Friday, June 22, 2018

Random Tid Bits

  1. On Isaak's last day of school he came out hopping. His teacher was laughing and said, "If I could record this to look back at different times of the summer I'd be happy." I knew exactly what Isaak was doing. He's had this goal of standing on one leg longer than anyone else to beat out the person in the Guinness World Book of Records. Will it happen? No. He gives up after about 30 minutes every...single...time. 

  2. We finally took my mom out for Mother's Day. Ya a little late, ya think? One sister was out of town, and my parents went out of town as well. I always feel like we should just celebrate early in the month. Then we get it knocked out before school ends. Everyone gets busy. We could just celebrate Mother's Day, Father's Day and my birthday in one shot, but no one but me likes that idea. They all like celebrating Mother's Day and Father's Day separate because they deserve that time. Somehow my birthday gets skipped, but I don't care. I could sulk and say, I don't deserve that time? I'm the one that would like to lump them into one big meet-up.
  3. I did get some use out of that 30% off Khols card. Travis got 4 or 5 shirts there. I made him try on a taco shark shirt just to get a good laugh. We all laughed, including the lady waiting for her son to try on shirts. 

  4. We only had Isaak with us shopping. Travis and I were both thinking, This is going to be wonderful shopping with just one kid. Mica was busy volunteering at the library. Isaak was a talker! He never shut up, and was in one of those extra goofy moods! Then Isaak stool Travis' hat to wear backwards, and proceeded to talk in an annoying voice that sounded a bit like Sponge Bob Square Pants. So much for the joys of shopping with one kid. At least he's cute in the picture.

  5. Back to shopping with my sisters...

    I had one stop I wanted to go on. Shhh....don't tell, but I like to shop on my own without them.

    Here's the deal:

    I bought 4 spools of thread for this art project I was working on. I had no idea what color of gold I needed. I didn't have the project with me, and I was across town. The thread was 50% off. Guess how much it was for all that thread? $25.25! My mouth dropped across the floor. I'm the girl that buys the cheap-o thread at the Dollar Store. Seriously! $25.25 for 4 spools of thread, which would have cost me over $50 had it not been on sale! I could get a whole kit that had just about every color of the rainbow + black + white + needles + a case for $15. I was beginning to think it was real gold, for that kind of money!

    I literally went home, picked out the thread, and sewed 2", and that's ALL I USED. It's the top of the mason jar - only the gold. Not the black shadow, or white highlight stitching.

    I wanted to return them all. I said, "I need to figure out how to get this to look like I never used it." My older sister, "That's not right. You used it!" Me, "I know, but barely. This crap is expensive!" Mind you her family has enough money to go on expensive trips. No ours! There you have it, she pulled the guilt trip on me. I know she was right. But...I barely used it, wouldn't use it again, and didn't want to spend that kind of crazy money on thread.

    I went to the fabric store on my own, and returned it all. No questions asked. So it was morally wrong, but dang it. I remember when I went to college a teacher said, "Buy a book, use it for the references, don't mess it up, and return it." This was prior to the internet to use images for references. There you have it folks, that was just as bad as what I did with less than 2" of thread. Have you ever returned something slightly used? I know everyone's worn a shirt, found out they didn't like it as much as they did when they were in the store, and returned it. 

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Camp Invention @InventorsHOF

I so excited about the first camp we signed Isaak up for. It's called Camp Invention. 

From their website: Camp Invention is one week in the summer where your child’s creativity, innovation, and problem-solving skills are challenged and developed in fun and exciting ways. Our top priority is to inspire future innovators and build their confidence in the natural ability to dream and create.

We were sent an email to save things we would typically throw away/recycle. We saved paper towel rolls, caps, plastic, meat trays and more.

Anytime a child of mine is in a new camp I get nervous. What if he doesn't fit in? What if he gets scared that Mica isn't with him? What if he gets lost? What if it becomes a hassle to get him there, and pick him up?

Dropping him off was so easy! They literally had a staff member waiting outside the door to get him. The camp didn't start until 8, but they'd let you drop them off as early as 7:30. I never was late to work.

Isaak walked in with wide eyes. There was stuff everywhere that kids could use to build things. Some stuff the staff already had. Then kids would add to it. There were robotic dogs, and Isaak had to add fur, and he choose to make it a collar and chain.

They gave him sticky hands to fling on the wall to try and get paper down that were taped to it. 

