Friday, May 29, 2009

Father's Day Craft

For anyone who has a father in their family that loves DIY stuff...this is perfect for them!

Car Nut Frame
By: Amanda Formaro
Difficulty: Very Easy
Age: 5 and up
Parental supervision is recommended

What you'll need:
Small wooden frame
Black acrylic paint
Washers and bolts
Permanent adhesive glue (recommended: GemTac jewel glue)
Photograph of you

How to make it:
Remove glass from frame.
Paint frame black and let dry.
Use permanent adhesive glue to decorate outside of frame with nuts and washers. Let dry completely.
Insert a family photo and the glass into the frame.

Get nuts and washers from Dad’s toolbox with his permission or have Mom buy them at a local hardware store.
Try to find a photograph that shows you riding your toy car or helping Dad in the driveway.
GemTac is glue that is specially made for attaching jewels and glass to other surfaces. You can also use Super Glue

Feel free to post a comment with a picture if you try this one!!

Monday, May 18, 2009


Infertility. Huh...infertility is one thing I never thought I would have to deal with. I have one child, and it only took 5 months to get pregnant with him. This time around, it has been 5 months since I have had a period. So I went to the Doctor to try to figure out why.

May 13, 2009
I talked to my Dr.'s office today to get the results from my ultrasound from last week. I had already received the results of the blood test and everything was normal. The nurse told me that he has dictated a letter, but it hasn't been transcribed yet, so she can only tell me what he has written in the notes. His notes say that the results of the ultrasound are consistent with PCOS, Polycystic ovary syndrome, which is the reason I have stopped getting a period recently.

I have a disease - a syndrome technically. I have always hoped that I had been dealt all of my major health issues early in life being born with a cleft lip & palate. Apparently, I will get to deal with at least one other thing in my life.

I have PCOS. My first thought when I heard the news...thank God for an answer. I can deal with this. It isn't isn't life's just a pain in the butt. I felt major relief. Then, all of the questions...the unknowns hit me:

*Is this something I'm going to deal with my whole life?
*Clomid - really, do we want to temp fate when twins run in my family anyway?
*What does insurance cover?
*Clomid - are we really ready?
*How much does it cost?
*Clomid - really? How am I going to talk my Hubby into that one anyway?
*When did this happen?
*What can I do to make it go away? (does it ever go away?)
*Clomid - really? What if it doesn't work?

I'm still waiting for that letter from the Doctor's office, almost a week later. Wish they'd hurry up and send it out. I'd like to know what all it said...but no hurry, it's just my health we are talking about.

While doing some looking online it looks like the best way to stay on top of this is to eat healthy, lose weight and exercise...all things that hubby and I have been really working at recently. I guess now I have more motivation than ever to stick with it.

Now, I'm back to being relieved, and grateful...grateful for the health I do happy that my family is healthy.

So for now, we just wait. Wait for the letter, wait to see what happens when I lose some more weight, wait to see what the insurance company says...just wait.

I hate waiting!

Lessons Learned

A few weeks ago I posted about a co-worker of mine and our Campaign against Squatting (if you missed it, click here). Later that week I received another email with her lessons learned for the week. I have told this person she needs to wear a helmet cam every day of her life...I'm pretty sure she could have some pretty interesting footage.

Life is just a big series of learning events, isn't it? And to think that I, at
age 31, am still learning some pretty big lessons. Below are 3 lessons that I
have learned this week, that I thought I'd pass along.

1. Look on the bathroom stall floor to make sure nobody has peed on it.

2. Police officers cannot slim jim into your car to remove a toddler who is locked inside. Also interesting, they don't like to be referred to as "Captain Obvious" when
they tell you that leaving your keys in the ignition was probably not the best idea.

3. Never, ever, under any circumstance, try to envelop a tow truck driver in a loving embrace, no matter how elated and relieved you may be to get your 2-year old out of a locked van. Apparently, tow truck drivers do not = huggers. Just say "thank you" and give them your insurance card.
I hope you have learned something here today!


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Iowa's Car Seat Laws

My 3 year old child still rides in a car seat with a 5 point harness, of course in the back of the vehicle. I know some other children that are my child's age that are currently in booster seats. I don't think there is any way my son is big enough to ride in a booster seat, so I decided to take a look at the laws in Iowa. I found a very helpful document that shows the laws in Iowa as well as the national standards for car seats. Click here to view the document.

