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Monday, October 31, 2011

Meal Planning For my Family

medival kitchen
Over the years I have employed a variety of meal planning methods. But I have gravitated back to a simple plan time and time again.
I have tried Menu Planning and Preparing the Shopping List to match. – I found I was spending way more doing this.
I have tried freezer cookingthis worked well when my kids were younger and I was at home more with them. I could take out meals early in the day to defrost. Now that I teach part time this no longer works for me.
I have tried the stocked pantry method. – This is probably my favorite way to cook. I shop with a basic list that has room to take advantage of sales. This works well if you can keep your pantry stocked.
But what works for me is to have a loose plan a weekly template for meals. This allows me to have flexibility while still knowing what is for dinner. This allows me to take advantage of any sales, or finds at the Farmer’s Market.  Having theme nights allows me to be flexible in my scheduling, So our busy night is my crockpot night. If I had to choose from the other methods above I would say it is the Stocked Pantry Method.
Here is what a basic week looks like for us.
Monday -  A roast (a natural roast usually in the crockpot if it is hot outside), or a whole chicken. I prefer whole chickens because I will then use the carcass Overnight Crockpot Broth,
Tuesday -  Is our soup/salad/sandwich night. It is also the night that all of us have an activity. By assembling the soup in the morning and putting it in the crockpot it is ready when we get home at 4pm. A quick change for soccer and dance and a mug of soup or a sandwich and we are out the door. As people come home from dance/soccer/church (Deacon G) people can have more soup if they choose or a grilled cheese sandwich.
Wednesday  Is a day home for us, but I like to keep it easy by doing a meatless meal.
Thursday  Is our breakfast for dinner night. For us that means something with eggs, frittatas, baked pancakes, buckwheat crepes, possibly some bacon or sausage. I am lucky in that this is the meal that my dear husband now cooks for everyone. Which is great since being a deacon’s family, Sunday’s mornings are not lazy breakfast days.
Friday is a meatless day too, but we usually go with a Mexican theme theme. With a build your own burritos.
Saturday is a day off from cooking for me. A great day to have our left over buffet and finish up anything in the fridge.
Sunday has seen the return of Sunday Dinner for us. Depending on Deacon G’s schedule on an given Sunday we will be home for mid day. We have a main meal at dinner time (1pm – in our family).  With one in Sunday school in the morning and the girls having youth group on Sunday night it works best for us and has been a nice treat.

Do you plan menus ahead of time? What is your plan for what to put on the table?

This post is linked up to Frugal Fridays

Last minute Green Halloween Ideas

It is All Hallows Eve tonight. But it is not too late to Green your Halloween. Having a Green Halloween is not too hard. It just takes so forethought.
  • Make your own costumes or repurpose old ones. My daughters both made their own tutus, reused their own shirts and leggings. My dear husband reused clothes already in his closet. While my baby boy reused a costume worn by his oldest sister, but reinvented it to be a ninja, while she had been vampire.

  • Walk around your neighborhood for trick or treating, instead of using a car  This saves on gas, carbon emissions while lets you get exercise and get out to meet the neighbors
  • Make your own trick or treat bags. When I was a kid we used to decorate paper grocery bags. I have made these bags for my kids from t-shirts. They took me about 15 minutes total to make. A bonus is that the jack o lantern one glows in the dark!

