Saturday, December 31, 2011

31 days to Clean - Day 2

So Day 2 is upon us....and I also went grocery shopping.  

So today's Martha's challenge was to wipe/clean out the fridge and freezer.  The smaller freezer was made easy to clean since our 9 year old son unplugged it to plug in the toaster to make his waffles......go figure.  The joys of autism.  I didn't take before and after pics (was busy putting away groceries too), but I did wipe out the fridge and clean out both things.  They are reorganized and ready for the morning.

The Mary Challenge is about the life that women provide into the family.  What ways can I help out our family better.  

  • I would like to be able to spend more time with Joe, without interruption from the  So we can have a full conversation without whining and screaming, and not just from each other.  
  • I would love to help the boys find a path for themselves in life.  Joey is starting to think more about what he wants to be doing for a career.  So we need to find what his niche is.
  • I want to try and have a more positive outlook on life and limit outside influence that has in the past allowed me to doubt our decisions regarding our children.  
  • I also need to listen to the doctor about finding a stress release to help with all that we go through daily.  If I am more stressed, then I am grouchy with everyone around me.

31 Days to Clean - Mission Statement

On Day 1 you need to write a mission statement based on why you want to clean your's taken me a couple days to think about it.

My goal with the reorganizing and decluttering is to hopefully give our house less of a sensory overload feeling.  I know I feel overwhelmed....I can't imagine what the kids feel like.

Kuehner Household Mission Statement:

Our goal is to create a peaceful and relaxing environment for our family to dwell in.   An inviting place to sit and learn or play games together.  A place where we can live together healthy and happy.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

31 Days of Clean - Day 1

So attempting this challenge....our house is driving me crazy!!!!!  I will be doing it in a little over 31 days, but at least try to finish each day "on schedule"

Challenge Day 1

Identify why I want a clean home.  My goal is definitely not to make it into Good Housekeeping Magazine...that'll never happen.  But the clutter and mess drives me crazy!  My hope is that others in the house will see me working at this and pick up on the importance of cleaning things up and not just leaving the mess lying around (too bad Lydia can't read what I am typing yet).  We have 6 people crammed in a small space and lots & lots of things.  

The boys are pack rats and cannot give up their toys very easily.  Even items that they do not play with.  Joey has been known to cry over me attempting to donate kids meal toys out of his room!  Want to talk about excessive junk.  The autism challenge definitely does not make my desire for cleanliness and organization any simplier, just more frustrating.

But between the school room, my office, and Joe's office....and that is all on top of school supplies, "quiet time" areas and various play areas set up through out the house to allow the kids some "chill out" time from each other, we have quickly borrowed more space than we have.  I didn't even think that was possible, but I may have to move my office/work area out into the driveway.  Which wouldn't be so bad at time, because at least I would have some quiet!

So I really want a clean home because:

  1. I hate surprise visits from friends and relatives and I am so embarrassed that they have walked into our home that I want to hide under the pile of unfolded clean laundry.
  2. Safety...the kids leaving toys everywhere is starting to be painful as we trip and step on stuff.
  3. The clutter makes me cringe.  I can't think with it around me.  I feel wiped just looking at it.
  4. Hope the kids see a clean house and learn some responsibility from seeing and performing tasks for their own life skills.
  5. I also hope that this project will carry some cleanliness over into my schedule.  If I can keep the house organized, maybe my calendar reflect the same thing....haha...that's a dream!
So here goes....if you are interested in starting this with me.  Please either email me at or just leave a post.  If there's interest in doing this together for support, we can set up a linky for this project.

31 Days to Clean is a wonderful ebook...Check out the book and information here.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

What we did last week....

I realized that I never posted what we did last week.  We got quite a bit finished, and still working on the couple things that we didn't.

Lydia made Sugar Plum cookies from her Ballet lapbook.  These were really yummy.

 We learned about the homes in Ancient Egypt.
 We studied about the circulatory system and built a 4-D heart model.

