Talking about home, children, parenting, homeschooling, recipes, faith and much more. Hope you'll join me!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Blog Moving to New Address - Exciting!

Just wanted to let everyone know that my blog is moving to a new address!  It's oh-so-exciting!  A few things have to be worked out yet (my learning curve), but the new design is done and looks pretty spiffy (if I may say so). 

My designer and friend, Lori, is absolutely fantastic to work with and she has many exciting and fun ideas for making your blog look fabulous!  

Go check out her website, would you please?  

Tell her Susan sent you.  

Oh yes, my new address is

Look forward to seeing you there!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

My Best Friend, My Childhood Room, and Senior Trip

I am linking up today over at Jen's Ink Pen! 

Jen asked her readers to share the following:

What do you remember about your very first best friend?
What did your childhood bedroom look like, smell like, feel like, or sound like?
Do you remember being allowed to do something as a child or teenager...that you would not think of letting your own child do today?

Simply reading her post brought back vivid memories, so I thought I'd join in!

My First Best Friend

My very first best friend was Tammy King.  I met her in my kindergarten class and quickly learned that she lived only 5 minutes away from me.  She lived with her grandparents in this sweet little home on a few acres.  I remember playing together in her beautiful room with a huge canopy bed.  It wasn't my style, but it totally fit her!  

She was so very sweet and a lot of fun!  We'd play dolls, draw together, and play outside.  We were inseparable in school - always sat next to each other and always found stuff to do together on the playground.  

In November of 1977, my parents finished building our home which was nearly 4 hours away.  The next summer, 1978, I was 9 years old and went on a trip with Tammy and her grandparents down South to Tennessee.  It was a great time!  It seemed though that after that time, we stopped writing as much and, sadly, eventually lost touch.  

I still have photos of her (found one!!) and wonder what ever happened to her.  Did she get married?  Have children?  

My Childhood Room

Ah yes, my room!  It was blue, all blue, with beautiful ruffled curtains that my Momma made me.  I had one painting hung on the wall (that my Momma painted).  I had a double size bed covered with a beautiful white chenille bedspread.  My first desk was a simple green tabletop with metal legs.  I loved that desk!  I think my parents still have it in their basement.  

My next desk, later in high school, was one that my Momma's daddy had built - very sturdy and a deep dark brown color.  I had my typewriter on it and would sit there to do my homework.  My fondest memory of using that desk was when I had a research paper due my senior year.  I spent countless hours at that desk poring through books to find information and then typing it out with that ole' typewriter.  My goodness, am I ever thankful now for Microsoft Word!  Can't tell you how much white out and correction tape I went through!  

My room was my haven, my refuge.  I had everything I needed in there to curl up with a good book, listen to music, and just spend time doing whatever I liked.  

Right outside my window was a dogwood tree that my Daddy planted for me when we first moved there.  It was then and still is now my favorite flowering tree.  In the spring, I would wake up to hear the birds singing and see the gorgeous blooms right outside.  It was my first view of the day...what a blessing!  

My husband and girls and I sleep in that very room whenever we visit my parents.  I feel so blessed to still be able to visit the home where I grew up.

The Senior Trip 

What bright person ever came up with the idea of sending several hundred seniors out into Cedar Point without chaperones?  When I think about that  Yes, we were seniors, but my, my.  

As a chaperone, I can't imagine the stress of making sure that each and every one of us got back onto the buses at the end of the day!  There weren't cell phones back then, so it was definitely the honor system - that you would show up when you were asked to do so!  

We had a blast, my friends and I, but I still marvel at the fact that we were let loose in a huge amusement park, even at that age.  We rode the rides, ate entirely too much cotton candy, took goofy photos, and made memories laughing together.  It was fantastic!  

 Diana, Julia, Me, Missy, Lorna

Will I let my girls go on a trip like that?  Hmmm...well, admittedly I'm one of those moms who will likely be a chaperone!  (shhh...don't tell my girls yet).  

