JUL
23
2014

One Pan Pasta Dinner

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Hi all! If you know anything about me by now, you know that I’m not a professional chef. I’m a busy mama of four and I don’t have time to dilly dally around in the kitchen everyday! That means when I hear something like “easy recipes”, “5 ingredient meal”, or ‘one pan’… well let’s just say you had me at “one pan”! So today I have a one pan pasta dish for all of you busy parents out there!   So if you have about 15 minutes to spare, then stick with me people and you’ll also have dinner ready too!   One Pan Pasta: 12 ounces linguine 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered if large 1/2 onion, thinly sliced (Or finely diced if you’re trying to hide them from your children.) 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced or minced 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes 3 sprigs basil, plus torn leaves for garnish 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving kosher salt and freshly ground pepper 5 cups water 6 oz. tomato sauce … [Read more...]

JUL
10
2014

It’s 7/11 FREE SLURPEE DAY!

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What better way to end my summer activities series than sharing that today is… 7/11 FREE SLURPEE DAY! For those of you who don’t know, on July 11th, the 7/11 convenience stores give out free kids size Slurpee's all day! This photo is from a couple of years ago, but rest assured we’ll be heading out today to get our free Slurpee today too! It’s actually the only day of the year we get these (I know I’m a horrible mama LOL), so the kids are always excited when July 11th rolls around ;o)   I hope you all have a great weekend, and get to enjoy a free icy treat with your family! … [Read more...]

JUN
30
2014

Homeschooling 101: Kindergarten & Elementary

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Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling kindergarten and elementary level students.   Make it fun! Elementary years can be an exciting time. Students at this age are eager to learn new things, but might also start to become reluctant when things start to get harder. With homeschooling you have the flexibility to take subjects that might otherwise be somewhat boring, and turn them into hands-on type activities that make the learning process much more exciting and memorable. Now that your student has entered into elementary school, you will need to check with your state laws regarding curriculum, subject requirements, testing, and any other regulations that might be relevant to your area. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take the opportunity to make it fun. With a little bit of planning, you can add in relevant hands on projects, lap booking, note booking, field trips, science experiments, and anything else … [Read more...]

JUN
25
2014

July 2014 Monthly Meal Plan

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We’re in full swing of summer and enjoying every minute of it! I have to say it’s been a little hectic though so I’m still wondering when the actual relaxation part of summer will hit! Since I don’t like to have to think a lot during summer time I made up another Monthly Meal Plan for you. I hope it’s helping you get your meals planned, and relieving a little bit of stress from your day too!   Download the 2014 July Monthly Meal Plan: 2014 July Monthly Meal Plan PDF 2014 July  Monthly Meal Plan Word Doc (Editable)   If you haven’t already used this before, you can click on any of the underlined menu items to get to a recipe.   Since you always ask, here are some of our smoothie recipes, just click on an image below for a fabulous recipe! … [Read more...]

JUN
18
2014

Homemade Salsa Recipe

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I don’t know about you, but summer always leaves me craving fresh snacks! And so for today, I have a very simple Pico de Gallo recipe to share with you! It’s crisp, fresh, and muy bueno!   I know you all probably have a favorite recipe for pico de gallo, but I thought I’d share mine as well. I like to keep it simple, so the less ingredients I have to deal with the better! Let’s get started chopping shall we?   Ingredients: 1-2 tomatoes, diced 1 red or white onion, diced (I prefer red, but only had white today!) 2 sprigs fresh cilantro, finely chopped 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon pepper 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder Splash of lime juice (Normally I would use half a lime and squeeze it in)     Directions: Chop everything up and mix it in a bowl!   Serve! Serve with tortilla chips, tacos, carnitas, and anything else you would like to add a little zing to! We like to just eat it plain with some crispy tortilla chips for a … [Read more...]

