Category Archives My Other Projects

Bedtime Math Parent Blog Writer

For a few weeks, I have been holding back on announcing some fantastic news. I was recently asked to write posts for the Bedtime Math Parent blog. Now that all of the paper work is signed and my first post is live, I thought I would share some information with my readers. It is no secret that math and science are a huge part of our world thanks to my love and TechyDad’s. Our kids have been naturally curious about numbers, math concepts, and like to play with math games when given the choice. My oldest son, NHL, has always incorporated math problems into his art work.

Bedtime Math Android App Screenshot

As a parent, I love why Laura Bilodeau Overdeck created Bedtime Math for families. The mission is to make math a fun part of kids’ everyday lives. Math is a part of our world, so why not find it within the fun that families do each and every day? That is exactly what the book, website, and app are working to do. This video shares a bit more about the book by Overdeck.

So my question this week is inspired by my new project:

What fun ways have you incorporated math into your family and lives outside of the school setting?

It's Me

Disclosure: My writing for Bedtime Math is compensated, but I was never asked to share this on my blog. I believe in adding enriching activities into the lives of our children, and Bedtime Math does this, so I wanted to share.

Thanks to Kailani at An Island Life for starting this Friday fun. These days, Pamela at A Renaissance Woman is reviving the fun Friday Meme. Head over there to link up and join in the fun.

Aloha Friday by Kailani at An Island Life

Aloha #256

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The Year that was 2011

It is hard to believe that 2012 is here. Once again, the year went by with a lot of fun, photos, and memories. Here are just some of the highlights from the year that was 2011.


  • Mother Nature started her tricks with a lot of snow that came our way. We had fun making memories with the sled in our own yard.
  • I started writing Education posts at The Disney Driven Life and introduced it to everyone. Thank you to J.L. for the amazing opportunity. I look forward to getting back on track in 2012.
  • NHL lost three more teeth during the first three months of the year. Much relief as they came out without dental assistance.

Lots and Lots of Snow

February 2011:

  • The Snowpacalypse welcomed the month of February threatening 18-30 inches of snow. It left lots of the white stuff and tons of ice damage. Our neighbors probably had a laugh with knee-highs on our roof.
  • With all of the freezing cold, even the little guy was trying to ride Tony Pony to Disney World to escape. Of course, we were gearing up for Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2011 in March.
  • We continued to take the boys to introduce them to hockey. They had a blast checking out all of the extras between the on ice action.

Greeting the Devil Dawg

March 2011:

  • Mother Nature teased us with warmth to melt snow mountains early in the month, only to knock us down with an ice storm to remember. Crackling trees and ice pelting the house is hard to listen to in the dark.
  • A magical trip to Walt Disney World for the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration allowed me to see amazing friends, learn, and have fun with my family. Lots of items from that trip were shared throughout the months ahead.
  • Of course, the reality world hit hard once we got back from our magical adventure. Tough decisions were ahead and left my head spinning. All of this made me remember the wise words of Rene SylerThe Good Enough Mother.

Magical Memories

April 2011:

  • Passover preparations were dominant this month. Making lists, shopping, and getting the house ready. Of course, we also captured memories of the holiday itself.
  • Lots of moments where I wished I was not the adult who had to make decision. Thank goodness, JSL helped to keep me smiling along the way.
  • A routine visit to the dentist for NHL revealed the need to see an orthodontist. We made the appointment for several months later in June, but knew the missing adult tooth was going to be something to contend with.

Views from Seder 2

May 2011:

  • Even moms need field trips. Yes, the weekend before Mother’s Day, Cutestkidever and I jumped into the car for a lunch date with Rene Syler.
  • JSL’s 4th birthday and new love for Jake and the Never Land Pirates required working on a theme for his party. Supplies were bought and cupcakes were made.
  • The sun coming back also provided an opportunity to test out our new grill, plant some veggies, and attempt to regrow our front lawn.

Cousins at play

June 2011:

  • After taking NHL out of a school he had been in since kindergarten, TechyDad and I watched as our second grader started to flourish in a new school. Once again, we started to believe in the education system. This entire drama made it SO hard to bite my tongue and keep a lot of things to myself.
  • Father’s Day we spent a fun day together. We had lunch out, went mini-golfing, and had dinner with Nana and Papa. It reminded me of how special these moments together are.
  • The end of June marked a major milestone for TechyDad and me. We celebrated out 10th wedding anniversary. Memories of our special day, honeymoon at Walt Disney World, and everything over the ten years together came flooding back. Of course, the day of our actual anniversary was a house nightmare. A plumbing fix resulted in us moving out for several days.

Reliving our honeymoon almost 10 years later

July 2011:

  • The month started with a visit out to see my brother and his family for 4th of July. While there, we went cherry picking and beat our previous record. A day at Niagara Falls was also included in the fun adventures.
  • Both of the boys were home with me for the entire summer. We looked for fun activities to do. We often ended up at the library for learning and crafting.
  • We also spent a lot of time at Michaels crafting our way around the world. Yes, Michaels and Crayola teamed up to make a great passport of crafts for kids to do that were mostly free. The kids learned so much and we found some great new crafts to try later on.


August 2011:

  • At the end of July, we started to think about a magical getaway to celebrate our 10th anniversary. Shortly after this, we booked a fantastic trip to relive our honeymoon at Walt Disney World. Everything was planned from the hotel, dining, and place for the kids to stay over Labor Day.
  • NHL turned 8 in August and requested lion cupcakes. We documented the construction process and birthday celebration.
  • The end of the month was heart breaking. We watched as Hurricane Irene wrecked havoc up and down the east coast. Thanks to the fear of the kids being stuck with no power and our flight getting canceled, we postponed our big trip to Disney. Being responsible adults was tough.

