Saturday, August 29, 2009

Healthier Living

A few years ago, I decided that my family needed to eat healthier. We did pretty good, but I wanted to do better. My mom had been on a diet (lifestyle change) that not only left her losing quite a bit of weight, but also feeling a great deal better. She was told that she had high cholesterol and needed to cut fats. Well, even before she changed her diet, she was always eating low fat foods. It turned out that taking away all of the fats in her diet was causing a huge problem for her. Good fats are necessary to absorb vitamins and maintain a healthy cholesterol. Lots of diets cut out needed protien and fats that also help keep your mood good and feed the brain.

I decided that we would just work on taking out of our diet the white flour and sugar. My husband had the hardest time with this. He does not like millet or oatmeal in the morning and the food tasted weird to him. I just decided to persist anyway. The kids were great about trying new things and really began to like the new way of eating. I figured I would start very simply with Brent. Saturday mornings were normally "pancake" days. I began substituting part wheat with white flour and trading out the sugar with ripe banana. That went over pretty well. I then changed that to several different whole grain flours and the banana. It took some time, but he was won over and even when he cooked pancakes, he made them my way.

Now to the present. We are doing pretty well with our lifestyle change. Some occasions are hard, but we have learned to make jut about everything whole grain and sugar free. Brent makes most of the desserts in the family and he has become really good at sugar free and whole grain recipes. The real test came recently. Mailaya had a birthday and really wanted to eat at IHOP. Brent had ordered a breakfast that had mostly meat and eggs and a couple of pancakes. I looked over and he had taken a couple of bites and that was it. I asked him if he was going to eat more and he said they tasted nasty to him, no flavor. SUCCESS!!! The kids ate his pancakes and all was well.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Another Happy Birthday!

Friday, Connor turned 11. Can you believe it? I sure can't. He's such a good boy. Connor has a tender heart, loves to tease, is quite literal and just a joy, most of the time. I have to tell a story about Connor. Saturday, Brent, Connor and I went to town. Brent had a bunch of change in a jar that we decided to cash in. The change machine stopped (needed to change the quarter bag) and so the bank president and a lady who worked there came to fix it. It was pretty fascinating seeing the inside of this machine and how the coins were separated. Well, the lady said that she hated changing the quarter bag because it weighed 30 ton. Connor said, "it does not!" She said something about how she meant that it was heavy. Connor proceeded to ask if she had ever lifted an elephant. She said no. He said, "an elephant weighs about 2 ton." It went on from there. That is Connor for you, so literal. The bank president got a kick out of him. He asked if Connor was a scout yet and that when he started working on the coin merit badge to come in and he would show Connor his huge foreign coin collection.

She's TOO smart for her own good

We have been trying to potty train Mckenna lately. Honestly, she could have potty trained 6 months or more ago, she just didn't want to. I had this brilliant idea, she loves princesses, if I get her princess underwear... So Saturday I bought her princess underwear (unwear to her). She was quite impressed and wanted to put them on immediately. I told her that princesses don't like to get all wet so she needs to potty in the big girl toilet. She did great, no accidents all day. Then we get to night time. I told her that she had to wear a diaper to bed and that if she could keep her diaper dry, she could wear underwear to bed. Kellie put the diaper on her but unfortunately left the underwear on her bed. She woke up yelling, "I clean, I clean." I realized that she had underwear on and it was dry. I then saw that her diaper was dry. "Great!" I thought. Then I noticed that her bed was soaking wet. I know exactly what she did. She removed her diaper so that it would remain dry, pottied in the bed and whala, woke up clean. The good news is that her diaper was dry this morning but I'm still not ready for unwear at night. LOL!!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Can I afford to adopt?

I am a huge advocate of adoption. 4 of my kids are adopted and those adoptions have been the most miraculous blessings of my life. Often I hear the comment, "I can't afford to adopt." Sometimes it seems that adoption costs are insurmountable. The truth is, dh and I couldn't afford it either but somehow, there was always a way. I'm gonna' tell about one way that anyone can afford, adoption through DCFS. The first thing that usually comes to people's minds when they think of adopting through the state is the fear of bringing a child in to your home and having to give them back to the birth parent. I know that fear was high on my list. Even after attending the required foster parent classes I had that fear. Well, I've watched several friends decide to take the risk and try anyway. In every case, a child is eventually placed, permanently, with the family if that is what they want to do. Just this past week, an online adoption friend was placed with just such an infant. They will be able to finalize his adoption in about six months. This adoption will not cost them anything. They will also get help from the state for a while, this includes medicaid until he is 18 years old. Just something to think about if you are wanting to adopt but feel that you can't afford to.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


This is my favorite way to teach fractions, play dough. It's simple and effective. I have the kids roll out shapes (circles are the easiest way to start) and have them make cuts. At first, I tell them how many sections to cut. So if I made one cut down the middle of the circle that would still be a 2 out of 2 pieces. Take one piece out and that is 1 out of 2 or 1/2. We do this with many sections until they get the hang of what a fraction really means. Once they get it, I tell them to make a fraction like 7/10 and see if they really understand. This is great for those hands on learners but for other learning styles as well.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Today Mailaya turns 6 years old. I love my sweet Mailaya. She has a personality all her own. Dh and I met her when she was 9 months old. It was love at first sight. Imagine looking into the deepest, darkest, most sorrowful eyes. The sorrow soon turned to joy and she has been a joy ever since. She had a friend birthday party yesterday and all her best friends were there. She was very particular about what we would do at the party. She was upset because there were pencils and glue and such in the pinata. Her comment was, "pinatas are not for art supplies." Mailaya has a very deep, raspy voice so it really emphasizes what whe says. We love you Mailaya!!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

If you have a little girl...'ve got to check out this site. I do a lot of sewing and cannot make little dresses and tutus for this price. Well, maybe with left overs. Cute fairy wings, wands, hairbows, crocheted hats. LOVE IT!!!