Thursday, April 16, 2015

5 Things Every Soccer Mom Needs, Just in Time for Mother's Day ~ #5faves



I guess you could say I'm kind of an expert in the sitting-on-the-sidelines-and-cheering-my-kids-on department! They've been playing organized sports for eight years....... on the CYO,  high school varsity and travel team levels.  Hey, many of us  are in the same boat.  And  by the way, if I wrote this a few years ago, I'd have a very different list, as coordinator of the local league. But since burnout set in and I'm now "just" a Mom on the sidelines, well, things have changed a bit. And for the better. I don't miss being in charge. 

 Moms of boys *and* girls cheering at  the fields, courts, rinks: you know we  spend a lot of time taking care of the kids' necessities ( and I'm thinkin' there's a future #5faves coming up for that too!... ) And whether it's batting, pitching, catching, goalkeeping, sinking baskets, defending, fielding, how about a few goodies to make our sideline time just a bit more fun, more productive,  more creative,  more comfortable? 

I got to thinking at my son's recent soccer practice this week about a few  treats that have become essentials while driving,  cheering  and waiting.  Here goes~!!
                                                           

I'm thinking  you will fall in love with this
 AC and USB port power converter. Talk about boosting  your productivity/creativity online during the kids' practices.  It's become a godsend to me during downtime whether the several hours of weeknight practices or the team's warm up hour prior to the game.
I can comfortably  sit in my car with  the laptop, keep an eye on my son at practice,
 while I also  get organized with lesson planning, bill paying, photo upload,
blog post writing,  list making, email responding. 
You can plug into your cigarette light with AC and USB port! Perfect!






                     In addition to sports sidelines, we're also huge camping fans (hence the blog title!) We only only only  buy Coleman products for outdoor usage. They may cost a bit more, but they endure the beatings of time, weather and wear. You can spill anything on this surface and it cleans beautifully. And the cup holders area huge advantage.
            Ever back up over a chair in a we-have-got-to-get-to-the-field frenzy that you  could have sworn you put in the trunk BEFORE you got behind the wheel ?  Yeah me too. Did said chair survive? If so, it was a Coleman chair!!  'Nuf said. I'd suggest black too. It's just nice and sleek looking.:



Garmin GPS

Besides the travel to games and meets all over our vicinity, we typically drive eight to ten thousand miles per summer exploring sections of our great country.
(And here are  my Visions of the Southwest and Forever West travelogues from the past couple of summers for those among you who are also travel freaks and would like to take a peek and have a chat! )
Anyway, this GPS is the bomb.
Off roading in Monument Valley, trekking to a ghost town in Montana, or just taking the
expressway to this weekend's game. It's perfect.






My indispensable camera...the Nikon Coolpix
was a Mother's Day gift last year! It captures amazing stills, videos, action.
 My hubby scoured tons of electronic stores and wound up buying the Nikon right here at amazonIt didn't come with a bag, so I picked  up this nifty one from Case Logic  to protect it on our journeys.






Yup, as I said, we typically go Coleman, but in this case, the best thermos out there
is this stainless steel 40 oz carrier for your cuppa.  It cannot be beat.
Hot, cold, even soups.....it's thin, fancy, big and perfect!
And my fave coffee? Forget those designer brands out there and stick with the 
standard and best: Folger's. Hazelnut is my my weakness. Enjoy!





Please head over to Jenna's at Call Her Happy for the SUPER fun #5faves shared! 
Actually~~ just found out that FF is at Rachel's this week...
Thank you Rachel.
Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time 
here at my home on the web!

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Until next time,

~Chris

Friday, April 10, 2015

"Relief" ~ Five Minute Friday 4/10/15


Joining with Kate's tribe of #fmf writers over at Heading Home...
Just focus on "relief," set a timer for five and.....go!



Good grief, RELIEF is anything but what I feel right now......

Because decluttering, disposing of, donating, organizing   for six hours yesterday yielded so little "thinning out" as I look around. REALLY? Come on. Seven hefty bags of stuff vacating the house doesn't make a difference? But I've come to recognize...... houses are  bought and lived in. Homes need to be made.  With our hearts and gentle touches...after the purging of all that extraneous of course. And so I keep at it. I will. Right after I hit publish. I mean it.

Because that quick visit to the dentist to have a thirty year old <small >  and crumbling filling refilled yielded news that the tooth next door needs a root canal....REALLY?? And how does that happen to someone who brushes after <most> meals and flosses twice a day?     And here's what I'm never doing again: Listening to the dentist when she says, "Hey this is a super small cavity. You don't even need to be numbed for this." Ok.  Why not. How bad can it be?  Here's how it went: Marathon Man, anyone?  You know what I mean, right? Please tell me you know what I mean. Never again... and judging by friends' reactions when I shared on FB, most are with me! 

Because I cannot look past the blood money that is exchanging hands within the walls of my  parish church and though our pastor  has become part of the fabric of our lives for the almost nineteen years that we have been parishioners, I need to go beyond and to a "higher" level to seek cessation for the parish support of an American institution that is irrefutably linked to the abortion industry and it pains me. I like to be anonymous. I like not to make waves or cause tension. But this, I can't watch any longer. Something needs to be done and I'm counting on the Bishop...and if not him, then the Pope, to be the  change that needs to be.

Because algebra. And homeschool paperwork. And history. And literature. And  knowing that time is short and there's much to learn and how do you fit it all in? hmmmmm.

Because life and balance and covering bases and not dropping the ball
 and laundry   and  recovering peace during waves of strife. Because strife does come, does it not, into every family at one point or another?

