Thursday, June 10, 2010

Local Mamas- Summer reading program!

Saturday I had the pleasure of signing up my children (and myself) for the summer reading program at Columbus Public Libraries. I have always been a fan of the library but I had no idea how many things they had to offer until this weekend.

This is how it works. For every 15 minute that you read to your child, they get to cross a box off their map. When they cross so many boxes off of the map,they win prizes!! (They also get points for going to any summer activity at the library!)

Since reading is how we tell our children that we value education and learning, the summertime is a great time to bring these values into our homes!! I was also impressed at how many other programs that the library offers to everyone free of charge!

Since I am all about saving money, I thought maybe you would be interested in these things too!

* Job Help Centers- Did you know that ALL library locations ( There are 22!!) have staff to help to assist with ....

-basic e-mail training
-On line applications and job searching
-Resume help
-Basic computer training
-Internet job searching

I was blown away with all this training for free! If you have any questions you can contact them at 645-2ask!

* Homework Help Centers - Did you know that your library has homework help for your kids? Contact your local Library to see about hours and programs!

* Ready to Read Program- This is a neighborhood program that gets children ready for school before kindergarten by...

- Ready to read workshops
- Free story time workshops
-Library Cards
-Early Literacy Kits
-Ready to Read training to in-home childcare providers
-Books to check out on the spot!

For more info call 614-769-0757

In honor of reading I will be posting a couple books a week that the library recommends to read to your little one. Happy reading everyone!!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Works for me Wednesday: Kids craft- Library bags!!

I am all about summer reading programs at our local library. I also love that my kids squeal in delight when I say we are headed to get books. What I don't like so much???? Lugging all the books my children can throw at me. It makes my back ache and I get cranky.

And who likes a cranky mama, right?!?!

To remedy this problem I thought the kids could spend an afternoon making their very own library bags. Nothing was off limits. They could decorate it however they wanted because it was their bag. The only catch was that they had to take,use and carry their own bag on library trips. This meant that they could not over stuff their bags and if it got too heavy they had to save some books for next time. ((sneaky, huh?))

I found great cloth bags at Hobby Lobby for $1.49. (They also have a coupon in many of the Sunday papers.) I had some puffy foam cloth paints and some iron-on's in my craft drawer. Then I let them go to it. (I did the ironing.) They had a ball!!!

They got really creative and I even got in on the action :) I love the way they turned out. I REALLY love that they are even more excited to go to the library!!!
No more back aches.....and that works for this mama!

For more great WFMW ideas visit We are That Family!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Menu Plan Monday - Packet week!

We are just starting to wind down from our very crazy spring! I was going through my fridge to see what to have this week and noticed that I have three bell peppers that I need to use. I found a couple of great recipes that not only use my peppers but also can be grilled in a foil packet. This pleases me for many reasons. The top being no cleanup. WOOHOO! I also like that the pepper steak packets uses most of the ingredients that I am currently growing in my garden. Happy Eating y'all!!

Monday: Cheeze It chicken tenders, baked fries, green beans

Tuesday: Baked Ziti, mixed veggies, garlic bread

Wednesday: Leftover buffet- If its in the fridge, you can eat it. But mama is not cookin!

Thursday: Pepper steak packets on the grill (recipe below), spinach salad, baked potatoes

Friday: Pizza Night!

Saturday: BBQ ribs, cole slaw, baked beans, green beans with ham hock

Sunday: Hawaiian chicken packets on the grill, corn on the cob, tomato salad

Easy Hawaiian Chicken packets
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup bottled teriyaki sauce or marinade
1 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
1 onion, chopped
1 (20 ounce) can pineapple chunks, drained

Preheat a grill for medium-high heat.

Lay out four squares of aluminum foil. Place one piece of chicken in the center of each square. Pour the teriyaki sauce over them, turning to coat. Distribute equal amounts of the green and red peppers, onion and pineapple chunks amongst the chicken pieces. Fold the foil up and seal tightly into packets.

Place the packets on the grill, and cook for about 20 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear. I like to take one packet off the grill and check it before removing them all.

Pepper Steak Packets
1 (1/2 pound) sirloin steak, cut into bite size strips
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 zucchini, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup steak sauce
Preheat an outdoor grill for medium high heat and lightly oil grate.

Place the steak strips on a piece of foil large enough to hold the meat and some vegetables. Layer with the red, green and yellow peppers, chopped onion, cherry tomatoes and chopped zucchini. Dot with butter, and drizzle with steak sauce. Fold edges of foil to seal the packet well.

Grill over medium high heat for 45 to 60 minutes. About halfway through cooking, flip the packet, being careful not to puncture it. (Note: Be careful when opening foil packet as the steam that escapes will be very hot.)