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Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

It is easy during the Thanksgiving Holiday to reflect on all the wonderful things in my life to be thankful for. I thought I would list some of the things I am grateful for.

My Heavenly Father and the knowledge that I am his daughter, my elder brother Jesus Christ who is my Savior so that I can live with Heavenly Father again, and the Holy Ghost who gives me guidance through out this earthly experience while I am far from Heavenly Father.

I am grateful that I have the gospel in my life. That I know the Plan of Salvation or the Plan of Happiness, and what my purpose on this earth is. I am thankful for a living Prophet and Apostles to lead and guide us in these days. I am thankful for local leaders and teachers who serve me, teach me and encourage me to live as I should.

I am thankful to have been born to good parents. I am thankful for my brothers and sisters. I am thankful for a wonderful childhood. We had enough to eat, a good home, a great neighborhood with lots of friends and the gospel of Jesus Christ. It has been a great life.

I am thankful for my children, Jason and Brady. I am thankful for the fulfillment I feel at being a mother. These boys have brought such joy to my life. I am proud of the men they have become and I love them.

I am thankful for the education system, and that I was free to attend school. I am thankful for the friends I had while growing up and the activities I enjoyed. I am also thankful for the education my children enjoy, for teachers and schools.

I am thankful to have been born in the United States of America. I am thankful for the freedoms I enjoy in this country. I am thankful for law enforcement officers and our military that keeps us free. I'm thankful for a  government that this country was built upon.

I am thankful for my health. I'm also thankful for emergency response teams, fire fighters and medical personnel. I am thankful for doctors and nurses and the fine medical care I have received in my life by skillful people and healing hands. I am especially grateful that we have access to medical services.

I am thankful for my home. My biggest dream in my life was to own a home. I am thankful for the stability it provides for me and that it keeps me safe and protected. I'm thankful for the warmth and comfort it gives me and my family. I am thankful for beds, kitchen, bathrooms, washing machines, stoves, microwaves, dishwashers, light bulbs, TV, chairs, carpet, windows, pillows, blankets, and on and on. We are so blessed to have all of these conveniences and comforts.

I am thankful for music. I am thankful we can carry it around in teeny tiny Zunes and iPods. I am thankful for the talented musicians who share their talents. I love singing in church (love it!), especially in Primary (just singing out loud). I am thankful for our piano and Brady's talent to play it. I'm thankful for my sister Cindy's singing - it is beautiful and it opened up a love of music in my life. I am thankful I can play the piano and sing a little too.

I am thankful for my business and my customers. I love not having stress and pressure that comes with a regular job. Being self employed ROCKS! I have been very blessed in my career through my life. Very blessed! It has been great to have been able to provide for my children and myself. Sometimes I can't believe how lucky I have been in my life. Heavenly Father sure has blessed me!

I am thankful for this beautiful world we live in. I am thankful for 4 seasons of beauty. I am thankful to live in the beautiful state of Idaho - it is beautiful! I am thankful for trees, flowers, grass, vegetable gardens, animals, birds and butterflies. I am thankful for the sun, for rain, and for snow.

I am thankful for food to eat. I am thankful I am a pretty good cook (at least my children think I am). I am thankful for my food storage. I am thankful to be able to taste. I am thankful for chocolate.

I am thankful for my body, my eyes that see, my ears that hear, a mouth that can speak, laugh and sing. I am thankful for hands that can do many things. I am thankful for legs and feet that lets me be mobile.  Even though I am not as thin as I would like to be - my body works and lets me do the things I enjoy.

I am thankful for my talents and abilities. Being a good mom, a good teacher, having an artistic eye, ability to decorate my home in beauty, that I can garden, that I can draw and paint a little, that I can scrapbook, and that I can have an happy loving life. 

I am very blessed! 

