Saturday, February 21, 2009

Make a Slam Book

Did you ever do this as a ‘tween? A Tween is a girl between 10 and 12, not quite a child and not yet a teenager. We made slam books to share a little of ourselves with our friends, kind of like those goofy internet quizes I get even now.

It starts out by taking a lined notebook and numbering each page one to 26. You can leave a few pages blank to draw on (flowers etc) and definately the last few pages for autographs, yearbook style. The numbered pages will have headings like those below, after the first page, which would be name, and you can add phone number and address if you wish. This does make it easier for Mom when Birthday time rolls around!

Feel free to decorate each page if you wish. So you understand that each person pics a number ( I just did #17) and I answer on the line for 17 on each page. I can’t go onto another line or I take someone else’s space! When you’re done you’ll have a page of favorite colors, etc. Here are some page toppers to start you off. Feel free to copy and paste these onto a doc to enlarge and paste onto the top of each page.

Your Name
Phone Number and email
Fav color
Fave number
Fav sandwich
Fav animal
Song on the radio
Disney movie
Slogan or saying
Quote from a movie
musical instrument
subject in school
snack food
characteristic you are working on
something you love about your best friend
where would you vacation if you could go anywhere
fav book
fav book series
fav piece of clothing
type of candy
type of ice cream
give me 5 adjectives that describe you
top 5 activities
what would you do with an empty jar?
If your best friend was an animal what would they be?
Telephone or text or email?
Fav video game
Fav website
Fav blog
Fav You-tube video
Board game
Best teacher
Best vacation
Name 5 random objects
Name 5 things in your room
something you do at school that's goofy
project you've done
Fav pizza
Is your mom cool?
Fav place to shop
What makes you laugh?
If you had to give a speech in public, what would it be about?
What colors would your wedding be?
Cake or pie?
Favorite Christmas activity
What did you dress up like last Halloween?
Favorite Easter treat
How many grandmas and grandpas do you have?
If you had a day to do anything what would you do?
Crafts you like to make (Origami, making posters, etc.)
Sports you like to watch
Balloons, crepe paper, cards, posters, pinatas... what makes a party for you?
Name a hero
Name a superhero from a comic book you admire
Person most qualified to help with your homework
When I grow up I want to be (Career)
When I grow up I want to live in (house, tent, apt, duplex, mansion, palace, villa, plantation, tiki hut) and where?
5 characteristics of my husband
5 characteristics I will have when I'm grown up
5 things I want to learn to cook
5 places I want to go someday
Name something that smells good
If you were at a restaurant that served anything what would you order?
Soup or Salad
Grand Plans-- Something amazing you'd like to accomplish
Draw a flower-dress-monster

OR you can buy some slightly more decorated version...we did ours with 9 cent notebooks from Walmart (they go on sale at school supply time)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Disney Trivia

Make your own customized Trivia Game! We do Disney movies and assign one to each player to come up with 10 questions. Here are my latest to get you started:

In Bedknobs and Broomsticks, what is the magic enchantment that animates objects?

Dragoona Merquoitees dracorum satis dee

(Hasn't worked for me yet LOL!)

In Bedknobs and Broomsticks, what is the name of the Magician?

Dr. Emmelius Browne

Where does the magician in Bedknobs and Broomsticks live?

In a house abandoned due to a large unexploded bomb in the front yard

Which in Bedknobs and Broomsticks island holds the key of the enchantment? The Isle of Nabumbu

Where do they find the other half of the book they need? Portobello Road (in posession of the Bookman)

When Miss Price in Bedknobs and Broomsticks tries to turn people into toads, what happens? They turn into white rabbits

What are the kids' names in Bedknobs and Broomsticks? Charlie, Carrie, Paul

What are the kids' names in Peter Pan? Wendy, John and Michael

What does the Magician sell Paul? A small object to make bird noises, it cost a penny (he couldn't get it to work either)

What town are the children from in Bedknobs and Broomsticks? And where do they go? London, Pepperinge Eye (You can pick the difficulty by the age of the replier!)

