Sunday, June 13, 2010

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Stuffed Pasta Shells

1 box of jumbo shells pasta
1 24 oz. container of cottage cheese
2 c. grated cheese
1/4 c. parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 jar of spaghetti sauce

Cook pasta according to the box.
Drain and let cool a bit. (Or run under cold water if your dinner is going to be late like mine was). : )
Combine egg, cottage cheese, parmesan cheese, and 1/2 cup grated cheese.
Fill each shell with a large spoonful of cheese mixture.
Place shells in a 9x13 pan.
Pour sauce over pasta. Cover with remaining grated cheese.
Bake at 350* for 25-30 minutes.

Yum! Thanks to Megan for sharing this family favorite. It's now one of mine!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Then & Now

More growth. June 5, 2009 and June 5, 2010:

This led to a layout inspired by the June gallery at where they have a whole slew of layouts on this theme. Very cool.
Then & Now

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pregnancy Update

I haven't written a lot about baby #4 on the blog, so I decided I needed to take a few moments to capture a few things before I forget. I'm trying to savor every moment of this pregnancy ... who knows if it will be my last one or not. Just in case it is, I definitely don't want it to rush by without taking note of what it's been like.
  • Just in case you forgot, this one is a BOY, and the first one for us.
  • I'm am 22 weeks along - I cannot believe how fast this is going by.
  • I can tell that I am carrying him lower than his sisters. While I still find myself out of breath, it is nothing compared to the gasping and wheezing I would do with the girls - they seemed most comfortable right on top of my lungs.
  • With the girls, I ate ice constantly due to anemia. I haven't had the urge once with this little guy ... and I'm hoping that continues. 
  • I also haven't had any huge cravings (yet). Normal snacks that I usually enjoy have had no appeal to me, too. Chex mix - blah. Chocolate - eh. 
  • The above point (re: snacks) is probably why I have only gained 8 pounds so far. (Insert huge cheer here). I am super pleased with this - this is very atypical for a pregnancy of mine because of my big babies.
  • The worst part of this pregnancy (yet this is SOOOO trivial) ... my hair. With each of the girls, my thick hair would get thicker and curlier with each pregnancy. One of few physical features I have never complained about has been my hair. : ) This time - oy! It is constantly coming out and is STRAIGHT. I have no idea what to do with it. My hair is driving me nuts!
  • I'm starting to pick up a few things here and there for the baby's corner as we loving call the area in our bedroom where he will settle. : ) I ended up going with a red gingham cover for his little bed. Our bedding in our bedroom is red and I thought it would fun (and look better) to try and and match his bedding to ours instead of going gung-ho with something with frogs or baseballs or bright blue all over it. 
  • We're pretty close on a name. We've narrowed it to two and he will have his Daddy's name as his middle name ... now we are just waiting on my husband to decide! : )

Book Review ::: 6 Liter Club

The Six-Liter Club: A Novel

Dr. Camille Weller is the first African American female attending in the trauma surgical department at the Medical College of Virginia (where Kraus earned his M.D.). On her first day, she joins the Six-Liter Club - a reference to an elite group of doctors who have saved a patient after the patient loses six-liters of blood. Exhilarated, she decides to do something about the antiquated "doctors" and "nurses" signs on the locker room doors and changes clothes with the "doctors." She'll also blow their prejudices about skin color out of the water. Yet Camille has far more to overcome than preconceived notions about her skin color or sex...she's having nightmares about her childhood in the Congo, a dark closet, whispered words, and strong arms holding her back.

My review: I've read several of Dr. Kraus' books before. Past books seemed to center more around ethical medical questions and how a believer would walk in those situations with a good mystery to get wrapped in along the way. This book was centered around a female surgeon who is trying to find her place in what is typically a man's arena, and in the process she is confronted with memories from her past and what that means for her future. I admit, I was looking for more of a medical mystery like some of his past novels so this one was just all right for me. Thank you to Glass Road Publications for the review copy of this book.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Blog Break

It's about time for my annual blog break. I need some time away from the computer and the next few weeks are BUSY with VBS, a mini-dance camp for two of the girls, and some time with extended family. I'm a little burnt out on the blog so a few weeks off will be good and then I can reassess if, how, when, why I am blogging (which I think is good to do from time to time). I'll still be checking email so you can always find me there if you have any exciting news. : )

You will see a few posts that I had previously scheduled before I decided to take my June break and I decided to just leave them. Otherwise, I'll be back sometime in early July ... I think. : )

Enjoy your summer!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Download N Go Winner!

