Tuesday, April 29, 2008

On The Go!

Today the girls had their first Dentist appointment, ever! They were a little apprehensive but they were great through it all. Mia has no cavities while Emma does have a couple that we have to go back and get filled next week.

After the Dentist we went to Victoria Gardens, the new big shopping center in Rancho Cucamonga, so we could get our FREE Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream. I know, taking them to get ice cream right after the dentist, what a great mom I am!!!

To our dismay Ben and Jerry's wasn't open yet, but the sidewalk water fountains were, so we stopped and played in those for a bit. Can you tell that the girls had a great time getting wet?

After that we went to guest services to find out when Ben and Jerry's opens because they had o signs on the door, we were told 10:00 but it was already after 11:00 and they were still closed. Then they said "I think that they special permission to start opening later like at 11:00." Well, whichever it was they were late opening. But we held out.

Deciding that the girls needed to dry off we went for a walk in the sun over to the playground area they have.On our way we met up with Heather, a lady from our church, and her two kids who were also on the way to the park. So, we all went together and the kids played together while us moms talked.

They didn't know about Ben and Jerry's FREE Ice Cream day, but after they heard we all went back over together. Guess what, still closed!

Now it became personal, I was not going to leave without my ice cream! Luckily there was a Thomas The Tank Engine Store just across the way, and her little boy LOVES Thomas so we went over there and played. The girls wanted to know if Christian has been there before, because he would so love it!

Finally Ben and Jerry's opens and we get our FREE ice cream! So what started out in my mind as a quick stop ended up taking about 2 1/2 hours. Oh well, at least we were with friends!

After leaving there we made a quick stop at Winco's, I LOVE Winco's! They are this great cheap grocery store in Fontana, they are actually on Foothill real close to Victoria Garden's and since we were already there I thought that we would make a quick stop for some fruit and a few essentials. They are super cheap just not so super close, I do my big shopping trips there, but for quick little ones I tend to go to a closer store to save my gas. but if I'm already in the area for something else, you bet I'll stop.

We then came home and I started on dinner, Crock-pot Chicken and Dumplings. Chicken and Dumplings is one of Erik's favorites and Crock-pot cooking is one of my favorite ways to cook in the heat! And get this it's even a healthier version as I got the recipe off Sparkpeople!

Erik went off to a lecture with his mom about Islam and the girls and I made a run to Blockbuster, I had a coupon that was going to expire at the end of the month, tomorrow and I knew we wouldn't have time tomorrow to stop!

Whew! Is anyone else tired? Here it is 9:00 the girls have been in bed for an hour but they are still talking up a storm in there. Why aren't they sleeping yet? Did we not do enough today? Maybe they can loan me some of their energy!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Graham Cracker Construction

The girls were inspired by their cousin Tyler's graham cracker tower (scroll to the end of the post) and wanted to build something of their own.

We absolutely LOVE chocolate and candy at our house, so instead of using peanut butter like Tyler, we used chocolate frosting, and candy to decorate with! Yummy!!! And instead of a tower they wanted to build houses that they could decorate. Reminds me of Christmastime.

As you can see the girls had no problem digging into their creations! I actually had a hard time making them wait until after dinner, though they did sneak some while they were hard at work constructing their houses. Like mother, like daughters! I sneaked some as well, but that will be our little secret!

Construction Zone!

Curb Appeal!

The Masterpiece!

Extreme Makeover!


Friday, April 25, 2008

Swimsuit Shopping

I hate swimsuit shopping!!!! Maybe once I get down to my goal weight I might feel better about it, but I'm not going to guarantee that. I had to go but a new swim suit so I could take the girls swimming this summer, and with the way the weather is going it will be sooner than later.

Why do I hate swimsuit shopping? Well, for all you guys out there, because all women understand this, every flaw is totally pointed out and highlighted as you try on swim suit after swim suit, trying to find one that will hide all the extra weight that you've managed to put on over the past years. Also, add insult to injury, I'm only planning on needing this new suit for a couple of months seeing as my goal is to lose the extra weight by the end of the year, so I had to shell out cold hard cash on something I despise doing as well as something that hopefully will not be used for more than this season!

Anyway, I finally found something that will work for a price that won't break the bank. Thank goodness! We also got the girls each a new swim suit, oh to be young again and to love swim suit shopping. When we got home they had to model their swimsuit for Erik. Here they are Mia and Emma!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Doughnut Math

So, I found a coupon for buy one dozen of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, get one dozen of their original glazed FREE! Anyone who knows me knows that I can't pass up a deal like this. The girls and I made a quick stop at Krispy Kreme yesterday to get our doughnuts!!

And to make it more educational, I found a worksheet with math questions dealing with doughnuts! So we came home last night and got straight to work filling out the worksheets so we could then fill our bellies with the doughnuts.