Friday, October 28, 2011

7 Quick Takes

For more 7 Quick Check out Conversion Diary
I am continuing on my sugar detox. So far not too difficult. I have given up High Fructose Corn Syrup in products, white stuff i.e., white flour, white rice and desserts. Truth be to told, I had looong ago gotten rid of products with High Fructose Corn Syrup in them as well as white flour products and white rice. My family has been eating whole grains for years. I personally do even eat wheat products as I am sticking to a gluten free diet.  All in all kicking the sugar habit has not been as hard/bad as I thought it would be.  I have lost a couple of pounds but most importantly I have lost 3/4 of inch off my waist.  I will soon be starting week 5, Week five means giving up quick breads, all muffins, pancakes and such. Now I am gluten free as I said, but about once a week on our breakfast for dinner night, I enjoy some buckwheat pancakes.  I am not looking forward to giving up my Buckwheat pancakes, so I had some for breakfast today. All by myself.
I had recently consigned some clothes of the kids. Lets face it you don’t really buy clothes for kids, it is more like rent them. When I went back to check out what I had made I was pleasantly surprised. Just about everything I had consigned sold. However, since it was Fall Break and the kids where there with me, I walked out owing $10. So much for making a profit. And did my kids need the things they got? NO, but it is nice to get things that are pretty and fun for a change.
Do you get enough sleep? I am trying to. That is one of the things I am working on this Fall, going to bed before 10:30pm .  I can’t remember the last time I thought sleeping in was 8am can you?
In the category of Kids say the Darndest things. We had our first frost the other morning. My son stepped outside in the morning to do what country boys do. If you don’t know what this is- you don’t want to know. He quickly stepped back inside saying that there were crystals  on the grass. Ice crystals. I am thinking where does this kid come up with this stuff?
Just about everyone in my house has been sick this past week. So my house looks like a tornado has blown through it. I guess it is time for some 15 minute cleaning, to get things under control.
IMG_8877This past weekend my family participated in a “Zombie Run” through the woods, the race was at one of our favorite parks in town. They kids and Deacon G got to run (as was suffering from asthma/allergies/crude) through the wooded trail while trying to evade the zombies. As they were running a wonderful Oklahoma Thunderstorm was rolling in. The clouds and rolling lightening added to the spookiness.

IMG_8905We had our School’s Fall Carnival. Way too much candy and fun for my kids. We are normally a candy free house here. My kids are all grown up, apparently they did not need me at the Carnival, they only needed my wallet, this includes my baby the 7 year old. Once he got his tickets he was off, only to return when he needed more tickets.  I have become Bank of Mom to him. But compared to his Dad he came out cheap. Have I mentioned that the big fundraiser is the silent auction, my husband really likes the thrill of the auction. But we did get some good bargains, for things we will use.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Thrifting is a Verb

I must admit I am thrifty but I still like nice things and after taking some time off from thrifting, Thrifting is defined as (at least to me) digging up treasures at thrift stores, yard sales, and flea markets, I have started to take it up again. I will admit that most of my house is filled with thrift store, yard sale or found items. I stop by thrift stores when I can it is not something I do on a regular basis, but rather on a  I am in the neighborhood basis.

My bargains include not only furniture and furnishings and clothes. Sometimes we use the item as is. Sometimes we repurpose it, making it into something new. Just recently we found some of these great items.


Jessica McClintock for Gunnee Sax Dress $5.99 (will probably be turned into a fairy costume for my petite one)


Pi, found this cute blazer and skirt. The picture does not do the skirt justice as it has some beading on the bottom of it. Total cost was $5.99 for the jacket and $4.99 for the skirt. She has already worn this ensemble to church. (minus my silk scarf)


Peanut found this brand name chiffon skirt at a thrift store for just $1.99, brand new to boot.


This Prize winning rag doll  costume was constructed from 2 thrifted t-shirts.


This apron was up cycled from a thrifted maternity jumper.

Do you go thrifting?
What are some of you favorite finds?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Turning Down the Heat is Good for You

freezeyerbuns (1) 
This will be my first time joining in on the Freeze Yer  Buns Off Challenge hosted by Crunchy Chicken.  What is this challenge? It is to keep your heat at a lower temperature during the winter. Why would anyone want to do that you ask?
  1. Lower your heating bill. For every degree you turn down the thermostat you will save money. Each degree you turn down the heat saves 3 percent of heating costs,
  2. You will use less energy overall even when you warm up your house from a cooler temperature.
  3. Do you really need to heat the house while you are away? Will the dog care? We have three dogs. Two enjoy being outside. The other is under a blanket when it is 108 outside. They really don’t care about the temperature in the house.
  4. People sleep better when a room is cooler. Medical professionals and sleep experts have some variation in what they propose, but in general it seems to fall in the 60 - 70F degree range. However, the majority say that the cooler you can keep it (between 60 and 65) the better sleep tends to be
    Article Source:
  5. Reduce the risk of SIDS. If you have a baby studies have shown that not only do baby’s sleep better  in cooler temperatures, but they are also at a lower risk for SIDS by sleeping in a room that is between 61º F and 68º
  6. When the house is cooler it is more conducive to baking and making soups and chili.
  7. A cooler house lets you use your sweaters.
  8. A cooler house is good for snuggling
  9. A cooler house gives you an excuse to make hot cocoa.
  10. Keeping your house cooler may help you loose weight. Those who keep their houses no warmer than 68 degrees as less likely to be obese.

