First Day of School

Photo Jul 31, 8 02 53 AM

Yesterday was Jude and Noah’s first day of school. This year they are attending a year-round public school. I’ve had a variety of emotions over the past few months about them going to school this year instead of homeschool. I feel at peace about the decision and know there are many benefits to this decision. It’s not one we took lightly but when we originally decided to homeschool Jude 4 years ago we said we would take it year-by-year and do what was best for each child. I am sad to give up all of our free time and flexible schedule but I think there are so many positive things that will come from their days at school.

As I dropped them off at school yesterday morning they walked into the building holding hands and I knew they would be alright. While they were at school I took the 2 little guys out for a fun morning at Pullen Park and it was nice to spend some quality time with just the 2 of them. I didn’t know what to do with myself all day, it was calm and quiet around the house even with 2 little boys. I think they also liked the extra space they got with their brothers gone. When I picked up Jude and Noah from school they had smiles on their faces and told me all about their days. Noah admitted he was a little nervous but then happily told me about his desk, cubby, recess, story time, lunch and his new teachers. Jude had lots to talk about as well. He is ready to volunteer for all the things and wants to participate in all of the extra activities offered. I also noticed a big difference in Jude’s behavior after school, he was very relaxed and attentive. I think the structured school day really helped him.

After dinner we took the boys for a bike ride to Pelican’s Snoballs where they continued to share their excitement for school. They were all pretty exhausted when bedtime came around and were happy to go to bed, not only because they were tired but because tomorrow was another school day.

I know there will be challenges that come along with each school year but for now I’m so happy their first day was a success. Photo Jul 31, 7 24 18 PM Photo Jul 31, 10 55 45 AM Photo Jul 31, 10 42 03 AM Photo Jul 31, 10 01 01 AM

 

Summer is almost over….

I love summer, I don’t always love when it’s a heat index of 115 outside but I love warm summer days spent at the pool. So I’m a little sad that summer is almost over for my oldest 2. They start school on Monday, July 31st. I know it seems really early to start school but they are at a year-round school. We’ve never done year-round school but everyone I know that does it loves it. This is also our first year with public school. I’m bother excited and nervous for my boys. I know they will do fine but sometimes change can be difficult so I’m praying they have an easy transition. Tomorrow we go meet their teachers so I’m hoping that will help ease everyone’s (mostly mine) nerves.

But for now we have a few days left of our official summer so we’re making the most of it with lots of trips to the pool, hanging out with friends and relaxing.I’m excited for them to start this new chapter of school I just don’t know if I’m ready for summer to be over.

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Probiotics for Women

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I’ve been using Jarrow probiotics on and off for several years and have always loved the results I see when using them. Whenever I’ve been pregnant in the past I’ve use them to help regulate bowel movements and keep my pH levels balanced. And with my babies and kids I’ve used Jarrow probiotics to help heal their gut health especially after stomach viruses.

I’ve been taking the yum-yum dophilus, fem dophilus and Jarro-Dophilus for women for a few weeks now and have noticed that the yum-yum dohilus has helped me feel more regular and healthy. They are really easy chewable tablets and taste great which makes them great for my kids to take too. The fem dohuilus have helped during my hormonal shifts and help keep the urinary and vaginal bacteria in check. I also really like that this formula doesn’t need to be kept refrigerated. Additionally, the Jarro-Dophilus for Women has been great at keeping my vaginal microfloral healthy.

Jarro-Dohilus for Women contains four probiotic strains that support vaginal urinary and reproductive tract health. What is great about Jarrow’s formulas is the EnteroGuard enteric coating which allows the probiotic to pass through the stomach unharmed and ready to be released in the intestines intact.

Jarrow also make a variety of other great probiotics for men, women and children all of which help balance pH and healthy bacteria in the body.

Jarro-Dophilus is available at health food stores nationwide and at many online retailers. Visit jarrowprobiotics.com for a full list of locations.

I received this product for free from Moms Meet to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.

Weekday Adventures: Sunflower Field

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We joined the several hundred other families that went out to see the sunflower field in bloom along the Neuse River Greenway Trail this week. At first we tried to go on Sunday but the parking was crazy so we waited to go on Monday morning. Not only was the weather a bit cooler but the crowd was considerably smaller.

We parked at the The Mial Plantation access point, 6008 Mial Plantation Rd and walked about a mile along the trail to the Sunflower field. The city of Raleigh started planting the sunflower field a few years ago as an application site for biosolids from the city’s wastewater treatment plant. The sunflowers will be harvested and the seeds will be used to produce biodiesel.

