Monday, July 2, 2012

My Genius Idea

At the beginning of the summer I had this genius idea. Okay, so maybe pinterest had this genius idea and I just tweaked it some. In May pinterest was inundated with Summer Leap Lists or Summer To Do Lists. I really liked the idea so Sweetie (that's what my three year old calls her "babies" when playing house) and I sat down and made a list of 100 things we would do this summer. It was not an easy task and I even realized later that I had written Watch a Parade twice. Below is a copy of our list:

o    1 Make and decorate cookies

o    2 Turn on music and dance around

o    3 Sidewalk paint

o    4 Make s’mores

o    5 Camp in the backyard

o    6 Go to a water park

o    7 Go to the zoo

o    8 Go to the Treehouse Museum

o    9 Draw a pic for Gma ******** and mail it

o    10 Draw a pic for Great gma ******and mail it

o    11 Draw a pic for Gma **** and mail it

o    12 Draw a pic for Great Gma ******* and mail it

o    13 Have a picnic outside

o    14 Have a picnic inside

o    15 Fly on an airplane

o    16 Go to a party

o    17 Have a BBQ

o    18 Draw an outline of your body on big paper

o    19 Go to the drive in

o    20 Go to a movie theater

o    21 Eat a snow cone

o    22 Make ice cream

o    23 Eat an ice cream cone

o    24 Play in the sprinkler

o    25 Go to a pool

o    26 Play in your blowup pool

o    27 Make sand pudding

o    28 Tie dye a shirt

o    29 Go to a children’s museum

o    30 Go to a dinosaur museum

o    31 Go to an aquarium

o    32 Go to Las Vegas

o    33 Sleep in a hotel

o    34 Play at a new park

o    35 Make popsicles

o    36 Go for a walk

o    37 Make a pet rock

o    38 Feed ducks

o    39 See a baseball game

o    40 Watch a parade

o    41 Eat fair food

o    42 Take silly pictures

o    43 Ride on Clifford at Wal-Mart

o    44 Fly a kite

o    45 Paint in the bathtub

o    46 Go to Temple Square

o    47 Make rock candy

o    48 Paint with squirt bottles

o    49 Make bouncing bubbles

o    50 Have a party
    o    51 Paint food

o    52 Make lava bottles

o    53 Make gloop with cornstarch

o    54 Get glitter toes

o    55 Go on a treasure hunt

o    56 Build a fort

o    57 Kangaroo Zoo

o    58 Make a new treat

o    59 Play the shape board game (pinterest-whole house)

o    60 Go to a splash pad

o    61 Have a water fight

o    62 Watch a parade Ride a bull

o    63 Make puppets

o    64 Wash the cars in our bathing suits

o    65 Read books outside

o    66 Go up a mountain

o    67 Make a bird feeder

o    68 Play croquet

o    69 Write a book

o    70 Make an alphabet book (pics that start with each letter)

o    71 Decorate the windows w/ window markers

o    72 Make sponge balls and have a water fight

o    73 Make crayons

o    74 Have a family game night

o    75 Play flashlight tag

o    76 Make a mural

o    77 Go on a scavenger hunt

o    78 Buy books at a book store

o    79 Participate in summer reading program

o    80 Make marshmallow people and buildings

o    81 Make cupcakes and decorate

o    82 Make a treat and take to someone else

o    83 Make a present for a friend

o    84 Make a handprint craft

o    85 Make an ABC book (magazine letters)

o    86 Make kool-aid ice cubes

o    87 Make a keepsake box/treasure box

o    88 Make homemade play doh

o    89 Make a summer photo album

o    90 Look at the stars

o    91 Go to the temple open house

o    92 Count cars that go by

o    93 Shoot off fireworks

o    94 Go see Madagascar 3

o    95 Take family pictures

o    96 Make a blanket

o    97 Buy ice cream from an ice cream truck

o    98 Build a tall, tall, tall lego tower

o    99 Make an I Spy bottle

o    100 Read 100 books!

Some of the activities were things we were already going to do (fly on an airplane, go to Las Vegas, etc). But most were things that we just thought sounded fun to do.

Then I saw an idea for a photo journal (see #89) and that is when I got the second half of my genius idea. I bought Sweetie a spiral drawing book with thick paper, we covered the cover with a piece of scrapbook paper then I let her decorate it with markers and stickers. This is now her journal.