While this is my first year joining the Freeze Yer Buns Challenge, I grew up in a house that was kept at low temperatures. My parents kept the bedrooms at 55 degrees at night, we even opened windows in our bedrooms to get fresh air. Folks I grew up in New England. I grew up with blizzards and snow during the winter. We are not talking the South. So yes the house did get down to 55 at night. I am pretty sure my Dad would turn up the heat in the morning before he got us kids up. I do know that he stoked the wood stove and got this going again. 
When my husband and I got married we carried on this tradition. When we lived in our little town house we kept the temperature at 65 degrees in the winter. I remember my mother in law claiming that we would freeze her grandchildren when they were born.  But we adapted, we worn sweaters, fleece and sweat pants while were at home. My kids have adapted and survived too.  No they don’t wear mittens. In fact they are quite comfortable going out at 65 degrees in shorts outside.
Now living in Oklahoma we have what I like to refer to as bi-polar weather, no that is not a reference to the North and South Pole. It is a reference to the fact that we arrive at our average temp not the normal way, but rather by having our temperature be 10 degrees above normal on Monday and 10 degrees below normal on Friday. Thanks to this crazy weather we often go until nearly Thanksgiving before turning the heat on.
Do you like to keep your house toasty in the winter, or would you like to join this challenge? You can join up with others on The Freeze Yer Buns Off challenge on Facebook.
What temperature do you like to keep your house at over the winter?
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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Up Cycling for Halloween

Up Cycling a Halloween  a T-shirt into Trick or Treat Bag

Halloween is fast approaching, My kids are making plans on what to dress up for. My 7 year old son wants to be a Ninja, so he can sneak up on people.  My 11 year old who is not too old to trick or treat wants to be a fairy.  I am sure these costumes will change about 3 times before Halloween. But I am still making plans for what to do.  I found my self with a free 15 minutes last Friday. I decided to put these too small Halloween t-shirts to good use.


I made Trick or Treat Bags for the kids. When I was a kid my mom would let us take paper grocery bags and decorate them as our trick or treat bags. While I loved this tradition I use cloth bags for shopping. So I decided to make cloth bags for the kids for trick or treating. It was super easy. lemon squeezie as my kids would say. Did I mention it only took 15 minutes to do both bags?

I started by removing sleeves from the t-shirts.

IMG_8263Then I turned the t-shirts inside out. I ran a zig zag stitch down the bottom of the t-shirt to close up the bottom of the shirt and make it a bag. It is times like this I wish I had a serger, but I am still intimidated by them.


I repeated the process with the jack-o-lantern t-shirt. I decided it needed a little bit bigger neck hole so I enlarged it. The nice thing about cotton jersey is that it does not fray, so there is no need to finish the edges.


Now two kids have trick or treat bags. They are excited about how much candy they can put in these bags.


