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May 2011
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July 2011

Opportunities

Because we've joined a homeschool Co-op, Kingdom Builders Co-op we received an email for an opportunity for the Georgia Boys to join the LEGO League. Beginning in August they will join coaches and mentors (graduate students) from Georgia Tech (Savannah) building LEGO robots (LEGO robotics related games) for competition. They will have practices to attend (hopefully during the day) and competitions. This program involves the maths, sciences, engineering, and problem-solving skills.

I doubt that the boys would have heard of an opportunity like this had they been in public school. So I am really excited that they will get to learn at the same time they can have fun with probably their most favorite thing - LEGOs.


Back in order

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The guest room is back in order. And just in time. Ashley and the boys will be heading this way this week as I'm walking out the door for a flight to see Elizabeth graduate Air Force basic training. But the room Ash and the boys will be staying in is ready for them. Yippee! We worked all morning last Sunday to get it back in order.

I made sure we purged while we were at it. Hoosier Man did very good of purging (which is very hard for him to do) the unnessesaries. Lots of stuff hasn't been tended to in 5 years or more - it went.

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This is probably one of my favorite parts of the room. I got most of the items on this adorable little stand when we were visiting Ashley last Christmas in Mississippi. At Kohl's no less. They were just on display waiting for me and my guest room. I bought the side table from this little furniture store here in Savannah when my mom and sister's were visiting for some retail shopping. Nadeau is this awesome little place that has amazing hand crafted furniture that is too-die-for.

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Hello Home Goods. Several of the pieces on the dresser came from Home Goods. Love that store too! You have to grab things up when you see them because if you go back for them they probably won't be there.

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I don't think I shared my latest addition to the room which I have yet to hang. I bought this framed, nautical - well - framed picture from Home Goods. Where you see the turquoise and painting of the starfish used to be some obscure painting of some such scene that I hated. But I loved the frame. I asked my daughter Elizabeth - my artist - to paint me a starfish. Oh my, she did an amazing job! The intricacy of the starfish is very lifelike. Love it, love it!

So there you go - all comfy for my punks to come.


10 things on Tuesday - Looking forward to

10 things I am looking forward to:

1. Spending time with my youngest daughter and my punk grandsons. They will be staying with us for a whole month!!! So many plans, so little time.

2. Watching my daughter graduate from Air Force basic training. I'll be flying out tomorrow to San Antonio and Lackland AFB for a couple of days. Her time will not be her own and I'll be squeezing in time with her hubby and my granddaughter and her hubby's grandparents (who I love). But that is all good.

3. Visiting San Antonio. I mine-as-well make use of the opportunity and visit San Antonio and take pictures.

4. Spending a week with my mom. Mom will be visiting from the 4th for a week (or at least until Saturday) while Ash and the punks are here. Planning a girl thing.

5. 4th of July and fireworks down on River Street. It will be our grandsons first time down on River Street. Great opportunity since this is a tradition for us.

6. A month of no homeschooling. While I love it and the time with our boys it will be a nice break.

7. Checking things off our 100 days of summer list. I excpect we'll put a nice dent to our list by the end of August (before Co-op starts).

8. Hearing about the boys' (and Jeff's) summer Boy Scout camp. They always enjoy the time and they should come home with enough merit badges to set them up for their next rank in scouts - Life Scout.

9. Cooking lots of yummy meals while Ash is here.

10. Getting well. I still have a bit of hanging cough and I really am looking forward to getting well completely.


A Week in the Life

If you note my left sidebar I've added the Week in the Life badge from Ali Edwards blog site. I'll be joining her doing another Week in the Life of our family. I've already done a Week in the Life this year that began here. So excited to do another one. This one will cover a great week - the boy's birthday week so excited about that. I have a pre-made digital set already that I'm planning on using so I'll just have to drop in the pictures and journal the day and I'm set. I also plan on creating an album with this one (maybe even the previous one too.) A mini-album would be great but I really like the idea of something more substantial.

This type of scrapbooking gets into the down and 'dirty' of our life in the day to day. Can't wait!


Pepper Pie

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A family favorite filled with vegetables and smoked sausages smothered with mozzarella cheese. I have learned over time that I like this dish best when the vegetables still have some crunch in them. Since the dish bakes for 25 minutes I now saute the vegetables only a couple minutes before transferring them to the baking dish. This ensures those vegis remain crunchy but done. If they get cooked longer the vegetables get mushy and changes the entire flavor of the dish.

