Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Diva and Boots

Apparently this cat thinks crafting is very exciting. Doesn't he look like he WANTS to craft.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day

Who kept the faith and fought the fight; The glory theirs, the duty ours. - Wallace Bruce

Staycation Whatcom County

This is for my local readers here in the Pacific Northwest (Washington). I will be staying home with my kids this summer and some days I JUST WANT TO LEAVE THE HOUSE. Our Summer break doesn't start until June 24th. So we have a few weeks before our staycation can officially start. My crew are ages 9 and12 but many of the things listed are ageless.

Go to the Beach - Our favorites are Semiahmoo and Birch Bay State Park. Starting in July you will need a Discover Pass to park at State Parks. The yearly fee is $30 and daily fee is $10 starting July 1, 2011. Birch Bay does have evening Ranger talks so come early with your chair. You don't have to be a camper to enjoy these. The C-Shop is nearby and worth a visit for an ice cream cone.

Go Hiking - a good hike for kids 5 and up is Squires Lake. We did this with the group we affectionately called the adventure van crew. All of the Adventure Van Crew are of the age that going on a hike is possible.

Have an adventure. If you have a GPS discover geocaching. There are numerous caches in our area. Hey, it is blast finding Tupperware with million dollar satellites. I have a kids GPS that works good enough to do this. Don't have a GPS, give letterboxing a try. There are lots of these in our area too. Look up the clue and get ready to search for the treasure. Don't forget to sign the logbook. This activity is a little addicting.

ICE CREAM - No summer would be complete without a trip to Edaleen's Dairy in Lynden for a cone. Actually I don't think there is a season that this wouldn't be good in.

Summer Reading Programs through the Whatcom Library System also have programs. This year is One World Many Stories. In the past we have seen llamas/alpacas, SARDIS raptor rescue center, mini ponies through these programs. READ ON has more details on what each branch is offering. They also hold an annual Lego Exhibition at the Ferndale Library and you get to bring in your Lego Creation.

Parks - I like to hit a different one every week. We have so many in our county. Our favorites are Hovander Park in Ferndale especially in the summer when they have the bigger animals there. Close second is Lynden City Park with their awesome playground. Cornwall and Fairhaven parks in Bellingham in the summer for the spray parks. We love to take out of town visitors to Peace Arch State Park in Blaine.

Go for a Cruise. Take the Plover across Drayton Harbor. They even let the kids help steer the boat.

Hey, feel free to leave a comment of great places you have discovered in WHATCOM COUNTY! We live in a totally great place.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Share Your Washington PSA

I don't know why but I kinda want the cut out of Washington. I know I am weird. Check out the contest at Share Your Washington. I believe it is over on June 15th.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Lemon Cake Mix Cookies

The alternate title to this post should be, "MRS EPI made me do it." That is my story and I am sticking to it.

Cake Box Cookies

1 box cake mix ( chocolate, yellow, lemon - all work)

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs

Mix and scoop onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 8 to 10 minutes

Need something a little decedent - Try these Lemon White Chocolate Cookies

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Linky Love

Today needs some linky love. We are kinda in the gloom here, dark outside. You know you want to click!

Ultimate LEGO roundup - You've got to check out the ideas for decor, storage, and parties.

Plan a Stay Vacation in Your Town -Life as Mom has a whole list of bloggers from various parts of the country that have planned Stay Vacations in their town. I wasn't invited to this blog party but it isn't going to stop me from posting about my town. Look for my post upcoming for my town. I imagine due to the economy many of us are going on Stay Vacation. I am a veteran of the Stay Vacation as I am home with my kids ALL summer long.

