activities.

All 4 boys have been in swimming lessons. We go from 10:45 until 12:45. Two of the boys are together, so there are 3 classes that we attend. One of the lessons was cut short and another cancelled, due to storms. We will be making those up this Sunday....uh, tomorrow.

Beginning Monday, we will be done with lessons, so we will start our 3-5 times/week trips to the Y to go swim.

Speaking of storms, we have had some doozies. Wednesday night, we got several of which sent us all to the bathroom. It was after midnight, the electricity went off, sirens started to's hard enough to get 4 kids into the bathroom when you have to wake them from a dead sleep...but to do so in pitch black...that was harder. Sure we had candles in the house....flashlights, matches. But, really? Who thinks of that when you don't know where the tornado is? Just get into the bathroom.

My little storm chaser was freaked and wouldn't sit and wait while I grabbed the babies....well, the 4 year old and 6 year old. He held onto my t-shirt while I stumbled and scrambled to get everyone in and settled while dh went to the back of the house for ds #1.

Another storm that night brought a tree down. :-( I'm sad for my tree....

We had a birthday party last Saturday. Twelve adults and 21 kids. We got a big, inflatable water slide. I had a lot of fresh fruit cut up for anyone who cared (watermelon, pineapple, cherries, grapes, strawberries and blueberries). We had 2 cakes because the party was for #4 who turned 4 this past Sunday and #1 who turns 10 on the 25th. One was a white cake "Backyardigans" theme and the other? Oh my.....Ghiradelli Triple Chocolate Brownies with chocolate frosting. mm, mm, mmmmmmmm! Of course, ice cream to cut the sweet.

DH and I are getting ready for our 20 year, high school class reunion. More on that, later. We leave Wednesday and come back Sunday. Of course, I'm fatter than I would like to be so, in true tradition, I'm on a crash diet. Four pounds down so far....I started Tuesday.

Kids are doing better on chores than I am. *sigh* I'm a work in process. Always will be, I suppose.

Only 31 and some hours until the new Harry Potter comes out. I don't do the midnight showing as I would need a midnight sitter for the 4 kidlettes. We usually go on day 2. However, that is when we are getting ready for our trip to Boston. SO, I might see this movie in Boston. The day after we get back from Boston, DH and my 2 oldest kids will go to church camp for a few days.

Man, the summer is almost over. I already miss my kids.

I need to get busy. School's starting, Fair is coming, Holidays are eminent which means......CHRISTMAS! Already have my holiday book out. :)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


What can I say? I was stupid. Looking back, I can think of a dozen things I should have done, but didn't. Instead, I scared myself, my hubby and my friends. I have spent many moments since telling myself how stupid I was. Now? I just thank God that He kept me safe.

I have been skydiving. Tons of fun! Stupid? Maybe. But, still...I'm glad I did it.

I have been rappelling....a LOT! Loads more fun than skydiving.

I am not here to talk about THAT stupid stuff. No, I'm talking about the life-threateningly stupid stunt.

Let me set the stage:

Hubby and I, along with our 4 boys, joined some dear friends of ours for an outing on a local lake. It was a bit windy. Not too hot. The water was just right. We had a few inflatables to pull behind the boat. There were a few jet-skis.

My boys have all had lessons, though I only consider my oldest to be water-safe (in a pool.) However, we made sure that all 6 kids (their 2 included) had their safety vests on the entire time. You can't be too careful with kids aged: 11, 9, 8, 6, 5 and 4. We moms sat on the end of the boat sunning while the kids were in the water, at our feet. One dad was on a jet ski. The other was swimming, sans vest.

So at one point, his daughter started to drift a bit. She got a little freaked. Her dad went after her, but then had trouble. He started to holler that he needed help. Now keep in mind that it is windy, there is water noise, boat noise and he is winded. While his wife turned to my hubby (who was floating on the jet ski by the boat) to ask if we heard him, I took off my sunglasses and dove in. (Also, sans life vest.)

