Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Nearly Wordless Wednesday


Library book sales make me happy...
High heels are a necessity when I am 4ft10...even though the snow was ankle deep...
3 kids all reading while standing in line....yes they are just like mom!
My kids in the library reading to service dogs.
Enjoy every minute my friends!

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Menu Planning...

It's Menu Plan time, I had to push it back a day, due to our celebrations! One thing my kids absolutely adore is fruit, a favorite is our fruit rainbow and I fill the cups with yogurt and they become the white clouds and the kids dip their fruit in the yogurt. 
Google is an AWESOME resource for checking out different menu plan templates that work for your family. Just pop over and do a google image search. This is the one I have been using recently. Now, on with the men!
Monday ~ Out to dinner for birthday!!
Tuesday ~ Crock Pot Pork Chops with green beans and corn, served with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes with salt & lime.
Wednesday ~ Bean & Cheese Gorditas with Mexican Rice served with garden salad and lime wedge dressing.
Thursday ~ Buffalo Chicken bites with carrot and celery slives and served with vegetable soup
Friday ~ Potato, Broccoli & Cheese soup served with homemade bread and baby greens salad.
Saturday ~ Out with my grandfather for his birthday celebration
Sunday ~ Out with friends for our birthdays

OUCH, that's a lot of eating out! I just happen to be friends with people who all have birthday surrounding me and they all want to go out to dinner...so it is only once a year ;)
Enjoy every minute my friends!

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Monday, March 23, 2015

In 34 Years...

In 34 Years...
I have learned that my heart has grown so much throughout the years, to near bursting with love for my husband and children.
In 34 Years...
I have learned that what other people think of you is nowhere near as important as what your children and YOU think of you.
In 34 Years...
I have learned that time moves too quickly to spend it sitting on a couch and staring, get out there and LIVE and DO!
In 34 Years...
 I have learned that my parents were always right, even if they went about it in crazy ways and I am glad that I took the time to let them know how blessed I am to have them.
In 34 Years...
I have learned that we all make mistakes and it is in correcting them that we learn the most.
In 34 Years...
I have learned that true love can only be found once you love yourself and accept yourself as you are.
In 34 Years...
I have learned that the unsanswered prayers in my life are the best things that have ever happened to me.
Today, on my 35th birthday I have learned that I am loved more than I ever knew or even suspected.
THEY WON!!!! Their diorama depicting The Pigeon from the book Don't Let The Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo willems (using Peeps), won first place!! My kids were so thrilled to see their trophy and first place ribbon and mom and dad could not be prouder!
I love how much they learned by working together and also by encouraging their friends to vote! 
Enjoy every minute my friends! My menu plan will post tomorrow!