Because Him.  "I can do all things in him that strengthen me" and because this I need to remember. <Phil 4:13>


And my time's up...that was SO not relevant to relief was it?
Come join us for others'  #fmf posts over at Kate's
as well as Holley's Coffee for your Heart!

Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time 
here at my home on the web!

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just enter your email address here
so we can be in touch regularly!

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Until next time,

~Chris



Friday, April 3, 2015

Peep Wreath for Easter and Spring: Artful Friday

             Well, it's been quite some time...two weeks in fact...since I've last blogged...and  all about fun with  Easter basket goodies! We've been busy living life;  time carved out to write just hasn't been abundant enough. I've missed you all, my friends! I hope the closing of your Lenten season and your Easter preparations are progressing as well as you would like! 
            I've lots to chronicle; a daybook's in the works for all of it. In the meantime, I wanted to pop in quickly to wish all my friends a Happy Easter and to share some fun that we've had here, creating an adorable decoration! Perhaps after Veneration of the Cross and egg dyeing, this is something you might like to tackle with the family this weekend?

I found this craft  initially at the lovely, Southern Blue Celebrations!
Sheila, at Southern Blue featured a  lovely wreath such as this that she found
 here at Tried and True.
I'm so grateful for Sheila's feature in a spring craft round up! 
Thank you Southern Blue and Tried and True!

Here's one of our finished products, ready to be hung on the front door:
Cute, right?!



And here are needed supplies...
peeps
wreaths
toothpicks
And to hang the wreaths, ribbon and/or suction cups ...the latter is not shown.


It's likely you have some peeps handy, though perhaps not enough peeps for the project.....
And  the wreaths, I picked up  at our local dollar store.
Now, since most of us aren't fans of braving  the lines at Walmart or our local supermarket   for more Easter candy on Good Friday or Holy Saturday, 
there's always amazon prime, right? We can  easily secure a variety pack of peeps here

There are a variety of ways to design/attach the peeps, of course.
My son created a color pattern, as such:






My wreath essentially looks the same as his, but I laid out the peeps a bit differently:

 Sort of  in a 12,3,6,9 "clock pattern."

Any way you'd like to arrange the peeps, you'll get a lovely, colorful decoration!

      



For another super easy and gorgeous craft, here's my  kids' crucifixion paintings
(Links to the original idea are within the post. )
They created these beautiful crosses on Good Friday, 2013

For my previous "Artful Friday" posts, 
you might like to click below.....
They're all here if you'd like to dust off something from the archives:
 ( knitting, winter crafts, the theater and piano)






Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time 
here at my home on the web!

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just enter your email address here
so we can be in touch regularly!

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Until next time,

~Chris

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Friday, March 13, 2015

Faith & Chocolate~ Goodies to Fill Those Easter Baskets! 7QTs/WWRW


Halfway through Lent .....are you planning for Easter morning, Easter dinner or brunch...or maybe creating some decorating and table setting plans? I'll bet you are! The Easter Bunny has long been filling all our baskets with symbols, treats and gifts of the season........I'd love to share the books and goodies that have been are staples.....and a few that...I hear tell, some kids around here may be receiving this very Easter morn!
Here's a shot of our Faith Book Basket, which contains a few of these titles, and which we switch up to include new ones as we enter various liturgical seasons......I'm sure you have many of the same around your house as well! Enjoy ~




Initiation of Christ
This is a pic of the Imitation that my Dad gave his sister, my aunt,  for Christmas of 1938. Yes, that's right! Look at the shape it's in, especially when you consider that Aunt Betty gave it back to Dad to carry with him when he shipped out in Feb 1942 ..
It traveled to the  occupied Philippines where he spent most of WWII, in the Pacific Theater. It's special to all of us, as you can imagine, not  simply for its content, but its history. 
            




Rosary Comic Book

Even though my kids are older now, we *still* use this as our main source for the order within each mystery.
 (Ya think we'd have it all down by now wouldja? Nope.)
Plus the whimsical drawings are clever.




Catholic Youth Bible
My favorite Bible....and we've tried on a lot. Guidance and "real life" applications of scripture after each Book. Awesome.


Crossing the Threshold of Hope
I bought this book for my Dad for Father's Day back when........
He read it that day and recommended it to everyone he knew, even passing acquanintances. We all know JPII had an amazing talent for writing and theater arts. But do we have his books on our shelves accessible for our kids? I realized my Dad never got his copy back from ??? and we needed a replacement! I just ordered this one for our Faith baskets!




Ablaze

This appeared in my kids' Easter baskets two years ago. Since then they've become intrigue even more with saints' young lives. I think the fave for each of my boys was St Dominic Savio. But there are about a dozen stories within and they are all gripping.




Paul: Tarsus to Redemption
For any kids into graphic novels/anime, this is IT.
My boys loved this and wanted more more more .....anything about St Paul would do. Gret springboard for study of saints' lives.






                           Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate !
One of our many molds
Russell Stover's bunnies and Cadbury's creme eggs 
epitomize Easter, but you can make your own candies, adding some personalized
and home-y touches too! Plus, the Easter Bunny will probably appreciate our
assistance...he's got a lot of stops to make on Easter Eve!
I've bought Wilton candy melts in dark chocolate, of course, but 
pastel chocolates make that first peek into the baskets on Easter morn
even more festive!





Just for fun~
Here's an ollllld pic of the boys' baskets:
easter morn 2007
Some bunny paint by numbers, treats and Bible DVDs





Please visit This Ain't the Lyceum for more QT
and Housewifespice for more awesome titles at WWRW!


Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time here at my home on the web!

Don't forget to subscribe to Campfires and Cleats
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I'd love to stay in touch regularly.

Until next time,

~Chris

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