Hope you find this as helpful as I did!

*EDIT I just realized this link no longer works, but I was able to find this website from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that gives some very helpful guidelines.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Scrap Page - Baby Boy

I traveled back in time almost 4 years for this one.

Campaign against Squatting

Have you ever received one of those emails that says, in case you are having a bad day, this person's has been worse and here's the story? Then they go into a bunch of stories about other people's bad day on the job...and you usually find yourself wondering if the stories are really true. I received one of those emails today from a co-worker. As I'm thinking to myself, I don't have time for one of "those" emails right now, I continue reading because I know this person tends to email out some funny things. A few sentences into the email, I realized that not only is this story true, but the person that sent the email is actually telling a story about how her day was going today.

This is the email I received (re-printed with permission)

What you are about to read is real. The name has not been changed to protect my identity - this seriously happened to me just one hour ago. Why am I choosing to share it? I guess I'm hoping that if somebody else reads this, they can be armed with knowledge and may not have to suffer this humiliating incident themselves. Also, if you felt your day was going a little south, read this, laugh, forward it on to share with your friends to poke fun at if you like - at least this experience will not have happened to me in

I had to pee. Badly. I walk quickly into the bathroom closest to my cubicle, pick an empty stall, lock the door, drop trow and breathe a sigh of relief. In the first 25 seconds or so that I'm in there, I notice that my ankles feel wet. Confused, I look down, only to discover that my pants have become a sponge for a puddle of liquid on the floor. The back of my pants and pants legs are completely wet. My mind is racing - WHAT THE HELL IS THAT? Was this toilet one of the power flushing variety that had sprayed water all over the stall? I stand up, not wanting to pull my pants all the way up, I hold them about hip high and grab a wad of toilet paper. It's at this point I realize the front of the toilet is ALSO wet. I wipe that off, too. Then, it happened. I glanced down at the wad of paper and it's YELLOW!!!!!! My pants have just absorbed somebody's (some WOMAN'S!!!) pee! What is wrong with people that they just can't sit their a$$es on the seat and go? Don't squat and hope your aim is right, people. SIT and go. And if you MUST squat, notice when you miss, okay? Then clean it up. Promptly.

But it gets better. Oh yes, just when you think it can't get worse, it does. I have to pull the stranger-pee soaked pants up and fasten them, haul a$$ to my desk, and grab my jacket and keys. Luckily my workout clothes are in my car. So I get to walk, pee-soaked clothes (yes, because now the bottom of my shirt is soaking it up from the waistband of my pants) and all, to my car which is seriously a long walk. Then I haul it back into the building to change and - guess what? My security badge that says I work here and am not some random sniper is at my DESK. The guards know me but I don't have a badge to scan, so they cut me a break and let me use the phone to call somebody to bring it down. But now, it's lunch time and everybody I work with is at lunch or away from their desks!

They must have noticed the distress on my face as I stand there, (hoping not to reek of pee), and bestowed pity on me - they gave me a visitor badge so I can get back upstairs.

So here I sit, at my desk, in my black dress sandals, black capri spandex/lycra pants with white stripes down the side, and an oversized baby blue T-shirt. What a sight I must be. I'm sure turning heads, and NOT in the best way possible. Now I'm just waiting to be turned into HR for not having business attire on. That would really cap off my day.

Now, ladies - it is time for some action. I know this isn't the first time this has happened and it probably won't be the last. So, please, I beg you, for your fellow women, please join me in my campaing against squatting. Together we can stop the humiliation of walking around in clothing soaked in another person's urine. Let's not let one more person fall victim to the female germaphobic people of our society.

For those of you who squat while at work, don't. Please sit like the rest of us do. Use the paper protectors if your that worried about it. If there are not paper protectors...DEMAND them. If you must squat, please practice at your own home before you do it in public. Other women should not have to be victim of such humiliation because of your fear of germs.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Sincerely, Mickala
Campaign Manager for WASP (Women Against Squatting Peeing)

Jump Start Review and Giveaway

I son is a computer game and video game addict. Yes, at 3 years old. He loves playing Mario Kart Wii, he has a V-smile, a mini laptop of his own, a digital camera that also plays games, an old game boy from the sitter, and he also plays games on my laptop on a few websites that are for his age.

