Thursday, June 28, 2007

Iced Tea

We didn't drink much iced tea until we moved to Virginia in 1990. Now there is always a gallon in the fridge and it only lasts two or three days. Last night Jared had some friends over and they drank a whole gallon but, thankfully, I had another gallon cooling on the stove. My recipe is nothing fancy but my family loves it. Jessica's boyfriend, Matt, is coming over tonight and he drinks a lot of my tea also. :-)

I put one gallon of cold water into a large pot. I use a dutch oven that I have and it works great. Bring the water to a full, roiling boil. Turn off heat and add 4 family-size tea bags. I use Great Value brand (decaffienated); I've tried other brands but this is what my family likes; GV brand is also less expensive. Let steep for about 20-30 minutes. Remove tea bags; squeeze out excess tea. Add 1 1/3 cups of sugar and stir until melted. Let cool, pour into a gallon pitcher and refrigerate. If I have lemonade made or lemons handy, I put that on the table so it can be added if needed. Enjoy!

Some people don't put their tea in the fridge because they say it gets cloudy but I've never had that happen. Maybe because it doesn't last but a few days! Making your own iced tea is easy and a lot less expensive than buying it pre-made.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Wednesday at Home

The camping trip was wonderful. The weather was perfect. It was really chilly the first night but I had packed extra blankets so we were fine. I also threw in some jackets at the last minute. Thank you, Lord! Julianne was gone most of the day with friends. She usually showed up around lunch and dinnertime! This year I tried to cut down on a lot of cooking. It worked out well. I loved the little oatmeal cups that I got a Wal-Mart. They were really good and oh, so easy!

I did forget a few things so I started a list of everything I need to take for camping. I used to have one on my PDA but I accidentally deleted it. Time to start over! I'm going to look for cooking utensils, etc. on sale so I can add them to our camping box.

Since coming home I've been knee deep in laundry. I'm almost finished. All the camping stuff is put away; Michael just needs to take it out to the shed. Right now they are on the living couch.

After bowling, we stopped at K-Mart to return an electric pump that Michael didn't need. While there I saw some curtains that I had looked at before--but now they were on sale! They are special light-blocking curtains that are supposed to help keep a room cool. I need them for our schoolroom, which is usually about 5-10 degrees warmer than the rest of the house. I needed six but, of course, they only had five. Anyway, to make a long story, short: I put the five on layaway and the clerk called another store to see if they had one. They did so I'll pick it up later today. Yeah! I'm hoping they will really lower the temps in this room. We have fans blowing in here all the time. I think a lot of it has to do with the computers. They generate a lot of heat.

That's all for today! What's new with you?

Monday, June 25, 2007

AFI's Top 100 Movies

The American Film Institute released their 10th anniversary edition of the Top 100 films last week. I love movies and watch them all the time. I've highlighted the ones I've seen. I'll have to start watching some of the ones I've missed. Some I don't want to see like Goodfellas. I got that from the library and watched about 1 minute. The language was just over the top. Ugh! I'm thankful we have a great library system where we live. I've been able to get most of these movies from there. Sometimes I have to wait a while if it's new and popular but that's ok. It's fun to see a notice in my e-mail telling me the next movie on my list is in and set aside for me!

