Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Is It Okay to Have a Parenting Pet Peeve

If you're like about 99% of parents, you have at least one thing that you feel so strongly about that you can't bear to see your kids do it. I'm not talking about huge things like sex, drugs, or gangs. It's our job to take a stand on these issues. What I'm talking about here is much littler stuff, like them making popping sounds with their gum, wearing their hats inside, rolling their eyes, saying "like" like a lot, wanting long hair, letting their rooms resemble the local landfill, etc.

There's nothing wrong with having a parenting pet peeve or two. That is, as long as you aren't attempting to micromanage or control your kids over every issue.

What's my advice? Share plenty of control in the form of small choices. "Do you want juice or milk?" or "Do you want to do your chores now or in fifteen minutes?" are good examples.

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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tidbit Tuesday

put your banana in the refrigerator!!!
This is interesting.

After reading this, you'll never look at a banana in the same way again.

Bananas contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with
fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy.

Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a
strenuous 90-minute workout. No wonder the banana is t he number one fruit with
the world's leading athletes.

But energy isn't the only way a banana can
help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of
illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.

According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst people suffering from depression, many
felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain
tryptophan, a type of protein that t he body converts into serotonin, known to
make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.

Forget the pills - eat a banana. The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which
can affect your mood.

High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in
cases of anemia.

This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it perfect
to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just
allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to
reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke.

200 students at a Twickenham (Middlesex) school ( England ) were helped through their exams this
year by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to boost their
brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist
learning by making pupils more alert.

High in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to
overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.

One of the quickest ways of curing a
hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms
the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar
levels, while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

Bananas have a
natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating
a banana for soothing relief.

Snacking on
bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning

Before reaching
for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a
banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and

Bananas are high
in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.

and at work?
Studies at the
Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at work leads
to gorging on comfort food like chocolate and chips. Looking at 5,000 hospital
patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in
high-pressure jobs. The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food
cravings, we need to control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high
carbohydrate foods every two hours to keep levels steady.

The banana is
used as the dietary food against intestinal disorders beca use of its soft
texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without
distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces
irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.

Many other
cultures see bananas as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and
emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In
Thailand , for example, pregnant
women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.

Affective Disorder (SAD):
Bananas can help
SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.

&Tobacco Use:
Bananas can also
help people trying to give up smoking. The B6, B12 they contain, as well as the
potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of
nicotine withdrawal.

Potassium is a
vital mineral, which helps normalize the heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain
and regulates your body's water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic
rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be rebalanced with
the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

According to
research in The New England Journal of Medicine, eating bananas as part of a
regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

Those keen on
natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of
banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold
the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!

So, a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an
apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the
phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and
minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around
So maybe its time to change that well-known phrase so that we say, "A banana a
day keeps the doctor away!"

Want a quick shine on our shoes?? Take the INSIDE of the banana skin, and
rub directly on the shoe...polish with dry cloth. Amazing fruit

Here another tidbit I wanted to throw in...

The following companies just filed for Bankruptcy:

Hollywood Video
Sharper Image

Performance Team Freight
Linens n Things
Circuit City

If you have gift cards from the above list use them ASAP, they will not be valid for much longer.

Be sure and head over to MelindaZook to see what she has for Tidbit Tuesday.

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Monday, April 28, 2008

Make It Yourself Monday

Magazine Envelopes! Recycling Never Looked So Good!

I found this little project and thought it was a really fun idea.

Just carefully rip apart an existing envelope and use it as a template. Most of mine here are made from a Sephora catalog and some junk mail fliers.

Back: (I lined these with construction paper because that's all I had lying around...scrapbooki ng paper would have looked a lot nicer)

These were seriously addicting to make...especially while watching a movie or something.

I thought this was cute as well.

envelope project

This easy to make book is a handmade and personalized way to organize all of your small odds and ends. Each envelope page can hold something different such as- "to do" lists, stamps, tickets, coupons, and business cards.
step one:
Choose your envelopes. You will need an odd number, anywhere from five to ten. We have used an A2 size here but, almost any size side-opening envelope will work.

step two:
Using a glue stick, adhere the envelopes together by placing adhesive on the inside of the flap of one envelope and using a bone folder, burnish it to the front of the next envelope.

step three:
Fold the pages accordion style, making the pointed flap of the first envelope the cover of your book.

step four:
Add a ribbon closure. Cut a small opening the width of the ribbon on both sides of the last envelope and run the ribbon through.

step five:

Using labels and colored gel pens indicate the contents of each envelope "page". Fill with all your odds and ends, fold up, and tie the ribbon closure to keep everything safely tucked inside.

