Sunday, September 21, 2014

When the baby's away, the others will play

Our big kids have been waiting what seems like forever for Clay to have "other engagements," so that we could take them to Schlitterbahn. Well, today was that day! Clay was at Nana Camp this weekend, and it also happened to be the very last weekend of the water park's season. (And, as a bonus, it was homeschool discount weekend!) It was absolutely the perfect time to go, as the weather was just right and the park was probably at its least crowded. We had a blast! Of course, I don't have any photographic evidence of this, because cameras and water slides don't really mix. But, take my word for it, we had a great time! And, Clay also had a fantastic time at Nana Camp! That's what we call a win-win!

Friday, September 19, 2014

All the oils I've loved

For a while, I have been researching and experimenting with essential oils and natural remedies. About six months ago, I was introduced to doTerra and have been using their oils regularly since. I will not enter into a debate about the merits of one essential oil company over another. I'm sure they all have something to offer, and this journey, for me, is not about the brand. It is simply about finding ways to take control of my family's wellness. My research and experiments with oils continue, and I still have much to learn. I know this isn't the path for everyone. But, for those of you interested, I thought I would share some our favorite oils and how we have used them.

  • Treatment of eczema
  • Treatment for in-grown toenails, mixed with On Guard (see below) and melaleuca
  • Helping people calm down and go to sleep
  • Treatment of minor burns
  • To help stop bleeding
  • For making water tolerable to drink
  • A perfect substitution for fresh squeezed limes in guacamole
Melaleuca (tea tree oil)
  • Treatment for in-grown toenails, mixed with lavender and On Guard
  • Treatment for ear infections
  • Diluted in vinegar, along with On Guard, Terra Shield (see below) and peppermint, for cleaning and sanitizing
  • Diluted in vinegar, along with On Guard, Terra Shield and melaleuca for cleaning and bug deterrent
Breathe (a proprietary blend with laurel leaf, peppermint, eucalyptus, tea tree, lemon and ravensara)
  • Mixed with water and run through the diffuser or rubbed on chests to clear up head colds and stuffy noses
Clear Skin (a proprietary blend with black cumin, ho wood, melaleuca, eucalyptus, geranium and litsea fruit)
  • I use the foaming face wash nightly and the roll-on, as needed, to help fight acne.
Deep Blue (a proprietary blend with wintergreen, camphor, peppermint, blue tansy, blue chamomile, helichrysum and osmanthus) 
  • For growing pains and sore muscles
  • We use this oil straight (because it's what we have), but doTerra has a whole line of Deep Blue products, including a cream form that is easier to use.
On Guard (a proprietary blend with wild orange, clove, cinnamon, eucalyptus and rosemary)
  • As a replacement for hand sanitizer
  • As germ deterrent in shared water bottles
  • Diluted in vinegar, along with peppermint, Terra Shield, and melaleuca for cleaning and sanitizing
  • Mixed with melaleuca and lavender for treatment of in-grown toenails
  • This one also comes in toothpaste, which I absolutely love!
Past Tense (a proprietary blend with wintergreen, lavender, peppermint, frankincense, cilantro, marjoram, roman chamomile, basil and rosemary)
  • For almost instant headache relief
  • For sore muscles/crick in the neck
  • It comes in a roll-on bottle for easy application. This is probably the oil I use most often.
Purify (a proprietary blend with lemon, lime, pine, citronella, melaleuca and cilantro)
  • Mixed with Breathe in the diffuser to rid the air of cold germs
Serenity (a proprietary blend with lavender, marjoram, roman chamomile, ylang, ylang, sandalwood and vanilla bean)
  • Mixed with water in the diffuser to provide a sense of calm
Slim and Sassy (a proprietary blend with grapefruit, lemon, peppermint, ginger, and cinnamon)
  • A few drops in a bottle of water to help curb appetite between meals. Tastes delicious and definitely makes water more tolerable.
Terra Shield (a proprietary blend of mostly citronella and cedarwood)
  • Mixed with vinegar, peppermint, melaleuca and On Guard as a cleaner/bug deterrent
  • Mosquito repellant
  • Ant killer/deterrent
  • This smells really good and works as well, in my opinion, as brand name bug sprays.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Finding Nemo

A pooping incident occurred at my house today, which claimed as victims all the cushions of my patio furniture and every single stuffed animal in my youngest child's room. It was…epic. And somewhat confusing. I mean, how in the world…?! I don't even know. My nephew was the prolific poop producer, so I was probably infinitely more patient with the situation than I would have been if it had been one of my own. (Just being honest here.) But, it didn't fully strike me how funny my life is until I laid eyes on this scene:

If any of you are still working on finding Nemo, you can stop now. I found him. He will just keep swimming right on through the spin cycle. See, hilarious, right?! I'm telling you, you cannot make this stuff up.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Whatever floats your boat

The boys and I had a good time studying about Archimedes' Principle in Science today and building our own boats. It was actually pretty challenging to get the shape just right to keep the boats afloat, but the boys wouldn't give up and were so proud of themselves when they finally got it! I love it when school time seems like play time, and I love getting to be a part of all these fun learning moments!

Monday, September 08, 2014

Round Two

Back in August of 2011, Ruth got braces. We knew at the time that it was only Round One. She started Round Two today, on a more aggressive schedule than we first anticipated due to our travel plans. She spent almost two hours in the chair at the orthodontist's office, so it was nice (though highly ironic) to receive a sweet treat from the doctor at the end of her visit.

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Game Day

Mustang Captains

Getting a little help from coach

This kids was on fire!
He scored two touchdowns and pulled six flags.

"Big Show"

part of the Watts' cheering section

More fabulous fans

future football players, learning the ropes

So proud to be a football mom and to wear number 99!

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Life with boys

Any mom with any number of children will tell you that laundry is a constant. As in, you are constantly doing laundry. Every. Single. Day. The fairly consistent flopping of the clothes in the dryer becomes the very heartbeat of the home. (It also drowns out (some of) the screaming, so if you need a break, just close that laundry room door and say you are "folding the clothes.") Boy laundry always adds an extra-special element to the monotony very important work of clothes cleaning. In the boy laundry, you can find things in pockets you can't even begin to describe or understand. You can find stains in places you didn't even know it was possible to stain. And, you can find what I found today: Almost an entire load of completely useless pants. What on earth are these boys doing to rip the knees (and thighs and rear ends) out of just about every pair of pants they own?! I just don't see how that's even possible. But, as you can see in Exhibit A (which really doesn't do the situation justice, because you can't really see the total extent of the rips), it is not only possible, but apparently also probable. Just one more way life with boys has surprised me.

Exhibit A