Everytime we do something from the list I take a picture of it. Then a couple times a week I send the picutres to Wal-Mart's one hour photo. When we get home I put a picture on each page and date when the picture was taken. Then Sweetie tells me about the picture and what we did. As she talks I write what she says. Then she decorates the rest of the page with markers.

So, far we have done 23 things on our list. She loves her journal and it is so fun to watch her "read" it. It has become her favorite book to read and she always wants me to "read it from the beginning". Yep, I'm in love with this idea.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

I'm Addicted...

So, through Pinterest I found a website that I am now completely addicted to. It is and it is seriously the best website for teachers. Here I only have three days of school left until summer and I can't stop downloading stuff of this site.

For those of you who are like I was two months ago and don't have a clue as to what I am talking about, it is a website where teachers make things like games, lesson plans, worksheets, etc and they upload them to this site. Then lazy teachers like me who want all the cool stuff but don't always have the time to make them up, can go and download them to use in our classrooms. Most of the things on the site you do have to pay a couple of bucks for, but please, I have to pay lots of bucks for ready made stuff at any teacher store. Plus, they have some really great treasures for free.

I'm really not sure how I taught before I discovered this treasure trove and I am addicted. A couple of weeks ago I seriously downloaded about 25 nonsense word games. That's almost a different game a week for the entire school year. This morning I downloaded seven short "a" games. Looks like I'm ready for the second week of school in September!

I can't stop, I look at it everyday. Almost as often as I check Facebook and Pinterest. Then this afternoon, I had this brilliant thought, "I wonder if they have stuff for pre-schoolers?". Guess what? They do! So I downloaded some stuff for my pre-schooler and I to do this summer when we have Mommy School.

Anyway, I didn't want to be alone with this addiction so I thought I would invite the world of teachers and parents to join me!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Teenager Advice

I teach the 16-18 year old girls at church and I love it! As I do this though I always get to think back to when I was a teenager and wish that I could go back in time and give myself advice. Not that it would've helped much, I think, because teenagers inately think that what they are going through is totally original to them and no one could ever understand. But, here is my attempt at trying:

1. High School is four years long. If you live to be 80, that is 5% of your life.

2. Most likely you will never see the people from High School again.

3. However, mom, dad, and siblings you will see for the rest of your life, therefore looking at #2 and #3 which relationships do you think are more important to focus on and build?

4. Once upon a time, mom was a girl dating boys...and dad was a boy dating girls. When you realize this there is a tresure trove of information! Mom- has been there and knows how to analyze with the best of them. And Dad- well he was a guy, therefore he knows how they think--you have an "in" to the guy brain!!

5. The High School boy will not be the guy you want to marry, so don't waste your time steady dating. Have fun!

6. Enjoy life! Not doing things, or moping about because of things you have no control over (i.e. moving from SoCal to Tennessee) punishes no one but yourself.

Now the next couple are things I did realize as a teenager, but I wish all teenagers realized this:

1.  This one is advice for my brother: If your parents know your friends, and if you follow the simple rules like calling when you will be late and always letting your parents know where you are, you will have a lot of freedom.

2. Hanging out with your family can be parents pay for things when you are hanging with them.

3.  Teenage years are hard enough, don't add to the mix alcohol and drugs.

4. There is not one thing wrong with graduating from High School a virgin. In fact, please, please, please really will make the entire rest of your life easier.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Bread Making

Today I did something that helps me with two of my resolutions. It all started because my husband and I were discussing the meals we would be able to make using food storage. As we were talking I realized that it would be very helpful if I knew how to bake bread. I know, I know, I should have realized this sooner, but oh well at least I finally came to the realization.

So, today I did it! I made bread! And it tasted good!

I found the recipe online

So, not only did I help improve the food in our food storage with learning how to make bread, but I also tried a new recipe which was also a resolution! I know it's only the 9th day of the year so of course I am still gung ho, but don't worry I'll still be on top of this 119 days into the year!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

New Year Resolutions

Yeah, pretty much I'm not the greatest at writing blogs. I had high hopes for this one then forgot about it once that weekend in September was over. Then today I got to thinking about my New Year resolutions and how I needed to have a way to report how I was doing on them, and that reminded me that I had a blog. So, duh, I could report here to whomever cared enough to read. So, here it goes again, me writing a blog; trying to be cool like everyone else (I even joined pinterest today, that's how cool I am).
So, my New Year Resolutions are as follows:

1. I will weigh 140 pounds by the end of the year. If I happen to weigh less than that I won't cry or anything! That does mean that I will have to lose about 17 pounds. Totally doable! In fact I started a mock biggest loser with my family and friends in order to motivate me to do it. So this one should be in the bag!