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Sunday, April 27, 2008

Get Time Smart ! Discovering The Hidden Time Wasters in your Day Part 3

In the last part of the series Discovering The Hidden Time Wasters in your Day I have a few more ideas to help you manage your day better.

Beat-The-Clock Dressing...

  • Plan your outfit the night before and lay everything out. If you are like most this is time consuming trying to decide what to wear, by doing it the night before you will ensure you are picking out exactly what you want and not grabbing something and throwing it on because you are running late. This will give you a more relaxed feeling in the morning knowing you already have the perfect outfit ready to slip on and go.
  • Don't switch handbags. A roomy clutch goes with almost anything and can be slipped into a larger tote for change.
  • Hang clothes by category.
  • Chose fabrics that keep their shape and don't require last-minute pressing.
Budget Time For Yourself...

Set aside whatever time you need to relax, unwind and to do the things that are important to you. Here are are some get-away-from-it-all suggestions:
  • Hire a sitter once a week so you and your spouse can have a regular evening out. I hire a sitter for a few hours each week so I can get things done that I need to do and not have interruptions constantly. Whether it be errands or things around the house. Not only do I get more accomplished but I am more relaxed and revived for the kids when they return. Especially if you are a SAHM or a WAHM and with your kids day in and day out, it doesn't mean you cannot have a few hours to focus on yourself each week. Just try it, believe me you will look forward to it.
  • Schedule an adult education class for one evening a week.
  • Get a group of friends together and plan something you never get time to do.
  • Check out low cost exercise or other fitness programs and sign up for one.
  • Set aside an hour each evening called "Private Time". The kids can use this time to do their homework, watch TV or play quietly, but make it clear that No One is to disturb you unless it's an emergency.

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Saturday, April 26, 2008

Get Time Smart ! Discovering The Hidden Time Wasters in your Day Part 2

Today in part 2 of Discovering The Hidden Time Wasters in your Day, I will cover the few more things to help you manage your time more efficiently.

Learn to use bits of time...

No one has several free hours to clean out a closet The keys is to use the 10-minute segments you do have to accomplish a small task or make a dent in a large one. For example, file your nails, make an appointment to see the dentist or clean just one shelf of that closet. You'll double your efforts if you do small tasks, such as writing a thank you note, while engaged in some other activity like running a bath or waiting for a casserole to heat. Try talking into a small tape recorder to give yourself reminders while putting on your make up or driving in the car.

You will be so surprised at how much you can get done this way. The problem we have is we overwhelm our selves then ultimately either do not finish or even start anything because it seems to be to much.

Those little hand held recorders are a real lifesaver. Before I started using one I would have all these things that I needed to to either get done, buy, etc and by the time I was ready to set down and make out my list I had forgot half of them and then would have to waste more time trying to remember what I needed to do.

They are very inexpensive anymore and they are small and do not take up a lot of space making it easy to carry in your purse for quick reminders and updates through out your day.

Avoid Peak-Hour Delays...

Schedule appointments and shopping for times when other people are less likely to do so:

  • Unless it's an emergency, schedule doctors' appointments early in the morning or just after lunch.
  • See your your dentist during the lunch hour if he or she is available.
  • Make appointments with home repairmen for times when you can be first on the list.
  • Avoid banks on Friday, the first and the fifteenth and the thirtieth of each month. Your best bet is bank online.
  • Call in your prescriptions in ahead of time and then use the drive- thru if available to pick them up.
  • Keep a good book and a couple of things you can work on for those time when you can't avoid waiting.
Consolidate and Plan Ahead...