JUN
11
2014

Keepers At Home Girls Club Ideas

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I thought it would be fun to share a post on some of our Keepers at Home meetings since it’s been awhile. For those of you who haven’t heard of this, Keepers at Home is kind of like Christian version of the Girl Scouts. It’s also a way to help spend some one on one time with your daughter as the mom’s and daughters both participate together. The group focuses on teaching girls practical life skills that they can utilize as they grow older and become women themselves. It is a Bible-based and Christ-centered program, and the parents lead the group, not an organization. What does our group look like? For our group, there are 7 families, and each mom takes a turn hosting at their home and teaching the skill for that night. It makes it much less stressful on the families when you only have to teach/host once per year.  But really you can set up your group anyway you like. Just gather some friends together with like aged girls and start up a group!   We’ve been involved in a … [Read more...]

MAY
28
2014

June 2014 Monthly Meal Plan!

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Good morning! We only have a few more weeks until summer break, and man am I ready for some relaxed warm summer days! And so I can relax and enjoy the remainder of our year, I have my June 2014 Monthly Meal Plan ready to go! I hope these help you get your meals planned, and relieve a little bit of stress from your day!   Download the 2014 May Monthly Meal Plan: 2014 June Monthly Meal Plan PDF 2014 June Monthly Meal Plan Word Doc (Editable) If you haven’t already used this before, you can click on any of the underlined menu items to get to a recipe.   Since you always ask, here are some of our smoothie recipes: Click on the image below to see our latest, and delicious if I say so myself, green smoothie recipe! … [Read more...]

MAY
26
2014

Homeschooling 101: Babies & Toddlers

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I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Today we’re talking about homeschooling with babies and toddlers in tow. I know this can be a challenging time, and I encourage you to set a schedule that works for your family during this time. Don’t worry about what other families might be doing!   Homeschooling with babies and toddlers in tow is a common occurrence for homeschoolers. And while it can be slightly daunting trying to teach math while nursing a baby, and trying to occupy a busy toddler, I can assure you it can be done. As mentioned previously, flexibility is a key point in homeschooling. Depending on the year, school might need to be arranged to fit the needs of the younger ones in your home. Here are some tips and tricks to homeschooling with younger children in your midst. Include your toddler I know it might sound crazy, but my number one tip to homeschooling with toddlers is to include them in your lessons whenever possible. Even … [Read more...]

MAY
21
2014

Vanilla Bean Frappuccino Recipe

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Do your kids beg for a Starbucks Vanilla Bean Frappuccino every time you go like mine do? Ugh. And those things are like $4/each! Being a homeschooler I quickly figured out that $4.00 x 4 kids = way more than I want to spend on drinks! Since I’m a softy and have a hard time saying no, we decided to come up with our own recipe so we could make them at home and save about a zillion dollars.   Ingredients: 1 cup of ice 1 1/2 cups of milk (You can use non-fat, 2%, or whole) 1 T. Sugar Free Vanilla Syrup (You can add another tablespoon if you like, but we thought it was a little too much.) 1 t. vanilla extract Optional: Whipped Cream topping   Directions: Blend and top with whipped Cream!   BAM! Just like that I saved myself about $16 by making them myself! Yipee! If it’s still not sweet enough you can add in a tablespoon of sugar, but we didn’t think it needed it. You can also add in a scoop of vanilla ice cream, but again, the flavoring … [Read more...]

MAY
19
2014

Homeschooling 101: Standardized Testing

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It’s that time of the year again! Time for the dreaded  T E S T I N G. So for today’s Homeschooling 101 post, we’re going to dig into the details of standardized testing and homeschooling! Are you excited? You should be because I’m here to encourage homeschoolers everywhere! Testing isn’t as bad as you think, and YES YOU CAN DO IT!   As with everything, you’ll want to start by checking your state requirements to determine if standardized testing is required. Some states offer testing or yearly assessments which are less stressful for the student, so it is good to know what your requirements are. I prefer to test regardless of my state requirements because I use the tests to gauge how well my students are doing. We choose to test annually starting in 2nd grade. In my state testing is required starting in 3rd grades and every odd grade after that. I begin in 2nd grade to give my students a “trial run” test. This allows them to get used to the test itself as … [Read more...]