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Change of Plans for Thankgiving

In Idaho, we have been experiencing snow storms, blizzards, cold temperatures and wind. I knew the weather was going to be pretty bad for the drive from Meridian into Pocatello Idaho. A week ago I called my Mom and told her I didn't feel like I should go and that I shouldn't send Brady. She talked me into still coming. I also spoke to Brady and he still wanted to go. I told him I could get him a round trip airplane ticket, but he got sad that I wasn't going to be there with him. I decided that I would go anyway. I've had major anxiety attacks all week - then the storm came in and my anxiety only increased.

I watched the news reports on the weather and the roads and finally made the decision to stay home and get an airplane ticket for Brady to return home.

Below is a map of the road conditions in Idaho today.
_____Driving Conditions Good

_____Driving Conditions Fair

____Driving Conditions Difficult 

 Closures/Blockages
There have been lots and lots of slide offs and major accidents.  
Tuesday afternoon when I finally made the decision to stay home, I had a calm, peaceful feeling come over me. The first time I felt calm in over a week. I know the right thing for me to do is stay home.

I will be making Thanksgiving Dinner here. Brady flies in Friday afternoon and Jason and Sharon are off work. We will have a nice feast and enjoy the day together on Friday. That gives me Thursday to make pies and other goodies, plus a little more time to thaw out a turkey.

I am really sad that I won't be seeing my family and helping my mother make dinner. It is nice to know that I am the glue that holds the family together or as they say "the life of the party" and that I will be missed. I always love being with my brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews, and great nieces and nephews. We always have a great time together. Plus, they love my homemade dinner rolls. This year Mom will have to make the rolls - she can do it!

Although plans have changes, it will be a nice Thanksgiving holiday with my children here and good food. We have been very blessed this year and I have a lot to be thankful for.

I'm especially thankful that I have the gift of the Holy Ghost and know that a calm peaceful feeling is a prompting from the Holy Ghost. I just need to recognize it earlier. I am safe and not out on those dangerous roads. I'd rather be safe then sorry.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your families - especially my Family. I love you all!

Seminary Thanksgiving Devotional

Friday November 19th Brady had a seminary Devotional. He did it on Job from the Bible and being grateful for the things we have.

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes senses of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. --Melody Beattie
These were the cute turkeys I made for his Seminary Class devotional.

Here is his devotional - he came up by himself (I made him).

(Ask the class if anyone knows the 9 B's)

• Be Grateful
 Be Smart
• Be Clean
• Be True
• Be Humble
• Be Prayerful
• Be Positive
• Be Involved
• Be Still
Who gave us the B's? (President Hinckley)

Should we obey church doctrines given by Prophets? (Of course)

What is the first B? (Be Grateful)

Since Thanks Giving break is right around the corner, what do you think my lesson is on?


This next quote is from the Lord, it is found in D&C 78:19. He said:
"And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more."


One of the things that I love to see are God's promises at work. Thankfully, I know a good story that has this promise fulfilled. (Read Job 1:1-3) (then Job 1:6-12 and recap).


• Servant comes and tells Job all his oxen and dinkies were stolen by thieves and all his servants working there were slain.

• Then another servant comes and tells him that a ball of fire came out of the sky and killed all your sheep and servants working in that area.

• Then another servant comes and tells him that some other robbers came and took his camels after slaying those servants.

• Then another servant comes and tells him that as he was out here, and his family was feasting in the house, a great wind blew down the house and killed all of his family.


After all that has happened, what do you think Job does. (Give a wrong example) (Read Job 1:20-22) After that, the rest of Job is pretty much how things only went downhill from there, but he was never ungrateful and never foolishly blamed God.


Now who can remember the promise that the Lord gave about being thankful? (If you're thankful, the things of this earth shall be added unto you) So what do you think has to happen to Job for the Lords promise to be fulfilled? (He has to be given an increase).
(Read Job 42:10-17)

I know that the Lord does fulfill his promises and that if we are thankful, and grateful for everything that the Lord does for us, he will give us more then we could ever ask for.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Canceled Flight

We planned that Brady would fly into the Pocatello (Eastern Idaho) this week to spend extra time with family for the Thanksgiving Holiday (since I am working).  He doesn't have school all week and we thought he would have more fun spending time with cousins, then sitting around here. I will be driving up Wednesday to spend the holiday with my family.

