Fly on the Wall



Fly on the Wall

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 9 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house.


Mommy: AKA Karen, me…the wife and mom 

Daddy: AKA Tony, husband and dad

AJ – our only child, a 7 year old boy who thinks he knows it all and is the one in charge

Bonus – our sweet and lovable adopted rat terrier 

Oh man that Scooby Doo. He’s silly. That’s his reality. He can’t change.

Holy Whoa. All that snow. It’s like Mount Everest.

While repeating one of many things to AJ, most of which go ignored. He finally looks at me and yells, “Stop aggravating me, Mommy.”
 AJ recent responses to most things in his life…
  • Well that’s reasonable
  • That doesn’t make sense to me
  • Okay Dude
  • No, I’m in charge
  • I am going to tell everyone how mean you are
  • I know, I know what to do (meanwhile he doesn’t)
I’m lucky I’m an only because (his list over the past month)
  • You lay in bed with me and rub my back at night
  • I get to sleep in the living room Friday nights for movie night
  • I don’t have to share my marshmallows
  • I don’t have to share my toys
  • I don’t have to share my Mommy or Daddy
  • I get to hold both my parent’s hands
  • I don’t have to share my toys with an annoying baby brother or sister
  • I get to always choose what to do
  • I am the king of the house

AJ Reviews: Galazy Zack-Three is a Crowd


Zack is thrilled when he finds out that his best friend on Earth, Bert Jones, is going to visit him on Nebulon. Zack can’t wait to show Bert around the new planet, as well as his new school. But when Bert meets Drake, Zack’s best friend on Nebulon, some jealousy starts to brew. Drake feels left out when Zack and Bert tell stories from Earth and share inside jokes. And he feels even more left out when the three boys go to an amusement park on the planet Cisnos and Zack and Bert go on all the rides…without Drake. When Zack finally realizes how out-of-place Drake feels, he, Drake, and Bert decide to all have fun together. Because, of course, two best friends are even better than one!

AJ bought one these books home from library time at school. We discovered how exciting and fun this book was to read. Needless to say we are both hooked. I love listening to AJ read this to me at night.

AJ’s Review:

This book is so cool. Zack’s friend from Earth visits Zack on Nebulon. He forgets about Drake, his friend on Nebulon. He keeps playing and going on rides with Bert and Drake feels sad and left out.

Zack learns he can be friends with both of them. You have to be be friends with everyone. It’s not nice to leave someone out. I know how that feels and it’s not nice.   

Mommy’s Review: 

What fun to read with AJ. I love that there are plenty of books in the series and the fact that’s hes reading a series on his own is wonderful.  Each book is filled with fun adventures and important lessons.  

The first four books AJ read are:

In book #1 We learn how and why Zack and his family go to Nebulon. At first Zack doesn’t want to go, but once there he begins to love his new home.

In book #2 Zack has to deal with a bully on Nebulon, but good guy Zack discovers something scientists need and he gets all the attention the bully wants.

In book #3 Zack’s dad works for an advanced company on Nebulon. He gets to go on a space trip with his dad and the dad’s company to bring back a prehistoric animal that came from another planet.

In book #4 Zack meets what he thinks is a monster, but the monster turns out to be a kid from another planet. Zack understands what it’s like to be new and they all become friends.

January Fly on the Wall



Fly on the Wall

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 9 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house.


Mommy: AKA Karen, me…the wife and mom 

Daddy: AKA Tony, husband and dad

AJ – our only child, a 7 year old boy who thinks he knows it all and is the one in charge