For someone who is trying to lose weight, I definitely ate too many doughnuts, but boy did they taste good!

We LOVE Krispy Kreme!!!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Celebrate Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day everyone!!! In celebration of Earth Day the girls and I went and got some plants and planted them in containers on our patio. I can't wait until we get a house and are able to put in a garden but, container gardening will have to do for now!

We got a variety of vegetables, herbs, flowers, and a few seeds, as well as strawberries, which are Miriam's favorite. We had to go to 4 different places until we could find strawberry plants!

Planting was our main home school lesson today! That and shopping, and deciding what we needed to buy to be able to plant them, and learning just how much potting soil you need. We had to make a second trip back just for more potting soil! But it was definitely worth it to see the girls so excited!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Bloggy Giveaway

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

Okay, this is my first time participating in the bloggy giveaways! I actually won something last time, me who never wins anything! So , I thought that I would go ahead and give some stuff away myself.

How it works is really simple, you leave a comment about your favorite thing about home schooling and I will randomly select a winner on April 27th, and you win the book The Homeschooling Handbook by Mary Griffith. I somehow ended up with two copies so I thought I'd share, it's a great resource book.

Not home schooling yet? Just thinking about home schooling? That's okay, you can still win, just leave a nice comment about homeschooling, I reserve the right to delete any comments made.

You don't have to be a blogger to win, just make sure that you leave an email address so I can contact you if you win! Because of the cost of shipping I am going to have to limit this to giveaway to U.S. participants only.

That's it, pretty simple! Just don't forget to leave a comment about homeschooling (no "please enter me," or "I want to win," etc.)--if you don't you won't be entered to win.

Also don't forget to check out my other blogs for more chances to win more FREE stuff!

Free Comic Book Day

When you're looking for something to do, don't forget about Free Comic Book Day.

You can find a local participating comic book shop on that website, but if you're around the Inland Empire, you should check out 4 Color Fantasies that day. Info on everything they're doing is here.

Just remember that comics, like movies, come for different age groups, but the folks at the store will probably be super helpful in finding the ones that are right for your kids.

(Or you, but I won't tell if you won't.)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Fun Things To Do

I found out some fun things to do coming up in the next few months and only two of the three are going to hurt my diet! Where did I find these things out, well I can't tell you. Well, I could but then I'd have to kill you! Just kidding! I got them off some of my homeschooling groups and thought that I would pass them on to you!

FREE Ben and Jerry's Cone Day on April 29th. Click on the link to find the one closest to you. For those of you who live near us the closest place is in Rancho Cucamonga. But hey, it's FREE Ben and Jerry's--it's worth a little drive!

$.31 cent scoops of ice cream at Baskin Robbins on April 30th from 5-10pm. Again click on the link to find the store closest to you. We have one just a couple blocks away from our house! I LOVE ice cream--hence why I need to shed a few pounds!

And now the third and final--select AMC Theaters are going to start their summer movie extravaganza in June. Again click on the link to find a participating theater near you. The closet one to us is the AMC Tyler Galleria 16 in Riverside. This year they will be charging $1 per person--it might be worth it if they are showing a movie that your kids love. The movies start at 10:00am each Wednesday.

Here is the lineup:
June 25--Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium
July2--The Waterhorse
July9--Alvin and the Chipmunks
July 16--Shrek the Third
July 23--Bee Movie
July 30--Surf's Up
That's all the fun stuff that I know of right now, if I hear of anything else I will keep you posted!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Organizing The House!

Okay, so I'm blaming this sudden obsessive need to get organized on a few people! Come on, you know that my moods are never my fault. Right? :) I'm blaming Michelle for making her place look so cute, my brother Kent who is planning to come out and visit us sometime in the next couple of months (he's bringing his pretty serious girlfriend out to meet us), and the new matienece guy for finally getting the leak in our kitchen sink fixed after a month (I can now start putting things away).

Anyway, I made up a schedule of when I want each room/space completely clean, deep cleaned and organized. It's a bit lofty of a goal--but I need to be prepared for whenever Kent and Angela are coming out, the soonest would be the end of May and the latest would be the end of July! Thanks a lot little brother for causing me all this extra stress! :)

Schedule of events in the cleaning marathon:
Living Room completed by April 23
Kitchen completed April 30
The Girls Bedroom completed May 7
Mine and Erik's Bedroom completed May 14
Both Bathrooms completed May 16
Home school Stuff completed May 20
Craft supplies completed May 22
Don't forget that I am also trying to lose about 70 pounds or so, home school the girls, and everything else that goes into running a house! Maybe I'm crazy, okay, no maybe about it. But I will succeed! It's just like anything else, 80% mental and 20% physical. Right? I think I can. I think I can. . . .
I am also weighing my options between having a web store on EBay or on Etsy. It is basically boiling down to the fact that an EBay store can have anything in it but it costs more money, while an Etsy store only allows handmade products but it costs less. I still have a few months to figure it all out. I want to have my web store up an running by July 2. Hence another reason for my crazy schedule, I need my house clean and organized so that I can spend time crafting projects that I can then sell. Make sure to check back for the grand opening update when that happens, in July!
Now it all has to happen because I have let the world know. I am conceited to think that the whole world reads and cares about my little blog but, I have to think that way because then I can't fail in front of everyone!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Sewing Class

For those of you who don't know part of our homeschooling consists of me teaching the girls how to sew. They are having the time of their lives, and learning that sewing is harder and more time consuming than it looks. I have another blog set up all about me teching the girls how to sew. Both the girls and I are learning a lot through this journey.

