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Our local library has a great schedule of events setup for this summer, including a Summer Reading Challenge that begins this week. We stopped at the library this morning and signed up both boys for the challenge, and picked up another batch of library books. Each boy has a reading log with their name on it, and they are excited to get started.

Josh already says he wants to read more books than anyone. I think this is going to be a great incentive to get him reading on his own. He’s got a pretty good start, and loves the library, so I’m confident we’ll make progress.

The scheduled events sound really fun too. One week they’ll play outside with bubbles. Another week they’ll make buttons. I think this will be fun for both boys, and give us something close to home to do during the week.



funny pictures of dogs with captions
see more dog and puppy pictures

Gotta love that picture! I just love the way dogs seem to know when you just need a hug. There is something about soft fur and a panting tongue that can just bring back the sunshine.

Yesterday we had a great day at the beach. It was overcast and cool, but not too cool. We went to a park along the beach that we hadn’t been to before, and we loved it!

It’s a nice short distance from home, only about a 10-15 minute drive. From the parking lot we climbed a set of stairs and found ourselves on a bridge overlooking the train tracks. Now that totally made Alex’s day. He loves trains. Down the other side was a great little beach. Nice and flat, with very calm waves (more like ripples really) it was perfect for shell and crab hunting.

We found one little red crab, but he’d already passed on. The kids foun him interesting though, and were able to examine him up close. A wide variety of shells and pretty rocks found their way into our bag (I was prepared with ziplocs).

The kids got wet, we all smelled like seaweed, and the event was a success! We can’t wait to go back.


From Puppy

Meet Belle! Or, “Summer Sky Aurora’s Belle” to be exact.

Belle is a three week old chocolate lab puppy, and the most cuddly little thing ever! We just get to visit with her for now, but will be able to bring her home around the 4th of July.

Until today we have been visiting will all three female chocolate labs in the litter, about once a week, to get an idea of which pup would be ours. Today though, we were able to mark the one we chose with a little dab of nail polish on the back of the head, so the owner can keep track of who belongs to who! Our choice was the lightest brown pup. She’s a bit bigger than her sisters, but extremely cuddly. While the other two were wiggling and squirming and searching for mommy, she was happily asleep in my arms. All three are adorable and sweet, but we only get one, so the choice had to be made!

There is still time to be sure of our choice, as their personalities emerge over the next couple of weeks, but the breeder is pretty sure this one is going to be a good fit for us. Also, we have second pick of the chocolates, so if the first pick family changes their mind, we may have to re-pick, but I’m not worried.

When we visited today all the puppies had their eyes open, and have been allowed to leave the whelping box and venture out into their mother’s run. Already they are leaving the box to go potty, and going back in to eat and sleep – pretty good for barely walking!!

The mother, Roxy, is an absolute sweetheart. She loves to show off her pups, and carefully smells and licks each one as it is brought back to her. You can practically see her counting to make sure they are all there! If past litters and the temperament of the parents are a good indicator, our pup is going to be incredibly sweet, and easy to train.

The hardest part about visiting is leaving the puppy when we go. I want to bring her home so badly! It’s hard to wait. But I’ve been using the last couple of weeks to get everything ready. I’ve got all the supplies I’ll need to care for a new pup, and the boys have had time to get used to the idea, and get really excited. They ask me daily if it’s time to bring home our puppy yet.

Check out the album linked under the picture for more puppy shots! The pictures start with week old babies when we first went to visit, and continue with each visit since. Look how much they’ve grown already!


My boys have just experienced the wonder that is Cheetos…And they are in love.

Before now I never bought them because I don’t like the crunchy ones. As a kid, I loved the supper soft cheese balls. I was so sad when they stopped making them. But this weekend at the store I noticed the Cheetos “puffs” and thought I’d give them a chance.

After the first questioning bite, my boys were sold. They started worrying about who had more, and Alex (2yo) even tried to grab one from Josh, claiming it was his! Josh of course immediately wanted to know if we could “buy lots and lots of these forever?” The highest recommendation in his world.

I didn’t think they were bad either, a nice amount of crunch, they reminded me of the cheese balls I used to love.

Halfway through the first bag, and three sets of orange coated fingers later, I can safely say that cheetos puffs are a big hit here. Now if only I could come up with a way to get Frito Lay to let me “test” their product for more reviews! 🙂

Ok now I’m totally sold on those microwave steamer packs. I tried the rice the other day myself, but today I fixed some up for the kids. They LOVED it!

I mixed a bag of the southwestern style rice with some refried beans, cheese and for the kids, a bit of ketchup (on bean? well…they like it) I tossed in a few chips and they ate!

When I say they ate, I mean…they ate like they’d never had food before. They loved it, the begged for more. I was amazed. Usually my 2yo requires coaxing with something he’s never tried before, but he dug right in. By the end of the meal he was covered in beans, his bowl was practically licked clean and he announced: That was GOOD!

I wasn’t expecting such a good review, but they both liked it, so I’ll be adding it to my grocery list. I would call this a really easy meal. It took less than 5 minutes from freezer to plate.

For those that wanted to know, the brand was “Bird’s Eye Steamfresh” I found it next to the other types of microwave steamers at Walmart.

I finished Alex’s blanket this week, and I’m happy with the result.

From Crochet Projects

I used a simple double crochet pattern, and two strands of yarn for extra thickness (and durability). Alex’s room is painted a soft green color, so this blanket matches very well. Best of all, he loves it and is already dragging it all over the house.

My next project is going to be Josh’s blanket which will need to be quite a bit bigger. He picked out his own colors, which are blue, yellow and a variegated to match. I think a stripe/wave pattern is going to be the best option for him. Of course, he wants one for his best buddy Dragon (a beanie he’s had since he was 3) so I’ll do that one in the same pattern with some orange and green scraps I have around.

Foamies Planes

Foamies Planes

We found these Foamies at the local craft store, and I have to say I’m impressed. This is possibly one of the greatest finds ever for craft time with two little boys. Foamies are just like stickers….only much more fun. We’ve been making pictures, bookmarks, door hangers and even our own counting flashcards with these fun shapes and letters. No cutting, no glue…and only a little paper mess from the backings. I can live with that!

They seem to hold up a bit better than stickers too, which is nice when it’s little hands trying to stick them. They also look good. I think the hardest thing with these is wanting to play with them myself…oh well, mom has to do the project too…so everyone knows what to do, right? 🙂


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