How to Protect Yourself Against Ebola

How to Protect Yourself From Ebola

The news is filled with reports of the Ebola virus.

Fear is definitely in the air!

With its appearance in the US and yet another confirmed case of the Ebola virus here in Texas, the big question on everyone’s mind is “how to protect yourself from Ebola?”

The Ebola virus as certainly been the topic of quite a few of our family’s conversations the last couple of days! Even our younger children are concerned and as parents, we are trying to answer their questions honestly without raising alarm – that can be challenging! It is especially challenging with the conflicting and changing information that is coming our way!

Before I go any further, I want to say that  propagating fear is not my intention but I want to encourage you to think for yourself, be aware and be prepared. Sometimes simple awareness and being prepared makes a big difference in the outcome.

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Heavy Hearts

sprinkles the shihpoo as a puppy and older

Have you ever noticed how situations, circumstances and lives can be changed in a matter of minutes? Life is fleeting and this was brought home in a very real way to our family this week through our little shihpoo, Sprinkles.

For our family, Tuesday began like any other day. We woke up and began preparing breakfast. While breakfast is being prepared, our 5 yr old feeds the outside dogs, Snowball and Cotton, both Great Pyrenees. This particular morning, Sprinkles was also outside and decided to help Snowball eat her food. This was never a problem when she shared the dish with our cat Lolli. As you can see, they would both plunge their heads into the bowl at the same time![Continue Reading]

Curing Tooth Decay

Cure Tooth Decay

Did you know that it is possible to cure tooth decay?

Teeth can actually remineralize!

I know you are probably skeptical, but after the slowing of my osteoporosis after being on the GAPS diet, I am convinced that it is possible!

I had read about tooth remineralization before and now I am reading a book purchases from my affiliate partner, “Cure Tooth Decay” by Ramiel Nagel. Mr. Nagel, prompted by his daughter’s severe tooth decay, details the results of his research and the reversal of her tooth decay through diet.

Dr. Nagel cites research which includes Dr. Weston A. Price who, as a dentist, gathered information about people throughout the world correlating their dietary practices with their dental health. From dental decay to the alignment of the teeth, the pictures shown and research given, give a clear distinction of those with a good diet including traditional methods of food preparation and those with dietary deficiencies.

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Watch Out!

Beware all you drivers out there, we have a new automobile operator in our family!

Our 16 year old daughter passed her driving test and is licensed to drive alone. While she is very responsible, the mother in me is anxious – will she be careful, will she get lost, will she wreck?

Knowing her:

The careful part is unfounded – she is.

The lost part – well, that is part of learning – being able to drive yourself while thinking about which way to turn is just part of learning. After all, how many times have I said, “if I’m not driving, I don’t pay attention to directions and where I am going”?

The wrecking part – I have instilled in her the defensive driving part, but, accidents do happen. This is where faith come in. Faith that she is in the Lord’s hands and He is watching over her, whatever happens.

It is not like this is the first time to have a 16 year old driver. This is the fifth time – only five more to go!

Being a mother is difficult. I guess I should say, the letting go and letting them grow up part of being a mother is difficult.



45 Lessons Life Has Taught Me

I received an email this past week containing an article written by Regina Brett, 90 years old, of the Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio. Although I would probably put the list in a different order I thought it contained some very good points.

I decided before posting it, however, to research Regina Brett and validate the article. I ended up on which is a great site to validate internet information circulated via email.

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Cheepo  is the name or our parakeet.

That is ChEEpo – not to be confused with ChEApo!

He was a Christmas present from our oldest daughter and her husband to the four youngest boys.

Why would someone call their bird Cheepo? Because he cheeped. Very softly in the beginning. But now, he lets loose and rivals the children in volume![Continue Reading]

What is Missing?

Let’s play a game!

I will show you a two pictures, see if you can tell what is missing in the second. The two pictures are identical except for one detail – how attentive are you?[Continue Reading]

Home Education – Reading and Spelling

As a home educating mother, I know how difficult it can be to teach children (especially boys!) to read and, even more so, to spell. With all the rules and exceptions to the rules, it is a wonder anyone ever gets it!

I guess, like all homeschooling moms, I have my favorite curriculums and tend to be stuck in my ways when it comes to trying new things. But last year, I did just that – I tried a new phonics and a new spelling program – and, I really like both of them. So, I want to share them with you. If you are a home educator or if your child needs extra help with either of these areas, give them a try! If you already use either of these or some other curriculum you like, leave a comment and let me know – I would like to hear about it!

