Super Dad: A Dad Who Stands Up For His Son & Against Bullies

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

I know this went viral not to long ago.  I know that I saw it on Facebook weeks ago, but it's really a story worth sharing.  I think all of us that love our children and especially if your child has ever been bullied can respect this father.
I stand behind my son in the fight against bullying. Please 'like' and 'share' to send a message loud and clear that bullying needs to stop now. Tell school districts that protecting bullies by turning a blind eye is wrong. Shame on Kaukauna area schools for protecting a bully in their school.
Courtesy of Matthew Bent via the Stir.
You can find the story here at the Stir or just google Matthew Bent. There are many ways this could have been handled, but I think this dad picked an awesome, effective, non-violent way to spread his message.

21 Somewhat Ridiculous Things Our Parents Said & So Will You

Monday, April 29, 2013

This list hardly covers all the things I heard as a child, but I think it covers the more ridiculous/stupid ones.  Of course, many of these have or will be repeated by me and other now-parents.  Why can't we stop this repetitive nonsense?
  1. Because I said so.
  2. I brought you into this world and I can take you out.
  3. I'll knock you into next week.
  4. Because I told you to.
  5. Because I'm your mom/dad.
  6. Because I'm the parent.
  7. Do what I say, not what I do.
  8. When I was your age...blah, blah, blah.
  9. Do you want a spanking?
  10. You'll understand when you're older.
  11. It'll put hair on your chest.
  12. It'll make you grow up big and strong.
  13. Money doesn't grow on trees.
  14. If whats-his-face jumps off a bridge, are you going to jump too?
  15. Stop crying or I'll give you something to cry about.
  16. Don't make me come in there.
  17. How many times do I have to tell you?
  18. I've had it up to here with you.
  19. It's my house, my rules.
  20. As long as you live in my house, I'm the boss.
  21. Were you born in a barn?

I'm A Barbie Girl, In A Barbie World

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Holy crap!  This is just another case of me not being able to resist clicking something.  Seriously though, who can resist clicking a human barbie doll ad?

I think it's her face more than her body though, in my opinion.  She looks so surreal.

Movie Review: Mama

Guillermo del Toro presents Mama, a supernatural thriller that tells thehaunting tale of two little girls who disappeared into the woods the day that their mother was murdered. When they are rescued years later and begin a new life, they find that someone or something still wants to come tuck them in at night. The day their father killed their mother, sisters Victoria and Lilly vanished near their suburban neighborhood. For five long years, their Uncle Lucas (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and his girlfriend, Annabel (Jessica Chastain), have been madly searching for them. But when, incredibly, the kids are found alive in a decrepit cabin, the couple wonders if the girls are the only guests they have welcomed into their home. 

Last night, my husband suggested we watch Mama.  When I asked him what it was about he said, "Oh, it's about two girls that are abandoned in the woods after their mother dies."  I was envisioning something along the lines of Tyler Perry's Daddy's Little Girls.  I even jokingly accused, "Why is it you always want to watch these sappy movies with me?"  He never did reply, now that I think about it.  Either a) he didn't hear me or b) I couldn't see the smug, knowing smirk on his face as he was secretly laughing at my total wrong-ness.  I'm going with b.

Anyway, when we watched the trailer, I was a little surprised to find out it was a horror movie!  My brother claimed:

I almost pissed my pants at the movie theater.  I was scared shitless!

Courtesy of my 17 year-old brother.
This kind of set my expectation for the movie, so I was automatically expecting it to be super scary.  Of course, the hubby and I were watching it after midnight in the complete darkness of the bedroom (he likes scaring the shit out of me).  He even let me lay in front of him on the bed so I could see better, but I whined a little:  "It'll be scarier in front!"

Picture from Rotten Tomatoes.
So, on to watching the movie.  The movie is about two girls who end up in an otherwise abandoned cabin in the woods after their father goes crazy, kills his wife, and wrecks his car in the woods.  After a five year search by their uncle, Luke, the girls are found.  When they come to live with Luke and, girlfriend, Annabel, everyone begin to wonder if 'Mama' really is someone the girls made up or if she's something far worse.

Got your attention so far?  Good.

Gettin' In Shape or Burning Off Mega Stuf Oreos?

