July 2017 · Just MOM!

Life with Anxiety and Depression

This is a hard post to write, but I have learned that there is a world out there that shares my same struggles.

One thing that I have figured out, is that I have anxiety and depression.  It was exaggerated and noticed more after I had my first child.  Going to work as a teacher was a struggle.  I was happy with the kids, but my director noticed that the moment I thought no one was looking, I went numb.  I didn’t notice this.  They did.  My director called me into her office and told me all the things she was noticing and told me she was concerned.  I’ll never forget that day.  I’ll never forget the tears that streamed down my face.  I’ll never forget that door that was shut behind me.  I looked at that door, wishing it was open so I could run out.  I knew that if I did, I would not get the help I needed.

Several years later, I thought I was better.  I felt better.  Then I had a miscarriage.  This put me over the edge.  I couldn’t get out of bed.  I didn’t want to get out of bed.  I cried.  A lot.  My mom came over, because my hubby didn’t know what to do.  He had to go to work, but we had a 2 year old.  He didn’t want to leave her “alone”.   My mom got me out of the house a few days later.  I didn’t want to be seen out and about in my town.  I didn’t want people I knew to ask why I wasn’t in school.  I didn’t want to talk about it.  I did agree to drive an hour away to go shopping.  It got my mind off of things and I enjoyed my time with my kiddo and mom.  I went through some therapy, and was put on meds.  I was feeling better.

I continue to take my meds.  I have up’ed them and have a backup med that is for “emergencies only”.  When I feel my chest can’t be “sat on” any more.  When the “burning” on my face, neck, back, and arms gets to much, I take this extra med.  I want to be off of them.  I want to be able to “control it” on my own.   But as my sister has said, if I had diabetes, I wouldn’t turn down my insulin.  Why would I turn down my meds now?  I need these to feel better, and to do better.

There are days, even recently, that I don’t leave the couch.  I feel I’m the worst mom out there.  Days that I hate being a mom.  Where I want to run away.  But I have learned how the meds I’m on can be used to bring me back.  I have learned that some deep breathing, sleep, a goal of what to make for dessert (dinner is too much for me at this point!), can sometimes help with these things.  The sad part of these days, is that I don’t want to be the worst mom ever.  I want to play.  I want to make fun foods for my kiddos.  I want to hang out with my sisters and parents.  I want to clean my house.  But all of those things make me more anxious.  A clean house makes me anxious, because I worry it will be a mess soon again.  A messy house makes me anxious, because I worry about what everyone else will think about me and the mess I live in.  Anxiety gives me the chest pain and pressure, burning sensation down my arms, on my face and back.  Depression keeps me doing nothing, laying on the couch, not wanting to do anything or go anywhere.

“I want to go shopping!”  “no, I don’t, that means I have to get dressed and drive there.”

“I want to do an art project with my kids.”  “No, I don’t, that means I have to get up.”

“I want to clean my house.”  “No, I don’t, that means I have to get up.  And it will be messy again.”

“I want to lose weight, I should start walking.”  “No, I don’t, that means I have to get up and go.”

We need to share our stories.  We need to stick together and support others.

My family is great at wanting to help.  I love them so much.  When I’m not doing good tho, I worry a lot about even what they will think of me.  Why do they want to help me?  The struggle is real.

Walking and talking helps.  But, to get out and walk and talk is hard to do.  Anxious that I’m gaining weight.  Too depressed to get out and work it off.  Ugh.  Who feels my pain?

Is this your life?   Do you know someone like me?

Thanks for reading.  Share this post. Like it.

— Becky

 

PS…if you are in need of a little retail therapy, this is my affiliate link where I get a little payment, but there is nothing added to your total!! 🙂

 

Family · July 2017

Our Strabismus Surgery Story

Last week, my daughter had Strabismus Surgery.  Her eyes were not tracking together.

Since she was 2 months old, I noticed her tracking was not where it should be.  We began going to eye doctors to get suggestions of what to do to help her.  We tried exercises, looking at black and white images, like all parents do in the early months.  We tried patches, which we found would not work with her type.  We tried glasses, which were not for her site, but only for her muscles around the eyes.  Over the last year or so, we were told surgery was inevitable, we just had to make sure everyone was ready, everyone meaning the doctors who needed to make sure the measurements were staying consistent.