What does the magician in Bedknobs and Broomsticks do at the end of the movie? Joins the Army (to be specific, the Old Home Guard)

In which other Disney movie do you see the actor that plays the magician (Dr. Emmelius Browne)? He's the dad in Mary Poppins

Sing as much of the song as you can remember of the letter Jane and Michael wrote to put in the paper to get a new nanny? If you want this choice position, have a cheery disposition, rosy cheeks, no warts, play games, all sorts, you must be kind you must be witty, fairly sweet and fairly pretty, take us on outings, give us treats, sing songs, bring sweets. Never be cross or cruel never give us caster oil, or glue, treat us as a son and daughter, and never smell of barley water. If you won't rule or dominate us we will never give you cause to hate us, we won't hide your specticles so you can't see, put toads in your bed or pepper in your tea, Hurry Nanny! Many thanks, Sincerely, Jane and Michael Banks (Yes that's from memory so it may not be 100%)

Diaper Cake

I made another cake recently LOL! It's a diaper cake. Simple. Cute. Expensive but very useful. So only make one of these for someone you really like. They are cute with just the diapers with a cute ribbon around them, but you can decorate them all you want. Some people put thermometers, baby spoons, clippers, you know all the little essentials, but you can also do washcloths (they look like candles!), socks, and toys. Whatever you want. Many times these little items can be found at the Dollar Stores. When you decide to do these you can start keeping an eye out for good baby deals and just have them on hand. I prefer the medium sized diapers because baby will be in them the longest, and they are going to need newborn ones right away, so they can keep the cake longer if it's size 3. You can do two tiers or three, I liked three, but I still considered four as I still had diapers. It's gonna be an impressive centerpiece to any baby shower. I would say if you are throwing the shower it's nice because then you don't need another centerpiece.

I have to say I would have liked to have cuter ribbon to go around the outside, but I couldn't find any to save my skin that day (I thought it would be easy!) so this one doesn't look as cute as it would with a wide bright ribbon.

OK detailed instructions follow:
First, Get all the diapers (I got a box from Sams with 4 packs in it and had quite a few left) and a really long bit of ribbon like a huge 100 ft roll of Christmas curling ribbon or whatever.
Second, look really inept with diapers all over the table and internet directions clutched in your hand with confused look. Husband comes over and figures out that:
1. Roll one diaper very tightly. Take the curling ribbon and make a slip knot and lasso the diaper around the middle and tighten up.
2. Wrap second diaper around the first, pulling it tight with the ribbon. Before the end of the diaper occurs, slip another diaper underneath. Keep it all tight with the ribbon. YOu will continue layering like this all the way to the end. When you are done with the whole layer, go around the whole thing a few times and tie it off where the ribbon came out of the last layer. Make sure it's tight.
3. Repeat with the top layer only this time you'll start with lassoing a bottle, or wrap a diaper around a bottle and lasso it. If you want a bottle sticking out the top that is.
4. When you are done with your layers, wrap them around over the curling ribbon with bright ribbon and tie in a cute bow.
5. Put your entire creation on a cardboard circle if you have one or be really careful transporting it. If desired, put baby items all around, stuffing in the diapers. Optional wooden Valentine sticker hearts, flowers, animals or trucks if the mom has a theme that matches. You can see from this one that the oragel, while useful, isn't cute, so keep that in mind when you are collecting cute little baby things.

You are so privileged! I searched the internet and most people want to sell these so they won't give directions. Other directions were really complicated and no more successful than this. Mine was so tight I carried it without a bottom and had no problems, but honestly you need two people to do it well, one to hold the center and the ribbon and one to feed diapers one at a time. I couldn't have gotten it that tight by myself. Let me know if you have questions!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Ok the Cake was a HUGE HUMONGOUS hit! I made one and the kids ate it... all. So I made another one for dinner, we were having company. Gone. Made one the next day. That is 3 cakes in 2 days. Maybe it was the shape, it was a bundt, and I usually do rectangles. I rarely ever frost. Don't need the calories and no nutritional value. So I shook a tiny bit of powdered sugar on this baby and it was very popular. The first one had black beans, which went perfect in the chocolate cake, and the second and third had red beans. I recommend the black, and make sure there are chocolate bits or chips in the cake if you are serious about avoiding detection. I didn't even tell my husband. It's just best to get them eating them. They don't have to know that what they don't know will probably make them more healthy!! Hee hee hee!

PS My cake was not as purple as the one below. It was brown like a chocolate cake should be. If the cake had been that purple they would definately been suspicious!

Strengthening Communication

SO you blog, you have friends you chat with online, you probably have a Yahoo group or two (or 8 or 9) that you follow. Here are some things you have probably noticed with online friends:
1. They can't spell.
2. Some are more technically proficient than you... and where did they get those smileys?
3. You really don't know them.

