pinterest-dd591.htm Oak Creek Academy: 2008

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Oreo Truffles

This is an easy, good, no bake dessert.

45 Oreo cookies, divided (one package)
1 8 oz cream cheese, softened
16 oz semisweet baking chocolate, melted

  1. Crush nine cookies to a fine crumbs in food processor; save for later
  2. Crush remaining cookies into fine crumbs and place in medium bowl
  3. Add cream cheese to cookie crumbs and mix well
  4. Roll mixture into 1" balls, place on wax paper lined cookie sheets (divide among 2 sheets for ease of working)
  5. Chill for about a half hour
  6. Melt chocolate in a double boiler or in microwave
  7. Dip balls into chocolate and return to tray
  8. Sprinkle the tops with reserved cookie crumbs
  9. Repeat steps 7 & 8 with the second tray of balls
  10. Refrigerate for one hour until firm
  11. Store in covered container in fridge

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Another Merry Christmas

We celebrated Christmas with Kevin's family this past Sunday, December 21. The kids (our boys and their cousin) were so excited by the gifts we let them exchange gifts among themselves early. I thought this was really cool picture of Ms. Cousin peering over the big princes coloring sheets. The glow from the sun helped too.

Don't know what caught Thing One and Thing Two's attention, but the picture is priceless.

The boys had been wanting their own "Big Boy Bibles" as they called it for some time now. We had bought them in October as Christmas gifts, but just couldn't wait to give the boys the bibles. They REALLY wanted the Bible; whose going to refuse a request for a bible? So after getting the bible, the promptly asked where the covers where. HELLO - we need to save something for Christmas!?!?
Thing two, figuring out the Hot
Wheel's Wii game, now that he has a steering wheel.

A Star Trek show gone bad. Okay, maybe not. Kevin playing with his new camera tripod.

Merry Christmas

My handsome gentlemen after our Christmas Eve Service at Burke Community Church.  They all looked really nice.

Our living room, Christmas morning, after filling two bags of wrapping paper and tissue paper. 

What the room looked like BEFORE cleaning up.  Lots of stuff everywhere.  The boys were so excited by everything.

One of the crafts I made for the boys.  Homemade Home School T-Shirts.  They thought it so cool that the shirts where in "their color and tye dyed"

Another gift, their big gift, were Wii remote attachments.  The set include a steering wheel, tennis racket, golf club, 
and baseball bat.  Of course, each set had to be a different color.  Can you guess what the colors were?

Monday, December 22, 2008

Laundry Basket Boys

Some things in life never seem to change. We'd finished folding laundry - last week maybe - and were sitting around reading "Hardy Boys". It didn't seem to take long before the boys found their way into the laundry basics. They were totally content, just sitting there, listening. Guess they like small places. Found a photo from about four years ago. Then, they could share a basic. To funny!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Another Not Wordless Wednesday


We've been working through "Snowflake Bentley" last week and this week.  Today, we worked on Negative Space.  Don't recall where I found the idea for negative space, but it was a fun art project for the boys to work on.  Here's what we did:

  1. start with two favorite colors of construction paper
  2. cut one in half and set one half aside
  3. fold larger sheet in half (optional) to give kids a reference point
  4. draw a design or half of a scene on smaller piece of paper
  5. cut out scene or objects
  6. lay out the parts cut from the half sheet along the fold forming half the design
  7. the remaining parts are placed on the opposite side of the full sheet in locations opposite those from which they were cut
  8. glue parts down

Monday, December 15, 2008

Home Made Bird Feeder

My son's Cub Scout Den will be making home made bird feeders this week and I wanted to have a practice run before Wednesday night.  As an adult, it wasn't to difficult to make, but I can already picture the questions that may arise when the kids start making them.  Following are the things you'd need and directions.

Items needed:
  • empty and dry 16 to 20 ounce bottle WITH cap
  • approximately three feet of twine
  • scissors
  • tack (I'll explain in directions)
  • 6" dowel (these had a diameter of .5 cm and came 12" long.  I cut one in half)
  • markers, duct tape, or whatever to decorate
  • bird seed
  1. approximately 1" up from the bottom, poke a couple holes on the side of the bottle with tack - this is easier than getting the scissors into it.
  2. on opposite side, do the same
  3. now, push dowel through the holes on one side and then through the other side, leaving some dole out on both sides
  4. approximately 1/2" up from dole, poke a couple starter holes, with tack
  5. cut the bottom, for the bird opening, 1" to either side of the dole
  6. next cut up, each side, approximately two to three inches
  7. repeat steps 4, 5, & 6 on the other side
  8. now, the rope needs to be tied, around the top of the bottle
  9. tie the two ends together so that it can be hung from a hook or tree limb
  10. fill with bird seed to the point that it is not falling out of bird feeder

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Snowflake Bentley

We've been rowing a book called "Snowflake Bentley" this week. It is a biography of William Bentley who became fascinated by snowflakes at an early age. He studied them, drew them, and learned how to photograph individual flakes. The story was a 1999 Caldecott Medal as well.

