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September 29, 2017

Homeschool/Preschool Week #4 (Letters, Leaves, Pumpkins, and Potions)

Preschool Activities and Adventures....

We are finishing up week #4 and man, have we been busy! Little E has been working...and playing so hard and has really gotten into learning this week. I think she is finally "getting it"!!! I have caught her even asking, "Today, I have school time?" or "I have my school before I play ponies?" The first few weeks it was a rough start to getting both of us on any kind of schedule and I seemed to be having to really coax her to get interested enough to sit and practice any type of worksheets...before the "fun stuff".
I was lucky the first few days just to get her to sit long enough for me to read and explain the paper to her before she was...done and ready to play.
As the weeks have moved on and we are learning together when is our best time to do school and she is learning more of a structure, it has gotten easier.

This week...
We started more of our Autumn/Fall theme. I printed of more Fall Trees! She really loves those!
I also found a few other free printables of pumpkins and leaves. We painted our pumpkin and gave him some "googly eyes" for fun.
We used the leaves paper to practice our "Fall colors" and learn how each leaf is different(like snowflakes and clouds). We painted them and when some of the colors ran, she loved that! She kept telling me, "I made rainbow leaves!"
That got this Momma thinkin'...
Fall... Halloween... witches, ....POTIONS!
Now, this got a bit messy, so I am still looking for "neater" ways to do this little experiment, but it did teach her about colors, blending, and it was a fun, outdoor activity we could do together.
I gathered a few random(luckily they weren't our "good" dishes) cups, bowls, and a spoon.
We added water to a couple and then we squeezed in a few drops  a TON of food coloring. blue, green, yellow, and somehow we had a purple neon one.
I had her name each color and see how less dye made it lighter, more dye it got darker.
Then we would "make a potion" by pouring one color(blue) into the cup of yellow water and see what color it made. I did have her try to guess what color it would be. She guessed, "Pink!" every time! She had so much fun and did her best "Whaa ha ha!" witch voice throughout the whole day.

We've also been working on...
The letters A and C this week. We are struggling a bit with A. I'm not sure why, but she just hasn't gotten it yet. C, we are doing much better on. It helps that we have Caralyne, Caden, Carter, Catalina, and a Chloe in our family, so we have been going over and over all the C names this week.She has identified it, practiced writing or tracing and making her best /K/, /K/, /K/ sound all week!
We even found a Youtube video of  the official... Letter C Song. Let me warn all my dear Mommas, it gets very...annoying, very quickly, but it really does teach them a ton all about the letter. There is a song for each letter of the alphabet. A song and video that averages about 3 minutes, about all 26 letters!
Our books for the week...
We have read a ton, as usual. Our two picks for our Fall theme are:

I hope you all have had a great and educational week and enjoyed our adventure recap!
We'd love to hear about everyone's week!
What have you learned this week?
Have you started a Fall/Autumn theme?
What are your favorite ways to teach?

September 25, 2017

What's That Quote? #2

What's That Quote?

Good Afternoon and Happy Monday! I hope everyone is having a lovely and productive start to the week.

Today's "What's That Quote" showed up randomly on my feed over on Pinterest , probably due to all the searches I've done lately for some really awesome things to save for future posts.

Here is my newest quote to share:

"Be a good person, but don't waste time to prove it."
Manas Disoriya

I have to be honest and say, I had never heard this exact quote. I have heard similar sayings, as in..."God knows your heart, you don't have to prove yourself to anyone else."(Awesome, BTW!) and I thought I honestly believed and lived by that.
I think I was wrong. I realize after reading this quote and trying to decide what it means to me and how I wanted to work it into a post, that it kind of...hit me. This one stung a bit.
In my mind I am screaming, "I am a good person!" and "I do prove it!"
Then, I thought...Why? Why am I always "proving it"?

To be a good person...
A good person to me is someone who gives without expectation of reward.
Someone who is honest and respectful.
Someone who likes to fulfill others needs.
Someone who wants to give joy or happiness to others.
Someone who wants to be a good person. Without the want or desire, how good can you be?

I love to serve and help others. It's just a part of who I am. I love seeing joy and happiness on the faces of those I have served or helped. I like feeling that I have taken even a small burden from someone's day. And, I will continue to do that as long as possible.
So, why do I catch myself going on and on about how much I accomplished in a typical day? Or all the great meals I have cooked? It may seem that I am boasting on myself.
That is NOT the message I want to send. That is not what I am trying to teach my daughters!
The message I am trying to say is that I am a good person. I do these things lovingly and with a giving heart. All that I do or try to accomplish are for a greater good. Not just to fill myself with pride.
Even when it is something I don't want to do, I try to think of the positive outcome. It may not be what I want or would have done, but it may be for someone else. It may help them or bring them happiness.
I know there have been several times throughout my own life where I have felt like nothing I did was good enough. I believe that has given me the idea that I have to repeat and maybe even boast on what I have done. To prove myself. Validation?? Yes, probably. I am human. 