So, Nabisco released the Mega Stuf Oreo cookies and I nearly fainted walking past them in the grocery store.  I, of course, have purchased three packages of these decadent cookies since their Limited Edition release.  While one blogger suggests they taste exactly the same as Double Stuf cookies, I'm going to disagree with her.  I think the Mega Stuf cookies are at least twice as good and I'm definitely on the creme side of the cookie vs. creme debate, just so y'know.  However, I do agree that it's annoying that they can't spell "stuff" correctly.

So, at about 90 calories a cookie, I'm thinking I probably should have skipped the Mega Stuf Oreos.  Afterall, I went to the gym 3 days a week for the past two weeks and I think that might have all been in vain considering last week I ate a package of these delicious cookies to myself.  I burn roughly 200 to 250 calories each visit to the gym, not counting whatever I might do with weights where calories burned is not kept track of for me.  At that rate, I only burn about 7 cookies per week.  FUDGE!  And here I thought I was getting into shape.

However, I have cut pop out of my diet, except for the occasional drink at a bar.  I tried ordering water at the bar last night and my water tasted flavored by old alcohol residue.  It was gross.  Probably the glass, but I ended up with a coke before the night was over.

I am really excited about my new gym habits and can't wait to go more, but I do need to think about what I'm eating more.  Mega Stuf oreos are not going to help me get into shape.

Resharing Some Words of Wisdom

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

  1. Smile at strangers.
  2. Don't knock it until you try it.

  3. When entrusted with a secret, keep it.
  4. Just because you can doesn't mean you should.
  5. Don't dumb it down.
  6. Hold your heroes at high standards.
  7. A suntan is earned, not bought.
  8. Never lie to your doctor.
  9. A handshake beats an autograph.
  10. Don't linger in the doorway. In or out.
  11. If you want to know what makes you unique, sit for an caricature.
  12. When traveling, keep your wits about you.
  13. It's never too late for an apology.

  14. If you have the right away, take it.
  15. You don't get to choose your own nickname.
  16. It's not enough to be proud of your ancestry, live up to it.
  17. Don't make a scene.
  18. Know when to ignore the camera.
  19. Never gloat.
  20. Make time for your mom on your birthday. It's her special day too.
  21. Sympathy is a crutch, never fake a limp.
  22. Give credit. Take blame.

  23. Never be the last one in the pool.
  24. Stand up to bullies. You'll only have to do it once.
  25. If you've made your point, stop talking.
  26. Admit it when you're wrong.

  27. Know at least one good joke.
  28. If you don't understand, ask.
  29. Be a good listener, don't just take your turn to talk.
  30. You are what you do. Not what you say.
  31. If you have a sister, get to know her boyfriend. Your opinion matters.
  32. Make the little things count.

  33. There is a fine line between sultry and slutty. Find it.
  34. Always make goals.
  35. Being old is not dictated by your bedtime.

--Words of Wisdom that friend shared on Facebook and now I'm sharing with you.

IAEYC Favorite Quotes & Key Notes

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Soften yours eyes.  When your eyes soften, your pupils dilate.  In the animal kingdom, this means:  I'm not going to eat you!
So last Friday I attended the IAEYC Early Childhood Conference (2013).  It's the first ever early childhood conference I have attended.  Other than trainings hosted by my work and CPR/First Aid training, this is my first ever workshop/training session.  I live a little over 3 hours away from Indianapolis.  My husband and I had intended to drive down Friday morning and stay the weekend as a late celebration for our 3 year wedding anniversary that was on the 31st of March.

Well, with his new gigs doing DJ and karaoke, we ended up cancelling our hotel reservations for the weekend.  Me, the hubby, and my little brother were up at 3AM on Friday...out of the house by 4:30AM.  I rode backseat all the way there with a comforter and pillow.  Well, except for when we stopped at McDonald's and I stuffed my face full of a bacon, egg, and cheese McGriddle.

Speaking of McGriddles, why don't they have more syrup?  Just a touch.  Not, like, drowning in it.  I feel like it's just a little too little.  Can you make McGriddles at home?  If so, somebody please share a recipe with me.  I will be eating breakfast 24/7.

Then I think I woke up about three times when we had to pull over on I-69 across who knows how many lanes because we were just doing 80MPH (and getting passed) and my hood latch decided to f*ck up and my hood kept popping up.  Each time I sat straight up, terrified that we were being pulled over for who knows what, because I was sleeping so I had no idea.

Poopyface is not an intentional teacher. Poopyface is the keeper of the keys to the cupboard.

