Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fun with Writing

If you know me personally (or even on this blog), then you know that I am a HUGE fan of BraveWriter!

If you have kids, whether you homeschool or not, and you want to help them find their writing voice and become life long writers, then I suggest you check out her daily writing tips and sign up to receive them via email.  You can sign up on the front page of her website.

I love these Daily Writing Tips and have determined that we will complete at least 2 of them each week.

Today I received one in my inbox and I KNEW it would be a hit!  It was a “twist” on the game “Telephone”. 

Everyone begins by writing a sentence on a sheet of paper.  Then the paper gets passed to the person on the right.  Everyone reads the sentence in front of them and illustrates it underneath.  Before you pass the paper again, you FOLD BACK the original sentence.  The next person should only see the SIMPLE illustration and it is their job to write their own sentence based on the illustration.  After writing the sentence, the paper is folded back to hide the illustration and the new sentence is passed along. 

We continued in this fashion until we received our original papers.  We wrote (or drew) the final piece and then shared them as a group.

Hysterically funny!


“Robbers throw a girl in the trash.”;  “The Ninja Turtles boil some poor victim in a mega coffee mug.”;  “Knights kill innocent girl.”


“I took a walk into the woods and ran into a bear”; “At the Olympics, Mickey Mouse cheers for the American runner”; “The United Nations cheer for the Americans who love mice.”


“At Thanksgiving the Indians popped popcorn and roasted marshmallows”; “After being hit by lightning, the two men popped popcorn over a fire.”; “The heat from a lightning strike is used by young boys to pop bubbles.”

My girls LOVED this game and want to play with friends.  I think we’ll have a blast in a large group!

Give it a shot and sign up for the emails yourself!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Zoob Creations

Look Mom, I made a guy eating popcorn!


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Life with my Kids

July and August have flown by. 

As I sit here, I am looking at a calendar for mid-September.  Where did time go??

But so much of our moments are frozen in my digital albums and I love to look through them.

I love to see everyday life around here.  I am so thankful to be able to walk through life with these four great kids!

If you come around on a random day, you might find mess…


Actually, you WILL find a mess.  A big, creative, messy mess!


You could most definitely join in on a board game:


Or an imaginative game, often with blankets.  For some reason the kids just adore blankets.


Lastly, you can always draw on our dining room table with us!


Time flies by in this house.  I love looking back at the fun times we have everyday.  The kids change so very quickly.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sunday, September 14, 2014

New State, New Swim Team

It was the first year in six years that we were no longer part of the KC Waves swim team.  This was bittersweet for us as part of our move, but we embraced the change.

This year we became part of the Greenway Club Racers.


This meant that we had Tuesday night swim meets instead of Saturday AM, which was a plus and a minus.  I LOVED waking up after 8 AM on Saturday mornings through the summer.  Yet, every Tuesday night was a LONG night, sometimes lasting until after 10 PM (due to thunder delays).

But we made it and had another successful year of swimming, of course, remembering that success is not found in the awards and ribbons!

I love watching these three do their thing in the pool every week!  They each approach it in their own way and with their own style and personality.  It makes for such fun races!


My D (age 7) just loves being a part of the team.  He isn’t a “natural” swimmer, so he works hard.  It is a challenge for him and I am so proud of him everyday for making it happen with such a great attitude.


During the first season of swim team, he just could not swim back stroke. 

Truly.  He could. not. do. it.

This year, we watched him work hard on this stroke so that by the second meet, he was competing in back stroke!  SO PROUD of his hard work.


This year we had a meet with starting blocks that were much higher than average.  He wasn’t thrown off at all!


At the end of the season, in addition to his participation trophy, he took home the most improved swimmer!  I have to agree that he truly was much improved this season and we were proud of his hard work and good attitude.


This gal is the happiest and “smiliest” swimmer that you will ever see.  We love to watch her breaststroke as her smile never leaves her face as she competes.


She had a disappointing incident at one meet where the parent  watching the line up missed her and she didn’t get to swim one of her strokes.  She handled it with a great attitude and I was really proud of her.


This season she took home the Paper Plate Award for “Best Personality”.  I appears that it wasn’t just her mom and dad who noticed her laughter, encouragement and fun spirit on the team.


Finally, there is my girl who truly is a natural swimmer.  I love to watch her swim simply because her stroke is beautiful.

Swimming in the south was a tough adjustment for her.  They set up the meets differently so that only the first heat is considered “competitive”,   This means that only swimmers in the first heat achieve times that can count for points and ribbons.   If you aren’t in the first heat, then you still get to swim and receive your time, but you can’t “win”. 

This was a huge adjustment for my child who was able to win a ribbon even if she swam in the second or third heat because she could beat out someone who didn’t have their best swim.  Our team had a huge number of year round swimmers, so she only was able to swim in a main event a few times, but even that was a HUGE accomplishment.


At the end of the season, she won the Paper Plate award for Best Technique.  Quote: “…and she isn’t even a year round swimmer, though we hope she will be.”


Of course, there was little C (age 5) who will join the team next year, but this year he spent most of the meets like this:


We had a great year as Greenway Club Racer and look forward to joining in again next year for another fun season!


Go Racers!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Science in the Summer

My kids were fortunate enough to each get a spot in the Science in the Summer classes this year.

These classes are FREE five day classes (three day for the older kids) to inspire and teach about a variety of science topics.

The topic this year was Chemistry.

D (age 7) loved his class.  He was so excited to come home everyday and tell us all about the class.  And he loved his free shirt!


On the last day, we were able to see all of the wonderful experiments and creations he had made all week.


Two weeks later, T (age 9) got to attend the same class.  She had just as much fun!


The last student to attend was K (age 11).  Her class was only three days, but they did much higher level experiments, focusing on crime scene investigations.  The students in middle school were able to explore the UNC mobile lab. 

I think these classes were a great experience and very well worth my kids’ time.  I hope they are able to get into one next year as well!

Friday, September 12, 2014

15 Years of Marriage

As of July 3, 2014, Eric and I had been married for 15 years. 

I feel so fortunate to be married to a man who loves me and loves his four children. 

He is an amazing man and I have been so blessed by our years together. 

He truly is my partner in life through everything.


It was the crystal anniversary, so I went with new “wine glasses” that represented the year we moved south.


Eric got me a beautiful necklace with Swarovski crystals in it.  (sadly, I don’t have it pictured)

The timing worked out that we were able to get a night away on our anniversary weekend at The Arrowhead Inn in Durham.   We stayed in the “Mountain Lodge” and it was perfect!


We had ordered a cheese and fruit platter for our room.  We was there when we arrived at 3:00 PM and it was delicious.  There were nuts, fruit, bagel chips, and delicious cheeses. 

The bed and breakfast provided a late afternoon snack of delicious lemon ginger scones. 

After all of these delectable treats, we decided to cancel our dinner reservations and just stay in the for the night.

Breakfast the next morning was fantastic and after some relaxing time on the grounds, we headed home.

It was an ideal way to celebrate our 15 years together.


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