SOOC Saturday

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Welcome to SOOC Saturday {or Sunday} hosted by Marvelous Mommy who says: "Whether you are a professional photographer, an amateur photographer, or just someone who likes taking pictures, I encourage you to link up. This is a super simple weekend meme that doesn’t take up much time. Please join me! I’d love to see your shots."

SOOC Saturday

Thanks for stopping by today! For more SOOC Saturday fun visit Marvelous Mommy.

Back from Blogger Pergatory

Geez, this has been a bad week for blogging. First the power outage, then the Blogger outage. Can't a girl get a break? All the more reason to move to Wordpress, I know. I'm saving my pennies.

So, it's Memorial Day weekend. It's sunny, hot and gorgeous here. Though we live just 20 minutes from the beach we never go on Memorial Day weekend. Too many cars, too many people. I enjoy the beach, but I don't enjoy being in close proximity to hundreds of strangers in bathing suits. We quit the pool last year for the same reason. We generally hit a museum, attend the local parade, take lots of family walks, grill out and eat too much. We also watch a lot of the History Channel marathons as we are nerdy homeschoolers. Oh come on, history's cool!

Anyway, so far it has been a low key weekend. Aside from a few blue crab and water moccasin sightings on the river up the street, there has not been a whole lot of excitement around here, and that's OK by me.

What do you have planned for the holiday weekend?

If you missed my post on Memorial Day links and activities check it out here. And have a safe and fun-filled weekend ;)
God Bless our troops!

Wordful Wednesday

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Hello World! I am finally getting reconnected after 22 hours without power. We had a big storm sweep through yesterday, with strong winds, hail, lightening and a monsoon of rain. Limbs and trees were knocked down and power was out in several cities. Finally, we're back and I couldn't be more relieved. It's in the 90's here today. Everything is wet and soggy, so you can imagine the humidity. The mosquitoes are multiplying by the minute, it seems. Welcome to summer!

Anyway, I have some catching up to do...everything in my fridge is rotten, the house is dirty, the dishes and laundry are piled high and I have a zillion emails in my inbox. It's amazing how quickly it all comes undone. It's no wonder I feel like I spend my days running around putting out or preventing fires (small fires in the big picture of things, I know) but keeping all those balls in the air is the only way to prevent the the rapid unraveling of the tenuous line between domestic order and sheer insanity. So, I'm back in the ring....juggling the household duties required for the care and maintenance of a family of six. Supremely thankful for all the electronic help I can afford :)

Tuesday Blog Hop

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Hello friends! Happy Tuesday :) I was perusing the blog hops over at Random Deals (awesome resource- what a brilliant idea) and came across this sweet little Tuesday Blog Hop hosted by Chic 'n Savvy Reviews. I thought I'd join in, partly because one can never have too many friends and partly because I'm a sucker for all things owl ;)

Tuesday's Blog Hop

So here's the scoop:
"You simply add your blog's name and link. In return, you are to follow the host (ChicnSavvy Reviews) of the blog hop. The blogs you follow will follow you back just make sure you leave a comment so that the blog owner knows you were there. Also if you don't follow back, please don't sign up. This is to help boost our traffic and followers on our blogs, and I want it to be effective and fun!"

If you are visiting for the first time, welcome to my little world! This The blog is about the life and times of a military wife and stay at home homeschooling mom of 4 ages 9, 5, 3 and 9 months. Written by a great dane-loving, cookie-haording, educational adventurer who rarely puts down her camera and drinks coffee by the gallons. I occasionally host reviews and giveaways for products of value to my readers.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. I look forward to hopping along to your blog ;)

Memorial Day Fun and Education

Sunday, May 22, 2011

It's almost here! The big summer kick off and a fun-filled three day weekend built for relaxing with family and friends. Here's a list of links to explore that will keep you busy with preparations all week long. From history, crafts, cooking, lesson plans, puzzles, quizzes and more, it's all covered here. This list of links was complied by a local homeschool group and it was just too good not to share :) Enjoy!

