Why Moms Should Love Pottermore

Surely you’ve heard about Pottermore, right? Well, I’ve seen enthusiasts excited for the new information Rowling’s going to share, I’ve seen E-Book lovers excited over the possibilities this lends to the future of reading digitally, and I’ve seen complaints from people on every side because it’s not what they wanted. But you know what I haven’t heard? Anyone talk about how awesome it’s going to be for those of us Potterphiles with small kids.

What? That didn’t seem obvious?

Here’s the thing. Harry Potter is a huge part of our life in this house. We have parties, do midnight movies, own all the DVDs and have built in the lexicon into our daily conversations. Early on I had to decide if I was going to let Nikki in on the world before reading the books, or try to shield her from it until she read the books. I decided shielding her would be impossible, so she has seen all the movies and we talk the world of Potter all the time. Now, I’m constantly reminding her that the books are better and that she’ll get to learn new stuff when she reads them, but I was always worried she wouldn’t be motivated.

UNTIL NOW.

This is how SHE is going to read the books. Via Pottermore. And it will be interactive. How awesome is that? When she reads about Harry being sorted? She’ll get to be sorted too. And when Harry goes to Diagon Alley to buy school supplies? She’ll get money from Gringotts too and will get to spend it. She now has all the motivation in the world to read the books, because she gets to PARTICIPATE.

Oh, and of course I’ll be re-reading that way them too. Duh.

It’s going to be a slow reveal, with the first book coming out in 2011 and Chamber of Secrets in 2012. In theory, she could be reading them as they come out. Just like E and I did. And she and I will be experiencing it together. JUST LIKE E AND I DID. This is a dream come true for me, as a Mom who desperately wants her daughter to love Potter as much as she does. Does any of this mean she WILL love it? Eh. Who knows. She’s often stubborn and just wants to do opposite of what I want JUST BECAUSE. But she already loves the world of Harry Potter, she randomly shouts spells and often says, “BLOODY HELL!” I’m hoping she won’t fight the pull and hopefully Pottermore will be something we can enjoy together.

I can’t wait.

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Pride! (To Hide The Shame!)

Handpring Frame Of Awesomeness!

One of the first things I pinned on Pinterest was this hand print project which I had found at Fun Mama. Unfortunately, it required a very specific increase of hand-sizes. Which, when you have a 16-year old, is kinda tricky. BUT I WANTED ONE!

So, I did something just as easy. I found a frame (with a mat!) stashed somewhere in my house that was empty. And I cut out our hand shapes in different scrapbooking cardstock. All of the cardstock came from the same book of papers, which makes it much easier to coordinate the colors/patterns. It took some tinkering to get them together in a way I liked, but once I did? Hodge Podge under the connecting pieces. Easy Peasy. I just picked a solid color to put BEHIND the mat, and glued the pile of hands to the FRONT of the mat.

TA DA!

I’m not entirely sure where I’m going to hang it. I may actually take it out of the frame and tie a ribbon to the mat and hang it on a wall with brown frames. Not sure yet. Obviously it’s a very flexible project. Adapted easily with colors, patterns and frames. And also? Friendly for families whose hands don’t consistently decrease in size.

NOW…let’s talk about another awesome thing.

It only took me 20+ years...

When I was in Junior High, friendship bracelets were the rage. I became quite good at the basic pattern but I could never figure out the one above. Which, is evidently called the Chevron. When I picked up the friendship bracelets again for my summer To Do list, I tried ONE MORE TIME to figure out that damn pattern. I thought, after 20+ years, I should be able to figure it out. I’m WAY SMARTER, right? Nope. Couldn’t do it. I was very frustrated.

BUT THEN! I remembered the INTERNET! And Pinterest! And I found this tutorial which made it SO EASY. And that bracelet? IS FOR ME. My kids have been watching me make it (it’s taking forever) and both are requesting it with serious intensity. But that thing? ALL MINE. It has basically taken me 20 years to make that bracelet. When I’m done? I’ll wear it with PRIDE.

Sorry for all the bragging this week! I’m just full of some Kim Is Totally Awesome blog content, aren’t I? I apologize. If it’s any consolation, I also made the BIGGEST PARENTAL ERROR OF MY LIFE this week, and I didn’t even realize it until hours later. I am not ready to share this story yet, because the shame is SO STRONG, so please tolerate my ego-pumping bragging as I try to convince myself I’m not the WORST PARENT IN THE WORLD.

(I promise. When a little bit more time has passed, I’ll share the story. I ALWAYS DO. Until then? Let’s just pretend I’m the awesome Mom who always makes cool crafts, good food, and never commits life-endangering mistakes, okay? THANKS.)

