Thursday, May 30, 2013

A Weekend to Remember

In addition to honoring the men and women who have fought and died for our country, there was a lot of activity in our house for a rainy Memorial Day Weekend.  

Alexander turned 6...

and got his first Lego building set, which took him 3 days to assemble.

Hannah got her toes painted for the first time.  

 Emmett learned to sit up by himself.  He must have then realized that it was better to be up higher because the next day he started pulling himself up to standing using the living room ottomans.  He certainly is a mover!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Green Goals '13

I have never been one to make New Year's resolutions, why make change more complicated then it already is?  Over the past few years however, as we have celebrated Earth Day my small steps to being more eco-conscious have resulted in some goals for how I want to live my life.  As time has gone on I have found myself setting some "green goals" based on books that I have recently read or eco-trends that are becoming the norm (bring your own bags, cloth napkins, etc.).  This year I struggled with my goals because I have made so many small steps that I knew I would need to make some more drastic changes to the way I live.  After reflecting on our current way of life I have decided that this year I will work to reduce the amount of food that we waste.  I have always been one to save leftover food and use it for lunch or dinner the next day but what about that half of an onion that sits in the fridge, not needed for the recipe and then forgotten about for 2 weeks until discovered the night before the trash needs to go out.  Yes, I threw those things in the trash because we do not have a compost pile.  So there is the first big change, we will now welcome rotting food to our backyard.  As happy as I am to have a "better" place to put it, I don't want the food to go bad in the first place.  So here are the Daigle Green Goals 2013 edition:

1) Find a nice spot in the yard and set up a compost bin.
2) Develop a system for getting the food to the compost bin.
3) Teach the kids what can be composted and how they can help. (Maybe a new chore for the chart?)
4) Keep better track of those little bits of recipe surplus.
5) Start a collection of recipes that can be my "go to" for using the most frequent of surplus items.  

Not a bad list, we will see how it goes and what other goals might stem from these changes.  Any of you make any recent green goals?  

Friday, May 3, 2013

What a Chore

Last fall a coworker of mine gave Alexander a notepad of weekly chore charts.  He loved the idea and it really helped encourage his independence and self-confidence.  The problem became filling out a new sheet every week, the paper became an extra chore.  We also had the unfortunate event of losing a chart one week, Hannah coloring on a chart another week and few nights out in the driveway digging through the recycle bin looking for the missing chart.  I liked the outcome of the chores but it was becoming one of those things where I was working harder at it than the kids.  Around the time that I was thinking the system needed to change I remembered I had some Staples Rewards to redeem so I went shopping...
They did have their own packaged magnetic chart system, but I didn't think the layout would work for us and the chore suggestions were a little more than what Hannah would stick with.  I ended up getting this great magnetic dry erase board and a package of printable magnetic sheets.  I hung the board on the kitchen wall (using those great Command picture hanging strips) as that is a spot that the kids walk by frequently but is out of the way of other items.  I then used the printable sheets to create 3 columns; Alexander, Hannah and a section for chores that are Done.  I had the kids help me think of chores that they felt that they could do daily  and I chose one to challenge them with and we typed those up as well.  As I was cutting the chore list items out, Alexander took the scraps and put stickers on them.  He then cut out the stickers and added them to the top of the board as extra decoration (I think he likes recycled art more than I do!) which I think was a nice chart.  We are now a bit more organized about our chores and I love that we can change the chores whenever the kids are ready for more responsibility.

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