 We played with some sugar cane, and discovered it's easier to just buy sugar at the store.
 We compared canned oranges to fresh oranges.  And even though the white stuff might not taste great, our body needs the fiber.
 And of course we did our math, handwriting and Language Arts.
I think the kids favorite thing though was our Kinderbach trial....All 4 kids are enjoying that program.  Watch for the upcoming review.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

It's almost 2012!!!

I have been on some sort of a blogging break for the past few days.  I was actually bored a few times.  We watched movies and did cool family activities, but when they were over (and I didn't have my laptop in my lap)...I felt a little bored.  I also had a bit of writers block.  Not sure what topics to approach.  A friend reminded me today of my goals that I have been mentally working on for next year.

I have been thinking of ways to decrease my stress and just plain make my life a bit easier.   Here's a few things that I will be working on or setting as my goals for 2012.

1.  More puzzles and coloring time.  It's so easy to overlook the educational benefits of puzzles and coloring.  The motor control issues that are being tackled as well as the visual perception benefits are numerous.  Not to mention the calming sensory issues.  And it's sure it fun to sit down with the kids and do these activities also.   I plan to incorporate more "learning" coloring pages into our lessons in when we are watching educational videos.  Such as while watching something for history or science, they'll have a coloring page that matches the topic we are learning about.

2.  Really start back up my workout routine.  I need to walk/run on our treadmill at least 2-3 times a week.  I would like to actually run outside 1-2 days a week, but since I am not a cold-weather runner....that may not happen yet.  But I really do need to get back into my routine, not for weight loss.  But to maintain my current weight and for stress management.

3.  Cook more meals and serve less processed foods to my family.  My diet is basically non-processed.  I do eat Boar's Head Lunch meat and Organic Blue Corn Chips.  I am working at cooking more of the foods the kids like from scratch and not allow them as much processed junk.  Of course, we do have one child completely addicted to processed foods and refuses to budge on the matter.  Crazy Autsim has him blinded to the goodness of foods outside of his comfort zone.  But our other son with Autism is at least making more of an attempt at eating "non" processed foods.  We are actually at 5 weeks of no fast food or eating out!!!!  No McDonalds or pizza orders!!!  The girls are fairly easy in this area and Joe is making an effort, even though he is wanting to stop at Taco Bell almost

4.  Stick to my lesson plans and not overcrowd my lesson plans.  I don't want to overcrowd the lesson plans with so much work that I feel like our week is a failure, even though we accomplished a lot!  I am working on this.  This week turned into an impromptu week off.  We have been working on small projects on the 50 states and a Character Study.  They still have music class also.  There are so many great projects out there for homeschoolers and there is just no way humanly possible to do everything that I would like to.  I need to work on this personality flaw so neither myself or the kids get burned out.

5.  Work on the quality and quantity of blog posts for our blog.  I would like to post daily, if possible.  But want to make sure the quality of posts is not forgotten.  This is another one of those goals.  But not sure how I will completely reach it or even start.  Guess we'll wait and see.

What are your goals for 2012????

How we spent our weekend

We have huge Star Wars fans in our house.  My hubby reads all the books, plays the online game, and the boys are following in his footsteps.  So I thought, how about a Star Wars marathon!!!

So we spent Friday, Saturday and Sunday watching all 6 of the movies in their numerical order!

We ate Yoda Stew.... 

 Put together models.

 Made light saber pretzel sticks.

 And the men of the family played Star Wars online all weekend.

 We also made Star Wars snowflakes...which turned into a mommy project because of the detail.  So I lamenated them to make them last longer.

This was a huge hit, even with the girls.  So we are going to chose another theme.  Next will be Shrek with lots of icky looking snacks and food.  Got my list ready for New Years Weekend!!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Couponing: The Extreme Video Course

stay at home mom

I just don't have time to coupon!!!!  I just keep telling myself that because I feel bad when I see others using coupons.  I know our family is no where near rich, and we could desperately use a way to save money in our grocery budget.