In February, our doctor suggested we come back in June, which is only 4 months apart instead of the normal 6 month apart appointments.  She wanted us to see the surgeon as a second opinion early in the summer, to allow for time to have the surgery and not be in the school year.

End of June came and the appointment happened.  The surgeon did suggest surgery.  Sharing the comment that this was inevitable.   Surgery was set for July.  We began talking about what was going to be happening.  As it got closer, we began watching videos about kids going into surgery.  We were even given a video of the hospital we were going to, so that she would be familiar with the look of the rooms, procedures, and materials.

The day before, we were called to be given our presurgery info.  This info included that we would be starting our surgery about 4 hours earlier than originally scheduled.  A little bit of a shock to me.  We were not able to go down (3 hours south) until that morning, so we got up at 3:30 AM to dress, do hair, and pack up the truck.

 

Getting into our prep room, we had the family specialist come in to help Miss A know what was going to be happening. Unfortunately, the nurse had just come into the room to give her meds that would help with anxiety and remembering all that was happening. So, that meant that Miss A was a bit goofy already.

She was giggling, saying funny nonsense words, telling us her finger was stuck to her lip, and her leg kept falling off the bed! We ended up putting up the second railing on her bed to help with safety!! Here is a picture of us together being silly! She said she was pinching her cheek! At this point, all of us in the room were crying from laughter!!

The doctor came in to check in with us, and to see how we were doing. He also had heard she had a loose tooth, and he had to check it out. He told us that since it was so loose, it probably would have to come out prior to the surgery, to make sure it didn’t get knocked out and swallowed. Fast forwarding a bit, as soon as the surgery started, we were given the treasure box with her tooth.

I’m going back to the point after the doc came in. When it was time for us to go to surgery, I was nervous. I wanted to go back to make sure she was ok going under anesthesia, but the doctor said we should see how she was doing first. Her dad and I walked her down the hall, as she was riding on the “bed with wheels”. When we got to a corner, the nurses said “we’re at the kissing corner, time to give kisses and to say see you later!” We did as we were told, and they went through the door, leaving us behind. My tears started then.

I luckily had a village behind me, so when I went to the waiting room, my parents, grandparents and my mother in law were waiting for us. They kept me talking, laughing and eating. I am so grateful for all of them! I also had my village back at home and on Facebook praying for us and giving me words of encouragement. LOVE my family and friends sooooo much!

When the tv said she had been in surgery for over 1 hour and 20 minutes, the doctor came out to say everything went great. They only had to fix one muscle on one eye. Originally, they wanted to do both eyes. They also talked about doing the surgery to fix the DVD, which is the up and down deviation. Through more examination, they did not feel that one was not necessary at this time. They think that this one muscle surgery will fix the other issues. I learned that eyes are not like arms and legs. Arms and legs can be told by your brain to do different things at the same time. Eyes, on the other hand, work and do the same thing at the same time. So by fixing the one muscle, the other muscles will correct themselves.

I did not take any pictures of her in the recovery room. One reason is that this mommy was crying silently too hard to control the phone. Another reason was that I was holding Miss A. She was not a happy camper when I first got there. I even asked my hubby if we had done the right thing. He said of course, she needed this to be successful. Some morphine was added to her IV, and her pain subsided. She relaxed in my arms. We covered her eyes with a cold wash cloth to help with the pain and itch. They told us her eye would feel like there was a bunch of sand in it, resulting in her wanting to itch it. We had to keep her hands out of her eyes. At this point, I’m wondering how in the world can I do that!? The nurse sitting with us, looked at Miss A and said “do you want some apple juice?” I was thinking, are you crazy? She is sleeping! But sure enough, she answered “YES”. The nurse laughed and said, see she is awake! Her vitals were looking great. The anesthesiologist thought everything looked great, and signed off on his part. Before we knew it, they were saying we could get her dressed and get ready to go home.

