Friday, October 13, 2017

Seed to Pumpkin Fun!

Oh man.  The stars and moon must have been all aligned just right because I pulled off a fantastic, last minute, holy-crap-I-have-all-the-material, lesson on pumpkins - the day before we went to the pumpkin patch.

Rock star moment (which will most likely never happy again, dude).

I pulled out a fall book bin and came across this book (which I totally forgot we had) ::


And then we read and learned how pumpkins grow.  At the end of the book there was a science project.  You know, the celery in colored water (watch the water go up the tubes??).  Low and behold, I had celery in my fridge.

So mama acted like she was all together and presented this cool science experiment ::


Rock star status.

We observed how the colored water traveled up the tubes of celery (demonstrating how roots underground bring water up to the top of the plant above ground).

The next day was our field trip to the pumpkin patch.

It was an awesome way to cap off the lesson.

And wouldn't you know it, we even found some buds that would soon turn into pumpkins.  You know, just like the pictures in the book!


Rock star.

Patty

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Big Orange Pumpkin Patch

Catching up here a bit...

Late in September, I organized a field trip for Clementine and friends to visit a local pumpkin patch.  We have been there before, but this time it was a 'field trip', you know, BIG kid business ;)

There was a petting zoo, hay maze, hay ride, pumpkin patch, and a little cafe to grab a snack afterward.  Oh!  And so many little friends to share the experience with.

(Oh my gosh, these little bitties in pre-k and Kinder are so stinkin' cute!  I love this age!)







Next field trip is coming up.  We will be going to visit a Raptor Center.  Should be interesting!

Patty

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Feast of the Guardian Angels (Books and Snack)

~ In heaven, the angels see, love, and adore God. Angels help us by praying for us, acting as messengers from God to us, and by serving us as our guardian angels. ~ (Baltimore Catechism)

The Feast of the Guardian Angels is celebrated on October 2.

When I realized the other day what day it was, I quickly pulled out these books to read aloud to Miss Clementine and the DVD for her to watch.  



Then we decided to make angel food cake (with sprinkles)  to celebrate :).

I didn't have any of it planned.  We made a quick trip to the store for a boxed mix, whip cream in a can, and frozen strawberries in juice.  Wa-la!  It was a successful feast day celebration!


I am so grateful for our Guardian Angels!

Patty

Sunday, October 1, 2017

A Nerf War Birthday Party

Our Stan the man turns 12 this Wednesday which means it is his year for a BIG birthday party!  We actually celebrated it a couple of weeks ago at a local park with a Nerf War theme for 16 tween boys. Oh my goodness!

It was a huge success :)



With that many boys (and wanting to avoid a Lord of the Flies craziness),  we supplied the Nerf guns and tons of bullets, eye protection (in case any parent was concerned), and handkerchief for the boys.


Stan used some, old pallets (two per team), and we had an ammo refill station for each team, (Team Orange and Team Blue).


After playing a few games of war, they also had Capture the Flag, hiking in the woods on the park trails, and a couple of ladders set up for target practice.


We served hot dogs, chips, and water & blue Gatorade for dinner.

We used a local bakery for the cake.


The entire party was a blast (excuse the pun)!  All the boys enjoyed themselves, (we heard a ton of positive feedback from parents).

The best part for me??  I left.  Ha!  David made a special meal for all the dads who ended up staying, so it was definitely a guys' party ;)

(PS - I got all the ideas off of Pinterest!)

Happy, happy birthday to our little man!!!  Wishing you abundant blessings throughout the year.  We love you!!

Dad & Mom


Saturday, September 30, 2017

Family Weekend in the Land of Cotton!

Last weekend we traveled down to Belton, Texas for family weekend at University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.  I was SO SO SO happy to hug my girl's neck!  And to have all of my kids together under one roof was amazing!  (Insert Mama's beating heart)


I teased Sarah telling her that we'd all be outside the classroom door when she finished up.  Sarah responded, "That's what I am afraid of!"  Ha ha!

Well, we didn't embarrass her, but we did not hesitate to pass out the hugs when we finally saw her!  We headed out for lunch downtown, historic Belton.


She had to work a few hours in the late afternoon - (the girl got a job as a lifeguard at the university's pool).  Then we met back up with her for the pep rally.


Little sister was so excited to watch the cheerleaders warming up and then had the chance to meet a "real, life cheerleader", a friend of Sarah's.


