Friday, June 22, 2018

5 Important Facts About Temper Tantrums & How To Survive Them As A Parent

mommysuburbia.blogspot.com

This post contains affiliate links which means I will receive a small commission from your purchase at no additional cost to you. For more information see my Disclaimer page.

So you are in the grocery store one afternoon, casually strolling down the cereal aisle when all of a sudden a shriek from the cart in front of you interrupts your thoughts. Next thing you know this little body with straggly hair, which appears to be a child, is thrashing on the floor, kicking, screaming and crying.

You watch in horror as the mother of this child just patiently stands a short distance from the tantruming child, reviewing her grocery list while selecting a healthy box of cereal from the shelf.

Your trying not to gawk but wow this sure is a big tantrum! Will it ever end, you wonder.

The mother of the tantruming child, without saying a word, slowly starts to push her cart down the aisle just a short distance from her child, who is no longer kicking and screaming but looks up to see where her mommy is.

A few seconds later (which feels like hours) the child stands up, wipes the tears off her face and runs to her mommy, grabbing onto the cart and walks alongside it.

What I notice next surprised me! The mom gently rubs her child's back, plants a kiss on her head and continues shopping as if nothing happened.

This woman must be a saint you think to yourself as you run through ideas of how you would react to such an embarrassing situation. How in the world did this mom keep her cool? Doesn't the child deserve to be punished for such inappropriate behavior?

Before having kids I never thought this type of scenario would ever happen to me. I would be the perfect mom with the perfect kids, kids who didn't throw tantrums.

Boy was I wrong! As a seasoned mom of four, I have endured my fair share of tantrums both in private and public venues. I've gotten over the staring eyes of those around me and their judgmental glares, whispers and snickers. It's just another day in the life of a mom of little ones!

If you're a mom and your kids throw tantrums please know that this is NORMAL. I've learned that every kid throws their own kind of tantrum too - some throw themselves on the floor kicking and screaming, some stand stomping their foot, arms crossed with a look that could kill on their face and some kids throw tantrums by trying destroying stuff (throw toys, pull books off shelves, knock down blocks).

As a new parent there are some things you should know about temper tantrums and how you can survive your first one! The best place to start is to talk to your pediatrician. Children as young as 12 months old can start throwing tantrums so it is best to be prepared and educated so that you know what to do for your child.

First off, "just give the kid what they want" or "giving in" to a tantrum is probably some advice you have heard or gotten from friends or family. This is a very ineffective way to handle these difficult situations which might work for the short term (sometimes) but going forward do you really want your child conditioned to pitch a fit every time he/she wants something? I don't think so! Also, punishing your child every time they throw a tantrum should not be your sole response. Realizing that tantrums are not always a child's attempt to manipulate their parents will help you understand what your child is really feeling and going through.


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Five Things to Know About Temper Tantrums

1 - Emotional Growth Spurts

Young children are growing in leaps and bounds, especially emotionally! Many times their emotions are beyond their self control which is common when they are experiencing a developmental growth spurt. Think of this like a scale. On one side of the scale is Self Control and on the other side is Abilities & Thinking. When a developmental spurt occurs the scales tip in favor of the Abilities & Thinking side causing an imbalance with the Self Control side resulting in a tantrum.


2 - Frustration

Life is frustrating even for kids! Your child might feel a strong desire towards something but hasn't yet developed the words to express themselves resulting in frustration and many times a tantrum. Their own emotions may make it hard to even express themselves verbally resulting in an even greater amount of frustration. 

My youngest struggles with expressing himself verbally when he feels angry. The emotion he feels is so strong he just can't find the words to express himself so he gets even more angry and in many cases it results in a tantrum. 


Understanding your child's threshold for frustration can be impacted by other factors such as hunger, feeling hungry, stress or even physical pain (see #4 below). 



3.  Sense of Self

"Mine, mine, mine!" screams your little one as a sibling or a friend starts to play with one of their toys.  (If I had a nickel for every time I heard this "song", oh boy would we be loaded!) 