We had a great time walking along the Neuse River Greenway Trail and the boys loved seeing all of the flowers. The boys rode their scooters and we got to talk about waste water, biofuels and of course all of the beautiful nature that surrounded us.

Guilt Free Summer Treats

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I’ve been cutting back my sugary treat intake over the past few months and with this blazing hot summer heat there is nothing I want more than a huge bowl of ice cream. When Joe and I were first married we would eat a bowl of ice cream almost every night… oh to be in my 20s again. After having 4 kids and surpassing my 35th birthday my body is no longer as forgiving of my indulgences. And I’m not just talking about the extra weight I’ve gained… I genuinely feel bad when I eat too much sugar.

We rarely eat sugary treats at night any more but on the occasion that I want something cold and sweet on these hot summer nights I’m stoked to learn about Arctic Zero, a zero-guilt sweet treat made with clean ingredients. The founder of ARCTIC ZERO created it for his mom—a Type-1 diabetic, because he believes that everyone should be able to enjoy delicious frozen desserts without any worries.

About Arctic Zero

  • ARCTIC ZERO is great for diabetics since it’s sweetened with monk fruit
  • ARCTIC ZERO is lactose free
  • ARCTIC ZERO only uses rBST-free whey protein
  • ARCTIC ZERO offers gluten free frozen dessert options.
  • ARCTIC ZERO is certified kosher, GMO free, and contains no artificial ingredients

Buy

Price Around $4.49/pint
You can buy Arctic Zero online or at your local grocery store.

We’ve tried several of the Arctic Zero flavors like Salted Caramel, Cherry Chocolate Chunk, Peanut Butter Swirl and more. The variety of flavors are amazing. The texture is a little bit different than a traditional ice cream, Joe says it reminds him of snow cream. I think my favorite flavor was the Cookie Shake and Joe’s favorite flavor was Peanut Butter Swirl.

The true test was weather or not Joe liked Arctic Zero. Ask anyone that knows him and they’ll tell you he has a slight obsession with ice cream. He’s also pretty picky about the kind of ice cream he eats so the fact that he really loves Arctic Zero tells me a lot. It’s not exactly like ice cream but it is a pretty great frozen dessert, especially for those that can’t typically have traditional ice cream.

I received this product for free from Moms Meet to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.

Weekday Adventures: (Almost) Free Bowling

Photo Jul 06, 2 08 24 PM A few months ago I signed up the boys for the Kids Club at Buffaloe Lanes here in Raleigh. Over the summer they are offering Free Bowling for Kids. Each child you register will receive 1 free game every day (shoe rental not included) through October 31st.

It’s like 100 degrees this week so I took finally took the boys bowling and we had a blast. None of them had ever been bowling so it was a little chaotic for the first half of the game as they learned the rules and techniques. By the end of the game everyone had vastly improved and was loving the game. I think we spent around $9 for shoe rentals all three of the big boys.

In addition to 1 Free Game per day Buffaloe Lanes also has daily EXTRAS. We went on a Thursday and could have got an additional game for free but we had a limited amount of time. We plan on visiting on one of the other days to take advantage of some of the other bonuses like free cookies and arcade tokens.

If you’re in the Raleigh area and looking for a great (inexpensive) way to beat this summer heat register for the Buffaloe Lanes Kids Free Bowling program. Photo Jul 06, 1 50 41 PM Photo Jul 06, 1 47 19 PM Photo Jul 06, 2 03 08 PM Photo Jul 06, 2 02 25 PM

 

Your Daily Dose of Cute bought to you by Scotties

Ted I’ll admit it, I’m not a cat person. Not by choice though. I’m allergic to cat dander, it’s a genetic curse I guess you could say. So, we’ll probably never adopt a cat. However, I do think cats are pretty rad.

Earlier this month, Scotties Facial Tissues partnered with animal rescue organizations up and down the east coast in an effort to get eligible cats and kittens into loving adoptive homes. Each organization – The Animal Protective Foundation (Albany, NY), Boston MSPCA (Boston, MA), and the Humane Society of Tampa Bay (Tampa, FL) all received $5,000 each to go towards the re-homing of cats.

All fees associated with adopting select felines were waived at participating locations. Initiated by Scotties in 2014, this ongoing effort to increase the number cats and kittens going to good homes has been a key focus for the brand. All adoptable cats and kittens are spayed / neutered, microchipped, screened for temperament, and are up to date on all shots and vaccinations. In the past four years, Scotties has found homes for more than 700 cats and kittens.