Thanks to everyone who entered my Download N Go giveaway. I had fun reviewing and sharing these two units, and how much we have enjoyed them! I numbered the comments in the order I received them, and the winner of their choice of a Download N Go study is:

Congratulations, Shelley! Shelley, let me know which study you want, and we'll get that sent to you!

Thanks again to those who played along. : )

Monday, June 07, 2010


Taken Monday, May 31 and Sunday, June 6:

I think it's safe to say that the sunflowers have grown at least a foot in the last week!

Again, May 31 v. June 6 (same broccoli plant):

Look how our garden grows!

Saturday, June 05, 2010

If you haven't stopped by and entered my giveaway to win your pick of one of the unit studies from Download N Go you have just a few more days! (You can leave a comment here and here for two chance to win). Just to whet your appetite even a bit more, DNG just released their titles for Fall 2010 and it looks like there are some great ones coming in a few months!

Chocolate Challenge
Lewis & Clark
Goofy Gecko
Expedition Africa
Rocking Robots
Roller Coasters
Terrific Tigers 

Constitution Celebration
Tremendous Trees 

Astonishing Animals
Expedition Canada
Creation Camouflage
Magnificent Moon
Hoppin’ Popcorn
Crazy Cartoons
Crunchy Cookies
Expedition Israel
Handsome Horses

Friday, June 04, 2010

Summer Hair

Last September:


New 'do's for the summer. We're ready to go! : )

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Paper Doll Fun

I found our Little House on the Prairie paper dolls when I was cleaning off our school shelves yesterday. Two little girls pounced on them and had a ball playing with them.

For the record, Jack the bulldog has a much bigger role in our production and retelling of the story than I remember in the books or the television series. : )

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Summer Crafts

Start with a couple bags of sticky foam pieces.

A couple $1 foam hats from the local craft store.

You end up with a couple girls that are ready to hit the beach in a few weeks. : )

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Bloggy Review ::: Download N Go Whale Tales

This is post #2 where I will be reviewing one of Amanda Bennett's Download N Go unit studies! 

Back in January, I blogged about Amanda Bennett's unit studies and how much N1 and I were enjoying them with our school. I've recently received two of her Download N Go unit studies to review and there will be a fun giveaway, too. : ) These studies are geared for a K - 4th grade age range and while we haven't attempted to do everything in the study, there have been plenty of questions and prompts to discuss and learn about. My favorite part of these unit studies is the extensive book list that is provided! At the beginning of each unit, there is a list of close to 40 books you can look for at your local library (or purchase) that talk about the subject of the unit. For us, that has been a great help especially as we spend so much of our day doing read-aloud right now. 

And now, Whale Tales!! From the press release:

Each day for 5 days, your students will meet and learn about a different whale and enjoy creative lapbooking fun. There are science discoveries, such as learning about whale and human anatomy, and history investigations, learning about Creation and the Bible story of Jonah. Geography lessons will introduce the oceans making the study of whales quite interesting! Plus there are writing prompts, crafts, games, a wonderful choice of books to complement this study, and many coloring/activity pages.
And now, for the giveaway ... leave a comment on this post for a chance to win your choice of a Download N Go unit study! This is the 2nd post that I will be taking comments on. (If you haven't left a comment on this post, you are welcome to go back and leave a comment (so you have two chances to win.) Two requests:

1. Take a minute to hop over to the Download N Go page at The Old Schoolhouse Store and tell me which unit study is the one you would like to win. (You are free to change your mind and pick another one if you do win!)

2. Also, please make sure that you leave an email address when you leave a comment. No email address = no way to contact you = no win.

Good luck! We have really enjoyed some of these studies this year and I'm excited to be sharing one of these studies with one of you! The contest will close on June 8 and I'll draw a winner from the combined comments on the Download N Go posts.

Disclaimer: I received this study courtesy of the LitFuse Publicity Group and have received no monetary compensation. The contest is entirely of my own doing and not affiliated with any other group or organization.


Yesterday, for the first time, I counted up last night the number of days that I have been “home” - using that loosely as I have been ou...