When we got in the truck, she started to cry, she said she hurt, and she felt sick. I was almost going to jump out and ask my mom to go in and get a nurse!! I was a little over reacting. I see this in hindsight! But look at this face. This face is one I don’t like to see in my baby. I do love the people in the background! I love this family of mine! They were so happy to be done with the surgery!

Within a few minutes, she was sleeping! She continued to sleep till we got to grandma’s house, and we put her in bed, covered her up, and she slept for another hour until we needed to give her more Tylenol. Then she slept for another 3 hours! I was so happy she slept so well! She woke up, we called her sister on Facetime, so she could see her and talk to her. That was so great for both of them! After her phone call, she said she was hungry. Doctor’s orders were to eat bland stuff, so her belly could handle it better. We offered her toast, apple sauce, and apple juice! She ate it all!

After dinner, we alternated watching movies, covering her eyes with a cold cloth, and playing with babies. It was great to see her doing so well right away!

That night, I woke her up every 3 hours to piggy back the Tylenol and IB profin, just so she wasn’t in much pain. The only time she was up longer than it took me to rinse out the cup, was at 2:30AM when she just wanted to chat, fix blankets, give me kisses and be silly! That luckily only lasted 45 minutes.

At 2:50PM the next day, we had our Post Op appointment to check everything over. They said she looked great! Just as she should look! Her eye will be red. It is the bruising that occurs. In the eye it looks red, when under your skin it would look blue/purple. But that is all perfectly normal.

Now, almost a week later, we are days into saying “how do I keep her calm? How do I keep her laying low?” Because she is doing so well, she thinks she can play like normal. Unfortunately for her, the doctor said “normal activities” may resume in a week. As of right now, she has 2 days left of laying low! And 2 more days of eye drops!! She is very excited about that! One drop 4 times a day is not a fun thing to do.

Miss A is doing well. Her eyes are tracking so well together! Glasses are not needed anymore! She feels great!

I’m so happy everything is going as planned!! I have to call the doctor on Tuesday to tell him the drops have been completed, everything is good, and then I’ll see him again in October!! I pray that no more surgeries will need to be done, but it is always a 1:3 chance one will be needed.

Thankful for family. Thankful for amazing doctors.

— Becky

Family Fun · July 2017

Strawberry Pickin’ Time

Beautiful day to pick strawberries!

It’s strawberry pickin’ time here in Minnesota!  How about where you are?  Has your season come and gone?  I know my sister, who lives in Nebraska, said her season was done weeks ago!  It’s amazing how different the weather and planting seasons are from state to state.

Our goal today was to fill 6 ice cream buckets full of delicious strawberries, and we succeeded!  It took us 2 hours to do this with 4 people picking.  Ok, really I’ll say 2.5 people, since 2 of us were children, and they were more interested in eating them!  The sun was so hot at 8am, the girls were wanting to be done after one bucket, but we convinced them we’d have more jam if we filled the rest of the buckets.

We made a friend!

Not only did we get  buckets of  berries, we got to see some other “wildlife” hopping around!  That was sure exciting!

Once we took the berries home, we took some time to enjoy a bowl full.  Then, we hulled and cleaned all of them.  That’s the boring part if I do say so myself! Make sure to stand on a comfy rug or have good shoes on, because you’ll be standing there for a while!

Now it’s time to separate your berries.  One bowl for your keepers, the ones you’ll freeze for eating later, putting on top of shortcake or ice cream, or making a strawberry crisp.  One bowl for the jam berries.

The berries you picked for making jam now get to be squished.  Put a layer of strawberries in a shallow dish, and start mashing with a potato masher.  Mash it up good, so that most, but not all, chunks are all gone.  Pour this mash into a measuring cup, until it equals 5 cups.

Now, pour the 5 cups into your pot, add in one box of “Sure-jell”, and 1 teaspoon of butter, then stir.  Bring this mixture to a rolling boil and add in 7 cups of sugar.  My mom said not to change this amount, because it won’t work.  There’s a science behind it, and we don’t want to screw this up!  Feel free to search for a less sugar or sugar substitute recipe and share with me in the comments!  But be sure to make this recipe first!  It is amazing!