For more great ideas check out Your Green Resouce

ordination 088-1Hi, I am Lisa – The Granola Catholic. I am a wife to a Catholic Deacon and mother to three great kids. I am passionate about Real Food and all things green. You can find my blogging  when I am not playing chauffeur to my kids volunteering, or trolling the thrift stores for my latest thrifty find. You can follow me on Twitter @GranolaCatholic and find on Facebook 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Things I have never Done

I am joining up with Mama Kat for this one

  1. I have never jumped out of an airplane (nor will I ever willingly – They will have to push me out)
  2. Gone Surfing, despite growing up in the Ocean State
  3. I have never eaten Sushi, even though my family eats it and loves it.
  1. I never won the prize for the Halloween Costume Contest at school, but my daughter did IMG_8516
  2. I have never been to the Grand Canyon
  3. I have never run a 5k – though I have hiked it
  4. I have never fed my kids baby food
  5. I have never castrated a sheep
  6. I have never had a cast one (almost said broke a bone, but I did, I broke some small bones in my foot). The Doctor said taping them would be fine, and that martial artists break those bones on purpose all the time,
  7. I have never climbed up the side of my house. My husband and daughter have IMG_8436
  8. I never played a school sport, though I did play soccer.
  9. I have never gone scuba diving, something about being slightly claustrophobic, though I  enjoy free diving, just don’t ask me to put on all that gear.
  10. I have never skied a Black Diamond trail (see the no cast at #9)
  11. I have never been arrested, nor spent any time in jail (except on kids field trips)
  12. I have never robbed a bank.

What is something you have NEVER done?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Kids Need Down Time

Enjoying some Downtime at the Granola Catholic House

We are currently on Fall Break at our house. While for some people that may mean trips, for us it means rest and relaxation. We do have plans to entertain our little ones, but for us it is more about family time and and staying close to home. We have just 5 short days off for our Fall Break, that includes the weekend, not really long enough to get on a plane and go somewhere. But that is okay. Why? Sometimes we just need Down Time, time to slow down, draw in and reflect. Fall is a perfect time for that. If you need to recharge your own batteries check out a few ways to recharge your batteries.  As a busy mom, I know I need this down time. It will help me to recharge my batteries before we enter into  one of the busiest times of the year for us. But I know that my kids need to recharge their batteries too with a little R&R but so do the kids. 

Do kids really need down time? Just like us, so many kids are over scheduled with too many activities. Even though we try to limit kid’s activities there comes a time when they look forward to a night off, or just some time to play and be kids.

According to a recent  report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), "free and unstructured play is healthy and- in fact essential- for helping children reach important social, emotional, and cognitive developmental milestones as well as helping them manage stress and become resilient."
What the study showed is that free, unstructured time helps children de-stress and become more emotionally and mentally healthy. Today, kids spend much of their free time on video games or watching television. Then, they are taxied off to dance, soccer or gymnastics. The problem is, the games, television and coaches are doing most of their thinking for them. Each moment is planned and implemented. And being too busy is stressing them out and causing a rise in childhood and adolescent depression. Children need some time to do “nothing” and let their minds and emotions rest.
So, one of the AAP’s recommendations is that children be given “real toys” like dolls or blocks that encourage them to use their own imaginations in play. No doubt you’ve heard the story of a child opening their presents on Christmas morning, discarding the expensive toy, and playing for an hour with the box. They’re telling us something. I know my kids love to get boxes. So we supply those when we get them.

Children need time to be bored. Part of a child’s learning process requires them to create, engaging in creative play is a learning activity that many children don’t get to have. When children are left to their own devices, they come up with creative games to play. Sometimes having fewer toys is a benefit. When you limit your child’s toys they are forced to be creative with what they have.

Consider this from the book Simplicity Parenting, Think of boredom as a ‘gift.’ … boredom is often the precursor to creativity.  Think of a bridge between ‘doing nothing’ and the sort of deep creative play … The bridge is almost always paved with (the frustration of) boredom. ‘I’m bored.’ Now that is when something interesting usually happens.”

