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Showing posts from June, 2013

Tasty Tuesdays {Easy Baked Salmon}

This is such an easy recipe I'm almost embarrassed to share it.  But I find that so many people (myself previously included) are afraid of cooking fish at home.  Several years ago I began to buy fish for my husband and myself to bake or grill because it was an inexpensive and healthy alternative to beef and chicken.  We discovered that we really do like it at home and not just in restaurants!  And since having kiddos I am happy to report that they love fish also.  Baked salmon (or even tilapia) is always a popular meal in our home.  This is a great meal anytime, but especially in the summertime because it prepares and cooks quickly and doesn't feel "heavy".  If there are leftovers, they work great in salmon salad or in salmon patties.  

Easy Baked Salmon Enough fillets for everyone butter or olive oil seasoning of choice
(we like Old Bay Seasoning, lemon pepper,  salt & pepper, and seasoned salt) ***** Preheat oven to 350F.
Place your fillets in a large glass baking…

What's for Dinner {June 24th}

It's going to be a "simple dinner" kind of week.  And I'm glad for that.  I'm in the mood for delicious, but easy right now:)  
There are a couple of carry-over menus from last week ...because last week went by in something of a blur! This week looks to be much more slower-paced.  Thank goodness!  
Here's what's cookin'...
Monday:Gourmet Gnocchi & Cheese
Tuesday: Bacon, Egg, & Cheese Sandwiches with fried potatoes 

Wednesday:Tostadas

Thursday:Baked Ham & Cheese Sammies
Friday:Mexican Pizzas

Saturday: Make-Your-Own-Pizza night

This post is linked to Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie.
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The Dog Days of Summer

I hope you're enjoying these days of summer like we are!



I'm being a bit lazy this week in the blogging department, but we have been busy playing games, grilling out, working on summer projects, and enjoying life!
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What's For Dinner {June 17th} & an *Operation Dinner* Review

It occurred to me yesterday that I've been meal planning for five years now!  I can't even tell you how much stress that has taken away in my life!  Sitting down once a week (in my case) and planning out all of the dinners for said week has not only simplified my life in that regard, but it has taken our grocery bill way down as well.  It's definitely one of my top five ways to save!  There are just so many benefits to meal planning and I am always looking for ways to make it work even better for me and my family.  That's why I was excited to find this new eBook, Operation Dinner, that gives some amazing advice on planning, shopping, and prepping meals for your family.


This eBook, by Lori Loomis of Moms by Heart, is filled with very use-able, practical tips that work in real life.  I've read lots of eBooks, blogs, etc., on meal planning, but I believe this just may be the most helpful thing I've read--and I'm a seasoned meal planner.  
Lori's book is …

What's On My Summer Reading List {2013}

Summertime is not just a good time for my kiddos to pack in some reading time, but it's also a great time for me, too!  I admit, I LOVE to read, but as a wife and mama with lots of commitments I often don't have nearly as much time to read as I would like.  But summer is more of a relaxed time for me and I can enjoy having some extra reading~yea!

I've been downloading lots of freebies for my Kindle lately and getting some good recommendations from friends, so I've got plenty to keep me reading for quite a while.

There are several specific books that I really want to be intentional about reading this summer though and I thought I would share them with you today.


1. Unglued, by Lysa TerKeurst: I am actually reading through this as part of a summer book study that I'm leading for the women at our church. I'm loving it so far!  It is really speaking to me about some areas in which I am so wanting to see some personal growth.  

2. Desperate, by Sarah Mae & Sall…

The Chocolate Fountain Birthday

This past weekend was Mr. B's 8th birthday.  This year will be remembered as the year Mr. B didn't want a birthday cake--or cupcakes!--but asked for a chocolate fountain instead.  
(I'm pretty sure he was inspired by the popular pictures of this bird).

And, no, I didn't let him lick the fountain.  However, he did sneak a straw later on and proceeded to suck up some of that dark chocolate goodness from the bottom of the fountain!  What a stinker! 
(Did I mention that he threw up by bedtime? hahaha)

It was a delicious idea though and we enjoyed dipping strawberries, kiwi, bananas, and angel food cake into it...mmmmmmm!  And it didn't seem nearly as fattening as cake:)

So, yes, Mr. B had a birthday and is officially 8 years old!  So hard to believe that my baby is that big now!  He is a constant source of entertainment and keeps me on my toes by the minute.  I love him dearly~he's my favorite little boy in the whole wide world.
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Talking About Apologia

We just recently completed our third year of using Apologia's Exploring Creation... series for elementary for our science curriculum.  And we love it!  We first began using this (as a family subject) when The Princess was in 2nd grade and Mr. B was in K5--and I wish I had discovered it even sooner.

We began first with Exploring Creation with Astronomy, then the next year moved on to Exploring Creation with Botany, and this year we began zoology with Exploring Creation with Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day. Next year we'll begin Exploring Creation with Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day.  


There are many reasons that I like Apologia. Just a few are:  It is biblically sound and has scripture throughout the lessons as well as points to the intelligent design of creation.It has fun and relevant activities and experiments suggested throughout the book.It digs in deep to a particular subject and you learn so much.It's a subject that works well for multiple grades, thus allowin…

A Great Idea For This Summer

Still looking for some great {learning} activities for your family this summer?  Here's one for you: Around the World in 60 Days from ThrivingFamily.com (a part of Focus on the Family).

Around the World in 60 Days takes you through 27 countries on six continents over the course of the summer.  Each day your family will be learning new things about those countries and also learning how to pray for the people in them.  They can "stamp" their "passport" each day as well to show their progress on their "travels".

This is a wonderful way for your kiddos to learn geography and how to be more missions-minded at the same time!

Click here to download the free resources: the map, the passport, and the itinerary for your trip.

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Our Summer Fun List {2013 edition}

Since we officially wrapped up our school year a couple of weeks ago, we've been compiling our Summer Fun List for this year.  We enjoyed having last year's posted on our chalk board so much that we wanted to do it again!

This year's list includes (but is not restricted to):

go geocachingvisit a new parkgo campinggo bowlingplay board gamesvisit Land Between the Lakes (often!)picnicgo swimming (often!) ✔ stargazevisit a museum--or two ✔ make craftsgo hikinggo bikingplay mini golfread!! ✔ go to a drive-in moviehave sleepovers build a fortwrite letters to far away friends & familygo to a baseball gamemake homemade ice creamvisit the zootour a restaurant--or threecreate arthave a water fight ✔ eat at Lambert's have lots of playdates ✔ You can see that we've already been able to check-off a few activities--but that doesn't mean we're finished with those!  We plan to enjoy all of these activities--and more--as much as possible throughout the summer!
What abou…

"Postcards" From Our Family Getaway

(so glad to be at our destination, having dinner at Branson Landing)
After a couple of very busy, hectic months we were more than ready for a family getaway last week!  It wasn't a very long trip--and it wasn't exactly restful--but it was a much-needed change of pace for us and we had a great time.  
We went to Branson, Missouri for a couple of days of fun and then even dropped in on our hometown for one night for a quick visit with family and friends.  
Here area  few (or maybe more than a few ..ahem..) snapshots of our trip.

(Branson Landing, watching a beautiful patriotic water and lights show  while eating dinner at Cantina Laredo)
(headed into the Titanic Museum--so interesting!  We had a great time here!)
(If you're ever in the Branson, MO or Pigeon Forge, TN areas,  we definitely recommend this museum!)
(Of course, we couldn't pass up Dixie Stampede!  Vince and I had been there a couple of times and we knew the kids would LOVE it--and they did!)
(This was the perfect me…