Friday, September 30, 2011

Analyze Your Life

Close your eyes for a few minutes and imagine that today is your 100th birthday. What would you tell a reporter about the life you have led? What were your greatest accomplishments? What what do you regret about your life? What would you want to change if you could?  

Now come back to the present and think about your life as it is now.  What  can you do to minimize those regrets?  It is never to late to start anew. 

Thursday, September 29, 2011


We don't stop laughing because we grow old;
 We grow old because we stop laughing.
Image courtesy of Dee'lite

“I have six locks on my door all in a row. When I go out, I lock every other one. I figure no matter how long somebody stands there picking the locks, they are always locking three.”
~Elayne Boosler

“Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.”
~Groucho Marx

"He who laughs last probably didn't get the joke."
~Unknown Author

“When somebody tells you nothing is impossible, ask him to dribble a football.”
~Unknown Author

"A father is someone who carries pictures where his money used to be."
~Unknown Author

"Mobile phones are the only subject on which men boast about who's got the smallest."
~Neil Kinnock

Never Sacrifice Who You Are...

This saying is so true!  
You can't please everyone you meet in life.  If someone you meet has a problem with something you are doing or saying or just you in general, then you really don't need them in your life!   You shouldn't need to go around trying to get everyone to like you. If you need to work that hard to get someone's attention, they are just not worth it!  Who needs a constant energy drain to pull them down?  I know I don't and neither do you.   If you can't be yourself around other people then you are not only being fake and lying to them but to yourself as well.  That fake facade is not at all attractive, people can see right through it and will hesitate to trust or get to know you.  Ultimately living behind a facade will lead to unhappiness.  The solution is to just be who you are.  You will find that you will attract people that like you for being you.  And in the end of it all you and they will be much happier.  

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Chore Tracker

Our kids are responsible for various chores around the house. After writing my earlier post about wanting a clean house I realized that we had gotten quite lax with chores over the summer and needed a new boost of "chore energy" .  The store bought chore charts had not worked well for us in the past.  We have in the past tried several different styles of charts available but found that none actually met our needs. We needed a more visual reminder of chores needing to be done.  So I created one myself using the side of our refrigerator, masking tape, Clipart in Microsoft Office and adhesive magnets.  When they finish a chore they simply move the magnet to the space below.

Yes I realize it is massive and takes up most of the fridge 
but if the house gets clean and stays clean as a result then it is worth it. :)

 The kids and I sat down and came up with a list of chores each would finish daily or weekly, I added into this basic daily hygiene such as brushing hair and teeth and showering. and reading time (to minimize time spent in front of the TV). Although it looks like a heck of a lot it, most of it really should only take very little time to accomplish and are based on the complexity of the task and the ages of our children.   

Here is an example of some of the chore magnets we made.

Here is what we have on the chore board:

  • Brushing teeth AM and PM
  • Brushing hair
  • Making the bed
  • Showering
  • picking out clothes for the next day
  • homework
  • reading
  • packing a snack and lunch for school
  • putting backpacks away when not in use
  • organizing the shoe area so they are not all over the place
  • helping to empty the dishwasher
  • putting dirty clothes in the hamper
  • putting away any laundered clothing
  • picking things up off the bedroom floors
  • putting toys in the playroom away
  • throwing in a load of laundry (for my 9 year old)
  • sweeping the kitchen floor (my 6 year old)
  • finding stray cups and dishes around the house (my 4 year old)
  • practicing piano (my 9 year old) 
  • helping mom prepare dinner
  • clearing their plate off the dinner table

Instead of earning money for chores done they are working toward my scheduling play dates for them which gives them the motivation they need to get it done.  They have been racing one another to see who can accomplish their goals for the day first.  :)

Cookie Monster Comic

Hee Hee
  Having grown up watching Cookie Monster,
 this one made me smile and want to share it with you.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Old Advertisements That Could Never Run These Days

These ads were forwarded to me in an email recently and I just had to share them.  It is amazing how far we have come in just a few short decades... Can you believe some of these? 

Wow,  there is no way this ad would work today,
 no one would shop there ...

Scary...particularly considering how many people are lonely and depressed around the holidays.

Hmm,  I wonder how many men slept on the couch after giving this one...

 and this one too...

I wonder how long it took for this to be in "high" demand...

Hmmm, wonder if crying would work to get new appliances these days...
Somehow I think not...

Helps them become couch potatoes
 who no longer want to run around and play... sigh...

Bet they both slept better afterwards too... 

Um,  how does drinking soda help children fit in exactly?  
Those poor parents can you imagine the dentist bills later?  
and this after dealing with kids hyper from the sugar too! 

What a shock it must have been to all those doctors to learn that it causes cancer.

UGH tape worms?????  too gross....

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Monday, September 26, 2011

White Bean Chicken Chili

I love trying new recipes and have found that one of the best sources for them is on  Here is a recipe we  tried out,  it was a big hit with my kids they seemed to like this much more that regular chili. .
2 tablespoons corn oil
1 large onion,chopped
4 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon aniseed
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 15-ounce cans cannellini beans (white kidney beans)
1 cup canned chicken broth
1 7-ounce can diced green chilies
1/2 cup whipping cream
Grated cheddar cheese
Chopped fresh cilantro

Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, cumin, oregano, aniseed and dried red pepper. Sauté 5 minutes. Push onion to 1 side of pan. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add to pan. Sauté chicken approximately 5 minutes.
Drain beans; reserve 1/2 cup bean liquid. Add beans, broth, chilies, cream and reserved bean liquid to chicken. Simmer until chicken is tender and cooked through, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Reheat before using.) Ladle chili into bowls. Top with cheese and sprinkle with cilantro.

