Lowe’s Build & Grow

Looking to do something fun and free with your kids this Saturday, September 24th? Hop online now and register for a free Lowe’s Build 7 & Grow class. Seats fill up fast, that’s why I say register now. Most start at 10AM and this weekend the kids are going to build a Fire Boat.

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Lowe’s Build & Grow Fire Boat project for Saturday, Sept 24th

Here’s the link to their site so that you can check it out and see if there are any more spots available. Lowe’s Build & Grow Program

Have fun building!

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Easy (er) cleanup

With kids, cleanup is never easy. However, I have found that you can make life a little easier for yourself and your counters with one step. Press’n Seal.

Whenever Tiny Destroyer wants to paint, I always start by pressing down a layer of Press’n Seal. It helps keep the paint from soaking through to the counter and when she’s done, I can just pull it up and throw it away.

There’s always going to be a mess to clean up. (See that pink paintbrush? Yep, that’s getting water color all over my clean counter.) But, it makes it just a little easier to pull up, throw away, and have less mess to wipe clean!

Happy Painting!

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Life isn’t fair…

It has been so long since I have posted on this site. Where does the time go?

My personal and professional life has been a mess for the past (almost) 4 years.

On the positive end: We had another daughter who we call Tiny Destroyer! I made it through two summers of craziness to complete my Masters in Economics! My husband and I celebrated our 14th year anniversary!

There are more positives, but they just get swallowed by the negatives that have overshadowed my life.

In the spring of 2012, my father was diagnosed with ALS, or Lou Gehrigs Disease. It crushed my family. He was an amazing man, who did everything for everyone and was never sick. ALS robbed him of everything that made him who he was. He was one of the people who also had cognitive issues as well, so by the end, he could not communicate, even with electronic device help. Before he died, my husband agreed to move into my parents house so that I could help take care of my father and support my mother through this. Trying to go to their house everyday to put him to bed, get his feeding tube bag set up, give him all his medication, and run our own household while working, having an infant and older daughter starting kindergarten was too much for me. Soon after we moved in through, my father took a turn for the worse and he died on September 29th, 2013. He was able to meet and hold Tiny Destroyer, but she will never know him. She will never be able so hear his laugh, or hear his storied about all the amazing things that he did in his lifetime. My older daughter will have fuzzy memories of him, but not the man that he was.

My mother did not handle the loss well. They had been high school sweethearts, married for almost 40 years, and she lived her life for him. She sunk deeper into alcoholism, which had been happening for some time before his diagnosis, and a year later she died from complications from the alcohol abuse. She was so stubborn that she waited until October 29th to breathe her last breath so it could be a year and a month to the day since my father died.

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My girls walking on the beach.

By Spring 2015, my parents were cremated, and they had wanted their ashes spread together in Florida. They were born and raised there, so we took them to Longboat Key that they loved to visit so they could spend eternity together walking on the beach together. After that, my husband and I took our girls to Disney World and had an epic adventure there for a week. Buffering the grief with a wonderful vacation was just what we needed.

 

So now, here we are in Fall of 2016 and my daughters are looking at loss again. My husband’s father is sick. The doctors don’t know what is causing the main problem so they can’t help him. He is in the hospital and we are just playing the waiting game.

We have no religious beliefs ourselves so I do not have the comfort of thinking they are going to “God”. I have the confusion wanting to know why this is happening again. I have the anger that this isn’t fair! My daughters, especially my now 8 year old, should not have to live through this amount of grief at such a young age. They should not have to grow up not having 3 of their 4 grandparents. I should not have had to lose my parents when they were 59 and 61 years old. My husband, sister in law and mother in law should not have to lose their dad and husband at 60 years old.

People tell me that life gives you what you can handle. Well guess what, I’m tired of life thinking that I can handle all this! I can’t. And yet, I push through, usually to the detriment of myself and my needs. Now I need to support my husband as he supported me. I need to make sure my girls, especially M, feels safe and loved as she goes through possibly losing her third grandparent by age 8.

It’s not fair….but I guess life’s not supposed to be fair.

 

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Free Saturday Activity at Home Depot

If you’re looking for something to do this Saturday morning, Home Depot has a once a month Kids Workshop where the kids can use tools, glue, and paint to create different crafts.  This Saturday from 9AM-12PM, the craft at Home Depot is a wooden frame for the winter season.