I see that I have wasted time, my time, trying to prove myself. Honestly, with little or no gain from it.
I owe no one any proof of how "good" I am. I will continue to strive to be good, better and give glory to God for my accomplishments and deeds done. I will continue to work on me and be good without proving it.
I'm so far from perfect, but I am trying to be good!

What does it mean to be a  "good person" to you?
Do you find yourself wasting time trying to prove it?

September 24, 2017

This Momma's Wish List...

What is a wish?

Well, according to Mr. Webster, 

feel or express a strong desire or hope for something that is not easily attainable; want something that cannot or probably will not happen
(Well, that is pretty discouraging!!!!)
a desire or hope for something to happen

I really try not to use that word too much. I like to think of myself as more of a realist.
I like things broke down into either a need or want. Those two categories are usually easier for me to manage and "realistically" place things into one of the two, nice and neatly.
Do I need it or do I want it?
Easy right?
So, where do you place the things you WISH for?
(mainly material things)

If I truly wish for it, I have more than likely wanted it for sooo long that I can't knock it. I just get it on my mind and need a moment to really embrace my desire. Let it sit there in my mind and be admired until the moment passes. Y'all get that, right?
But, what if that wish is a need?
If you truly feel that it would make you or your life better, easier, more fulfilled.
What if it really could help you? Whether it be physically, mentally, or spiritually. Then is it a need?
Oh, the questions of life...
How do we justify a wish?

Wishes don't have to be right or reasonable.

Today, I want to share my wish list with all of you.
These are the things I have pined over for some time. I've found, loved, researched, "wish shopped", begged the hubby for, and even PINNED and PINNED them on several boards(That's serious stuff).

This Momma's Wish List...

1. Goats and Chickens!
I want these little adorable,crazy, lovely, milk, meat and egg producing creatures even more than I wanted my beagle 16+ years ago! And not just any old goats and chickens. I've done my research and read and read and looked and looked. I need Nigerian Dwarf Goats and Rhode Island Reds.
These goats are the best milk makers, for all my cheese and soap I'm going to make. Plus, they are friggin' adorable and hilarious!
The chickens are both meat and egg chickens. Bonus! With us being in Ohio, they are considered "hardy birds" and can take the colder temperatures and they are more docile..since I have children.

2. Farmhouse in the country
Ok, I know this should be #1 since I need a place to keep the goats and chickens.
So...maybe the farmhouse is a need?!?!?
I have always dreamed and wished for a big old farmhouse up on a hill out in the middle of nowhere.
A house that has a history, memories, a story...and room for more.
The kind where you have to drive to the mailbox and can sit on your porch smelling sweet, sweet hay and say to the hubs, here comes (X) down the road...when they are still a good 1/2 mile from your drive.
I had this once(that's a touchy story, maybe another day/post). A good part of my childhood, I had this. I truly feel my soul NEEDS this again. Someday...I wish.

3. Classic Books
It is no secret that I love books. I love to read just about anything. I can buy used, have them given to me, check them out from the library but lately I've really been looking into old books.
Not the new remakes but the original edition books.
Some of my favorite authors are Charles Dickens, Jane Austin, The Bronte Sisters...
I would like to start a small collection of some of the classics. Not too many. Remember, I'm frugal and I can't justify cashing out our IRA to collecting old books, but maybe just a few.

4. Antique Coffee Grinders
I suppose all these "old things" go hand in hand with my old soul. I'm so drawn to anything antique, classic, old.
I love the old coffee grinders. I would love to have at least one that is still functional but I hope to decorate with them in my farmhouse kitchen. There are so many different styles and makes. I love them all. Aren't they beautiful???

5. Coffee Mugs
Yes, I know. I may have a problem. Hey, don't judge. Coffee lives matter!
I just love all these wacky mugs. I can add them into my decorating and choose a new mug to drink out of everyday. The hubs can design and build me a fabulous display shelf...or 2 or 3 to show them off!

Tell me those aren't awesome!
6.  Quirky T-Shirts
I honestly don't know where this wish came from. I openly have OCD and I went through a phase in high school where I only wore solid colored shirts, jeans, and ALL white Keds. I couldn't handle anything that even remotely didn't "match". 
I guess as I got older, and had girls in sports, every thing we own has a logo, sponsor, school name and # on it. We got trapped into buying those "support your kid" T shirts and there it went. All my trying to match and coordinate. Ain't no Momma got time for that!
That is the truth. Anyway, I've come to love these expressive T shirts.  Maybe it is my way of saying what I want to say on those frigid, game day mornings where my coffee hasn't kicked in enough to talk human. Who knows? But I love these.