Once this sweetness comes to a boil, stir continuously for 1 minute.  Get your jars ready.  I forgot to get a picture of the jars boiling, but here is a picture of the rings getting sterilized!  Once you are at the 1 minute stage, turn off this pot, and add in your lids to the rings.  Let sit in the hot water until you are ready!

Are you ready for the messy part?  With your jars sitting on your newspaper covered counter, add in a funnel to a jar and ladle your strawberry jam mixture to each jar.  Leave about 1/2 centimeter of space to the top of each jar.  Now, this is important, wipe each top of the jar with a hot water rag.  Make sure there is no residue on the top or side where the ring and lid will go.  This will ensure a good seal!  Immediately cover with lid and ring, tighten, and flip upside down for 5 minutes.  Once your five minutes is up, turn right side up, and listen for the “pops”!  that will mean they are ready for your pantry!

With hot soapy water, wash the outside of each of these jars, and place in your pantry, ready to eat!

Enjoy your jam!  Comment below with any of your on favorite flavors!!

— Becky

Here are some affiliate links to Amazon that will help you get the important things you need to make your own jam at home!

 

 

Family Fun · July 2017

Lake Time

 

 

Being by a lake is an experience that is one of a kind. A feeling of calm. The smell of fresh water. The sound of kids splashing and giggling. The realization that we will never, ever, ever get to leave the water, as long as it’s not storming! How can I as a mom take away this fun when nothing else is going on? This is the time to enjoy!

Lakes are a place my kids love to go! My oldest is a fish. I hear stories of years ago, when I was just like her. Always wanting to have a part of me in the water. Feeling the water rush over me as a wave from a fishing boat comes crashing by. The sights of bonfires still smoking to remind us of the fun that was had the night before.

This lake, this weekend, has a slide and a dock. Both allowing creativity, daring behaviors, and fun! The kids, and the kids at heart, challenge themselves to jumping and diving contests, who can slide with most finesse, and who can rock the raft the best. The laughter, the screams of joy and the fun is something we crave every year and are blessed with the ability to come year after year.

When we were packing to come, we reminisce of all the years before. Thinking of what we needed, what we didn’t. How many towels are necessary this year? What kind of clothes should we have on hand? Food… Food always goes with camping! My family is kind of a “foodie” family, in a casual, creative and delicious way! Example A: my family is in charge of day one’s meals. What should we have? Breakfast: 2 different egg bakes, fruit, caramel rolls, muffins, juice and coffee. Dinner: lasagna in a Crock-Pot, sides of bread, Cole slaw, fruit and cake.  Oh did I forget snacks in between? Chips, crackers, cheese, meat, nuts, candy, beer, pop, juice boxes, and more! What else could we need?!

Company. Great company. That is what it comes down to. Who is around? Who do we chat with, eat with, play with? Who do we remember a week later when talking about the weekend?  Yes, location is wonderful, but company is most important. Who will love you for you? Find it. Embrace it. Enjoy it!

— Becky

Family · Family Fun

Supper Club with the Family

Something I cherish is time with my family.  I love seeing my siblings, my nieces and nephews, my cousins and their children, my aunts and uncles, and my grandparents and parents!  With a section of my family, we started years ago a supper club.

How does it work?

With 5 families in our supper club, we all take turns hosting.  The host of the month chooses the theme for the meal.  This is the fun part!  We can pick anything we love to eat…. and everyone rolls with it!  Here are some suggestions:

  • Mexican
  • Italian
  • Grilling– Burgers and hotdogs
  • Chinese
  • Greek
  • Picnic
  • BBQ ribs and sides
  • Turkey

After the theme has been picked, the rest of the crew starts throwing out what they will bring.  The host provides most of the plates and silverware needed, and also provides the main part.  Sometimes the meal requires the main part to be spread out among everyone, that works too.

Things to bring– have your families sign up!

  • Side dish 1
  • Side dish 2
  • Side dish 3
  • Dessert
  • Main dish
  • Drinks
  • Appetizers
  • Add to fill your groups!

