Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Saturday fun...OWL PELLETS??? LOL

What does my child beg to do on a Saturday? Dissect owl pellets of course! LOL. I ordered these a week ago and kept asking DH to bring rubber gloves home from work, but he kept forgetting. He finally brought them home Friday and all day Saturday Kookie followed me around the house begging for the owl pellets. I used it as a bribe to get her to hurry up and help me pick up the house and then I got them out. She spent the next several house busy at work dissecting 2 pellets and identifying the bones contained.

Both pellets contained 2 complete Vole skeletons...

So then Kookie spent the next few minutes figuring out how many pellets and owl produces a day, week, and year (the book told us that owl's produce about 2 pellets a day). She then figured out if her owl at 2 voles for each pellet and produced 2 pellets a day, how many voles the owl would eat every day, week, and year. Turns out the vole eats 4 voles a day, 28 voles a week, and 1460 voles a year! That's one hungry owl LOL.
I was pretty impressed with the math she did. She figured out how to do it all my herself. Sometimes she really does blow me away.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

After the blizzard

My last post was a blizzard warning. Well we woke up the Sat morning to snow, and lots of it. 4+ foot drifts surrounded my car . DH had to run to the office for a meeting so he and I got busy shoveling it out. Here's Kookie standing where my car was. LOLAnd Dh's car definitely wasn't going anywhere even if it didn't have a blown head gasket LOL.

We were going to take Kookie and Bella up to the tundra, but all the roads were blocked with snow and had not been cleared. So we headed to the town park since it has a fence around it. However, the fence was useless since it was completely buried under the deep snow.
But at least they both got a chance to play and run around.

It has warmed up and we have had some serious meltage going on. Now the snow is ugly with shades of grey and brown. I am to the point that I wish it would all melt or either let us have another good snow to hide it all and make it pretty again! LOL

Night all

Friday, January 27, 2012

Blizzard Warning Again

Yep, through tomorrow morning. Crazy weather we are having. Last winter we had a few inches max on the ground at any given period and it would melt in just a day or two...this winter, well we have had snow on the ground for 6 weeks now, several blizzard warnings, and lots of cold weather. Weather like this makes me thankful we homeschool. No need to get out in the mess. Stay warm and cozy inside.

Tomorrow Dh is going in to work in the morning and then a trip out of the house and to the library is in order.

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. I am off to crochet some more dish clothes. We are cutting back on our paper towel use this year and are doing pretty well so far. We used to use at least 2 rolls a week. I have been busy crocheting up a bunch of clothes to use, and so far, we are using about 1 roll every 2 weeks. Definitely a big difference, for both the environment and our pocket book. Night all.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

An inside day and my Coconut, Cranberry, Granola recipe

What icky weather we have been having. Winds are gusting over 80 mph, our windchill has been below zero all day, and there were many periods of white out conditions. It was a good day to stay in and stay warm....except....my heat is broken. Yep, woke up this morning to a cold house. Thankfully not that cold, as our house has two zones, and one zone was working. This meant Kookie's room and the school room were warm, so we spent a lot of the day in there. Someone is coming in the morning to fix it, so tonight I will be sleeping with Kookie (if she lets me...she told me before she went to sleep that she did not want me in her bed all night) LOL.

Anyway, we started the morning off in warm fleece, and Kookie in a stolen hat. If that looks familiar, it's because it is MINE! LOL.
We did a little school and a little "challenge" math. I was impressed.
Kookie and I warmed up the house by making homemade coconut, cranberry granola. It tastes great and makes the house smell amazing while cooking.
And enjoyed it with some coconut milk steamers.
And Kookie spent the rest of the day using every towel and blanket in the house building a cave fort.
Another day of trying to stay warm.

I thought I would share my recipe for those who want to try this. It is truly one of my favorite granolas.

Coconut Cranberry Granola
1/4 cup coconut oil or vegetable oil
1 Tbs Water
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 cups old fashion oats
1/2 cup wheat germ
2 Tbs. ground flax seed
2 Tbs. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 275. Coat 9x13 pan with cooking spray and set aside. Mix oats, flax, wheat germ, brown sugar, salt, coconut, and pecans together in a large bowl.
Bring maple syrup, oil, water, cinnamon, and vanilla to a simmer over low heat.
Drizzle over oat mixture, stirring to combine.
Pour mixture into pan, and working a handful at a time, squeeze oat mixture to form small clumps.
Bake for 30 minutes then stir in dried cranberries. Bake 15 minutes longer.
Let cool.

Your house will smell wonderful, and the granola will last up to 2 weeks in an airtight container. It is usually gone before then here LOL!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

My new way of buying groceries

All this came in the mail the other day. I have found a way to save big on our groceries and the cost of food out here! I am hoping to cute our food bill by 25%. We shall see. Amazon has started offering free shipping and subscribe and save to our area again, and this means big savings to our pocket book. Groceries are expensive here! Really expensive. Everything has to be flown in or brought in by boat. Many things are more than double the price in the lower 48. Buying my non-perishable items here should help us save quite a bit of money. This is my first month doing this, and the order I placed from amazon should last for several months!