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It Took 16 Years But I Finally Have A Kid With Stitches! WOO HOO!

Another time the instagram app is useful? When you find yourself somewhere unexpected! Like the Pediatric Emergency Room!

I got the call at work yesterday. You know the one. Parents who work outside the home DREAD them like the PLAGUE. The call…from…DAYCARE. Is it fever? Diarrhea? Disobedience? No! It’s a bloody face from a playground fall! You win some stained crime-scene clothing and a trip to the ER!

When they called, Wes was screaming bloody murder. When I got to school to pick him up? He had one teacher holding ice and rags on his chin, his sister was sitting with her arm wrapped around his shoulders, and he was eating a Pop-Ice. Needless to say…He was doing JUST FINE. Even trying to not to smile as he was being pampered.

We went to the ER and they took great care of him. He was okay with everything until the prep for the stitches. The bandage they wrapped his chin to hold the numbing agent hurt like hell when they pulled it off, and it went downhill from there. The stitches themselves didn’t hurt that bad, I don’t think. He was well-numbed. But it was the cleaning and the covering and the holding down of the arms and the legs that made the ordeal just…AWESOME.

But we lived! And we went back to school after naptime to show off our stitches and Wes was the KING OF THE PLAYGROUND. My first kid with stitches. If it’s the last? I’ll consider us blessed. If it’s not? It’s okay. I learned quickly what the best post-stitches ritual is.

GIANT MEXICAN BEER.

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More Internet Bandwagons For You To Jump On With Me

I really am having fun with Instagram, no matter how resistant I was to jumping on the bandwagon. Mainly because, it makes me feel better about not bringing my good camera places. Like at the water balloon fight a few weeks ago. No way in HELL I wanted to have my camera there, but my phone? Did a dandy job. I think this is a great photo.

I I don’t know why I get so hesitant to jump on new internet bandwagons. I mean, come one! I live online, why wouldn’t I want to use whatever awesome tools YOU use?

Yet…I fight it. If no one has ever heard of the tool? I’ll totally sign up. But if 10 people are already using it? HELL NO. MUST SUCK. WILL NOT GIVE IN.

And now? I’m in love with Instgram, GoodReads and the latest…Pinterest.

It’s like a bulletin board of AWESOMENESS. I’m already following like, 120 people. And I kinda want to spend hours and hours “pinning” all of those brilliant recipes, crafting projects, organizational idea, and kid-friendly projects and then spend the rest of my life doing them ALL. But since I can’t really do that (BUT I WANT TO) I will simply look at my bulletin boards and dream…and then do one project at a time. Especially the Red, White and Blue strawberries. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

You have to sign up for an “invite” – which I got mine pretty quickly. A few hours after I requested it. However, that may be because I have my name on a database somewhere of “OBSESSIVE USERS” that automatically gets invited to everything. I think I can also send out invites, I managed to send out one or two last night and I think that worked. It looks like I may have a few more. If you want me to try sending you one, leave your email address in the comment section. I’ll post down there when it looks like I’ve “run out” — and then YOU can obsess with me.

Here’s a Tip: Explore the users they call “Tastemakers” – I found some amazing users with bulletin boards set up for entire seasons. Halloween, Christmas, even Valentine’s Day – Best. Resource. EVER. I promise you.

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fruitsalad_featured

Flexible Fruit Salad (A Summer Staple)

Fruit Salad

Every Sunday that we host family dinner (and even some Sundays we don’t) I whip up some of this fresh fruit salad. It is a GREAT summer recipe and a great side dish for any meal. It requires absolutely no skill whatsoever. You just get a big salad bowl and buy whatever quantity of fruits fits into your budget or match your tastebuds for the week. I usually go with about 5 apples, and then sprinkle red and green grapes with 1lb of sliced strawberries. I basically fill the bowl with a different variation of these fruits every week. You can even mix and match other fruits as you see fit – like blackberries, kiwi, pineapple. I add blueberries AFTER I add the dressing, which is the key, because I don’t want to squish the blueberries as I stir in the dressing. The key? Is the dressing (photographed above).

DRESSING: About a 1 1/2 Cups of Vanilla yogurt and about 1/8 Cup Agave Nectar.

THAT’S IT.

And you may increase or decrease either ingredient based on your preference. Agave Nectar is quite sweet, this may mean you want more or less, depending on your own taste buds. You may also like more dressing in your fruit salad, although I feel like this is quite a bit. It’s a great dish to tinker with because you really can’t go wrong.

This has staying power as well as Wes, E and I eat on it for several days AFTER Sunday dinner. I even add granola to it for breakfast. It stores well for several days and is a great healthy and sweet treat for the summer. Here is the final product which I eat in LARGE QUANTITIES.

Fruit Salad
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