Yin and Yang, Napping

4Sep2008 Filed under: blah-blah-blog

When I got home last night, I found my cats curled up inside Zach’s laundry hamper. They are just TOO cute! I guess they’re remembering their kitten days, all curled up together. They slept like this for hours:

It’s hard to see Lily’s face, so I tried zooming in. She loves to sleep like that, with her head tucked under her paw.

Ladies’ Night

3Sep2008 Filed under: blah-blah-blog

I am getting out of the house.

Tonight. Alone.

To meet a friend for coffee.

I am happy.

Amazing, isn’t it, how little it takes to make a mama smile? :mrgreen:

When Devil Dogs Attack

1Sep2008 Filed under: blah-blah-blog

This is how Rachael Ray’s “Devil Dogs” recipe is supposed to be made:

-4 low fat turkey hot dogs
-1 tbsp. butter
-1 tbsp. Tabasco sauce (we use garlic Tabasco)

Melt butter and Tabasco over medium heat in nonstick frying pan. Saute hot dogs until browned. Serve on buns with chili and condiments.

Nice, easy recipe, right?

Well, Donnie made these for lunch today. But instead of allowing the Tabasco to gradually melt with the butter, he splashed it on at the very end. If you’ve ever added cold liquid to a hot frying pan you know what happens. Lots of steam, right?

Donnie started coughing and said his nose was burning. When I walked into the kitchen I started coughing, too. Then I saw that he had accidentally used the habanero Tabasco instead of the mild garlic hot sauce!

Habanero pepper steam bears a striking resemblance to tear gas.

The end product was rather tasty, though. And hey, my sinus headache is gone!

Cha-CHING!

29Aug2008 Filed under: blah-blah-blog

I just got back from grocery shopping. We get paid twice a month, and except for milk and fresh produce, I buy enough each payday to last ’til the next one. But holy cow, is it expensive to feed a family these days! I do what I can to cut corners…use coupons, cook most everything from scratch (even our bread), try to double up coupons and sales. Still, it’s hard to get out of there without going over what I intended to spend. (Tonight I went nearly $30 over…and I didn’t even get everything on the list!)

I went to Aldi first, for a few staples. I was really surprised to see how much their prices have risen since the last time I went. They’re still a better deal on lots of things, though. It used to be that I’d go to the commissary when I could, but that was before gas cost an arm and a leg, negating any savings.

You’ll notice a few frugal links in my “Favorite Peeps” bar to the right, sites like Hillbilly Housewife  and TipNut. They’re worth checking out if you’re also concerned about trying to save a few bucks during this “economic correction” as the optimists like to call it.

My biggest gripe about grocery shopping these days? How manufacturers are charging the same price for goods but making the packages smaller. I understand why  they do this, yet it still smacks of dishonesty. Raise the price if you need to, but don’t try to trick us by shrinking the box. We’re not stupid, and I don’t like it.

I was looking at shampoo tonight, when these three teenaged girls breezed by me. They were giggling and gabbing and as they walked by, one said, “Oh sure, like I’m going to buy my hair stuff here!” and I just rolled my eyes. Ah, to be so young and dumb. Ten years from now, she’ll be in my comfy shoes, with nothing better to do on a Friday night than leave the kids with the hubby and enjoy a few hours of shopping alone. :lol:

Wow!

27Aug2008 Filed under: blah-blah-blog

Two things have wowed me so far today.

One, Eli hopped out of bed, made his bed (without being asked), put his dirty clothes into his hamper, begged to feed the cats, and asked if there were any other chores he could do before breakfast. 8-O

I picked up the phone, dialed the Alien Abduction Hotline and reported a missing child. Because that creature, despite looking exactly like Eli, could not possibly be my offspring. I just know that at this very moment, in a galaxy far, far away, my Eli is demolishing the interior of a UFO and the aliens are wringing their hands over what to do with him.

Ok, all joking aside…this chore-reward system is what made the difference: Handipoints Chore Charts Can’t really explain what it’s all about, but my kids love it and you just have to give it a try.

And now to the second WOW! moment of the day…the Today show did an awesome segment about how much our kids need free time and unstructured play. Watch the video here.

As I watched this clip, I couldn’t help thinking that it explains why my kids are so much happier, more creative, and better-behaved now that we homeschool. They do their 4.5 hours required by law, and the rest of the day is theirs. I am just so thankful to be able to teach them at home, and provide them with the unstructured free time they need to reach their full potential.

I know my kids have their moments, as all kids do, (see post below!) but overall, it truly is a blessing to live this homeschooling lifestyle. I just wish we’d have started when Zachary was small…it’s been so good for all of us.