Monday, August 26, 2013

This Place is going to the Dog...National Dog Day

Happy National Dog Day!  Did you know it existed?  I didn't but hey why not have a reason to give Dex an extra homemade cookie today?! Yes, I bake for our dog, much cheaper than buying the nice treats, but I still buy the good 'ole milkbones and rawhide. Well we have had Dex for just over a month now.  We're loving him and he loves us.  Though sometimes Pete chases him a bit too much, and sometimes we rough house with Pete a bit too much and freak Dex out with it.  Every night we go to Pete's room and read the scriptures and pray and do the general bed time routine.  Well Dex has to be in there for that and snuggles up with us and gets jealous when we are kissing goodnights and wants in on it too.  Pete frequently asks for Dex to put him to bed, but we don't allow that to happen, I don't think Dex would enforce the rules well enough. 

How about the recipe to the most recent dog treat creations in celebration of National Dog Day?

Dex's Peanut Butter Apple Cookies

1cup PB
3 cups whole wheat flour/white flour
1/4-1/2 cup flaxseed meal
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 TBS oil
1/2 cup diced apple
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix it together. Flour surface thoroughly and roll out.  Cut into squares or with cookie cutters and back at 350 for 20 minutes of until golden brown.  Store in the fridge or freezer.  If you freeze them, make sure to thaw before giving them to the dog!

My dad was actually really tempted to eat one the other day and you probably could and it wouldn't taste too bad. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

BIG Hole

I picked up a long handled plastic for Pete last week off the clearance in hopes of deterring him from Phil's real ones hanging up in the garage.  I just tend to have a little problem with it.  Pete seems to think it a little strange.  Well today it was nice out this morning and I was dying to just to absolutely nothing and let Pete have a jolly good time since both of us have had a hard week after canning peaches.  So today was our real rest day after all of that. Pete went ahead and tried out his new yard tool set in my front flower bed, such a thoughtful young man...I thought it was pretty funny really.  He really only scraped off the mulch and got off a bit of dirt before moving onto something else, but he thought he was doing a big job.  Dex hung out with us too. 

Here are the end results this afternoon.  Poor little boy wore himself out...though it wasn't just from the digging he ended up trying to help us catch a dog and was going crazy running around for it.  No worries we knew the dog, not some random stray; Pete had accidentally let it out of the house, so we had to help get her back!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Nap Time Project: Animal Action Dice

Part of our survival  pack of traveling with a toddler for too long in the car. I found part of the idea here, but have expanded out to meet our own needs and Pete's abilities.  I wanted something to get him moving while at rest stops while driving, but something that would hold up better than the painted cardboard box in the car.  Well they had some big dice at Dollar Tree in the gag/toy section.  I've been eyeing them for awhile because I knew there had to be something I could make/do with them. 

Action Dice Tutorial
Jumbo foam dice from Dollar Tree
Acrylic paints/spray paint
Metallic Sharpie to write over dark color

Paint the dice the desired color.  I used acrylic paints because the weather wasn't working out for spray paint to cold, windy and wet to spray them.  Two coats of the acrylic worked wonderfully to cover both the base color and the dots on the original dice.

Allow to dry thoroughly. 

Write on your action words with the marker.  I used:
jump like a kangaroo
stomp like an elephant
swim like a fish
wiggle like a crocodile
fly like a bird
kick like a donkey

I'm excited to try them out.  We've read some books with these actions and they are all doable for him, which is what I needed.  I'm also considering making a set of animal noise dice to go along with them, but with other animals.  I'll use:
moo like a cow,
cluck like a chicken,
oink like a pig,
quack like a duck,
neigh like a horse,
baa like a sheep.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Nap Time Project: Dry Erase Coloring Sheets

I knew Pete would want to color while we were on the long road trip west, but I didn't want to deal with packing multiple coloring books all the small crayons (that were bound to get lost and melted into my upholstery*).  So I made his coloring sheets dry erase!

coloring sheets
laminator and lamination sheets
hole punch
book rings
Crayola dry erase crayons

Pick out your favorite clean coloring pages either printed from online or from a coloring book.  We went with coloring books because they were handy and high quality. 

Load them into the lamination sheet with the backs facing each other, that way you get double-sided action, more bang for the buck! If you don't have a laminator most office supply store have services, but they are not cheap.

After all your pages are laminated punch a hole in the top center of each page.  This is the best place to hook the book ring and attach it to a clipboard. 

Attach sheets via ring to the clipboard. You can also reinforce the hanger on the top of the crayon box and hang it there too, just so pieces won't get lost.

