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A cute infinity scarf…

So, my niece is in college and I love to make stuff for her that she can actually use.

I had some pretty material in my stash and found a tutorial online (super shock) for an infinity scarf and I thought hey, I can do that! So, I pulled everything out and this is what I ended up with 😀

The pretty fabric :

I’m so good at taking pictures of myself, don’t ya think?

IIIIIIIII Love this scarf!!  Hope niece-bit loves it as much as I do 😀

Til next time…

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Down on the Farm…

My Little Bit #2 is a big bad third grader this year.  Wow, where did the time go?  I really don’t know but some days I sit and wonder how in the world my kids all got to be so big.  Anyway, even though my girl is a big girl, she still wants me around.  I love that.  She still wants me to drive her to school and pick her up at the bus stop and hang out with her around the house.  When she asked me to attend her field trip with her, I was super excited and got all my ducks in a row so I could tag along!

This particular field trip was to a local farm here in the town we live in.  I took my LB2 to school on the day of the field trip (decked out in her winter jacket and gloves because boy was it super chilly outside!), and bundled up my LB3 since she stays home with me during the day, and prepared our sack lunches so we could go and learn all about Papa’s Farm!  I thought it MUST be a little drive, so I got my music ready and prepared myself to follow the buses.  About 5-7 minutes later we arrived at Papa’s Farm.  Huh, not near as far away as I anticipated LOL.

The first thing we did was pick those yummy peanuts that we boiled later when we got home.  Oh YUMMY!

LB3 and I even picked some peanuts since we knew what yummy treats were in store!

Next we dug for sweet potatoes (which we also got to take home — hello Sweet Potato Casserole!)

Then we got to pick corn straight off the stalk — LB3 found a Little Bit just her size to be her partner 🙂 Awwww

There were lessons to be learned after all that gardening

LB3 was enamored by the scarecrow sign in the back of the crowd.

There were chickens running loose

There were goats

The kids got to shuck a corn cob

And then got to use the nifty little cutter thingy (that’s the technical name for it), and cut all the corn kernels off the cob so they could later be ground up and made into corn meal

Next the kids got to make an old-fashioned toy out of a piece of string and a large button

We also went on a hay-ride and when it was almost time to head back to school…

the class got together for a photo-op!

It was a lot of fun and I’m so glad I was able to tag along.  It made my LB #2 happy too, so I’m a happy Mama.

Til Next time…

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Did you know…

Recently my girls and I went on a school field trip with my Little Bit 2 and her  class where we visited a farm in our local area.  We all had a good time but my Little Bits had SO MUCH FUN digging in the dirt and learning about the different things they did long ago on farms just like the one we visited.  When we finished up and headed for home, we went away with some knowledge we didn’t have before and a lot of green peanuts!

Here are my 2 Little Bits digging for peanuts.  Even my littlest bit has a great love for boiled peanuts — that’s my girl :D.

Okay, so if you’re from South Carolina, you definitely know what green peanuts are, especially if you have a love for boiled peanuts like I do.  If you’re not, green peanuts are just peanuts that are freshly harvested and haven’t been dried or dehydrated.  Peanuts are actually not a nut at all but are considered beans and are really good for you.  South Carolinians have been eating boiled peanuts since Civil War times when, because of food shortages, Confederate soldiers began to use them as a source of protein.

To sanitize the peanuts straight from the ground, they boiled them in salt water and ate them.  Most people who I come across (since I’m no longer living in my home state) haven’t even heard of boiled peanuts, but these legumes play an important part of the culture where I come from.  When the soldiers came home from the war, they shared the boiled peanuts recipe creating a southern delicacy we all still enjoy today.  In fact, South Carolina named boiled peanuts the state snack in 2006.  Though they have many names, they are a delicious salty treat we enjoy almost any time of year!

(information was found here: http://www.sciway.net/shop/sc-boiled-peanuts.html)

So, now that the history lesson is over :), here’s how you make ’em!

Most people cook their boiled peanuts in a large stock pot on the stove for several days.  Since I don’t like that method (mostly because you have to keep watching it and stirring and make sure the pot doesn’t boil over and the water doesn’t evaporate… etc, etc), I cooked mine in the crock pot.  All I did was clean my peanuts off (this is very important to me since sometimes you have to crack the shells with your teeth and eating dirt is NOT fun).

My LB3 loves helping wash anything off in the kitchen sink, so she was my big helper here.

Next, dump them in the crock pot, pour enough water to cover the peanuts and start dumping in salt.  I’m not really sure on the measurements of everything I added, but the website above has measurements on everything and I think, even though the method of cooking is different, you could still use the same measurements.

So, basically, all I did was add the cleaned peanuts, the salt and the water to the crock pot and turned it on high.  I cooked them for about 24 hours (turning it to low and making sure there was plenty of water for overnight cooking).  Once they were done, which means that they’re tender, but not soggy (that’s what most people complain about when explaining their disdain for boiled peanuts), they’re ready to eat!  yum!