Purchase T-Shirts here

7. Rustic Signs
I think my brain must be stuck on old, antique, farmhouse decorating and design these days.
I may need to pray and reflect after writing this post. I'm starting to feel like my wish list may be more of an obsession with what I want and not what I need.
Rustic signs are another way for me to "say" something. I love the worn look. Something that has been used and enjoyed.
(Too Cute)

I hope you've enjoyed my wacky wish list.
What do you wish for?
How do you define a wish?
I'd love to see what other Momma's have on their lists.
 Do you write them down? Do you search for it?

September 22, 2017

Homeschool/Preschool Week #3 ( Numbers, Counting, Patterns, and Pumpkins)

Preschool Activities and Adventures...

I can't believe we are already finishing up week three!
And, it is the first day of Fall! I'm not even ready to touch that subject.
I'm not one of those, Ooooh, pumpkin spice everything, ready for campfires, and loving all things crisp and cool.
I am definitely a more sun out, flip flops, iced tea, tank tops and 80+ degrees kind of girl!

Luckily, Little E has been more cooperative with having some "desk time".She too is a, wake up, get dressed, go outside, kind of girl. (Some days she doesn't even get to the get dressed part before she is begging at the door, like the doggie that needs to tinkle!)

Week Three Round Up

This week we slacked off on all the letters and alphabet. She seemed to be getting frustrated and wanting to play around or whine every time I mentioned her "Letter work".
To me, that is a red flag that she was either A. Not quite ready for those, or B. She was getting burnt out and we needed to change things up a bit. 
I don't want to feel like I'm forcing her too much. I understand she needs to learn these, but if it is causing her to become uninterested or down right put off by "school" then we can move on and come back later on.
I have tried to sneak in asking her to identify "big letters" while we are reading and she is doing great with that.

This week we found a fun way to get started on identifying numbers and also counting.
It really is pretty basic. I just did a plain Office doc and spaced out the numbers into a sort of grid or block. I believe I used font size 88. You can always play around and figure out which is best. 
We only did 1-4 today but soon I will add more numbers or even mix the order up.

We then gathered about 473  10-12 blocks and placed the correct number amount on that space. 
(1 block on #1 space)
 I made her count each block she placed on the grid and then count them all together(total).
At first she only wanted to use the pink blocks. Green and white blocks were "wrong". LOL
After finding ALL the pink blocks, she was back on track. 
We did this about 5 times and I had her tell me each number(identify) on the paper.
I would ask her:
Can you find #3?
After she pointed to it, then I would have her add 3 PINK blocks to that grid.
Here's what ours looked like. It isn't pretty, but it serves it's purpose.

I tried to use our time...and her attention wisely.
While we had all those blocks out, we also worked a little bit on doing patterns.
Again, she wanted only pink blocks, so it was a challenge at first.
Her "pattern" was all 6 pink blocks, nicely aligned into a row! I had to laugh.
I did get her to follow my pattern after a few tries.

We also did some artwork this week. She is on a painting kick. I printed off a few "Fall" pics and instead of coloring them, we busted out the Dollar Tree paint set!
Although as you can tell, by the end of this week, we only have brown and black paint left.
Hey, it was only $1.00 and we weren't expecting a Picaso.

Here is her Pumpkin from today.

As always, there has been TONS of reading and story time!
This week she has been stuck on Tom's First Day of School.
I bet we have read this book 20 times! She loves it.
It really is a cute story. It starts out with Tom learning he has to start school. He isn't excited at first.
After his sister teases him with "scary stories" about school, he is even more scared.
Mom and Dad take him the next day and he learns about all the wonderful things there are to do.
He makes friends, enjoys class, lunch, and recess.
It shows lessons in teasing, making friends, learning that everyone is different, sharing, and not being afraid.

We are finishing up this week with a few more books we haven't gotten to yet and probably a...letter sheet! We shall see.
We also have a busy weekend ahead, so I have plenty ready for Monday, and the start of week #4.
I hope everyone had a productive week.
If you've missed our adventures, you can go back and see what else we've been doing:
I hope you enjoy our journey and adventures.
Please share any ideas or tips you have found!
We love new ways to learn!
Enjoy the Weekend!

September 19, 2017

What's That Quote? #1

What's That Quote?
(I couldn't think of a better name)

I wanted to do a weekly quote post.
I love seeing and reading a great quote!
 I even have a whole Pinterest board just for these.>>Great Quotes
I love that some are old, some are new.

