Wednesday, December 7, 2011


My mom and I recently moved from our hometown (where we both have lived our entire lives, hers longer than mine, of course)... to a new city about an hour from our hometown.

The new city is still kind of weird.  Well, maybe not weird, but certainly different.  I didn't go too many places on my own, so it's not the same experience for me as it is for my mom.  Moving to a new place can be hard.  It is exciting.  There are lots of new places to check out.  It's like every day is a new adventure.  I will start my new school after Christmas break.  In the mean time, we are finding ways of sharing our old hometown with our new one.  Today's adventure was picking up some Mrs. Fisher's chips in our old hometown and sharing them with the folks in the new city.

Can't wait to tell you what they thought of the chips?

What would you share with someone you met with wasn't from your hometown?

What tips do you have for me about starting a new school?

Giving Thanks.....

I'm not going to say much today.  Just a reminder to give thanks, to God and to each other.  Be kind to one another, it makes the day better.  It can be that simple.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Easy as 1-2-3 for a Boy Scout

Joined the Boy Scouts officially on my 11th Birthday.  Every year my troop sells pumpkins as one of our fundraisers.  I didn't get too many customers the night I worked at the Pumpkin Patch, but I had a really great time.  It's all about what you do with any opportunity.

Friday, October 14, 2011

My First Scout Camping Trip

The weekend of my 11th birthday, I went on my first boy scout camping trip.  We went to Canyon Camp in Stockton, IL.  It was a special Boy Scout Campout, so there were many other troops there the same weekend. I would guess there were almost 200 other people.

The theme of the camp was "Top Shot".  There was a police officer who has been on the TV Show Top Shot there doing demonstrations.  She was really cool-- and the only girl at the camp.  The best part was learning how to shoot a rifle and a shotgun.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Beach is for the Birds....

This is my first time at the Beach... the white sandy beaches of Clearwater, FL.
While we were there we visited a nearby Bird Sanctuary.

Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary  It is the largest non-profit avian hospital and sanctuary in the U.S. ( I copied that right off of their flyer).  Here they house birds that have been hurt in the wild.

They take in up to 8000 birds a year.  They try to return to the birds to their natural environment.

We saw one bird today that was the 125th bird to arrive at the sanctuary.  He is blind and is around 39 years old the lady feeding him told us.  That is almost double the average life expectancy of this bird.  There is a picture of him on the left.

It takes a lot of money to take care of and feed these birds 365
days a year.  They could really use our help.  So, here's my thought.  Ready?
You saw that gorgeous beach picture at the top of this blog post, right? Wouldn't you love to go there?  Me too.

So, next time you're in the area or just going to do something fun.  Take the money you would normally spend, make a donation to the sanctuary instead and take a sack lunch with some Cheez-Its to this beach instead... and visit the birds while you are there.  There is even a crow that says HELLO when you walk in.  Impressive.
And much more unique than the greeters at Wal*Mart.

Look a this guy on the right...trying to be me.  Lucky for me he doesn't type cause he sure was cute!  :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Learning How to Use Video....

When we originally starting doing this blog, we knew eventually we wanted to do toy reviews...

Here is our first attempt at getting started.  Both our camera person (mom) and the on-air talent (Tanner) need a little work, but everyone starts somewhere and this is our, please be kind.

Back to School Binder 2011

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

It's Back to School Time

I love school.  Don't get me wrong, summer has been fun and all... but, it's back to school time and that means new school supplies and getting back in the classroom doing art projects, learning about history, seeing friends you haven't seen in awhile... and probably some math homework--that's the part I could totally live without.

I'm a 5th grader this year... It's kind of exciting, but there aren't any major changes for me this year.  Same school, same teacher, just new supplies.  I might even use the same back pack-- it's still in good shape.

School supplies can be expensive, so only buying the stuff we actually need helps my mom not stress out so much.  Besides is anyone really going to notice if I have a new back pack or not other than me.  Not to mention, I think not getting a new back pack will leave me a better chance at the getting the new gym shoes I want.  I found this really cool website where I can custom design my own shoes... and they even put my name on the back:  Super Cool!

Mom's Note:  Ah yes, I am glad he's excited about going back to school..  I can tell he's growing up. Not sure he's ever cared so much about what shoes he will be wearing.  He has wanted those for a little over a year now though, so, I suppose he has been patient enough.  I think we spend close to $250 on Back to School supplies and fees.  How much do you spend on Back to School?  What tips would you give families to help them save money?

Summer Lovin'

August arrives and we always go into shock.  Where did the summer go?  Oh my goodness only two more weeks until school starts?  We haven't event gone on vacation yet?  And then the checklist begins....