Anyway, I'm glad I slept all but the last thirty minutes of the drive because the drive home made me realize how nervous the hub's mad driving skills and road rage make me.  His confidence is scary.  Where I'd be all careful and end up trapped in the wrong lane and have to turn around umpteen billion times, he just manages to find a crack big enough in a line of traffic and zooms right in.

The conference was amazing!  I rolled in just shy of 8:30AM and found myself smack in front of Lisa Murphy (aka the Ooey Gooey Lady)'s workshop, who happened to have been recommended to me by a coworker.  So, of course, I stood lounging in the doorway until some seat Nazis come and ordered us to find a seat, which I did, because Lisa was cracking me up and I wanted to stick around.  I ended up going to her afternoon session Let's Go Outside, too, and was extremely inspired by my experiences!

Also, I saw keynote speaker Dr. Becky Bailey, did a workshop on the MindUP curriculum, and sweat my butt off with Don Monopoli.  So, I want to share with you (finally) what I have scribbled in my little note pad and what I found moving and most important about my experiences at my first ever early childhood conference.

Lisa Murphy: Child Centered Classrooms

The secret to good teaching is controlling the environment.

  • Tell children what you want them to do, not what not to do.
  • One rule: People are not for hurting.
  • Routinely ask: Who needs something?
  • Engage all senses.

When it comes to learning, ask yourself: Can we bring it to them or them to it?

  • Needs to be there.
  • No abstract.
  • Literalness.
  • Ask why. Why do we do it? What is this for? Who is this really for?
  • Don't do it/buy it just because it's cute.

Play = Learning. Make a binder with proof for the nay-sayers. Must read articles first!

Dr. Becky Bailey

A 1300% higher expulsion rate in preschools than primary schools.

  • Preschool can and often does hinder social-emotional development.
  • Preschool increases language and cognitive development.
  • Accept how it is and solve the problem.

My job is to keep you safe!

  • Empathy is impossible without safety and composure.
  • STAR: Smile, Take a deep breath, And Relax.
  • Know that the child is calling for help and not trying to make you miserable.
  • Downloading = Mirror Neurons = Children learning from us.

Switch from seeking control to making connections.

  • Connect outside = Connect inside.
  • Must have: eye contact, touch, playfulness, and both people present.
  • More face to face.
  • Give them empathy when they're upset.

Lisa Murphy: Let's Go Outside

35% of our country's elementary schools have eliminated recess.

  • Ball + paint + slide
  • Blocks outside.
  • Chalk + blocks outside.
  • Straw bales - books outside
  • Spools
  • Tires (drill holes in top & side and paint inside with white, acrylic, waterproof paint to keep nay-sayers at bay)

Outside time is NOT wasted time.

  • Dress up outside.
  • Do not lift to equipment. False sense of mastery.

Ask: What's your plan? DO NOT SHUT IT DOWN!

  • Is it life threatening?
  • Weaving on a chain link fence
  • Use chain link fence as drying rack
  • Paper on/taped to walls or fence
  • Squirt painting
  • Fly swatter painting
  • Foot print painting
  • Swing/upside down painting

Not everybody needs to do. We need watchers, too.

  • Spaghetti paint/throwing
  • Bike painting
  • Sand in balloons. Same color and one for each hand.
  • Hand washing bucket (for more 'neat' or picky children).
  • All you really need is water, dirt, and a couple good books.
  • Water painting.
  • Sensory walk... Walk right through it.
  • Ramps and pathways
  • Sheets and tarps
  • Watercolor on snow

Cereal & Other Box Upcycling: Organizing Children's Books

Monday, April 15, 2013

I think this the project that started it all for me, when it comes to upcycling boxes.  Believe it or not, it was not something I discovered via Pintrest.  Instead, another preschool teacher, whose break I cover daily, uses this method in her classroom (to some extent).  For this project, I used cereal boxes, a packing box (similar to diaper box size), and other miscellaneous boxes.

My children have quite a few books and, honestly, I didn't realize no many until I was organizing them and stuffing the last one in.  Before they were all strewn across this shelf above their toy box, but now they're in this nifty little combination of boxes.

I've yet to decide on a permanent place for their book box, but I might just leave it downstairs. This is where it has been been since I finished it.  This project basically requires you have two items: boxes and a pair of scissors.  Just like in my organizing tupperware post, I took off one set of flaps, cut at an angle, and then straight across.  For the larger box, I cut off all flaps and cut a sort of smoothed V shape in the front.  Then, there you have it.