These "What's That Quote?" posts will be anything that caught my attention or really stuck out to me.
It may be spiritual, proverbs, literary, or just a fun and quirky meme. Who knows? This is the first post and I am excited to see where it goes.
I will try to give my interpretation or how the quote made me feel. Maybe share a bit of how it reflects in my life. We shall see. I hope you enjoy and please share your opinions. I love learning how the same sayings can be interpreted differently.

" It doesn't matter how slowly you go, as long as you don't stop."

I really like this quote. It can play into so many aspects of our lives. Not just as people, but as a woman, a mother, a teacher...
We all have to go at our own pace. What may come quickly to some, may be a struggle for others to get to the same point.
I am learning, with trying to get this blog up and going that I definitely am the tortoise in this race!
It isn't that I'm not really trying. It is just taking me a bit longer to get there. I'm slowly learning that it is okay to fall behind all the others speeding past me in the blogging world. Our "races" are different.
I'm not stopping. I will get there eventually. I'm just taking a slower route and soaking up all the information along the way! 
I would so much rather get to the goal with a ton of knowledge that I hopefully can use and pass onto others who have been there, than to speed through, only to reach the prize, having no idea how I got there.
How do you feel? Are you the tortoise or the hare?

September 18, 2017

Lessons from the Imperfect Momma

I know we all like to think we have it all,...or most of it together all the time.
News Flash!...We don't!
Most days, we're lucky we keep ourselves alive.(Thank you, Gods of Maxwell House and international creamer!!)
Sure, we have become the Grand Master, Mother of faking it!
Why do we constantly feel like we have to prove ourselves or our worth to everyone else?
As if we don't have enough crap to deal with. Pleasing our Lord. Pleasing our children and spouse.
Have we become so wrapped up in the idea that we need to please every human we may encounter that we kill ourselves faking it?

I like to tell myself that, "I don't care what people think of me!"
We all say that to ourselves, Don't we?
So, why don't we actually feel that?
Why can't we just be accepting of ourselves AND others?
Isn't that the lesson we teach our littles?
That everyone is special in their own way.(I know I'm some kind of special!)
To love and accept others as they are.

And the honest truth is...
We probably aren't thinking about you nearly as much about you as you'd like to think we do.
Or, should I say, You don't think about me as much as I stress and believe you do.
That is more likely the reality.
Social media has made us believe that our outside appearance and every single aspect of our mothering is being judged 24/7! That we have to look, do, and be our best at all times.
That is so sad to me. It is absolutely detrimental to all mothers and future mothers.
We were given these little blessings as a GIFT from GOD!
And how do we show our love, appreciation and thankfulness for these gifts??
We brag about Susie's new wardrobe from The Children's Place(Look, how posh my toddler looks in her name brand clothes)
I honestly don't care where you buy them(that was the first store that popped into my head).
Susie could be wearing her brother's torn jeans with a Spongebob pajama shirt, and she would still be YOUR GIFT!
We want to bash the momma who breastfeeds in public!
Oh! What shame she endures to feed her child a healthy meal in the view of others...while your  letting little Dougy eat fries off the floor in the mall!

Here's the thing, Mommas! We all live and do the best we can! Every day!
It is a learning process and none of us have all the answers.
Yes, I want my child to eat and be healthy. That is the goal!
And, yes! She has chocolate milk and Pez candy for breakfast!
It happens! Life goes on!

I have three daughters and while I have tried to teach them the best I can. I mess up!
I have honestly said to them...I don't know!
I don't have the right answer!

There are some wonderful, (and hilarious) Mom authors that have written books about just how imperfect being a mother is. This is what motherhood is. Not photoshopped or edited. Real and Raw. Some stories are a hoot, some will have you crying, but every one of them will ease your idea that there are perfect moms.
They do not exist!

These are a few things I KNOW I have taught my daughters! 
And I am totally cool with them learning these lessons! I'm imperfect! They know it. I know it. My lovely husband knows it. God knows it!

1. Brushing your hair is optional! Washing it is not!
Hail praise to the woman who invented the "messy bun"! She is my secret idol!
Me+ 3 daughters= hair nightmares!
"Ain't nobody got time for that!"

2. Bare feet are preferred!
I don't care. I'm a hillbilly, true and through.
I hate shoes, they hate shoes. Yes, we own them and will wear them when it is required, but it will not be done willingly or happily.

3.I love Jesus and I cuss a little. Well, I'm being honest.
It happens. He knows it, so why hide it.
I say SH*T...a lot! I wouldn't say, I'm proud of that, but I'm not completely ashamed either. It is what it is.