They have already completed one project, a drawstring bag that they made all by themselves! We just started our second project today, they are making a skirt. I let them pick between a skirt or a pair of shorts, well they are definitely girls!

FREE Sample

Okay, I had to post this offer here. You can get a sample of Sani Hands For Kids, by just calling this toll-free number: 1-877-SANIKID (1-877-726-4543). It is all automated so you don't even have to talk to a live person, you give them you name and address, answer a few questions about sanihands for kids and then they will wend you out your FREE sample.

Now if any of you guys are on a strict budget like I am, you know that every little bit helps. So, if you use hand sanitizers and you want to save some money then give them a call. It will only take a couple of minutes, I already did it!

Learning To Read

One of the things that scared me the most about homeschooling when we first decided to home school, was how was I going to teach my girls how to read. I don't remember learning how to read, I've been reading as far back as I can remember. My husband was reading by the time he was four so he was no help either.

Reading was a big concern for Erik and I, we are both avid readers. And we honestly have more books in our small two-bedroom apartment than anything else. We have more bookcases than any of other furniture added together, and we still do not have enough shelf space to hold all our books! Our dream house consists of a large library type room filled from ceiling to floor with books.

Also, we felt that if they can master reading then they will be able to master anything else that they will want to. As long as you can read you can learn anything.

Then my mother-in-law wanting to support us in our decision, purchased the complete Deluxe Hooked On Phonics system for us. Well, we have been using it now for 1 1/2 years and let me tell you, it has worked with our girls! They are reading and loving it! Thanks Mom!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Emma's New Glasses

We picked up Emma's new glasses today! I finally remembered to get her a new pair, she's only been needing a new pair for a couple of months now. Not that her prescription has changed, it hasn't changed since she got her glasses three years ago, but you know how kids are. So, her glasses have gotten pretty beat up! So, here she is modeling her new pair. (They're purple)

Other Blogs We've Got

Okay, so some of you know Marci and I have been noodling around with blogs for a while. I thought I'd share where all the other pages we have around the Internet are. There are a lot of them. Some are serious, some are just experiments, and some are flat-out lame, but they're all here . . .

Marci's Blog On Children's TV at Bella Online

Marci has a weekly column at Bellaonline.com, a web portal targeted towards women. She mostly talks about educational TV, although I know she's got a big article on the Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Awards she's working on . . .

Marci's Usborne Books Blog

As you know, Marci is also a consultant for Usborne Books. At this blog, she posts reviews of different cool products when she tests them out on the girls. There are pictures and stuff here, too.

Musings From The Doc

This is the blog that started it all . . . it was just a place for me to go and vent about stuff. It's got stuff in there about politics, TV shows, books, movies, and my life in general. If I had a personal blog before this one, it was probably that one.

The 365 Day Turnaround

This was a blog I started when I first decided to lose weight and get out of debt. It's a combination of informational articles and personal stuff about getting out of debt and getting fit. For a while I was even doing a weekly feature about different gambling games and why they're a bad idea. I liked doing this blog a lot, but haven't been doing much with it lately.


Yes, I do have a website that is not on Blogger. Mildlyamusing.com is a humor site my friend Jarrod and I work on like crazy sometimes and altogether ignore at other times. I'm looking to make some big improvements on it soon, though, and try to make it into something that can make a few dollars a month, in addition to having it be a place I can post on those rare occasions my brain thinks of something funny.

How To Manage People

This blog is basically about my management philosophies. I work in multi-unit management, and have both read and studied extensively on the subject of leadership. Nevertheless, this blog still manages to be fairly incomprehensible. But I really enjoy working on it--I'd love to make my living talking about the kinds of stuff I talk about on there.

Free Stuff Online

This blog has links to stuff you can get for free all over the Internet. Mostly samples, although it also has free educational materials and other stuff. We try to filter out anything that's not just straightforward, "Fill out your address and we'll send you something free."

Let's Save Some Money!

A blog in two parts: The first part are articles about saving money that Marci and I write, and the second part is links to sales all over the Internet from sites that are affiliates. Probably the two most useful posts are the two with links to places to get deals on used textbooks and other books and places to get travel discounts online.

