Friday, July 31, 2009
We rented the vacation home on wheels and it far exceeded our expectations. If the thought has ever crossed your mind to rent one...do it. If you have ever considered buying one...do it! [and while your on your shopping spree could you buy us one too?]
You haven't lived until you have enjoyed a pancake breakfast with the wind whipping through your hair while doing
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
The kids were sad to leave, as were we having had a fantastic weekend with all!
Fruit Simple is a 100% all fruit smoothie with no added sugar!!
An 8-ounce serving of Fruit Simple contains two servings of fruit
Fruit Simple is available in a convenient on-the-go 12 oz bottle or in multi-serve family size options in 32 oz and 40 oz bottles
Fruit Simple is available in a variety of healthy, delicious flavors -- Orange Mango, Strawberry Banana, Mixed Berry and Pomegranate Blueberry
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
After the reunion we decided to add on a day at Sesame Place- the first time we have been there in three years. Meg has no memory of being there and Michael should be ready to do many of the slides himself! Should be great and so far (fingers crossed) the weather looks good!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Especially if you know my mom. This is my mom many moons ago, before I was born. The reason I find this picture especially fitting for the Feet challenge is my mom is NEVER ever without her shoes on--Never. Really....NEVER.
When my sister and I found this picture we went hysterical because my mom was actually barefoot at some point in her life and without a picture we would never have believed it.
So I took the orignal and worked on it ...cropping, contrasting, recoloring etc. Here you have the finished product.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Making mozzarella cheese was much easier than I expected. Start to finish ( and by finish I mean in my mouth) it took us 40 minutes including clean up. Not bad.
You will need:
1 gallon whole milk, NOT ultra pasturized, rennet tablets, citric acid, salt, a large stainless steel pot, slotted spoon, microwavable bowl, and a thermometer.
Disolve 1/4 rennet tablet in 1/4 cup water and set aside. Also disolve 1 1/2 tsp citric acid in 1 cup of water and set aside.
Combine milk and citric acid in pot over medium heat while stirring until it reaches 95 degrees.
Remove from heat and add rennet mixture while stirring up and down. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes.
Using a knife, cut through the thick custard, and you should see a yellowish clear whey seperate from the thick white curd.
Put back on heat and stir until it reches 105 degrees.
Drain off whey and ladel curds into a microwavable bowl. Put in the microwave for one minute. Again drain off excess whey. Cheese curds need to reach 135 degrees. After one minute, combine curds into one large curd and then microwave for 30 seconds. Once it comes out, add one teaspoon of salt.
Begin to pull and knead the curds.
The more you work the cheese, the firmer it will be. Once it is smooth and shiny, it is ready to be formed.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
[Grace holding Meagan]
It was two years ago now, August 1st. The morning bright and sunny as I moved into my new house and almost immediately found out that Grace had lost her battle with cancer at 17 early in the morning. Unfortuantly, it was not a quiet peaceful end, but more of a shockingly real event that was her last.
To say she was my husband’s goddaughter and my daughter’s godmother, doesn’t seem to do justice to the bond we all had with her.
[Grace holding Meagan]
She was always a vibrant part of the family. She was lively and energetic, silly and funny, smart and determined. She fought a hard battle against cancer, encompassing all of her teen years in a different kind of teen-angst than her friends were experiencing.
We miss her terribly but see her everywhere. She is present in my garden as the mint we used to joke about in her garden takes over the entire north side of mine. She is visible in the polka dots that keep decorating parts of my house, almost by accident.
She is everywhere and nowhere all at once.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Exercise: We are big on physical activity. Bike riding, trampoline playing, karate, gymnastics free play, hiking—we do it all. It balances our lives by rounding out the day. Our philosophy: if you aren’t tired by bed time—you did something wrong today!
Math: No, I’m not going to start discussing curriculum. We “live” math just as we do the other key ingredients above. I do not look at it really as a subject. It is as fluent in our day as any of the other topics. As we go about our day we speak math, calculate, and study numbers. My kids have learned multiplication—as a logical expression of addition, and division as a way to part out a whole. My kids are 4 and 6. Math is critical to daily living and we learn it and live it that way. No textbooks required on a daily basis.
Language: I read to them daily. This may be SpongeBob on one day and Greek Mythology on another—whatever we are in the mood for. Sometimes it’s a combination—we think of literature as a buffet or salad bar—take what you are in the mood for. The kids also read to me practicing both their fluency and decoding. We discuss all of the key components and comprehension skills as well as reflective reading practices. To me language also means our ability to speak and interact with one another, as well as expanding our language horizons. We are working on learning French and try to incorporate it through out the day when ever we can.
Socialization: Yes the good old “s” word. For us, it almost isn’t even something worth mentioning like breathing—of course you do it! We are part of homeschooling groups and co-ops in our area, we do park days and field trips with our homeschooling friends, we play in the neighborhood with the school kids, we belong to teams and other clubs, we interact with society everyday: the young, the old, those of differing socio-economic status, different cultures, and so on.
So that’s it—find your proportions to taste and enjoy.