In my defense, as a mom, I think I went a bit blind. I saw that this sweet little 5 year old girl was panicked....though in her life vest. I was always a strong swimmer. I've never made a lake rescue.

I got to her quickly. I turned to head toward the boat and realized the issue I was in.....not only was she in a current going one way, but I think the boat was in a current going the other. I promise you that the distance I swam to get to her was doubled by the time I turned. NOT GOOD!

Thankfully, my hubby was there. He pulled off his life vest to give to me. I got it on while the little girl clung to the side of the jet ski. DH grabbed the loop at the top of her vest and pulled her up and drove her to the boat.

It was during that time that I mentally started to kick myself....and suffer claustrophobia. Though I was floating...out and away, I might add, I felt the weight of the vest against me. Being a musician, I have always breathed with my diaphragm. I couldn't expand it enough, but I couldn't get enough air with just my lungs. My hubby came to get me. I grabbed his leg and he towed me to the boat.

Now, here are some interesting hubby, upon hearing our friend's call for help, started yelling for me to toss a life vest to our friend. I didn't hear him. I most certainly would have done that, had I thought of it. I have learned that he is always calm and cool-headed in a crisis....unlike myself. Also...I KNOW BETTER! I mean, really! I do. But, I guess some mommy instinct, from the stupid side of my brain, kicked in and took over.

When I think about what could have happened....well, God was definitely keeping His hand on me. For that, I am thankful....also thankful for my hubby's well-timed arrival on the jet ski.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


Hey y''s Tuesday, which means it's time to pop on over to my sweet friend's place. Lisa is hosts a blog carnival, with her twin Lana. Come on over and share some yummies with us.

For my contribution, I want to share a super easy, and yummy appetizer:



fresh jalapenos, stems still on, but seeds and membrane taken out
grated "fiesta blend" cheese

First, wash all jalapenos. Split from stem to end. Open up and take the seeds and membrane out. (This is the hot part of the pepper. But don't worry, you won't remove ALL the heat.

Fill pepper with grated cheese....only enough so that the pepper can close around it.

Wrap pepper with 1 slice of bacon. Secure with a toothpick.

Throw on the grill, split side up, for about 2-3 minutes. Turn over and grill until bacon is cooked.

YUMMY!!!! These are good as they are, but I imagine salsa, or ranch would be good, too. Ranch if the peppers are especially hot.

Monday, June 08, 2009


Hey, y'all!

Hope everyone is having a great beginning to the summer. We sure's already been crazy-busy, but we are having fun. I'll post about some of that later.

So for today's (late) installment of Making a Happy Home Monday I will talk about YARD WORK!!

First let me say this....I'm opposed to yard work.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not against it being done. I am opposed to MY doing it. LOL! I don't like to work in the yard. I don't like to dig in flower beds. I don't really like to garden....though I'm trying to convince myself that I do. I don't feel "girl-power" when I mow. I truly understand why farmers, back in the day, popped out many babies.....for the yard work. :)

SO, with all that in mind, my sweet hubby is in the process of teaching my 9, soon to be 10, year old son to do yard work. Last summer, he learned to ride the tractor mower (nothing too difficult....he is MUCH smaller than the old John Deere, but we keep it to straight patches.) This year.....he is learning how to weed eat!

Share with me what you are doing at your place to make your home happier.

Love to all!

** Due to my studying JBQ, I'm not working on specific scripture memoriztion outside the Bible Fact Pack.

Friday, June 05, 2009


OK OK....I know this is late. And I know I didn't do one last week....did I?

Last Friday was our last day of school. I had stuff to do.

Today? Well, I can't really get into all the details, for the sake of my son's pride. Suffice to say a quick checkup at the doctor led to an emergency ultra-sound and possible surgery. However, through the power of prayer, all is well.....I am back to my normal insanity and planning a joint birthday party for tomorrow.

BUT, I wanted to leave you with this:.....this is another favorite post of mine. Please go, read, laugh (at my expense) and share your thoughts. I love you all and will see you Monday, for sure!