So that's my 'lil trip down memory lane.

All my best to you!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Crazy Busy Week!

It was a crazy busy week (last week) around here! 

There is much going on in our home and and some exciting online changes coming too!

I just finished up with our homeschool co-op curriculum sale today.  It is always a great time of looking at curriculum and fellowship with other like-minded moms.  I confess though, I did take a nap when we got home!

We also finished painting the kitchen and dining room a day or so ago.  Love, love the results!  We did two shades of green on the walls and it turned out exactly like I envisioned it looking in my head. 

We realized the other day that our kitchen and dining room are not the only green rooms in the house.  Our master bedroom, sunroom and hall bath are also green!  

One of our friends joked, "hey, does this mean you are going green?"   I guess is does!  All I know is that the color green makes me happy!  Another friend of ours mentioned that green is a sign of intelligence...ok, we will take it! (smile)

Ok, so exciting new changes...

My blog will soon be moved over to Word Press!  And, thanks to Lori at Web Midwife, I will also have a brand new design!  She is amazingly talented and very easy to work with.  If you are looking for a new design or simply need help with your blog elements, be sure to visit her site and contact her.  

I am also very excited to be part of a new adventure with my friend Denise.  You may already know her as The Cottage Chick.  She is now in the process of presenting a new blog called Denise in Bloom.  You can read more about it here.  Denise is a fantastic mom, writer, friend, blogger and website owner and I am proud to be a writer for her new blog!  

So, we are looking to the future with high hopes...and great anticipation.  It is going to be a lot of fun!

This week...two meetings the first two days of the week, my Mom is coming to visit, my parents are coming for the recital, and the flowers will hopefully go into the flowerbeds with my Mom helping me.  No worries!  It will somehow all get done...right?

Until next time...hopefully it will not be so long next time in between posts...

All my best to you!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Goodie Bags - Last Day of Class

This year I had the privilege of helping my friend Gail teach a class at our homeschool cooperative.  We taught 8th graders and up - what a terrific bunch of people!  

We taught financial principles that we know will benefit them when they get out into the world.  They learned about budgets, tithing, getting an apartment, family life, resumes and interviewing.  

They all did great with their mock interviews too!  Several of our moms graciously agreed to 'interview' our students so they had an idea of what it would be like to answer questions about their resume and their skills.

Their projects for the year involved taking the skills they had learned throughout the year and putting it all into a presentation.  Each student was given a budget - a honeymoon budget for the boys and a wedding budget for the girls.  Their presentations were excellent and everyone stayed within budget!

For our last day of class, Gail and I wanted to show the students that we appreciate them and their enthusiastic participation in the class, so we made up goodie bags for them.  It was a bit of a challenge to find small items that we thought teens would like, so we kept it simple.  

These goodie bags are really easy to put together and could be used for students or even birthday party treat bags.

What's Inside the Goodie Bags
  • Peppermint Patties
  • Mini chocolate bars
  • Two pencils
  • Dum-Dum lollipops 
  • 3 homemade chocolate chip cookies
I had purchased treat bags with the intention of placing everything into one bag, but the treat bags had a narrow mouth.  I simply placed the candy and pencils into the purchased treat bag and then put the cookies into a sandwich bag.  Tying the two together with twistie ties worked out perfectly.  

To dress up each bag a bit, I tied organza ribbon (love, love that stuff!) around each one along with each students' name printed out on cardstock.  

Upon receiving the goodie bag, one of the students said, "you're a really nice lady!"  How sweet! 

It was such a pleasure teaching the 8th grade and up students this year!  The goodie bags were just a small way of saying "thank you" to them.  

Anything at all could go into these goodie bags, so use your imagination and have fun with it!

Do you do something special for your students at the end of the year? 

Linking up with Amy for Anti-Procrastination Tuesday over at New Nostalgia!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Coffee Is...

Coffee is...

Love at 1st sight

 Giving you energy too...