I have watched those shows on TV and drooled over the stockpiles that people have accumulated.  There was a kid on one of the shows that was in high school, saved about $1000.  HUH!!!  

My dream is to have a stock pile...that I don't even have to shop for.  I have a secret......shhhhhh......I hate grocery shopping.  I hate the price.  I use coupons occasionally, but never really go out of my way.  Makes me nervous because I truly do not know how to be coupon savvy yet.  That is until I watched 'Couponing:  The Extreme Video Course'.

This series, created by Stay a Stay at Home Mom Rayven Perkins, breaks couponing down into easy to watch segments.  They range from an Introduction to Couponing, How to collect coupons, How to organize your coupons, using Double/Triple Coupons, How to watch for counterfeit coupons, Shopping at Various popular stores, Couponing Ethics, and How to use a Stockpile.

The best thing is each Session is broke down into roughly 7-10 minute segments, so you can easily find the time to learn more about saving your family money.  You can re-watch any segment that you might want to review.  I was easily able to watch a short segment in the evenings before going to bed or when I first got up while checking my email.  You can also easily pause the know when the kids start fighting over who gets the last cookie (because I was too cheap to buy multiple packages at full price).

The accompanying 35 page workbook gives you written reminders how to use coupons to the fullest potential for your family.  You can easily print a copy and keep it in your coupon binder as a reference.  She also provides extra links for continued savings after you get started.  These include links to legitimate savings sites to print coupons from.

The course took the overwhelming out of couponing for me.  I no longer fear a coupon binder, and in fact excited about going and getting one today.  I will never be one of those people that have $10,000 stockpiles, but I truly look forward to saving my family money on our groceries.

If you are trying to get started and just don't know where to turn.....this course is a great stepping stone into the world of couponing.  There is a No Hassle Money Back guarantee if you are not completely satisfied.

The Extreme Video Course, is a 14 part video training on how to save 20 to 90% off your grocery bill. This comprehensive video series, brought to you by coupon expert Rayven Perkins, includes over 90 minutes of actual "how to coupon" video instruction with easy to implement steps. Take the course today and begin extreme savings by couponing tomorrow!

In order to simplify you coupon experience, Rayven breaks down 5 national and regional chains that can immediately accelerate your coupon savings. The stores discussed are: Target, CVS, RiteAid, Walgreens and HEB (of Texas) and Rayven dials in on extreme savings by implementing the 7 Rules of Couponing in these 5 stores. 

The Video Series also includes 2 BONUS videos. Bonus Video 1 will teach you how to save on your grocery bill without coupons and Bonus Video 2 gives you members only access to websites that will skyrocket your coupon savings. 

Brought to you by Rayven Perkins, author, editor, webmaster of

Start saving today!!!!  Visit Stay a Stay at home Mom Extreme Video Course today!!!!

Check them out on Facebook.

Creator:  Rayven Perkins
Cost:  $37.00 with a 90-day 100% money back guarantee

*****I received Couponing: The Extreme Video Course free of charge for the sole purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The views I have expressed are my own and are real experiences with my family. I am disclosing this is accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255>:"Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What we are up to this week...

I am praying hard for a smooth week.  Very little excitement would be nice!!!

As a group:

History--Daily life in Ancient Egypt and what their homes were like
Music--What the Renaissance Music period was.
Art--How Artists Communicate through their work
Health--The vitamins we get from fruit and the other benefits of eating it.  We will be making fruit sorbet and our own fruit gelatin.
Science--We will be learning about the Heart and build a model of it.
State Geography--Hawaii  (we found 6 foot tall stalks of sugar cane!!!!  Very excited to get to tear into them!!!!)


She'll be working on Reading Eggs Phonics and her new Reading Series.  I have some copywork for her to work on, simple words from her Reading series.  She'll work on a new set of site words.  For Math, we will continue with skip counting this week, 2s and 5s.  And she is working on telling time.  We are going to start back on her Animated Ballet lapbook and we are going to make Sugar Plum Cookies.  