1. Hooked on Phonics (HOP) is a learn-to-read program for levels Pre-K (3-4yrs) to 3rd grade and up (8yrs and up). I have been using the HOP program with our 6yr and 9 yr old sons and am very pleased with their progress. Each level has at least 2 non-consumable workbooks they read from, as well as, many story reading books. The program has games incorporated into it which help with word recognition. The child can proceed at their individual pace based on the amount of repetition they need. The boys love it and ask me to read with them!

As the name stated, Hooked on Phonics is a phonics based program which gives the necessary skills to unlock words at all levels. The workbook and readers build on each other with plenty of review. This program could very easily be used with older students needing extra help.

Hooked on Phonics also has a spelling program corresponding to each level and while it does help reinforce the words being read, I feel it is more rote memorization. My preference for a spelling program is “All About Spelling” which I will discuss in a moment.

Hooked on Phonics also has a math program. Here again, I prefer another math curriculum to this one which helps children understand the concepts behind what they are learning. I will save my math review for another time!


2. All About Spelling is as you guessed from the name, a spelling program. Marie Rippel has done a fabulous job in systematically building spelling rules upon each other. This is a multi-sensory approach utilizing (if you choose) magnetic letter tiles to manipulate, spell and illustrate the concept being presented. Flash cards are used, as well as, review of previous concepts at the beginning of each lesson. Once the concept is mastered with the tiles, the teacher then dictates the spelling words. Eventually phrases and sentences are added to the dictation. The teacher’s manual is easy to follow and even gives you the script for the day’s lesson. Each lesson is geared to last about 15 – 20 minutes.

Also offered is an “All About Reading” program which I have not tried. If it is as good as the spelling, it should also be great. Since I have already invested in Hooked on Phonics and am pleased with it, I will continue – remember, I am kinda stuck in my ways!!

Another plus is their one year guarantee – use either the All About Spelling or All About Reading program for 1 year and if you are not pleased or they do not meet your needs, just send the material back and they will refund your purchase price.


*Since I think these programs are so good, I have become an affiliate, so, the above links are my affiliate links. Whether or not you choose to use them, I am very pleased with the results from both programs and wanted to share them!


End of an Era

Six diaper pins

Our 3 year old is now officially potty trained!

This would be a milestone for anyone, but for us, it is the end of an era. An era spanning 26 1/2 years.

Our oldest son was born ten days before our first anniversary. Little did we know that our first year would be one of the few periods of time in our married lives without diapers.

Diaper bags took the place of purses. Why carry both? It was much easier to throw my wallet and lipstick in the diaper bag. I think I have gone through at least 8 – 10 diaper bags. They were stylish, of course, and though they did not define me, they became my main fashion accessory. I like big purses so my diaper bags were also big. Maybe I should say, they were mutli-functional bags.

Having used cloth diapers for the past 26 1/2years (except occasionally splurging on disposables) I have seen the decline in diaper quality over the years. I am not talking about those cute ones available now with covers that use snaps rather than diaper pins. Being a hard core cloth diaper mommy, I stuck with diaper pins and plastic pants. Plastic pants which, by the way, as the quality decreased over the years, your fingers could go through if you were in a hurry and pulled them up on your toddler too quickly! My reasoning for not investing in the latest cloth diaper craze was, of course, financial. While still less expensive than disposables, they were much more costly than if I just stuck with what I had. After all, how many more children would I have?

So, here we are, twenty-seven, almost twenty-eight years from when we started. I am finally trading diapers for big girl panties for the last time and a diaper bag for a purse.

Think you detect a bit of sadness?

I do like purses – big metallic ones and big ones in pop colors – that’s undeniable.

I guess I just have to face it – the end of an era has come!

Maybe the girls will let me carry the grandchildren’s diaper bags.

Or …

Maybe, I should go shopping for a new purse!


Photo Credit: ©


A Sad Day

Because of more problems with our internet, I was unable to post the introduction to Bob and Monty when I originally wrote them last week. I debated as to whether or not to post them as written. If you read them, you will remember that several of the pictures included Squiggles, our red and white Pembroke Welsh corgi. It is with great sadness that I write – Squiggles is no longer with us.

While we were away one evening, she wandered from home which was very unusual (as far as we know anyway) and someone shot her. Our neighbors all knew her, so, our assumption is that someone mistook her for a coyote. (There has been a problem with rabid coyotes this year.) Although I do not see how, it is also incomprehensible that someone would be so cruel as to shoot a dog and leave it to suffer.

Needless to say, it has been very sad for all of us and many tears have been shed. In light of the suffering that other families are experiencing, I know this may seem trivial. But, while Squiggles was just a dog, she was a great dog and had her place in our family. It is one of those lessons that as parents we must deal with and help our children through. Death is a reality – we will all face it.

This life is temporary and fleeting – make the most of your time and be prepared for eternity.