4. If you can win an argument or make me laugh by bursting out a movie quote...your punishment will most likely decrease.
Me: "Let go of your sisters (hair, toy, book, etc)"!!
Kid:"Let it Go, Let it Go..."
(This one is worn out! Y'all need new material!)

5. You have to at least try what I make.
 I'm not a professional Chef, but you won't die!
I am a fairly good cook, some dishes I can rock out, others I bomb. I do what I can and hope for the best.

6. Hugs, kisses and prayers are mandatory!
You will give me hugs and kisses at my every request, and prayers will not be skipped.
I try to pray with them every day, or at least remind them to say their prayers.

7. I'm not doing it all! I have good, productive days and I have days when I don't even care if you brush your teeth!
If you want food...the kitchen ain't moved.
(make me a sandwich while you're in there!)

8. We don't need the television!
It is a luxury, not a requirement. You can do something other than watch TV in your free time!
"What you're bored?....Wannna wash a dish, scrub a toilet?"

9. I will forget.
I'm sorry..not sorry.
I remembered to fill out your athletic form, and I remembered the lunchable(cheese pizza, not pepperoni), your raspberry cereal bars, red Powerades, bikini, not brief pack of new underwear, and your 2 rolls of "Volleyball" ribbon for Monday. I forgot your only white, ankle, not shin lengths socks.

10. I'm not giving you "free money"
I buy what you need, and you can earn money or activities.
You don't work for it, you ain't getting it.
Don't hate, Appreciate! xoxo

I know this isn't the best list, but hey, I'm not the best!
I'm just a Momma trying to keep it cup of coffee at a time!
I guess the lesson here is, this post isn't about what we teach our children, it's about what we can teach ourselves and other moms.
I want you to know:
It is ok if Timmy walks into church with jelly on his face.
It is ok if you haven't given them a bath in 2/3 days.
It is ok if they come running in, mud caked.
It is ok if they stay up too late.
It is ok if you forgot to schedule their dentist appointment.
It is ok if you've fed them McDonald's three times this week.

Mommas! It is ok! They will be ok! You will be ok!
We all have got to start being kinder, more helpful. We need to be less judgmental, less scolding!

I need a refill.
What are some wacky lessons you have taught your children? 
Did you teach them intentionally, or did it sort of just happen?
What have YOU learned?
How do you honestly feel about some of the lesson you have passed on?
I love feedback and other opinions.

September 15, 2017

Easy Fall Craft~ Making Trees...Homeschool Week #2

Do you need a quick, easy and cheap Fall/Autumn craft to do with your toddler or preschool aged child?
This craft can be done with minimal supervision and not a huge mess.

You will need:
A printable tree trunk(Printable Tree Trunk)Free!
Construction paper(shredded or torn)
red, yellow, orange, brown...
and a glue stick!
That's It!!
This whole project cost seriously, like $2.00
Glue sticks are $1.00/2 pack
and the construction paper was $1.00 for like 200 sheets

How easy is this?? Right?
Here is a link: Autumn Tree Craft
By the way, I printed off like 4 of the trunk sheets and my little has been making these for days!
Each one turns out different...She made one with all red leaves.
At first, being the OCD that I am, I tried to arrange and show her how to place them at the tips of the branches and then work her way around or in toward the trunk.
Well, Yea, she wasn't having that! She just wanted to haphazardly glue them anywhere!
And, guess what?
It turned out GREAT! I loved it! She loved it, and was so proud of her little Fall Tree!

We went over each color and why they fall off the trees.
"The trees deed(Dead*), Mom?"
She really was fascinated with learning about why they go from green(and stay on) to changing colors and fall off.

I've honestly been sort of slacking this week with the homeschooling. 
I've been out of sorts and she has been restless and fussy.
We've read a ton of books about school and whatever else she finds, we've tried to work on the letter A. I found some cute Autumn themed worksheets about Apples, Acorns, etc. She wasn't really into those too much. But I have discovered she loves the "Letter finds". Basically, it is a word find sheet, only with letters mixed up and each sheet wants you to find a particular letter.
Those are great and they have capital and lowercase.
(I'll have to find a pic of her A sheet)

I'm sure I will have a ton more things about Fall/Autumn and the crisp season coming.
I've got a ton of material yet to do on this.
I hope you enjoy this fun littel craft as much as we have.
Also, check out these great finds:

In case you missed our intro to homeschool/preschool and week one,
Check us out here:
Happy Learning!

September 13, 2017

Making a marriage work... when you are total opposites!

Can it work?
How does it work?
Honestly, it's kind of like being dragged onto a roller coaster you are terrified of, but enjoying the ride after all.

The hubs and I are total opposites!
I could safely say in almost every way.
We didn't change, it's pretty much always been that way.

