Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Sock Problem Solution

So remember awhile ago, I was complaining about the abundance of socks I had to sort through on a weekly basis?
If you forgot about it or missed it, you can refer to it here.
In the middle of my grumbling I had a light bulb moment about how I could better organize all those boy socks we have floating around.
Lingerie bags.

So I went to the store and picked up 2 of them. I had thought to get one for each boy, but my kids don't take their socks off only in their bedroom. They take them off all over the house, the garage, the yard, the trampoline, the deck, the woods and the van. However, they usually end up in either the laundry room or their bedroom.
So I decided 2 bags would suffice.
Although one in the van might just be genious.

Then I got some ric-rac.  I chose orange (for their room) and pink (for the laundry room).
Don't ask me why it was important that each room have their own specific bag.  I really can't remember right now, but it made sense at the time.

I sewed the ric-rac loop onto the edge of the lingerie bag, where the zipper ends.  I sewed it really well so that it would be sturdy and not rip off.

Then, I bought one of my favorite inventions.
Command hooks.
If you've never used these things, they are really awesome. I am not one to balk at putting holes in my walls, but I do tend to rearrange the furniture a lot. So this seemed to be a better choice.  Besides, I was hanging one of these bad boys on the side of my dryer, and there will be no hole drilling going on there.

One hook on the dryer and one hook on the door jam next to the hamper in their bedroom.  I chose my locations carefully. I know that if the boys don't see it,
they won't use it.

I explained the new rules to the boys.  Then I waited to see how many times I would have to explain the rules again.  To my surprise, they have pretty much taken to the new system. Of course there is still a reminder made here and there, but overall the boys have been doing a great job.  Maybe they don't realize it yet, but it could be they actually like things being organized.
If only I could get them to realize that about keeping their bedroom clean. Or the school room. Or maybe they will actually use some of the organization systems I have in place.
Whoa, wait a minute.
I'm getting a little carried away now.
They are just little boys after all.
One step at a time,Mama.
One step at a time.
I have also had them sort and pair up their socks as part of their chores.
I am on a role people!
What's next?
Oh, my craft closet that has vomited out onto the floor under the laundry table and into the t.v. room. 
That definitely needs to be next.
Anyone want to come over and help?
This isn't a job for one woman.

Thanks for stopping by,
may your sock organization be inspired.
That's what is next.
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Monday, September 24, 2012


These flowers come up in my flower beds every year.
I have no idea what they are called. They were planted here long before I moved in. Isn't that fun? Someone, wanted to beautify the yard outside my home and chose these yellow puff balls.  That person must have enjoyed this type of flower. Now I get to enjoy it too.
These flowers have stalks that are about 6 feet tall and skinny.  So skinny, in fact, that once the flowers are in full bloom they bend the stalks over almost to the ground.

I suspect they are of the Chrysanthemum variety.
It doesn't really matter.
I'm just happy that they are there.

Their sunny orbs brighten my yard and make me smile.
I love the fullness of the flower.
They are beautiful.

What do you have blooming in your yard that you really enjoy?

Thanks for stopping by -
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Sunday, September 23, 2012

A New Start To A New Year

Just thought I'd share a few photo's of my students this year.
Funny, they look a lot like my students last year. 
Just a little older and a little wiser.
This month, we started our school year, although it has begun a little slowly.  We are okay with that.

We are starting a new curriculum, a whole new program in fact, with the school district in Antigo.  Part of the fun of being in on the ground level of a new program, is working out all the kinks.  So our curriculum is trickling in.  However, that has given us an opportunity to ease into the year, which has been nice.

It also gave me a little more time to focus on my Kindergartner.  We started a new program, a virtual curriculum, called Little Lincolns.  So far it has been going really well, and has been just what we needed to grab the Doodles' attention and get him excited about learning.

Can I just say that I am so blessed to have an entire room dedicated to home schooling my children?
Well, I am. 
I love it. 
It is a bright and cheerful place for us to learn together. It has enough room to store all of our supplies right there so we don't waste time hunting down books and scissors and stuff. Plus, I can close the door on the mess instead of having to clear it off the dining room table each day. 
I also want to say that I have the best students.
Most days.
Home schooling has been an unexpected blessing.  This isn't what I planned to be doing originally, but I am really thankful for this extra time with my boys.  It is exciting to be the one who helps foster their love of learning and gets to watch their eyes light up when they are interested in a subject. 
It's a hard job. 
But it is also a rewarding one.
It would probably be even better if I possesed more patience.
But, maybe that's why God has me home schooling.
So I can develop that quality.
See, everyone is learning something in this school!

So here's to a new year full of exciting adventures in learning!

Thanks for stopping by,

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Friday, September 21, 2012


This summer, one of my girls agreed to pose as a model for my photography exploits.
I thought I'd share a few of the results.

Those were a few of my favorites.