Friday night, Miss Mabel stayed with Sarah in the dorm room, and then on Saturday night, Miss Ester stayed with her.  It was a neat experience for them to stay overnight in a college dorm with college kids.

The dorms are not co-ed.  In fact, it is SO strict, that men, (including visiting dads and sons), had a limited time frame during the day that they could actually go inside to see the dorm rooms. Otherwise, they stayed on the big veranda porch or inside the air conditioned lobby.

Saturday morning, Sarah drove the girls and I into Killeen (this is where Fort Hood is located) for some retail therapy. :)  Then I dropped the three older girls back off at the dorm to "get ready" for the big football game!


It was SO hot - about 100 degrees last weekend.


But the shade was inviting.

The main street / plaza area of camps was closed off and family activities were set up to the theme, "hometown heroes".


It was so much fun meeting a handful of Sarah's friends in person!!


UMHB football is Div III National Champs and they won the game, 50-7.  :()

However, my favorite part of the entire weekend was attending Mass together as a whole family again.


We left Sarah about 2:30 in the afternoon and headed back home.  It's only a three hour drive.

She says she misses "home" and her bed, so I'll go down to pick her up for a weekend in a couple of weeks.

After that, we won't see her again until Thanksgiving.

She is doing well, adjusting to college life nicely.  She is studying hard and earning some great grades.   We are so proud of her!

Had to share this photo of all the cotton that is almost ready to be picked.  There's SO much cotton this year (we had a wet summer) and it looks like snow when driving along the interstate.


I live "in the land of cotton" and it is so beautiful!

Patty

Monday, September 25, 2017

Mid-Term - Daybook Post

Outside my window ~

Lately, it has felt like July in Texas.  We have tried to take advantage of the swimming.  It's great for PE class!




I am thankful for ~

Time spent with Sarah at school.  This past weekend was family weekend.  We all went down and had a great time.  That will be another post ;)


From the school room ~

We are on week 7 of the first quarter (well beyond mid-term).  We are FINALLY getting our groove after nutty first half of the quarter.

The one thing we are kickin' it in are the labs.  Bam!  By the third high schooler, one's confidence level in the high school at-home labs really grows.


(Miss Mabel is taking Biology with lab this freshman year.)


(Miss Ester is taking Chemistry with lab her junior year.)




Stan the man was studying whales and how their blubber protects them.  A little Vaseline and ice water experiment is easy enough that little sister can be included in them.

And Kindergarten science is SO! MUCH! FUN!

We studied density a couple of weeks ago.  We first read the cute story, Sink or Swim.  Then we preceded with collecting items from around the house.  With those items, we predicted if they would sink or swim float.  Once we predicted, then we performed the experiment to see if our predictions were correct or not.



After we saw the results, we mixed water, dish soap, and oil in a beaker to check out the density of each.


So much fun!!

I found the lesson on the website "BetterLesson".


From the kitchen ~

Earlier in the summer, Miss Mabel attempted Macrons for the first time.


She was disappointed that only half the batch turned out, but dang, girl!  Macrons are expensive in the store for a reason!  I think she did an amazing job on her first attempt.  These are incredibly challenging to make.


What I am reading ~


I'm really enjoying this one.  But beware! Do not read if you are hungry.  The food description is amazing and will leave your mouth watering.


Around the house ~



I took these of Miss Clementine at her first Little Flowers meeting.  This is also the adorable project she made after studying a bit about St. Catherine of Sienna and the Virtue, Faith.  (She goes to a meeting the first Friday of every month.)

I am thinking about ~

Homecoming!!  (It's October 7.)

Both Miss Mabel and Ester are going.

And Miss Ester was asked by one of THE most kind-hearted, gentleman-like guys out there who comes from a strong military-family background.

He asked David's permission first, (which is what we expect).  And when a guy really does that on his own, you know he is a real gentleman.



They are cross country team mates :)

I am praying for ~

Miss Ester...



This girl.  She has a nasty case of shin splints (micro fractures).  It's been 10 days and she is still limping.  There will be no more cross country for her for the season.

We need her feeling better so she can dance at the homecoming dance, people!!

I am listening to ~

Silence (except for the air conditioner running)!  The kids are busy with school so I thought I would get a chance to finish this post I've been working on.


