Category Archives: how do you do it?

Read Aloud Time with the Kids

Read Aloud Time with the Kids

It had been a long time. Really too long. We used to read with the kids every.single.night. But then we basically did our jobs and BAM! they were readers. All three of them. So they got to read to themselves or to each other each night before bed. The routine was the same, the reader was different. We were no longer needed. And when you have three kids and a husband that often travels for work…the new process was so much easier.

But then Andy read “The Princess Bride” to all three of them over many, many nights and afterwards they enjoyed a movie night to compare the pages to the screen. Charlotte had a second grade class project that followed next which asked the entire family to read “The One and Only Ivan” together. Though it was quite the commitment, we enjoyed it. And finally Stella had the chance to meet Chris Colfer over the summer. I was with her and her love for his series was fantastic. She was truly starstruck. But what sticks out is her turning to me and saying, “Mom, I can’t believe you haven’t even read one of them. They are SO good.”

So as summer came to an end, we started a new reading project at home. Reading aloud one book one-on-one with each kid. Stella and I picked “Wonder” because “everyone is reading it and it’s going to be a MOVIE!” Charlotte and I chose Book 1 of “The Land of Stories” because “Stella loves them so much and it’s going to be a MOVIE!” Henry? Henry and Andy found an old baseball chapter book about Toilet Paper Tigers. I didn’t ask anymore than that. That’s all I got. And probably all I need to know.

It’s not an easy task sneaking pages in here and there whenever we can. Charlotte and I read during Stella’s piano practice, Stella and I read waiting for Henry at the bus stop, Charlotte reads to me while I prepare dinner, Stella and I read at soccer for the other two. Andy and Henry get the bedtime reading snuggles. And it’s been awesome. The girls and I have had some great side conversations that wouldn’t occur without these books. We’ve already decided we’ll take a break when these books are completed, but don’t want to wait as long before we do it again.


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The Chore Chart That Finally Works for Us!

The Chore Chart That Finally Works for Us!

The Chore Chart System That Works for Us I have to admit we started and stopped many chore chart efforts over the past few years. However, I’m happy to say we finally found a system that works for us. We are using a magnet system that lives in our mudroom. This location works well for

Chair Pockets

Chair Pockets

We have a great group of neighborhood ladies who are connected together on Facebook. Our neighborhood is 30+ years old and everyone is starting to update bathrooms, kitchens, backyards, etc. Last fall a few neighborhood moms that it would cool to host our own “Parade of Homes” and see in-person what each other is doing

Swim Bag Checklist for Kids

Swim Bag Checklist for Kids

Pool Season is HERE! It’s pool season and I love it! The only thing I don’t like about pool season is the process of packing up to go to the pool. Charlotte LOVES to pack her own bag and helps me get everything ready to go. However, the bags she always used were inconsistent and

No More Stroller

No More Stroller

There comes a point in your parenting journey when you can look at your spouse, give a high-5 and shout, “Woo-hoo!! We can go out with the kids WITHOUT packing a stroller!!!!” And then it hits you. Your next thought is suddenly, “What do we do with the stuff that the stroller hauls around for

The Tooth Fairy

The Tooth Fairy

Stella is probably the only first grader in her class that has NOT yet lost ONE tooth. At her dentist appointment over Christmas break, the hygienist and dentist both reassured her that it was quite normal. They also told me it was still going to be awhile – nothing was budging much yet. So yesterday

Dear Santa Letters 2013

Dear Santa Letters 2013

If you were a Take 10 reader last year, you might remember that we celebrate St. Nick tonight.  Basically, I make sure my kids have their lists to Santa ready by December 5th every year.  St. Nick picks up the lists overnight, leaves some treats in the stockings of good boys and girls, and delivers

Success with Potty Training Method

Success with Potty Training Method

I’ll be the first to admit it…even I was skeptical.  3-day potty training method?  Really?  But folks, I’m here to tell ya…it worked.  Even with our unexpected trip to the hospital on Day One.  Ok, so it took us more like 4 days at his age…but still…it WORKED.  Even night time training.  And he only

Dinners on the Go

Dinners on the Go

Do you suffer from Dinner-on-the-Go?!? Thanks to Stella’s soccer schedule, there are 1-2 nights a week when we are at the soccer field for dinner.  Stella usually eats in the car on the way there… But I make the other two wait until we arrive at the field.  Eating dinner keeps them occupied for at

Melatonin – Why We Use It

Melatonin – Why We Use It

Disclaimer: I am in no way offering you medical advice/drug supplement advice in this post.  I am just sharing my story in the hopes that it may help someone else.  Before trying any new medications/vitamins/supplements with you and/or your child, you should OF COURSE speak to your own doctors.  Or at least call your mother!

What Every Mom Needs at the Pool

What Every Mom Needs at the Pool

Now that the weather is hot and humid, it’s time to head to the pool more often.  However, being at the pool with little kids requires a lot of work and a lot of gear.  And if you are a mom going alone?  You must pack wisely whether you are going for an hour or