They had obstacle courses where the had to do this or that, and at the end had to take apart a toy with a screw driver. 

They learned about batteries and lights. 

I think Isaak was a little bummed when it was all over. 

It was a first sign-up, first get into kind of camp. I'm glad we hopped on it! 

One of the best parts is it was free. I also loved that it was at a middle school, so Isaak got a feeling of what that's like. It was at Alice Buffett Middle School. Alice Buffett is the daughter of Warren Buffett, if you've heard that name. They get a lot of donations at Alice Buffett, and would love if Isaak could get in there. We'll see, it's kind of hard to get into it. 

Are your kid(s) in any camps? Mica's getting a little old for camp, but we have the boys registered for a science camp and an outdoor camp.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Rainrop Men Garden Shoes

These Raindrop Garden Shoes are perfect with all the rain we’ve been getting. In Omaha it's been raining for a week now. It's rained more now than it did all spring. It turns summer tomorrow!

They come in 6 different sizes:

  • 7
  • 7.5
  • 8
  • 8.5
  • 9
  • 9.5
So they won't fit my Dad that has 15 AAA shoes, but they do fit Mica.

He likes that they breathe, are easy to slip on and off, and are waterproof.


    • Black with beige bottoms (the ones we got to review)
    • Blue with white bottoms
    • Black with yellow bottoms
    What style would you pick? I like the sporty look of the black with yellow, but felt like blue and black with beige would be more practical.

    Where to Get Them:

    You can get them on Amazon Prime for between $9.99 to $19.99.


    They have holes all over. I don't the fact that they are breathable. No foot smell. No chance of foot fungus. Ewww!

    What kind of shoes do you like to wear in the summer?

    Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for a discount. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

    Alex and Me Blu-ray #Giveaway

    Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I wrote about in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.

    Get ready to fall in love with Alex & Me!

    It is an inspirational tale for the whole family!

    About the Film:

    Soccer superstar Alex Morgan scores her movie debut with Warner Bros. Home Entertainment in the full-length feature film Alex & Me on Blu-ray™ & DVD June 19, 2018. Also featuring Nickelodeon star Siena Agudong (Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn and the upcoming Star Falls), the film follows the uplifting story of a young female athlete who learns how you need passion, determination and self-worth to make all your dreams come true.

    Teenager Reagan Willis (Agudong) has one dream – to play soccer like her hero, Alex Morgan. Her bedroom is a shrine to all things Alex, including a life-size poster of the Olympic gold medalist. Yet in the Willis house, Reagan lives in the shadow of her prep football superstar brother, Logan. When Reagan fails to make the cut of the premiere local soccer club team and is humiliated by her rival Claire, she’s certain her ship has sailed. But after accidentally hitting her head, Reagan’s poster of Alex Morgan suddenly comes to life and everything changes!

    An Olympic Gold Medalist and FIFA Women’s World Cup champion with a penchant for goal scoring, Alex Morgan is one of the top soccer players on the planet, currently playing forward for the United States Women's National Team and the Orlando Pride of the National Women's Soccer League. Away from the field, Morgan is also an accomplished author of “The Kicks” series, a collection of chapter books filled with wonderful messages of empowerment for young girls. The first The Kicks book, “Saving the Team,” debuted at No. 7 on the New York Times Best Seller list.

    Who's in the Film:

    Eric Champnella (Thunderstruck, Mr. 3000, Eddie) wrote the Alex & Me screenplay and is also making his full-length feature debut as the film’s director. Alex Morgan serves as co-producer. Producers are Mike Karz (Blended) and William Bindley (Mother’s Day). Todd Williams (The Illusionist) is the executive producer.

    Jerry Trainor (iCarly) also stars as Nigel, a less-than-reliable youth soccer coach, alongside Matt Cornett (Bella and the Bulldogs) as Reagan’s brother, Logan; Colin Critchley (Legends of the Hidden Temple) as Reagan’s soccer-playing pal, Ben; Chuiti Tiu (Nashville) as Reagan’s mother, Ann Wills; and Jim Klock (True Detective, Scream Queens) as Reagan’s father (and biggest fan), Joe Wills. Jessica Treska (HBO’s upcoming Sharp Objects) plays Reagan’s arch-rival, Claire.


    Alex & Me will be available on Blu-ray (SRP $24.98), DVD (SRP $19.98) and Digital (SRP $14.99).