1 Citizen Kane (1941)
2 The Godfather (1972)
3 Casablanca (1942)
4 Raging Bull (1980)
5 Singin' in the Rain (1952)
6 Gone With the Wind (1939)
7 Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
8 Schindler's List (1993)
9 Vertigo (1958)
10 The Wizard of Oz (1939)
11 City Lights (1931)
12 The Searchers (1956)
13 Star Wars (1977)
14 Psycho (1960)
15 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
16 Sunset Blvd. (1950)
17 The Graduate (1967)
18 The General (1927)
19 On the Waterfront (1954)
20 It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
21 Chinatown (1974)
22 Some Like It Hot (1959)
23 The Grapes of Wrath (1940)
24 E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
25 To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
26 Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
27 High Noon (1952)
28 All About Eve (1950)
29 Double Indemnity (1944)
30 Apocalypse Now (1979)
31 The Maltese Falcon (1941)
32 The Godfather Part II (1974)
33 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
34 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
35 Annie Hall (1977)
36 The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
37 The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
38 The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948)
39 Dr. Strangelove (1964)
40 The Sound of Music (1965)
41 King Kong (1933)
42 Bonnie and Clyde (1967)
43 Midnight Cowboy (1969)
44 The Philadelphia Story (1940)
45 Shane (1953)
46 It Happened One Night (1934)
47 A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
48 Rear Window (1954)
49 Intolerance (1916)
50 The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)
51 West Side Story (1961)
52 Taxi Driver (1976)
53 The Deer Hunter (1978)
54 M*A*S*H (1970)
55 North by Northwest (1959)
56 Jaws (1975)
57 Rocky (1976)
58 The Gold Rush(1925)
59 Nashville (1975)
60 Duck Soup (1933)
61 Sullivan's Travels (1941)
62 American Graffiti (1973)
63 Cabaret (1972)
64 Network (1976)
65 The African Queen (1951)
66 The Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
67 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
68 Unforgiven (1992)
69 Tootsie (1982)
70 A Clockwork Orange (1971)
71 Saving Private Ryan (1998)
72 The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
73 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
74 The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
75 In the Heat of the Night (1967)
76 Forrest Gump (1994)
77 All the President's Men (1976)
78 Modern Times (1936)
79 The Wild Bunch (1969)
80 The Apartment (1960)
81 Spartacus (1970)
82 Sunrise (1927)
83 Titanic (1997)
84 Easy Rider (1969)
85 A Night at the Opera (1935)
86 Platoon (1986)
87 12 Angry Men (1957)
88 Bringing Up Baby (1938)
89 The Sixth Sense (1999)
90 Swing Time (1936)
91 Sophie's Choice (1982)
92 Goodfellas (1990)
93 The French Connection (1971)
94 Pulp Fiction (1994)
95 The Last Picture Show (1971)
96 Do the Right Thing (1989)
97 Blade Runner (1982)
98 Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942)
99 Toy Story (1995)
100 Ben-Hur (1959)

Friday, June 22, 2007

Camping Time!

Tomorrow (today actually) we are headed out to the country for a camping trip with our church. At last count there were about 29 families going; roughly 130 people! I think the church will look empty this coming Sunday.

Today was spent packing all our gear. I told Michael that we certainly need to take a lot of stuff just for 3 days: tent, sleeping bags, food, stove, etc. I'm really excited this year because we bought a screen tent that we can put the picnic table in and enjoy bug free meals. It will also be a nice place to sit in at night.

This afternoon I made some brownies and muffins to take. Since it will be warm, I'm not cooking as much as I did when we went in September. Dinner tomorrow night will be Italian sausages for Michael and I and hamburgers for Julianne. Saturday's breakfast will be muffins, eggs and bacon. Lunch is pbj's and chips! Dinner will be chili which I've already made and frozen. I'll just need to cook it a pot. Sunday morning breakfast will be oatmeal (in these handy little cups that you just add water to make) and cereal. Easy!

Michael loaded up the van this afternoon so we are almost ready to go. I will update you when we return. I'll be taking lots of pictures so I'll share those also.

See you on Monday or possibly Tuesday. Monday might be spend doing laundry and putting away all the camping stuff.

Monday, June 18, 2007

In My Home Today........

Reading.......various e-mails from the weekend crows scaring off a red-tail hawk


Relaxing......on my swing

Working......on a huge pile of laundry

Planning.......on our upcoming camping trip

Praying.......for a job situation of a friend

Making......a mess of my desk! and from church

Mailing.......lessons for The Mailbox Club

Studying......the Word :-) daughter make Rice Krispie treats

Praising......the Lord for His care and provision

Friday, June 15, 2007

Learning to Talk to Myself

One of the lessons I took away from reading "Living the Cross Centered Life" is learning to talk to myself. C. J. Mahaney puts it this way. "On a daily basis we're faced with two simple choices. We can either listen to ourselves and our constantly changing feelings about our circumstances, or we can talk to ourselves about the unchanging truth of who God is and what's He's accomplished for us at the cross through His Son Jesus."

This has been a hard lesson to learn--and I'm still learning! The Lord gave me an opportunity to put it into practice today. Michael called this morning to tell me that Jared was in a car accident. He is fine except for muscle stiffness and soreness. Praise God! But....his car is probably totaled. He drove it home but that's as far as it's going.

I have to admit that most of the morning I was listening to myself. Thoughts like these filled my mind: Why? Why, Lord? How could this happen? How is he going to pay for this car? What if it is totaled, how will he get to work? I don't have to write anymore because I'm sure you can fill in the rest!