Sharing is such a difficult concept for your toddler to understand as they are experiencing the development of a sense of self and can be a trigger for those tantrums. Until they are 3 years of age or older, sharing is not something they fully grasp. They are learning about how to satisfy their own needs by using phrases like "I want" or "mine" and a lot of times saying "no" as they learn how to make choices. 



4. Underlying Medical Condition

A typical temper tantrum lasts anywhere from 90 seconds to 15 minutes depending on the child's disposition, their age and the situation. The frequency of tantrums should start to decrease around age 4. If you notice an increase in tantrums or the tantrums get worse it is wise to consult with your child's pediatrician to make sure there are no physical or emotional problems causing the tantrums. 

Simple irritations like loud noise, itchy fabric or elastic waistbands can be cause for mild stress in children under age 7 however children with a sensory integration disorder could find these types of irritants unbearable resulting in a tantrum. Also, mental health conditions like ADHD, anxiety or depression can trigger tantrums in children and in many cases require an intervention by trained medical personnel. Additional medical conditions like celiac disease, migraines or sickle cell disease that cause physical pain to your child could be the reason for excessive tantrums. If you think or suspect that your child has an underlying medical condition it is best to talk with your child's doctor right away.

5. Manipulation Game

Do you have a strong willed child whose tantrums seem like a never ending battle of wills? Do you see their tantrums as manipulative which in turn makes you react with anger wondering when you should teach your child a lesson? 

All parents wonder the same thing especially when the tension during a tantrum is high and it seems that everyone around you is watching your flailing, screaming child - any you. Keep your cool and communicate clearly to your child what their choices are beforehand and STICK TO IT. 


Never give into your child just to stop the tantrum. This teaches your child that they can get what they want with a temper tantrum. Set the rules and stick to them and don't feel guilty about saying no. Waffling between rules confuses children and they don't know what rules are firm and which ones are not. 


Many times you have to say no to protect your child from something that is harmful and can cause injury. This might trigger a tantrum but it is always more important to keep your child safe. 



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How To Survive A Temper Tantrum As A Parent

So how do you as a parent survive your child's temper tantrums? Here are some tips and tricks to get you through those tough times.

  • Remain calm - shouting or getting angry and losing your cool will only add fuel to the fire. 
  • Distract or redirect your child and take their focus away from what is starting to trigger a tantrum. 
  • Ignore minor tantrum behavior like screaming, crying and kicking. Intervention can become necessary if your tantruming child is hurting someone or throwing objects that could hurt someone - this is when you step in and stop them.
  • Give your child a break or time out. Removing them from the place where they are throwing their tantrum and providing a safe place to "cool off" can help them learn how to have better self control. A good rule of thumb is 1 minute of time-out for every year of your child's age.


Parenting Resources

Looking for some additional advice and resources to help you with your parenting journey? Here are a few books and tools  I recommend (affiliate links):
Buy it Now


Buy it Now












Friday, June 15, 2018

Top 10 Reasons Why It is Important to Read To Your Children


This post contains affiliate links which means that if you click the link and make a purchase I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. For more information please visit my Disclaimer page above.

When my children were just little tiny infants barely able to hold their heads up or even sit on their own we made sure to start reading to them. Babies love hearing their mommy or daddy's voice and reading is a great way for them to listen to you while you tell a little story.

Of course the first books we started reading were the durable board books that could last through the child exploring the book on their own. By exploring on their own I mean chewing on the pages, licking it and many times dropping or throwing it down on the floor. Those board books sure could take a beating but I just loved watching my child explore a book.

find it HERE
Here are a few of my favorite board books that I read to my children when they were young:



find it HERE
Because we started reading out loud to our children at a very young age their love for books and listening to stories took root and they enjoyed being read to. Starting this practice at an early age helped our children as they became energetic and wiggly toddlers (1-3 years old) to sit quietly on our laps and listen to a story.

If your little one has a hard time sitting still on your lap that is totally normal! Just keep trying and eventually I promise, they will start sitting with you listening to the story and looking at the pictures. Be patient with your child and let them explore the book in whatever way they choose. Also, don't expect too much from a youngster - remember their attention span is short!