She could hardly wait to sink her teeth into those peanuts! 😀

My hubby, being from Texas, had never heard of such a thing before he met me.  But with lots of persuading, he finally tried this yummy treat I always rave about and they quickly became a favorite of his as well.  So, even if you may think “eeeewwwww” at the thought of peanuts boiled in lots of salt, try it, you just might find a new favorite treat :D.  Trust me, they are YUMMY!!

Til Next time…

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Another Day, Another Fall Festival…

This year we have been doing all sorts of fun fall things! We were invited to yet another fall festival last week and decided to check it out and have a little fall fun — well, a little MORE fall fun :).

We started the evening jumping in the jumpy houses

I swear, their favorite part of the jumpy houses is falling down on purpose LOL

That was followed by a little fishing

LB2 caught a couple of “kissing” fish 😉

Next was LB3’s turn

She caught some “kissing” fish too!

“Look Mom!”

Oh, they were SO pleased 🙂 LOL

Now we are the proud owners of “Fishy” and “Goldie”

We tried our hand at throwing the ping-pong ball in the little fish bowls (that’s harder than it looks)

We tried throwing darts at the balloons — 2 pops out of 3 WOO-HOO!

We threw some little lambs threw the holes

and we used a slingshot on the giant

had fun in a cake walk

enjoyed some yummy refreshments

We even took some home to enjoy later :D.

All-in-all, it was a really fun time and we had a very fun evening.

Now, to go to Walmart and get some food for those fish.  Hmmmm, maybe I’ll regret letting the girls bring those suckers home, but it made them oh so happy to when a “real live fish!” LOL

Til Next time…

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Her first school project…

I’m kind of excited because this year (being LB2’s 3rd grade year) is the beginning of book reports for my Little Bit #2.  That sounds kind of bad — like I’m enjoying the fact that my little bit has to do more work.  Hmm, well, that’s not the case.  I’m just excited because in my family we have always enjoyed a love for reading. Sometimes my middle bit gets upset that she has to read for 20 minutes as part of her homework (man, I’d LOVE 20 minutes of quiet reading time LOL), but I know she does enjoy reading a good story, a silly story or sometimes even a book telling all about different kinds of animals.

I’m mostly excited about this project because the teacher LB2 has this year has a very different way of asking her children to do the reports.  Gone are the days of 2-4 page written essays with the student standing in front of the entire class reading for everyone.  We’ll have none of that! The book reports of today involve sculpting clay, or making up your own board game, or  even acting out your favorite character in a scene from your book (among other choices)! I mean, isn’t that AWESOME?! I think so (I know you couldn’t tell).

When LB2 came home with this packet, I looked it over and wanted her to get started right away!  I was so excited that THIS would spark her interest in reading as much as the rest of our family members.  Well… one part of the project is that the student needs teacher approval of the book (and that took like 3 weeks for her to get because she kept forgetting).  Then she also needed approval for the actual project she chose… oh me oh my! That also took a couple of weeks because of the forgetfulness.  I mean, really?!

Okay, so she finally got all the approval she needed and out came the modeling clay — woo-hoo!!

The clay was out, the book was chosen (Animals of Australia), and she was ready to begin…

My artsy Little Bit LOVES a good art project, so she dove right into that clay.

First she made an Emu

And then a dingo (gotta have a little dingo bit in the cave)

and a King snake.

We used an old cookie sheet that I’d been saving for a craft project 😉 and wrapped it in brown packing paper (also saved for a crafty project) that we wrinkled up and she colored the grass and dirt and water.

She decided it would be really great if she had something to use as a background, so we looked around and found a long popcorn box in the recycles and cut it to work for her background.  She colored that as well and we hot glued everything down.

Tah-dah! The art portion of her project was complete!  She filled out her 4×6 index card with the proper information and started practicing her 2-3 minute speech that she present to the class.

Here she is on the way to school practicing her “speech” in the car.

She did a really great job with this and I think she’ll get a good grade.  It took her forever to get the approvals she needed, and it took several days to get all the work completed but, in the end, she did a great job.  She worked hard and was very pleased with the finished product.

I was very pleased that the project was so much fun for her AND that the only thing we had to buy was the modeling clay!  I LOVE that my girl was super excited that we recycled most of the materials used to make her project :D.

Good Luck, Little Bit! I’m so proud of you.

🙂

Til Next time…

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Carving up the Pumpkin…

October is such a fun month!   The decorations, the scary Haunted Trails, the pumpkin carving, the Fall Festivals, Oh My!  It’s one of the most fun times of the year and we LOVE IT!

We were very busy this past month and ended up waiting too long to get out and purchase our pumpkins.  Everywhere we looked, the only pumpkins that were left were either too small or too big.