Lion Cupcakes

September 2011:

  • The boys started back to school after Labor Day. NHL loved his new school and was settling into third grade. JSL thrived at his familiar nursery school and we had lots of fun going apple picking with his class.
  • As a Type-A personality, I am a planner. So it was very rare for me to pack up in just a few days notice to head to New York City for the first ever SheStreams Conference. It was an amazing time seeing friends, learning, and getting away for a weekend. A huge thank you to all of those that made it a magical and empowering weekend.


October 2011:

  • As a third grader, NHL started to take band in school. He picked percussion instruments and drum practice even got a Disney touch thanks to Nana and Papa.
  • During the month of October, two large packages arrived to host parties. The boys loved learning and playing with LeapFrog items during the Learn, Create, and Share Party. The LeapPad had been an amazing addition to our family learning electronics. HexBugs also invaded our house for some glow-in-the-dark holiday fun.
  • Halloween was a lot of fun thanks to everyone staying healthy. NHL was Darth Vader, JSL was Jedi Tigger, and even TechyDad dressed up. Of course, Snowtober threatened to make things more interesting just a day before heading out.

Halloween 2011

November 2011:

  • The start of the month meant going to a fun event for bloggers at Price Chopper, headquarters. The Price Chopper Holiday Cheer afternoon showcased endless holiday entertaining ideas. Of course, I wanted to highlight the Decadent Desserts line.
  • This was also the month that my entire family fell in love with Susan Egan. I had been lucky enough to see Susan at Disney Social Media Moms in March, but her new CD review was a hit in our house. My little guy even had a crush on her and certainly did care more than Nina.
  • The boys learned about what an aufruf is and spent a lot of time with family in November during Thanksgiving weekend.

Silly Turkeys

December 2011:


There were so many other things that made 2011 special and amazing. Thank goodness that is what archives are for. We can look back, laugh, cry, remember, and reflect.

What are some of your favorite part of the year that was 2011?

It's Me

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Catch Me There – Mickey Mouse and Schools Collide

What, you ask, is controversial about Mickey Mouse and education? I know many of you are telling yourself that there is so much that Disney, Mickey Mouse, and the rest of the gang can teach your children. You do not have to sell me on that. As NDM183, I write about the world of education in The Disney Driven Life. I have used Disney within my past classroom, with my own children, and beyond.

I have been on a bit of a hiatus with my post on The Disney Driven Life. Then, I had an idea for a topic. Always on the minds of parents is whether or not it is “ok” to take a child out of school for a vacation. Being an educator who once thought a certain way, and now a parent that has slightly altered her theory – this seemed like a great topic to pick up.

What I did not expect was the controversy to hit so quickly. When I posted a question to my teacher friends on Facebook, it got heated quickly. Parents of children came in to defend their views. People talked about what they did as children and now as parents. It made me wonder if I should continue on.

Heading to Walt Disney World

In the end, this heated commenting sparked an idea. My almost finished post morphed before my eyes. It quickly became at least a three post series.

My latest post on The Disney Driven Life: The Mickey Mouse Over School Dilemma – Part 1 is all about how the need to talk about this topic came to fruition. Please stop by to say hello and check out the other magical posts from my Disney Drive Life friends. My other posts there can be found under NDM183 – that’s me!

It's Me

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100 Days of School Projects – Catch Me There

It may only be September, but before you know it your children may be coming home with a 100th Day of School project. Did you have to do one as a child? You probably didn’t since they have not been celebrating this day very long.

Of course, my oldest has experienced this for a few years now. When he was in kindergarten we made a cool Googly Eye banner. This was something we came up with while exploring a craft store for ideas. The next year we had to come up with a project idea while at Disney World. The result was this:

100 Days Photo Project

My latest post on The Disney Driven Life: 100 Days of School Projects with Disney Memories is all about how we came up with this idea while on our trip. I share other ideas that we considered and ask people to let me know what other possibilities with Disney they can think of.

Please stop by to say hello and check out the other magical posts from my Disney Drive Life friends. My other posts there can be found under NDM183 – that’s me!

What 100th Day of school projects have you done with your children? I would love to know and think it would be great to share with others. Please share in the comments below and if you have written posts about them, feel free to leave a link as well.

It's Me

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Getting to Know You Back-to-School – Catch Me There

This morning I will be taking my oldest son to his first day of third grade (photos coming later). My heart is hopeful for an amazing year. I think every parent wishes this for their children. Of course, no parent expects the worst and we experienced that last year. I did not write about it much because it was not needed. Bullying, bad classroom management, inexperienced administrators, bullying, and not following doctor notes just some of the issues.

Today, I will be putting on a brave face as I take NHL to school. He is excited to be in his new school and has already met his teacher. She asked to meet him this summer when she heard some of the events from last year. Yes, a teacher going above and beyond to ease a child’s fears. It made my summer to know this professional was thinking about my child.

Gifts for teacher?

As a teacher, I understood the need to get to know my students and use parents to help me with this. The more information you have the better things can get for the entire classroom family. Reality check here, it was SO much easier on the reverse side teaching the kids.

My latest post on The Disney Driven Life: Getting to Know You – Back-to-School is all about ways that teachers and families can get to know each other. I share what I did when teaching and the latest craze in back-to-school teacher gifts.

Please stop by to say hello and check out the other magical posts from my Disney Drive Life friends. My other posts there can be found under NDM183 – that’s me!

How do you help your child during this hectic back-to-school time when fears may be high?

It's Me

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