This Just In ...

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Blog Has Moved

Hi Faithful Followers.

I have decided to move this blog. The new address is

I hope you'll come for a visit soon.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Rick Rocks ~ When He Doesn't Think I'm Sexy

Rick thinks I'm sexy. He tells me that all the time. He thinks other men should be jealous that I am his wife.

But the other day Rick came in from work and said, "You look cute!"

I loved that!

Yes, I love that Rick thinks I'm sexy and I try hard to dress and present myself to him in the ways that he thinks are sexy. But there is just something great about being told you are 'cute' by your husband. It brings a smile to my face every time I think about it.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Meal Schedule Continued

Now that I have my meal planning acronyms set, it's time to start planning meals!

Yesterday I planned the next two weeks. I must say, having a guideline to follow sure made it easier! But, I still found myself spending too much time thinking of meals.

How often do you see a recipe on another blog and think, "I'd like to fix that!" And, maybe you even Bookmark ("Favorites" for Microsoft users) it. But then it gets sucked into the thousands of Bookmarks you already have and then you never get to it, or even find it.

To solve this problem, I created new Bookmark folders with the titles of my day-of-the-week meal planning acronyms {did that make sense?}. For instance, I now have folders entitled "Mexican Monday" Recipes and "The Favorites Thursday" Recipes. When I see a recipe I like I decide which category it would fall under and immediately Bookmark it into that folder. So when I go to plan meals I can pull up that folder and choose some new recipes.

I've already got a couple in there I can't wait to fix!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Nicole's Daybook

Outside my window... It rained this morning, so now it is cool and the wind is blowing and it feels like a Fall day. I love it!!!

I am thinking... about how it is the simple things in my life that make me feel so happy and peaceful.

I am thankful ... that this year's visit to Missouri for Kyndal and Dawson didn't stir up a torrent of turmoil, like last year's did.

I am wearing... a pair of black yoga pants, t-shirt, zip-up hoodie and Nike's.

I am planning... lesson plans {always lesson plans}, girl and boy frog Halloween costumes.

I am creating... the beginning of my Christmas list.

I am going... to sit here on my back porch, by myself, enjoying this cool weather, playing on my computer, for at least the next 30 minutes while Dawson does his Algebra.

I am reading... Mad Dash by Patricia Gaffney; The Golden Goblet by Eloise Jarvis McGraw and Radical by David Platt.

I am hoping... that Rick and I continue on this path of connectedness for a long time ... forever would be nice.

On my mind... is the little bully on Eli and Brynne's bus who pulled Eli's hair yesterday and threw a rock at him and spit on him and Brynne. We now know the child's name, and will be making a formal complaint to the bus driver.

From the learning rooms... Brynne came home yesterday and said, "Do you know how to make homework? I don't have any and I want some." I gave her a kindergarten page from Eli's Summer Bridge book. She did a subtraction page. She's 5. Eli is doing really well earning his marbles by completing his work. We are even giving him marbles for doing his homework without complaint that he takes to school to add to his jar. He had his first assessments on Friday and got a 100% in math and a 93% in phonics. I am still thrilled about Kyndal's attitude toward her school work. She told me she got a 100% on her Biology test on Monday, and that was after she missed school Thursday and Friday and was gone all weekend. Dawson is still studying Ancient Egypt and plugging along in his other subjects. His good attitude continues to amaze me and its so fun to see him smiling about something he has learned!

Noticing that ... I get so tired in the afternoons from lack of hydration. Better go get some water!

From the kitchen...Dawson and I just threw an entire lentil casserole down the drain. He made it for one of his Ancient Egypt assignments. Gross! Who eats that stuff????

Around the house... are sleeping puppies. It's nap time!

One of my favorite things... is standing in the driveway with two other moms watching our kids (9 total at our bus stop) load the bus, eager for their day.

A few plans for the rest of the week... Kyndal's physical therapy and ortho appointments, football games, homework, Fall t.v. in the evenings, swinging, a trip to the art museum Thursday night to sculpt with clay, and a date night this weekend.

From my picture journal.
The cool inside of a sunflower. This sounds dumb, but I really didn't know where the sunflower seeds came from! I plucked them all out and am going to salt and roast them for Rick. He loves sunflower seeds.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Menu Plan Monday ~ The Week Before the New Schedule

I clean house by use of acronyms, based on the day of the week. I've blogged about it before.

