Monday, April 27, 2009

Turn Off Your TV

Did you know that 99% of all families have at least one TV in their home? Forty-five percent of these families have three or more TVs. At first this blew my mind, then I counted the TVs in my house and was floored! We have three that are currently in use and three more that will be in use this time next year (we are doing some renovating and still moving in so three of the rooms with TVs are not currently set up). This next statistic really boggled my mind. Fifty-six percent of all 8 to 16-year-old's have a TV in their bedrooms. In our family, we never allowed our children to have a TV in their room until they were out of High School. You may want to sit down for this next Statistic. Th average person watches 40 hours of TV per year. That's a total of 960 hours a year. Children spend 1,023 hours a year watching TV. They only spend 900 hours a year in school. Want to know why children are desensitized to violence? Maybe it's because they will see 200,000 violent acts, including16,000 murders, on TV before they turn 18-years-old. Are you aware of the fact that 70% of all TV shows include sexual content, with an average of five sexual scenes per hour? What does this mean? Why should we be concerned? On the average, 38.5 minutes per week (20,020 minutes a year) is spent on meaningful conversation between a parent and their child. What an eye-opener. When I read this, I had to share this with others. It's scary that TV is being made into a BIG part of shaping our children. It scares me to think that children will see 200,000 acts of violence and then witness it for real and think it's not a big deal. Is it any wonder that our children are growing up too fast and not mature enough to handle what the world throws at them. If they are seeing actors being killed off one show and turning up on another show a week later, then how are they suppose to really get that death is final? How are they suppose to tell the difference between whats real and what is pretend? With all of the "Reality" TV they are watching how can they be expected to know that the reality is mostly exaggerated to make "good television"? Maybe it's just me. If you are as concerned as I am, there are six things you can do. First, turn off your TV. Second, decide on TV-free times of the week and stick to them. Third, remove TVs from your bedrooms and kitchen areas. The only place you should have a TV is the Family Room or Living Room. Fourth, make a list of activities to do in place of watching TV. You could read a book, ride a bike, plant a garden, get some of those household chores done, go swimming, the possibilities are endless. Fifth, Stop using TV as a reward for good behavior, good grades or other things you would reward yourself or your children for. Sixth, When you do watch TV, be more selective. Watch things with a positive message; something educational or inspirational. Lets face it head on. We complain we don't have enough time to get things done that we need or want to get done (I'm guilty of this too) but we always have time for our favorite TV shows. Are you part of the 70% that falls into this category? By just giving up TV one day a week, we can exercise the recommended amount necessary for healthy living. We can read 20 books. We could find time to complete those projects we've been putting off. We could spend that extra time with our loved ones. Instead or watching reruns of our favorite characters lives, we could be living our own lives. Let's get into the game and stop being spectators in our own lives. One day our children will be grown and we will have missed them growing up because we were busy watching TV characters grow up. Just something to think about this Monday morning...

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Marbled Eggs

I know Easter is done and the baskets are put away, but this is a fun project that you can do to add some "fancy" decor to your home anytime of the year. WHAT YOU'LL NEED: 1 Tablespoon of Food Coloring; 1 Tablespoon of Vinegar; 1 Tablespoon of Cooking Oil; Blown Eggs; Craft Glue That Dries Clear (I like Aileen's Tacky Glue); Clear Glitter Paint. Marbleized eggs don't have to be just for Easter. These beautiful eggshells can be saved for Easter, displayed all year long, made to hang on your Christmas tree, or any other creative way you can think to use them. Since you are decorating them, take a moment to think of how you want to use them and where you want to display them. Wash your eggs in soapy water (I like to put a few drops of Dawn dish liquid in some water) and dry them taking special care not to break the eggs. Take the darning needle and poke a hole in one end of the egg. Twist the needle around the inside of the egg until the yolk is broken. Turn egg to other end and poke a hole in that end with your needle. Blow hard through the top of the egg, holding the egg over your bowl. Be careful not to get the raw egg in your mouth. At first it will be hard to get the yolk out but once it starts, it runs out fairly easy. Rinse out the eggshells and let them air dry completely before decorating. In a small bowl, combine food coloring, cooking oil and vinegar until blended. Add enough water to make the liquid deep enough to cover an egg. Swirl the liquid around with a spoon and quickly lower an egg into the mixture. Remove from the solution and pat the egg dry with a paper towel. Repeat the process in as many different colors as you like. When the eggs are dry, paint a thin layer of the glue over the whole egg. Once the glue is dry, paint a thin layer of clear glitter paint over the egg. Your done! You can also use hard boiled eggs instead of blown eggs. If you want, you can draw a design or picture on the egg with a white crayon before dipping it in the solution. Wherever the crayon is will remain white. Now your decorative eggs are ready to be displayed. Remember, hard boiled eggs need to be refrigerated and kept refrigerated after coloring.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bathtub Finger Paint

