Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Craft of the Day!

Today's fun activity was to make Christmas ornaments.  We just took pipe cleaners and bent them into shapes.  We made candy canes, stars, and hearts.  Then using the solution of 9 tablespoons of borax to three cups of hot water, we hung (susspended with string) the pipecleaners into the solution.  We started this project this morning.  After returning from our errands, the ornaments were fully crystalized!  This was such a fun and easy project.  I will probably thry this with my class next year! (Pictures will arrive soon!)

Tea for Two

I felt like such a great mom yesterday.  First of all, you should know that I was horribly sick.  Next, I helped my kids put together a pink tea party.  Allie used the easy bake oven kits and created the pink cakes (complete with frosting), Brianna and I made star and heart shaped sandwiches, I made the girls some pink lemonade, and Brianna washed and pulled the grapes.  They had put together the princess tea party spread on the floor.  We took all of the tea party supplies upstairs and they had a ball!

Breakfast with Santa

We attended our annual Breakfast with Santa at the Marriott.  As usual, we all ate too much and had a wonderful time!  The girls got candy cane tattoos, bags of candy, and little stuffed animals - as if visiting with Santa just wasn't enough! We also took the time to take a few family photo's by the giant Christmas tree.  I think that my years of band photography has paid off - I am the only one who can continually smile at the camera.  The rest of my family - not so much!

Bri's Birthday

Well, it is official, Brianna is 5!  The past five years have just flown by!  We all knew that she would turn 5 one day, and that day has come.  It was so funny the morning of her birthday.  She came down the stairs and asked, "Mom what school do I go to today?  I am 5 you know?  Do I go to Socrates Academy now?" I had told her that she could not come to Socrates until she turned 5, I guess that she remembered!  We are so blessed to have such great friends and family.  My friend Mandy made the most beautiful cake for Bri's birthday (the pictures are currently on my new cell phone; not really sure how to get them??).  The cake was pink with Hello Kitty on top.  She just loved it! We celebrated by inviting one of Brianna's friends over and taking the girls to Build-a-Bear.  That was an adventure.  Having three girls was not the adventure, it was getting in and out of the mall parking lot the last weekend before Christmas was the adventure.  Needless to say, Heath was not entertained!
I almost forgot - Bri got a Hannah Montana guitar.  She really is a rock star now!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christmas Card Pictures

The girls and I visited the Festival of Trees yesterday.  They had so much fun seeing all of the christmas trees.  The festival of trees is a n event that our local hospital throws to raise money.  The trees are all auctioned off and the money goes to charity.  It also makes the best place for christmas card pictures.


Photo Card

Initially Merry Christmas
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Photo Card

Initially Merry Christmas
Quick and easy: Christmas photo cards at Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Fall Fun

Well, it is officially fall if Heath has to blow the leaves.  For those of you who don't know, we live on a fully wooded lot.  That means lots and lots of leaves! This year, we have Miss Bella Grace to add to the fun equation.  Look at the pictures, who had more fun: Allie, Bri, or Bella Grace?  My money is on Bella Grace - she was running non-stop through the yard.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

the chicken survived!

Good news the chicken survived and so did everyone at the dinner table!  My first try at cooking the chicken in the crock pot was okay.  There are no pictures because I butchered it getting it out of the crock pot.  It was good . . . for my first try.  I can and will do better next time.  Yep, that means that I will be in the kitchen again cooking chicken!
Good luck to my kitchen and good luck to the next chicken!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Me in the kitchen - stop laughing!

Okay, so Heath is away on business.  I am trying to stay on tops of our monthly grocery store spending and I feel like I have gotten this down to a science.  There is a kink in my plan; Heath had to travel for business.  I already have the whole chicken defrosted in the fridge . . . now what?!  I have done some research, and I think that I will be cooking it in the crock pot.  As most of you know, I don't cook.  This should be exciting.  I will make the preparations tonight and cook it tomorrow.  I will let you know how it turns out.  If all is well, I may even take a few pictures!
Happy Cooking!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Oxi Day

For those of you that don't know, Oxi Day is celebrated throughout Greece.  Since Allie attends a partial Greek immersion school, we celebrate this day at school.  Allie had practiced for several weeks with the Oxi Day choir.  She was so proud of her accomplishment.  Here is a clip of here singing in Greek!

It's Fall!

It is officially November and so much has happened!   September flew by: Heath and I celebrated our 12th anniversary, the girls were in full swing at school, Brianna went on several field trips, and Allie went to the Yiasou Festival.  Then came October!  October has been a whirlwind as well.  My schoolyear has flown by.  Allie is loving second grade.  She did an amazing power point presentation on our town.  The hardest part was me NOT helping her with the typing and inserting pictures.  Brianna also loves school.  She went on a few more field trips to the theater and the fire station.  Friday (10/28) we celebrated our puppy's birthday along with the death of our beloved lab, Baxter.  Baxter was 12 years old.  He had lived a great life, and we know that he is in heaven eating all of the bread that he can find!  The girls enjoyed trick-or-treating yesterday.  Allie was a witch and Bri was a jaguar.  We went with our neighbors for our annual romp around the neighborhood.  I am so glad that the girls had fun, because I got upset at the amount of people who had all of their porch lights on and did not answer the door.  Happy Fall!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Where did August go?

