Tuesday, September 14

Back to school

I'm here to admit I'm sad to say that Thursday will mark all four kids back in school.  Anyone that knows me knows that I'm an easy crier as it is, but when the kids have their supplies packed and their new clothes on I'm a big cry baby!  Time is just flying by too quickly.

Tommy & Liam got a late start with the Ferndale strike, but the teachers unanimously voted to accept the offer and preschool will start on Thursday, we love our teachers.  Hannah is a junior this year splitting her time between Sehome HS and WCC in running start.  Nate is a sophmore and is starting to enjoy attending his first year at Exporations which is a small independent school and has already been on a camping trip with and it almost has a homeschool feel to it.  Four very different school schedules to keep track of, plus two cheerleading calendars, google calendar will be busy with our family.

So with kids back in school my attention is turning to volunteering.  The 7th annual Buddy Walk for Down syndrome outreach, is on October 2nd at 11am at the Fairhaven Village Green Park!  Last year I spent some time organizing a piece of this fundraising event, the silent auction.  This year I'll put some more time to this wonderful event that also brings so many beautiful families together.

Next, if you want to "Learn What’s Happening to Strengthen Services for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs and their Families in Whatcom County" -- Community Meeting Friday, September 17, 2010 11:30 AM - 3:00 PM Bring Your Lunch Beverages Provided St. Luke’s Community Health Education Center 3333 Squalicum Parkway Bellingham, WA 98227
* Hear from guest speakers from Pope’s Kids Place and Children’s Village, two thriving programs that came about as a result of community efforts in Centralia and Yakima
* Hear updates about progress being made by Whatcom Taking Action for CYSHCN, our own community’s group effort (I've spent not nearly enough volunteer time on, but thoroughly enjoy the direction and focus)
* Have a chance to ask questions of our guests from Children’s Village and Pope’s Kids Place For information about this community meeting, contact Margaret Jahn: mjahn3333@comcast.net
More information on events and comittees that lead to this meeting:


And of course volunteering for the schools when I can.  Usually, because I work, it's more of volunteering on projects that I can do in the evening, or chaperoning a field trip once a year.

Besides volunteering, fall has brought Colin & I to sign up for a back to school class.  We saw the title at Sunday service, "Joy of Marriage" and looked puzzled at each other.  What?  Joy?  Granted we have plenty of joy in our marriage but often it's also stressed and pulled and reprioritized and forgotten.  Go ahead, laugh at us.  Our first small group meeting is this Friday and I'll let you know how the class goes and if we get a little more "joy" put back in our hearts.  God has great plans for us as a couple.  I know this.  Colin knows this.  I'm thinking this might become a class PLUS date night.  We deserve it!

Tuesday, September 7

Tommy's Story at OneTrueMedia.com

Join us October 2 Saturday at 11am at the Village Green Park in Fairhaven for the 7th annual Buddy Walk in Whatcom County.

Here is Tommy's first three and a half years to provide you a little incentive and motivation.

We hope to raise $500 for Down syndrome outreach of Whatcom County, come walk with us.

Sunday, September 5

Homemade laundry soap

Since I'm mixing up another batch today, I thought I would write out the recipe for "Homemade Laundry Soap".  It's safe for septic systems and HE machines.  We have been using it since March of this year and have really enjoyed the lemony smell and how inexpensive it is! 

1/3 of 5 ounce Fels Naptha soap, grated
1/2 cup of washing soda (not baking soda)
1/2 cup boraxo (20 mule team is just fine)

Have two 1 gallon bottles (we use well washed milk jugs) and a funnel for filling them.  You will need 13 cups very warm water in these bottles.
Also 8 one quart squirt bottles (dish detergent type, water bottles, soda bottles) empty.

First step:  grate fels naphtha coarsely with a cheese grater (we dedicate a grater to our soap making and don't use it for food obviously)

Second step:  add grated soap to 6 cups water in a pan on stove (we dedicate a pot just to soap making and don't reuse for food) and heat medium low until completely dissolved. 

Take off heat, add other ingredients and stir until completely dissolved, smooth and a little thickened. 

Add hot soap mixture to hot water in bottles (3 cups of soap mixture plus 13 cups of warm water = 1 gallon)

Mix and while still quite warm pour into smaller bottles.  It will "set up" as it cools.  Then it will dispense smoothly through the squirt bottles or you can shake them a bit to break up the gel.  We stopped using the squirt bottles due to the volume of laundry and just use the gallon jugs.  We actually make a double batch of this recipe each time :)   Use 1/2 cup per load.


Tommy Adventures