While looking for an appetizer recipe last week I came across some recipes I would love to try! It got me thinking about how boring and predictable our menu has become. I haven't tried anything new in a long, long time. And I am bored with cooking. That's not a good place to be on the cusp of winter cooking.

So, I decided to implement a meal planning schedule based on acronyms, as well.

I already had our menu planned for next week, so the new schedule will start on Monday, September 20th.

The plan will be:

Monday ~ "Mexican" Monday {We love Mexican!}

Tuesday ~ "Taste of Home Cookbook" Tuesday {Cook something out of one of my many Taste of Home cookbooks.}

Wednesday ~ FFY, still Fend for Yourself {I don't care what it is as long as I don't have to cook it!}

Thursday ~ "The Favorites" Thursday {Where everybody gets to take turns requesting favorites, like spaghetti, chicken fettucine, baked salisbury steak, etc.}

Friday ~ "Freezer" Friday {Whatever I make, I will make a double portion and freeze one for later use. I am also toying with the idea of making a triple portion and giving one of them to a special person in our lives as a Christmas present that lasts all year.}

Saturday ~ "Sandwich" Saturday {BLT's, egg sandwiches, paninis, grilled cheese, etc.}

Sunday ~ "So Easy" Sunday {Hot dogs, burgers, Tyson chicken sandwiches, chicken quesadillas, etc.}

This starts next week. Here's what we're having this week:

Monday ~ Weight Watchers Salisbury steak, homemade mac and cheese
Tuesday ~ Broccoli and beef stir fry
Wednesday ~ FFY
Thursday ~ Chicken tetrazinni
Friday ~ Mexican pizzas
Saturday ~ Chicken sandwiches
Sunday ~ Pizza bread

Friday, September 10, 2010

Rick Rocks ~ Because He is Thoughtful

Although I am bored with what I have to say about myself right now, I still have very important things to say about my husband!

Yesterday it was raining. My garage door opener is jacked up right now. When I went out to take Eli and Brynne to school, my Suburban was parked in the garage in Rick's spot . He had pulled his car out of the garage and moved mine over to his spot so that I could use his garage door.

Without doing that I would have had to back my car out, park it, get out of my car, go into the garage, hold my garage door button down until the door was closed, open Rick's garage door, go out his door, get back in my car and close his garage door ... all while in the rain.

I felt such a swell of happiness when I sent the kids out to the car and walked out and saw my car moved over.

Rick Rocks ~ Because he is thoughtful!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I am feeling, for now, a pulling back from this blog.

Who wants to read this stuff anyway? What do I really write about? Does anybody really care but me? And if I am the only one who really cares, then I am a narcissistic freak of grand proportions ... not to mention full of more pride than humanly possible.

Sometimes I have real things to share, like a yummy new recipe or how to make a fun t-shirt. But my other ramblings?

Rick says I should keep writing if only for myself because it is a place where I can get my thoughts out. He also said that he learns more about what's going on inside my head by reading my blog than he gets out of me personally.

Anyway. At this time I am obsessed with homeschooling and what I am sharing on that blog. The link is on the right sidebar. And, I still post regularly on Taulman Times: Special Edition to keep my family updated on the kids. That link is on the right, also. So, if you are one of the few who are actually curious about me and my family, you can see more than enough activity there.

There's nothing wrong with me. I'm not depressed. I'm not angry. I'm just bored with myself and more interested in my family right now.

Thanks for reading, and check in every once in a while to see if I've had a change of heart.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Nicole's Daybook

Outside my window... It's cooler and cloudy and is going to rain today.

I am thinking... about how I just don't belong anywhere. We went to some good friends' for a party on Sunday night. I didn't fit in. I imagine the women there were looking at me thinking what a snob I was. I just didn't fit in. It got me thinking about how I used to be friendly. In high school and college I was excited about meeting new people and would be social and mingle. I don't know if it's being burned one too many times, or if I really just don't care anymore. But I am a snob. I have no desire to talk to people or get to know new people. I enjoyed talking to the couple of people I knew. But otherwise, I just didn't care.

I am thankful ... that I am able to be involved in my kids' schools.

I am wearing... a pair of denim capris, a white tank top, my favorite brown moccasins and my hair in a pony.

I am planning... lessons and a couple of days off from school on Thursday and Friday.

