Category Archives for "Living Life"

Living Life is about being a parent, giving tips for home management, finance, humor, love, and everything the day throws your way.

January 10, 2010

Family Activities to Warm up Your Winter

Are your children climbing the walls?This bitter cold weather has left little opportunity for children to play outside and get the wiggles out! Below you will find ideas to keep the children entertained and bring some warmth back into their minds! This post is brought to you by our partners Studio One Networks.

Your Family Today: Activities

7 Ways to Warm up Your Winter

By the editors of Your Family Today for Your Family Today

When it’s cold and gray outside, doesn’t it seem like your whole family’s mood turns to slush? Well, it’s not just your imagination … and it’s not just you. Studies show that one out of four people suffer from the winter doldrums, a very real phenomenon that starts in September or October and runs until March. You can’t change the weather, but if you bring in some summer fun, you’ll see how fast your family’s blah mood turns bright and sunny again. Here, five indoor activities that will warm things up this winter:

Paint on the sun Tired of seeing nothing but snow? For a better view, paint a summer scene right on your window using a mixture of about 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid and 1/2 tablespoon of tempera paint. (Note: This paint comes off easily with a damp paper towel. Test a small area to make sure there is no damage to the windows.) 

Catch a wave Put the kids in bathing suits, gather some favorite pool toys and send them for a “swim” in the tub! Don’t forget to have the beach towels on hand to dry them off.

Have a beach party Pull out the tiki torches and beach umbrellas and serve your favorite summer foods, like fruit salad, hot dogs and chocolate cream pie. Tell your guests to raid their summer wardrobes and show up in shorts and T-shirts.

Hit a hole in one Clear the biggest room in your house and set up a mini golf course. (Pick up any area rugs so nobody trips.) Take empty cans or containers and lay them on their sides to create golf holes. Poke holes in the tops and plant homemade flags in them. Feel free to make the game challenging by adding obstacles. Make clubs for everyone by attaching empty juice boxes to dowels or sticks.

Go on safari Parents, prepare to take your little ones on an African safari. Gather stuffed animals — zebras, giraffes and lions — and place them on chairs, beds and floors. Make other safari animals and scenery out of construction paper and tape them to the walls. Or draw a landscape on butcher’s paper. Decorate a few rooms in your home to resemble some animal habitats, using your creativity and a little help from your local craft store. Last but not least, dress your kids in adventure clothing (including binoculars) and narrate an African safari. Let your imagination run wild!

Plan a picnic Pull out a blanket, lay it down in the kitchen or living room, and have a picnic dinner in the “park.” Pack up a basket with sandwiches or fried chicken, macaroni and potato salad, and cold drinks. For dessert: brownies or homemade chocolate chip cookies.

Take in a flick Hold a festival at home. Buy movie-candy favorites, pop some popcorn and settle in for some rented classic summer blockbusters. Here are some of the highest-grossing summer movies of all time along with their release dates: Jaws (June 20, 1975), E.T. (June 11, 1982), Star Wars (May 25, 1977), Raiders of the Lost Ark (June 12, 1981), Forrest Gump (July 6, 1994), The Lion King (June 15, 1994) and any of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

Copyright © 2009 Studio One Networks. All rights reserved.

January 8, 2010

Marinate & Freeze Boneless Skinless Chicken

Have you taken advantage of the great deal on Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts at Harris Teeter this week? If so, you may be wondering what you will do with all of it!

A few weeks ago Harris Teeter ran a similar promotion. I ended up with (6) packages of the chicken tenderloins. I divided the chicken into family sized portions and placed them in zipper bags. A simple way to get ahead on dinner is to add the marinade to the meat before you freeze it! When you pull the chicken out to defrost, it will be marinating at the same time. I used three marinades: BBQ, Italian Dressing and Raspberry.

December 24, 2009

Ask A Teacher- 10 Family Fun Activities

So taking a break today…

Instead I am listing 10 fun activities to do if you are snowed in:

1)   Make snow cream, YUMMY!

2)   Put on some music and do puzzles

3)   Bake a treat

4)   Play board games or interactive games like Win, Loose, or Draw

5)   Let the kids “swim” in the tub

6)   Paint the snow. Take squirt bottles or spray bottles and put some Kool Aid in with a little water or use food coloring and paint away (you can also use the Kool Aid to paint with on paper too)

7)   Write letters to friends. This is so much more personal than email.

8)   Read to your kids or have them read to you.

9)   Have an indoor picnic on the floor.

10)  Doing something creative like write a book or play, make play dough, paint, or make props for a play.