There isn't a direct flight into Pocatello or Idaho Falls from Boise. The flight had to go through Salt Lake City and then on to Idaho Falls.

Brady was scheduled to arrived in Salt Lake City around 3pm today and was suppose to leave at 4:50pm to Idaho Falls.

The Flight was CANCELED and he is stuck in Salt Lake City. BUMMER!

Thanks goodness his father lives in Salt Lake City.

We are trying to get him out on a flight this evening to Pocatello since nothing is available into Idaho Falls.

Unfortunately it leaves at 9:50-10:45 this evening. I hope it doesn't cancel.

More hours to sit in an airport waiting for the flight. If it is canceled, at least Maurice can get him for the night. Poor little Brady!

This is such a Bummer!

Update: He made it! The flight left at 9:50 pm as scheduled... It's been a long, long day. It is hard to ask family to venture out on the terrible roads and weather to pick Brady up at the Pocatello airport. Thankfully, Cindy and Kelly will pick him up from the airport at 10:45 pm and let him stay with them tonight. They are the best!

I've been a nervous wreck all day long!! It was nice to know he would be safe in any outcome that happened.

Now, I just hope the roads are clear by the time I leave on Wednesday and that I make it to Pocatello OK and back to Boise. I hate snowy weather and icy roads! So far it looks like it will be super cold, but the storm should be over by Tuesday night through next Sunday. At least I won't be traveling in bad weather and hopefully the interstate will be cleared of snow and ice by the time I start driving.

Honestly....it's times like this when I wish I had a husband to lean on AND let drive - ha ha! Oh the joys of being single ;-)!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Service To Others

"By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another" John 13:35
 Brady was busy doing a lot of service this week. Saturday morning he woke up bright and early at 7am to join in "Rake up Meridian" and didn't get home until 11am. I am happy for his willingness to give up a Saturday to help others.

In the Strength of Youth handbook, it says:

"Service to others is one of the most important characteristics of a disciple of Jesus Christ. A disciple is willing to bear other people's burdens and to comfort those who need comfort. Often Heavenly Father will meet the needs of others through you.

At 12 noon he left to help out a Boy Scout Eagle project at Meridian Elementary School.
They repainted things in the parking lot, the drop off zone and playground. He didn't get home until 4pm. He worked hard Saturday.

I am glad that he is willing to do service. On Wednesday night, he was giving service by raking lawns in the neighborhood with our church's young men's youth group.
The Strength of Youth handbook also says:

When serving, look to the Savior as your example. Although He came to earth as the Son of God, He humbly served those around Him.

As you devote yourself to serving others, you will draw closer to Heavenly Father. Your heart will be filled with love. Your capacity will increase, and your life and the lives of those around you will be blessed.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Book Review: The Dickens Inn Series Conclusion AND Cinderella

Lately I have been having a HATE relationship with the TV.  Instead I am in a "listen to music" and "read" mood.

The last 2 books from the Dickens Inn Series by Anita Stansfield have been sitting by my bed for a couple of months. I decided it was time to get them read.


For me this series is about forgiving yourself for past mistakes. I think Satan is very deceptive in making us feel bad about ourselves, so that we don't move forward. It's easy to think "I have made too many mistakes in my life compared to others" and that "I am not worthy of forgiveness or blessings". When we continue to beat ourselves up, Satan wins because we don't live our best life and move forward.

I am thankful to know that we ALL struggle with certain things. I am also comforted to know that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, my sins are forgiven when I repent and try to do better each day. I am glad to have the knowledge that I am a daughter of God and He loves and blesses me.

That is what this series is for me...forgiving ourselves and moving forward.... These books are uplifting for me, I loved them.

Book 4 was probably my least favorite in the 5 book series. I liked it and it was good to see that most people struggle with individual challenges.The book seemed a little slow.  There was a group of women that stayed at the Inn for a get away together. They were able to support each other in the trials they were going through. They helped each other keep a positive attitude so they knew they could tackle and overcome their individual trials by being there for each other. Isn't life always easier to endure when you have a listening ear from dear friends and family?
The other obstacle explored  in the book was about Chas and Jackson preparing to go the the temple to be sealed together and have their children sealed to them. They had to overcome challenges Satan threw at them as he made them feel unworthy for this great blessing. The theme is overcoming trials and challenges to obtain gospel blessings.