    Win It!

    The giveaway will run through 6/30/18. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to winning email or a new winner will be selected.

    *This is a Rafflecopter giveaway open to residents of the USA. Each household is only eligible to win Alex & Me Blu-ray via blog reviews and giveaways. Only one entrant per mailing address per giveaway. If you have won the same prize on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.*

    Tuesday, June 19, 2018

    WW: Do Old Buildings Talk? {Linky}

    I don't think buildings really talk, but they all have personality.

    A few weekends ago we went walking around downtown to see some art openings. I think some of the buildings alone make me feel inspired. I could just spend time there just taking photos all day long.


    What inspires you?

    Friday, June 15, 2018

    Random Tid Bits

    1. I never spent my Christmas Bonus until now. I decided to use it to stock up on groceries. The boys have been eating like crazy! They take turns with growth spurts. At the beginning of summer break it was Isaak that was starving, now it's Mica. Mica's the same hight as me now.

      Those that have kids, do you feel like you spend way more in the summer on food than any other time during the year?

    2. Speaking of food...

      I was talking to Travis about garden mulch.

      All the sudden Isaak pipes in to say, "I really love the taste of mulches."

      Curious as to what Isaak thought mulch was I asked, "What is mulch Isaak?"

      Isaak said, "That brown stuff in a cup that comes up from the freezer, that we have to thaw out before drinking it."

      I said, "Isaak that is called Good Rich malts. Not mulches. Mulch is the stuff that's in the garden."

      He said, "Oh! Well I like malts then." On my grocery store run I bought some Good Rich malts." I so want to refer to them as "Mulches". 

    3. Mica's a great kid for the most part. He's always gotten A's in school, but man his lack of effort in tasks at home is more like a D-. I would say it's an age/stage thing, but Isaak's always put in pretty good effort when it comes to home chores. 

    4. Here's how Mica loads the dishwasher when there was all that space...

    5. We went to visit my parents. They just got back from a week long trip. Isaak starts feeling my Mom's arm fat and says, "Wow you're so muscular!" We all had a good laugh! 

    Thursday, June 14, 2018

    Library Volunteer

    Mica's continuing to volunteer at the library a few hours a week. He collects zip codes for their Read to a Dog Program.

    The teacher in me already had to get after him. We went to pick him up, and he was on his cell phone checking something. I said, "Mica you're at work. No cell phone!" He said, "Mom they don't care." I said, "I do. Get off it!"

    Otherwise I think volunteering is good for him!

    The boy has already read his Summer Reading hours. I'm making him wait to cash in for prizes until Isaak gets there. 

    I signed the boys up for a few things through the library. 

    Babysitting Class:

    Mica took a 2nd Babysitting Class. He wasn't too excited about joining in because he took it last year. I said, "You may learn something new. A refresher is good for anyone." 

    He came out of the class thanking me. He said he did learn a lot. I guess the girl that headed it up was a different person than his other class. 
    • He learned different games to play with different ages of kids. 
    • They talked about how a lesson is more important than discipline. Example: Instead of taking something away, explain why what a kid did was bad. Then they know not to do it again. That's not to say that they shouldn't be disciplined, but have a lesson first.
    • He learned more First Aid. He's not certified with it, but knows how to deal with certain situations. 
    Cupcake Decorating Class:

    I kind of thought Mica may not want anything to do with cupcake decorating, but Isaak wanted to take the class when I brought it up. They could choose between just frosting and sprinkles, making a rainbow with an Airhead Strip of Candy, or a Sunflower with the center being a small Oreo. 

    Isaak picked the Sunflower. He was happy to eat it afterwards.

    We have a few more classes underway:
    • Didgeridoo for Isaak
    • Teen Movie Night (Possibly)
    • Chess (Possibly)
    • Ukulele Lessons

    I say possibly because some we didn't have to sign up for all the classes. It's more like you just show up. 

    Are you active with your public library?

    Wednesday, June 13, 2018

    Soeos Authentic Szechuan - Red Sichuan Peppercorns Review

    Sichuan peppercorns' are not hot like black, white, or chili peppers. 


    My family noticed it to have a slight lemony taste and smell.  It's great for people that like that lemony taste. I do, so it worked for me. It was a bit strong for the rest of my family. Maybe we just used too much.

    Pacific Rim Stir Fry:

    Start 4 servings of rice, or noodles.

