Saturday, June 29, 2013

Sing, Sing a Song Saturday

I started doing what I call Sing, Sing a Song Saturday.  I'm going to post one song on Saturdays that the boys or I like. 

The song may be part of a movie, a kid's video or just a song we like. I'll try and include why we like it and/or the history of the song/singer.

I heard that Steve Martin was in a band. You know the comedian, but have you ever heard his music? Awhile ago I heard that the band he is in is good. I kept forgetting to look it up though. The band is called The Steep Canyon Rangers.

Steve Martin isn't the sole man in this band. In fact he just steps in to collaborate every once in awhile. Because of his name they've stepped up in the charts. In 2011 the band released its first collaborative record with Steve Martin called Rare Bird Alert. It was #1 on Billboard’s Bluegrass Chart and at #43 on the Billboard Top 200. In 2010, the latest solo record from Steep Canyon Rangers, ”Deep In The Shade”, remained in the Bluegrass Top 10 on Billboard for 18 weeks. They are on tour through festivals much of the time.


The genre is bluegrass. I just love the sound of a banjo in music. It reminds me of when we went to Wyoming a few years after we got married. There was only one station during our 4 hour drive Thermopolis, Wyoming; all it played was bluegrass. I never knew I liked that type of music until that day.

Rare Bird Alert

Jubilation Day

I like when any comedian can make fun of themselves. Steve Martin is a known Agnostic. The Steep Canyon Rangers wrote a song called Atheists Don't Have No Songs.

Go check out The Steep Canyon Rangers now!
Like The Steep Canyon Rangers on Facebook.
Follow The Steep Canyon Rangers on Twitter.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

#Sponsored Post: Toyota Partnered With Food Bank

This post is sponsored by Stiletto Media Blogger Network.

Toyota partnered with Food Bank for New York City to bring food to areas that were impacted by Superstorm Sandy. The program is called Meals Per Hour. It's a team from the Toyota Production System Support Center (TSSC) to share Toyota know-how on how to do more with less.
Toyota sought to increase the number of meals given out per hour. Through small changes, the team was able to increase the number of emergency meal boxes from 25 to 450 per hour! This provided 250,000 meals in the process. Those small changes add up to have a hug impact!

Watch the Supermarché documentary to see the changes Toyota made and why these changes matter. Toyota will donate one meal to the Food Bank for New York City, up to 1,000,000 meals by July 19, for each video viewed.

What are some small changes you can make, that would better you life or your community?

Here are a few of the things I've done:

  1. Keep a Compost Pile- We keep a compost pile year round. Even when there is snow on the ground we make sure there is a bin outside the door to throw our food waste into. It really help make the garbage less smelly, we go through a lot less garbage because of it.
  2. Reuse- I take in Styrofoam from meat packaging to work for my college students to use as paint pallets, yogurt and cottage cheese containers for them to use as water wells for paint water, and when I had baby food around (many moons ago) I'd bring them in for my students to keep paint in. Whenever possible we reuse in our family. You can take that a step farther and buy cloth diapers, cloth sandwich bags and a reuseable lunch bin.
  3. Carpool- When we can we carpool to work. It didn't always work out because one kid wasn't in school full-time. Daddy's work is so close to mine that we carpooled when we could. It saves so much gas!
  4. Wash When Full- I only run the dishwasher when it's full. With laundry I wait until I have more than enough before I run a few loads. 
  5. Be Active- I'm not only not only talking about working out. Also be active in things you care about. We go to the library. Mica is active in their summer reading program. We go to the Y. Daddy helped out at Mica's school with their Lego club. He made sure they didn't just have fun, but learned things on top of that. I blog and blog about topics and things that interest me.
Latina On a Mission is hosting a giveaway in conjunction with this cause. Two bloggers will have a chance to win a $150 gift card and four readers will have a chance to win a $50 gift card. 
Disclaimer: This post was written for Stiletto Media Blogger Network. This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. Stiletto Media Blogger Network did compensate me for writing this post.

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Crazy Horse

In Rapid City we went to see the Crazy Horse Monument.

Right away Daddy got very frustrated with me because I couldn't see the horse. All I saw was an ugly cartoon character that he couldn't see. It looked something like this:

We went inside and watched the film. I was fascinated by the determination of one single family. The sculptor started carving Crazy Horse on June 3, 1948! Many ask why it's not done yet? Well the sculptor refused to hand over the project to the government. He was afraid they wouldn't honor, and make sure it got done the way it should. To be honest I don't blame him for thinking this way. It's of a Native American, not of our president's faces. The sculptor had six kids. All have had a part in the carving. The sculptor passed away. Before he died he told his kids that if they chose to work on it, never to let it go. Otherwise he didn't want them working on it at all. They have kept it going. They take donations such as explosives to blast out the sculpture, and private money donations.

This was all very interesting. We got done seeing the film.

It was then that I realized my camera wasn't in my purse! PANIC! Daddy walked back into the theater, no camera, and I filled a report. I asked Daddy to kindly check where I took pictures of Crazy Horse and the car!

Well there are good people in this world. Way more good than bad. My camera holder was tied to the car door. Someone must have really taken in who we were and what car we came out of when I shot pictures that day!

