family traditions

Relax, Recharge, Refocus

Are you ready for the week ahead? Once upon a time the work week was Monday – Friday 9-5. Now it almost 6 days a week and family life on top of it all. Lunches, laundry, errands, sports, Dr’s appointments, kids school activities, with all this going on what happened to a relaxing weekend. One for the extras to get done the second to take it easy. The crazy school week cluttered with your job, kids homework, getting dinner on the table each night.  It can seem like going from 1 disaster or challenge to another.  To make it easier to handle some simple organization can make for a lot less stress.

  • Plan out your week.

Knowing what is coming for the week ahead let’s you plan for it.  Knowing what day you have to work late or make it the same night as say soccer practice.

  • Meal prep

Using part of your weekend to meal plan or do prep will save loads of time during the week.  I try to keep breakfasts, lunches and dinners ready for the week ahead.  I plan a full month menu with some days I can easily change out.  Then I make a shopping list.  I’m a huge fan of order pickup and delivery.  Instacart, Shipt, Aldi, Publix,  Amazon Fresh, among others delivered right to your door.  The fee is nominal and saves you even more time to spend with your family, or re-charge your own batteries.  Once the shopping is done it’s time to prep.  We use family favorites and adapt as needed.  We love freezer meals that go from freezer to either crockpot or quick cook on the stove.  Breakfasts can be multiple choice with the finished product in the freezer.
Lunches can be prepared and stored in the refrigerator so it only takes minutes to pack lunches. 

Stores like Walmart deliver in some areas but not mine.  I love thier order service.  I can pick out what I need, browse, and re-order frequent purchases from the comfort of my home.  Simply log in to the app and shop the grocery store.  I can get all the groceries including produce, paper goods, household, pet supplies, even deli and bakery.  They have also added a liquor store (in some areas), stores so as long as we present ID when we pick up.  So a bottle of wine, beer, and some liquors can be added to the order.  Schedule a pick-up time, checkout, and you’re done.  They give a window to alter the order including something either forgotten or someone just remembered to tell you about for a special day at school.  Arrive at pickup time, park in special lane, and checkin from your phone.  Walmart will bring and load your groceries in the car for you.  It usually takes about 15 minutes from checkin, but can take longer if they are exceedingly busy.  Even when I have to wait it saves me the trip through the store with heavy traffic, screaming kids, and the aisle road rage you can experience in the store when you are on a mission.

Family time

We do our prep work as a fun way to spend more time together.  We joke, laugh, catch up, share stories, experiences.  Working together builds the teamwork in families.  It also adds to communication and respecting each others contributions.   2 or 3 can get alot done in a few hours.  Young children can be included to help fetch and carry ingredients as appropriate.   You will see the pride and happiness shine in thier smiles when they bring the right item.  They also feel like an important contributer to the project. Older children or adults can cut, chop, measure (little ones like this to with supervision), package, label..and so on.  I can even get my kitchen phobic husband to help with easy tasks.  Biggest piece of advise I can pass on is never assume children and even some adults know how to do certain things.  In my husband’s case you cannot take things for granted.  Anyone who cooks alot knows that a cup of something refers to a specific measurement.  I have learned I have to explain what kind of cup you need to measure an ingrediant.  Children may also not be familiar with what or how.  It’s also a great way for them to learn both math, like fractions, history, like where come spices come from, and the science-based principles of things like yeast.  Next time someone is doubling a recipe have a child help figure out the measurements needed.

Package prepared foods

Singles work great for a lot of things like a breakfast or snack.  Dinner, at least at our house is a family affair.  We try to sit down together and eat as a family.  This gives us further chance to stay close.  We take a break from the electronics in our lives and connect with each other.  We keep things family appropriate with very few taboo subjects.  Open discussion is encouraged and every one right, wrong or different can weigh in.  Whether sharing a personal experience or just a preference, or opinion, it helps all understand the world as it was, is, and possibly will be.  Exposure to multiple points of view opens the world and helps all decide which way to handle almost everything life throws at you. 
With all the prep done it makes it easier to get everyone where they need to be.  Grab breakfast, lunches, and dinner for later.  Place dinner in the crockpot, microwave breakfast as needed, and quickly pack lunches so all is ready to go.  This reduces the morning rush of trying to get everyone fed, dressed, and out the door.  The big plus is of course dinner is ready when you get home that evening.