We read short stories when they were very young and as they got older (3-4 years old) and could sit still and listen for longer periods of time we started reading lengthier stories.  Like -

find is HERE

find is HERE

find it HERE


Even though my kids can read on their own (except our youngest), I still make it a point to read books aloud to them almost every day and especially before bedtime. Most nights as my youngest sits on my lap to hear a bedtime story the older children wander into his bedroom just to listen to the story too. Who doesn't love listening to a treasured story that you've already heard a hundred times being read one more time! 

I'm not a trained teacher, doctor or psychologist but as an mother I can say in full confidence that reading books to my children has been one of the most important things I have done for my kids. The benefits are immense and lifelong. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics it is recommended that parents start reading out loud to their children from the time they are born! (source)

I put together a list of 10 reasons why it is important to read to your children and I hope this inspires you to start today or keep reading if you are already doing so.


10 Reasons Why It Is Important To Read Aloud To Your Children

1. Books are Brain Food - reading is GOOD for your child's brain! Regions of the left part of the child's brain become active, even in infants, when they are being read to. So the more you read to your child the more you help the neurons in this left region of the brain grow and connect in a way that will benefit the child in the future. 

2. Promotes Physical Closeness and Bonding - Holding your child in your lap or having them sit next to you while you read out loud to them is one of the most pleasurable activities that you can do with your child. This unhurried time the child has with their parent, who is focused only on them (put that phone away mommy!) benefits both the child and parent.

3. Fosters Short and Long Term Positive Behavioral Traits - a study done by the American Academy of Pediatrics to determine the impact on social-emotional development of a child who experiences positive parenting through reading aloud and play shows how big the impact reading and playing with young children can have in shaping their social and emotional development. Reducing problem behaviors like hyperactivity, aggression and difficulty with attention are all benefits from reading to your child the study found

4. Spark Your Child's Imagination and Creativity - reading just adds a little fuel to their already imaginative and creative fire. Why not stoke those flames with good stories from a variety of genres!

5. Jump Start Your Child's Language and Literacy Skills - whether you homeschool like us or not, reading aloud to your child will give them a jump start in preparation for kindergarten with better vocabulary, higher literacy, better concentration and the ability to pay attention.

6. Quiet Time is Precious Time - everyone needs a little "down time" in their busy day and that includes young children. Maybe they have outgrown nap time but they certainly haven't outgrown some quite down time. This is the perfect opportunity to read to your son or daughter giving them that much needed break from their busy lives.

7.  Begin to Build an Appreciation for Art and Writing - what child doesn't love to look at the pictures in a picture book? Seeing the pictures and listening to the story all help your child piece together the story and the sequence of the story's events. Learning about colors, shapes and even different media used to create the pictures is a way to help your young child begin to appreciate art.

8. Learn New and Fun Facts - filling their little minds up with fun and interesting facts from the books your read to them is just plain FUN. Knowledge is power so why not start instilling this concept into them from an early age.

9. A Great Way For A Child To Explore The World - from the safety of their own home, in the lap of a trusted adult, you can introduce your child to different cultures, languages, foods and traditions through a book.

10. Promotes Communication - encourage your child to communicate by asking questions about the pictures, what the main character is doing, how the story makes them feel. Building a solid relationship through communication with your child at a young age will benefit them throughout their childhood and into their teen years.


Let's not stop at 10 reasons. What other benefits to books provide for Children?

Looking for a fabulous printable to keep track of what you and your child read together? This awesome Summer Activity Planner has the perfect tool - a Summer Reading Book List that you can fill in as you read. Kids will have such a sense of accomplishment at the end of summer seeing all the books they read (or you read to them)! (affiliate link)

Click to Purchase

Friday, June 8, 2018

Make This An Epic Summer and Get Organized With A Summer Activity Planner


  • The following may contain affiliate links which means if you click on it and make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no cost to you. For more information see my Disclaimer page.

  • The kids are out of school for summer break and your job is to help them have a summer that is full of fun, educational, active and relaxing for the next few months.