*but I did still store the crayons in the cooler if the car was going to be just sitting in a parking lot for too long.*

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Family Bike Ride

Everybody loaded up!
When I say family, I mean the whole kit and caboodle!  I'd forgotten Dex's food bowl at my mom's house today from spending some time over there and we needed to retrieve it for this evening.  We thought it would be wise to take advantage of the amazing weather today and bike over and get it.  There is a way zigzagging through all the neighborhoods that we can get there with only being on a major road for about 100 yards.  It works out well really.  We have the bike trailer for Pete that can hold up to 110 lbs, though I'm not sure either of us would be capable of pulling that much really.  But it does work out well with a dachshund traveling along with a toddler, until that is when the toddler gets tired of sharing, and makes the dog go to the back of the trailer.

The boys on the road!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Pete's 3!

Pete's Birthday Party
Pete had a nice little party this year.  Alas not everyone was able to make it up, but I think Pete was still happy having grandparents and some friends to dote on him during his big day!  I made a Curious George cake (though my frosting gun broke and didn't make for the best looking cake, but Pete said it was cute, so that is all that matters).  We had hot dogs and lots of sides and homemade ice cream.  Pete got to open lots of presents and got 2 new tractors, the Curious George movie and stuffed animal and books and a toy drum, and of course clothes.  Pete had a piƱata this year that I made for the occasion, and he didn't have to share!  I think he had a great time, plus it was an easy party to prepare!
The cake

Grandma helping Pete destroy my hard work and earn some candy

Pete opening a tractor from grandma and grandpa, though it was
broken and we had to get another one.

A Year in Pictures
2nd birthday bash

October 2012- EEG

Halloween 2012

November 2012

December 2012

Big Snow 2013

Spring Break 2013

Summer Vacation 2013

July 2013

10 Little Things I Love about Pete
1.  After he tells me to "go way, mommy" at bedtime he comes to the door saying, "I missa mom, I missa my momma"(insert heart melt)
2.  How snugly he gets when he isn't feeling the best.
3.  Really a love-hate relationship, but his independence!
4.  The absolute love he has for his popo, popo welch and skypopo!  It is wonderful!
5.  His love of dirt.  Want to know how to entertain him, give him dirt or rocks, you'll have an easy 15-20 minutes.  Add a spoon and you'll have even longer.
6.  The way he says, "sarr-ee Dad, sarree Dad"  Love it! (that is sorry if you couldn't tell)
7.  The way he worries about leaving the dog at home, "Oh no! Woof a Mommy house! Save awoof!"
8.  Counting with Pete!  So much fun.  Especially after reading his rocket book and he counts down instead!
9.  The fact he is still a clean freak and even takes his plate to the sink for me now.
10.  While putting him to bed and having him tell me who he loves "I luv mommy, I luv daddy. I luv (I tell him Dex, but he changes it to woof) I say good night Pete, I love you Pete.  He responds, "I love Pete"  and his nightly, "sleep <pause> tight."

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Painting of the Classroom

I've been dying to paint Phil's classroom since he got it last year.  It wasn't  my favorite color to begin with but then add in the wear and tear of how many teenagers using it, not a pretty sight!  I spent part of a prep period while I was subbing drawing it out and figuring out how to make it into the coolest room ever. So enjoy some shots of the before, during and after.

Phil during.

There is part of the front kind of after/during.

The student display area during

This is an almost after picture, just needs the tape removed.


after with the "new" couch

 after by the teacher's desk

What do you think? A better place to attempt learning?

Sunday, August 11, 2013


Dex loves to play fetch.  I mean really really loves to play.  He will come up to me just going crazy, I take him outside and he goes bonkers after that ball!  I just picked up a Kong Squeakair from Petsmart (with a coupon a whole 49 cents!) and tried it out.  The shelter had no idea what he liked or didn't like but I figured I couldn't go wrong with a squeak toy and a ball for a dog.  He absolutely loves playing in the yard with me.  He is great too with Pete.  Pete will try to play with him too and Dex will go and retrieve the ball for him or if Pete completely takes the ball just lays down until Pete finally drops or throws the ball.

We are still so amazed at Dex and how good of a dog he really is, it really does blow my mind that we ended up with the perfect dog for our family!

Naptime Project: TARDIS Door

 In our wonderful basement there lives a closet.  It wasn't much of a closet before the last few weeks, though it did house the watersupply for the house, so still very important.  It has been the object of my creative/craft side these last few weeks though.  It has now been transformed into the TARDIS door!  It started out as just a basic unfinished door and came out much much cooler.  The hardest and most time consuming part of the door was the taping and prep work for the highlighting and shading.  It took for ever for us to do this!  Phil helped out a lot with this, he measured and I taped, great teamwork! It was definitly worth the extra effort to do the shading/highlighting because it did make a huge difference in the look and made it look much more put together.

Oh and for those of you that are completely lost on the topic of this post concerning Doctor Who and the TARDIS.  Go educate yourself.

Here is a picture tutorial for you.  If you have any questions comment and I'll let you know!

Door primed with Zinser mold/mildew resistant roll on primer.  The spray on kind didn't have the mold and mildew stopper that is need for in the basement.