What I'm about to tell you is true. It is almost unbelievable. When I tell others, the tears stream from all eyes. These are not tears of sorrow, empathy or pain. They are tears of hysterical, uncontrollable laughter. is laughter at my own expense. One would think that laughter such as this might be too hard to I said, it is unbelievable. Embarrassing? YES! So funny, I LOVE to tell this story.
To truly understand this story you need to put yourself into the scene. If you are a teacher or speaker, imagine that you are teaching 30 VERY bright 13 year-olds in an inner-city middle school. The kids are rough. The demographics are not important, but the age is. These kids understand a lot more than we would want them to know. If you are neither a teacher nor speaker, go back in time to a relatively difficult math class; a class in which the teacher is firm, sarcastic, but loved by the kids. Finally....imagine that teacher is pregnant!

The time is approximately 4 years ago. The place is my middle school classroom. The audience, about 30 boys and girls 12 to 13 years of age. The topic, be more specific, geometry...even more specific, congruence.

Now in order to prevent the brain-strain-pain that is hitting some of you (I won't mention any names, but I know who some of you are) I will not get technical and assume you know the term. Granted, you have all heard it, but for some of you, school was a LONG time ago and even if you remember hearing it, you might not have understood it. All that to say that the definition of congruence is basically same size, same shape.

I was always a fun teacher. I did cartwheels up and down the halls, walked across desktops and drew zeros around my room (on the walls in chalk). I allowed candy days as rewards and held lessons in various parts of the school. I was (and am, thanks to my newly renewed license) a good teacher. The parents liked me (most of them, anyway) because I was firm and I pushed rote memorization of multiplication tables. The kids loved me because I brought my life into the classroom. They knew my children. They knew my husband. They knew I could get mad at them for doing the stupid. They knew that I loved them from the bottom of my heart.

Knowing what a good teacher does, I was always on the lookout for good examples. These examples needed to reach out to the children to help them attach to the core of the lesson. It's not enough to read from a book, copy it on paper and hear it from the teacher. A good teacher reaches for ideas and presents concepts in multiple ways in order that he or she may reach every type of learner.

SO, here I am in pre-algebra. This class is an Honor's class for 7th grade. These kids are smart, but some, like me, have a hang-up in geometry. Knowing this, I really worked (and still do) when presenting concepts dealing with geometry. I didn't want to lose anyone. We were learning about congruence. We discussed, made models, measured no avail. I knew I had to cover it again after seeing their first test.

I have them repeat after me over and over again.
me - "What is congruence?"
them -"Same size same shape." (this is done in monotone...I was quite pleasant and chipper.)

me - "What is congruence?"

them - "Same size same shape."


Finally, I reach for one more example. I say, "OK, you know when you show up at school wearing the same shirt as your best friend? You are Twinkies." (y'all remember using that term? They understood. So then I say, "For example Brian (NOT his real name, but it was a boy) gets up one day, looks in the mirror and sees his Twinkie."

There it just hung there (no pun intended) in the silence. Nobody moved. Nobody even breathed. They all waited for the reaction of the speaker.

Realizing immediately the faux pas, I tried to recover. I couldn't pretend it didn't happen. I had already turned various shades of red. I couldn't brush it off, because DUDE...the teacher just referred to a....YOU KNOW! So I said, "Hmmmm. THAT didn't sound real good, did it?"

The class burst out laughing. There was a sense of relief as the students were finally able to release the toxins and take in fresh air.

After owning up to this horrible event to some co-teachers, I drove home and chalked it up to an interesting, but successful, lesson taught by one, but learned by all. The next day, I swallowed my pride, walked into my classroom only to find some Twinkies on my desk.

That class, to this day, contained my favorite students of all time. I love them all.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009


Girly, at Be Still My Heart, has given me this award. How sweet. Thank you so much.