Bonus – our sweet and lovable adopted rat terrier 

I was arguing with Tony and he got a bit loud. AJ yelled, “You can’t be mean to Mommy because then you’re mean to me. I came from Mommy’s belly, so when you’re mean to mommy you’re mean to me. That insults me.”
Oh man why do they have to ruin movies with all this kissing.
Tony refused to take out dog. AJ turns around mid walk, puts hand up in hair, and says I’ll take care of this as he marched up to Tony. “You better take Bonus out, Mommy asked you.”
AJ got mad at me, because I was talking to him while he was searching for a show on Netflix. “See you got me messed up Mommy. Great Mommy, great job.”
While laying in bed with AJ during our nighttime routine. He began coughing and sputtering. “Mommy you are suffocating me with your bad breath.”
“What? I just brushed my teeth?”
“Well you stink.”
“That’s a lie, my mouth smells great.”
How dare I ask him to clean up before breakfast. I knew once breakfast was over we would only have a little time to get ready for basketball.
He repeated this about ten times. “You’re a big meanie. You’re the worst mommy.”
My father is talking to AJ and telling him to come pick up a bag and come to the door. AJ rolls his eyes and says “Okay, hold on, Sonny Boy.”
We brought AJ to a gymnastic activity place on a recent day off from school. He spent two hours there and loved it.
“So what did you do?”
“I did jumping, balancing, kicking, and yada, yada, yada.”
Tony and AJ are chatting, Tony is wearing a knit cap.
“Take off your hat, Daddy.”
“Why? Is it bothering you?”
“Well spring is coming.”
Tony laughs, “No, we are in the middle of winter. Spring is not here yet.”

Fly on the Wall March



Fly on the Wall

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 12 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house.

Buzz around, see what you think, then click on these links for a peek into some other homes


Mommy: AKA Karen, me…the wife and mom 

Daddy: AKA Tony, husband and dad

AJ – our only child, a 6 year old boy who thinks he knows it all and is the one in charge

Bonus – our sweet and lovable adopted rat terrier puppy 


AJ didn’t win the pine derby race, but he had a blast. It was an interesting experience for us all. An older cub scout said to him. “It’s okay, now next year you make work more on your car and make an upgrade.”

I told him next year he should make a sketch of what he wants his car to look like, then him and daddy could create that.


He got his green belt in karate!!!! I am so proud of him. It’s a tough test as it requires him to exercise before and during the test. It’s harder tests from here on out, but he did it. I think he liked being with the older kids and doing the harder test…even though it wore him out.



Seven belts down (including the green belt). Now he has to earn his green stripe, 3 different degrees of brown belt, then he can start training for his black belt.


AJ was taking a long time in the bathroom one morning. So I asked, “Is everything okay?”

“Yeah, I’m just daydreaming.”

“Okay, well I do that all the time. Lots of people daydream, it gives them great ideas.”

“I’m daydreaming about why I’m not a superhero and don’t have powers.”

Please don’t go in the bedroom yet, I just put the light on and Daddy is waking up. Poor guy needs a few minutes to wake up.

Laughing at me, “Mommy, poor guy means he has no money, not that he is sleeping.”

“Well, it also means when you feel bad for someone. Like poor guy broke his leg and is in a cast for three months. You have to hear how it’s used to see if it;s about money or feeling bad for someone.”

We’re reading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. In chapter 3, Harry Potter is sitting down for breakfast at the Weasley’s house after being rescued from his evil aunt and uncle.

Anthony: Why did Ginny run upstairs?
Me: She’s embarrassed to see Harry at the table. She likes him.
Anthony: Oh maybe she wants to marry him.
Me: Maybe, but they are only kids
Anthony: When they are older, she may want to kiss him and marry him.
Giggle snort…little does he know


Anthony: What is that number called again, where they need to go?
Me: 9 and 3/4, they need to walk through it. Remember?
Anthony: I think someone a spell on it so Harry couldn’t go to school
Me: Who do you think did it?
Anthony: You tell me. You already know
Me: I want you to discover it for yourself
Anthony: I think Snape because he didn’t like him, even though he protected him. It could be Voldemort, because he doesn’t have a body and doesn’t want school protecting him.
Me: Those are some great guesses.

Anthony playing with Legos after being inspired by a Lego Documentary. After a while the building turned into his typical boy playing with sound effects.

Anthony saying goodnight to Bonus. Yes he’s talking about Africa and Antarctica, he’s a bit obsessed with them lately.

AJ had to create a leprechaun trap for school. It may not have been the prettiest, but once the little guy gets in there, he will have a hard time getting out.

leprechan trap collage

Since he had to leave his trap in school, we created another one for our home. The cheeky little leprechaun painted happy faces on walls and doors and painted a mustache and bear on Anthony’s school photo. At least he left him chocolates and coins.

PicMonkey Collage


Walking Bonus has been embarrassing. She is now obsessed with marking EVERYTHING. She just can’t enjoy the walk and get exercise. Nope, she has to keep trying to pee and poop every five feet. It’s exhausting and annoying. She is like a mad woman and nothing stops her.