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  • Re-charge


While we recharge our phones, tablets, and any other items we need, we often forget to recharge our own batteries.  Imagine all the love we give those special to us in a pitcher labeled you.  Evertime you hug, kiss, talk, listen, care, it pours from that pitcher.  What do you do when it’s empty?  If this was just water we would simply refill the pitcher from the tap, right?  Well when the pitcher is filled with love the sink just doesn’t have a re-supply.  We regain the energy we give by doing things like going to church, relaxation, personal time, a hobby or other things that bring enjoyment.  Having a full picther allows us to juggle all the things thrown at us.
While we recharge our phones, tablets, and any other items we need, we often forget to recharge our own batteries.  Imagine all the love we give those special to us in a pitcher labeled you.  Evertime you hug, kiss, talk, listen, care, it pours from that pitcher.  What do you do when it’s empty?  If this was just water we would simply refill the pitcher from the tap, right?  Well when the pitcher is filled with love the sink just doesn’t have a re-supply.  We regain the energy we give by doing things like going to church, relaxation, personal time, a hobby or other things that bring enjoyment.  Having a full picther allows us to juggle all the things thrown at us. While we recharge our phones, tablets, and any other items we need, we often forget to recharge our own batteries.  Imagine all the love we give those special to us in a pitcher labeled you.  Evertime you hug, kiss, talk, listen, care, it pours from that pitcher.  What do you do when it’s empty?  If this was just water we would simply refill the pitcher from the tap, right?  Well when the pitcher is filled with love the sink just doesn’t have a re-supply.  We regain the energy we give by doing things like going to church, relaxation, personal time, a hobby or other things that bring enjoyment.  Having a full picther allows us to juggle all the things thrown at us.

 Refresh  

After all the chores are done take, some “me time”.  Read a favorite book, watch a movie or simply spend quality time with your children and or significant other.  Make sure you go to bed early enough to get plenty of rest.  Try not to rush through the tasks you’re doing.  We have enough hustle and bustle.  Making these things fun for all nor only makes them a lot less if a chore, it makes them enjoyable too.  As you look around savor that special feeling that comes when we do for those we love.

Re-focus

To get the most out of your time focus on what you have to do, need to do and want to do. Get the have to and need to done first. This will let you be more relaxed and concentrate on the things you really enjoy. I hear the expression there’s an app for that and I can say for myself at least it’s partly true. We use things like Google Calendar, Prism bill pay, Keep,and several others to tract our world. The notifications help keep us on track. Google Calendar let’s us track everything from my husband’s work to Dr appointments. I pay all our bills in about 15 hassle free minutes each week with Prism. It keeps track of what’s due when and I can schedule payments ahead of due dates to avoid things like missed payments or late fees. Keep helps us track everything from grocery lists to tasks like cleaning medical equipment, Pet medicines, simple to do lists, and I keep a running list of blog ideas and scheduling here. At the end of my day I can easily cross off what I got done and know what I still need to complete and when.

Me time

As we move into the future technology helps us run our world’s. While there is no shame in making things in your life easier, never forget that things like love, family, patience, kindness, understanding, and others still need the old fashioned low tech approach. I use my technology to speed up the have to’s so I can spend more time with those I love and the wants in my life. Between, Spouce, siblings, children, friends and neighbors I keep a busy schedule and get the best out of life by being available to those I love. To me the love I shower on my pets (our children), family incuding my neices and nephews, extended family, friends, and neighbors fulfills my life. Take the time to nuture these connections. You never know how precious that is until the prospect of tomorrow never coming makes an entrance in your life.

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World photo day

Today is World photo day

Today’s generations are some of the most photographed ever. Honor today by snapping some extra pics.

How to Celebrate?

Are you an amateur, a professional, or takes phone pictures and shares on your social media World Photography Day is an easy holiday to celebrate. Here are some ways you can enjoy this day:

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  • Learn and read more about the history and science behind photography.
  • If you have always wanted to learn photography, maybe today is the time to start taking lessons.
  • If you are a photographer, why not volunteer your time to teach your craft and trade to others?
Memories photo album
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Did You Know…

…that some 12 Hasselblad cameras were left on the Moon by various missions? Some suggest that this was done in order to compensate for the weight of rock and soil samples the astronauts brought back to Earth.

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Back to School

Starting Kindergarten, finishing Elementary, heading for Middle School, stepping onto a High School or University campus, it’s that time of year. As summer heads into fall we prepare for the school year ahead.

I know things have changed since I was in school, but the importance of an education was always encouraged in our home. Growing up we were encouraged to shoot for the stars and nothing we wanted to do, be it artist, doctor, nurse, lawyer, astronaught, musician, historian, yoga instructor, writer, or even the next Bill Gates, was always attainable. Now computers take a much more central role in education. Some learn the same curriculum exclusively online in programs like Florida’s K -12 program.

I also have to say if you are homeschooling or considering it, you have my hearty encouragement. My siblings and I started out first in a private school then public. When I was in 3rd grade that changed. My brother was having challenges. (This was before so many things like ADHD, dyslexia, and others became common knowledge.) My mother devoted herself to helping us both with anything we needed. Whether just some homework questions, or entire big concepts that we were not understanding in school. By the end of that year she was spending several hours teaching what they were doing at school. She decided that if she had to spend all that time doing the job, why was she sending us to school?

Check here for the rules, requirements and support in your state.

It was one of the best experiences ever! Not only did we learn at a higher level, we had a rounded curriculum that included, music, socializing with a group of 40 families who were also homeschooling, field trips and things not typically taught now. We went to zoos and museums, wrote book reports, we wrote and published our own newsletter. Birthday parties, libraries, science experiments, and a schedule that still saw us out the door when our friends arrived home thier schools.

When the word homeschooling is mentioned by some, they give a disapproving context. Claims of missing out on the social skills learned in other school settings, is one of the most frequent. I can 100% tell you in my experiences this was absolutely false.

