Custom Youth Game Sheets for a Church Activity

It wasn’t exactly part of my role to design these since I managed the welfare requests in an entire region — and training the trainers about welfare resources and self help groups. But since I had the skills, I helped a Springfield Missouri congregation create this game for their youth. There are different versions for youth brackets, missionaries, college edition etc.

I don’t have the game rules that were used nor did I attend the activity but here’s the sheets! Reverse engineer if you will…

Price is Right Game for youth – MiaMaid and Teacher edition
Price is Right Game for youth – Beehive and Deacon edition
Price is Right game for youth: college edition

A Wonderful Day in Houston

Wait.  Did I actually write that title???  The boys and I took off on a spur of the moment mini trip to downtown to the Zoo on this rainy day.  Bonus:  NOBODY WAS THERE except for us!  We were the only people in the reptile house and then the close encounters building and then the aquarium.  We did get wet for the outdoor dinosaur exhibit (and a little miffed it cost extra – only $2 each, though).  We did get wet from the rain but it was so much better than the usual heat.  None of us are made of sugar and a nice time was had by all!  I will post pictures soon.

We also went down the street to the Houston Museum of Natural Science.  We rode the geovator.  We went through the section that teaches all about oil drilling and we wished there was a new section explaining the latest oil spill catastrophe to us!

All in all – a great day!

Jack’s First Swim Meet

My kids teach me something every single day. Although most days it’s just a new level of patience! Today, though, Jack taught me to not underestimate his ability. He started swim team not knowing anything about swimming and today swam across the pool both freestyle and backstroke – and shaved nearly a minute off his time for each. While I had been worried about him participating because he’d surely come in last (and, truth be told, he only beat one kid), he was concentrating on what mattered most — getting there. He said, “I just got up on that stand and wanted to WIN!” He said he was at the other side before he even realized it so he didn’t have time to think about holding onto the ropes. Nothing like your own kid teaching you to have a winning attitude — whether you win or not! And, yes, that is a marker smiley face on his belly button. Small pleasures, people.

Madsen Cycle’s Cargo Bike

Have you seen these cargo bucket bikes from Madsen Cycles? I want but cannot afford! Maybe after next year’s tax return!!!

Valentine’s Candy 2010


It’s a little gnome army. Cute, huh?!?



Jack’s showing off his candy sweetheart ipod box. Both ideas are from Family Fun online, except I modified the gnomes by sewing the hats instead of gluing them with fabric glue.

The Cheerios Incident

Just last week, we had the Fruity Pebbles incident. After this Cheerios incident, we might have to give up on cereal altogether and start eating more oatmeal! I came out of the shower to find Ben had tried to get himself more Cheerios. When I saw him he had a glass shard the size of a pencil in his hand, rolling it around, so I calmly asked, “Where did you get that???” and then I saw the broom. He was barefoot and had tried to clean it up himself. I could hardly be mad at such a sweet effort. It was a miracle we weren’t in the ER that day! He had not a cut, bruise, or drop of blood on him anywhere. We were headed to the church that day to put on a luncheon and I think the good Lord must have wanted us there instead of the ER.

Toothless Brothers!

Jack is currently our toothless wonder but I created this photograph for a stock photo site today. It was just too cute not to share! It’s from last summer but, good memories. Busy with “real” work this week so I’m not getting much time to blog but, that’s okay, I’ll be back soon. Looking forward to Quilt Market in Houston this weekend so be sure to check back for the news and some fun pics.