General Info:
History of Memorial Day
Memorial Day: A Time of Reflection
Memorial Day History
Origins of Memorial Day - Kids for Our Troops
The National Memorial Day Concert

Lesson Plans:
Celebrating Memorial Day - What is Memorial Day?
Creating a Memorial Day Poster Poem
Graphing Our History of Sacrifice
How to Plan a Memorial Day Flag Lesson Plan
Learning Through Listening | Memorial Day Lesson Plans
Memorial Day:
Memorial Day is observed in the United States today
Memorial Day Lesson for ESL Students:
Memorial Day Shoebox Parade
Memorial Day Theme for Preschool
Memorial Service Lesson Plans
Memorial Day Sunday School Lesson & Craft (Memorial Stones)
Remember Our Veterans Lesson Plan
Remembering the Heros of Memorial Day Lesson Plan

Remembering Those Who Gave Their Lives:
Teaching the Meaning of Memorial Day
The Memory Shall Be Ours: Celebrating Memorial Day
Unknown Soldier Diorama Lesson Plan
Veterans in My Family
American Wars Fact Sheet

Craft Stick Flag
Crayola® Holiday Crafts - Memorial Day
Memorial Day Poppies
Patriotic Ribbon Dance-Along
Patriotic Wind Sock Craft
Patriotic Wreath
American Flag Fan

Red, White & Blue Spinners:
Sequin Flag Magnet

Recipes and Cooking:
Flag Cake Recipe for Memorial Day
How to Make Memorial Day Cupcakes
Memorial Day Desserts

Multimedia Resources:
"Memorial Day Flash Movie -- 2001" by Jackson Tuggle
Memorial Day - Free Presentations in PowerPoint Format
Memorial Day Images

Virtual Field Trips:
Arlington National Cemetery
Memorial Day Museum

Online Activities:
A Time to Remember: Memorial Day Quiz

American Flag Concentration Puzzle:
English Study Quiz - Memorial Day (Grammar Quiz)
ESL Quiz - Memorial Day Quiz
Memorial Day Maze- Easy
Memorial Day Maze - Medium
Memorial Day Maze - Tough
Memorial Day Word Search

Internet Scavenger Hunt: Honoring Our Veterans PDF File
Memorial Day Coloring Pages
Memorial Day Printables
Memorial Day : Spelling Words Worksheets Builder

Memorial Day Vocabulary Quiz Worksheet:
Memorial Day Word Jumble Puzzle PDF File
Memorial Day Word Search Puzzle PDF File
Memorial Day Worksheets for Kids

Whether you are traveling, camping, hitting the beach or planning on staying in your own backyard, I hope you have a fun and memorable Memorial Day weekend! Cheers ;)

SOOC Saturday

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Welcome to SOOC Saturday {or Sunday} hosted by Marvelous Mommy who says: "Whether you are a professional photographer, an amateur photographer, or just someone who likes taking pictures, I encourage you to link up. This is a super simple weekend meme that doesn’t take up much time. Please join me! I’d love to see your shots."

Yesterday was a big day at our house. Baby girl crawled on her knees for the first time, rather than on her belly like an army man. And big brother rode his bike without his training wheels for the first time! I knew he was more than ready. It took him less than an hour of trying to be off and speeding away on his own.

Thanks for stopping by today. Your comments make my day :) Have a beautiful weekend!

SOOC Saturday

Thanks for stopping by today! For more SOOC Saturday fun visit Marvelous Mommy.

Aloha Friday!

Friday, May 20, 2011


Greetings friends! It's a beautiful day. I hope you are enjoying some sunshine where you are. It has been a mild spring here. Usually it's hot enough around here by now to have the AC on full time and to make regular visits to the beach or pool. This season weather has been quite lovely, sunny and in the 70's to low 80's with intermittent rumbling thunder storms most days. And, I am thoroughly enjoying it. We have yet to hit the beach though. It just doesn't quite feel like summer yet.

My question for this week is simply this? Beach or pool? Which do you prefer? If you're not a water person, what's your favorite summer activity?

For more Aloha Friday fun visit An Island Life. Thanks for stopping by today. Have a great weekend!

The Pioneer Woman Reads

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Don't you just love The Pioneer Woman? I visit her site daily and never cease to marvel at her wizardry in the kitchen, her artful touch with a camera lense, her grace in homesteading and homeschooling, and her gift for making every visit to her blog feel like a big hug and a down home welcome. She seems to do it all and with such ease. I admit to more than blog envy. I'm also envious of her gorgeous ranch views, and of her whole family for eating so well (I wish someone would cook like that for me!)

In addition to the non-stop parade of delicious dishes on her blog at The Pioneer Woman Cooks, and her sister site at Tasty Kitchen, she also has a cook book out titled, The Pioneer Woman Cooks and a new children's title, Charlie The Ranch Dog. It's a sweet little story about Charlie's life on the ranch.

As if that wasn't enough, now The Pioneer Woman Reads too. Her Charlie book is featured this month on the Barnes and Noble Kids Club website and you can listen along while The Pioneer Woman herself reads it to you. Check it out here:

Seriously, is there anything this woman doesn't do???

By the way, this post was in no way sponsored. Just thought I'd share a little down home warmth and a good story time tale with you. In case you hadn't heard ;)

Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ok, my "Wordless Wednesday" is a little verbose today. My apologies.  If you're not in the mood for reading you can just look at the pictures ;)
My oldest is a bird-lover. He is the only kid I've ever known who has actually picked up and held a wild bird. And on more than one occasion. I call him the Bird Whisperer. He's a rambunctious 9 year old, but will at times, on his own accord, spend hours outside standing still, watching birds. He talks to them. He follows them. He names them. He checks up on their nests, carefully counting the eggs each day. The Carolina Chickadees are his favorite. The family that lives in our basketball stand is very dear to him. Mother and father, Flap and Izz, respectively, have four children who just this week took their first flight. The Bird Whisperer was there with a watchful eye. To ward off predators and retrieve any young who wandered too far from the nest. It was a beautiful sight.

Unfortunately, all of this took place as I was coloring my not-so-beautiful gray hair the other morning so I captured very few pictures. The pics of the babies were too blurry, but here you see Flap keeping watch over her banditry of babes.

Update: We had a torrential downpour come through this AM and Mr. Birdman went to check on his babies. He found "Emily" behind a bush and put her back in the nest. But not before I captured these:

For more Wednesday fun, be sure to visit these fabulous blogs:
5 Minutes for Mom
Wordless Wednesday HQ

SOOC Saturday

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I love these pictures of my silly monster just being a goofy kid.

Ah, the carefree days of childhood.

"You can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can't..." well, you get the picture.

SOOC Saturday

Thanks for stopping by today! For more SOOC Saturday fun visit Marvelous Mommy.

Aloha Friday!

Friday, May 13, 2011

I'm late to the party today, thanks to a Blogger outage. Grrrr blogger. I'm pining for Wordpress but don't have the time or money to move right now, so this is it.

My question for today is: What is something you wish you knew more about?

I could answer many, many things but photography, or how to better utilize my camera's functions would be a start. Then learning Photoshop is next on my list. How about you?

Thanks for stopping by! Your comments make my day. Seriously.

Visit An Island Life for more Aloha Friday Fun. I hope you have a wonderful weekend :)

Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

At first glance this photo looks blurry. I added a watercolor effect in Photoshop and love the result, but realized it didn't show up well here. If I enlarge the pic in my post it expands into my sidebar, but if you click on it to enlarge it, you'll get the full effect.

Thanks for stopping by!! Have a wonderful Wednesday :)

Link up your posts here:

For more Wednesday fun, be sure to visit these fabulous blogs:
5 Minutes for Mom
Wordless Wednesday HQ

May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

May is Pet Cancer Awareness Month and Blue Buffalo and Petco have joined forces to raise awareness and fight to find a cure. You probably don’t realize it, but dogs and cats get cancer at approximately the same rate as people do. Unfortunately, 80% of pet parents know little or nothing about pet cancer.

A couple of years ago I wrote about our sweet Great Dane Max, who was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. He was so dear to me, and was definitely an important member of our family. Losing him was devastating, but watching him suffer was even worse.

Please join me in supporting Pet Cancer Awareness month. Make a donation, or just help get the word out. Together we can make a difference.

Learn more here.

Happy Mother's Day

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mysteries of Motherhood
adapted from Reb Bradley's poem

Mother's hearing
She does not hear her cell phone ringing in her purse, the neighbor's music, or her husband calling for another roll of toilet paper from the bathroom,
But from the other end of the house, in the middle of the night, she will hear a child's slightest whimper.

Mother's mind
She may not comprehend how to use the umpteen remote devices connected to the TV, or how to archive photos to her external hard drive,
But she understands a child's heart whenever it hurts.

Mother's strength
She may be too weak and exhausted to carry that 6th load of laundry to the washer,
But she is strong enough to intimidate any who threaten her children.

Mother's memory
She may not remember where she put her keys or the reason she walked into a room,
But she never forgets the wonderful things her children do and say.

Mother's clothes
Her clothes aren't so perfect – they're stained by baby's burps and last month's lasagna,
But each stain is a badge of love and service equal to any won by a soldier.

Mother's hands
All she sees are the lines and wrinkles in her hands, and longs for their youthful appearance,
But she forgets their wear speaks of love, devotion, and sacrifice.

Mother's shape
She sighs and moans when she cannot fit into the clothes of her youth,
But her shape and stretch marks are like battle scars which say, "Kids, you were worth it!"

Mother's eyes
The mirror tells her that her eyes lack sparkle,
But the bags and fatigue betray love that burns bright and unending.

Mother's career
She is haunted sometimes by what she could have been,
But she equips generations and shapes the world's future.

Mother's trust
She doesn't trust enough to let you near the strange dog or to climb to the tip top branch,
But she believes in you when you are discouraged and full of self doubt.

Mother's significance
She regrets her failures, mourns her anger, and dreads she is warping her children's psyches,
But she so tightly bonds her children to her heart that they will grow up, but not away.

Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful, caring, hard-working, generous, patient, kind, wise moms out there. Your love and devotion and tireless efforts make the world go 'round. Here's to mom!!!

SOOC Saturday

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I'm joining in SOOC Saturday this week. These are pictures from my garden taken with my iphone. I'm amazed by what a great little camera it has.

Happy Mother's Day to all you mamas out there!!

SOOC Saturday

Thanks for stopping by today! For more SOOC Saturday fun visit Marvelous Mommy.

Aloha Friday!

Friday, May 6, 2011


Greetings friends! It's a beautiful day. I hope you are enjoying some sunshine where you are.

My question for today is: Aside from blogging, do you have a hobby?

For more Aloha Friday fun visit An Island Life.

Before you go, enter my giveaway for a What to Expect the Second Year prize pack worth over $120! I don't have many entries, so there's a great chance you'll win!

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The holiday of Cinco de Mayo, The 5th of May, commemorates the victory of the Mexican militia over the French army at The Battle of Puebla in 1862.  It is not, as many people think, Mexico's Independence Day, which is actually September 16. Help kids learn more about Cinco de Mayo through this Social Studies link.

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo and make today a day of Mexican history and cultural exploration. If you are looking for lesson plan ideas, kinderart has some great crafts for younger kids including how to make a poncho. Get the kids in the kitchen with these cooking ideas. And, if you just can't get enough Mexican food (like me),  here's more info on Mexican food and links to recipes. Also, try these craft ideas and songs to add to the festivities. Find even more links here. Enjoy. Ole!


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