Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Heat Wave = Blessing in Disguise

Chicago is beginning a 3 day heat wave today, including tomorrow when we could hit 100°, a very rare occurance in Chicago. I am truly seeing this 3 day Heat Wave in Chicago as a Blessing in a Disguise. I know that may seem crazy but this past month has been EXTREMELY busy for my boys and I and the hubby, that I am looking forward to being in the apartment and out of the heat.

My parents have been "nursing" foot injuries since late May, so the boys and I have been back and forth helping them out with different things. My mom had foot surgery in mid-May as she broke her foot in 6 places. My dad was doing what he could to help her, but 1 week after her surgery my dad ended up in the hospital with an open wound on the bottom of his foot. My dad has diabetes and kidney issues, so therefore he has to be under 24/7 care while the wound closes. He was in hospital for 3 days and then was transferred to a Nursing Home/Rehab Center. My parents are almost "mended" but still need some help. My dad will hopefully be coming home in the next week or so and my mom is almost near the point to being "released" by the Dr. post surgery. The boys and I have been going by mom and helping with laundry, cleaning and grocery shopping about 2x a week. Once a week we have been driving her to her Drs. appointment. Her Dr. is really close to my dad's rehab facility so we would visit him that day also. I have also been visiting my dad a couple other times a week and helping with his laundry also. I have also been substiting for my dad at his Tuesday evening job. He is Circulation Manager at a local neighborhood paper and he is in charge of making sure his delivery crew has their papers for their routes and that they are beginning their routes. I have been doing this on Tuesday evenings from 7-10pm. The boys and I, and sometimes my husband are really the ones available right now to be helping, so we have "stepped up to the plate".

I have also been helping a cousin of mine at a couple of local Fairs/Festivals at his Food Vendor booth. 2 weekends in a row I have helped him and it has been a LOT of fun! I really enjoy helping him as this kind of thing is what I am familiar with and it really is fun!

So needless to say this past month has been an extremely "busy season" in my life. I have been so busy with things outside of the home, that my apartment needs a good deep cleaning! I have been able to keep up with the day to day cleaning, but there are some things I really need to catch up on! I am going to use the next 3 days as a oppurtunity to catch up on cleaning and things inside my apartment.

The boys and I have a planning ahead for HOT weather routine when it comes to Heat Waves. I really have no reason to "whine and/or complain" when it comes to Heat Waves as there are things we can do to help ourselves and our families stay cool rather then "whine/complain", so I just set about "prepping" instead of "whining".  Joshua has asthma which is affected by the heat and humidity therefore on "ozone action days" we have to get outside before 11am or after 8:00pm. I went grocery shopping last night and early this morning for "cool and refreshing food and treats". We are stocked up on Fresh Fruit and Veggies, Cold Cuts, Summer Salads and more! We also made a trip to the library on Monday so we have plenty of books, DVDs and Wii games! The boys are not leaving the house until Saturday, unless it is cool enough after dinner to go outside to a park for an hour or so!

The extra income I have been getting lately from helping my dad and cousin is going to be put to good use later today. I am going to use a portion of the money to go to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to purchase a 2qt Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker. I have a 20% off coupon so that will save me quite a bit of money. I have had an Ice cream Maker on my wish list since last summer, but we just didn't have the funds to purchase one nor the freezer space for the bowl. We now have the funds and the freezer space, so I am purchasing one today!! YEAH!! I am looking forward to trying different varities and making not only homemade ice cream, but HomeMade Ice Cream Drumsticks and Homemade Ice Cream sandwiches. I can do a "day of ice cream making" and stock the freezer!!

I am praying for those who will be lacking means to stay cool during this heat wave, hoping they will seek help if needed and those who have to work outside. I am also praying for those in Colorado affected by the Wildfires and those working to put the fires out. Also, praying for those in Florida who have been affected by Tropical Storm Debby!

I am prasing God for giving my boys and I a much needed "Break" from "busy season" we are having right now and the blessings he has bestowed upon us due to our willingness to help others!