Giving you a break from life

 and most important..keeps Mom happy!

 How do you like my (eldest) daughter's thoughts on coffee?  I love them!  

She did this for my website, but I had to sell the site, so I wanted to post it here to honor her beautiful creativity.  

Hope you are enjoying some delicious coffee yourself this morning!

All my best to you,

Monday, April 18, 2011

It's Working! So Far...

I don't know about you, but I have tried every tried and true technique I know or have read about to get my girls out the door on time.  We go over the next day's schedule the night before.  In the morning,  we talk about the way the day needs to go in order to get out the door on time.  

I let them know about an hour ahead of time that we are going to have to leave and that they need to have "teeth, hair, shoes" done by a certain time.  Another "heads up" comes 15 minutes before we have to walk out the door.  It's like pulling teeth to get them out the door when we need to be somewhere!  

My husband often (gently) tells me I have set my expectations too high for our girls and that I desire too much from them too soon in their lives.  I believe that...sometimes.  But now that our sweet daughters are 8 and 11, almost 9 and 12, I don't think getting out the door in a state that doesn't resemble just getting out of bed is all that much to ask.  (Am I alone here??)

Mind you, I realize that I am the only Type A personality in my family and I know that I'm a bit of an overachiever sometimes, but my goodness...

Ok, so one day last week I had had enough.  That's putting it lightly I'm afraid.  It was a crazy busy day for me and I was trying to meet a deadline and by late afternoon, we had to go to an appointment.  So, like usual, I let them know an hour ahead that we were going to be leaving the house.  Forty-five minutes later, do you want to know where I found my youngest?

She was lying on her stomach, feet in the air, munching a cookie, and reading a book very happily.  So, I say to her, "we have to leave in 15 minutes - have you brushed your teeth and hair?"  (I knew the answer already, but I have to ask, right?)  She of course, had not, and didn't seem in any hurry to do so.  Ten minutes later, she was still in the same place!

Ok, fast forward...we are in the van, we're going to be late for the appointment, and I'm not exactly in the greatest of moods.  

Now, I am going to preface these next statements with this:  our girls don't have cell phones, hand-held electronic games, or the like, so when it comes to taking a privilege away from them, it can be somewhat of a challenge.

However, they do receive 30 minutes of computer time per day.  So....

I explained (calmly) to them that day in the van that starting the following day, a new "rule" was in effect.  

For every minute they are late getting out the door, they will lose 10 minutes of their computer time.  (Gasp!)  So, if they are 3 minutes late getting out the door, they lose all of their computer time for that day.

Yes, I know, some of you are saying in your mind, "isn't that a little harsh when they only get 30 minutes anyway?"  It may seem that way, but let me say this...I am at the point where I believe the consequences have to be enough to motivate them.  

Guess what?  The next several days when we had to be somewhere at a specific time, they were ready early Whoopee!!  (Ok, I never say that, but it expresses my elation!)

It's far...

What techniques do you use to get your children out the door on time?

All my best to you!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Some Link Love...

Good Sunday Morning!

This is a simple post where I give some "link love" to some of my favorite blog posts this week.
Hope you enjoy!

Shag Pillow @ V & Co. - the cutest ever shag pillow!  Great for any room of the house.  I'm going to make a few of these for my girls' bedrooms.

Quilted Potholders @ Chocolate Covered Chaos - who doesn't need an extra set of cute potholders?  Her binding technique is ever so easy!

Easy Spring Decorating Ideas @ The Cottage Chick - brighten up every room of your home with these easy quick ideas from Denise.

My Rather Imperfect Home @ To Love, Honor and Vacuum - a great reminder about what is truly important and how to achieve some balance.  

And a few great websites I rediscovered over the weekend.  

Canning season is quickly approaching!  Great tips for canning just about anything you might think of to put into a jar.

What a great concept!  I'm in the process of reading more about this technique of saving and storing food.

Hope you have a blessed Sunday!