  • Impossible job? No!! You got this mama!! 

  • No more "I'm bored, there is nothing to do" from little Susie because this summer you have a plan - an AWESOME boredom buster plan! Make the most of those precious summer days by planning out your activities, creating a to-do list and even checking off a bunch of your bucket list ideas. 

All you need to do is use this Summer Activity Printable by Sunny Day Family, brain-storm some ideas with your kids and print it off! Kids thrive when given a routine and predictable schedule and this printable will help you and them stay sane this summer. Act now and get 25% off with the code FRIENDS. (affiliate link)

The Summer Activity Printable has the following pages for you to use:
  • Summer Bucket List
  • Summer Reading List
  • Weekly Family Fun Planner
  • Daily To Do List
  • Monthly Calendars for June, July, August
  • Summer Fun Coupon Book with 18 Coupons!
Click HERE to purchase

Looking to reward your kids this summer as they help with chores around the house? The 18 Summer Fun Coupons are completely customizable for you to use with your kids. Who wouldn't want a ice cream date with dad after mowing the lawn? My kids would probably fight over that chore if the coupon was for a trip to the local ice cream parlor!

Below is a great chart with age appropriate chores for kids. Summer is a great time to teach your kids house hold management (e.g. laundry, dishes, vacuuming!)



You can read my previous post about kids and age appropriate chores HERE  which also includes a FREE printable Chore Chart.

Click HERE


Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Why I Started a Blog and 5 Reasons You Should Too

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*This post contains affiliate links which means if you click on the link and make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Please see my Disclaimer page for more information.

Life is busy so why did I go and add another activity to my already packed schedule? Let me tell you why. I needed to find an outlet to expand my brain, stretch my skills and give myself an outlet to the outside world. With a limited amount of time and money to learn something new, blogging seemed to be the right kind of challenge for me to keep my mind sharp.

Because I stay home with our four kids and homeschool them there isn't much time for me to learn a new skill but I was craving an opportunity to learn something new and challenging. 

Blogging was this uncharted territory for me - HTML coding, graphic design, writing content, SEO/keywords and many other skills I didn't have - yet. Once I started I just couldn't stop. Blogging  has become this wide open endless space with countless opportunities and I'm enjoying learning new things everyday. 

Where did I start learning about blogging? The Internet, Pinterest, Youtube and a bazillion Google searches. I just read and watched a ton of videos and then tried out the tips, tricks and skills I learned about on my own real blog. Trial and error have become my BFF.

Side note here - I chose not to purchase any courses or resources starting out since I didn't feel that I had a good sense for what would work for me or not. In the future this may change as I continue my blogging education.

Which Blog Platform Should I Choose?

I started blogging using both the Blogger blogspot platform and the free Wordpress blog platform. Since I had no prior knowledge of either I really wanted to compare each platform side-by-side as I got started and find out which one best suited me and my style. I read countless reviews, tutorials and have had a ton of fun playing around with the endless (free) themes and gadgets each platform offers.

There are a TON of blogs that teach a newbie how to set up a Wordpress blog in like 1 minute but honestly it has taken me way longer than that. Sometimes this whole blogging world is like learning a new language and can be confusing! The start up stuff - picking a blog name, opening an account and some of the basic stuff takes no time at all (like 1 minute) but after that the real learning starts happening. I had no idea what a header was or a favicon or even a gadget - but I do now thanks to my independent studies. 


Wordpress

I set up my Wordpress blog and decided to use it as a platform for books I have re-published, ebooks I have written and reviews for books I have read. You can find it here - Good Book Publishing.

The beauty of Wordpress is that if I decide someday to upgrade to a paid monthly plan and self host my blog the transition should be seamless and rather easy. The features available once you upgrade are endless. Many bloggers who want to upgrade choose Bluehost for their web hosting service. Bluehost has gotten raving reviews and it seems like a ton of bloggers use it and like it. (affiliate link). 




