Monday, June 27, 2011

Menu and Shopping Trip Week of 6/26

I have planned out Sunday-Thursday of this week and will finish out the week when the sale ad is available. I did our grocery shopping last night, with the kids so a few extras made it into the cart. Hmmm not sure HOW that happened :)

B: We ate at camp. We sauteed leftover potatoes, peppers and onions in a cast iron pan over the camp fire and fried up eggs to go with it.
L: Sandwiches & chips
D: The two older kids had a BBQ for youth group and I treated the two younger kids to dinner at Billy McHales on Sundays their kids meals are 1/2 price!

B: Leftover muffins from camping
L: Mini corndogs/french fries or sandwich/chips
D: Grilled chicken, grilled potato/veggie packets, salad
Snack: Smoothies
Activity: Family movie night

B: Eggs, bacon, hashbrowns
L: Tacos
D: Slow roasted sticky chicken, mashed potatoes, veggies and salad
Snack: Popcorn
Activity: Dance classes. The dance studio where my youngest daughter takes classes is offering drop in classes on Tuesdays over the summer. Both of the girls are going to try some different kinds of dance this summer. My youngest son is going to reluctantly give Hip Hop a try :).

B: Biscuits/gravy and sausage
L: Sandwiches & chips
D: Spaghetti, french bread and salad
Snack: Ice cream cones from a local dairy farm
Activity: Library and farm for ice cream cones

B: Cereal or eggos
L: Sandwiches & chips
D: Grilled burgers/hotdogs
Snack: Crackers/cookies etc.
Activity: TBD

I didn't take a picture of my shopping trip but here is our list of purchases for the week:
2- Eggo Waffles $3.98
2- Apple Juice $3.78
2- Whole fryers $7.73 (one is for our family and one for a family we are providing a meal for)
1- shredded cheese $2.50
1# bacon- $5.71
Sausage links $3.49

Total: $27.52
I will pick up our CSA Farm box on Wednesday and that adds in more veggies. We are still using what we received last week as well!

Camping and the Beach

This past weekend we took our first camping trip of the season. While we were only about 20 minutes away from home, it seems like we were a world away. This is our 2nd year making this group camping trip with friends. We reserved a double site giving us lots of room for tents, tables, fire pit and the kids to play. We are just a short walk from the beach which is AWESOME. By splitting the cost among the families that went, we were able to camp for 4 days/3 nights for less than $40! Keep the meal simple and this is a very low cost way to have some family fun!

The beach is one of my families favorite places to be. Especially my youngest son. He can spend HOURS at the beach collecting rocks and shells. The weather was nice but the wind kept it a bit too chilly to really play in the water this trip. Except our last night there. Despite the cold water the kids were determined they were going to swim once this camping trip. So as we sat on the beach waiting for the gorgeous sunset, the kids swam.
One of the best parts of this camping location is the AMAZING sunsets.

This is our first year tent camping. We invested in a new 10 person tent. I was worried about setting it up for the first time. I have to say, this tent was probably the easiest tent I have ever set up! The hardest part was staking it down because the ground where we were was hard and rocky. We are so excited for our many camping adventures to come this summer!

This is a picture of 3 of my kiddo's and my daughters best friend. My oldest son seemed to have been MIA in all of my pictures LOL. I am sure that wasn't on accident on his part.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

First Day of Summer

What a beautiful day! After such a dark, wet winter and spring it was a delight to have such a beautiful sunny day for the first day of summer. I have a two week break between spring and summer quarters at college and hope to make the most of it with the kids.

My youngest son was a little down the other day and when I asked him why, he had a very good point. The older kids had so much going on the past few weeks he hadn't had a day that was about him. So we made yesterday all about him and what he wanted to do. We had originally planned to go bowling (Free with Kids Bowl Free) but we opted to skip that for the outdoors and the park. We took a picnic lunch and enjoyed the park and playground. After the park, we headed to the library to check out books for the week. While we were there, all four of the kids signed up for the summer reading program. We stopped at Dairy Queen for ice cream cones to cool off on the way home. Last night we had lasagna for dinner (his favorite) and ate outside in the back yard. Such a great way to spend the first day of summer!

There are alot of free options out there for activities. We participated in the Kids Bowl Free and the Summer Reading Program at the library last year as well. Even if you do not live in our local area, check your local library to see if they have such a program. The Kids Bowl Free website has a list of participating bowling alleys and suggestions if yours is not currently participating.

We are off for day two of summer vacation! Make sure to take time today to make some memories!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Summer Vacation- Week 1

YEAH summer vacation has finally arrived. This summer, I won't be working but I will be taking 12 college credits. 7 of those credits will be online classes which allows quite a bit of flexibility. However, as with anything, routine is key. We started off the summer by creating a rotating chore chart for the family. By using this chore chart, it will take about an hour each day to get thru all of the daily "stuff". This allows us the entire afternoon for fun!