Coming down the pike this week ~

Tuesday - (Make up) Ice Skating Lessons

Wednesday - Field trip to the pumpkin patch

Thursday - Dentist (for me)

Thursday - Ice Skating Lessons

Friday - Sunday - Troops of St. George Camp Out


A couple of last photos to share ~


(Glow in the dark pajamas!)


 (Algebra II Saxon Math - I'm so grateful for the "teacher" on disc!!)

And this is from the day big sister, Sarah, sent a care package from her school to Miss Clementine :)


Wishing you all a wonderful autumn season, houses smelled of yummy goodness, and blessings abound!

Patty



Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Our SWEET Girl Turned 14!!

On the 15th, we celebrated Miss Mabel!  David and I are SO LUCKY to be her parents.  She is our quiet one who finds JOY in everything!



Her birthday wish was to spend the day on a lake, and her daddy delivered!  BIG Time!!


He drove Mabel and Ester up to Lake Texoma, found a private beach, prepared fresh, foil-wrapped lunches over a fire, and then took them knee boarding and Mabel water skiing.  And she got up!! You go girl!


We ordered out dinner at this awesome sandwich place ::


(I'm telling you, sloppy, but to-die-for Cuban BBQ sandwiches!)

And then it was Nothin' Bundt Cake for our birthday girl::




She had a super fantastic day celebrating HER!

We love you so much, sweet girl!!  Wishing you abundant blessings throughout the year :)

XOXO

Dad and Mom

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Cheesy Taco Pasta

During the summer, I tried this new easy-go-to dish for our Mexican nights on Tuesdays.  The fam liked it enough that it made the Mexican night rotation on our menu planning.

Cheesy Taco Pasta


Ingredients:

1 pound large shells pasta
1 pound ground beef
1 packet taco seasoning
3/4 cup water
1 cup salsa
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

1.  Cook the shelled pasta according to the directions on the box and drain.

2.  Add the ground beef to the pan and brown well.

3.  Drain the fat.

5.  Add the taco seasoning and 3/4 cup water, stir and cook until water is gone.

5.  Add the salsa and cheese and stir to combine.

6.  Serve immediately.  (Can serve with crunchy tortilla chips on top.)

Enjoy!!

Patty

Sunday, September 3, 2017

It's Been a Long Time - Daybook Post

Let's see if I remember how to write one of these...

Outside my window ~


We were not effected from Hurricane Harvey.  We did have the cloud coverage, cool breezes, and intermittent rainfall, but our prayers.  So many prayers go to all of those effected by this horrible, catastrophic storm.

I am thankful for ~

1.  Sarah's safety as well.  She is located north of Austin and only had heavy rainfall, (not catastrophic rainfall).

2.  All of the compassion, love, kindness, generosity that Texans (and others) displayed during this incredibly devastating storm.  Why doesn't the news broadcast this?  #TexasStrong

From the school room ~

Miss Clementine is enjoying Kindergarten!


And kindergarten science is about to get exciting!



Stan the man read and wrote three of his four mandatory book reports over the summer.  For each book report he sent into Seton, I bought him a new book for his own collection at home.



From the kitchen ~

For Sunday dinner, we enjoyed pulled pork sandwiches, cheesy potatoes, and slaw.  For dessert, Miss Mabel made oatmeal, chocolate chip bars.

Full bellies = happy folks!!



What I am reading ~


Around the house ~


Her little world!


I am thinking about ~

plans for tomorrow!  Trim the bushes.  Mow the lawn.  Work on finalizing plans for an upcoming birthday party.  Counting down the days till we go visit Sarah!

I am praying for ~

all the victims of Hurricane Harvey.  Amen.

What I am listening to ~

Ramblin' Man (The Allman Brothers Band - on my playlist)

Coming down the pike this week ~

Tuesday - Miss Ester has cross country practice

(Miss Ester with some of her team mates.  Photo credit: K. W.)

Thursday - XC practice again.

Thursday - Ice Skating lessons for Miss Mabel and Miss Clementine!



Saturday - TSG recruiting event (for Stan the man)

Saturday - XC meet for Miss Ester

A final photo to share ~

Actually a few from the eclipse ::

Miss Ester and Mabel melted a candle onto a piece of glass and then blackened it.


They held it out and could see the eclipse image on the blackened glass.


Isn't that a cool idea?!  I think they found it on Pinterest.

Now that we have finally found a new school year groove, I'm hoping to catch up on my blog reading and keep updating here.  Have a great week!

Patty

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