Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Recipe Day: Easy Homemade Stewed Tomatoes

Every time I read something new about foods and the FDA, it gets a little scarier. The not-so-latest, but hardest habit for me to break, has been buying canned tomatoes. Going to dried beans from canned was not so bad, just required a bit of pre-planning; getting rid of most canned vegetables was not remotely difficult because they tend to be overcooked and mushy; but darn those tomatoes in a can! They're just so handy when making homemade spaghetti sauce and soups.

Then I came home from Scotland - long story for another time, but a great trip nonetheless. And found myself faced with a half-bushel of just ripened tomatoes and nothing to do with them. We sliced them for several days, we diced some, we did everything but make tomato pie! And still had a bunch. There is a first time for everything, so I decided to skin and juice them and stew them up for other projects.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Homeschool Review Crew: TeenCoder Java Homeschool Programming

Maestro has been talking for a long time about learning to write his own code and build a website for his magic business. When Homeschool Programming was offered as one of the options for review, I was pleased to find that I was one of those picked to check out the course. There are four courses available through Homeschool Programming, and Maestro and Chef were able to try out the TeenCoder Java Course, geared towards 9th - 12th grades. I know Chef is not quite there yet, but thought I'd let him give it a go anyway, just to see how he would do.

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 Java Programming is a one-year course consisting of the Programming portion in the first semester, and the Android portion in semester two. When combined with the extra reference materials a student should be able to take the AP Computer Science test at the end of the program. As far as technical specifications go, we run Macintosh computers only by this point and the Java program was compatible with a Mac running OS 10.5.8 or above. Mine runs on 10.7.5 - so not the newest version out there, but new enough to stand on its own.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Homeschool Review Crew: Book: Couponing Made Simple

When I was in Scotland last week (for another blog post), I got a text message from my wonderful White Knight. It said:
Spent another $100 at Kroger - hopefully will get us most of the rest of the way through the week... I don't see how we keep them alive with the amount they eat.
And another said,
I let the two oldest order their own food at lunch today. I will NEVER do that again!
Seeing messages like these from my husband, is it any wonder that I would jump at the chance to review a book called, Couponing Made Simple: Simple Steps to Successful Couponing by a lady named Christi the Coupon Coach?

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Young Living Big Announcement - and a Drawing

New Premium Essential Oil Kits with Young Living

Today is the first day that Young Living's new Premium Kits are available for purchase! That is HUGE news because the new kits include a home diffuser as part of the kit, as well as several sample packets of oil for you to share with your friends!

Truly, I write this on my way out the door to the airport but I am really excited about the contest I'm running and so I'm setting this up now (from the airport - got interrupted before) to post on Monday morning.

The picture here is the newest Premium Everyday Essentials Oil Kit. The most visible change is that with the old kit, new customers and distributors received a coupon for $30 off of a Young Living diffuser; with the new kit, the diffuser is included so you can begin using your oils for aromatherapy and other airborne-based applications right away

Friday, July 12, 2013

Taking on the Controversies that Arise with Young Living, MLMs, and Other EO Companies

Today on FaceBook, my sister-in-law tagged me in a link asking if I had heard of it. I had, and posted an answer in reply not only to that link, but also to a few statements made in the comments below. Then I decided I'd put my answer here and address some things I've heard more than once in just the six months since I began using and telling others about Young Living, and changed my original answer because I realized that I had helped in the hijacking of someone's paid-for ad, since there were SO many others who were using it as a platform to talk up Young Living.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Homeschool Review Crew: Classical Conversations Handwriting

Homeschooled children are frequently thought (known?) to be the exception to many of the plagues that come through modern-day schooling, but good handwriting seems to frequently get overlooked in both worlds. Try passing poor handwriting off to a Papa who does beautiful calligraphy work, though, and you'll find yourself doing some serious writing practice! Because my handwriting is legible, and decent, but not necessarily what old-school folks would call "great", I was pleased to have the chance to review the Classical Conversations PreScripts program.

We received the paper-book form (as opposed to the online/"e-" edition) that covered cursive handwriting and art lessons. The book is not supposed to be copied for use with multiple children but is supposed to be used once and then a new book should be ordered for each child. The books cost $12.99, and so aren't too expensive if you're only purchasing one or two.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Guest Recipe: Irish Car Bomb Tipsy Cakes!

This recipe was made up by a young lady in our church and they are awesome! They are for adults only because of the alcohol in them, but they are not so super strong that you can't drive after having one. Just enough to give a taste - in fact, her mom suggested that next time she put in just a bit more. Either way, they are delicious and of her own design, so all credit for this recipe goes to Rebecca Simerick - and thank you for sharing with the rest of us (we moms with five kids appreciate it!)

These have ingredient lists for the cake part, the filling in the middle and the icing, so it looks like a longish list, but I see that there is a lot of overlap, so don't let it scare you. To simplify things, I'll include an overall shopping list at the end.

~ Irish Car Bomb Tipsy Cakes ~

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Recipe Day: Fresh Peach and Berry Cobbler

We have been getting a boatload of super-tasty, super-ripe, do-something-with-them-right-now peaches
from our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture/local farmer style co-op) lately and have had lots of fun eating them straight from the basket. But after a while you get some that are not quite ripe but you still want to do something... peachy with them. This morning for a special treat we decided to make a super-easy

Peach-Mixed Berry Cobbler

oh so yummy! If it wasn't breakfast, we
would have added ice cream... 


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