What I have learned so far with my Wordpress blog:
  • how to set up an account and select a blog name
  • how to create a static homepage to display the books I sell
  • how to make links to Amazon and other sites
  • managing comments from readers
  • how to add media (pictures & graphics)
  • how to create site pages and blog posts 
  • how to insert HTML code 
  • how to customize the theme 
If you are really serious about blogging and want professional help with your blog, selecting a theme and getting it up and running smoothly and easily I recommend Wix.com which offers free website design and many other services. After a lot of research I know this is what I would start with if I was to take the next step with my Wordpress blog. (affiliate link)


Blogger

If you are reading this blog post then you are currently viewing my Blogger blogspot blog (try saying that 10 times fast!). I am using the Blogger blog to try my hand at lifestyle/mommy blogging. Blogger has been super easy to use and figure out however there doesn't seem to be as many tutorials on how to set up certain features as there are for Wordpress. I really love the Blogger dashboard and the toolbar available when I am writing a post. It is user friendly and simple to understand.

I have put a lot more time into the Blogger platform since this seems to be the platform that resonates with my style more than Wordpress. The downfall is that if I ever want to convert my Blogger blog to Wordpress I have heard it is quite difficult and may require hiring an actual IT professional to help out.

What I have learned about so far with my Blogger blog is
  • how to write a blog post, add labels (like tags), add links & pictures and post to the web
  • how to use gadgets like adding a Pinterest button, sidebar links, and footer info
  • set up new pages within my blog like an About page and Disclaimer page
  • add and modify HTML code
  • create a favicon which is that little icon you see in the address bar or next to the site name in a bookmark list.
  • how to modify the theme I chose to use
  • how to create a header for my blog (still working on tweaking this!)
  • how to monetize my blog
Whew, that is a lot! It is kind of fun to look back and see what one has learned and put to use. I am by no means an expert and there is so much more to learn but I am having a blast figuring this stuff out!


What I Love About Blogging

My blogging adventure has been set at my own pace allowing for flexibility in my schedule and not overwhelming me with due dates or time crunches. By far what I love most is the challenge of learning something new! I consider myself a lifelong student and just have a deep need to keep learn new skills and be exposed to new ideas and technology as I grow older.

I have found such joy in this process and I think you will too. Here are my top 5 reasons why you should start a blog.

mommysuburbia.blogspot.com


5 Reasons You Should Start A Blog Today

1. Blogging is just plain FUN. Blogging is a great outlet for you to be creative, communicate with the world, and share your ideas and opinions. 

2. It is fairly simple and FREE to start a blog. No more excuses that you can't afford to start a blog. You can thanks to the free Blogger and Wordpress platforms anyone can start a blog.

3. Blogging can challenge you and teach you something new and help you stay current with the ever changing technology in our world. 

4. You get to create some awesome graphics (pictures on your blog)! Free sites like Canva are amazing and have pre-made templates to help you make your blog pretty!

5. Your voice can be heard around the world! You have something to say and it matters so why not use a blog to tell others.

I hope this post has given you a little glimpse into my blogging experience and provided you with some encouragement to start your own blog. What are you waiting for? Go on get that blog going!

Link to start a free Wordpress blog - click HERE
Link to start a free Blogger blog - click HERE 

Once you have yours up and running link back to mine so I can see what you have to say! Thanks for reading.


Friday, June 1, 2018

A Look At Our Homeschool Schedule - What Works and What Doesn't

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This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you click on the link and make a purchase I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. For more information please see my Disclaimer page.

Our family has been homeschooling for 8 years now! Through those years I've had to make adjustments as needed to accommodate the personalities of my four kids. After finding the right rhythm for our homeschool the current schedule we follow seems to be working well for us.

Before I go any further please remember that this is a look into our homeschool. My home. Your schedule and what works best for your family will probably be different. I hope you glean something from what we do to help you in areas that might need tweaking in your own schedule, but I would hope that your homeschool looks different from ours.

Years ago I was overwhelmed, frustrated and heading towards burnout! It seemed that chaos and sometimes bad attitudes ruled our school day. It lead to a lot of whining, complaining and fighting from everyone - myself included!