Here are some playdough recipes:

Rubbery Playdough (from

2 cups baking soda
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup cornstarch

Mix with a fork until smooth. Boil over medium heat until thick. Spoon onto plate or wax paper.

Just in case you are without power:



1 c. white flour
1/2 c. salt
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. alum
Food coloring, be creative
1/2 c. water
Mix first 4 ingredients well. Add food coloring to water. Gradually add small amounts of water until mixture is consistency of bread dough. Store in airtight container or plastic bag to last a long time.

Take this time to appreciate your family!

December 10, 2009

Ask A Teacher: How do you keep a teen out of trouble?

The best way to keep any person out of trouble is to keep them busy. This does not mean drag them to every activity you want them to do. Rather it means help them find a passion. Then support this passion and enable your teenage to pursue their dreams. I came across this site that helps teens achieve their dreams.

The Do Something site provides grants $500 and up to student with innovative ideas.

I realize my high school years were filled with tons of fun but also coupled with a lot of community service. I was busy working, reading to under privileged children, visiting nursing homes, making changes in the school via student government, and studying. I had plenty of friends, did well in school and found the beach. What I didn’t find was trouble. I stayed away from the drugs and drinking because I didn’t need it to prove who I was. The strong sense of self was achieved by figuring out early what was important. I am not an angel nor have I ever been but my naughty events were very limited and the amount of good done was extensive. The obligations and sense of community I developed are still with me. I now teach my children compassion, understanding, and service by exposing them to experience and events that lead to understanding others. I hope it will allow them to stand by who they are and not fall for anything. What are some ideas you have for keeping teens out of trouble?

December 3, 2009

Teaching your child what the holiday is about

This is a great one. What are some ways you teach your children to be part of the spirit and not get caught up in the “me” of the holiday? We start early every year we take five birthday gifts and put them away to give to children who do not have much for the holiday. We then have a budget for children in need. We put our coins in a jar. The coins are divided into thirds: 1/3 for our daughters bank account, 1/3 for our sons, and 1/3 for a child in need. My son even does chores to add to the jar. We take the 1/3 for the child and we try to buy as many toys as possible. We look for items we can use coupons for and we follow the sales flyer. We really try to stretch our buck and make every dollar count.

It was funny last year when we had .32¢ left! My son asked if he could use his money to get one more thing. This year to make room for new toys, we have given some of ours to friends to love. We also are attending the toy swap to get some new to us toys. It is important to us that we teach our children to recycle and give to others. We try to attend events that encourage giving. We make a point of making giving as exciting as receiving. Here is one event that is local to our area but I am sure there are many around.

Lauterbach Chiropractic in conjunction with C-villes Toy Lift Foundation is
sponsoring the sixth annual Live Toy Lift this Friday from 10 am until 7pm.
Located in front of Dr. Lauterbach’s office near Food Lion. This year’s event will be
serving 3,468 area children this year! Join Santa and the famous (aging) Dancing
elves! Bring your camera for Santa Pics. Hot cocoa & cookies provided.

Some of the most requested toys are: bikes, dolls & Barbies, cars &
trucks, remote control vehicles, board games, stuffed animals and arts
and crafts. Also, we always need items for middle school aged children
(jewelry, electronics, music, and sports equipment) Popular characters
this year are: Bakugan, Dora the Explorer, Hannah Montana, Moxie
Girls, Spiderman, Transformers & WWE Wrestlers

Thanks so much for your continued support. We will see you Friday. And

November 26, 2009

Ask A Teacher: How do I teach my child to be thankful?

How do you teach children to be thankful?

The answer is simple, lead by example. We make a point of saying what we are thankful for each night. We remind our children that we are lucky to have the things we do and we need to appreciate what we have instead of always wanting new things.

Another way to teach thankfulness is to take things away when children do not appreciate them. I know it sounds harsh but, we often do not miss things unless we are without. I have to say, I take the fact that we have running water for granted. This was until we didn’t have waterlast week. It was only for a couple of hours while they repaired the water main break, but it felt like it was forever. When the water wasn’t on we talked about all of the things we use water for. We also talked about what it must have been like not to have water that comes to your house simply by turning on the faucet.

When you celebrate today with your family, think about the reason for your meal and be thankful. We go around the table and tell everyone why we are thankful. I think what I have to say this year will be a great gift to our family. If you are not having a feast, be thankful that you are alive and well. The world has so many people who have less and who do with less everyday. We must be mindful of how lucky we are even if sometimes we do not feel so lucky.