I am creating... nothing.

I am going... to go to Brynne's Mom and Me Muffin Morning on Thursday.

I am reading... Mad Dash by Patricia Gaffney; The Golden Goblet by Eloise Jarvis McGraw and Radical by David Platt.

I am hoping... that I am wrong about my ill feelings.

On my mind... is the genuineness of people. I may be a snob, but at least I'm not pretending not to be. Last week I was walking in the evening and I walked past the house of some people we used to go to church with. I had an image of what a "nice" family they were, what a "Christian" family. I heard the dad yell to his son, who was in the backyard pulling the hose around, "**** you are a complete idiot, despite what you think. Go the other way! **** take the hose the other way!" And he wasn't saying it like, "Hey **** you doofus, take the hose the other way. Oh, geez, what a goof ball." No. He was calling his son an "idiot" and meaning it.

From the learning rooms... Brynne's will get smaller this next week because they transferred a pre-k teacher (Brynne's from last year) to kindergarten so they will have 20 kids in a class instead of 30. I was told by Eli's teacher and resource teacher that since we started our marble box that he has gotten all his work done and hasn't even had to go see the resource teacher to help him finish it!!! Kyndal is still doing well and enjoying her classes. Dawson will have a very busy day today and tomorrow because he and Kyndal are taking off school Thursday and Friday to go on their yearly trip with their dad.

Noticing that ... First it was frogs. Then it was butterflies. Now? Armadillos! Glad I decided not to plan a fall garden. They would demolish it.

From the kitchen... we have a full pantry, fridge and freezer since I went to the store this weekend and our menu is more on track this week.

Around the house... It is super dark because some of our house lighting is not working.

One of my favorite things... is a cool Fall breeze, my back porch and a cup of coffee, all at the same time.

A few plans for the rest of the week... Busy school days, quieter evenings.

From my picture journal.

On our window last week.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

While looking for a couple of my appetizer recipes yesterday I came across sooooo many recipes from the past and new recipes that I want to use. So next week I plan to tap into some of those! But for this week, more of the same 'ol same 'ol.

Monday ~ Stuffed peppers (and stuffed pepper mix over rice for the kids)

Tuesday ~ Chicken fettucine and french bread

Wednesday ~ FFY

Thursday ~ Crescent chicken

Friday ~ Salmon, veggies and rice (and fish sticks for the kids)

Saturday ~ Grilled chicken wraps

Sunday ~ Paninis and grilled cheese sandwiches

Have a great week!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

'Tis the Sneezin'

It felt like Fall yesterday. Beautiful temperatures, the first home high school football game and this ....

Yep ... we got t.p.'d! Rick said it must have been done by a bunch of girls though because they almost decorated our trees and bushes with it and it wasn't more than 10 feet off the ground. My thought was that I could have really used that toilet paper this week to wipe all of the snotty noses in my house.

Because, yes, it's also cold and sinus season. And we had our first bout of it this week.

So that brings me to the topic I think I raise every single year, but it's worth repeating. What do you do to help ward off sickness in your house?

Our Eli has a weak immune system, especially with upper respiratory infections. For many years he has gotten pneumonia more than once and he's the one most likely to get the flu. I take many measures to keep him healthy so that he misses minimal school.

1. Vitamins. Very important! We take them all year round, but especially during this season. I just use a gummy mulit-vitamin for the kids and I take the cheap Wal-mart brand of woman's multi-vitamin. I also take extra calcium for my bones.

2. Immune Boosters. For the past few years I have religiously given my little two an extra gummy vitamin called 'Lil Critters Immune C. I swear by it! I think, and my doctor agrees, that the zinc in that vitamin is what has kept Eli pneumonia-free the last two winters. I cannot recommend it enough and should get paid to endorse this product.

3. Humidifiers. We run humidifiers in the kids' rooms during this entire fall and winter season to keep the air moist.

4. Green Tea. Brynne won't drink it, but Eli and I definitely do! We each drink a cup of it every evening. Green Tea has proven to have immune boosting qualities. And, I just love it's soothing feel.

5. Sleep. Everybody here gets their sleep. It's so important to stay healthy!

6. Healthy Eating. I would never claim that we are the best at it, but I really do try to make sure my kiddos eat as healthy as possible.

What do you do to try to stay illness-free in your home?