Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Bears on Hemlock Mountain

A fun little book "The Bears on Hemlock Mountain" was the start for a fun project done over Christmas break. Thanks Nana for all the 'on the spot training' in painting and doll making.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Life is a series of choices on what you will neglect. I find this statement to be true. My life (as well as yours, I’m sure) is full of way too many responsibilities and way, way too many fun things that divert my attention from those responsibilities and as a result it has been a while since my last post. I like writing and sharing glimpses of my life, but to keep both my and my families sanity I have chosen to neglect my blog. This is not to say that now I am going to be a regular poster, but I hope that you will see me posting more often. But, as the saying goes, “Don’t hold your breath!”

So what have I been up to all this time?
Over the past several months I’ve been re-evaluating my teaching techniques and the curriculum I’ve been using, and have come to the conclusion that I needed to make some changes. One of the drawbacks of homeschooling is that there is a lot of on the job training, but this year I really feel that I’m on the right track and I’m very happy at the progress we’ve made so far.

I’ve also spent much of my time on my soap box complaining to anyone who will listen about how much I hate this new digital television stuff. I will not go into it here. Just thought others might want to leave a comment about their experiences with the change over to digital. The only positive experience of this is that I receive a very interesting Japanese channel, which I watch a lot since I can’t get anything else in! Moving on.

We went “Ballistic” with our oldest 8th birthday this year! He received a book from his Grands called “Backyard Ballistics”. Honestly, this was really a gift for the big boys. The morning of his party was spent driving around looking for all the supplies needed to make a Tennis Ball Mortar. It turned out to be a lot of fun for the big boys and the little boy!!!

My husband has started his own blog, “Floating Axe”. It is turning into a great resource for anyone interested in woodworking, it is also a showcase for some of his drawings. He is a very eloquent writer and a very talented woodworker and artist. Check it out!

Now fast-forward to today. The weather has cooled and so the field mice have started to leave their pretty field and live in my pretty home. This week we have caught a mouse and a snake (aggghhhh!!!) and last night I saw another mouse. I think we have been watching a little too much “Swiss Family Robinson” around here. The kids got the idea to design their own mouse traps. Chaim had the idea of luring the mouse to some cardboard tubes with an empty jar that still smelled like peanut butter. Aby is trying to entice the mouse to walk onto her sticky trap of tape with a little crumb of biscuit. We will see if either of these works, but I have my back up plans in place!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Apple Butter (on the thrift)

swap blogpost
Recently I was able to try out another experiment in 'living on the thrift'. I have been filling a gallon size freezer bag with all of our left over apple cores and peels, with the plan to make apple butter in the future when the bag was full. With bag now full, my mad science experiment was ready, and the results were successful. After cooking and mashing I was left with about half a cup of yummy apple butter. The yield was a less then I hoped for, but I plan to improve that by buying some proper equipment. It isn't a jar full but with minimal supplies and time I was able to produce something tasty from something that would otherwise been thrown away.

Thrifty Apple Butter
1 gallon size ziploc bag of apple cores and peels
enough water to cover bottom of heavy pan

Place water and apple parts in heavy bottom pan. Bring water to a boil over medium heat, then turn down to a simmer and cover. Simmer for about a hour until the apple parts are very soft. Place colander over a large bowl. When apple parts are soft pour mixture into colander and press mixture through holes. If you have a food mill use it instead, you will be able to get a lot more apple pulp with a mill. Pour pulp back into pan and bring to a slow simmer. Cook (about an hour) until water has been evaporated and butter is a thick consistency.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

"The most incredible thing about miracles is that they happen."
-G.K. Chesterton from The Innocence of Father Brown

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Little Hands, Big Cards

Here is my honest and openhearted confession- I don't so much like to play games with the kids. It is kind of like playing a game against yourself. When playing card games I am quickly annoyed by constantly having to re-adjust the cards for the kids. One thing I do enjoy doing with the kids is craft projects. Crafty solution- Card holder!!!!

Grab your Sculpey clay and get rolling. My daughter did the rolling. We rolled logs to 5 in. (but any size will do). The diameter is about a 1/4in., but I think I would make them thicker next time round.

With the basic log made now comes the creative part, embellish to your hearts content.

Next, using a playing card (or a knife) make slashes every half inch or so. Just make sure not to go to deep. It helped to use a card to know how if the cut was deep enough to hold the card up and not to deep to cause a break in the log.

Now for the waiting part- cook according to clay directions.

This was a fun quick project and something my family will get a lot of use out of.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Knitting With Nana

"Memories are stitched with love." ~Author Unknown

Reposted with permission from Nana.
Knitting With Nana
Aby's Wristies - My Grand-daughters 1st time knitting. She did a great job!Check out the pics.

Aby's Pattern

Knitting w/ Nanna

by george....I think she's got it :0)Time for the training wheels to come off. "Actually Nanna, I'm controlling your hands."

Making progress.

what happened Nanna?

Shhhhhhh......I'm counting

Tada!!!!! Aby's Wristies...Good Job!!!!

Thanks Nana for a day of memories and for teaching us both to knit!!!

"I like making a piece of string into something I can wear." ~Author Unknown