I was thankful that Jared wasn't hurt. I wasn't bitter about what happened or blaming God but I was listening to myself and my feelings. And what does the Bible say about that? "The heart is deceitful above all things and desparately wicked, who can know it?" My heart was certainly deceiving me! Colossians 3:2 says, "Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things." Was I doing this? No! (And I just had a discussion about this with Trish on Wednesday night! How quickly I forget things!!!!)

About this time, I had to run some errands. I was still listening to myself and knew it wasn't right and that I had to do something!! I put on a CD from The Listener's Bible. I chose 1 Peter and I'm glad I did! The Lord used His Word to remind me that I needed to talk to myself about the unchanging truth of He has done for me through His Son. As C. J. says in his book, "By God's grace I was able to turn away from what I felt and began to live in the goodness of what is true and unchanging--God's grace to me through the cross."

I still don't know the answers to my questions. A friend came over to look at the car and it does indeed look bad. He's going to price some parts for us but it may not be worth it to get it fixed. How will Jared get to work? How will he pay for another car? It looks as if all the money he saved for college will be going to a car. But it's ok. God is in control. He protected Jared from harm (and the other person also). He has a reason for this and it's good (Romans 8:28-29). I have been praying that the Lord would get Jared's attention--perhaps this is the way? It's not what I as a mom would have wanted but God's ways are much better than mine!!

Here's the passage the Lord used to remind me of all He has done for me and to get me to talk to myself instead of listen.

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. Through Him you believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him, and so your faith and hope are in God. (1 Peter 1:18-21)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Summer Reading Challenge

Charlotte Mason said, "Besides my Bible, I always keep three books going that are just for me--a stiff book, a moderately easy book, and a novel, and I always take up the one I feel fit for." With that in mind, here's my reading list for the summer.

Damsels in Distress--Martha Peace (Trish and I are meeting once a week to work through this book together)
The Holiness of God--R. C. Sproul
Age of Opportunity--Paul Tripp
Love God with All Your Mind (Revised and Expanded)--Elizabeth George

Moderately Easy
Shop, Save and Share--Ellie Kay
A Passion for the Impossible--Miriam Rockness
15-Minute Meal Planner--Emilie Barnes
Love to Eat, Hate to Eat--Elyse Fitzpatrick

Aunt Jane's Hero--Elizabeth Prentiss
Miss Jane Austen (bio)--May Becker
Ishmael (Lamplighter book)--E.D.E.N. Southworth

Seasonal Soundings is sponsoring this Challenge. Be sure to check out her site to see what others are reading. So many little time!!!

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Class of 2007

Graduation has come and gone! It was a wonderful day and ceremony. Before I went to bed last night I wrote out a list of everything I would need for today so I wouldn't forget. I'm so glad I did that because I felt like a chicken with my head cut off this morning. Thankfully, everything we went as we ironed clothes, gathered batteries and cameras, graduation tickets, parking tags and various other items. Whew!

We took three cars to the ceremony. I guess we're helping heat up the planet (LOL!). Michael drove with Jared following. He wanted to drive his own car but followed Michael because he wasn't sure of the way. We left about a half hour after them. As soon as I got on the highway, I noticed lots of other cars that were from James River. When we got into downtown Richmond, we came to a sudden stop. There was traffic everywhere and we were all headed to the same place. It actually didn't take too long to get there and I'm glad we left early. Even so, we got there about 10 minutes before it started.

The ceremony was really nice although we were far away. Jared did manage to find us in the crowd and I was glad of that. I can't say there was anything different about this graduation than any other you've probably been to except that Jared was in it! I did like the bagpiper's that played in the beginning and how the James River mace was brought in and put on a stand. But for our family, it was all about Jared. :-)

Last month we received a letter from James River about the rules of conduct for the graduation ceremony and one of the things that was stressed was no applauding, cheering, screaming, etc. until all the graduates' names were called. I couldn't believe they were going to do that! Well, right before the ceremony they announced the same thing but I'm happy to say that most didn't listen. This was Jared's graduation and I wanted to shout. And we did!! When his name was called, all of us shouted his name. He started laughing!

Our dinner at Penny Lane was really nice and Jared was glad we went there. All in all it was a good day. I'm so thankful to the Lord for giving us this special son and I love him very, very much.