Once all this has been designated, all there is left is to show up and have fun!  But how do you get all the food planned?  Oh there are many ways….  My fam uses a group we created on Facebook to chat all about what we’re bringing.  But you can make a sign up genius sign up!  If you haven’t tried that, go to signupgenius.com and check it out!  I’m not hired by them to say that…don’t worry!  I just use them a lot in my classroom for fun events coming up and it works great!  Other ways could include using a google doc or spreadsheet, and have your peeps fill in all the goodies they are bringing!  You can also just assign a thing to bring to each family.  We did do that at one point, switching it up each month….made it fun to see what everyone did for different parts of the meals!

Don’t forget the pictures!

This is important! Get a group shot!  Get a group shot of all the kiddos alone and then one with the adults.  It is amazing how much they grow and the pictures help show that off!  Do it, figure it out, prop those cameras, laugh.  Trust me, there will be laughter!  And there will be lots of great food!

Your job now?

Get your family groups together and create your own Family Supper Club!!

Comment below with your own pictures of your family supper clubs!  What themes do you use?  I love being creative and making new dishes to show off!  I hope you do too!

—Becky

Affiliate link to Amazon 🙂

Dairy Free · June 2017 · Just MOM!

Deals, Deals, Deals!!!

Ok Peeps!!! I went shopping for a camping trip we’re taking, along with shopping for my dairy free 4 year old!!  I’m used to paying about $2.50+ for one yogurt she can eat and enjoy, and I found at Walmart the same kind (not too many flavors tho) for $1.58!!!!  Seriously…a dollar cheaper!!  And boy was Miss A sooooooo excited to see I bought 4 of them at one time…..normally I don’t do that due to the price.  No I’m not doing an affiliate post for them, no I’m not getting paid to say this, but I love a good deal, and I thought you’d like one too!  The kind we love is the “SO Delicious” brand of coconut yogurt, in all the flavors!  NUM!  Oh, and the same brand of icecream is also cheaper there!  Go see if your local Walmart has the same prices!

Side note….when you’re shopping at Walmart or Aldi or Sam’s Club or….anywhere really…you need some good bags.  Bags that can hold a lot!  The Everyday Tote Set from Pampered Chef if perfect for this!  They can hold up to 40 pounds, they have clips on them to help hold them to your cart 🙂  How awesome is that!

Oh come on, you had to know I was going to plug Pampered Chef…I love it so much!  And I am a consultant…if you want to purchase one go to my link here and I’ll help you out!

ALDI…..have we chatted about Aldi yet?  I love that place!  Also not paid to say that!  LOL!!  There are many many things there that are dairy free and delicious!!  I just found their cookies are DF!!  They sell DF milk too!  What else do they have?  If you are GF, they have a nice section just for you 🙂  I find that if they are GF, sometimes they are DF too!  Do you find that?  And to make everyone happy, the fruit and veggies are always a great price (way lower than our other local stores) and they taste great!

My exclamation mark is getting a work out today 🙂  When I’m excited, it’s hard not to use it!!!

Have a wonderful day!!

Shop on!

Becky

Need more deals?  Check out my affiliate link at Amazon 🙂

 

June 2017 · kids activities

It’s a BEAUTIFUL DAY!

Oh what a beautiful morning, oh what a beautiful day! Yes, you can sing along with me if you’d like! What are you going to do today? I’m planning on what to do with my girls and 2 little guys that are coming to play this afternoon. What are some of my ideas you ask? We’re going to sit in a circle and stare at each other…….for 3 hours….yep..maybe get a tan while we’re at it! Baahahaha!!! Nope, that would not fly with any of them! I’m going to pick a few items from my list below and have some fun! If you have more ways to entertain those littles, comment below…I’d love to hear them.