    Cook in Oil:
    • 2 medium carrots
    • 2 cups of broccoli
    • 1 bell pepper 
    • A handful of split peas 
    Once they are cooked, set the veggies aside, and add in a package of skinless/boneless chicken breasts - cut up in bite sized pieces to cook.

    Make the sauce and whisk together:
    • 1 Tablespoon turmeric
    • 1 teaspoon dried basil
    • 1/4 cup chicken broth
    • 1 Tablespoon Red Sichuan Peppercorns
    • 2 Tablespoons Corn Starch
    • 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
    Add veggies back into the pan, and add in the sauce. Stir until bubbly and thick.

    Serve on top of rice or noodles.

    Soeos Authentic Szechuan - Red Sichuan Peppercorns works great in stir fries, and other dishes. I really like that it added a different flavor to the dish we ate. Do you like a lemon flavor? What is your favorite stir fry?


    It comes in different price points. This is $8.35 for 4 ounces on Amazon Prime.

    Disclaimer: I got this product for a discounted price, in exchange for an honest review.

    Label Daddy Review

    Save 20% on Label Daddy labels

    Label Daddy is the number one solution for labeling your belongings! Remember to label all clothing, sports equipment, electronics, and other personal belongings your kids bring to school, camp, sports leagues, day care, vacation, and other places. Label Daddy labels keep them from getting lost or mixed up with others. 

    I get labels for the boys every other year to use for school and camp. Some of their things don't need to be labeled because their school supplies go in a big pile for the whole class to use. Other things do need to be labeled. 

    At camps the boys always need a water bottle. I put labels on those.

    This year I choose to get basket ball labels for Isaak to use.

    The labels turned out great, and Isaak's a happy camper for sure! First camp this year is Camp Invention. We added a label to his water bottle that he needs to take with him every day. 


    I got small all purpose labels. They can go on water bottles, clothing, luggage, folders, and more. There are many sets to choose from! Some sets have labels that vary in size.

    I stuck with their basic design: Basketball. They have team icons, princesses, trucks, emojis, monsters, camp, other random icons, or plain solid labels to choose from. One that I did see missing was all the superheroes that they used to have.

    They have different colors and fonts to choose from.

    They do space the letter different than the preview shows, but they note that in small letters under the preview.

    I think we'll have enough for camp and school. For camp the boys typically use it for just their water bottles, and possibly their lunch bag. For school they put them on folders and notebooks.

    Here are some tips that Label Daddy sent me:
    • Extra Small Labels work great for all garments. Put the label on the tag if possible. It will last longer there. That's where people look if they are trying to return a clothing item to you. If you have a tagless garment, place the label on the tag that has the washing instructions. 

    • When you apply a label use pressure to get the label down, so that it doesn't fall off. 

    • Wait 24 hours before washing a clothing that has a label on it. Again this will ensure it's had time to adhere to the fabric.

    • Label Daddy has a laminated option. What this is for is if your clothing is going to be used around chemicals such as chlorine, sunscreen, cleaning agents, or extreme heat. 

    • Do not apply labels to clothing that has been pre-treated with a stain/water repellent, such as a scotchguard. They won't stick to a "not-stick" surface.

    • Zipper tags are for labeling, not for pulling. If they are tugged on daily a zipper can break. 
    These labels are super durable peel-and-stick washable labels -- they're washer/dryer safe, microwave safe, dishwasher safe and UV resistant! Label Daddy labels are also fun and attractive. You design your own labels! 

    Their exclusive laminated coating gives labels an extra layer of protection and is a must for camp! These labels are made in the USA and shipped directly to you worldwide.  
    Save 20% on your entire Label Daddy order - this is the best discount available anywhere. Use code USFAMILY20 at checkout.

    I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using USFamilyGuide. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 

    Tuesday, June 12, 2018

    WW: Earth Oven Pizza {Linky}

    We visited a spot here in Omaha where they grow their own food in a City Garden called City Sprouts.

    My husband knows the guy that makes Earth Ovens. Travis thinks of him as an artist. He doesn't think of himself as an artist at all. I think it's an art form for sure. It's interesting how different people define art differently.

    Mica got to make a pizza in the Earth Oven. They grew the basil and tomatoes (sauce and sun dried tomatoes) in their garden area. It took about a minute to cook.

    I got a slice. It was good!

    What toppings do you like on your pizza?


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