Here are a couple photo collages.
I thought you all might like to see the many expresions of Alexa.

And here's my all time favorite:

Thanks Lex, for the opportunity to take your picture.
I hope you like them.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Roasted Garden Veggies

Did anyone garden this summer?
Or maybe you are a fan of the local Farmer's Market? 
You may be wondering what to do with the abundance of amazing produce you have gathered from either your personal garden or from produce you've bought or been given from a neighbor. 
Let's be real, no one can eat all the zucchini that comes out of their own garden.  It needs to be passed along.   And passed along again, and again.
I am more of a summer squash fan myself. I know that there aren't many differences between a zucchini and a summer squash, but I love the bright yellow skins.  If you've been graced with an abundant crop of garden veggies, you may be running out of ideas on how to eat them. I thought I 'd share one of my favorite ways with you. 
I like to make a roasted vegetable medley
You can use almost any combination that you like.
In the pictures below you will see cauliflower, summer squash, mushrooms, sugar snap peas, broccoli, red potatoes, carrots, and onions.
I dice everything up, put it all in a bowl, and then drizzle olive oil on top. I mix it up so that all the veggies have a light coat of oil on them. 
Then I add the seasoning.
Some of my favorites to use are rosemary, garlic, salt and fresh ground pepper.  But you can add almost anything that makes you salivate.  I don't use measurements, I just sprinkle until it looks right.

Mix it all together really well. Then spread it out on a cookie sheet.  I usually bake it at about 375 to 400.  You do have to keep an eye on things so they don't get over done. Usually 20 minutes will do it.  I like my veggies cooked so that they are still al little crisp.
You could also package this all up in an aluminum foil packet and throw it on the grill.

Roasted veggies make a delicious accompaniment to any summer meal. 
Go gather up your fresh veggies and roast away, you'll be glad you did.
It's so good.
Thanks for stopping by!

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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Miss E - A Sneak Peek

My friend Caiti let's me practice taking pictures of her adorable little girl. 
She is a sweet and sassy little one year old.
And very busy. 
It's really hard to get a focused picture of a moving toddler.
But I tried my best and managed to capture a few cute shots.

So, please be nice, but I would appreciate hearing your thoughts.  Ideas on what you like and don't like.  Tips for making it better. 
If you are a photog, what's your best tip for keeping the eyes in focus? What photo program do you use? What is your favorite way to edit the pictures?

I would like to know.

I hope this little girls Momma is happy with the pictures. 
It's pretty easy to get some cute pictures when your model is so adorable. 

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts,

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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

A Family Getaway

We finally did it.
After talking about it off and on all summer, we actually did it.
We may have done it a little differently than we originally planned.
We may have gone somewhere we didn't originally plan to go.
But we finally took a family vacation.
Not a long one, not a fancy one,
but a good one.
Just enough time away to feel refreshed.
Just enough distance from home to feel relaxed.
Just enough adventure to satisfy the need to shake things up.
Where did we go?
What did we do?
Here's a little picture of our home away from home (for 3 days at least)

We have good friends in Baraboo, Wi that own this little pop-up camper.  We gave them a phone call the day we wanted to leave on vacation and asked them if we could borrow it.
They said yes.
Because they are good people like that. 
They also towed it to Devil's Lake campground (after reserving us a site) and set it up for us.
Yeah, they win the 'Most Amazing Friends of The Year' award.
We showed up just in time to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich supper,  hug our friends and thank them profusely with promises to see them tomorrow, and fall into bed.
The next morning, after 3 middle of the night trips to the bathroom, we set up the rest of  our little campsite and made some breakfast.

H.H. was all over breakfast detail.  He's not only the best breakfast chef at home, he'd the best on a camp stove or over an open flame.  That's right, he can do it all.  

The boys helped to string up the clothes line. It had a little sag in it but we made it work.  One day they'll be able to do all this stuff without help. Troy and I will be able to wake up to the smell of frying bacon, with the coffee and tea already made.  (sniff, theygrowuptoofast) Hey, a mom can dream.

I stuck with my normal morning role, I mean, we weren't trying to shake things up too much, you know?  So I happily sipped my chai tea while I watched H.H. cook the bacon.  (it's crucial, even on vacation to keep some of the most important routines of your day consistent)

I think mornings are the best times while camping.  Something about waking up and sitting out in the fresh air, eating food prepared outside.
Maybe because we had nowhere to rush off to. We just took our time, ate our meal in stages, shared time in the Word together.
It was relaxing, and nice.

So our vacation was to go camping, which is slightly ironic since we work at a camp.  However, we haven't camped as a family very often.  Probably because we live in the woods where everyone else comes to camp.  The boys love it though, and it is one of the last affordable places to stay with a family for a few nights.
Plus, if you have access to a camper, it's not half bad.
Stay tuned for more of our vacation adventures!
Thanks for stopping by,
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