I was always the kid playing alone, sitting quietly, waiting for free reading or to go home and write about whatever had been on my mind all day.
He was the kid in the back of the classroom with ants in his pants, anxiously awaiting recess, gym, lunch or football practice.
Not much has changed...
He is the jock to my nerd girl.

I am the loner, the introvert.
He is the guy with 30 friends who wants to be center of attention.
I would love one, just one weekend of uninterrupted quiet, lazy, no plans time.
He can't sit still and has to have a plan to go somewhere, do something...All the time!
I am the home-body to his extrovert.

I am a tight-wad. I hate spending money on anything!(except maybe books!)...and food.
I like to budget and try to plan ahead.
He says "That's why we make it"! Let's just do it/get it! And that goes for pretty much anything the girls "need".
I am the frugal to his free spending.

I grew up learning to make-do or do without. Reuse, recycle!
Some times it wasn't a choice. 
He has learned to buy. Buy new, bigger, better. What is easier, faster.
I am his DIY.  He is my splurge on new. 

I like things nice and tidy. I hate clutter. 
He drops his keys, socks, shoes, tools haphazardly anywhere they may fall.
I am the neat-freak to his slob(okay...unorganized).

I grew up in the same house until I was 15.
He grew up as an Air Force brat, moving all over for years.
I am the rooted to his mover.

He let's his emotions show openly. He has to get it all out.
 I am the one who hides my feelings. I am the closet crier.
He is the talker. I am the thinker.

He loves to tease, joke and play around...constantly!
I am quite more reserved and find it mostly annoying!(Hey, I'm being honest here!)
He is the jokester to my serious.

I am definitely the more serious and disciplinary figure. He is the big pushover daddy.
Those girls get away with way more than I would allow!
I am the hard ass to his softie side.

There are so many more but that is the gist of it.
So....How do you make it work?
The first question should be, Do you both want to make it work?
If either are unsure, this post isn't for you.

 There is no right or wrong answer. Every person, every marriage, every life is different.
I can only share what works for us and give you advice and tips.
First, DO NOT try to change your spouse.
It is tiring for both of you. It is pointless and it is detrimental to your relationship. If I had spent the last 20 years(yes, it's been that long!) trying to change him...we never would have made it.
We are both born again Christians, which is now the root of our marriage, but it wasn't the case in the beginning. We had both grown up with religious families and had the basic idea but neither of us had made the conscience decision as adults.
So zoom 6 years! into our marriage(by the grace of God, we made it that far!)
We were both saved and baptized.
I won't say it got better or even easier after that. But, we had a new view of life, love, and marriage.
It really was kind of a start over for us!
We became more open and accepting of each other for who we were and what made each of us happy, happier.

We learn everyday to love and cherish each other. Learn and grow together.
Instead of fighting, complaining and making each other miserable because we don't agree or because we are different, we embrace those differences.
He knows if I get grumpy or agitated, he can take the kids outside so I can have quiet to think or refocus.
I know if he really wants new bowling shoes, I can skip a few lunch dates with friends, or not buy the book.
He knows I hate crowds and loud people, so he asks a friend to go to big events.

He knows I secretly want to spend an hour at Half Priced Books on date night, so we do...after his steak dinner at Longhorn(not MY fave!)
If I have had a rough day, he will offer to cook dinner or order out.

If he has put in 10 hours of over time this week, I can do the yard work or take the girls to the park so he can catch a nap.

All marriages are about compromise and sacrifice.
It should be done lovingly and openheartedly.
If everything you do and say is done out of anger or a dreaded feeling, you probably need an overhaul.
And that is totally okay!
There is nothing wrong with taking time to stop, rethink, work out a plan and start fresh!
Trust me, in 20 years there have been plenty of times and situations where you just stop and wonder...what are we doing here???
WE are around people who are different than us everyday. People at work, school, church, etc. We learn to live around those people. Why is so hard to learn to live with that person? Especially, if that person is your spouse!
If you truly LOVE them and are in a dedicated marriage, it shouldn't be a battle to live with their differences. Or at least not impossible.
I feel like our differences make us stronger.
He pulls me out of my comfort zone to try new things.
I calm him down when he is overwhelmed.

This book truly did give us great ideas, advice and understanding.
Yes, the link is an affiliate link, but I promise you, this book is one that I recommend to every married couple I know. It really is worth it.

I hope this gives you a little piece
We aren't perfect. We are imperfect, making it work.
Marriage is falling in love with the same person, over and over.