Unless you are a very good communicator, your message is often misread by others. It's hard to be clear and convey messages that, in person, would be very simple. We speak in person and we pick up each other's body language, stress on which word, etc. It makes a huge difference in print.

Sometimes when I am writing to encourage someone it comes off wrong... once I wrote to cheer someone who was down, and they had gotten over it by the time they got my message, and they were, like, What? I'm fine? Why do you always think I am down? I 'm not like that all the time! Sheesh, I didn't even get points for trying.
So I tried rereading my posts out loud, but since I know what I mean it didn't help my clarification much. And humor! It is easy to make people laugh in person, but in print they don't always get it. When you do a play on words they just think you misspelled. Frustrating. I also tend to be a great wide reciever... "GO LONG!!"
SO I am sticking to form on that one... but I think I am learning that my best communicating is in public. I am going to put together a powerpoint presentation soon and I am really looking forward to it. Usually when I speak in public I offend one person who just isn't going to get it no matter what, but I also get a lot of cudos, so I am HOPING that is a sign. (One time I did a presentation on Strengthening Communication and my big visual was of a hand-drawn cartoon of a bodybuilder --- strength, bodybuilder...get it?--- anyway I offended someone who was disconcerted by his lack of a shirt and his little Speedo. How many bodybuilders do you know that show off their muscles by wearing a suit? Other than Arnold Shwartzenegger--It was a DRAWING people.... ok so besides her lots of people liked my pic. I am NOT Posting one here because I don't want any feedback on the bodybuilder!)

So let me give you a few tips from my Strengthening Communication class:
1. Just do it. Call or write. If you write, you can do it any time and not be worried you're catching them at a bad time or that as soon as you're on the phone some household disaster will occur. Email if that's an option. Send a personalized note.
2. Send something extra. I like to include a little poem or something, like, when I wrote thank you notes to thank people for coming to an event recently, I included this one:
Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom. Marcel Proust.
3. Even in email, include a salutation and a closing like a real letter. If you were making a phone call you'd say, Hello!, Right? A short, terse email is very frosty without any Hello! of any kind. And a closing is a great time to tell you they are important to you and that you care about them.
4. Make a printout of your Christmas list and choose someone to write to every week or month. It's even easier if you print it out on the labels already so all you have to do is stick it on the envelope. Then they're off the list and you won't write to them twice (unless you want to or they write back!)
5. Make short phone calls and people are more likely to call you. There are people I don't call because I know it will take way too long to get extricated or because I know we both like to talk too much! There is a lady at church who calls me and always keeps it under 2 minutes. She gets a funny story from me and gets off. Though she is mentally challenged, I don't mind 2 minutes. Now if she kept me for an hour I'd seriously think about Caller ID.
6. When communicating with family members it's great to have stories to tell them. Write down some things that happened this week, good or bad, and you won't be having long mental blocks when they call or you are writing. My husband calls and just wants to know what I had for breakfast. He's so sweet! He just feels he's missing out. So I always try to have a story for him. For my grandma I save all the paintings and drawings in a manilla envelope and when it's full I send it along with cards made just for her.

Let me end by telling you my story today.
My husband has a very unusual work schedule. I gotta preface with that.
I tucked the girls in last night and one was blocking my view of the room, rather obviously.
"What's going on? Ok, now I HAVE to come in and see what you're hiding."
It turns out she was hiding her sister, who was in bed crying.
"Sweetie, why are you crying?"
I finally got the answer after going between them for a while...
"She said that if I miss the bus and I'm late to school you could go to jail!"
Well, technically this is true. Our state has started new truancy laws. This poor child has missed less than a half hour total of school due to late check ins because the bus either did not pass or passed early and we waited, not knowing. If the bus shows up at noon and picks them up (after they've been waiting since 7am) and brings them to school it's excused, but if I bring her 5 minutes late, I am raising a truant child and flying in the face of all convention and rule about school attendance. It's insane, but it's the new law. I think it's nuts. But I try to comply and get her there on time. Sometimes I am one minute late and have to sign her in. Anyway, she misses one more minute and I have a hearing. Cool, huh!
This is where dad's work schedule comes in. There are a few days a month that he's not there to back me up. So I really need my bedbug to get out of bed on time.
So I said, very cheerfully, "Well, she's right, so I guess you'll just have to get up early every morning!"
She dried her tears and agreed she'd make a greater effort in the mornings to keep Mom from the slammer.
I appreciate that. And she got up and dressed in record time this morning!

Anyway, it's those little moments people want to hear about. The things they would be part of if they were there.
So go write to someone, already!