So a lot has happened since the last post.  We visited my family in Florida.  That was a blast!  We rescued a puppy (our own little monster), Bella Grace.  She is keeping us on our toes and helping us baby-proof the house again!  Allie has returned to Socrates as a second grader.  She is in Mrs. McGill's class and loving it! Bri is continuing at Matthews Country Day, but only on a part time basis.  She attends "Daddy School" on Monday and Friday and attends MCD Tuesday-Thursday.  She enjoys this new change.  I even think that Heath is enjoying working with her during his "school" time.

We just helped our church celebrate their 1 year anniversary.  That was so fun!  It was amazing to see what God has done in our lives as well as our church's life over the past year.

At the beginning of September, Heath and I celebrated our 12 year anniversary.  I believe that this year was challenging, but has truly brought us together.  We rely on each other and have so many more meaningful conversations than ever before.  I am so blessed to have such a wonderful husband who is also such an incredible father to our girls!

Happy Autumn!

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Villages, FL

Again this year, my parents rented a house in The Villages.  In case you are not familiar, it is Disney Land for retirees!  In their words, it is a "drinking community with a golfing problem."  We had an uneventful 8 hour car drive down.  Once we arrived, the girls swam, and swam, and swam.  Allie is now able to swim without floaties.  Seh proved this by swimming 2 lengths of the pool just so that Heath would get into the pool!  After all of that swimming, it was time for dancing.  The girls loved going to the town square each night for dancing, live music, and special drinks.  After dancing, the next favorite activity of choice was going on a golf cart ride, or in Brianna's words "golf horse ride."  Dad (or Papa) took the girls on a trolley ride through the Villages.  Since we missed the first trolley, we took the girls to the local Barnes and Noble for a free book and a smoothie.  While we were there, Brianna found the car of her dreams!  We had a blast in Florida again this year!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The park, magic, and more

Well, we have been busy at the Walters' household!  First of all, we found the Colonial Francis Beaty Park.  It was great, but it was too hot!  We played on the playground, walked to the lake, and fed the geese.  I think that Brianna enjoyed the playground better than the geese.  She screamed when the geese wanted the bread in her hands.
Next, we went to the best magic show!  Zelnic the Magician was at the library.  His show was a reading program infused with magic.  As a reading teacher, I could not have been happier.  The girls thought that he was amazing.  They even bought their own magic wands.  Allie was a little disappointed when we got home.  she was going around the house saying "Reading is Magic!", but nothing was happening!  It was quite funny to watch.
Then there is the new addition to our family.  We have realized that our 12 year old lab, Baxter, is not doing well.  He seems to be on his last leg.  We had discussed getting another dog, but we wanted to make sure that it was the right choice for our family.  We decided that a female would be the best fit for Baxter.  We didn't want a puppy because of the incredible amount of work involved, but we didn't want a dog that was too old either.  Then we found Bella Grace.  She is a nine month old cocker spaniel - Australian Shepherd mix.  She was an outside dog, but has transitioned nicely into an inside dog.  She loves to go running, and is challenging me to run 1.5 miles with her daily.  The girls love to play with her.  In turn, Bella Grace gives them lots of kisses.

Welcome to our family little Bella!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Adventures on a Monday

Today was our second day with the girls home.  We were all glad to be back in our home in our beds.  Like always, we ventured out to Barnes and Noble for Magic Tree House Monday.  Today's story was Polar Bears Past Bedtime.  And as you can see from our pictures, we made our very own polar bear masks!
As our day came to close, we finished off with some singing.  This is my favorite.  Not only does Allie do a great job, but the dancing from Brianna is hilarious!  Yes, she is using the broom as a guitar.
I hope that this puts a smile on your face!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Adventures in Camping!

This past weekend, we took the girls on their first camping trip.  We went to a campsite about an hour from the house.  It was great!  The campsite was shaded!  There was a pool, lake, store, and playground.  Most importantly, there were bathrooms!  We spent two nights there with the girls before we took them to their grandparent's house.  They had a blast!
Heath bought them a Hannah Montana fishing pole.  Bri caught two fish and Allie caught one fish.  I think that Allie enjoyed fishing more than her sister. 
The girls made friends with the little girl in the next site.  They are now going to be pen pals.  Allie was very excited!
To end our camping trip, we enjoyed the fireworks at the lake.  Well, three of us enjoyed the fireworks and one of us sat there crying.  At the end, Bri settled down and enjoyed them.  The girls got to have their first funnel cake and fried oreo at the fireworks.  Yummy!
All in all, it was a great time.  I will say that I am searching for a used camper for the next camping excursion . . .

