Monday, July 13, 2020

Summertime Week 4 - Links and Looks

This week was a little different.  I decided that instead of doing individual time in the morning, we would take a break this week.  This is not a true "vacation" week (that's next week!) but just a little more fun!  I decided to make this week "water week".  I'll admit freely that the train kind of fell of the tracks this week HA!

Monday - The kids played with Water Guns I picked up in the Aldi "aisle of shame" a few weeks ago.  We kept the hose filling the bucket so they could refill the guns and then they played.

Tuesday - I bought a new sprinkler.  The kids liked it at first but then complained that the water was cold and they couldn't get used to it because it just "sprinkled" them HA!  Oh well, they can't all be winners!

Wednesday - So, I picked up a "splash pad" for the kids to play in . . .. but it didn't do anything.  The outside ring filled up but no water came spraying out of the holes!!  Instead, we went to the beach!  The kids were very excited!  When we arrived, there was only one other family; when we left, the beach was full.  Next time we go, we will aim to leave home about an hour earlier so that we have more time without anyone there.  I only got a couple of cell phone photos and they aren't great (plus I shared them on Saturday!)

Thursday - This was a free day because I had a meeting in the morning followed by grocery shopping.

Friday - It was a rainy day plus Friday Free Day so everyone hung out inside.

We still had a theme this week which was "Animals".  The great thing about this theme is it was super broad so I could pick any activities relating to any animals.  Since the afternoons are out of control hot this week, we kept our group time in the afternoon in one of the coolest rooms of the house - the dining room (right next to the AC unit!)

Monday - First, we worked on this really awesome Food Chain Petal.  This is one of these activities that I would have used in my class room year after year!  We followed that with a great game of Bingo - Animal Track Bingo.  Some of the animal tracks are pretty cool - we liked the Zebra track the best.  Finally, we started an Endangered Animal Lapbook.  I heard Nate call this group time our "Arts and Crafts" time today and that made me smile.  He is really enjoyed making Lap books and doing the various activities.

Tuesday - Today's plans changed because Nate's mattress came in and we wanted to pick it up.  That didn't change our plans . .. but when we put it on his bottom bunk bed we discovered that his mattress was REALLY tall and he couldn't really lay under the top bunk bed anymore HA!  So, our afternoon was taken over by cleaning, organizing the bedroom and taking apart the bunk beds!

Wednesday - Well, by the time we got home from the beach, had lunch, and everyone took a "clean the lake off" shower, it was 3:30 so there was no group time!  At this point, I'm going to save the rest of our "Animal" them for our next regular week.

Thursday - Today was a free day!

Friday - Friday Free day!  I have a graduation album to work on and finish so that was my goal for the day!

Sunday, July 12, 2020

Sunday Worship -- Casting Crowns - Nobody (Official Music Video) ft. Matthew West

I love Casting Crowns and I love them even more after watching a Facebook Live Concert from the  living room of the lead singer where his kids were his band!  This is a great song!!

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Weekly Photos 2020 - #26

Here's a look back at our week:

Saturday - It was the 4th of July!  We pretty much just hung out at home and tried to stay cool.  My mom came over for dinner and then we set off fireworks later in the evening.

 Throwing smoke bombs in the fire. 
 More fun with smoke bombs. 
 Nate got creative and attached a smoke bomb to his bike. 
 A neighborhood  set off some pretty cool fireworks! 
 Fun with sparklers. 
Fun with driveway fireworks. 

Sunday - We went to my mom's for lunch and that's it :-)

Monday - This was our first day of "water fun".  Nate also had TKD in the evening.

Tuesday - More "water fun" and we did some rearranging in the boys room.
 The boys got much needed new mattresses but, when we put Nate's on his bed we discovered that he had very little room for sleeping HA!  
 So . . .. we took the bunk beds apart. 
So now their room looks like this!  I was not expecting to take the bunk beds apart and I kind of miss them.  

Wednesday - A beach day!  I totally forgot to take my big camera so all I got were these two lousy phone photos HA!

Thursday - The kids had a free day - I had a Leadership Team Meeting and grocery shopping (hold yourself back from all the excitement! HA!)

Friday - I conquered this:

 Before . .. .

and after :-) 

My desk just blows up all the time.  Nate had a follow up doctor's appointment that was finally rescheduled to check on his asthma/lungs.  I made Darryl go with us because I hate (yes, really) the location or, more specifically, the parking garage.  Whoever thought putting most of the medical stuff downtown was dumb.  For real.

I forgot to take photos of our garage - Darryl worked out in the garage a few evenings getting it cleaned up.  The garage door springs are broken and we've been saving to get it fixed.  We are to that  point but we had to make room for them to work HA!  I'm looking forward to being able to open the garage door again after about 6 years!!! 