Phil modeling the now blue spray painted door.  I used Rustoleum Deep Blue in a gloss finish.  It took 2 1/2 cans to do both sides of the coat with a nice coat.  My final coat didn't turn out glossy though so a bit annoying.  Only time I've not been happy with a spray paint finish.
All taped and covered in vinyl and ready for the final spray painting.  The vinyl worked really well, just try to get all of the air bubble out.  Th vinyl isn't as sticky as the contact paper and was just the right size for the inside of the squares (9x12inches)
The top and right sides in done in spray paint I used Rustoleum in Navy Blue for the dark shading portions.
Wondering how I got those amazingly straight lines? I used a leftover piece of foam core as a straight edge.  I also had another one at the top to keep the other blocks from the overspray, but I couldn't take a picture and hold both.  Not enough hands I suppose.
The top of the door has the vinyl removed and the rest still covered.  Be prepared for the awesomeness to ensue!

Here it is with all the tape and newspaper removed!  I swear it is just a flat paneled door!
The finished and installed TARDIS door!  I forgot to photograph the finishing touches so I'll go over what they all are quickly, while you drool over the door.  The Police Box sign is a scrap of wood that was painted black and hand lettered (that high school calligraphy class is paying off!)  and then adhered with Gorilla Glue.  The windows I taped over the shadowing to get a sharp edge and painted with acrylic white paint. I added a dab of black to one box and used to make a couple of gray "panes" and then outlined the panes in black acrylic paint, though a permanent marker would have worked as well.  The Public Call and Ambulance signs are from a Bing search and both came from various Deviant Art users and were free to download and print. I then laminated them and stuck them on with double sticky back tape.

 I still need to get some trim work and frame it in with more blue.  But really a great addition to our geekiness in the basement.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Coming to an End

Sadly enough school is getting ready to start up again. We will have to bid adieu to Phil and hand him over to the school for the next few months until Thanksgiving and then Christmas breaks. 

We have had a great summer full of fun from vacations to getting a new member of the family. It is pretty sad and I know Pete will be rather distraught over the lack of Daddy during out daily life. Heck, I'll be pretty dang sad too. We have gotten spoiled this last couple of weeks with only tutoring happen
ing on a daily basis.  Soon I'll start back up with the insanity of subbing, but at least we'll have playgroup and the reading group at the library again this fall to keep us busy and make us leave the house!

Goodbye summer we'll see you again next June!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Dex's New Toy

I'd gotten a gift card to amazon for my birthday and decided to share the wealth with the family.  I got a new game I've been wanting for awhile, Man Bites Dog.  Pete got Curious George matching game and Dex got Hide a Squirrel.  I thought it looked like lots of fun for him, and worse comes to worse it came with 3 squeaky toys! Well here is your video evidence.  I just thought it was funny and had to share.

Dex has actually gotten quite spoiled lately with squeaky toys.  He found Pete's stuffed animals the other day and I was worried that they wouldn't survive the onslaught and we'd end up with a rather upset toddler.  A quick trip to the pet store and amazon fixed that though.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Temple Trip

Saturday the South Bend area had a temple day up in Chicago.  We took advantage of it and had Mom and Dad babysit Pete for us so we could enjoy the day without having to take turns or worry about him.  We were super lucky to catch a ride with another couple that was going up so we didn't have to deal with the traffic.  I hate the traffic!  Luckily it won't be an issue for too much longer since there is a new temple being built in Indy!  Granted it will take some time, but not that much longer!  We had a great time there and was nice to get away for awhile.  It really is such a blessing to have a temple nearby, even if it does feel like a near death experience to drive through Chicago sometimes!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Another Weekend of Visitors!

This weekend Phil's family came to visit us.  They weren't able to come up until Saturday evening because of work schedules and stayed until Tuesday after dinner.  Sunday they joined us for church and a wonderful potluck for dinner.  I made this bread, which was gone in just a couple of minutes.

On Monday, I made pancakes for breakfast and the Calls went up to take Sarah through a tour of IPFW and Phil headed off to a tech conference at the high school; and I ended up staying at home with Pete and Dex (story of my life!).  Once Phil finished up at the conference we met up at the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo.  They had a big event that day and we ended up with free lunch and a ride.  Pete had a great time enjoying the zoo and Sky Popo!   
Pete in the safari jeep

Pete and Mom showing off his filthy face in Australia

Pete giggling about the goat licking his hand for the food!
Tuesday Phil had to attend a conference/workshop and also present at it and his parents tagged along to see him.  I was planning on hanging out with Sarah and Pete, but mom said she could take him for me! So I was able to spend the afternoon with Sarah shopping and eating ice cream, without Pete!  Phil started working on the shower faucet, which we've been turning on with a wrench for the last year.  Classy, I know.  We had a nice barbeque with my parents and Phil's family and said goodbye shortly there after.