So, for today, my WIP(work in progress) is marriage...our marriage.
What are you working on? <3

September 11, 2017

Amazing LIST of Books about SCHOOL for PreK and Kindergartners

"Children are made readers on the laps of their parents"~ 
Emilie Buchwald

I am an admitted book hoarder and hopefully will pass on this wonderful love of reading to all my children.
I strive to read every day!
My children see me reading, book shopping, logging in or researching books, doing a book review or recommending books on the DAILY!
They can't get away from me and my addiction..err, habit.
Tidbits of my hobby here: A Novel Experience
My youngest just turned 4 years old, and she has already become the boss of..."Read one more, Momma!"
This I hear 3 to 4 times a day. 
Usually, when "Mr. Sun" is sleeping and my coffee has worn off for the day!
It has become a nighttime ritual.
And while...honestly, there are times, I just want to read my OWN book or try to let her "read" independently...I usually end up reading to her, the same book...again!
And again!
I love that this is "our time".
 I could sit and read to her for hours, if we had all that free time. I love that she would allow me to, and she enjoys it.
I see her remembering what happens next and asking questions when she doesn't understand something in the story. She has even begun reading along or "spoiling" the next page by reading ahead because she is remembering the story!
It is so amazing watching her go through this process of learning. I can sit in awe of this accomplishment!
These important times are the beginning steps in her learning to read,...and enjoy reading!
I have learned it is so much easier to get her interested if I let her choose the book and also let her pick out what she likes at the library or bookstore.
It doesn't always have to be "kiddy books".
Non-fiction, science, nature, animals, transportation, even cookbooks with pictures....all these subjects have a book that will intrigue a child if they are interested.

I wanted to try to make some lists and also help organize her books to be ready for homeschool/preschool.
Organizing by author didn't really seem too practical for our needs, so I am trying to separate them by theme or "characters"(Arthur, Berenstain Bears, Disney, etc)
So, My first list is of books about school.

We seem to be moving backwards in working on "Back to School" in week #2, but that is okay. It's still September and she is enjoying the books. Well, and that seemed to be a subject we found a lot of books about.
Some we have read, some I had read years ago to my older girls, and some I found online or on other great lists.
So here they are:
My List of Amazing Books about School!


1. Olivia and the School Carnival~ Tina Gallo
2. Tom's First Day of School~ Beth Robbins
3. Strawberry Shortcake Goes to School~ Grosset & Dunlap
4. Wonder Pets: Off to School~ Sascha Paladino
5. Little Pirate Goes to School~ Lawrence Schimel
6. Kindergarten, Here We Come~ Quinlan B. Lee
7. The Berenstain Bears Go Back to School~ Stan and Jan Berenstain
8. A Place Called Kindergarten~ Jessica Harper
9. First Day, Hooray!~ Nancy Paydor
10. If You Take A Mouse To School~ Laura Numeroff
11. Preschool To The Rescue~ Judy Sierra
12.Llama Llama Misses Mama~ Anna Dewdney
13. Mouse's First Day of School~ Lauren Thompson
14. The Night Before Preschool~ Natasha Wing
15. Back To School? Cool!~ Suzy Spafford

Here is a great "box set" of beginner activity books:

I hope you will find these books to read and enjoy with your littles!
Please comment on any you have found or any you would like added to the list!
I know there are SO many more wonderful books out there!
What are your favorites?
Happy Reading and Happy Learning!

September 8, 2017

Learning to Homeschool...starting simple! Week # 1

Homeschooling my four year old...

I  decided a few months ago that I really needed to start teaching my soon to be four year old some basic skills. Things like learning to be on a schedule and things that should be routine. Not just something we do when I think about it or when we remember...or more likely, when she is bored and I'm scrambling to be that oh so creative Momma, with my Thirtyone bag of arts, crafts, and games to thrill and educate her on a whim!
There are some basics that she does well and I think I focused too much on those things and sort lazy on other things she should or could be learning.
She is potty trained and can pretty much dress and undress herself with little help. She can put her shoes on 99% of the time. (We haven't attempted laces yet)
She does surprisingly well with bathing and brushing her teeth with supervision.

So, what else could I be teaching her now?
The last two weeks we have been learning together. 
She still wants me hovering over each"worksheet" but it is a start. If I move or try to leave her to do it herself, she immediately is "done". Unless, it is art or painting.
I have started by using free printable sites and found numerous pages for her to learn the alphabet, trace letters, find letters or objects, decorate or design her own coloring page, count and much more.