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Korea and Canada

Today we learned about two very different countries: Korea and Canada. First we visited Canada while at Michael's. The craft of the day was to make a moose. They turned out to be pretty cute, and they might reappear this Christmas as reindeer ornaments! The girls also made a maple leaf in Canada's traditional colors of red and white. Those were pins and they were added to the girls' backpacks for camping.
Next, we visited the Mint Hill Library for "One World, Many Stories: Korea" for story and craft time. The story time was a flop! The gentleman was speaking to a group of 6-9 year olds about the history of Korea. (It was like watching paint dry!) Once he finished, it got better. As you can see from the pictures, they learned a bit of Tae Kwon Do. The best part was when the man split the board with his hand. Next came craft time!! The girls made Korean fans. They will be great to use this weekend when we are camping!
All in all, it was a fun time. We checked out some Korean folk tales so that we still learned a little bit about Korea.
We will have to let you know how the stories are . . . .

Stars and Stripes Forever

Yesterday, we ventured to A.C. Moore for their Fourth of July Celebration. The girls made tie dye t-shirts (with spray paint), made cards for our troops, and got their faces painted. We had such a great time! As a mom, I love the spray paint tie dye!! It is easy, non-messy, and the kids can do it. Check out how cute the shirts turned out!
The girls loved getting their faces painted. Allie got the butterfly and Brianna got the cheetah. Brianna could not remember that she wanted a cheetah and asked us at least 5 times what the animal was called. We kept telling her that she was getting her face painted like a hamburger. She laughed and said that we were crazy.
Have a safe a fun Fourth of July!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Free Donuts!

When you drive by Krispy Kreme and the sign reads "hot donuts now," how many times have you wished that they would just give you one or two for free? Well, you can have that! Actually, your school-age child can get them for you. Just take your child's report card to your local krispy Kreme and you can get up to 6 free donuts. If you are like me, you take your coffee and just purchase 1 chocolate milk for your children to split and then your breakfast has only cost you about $2. When we got our donuts, the girls also got hats!
What a fun and rewarding way to say "great job at school!".

Where in the world have we been?

Today, thanks to Michael's, we visited the Bahamas! No, not really, but in our minds. The girls created wonderful koozies and lay pins. They had so much fun and all for under $1 each! It is usually hard to find cheap entertainment, but this was great. Our wonderful Michael's helper, Kelly, had everything we needed for the fun to begin. Since we were the only ones there, both girls were able to get some one on one time for art.
Upon completing our Bahama creations, we received passports. The neat thing is that the passports have the countries, dates, and art projects for the rest of the summer. Check out your local Michael's to let the fun begin! (You can find it on the website under the events tab!)

Magic Tree House Book Clubs

We have recently discovered this wealth of fun at our local Barnes and Noble bookstore. This summer they are hosting a weekly Magic Tree House event. For those of you who don't know what I am talking about, Magic Tree House is a book series for kids 5-9. They are rather quick reads with 10 chapters in each book. My daughter, Allie, loves them! We reread Lions at Lunchtime so that she would be up to speed to discuss at the book club. She had so much fun participating in the discussion. Brianna just enjoyed listening to parts of the story again from Mr. Z. After the discussion, we made a lion puppet to go with the book. What a great way to get kids excited about reading!
Now we have two weeks to reread Polar Bears Past Bedtime. Allie loves to be prepared!
One more thing, we got Magic Tree House passports. Every time that we complete the story, we get a stamp in our passports! You can check out the fun to be had at

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Breakfast with Olivia

If you know anything about my girls, you know that they love Olivia the Pig!! Mandy Rappe (Mr. R's wife) made Brianna's birthday cake with Olivia on top. So, when we heard that we could have breakfast with Olivia at our local Barnes and Noble, we rushed to sign up. Not only did we get to have breakfast with Olivia, but we also got to have our pictures taken and have a story time as well. We ended the morning with each girl selecting 2 books to purchase. I am happy to say that Allie has already finished reading her books (120 pages total!!).
To add to the fun, I got to share the excitement with one of my students! Thanks Victoria for taking a picture with me and Olivia! I had a great time with you!
What a great Saturday morning!

Zootastic is Fantastic!

On Thursday, June 23, the girls and I ventured to Lake Norman to a place called Zootastic. This was a zoo that I was not aware of. They are committed to educating people about animals. So, it is not just a zoo, it is educational and interactive. We received a personal tour. Our guide, Craig, told us about every animal on the property. He also let us pet and feed most of the animals. We pet: skunks, possum, ferret, kangaroo, birds, snakes, lizards, camels, goats, sheep, turtles, but not the yak. Allie likes to tell everyone that the yak does not like people, so you can't pet him. The most exciting animal for me was the baby white tiger. Yep, we got to pet that too! We ended our trip with fresh chicken eggs out of the coop.
This was the best zoo experience that I have ever had! Even better, it was completely free to us that day because it was teacher appreciation day. Teachers - this zoo is always free to you. Just show your id! check out the website at