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Sunday, March 22, 2015

Sunday School Post #8

Happy Sunday my friends! It has been a busy weekend with birthday celebrations and fun, so I apologize now for the very late post! I am busy preparing for the month of April in our classroom, with Easter and Spring bringing so much fun and excitement. Here is a calendar I found online HERE and then jazzed up a bit, this is perfect for using in our classroom to look up information in the morning during our prayer time.
Stopping in to a preview sale at the library got me striking it rich when I found my very own copy of The Book of Virtues!! I love sitting on the floor of a book sale and going through each and every box as I create piles and then sort through my piles to make stacks and then realize I have spent more than I intended and of course far more time than I ever thought was possible. A book sale is like a rabbit hole for me!
This past weekend took us out of town and of course exploring a new church! This is St. Peter's Church in Geneva and not quite new to me as I grew up at this parish and even was the first class to graduate in this church. I love taking the kids to a piece of my history. Visiting new churches is so much fun for not only the adults but the kids as well, they all seem to do something different for children. Here, they have special children's bulletins, complete with scripture verses and activities along with the readings of the day. They have 1 version for younger children and 1 for older children.
Our Love Dare for Children/Couples challenge still goes on and we are enjoying every part about it still. I recommend this to anyone that just wants to strengthen the bond they have with their spouse and or children. Both books are sold seperately and both go into so much detail!
I absolutely LOVE this labeled Paschal candle that I found online HERE. I printed it out in black and white, so that the kids could color it as they read each part of it!
Time for some Little Flowers Girls Club updates! Look at those cute buttons, I found them at Joann fabric and I think they would look so cute sewn on a sash! My daughter is going to put 3 on her sash and I plan on offering them up to the girls in our group in the future for a craft!
I just took my Leader Guide to Office Max and had it unbound and then hole punched for under 5.00 and now I can just slip it in a binder! This allows me to use tabbed dividers with folders in between each virtue, where I can stick ideas, worksheets, prayers and anything else I need for that particular meeting. I love being able to organize it just a bit more than it already was!
I also picked up some baseball trading card sheets to hold Holy Cards that I will need for this wreath. I have mentioned HERE, that we put our prayer cards on binder rings. That works best for us, because we love the portability of it all, but this works great for being able to view what I need and find it quickly. Some of the cards I even have multiples of, if the girls need 1.
This is my special gift to my Little Flower. I am collecting medals of each Saint we are studying in Wreath 1 and making her a charm bracelet that I will gift to her when the wreath is through. I plan on adding in crystal beads, rose charms and a variety of other things to chunk it up and make it looks sensational!
Our next meeting is on Tuesday and we begin with Virtue #1 and our first Saint is St. Catherine of Siena. This is the print out I THINK I will have for the girls (I have changed it 100 times!) and I plan to share the full meeting in next weekend's Sunday School post but wanted to share what I had so far. From the print out, they cut out each section and then create their own 'St. Page' as they listen to a story I read from a children's saint book. The page includes a Saint Coloring sheet, picture of St. Catherine, a print out of the Memory Verse and a prayer and reflection sheet. These can all be found using a simple Google Search.
Once again, over at Office Max you can have your Little Flower Member manual unbound and coiled for less than 4.00 and now it's easier to use and it looks so much nicer!
I absolutely love this quote!! Enjoy every minute my friends!


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Thursday, March 19, 2015

About Me...

Hello my friends! Wow, this blog is old and it's about time I update my about ME page, with my 35th birthday looming on the horizon this coming Monday. Well, here I am. Michelle is my name and I am a married (Disney bride), mother of 3 that is beyond ridiculous in my use of exclamation points, highlighters and colored pens. My obsessions are books, tea and office supplies...in that order. I can often be found with a trenta iced green tea (unsweetened) from Starbucks and that lasts me the entire day while I am also chugging down 1 gallon of water of a day. My color is pink but I am often wearing black, because I find myself carrying too many extra pounds. It's time to begin a new regime that I can stay with, I start Zumba on Monday again and am walking while my kids are running with cross country. I hope to make it to running with them along the way.
This describes me perfectly, I try to be the best at all I do and it may not always work out how I want it to, but I like knowing that I did my best and gave my all. I am a dreamer but a realist first and foremost. I have an insane desire to explore the world and cannot wait to get back to Europe, waiting for my youngest to grow up has taken longer than I wanted but I didn't want to be hauling around strollers or cranky children through my favorite places in the world. I am definitely not one to sit still and I think that is why our homeschool is always on the road, we learn best standing on location and that's probably because those moments are when mom comes alive. I studied to become a tour guide in college and it's where my passion still lies. I love leading vacations and tours and outings and the like, I enjoy planning and putting together adventures and learning experiences and most of all I love exploring the unknown! This could be why I enjoy homeschooling, it is a blind road for all of us and we are learning together.
I am a mother to 3 amazing children that keep my days full and my heart bursting! We are Catholics, using Seton Homestudy as our curriculum and it's what works best for us. My kids are pretty close in age (7,9,10) and all get along pretty well for being siblings! I've been married to my Prince Charming for 10 years and together for 15, he is my complete opposite and I think that's why we work so well together. I am too forward to be with someone just like me! With raising children to be confident and well rounded, I have noticed my confidence grow. I am far from just a mom and know that my children know that too. 
I am a lover of books that loves to sit on the floor of a bookstore and just read covers and smell pages, feel spines and get lost in the world of fellow book lovers. I read with post-its and a notebook, colored pens and a highlighter. I own 2 Nooks and still love the feel of a book in my hands. I write down quotes and questions, memorable characters and anything that catches my eye. I'm a nerd that misses school. I'm sure there is more about me you want to know or maybe I have revealed too much, who knows! Ask away if you have any questions!
Enjoy every minute my friends!