Yesterday's art assignment that we worked on photography and I let Thing One take a few photo's (before the batteries began to run out). Here is some of his handy work:

Our Christmas tree looks a bit blurry, but thought it was neat how the lights kind of "melt" into the tree.

One of Thing One's current favorite books to check out at the library - Hardy Boys. He's even reading them a loud, very cool.

Thing One got Thing Two and me working on Snowflake Math together. Think it's the first photo with me, in it, actively doing school. :)

The "boys" in the house, seem to enjoy taking self portraits. So, in honor of that tradition, here is one of Thing One.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Who are you??

Not a loaded questions, really.  Just take it at face value.  

It's one I've been mulling over today, kind of being stirred by the Holy Spirit.  Of coarse I've come up with the usual answers:
  • Wife
  • Mother
  • Child of God
  • Teacher
  • Taxi driver
  • Maid
  • Cook
  • Mason Jar, iced coffee, drinking lady (kind of how I'm known at church)
  • laundry lady
  • Meanie for enforcing rules
  • Assistant Den Leader to Bear Den 1
  • Sister
  • Daughter
  • Friend
  • Neighbor
  • Sports Mom
It makes me think, that although most of these titles are good, are they what really matters in the long run?  Why do I work at these jobs?  Am I doing these jobs because God has called me to them or because they are what I am?  Is my purpose, or focus, to get the job done or to glorify God?  Will my love for God show through these tasks?

Hhmmm!  A lot to pray over and seek answers.

Monday, December 8, 2008

What was lost is now found!!

Okay, so it's nothing of great consenquences, but none the less, important to me.  I have a cookbook, Casserole Cooking From Taste of Home Books.  There are a number of recipes that we enjoy from this book and it got buried beneath some piles of papers.  Was disappointed when I thought it was lost, but got over it.  Was happy when it was found.

Ah, can still make:
  • Cordon Bleu Casserole
  • Tater-Topped Casserole
  • Sunshine Casserole
  • and others
P.S.  Does this count as Monday Musing?

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Not a Wordless Wednesday

It's been a bit challenging to keep up with Monday Musings, Wordless Wednesday, Science Friday.  Thanksgiving and a cold got the best of me.

In trying to consolidate postings, I remembered this picture.  We'd planned on giving the Bibles as Christmas gifts, but when the boys began asking for big kid bibles, it was hard to not give in and let them have it early.  Both were excited to get their new Bible.  They've enjoyed learning how to look up passages and learning to read from them.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Not a Wordless Wednesday

I have been working on this baby blanket since, I think the beginning of August; granted not every day.  A couple weeks ago, with just three and 1/2 panels finished, I decided I wanted to get it finished before Thanksgiving (and have my hubby bring it to work for one of his co-workers).  Was almost there,  if I hadn't been so sick yesterday, I would have taken the photo's and the blanket could have been delivered.

Not that anyone particularly cares, but each panel is 32 knit stitches wide and 62 rows (or 31 ribs) long.  When I had 4 panels of each color, I had to figure out which color would be the X and choose the multi colored yarn.  I whip stitched them together in cream, as it was in both colors, to varying degrees, and then a stocking stitch around the edges.  A stocking stitch is one row knit stitch, one row purl stitch, until a desired length is reached - 5 rows here.

I think it turned out well and hope hubby's co-worker likes it.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Finally Friday!!

Science Friday's just aren't cutting it.  Occasionally we have good experiement's that are photo worry, but more often, not.  Being the last school day before Thanksgiving Break, it was hard to get through.  We managed and everyone was more than happy to put school supplies away for a week.  Still amazes me though, that they'll sit and listen to books so easily, or watch an "educational" video without batting an eye.  Having taken the stress out of most of the school day sure has helped the overall school experience.