 Here is the review of the book:

Dickens Inn, Vol. 4: Tranquil Light

When a group of friends reunites at the Dickensian Inn bed-and-breakfast, little does Chas realize that the promises of a blessing are about to be fulfilled. As these women share their tender feelings and innermost secrets, the words of Charles Dickens take on greater significance for them— The pleasure of a generous friendship is the steadiest joy in the world.

But even as these heartwarming events unfold, a secret from Jackson’s past threatens to sabotage the happy life he and Chas have created together.

Jackson finally turned to look fully at his wife. . . . He tried to form the words to tell her about his relationship with Serena and all that he was feeling upon realizing that she was dead. . . . He’ d believed his past was put away. He’ d believed that his skirting the truth and omitting facts had been sufficient in his relationship with his wife. . . . Now it suddenly felt like he’ d sinned against her.

Will Jackson’s doubts and guilt jeopardize the plans he and Chas have made to be sealed as a family for all eternity? Is their love strong enough to overcome the painful shadows of the past?

Beloved, bestselling LDS author Anita Stansfield delivers a startlingly soul-searching and richly romantic story that resonates with emotional truths and captures the essence of the meaning of redemption. Tranquil Light is a triumph.

Book 5, Every Graceful Fancy... I LOVED this book!! It was the best book of the 5 for me. I pondered it for several days - trying to understand why it effected me in just a warm light. It may be the Cinderella theme. I LOVE Cinderella stories, since I was a small girl. Every year I would watch Cinderella and cry and cry for that poor girl and then she was swept away by her Prince Charming. Always my dream - to find my Prince Charming and have a fairy tale life.  
When I came home from work that day after pondering the book and the Cinderelle feeling, I checked the blogs I follow and the first blog I read was "One Shoe Can Change Your Life". I tingled! She wrote everything my heart was feeling as I read the book and pondered it.

This is a quote from the link above - which you should read:
"Fairy Tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten".

An answer to a silent prayer that she wrote this blog on this day? My feelings were very tender after reading her blog that day. It is inspiring to know how we touch each others lives - even when we don't know it.

Also there was another post I read next day from a divorced/single mom I follow called The American Homemaker. It was about Cinderella too - wow! It must have been in the air.
She has a sign in her house and it says:

"It's Never To Late To Live Happily Ever After"

That is a great saying for me too - a divorced woman who failed at "living happily ever after". Isn't there always a hope of "living happily ever after". I believe in fairy tales and Prince Charmings and 2nd chances that there is always the hope that  "One Shoe CAN Change Your Life" !

ANYWAY, back to the review - from the book:

Dickens Inn, Vol. 5: Every Graceful Fancy

What could be more unlikely than a romance between a traumatized and unwed expectant mother and a charming, wealthy, and ambitious young man with philanthropic dreams of astonishing proportions? Acclaimed, bestselling LDS author Anita Stansfield does not hesitate to take on tough and sensitive issues, and has a gift for handling them with wisdom and compassion.


In this compelling conclusion to a remarkable series, the Dickensian Inn once again proves itself to be a place of warmth and welcome — a place where, under the gentle tutelage and friendship of proprietors Chas and Jackson Leeds, the light of the gospel and the miracle of forgiveness change people’s lives and bring peace and healing.


Every Graceful Fancy is a story of courage and quiet heroism, a captivating novel about people and the choices that define them. Ms. Stansfield’s gift for creating an engaging story with characters we know and love sweeps the reader along in these pages toward a genuinely satisfying, happy, and graceful ending.


Filled with an artful balance of tension and conflict offset by a tender love story, this final volume of the Dickensian Inn series provides a compelling read, proving that the Inn is indeed a haven for healing and comfort, friendship and unconditional love. A gentle and satisfying conclusion to the Dickensian Inn series. - Shauna, Utah

I really enjoyed The Dickens Inn Series and am sad it is over - especially after book 5.