She nominated 10 bloggers. I don't think I'll nominate that many, but here goes:

Bittersweet Symphony


Make You Work More

Miss Paula

Seven 4 Heaven

There you have it....these aren't all my faves, by any means...however, if you are "ALL" given a special award, then it isn't special, right? LOL

Go check them out.....along with the others listed in my side bar.

And, once again, thank you Girly for this!


Hey, guys. I hope you will join in for Tempt My Tummy Tuesday. This is a blog-carnival hosted by my friend, Lisa. You can link up and join a bunch of others sharing recipes, kitchen tips and other ideas dealing with all things yummy.

Anyway, for my entry, I will share with you a shrimp appetizer. It is SO SO easy and really yummy.

There is really no name for this (though DH and I call it "bleeding shrimp." Gross, I know, but still)


1 block cream cheese
1 can shrimp (either tiny or small)
1 bottle shrimp cocktail sauce

Place cream cheese on serving plate
Top cream cheese with cocktail sauce (use as much as you want, but I use about 1/2)
Top sauce with all of the canned shrimp
Scoop up with crackers

In this picture, I used 2 blocks of cream cheese and one entire bottle of sauce. I topped with the tiny shrimp. Then, I placed the small shrimp around the edges.

*I had already covered this with plastic wrap, hence the glare.

Monday, June 01, 2009


If this is the first post you are reading, then you have 3 more new ones to read. If you are reading these in order of posting, then this is the 4th! WOW! FOUR POSTS IN ONE DAY!

This is a quick installment of Making a Happy Home Monday.

Chore charts!

We have created chore charts for all our kids and I wanted to share what we did and how we are working with this system.

I created 3 different charts. One chart is shared by the 2 older. They each do the same chores, I just printed an extra copy and put each kid's name on his chart. The younger 2 each have their own chores. The chart with the sun is for my oldest 2. The chart with Veggie Tales is for my 6 year old and the one with Thomas and James is for my soon-to-be 4 year old. (Sorry it's crinkled.) I placed a strip of paper over their names.

I created these from here.

Instead of reprinting the chart each week, we just have the chart in a page protector. The kids then use a dry-erase marker to check off each chore as it is done. My 2nd LOVES it.....he woke up, saw the chart and got everything done before I even got ready for the day. My first will have to be ragged and nagged constantly. Oh well.....

The little ones love to help and will adapt, I think, quickly. (Heh....I say that, my youngest was the one that crinkled his chart.)

Anyway, another way to Make a Happy Home.

*if you click on the picture, you can make it bigger and see the actual chores


It has been so crazy. Last week was the craziest! I just thought I would let you know what all I have been up to. By the way.....continue reading after this post, because there are 2 more below.

Last week was our last week of school. It was a lot of fun, but busy!!!

Tuesday....what did I do Tuesday? Oh yeah, there was a poetry reading for 2nd grade. My 8 year old, along with 124 other 7 and 8 year olds EACH read a poem that they had composed. Their teachers also composed and read poems that included the names of each of their students. Anyway, the program was cute....but made worse because the 2 little boys didn't really want to sit through all those poems.

Wednesday? Hmm.....oh, you know what? The poetry reading was Wednesday. I think Tuesday was a day to prepare for.....

THURSDAY!!! This was our big day....our busy day.

Thursday saw awards and parties. My 4th grader and my 2nd grader both had both. So, we went to the award ceremony of DS #1 (see previous post) then ran to start DS #2's party. Got that started, went to start #1's party, check on #2, a bit more with #1, awards for #2, pick up from school and off to piano lessons. PHEW!

Friday was the last day of school and was only 1/2 day. Second grade had another party. (There *might* be a post about that, but I'm still trying to decide how to be nice about it all. ;) ) After that, we all went to see the movie UP. That was fun. Then Daddy took us to Dippin' dots for a fun treat.

Saturday saw a piano recital for both older boys and then a birthday party for a friend. The party was over about 6, but we ended up staying until about 11:45. LOL!!!! FUN TIMES!

