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Showing posts from May, 2013

Suggestions for Summer Reads for Teens and Adults

I thought I'd list some of my favorite books and authors.  I am hoping visitors to my blog will suggest their favorites - which I will add to the list below and perhaps will have something to read this summer.

Jan  Evanovich - of the cozy mystery sort, I think most people know her but still a good easy read
M.C. Beaton - both Hamish MacBeth and Agatha Raisin series are a quick easy read that's entertaining
Douglas Adams - a funny twist on sci-fi, starting with Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Michael Crichton - Jurassic Park, Andromeda Strain, Congo - lots more

King Peggy (Bartels) - true story of a woman who has been living in America for many years and becomes King of her tribe back home in Ghana - my current favorite book.

In My Father's Country (Wahab) - based on a true story of an Afghan girl coming to America, then returning working for the United States, not my favorite book but it truly gave me an understanding of what is going on in Afghanistan.

A day with no kids, How to find your spa day that's not at the spa

My husband visited his parents and took the kids with him.  Woo Hoo! Free day.  I could spend it at the spa but I don't like the spa.  A massage never cut it for me.  I relax by getting out and doing things.  I scoured the internet for something to do.  I searched and the local newspapers and I did searches on what I want to do.  In the end, I settled on a Qigong class in the morning and a painting class for beginners in the afternoon.  Although I have older kids and would love to bring them along, it's nice to meet with adults without a kid tagging along (and the activities are getting costly).

How to find your spa day that's not at the spa:
Check local park websites for calendar eventsInternet search on an activity you want to do and put in your zip code after it, i.e. Qigong 90210Check with your - this is not just for races, they list music and outdoor events or just fitness events, like yoga www.meetup.comGet outdoors and find a trail on…

Staying Close to home for summer vacation

Last year, our family went on three big trips, so this year we're staying close to home.  We are going to try and stay within a half a day's ride from home, so that our biggest expense is where we stay.

Where to stay:
*  Camp - it's a great way to get back to nature.  If you don't have a tent, many campsites have cabins you can rent.  It's the basics but it's saves

*  Stay home - part of our adventures will be right in our own backyard.  Of course, we are lucky to have a place that has an overwhelming amount to do.  Still, look at local tourist site to see what you might have missed.

Save on food:
*  Pack the cooler with frozen juice boxes and sandwiches:  I will freeze some juice boxes and make cold cut sandwiches the day before we leave. Be sure to put some juice boxes or water bottles that are not frozen in the cooler.

* I have been known to go to the supermarkets on the road.  Lunchables are good but either their quantity has gotten smaller or my kids are har…

Bonding Time? Movies with the kids

This weekend, we saw Iron Man 3.  The movie was so much fun - I would recommend it, it's like taking a roller coaster ride, except at times funnier.


Two days before heading out, we watched Iron Man and Iron Man 2.  We wanted to watch Avengers but we also wanted to see it opening weekend.  (Tip:  I personally could have waited but apparently if you didn't see it opening weekend, nobody cares in school).  For two days we talked about the movies and watched the interviews and showed each other trailers.  There was much talk and excitement in our house.  After the movie, we talked about our favorite parts and the funny one liners.  We hoped there would be an Iron Man 4 but wondered if they could with the way they ended it.  We wished they had more girl superheros, perhaps the Black Widow.  We wondered about the Iron Man comic books and thought perhaps we should see if we can find some.

Basis for Serious Talk

Although we did not talk about anything serious like drugs or datin…

Summer Projects

Two weeks ago, I told my kids that they will need to pick a project that takes all summer long and if they don't I will pick one for you.  Every couple of days, I ask them if they've been thinking about their project.  Both of them did, but I'm not allowed to say.  So, I thought I'd give you a list of things your kids could do that I would have suggested (or made) my kids do this summer:

Tips to keep in mind:
Establish a budget.
Establish how much time you want to commit and how much they should work on their own.

1.  Read a book series
- Some of my kids favorites are: Harry Potter, The Ranger's Apprentice, The Princess Diaries, Divergent series and yes believe it or not the Laura Ingalls Wilder books)

2. Make a go-cart
- I've been dying for my kids to do this but no, sigh.

3. Plan, prepare and take a bike trip
- We have lots and long biking trails that you can spend days on where we live and now with google maps showing biking trails it's even more fun.