Need something to make bath time more fun? Is it a fight to get the kid's in the tub for their baths? Well FRAZZLEDNANNY has an answer: Why not have fun, clean your tub and clean your child at the same time. You can now with this Bathtub Finger Paint. You will need: 1/3 cup of clear, mild liquid dish detergent (I like Dawn); 1 tablespoon of cornstarch; food coloring. Directions: Combine the dish liquid and the cornstarch in a small bowl. Once mixed well, divide into equal parts (depending on how many colors you want). You can use small bowls, ice-cube tray, baby food jars, or any other container you have available to you. I prefer the baby food jars so I can put the lids on any unused portions and save them for later. Next add your food coloring. One or two drops is all you need. Mix with a small spoon or a Popsicle stick. For easy clean-up, keep the finger painting inside the tub. Play games like tic-tac-toe, hangman, or draw pictures. You can also use the Bathtub Finger Paint as traditional finger painting. To clean-up, just wipe off. It's so easy the kid's can clean-up after themselves. What a great way to spend time with your children! Just think of the masterpieces they can make! Have fun and enjoy your children while they are still young. Listen for the music and take time to dance...

Monday, April 6, 2009

What Matters Most In Life

It's Monday, what are your going to do to make a difference in your week? Everyone has the power of greatness. Not for fame, but greatness. Because greatness is determined by service. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Have you ever made a list of what matters most to you? If you haven't, now is a great time to do so. If you read my BLOG over the weekend, you know I just turned 40 on Sunday. I decided I could continue with my life as it was, being nice and a "good" person or I could really "walk-the-walk". So I made my list of what matters most to me. My list looks like this: 1. God 2. Family 3. Friends 4. Faith 5. Health 6. Love 7. Freedom 8. Happiness 9. Career I came across some "averages" that person spends time on. I found that I am not average. For one thing, my time commuting is far lower than the 100 hour average (I work from home). Another area that was way off for me was sleep hours. The average person gets 8.6 hours a night and I get far less. This got me to thinking about time. How do I spend my time? So I made a second list; How do I spend my 168 hours each week? It looks something like this: 1. 78 hours ~ Career 2. 28 hours ~ Homeschooling 3. 28 hours ~ Family Time 4. 28 hours ~ Sleep 5. 7 hours ~ Church I am becoming more aware of how fragile time is. Once it's gone, there is no getting it back. Our children grow and no longer need us to take care of them. Our bodies age and need more care and attention. I don't like the proportioned list of how I spend my time. So what can I do about it? I think it's time to re-organize my schedule. What can I cut back on? My career. I spend half of my time on my career. I know I'm starting a "business" but I'd rather not have my own business than to wake up one day and my kid's are grown and gone. Right? All I know is that I want to be proud of each year when I look back on them. I want to know that I mattered and that I was the person God called me to be. Today can be the start of something new in each of us. Take this opportunity to make the most of your life by making a difference in you, in your life and in the lives of those you love. Be EXTRAORDINARY and live an extraordinary life!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

I'm Turning 40

That's right, FRAZZLEDNANNY will be 40 years old on Sunday, April 5th. It feels strange to be turning 40. I thought I'd be emotional, but I'm not. I thought I'd be sad, but I'm not. In November 08, God revealed to me that I had been holding onto all of this pain and anger from some past hurts regarding our church. It would take too much time to go into all of the details so I'll just say that I was a new Christian (Born Again in December 87) when I started attending the church that caused the pain and anger (January 89). I was strong in my faith and I had a great relationship with Jesus. Then I met the man I later married. We decided to attend his church (he was born and raised in this church and I had only been at my church for about a year). For the next 17 years, I struggled with this church. Some of the Board Members made it difficult to Praise God my way. The church was "set in it's way" and they didn't want to "step out of the box". Every Ministry I tried to start (following God's lead), they put up "road blocks". I got the teens excited about Jesus and Praising God their way. The church put up a fight. It was a constant battle. I thought I had let go of all the bitterness and hurt, when we changed churches in June 07. I tried to get involved in our new church. I attended church as often as I could. Inside, I felt numb. I couldn't get excited about anything. Then God revealed that I was holding onto the pain and anger. When God told me that, I felt a weight lift from me. I was so happy and I felt something for the first time in a really long time. I realized I hadn't felt anything since before leaving our old church. After a week of joy, God revealed that now I had to grieve everything that had happened since I stopped feeling things. The flood gates opened. Every morning, God would ask me if I was ready. Some mornings I was and I would be on a roller coaster of emotions. Some mornings I wasn't up for it and God would simply say, "O.K. We'll do another day." He was so patient with me and I felt His love again. I felt alive again. In March 09, I felt complete again. I feel my passion returning. I feel a great peace and joy flowing over me. When things happen, I am able to grieve them or enjoy them. I believe all the things I buried for all of those years have been dealt with. I am excited about church and I love Praising God again. Our new church is accepting of everyone. They are open to letting everyone Praise their own way. They focus on God and loving others (just as they are). I wanted to be there for my children and now I can. During my time of being shut down, I gained a lot of weight. Now I understand I was eating to avoid dealing with my life. I have about 75 pounds to lose and I feel ready to finally change my habits and lose the weight. I'm telling you all of this because as I turn 40, I am blessed. I cannot begin to count the blessings God has rained down on me. Turning 40 is nothing compared to shutting down and then having years of your life bubble up and over you in a matter of months. So this year, as I turn 40, I invite all of you to celebrate with me. Let go of the things that hold you back from being the "you" God wants you to be. His plans are far better than we can imagine. Let go and have FAITH that God will catch you and soar with you. My goal as I turn 40, is to let go and soar with God. I'LL BE THE ONE LISTENING TO THE MUSIC AND TAKING TIME TO DANCE!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Celebrate Our Youth

Summer is just around the corner. Before we know what has happened our children are grown and spending less time with us and more time working or being away from us. So take time now to celebrate your teens and preteens. Showcase their special talents with a "Talent Show". Invite your neighborhood kid's over to display their talent and have your kid's showcase their talent. Maybe they play an instrument well or maybe they are an artist. Whatever they are god at, let them showcase it at a neighborhood talent show. You can also have a "Kid's Night" and let your children choose a movie, decide "what's for dinner?" and spend time with them. Maybe your child enjoys the outside more than a movie. Plan a day at the park with a picnic supper. Having a weekly "Game Night" is another great way to share time with your children. Pop some popcorn and get out the board games. The point is to enjoy and appreciate them while they still have time to spend with you. I know this BLOG post is short, but I want to spend time tonight with my girls! More time with them means less time BLOGGING. FRAZZLED Nanny out!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Fool's Day

Happy April Fools Day! I never really saw the big deal about April Fool's Day. Maybe because it falls so close to my birthday (my birthday being April 5th). Maybe because I'm not much on getting people with practical jokes. Now I have a husband, a daughter (our third one who is a college commuter) and a son-in-law who are all consumed with "getting" each other in a practical joke. I just don't see the humor in making someone else look silly or stupid. What my youngest daughter and I will be doing today is playing silly games and drawing silly pictures and maybe even doing some silly crafts. We even have a silly song or two we can sing. Today is a day that we will embrace our silliness. I hope everyone can find their silliness that is locked inside of them. Take this one day and laugh. Be a fool. Enjoy life. Tomorrow will still be there ~ serious, demanding, draining, stressful...and I'll still be FRAZZLED.