Monday, August 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Sweet Girl!

Three years ago I brought a precious girl into the world. When she was born we knew she had her own way of doing things. She pooped in utero, pooped all over the nurses, and still weighed 7 pounds 12 ounces. She was my biggest baby, with her chubby little legs, and angelic face. She was perfect!

Through the years we noticed her strong willed ways, and even said she took after her Aunt. She is smart, super funny, extremely strong, and knows how to run this whole household including her 10 year old sister!

This is my three year old! She is growing up, can talk all day long, and has finally found her imagination. I don't know what I did to receive such a blessing, but I sure am happy about it! She completes our family to the fullest degree!

Happy birthday Angel, we all love you!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

My Post List Post

OK, so I didn't get everything done, but I did manage to get through lessons without any tears! Score one on the happy meter! As you all know, this is the first year going independent, and I was expecting some resistance from the kiddos. Instead I got smiles, and was told they were actually having fun! I know there will be bumps in the road, so I am going to ride this wave with a big grin while it lasts!

I am having some issues with what to do about history and science. Should I do unit studies, use a curriculum, lap books? I just don't know. I would really like to do these subjects with both children at the same time, so I don't think a curriculum would work unless I buy a book somewhere in the middle. Any advice?

Here is my to-do list from yesterday. What I did is in bold. I am happy to report that the list is almost done!

-Scour Kitchen- Yep, the kitchen is begging to have a good cleaning.
-Make Focaccia bread
-Make sandwich bread
-Make pizza dough
-Water flowers
-Wash bathtubs, and showers
-Do a load of whites
-Clean the 5 yr olds room
-Hang pictures
-Start writing lesson plans
-Dance class tonight!!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

My To-do List For Today

I thought it would be fun to post all that I need to do today, and then some. Whether or not it all gets done depends on my coffee intake, and the kids co-operation!

-Scour Kitchen
-Make Focaccia bread
-Make sandwich bread
-Make pizza dough
-Water flowers
-Wash bathtubs, and showers
-Do a load of whites
-Clean the 5 yr olds room
-Hang pictures
-Start writing lesson plans
-Dance class tonight!!

And there you have it. Doesn't seem like too much, so hopefully it will all get done. I am down to one bread machine at the moment, so the sandwich bread may have to wait until tomorrow. Focaccia trumps the regular bread in my house! That bread is divine!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

I am back on the menu planning wagon now that school will be back in session. I have been the laziest, unmotivated mother this summer, and it has been great!! Absolutely fantastic! If I could extend our summer vacation another month I would, but the kids are begging for structure, and so I must willingly respond. When the kids say they need to do lessons, then their little brains must really be feigning for it.

So, for this week I am going to be getting out the dusty home management binder, tweak a few schedules, and begin menu planning. So, without further ado, here is the first plan for the week:

Monday: Homemade Tomato soup, grilled cheese sandwiches, watermelon

Tuesday: Homemade Pizza (crust recipe to be posted soon) with all the fixings, breadsticks

Wednesday: Vegetarian Chili, cornbread

Thursday: Chicken Enchiladas, Spanish Rice, Refried Beans

Friday: Chipotle Bean Burritos, Salsa

Saturday: Leftover night with a salad

Sunday: Fried Rice with a whole lot of vegetables

So, there you have it! I am going easy this week, and utilizing all my mechanical servants to make my job easier. Gotta love it!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A New Bread Recipe....I am excited!

If there is one thing you must know about me, it is that I love to bake pretty much anything. I don't think I have ever baked something and not enjoyed it. The process is a blast, but the actual baking part is what does me in. The enticing smells coming from the kitchen is enough to make my heart sing! A house feels so homey when there is the smell of cookies in the air.

For a couple years I have baked bread using my bread machine, and have tried a ton of different recipes. Some were good, others just OK. I have never been floored from a great sandwich bread recipe, but I would love to experience it! I happened upon a blog that posted the "Perfect Sandwich Bread" recipe that combines ingredients that I have never done before, so I am hoping this will be perfect for my family. It is rising in the bread machine as we speak, and when it is done, I will let you all know how it went. Keep your fingers crossed!

Here is the recipe. It does look perfect, doesn't it? Click on the link to view the blog, and if you like it, make sure you leave her a comment!

Perfect Sandwich Bread

1 cup lukewarm water
1 TB milk
2 TB oil (vegetable, olive, all works fine)
2 TB honey
2 TB brown sugar
1 tsp salt
2 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp yeast

Put all ingredients into a bread machine in the order according to your manufacturer's instructions (the above list is how I add mine).
Set your machine to the Dough cycle (my machine takes 90 minutes).
After the cycle is complete, remove the dough and place it into a well-greased loaf pan.
Brush the top with a small amount of oil (optional, but gives the bread a nice shine & crust).
Cover the pan with a dish towel and place in a warm spot of your kitchen. (I put mine in an oven that I preheated to 200 degrees, then turned off).
Let the dough rise for 30-45 minutes.
Remove the towel and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Going Independent....Homeschool that is!

We are homeschooling independent, and one thing I can say is it's very scary! The thought of being on my own, and not having a teacher to be accountable to is daunting. It was easy when we used a charter school, with the free materials and extra help, but it was time.....I guess. They sent my 5yr. old a letter of expulsion for not progressing in phonics (pretty ridiculous, I know), and that was the last straw. However, when I hear my friends getting all their brown boxes, and opening up their new books, I get a little sad. I have a thing for the brown boxes! I actually had my husband send them back because I knew I wouldn't be able to do it. I know myself well!

Since our decision I have been looking, and looking for curriculum to use for my 5th and 1st grader. All the choices are super overwhelming! I wonder how anyone can choose a single book to buy when there are so many others that are just as good. We have finally narrowed it down to Abeka, or Rod & Staff. Abeka has a flashy, colorful look that I like, but my husband likes the look of R&S and thinks it will work better for our girls, so that my be just the one for us. It's also the cheapest I have found. The thing I particularly like about the R&S books is it has a retro look to it, which I know my oldest daughter will appreciate. I think this is how they keep their prices so low, but that is only a guess. Hopefully we will be ordering soon, and I can post pictures of the happy little faces and their new books! The girls have been asking (more like begging) to do lessons, so they will be very excited! Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Well, obviously maintaining a blog is way too time consuming for me. I have done so much in the last 8 months that it would be too hard to write it all down. I have canned fruit, made home-made noodles, started a dance class...or two...or three, loved many, and laughed a whole bunch!!

I have been thinking a lot about blogging lately, so I will write as often as possible. We are homeschooling independently this year, so there will be a whole lot to blog about. I have some fun ideas for field trips that I will love to share with you when the time comes.