Something had to change - NOW.

So what did I do? Prayed! I prayed for wisdom and that God would equip me to do the job He was calling me to do - homeschool our kids.

My husband and I agreed on a more structured schedule that required the kids to be up and ready for the day by a certain time each day. With time for us to gather together for read-alouds, plenty of time for breaks and independent work.

I hope by sharing our schedule with you it may encourage you or give you some suggestions for your own homeschool structure. So here is what our typical homeschool day looks:

Our Homeschool Schedule

8:15 - Bible Study - my oldest two girls (6th grade & 8th grade) are ready for the day and start working on their Bible study. This gives me time to help answer questions or discuss the lesson with them before their younger brothers need me to help them get ready for the day.

*we attend a weekly Community Bible Study (CBS) class which has a home school and teen core group class. We LOVE it! The class meets every Wednesday and since I am part of the teaching team we are there all day. My oldest (8th grade) brings school work to do during non-Bible study time and my youngest three just play in the gym during that time. I do not require the kids to do school on Wednesday therefore our school week is only 4 days. click the link above to find a class near you.

8:30 - Bible Study - the boys (4th grade and K) get their school day going with Bible Study.

9:00 - Group Read Aloud Time - we gather at the kitchen table and I read either our history lesson or whatever chapter book we are reading to the kids. During this time they can doodle, color, play with slime - anything that is quiet!

10:00 - Math (6th grader) / Language Arts (4th grader)-  At this point my oldest starts her independent work in the order she chooses. While the two middle children do math and language arts I spend time with our youngest playing games or working on reading, math or handwriting.

10:30 - 11:00 BREAK TIME - by this time in the morning we all need a break and this is free time for everyone to do whatever they want. Most of the time they play basketball outside on a nice day or play with Lego's if the weather is bad.

11:00 - Math (4th grader) / Writing (6th grader) 


11:30 - Spelling & Writing (4th grader) / Language Arts (6th grader)


12:00 - 1:00 LUNCH BREAK - we all eat together! During this time I will either read to them or we watch past episodes of CNN 10 to get up to date on current events happening around the world.

1:00-1:45 - Science (4th & 6th grader) - The two middle children have been doing science together for the last 3 years and it has worked out well for us. The curriculum we use has a student notebook/workbook that has both a junior level (lower elementary) and a regular level for the upper elementary students. My youngest loves to do science with us and has his own plain spiral notebook to write in and make lap books with the older two.

1:45 - 2:30ish - Reading / Exercise / Music - this chunk of time includes a lot of different options for the kids to choose. My son (4th grader) takes an online robotics class and uses this time to work on his EV3 robot as well as read his assigned chapter book. My 6th grader practises her guitar or reads her assigned chapter book during this time. Depending on what day of the week it is the kids can also use this time to exercise on our Max Trainer machine (they love it!).

Whew! That is one busy day, right!

My oldest ends her school day at various times during the week depending on how ahead or behind she is with her assigned work. Most days she is usually done with school around 2:30 / 3:00.

I found this great Homeschool Planner Printable on Etsy that offers tons of options for you to use while creating your schedule. If you are not great at creating a schedule from scratch this product is for you!! (affiliate link)

This schedule represents a typical day of homeschool when we are HOME! What is not listed on this schedule are the extra weekly activities the kids do like ballet class 3 times per week, guitar lessons, little league, doodle crate art and a baseball class. With a flexible yet structured schedule our days have been more productive and enjoyable.

Because of these extra activities it is quite common for us to "road school" which means each kid packs a bag with one or two subjects to work on in the car (or waiting room) while we are out and about.

This schedule has taken a lot of "tweaking" to get it working well for us. Here are some tips I thought would be helpful for you as you work on your homeschool schedule.
mommysuburbia.blogspot.com

5 Tips to Help You Create An Awesome Homeschool Schedule

#1 Tip  - pay attention to what time of day your child learns best and schedule their more challenging subject(s) during that time. Also make sure your schedule is age appropriate. I don't know any homeschool kindergartners who have a 5 hour school day!