So, when I was contacted by the JumpStart company to test out and review their website and computer games....I wondered how the heck they knew!! I feel much better about my son playing all of these games when he is actually getting something out of it. JumpStart is an award-winning adventure-based 3D virtual world that is super-personalized, wildly imaginative and really fun, but don't let that fool you - it also teaches math, reading, and critical thinking skills so kids get a real jump start in life.

We started by logging onto JumpStart's web page. After you log in for the first time, you will need to install JumpStart's active X control. After this was downloaded, my son took over.

First he got to design his person on the game. He absolutely loved this. He got to pick the clothes, the hair...everything. Caiden got the biggest kick out of seeing what happened when he picked something new. After he finally decided what he wanted to look like on JumpStart, he was ready to play some educational games.

Along with our membership to JumpStart, we also received the JumpStart 3-D Virtual World - The Legend of Grizzley McGuffin game to try, which is a computer game you install on your computer. You can play it as a stand alone game, or you can use your membership at JumpStart to expand the game online. This has all of the great benefits that the online version does. They work together hand in hand.

Since Caiden is only 3 years old, some of the learning games are a little too advanced for him, but some of them are just great. Right now he loves playing a game that teaches rhyming. I have been trying to explain to him how to know if two words rhyme for I don't know how long and he just wasn't getting it. After playing this game for the last week or so, I think he is finally getting it!

JumpStart also has a section on their website just for us parents. There is a discussion board as well as a blog that is full of wonderful information for Parents. Also, there an added bonus to this site for parents. JumpStart sends out periodic progress reports by email, with information on what Caiden has been working on. It will tell me what type of games he has played, like math, reading, etc. and how well he did with the games he played. Proof that he is learning while playing :)

About the only drawback to JumpStart's online game is that is can be a little slow at times, so you may have to wait for some things to load.
WIN IT!!! - this contest has ended

Now that you've heard about this wonderful product, I bet you want to find out what you can win and how!

All I need you to do is head over to JumpStart, and then come back here and leave me a comment with a fact from the website that I did not post here. The winner will receive a free 3 month membership to It's that simple!

For additional entries you can:

1-Add my button to your side bar and leave me a link to your blog in your comment;

2-follow me on blogger or twitter;

3-subscribe to my blog;

4-send an email to all of your friends (at least 5) and copy me;

5- Tweat about this giveaway; and

6-blog about this giveaway and leave a comment with the link to your post.

*Please leave me a separate comment for each item you do on this list*

This giveaway is open to bloggers and non-bloggers. If your blog profile is private, or you’re a non-blogger, please leave an email address in your comment or your entry will be disqualified.The winner will be chosen randomly on May 19th at 10:00 pm CST.

Sorry, this contest is open to US residents only.

Good luck!
This contest has ended

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Family Activity - Tumblebugs

I love going to Family Fun's website to find new craft ideas. I'm not a very crafty person, but many of the ideas on this website and in their magazine are easy enough for even me!

This week we are going to make some Tumblebugs.

Set these little critters on an incline and watch them cartwheel a beeline to the bottom. The secret to their antics is a marble rolling around inside.

Card stock
2 nickels
Tacky glue
Marble (1 for each bug)
Black marker
Colored tissue paper
Glue stick
Time needed: Under 1 Hour

1. For each bug, cut a 5-1/2- by 3/4-inch strip of card stock and two 1 3/4- by 7/8-inch card stock ovals.
2. To make an oval, lay 2 nickels side by side on the card stock and trace around them, connecting the top and bottom.
3. Glue the strip into a loop, overlapping the ends by an inch. Pinch it or use a paper clip to hold it together while the glue dries. Next, use a toothpick to line one edge of the loop with glue, then set the loop on top of an oval.
4. When the glue dries, place a marble inside. Line the edge of the loop with glue and press the other oval on top.
5. Once all the glue is dry, use a marker to add a face and other features. Cut out a couple of 2-inch-long wings from tissue paper and use the glue stick to attach them to the top of your bug.

Instructions can also be found on the Family Fun website here.

Have fun and feel free to leave a comment with a picture of your tumblebugs. If you have any thoughts on what you would like to see posted for a family craft or idea, feel free to drop me an email!