For fun today, we started snapping photo's for possible Christmas cards.   First round wasn't to bad, but may need to redue the family ones to have the letters show up better.  Will see what we can do.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Monday, November 17, 2008

Monday Musing's

I've been working on Christmas decorations the last few days.  I have been painting the letters in the word "NOEL" gold.  I'd seen this in a Southern Living Christmas 2008 book and really liked it.  Hoping to getting some family photo's with each of us holding a letter and some individual shots, too, for a frame that has been on the wall (for a while now) with four empty slots.  I've taken a few pictures of the letters in my dining room window, which turned out really cool, but realized that my Five in a Row ornament's were in the shot.  I might be able to crop them out but haven't taken the time yet.  I hope to try a little later in the day.
 In the same book, there was a photo of hung stockings with a letter dangling with the stocking.  Thought this would be a cool thing to do as well.  So, the eight letter are almost finished. 
It's amazing how many coats of paint are needed, when using gold, to get it covered.
Got to the pictures, as you can see.  The gold doesn't show up well.  But when we get to family photo's taken, I'll post those.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Proud Parent Moment

Today's post won't be about Science. I know it's heartbreaking (hehehe, maybe not). Pack 683 had a uniform inspection at our Pack Meeting last night. Our Thing One won for his den. Woo Hoo!! He was excited because the prizes for each winner were a "I'm Proud of My Cub Scout" bumper sticker, a box of Boy Scout Popcorn, and a build a car type thing - similar to pine wood derby cars. He really liked the sticker because "Dad's car doesn't have one yet!!" This morning all he wants to do his build his car. Thing Two is kind of bummed because he wanted a car too.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wonderful Day!!

Have you ever had just a wonderful day and it's not because of any one thing?  That is our day so far.  It's just been a day when things seem to be going well.  The boys had fun while I was at bible study, made many connections while reading "Cranberry Thanksgiving" for Five in a Row, the deer came for a snack (in the neighbors yard), and we're finishing up school in front of a fire.  Not such a bad day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Monday Musing's

So, I have been trying to add more fun stuff around the house for school.  I'd seen metal put up on a wall on FIAR ladies blog.  It looked like something the boys would have fun with using letters or words to create stuff.  My problem is that we decorated our house long before we began homeschooling and have limited wall space.  I was able to find a couple pieces, about 2' x 3', at Home Depot and they fit under the cork board puzzle I'd put up on the "stair case wall".  There isn't much use for the wall, other than photo's, so adding the metal sheets was easy enough - other than having to work around an outlet.  

It should be fun, just need to order some words or buy some magnet sheets and make our own - or both.

Friday, November 7, 2008

"Our Piece of Earth"

I have been so distracted during school today by the flurry of birds coming to the feeder.  There's been a change in birds about every 10 seconds it seems, with some "sitting" on the hook, porch roof, or ground, just waiting their turn.  It does seem we have a few bullies - pushing others out.  Kind of neat that some of the pictures, I was able to get the birds with their wings fully extended.

Look at this bird coming in; just amazing!!

This was a pretty picture from our deck looking into the park land.  It's this view that makes it hard to move from an awkward layout of a house and narrow lot.  The fall colors are such vibrant yellows, oranges, and reds.  Not to mention there are plenty of places to go hiking.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

So excited!!

Yes, I've fallen into the homeschool decorating scheme.  My wish list for Christmas includes bookshelves and Five in a Row manuals and Books.  We also bought some metal sheets from Home Depot to hang for magnets (Thank you Heather W. for the inspiration!!)  so the boys could work on language arts in a different way.  It will probably be used for more ways than just language arts though.  

Hope to get them up today and have pictures blogged soon.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday Musing's

In the past few month's of the school year, I have visited a number of Five in a Row ladies blogs.  I have been inspired at their creativity with homeschooling and their blog.  One of the things I want to try is "Wordless Wednesday" - posting a picture, with no text, of something - anything - that inspires you.  I may try to keep up with my Science Friday's, too, and Musing Monday.

Not much to muse about today though.  Will be very happy, though, when the election is over and any fall out dust has settled.  

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween Pictures

Here are my young padawan's. They were dressed as Qui-gon and Obi - won. Their Jedi robs were going to be Christmas gifts, but when they asked to be Star War Jedi for Halloween, the robs came early.

Family shot of the "boys" dressed for the day. Kevin was dressed as a "Nerd Herd guy" from Chuck. His tie was home made, too.

