Archive for October, 2009

10/19/09
Amy

(Family Activities) Pumpkin Patch


pumpkinsOutings to the local pumpkin patch are classic, classic, classic.

Bundle up your family and make an event of it. If you can, pick a pumpkin patch on a farm where they have other family-friendly events such as corn field mazes, hayrides, and animals. Make a day of it!

Then, pick out the perfect pumpkins and bring them home to carve or cook. As your day draws to a close, cozy up with your little family and pour the hot chocolate.

These are the things that traditions are made of.


Amy
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“Not Me” Monday


We all have those days…or weeks. “Not Me” Monday was created by MckMama to give us an outlet to laugh at our own imperfections. Will you join me? When you are done here, you can head over to her blog and read about what everyone else has “not” been doing.

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It was not me that discovered that Kaelynn has been wearing shoes at least a full size too small. And it certainly was not me that discovered that almost two weeks ago and has still not purchased new shoes. My daughter has not been going sock-footed most of the time while I try to find the right shoes at the right price.

rottedpumpkinOur family did not search high and low for the perfect pumpkin at the pumpkin patch, only for it to start rotting before I could bake it into all of the promised yummy baked goods. The accelerated rotting process couldn’t be because I left it rolling around in the back of the van for a week.  If I heard something hit the sides of the van every time I turned a corner, I would most certainly investigate at the first opportunity.

And, last but not least, it is not my one year old daughter that has picked up on my horrible habit of saying “ummm”. So it couldn’t be her that I hear call, “Mama?”, and I answer, “What Kaelynn?” She doesn’t respond, “Ummmm…”, every time. See, I never say “ummm” at the beginning of a sentence, so she couldn’t have learned it from me.

What did you not do this week?


Amy
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Little Boys and Worms


Is there a more classic combination than little boys and worms??

worm2worm3

wormworm4

I don’t think so.

10/18/09
Amy
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(Comic Relief) Rare Moments


It is usually just coincidence, but in moments like this, I like tell myself that it happened because I did something right as a parent.

family_circus

(Comic copyright The Family Circus)
10/17/09
Amy
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(Cooking) Chocolate Satin Pie


If you are craving something light and chocolaty, then you will fall in love with this creamy, chilled, chocolate delight.

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Chocolate Satin Pie

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup butter

3 oz unsweetened chocolate, melted

1 tsp vanilla extract

3 eggs

1 Oreo pie shell

Cream the butter and sugar in a mixer for 4 minutes or until light and fluffy and the sugar has dissolved. Add chocolate and vanilla and mix one more minute. Add the eggs one at a time, beating on high for at least 1 ½ minutes after each egg. Scrape down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Transfer to the pie shell and chill 5 to 24 hours in the refrigerator, or 15 minutes in the freezer.

Top with whipped cream.

10/16/09
Amy
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(Just for Mom) The Daddy Countdown


When Dad goes on a business trip, the days can feel extra long. You don’t get backup and companionship at the end of the day and the kids can get restless.

aug2By forming traditional Dad’s-out-of-town events, you can fill the extra hours as well as give the kids some fun memories and extra time with you. You can let the kids plan dinner or pick the restaurant, cuddle up with a movie night, or have a slumber party in Mom and Dad’s bed. Try to plan one or two extra events or treats each day that you and the kids can look forward to.

Another way to help count down the days, while simultaneously creating a homecoming gift for Dad, is to do a simple craft a day until he comes home. At the beginning of the trip, mark a piece of paper (i.e. Day 1, Day 2, Day 3) for each day that he will be gone. Then let the kids do a simple craft on the corresponding day of the countdown. They can paint, draw, glue, make a collage, color, write a letter, etc. This provides a visual for the child to see the number of days before Dad returns while also providing them with an opportunity to be active in their excitement about his homecoming.

10/15/09
Amy
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(Date Idea) Dollar Date


After being in a relationship for any length of time, keeping dates fresh and creative can be a challenge, especially when you are on a budget. Here is a fun idea for a date that you can do with just a few dollars…

Go to a local store such as Target, Wal-Mart or even the dollar store (you might be surprised at the treasures you can find there!) and set a budget between $3-5 per person. Then explore the store together to find fun items that you can purchase with your cash. The only rule is that you can’t spend more than $1 per item!

Whether you find real little treasures or just a lot of laughs, it is a reminder that dates don’t have to be expensive to be fun.

Note: A local dollar store is a great option for those who find it challenging to stay away from the more expensive items.

10/13/09
Amy
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(Organization) Kids’ Keepsakes


Her first painting. The outfit she was brought home from the hospital in. Her favorite teddy bear. A lock of hair from her first haircut. Her 1st place spelling bee ribbon.

These keepsakes are invaluable, to both you and your child. They are treasures to be cherished.

Yet when they are mixed in with all the other toys, pushed under the bed, crammed into the closet, or even when too many of these items are accumulated, these precious items are no longer treasured and certainly not protected. They eventually get broken, thrown away, or lost. In short, they become clutter.

Buy a medium to large storage tub for each child to contain their own little treasures. It will help preserve the condition of the items as well as the magical sentiment that they hold. As you look at potential keepsakes and watch your stash of treasures grow, it may also free you to get rid of items where less sentiment is attached.

In later years, or maybe even currently, your child will love to dig through their little treasure chest and either listen to the stories that you have to tell or renew their own memories. It is a gift that will last a lifetime.

Tip: If you find that your child starts to consider everything a “treasure” to be saved (this most frequently happens with artwork), keep a smaller box to temporarily hold the items. The child will be satisfied that you are keeping their treasure and you can sort through the artwork, by yourself or with the child, several months later. The passing of a little bit of time will reveal the true treasures.

10/12/09
Amy

(Family Activities) Fall Traditions


applesauce

Have you found that memories come alive when the seasons change? Memories of events that happened during one of those first warm days of spring or during the first fall cold snap are brought to life by those weather changes in subsequent years.

This can make it a fun time of year to establish a family tradition. It gives the whole family something to look forward to and makes lasting memories that the kids will remember 20 years from now when they feel that first crisp, fall air. Take a family hike, work together to make applesauce or a special type of baked good, light the first fire in the fireplace and cozy up to have a traditional game night. Just remember, doing something that is special to your family and presenting it as an anticipated and exciting event is more important than coming up with an elaborate event.

What will your fall tradition be?


Amy
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“Not Me” Monday


We all have those days…or weeks. “Not Me” Monday was created by MckMama to give us an outlet to laugh at our own imperfections. Will you join me? When you are done here, you can head over to her blog and read about what everyone else has “not” been doing.

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It was not me that found my sweet, adorable daughter this week walking across the yard, proudly carrying dog poo in her hand. We don’t even have a dog, so that couldn’t have been me.

cakeI am most certainly not a perfectionist, so it wasn’t me that bought a cake mix and tub of icing to make a birthday cake for my husband, only to open the icing and decide that I couldn’t bring myself to not use homemade. I would never be that particular.

It was not me this week that, while out shopping, stopped to take Kaelynn out of her stroller only to find an unpaid-for bracelet in her seat. And if it was me, then it would have most definitely been the first time something like that had happened.

And it was not me that didn’t do a lick of school with Samuel last week, despite my great aspirations. I am always consistent and diligent.

What did you not do this week?