2. We will have one year supply of food storage. Last year I made the goal to have 72 hour kits and we accomplished that along with a rotation system for them every six months. Now we are working on our food storage. My wonderful husband even put shelves up for me in the laundry room/pantry so that we will have room to store all that food.

3. I will try at least one new recipe a month. As I sat down last week trying to write up our menu for this week, I realized we eat the same ten or eleven things all the time. It has now become time to stretch that amount.

4. I will continue to go to Relief Society weekly activities. My resolution last year was to go to the weekly activities of my church's women's  group. Since I still have to talk myself into going, I decided it needs to be a resolution again...for the record I went to all but two last year, so I do feel as though I met that goal last year.

5. I will finish reading the Book of Mormon again. Our ward (congregation) issued a challenge last October to read the Book of Mormon again. My husband and I accepted the challenge. However, it was to read a chapter a night and sadly we are 20 some odd chapters behind. We will catch up and we will finish.

My hope is that since I'm using this blog as a way to report on how I am doing to the world that I will make sure that I stick to these goals and they will all be completed by December 31, 2012. Well, unless the Mayan calendar is correct, then it won't matter after December 12!


Sunday, September 18, 2011

And My Father Dwelt in a Tent

I woke up earlier than I had planned this morning. As I laid in bed my mind kept going back to a scripture that my husband and I had read the other day. It is one of my favorite scriptures for the reason that I think it is usually overlooked and I feel like it is full of information for us. For those who are not familiar with the Book of Mormon I can give a little background before I discuss my thoughts on this scripture and for those who are familiar it can be a quick refresher.
The man writing this is named Nephi. He has a prophet for a father named Lehi. He also has three older brothers, two who doubt what his father says and one who goes along with Lehi and Nephi. And I can't leave out their wonderful mother Sariah. Anyway, this family was a very rich family in Jerusalem. Lehi had a vision that Jerusalem was going to be destroyed so Lehi warned the people of Jerusalem who, of course, didn't listen to him. For his protection from the angry people and for protection for his family from the destruction, they fled to the wilderness.
Now here are my thoughts on this scripture:

2 Nephi 2:15 "And my father dwelt in a tent."

I think this verse should be read with the emphasis on the words my and dwelt. As in "MY father DWELT in a tent."

I'm almost positive that had Nephi not been trying to engrave on brass plates and had a computer to type on that verse would have read "And my father (the city boy, with all the riches and comforts in the world, who never would have been caught dead living in the dust dirt of the wilderness) dwelt (not camped or hung out for awhile but LIVED) in a tent.

I think this shows us how Lehi was an example to Nephi. Nephi knew that what his father was telling them had to be true because he was living in a tent and there would be no chance that would be happening unless his father thought it was necessary to save his family.

I like to use this verse as a reminder that all the things the Lord has asked me to do has never been as difficult as moving from my comforts and living in a tent. And since that is the case then I must be willing to do all the small things that I am asked to do. It also makes it much easier because then I think "at least I'm not having to live in a tent in the wilderness!"

And then I'm reminded by the famous verse in the next chapter that says:

"I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commanded them."

Today is good because:

...of the scriptures!!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Idea

So, I went to an event titled Time Out for Women and at this event they encouraged the women in attendance to BECOME something. So I decided to take this challenge, first I thought about the presenter who became a runner in response to this challenge. Then I thought about how much I didn't want to run. Instead I continued to listen as the other presenters talked about their challenges. One thing kept jumping out at me and that was to focus on how Life is Good. Then the idea came to me, I would become a blogger. That had to be way easier than running! The idea behind the blog would be how Life is Good. We live in a not-always-so-great world, but there are so many good things that I think we forget about because the bad always seems to overshadow them. My purpose in becoming a blogger is to bring focus back to those good things. I don't know that anyone else will care what I am writing about, but I know that focusing on the good things in my life will help me and my family. So if I am the only one who reads this (and my very supportive husband) then that's fine. So let's start this Life Uplifted thing:

Life is good today because:

 ...when I came home from this event my beautiful 2 year old ran up to me and said, "Mommy I need to give you a big hug and a big kiss cuz you were gone!" Talk about the best part of life!!

... I got to spend the afternoon out with my husband and a friend for a movie and dinner.

...of Cold Stone ice cream. YUM!!

Life will be great today if BYU can win this rivalry game. Guess that part will have to be seen later.