  • With gas prices being what they are, group errands together. If you are going to the cleaner's, check your master list to see what else you can do in that part of town.
  • Whenever you buy a staple, pick up two instead of one. When you start to on your last box of noodles or your last tube of toothpaste, enter that item on your shopping list so you do not forget later. You'll save yourself needless trips to the store.
  • Buy an assortment of birthday and other greeting cards and stock up on all-purpose wrapping paper, note cards, ribbons and bows.
  • Keep a list of your family's clothing sizes in your purse or wallet. When you stumble on a good buy, you can take advantage of it while saving time and money.

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Friday, April 25, 2008

Be Careful About Taking Away What Your Kids Need the Most

When we've got a seriously underachieving youngster, it's awfully tempting to resort to taking away all sorts of things in a desperate attempt to motivate them to do their schoolwork. Sadly, this often backfires, leading the child to become even more resistant about learning.

Most of us wouldn't feel that motivated if our spouse said, "Ok, that's it! No more golf [or whatever else we might love to do] until I start getting some better reports from your boss!"

While it's entirely reasonable to set some limits on TV, video games, and other entertainment activities when kids are doing poorly in school, taking them out of their favorite sport, Boy Scouts, music lessons, etc. is a bad idea. The research is clear on this:

Children who are involved in a healthy extracurricular activity are far less likely to get involved in drugs, sex, gangs, and other high-risk activities.

Kids who are struggling in school need at least one natural high…so that they aren't so tempted by various artificial ones.

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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Some Thoughts on Video and Computer Games

Over the past two decades, video and computer games have become dramatically more fast-paced, realistic, and stimulating. Not long after their introduction, I began to suspect that these games had the same addictive potential as drugs, alcohol, and gambling. Today, family therapists and researchers have confirmed my fears. Listed below are some tips for helping your child avoid getting hooked:

  • Don't allow your child to have a computer in their room.

  • Allow them to play these games no longer than thirty minutes per day.

  • If your child becomes sneaky, noncompliant, or defiant about this time limit, remove this privilege.

  • Children birth to six should spend no time playing these games, watching videos, or viewing television.

  • So-called "educational" games, videos, and shows are no substitute for real-life learning activities, involving movement, problem-solving, and human relationships.

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Happy Birthday Baby Boy!

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Tidbit Tuesday

Happy Tuesday to you!

Well I have a great tidbit for you today. Have you ever heard of Atomic Learning? Well I had not until I started working for my current employer. Atomic Learning is a site where you can watch tutorials on many different things. You learn how to blog, learn about, Gimp, Wordpress, Blogger

Just to name a few. I have learned so much from Atomic Learning, I am sure you will too!

Now there is only one thing if you would like to take part in these tutorials you will need to email me or see if the school that your child goes to participates in the site because you have to buy a subscription to the site but I have the code that you need to get in that I will share with you. This is a really great learning site about so many different programs, you will not be disappointed.

So Email Me! One last note don't forget to head over to Melinda Zook to see what she has for Tidbit Tuesday.

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Monday, April 21, 2008

Make It Yourself Monday

I found the cutest gift idea for Make It Yourself Monday. I was stumbling and come across Spiltcoaststampers and Julie had made this little tutorial of how to make this cute little gift tin. Not only is this a great and easy project but it is also Eco friendly as well. I hope you think it is cute as well.

Altered Pop Top Can

Alter a pop top can container and fill it with goodies. It makes a great gift container for small gifts or candy.


  • Pop Top Can

  • Safety Can Opener

  • Coluzzle™

  • Patterned Paper

  • Scissors

  • Sticky Strip™

  • Candy or other filling

  • Crystal Effects or other STRONG glue


  1. Step 1

    Open the can AT THE BOTTOM with a safety can opener. Drain contents and wash container.

  2. Step 2

    Apply Sticky Strip™ at the seam of the can.

  3. Step 3

    Cut patterned paper tall enough to cover the area between the top and bottom of the tin, and long enough to wrap around the can, leaving a slight overlap.

    Adhere over the Sticky Strip™ and add more Sticky Strip™ to the end of the paper. Remove the red liner, then wrap the paper around the and adhere.

  4. Step 4

    Measure the top of the can with a Coluzzle™ template. Only measure the metal area that is going to pop out when the can is opened.

  5. Step 5

    Cut circle to fit.

  6. Step 6

    Slide paper under the tab to get an idea of how much will need to be cut off.

  7. Step 8

    Using Sticky Strip™, adhere paper circle to the lid of the can.