Last Day of School

I’m extremely sad today. My boys are growing up. No more kindergartner for 2 years (and then I’ll REALLY cry!). Not to mention that my kids are about to wreak havoc on my life for the next 3 months! I absolutely love having them home but — let’s be honest — I’m not going to enjoy cleaning even MORE than I already am for showings, etc. I think we’ll be playing outside. A lot. I think I might pull out some summer plans that we made last year that we never got around to doing for one reason or another. The kids had some great ideas:

– talent show
– visiting an old folks’ home
– plant a garden (we’ve put off too long thinking we’re moving)
– surprise a family with cookies
– study birds
– visit a farmer’s market
– make homemade syrup night (elderberries, anyone?)
– pumpkin patch
– art night at a museum
– bike night
– rolfson track & field
– numbers night (I don’t even remember what this is!!!)
– tent in the backyard
– camping
– dance night
– cooking night
– campfire night
– no tv week
– reading night (okay, so we practically do this one every night)

Not a bad list to start, right? I’m going to aim low – one special thing a week. I can handle that!

Buffalo Diversion While Getting Sod

Some nice person from church has a tiny bit of sod we could use to patch in where we sold our playset a few weeks ago so I drove into Papillion to pick it up. Along the way there was a field of buffalo – with TWO BABIES!!! Two baby buffalo – they were so cute that on the way home, I pulled over to get a better picture (where, oh where is my Nikon D90 when I need it – hurry up and get out of the shop already – did I mention I kicked it out of the car and broke MY SECOND over-a-thousand-dollars camera?). Anyway, I was midway through the street and the big one actually growled at me so I was not brave enough to get any closer. It looked like it would come through that measly barbed wire fence and get me! I’ve never heard a buffalo growl before – and neither should you. Trust me! The video of Jack is just a bonus for his Dad who is still lonesome for us (I hope) in Texas. It was in the car on the way to get the sod.

Our Homemade Valentines

I used the bird template from Martha Stewart, though I can’t seem to find that page now to link to it. I know it’s on her website somewhere!!! The birdies turned out very cute but I like what Cole did with these flocked cardboard cutouts from Hobby Lobby. He glued a cardstock back to them for a message and covered the interior price tag with additional hearts. He’s such a clever kid. I think I will let him do the cards with the kids next year. Everybody would probably enjoy it more!!!

Lunch with Friends

Last Friday (I wish I could repeat this day), I was able to get out with some friends – and their kids – and have a nice casual Panchero’s lunch. Here’s some cute pics of the kiddos – they’re growing too fast! Afterward, I got to do some shopping at Sephora. I’m still reeling.

Ben Still Needs Naptime

Well, I wanted to keep Bennie up so he would go to bed on time one evening and around 3 p.m. this is what I found in the family room. I guess he’s just not ready to outgrow his nap (that’s fine by me!). What a kid! He was snuggled up sideways in our red chair-and-a-half. He’s been called a girl twice this week PLUS we were served two boys’ and one girl’s happy meal the other day. I think it may be time for a haircut but I’m not ready. Lili’s hubby, Ron, says he would look like the Wendy’s girl if his hair was red. Yeah, probably. He is such a great kid! He’s just so rough and tough and wears camo so much we never considered he’d look girly in any way!

Apple Treats for Kids


Yummy “candy” centered apple circles!

I have a bushel of apples so I’m getting good at thinking up treats for my kids. We exhausted the caramel apple dip recipe over the weekend and here is another.


Mix 2 T. peanut butter with 1/4 c. uncooked rolled oats and about 1T. honey (or to taste).


Core your apples and stuff ’em with the mixture.


Slice into desired thickness and eat – it’s like having a “candy” center! My kids love this. I used my Pampered Chef Crinkle Cutter today but it’s absolutely not necessary – but cute.

Jack, Oreos & Star Wars


Don took the kids to see Star Wars: Clone Wars and when they got home, I told them they could have sandwich cookies and milk for a snack. They weren’t “real” Oreos but the store brand duplex kind with vanilla on one side and chocolate on the other. Jack started digging in and while only eating the chocolate sides, he excitedly proclaimed, “I only like the Dark Side!” Don and I could not stop laughing. He is a huge Darth Vader fan. Yikes!

First Day of School!

First day of school. First day of all day Kindergarten for Jack [sniff, sniff]. He did not seem concerned at all and was chomping at the bit to get there (thank you, preschool!). The house is much too quiet. Even with Don home from work on vacation! Having said that, I think I could get used to this…