Daddy and I are now even. He almost lost our train tickets to go home in Chicago and I almost lost our camera. With both situations we were so lucky! Someone turned the train tickets into the lost and found. Otherwise we would have had to pay full price for them.

Back inside we went through their museum. They have a lot of homemade Native American things you can buy. One lady tried to get us to buy a talking stick. Whomever is holding it is the one who's turn it is to talk. I love the idea, but that talking stick would turn into a fighting stick in our house. They had jewelery and homemade dolls to.

Of course things were shown that were not for sale as well.


This is when I could finally see the horse. Do you see it? It's pretty easy to see when the white full study horse is in front of it.

Just to see the scale.


I had an old student on Facebook that was giving away tadpoles. Isaak's been wanting a frog. I figured if anything we could hopefully see their legs grow. If it gets to be too much, we'll just turn them loose at a river or lake.

We have them in rain water. It's great we've been keeping rain water! We have a tank and a bubbler, so they are good to go I hope. I asked a local aquatic shop what to feed them, and got what they needed.

I just love animals/bugs that change so much from their baby state to their grown up state.

Also I'm not allergic to these!

Here's their travel jar.


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

WW: Mount Rushmore {Linky}

I went to Mount Rushmore some when I was a kid. I have an uncle that lives in South Dakota. It's been a long time since I've been there. I never knew about the path where you walk pretty much right in front of it!

The moment we got into South Dakota Mica wanted to see Mount Rushmore. We didn't know if you could go an evening with their parking pass, and come back the next day. The answer to that is yes you can!

I took tons of photos, and went through to edit.

They have a lot of hiking spots, as well as stop and view areas.

This is what we could see at this viewing area. A side view of George Washington.

Here's Mount Rushmore:

When you hike right underneath it, this is what you see.

 Meet George Washington

Meet Thomas Jefferson

Meet Theodore Roosevelt

Meet Abraham Lincoln

 A study done before Mount Rushmore was carved.

Here's a close up of some eyes. They actually have stone pegs coming out of the eyes to give an illusion that there is a reflection.

Here's a few of a trail we went on. We went hiking during the day, and to view the lighting at night. We all love the hiking. With the light show Isaak fell asleep before it began, and Mica kept asking when it was going to start; even after it was going on. I think it's cool to see the light show for adults, but it gets pretty late for kids.

Have you been to Mount Rushmore? 
What's your favorite president?

Mica kept trying to remember all our presidents. He called our current one Marack Obama. Daddy and I giggled.

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If you have time enter my low entry Giveaway Jack the Giant Slayer Blu-ray + DVD + Ultraviolet.

Berry Picking

We've mostly I've been picking Juneberries. They come from our Service Berry Bush. It looks more like a small tree, than a bush. In some ways I wish they were all ripe and ready to pick all at once. They taste good in pies, crisps, muffins, pancakes, yogurt, jelly, jam, and on their own. I've never seen them in the stores though. It's probably because they are such a pain to pick.

These are what I picked last night after swimming lessons. I have bags of them in the freezer. On Friday Aunt Terra and I are going to make Juneberry Jam. I've already made to Juneberry Crisps for our works.

I tried getting the boys to help. This is what happens:

Isaak: "Is this one ripe?" After his picks it. This is with every berry he picks. Then he proceeds to throw grass into the berry bowl.

Mica: "I'm board!" After picking 35 berries. He dances around in circles more than he helps.

Sigh! Someday they will be better helpers with berry picking. Until then I'm pretty much on my own.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Wind Cave National Park

We decided on our trip to take the boys to their first cave ever. I was excited for them.

I was also nervous because Isaak got very little sleep the night before, and it was during what is sometimes nap time. He's 5, but still sometimes takes a nap. Both of our boys have been sleepers. Mica more so than Isaak slept a lot. It was vacation, who needs sleep on vacation anyway? Daddy is one of those go, go, go people. He plans somethings for every minute of the day.

There also wasn't any bathroom in the cave. No food, or drinks either. I has them eat, drink and go potty before the cave experience. Thank goodness I thought to bring their jackets! It was cold down there.

One of the most hillarious parts of our trip (you can see the other comical part here) was this moment.

I told Isaak that the cave started right here:

He looked for the cave to start in the trash can. The tour guide looked at him oddly. I told the group what I had told him. They all laughed.

This is where the cave actually started. Can you believe that a kid used to jump in this hole to roam around the cave by himself? You can feel wind outside the hole.

We of course went in a different way. Mica nominated himself as a leader; when our tour guide asked for one. He drove me nuts! He kept saying to us, "No one can go before me! I'm the leader." One time of that is fine, fifteen times of that is a bit much! I kept telling Mica that if he didn't stop with the leader stuff, I was going to become the leader. Discipline is hard when you are trapped in a cave.

The tour guide told us about the boy who discovered the cave. His hat blew off in the cave entrance; they never did find it. My boys thought that they would be the ones that would discover this mysterious hat. I heard about that the whole time we were in the cave as well.

We asked if any bats lived in the cave. Her answer was that they have never seen any life forms in there. Most of the ceilings looked like this:

It's a really pretty cave. We had a good time overall. I really liked our tour guide. If you go to this park, you do need to visit a cave. Really that is it's main attraction.

Guess who fell asleep once we hit the car? This is a rarity. Yes my boys are good sleepers, but they have never been good sleepers in the car.


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