“Here at Scotties, we are delighted to see this program in its fourth year,” said John Robertson, Scotties Marketing Director, “We take great pride in helping hundreds of cats find the loving forever homes they so desperately need.”

From June 1st through the 7th during “Scotties Adoption Week” over 400 cats and kittens have gone into loving forever homes.

Now for your daily dose of cute, these are just a few of the cats that were adopted this past month…

Kittens Dash Donald Peanut older Peanut Tabby Torbie Twix The information has been provided to me by Scotties Tissues.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Weekend Adventures: Wet n Wild Emerald Pointe

Photo Jun 16, 10 53 31 AM

On Friday we took the boys to Greensboro, NC to meet up with some friends at Wet-n-Wild Emerald Pointe. We visited Wet-n-Wild last summer but I was excited this time because the boys are a bit older, better swimmer and more interested in the rides. My boys didn’t do too many of the big rides but Joe did get to sneak off for a bit and ride some of the bigger rides with our friends who had teenage sons.

We arrived shortly after the park opened at 10am and set up post at the Bayside cabanas right beside the wave pool. (You can rent a cabana for all day starting at $125/day.) The boys loved watching all the swimmers in the wave pool whenever we were taking a little break. I love the cabanas because they are sectioned off from the rest of the crowd and provide a bit of calm amidst all the crazy fun everyone is having. The cabanas in our section can hold 8-10 although they only really have seating for 8. We had 10 people in our group but the majority of them were kids and they rarely sat down. Each cabana comes with it’s own private locker for storing valuables and food service right in your cabana. You can of course go eat at any of the other food options throughout the park but I really liked being able to order food directly from the cabana.

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The weather was a little iffy the day of our visit, with dark clouds looming over us most of the morning. It actually made for a pretty nice start to the day, there weren’t a lot of people at the park and the hot summer sun was hidden behind the clouds. Around noon the sun came out and so did the rest of the people. Although, I will say, compared to our last visit which was on a Saturday it wasn’t nearly as crowded.

We started with a trip to the wave pool as it was calling all the kids, however we didn’t get any waves for some reason and decided to explore a little more of the park. The big kids rode, Cyclone Zone then we all rode the Lazy River. I always love a good Lazy River. The big boys did the Double Barrel Blast that goes way faster than I realized. Jude and some of the bigger boys also tried the Tropical Drop.

Then we headed back to the cabana for a little rest and some lunch. After we placed our lunch order I took all the boys right next door to the Soak Zone. This was probably my favorite place in the whole park. I love all of the fun water features they have for children of all sizes and ages.

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After lunch of chicken fingers, burgers and gluten free pizza we headed back to the wave pool to catch some waves. The wave pool is intense and I’m very glad they make smaller children wear life vests. I want to take a moment to commend the wonderful lifeguard staff at Wet-n-Wild, they were all very attentive and responsive. I witnessed a few times the guards had to respond to a swimmer in distress, thankfully no major rescues. I’m always very watchful of my children around water but it’s comforting know that if one of them gets out of my sight for just a moment there is someone making sure they are safe. Photo Jun 16, 12 46 47 PM

After the wave pool we took the little ones to the Happy Harbor and Kiddie Wave Pool. The boys love the Happy Harbor slides, Simon (4) loves rides but is just a little too short to ride some of the bigger slides so this was a welcome opportunity for him to “ride” some slides. While we played at Happy Harbor all of the big boys ran off to ride some of the more exciting slides like Dr. VonDarks Tunnel of Terror, Runaway Raft, Riptide Racer and maybe a few others. I don’t think anyone was brave enough to try Daredevil Drop, Twin Twisters or The Edge.  Photo Jun 16, 3 57 35 PM Photo Jun 16, 3 58 17 PM

We finished off our afternoon at Shipwreck Cover and Leisure Lagoon. We changed out of our wet clothes in the Locker Rooms before heading home. We had such a perfect day and we look forward to going to Wet-n-Wild again very soon.

SAVE WHEN YOU BUY ONLINE!
Purchase tickets during the regular 2017 operating season and use the special promo code to save on admission to Wet-n-Wild Emerald Pointe.

Special Wet-n-Wild Emerald Pointe Discount

Or use the Promo Code: Bkeepsushonestsblog17

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Disclosure: I received free media passes. The opinions expressed in this post are my own and not influenced by the company.