As always, feel free to decorate however you like or not at all.

How are your children's books organized?  Do you like this method? Why or why not?

Cereal & Other Box Upcycling: Organizing Tupperware Lids

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Yet another brilliant Pintrest discovery while filling up my DIY House Cleaning & Organization Pinboard. Pintrest has enlightened me and inspired me to reuse what would otherwise be considered trash.  One of my favorite and most popular upcycled items are cereal boxes and other miscellaneous boxes.  This is part one of a multi-part miniseries of posts dedicated to upcycling boxes.  Look for Organizing Children's Books, Organizing Mail & Paperwork, and Organizing Canned Goods in the near future.

Anyway, I'll show you what my tupperware lids looked like before I organized them with the boxes.  You might notice that these are, also, mostly upcycled butter, sour cream, and other containers.  More on that in a future post, as well.  As you can see, it was very messy

In order to create these nifty lid holders for my tupperware, I simply saved empty macaroni, cereal, and fruit snack boxes.  I then removed the flaps with scissors wherever the box was open.  Finally I cut at an angle most of the way down and then straight across.  I did the same on the other side.  I like this way best, but I'm sure you can modify the whole process to your liking.

As you can see, mine have yet to be prettified. I suggest colorful duct tape, fabric, wrapping paper, or scrapbook paper.  Or you could not do anything at all with them (for now or for forever) and let them simply be functional creations sans pretty.  Now, instead of needing an entire shelf for themselves, my lids are on the same shelf as my tupperware.

Have you done this or something similar?  Please share your own organization tips, creations, or recreations of this post!  Thanks for reading.

Not Enough Chocolate

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

While this might be a little late, I figured I'd share some of my Easter experience this year with you.  Easter weekend was a super busy weekend for us this year when it came to family events.  A few days before Good Friday, my husband's aunt hit the big 50.  We had our little egg hunt on Good Friday and had an extended family gathering/surprise 50th bash on Saturday, and Easter day was my husband and I's third wedding anniversary and our nieces fifth birthday.  So, yeah, we were a little busy.

My three day weekend turned out to be a lot like work except there was no pay check when it was over.  Don't get me wrong, I loved spending time with our family, my kids and husband especially, but it's not how I envisioned my three day weekend.  When I realized I got Good Friday off (even if it was unpaid), my first thought was:  Yes!  Three day weekend!  Okay, well, when you have three day weekends or any vacation time and holidays are mixed it the bunch... Ugh.  It's not much of a "vacation", in my opinion.

Friday was great.  My husband and I decided to have an egg hunt for our children this year because his family is often on the brink of war so you never know what's going to happen.  My two nieces and nephew really close and so we had it at their house (to avoid the inevitable dog poop in my back yard).  It was so much fun!  Kind of made me wish we could have an adult egg hunt.  I really want to do a glow in the dark egg hunt!  Maybe I'll find an excuse to do something like that anyway, because I'm not sure if I can wait until Easter next year.

Saturday we had to be at a relative's house at 11AM for the egg hunt that we knew wasn't going to start on time.  I, of course, was metaphorically kicking and screaming like my two year-old used to do because I didn't understand why I had to get up so early on my Saturday off work.  Don't judge me.  It was an hour drive to get there and so I had to get up around 8:30AM.  Through all my grumbling, we still went and I think we were even on time!

My grumpy, party-pooping self planned on dragging my husband out of there by 3PM, but I don't think we ended up leaving until 8PM or so.  We topped the night off with lasagna around 10PM or so.  Needless to say, it was a long day.  It wasn't a bad day or anything, but there went two days of my vacation.

Sunday was a beautiful day.  My baby boy and I went to the park.  We even took my dog Bo.  We had him climbing through tunnels and going down the slide.  Needless to say, it was a bright blip in my weekend of busy, busy, busy.

DIY Laundry Detergent: My First Guest Post

Thursday, April 4, 2013

So I was super excited to finally land my first guest post, but it was written before I started switching to the new blog.  However, it's still worth skipping over and taking a look at.  I shared with Adventures of a DIY Mom how to make DIY Dry Laundry Detergent.  If you've ever wanted to make your own laundry detergent, you should check it out.  And if you're not sure if you want to make your own laundry detergent, just take my word for it and do it!

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