Here's a sample of the comparison in prices...
-16 oz Safeway brand spaghetti $2.79- Amazon Price $2.03....savings on 10 boxes- $7.65
-Can of corn-Safeway price $1.89 a can- Amazon Price $.90 a can.....savings on 12 cans-$11.80
-Can of green bean-Safeway price $1.89 a can-Amazon Price $.77 a can....savings on 12 cans-$13.47
-Can of mixed veggies-Safeway price $2.12 a can- Amazon Price $.90 a can...savings on 12 cans- $14.56
-Spaghetti sauce- Safeway price $3.99- Amazon Price $1.83....savings on 8 Jars-$17.27
-Brown Rice Blend- Safeway price $12.49 a container- Amazon Price $6.58 a container....savings on 4 containers- $23.66!
-Frosted flakes cereal 23 oz.- Safeway price $6.99- Amazon Price $3.22....savings on 4- $15.05

Total Savings...$103.46!...not including the taxes I would have paid buying here compared to with Amazon!

Impressive huh? I am thrilled with this. I am hopeful that most of my grocery cost at the store here now will be fresh produce, meat, and dairy. This should take a big chunk out of our bill, and it will also help since as of right now I am car-less as DH is using my car to get to work and back until his will be back in commission. I don't really mind with the way the weather has been lately...

On that note...it is 18 degrees outside and blowing sustained about 50 on the hill with gust of 80. The windows are billowing and the house is creaking, and the windchill is between -6 and -10. I just took Bella out and am now trying to warm up. Should be like this at least through Tuesday, so we will be snuggled safe an warm inside for the next few days.

Good night all!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

A look back at our week

We had a pretty good week this week. A few interruptions from a 24 hour stomach bug floating around, but otherwise we had a lot of fun.

I thought I'd share a look back on our week.

We sleep late here...neither A nor I are morning people, but that doesn't mean we don't get to see beautiful sunrises. Definitely one of the perks of Alaskan living.

These pics were taken at about 9:30 in the morning. I took the dog out for her morning walk, and was just blown away by the windswept lenticular clouds and the beauty of the sunrise, so I ran inside and grabbed my camera.

Playing with our food....

Yep I let my child play with her food, and I am always in awe of her creative creations LOL. A walking person...crafted from leftover pizza bagel, bell pepper, and a grape :)

We did a little school.....

A quick lesson on rounding...
Working with equivalent fractions. Later she worked on multiply fractions and dividing them to discover additional equivalents.

Friday was a weekly review. Addition and subtraction with regrouping, simple multiplication and division, addition and subtraction of fraction, and rounding. For some reason, standing up and writing on the chalk board makes everything more fun!
A little bit of grammar....
Some writing....

I think I mentioned last week that I have come up with a new way to help Kookie become more confident in her writing. She picks an animal each week from our poster book, reads the information on them, and then pretending that I know NOTHING about the animal she is writing about, she writes a paragraph telling me what she believes it is important for me to know.

This week she chose polar bears since we have been studying the arctic.

I asked her before she started writing, what types of things she thought I should know? She said, what kind of animals they are, what they look like, what they eat, where they live. And I said, exactly...so tell me those things! And this is what she gave me. Awesome!
And a lot of fun....

We had play dates, Daisies, nature walks on the ice, discovered some new yummy recipes, and best of all.....we booked our tickets for a 3 week stay with my mom! End of March....here we come!

Happy weekend everyone!

MLK day festivities

Monday was Martin Luther King Day as you all know. Here on our island, we have a VERY diverse community, and we celebrate this every year with a great ceremony on this day, celebrating the many many cultures of our community. The girl scouts and boy scouts of our community were asked to present the flags. Kookie, being the shortest of them all, led the line. She was so nervous. She said she was afraid she would do something wrong and mess it up for everyone...but she did great! I was so proud of her. Her first time in front of a crowd, and it was in front of hundreds of people.
I am just glad she is loving being a girl scout. She is really coming into her own and finding a fit and my heart is happy.

A better day

Today was a much better day than yesterday. Finished out the week strong I like to think. After finishing school and having lunch, some wonderful friends came over to visit and play, and then we made a mad dash over to the church for our first Daisy meeting with me as the troop leader. It went pretty well, I just need to plan time better I think. The girls all really had fun and I enjoyed seeing them get excited about what we are doing.

On another note, I have found an awesome new website! I made these tasty treats for Kookie and her friends, and their were none left over! I will definitely be trying more of her recipes. No refined sugars in this either, and they definitely tasted like brownie batter! YUM!

Night all! I have lots of pics from our week, but those will have to wait till tomorrow. Have a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

One of those days

It was one of those days today. I should have known when the morning started out with me being startled awake by the shooting pain of a huge dog paw whacking me smack across my closed eyes. The scratch she left still stings. She decided not to go out when DH got up this morning and really had to go, her solution to waking me up however, left a lot to be desired! Shortly after, I slipped on the ice and landed on my right hand middle finger. I was convinced for the first 20 mins that it was broken. After icing it though, I was able to move it. Now it is just a nasty purple and blue shade. Kookie pushed every button I had, we put school up, I cried on the phone to a friend, and this was all before lunch. Somehow we managed to push a restart button and this afternoon was much better, although we ended the evening with Kookie coming down with a touch of that 12-24 hour stomach bug DH had a few days ago. Medicine and 2 chapter books later she finally fell asleep. On days like this I cling to our motto here that my sweet girl reminded me of today. "Tomorrows another day full of fresh chances." And I know tomorrow will be a better day. A good nights sleep, friends coming over in the afternoon, and our first Daisy meeting with me as the new leader, gives us plenty to look forward to.

In the meantime, I thought I'd share some pictures we took last week after the snow became coated with a layer of ice. Unfortunately this ice is still there, and while we had some slight meltage (yes, probably not a word, but I am going with it tonight), it is now well below freezing and looks to stay that way. Just walking outside is a treacherous adventure....just ask my finger! LOL