Some Hero Stuff

This was originally intended to be a place where I would post reviews of graphic novels, except I never actually got around to reviewing any. I did manage to make around 40 posts so far, though, and I get the most hits for people searching for who would win in a fight between Batman and Snake-Eyes.

Teaching Kids To Sew

This is Marci's blog about her efforts to teach the girls how to sew, complete with pictures and stuff. I have it on good authority there will be a skirt project soon--stay tuned!


Okay, I think that's all of them. We're currently working on a couple of other websites that we'll probably post about at some point, but we're learning slowly about how this whole "making money online" thing works. Someday, we may just know enough to actually "make money." In the meantime, I think I'm the Internet authority on who would win in a fight between Batman and Snake-Eyes, and that's something, right?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Went To The Cardiologist

Okay, I had my checkup at the cardiologist on March 25th. Yep over a week ago and I can just now talk about it without losing it. So here's the results, not good, but not life threatening either. Just upsetting to me.

The day started out horrible, I was still sick with that congestion head cold thing, and had lost my voice because of it. I had just started my cycle, and since the heart surgery my cycle's have been longer and more painful, and I was bloated on top of that and PMSing, BIG TIME! And I had a start of a migraine. If I hadn't already had to reschedule this appointment I would have called and cancelled. But, I went.

First off my blood pressure was slightly elevated, so little in fact that if I was a normal person they wouldn't even blink an eye at it. But because of the heart surgery, they are freaking out! So, they upped my blood pressure medication, so now I take 50mg of a medicine that makes me tired, and I thought that I was having problems getting everything done before!

Keep in mind that I am emotional and hormonally at my limit, logic is not a strong point if mine on a good day, I tend to act and think emotionally. Hey, I am a woman! Anyway, the doctor says something like, "Hey, you know if you lost a little weight, it would probably help get your blood pressure under control." But what do I hear? "Hey, you fat hog if you just got up off your lazy butt we wouldn't have to up your medication." I told you, I'm emotional.

I am not stupid, I know that I need to lose weight, at the doctor's office I weighed 218. The most I have ever weighed! Even more than I weighed when I was pregnant, both times. So, I already feel like a loser.

I want to get down to 150, I was 12 pounds away before my surgery. Then I had the second surgery, and physically I recovered faster this time but emotionally, well let's just say I am still dealing with that part of the recovery.

After surgery I got so depressed, mostly about all the things I would be giving up forever. I think that I could have dealt with almost everything that I have had to give up but, I am still having problems, even some days now, that I will no longer be able to have children. Me the one who has always wanted to have a house full of kids, can no longer have any more.

So, how did I deal with my depression? I ate and shopped my way into oblivion. Not the logical choices for someone who is trying to lose weight and who's family is working so hard to get out of debt! So where does this leave me? At the heaviest weight I have ever been and still not out of debt.

Anyway, back to the doctor's, after I heard him tell me I should lose weight I was devastated. All I wanted to do was go home and curl up with a tub of ice cream or some chocolate and have a pity party for myself and then go shopping. I wanted to just cry and yell and blame someone for what I was going through. I don't cry in front of people, so I didn't cry at the doctor's, and I had the girls with me so waited until we got in the car and I was driving home before I let the tears fall, praying the whole time that the girls would keep themselves entertained so I didn't have to let them see me cry.

This time though, I was able to see that I was trying to drown my feeling with food and shopping and I resisted the urge and I went home. Erik was still there and I was able to cry on his shoulder and yell and scream and get it all out emotionally.

So, now I am on a mission, a mission that I have to tell everyone so I can be accountable. I am going to lose the 60 pounds by the end of the year! I will be 150 pounds, I will be able to decrease my medicine, and I will be thankful for everything I do have. When a blue day hits I will look at what I do have and be grateful. I will be fit and healthy, I will have a wonderful family, and we will be out of debt. (As of this morning I weigh 214. Go me! Go me!)

This time I am mad and determined enough to do it. For anyone who knows me, the best way to get me to do something is to tell me that I can't or to tell me something that I already know in a "you're so stupid, Marci" kind of way. So, even though the doctor didn't say the things the way that I heard them, it upset me enough, that I am going to do this to show him!

Not the best attitude to have and this is a quality that I have always had and it's something that I have to work on. Unfortunately, I sometimes see this same quality in my girls and I want to scream. How did my mom ever put up with me?! I'm sorry mom and dad for everything I ever put you through!!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Following In Their Daddy's Footsteps

For school today I had the girls draw a picture and write a short story to go with what they drew. They loved it! They are definitely following in their daddy's footsteps with their love of telling stories.

For anyone who knows us well you know how much Erik enjoys telling stories. And you also know that he would love to write as a career! We are still hoping that one day he will be able to follow his dreams. Meanwhile, the girls are ready to start their own "careers" as authors!