Boredom Buster | Scientific Journal

I hate those words "I am bored."  They are like nails on a chalkboard!  Every summer I try to come up with lots of creative ways to avoid those dreaded words escaping my children's lips.  One of the things we do each summer is tune-in to and watch for animals.  It is the coolest thing to watch monkeys, lions, elephants, hippos, and giraffes in their natural habitat.  We have to wait until summer because the "watering holes" don't get busy until 9pm our time.  I have been a fan of this site for years and I love watching it grow in popularity because they keep adding more live cameras and features.  Check out what we saw the other night:
Zebras!  There is this new feature where you can take a snapshot of the live animals you are seeing.  There miiiiiiight be times I am watching without the kids so this comes in handy.  Anywho.

This summer, I decided to make this part of our "summer learning" plan.
(yes, I am one of those Moms who make their kids do school work on their time-off)
This is in our "science" portion.  I created this worksheet for my kids to record their findings:
I think you can click on it to enlarge and print for yourself if you'd like.
If there is a big enough interest, I can put a PDF version on my website.

We don't just sit and watch all day.  We use this worksheet for investigating clouds, nature walks, experiments we find on the internet, bugs, and anything else scienc-ie.

Now go getcher science on, People!

Summertime Toneout

I am not a big fitness guru and workouts like "CrossFit" frighten the heckles out of me.  I've trained for marathons and I love being out on the road running with my friends until my legs feel like jelly.  I needed something I could do at home when the weather wasn't cooperating or my schedule was packed.  Something in the comfort of my pajamas when necessary.

I am excited about the daily "toneout" I've created for myself.  I've been developing this for a couple of months and being the designer I am, I needed to make it purdy.

Here is my Daily 20 Toneout:
20 Jumping Jacks
20 Squats
20 Second Plank
20 Side Crunches
20 Second Plank
20 Scissor Kicks
20 Push-Ups
20 Sit-Ups
20 Calf Raises
20 High Kicks
20 Tip-Toe Plie Squats
//Bonus Cardio //
20 Minutes of Dancing (or walking, jogging, biking, chasing my kids, etc.)

Without the cardio included, this workout generally takes me about 20-30 minutes.  Totally do-able with my kids around all summer!  If you are just beginning an exercise regimen, I think I'm supposed to tell you to talk to your doctor first, so do that.  You can begin this workout at your own pace starting with only 5 reps of each exercise and work your way up to more!  Try to do the exercises one after the other... the professionals tell me that's a good thing.

Feel free to print, pin, and share my Daily "Toneout" plan but, please give credit where credit is due.  Please and thank you.
Have a great workout... YOU CAN DO IT!


Today is my birthday.
I love birthdays.
Its our very own special holiday where friends and family take a moment to love on you.  I wanted to give you something for my birthday because I want you to feel joy today.

Know that someone is thinking this very thought about you...
[your pretty much my most favorite of all time in the history of ever]
 You can print this out onto any 8.5"x11" (be sure to set printer to fit to page or scale to fit so you don't lose any details around the edges) or save it as a desktop background.  Click the image above and save to your device.  I also will load a PDF version onto my website a little later today.

Have a happy and most lovely day. 

Technology Tickets

I'm all for encouraging the free-spiritedness of summer except when it comes to technology.  We have to limit our technology time (this includes TV, Wii, computer, etc.)  Have you heard of Technology Tickets?  Well, I decided to make my technology ticket system a little different than some of the ideas I found HERE.

Here is what I came up with:
The kids can earn a technology ticket for completing an extra chore or when they "go that extra mile" (being kind, helping Mama or Dad with a project, obedience, sharing, etc.)  They can redeem them anytime they would like to extend their technology time.  Right now they are allowed 1 hour of computer time a day and 1 hour of TV time per day.
Click the image above to enlarge.
Save to your computer and print.

I sat down to design the tickets and decided to leave the amount of time redeemable as a blank space.  Then I could decide on the amount of the ticket based upon what they did to earn it.  For example, let's say my son decided to wash our van.  That would earn him a 15 minute technology ticket.

If this idea sounds like it might be something you would like to try with your kids.  Feel free to click the image to save to your computer and print it out.  I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas on this as well!  Please come back and share with me.  This is new for us too so I will try to update on our progress with this new system.  Happy Summer!

ink & mouse

Today is the day! I am so thankful and blessed to be able to launch my design website for ink & mouse! (for those that aren't aware, I do graphic design) I made this little desktop gift as a welcome:

Click image to make larger and then save to your computer.
Click here to have a look around:
Let me know if I can help you with any projects that need to get fancied up!
Tell your friends too.