Whatever the case may be the importance of education cannot be denied. Private, Public, Correspondence, Home, or other help prepare you stars to shine brightly in the academic world and later in life.

I’m admitting it, my mother was right! Education helped me become a success later in life. It also taught me to be tenacious while not giving up when life gets challenging. While unforeseen health issues have affected my ability to physically fly to the moon, I have not stopped reaching for the stars.

I hope everyone gets the same encouragement we did. As a help to parents and children everywhere, I’ve compiled 3q33 2esupply lists and provided links to Amazon. Skip the traffic, and the heat while your fingers do the walking. Get it all shipped directly to your door.

Kindergarten

1st grade

2nd grade

3rd grade

4th grade

5th grade

6th grade

7th grade

8th grade

High School

Off to College?

More coming soon….

No matter what stage or where life takes you learning is a life long endeavour. In a classroom or the halls of life, experience or research, give the encouragement to help theirs or your own star shine as brightly as possible.

Back to School 7th Grade

Send them off to school in style, with everything they need to make the grade. Check with your local school for exAtact quantities. In our county the quantities differ quite a bit depending on the school.

Don’t forget tax-free shopping days. Click hereto find them in your state.

The list

Basic classroom supplies (to be replaced throughout the year).

Notebook paper, loose leaf, wide rule

Plastic Folders (see individual school lists for color and prongs or no prong)

1 pencil bag\box

#2 pencils (no mechanical pencils)

Black, Blue, and Red pens

White copy paper

Colored pencils

Pkg 3 x 5 index cards

Pkg 3 x 3 sticky notes

1 pencil sharpener with cover

Graph paper

Composition notebook(s)

Basic function calculator

Protractor

Highlighters

Earbudsor headphones

Lg bottle hand sanitizer

One 1 inch view binder (chorus & music students)

Tissues or paper towels

P.E. Students

Athletic shorts (no Soffe brand\style shorts. No denim; all must be mid-thigh).

Athletic t-shirt

Sweatshirt and sweatpants are needed for cooler months

Athletic shoes; must tie or Velcro (no boat shoes, boots, slides, flip flops, or slipons)

Activity fee may be needed. Varies by school and teacher. Please see your local school for information.

Art Students

Pkg wooden pencils

Colored pencils

Black sharpie markers (ultra-fine)

Colored markers

Glue stick

White liquid glue

Scissors

Rulerwith metric & customary units

Box of watercolors (8 trays)

Small container to hold art supplies

Copy paperor card stock

Pencil sharpener with cover

Activity fees

May be required for electives and things like science lab, STEAM Elective, Art, and P.E.

Backpacks are allowed here but must fit under the desk.

Back to School 6th grade

Send them off to school in style, with everything they need to make the grade. Check with your local school for exAtact quantities. In our county the quantities differ quite a bit depending on the school.

Don’t forget tax-free shopping days. Click hereto find them in your state.

Sixth Grade

Notebook paper to be replaced as needed (no college rule)

Plastic Folders (see individual school lists for color and prongs or no prong)

#2 pencils must have erasers

Colored pencils

Science

One 1″ three-ring binder with pockets

1 set of dividers

Pkg 3 x 5 index cards

Mathematics

One 1-1/2″ binder

1 set of dividers

Graph paper

P. E. Students

Athletic shorts (no denim, must be mid thigh length)

Athletic t-shirt

Sweatshirt and sweatpants are needed for cooler months

Athletic shoesthat velcro or tie, (no boat shoes, boots, slides, flip flops, or slip ons.)

Activity fee (varies by school, teacher, county and state.)

This list does not include general items requested by schools at Orientation or elective classes. They vary greatly by class, teacher, school, etc. Please check with your local school for these items and any additional fees that may be requested.

Back to School 5th Grade

Send them off to school in style, with everything they need to make the grade. Check with your local school for exact quantities. In our county the quantities differ quite a bit depending on the school.

Don’t forget tax-free shopping days. Click hereto find them in your state.

Shop Amazon for the perfect back to school outfits

Help his style soar with his grades with the perfect back to school look.

Fifth Grade

#2 pencils

Notebook paper to be replaced as needed

Tissues

Hand Sanitizer

White copy paper

Cap erasers

Gluesticks

Plastic Folders (see individual school lists for color and prongs or no prong)

Spiral notebook(s)

3 ring binder

Colored pencils

Markers

Pkg skinny dry erase markers to be replaced as needed

Lysol wipes

Clear backpack

Back to School 1st grade

Send them off to school in style, with everything they need to make the grade. Check with your local school for exact quantities. In our county the quantities differ quite a bit depending on the school.

Don’t forget tax-free shopping days. Click hereto find them in your state.

Shop Amazon for the perfect back to school outfits.

Help his style soar with his grades with the perfect back to school look.

First grade

Notebook paper wide rule

Blunt tip scissors

#2 pencils

Crayons

Glue sticks

3 prong, 2 pocket folders

Copy paper

Washable Markers

Tissues

Small supply box

Hand sanitizer

Black EXPO markers

Cap erasers

Spiral notebook

Ear buds or headphone these come with a backpack.

Best of all Amazon ships right to your door.

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