#2 Tip - Make sure you are consistent yet flexible as you create a homeschool schedule for your family. If the schedule says get up and be ready by 9am - do it! If your child was up late one night cut them some slack and allow a little flexibility for a tired cranky child.

#3 Tip - Don't overload your week with extra activities. I know each opportunity is fun, educational and your kid just wants to do it but there is a limit to how full you can pack your schedule.

#4 Tip - Get your kids involved helping you create a schedule. This will help them feel heard, important and give them a sense of ownership of their homeschool - it is their schedule right?

#5 Tip - Create a calendar just for homeschool so kids know when certain projects, book reports or papers are due, what they should be reading or studying and if you test, when the test will take place as well as any other important deadlines. This keeps everyone on the same page! Don't add items like doctor appointments to the homeschool calendar - Just Homeschool Items ONLY!

I could probably go on and on and I'm sure you can add your own tips to this list but I will save those for another post.

I hope this helps you as you figure out what is best for your family. Flexibility has been a key factor for us as we journey through each year of homeschool. Best of luck to you as you work on your family's homeschool schedule.

If you get stuck and can't seem to figure out why your schedule isn't working I'd love to help you. Please leave me a comment, question or suggestion so we can chat! Don't forget to PIN this post so you can come back to it as you work through putting your schedule together.


Thursday, May 31, 2018

The Best Sandals For Summer

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This post contains affiliate links which means if you click on and purchase the listed item I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclaimer page for more information.

Besides the warm sun, beaches and carefree days my favorite thing about summer has to be flip flops! They are so versatile, comfortable and come in many different colors. I wear my flip flops almost all year round even though I live in Michigan. After the snow starts flying and I can't wear them outside anymore, I grab a new pair and wear them around the house as house shoes. Then at the hint of spring I'm once again rearing to go full speed ahead into flip flop season!

Bring on summer!!

Sandals in general just make my feet feel free instead of being trapped  inside some clunky winter boot or suffocating tennis shoes. Yeah, I know my feet don't have a nose and can't actually breathe, but if they did I'm sure they would be gasping for air all fall and winter long!

I have fairly flat feet so there are times a cheap-o pair of flip flops from Old Navy just doesn't work especially if I plan on doing a lot of walking. Fortunately there are many great options with good support like Chacos! Just look at the variety of these durable support giving beauties! (affiliate links)

But what about those times when a dressy sandal is needed, like a spring/summer wedding? No problem! The choices are once again endless (thank goodness). Price range, heel height and color all play a part in choosing the best sandal for a dressy occasion and this list will not disappoint! Check out these lovely choices (affiliate links).



No matter what the occasion, there is a sandal for it! You can bet this summer my feel will be enjoying some wonderful sandal and flip flop time! I'm currently sporting my favorite AFFORDABLE Old Navy flip flops in black and chocolate brown.

Old Navy
So what kind of sandals do you love? Better yet, how many pairs of sandals do you have? I love that they take up so little room in the closet, don't you! More room for more sandals, right?

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

24 Summer Cocktail Recipes To Rock Your Home Bar

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Summertime is the season for friends & family gatherings at the pool, beach or cottage with a cool drink in hand. Why not impress your friends with some tasty & easy cocktails?

Maybe you are a novice home bartender just learning how to make the perfect mixed drink and you want to expand your adult beverage recipe repertoire? You can do all that with this fabulous ebook Cold, Smooth & Tasty: 24 Cocktail Recipes! This great ebook contains 24 Amazing cocktail recipes in simple drawing format with the ingredients incorporated into the artwork making them easy to follow. 

Take your cocktail parties to the next level just by following these easy to follow simple cocktail recipes. Dust off the daiquiri glasses and get busy mixing!

But WAIT!!! Here is the best part!! I am currently offering this ebook FREE on Amazon Kindle from May 30, 2018 to June 3, 2018! You won't want to miss this opportunity especially since summer is the season of cocktails my friends! Amp up your BBQ and Beach Party and get mixin'!

Get Your Ebook HERE