Friday, June 19, 2015

Swimming Lessons 2015 and Shane

Swimming is a very important life skill.  I made it imperative that all 3 of my boys learned how to swim at an early age.

Zach and Alex both took swimming lessons in Starkville at Moncrief Park for two years.  They are both excellent swimmers.

Shane took swimming lessons last year from Megan while she was home during her summer break from college.  

Megan and Shane this year in the pool!
Megan did a great job teaching him the basics of swimming last summer, but I wanted him to take additional lessons from her this year to reinforce what he learned last year as well as increasing his swimming skills.  

Jumping off the diving board was a big obstacle . . .

But he finally took the plunge and now he loves it!

Last year he could swim across the shallow end of the pool, but wouldn't even consider swimming in the deep end . . . much less jumping off the diving board!  

I left after taking these pictures because he does better when I'm not at his lessons.  At the end of this lesson, he was swimming in the deep end (without the pool noodle), swimming with his head above water (without the pool noodle), and swimming without the goggles!

Last year he was convinced that he couldn't swim at all without the goggles. . . . he said they helped him breathe under water.  :)

Swimming with his friend Dakota at another swimming lesson.
They were trying to beat each other at getting the rings off the pool's bottom.
Swimming without the goggles is a big accomplishment.  I'll have to get pictures of that next week!  Swimming with his head above water is also important for swimming in the deep end.  He's got to breathe!

There has been such a great improvement in his swimming skills this year as well as his self-confidence in the pool.  I'm so thankful that Megan found a space for him in her schedule this summer 'cause Shane is loving it!

Summer is soooo busy but it's important to make the time to learn this important life skill.  Swimming is a life skill that is also another way to have fun this summer for . . . 

                                 the Ferrell boys and me!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Ball Season 2015 and Zach

I'm smack in the middle of ball season.  I love baseball, especially when my boys are the ones playing.

This year is especially emotional for me because it will be Zach's last year to play in Little League.

I uploaded some pictures from an old camera I found while cleaning out my dresser drawers.  I found pictures from when Zach first started playing in Coach Pitch.

He has always been so serious about ball.  Look at his expression.

He played catcher a lot during coach pitch.  

He was so cute in catcher gear. . . . and so little.

I'm sure there were other boys playing on his team, but the only one I remember was #98.

And now he's playing in Little League . . . for the last year.

Just a few more times to bat . . .

This year he's even pitching a couple of innings a game . . .

It's so exciting to watch him pitch . . . exciting and terrifying all at the same time!  :D

When he's not pitching, Zach plays short-stop.  It's so much fun watching him play knowing how much he loves the game.  

And during every game, I'm reminded that we are slowly playing toward his last little league game.

Thank goodness there's always our school baseball team!  I'm not ready to put my camping chair and cooler up yet . . . at least not for this season with . . . .

                               the Ferrell boys and me!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Summer Goals - 30 Days to Clean

So I am getting into Summer in a big way.  I'm taking the time off from my office to spend it with my boys accomplishing several goals.

One of the big goals I have for this summer is to deep clean and de-clutter my house.  I'm always trying to simplify and clear away the stuff that is constantly accumulating in my house.  Five people creates a lot of stuff!

Pinterest is such a great place to find lots of methods for cleaning your house.  There are daily lists, weekly lists, and monthly lists for cleaning your house.  I've got lots of them pinned to my Clean Home board.

But really, I'm not ready to start a daily, weekly, or monthly cleaning schedule because I keep stumbling over the stuff and the mess the house has gotten into over the past few months.

I found a 30 Day Spring Cleaning Challenge the other day on Pinterest and decided to try it. You can find it HERE.

 There are 30 cleaning tasks to complete -- one for each of the 30 days -- and I liked that each task is something that I could easily complete without feeling overwhelmed.  The list begins with the Kitchen.

They even have links on how to clean some of the areas.  I started with the microwave and the oven and followed their links for how to clean them.  

Here's my microwave "before" picture.  My momma will absolutely die when she sees this picture!  In my defense, I rarely use the microwave.  It's mostly used by the boys.  I was a little shocked when I opened the door and saw this mess.

Notice the microwave is missing the glass turntable.  Someone broke it . . . one of those Ferrell boys.  Yuk.

I followed the directions in the link on How to Clean the Microwave . . . mixing the vinegar and water in a microwave dish and microwaving for 5 to 10 minutes.

The toothpicks keeps the water from exploding when you move it.

Everything wiped off easily.  I ordered a new turntable for the microwave from Amazon.  Here's the final result:

Next I moved on to the oven.  I actually have a double oven.  We use the top oven the most so I started with it.

The glass was gross.

I followed the link suggested for Cleaning your Oven.  HERE.