Here's a few pictures. The ones of the ceremony didn't turn out because they were too dark. Thankfully, our local cable station broadcasts the ceremonies live and also on another date. We recorded it today from our computer and we'll do it again on the 25th just in case. There video was a lot better than mine!

Jared's in there somewhere! He's facing toward the camera. Can you see him?

Dinner at Penny Lane Pub

The Gang at Penny Lane

I can't seem to get the caption under the picture but the one above this one is Jessica, Jared and Matt.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

One More Week of Busyness

For someone who advocates staying at home and enjoying a simple life, it seems I've been very busy lately. But after next week, it will slow down. Tomorrow is Jared's high school graduation! I am so looking forward to it. Afterward, we are going to Penny Lane Pub for a celebration dinner. Jared loves The Beatles so we thought this would be a perfect place to go!

In coming days look for my summer reading list. I have a lot of books that I "want to" read but have never gotten around to actually putting a list on paper. The Lord has really been convicting me lately of the use of my "free time". Reading more is something I say I don't have time for but actually I don't make the time. Lord willing, that will change this summer.

What else is planned for this week? I need to finish up the spring cleaning that I started last month. I have Mailbox Club lessons to mail and other paperwork that needs to be finished.

So, how is your week shaping up?

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Homeschool Convention Time

All of the books are labeled and ready to go! Michael is picking me up in a little while and we're going to have lunch with Jessica. After spending some time in his office, he'll drop me off at the convention center and I'll deliver all my books. Yeah!

I e-mailed twice to see if I could volunteer at the Used Curriculum Sale but I haven't heard anything. Oh well, I'm sure when I get there and tell them I'd like to volunteer, they won't turn me away.

Pray for me and all the other homeschooling moms who will be going. Pray for safety, a time of rest and refreshment and to not get stressed when we see all the wonderful books, games, curriculum, etc. and think that we have to do it all. God knows our families best so pray that we listen to Him and not the world.

Monday, June 04, 2007

I'll Be Away This Week

Just a quick note to let you know that I'll be away from the computer this week. Well, away from blogging at least. I will be using the computer to input all the books I'm taking to the HEAV Used Curriculum Sale. Our state convention is Thursday-Saturday so this week will be very busy.

Stay out of trouble!

Friday, June 01, 2007

K-12 Meme

I found this meme over at A Gracious Home and thought it would be fun to do since I'm in "school" mode because of Jared's upcoming graduation. Thanks, Sallie!

Apple Jacks or Captain Crunch with Crunch Berries
Neither, I liked Trix. I always felt sorry for the rabbit. I would have given him a bowl!

Band or Choir
I was in the band in Jr. High.

Class Ring
Yes, it was gold with an purple stone. It's still in my jewelry box.

Ducks or Battleships
Neither. I used to take Barbies in the tub so they could swim. :-)

Earning Money
I never had a job until I graduated high school.

Favorite Teacher
Definitely Mr. Brett in high school. He was an English teacher but I had him for study hall. He helped me with my writing. I was finally going to have him my last semester of senior year and he moved! His last day he drove me home in his WV bug and I cried the whole way. (Wow, I bet a teacher can't drive a student home these days!!!)

Home Economics
No, but I've done all right w/o it.

Indoor Recess
Didn't enjoy this. I'd much rather be outside!

Kickball or Dodgeball

The Monkees, of course!

Am I musical or do I play an instrument? I can play the flute; can't sing, though.

Number of School Districts
Two: 1-4 (didn't go to kindergarten, it used to be optional); 5-12.

Orange or Apple
Apple, but I'd rather have a banana.

Playground Equipment

Quiz Team or Debate
Ha! I'm not sure if our school had this but I was "way too cool" to do anything like that. LOL!!!

Jumping rope. I loved to sing all the jump rope rhymes and to double dutch. That's usually all we did during recess.

Spring Break
Stayed home.

Team Sports

Unfulfilled Dream
My high school yearbook says something like "art and fame". Neither has happened. That's ok because once I became a believer my priorities changed.

I think I learned how to be a friend in school. High school was a joke. Even though I was a straight A student I can honestly say I have learned more from homeschooling my children than I ever did in school.

Walk or Bus
Walked in elementary school and rode the bus from 6 through 10. My junior and senior year I rode in my girlfriend's car or mine. Riding the bus as a senior was not cool, LOL!

X Country or Basketball

First Grade and Senior Year

Hmmm, there were lots of boring classes, mostly history. Today it's my favorite subject.