Yes, I am posting a blurry photo - Thing Two had just eaten a tart piece of lemon candy and this was his reaction.

Thing One was working on a Tootsie Roll Pop!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Science Friday's

We've been "rowing" the Pumpkin Runner by Marsha Diane Arnold, Pictures by Brad Sneed this week in school.  The story was "inspired by Cliff Young, a 61 year old farmer from Victoria, Austrialia, who shuffled from obscurity to national prominence in 1983 when he defeated younger opponents in an 875 kilometer (542 mile) run between Sydney and Melbourne, cutting nearly two days off the record.  He won $10,000 for winning the race, which he split with the other runners."

For science, we took a look at hot air balloons and the density of hot air and cold air.  We put balloons on three 20 ounce water bottles, then left one on the counter, put one in hot water, and one in ice water.  It was amazing how quickly the one in hot water inflated and the one in ice water "sucked" in the balloon.

A very cool science moment, at least for a few moments.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The name Jennifer

There was a time, when growing up, that it seemed about every other girl was named Jennifer or went by some version of the name.  It got to the point, I just stopped turning when I heard "Jennifer" unless I knew the voice well.  As I got through college, there were fewer and fewer Jennifer's.  Now, many years after college (16 years December 15) I am finding the circle including a lot more.  On the FIAR forum, there are 24 variations of Jennifer.  At the church we've been going to, there are 4 or 5 besides myself that I can think of quickly.  

Ah, at least I'm unique to God.

Monday, October 27, 2008

One Blustery Day

around the home front.  Almost want to move the van out of the drive way and hope that all the leaves blow out of our yard, past my neighbor's house, down the hill, and into the tree line.  No raking for anyone.  :)

If I can get a good picture of the trees swaying, might have to post it.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Double Posting Today

Wow is the only word that totally fits right now. Not so much that I am posting a second time today, but the overwhelming feeling of how blessed life can be. Nothing in particular has happened here. It's the realization that on a cold, kind of dreary day, we (all four of us) are warm, safe, and happy. Kevin is working on Bible studies for the coming week, Thing Two is happy as a lark in the play room, and Thing One is going between Wii and Lego's. I've been able to "watch", listen is more like it, to the cooking shows on PBS while I begin to prepare for next weeks lessons. It is just a beautiful thing when you realize how blessed you are and to be content in the moment.


So, I knew event it would eventually come this:  I'd either keep up face book or my blog.  I am trying to keep both up, but haven't been posting as much here as I thought I would.  Oh Well!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Cedar Creek

My eldest son and I went camping this past weekend to Middleton, VA with his Cub Scout Pack.  This has become an annual camping trip to Cedar Creek where part of the American Civil War took place on 19 October 1864.  It's hard to imagine, that on all these rolling acres, so many lives were lost, while fighting for what was considered basic freedoms.

It was an enjoyable time with my son.  It was probably the most time we'd spent together, without his brother, in 5 3/4 years.  We spent a lot of time just hanging out and walking around looking at the living history exhibits, learning about cannons, and watching different aspects of the war being re-enacted.
It had been forecasted that it would be cold, so both Friday and Saturday nights thermometers were set out.  Saturday, we woke to cool weather, cool enough to go through a lot of hot chocolate.  Sunday, though, it was 31 degrees.  There was frozen dew on the tents, a wet dish cloth was stiff, and the scouts had earned there Polar Bear Patch.  The warm air in the van, on the way home, felt wonderful.  Being clean and a nap that afternoon was a welcome change.

Friday, October 10, 2008

How to Make Apple Pie

This is the title of the book that we "rowed" this week.  It has been a fun fall type book to row.  We took a look at England, Sri Lanka, Italy, Jamaica, France, and Vermont.  We also worked with measuring cups, went over evaporation and set up some salt water to evaporate for science, looked at street scapes for Art and just had fun with school this week.  The best part was making the apple pie today, a first for me.  Below is a picture of how it turned out, not to bad for a first time!!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Picture updates

It's been awhile since I've loaded pictures onto my blog.  These are from the last week!!  We've lived here for just over six years and this is the first time we've taken the time to photograph "wildlife".  This is one the main reasons I don't have flowers in our front yard.

Deer enjoying our neighbors yard.
There were three, total, but can't guarantee that the three photo's
where of the three separate deer.


During the morning hours, there is a lot of
light coming in.  The boys loving sitting
here doing their school work.