Posts

Showing posts from June, 2017

Kids' chores and schoolwork during the Summer

Our Summer schedule is crazy busy, especially since I have decided to take on tutoring clients in the morning at home as well as tutoring in the afternoons like normal. This is a blessing on the money front, but doesn't allow me that time to clean or relax. It is good to be busy though.

Since I don't have a lot of time to clean and maintain the house, I have implemented a new chore system with the kiddos. (Remember they are 10, 7 and 5). They have their assigned chores per day, then they have to do zone work daily. I have them focus on the living room and dining room. We switch it up each week.
If they complete all of their chores each day, then they can earn tickets that they can then spend on Sunday in "Mom and Dad's store." I have different items priced out of tickets that they can choose from. So far in June it is working out pretty well!! My house is cleaner and the kids are happy with the system, so it is a win, win!
I also expect for my children to do some…

Mini Mozzarella Stuffed Italian Meatloaves (new recipe #9 of 2017)

Image
One of the things that I would like to get done in 2017 is to try to expand our menu items. I have decided to share the recipes that I try so that maybe I can help a few of you out with some new menu ideas. I know that I get inspiration from other bloggers so maybe I can help.


I was doing really well with this in January and the beginning of February. In April, I made a yummy tuna avocado salad. In May I made a yummy monkey salad.

This month, I made a came across a yummy sounding low-carb recipe and decided to give it a try.

I made mini mozzarella stuffed Italian meatloaves from "Joy Filled Eats." 


They turned out so good!! EVERYONE loved them and they were none the wiser that they were eating zucchini. The kids started calling them cheese stuffed meatballs. 





I served them with fresh steamed green beans and sliced tomatoes. Perfect for a lighter summery meal.

*In the interest of full disclosure, I do need to say that I made these 2 different times. The first time, they got overco…

The Friends of the Library Book Warehouse

Image
Ever since we moved to our current city, I have seen signs at the library for their "Friends of the Library Used Book Warehouse." I have never been though. That changed a few weeks ago, when I decided to take my mom out their to explore it. My mom loves to go to the half-priced book store which is over an hour away, so figured let's see what this is all about.



Well, what it was all about was a warehouse stuffed with thousands of used books, magazine, dvds, etc. for sale. These were library books that they had taken out of circulation, books that were donated by the general public or businesses. They had a ton! The only ask for a donation of $5 per grocery bag that you buy or a donation of your choice if you buy less. Talk about a bargain! And each child under the age of 18 gets a free book at each visit! The money that they make goes back into the library program to pay for things like the Summer Reading program materials, community events, etc.  
Well, our first visit ne…

Made it to Friday....

This week has been a blur.... crashing into bed exhausted every night and waking up running when my feet hit the floor in the morning. It has just been a crazy busy week. But I made it to Friday! HOORAY!

Some of the highlights of this week....
My dear husband has worked many, many hours (almost double his normal schedule) as the local little league has their tournaments and Bill has to cover every single game per his editor's orders. He is responsible for 16-18 feature stories this week alone! There was one night where he didn't get home until close to 1AM and then had to be back to work at 6:30AM to do it all over again. He has had a really rough week (actually the last few months) and is trying to send out resumes  to find something different but it is hard.
So I have been doing all the kid stuff and running my tutoring business, and trying to keep the house clean as our landlord has decided that all his houses need an inspection that is supposed to happen sometime this week …

So busy

Image
Sorry for the lack of posting. I am so busy. This week my to do list is 75,000,000 miles long and I am just a little overwhelmed. So I will be taking a break from the blog this week. Hopefully, will be back by the weekend. We shall see. I hope everyone has a wonderful week! See you soon!

This week....

Image
Today's posting is going to be kind of random. I have had a beyond busy week, so feel like a bit of randomness is due....

So, here goes....
This week...
HAS BEEN HOT!!! Each day the heat index has been close to 100. On Tuesday it was actually closer to 105 degrees. It has also been very humid so we have been kind of stuck inside. Thank goodness for air conditioners.
WE GOT THE BOYS A NEW WINDOW A/C....