There goes me trying to get exercise by waling her. I mean who has heard of a rat terrier who doesn’t want to take long walks.

Fly on the Wall January



Fly on the Wall

Welcome to a Fly on the Wall group post. Today 12 bloggers are inviting you to catch a glimpse of what you’d see if you were a fly on the wall in our homes. Come on in and buzz around my house.

Buzz around, see what you think, then click on these links for a peek into some other homes


Mommy: AKA Karen, me…the wife and mom 

Daddy: AKA Tony, husband and dad

AJ – our only child, a 6 year old boy who thinks he knows it all and is the one in charge

Bonus – our sweet and lovable adopted rat terrier puppy 

AJ doesn’t want to take the bus to school anymore. He said some of the girls were being mean to him and not listening to the bus driver. He rather spend more time with his Daddy anyway. Tony will drive him in following the car drop off rules. In the nicer weather they can all walk in with Bonus! It’s a Daddy and AJ win!

I hear a whine and see Bonus standing in front of AJ’s door. She wanted him to get up so she could play with him.


Daddy cleaned some of AJ’s sheets and animals. AJ was so happy to see how Daddy left them for him.


Two buddies enjoy the sun’s rays from the safety of their warm place on a cold day.



Who knew dryer balls could be a fun toy. I discovered this with Balboa. I tried ti out with Bonus and she loves them too. They are hard so they make for great teething and gum cleaning. She’s quite persnickety and picky when it comes to food and toys. I plan on buying another pack of four dryer balls. She looses her mind trying to keep them all in the right place…which makes for great exercise on cold winter days.

PicMonkey Collage

AJ was sick with a bad cold. He was up all night coughing and blowing his nose. After some serious medicine, he finally slept. When he woke up I went over to him to see if he was feeling better.

His hand goes up and waves me off. “No, don’t come over to me. I’ll call if I need you.” Feeling dejected, I went into the bathroom to do my eye makeup. AJ gets a rag, wets it, then cleans off all the dried boogies off his face.

When I come out of the bathroom, he is reading to Bonus. Guess she is allowed to come over to him. I am so happy he’s striving to be independent, but sad he doesn’t need as much of my help as he did before.

PicMonkey Collage2

Getting Paid to do Chores


Around my early twenties I heard on a talk show that the best way to teach your kids about money and chores was to pay them half their age each week for chores. I always remembered that and thought about instilling this when I had kids. Fast forward to years later when we had AJ and I thought it would be better to make him do chores because he lives here and it’s what he has to do. We all need to have a hand in keeping up our home and he never needs for anything.

Now, AJ’s starting to ask for more toys, videos, games, and other things he sees. He’s not spoiled, but has no concept of the value of money and what it means to work for it. So I decided to go back to my original plan.

AJ is now getting paid $3.00 every Friday for basic and expected chores around the house. He must set the table, clean the table after he eats, put away his toys, put pillows back on the couch, fold towels and put them away, and vacuum (use the carpet sweeper) his room.


For extra money (25 to 50 cents), he can do other chores….such as washing dishes, replacing toilet paper, cleaning the bathroom sink, sweeping the porch, clean the dining room chairs, and clean the kitchen floor.

As he gets older not only will the difficulty of the chores, but the amount of money will increase as well. When he’s 7 he’ll get paid $3.50, when he’s 8 he’ll get $.4.00, 9 years will get him $4.50…and so forth.

What about when he’s in his teens? That’s almost no money per week. What if he takes on more responsibility? Can he get more per week? 

I hope that by the time he’s ready for working papers he will get an after school job and working hard to earn money will be a no-brainer for him.  Though helping around the house will still be expected. As for increasing his amount per week, I think that is open to discussion. Right now the small amounts are good enough. If he wants to earn more per week, then he will be expected to do more.

Hubby and I had a discussion about when AJ’s older, he can rake leaves, shovel snow, wash cars, take out the garbage, and even do his own laundry.

How does earning money help him understand how to save? 

We are keeping a record of what he has in his wallet and bank at home. Money in his wallet is for spending. He keeps asking to spend it, but I keep reminding him he may want to spend it on our upcoming vacation. This will prepare him for keeping a well detailed check register, understand what it means to save and spend money, and how to save for something big.

If he saves up $20.00 and puts it in the big bank, then I will add another $20.00. I think an incentive to save is not only great for him, but will increase the amount we have saved for his college fund.