I highly recommend getting there early so that you definitely get to make the craft that is scheduled for that month.  By the time we finished the craft at the last one that we attended, the kids that were showing up had to make an older craft because they ran out of the scheduled one.

It’s also super cute because the kids get their own Home Depot Apron (kids’ sized), a pin for the craft they made and a certificate of completion.  Home Depot does a really good job with this.

 

 

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Lowes Build and Grow this Saturday

This Saturday, October 27th, at 10AM, your local Lowes should be hosting a Build and Grow for kids.  Check out their website because you do have to register, and you want to register sooner rather than later to be able to make the super cute box that is the project this month.

http://www.lowesbuildandgrow.com/pages/default.aspx

How cute is this box.

The kids are able to do all the work.  They hammer with smaller sized hammers to fit their hands, glue, and decorate everything themselves.  It’s a lot of fun.  Hope you enjoy the adventure. 

Please stop back and let me know how you enjoyed it because we will be in NJ celebrating Rutger’s Homecoming Game with my Dad and family because he played for them and was a captain of the team in college.  We’ll be in our red this weekend for the Scarlet Knights!

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Whoops

Apparently it has been almost a month since I have posted.  Whoops.  Time really seems to fly once the school year starts.  Trying to make sure my lesson plans are engaging and complete! Grading the mounds of papers that they complete. And still having time to be a good mother and wife.  I am exhausted.

We’ve been pretty busy every weekend too.  After our camping adventure, we had LittleM go Rock Climbing at Delaware Rock Gym for my niece’s birthday.  That was nerve-wracking for me.  Watching my baby (I know she’s 4 but she will always be my baby) climbing 20 feet up from the ground was a little much for me!  She had a fantastic time though and climbed up and down quite a few times in 2 hours.  Then we had a Rutgers football game the next weekend to go to.  My dad played for them in college and still has season tickets so we drove my parents up to see one of the games with them and tailgated with their friends. LittleM had a good time because she got a new football for us to play with.  We also got the pumpkins for Halloween by going to Milburn Orchards.  I was a little in sticker shock because it was $10 a person just to get in. I understand they only have a short season to make money, and Supply and Demand from economics, but I just wasn’t expecting it.  LittleM had a fantastic time and we all had a nice nap after that trip! 

This weekend we have no plans. I don’t know if we’ll know what to do with ourselves with no plans.  I’m hoping for a pj day.  It’s supposed to be rainy on Saturday, pjs, are the way to go.

Coming up though, if you have never ridden the Wilmington and Western Railroad, I highly recommend checking them out on October 28th for the Halloween Express. They have the train running at 12:30, 2, and 3:30.  You can get half price tickets for your kids if they dress up in their Halloween costume, and there are people working on the train that come around handing out candy.  Right now it is a beautiful ride on this train because of the amazing colors of the changing leaves.  Tickets are $13.50 for adults, $11.50 for kids 2-12 years (but don’t forget to wear the costume so they get half price tickets).  It’s a really great time and I hope you get a chance to enjoy it.

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Delaware Dines Out, Sept 24-30, 2012

Do you like to eat out?  Next week is your best opportunity to try out any restaurant that you might have been hesitating to try because of the price.

September 24-30 is Delaware Dines Out Week where a huge list of restaurants throughout the whole state of Delaware will be offering set price menus for lunch and dinner to try their food.  Restaurants participating in Lunch will offer a meal at $15, but not all are.  All restaurants are offering a 3 course dinner for $30 a person.

Check out the Delaware Dines Out website to see who is participating and what their dinner menu looks like.

I’m excited to talk my husband into taking me to the Melting Pot for a Cheese, Salad, and Entree course; add on the chocolate for $8 and get 10% off a bottle of wine. Or, I have not yet visited the Stone Balloon since it changed from nasty bar (which I only visited once in college) to upscale wine house because of the prices.  For $30 I can get Caprese Risotto tomato confit, fresh mozzarella, garlic foccacia crumbs, basil salad, EVOO Powder
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Mixed Greens Salad pickled onions, toasted pine nuts, bleu cheese, shaved rainbow carrots, charred lemon-white balsamic vinaigrette
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Smokey Cauliflower Bisque pistachio Gremolata, herb oil for my first course.