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Reducing Your Risk of Breast Cancer

this is part of my Beast Cancer Series.
  1. Maintain a healthy weight
  2. Consume as many fruits and vegetables as possible. Eat seven or more servings daily. The superstars for breast cancer protection include all cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, cauliflower) ; dark leafy greens (collards, kale, spinach) ; carrots and tomatoes. The superstar fruits include citrus, berries and cherries
  3. Eat organic foods if at all possible
  4. Breast feed. A study published in the July 20, 2002 issue of The Lancet showed that the more babies a woman has and the longer she nurses them, the lower her breast cancer risk. Yale University researchers showed that women who breastfed for two years or longer reduced their risk of breast cancer by 50 percent.
  5. Minimize consumption of omega-6 fats (sunflower, safflower, corn and cottonseed oils), saturated fats and trans fats. Omega 6 fats are pro-inflammatory
  6. Maximize your intake of omega-3 fats, especially from oily fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, lake trout and herring). These are anti-inflammatory
  7. Soak up some Vitamin D I(but not too much) According to William B. Grant's analysis, breast cancer risk could be cut in half by sufficient vitamin D levels. Most fair skinned people only need 15 minutes a day of sun exposure. Darker complexions need closer to 30 minutes. But most people will benefit from a supplement.
  8. Don’t take birth control pills. Women using birth control pills possibly have a slightly increased risk of breast cancer.
  9. Take your Vitamin E. Some studies have found vitamin E to have any protective effect against breast cancer, and many have not, but more recent studies are now finding that it is the form of vitamin E that makes the difference.   It appears that the common form of vitamin E that you find in supplements and in most food sources, alpha tocopherol, is not protective against breast cancer (though it certainly is a very powerful antioxidant and needed nutrient).  But women consuming other forms of vitamin E called tocotrienols have been found to have dramatically lower risk of contracting breast cancer - 50% less risk for women without family history of breast cancer, and as much as 90% for premenopausal women with family history.The food sources of tocotrienols are rice bran, barley, and wheat germ
  10. Minimize your exposure to xenoestrogens. Estrogenic compounds found as pollutants in the environment, and try to minimize exposure to them.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Signs of Fall - Wordless Wednesday Edition

It is starting to feel like fall around here, the temperature is dropping and ....

The Days are getting shorter around here. It is dark when we get up and now it is dark about 7pm
Kids are playing Soccer
Scarecrows, pumpkins and mums are making an appearance .
Trees are starting to Change
Costumes are being created and worn

What are your favorite signs of fall?

Monday, October 17, 2011

Natural Methods for Combatting Fruit Flies

Natural Ways to get rid Fruit Flies
I don’t know about you, but this time of seasonal transition is bringing out the bugs. For us it was so hot this summer all but the hardiest of bugs were about fried. But now we have cool nights(50’s) with warm days (80’s). Perfect breeding temp for the little nuisances. For me, perhaps the most annoying is the fruit fly. Not only do we have a couple of bowls of fruit in our kitchen, we also have a compost crock. So as you can imagine they are swarming. So what can you do to get rid of pests such fruit flies?
  • Put a piece of rotten fruit or cider vinegar into a large, clean jar such as a Mason jar.  The fruit flies will go in for the fruit. Put the jar near the greatest concentration of flies. Place a small paper cones with a small hole in the bottom (like a sno cone). The pointed end should point down(like an ice cream cone).The fruit flies will enter the cone at the top fly down to the bottom and they will not be able to get out. Release the fruit flies outside when you captured several.
  • Put a piece of old, skinless fruit and some wine, or some balsamic vinegar in an empty wine bottle. Cover the neck  tightly (no wrinkles) with plastic wrap. Poke many small holes in the plastic with a fork. The fruit flies go in and can't get out (if the holes are too big they will fly back out).
  • Pour  a cup or two of warm/hot vinegar (can be diluted with half water) down your kitchen & bathroom drains. Fruit flies like to go to warm, dark, damp places.
  • Fruit flies sense quick movement. Approach them very slowly with a moist paper towel on bathroom mirrors, cabinets,or counters
  • Make sure you remove any spoiled fruit from the house. This goes for trash, compost and fruit bowls.
  • Put some basil in the kitchen, bugs do NOT like basil and this will keep them away.
  • Put a household fan near the most vulnerable areas (fruit bowl) and keep it blowing across the fruit. The flies cannot land in a cross wind.