Sunday was church and then our home team....I made the "BIG" salad and Red, White and Blue Sundaes. Also made some chocolate chip cookies just because.

Today is our first, full-day of summer vacation. The kids are having a "fun" time adjusting as the chores that were NOT expected are a lot less fun than all the video games that WERE expected. Ha. We will not be wasting the summer away.

Thank you, dear reader, for being patient with me. I hope to be better blogger soon.


So, my oldest son is kind of shy, really smart, scrawny, long-legged, big-footed, not too popular and a bit awkward. He is I identify with him.

The past few years of school have been kind of hard because of bullies. My son, whom I love, has come home many days, upset because that classmate said this or this classmate did that. Even children of friends have been an issue. Apparently, being friends with the momma or daddy doesn't always translate into the offspring being friends....but I digress.

Every time we have discussions about these others, my hubby and I always say the same...."We pray for them, we are friendly to them, and over all, we do the right thing."

Yes, it sucks sometimes. It hurts. It's not fair. But, God expects a certain behavior from us and that is what we will do.

FINALLY, after a few years of difficulties, my sweet boy received something that the class bully doesn't get. He received the Mustang of the Year award for our school.

This is a big deal for 2 reasons. First, it is very exclusive. There is only 1 boy and 1 girl chosen for ALL of kinder - 6th grade.....not 2 per class. Not even 2 per grade. Nope....2 for ALL of those children....between 800 and 900 children. Secondly, the Mustang and Lady Mustang of the Year are chosen by the teachers.

I finally had the chance to point out to my son that doing the right thing is seen and remembered.

THANK YOU, GOD for this wonderful reward.

*sorry for the quality of this photo...the lighting in the auditorium was really bad.


Hey, y'all

It's time for Making a Happy Home and Memorization Monday. The purpose of MHHM is to hopefully inspire and encourage others to take a small area in their homes and make it a happy place. This can be done by cleaning it, organizing it or making it pretty. Whatever you do, it will make you happier. That happiness will filter down and make your family happy.

It's been crazy. I will be posting more about why I have been AWOL so stay tuned.....there may even be more than one post today. (In fact...that is my goal so I can get caught up on things.)

Let's get down to business, though, shall we?

For Making a Home Monday I am working on a few of MANY housekeeping issues for me.

It seems my nemesis, well not really...laundry is my nemesis.....but a problem for me is my dining room table and my kitchen bar. I have so much trouble keeping them clean. It is a vicious, vicious cycle....

I get them cleared off and then promise myself that I will not allow them to get out of control again....only to wish I kept my promise to myself just a few days later. :( I will have the table or bar cleaned off, swearing I won't get into the clutter problem again....after all, if I just put things away as I use them, it won't be an issue. But who does that? Really. Who? It starts with one pile of coupons, or one or more cookbooks, telling myself that I will get to the pile soon and that it is not out of control...until I have about 8-12 piles of cr@p going.

I would imagine that this (or something similar) is a problem for you, too. So you might see this on MHHM often....I just don't know that I will kick the clutter habit.

Since I'm so behind in blogging (see other posts) I haven't even started this yet. I just took some before shots. I will be back in a few hours, or days, to share my progress.

This is please don't judge me.

And now for Memorization.

First off, I'm pleased to announce that I have received my 10 point seal for Junior Bible Quiz. I had to learn a lot for that. I had 288 questions that I had to learn. Then, for the test, 30 questions were chosen randomly (from the 288) and out of those 30, I had to answer 20 correctly. Fortunately, I knocked them out so I didn't have to worry about almost not getting it. Now, I start working on my 20s. That will only be 192 *harder* questions.

Anyway, I came across this list and I'm basically going to start cracking these out - along with the 20 point JBQ questions I need to learn.

The first one, I know. I had to learn that for JBQ. Now, I will work on memorizing the 2nd which is Psalm 1:1-6

1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall ot wither, and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4 The ungodly are not so; but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

OK...we will TRY Mr Linky, but I might have to remove it. I hope not. Y'all take care.