Pepper Pie

2 pkgs. Hillshire Farms Smoked Sausage, sliced into thin rounds

1 large green bell pepper, sliced into small pieces

1 large red pepper, sliced into small pieces

1 large Vidalia onion, halved, sliced, and halved again

1 tsp. oregano

1 tsp. thyme

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1lb. mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 pkg. hot roll mix

Preheat oven to 375. Grease a 9 x 13 glass pan and set aside. Brown the sausages in a skillet about 15 minutes. Add peppers and onion and sauté 3 minutes. Add spices and garlic. Stir to combine. Turn off heat. Prepare hot roll mix according to directions except reduce hot water to 1 ¼ cup. Press the roll mix into bottom and up the sides of the glass pan. Bake for 6 minutes. Remove from oven and fill the deep dish of dough with the cooked sausages, vegetables, and spices. Cover with shredded mozzarella. Bake for 25 minutes, or until cheese browns nicely.


Berry Cobbler

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Oh my, this was amazing cobbler. I served this up for small group on Father's Day. It was definitely another hit. This will be my go to cobbler now for all kinds of fruit.

Berry Cobbler (adapted from OurBestBites.com)

3 c. all-purpose flour, lightly spooned into the measuring cup and leveled with a knife

1/4 tsp. table salt

2 1/2 Tbsp. baking powder

1 1/4 c. sugar

1/2 c. (1 stick) salted butter

2 eggs

1 c. heavy cream

zest of one lemon or orange (optional)

4 c. berries (I like blueberries and/or blackberries)

3/4 c. brown sugar

Topping:

1/4 c. sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

4 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a 9×13″ baking dish and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, sugar, and citrus zest. Set aside. Using a cheese grater, grate 1 cold stick of butter. Lightly toss the butter with flour mixture until it’s mixed evenly and crumbly (don’t over-mix here). Add in the cream and mix until combined; the mixture should be quite sticky and a little lumpy (kind of like biscuit dough). Lightly press about 1 1/2 c. of the dough mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and set it aside. Toss the berries with the brown sugar and spread it over the prepared crust. Drop the remaining dough over the berries and set aside.

Mix 1/4 cup of sugar with 1 teaspoon of cinnaomon and sprinkle on top of cobbler. Pour the melted butter over the sugar mix. Bake for 45-55 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the crust is cooked through. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.


Homeschool 101 - Learning about Coins

A couple days ago I saw a review on The Pioneer Woman - Homeschooling site for Coin Collecting for Kids by InnovativeKids and I knew I wanted them for the boys. A fun and simple learning tool this book board is awesome for even 13-almost 14-year old boys. The boys read each page and sifted through our stash of coins to see how much of the book they could fill.

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Sturdy and colorful. Perfect for keeping boys' attention.

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We spent several hours reading about how coins are made...

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And filling up the first pages of the book with pennies from 1970 on.

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The book covers all coins very well, when and why the coins were made.

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Each page is filled with color pictures and highlights specific facts about coins.

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There is even a spot for the oldest finds...

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Is that a 1930 penny?

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There are even spaces for special minted coins such as the Western Journey Nickel Series. We were able to find almost all of those to fill both books.

We will need to re-visit our coin books every couple of months or so and maybe the boys will get in the habit of looking at dates for those 'oldest finds' even.

Loved this addition to our homeschooling learning


Lincoln Logs and Legos

It has been way to hot here for the Georgia Boys to spend much time outside so they've spent some quality play time inside. It never ceases to amaze me how their imagination works.

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Classic Lincoln Logs + Sci-Fi Legos = Great fun!

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Sure they love the already designed LEGOs that LEGOs comes out with...

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But, they really prefer...

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Creating their own.

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They can spend an entire afternoon of fun with Lincoln Logs and LEGOS.


10 things on Tuesday

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1. On my list of things 'to make' this summer. I'll hang it in an arrangement I'm considering for our 'new' bedroom when I get there.

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2. Another item on my list to make. The 'bag' holder that hangs on my cabinet door has lost it's elastiscity and I'm in need of something to replace it.

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3. One of each please!!!!

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4. Love this sign. How cool is that???? Don't know how many times I needed this sign growing up. Hello Department of Transportation people please put these up on all many highways. Every parent travelling with children will thank you!

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5. Oh JOY! On my list of Christmas things to make. How darling are these???

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6. 5-7-94. Yes! Love this anniversary pillow. Want one for the 'new' bedroom.

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7. This would be really cool in our bedroom. I've seen an ETSY shop that does this. I think they're pretty expensive though.

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8. Hello. On my 'butter' yellow front door.

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9. Another great photo display on the wall. Photobooth prints on large canvases. Lovely.

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10. Sounds like Hoosier Man calling.

(Note: all photos are via Pinterest.com)