Addictive Summer Reading List for Kids of all Ages at Make and Takes

I am oddly fascinated with the Copper Heiress, Huguette Clark, who died at 104. Why did she become a recluse? What was her life like? Who will get her money? I know I have too much time on my hands.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Memorial Day Flag Art Project

Diva's (Top) and mine(Bottom)

The Diva and I decided to give this Memorial Day Flag Art Project a go yesterday. The project basically asks you to use the colors and shapes on the American flag to make your own flag. I think these turned out great. We used stars that were cut out with the sizzix. We didn't talk about what the colors mean on the American Flag . I had to look it up for my own benefit. White signifies purity and innocence. Red signifies hardiness and valour. Blue signifies perseverance and justice.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Sunday at the Beach

#1 Son on the Rocks

When the going gets tough, the tough head to the beach. It cleared enough yesterday afternoon to head to the beach. Our favorite beach is Semiahmoo beach. We did some beach combing. Ms Smarty pants found a starfish.

We ate a sub sandwich. We managed to find a geocache and a letterbox. All in all not a bad way to spend a Sunday afternoon

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Grown-Up Room

Chuck wanted a desk for his room for his Birthday. We had most of the elements already. The Giant Man Child made a desk with a top that he had dumpster dived for. The red office chair was a dumpster dive too. The Bulletin Board and Chair Mat were purchased from Costco. I rearranged his room and took out some of the more juvenile elements - road rug, toys, hanging quilt. It ended up becoming a more grown-up room. This is also home to the 27 cent bookcase.There are some more toys that need to be eliminated. I would like to make a new valance or cornice for this room, too. Hey, the decorating never ends.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Too much time and Saran Wrap on their hands

We were out and about and we saw this. Yes, it is a car completely wrapped in Saran Wrap and caution tape. Did I mention it is also rainy out? So, the lucky individual is going to have to unwrap their car in the rain.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Nine is Mighty Fine

I can't believe my youngest is turning 9 today.

Happy Happy 9th Birthday!

Nine Facts About Chuckles

1. He has the best laugh

2 He will be the first to wear a funny hat or costume

3. He has a lot of enthusiasm. He is always ready for an adventure

4 He is kind

5 He loves LEGOS

6 He likes to help out . He is my biggest helper.

7 He is a huge Star Wars Fan

8. He loves pizza and steak

9. He is a very early riser.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Sunny Day Geocaching

I had a little extra time (LOL) with #1 Son so he and I found a geocache. This was our view from the cache. This one was located along the Centennial River Walk in our town. The mountain in the background is Mount Baker. There are also two little birds on the railing. For more information on Geocaching check out this post.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Northwest Trek

This past Saturday we visited Northwest Trek. It had been on Nonna's list of places to visit for a very long time. It located not too far from Eatonville, Washington. We were lucky to have a rain free day. NW trek has only animals indigenous to the Pacific Northwest. The have tram that takes you through some of their grounds to look at the animals as you would see them in their natural environment. We saw bison, caribou, mountain goats, and black tailed deer on the tram ride. One of the bison stood in the middle of the road. The tram and the bison had a little stand off.

My favorites though were along the walk around the park - the wolves, lynx and bear.

I don't know if you have ever heard a lynx - growl(meow) but heard it. He basically announced here I am and sat for pictures it was funny. I loved that even in the enclosures the animals were very viewable.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Swimming with the Sharks

Or should I say swimming with the pool sharks. Pool has been very popular around here this last week. It is a little sad when the under 12 set are better players than you.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Beaded Lizard

The Diva asked if we could make beaded lizards. So after a little research, this is what we came up with. This was a hit. Even my 12 year old son made one. I will say I did assist on this. This is a little more complicated than the beaded flowers. I think kids 10 and up can do this craft probably without assistance.

Book it 2011- May

Please check out what everyone is reading at Life as Mom. I read "The Boy From Baby House 10" by Alan Philps and John Lahutsky. This true story really pulled at my heart strings. The subtitle is - "from the nightmare of a Russian orphanage to a new life in America. The book is about Vanya condemned first to a baby house and later imprisoned to a psychiatric hospital and labeled as imbecile by Russian State officials. It talks about the incredible Americans and Russians who advocated for him. What a true amazing story that will have you wanting to save every orphan in a Russian Baby House.