All I ask is that the house be clean.....

As I look around my persistently cluttered and messy house, I sigh and wish for something more, something nicer, cleaner, less cluttered.  This constant clutter is so draining and eventually saps my motivation to even try to keep up with it.  With three small children I realize that the constant small toys and art projects in various stages are my reality for now. I am so tired of the need to remind them to clean up after themselves. Seriously how many times in one weekend can we do a massive clean up of  the same room? I am constantly stepping on or around blocks, toy cars, tiny doll accessories etc.  I have tried taking pictures of the toys and labeling the bins they belong in, bought cabinets for the playroom to store the board games but in the end the toys remain scattered across the floor seemingly invisible to my children once they stop playing with them.

I have come to the unavoidable conclusion that perhaps they have too many things to play with.  I am beginning to dread the Christmas holidays knowing that even more toys will come.   I have started to sort through their toys to find the ones rarely played with or that are broken or missing pieces.  The broken or incomplete ones will be tossed out.  The ones in good condition need to go.  I think we will  have a garage sale if I ever can find a free weekend with good weather to hold one.  Still other toys I think will be moved into storage in the basement  to be rotated upstairs periodically.  Perhaps if they have less toys to play with they will be better able to keep them clean.

I dream of a day when I will be able to walk through a room without needing to step over toys, and to be able to simply turn the vacuum on and clean the carpet without needing to ask the kids to pick their stuff up for the 100th time that day.  Is it really so much to ask????

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The World's Oldest Museum

Here is a very interesting story I came across using 
Click the link below to read all about it!

The story behind the world’s oldest museum, built by a Babylonian princess 2,500 years ago

"It's easy to forget that ancient peoples also studied history - Babylonians who lived 2,500 years ago were able to look back on millennia of previous human experience. " 

Natural Cures

Many Americans are relying more on home remedies or OTC drugs to save money on doctors’ visits, according to a Kaiser Health Tracking poll. While you should always see the doctor for serious ailments, you may be able to soothe minor complaints with these inexpensive products many of which you may already have at home.

Stress and Relaxation
Stress has been known to lead to all sorts of health problems. Drinking chamomile tea, lemon balm tea or a glass of warm milk will help you relax and unwind after a long stressful day.  Milk contains the amino acid tryptophan, which can bring on relaxation.

Stomach Problems
Is lunch or dinner making you feel bloated and gassy?  Steep some crushed fennel seeds in boiling water and drink the tea.  Fennel is a natural anti-gas and will help you feel better quickly.  If you have stomach cramps as well steep them along with a bag of peppermint tea since peppermint is a natural antispasmodic.  Chewing fennel seeds after meals is a remedy for acid reflux.  Another great stomach remedy is Ginger root.  It’s great for relieving just about any gastrointestinal illness, including motion sickness and pregnancy morning sickness. To make a tea, steep a tablespoon of ground fresh ginger in hot water for 10 minutes, then strain.  Diarrhea can be treated by eating dried blueberries.

Common Cold
Zinc and echinacea when taken at the onset of a cold can help minimize its duration and severity.  Chicken soup is a awesome way to fight  your cold.  This is not just an old wives tale.  If you are congested the hot steam from the soup will help open your sinuses.  Most people make chicken soup with garlic and onion in it.  These are natural antibiotics and help your body fight off the cold.  The broth helps keep you hydrated and the vegetables give your body sorely needed nutrients since your appetite is probably fairly low when sick.  You can also fight the common cold with Elderberry Syrup (sold in health food stores by its Latin name Sambucus).  Elderberry is high in anti-viral properties and is  used in many countries to fight flu.  After our family started taking it daily over the winter months we discovered that we had not needed to see the family doctors as often as we had before!  

Urinary Tract Infections
Prevent Urinary Tract infections by drinking cranberry juice and eating yogurt on a regular basis.  Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice during a UTI helps keep bacteria from adhering to the bladder walls.  Increasing fluid intake and using the bathroom regularly to empty your bladder will help flush the bacteria from your system.

Chronic Joint Pain
Do you suffer from pain from  such conditions as psoriasis, fibromyalgia, shingles, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis?   Cayenne contains a substance known as capsaicin. Capsaicin has pain-relieving characteristics that works temporarily by effecting the nerves that are responsible for transmitting pain. When applied topically in a cream, capsaicin can be helpful in relieving pain. 

Chapped Lips
Do you often get chapped lips?  You could be dehydrated.  Dehydration is the main cause of dry or chapped lips, it is recommended to drink 8 glasses  of water daily. Also, on dry winter days, try to use a humidifier in your home to keep the air moist.  Aloe Vera is an amazing treatment for chapped lips apply a small amount daily.   

Sprains and Bruises
Arnica (Arnica montana) has been used for medicinal purposes since the 1500s.  Applied to the skin as a cream, ointment, liniment, salve, or tincture (available in many health food stores), arnica has been used to soothe muscle aches, reduce inflammation, and heal wounds. It is commonly used for injuries such as sprains and bruises.  It should however, not be used in instances where the skin has been broken.  

These alternative medicine (herbal home remedies) should only be tried for a short period of time. If you find that there is no relief from symptoms, please see your doctor to determine if additional treatment is needed. The alternative medicines can in most cases still be taken as complementary adjuvant's, but with the consent of the specialist. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Great new blog featuring posts and reviews of the latest TV shows.

Here is a great new blog that I am hoping you will follow.

Come along as the writer provides episode recaps and commentary, 
tells you what was learned from  favorite characters, makes recommendations on what to watch, waxes nostalgic about shows of the past and regales you with undeniable humor, wit and insight.