Our upstairs does not have a/c due to the way the heating system is in our house. Well, the last 2 summers we have had window units in Rebecca's room and in our room with a fan blowing air into the boys' room. Well, Sunday and Monday the heat in their room was unbearable so we decided to take the plunge and get a window unit for their room. Bill went to Walmart to get one and before tax it was $112. I told him we would make it work in our budget. Well, I logged on to our bank account and I had just received a payment from Google for $112. Only took me over 7 year of blogging to…

Drunk Barbie cake

Image
On Saturday we celebrated my sister's 21st birthday. I can't believe she is 21-- that makes me feel old. I was a high school junior taking a chemistry final the day that she was born!



Anyhow, we went out to my parents' house on Saturday evening for a birthday cookout. I have come to be the go to person for birthday cakes in our family and there was no exception for my sister's birthday.
I always ask if there is something specific they would like on their cake and the flavor of cake they would like. I make a non-dairy from scratch cake in chocolate and vanilla (as if my nephew is there, he cannot have dairy).
Well, last weekend in a kind of joking manner, Mary asked if I could make her a chocolate "drunk Barbie" cake. Of course I said yes, as I love a challenge.
Well, here is the end result....

I think it turned out really cute. I got the Barbie at Walmart (on a related note do you know how hard it is to find a red-headed Barbie that is not Ariel (the Little Mer…

We saw some animals....

Image
On Thursday I took the kids to a summer reading program presentation put on by our library. This week's presentation featured The Columbus Zoo and some of their animals.

We got there about 5 minutes before it was scheduled to start and the place was packed!
The kids enjoyed themselves. They loved learning about the different animals.
They got to see a joey....


a bearcat (which we learned smells like buttered popcorn)...

a penguin....

a 3 banded armadillo, a screech owl, a baby spotted cheetah and a baby bobcat. All the animals were really cute! Ben said that his favorite was the screech owl.
Overall, the kids had fun. I was embarrassed though as the zoologist kept having to stop her presentation to ask the audience to quiet down. It wasn't just the kids either. There were adults talking to one another even though the zoologist asked at the beginning that everyone be quiet as the noise level was not good for the animals. Sad to see the example that adults are showing their kids. I…

Ye Old Mill and Velvet Ice Cream

Image
On Tuesday, we found ourselves with a free afternoon for a variety of reasons. The weather was nice (high of 70 and the sun kept coming out from behind the clouds!). We decided to take advantage of it and have a family afternoon. We packed the kids up and headed to Utica to visit the Ye Old Mill and Velvet Ice Cream. We typically go down during the weekend of Memorial Day, but this year we didn't get to.

We love the ambiance of the mill and the grounds and of course the taste of the ice cream.

When we arrived, the first thing we saw was a woman who was offering carriage rides. Rebecca wanted to ride so I paid for her and I and we had a fun little jaunt around the grounds.




After that, we met back up with Bill and the boys and decided to head in to get ice cream!

I enjoyed a summer peach ice cream cone. Bill had a chocolate peanut butter cup cone. Rebecca had a campfire smores cone. Jacob had a moose tracks cone. Benjamin had a birthday cake ice cream cone.

We took our ice cream outs…

Bliss Beauty Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Image
I was recently contacted to see if I would like to try out a bottle of Bliss Beauty Organic Essential Oils. I have dabbed in essential oils in the past-- we have used thieves essential oil during the winter to fight colds with some success. We have tried vetiver and cedarwood with some success on Jacob to help his ADHD symptoms, and we have used tea tree oil in shampoo as a lice repellent (after dealing with lice 2 years ago). After doing some research on Bliss Beauty Essential Oils, I accepted as they are 100% pure, natural and organic and they are USDA certified.

I chose to try the Bliss Beauty Organic Eucalyptus Oil. I chose this because it can be used as a cleaner among many other uses! Also, since it is 100& natural, I could make up a natural cleaner with the Bliss Eucalyptus Oil that would be safe for my kiddos to use while helping with their Summer cleaning chores.



I was super excited to receive my oil and try it. The first thing that I did was open it up and smell it! It sm…