We are starting with the letter E this week. This letter is obviously familiar to her as her name begins with E, so I found her tons of pages all about that letter.
She loves that she knows "Her" letter and gets super excited every time she finds it...ANYWHERE!
This was a letter recognition paper. She found ALL the upper and lowercase E's all by herself! (working on her "circles" may be next weeks lesson)
I admit, I was totally impressed at how well she did!
We also did a little art work this week. She named each color as she asked to have it opened. I can't believe how well and carefully she finished this...on her own!
This girl can stay in the lines like a four year old BOSS!
P.S. Thank you Nani Jo for a great birthday gift! xoxo
The weather has been amazing this week, so we took our "class" outside to have some cousin, play, and learning time!
Hopscotch is always a WIN!
They had sooo much fun and we mixed it up a bit.
They could tip toe, big jump, hop or run on the numbers. They could call out a number and the other had to "jump" to find it.
There are so many ways to add learning to a simple chalk graph of numbers. They even got a little P.E. time and lots of laughs.
I think the first "jump song" was something like...1, 2, 3, 4, 8, 12, 7
but they loved it!
School and learning shouldn't have to feel like a battle between you and the "student".
If you love to learn and show them how to do it creatively, it is a win/win!
Happy teaching...and learning!

CoffeeWastedMomma and Little E = week #1 done!

My new featured blog find of the week:
(i'm going to try to have a featured blog each week)
We all need a little Momma love!

September 6, 2017

Blogger, WordPress, Bluehost...OH My! (WIP Wednesday)

Those three words will be the death of me!!

Start a blog they said. It will be fun, easy, rewarding,therapeutic!
It's hogwash, I say!

Seriously though. I have been blogging, using only Blogger/Blogspot for over 6 years and I have become comfortable with the simplicity and familiarity of it. I know where everything is and goes. I can navigate it like a BOSS! I can add labels, images, links. I can share my stuff to Facebook and Pinterest, no problem. I've got my Adsense and Google+ working. I could even link my images...until Photobucket got greedy and now wants my non-existent income to share my little link code thingy...See, I'm techy!
Well, poo on them! Thanks to my handy Pinterest search, I now have Befunky, Picmonkey(still learning this one), and I just got a Canva account yesterday!
So, here I am trying to get all professional with my domain and hosting, so that Blogger and Google aren't eating my profits(I made $1.16 in 6 months!!)
I get my accounts registered and set up and now I'm "supposed" to download Wordpress...but only .com, not .org(yet) because well, I don't have the money and I'm not even sure this is going to be something that I'm in for the long hall. I found all these momprenuers and biz-bloggers with a plethora of tips, tricks, gadgets, widgets and codes to "make this easy", but I am just not getting it. Every click, page, form I'm having a small panic attack. 
If I click the wrong one, will my entire blog be wiped out? I'm supposed to "transfer" my blogger blog over to Wordpress.
I have a domain name, a blog name, a log in name.... Should they all be the same?
Will I lose my Google+ and my Adsense accounts?...Since they are owned by Google, who "owns" my blog!
I can't just sign up and pay someone for every little thing that needs done!
And I have a real life off the computer so which e-course or ebook or webinar is really worth my time and money?
 I know, I know. Take the plunge. Step out of my comfort zone...and so on.
I'm trying....Really trying!
I started THIS blog as a "mom blog" all the stuff wrapped up into one neat site. For family and friends, It's just my everyday stuff. What I'm up to, what the littles are doing, post some pics, jokes, what ever is on my mind for the moment. In my "CoffeeWasted" moments!
For my "followers" and the public, I wanted to share my life and love of family, adventures, crafts, recipes, tips and tricks, etc and just try to branch out and see where it goes. And yes, eventually make some side money if not a part time income. I mean that's all I see is how:  Mrs. Mom of the year is making 6 figures and quit her 9-5 to live the dream of baking cream puffs and homeschooling her 11 children. She made it all possible by starting a blog!!!
And they have proof! Right?, You've seen the screen shots of their income reports.
So, why can't I get this???
I'm not mocking or downing ANY of these women. I promise. I may just be a tad envious. There really are so many wonderful "mom blogs" out there!
Here are a few I have read and went back to read more:
There are many more but I'm still reading...
There are all these side steps, and you pretty much have to either know...really KNOW how to use them or take a chance of messing things up completely!
Which template works best?
Which widgets do you need and which can you use?
How do I transfer my facebook, pinterest, bloglovin', etc over to Wordpress if when I do get it moved over.
I am determined to figure at least enough of this out on my own to say I gave it my all. I really, really want this to work and to continue on this blogging journey.
I know it isn't easy and that is okay. I just wish there was a way for me to figure out one thing at a time, and not feel like I have to do 10 steps to get 1 thing accomplished!
In case anyone is wondering just what kind of research I have been doing or where I'm getting these tips and advice...Here is a look at my Pinterest board that leads me to all these great bloggers who have taken the time and dedicated a part of their own blogs to helping
I'm still learning and working on it.
What is your WIP work in progress this week?