Monday, November 15, 2010

Motivational Monday - "Warm Fuzzies"

Our Primary is working on service this month. Yesterday, Sister Lange shared warm fuzzies and this video from President Monson. I loved this story during General Conference and I love President Monson!

Our Primary is working on a warm fuzzies, but you can too. Deseret book is having a warm fuzzy party. They are collecting warm fuzzies to be sent to President Monson. You can put warm fuzzies in a jar they have in their stores for acts of service you have given. You can also give virtual warm fuzzies on-line. Here is the link.

Just like the warm fuzzy story, we can start sharing warmth and love by sharing love and service. Can we start an epidemic of love. If we do it to one person and they feel good, then they do it to someone else and so on. This is the way we should start out our holiday season, by spreading warm fuzzies. Starting today, I hope you will share warm fuzzies with everyone you come in contact with.


The Warm Fuzzies Story

A long time ago there was a wonderful place called the Land of the Fuzzies where people were almost magically happy. To know how happy they were you have to understand something about those days.

You see all kids and grown ups had small, soft, fuzzy bags that they carried around with them all the time. They could reach into these bags any time and pull out a warm fuzzy to make themselves or others feel good all over.

People who didn't get fuzzies, and didn't give any to themselves or others, usually shriveled up and were mean and nasty all their lives. But people didn't have to live without fuzzies in those days, it was easy to get them.

If you lived in the Land of the Fuzzies, people might walk up to you and say, "Please give us some warm fuzzies!" You would then gladly reach into your fuzzy bag and put some of your fuzzies into your friends' hands. The fuzzies would snuggle up to your friends and make them feel wonderful all over.

In this land, people felt free to ask each other for warm fuzzies, and they willingly shared their fuzzies. There were plenty to go around, it seemed.

But then trouble began! Bratinella, the Wicked Witch in charge of giving out all the mean and lonely feelings in the world, got very angry when she flew over the Land of the Fuzzies and saw how happy the kids and the grown ups were. "Well, shiver my lizards," she growled. "This will never do. How can I make sure the world is miserable when people are giving each other warm fuzzies?"

Since Bratinella the Witch was as clever as she was nasty, she quickly came up with a plan for ruining those good feelings in the Land of the Fuzzies. On the next Friday the 13th, she got into her princess disguise, changed her broomstick into a magic carpet, and flew to the front yard of the first cottage she saw in the Land of the Fuzzies.

Henrietta, the woman who lived in the cottage, thought Bratinella was a royal visitor and rushed out to greet her. Of course, the first thing she did was offer Bratinella a warm fuzzy. Since witches and warm fuzzies don't mix, Bratinella said to Henrietta that she couldn't possibly take her warm fuzzy.

"In fact," Bratinella said slyly to Henrietta, "I wouldn't dream of taking away your fuzzy when there are so few of them left! Haven't you heard about the terrible shortage of fuzzies?"

"Leaping lollipops!" said Henrietta. Maybe I shouldn't be giving my fuzzies away so freely!"

"That's exactly what I came to warm you about," said Bratinella. "And now I hope you'll hang on to your fuzzies."

Can you figure out what Bratinella's plan was? Do you think it was going to work?

Well, Henrietta stopped giving away warm fuzzies when her friends asked her for one. People noticed her selfish behavior and stopped giving theirs away, too, for fear they might run out. Pretty soon, there were no warm fuzzies circulating around, and people started locking them up so they wouldn't be stolen.

Now people began to get uncomfortable feelings that they had never had before. They didn't know what to do with those feelings. When they got lonely, they stopped going to friends to get cheered up. When they got mad, they pouted and stayed mad instead of trying to talk it out. When they got sad, they even sometimes took a pill, thinking it would solve their problems.

Do you think that their taking pills could solve their problems?

People stopped being generous with each other. And to try and get happy again, they started wanting to own all kinds of things, like lots of clothes or huge cars, or they watched a lot of television. They stopped talking to each other.