for more information check out these websites
How to get rid of Fruit Flies in the Kitchen
Chow Hound

this post is linked up at Simple Lives ThursdaysGreen and Natural Mama's

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Food Choices and Insecurity

Empty Bowls

This post is part of World Blog Action Day and World Food Day
When I started this blog, I knew I wanted to write about food, Real Food, how food can be both simple and nourishing. I never dreamed that I would be writing about food issues, but some of m most popular posts have been about the problem with food. But I am lucky, I live in a country where I can not only write about the problem with food but I have options. Earlier today I complained “whined” if you will about the food that was available for me at a luncheon I went to. I had understood ahead of them that there would be something that I could eat with my dietary restrictions, Gluten Free and Dairy Free.  Unfortunately for me the lunch was Lasagna and Caesar Salad(with both crotons and parmesan cheese). A perfectly lovely meal but not for me. I am trying to adhere to gluten free and dairy free to reduce the side effects that I suffer from as a result of consuming these foods. Those side affects being allergies, digestive, and psoriatic arthritis.
But I am lucky. I am lucky that I have choices. Many people around this world have no choice about the food that is available or not to them. They are lucky to have food at all. Around the world people go hungry everyday. Worldwide around 852 million people are chronically hungry due to extreme poverty, while up to 2 billion people lack food security intermittently due to varying degrees of poverty. Six million children die of hunger every year - 17,000 every day. That is right people hunger kills more children a year than. That is more than the number who die in a year from the next top five causes of death. The overwhelming majority of deaths of children in the world are caused by under nutrition. Under nutrition is akin to malnutrition, but in this case children consume just enough calories to live but not thrive. Under nutrition  is an underlying cause of 53% of all deaths in children younger than age 5 years.
Many people around the world suffer from what is called food insecurity. The United Nations defines food security as "all people at all times having  both physical and economic access to the basic food they need." For approximately 2 billion people throughout the world, this security is anything but guaranteed. Food security is a complicated issue that is susceptible to many forces.
Causes of Food Insecurity
  • Climate change,
  • urban development,
  • population growth
  • oil price shifts that are interconnected and rarely confined by borders.
  • corrupt governments, this is a problem particular in some African countries. 
  • of over reliance on one crop. When there is a problem with your primary crop you have nothing to fall back on. (Anyone remember the Irish Potato Famine?)
  • income inequality is amongst the worst in the world, with indigenous communities at a particular disadvantage. This happens here in the United States as well as countries like Guatemala.
  • Lack of access to food stores/sources.
  • Lack of transportation. The majority of those without access to adequate food live in what are called food deserts. A food desert is defined as an area with limited access to retail grocery stores, and healthy food. We often think of food deserts as being an inner city phenomena but they are prevalent in rural areas.
Access to food is not only a problem in developing countries but it is a problem in the United States. According to the USDA
  • In 2010, 85.5 percent of U.S. households were food secure throughout the entire year, and 14.5 percent of households were food insecure at least some time during that year. The difference in the percentage of food insecure households from the 2009 estimate (14.7 percent) was not statistically significant.
  • In 2010, 5.4 percent of households experienced food insecurity in the more severe range, described as very low food security, down from 5.7 percent in 2009.
So did I truly suffer today when the meal provided at church was not something that I could eat? No I managed to find something on the table to eat. It was much smaller than what a meal would be. But I did have access to food, there was plenty available for all to eat. Yes it would have made me sick to eat the majority of the food there, but I had options, and I had transportation, I had access to food sources. I was able to drive to a store that had plenty of healthy options for me. For most of you reading this post you have options. You can choose what to eat or what not to eat. You can choose what “diet” to follow or not to follow. You can choose to be a vegan, vegetarian, or flexitarian. We should consider ourselves lucky.
for more information on Food Insecurity check out
Pulitzer Center
Technorati Tags: ,world blog action day