  • Chalk Drawing — fill up those neighborhood sidewalks, make masterpieces on the driveways….use what you’ve got!
  • Hopscotch—-keep that chalk out, find the best rock or beanbag you’ve got, and have fun!
  • Tic-Tac-Toe—- with chalk or Use my ideas to get you started!  If you click on the picture here, you will see a printable page to use!  You’re welcome!
  • Take a hike— there are trails everywhere!  But if you don’t have a real trail, create your own “trail”.  Enjoy the outdoors.
  • Read outside—-take a book, magazine, catalog, recipe book, anything….and READ!
  • Pitch a tent in the back yard
  • Garden together—pick those weeds! Won’t that be soooooo fun!  (says I, the brown thumb of the family!!)
  • Go to the beach— don’t forget your sunscreen, beach towels, cooler of drinks and snackies!
  • Go fishing— in a boat or off the shore, just as fun, making memories!
  • Build a sandcastle— obviously it goes along with beach going right???!!!  Just remember a bucket or cup or bowl….no need to be fancy…that’s what imaginations are for!
  • Color.  Just color.  Take out the paper or color books and color.  Lay on a blanket in the back yard, sit at the table on the deck, and color!
  • Do a scavenger hunt with the kids.  I have one here for you to start with! Click on it for a printable PDF!   Then make your own with your kiddos!
  • Take a bike ride
  • Play volleyball
  • Make ice cream— either make yours using an ice cream maker (I recommend the Pampered Chef Ice cream maker of course!!) or make the Ice cream in a bag!
  • Go to ALL the parks in your city—this one will take the whole summer!!
  • Host a party in your backyard!
  • Put on a play
  • Have a picnic
  • Pick flowers
  • Skip rocks
  • Take pictures and make a scrapbook
  • Have a lemonade stand
  • Take a trip to the zoo
  • Make a bird feeder
  • Take out the sprinkler or pool
  • Make recycling art— utilize all the different items in your recycling can and get creative!
  • Go to the movie theater— get away from the heat!

What else would you add to my list?

I’m hoping to get through this whole list this summer, and I hope you do too!

—Becky

Dairy Free · June 2017 · Just MOM!

Going out to eat— Dairy FREE

This is HARD.  Going out to eat is not as easy as it once was.  I have to think….about everything that may be used in the back kitchen.  I have to think about all the options that may be available for my 4 year old who gets a super upset tummy when she eats dairy in any form.

I started with the thought….GO WHOLE FOODS.  No dairy there! Go vegan!  When I start looking for those items it gets easier…..for a minute…then I remember, Miss A doesn’t like all that! UGH!  I’ve created a monster! LOL!  No, actually she’s pretty easy and knows that she needs to avoid dairy, even asking if that has dairy in it herself.

One thing I’m also learning….DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK!!! Most places will accommodate allergies.  We needed spaghetti and toast without any butter or cheese…we got it!  Want to know if there is dairy or gluten in something?  Ask.  If the waitress/waiter doesn’t know, ask them to find out.  Be polite and USUALLY they will work with you!

Another thing I’m watching for is the fried foods.  While camping with my family, I thought having fried fish would be safe for Miss A, but then I looked and they were dipping the fish into milk first.  It’s such a habit, no one thought of it.  It was totally ok that day, because there were so many other choices, no one went hungry.  Now, though, at restaurants, I have that memory playing in my mind….and it makes me think about if the people in the kitchen use milk in their deep frying.  Lesson of the day…..limit the fried.

What would my Miss A like?

  • Apple sauce and fruit sides
  • burger without bun (or ask if the bun has milk)
  • Soup–non creamy of course unless it is a special cream free soup base
  • Lemonade/juices/water
  • tacos – minus cheese

Last week, my girls and I were treated to lunch at “Bridgemans”…. one of my ideas….  I wanted to see if I could do it at a place that mainly sells DAIRY!!! 🙂 LOL!  She had chicken strips and apple sauce.  They did give her bread with butter, because I didn’t know that was included.  I would have asked about that one if I had known.  She was able to get a sundae with her kids meal, obviously not really an option, and the waitress asked if she wanted more apple sauce or some fruit.  Miss A said she was ok and we declined.  It was a nice gesture tho!

Picky Nicky’s in the house?  This gets tricky! (hehe!  I’m rhyming today!)  Again, from earlier, stay non processed, go vegan, get creative!  Many places will let you pick and choose, especially when they know there’s an allergy!  Use it!

Good luck….I’m learning….I’m a mom trying my best to keep my kiddo tummy ache free….    Learn with me.