When people did talk to each other, they gave each other such uncomfortable feelings that it felt like the opposite of a warm fuzzy. And the opposite of a warm fuzzy was a cold prickly!

Have you ever gotten a cold prickly? Something that someone said to you or did to you that left you feeling really put down?

Since the warm fuzzies weren't being shared what do you think the Land of the Fuzzies should be renamed? Do you think Bratinella's plan worked?

One day, a family moved into this sad land and they were very kind. They just happened to bring some warm fuzzies with them and were quite willing to share them with everyone. Pretty soon the good feelings that they created began to spread, and more people began sharing their warm fuzzies again. Like a flower beginning to bloom, the people began to renew their ability to make each other happy.

And that's the story of the Warm Fuzzies!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Frugal Living, week 2

I spent $45.72 this week
OK, this wasn't my best week for being frugal. Bad habits are hard to break. The reason I hate to go to the grocery store is because I impulsively purchase items. It is rare that I leave a store without spending $100. This is the reason I just hate to go shopping.

If I purchased the items I needed, the cost would have been $11.66 with tax $12.36
Overspent $33.36
I am happy that I didn't spend $100 --- but am discouraged that I didn't keep my shopping to the things I needed for this week.

It is even hard for me to coupon shop and lately I haven't been opening the newspaper and browse the ad's - because I spend money when I do it. If I don't look at the ads or coupons, then I don't shop - which means I don't spend money. I know that many people purchase items with coupons for free, but with my small family, I have found that most of the items purchased on bulk sales/coupons don't get eaten and expire quickly. I do use coupons for items I regularly purchase, but that is it.

I am also a brand name shopper. I like certain brands and that is what I purchase. I know that I CAN be more frugal and that is why I am doing this exercise. Day by day I can achieve my goals.
One way to motivate me to stay on track is pulling out this book, "The Tightwad Gazette". It keeps me on track when I read and think about it daily. I also like to read Dave Ramsey's book or listen to his program on the internet when I have time.

I started reading The Tightwad Gazette at the beginning again this week. When Amy (the author) was a young bride and mother, she watched daytime TV that said:

"Nowadays, a family has to have two incomes to make ends meet."
"Nowadays, it is impossible for a young couple to get into the housing market."
"Nowadays, families cannot afford to raise more than two children".

She says she raised her fist and shouted back at the TV: "It is not true, it can be done." And so her quest began.

Personally I know it can be done. I've been doing it all my life. I have always been a single mother doing it on my own. I was married for a short time, but I still was the main support for my family - actually it felt like I had another dependent instead of another bread winner. If I can raise a family on my own - then why does it take a husband and a wife? I have a different perspective, because I've done it, and Amy Dacyczyn did it too.

Amy said her challenge in life became how low could she get their food budget and still have a varied, healthful diet. She made it her personal mission to see how much she could save. In 7 years they saved $49,000 and were debt-free on an income of less then $30,000.

Basically it's not what you make, it's how much you save. What can I do to save more money - not make more money to spend. I've been pondering this a lot this week. I want this!  I want to purchase a gently used car with money down. I want to be debt free, including my house. I know I can do it if I am wise about the money I am spending.

I like this quote: "The safest way to double your money is to fold it over once and put it in your pocket" - Frank McKinney Hubbard (1868-1930)

2nd week into my frugal living, I am more committed than ever. I am sure that I can make it through the rest of November without going to the store for groceries. Everyday when I come home from work, the first thing I do is build a fire to cut down on heating and electricity.

The menu that I made last week worked out well. This weeks menu:

Breakfast: Cereal

Lunch: Sack lunch for Brady and leftovers or soup for me.

Dinners:
Monday: Leftover Sunday dinner which will be meat loaf.

Tuesday: Wild Rice Soup

Wed: Chicken Enchiladas

Thurs: left over Chicken Enchiladas

Friday: Chicken Broccoli Fettuccine

Saturday: Leftovers - wild rice soup, enchiladas.