I mixed up the paste using hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and Dawn dishwashing detergent and followed the directions.

You let the mixture soak for 4 hours and then you wipe it off.  The final step in this procedure is to use the self-cleaning program of your oven which seems to be redundant after spreading the mixture over the oven and letting it soak to clean the oven.  But I followed the directions anyway.  Here's the final picture of the top oven following this method.

With the racks . . .

And the glass door looks better, but there are still some little dots on it that need to be scrubbed off to be perfect.

In cleaning the bottom oven, I have decided to just use the self-cleaning program only and see if I could see any difference from the procedure I used in the top oven.  I'll post pictures of that later.

So day one is complete. It may have taken more than one day. :)  

Of course, I'm committing to the 30 Day Challenge not necessarily the 30 Days Consecutively Challenge.  :)  My real goal is just to work through each day until I get it completed.  I really love looking into the microwave and oven and seeing how clean they are now.

Nice and clean for Spring!  or Summer!  Ha!  
Nice and clean for . . .

                                  the Ferrell boys and me!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

A Day in my Life - Thursday

It's been a while since I've blogged.  I just haven't been in the mood.  Yet while I haven't been in the mood to blog, I have been constantly taking pictures of stuff I want to blog about! Ha!

So I decided to write about an ordinary day in my life.  I picked last Thursday.  Here's what it's like to be me with 3 boys:

Last year for Shane's birthday party we used a pirate theme.  Here's a link to read about that party - Shane's Pirate Birthday Party.

I had so much stuff left over from that party that it's embarrassing. Dave wanted me to throw it away.  "It's just creating clutter in your office?" he would say.  But I just couldn't waste perfectly good Pirate party stuff!  So I told Shane's first grade teacher, Miss Pam, that I would bring it to school on the next to last school day for an impromptu pirate party.  :)

Left-over, I had 2 packs of pirate hats, a dozen plus of bandanas, eye patches, mustaches, coins, compasses, and bead necklaces.  
I spent Thursday morning dressing little pirates at the school.

I also had pirate crafts left over --  little wooden pirate and princess masks to decorate and pirate monkey kits with stickers that I got from Dollar Tree. Somehow at Shane's party, I forgot to bring them out!   So I passed them out for the school children to take home.

And the pinata!  I totally forgot the pinata the day of Shane's party. So I filled up the pinata and we hung it up on the playground for the school children.

Candy and prizes fell to the ground and there was mad chaos as the little pirates tried to get their loot!

After the pirate "party," Shane and I left the school and went home in time for me cook lunch.  Zach and Alex were through with their exams so they didn't go to school at all that day.

For lunch I made Monte Cristo Sandwiches. 

They were delicious and the boys have since requested I make them again.  Recipe to follow in another blog post.

I had to wash clothes, specifically baseball uniforms.  

It's that time of year again.  And every year I question the sanity of the coaches in picking white baseball pants.

I wash clothes every chance I get because I have a tremendous amount to wash.  This space in my house is lovingly called Mt. Washmore by me.  :/

Things in my kitchen . . .  my mother's day flowers from Shane:

Notice the printer behind it . . . left there from end of year history reports.  It's back in my office now.

On one of the chairs at the kitchen table . . .  I don't know why . . .

On the bar in the kitchen I found this . . . evidence of Spring football practice and little league practice . . .

On the Kitchen counter I found tomato plants . . .  for the Noxubee County Tomato Battle . . .  :D

I was still washing and drying clothes while I taking this tour of the random things in my kitchen.

In the living room is our pet rabbit - Runner.  Feed, water, and changed his litter box. Check.

Checked on the new puppy:  Rowdy Rebel.  Feed, water, and walked him. Check.

Popped the frozen macaroni and cheese in the oven and got ready for the Athletic Banquet.  Check.  Alex and Zach have baseball practice too . . . at the same time as the Athletic Banquet.  

We dropped Alex off at baseball practice on the way to the Athletic banquet and that's when I realized I had totally forgotten Shane's Coach Pitch practice.  Oops.

We dropped Shane off at Nana's and headed to Athletic Banquet.

Zach got a Basketball Participation Award.

And a Booster Club All Sports Award.

The Junior Varsity Basketball team was recognized at the banquet.

And the Coach made remarks about Zach personally . . . picture is a little blurry . . . I think I was laughing.  

After the Athletic Banquet, Zach went to baseball practice.

Alex had already been at practice for an hour and half by the time Zach got there.  He was tired and thirsty.  I had forgotten to leave any water for him.  :/

We got home about 9:30 that night.  It was a long day.  And I didn't get any work done in my office!  I don't know how mommas get it all done that have full time jobs?!?

But this is just what it's like on an ordinary day with . . . 

                             the Ferrell boys and me!