Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Looking toward 2010

You know there is something about the new makes you think of fresh starts and clean, organized homes (well, that's what it makes me think about!) I'd like to clean every surface, declutter every corner and have a place for everything before the new year. What's that you say, that's in TWO days...the new TWO (2) days!! Okay, so my plans are a little lofty.

The revamped plans are as follows::
  • Continue lesson planning for homeschooling (which begins again January 4th)
  • Declutter and clean as time and energy allow. Then continue this trend into January, and February, and March, and so on and so on, and so on. Is this ongoing for anyone else?
  • Post my re-cap of 2009 and unveil my word for 2010
  • Love on my family and friends
  • Keep the main thing the main thing--my relationship with God.
Here's to the last TWO days of 2009!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Music that Ministers

I so enjoy music and often I find that it soothes my soul, expresses thoughts and feelings I'm having and reminds me of the hope we have in our faithful God. This is one of my new found favorites.

JJ Heller has a fun blog that I've already enjoyed reading. The words of this song have been my companion this holiday season. He holds us in His hands!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Galloping the Globe--Japan

I am working through Galloping the Globe with Bethany (2nd grade). Preparing the lesson plans for each country has been a downfall of mine--until now. I'm determined to stay ahead (said with deep conviction and gusto!) Several other homeschool bloggers have made planning lessons for each country so really I have no excuse.

Here are some of my great finds for Japan:
Lapbook Lessons
ABC Teach--lots of links
Jolanthe at Homeschool Creations--week 1 of her Japan study and week 2 of the study
National Geographic Kids--Japan

My goal is to spend approximately a week on each country, stamp our passport and gallop on to the next country.

*remember that the links do not show up a different color--I do NOT know how to fix that. :( So mouse over them and then you can click on them.

The Happenings of Christmas Week

We had a wonderful merry Christmas.

Christmas morning the atmosphere was relaxed and joyful as we opened gifts. My favorite gifts were the ones my children made for me....a coupon book from my oldest daughter, a homemade card from my middle daughter and lots of hugs from my little guy. The picture below shows a gift I made for our Bethany girl. We realized that the other two kids had something with their names on it hanging on their walls. She did not. I took care of that. I love the way it turned out. It was fun to make and she was thrilled with it.

Our little guy has had hours of fun already with this Fisher Price castle complete with knights (and a dragon). A fellow homeschool mom passed this goodie along to us as her son was finished with it. I'm so thankful because it has been T's favorite toy.

The last couple days I've been working on a rag rug. A friend and I were talking about making them and she said she thought there was a way to make them without sewing or crocheting them. So, after some searching we found this set of youtube videos. It uses a tool that my friend's husband made out of a coat hanger. I'm using some shirts and some material I had in my stash just for this purpose. I'll take a picture of it soon. It is turning out so pretty!

My other big job this week is doing lesson plans for January through March. I'm almost half way through Bethany's and hope to finish up tomorrow; then on to Marissa's.

What's keeping you occupied this week?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

More Christmas Traditions

One of our Christmas traditions is to spend the day before Christmas Eve with my Hunny's mom and siblings. He has one sister (who has 2 children) and one brother (who lives a few states away and we don't always see him at Christmas). So last night we headed down to my mother-in-law's house with a few special gifts wrapped in brown paper and tied with ribbon and lots of homemade yummy treats to share.

The kids had a great time and my brother-in-law was there which made it special for all of us. My Hunny said that he wished he had longer to visit with his brother...and that made me a little sad. I miss my siblings too and wish for long, meaningful talks over hot chocolate.

All in all we had a good time. The kids are enjoying playing with some new toys today and that's great as I'm trying to finish up wrapping gifts and cleaning.

We will also make a birthday cake for Jesus. Hopefully finish up Bartholomew's Passage and reading our Adorenaments.

Merry CHRISTmas Everyone!

“For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulders. And his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”~ISAIAH 9:6

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


I'm making these yummy little bars for gifts for my mother-in-law, sis-in-law and her kids and my bro-in-law. They are called Scotch-a-roos and are similar to a rice crispie treat. Here's the recipe::

* 1 cup light or dark corn syrup
* 1 cup granulated sugar
* 1 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky)
* 5-6 cups rice crispies
* 1 cup chocolate chips
* 1 cup butterscotch chips
* 9 x 13 inch greased pan


1. In large bowl, measure 5-6 cups (5 cups makes bars chewier) Rice crispies and set aside.
2. Combine syrup and sugar in a large saucepan and heat on stovetop until sugar is dissolved and mixture starts to bubble.
3. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until creamy
4. Stir mixture into the Rice Krispies/thoroughly combine.
5. Spread evenly into 9 X 13 prepared pan
6. In microwave-safe bowl combine chocolate chips and butterscotch chips and melt in microwave until smooth consistency.
7. Spread melted chips evenly over crispies.
8. Refrigerate 30 minutes to set
9. Cut into desired squares and enjoy!!

As I was making them Bethany (my 7 1/2 year old) said, "I know these taste good, but they are so unhealthy for you. Do you want to make grandma unhealthy?" So should I tie them up with ribbon or what?

It's so funny that she would say that because I was thinking it in my head! I was thinking about writing this blog post and I was going to say, "Now these are yummy, but except for the peanut butter, they do not have one ounce of healthy in them!"

They are easy though, and they taste good.

You may be wondering how I resolved the issue with Bethany...well I told her that we were only going to give each person a few and they could eat them in moderation. Satisfied, she nodded her head and added, "And we are not keeping any for us!"

Happy Baking!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Crafting Fun and Christmas Traditions

I've been busy:

I made this bag for the little girl we watch. {You'll remember I made her this baby doll for her birthday.} I found the instructions here. The bag was not hard to make--all single crochet stitches. I had to make it twice because the first time it was H.U.G.E. Just about as big as a 2 year old. So, I started over and this time reduced the base by at least half. The lining gave me a little trouble, but I persevered and it turned out okay.

I made these monogrammed ornaments for my niece and nephew. I filled the inside with tinsel.

The tree ornament is for some friends of ours. Their last name will be on the other side--written in "puffy" paint.

And the kids and I started the Christmas Story Ornaments from this website. Really cute.

The Christmas letter is written and printed, the envelopes are addressed, the pictures are taken and printed and all I need to finish is wrapping the gifts. I love wrapping gifts. I use the brown Kraft paper and tie the packages up with ribbons and strips of fabric. I love the way the gifts look under the tree! (Of course, I keep the ribbons for other uses and we recycle the paper.)

We have more making and baking to do. In addition we are reading Bartholomew's Passage for Advent. And reading and putting up the "Adorenaments" each evening. Each ornament celebrates a specific name of Christ. A book and CD accompany the ornaments. We've done them for years and enjoy them immensely. Such a wonderful time of making cherished memories.

Monday, December 14, 2009

A nativity giveaway...

I've been missing in action, lots of action!

While I've been gone, I've found good stuff online. Like this:
A giveaway at Prairie Flower Farm--a beautiful nativity scene.

Click on the picture to enter the giveaway. (Or better yet, increase my chances by not. :) Just kidding!

I'll try to be back soon and share some more fun stuff I've been finding and doing.