Sunday - Leftovers.
Brady flies to Pocatello to spend time with the cousins before I can leave for Thanksgiving. The airline ticket was purchased last month. He flies into Idaho Falls one way for $114. School is out for the week and I thought about taking a week off of work. However, when I don't work - I don't get paid. I decided to work - because I know my clients want a clean house for the holiday and family visiting. I will be pulling in houses and working Monday, Tuesday and half a day on Wednesday. They will be hard intense days to get the work done and bring 5 days into 2 1/2, but I will be taking 4 days off to rest and see my family. I am excited for a break and to see my family.

I will need to purchase some Christmas presents before I leave for Thanksgiving. I am committed to be frugal and not get carried away this year - because I really don't need to.

I'm motivated to keep on track. I have been able to save money during the past week - and I feel like I am on track. I just need to stay motivated.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Brady Loves Science!

This is a Chemistry assignment Brady, Amber and KyLynn did, complete with pictures.

A lot of the information is WAY over my head... so you may just want to look at the pictures - ha ha!
Methane Combustion Enthalpy Lab
They wanted to find how much energy was produced by the combustion of methane in KJ (kilojoules).
This is what they did: Method: (Part 1)


First, we set up a Terrill burner, a five gallon bucket almost of water, and a two liter bottle full of water. We then attempted to achieve a "perfect" flame with our burner.

Next, we noted the position of the gas valve at the "perfect" flame setting. We then turned off the flame and then submerged our burner, while still attached to the gas valve, in our five gallon bucket of water. We then carefully placed the mouth and part of the top of the two liter bottle of water in our five gallon bucket of water, making sure none of the water from the two liter bottle escaped.

Finally, we carefully positioned the burner under the mouth of the bottle, and turned on the gas valve so that it matched the position of the perfect flame. The methane from the burner then went into the bottle, pushing out the water, and we timed how long it took for the bottle to fill up completely with methane.
Method: (Part 2)


First, we set up a ring stand with a 600 ml beaker, with 500ml of water in it, and placed the Terrill burner underneath, so that the beaker is about 1 inch above the inner cone of the flame.

Next, we light the Terrill burner and set it underneath the beaker. When it is under the beaker, we start our timer. We then check the temperature of the water roughly every two minutes, then record its temperature along with the time it took to achieve that temperature.

We then got to 80 ͦ C, and recorded the time to get to that temperature.
Copper Plating Lab   Introduction: Wanted to copper coat a piece of metal

Method: 1. Clean the metal  • Physically cleaned metal with water and steel wool
Put into sulfuric acid/water mix (H20 + H2S04) -- Chemical Clean 1
• Put into Hydrochloric Acid solution (HCl) -- Chemical Clean 2 • Rinsed in water

2. Coating the metal • Put nail polish on parts we didn't want copper to coat to
• Attached metal to a rod attached to a magnet (pumping electrons in) with copper wire
• Dropped attached metal in copper sulfate solution
• Waited 30-60 seconds before removing the metal • Rinsed it in water • Buffed the metal with quick light strokes
• Repeated process about 6 times through • Lastly, buff the metal with several quick light strokes until shiny
• Remove the nail polish (done at home or on own time)

Conclusion: (Brady's was the quarter above)

I wish that we had brought our own nail polish, since there were only two bottles in the whole class, I felt rushed, and did a poor job. I also buffed my quarter a little to hard on the final buff, and ended up removing a small portion of the end result that should have stayed on. If I had to do it again, I would have been more precise when painting the quarter and buffed it more gently.
The teacher set the table on fire... What a Crazy Fun teacher. Now that is a way to get the attention of your students! Brady loves Science!

I am thankful that I am a Mom! I love watching Brady be excited about school, science and getting a good education!

Looking a little old?

Sharon posted these pictures a couple of weeks ago and I thought they were a hoot.

I first thought they were a Halloween costume and the make up was awesome.

But, it is actually an  iPhone app - to make you look older.

I swear they look 100 years old! ha ha ha! I definitely took a double take when she posted them on facebook. WOW!
It still cracks me up.