I also had a chance to read Water for Elephants. I actually saw the movie before completing the book. It was a good read. There were a couple parts that were rather graphic. I think I liked the movie more than the book.

My reading wouldin't be complete without a Bonnet Novel. I completed The Thorn by Beverly Lewis. It is book one in the Rose Trilogy. It is typical of Beverly Lewis books.

Our bible study group finished the Beth Moore Study - Esther: It is tough to be a Woman. We did this at the perfect time of the year as our study was during Purim and Easter. My review is here.

Last but not least, I read the Help by Kathryn Stockett . It was really good and I jammed through it in about 3 days. The story is about a white woman, Skeeter, who lives in Jackson, MS and decides to write an expose about what the Black maids think about their white woman bosses. This is also being made into a movie.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Beaded Flower Necklaces

Yesterday, I showed the Diva how to make a beaded flower necklace. The boys were examining the example I had made. They couldn't quite wrap their heads around how I made the flower shape. I tried to convince them that the beads I had were magical mysterious beads. They didn't quite buy that. This is an excellent project for 8 to 9 year old set. I helped the Diva through about 3 of these flowers and she got it. The colored pony beads I got at the Dollar Store and the green beads at Goodwill. The excellent tutorial can be found at the Paper Pony.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Best Shot 39th Birthday Party

Just had to put a little party into his 39th Birthday. I used this banner with two special embellishments.

Notice the nice typo - You should be Your. That is what happens when you are trying to do things stealth. I also added empty shells to my candle centerpiece.

Hey, we are a little redneck here. Chuck made The Giant Man Child this lovely card.
The card says - Bang, Bang, Bang, Your the Best Shot- Happy Birthday

Do you like the gun?According to Chuck it issuppose to be a .22. Lastly, we got the Birthday Boy a Nerf gun from the children as he was always borrowing theirs.

Give 39 Your Best Shot


to my



(welcome to 39)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Rain Day Field Trip

It was beautiful yesterday with no rain. So of course, it poured yesterday for Chuckles field trip to Pioneer Park. I hadn't been on this field trip before. We got to tour 6 of the buildings including the school house, church, 2 cabins, granary, post office. The kids made candles and ground grain. The girls got a chance to help bake bread. The volunteers who do the tours are outstanding.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Haman's Ears and the Study of Esther

The bible study I have been attending has been doing the Beth Moore Bible Study of Esther: It's Tough being a Woman. This is the second Beth Moore study I have done. I love how Beth Moore can tie everything together. Her studies are intense. I know this story resonated with a lot of woman in our group. There are a couple of things that I keep coming back to. The place where Esther says, "...and if I perish, I perish." (Esther 4:16) She basically reached out and took a risk for the greater good of the Jewish people. It was risking her own life. Beth Moore also talked about the what if's in our lives. How sometimes those what if's become paralyzing. I also like the devotional saying that was included in the study by Beth Moore.

If _____

then God will take care of me.

If _______

then God has a plan.

If _______

then God desires to accomplish something monumental in me.

If _________

then God's going to demonstrate HIs sufficiency to me.

At the end of the study there was a recipe for the traditional cookie Haman's ears or Hamantashen served during the Jewish Celebration of Purim. Haman is the villain in Esther. My Haman's ears came out OK. I filled mine with Raspberry Jam. The dough was really crumbly. They did really taste good with with coffee or tea.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Got to go to Headquarters

Some people take pictures of beautiful landscapes not me. I love a good picture of a Honeypot. See the Wizard of Ooze post. This one cracked me up. I think you are in the port a potty sanitation business you have to have a sense of humor. This one is located in Auburn, WA

Monday, May 2, 2011

Time to Fly the Flag

It seems like September 11th is a distant memory. IT also seemed like the bad guy was going to get away with it. Justice was done. I wrote this on September 11. Today I get to tell my children that evil doesn't triumph over good. Sometimes justice isn't quick. I pray the world is a safer place today.