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Kids Need Chores

Kids and Chores
Earlier this week I asked friends and readers on Facebook and twitter about kids and chores. Not surprisingly most believed that kids should do chores, Interestingly many kids did not have assigned chores. They were just expected to help out around the house and keep their room clean.
Julia at  Julie Cache starts  the biggest chores:  laundry and dishes. at age 7 or when they are tall enough to reach the controls.
Nada at MiniMomist starts her kids early. Her one year old helps out around the house. Actually this makes perfect sense, since toddlers readily want to do what we as adults do. They are also genuinely helpful.
Heidi works and lives on a farm and her girls have always helped out.
Now my kids do chores around the house plus theoretically  keep their rooms clean.  But what about the rest of the house? My kids help there too. In order for our house to run smoothly they must. Even though I work just part time teaching I nonetheless am out of the house when teaching. And besides that I am not the maid around here. My job is to teach my kids how to do these jobs so they can grow up and be enabled to do them for themselves. Not show up at college without prior knowledge of how to use a washing machine.  .
Chores Teach Kids
Having chores teaches kids.
  1. It teaches them if no one feeds the dog the dog will not be happy.
  2. That if they do NOT get their clothes to the laundry room they will not have their favorite shirt when they want it.
  3. That they will have to clean up their own messes
  4. Having chores teaches kids to responsible.
  5. Having chores teaches kids basic household management skills, how to do laundry, dishes, etc.
  6. Having chores teaches kids that they can do things for themselves, like make their own lunches
  7. Having chores teaches them that if they leave a job undone it does not go away
  8. When kids have chores they learn that a clean house means you can have friends over (from my 7 yo)
How do I get my kids to help Around the House?
  1. I ask them to help. I let them know what jobs need to be done and ask them to do the job in the room they are responsible for (more to come on that later)
  2. I tell them to do their chores.
  3. We set aside time to do specific chores such as making school lunches, putting laundry away, or picking up the living room
  4. For Special outside jobs I may offer a one time only payment. This works real well when the want to buy something.
  5. I set a timer and we do 15 Minute Cleaning.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Save your Boobies–Breast Feed your Babies.

Breastfeeding and Breast Cancer
One of the biggest reductions comes from a subject that is not mentioned much in all the publicity about Breast Cancer, Breastfeeding. In the July 20, 2002, issue of The Lancet  researchers showed that the more babies a woman has and the longer she nurses them, the lower her risk of breast cancer  The researchers also looked at how breastfeeding and pregnancy would affect the risk of breast cancer if women in developed countries had the same number of babies and breastfed them as long as women in developing countries. They found that the risk of breast cancer would be cut by more than half and that almost two thirds of the reduced risk was due to breastfeeding alone.  Not only does breast feeding reduce the mother’s rate of breast cancer it also has the same affect on the infant daughter. A 1994 study showed a 25% lower risk of developing both premenopausal and postmenopausal breast cancer for women who were breastfed, even if only for a short time when compared to their peers who were formula-fed as infants. That's a significant reduction in risk.
So, why isn’t Susan G.Komen talking about supporting more moms in breastfeeding to lower the cost of breast cancer? (Here is what they say on their website - Although data are limited, breastfeeding for less than one year may also modestly lower breast cancer risk.) Why are more doctors telling women to breast feed to save their boobies?  What do you think?
Even if you have several pregnancies and breastfeed each baby, you may still develop breast cancer. Having breast tissue alone puts you at risk of breast disease. (My ob./gyn who was a male got breast cancer) Keep doing your monthly breast self exam to check for changes in your breasts and if you are over 40 get regular exams by your doctor.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

A day in the life (sort of) here at our house
These pictures were all taken in one day, Though not by me, All of my children took turns stealing borrowing my camera. I think it might be time to get them camera's of their own. The only question is what is a good starter camera for a 13 , 11, and 7 year old?

IMG_8522We left the house in the morning knowing it was well guarded
IMG_8523and headed to go play/coach a couple of soccer games. After some lunch at the soccer field we headed to the big city (Tulsa) for some Art and Culture at our favorite museum. The Fall family Festival was taking place in the gardens.
We even made it inside the museum today, to  visit some of our favorite pieces of art.
After leaving the Museum we took some time to stop by the Monastery and visit Father Kirby and Brother Seraphim.


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