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Simple Woman's Daybook 6/6/12

Outside my window... The Sun is shining beautifully and it is looking to be a gorgeous day!

I am thinking... about a freezer stocking shopping trip I need/want to do in the next few days.

I am thankful... for the blessings of "extra income" during a time when it is needed.

In the kitchen... making Pasta Salad for lunch and Tacos for dinner today. Also, going to make some deviled eggs for snack time.

I am wearing... a pair of gray shorts and a t shirt. My "indoor" clothes!

I am creating... a list of Summer Fun activities the boys and I can do and things we can do as a family!

I am going... taking the boys to the park today for a bit. No plans otherwise!

I am wondering... what the next step will be in my Dental Journey when I go back to the dentist on June 15th.

I am reading... lots of great books! Check out the right side bar for my list. I am currently reading MOMumental by Jennifer Grant.

I am hoping... that a check hubby is expecting arrives in the mail today.

I am looking forward to... getting outdoors and enjoying the summer. I LOVE summer time and park days and more!

I am learning... there are many things to explore in the Chicagoland area!! I am from the city, but live in the burbs now and there is so much to explore in the burbs also!

Around the house... Fold laundry and put it away. Clean the boys bedroom.

I am pondering... about missing the annual Illinois Christian Home Educators Convention this coming weekend. I have been going since '07 and am disappointed that I won't be there this year, but I will be back next year. I will be praying for those in attendance and all the speakers and convention workers!

A favorite quote for today...

One of my favorite things... Yonanas Machine!! I discovered One Ingredient Ice Cream a couple of years ago on a blog and have been making it in my blender every since. 9 months ago I saw the infomerical for Yonanas Machine and have been "wanting" it ever since. I was able to purchase it about a month ago with Gift Certificates I earned from a few online point earning sites. I LOVE this machine! It really has a great texture and really does taste and feel like soft serve ice cream. I love the healthy alternative to ice cream!

A few plans for the rest of the week: Go to a park with the boys today. Thursday: My boys and I have to take my mom to a Drs. appointment and then go visit my dad in the temporary rehab facility he is in for care on his foot. Friday: The oldest has a Drs. appointment and then we are planning on going downtown for the day for a "Fun Day". I am not sure what we have planned for the weekend yet! Hopefully some family fun activities!

A picture to share... 
  3 of the 5 boxes of Bananas 
I recently purchased for .99¢ a box

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Homemade Orange All Purpose Cleaner

I began the New Year with a desire to make a valant attempt at doing "Homemade" products that we use in our home on a daily basis. I did quite a few in Januray and February, but "life" got busy and I started slacking. I picked it back up in May and have great success with a few products.

I really wanted to make a Homemade Orange All Purpose Cleaner, but didn't know if it was possible. I did a google search and came upon this one: Homemade Orange/Vinegar Cleaner.  I was very impressed that it seemed so simple and inexpensive. I already had a gallon jar and vinegar. I was needing to buy oranges to peel and freeze for smoothies, so I was excited! I purchased the oranges and got to work!

I peeled the oranges and put the peels in the gallon jar and bagged up the oranges in snack bags to be frozen. Once the jar was filled with orange peels and vinegar I decided to let it "Brew" for a month to really get more a citrus smell then vinegar.

Peeling Oranges 

Jar getting Full

Pouring in the Vinegar

Brewed for 2 weeks

Brewed for 1 month 

Straining the Orange Infused Vinegar


The "ingredients" 

All done and READY to USE
I am LOVING this Homemade Orange Cleaner. It was VERY easy to make and it does a great job at cleaning but also at disinfecting! I also like that a little spray goes a long way. My husband and boys do not like the smell as they feel it still smells too much like Vinegar. I truly smell the Orange smell over the Vinegar. I have since learned that this can be done with any kind of Citrus peels, so I might try Lemons or Limes in the future!

I am very pleased with this "Homemade" project!!

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