Along with chores, we have made sure to add in 20 minutes of reading time daily. I feel reading is very important for the kids as well as myself. It allows one time to relax and step back from the insanity of life, along with keep up on a very important skill. As I type this blog post, the two youngest kids are sitting here with their books :). Our local library offers a summer reading program that awards the kids for their reading and best of all, its FREE!

Our menu has been planned for the rest of this week along with fun activities. Here is a peek at our week :)

B: Egg/toast or cereal
L: Leftovers
D: Pecan Crusted chicken, mashed potatoes and salad
Snack: Popcorn
Fun activity: Game night!
Craft: Chocolate covered strawberries (ok not really a craft but hey the kids are excited!)

B: Blueberry pancakes, bacon and eggs
L: Potato chowder and sandwiches
D: Lasagna, salad and homemade french bread
Snack: Free ice cream cones
Fun activity: Bowling and the library
Craft: Cards

B: Omlets or cereal
L: Sandwiches & chips for those at home. Oldest daugther and I will be heading to a soccer BBQ. We will take cucumber salad and snicker salad.
D: Leftovers, steak bites with blue cheese dipping sauce, salad
Snack: Smoothies
Fun activity: Park
Craft: Sun visors

I will post the rest of the week later on!

Graduation, Dance and Summer Vacation!

We made it thru our busiest five days WHEW. Last Thursday brought my oldest daughters 8th grade graduation and her first high school dance. She looked beautiful and so grown up!

Friday was the last day of school for the kids. They are ready for summer vacation and all of its fun! Friday night we had our first big BBQ of the season. We celebrated summer and the 8th grade graduation with family and friends.

Saturday was dance day. My youngest daughter had her spring performance for ballet. She too looked beautiful and so grown up. This is a picture of her in her costume/hair/makeup.

Sunday was Fathers Day. The kids dad doesn't live locally. We went and spent the day at the beach with friends for a BBQ celebrating the day and my friends birthday. It was alot of fun and great to just sit and relax for a few hours.

Today we are on the first official day of summer vacation. We have done alot of planning today. Chore lists, extra projects and menu's. We are also working on our list of summer fun activities. This is going to be an AWESOME summer!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Lots of Catching Up to Do

Every morning as I write my daily to do list, "update blog" is on there. However, as you can tell, that has fall off the list every day UGH. I hope to do better (yes I know said that many times before). It has been an extremely busy month here. Here are a few highlights!

We have decided to not grow a large garden this year. We have had such a very wet spring and the ground is just now ready to till. However, the farmers are so busy trying to get their fields done, tilling the garden just isn't in the cards. I have decided I am totally ok with not having one this year though. We are going to be so busy this summer I am worried it would just be added stress. Instead, we have joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program thru one of the local farms. For a fee, you buy a share in this years crop. Each week we get to pick up a box of produce. Here is what our first weeks box brought us:

We survived the end of the year band concert. This was an all district band concert and was L-O-N-G. The high school band/jazz band are really really good, the jazz band even received a standing ovation! I am excited that next year I will only have to attend one concert per season as I will not have a middle schooler for one whole year **sigh**. In other "music news" and a "proud mom moment", my oldest son lettered in both Band and Jazz Band this year! I didn't even know you could letter in music, one of the things I guess I missed growing up in a very small school. The 2 oldest kids also marched in the Farmers Day Parade with band. My oldest daughter plays bass which is too hard to do with band so she volunteered to help with the flag team instead.

The biggest highlight of this past month was getting to go on a mission trip with my oldest daughter. This is what she chose to do for her 14th birthday. We went to Esperanza, BC with a group of 14 from our church over Memorial Day Weekend. We were gone 5 days, volunteering with a women's retreat. Our team cooked, did dishes, provided child care and worked on a list of maintenance projects. It was so amazing in so many different ways!! We cannot wait to go back again next year!

The two younger kids are so excited for summer vacation. They both LOVE the outdoors. Our summers are full of days at the park and camping which they both love. My youngest son finished up soccer season and cannot wait for fall soccer to start. My youngest daughter finished up fast pitch and is practicing her pitching skills to be ready for next year! This week she will finish up dance for the season as well.

My biggest news is actually winning something! I won a $1000 shopping spree in the Haggen Monopoly game WOOHOO! I will be blogging about how much I can actually get with that win using sales/coupons and hope to use it to well stock my pantry for next fall/winter! School is going really well. This week I wind down spring quarter and then summer quarter will start July 7th.

I really do hope to blog more frequently over the summer.