I am thankful for my children who make me laugh out loud!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Potion Center was Featured on Chickabug

Remember the Spell Book printable I did at Halloween located here?  The printable was from Chickabug.

She asked me if she could use my photos and put them on her blog. Sure!!

She featured my fun potion center on her blog at "Witchy and Wonderful Spell Book Photos".

I love being noticed - LOL!

School and Cross Country

 The other day when Brady came home from school, he asked me to take his picture, so he could post a new one on facebook. Or course I was ready! Being asked is lots better then the begging that usually goes on. He is such a fun, cute teenager!

Last week was report card time AND parent teacher conference. I'm a bad mother because I decided not to go to parent teacher conference this year. The reason I decided not to, is because I usually stand in line forEVER and then when I get to the teacher, they look at their records and say he doesn't have any missing assignments and he is a good kid. WELL.....I already know that. We have an on-line parent power school that I check everyday. You can click on the grade and see what grade he received for each assignment. I can see if he gets a bad grade on an assignment of didn't turn it in. With these kinds of tools, and a straight "A" student - I don't have any concerns or reason to stand in line and meet with his teachers.
I DO - however, contact the teacher via email if I have a concern all the time during the year. I don't need a scheduled time when he is doing such a great job in school. Here is his current grades off of power school. Perfect attendance and fantastic grades. I am proud of the student he is.  I need to pop down to the school to get a real report card, since they don't mail them out anymore.

Last week we attended the final banquet and award ceremony for Cross Country.
 These are the coaches for the team this year. Liz, Rusty, Brice and Ms. Muri (I don't know her first name). Young coaches ....  they are the best! They are motivating and made this team a family. It's been such a pleasure being involved in cross country.
When Coach Rusty presents the award to each team member, he highlights their strengths and what a great kid they are. He makes it personal for each team member. He is a great coach!

 The certificate that Brady received. Brady hasn't received a letter yet, which I'm sad about. One more year to try and get one - or I hope they just give him one because he as participated for 4 years. They have to run under 19 minutes to receive a letter. Brady's personal record this year is 19.45 - yea! under 20 minutes was his goal. He has also made a goal to run and train through out the year to drop his time and make Varsity next year. I hope he will be able to achieve his goal, through all his hard work.
 This is Coach Rusty's last year with us. He has left to be with his smart wife,  who received a scholarship for her masters and is in Pittsburgh. They have been apart for 12 weeks while Rusty finishes off this last year coaching our team. He is a GREAT coach. We love him!! It's sad that he will not be here for Brady's senior year - sniffle, sniffle.
 We wish him well as he moves on in his life. We know he will be brilliant in anything he does that involves working with kids - hopefully always teenagers. They need someone like him. He is a great motivator and he helps build up a teenager and lets them know they are great and can do great things.
 Rusty and Brice running a race at Bob Firm in the adult section. I think Brice will be our new coach - at least I hope so. They are wonderful men and we have been lucky to have them as our coaches.

This was the last letter from Rusty:
Of all my seasons at Meridian High, what this season was about was truly creating a team and for many of you, a family. We did that, and as I sit here knowing that in less than a week I will no longer be physically a part of what goes on at Meridian High Cross Country I am really thankful for the hard work and wonderful memories that I will get to take with me the rest of my life. I am leaving something that I love to do to do something more important. You are the best kids at the school. I have been working with the most incredibly hard working and fun young people that I have ever met. I have been blown away by so many of your performances and personal character. I have nearly lost my voice a couple of times, and I have loved being a fan of what you guys do. Remember that there is almost nothing that a good hard run can't cure.


Always a Warrior, Always a Runner

Rusty

They posted a bunch of pictures on our team website. I loved this picture! It's from last year, but I never saw it. I love it! It's been great having Brady involved in Cross Country!


I am Thankful for a free education. I am thankful for people who are teachers and do it well. I am thankful for coaches who motivate children. We are lucky to live in a place where we can take advantage of a good education if we do our part. Those who succeed, value it by studying, participating and doing homework.

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