I also found this photo on my phone:
This was the day of the lockdown.  We had gone as a family to some appointments, went out to breakfast/lunch at Wolfgangs and drove all around downtown the city for fun.  That night came the announcement that things were shutting down.  It seems so long ago!  

So, that was our week.  Our main focus was staying cool.  I'm ready for this July heatwave to break at any point.  Give me back the 70 degree, non-humid days please!!!

Friday, July 10, 2020

Weekly Menu - The one with family in town

We have family visiting this week which means more family dinners!  We usually all gather at my mom's for dinner and sometimes some board games after dinner - my sister-in-law, Lynnette, is a HOOT! and the best person to play games with too! 

Friday - I have to take one of my kids in for a late follow-up dr's appointment (rescheduled from March) so I'm guessing we will grab something afterwards on the way home. 

Saturday - We are going to my mom's  (I think!)

Sunday - Stuffed Shells, Garlic Bread, and Salad

Monday - We will all be gone for the day so we are eating out.

Tuesday - My mom is cooking :-)  I'm making a side dish - I think strawberry pretzel salad.

Wednesday - My mom is cooking :-) Again, I'm making a said dish - I think a nice fruit bowl

Thursday - Swiss Chicken, Amish Noodles, French Bread (HA!  Notice an "international theme") and a veggie

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Using the "Nifty Fifty"

For my birthday in April, I was able to get a lens for my camera that is nicknamed "The Nifty Fifty" .  It is a 50 mm lens which is supposed to be one of those "little gems" that is affordable.  It's been on my goal list for two months now to learn how to use it better.  Just before the 4th of July, I did a little reading to try and figure out how to take better photos of fireworks.

One of the tricks of the Nifty Fifty lens is that there is no zoom.  Since the fireworks were going off literally above our heads, it was really hard to get a full shot. 

I was hoping to take a couple of "portraits" of the boys to try a few other things with the lens but, it is hotter than the surface of the sun outside and no one wants to take photos in that kind of grossness HA! 

I hope you have enjoyed one of the most boring posts I've ever written :-) LOL

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

What We are Eating Wednesday!

So, what new and fun thing did we eat?  Nothing.  I tell you, Nothing! 

Granted I did find these at Wal-Mart the other day:
Cheesecake Factory at home!  I had thought they would be more like cheesecake with a cookie crumb on the bottom but they are more like a pudding cup with a sauce on the bottom.  I did notice, when looking for this photo, that it appears there are also cheesecake slices - I'm guessing those would be in the freezer section - so I might have to check that out!

This makes me miss eating out - I had planned to go to the Cheesecake Factory for my birthday dinner because the one other time we ate there it was AMAZING but we did not since everything was closed down!  Maybe next year :-)

My mom made this great dinner the other night with smoked sausage, corn on the cob, green beans and little potatoes with butter and seasoning - all wrapped in foil and cooked on the grill.  It was super yummy. 

I guess I better find something fun to cook this week so I have a recipe to share next week HA!

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Are you thinking about Christmas yet?

I know, I know - it's JULY, not Christmas!!  This wasn't even on my mind until my neighbor, who sells jewelry, decided to plan a "Christmas in July" week for her business HA!  The past 4 years, we always enjoyed Christmas in July at the campground.  Santa always came to visit and brought treats, there were crafts to make and a parade.  Granted, if it wasn't for the pool I think we would have all melted HA!  (I just realized, I should have made this weeks school "Christmas in July" . . oh well!)

Christmas is one of my favorite times of year.  I love the lights, decorations, and planning.  We have such great traditions that I work hard on to make sure they all happen.

What are some of your favorite traditions?  Here are some of ours ---

1) I love the programs and concerts -- On normal years, I always have a choir concert (this year our choir season was cancelled) and the kids have the Christmas Program.  I've always wanted to add something else - a play, a concert -- but it has never quite fit into the plans.

2) Our "Grinch" calendar - This is our Christmas Countdown calendar that starts on December 1st.  Each day we read the card with part of the story on it.  It has gotten better through the years because the boys now read the story.  It does get harder though because the boys are quite as thrilled with little trinkets so I have to get creative with their daily gift.  (Money is always a favorite HA!)

3) The Christmas Tree -  We have a great place we go to cut down out tree which is still a fun tradition.  Plus decorating it is always fun as we watch "Home Alone" at the same time.

4) Christmas Lights - Driving around and looking at lights is fun too.  There are some really great decorations out there!

5) Christmas Eve Service - I feel like this service kind of grounds us into what the true meaning of this Holiday is so I make this a priority.

Of course, the culmination of it all is Christmas Day.

Yes, I have already started to plan for this Christmas.  I have Christmas wish lists started on Amazon for each of the boys.  They are already giving me some ideas as well.

So, to all of you --- MERRY Christmas (in July!)