—Becky

*** Affiliate links are posted on this blog post.  All purchases made by clicking on a link, will provide me with a little extra in the bank with nothing added on your end!  Thanks in advance!***

Recipes

Ice Cream in a BAG

I L-O-V-E ice cream….I really do!!  Now, as a teacher and a mom, I am always trying to find a way to “teach” my kiddos something along the way….even in ice cream.  No, I’m not meaning that I teach them they may get an ice cream headache if they eat it too fast!  They will learn that all by themselves!!  Hehehe!!    I am going to teach them the science behind the making of ice cream….. how do you get it to be ice cream when you start with cream and sugar?

Other learning objectives they will learn? (yes I’m a teacher….objectives is a word in my vocabulary!)

  1. Measurements.  How much cream and sugar do you really need to make it taste good?
  2. Strategy.  How do you pour the liquids in and NOT spill all over your self and others?  TIP:  Use a friend!  Having ice cream is way more fun when eaten with others, right!?
  3. Chemistry.  A reaction happens when cold ice is added….. the MAGIC happens 🙂
  4. Vocabulary.  Words such as “Amazing! Fabulous! Delicious!” will be used when making ice cream in a bag!

So no matter the season, it is ALWAYS a good idea to make and eat ice cream!  Get out your mittens and get ready to mix!

What you’ll need:

      • 1/2 cup milk
      • 1/2 cup heavy cream
      • 2 Tablespoons sugar
      • 1 teaspoon vanilla
      • lots of ice

     

     

    Mix the top 4 ingredients in your quart size bag…. mix it well!  Then, add about 3 cups or more to your gallon size bag, top with rock salt, and lay your ZIPPED quart sized bag (filled with goodness) on top of that!  Zip the gallon sized bag and start shaking!  This is where your mittens may come in handy, as the bag and your hands start to get super cold!  The science behind how the Rock salt and ice together creates a super cold environment is going to be saved for someone else at another time!

    I like to sing when I’m shaking my ice cream!  You should too!  Shake, shake, shake…shake, shake, shake…shake your ice cream! Shake your ice cream!

    If you are able to sing my new song up there, I love you already!  We will be friends!

    After you sing for a while, try 5 minutes, carefully open the bags to check your consistency.  Each person’s shake is different, so time will vary 🙂  If you want your ice cream a little thicker, close it back up and continue shaking.

    Once you have the perfect soft serve ice cream in the bag….take it out….rinse off the quart size bag (trust me…no one wants Rock salt ice cream)…. and ENJOY!!!

    To create other flavors, you could add some chocolate syrup, strawberries, mint extract, coffee, and so much more!  Get creative!

    Dairy free?  Not this one….but I’ll be posting about a dairy free idea for you that uses the same concept!  Stay tuned!

    —Becky

Games · kids activities

Floor Tic-Tac-Toe

Living room floor Tic-Tac-Toe is a super easy Rainy Day activity!!  When the kids are going crazy, or better yet…making YOU crazy, take out the tape and the paper plates!

Now get that tape on the floor in a tic-tac-toe shape 🙂  When you make it big, the kids get excited.  I don’t know what it is, but when ever I make a simple thing BIGGER, the kids come running.  Next, take out paper plates (little or big—what ever you have on hand!) and label each with an X or O.  Do at least 4 of each so a whole game can be played.

So easy…Not messy…can’t get any better!

 

Have fun!

Becky

PS….Need tape and plates? Check out Amazon!!

 

 

 

kids activities

Homemade Playdough

Many times I wanted to make play dough with my kiddos, but I thought you had to cook it to make it amazing, or you needed special ingredients that I knew I didn’t have.  I was wrong.  I’m sad that I missed out on many days that could have been filled with fun play dough play time!

What you need:

  • 2c. Flour
  • 1c. Salt
  • 2Tbsp oil
  • 1c. water

Combine all ingredients, mix well and knead until smooth.  I did have to add a dusting more of flour at times when I thought it was too sticky.  Use you best judgement…add a little bit at a time…your end result should look like this!

You can add any spices that you have in your cupboard to create a smell you love!  Examples:  Nutmeg, cinnamon, Pumpkin spice, coconut extract, Vanilla extract, or any other extract that your nose is attracted to!

Store you creation in an airtight container to ensure you’re able to play with it for days to come!

Have fun!

— Becky

 

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