For my Second Course I can choose Country Fried Quail grilled watermelon, haricot verts, smoked onion crema, fresno pepper syrup, toasted quinoa pilaf
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Shrimp a la Plancha braised greens, cheddar-scallion grits, mustard seeds, tabasco-tomato coulis, fried arugula
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Zucchini Cakes roasted plantains, crispy brussel sprouts, pickled vegetable salad, romesco sauce.

And for the Third Course (Dessert, which fantastic because I have a really big sweet tooth) Angel Food strawberry custard, orange blossom syrup, buttermilk sorbet, kiwi chutney
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Chocolate Hazelnut Brownie rosemary shortbread crumble, frangelico ganache, white chocolate gelato, chantilly.

Yes, Please!

I hope you can go out and try some new restaurants or order something a little different at your favorite restaurant!

Happy Eating!

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Camping!

Tomorrow my husband and I will be taking LittleM camping for the weekend.  This will be her second trip but what makes it even more exciting is that friends of ours with their two little girls (who are also friends of LittleM’s) will be going with us!

Tonight will be the big pack where we get everything together, pack as much as we can in the car, and get everything else ready to grab and go when my husband gets off of work on Friday. 

LittleM is deep in her princess phase where she refuses to wear anything that is not a dress so I have been prepping her for 2 weeks that this weekend she will have to wear pants.  I want her to be warm enough and protected as we hike, camp, and explore the local caves near where we’re camping.

We’re going to be camping near the Crystal Caves in Pennsylvania so I can’t wait to check them out.  I have never been in a cave before and there is only one in Delaware that you can’t visit anymore because it’s on private property.

Is there anything that you think is imperative to bring on a camping trip?  Anything that you can’t live without?  I would love to hear what you think we should bring in the comments!

Have an adventurous weekend!

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Halloween Costumes Gone Bad

Halloween is quickly approaching so all the Halloween costume stores have come back, along with costume catalog junk mail.

Am I the only one who thinks that costumes, even for small kids, have become really inappropriate?

Here is are a few from the latest catalog we got in the mail.

This one is “Lacy Witch Costume”.  I’m sorry, my kid will not be going out in that outfit.

Bratz Bratty Nurse Costume.  Are you kidding me?

 

This pose for the little girl pains me more than the actual costume.

 

All of the costumes were found under the “Kids” heading next to “Babies/Toddlers”.  Not even the teen section. I’m afraid to show you what the “Teen” costumes looked like.

What message are we sending to kids when these are the basic costumes that can be found everywhere.  I don’t know if I’m overreacting but these little girls just look way to sexualized to me.  The short skirts, tight clothes, provocative poses that can be found everywhere now makes me nervous as my LittleM grows.  I don’t even let her watch the regular Disney Channel anymore because I don’t agree with the way girls are portrayed and the clothes that they wear in some of the programming  (especially Shake It Up, which also has 2 costumes you can buy for Halloween).  Thank goodness for Disney Junior.

So, am I overreacting?  I don’t know.  I just know that I have to do the best that I can for my daughter to raise her to be a proud, smart, strong woman.  To know that she doesn’t need to follow the herd and to take pride in herself and the way that she dresses.  This may be harder than I thought.  :-/

Good luck wading through the Halloween inundation.

 

 

 

 

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Fall in Full Force Already

I can’t look turn around without seeing Fall in full force around me.  Lots of Halloween decorations in all the stores, even more activities online for the kids.

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I love the change in weather and sleeping the cool weather.  I love the changing of the leaves and football game tailgate parties.

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LittleM and I are planning her Halloween costume and I’m still trying to get back into the school rhythm.  It’s only week 3 and I feel like it’s been 3 months.  It happens every year at the beginning of the year, meeting 150 new students and getting all class procedures taught.

There are some really great blog posts coming up with Fall activities that I can’t wait to check out that I wanted to share.

No Time For Flash Cards- Easy Halloween Crafts for Kids and Fall Crafts for Kids

Simple Mom- Top 5 Outdoor Fall Activities

Imagination Tree- Autumn Play Inspiration 

I hope you can get some great ideas from these blogs that I love stealing er, borrowing from!

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