She finished half her Josefina Memory Box last week.  We will finish painting it this week.  Josefina is the American Girl that we will be looking at for the next 3 months.  We will be working on another Quilt like we did for Felicity.  This week's squares will be about What their houses look like, and where she lived.

She's going to be working on her UmiZoomi Math cards.  Patterns is her current subject.  We are going to work on sequencing also.  She has some fun cut-n-paste activities also.  

Both girls are starting the Literature Pockets Nursery Rhymes book.  This week is a rhyme called A Little Bird.

He is going to be finishing up his Math Mammoth Time with a review of Calendar skills.  His trial to Reading Eggspress will be continuing for a couple more weeks, so I am going to actually sit and work with him on this to see if the program helps him with his comprehension skills.  He is going to finish his 'I wanna be a chef' unit study.  He will be making a Coconut pudding recipe that is easy (and go great with our Hawaii study).

He will be finishing up his Math Mammoth Time book also.  Brayden will be working with K5 Reading program (another trial) to see how it works for him.  He is half-way through his Cars 2 trivia lapbook.  And will also be working on Big IQ Kids Spelling and Geography.

Caty has an ultrasound on Tuesday to have her bladder and kidney's checked.  Joey has another follow-up and then Thursday we have some friends visiting us all day to play.  So it will be a busy week as usual for us.

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!!!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Our weekly Triumphs and Accomplishments

weekly wrap-up

We survived it!!!  That's our Triumphs and Accomplishments!!!!  We survived the week.

As many of you may have read, we had a very scary medication reaction with Joey early Tuesday morning. It resulted in a trip to the hospital and Joey's first ride in an ambulance.  His symptoms mimicked a stroke and several petite mal seizures.  His heart rate went up and down.  He lost touch with reality.  He lost all control of body functions and his muscles in his face stiffened so bad he looked as if he had a cartoon mouth stuck open in a position as if he was screaming with an O mouth.  This though was all on the right side of his face most times his face had his mouth pulled open wide to the right, but his left side was left drooping.

We seem to be out of the clear, but then the medication given to him to help with the side effects caused eye issues.  He has been complaining since Thursday evening.  Another call to the specialist and he was pulled off the meds a day early.  But now poor Joey is complaining about difficulty focusing on words on the computer screen or even focusing on his LEGOs.  We go back to the doctor on Wednesday, but if he keeps complaining may have to make another call.  I am praying for no damage, and we may have to see a neurologist after all.  But other than, hopefully some dry eye (or at least that is what they are calling it right now), Joey is doing better.  He is talking non-stop, even when no one is listening.  So he is getting back to normal.

I had given the kids Monday off and we were going to do schoolwork Tuesday through Friday.  But wow!!!  It took us till Thursday evening to calm down some.  I gave up with trying to get things going again.  Unfortunately for the other kids, Joey took up a lot of our attention for two days and they got some extra hugs thrown in as we were tag teaming to keep an eye on him and make sure they didn't feel left out.

Lydia did have scouts this week, which we were not sure if we would make it or not.  But fortunately we did.  It was a welcome change for her.  We did fun crafts and activities.  And our troop did a collection for Hannah's socks, glad Lydia and I did our shopping Monday morning before all the excitement!!

We did watch alot of educational TV and played some games together.  We had discussions about healthy eating and I was able to take a look at my office/work area.  Hoping some of the changes that we will be starting next week will benefit everyone in our homeschool.  I am pretty excited and hope the kids are too.  I will have to do a post next week.

I did manage though in my work area to add a book shelf yesterday to clean and hopefully organize our current books in a better way.  That also allowed me to have a space to re-open our Ebay store. Which I was able to do last night.  Now to find time daily to list items.  I also started listing items on Homeschool Classifieds.

That is our week....Next week back to normal (or whatever that is).  Linking up with other homeschool families, check out what they have been up to this week.

Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers