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December 2010
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February 2011

47 before I'm 48 - How am I doing?

47 before 48

1. have a great first year of homeschool

2. swim 2 miles straight

3. read 52 new books

4. paint the guest room Done

5. decorate the guest room Almost there, just need wall decorations, curtains, and a side table and lamp.

6. learn how to use my Canon xTi in manual mode

7. grow tomatoes

8. grow herbs

9. grow jalapenos

10. finish my MBA Done!!!! Graduated with a 3.83 GPA!

11. lose 48 pounds

12. visit new Orleans  Done! We had a great time - but tiring!

13. start and finish Project 365 Started - doing ok, but not everyday - and that's ok too!

14. finish the Geer family recipe book

15. take a spiritual retreat once a month

16. go on a cruise

17. make gratitude journals with the boys

18. Meet my brother for lunch

19. save for wood flooring

20. clean out attic

21. learn something new every week

22. make homemade laundry detergent

23. get a massage

24. go to the farmers market

25. go camping with family

26. go to the Tea Room with family or friends

27. make and send 10 surprise gifts 1 sent

28. teach and/or participate in 6 bible studies  In progress! Taking Precepts (Lamentations, Nehemiah, and Esther); teaching (the Uncommon Woman)

29. make a shadow box of Jeff’s military awards/decs

30. go on a dolphin hunting trip

31. watch my daughter graduate from air force basic training

32. visit the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta

33. build a Lego city with the boys with all the Legos the boys own

34. complete a walk, run, swim, 500-mile challenge with Jeff and the boys started; 6 miles down

35. Visit St Augustine

36. Drink more water than soda

37. Visit Washington D.C.

38. Make 30 new recipes 3 down 27 to go

39. Complete a Week in The Life Challenge (Ali Edward’s prompt)

40. Complete One Little Word challenge  My word is GIVE

41. Make ‘word’ tags for Christmas tree (2011)

42. Begin making handmade Christmas gifts (2011)

43. Go on 12 field trips with John and Jarrod (for homeschool)

44. Paint bedroom

45. Organize kitchen cabinets

46. Take a Big Picture Scrapbooking class (Maybe One Little Word!!) WOW! I’m taking the One Little Word class with Ali Edwards!

47. Keep track of this list

So that's where I'm at. Many months to go. I have plans to strike a couple more off my list in February. I am definitely going to do this again. I will re-visit my list and how I'm doing the end of February so LIST see you then.

Day 26

Day 26 - I finished up these sweet Valentines decorations. Ideas from the internet at different craft sites. Love the felt rosettas (but they are delicate); I made the La La LOVE YOU myself to frame. Here are some close ups:

I have several more internet ideas that I want to make for Valentine decorations in the coming days.

Elsewhere, homeschool went well today. Our bible lesson this week has been on Stewardship and visiting various parables that Jesus taught about. I have figured out Easy Grammar goes much smoother if I get them started and we go over together the assignment. Both didn't miss any on their last grammar assignment - huge accomplishment. Science will be fun today - it's a bit of outside observations.

Hoping to swim this afternoon.

Project 365 2011 - Going strong!

Just not everyday. That's ok.

The boys played outside with their friend Hunter this afternoon. They had a blast. Guns have always been their thing. It really is good guys against good guys.

Day 21 - Out my scrap room window.

Day 22 - Boy Scout Father-Son Freeze Out camping trip for the weekend. They were responsible for several of their meals. Jeff and the boys ate well. John and Jarrod were waiting on their large, grilled hamburgers.

Day 25 - Jarrod is finished with his individual work and is reading the next book in a series of books he got for Christmas from me. He can be a satiable reader when it is something that interests him and Knights (and swords) are high on his list. Today is also the day life returned to 'normal' or before MBA.

Two days left

I have two days left until it is final. I will have my MBA. This last class is a bear. Each week I finish a paper I think I've done horribly. Thankfully, each week my instructor hasn't thought so. I just got my week 5 paper back (one of the longest and most important aside from the final). Out of 10 total points I got 9.8. My grade going into my last week, my last paper, my last final is a 97.01. But the final paper is a bear too. I feel so much better about it now that I did so well on week 5.

Can I say though, I can't wait until I wake up Tuesday morning and know that I have no more papers due - ever. Well, unless someone pays me to get a Masters in Meteorology.

Anyway, I have to finish my paper and take my final and I'm done. MBA. A master's. WOW!