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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

This Moment...


In this moment I am...

~Sipping Jasmine Green tea
~Reading Panic by Lauren Oliver
~Nibbling green grapes
~Smelling a Country Apple candle
~Thinking of blog ideas for tomorrow
In This Moment, I am...

~Laying with my feet in my husbands lap
~Laughing to myself about something silly I heard earlier
~Printing out work for tomorrow
~Preparing for my book club by going over We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
~Wishing my kids were awake so we could all snuggle!
In This Moment, I am thinking of my favorite book store of all times...Town House books in St. Charles. Definitely stopping in for a visit this weekend.
Enjoy every minute my friends!

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Buying Books Brings Brilliance!

New books coming into our classroom library have arrived today and the excitement of all of that made me push wordless wednesday aside! Books always make us all smile and I love the looks on their faces as they sit on the floor and go through them all. I have not even made it to the classroom yet, we opened the packages on the floor of the living room.
Previously I have mentioned our study of the Lewis & Clark Expedition and the game I was able to find online. Today, the missing piece arrived!!! The Lewis & Clark Expedition Coloring Book! I LOVE these books by Dover, they teach as the kids color!
After talking in the library with a friend yesterday, I realized that I had never shared our WHO WAS biography book report sheets. We LOVE these books, not only are they fun and full of facts, but they even capture the interest of adults as well!
This is the sheet I made up for the kids to keep track of what they are reading. I print them out 4 to a page so that they fit in one of our Paper Bag Books! This way we do not waste a lot of paper and all the reports are in one place! Get your own report HERE!
Enjoy every minute my friends!
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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Menu Planning, Game Playing, Contests and More...


Monday came and went without a glimpse of the computer for me and for that I have a lot of catching up to do! This is the latest menu planner I am using, I love the bright colors! Keeping everything organized helps so much with shopping but also with out schedule, there are days when we barely have an hour to get dinner on the table, eat and be out the door...these days are perfect for crock pot meals! On days that we have activities in the early afternoon, we may have to bring a brown bag lunch with us or snacks. Being able to visualize it all, helps me know if we need to prep anything the night before or defrost something. It doesn't take longer than 20 minutes to get it all down and ready, including checking out recipes and it saves me from doing a drive thru more than we should.
This past weekend we entered a family PEEPS diorama contest and had so much fun putting it all together! We worked on it Sunday evening after dinner and had many laughs as we read the book (Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus) and created our scene. It is now on display in the library for all to vote on, if you happen to pop into Cherry Valley Library, vote for us #5!
One thing I love to do is read, I am often found reading or with 2 books in my bag waiting to be read during any break at all. One way I am able to constantly pick up books, is that I keep a list of titles that friends refer to me or books that I head about on tv, read in a magazine or even through the Book Page magazine. I keep this list in my day planner, that I always have on me. I use the pages that are saved for contacts and address information and then I break it down by month. It helps me keep track of the books that I have read and what I still want to read!
Taking work ot the library is something we like to do often and keeps the kids from getting too bored in 1 environment. One thing they love to do, is to bring their history or 4H projects with them, this gives them a whole world of books to take a deeper look at the subjects they are studying. 
Game Day breaks up the monotony of book work and the kids are still learning! I absolutely love it and so do they! Today, we used our LEGO States & Capitals found HERE, along with our popsicle stick States & Capitals FOUND HERE, our Periodic Table of Elements flashcard game found HERE, and finally, we used our container of fake money dimes that I made to work on multiplying by 10s with my youngest. You don't have to make your own games to have fun, the shelves of toy stores have plenty of educational games that can be used for teaching puposes! This week, I will pull some off our shelves to share!
Enjoy every minute my friends!

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