😦

Luckily, since I am the bargain hunter that I am, I happened to have a few foam crafting pumpkins from Michael’s that I purchased on super clearance last year (or maybe the year before??) after Halloween.   We also had some smaller than normal-sized pumpkins that the girls got at the Fall Festival’s we attended this year, so we decided to make lemonade out of lemons — or Jack-o-lanterns out of small pumpkins (as the case may be).

We started with the small pumpkins so when Dad got home from work, he could get started (he does all of the actual carving because he is sooooo good at it — and the girls are too young to handle knives and such.  They like to include him in the fun :D).

Scooping out the goo is the ickiest and, even though my Little Bits would admit it, the most enjoyable part of the pumpkin carving.

Well… LB3 seemed to like it :).

We also decided to decorate the crafting pumpkins with stickers and glitter (we LOVE glitter as you well know) and ribbons and… well, you’ll see…

We do love to get our craft on!

LB2’s decorated pumpkin (she said this was the front — I had to ask)

LB3’s decorated pumpkin (I got to help on this one! SO FUN!)

She thought the crown on the pumpkin was the perfect final touch LOL.  I just put it there to make her laugh.

Just before I took the picture, LB2 decided she needed to add some silver glitter!  I don’t know if you can tell, but that silver glitter got all over the porch and may be there for some time to come LOL.  All’s well in love and pumpkin decorating.

LB2’s finished carved pumpkin (thanks to our master carver — Dad)

LB3’s (A.K.A. The Princess) finished carved pumpkin (again thanks, Dad)

The Master carver himself — carving up a Family pumpkin (since we were running out of materials).

I don’t know if you can tell, but our family Jock-o-lantern has “SLOAN” for it’s mouth!  I just thought that was such a cute idea!  I wish I came up with it myself… but I WAS the one who found it online, so that counts, right?

Anyway, there you have it! We had a lot of fun decorating and carving and digging out the GUTS.  I hope your pumpkin carving was as exciting as ours.

Til Next time…

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Trick-or-treating…

We all love Halloween in the Sloan household (I wasn’t sure if you realized that yet so I wanted to make sure).  Trick-or-treating is SO much fun!  Even though Hubby and I don’t usually get dressed up for the trick-or-treating ritual, we still have fun watching the Little Bits get so excited.  This year was super exciting because LB3 is 2 and has been getting more and more excited with each passing day.  I wasn’t even sure that she realized what the excitement was over exactly, but she was a pro!  This was one proud Mama :D!

Before we could head out, there were preparations to be made.  The princess had to put on her dress and tiara (along with all of her jewelry) and Frankie Stein had to be made up.  She wanted a before and after pick “for the blog” LOL.  So here they are.

BEFORE: my sweet little bit2

AFTER: a sassy Frankie Stein (that’s the daughter of Frankenstein for those

of you who have NO IDEA what or who Monster High is — I was right there with ya)

I’m especially proud of my neck bolts, so make sure you pay extra attention to those ;)!

Before we left for our candy collection, we had to set up the candy bowls for the other Trick-or-treaters…

We want NO tricks at this house!

The cutest princess and Frankie Stein trick-or-treating at the first house (just look at that excitement!)

The pic is kind of blurry, but I had to post this pic of Daddy with his princess 😀

She says, “Oh Mom!” — I say “What?!”

Lb3 struggling to get that treat sack open. LOL.  Don’t worry… she got it :D.

One of the last houses of the night.  We ended up with lots of candy in the LB’s treat sacks, not too much candy left in the candy bowls (thanks goodness!), and two very tired parents.  It was SO much fun :).

Hope you all had a blast with your little goblins and monsters!

Til Next time…

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The Great Pumpkin Hunt…

Every year around this time, jack-o-lanterns are popping up everywhere!

From the scary ones to the super cute ones, we at the Sloan household LOVE getting into the festivities of the season!

This year, just like all the years past, we jumped into the car and headed to a local church where we always purchase our pumpkins.  Unlike all the years of the past, we waited until the weekend before Halloween (things have been super busy this year for us) to make our annual run to the pumpkin patch.  We arrived very cheerful (even though the weather was anything but) and began checking out the pumpkins — or lack thereof.

We waited too late *sigh*

The only pumpkins left were super huge pumpkins and itty bitty baby pumpkins.

We searched high and low…

for just the right one…

When all of a sudden LB3 exclaimed “I found it!”

She put it in the wagon and since none of the rest of us could find just the right one for ourselves, we paid for her pumpkin and loaded back into the car.

We thought and thought and thought, trying to figure out where we would go to get our pumpkins!

And decided that a quick trip to the ice cream shop would help us think better.

That is one big bowl of ice cream!

It helped us to decide to go home and come up with a new plan for another day.

We ended up trying Food Lion and they were all out by the time we got there.  Back to the drawing board.  Oh well, at least it was a fun outing — and as LB2 said “at least we got ice cream”!  LOL

Til next time…

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