Mom says things like visit Hawaii, clean-out the garage and lose 20 pounds.  My list is nothing like that.  Although, grandma did go to Hawaii a few years ago and it sounds awesome... volcanoes, hiking, swimming with the fish... who wouldn't want to say they did that stuff during their summer break?

So, the craziness that is August begins. Since most of us don't have the time or money to head out at the last last minute on a grand vacation, it's important to remember there are lots of things we can do in the summer that are free or close to it.

 Get out your pencils (and I don't mean for school) and see how many of these things you can say you did.

___  Played with chalk, bubbles and sparklers.
___  Ran around or rode your bike outside
___  Went to a pool or water park.
___  Made a new friend at the park.
___  Had a lemonade stand.
___  Bought a new toy-- at a garage sale.
___  Make shish-kabobs--Ask to be grillmaster
___  Make sun tea,
___  Jump in the puddles after it rains.
___  Drive with the windows down, listening to tunes.
___  Visit a Farmer's Market,
___  Go on a picnic.
___  Tried a new sport you had never played before.
___  Plant flowers.
___  Catch Lightening Bugs and Lay under the stars.
___  Go to a baseball game-- or organize a neighborhood game.
___  Wash your bike
___  Gone fishing.
___  Create or paint an BIG cardboard box.
___  Played in the sand.

Those are the ones I could come up with off the top of my head.  Here are some pictures of me doing some of that super-fun summer stuff... or other people doing them, like the lemonade stand.

What kind of fun did you have this summer that I forgot to put on my list?

Please share... I wouldn't want to miss out.  :)

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Wheels, wheels and more wheels.

From Mom:
I will never forget the day Tanner was staring at this little girl in a wheel chair.  He couldn't have been more than three and she was a little bit older.  I gathered from her return look that she did not understand that he was staring at her out of complete awe.  He didn't feel badly for her, he wanted to know why he couldn't travel around the world in a chair with wheels.  He was equally as enamored with senior citizens using walkers with wheels or scooters.  I am still surprised "wheels" wasn't his first word.

The trend continued.  Anything with wheels will captivate him.  He collects matchbox cars, old peddle cars, old-fashioned bicycles.....if it has wheels he wants it.

Big Wheels.

Wheels that don't really go anywhere.

So far, it hasn't been an overly expensive hobby.  We can either just visit places with lots of wheels to look at or we get most of his finds at garage sales and auctions.

Until this past Sunday, when he was introduced to this little MG.  Don't get me wrong, I love it too.  I'm just not sure how well I believe the owner when he told us that they aren't expensive, they are easy to work on and the parts are readily available.  I think it may depend on the individual perspective.

I'm in trouble though... because that is quite a smile:

Good thing I have a few years to save before he turns 16 and starts driving.

Is this a boy thing?  I'm not sure, and I doubt I ever will know... but, no thing is for sure when it comes to wheels there will always be some that we want... and some people who wish they didn't have to use them.  Whether it's the little girl in the wheelchair who wishes she could walk like Tanner was that day or the truck driver that would rather be home with his family.  So, wheels are everything to all people.  

Saturday, August 6, 2011

We've been a way for awhile....

Unfortunately, we've taken nearly a year off....but, that doesn't mean we haven't been out doing really great stuff.  So, bare with us as we make some catch up posts... that won't depict the date or even the time of year that they took place, but we still want to tell the stories.  Enjoy!

This picture is a perfect example of some of the really fun stuff we have been up to... I took this on my camera phone while on a road trip with my grandma and grandpa in Wisconsin... and I texted it to my mom and dad.

See moms and dads, there are good reasons to give your kids cell phones.  :)

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Importance of Horsin' Around

What is it that the grown-ups say?  "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy."  I can't tell you who said it, but I do know they were right.

This summer has been a lot of following adults around doing what they need to do, but that all changed this week.  I got to go to Horse Riding Camp at Lockwood Park!

It was incredible.  Horses are so cool.  It would be hard to tell you all the reasons why I loved it so much.  It's really one of those things that I hope you just get to try some day.
I highly recommend it.  One of my favorite parts was grooming my horse and giving him an apple when we were all done.

On the right is a picture of me with my horse, Justin.

Mom's Note:  This was one of the more expensive camps we have ever had T attend.  However, he loved every minute of it--even cleaning up the poop-- so, as any parent would admit that makes it well worth the cost (the loving it, not the poop).  This is something T has asked to do for at least a couple of years now.  Just before summer started, I had him read through the different camp catalogs and make a wish list of the ones he wanted to attend.  This summer we were on a limited budget and only sent him to this camp.  He was very patient all summer doing everything we "needed" him to do, so in a way he earned his way to camp.  Plus, I think working with the animals, the long day at camp and being focused on something somewhat serious was a good primer for preparing him to return to school in a few weeks.