  8. Step 9

    Now, fill the can. Turn it upside down and add desired contents. If adding food items, put them in a baggie. This way, the glue used to close the container will not touch the food.

  9. Step 10

    Apply a thin strip of Crystal Effects™ (or other STONG glue) all the way around the outer rim of the cut out bottom.

  10. Step 11

    Press the bottom back on, wiping away excess glue with a tissue.

    Leave can upside down and weigh down a heavy object on top until the glue has dried for a few hours or overnight.

    When dry, embellish as desired!!

  11. Step 12

    Finish decorating your can.


Use a can without a pop top

by Julie Buhler

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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Where are the heroes of today?

I thought this was a nice piece about teachers whether it be public school or otherwise.

A radio talk show host Thundere**d*.
He blames society's shortcomings on education. Too many people are looking for heroes in all the wrong places.
movie stars and rock musicians,
athletes, and models aren't heroes; they're celebrities.

Heroes abound in
public schools, a fact that doesn't make the news. There is no precedent for the level of violence, drugs, broken homes, child abuse, and crime in today's America. Education didn't create these problems but deals with them every day.

You want heroes? Consider Dave Sanders, the schoolteacher shot to
death while trying to shield his students from two youths on a shooting rampage at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Sanders gave his life, along with 12 students, and other less heralded heroes survived the Colorado blood bath.

You want heroes? Jane Smith, a Fayetteville, NC
teacher, was moved by the plight of one of her students, a boy dying for want of a kidney transplant. So this woman told the family of a 14 year old boy that she would give him one of her kidneys. And she did. When they subsequently appeared together hugging on the Today Show, even Katie Couric was near tears.

You want heroes? Doris Dillon dreamed all her life of being
a teacher. She not only made it, she was one of those wondrous teachers who could bring the best out of every single child. One of her fellow teachers in San Jose, Calif said, "She could teach a rock to read.

" Suddenly she was
stricken with Lou Gehrig's Disease which is always fatal, usually within five years. She asked to stay on job...and did. When her voice was affected she communicated by computer.

Did she go home? Absolutely not! She is
running two elementary school libraries! When the disease was diagnosed, she wrote the staff and all the families that she had one last lesson to teach .... that dying is part of living. Her colleagues named her Teacher of the Year.

You want heroes? Bob House, a teacher in Gay, Georgia, tried out for
Who Wants to be a Millionaire. After he won the million dollars, a network film crew wanted to follow up to see how it had impacted his life.

cars? Big new house? Instead, they found both Bob House and his wife still teaching. They explained that it was what they had always wanted to do with their lives and that would not change. The community was both stunned and gratified.

You want heroes? Last year the average school teacher spent $468
of their own money for student necessities...workbooks, pencils-supplies kids had to have but could not afford. That's a lot of money from the pockets of the most poorly paid teachers in the industrial world.

don't teach values? The critics are dead wrong. Public education provides more Sunday School teachers than any other profession. The average teacher works more hours in nine months than the average 40-hour employee does in a year.

You want heroes? For millions of kids, the hug they get from a teacher
is the only hug they will get that day because the nation is living through the worst parenting in history.

An Argyle, Texas kindergarten teacher hugs
her little 5 and 6 year-olds so much that both the boys and the girls run up and hug her when they see her in the hall, at the football games, or in the malls years later.

A Michigan principal moved me to tears with the story of
her attempt to rescue a badly abused little boy who doted on a stuffed animal on her desk-one that said "I love you!" He said he'd never been that at home.

This is a constant in today's society... two million unwanted,
unloved, abused children in the public schools, the only institution that takes them all in. You want heroes?

Visit any special education class and
watch the miracle of personal interaction, a job so difficult that fellow teachers are awed by the dedication they witness. There is a sentence from an unnamed source which says: "We have been so eager to give our children what we didn't have that we have neglected to give them what we did."

is it that our kids really need? What do they really want? Math, science, history and social studies are important, but children need love, confidence, encouragement, someone to talk to, someone to listen, standards to live by.

Teachers provide upright examples, the faith and assurance of
responsible people.

You want heroes? Then go down to your local school and
see our real live heroes, the ones changing lives for the better each and every day!

*~Author Unknown*

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