I Homeschool - Notes from the Classroom

1). We are seeing the light regarding our Wordly Wise vocabulary curriculum. There are a couple difficult parts to each lesson and the boys - until now have not taken them seriously, not followed directions, raced through. They've learned that it is better to do it right the first time.

2) Our Easy Grammar(grammar) curriculum has been difficult for the boys. We are starting over. I am also assigning less practice pages. I am also spending additional time and going over the first few and then letting them finish for individual work.

3) They love Creative Writing. We've been using Story Starters and whenever I pull it out they get so excited. I don't check there story for grammar or spelling (we do enough of that with other things) I just have them read it aloud. I get so excited at their creativity.

4) The boys told me the other day that they love their Saxon Math 87 curriculum. They appreciate the repetitive nature of the program. Practice, practice, practice helps them understand it immensely.

5) We've been reading Holes for our Read-a-loud and I found many activities associate that we've enjoyed. I have also been adding 'paragraphing' lessons too. They love me reading aloud to them. I have read that many moms have their kids do crafts while they are reading and it keeps them focused better. I think I'll try that with our next read-a-loud session.

I Create - Valentines Garland

Day 19 - I made this Valentine garland for - aah - Valentine's Day decorations (or at least in the month of February). I used jute, two different heart punches, and scrapbook paper that I cut to 6 inch and 5 inch lengths. I plan on hanging it on my white tablecloth-clad dessert table for small group. Excited about this simple craft.

I Cook and Day 16

Day 16 - Two new recipes for my "47 before I'm 48" challenge; Day 16 of my Project 365 challenge. And again according to the Georgia Boys, "A keeper!!" I loved this Philly Cheese Steak. This will probably be my go-to philly cheese steak recipe - so easy because of the crock-pot. The oven fries were spicey and sweet

Another Philly Cheese Steak


2-3 lb beef chuck roast

1 bottle Zesty Italian Dressing

2 Tablespoons Butter

1 whole Small Onion, halved and half moons

1 whole Small Green Bell Pepper, sliced

4 whole Hoagie Buns, Split

1 C. Shredded Monterey Jack cheese


Combine roast beef and Italian dressing in a crockpot. Cook 8 hours. Shred the beef. Preheat a 350 degree broil oven. In a skillet, melt butter; add sliced onions and peppers, saute until translucent. Split hoagies and place on cookie sheet. Top with roast beef, onions and peppers. Sprinkle Monterey Jack cheese. Broil till golden brown and cheese is melted. Enjoy!


Oven Roasted BBQ Fries


6 small Russet potatoes
1/4 cup Canola or peanut oil
½ tsp. smoked paprika

½ tsp. garlic powder

½ tsp. onion powder

½ tsp. black pepper

½ tsp. cayenne pepper

½ tsp. chipotle chili powder

2 T. brown sugar 

Preheat your oven to 375º. Wash the potatoes, and dry them with paper towels. Cut each potato in half lengthwise, then cut each half lengthwise into three equal wedges, and put them in a large plastic ziploc bag. Add the oil and the spices. Toss to coat all the potatoes
Pour the potatoes (and all the spiced oil) onto a cookie sheet. Arrange them so that each wedge is sitting on the skin side (cut sides up). Bake for 45 minutes, until the fries are golden brown and crispy.

Serve and enjoy!

I Cook and Day 15

Day 15 - We had a new recipe on Saturday. As part of my "47 before I'm 48" challenge I want to make 30 new recipes. Here is number 1 'new recipe'. According to the boys, "It's a keeper!"

Roasted Veggies with Smoked Sausage & Penne

2 whole Yellow Squash

2 whole Zucchini

1 whole Red Bell Pepper

1 whole Green Pepper

2 pound Smoked Sausage

1 teaspoon Ground Sage

1 teaspoon Ground Oregano

1 teaspoon Ground Italian

Salt And Pepper, to taste

2 T. extra virgin olive oil

2 cups Cooked Penne Pasta

Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese (about ½ C - ¾ C.)

Chop veggies into chunks. Slice Smoked Sausage into 1/4 inch rounds. Place cut veggies and sausage in a bowl. Sprinkle herbs and spices over veggies and sausage. Sprinkle with the good dose of extra virgin olive oil and give the whole thing a good toss. Place in a 9×13 pan or rimmed cookie sheet and put in a 350 degree preheated oven and let it roast for 35-40 minutes, stirring a few times throughout the cooking process. When veggies are nicely roasted and the sausage has crisped a bit, remove from the oven. Mix in the COOKED penne pasta and toss. Add a little more olive oil, if desired. Sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese.