Interesting Pages You should look at

Monday, December 17, 2012

Curriculum Review - Apologia Land Animals

Young Explorer Series
Zoology 3 Exploring Creation with
Exploring Creation with Zoology 3: Land Animals of the Sixth Day

This is the book my girls used for Science for the fist semester of the 2012/13 school year.  This book was so well laid out that I didn't need a teachers book to explain it (they took it at co-op any how).   There were plenty of colorful photos, easy to read text, and exciting activities.

At the end of each lesson is a What do you remember section.  The student is to review/write the answer to a few questions regarding what they learned in that lesson.  Along with tracking, notebook activities, and mapping skills are fairly easy experiments.  We didn't do each one, but the ones we did were simple enough and did not require a huge trip to the store (love it!)

While taking this class at co-op, the students were also challenged to make a zoo and add animals to it each week.  The new animals were to be the ones they had learned about that week.

We really enjoyed learning about the animals, then taking a trip to the zoo to see them in "real life" and talking about what we had just learned.  I really believe that the girls will retain so much more information from this class than any other.

Along with the text book, you can also get a note booking journal.  I got a jr journal for my 4th grader, but would not do it again.  It would be fine for a student who really does not like to write or for a younger child, but there were too many coloring pages. 

My older daughter (5th grade) had a regular journal.  There are pages to color small pictures of what you learned about, and write info about the creature, mini books and penmanship practice as well.

In co-op we did the entire book in one semester.  That was way too fast.  If you spend an entire year and really enjoy the book, you will get a lot out of it, and retain the information.  As with all home schooling - you only get out of it, what you put into it.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Hot cocoa mugs

Hot Cocoa Pudding Mugs
These were just too cute to pass up!  And so easy to make.  The original recipe was found in the coupon section (go figure!).  I also found it on the jello website.
  • What you need 

  • 2-1/2 cups milk
  • 2 env. KNOX Unflavored Gelatine
  • 2 oz. BAKER'S Bittersweet Chocolate
  • 1 pkg. JELL-O Chocolate Instant Pudding
  • 12 miniature pretzel twist
  • 1-1/2 cups COOL WHIP Whipped Topping
  • 1/4 cup               JET-PUFFED Vanilla MALLOW Bits

    • Reduced Sugar Version
    • Save 30 calories and 4g of carbs, including 4g of sugar, per serving by omitting the bittersweet chocolate, reducing the MALLOW Bits to 2 Tbsp., and preparing the desserts with fat-free milk, 1 pkg. (1.4 oz.) JELL-O Chocolate Fat Free Sugar Free Instant Pudding and COOL WHIP Sugar Free Whipped Topping.

    How to make it                                               
    • Add 1-1/2 cups milk to dry gelatine in small saucepan; stir. Let stand 3 min. or until gelatine is softened. Cook and stir on medium heat 3 min. or until gelatine is completely dissolved. Remove from heat; whisk in melted chocolate. Cool 5 min.                            
    • Beat pudding mix and remaining milk in medium bowl with whisk 2 min. Whisk in gelatine mixture. Spoon into 24 shot glasses sprayed with cooking spray. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm.                              
    • Unmold desserts onto tray just before serving. Insert pretzel half into side of each for the mug handle. Top each with 1 Tbsp. COOL WHIP and a few MALLOW Bits.

    Thursday, November 22, 2012

    Kale Salad

    Besides being yummy, kale is really good for you.  This is a salad that everyone in the house eats, and I love to serve it when company is over.  Everyone thinks it so unique to put fruit into the 'dinner' salad.  I just see my kids eating healthy.

    1 bunch kale
    1 bunch spinach
    1 apple cut into small cubes
    2 oranges peeled and cut into segments   
    1 pkg strawberries
    6 carrots, cut into thin slices (rounds or matchsticks)
    1 cucumber
    1 bunch radishes
    1 pkg blueberries
    6 kiwi - cut into cubes
    4 cups grapes cut in halves
    1 bunch celery diced
    Mix and enjoy

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012

    Free Reading - Cool Beans

    I'm not a coffee drinker.  I don't like the taste.  I really don't like the smell.  I do not like the high price at coffee shops.  I don't understand the fascination with spending hours at a place drinking over priced caffeinated beverages with complete strangers.  I do however, love Cool Beans, by Erynn Mangum.  This particular novel is geared toward teens and young adults.  Considering myself a 'young adult' still, and not seeing that particular description, I read it cover to cover - and I am looking forward to reading the sequel. 

    One thing I particularly enjoy about Christian romance, over regular romance, is that instead of everybody getting 'overly friendly' with each other, they have Bible study.  Characters help each other and work through realistic life problems - not far fetched fantasies.

    Ok- about the book:  Everything seems to be going perfectly for Maya Davis: She has a great job at a coffee shop, gets along with her parents, and is happily single. That is until her best girl friend starts dating Maya’s high school sweetheart. Now Maya has to figure out wheather or not to tell her friend, sort out her feelings about her ex, and now, her feelings about her best guy friend.

    Friday, November 2, 2012

    Free Reading - 31 Kisses

    When I first started reading this, I though 'hmmm, just another silly romance novel.'  It is, but it is so cute!  31 Kisses is written by Chautona Havig - the same author who also wrote Ready or Not.  Had I noticed that, I would have been a lot more excited to read it!

    Right around Christmas Chessie and Gumpy (grandpa) are at the grocery store.  Grandpa finds a cute guy, Carson,  to set Chessie up with, but never quite finds a way to do. 

    A few days later Carson happens to stop by Chessies house and inadvertantly knocks her Gumpy off a ladder!  As with all great romance novels, they quickly become friends and start a new tradition with kisses - the chocolate kind. Gumpy is such a kid at heart, constantly evesdropping and pushing Carson and Chessie together.  Chessie is a thoughtful granddaughter, always thinking about Gumpys salvation, not her own romance.  In the end - at least one of them get their way.

    I laughed so much with so many parts of this book.  It also made me crave kisses :)  I was a little sad to see that there is not a second book to continue the story, but then again, if there was, I would want to buy every one!

    Tuesday, October 30, 2012

    Free Reading Time - Ready or Not

    As my children get older, they desire more time for 'free reading.'  They have always loved to read, and like getting time to read anything that is not necessarily required for school.  I love the fact that we can have an hour in the afternoon for quiet time, where we can just lie in our beds to read.

    I subscribe to a blog called The Frugal Girls.  Every day I receive an email with freebies, diy ideas, recipes, and more.  I love reading on my Kindle and will download nearly any book to my Kindle, hubbys, or one of the children's when I see a good one for free.  They are easy enough to delete if we do not like it or find it inappropriate (which we have not seen with the Frugal Girls list). 

    I have never enjoyed sci fi or fantasy, but love romance novels.  I have recently discovered Christian romance and Amish series.  I thoroughly enjoy reading something that not only keeps my mind on God and is enjoyable for my imagination.  Unfortunately, I get so involved in some of these books that I loose sleep on a regular basis.  I am not a person who can fall asleep reading, unlike my mom.  I get so involved in a story that I find myself wide awake at 1 am at least once a week. 

    Most recently I have started reading a book called "Ready or Not (Aggie's Inheritance)". 

    This is the book description on Amazon:

    Fresh out of college, Aggie Milliken thinks she's prepared for anything life can throw her way.
    After the abrupt loss of her sister and brother-in-law, Aggie is stunned to find herself the sole guardian of her sister's eight children. If learning basic parenting skills wasn't complicated enough, she must also battle the children's half-crazed grandmother, survive a massive remodeling project, and navigate the waters of new friendships-alone.
    She has little experience with children and none with housekeeping, and it shows. What she has going for her is grit, a double dose of determination, and the confidence that this is exactly where the Lord wants her to be. With an unlimited P-mail account and enough hymns to keep her spirits bolstered, she tackles one catastrophe after another.
    It seems like nothing Aggie does is right, but ready or not, here she comes!

    Not only does our main character have 8 children at the age of 22, she has never been on a date, her parents don't live close enough to help her out much.  Aggie must rely on new friends and God to bring her through the teen years and infancy all at once.

    There are 2 other books in this series - For Keeps, and Here We Come.  I can't wait to read them both and see who is prepared to move in and help her out.

    I'm that crazy lady who likes to mark all over every book I read.  If I find a quote or something that is encouraging, I will highlight it and dog ear the page.  I don't make 4,700 marks in the book - just the 
    REALLY good ones.  On page 125 there is  a prayer that Aggie prays that is applicable to all of us:

                       "Lord, remind me Who is the Potter and who is the clay.  I tend to try to model
                         myself and hope that You'll just kind of keep me from cracking the the fire
                         of life.  Please, Lord, teach me to simply be a lump of clay."

    I read this during a particularly hard week and was able to share it and encourage a few friends. 

    Thursday, October 4, 2012

    Raw Taco salad

    Yummy!  I left out the nuts since I cant have walnuts or cashews, but the kids really liked this.  I also added spinach, just cause its yummy.  I really like this website with raw recipes.  Not only are they less expensive than a lot of raw recipes, but I can budget dinner at the same time :)

    • 1/4 cup walnuts
    • 1 large tomato
    • 1 teaspoon cumin
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 head romaine
    • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
    • 1 small jalapeno, sliced
    • 1 ripe avocado
    • black olives
    • green olives
    • 4 tablespoons cashew cream {recipe below}


    • Make the walnut taco meat first and set aside.
    • In a food processor fitted with an "S" blade, pulse the walnuts, half a tomato, cumin, and salt until chopped but still a little chunky.
    • To a bed of chopped romaine, add the walnut taco meat, the other half of tomato (chopped), sliced onion, a bit of sliced jalapeno, chopped avocado, and olives. 
    • Top with a couple scoops of cashew cream.

    cashew cream
    • 1/2 cup cashews
    • 1/2 cup water
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt

    Blend all ingredients in small blender until very smooth. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.

    nutritional information

    calories: 398      fat: 30 gr      carb: 26      protein: 13

    Saturday, September 15, 2012

    Yogurt Banana Split


    There are some mornings (birthdays, holidays, Saturdays) that deserve something extra special for breakfast. 

    On those morning, for many years, we have made banana splits for breakfast.  No I do not give my kids ice cream and sugar.  I'm not that nice.  Replace the ice cream with yogurt.  It's that simple.  Really!  As long as your kids like yogurt, they will love it.

    Simply take a banana and split it down the middle.  Top it with 2-3 flavors of yogurt (there are SO many choices!)  Then top with any variety of fruits (fresh or frozen), nuts, and granola.

    I have found several other ways to do this, but this has been our favorite for years.  As the kids have gotten older, I have allowed them to make their own.  This just adds to the excitement.  I will often serve this when we have a guest over - highly impresses them, and instantly makes me the cool mom :)

    Chop it all up and put it in a fancy glass - makes it seem almost royal

    Monday, September 3, 2012

    Bean Burrito

    I really do NOT like refried beans.  I love Mexican food, but not refried beans.  I suppose it's because I know how much fat is in there.  That, and when you open a can it is full of squishy dog food looking, rotten smelling, stuff that barely resembles beans.

    Well, I made a batch for a potluck I was going to.  I say I made them, but really I opened a few cans and heated up the mess inside.  I could barely handle the smell. 

    My thought - If I don't like this stuff, then why am I bringing it?  I did an internet search and found a lot of ideas.  I had already been to the store 2 times today and I was NOT going to go back a third time.  Besides, I only had an hour left before I had to leave.  I had to make do with what was on hand.

    What I ended up doing was this:

    In a crock pot mix 2 cans refried beans
    1-2 cups velveeta cheese
    1/2 can rotel
    2 packets taco seasoning
    1/2 cup diced onion

    They didn't taste too bad.  Not my favorite, but definitely a TON better than what came out of the can.  Now, what do I do with the left overs?  There's not a lot, but enough that I really don't want to be wasteful.

    My oldest daughter has a thing for burritos right now.  I simply put that brown mess on a tortilla, add a few sides, and call it dinner.  I love quick dinners!

    This won't be my go to on a busy night, but now I know what to do with the 3 cans of refried beans in the pantry.

    Wednesday, August 15, 2012

    Home school General Curriculum Info

    Disclamer:  I have been working on this for several months, it is a work in progress.  I want to go ahead and post it, but let you know that it will always be a work in progress - much like our children and spouses.   If you have something to add (or spot an error) please email me.  Then check back often to see any updates :)

    After home schooling for 5 years, I am so glad that I am not living in the 80's - or any time before then!  Without help from the internet, I don't know what I would do!

    As more families leave the structured setting of a traditional classroom, the need for free homeschooling resources continues to increase. More programs are being added and created everyday, so getting started is becoming easier than ever before. I know that when I first started out, I had no clue what I was doing, spent too much money, and had little to no help.  In the 21st century there is a plethora of information.  So much so, that I have recruited help from other moms to compile this list.  I cannot guarantee that all of these links will work when you click on them, but they did when I posted this.  I will continue to update this site and elaborate on the descriptions as I learn more about each site, and find more.  In the mean time, enjoy the fruits of my labor :)

    General Curriculum:

    K¹² - Free (private school option available)
    All subjects are offered - grades K-12
    Offers outstanding, highly effective curriculum that enables mastery of core concepts and skills for all kinds of minds. The minds that are superbly gifted--or that are gifted in some areas and struggling in others. The minds that need to use hands to learn on some days, and eyes or ears on others. The minds that move faster or slower than average. The minds that are connected to bodies that need to run off steam periodically, or that are medically unable to attend a physical school. All kinds of minds, not just the best and brightest—not just the ones that are easy to teach in a classroom.  K¹² offers free classes, but you must have attended public school the year that you want to use K¹², or the prior year.  The only loop hole I have found - enroll your children in public school for a week, then take them out and enroll in K¹².  Not a fan, but it is an option. 

    Connections Academy  -  Free (private school option available)
    All subjects offered - Grades 3-13
    Offers free, public schooling for grades K - 12. They are fully accredited with state-certified teachers who guide the program. Upon enrolling, each child receives all text books and materials free-of-charge. Parents are actively involved in the program as Learning Coaches, and work closely with the teachers to provide a unique and individualized lesson plan for each child. To help children socialize, the program has activities, clubs and field trips.Connections Academy also offers an online private schooling option for a fee.
      Connections Academy is very similar to K12, in the fact that you must have attended public school the year you want to enroll - this is a new Texas state law as of 2011 (if I remember correctly)

    College Plus -$3000 the first year
    Many degrees offered - they specifically advertise: Accounting, Anthropology, Biology, Communications, Computer Information Systems, Computer Science, Criminal Justice, Economics, English, Entrepreneurship, Finance, General Management, History, Human Resources/Org. Mgmnt.,  Humanities, Information Technology, International Business, International Studies, Journalism, Liberal Studies, Marketing, Mathematics, Music, Natural Science/Math, Organizational Leadership, Political Science, Pre-Med, Psychology, Social Sciences
    I am still learning a lot about this one, but have friends who have children using this particular program.  I like any idea that will get my children through college for a fraction (ANY fraction of the price).  Distance learning is gaining popularity across the US, growing by almost 20% each year. College Plus students use a unique system to earn their bachelor's degree through a blend of CLEP and other exams, online classes, and onsite courses, depending on what their major requires.
    Every CollegePlus student is guided by a degree coach that walks them through their entire degree process. This coach is knowledgeable in study skills, CLEP exams, and navigating the distance learning college the student will graduate from. College Plus consists of three phases that just about every student goes through before graduating: study skills and life preparation first, then credit by exam (CLEP and DSST), and finally online courses.

    Time for learning $19.95 a month
    Subjects: Language, reading, math, science, social studies - Grades PK-8
    The Time4Learning curriculum gives preschool to eighth graders who are homeschooled the independence they crave, as they progress at their own pace. The program also helps kids who are homeschooled advance, by teaching with individualized learning paths that assure skill mastery.This program is for anyone in home school, summer school, or wants after school advancement.

    K12 Homeschool Online-
    A Christian-based program, K-12 Free Homeschool provides a core curriculum, tuition free. Once a student is enrolled into the program they receive:
    • Interactive CD-ROMs
    • Textbooks
    • Workbooks
    • Audio programs
    • Video programs
    • Homeschool activities online and offline
    • Software for grading
    • Software for record keeping
    • A complete curriculum with more than 140 Bible-based courses
      Parents are asked to pay a small shipping and handling fee for the materials.
      A flexible program, the course content of K-12 Free Homeschool is adjusted based on the needs of each child. Parents can mix the grade levels of the subject materials according to the level of the child in each subject area.
      The school offers optional fee-based upgrades which include:
    • Unlimited assistance by a homeschool teacher
    • Elective courses
    • Creation of a portfolio

    Ambleside Online -
    The free curriculum provided by Ambleside Online follows the methods used by Charlotte Mason in her correspondence and private schools.Parents receive access to the curriculum guides, book lists and online books for their grade level, from kindergarten through twelfth grade, and a weekly schedule following a 36-week school year. Adherence to the schedule is optional as it is intended as a helpful resource for pacing the amount of reading a student must do. Parents do not need to register or notify Ambleside Online that they are using the material on the website. Joining the email list provides access to support; however, it is not mandatory. The program does not include a math program, a foreign language program or a preschool phonics program.
    Available resources include studies in the following areas:
    • Bible study
    • Picture study - art appreciation
    • Folk songs and hymns
    • Composer study - classical music appreciation
    • Nature study - science
    • Study of the lives of Plutarch and Shakespeare
    • History
    • Geography

    Free World U -  
    Offers curriculum for grades preschool through 12. The program uses accelerated learning methods that are faster than conventional methods, and offers a rolling enrollment, meaning children can join at any time during the year.
    Information is given via flashcards in small facts that students can mark as correct or incorrect and sort into learned and unlearned categories. More than 20,000 flashcards are available on the site with additional content added frequently.
    Students can use the flashcards and projects on their own or enroll in the accredited program which includes project learning, student assessments for individualized lesson plans and socialization.

    Abacus -
    The Abacus Educational Service, in association with the Excellence in Education Academy, provides free online classes and a virtual classroom for homeschoolers everywhere. This collaborative effort is an online educational experiment in response to the need for online homeschooling facilities. Abacus Educational Service uses the famous course management system, Moodle. Homeschooling parents download the Moodle user guide and add themselves as a teacher. They are then ready to share their expertise in an area.
    Fee-based online homeschool courses are also offered by Abacus Educational Service.

    Learning by Grace

    Jubilee Academy

    Head of the class - allows you to customize your child's curriculum by mixing grade levels and multimedia presentations. The curriculum is for preschool through grade 8 and includes worksheets, videos and interactive programs for all levels and subjects. Options include:
    • Videos of art projects and music
    • Worksheets
    • Coloring pages
    • Foreign languages
    • Strategies for customizing the plan to your child's level and ability
    All content is free and can be used collectively or as a supplement to other homeschooling programs.


    Splashes from the River is a DVD and online streaming site for English, grammar and essay courses. While these programs are paid, the site also offers a free online spelling course from grades 6 to 8. The course consists of 30 lessons, each with approximately 20 new words and several exercises to incorporate them into vocabulary and learn the proper spelling of each one.

    The National Repository of Online Courses offers several free programs for high school students and for AP and honor students. Classes include algebra, physics, history, calculus and biology. Each class includes a syllabus, unit work and class extras. has free math and phonics, as well as math, phonics and grammar games and online lessons. Programs include:
    • Science
    • Language Arts
    • Social Studies
    • Math
    • Phonics and Grammar
    Quizzes, games and themes are also available. The program is aimed at Pre-K through Middle School.

    Heart of Wisdom - a guide to choosing resources for your homeschool classroom. The guide is based on the Heart of Wisdom teaching approach.

    School Express - offers free thematic units and eWorkbooks.

    Adam Smith Academy - this classical education website offers many free podcasts and online movies for homeschooled students.

    Lesson Pathways offers many of the same subjects that Time4Learning offers for grades pre-kindergarten through five. You'll find lessons on language arts, math, science and history. They also offer reading and phonics for kindergarten through second grade. You can use complete curriculum outlines or choose from particular subject areas and unit studies. The site is supported by advertising and donations.

    Bitesize is a British website offering free interactive lessons in math and reading. However, the grade levels in the UK are named differently than they are in the United States. You may have to spend a little time initially figuring out where your child falls in the British system. Once you've decided where to place your student, allow your child to view the animated lesson and game. Once the lesson is completed, print a worksheet that goes along with the topic and have your child complete the worksheet.

    NeoK12 offers online videos, lessons and games to help homeschool students learn about a wide variety of topics. Lessons can be found for English, math, science, social studies, geography, history, music lessons, sports lessons and arts and crafts. You won't find a lot of worksheets, so you may want to use this site more as a reinforcement of concepts being learned through your curriculum. If you do choose to use NeoK12 as a complete solution, you'll find quizzes on the site that are sorted by topics.

    Homeschool Share is a site full of moms who have generously shared their resources and ideas. The site is definitely geared towards those who lapbook, notebook or do unit studies. However, if that is your cup of tea, you will find a bounty of foldables, as well as whole-language type resources that help your child write about what he's learned. It definitely has a Charlotte Mason feel, so if you're looking for worksheets that look more like what your child would get at school, you won't find it here. However, the site is especially ideal for little ones who are into making their own books. That's not to say that big ones who lapbook or notebook won't find ample resources here as well.

    edHelper is neither geared specifically towards homeschoolers nor teachers, but rather features numerous worksheets in just about every topic imaginable. EdHelper is popular with homeschoolers because it offers high school level worksheets, and the site features an easy-to-use format. There is a subscription level to the site which allows you access to more worksheets as well as the ability to create your own. With that said, there are literally thousands of worksheets available at the free level.

    SchoolExpress is another site that is ideal for those who use a traditional approach to education and are looking for some reinforcement in certain topics. Again, like most sites of this nature, there are subscription options. However, they still boast about 16,000 worksheets that are available for free in a variety of subject areas.

    Holt McDougal has Holt online learning and Class Zone, both of which allow you to access various activities including worksheets. The catch is, of course, that you have to purchase the book, but the worksheets are incredibly well-done. Likewise, Saxon publishers have math worksheets that correlate to the lessons in the textbooks, as well as extra activities to reinforce ideas and general mathematical awareness.

    LearningPage, is a good source for free teaching materials that you can use in place of more traditional, fee-based online or book-and-paper homeschool courses.
    To download courses at the Learning Page, a parent must register with the site. Membership is free. You can browse through lesson plans, activity sheets and themed workbooks according to your child's grade level and interests. You and your child can choose from a variety of themes and archived pages devoted to making learning an enjoyable experience.
    Super Teacher Worksheets
    Worksheets by Grade Level
    Lesson Plans and Printables

    BrainPop is relatively new when it comes to homeschooling curriculum. BrainPop was devised by a doctor with the goal of making difficult concepts easy for young students. They are a subscription based service, however, there is plenty there to take advantage of for free.

    MIT Open Courseware is for those parents who are looking for help with high school and college courses. All courses are free and there isn't instructor guidance. . .but these are real MIT courses. 

    Homeschool Central

    Old Fashioned Education

    Homeschooling in the blue grass

    Successful Homeschooling

     Mercury Online

    Smart Tutor

    Friday, June 29, 2012

    Dry Drowning - Every parent should read this!

    Something scary happened at our house recently and we want to share it with you.  We are sharing this story because it has come to our attention that this is something that could save a life if it is known about.

    Drowning is a huge problem, especially in the summer time. About 4,000 people drown each year and 1,400 of these are children. The CDC has no statistics on the number of dry drowning deaths.  25 people have drowned in 2012 (as of July 1, 2012)

    Here is what happened the night of June 26, 2012 -All times are approximate

    4:30 pm: Mom drops Codiemichael, Cynthia, and Nikki off at grandmas house for a few hours while she and dad attend session 9 of pride training.

    7:00 pm: Cynthia and Nikki go swimming at grandmas while Codiemichael plays inside.

    9:00 pm: Mom and dad arrive at grandmas to pick up the kids. Girls are in the pool while Codiemichael plays inside the house. Dad tells girls to clean up the pool toys.  Dad and Codiemichael help pick up toys on the patio while Cynthia and Nikki dove to the bottom of the deep end to retrieve toys.

    9:15 pm: Cynthia comes up from the bottom of the pool saying she can’t breath. Dad pulls her out of the water. Cynthia is not able to stand up, speak clearly, breath easily or understand what is going on. Mom takes Cynthia to sit down while dad and Codiemichael help pick up the remaining toys. Mom and dad think that a combination of being tired and water pressure are contributing to her having a difficult time breathing.  Cynthia dries off and changes clothes on her own.

    9:30 pm: Family is back at home preparing for bed. Cynthia comes downstairs and tells mom she is still having a difficult time breathing she was nauseous, and her legs were weak. She said that if she 'went down again I wouldn’t come back up' because she had breathed in a lot of water.

    9:51 pm: Mom called utmb in Friendswood to talk to an on call nurse. Dad then took Cynthia to Clear Lake Emergency Care when nurse said to get her to hospital after being told of symptoms.

    10:00pm: vitals 98% o2, bp 99/62

    Chest x ray clear creatin low - probably dehydrated per nurse saul at clear lake er

    Given pill under tongue for nausea.

    11:58 pm: 98.4 temp, 93/57 bp 100% o2 nurse saul said she sounded clear

    12:27 am transferred to Clear lake regional for further observation via windsor ambulance.  Taken to picu.

    1:12 am 6/27/12 - 80 lbs, 4'9", 97.8 temp, 100/64 bp, pulse 80 bpm, sounds clear per nurse laura. Per cynthia: hurts to breath deep, legs hurt

    3:00 am: sleeping soundly

    1:00 pm 6/27/12 – Doctor says lungs sound good enough to not expose Cynthia to more radiation and she will be released around 4 after a few more hours of observation.

    4:15 pm – Released!


    More or less a mystery among the medical field, dry drowning is a delayed effect of a small amount of water in the lungs. This can occur when hitting the water forcefully (say, when exiting a steep waterslide or following a leap off a diving board), or simply from taking in too much while playing, as in our case. The result, which can occur minutes or hours after exiting the water, is constriction or spasm in the air passage and restricted breathing, potentially leading to respiratory arrest, cardiac arrest, and even brain death.

    It can take a while for the process to occur and to set in and cause difficulties, because it is a lung process, difficulty breathing is the first sign that you would be worried about.”  All children react to unintended swallowing of water by coughing, sometimes crying, and eye rubbing. The thing parents should watch for is coughing which is persistent and continues for an extended period or often long after the water has been ingested. If this coughing continues for as much as 20-30 minutes it may well be an indication of water aspiration into the lungs. Parents should be especially concerned if the child has any of the risk factors above.

    The second sign is extreme fatigue, which isn’t always easy to spot. “It’s very difficult to tell when your child is abnormally tired versus normal tired after a hot day and running around in the pool,” one researcher said. “The job of the lungs is to get oxygen into the blood and your brain needs oxygen to keep working, so when your brain isn’t getting oxygen, it can start doing funny things. One of them is becoming excessively tired, losing consciousness and the inability to be aroused appropriately.”

    Finally, there are changes in behavior,  — another tough call when dealing with very small children, whose moods and behavior can change from one minute to the next.

    The researcher admitted, “It is very difficult to pick this up sometimes.” But spotting the warning signs and getting a suspected victim to an emergency room can save a life, he added.

    Children complaining of chest pain is very unusual. It is a strong indicator of ingested water and possible aspiration into the lungs. Be aware this is another symptom of dry drowning. Any other complaint of pain following water ingestion is a warning sign and is another symptom of dry drowning.

    If the child demonstrates confusion, has trouble understanding verbal instructions or has difficulty verbalizing his/her own thoughts following accidental water intake he/she is demonstrating another symptom of drowning.

    A sudden lack of energy or demonstration of extreme tiredness is a significant symptom. This is especially meaningful when seen in a normally active child.

    Victims of dry drowning are treated by having a breathing tube inserted so that oxygen can be supplied under pressure to the lungs. “Then we just wait for the lung to heal itself,” he said.

    Doctors suggest that when accidental water ingestion occurs that parent first consider whether their child has any of the high risks (above) for dry drowning. They should then keep their child nearby and observe intently, whether any of the above symptoms are demonstrated. If they are the child should be taken to a doctor or emergency room.

    Doctors warn us that this is not a condition which can be treated at home or will go away with time. The only effective treatment is remove the water from the lungs and resupply oxygen to the lung as quickly as possible.

    In the absence of timely medical treatment the spasmodic effect of the larynx may cause respiratory failure and eventually respiratory failure shutting off air supply to the lungs and later cardiac arrest.

    Please be aware of the risk and symptoms and do not hesitate to get medical attention for any child demonstrating these.

    While my daughter is a strong swimmer and very familiar with this pool, you can see that we nearly overlooked some very important warning signs because of the time of day (late at night), and the situation (she was tired from swimming for several hours).  I don’t send this to scare anyone, just to keep you aware. 

    I would rather be an over protective parent, than a parent with regrets

    Monday, May 7, 2012

    The day we found Ted

    On our way to check out a new co op this morning, I was driving down Clear Lake City Blvd. 
    It's not a huge road, but with 4 lanes of traffic at rush hour - I don't want to walk in the middle of it!  Well, I noticed in front of me a turtle! 

    Well, everyone in our house is an animal lover - so I stopped.  I stopped in the middle of the road, turned on my 4-ways and stopped traffic.  I let my son get out (on the safe side) and grab this turtle.

     We took the turtle in the truck and drove over to an abandoned golf course with a creek running through it.  On the way we looked up all kinds of information including what kind of turtle it was.  Although he was with our family for just a short time, we will always remember Ted the Turtle :)