What about giving to charity and helping others? 

Yes I encourage helping and giving to others. AJ likes give at church and for other donations. He already donates clothes and toys and giving money to help charities is important. For Christmas time AJ will spend some of his money to help out kids in need. Though getting him involved in a specific charity or cause might be beneficial as well.

Do you pay your kids for chores? Teach them how to save?
How to help with charities? 

This Week I Read…

dino pic for header2

Only One You


Before we get to the book review, AJ is excited for the summer reading program. For AJ reading every night, even during the day is not an issue. He loves to read and create his own books. As of today, he has read 10 books, so we have to get to the library to get his prize.

This year the prizes are…

  • 10 books: Summer Reading poster
  • 20 books: Ice cream gift certificate to Deborah Ann’s Sweet Shoppe
  • 30 books: Get your superhero photo taken.
  • 40 books: Cool sunglasses courtesy of the Friends of the %%%%%%% Library.
  • 50 books: Toy Chest gift certificate (toy store in town)

Amazon Summary:

There’s only one you in this great big world. Make it a better place. Adri’s mama and papa share some of the wisdom they have gained through the years with their eager son. Their words, simple and powerful, are meant to comfort and guide him as he goes about exploring the world. This exquisitely illustrated book explodes with color and honest insights. Kranz’s uniquely painted rockfish, set against vibrant blue seas, make an unforgettable and truly special impression. Only One You will inspire parents and children of all ages as they swim through the sea of life.

AJ’s Review:

He is the only kid like me. His parents tell him lots of things because they think they have wisdom. Mommy says wisdom is knowing a lot of things. The mommy and daddy want the boy fish to have fun, make friends, and see lots of art. Art is everywhere, it is, I’m serious. 

Mommy’s Review:

It’s nice to read a book that features an only child, even though it does not focus on being an only…just portrays a family with one child. There are books about new babies, different types of families, and stages in kids’ lives. So if I come across a book about an only child I grab it up and want to celebrate our family. 

This book is inspiring and sweet. It doles out wisdom that all parents want to instill in their children. It does not focus on making lots of money or being powerful. Instead the parents want their child to see the beauty in life, be happy and, make a difference in the world.

This was one of the books we bought using a gift card from his Grandma and Grandpa. we bought a few first grade books, and a bridge activity book to get him ready for first grade. . 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

What are your kids reading? 

This Week I Read


dino pic for header2

Loose Tooth


Amazon Summary:

A young boy wakes up one morning to find that he has his very first loose tooth. But no matter how much he pushes, pulls, and wiggles it, it just won’t come out!

Lola Schaefer’s energetic text and Sylvie Wickstrom’s exuberant illustrations perfectly capture the excitement and anxiety of a child losing his first tooth in an appealing book about a childhood milestone

o Beginning readers will recognize and respond to the familiar situation of a child with his very first loose tooth.

o Energetic and engaging, Lola M. Schaefer’s very simple story is perfect for the youngest beginning readers.

o Expressive and lively illustrations will delight young children.

AJ’s Review:

I had a loose tooth, but then it fell out. I swallowed it while I was eating lunch at school. Now the tooth fairy is getting a “poop tooth”. Don’t worry, Mommy says she has magic to clean it off and I still get money. The’s boys tooth came out all by itself, just like mine.  

first tooth

Don’t mind the face paint and stamps…it was a kindergarten celebration to get ready for first grade.

Mommy’s Review:

An easy to read book with word and sentence repetitions to reinforce decoding of text. The boy has a loose tooth and wants it out, but it won’t come out. His family tries to help, but then it comes out all on its own. Perfect for beginner readers and kids who are just loosing their baby teeth.

Kid Lit Blog Hop

What are your kids reading? 

Dinosaur Reads…

dinosaur xmas

La La bought me this book, just in time for Christmas.

knight for a day

Amazon Summary: The dinosaur fossils in the museum come to life (and sing, dance, and eat gingerbread) in this rollicking twist on the classic poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. And with the enclosed CD, children of all ages can enjoy dinosaur-themed Christmas party music, and hear the story read aloud by the Today Show‘s Al Roker! A portion of the proceeds from the sale of the book goes to support the American Museum of Natural History in New York, where the story is set.

Dino Review: It’s dinosaurs at Christmas. There is a dinosaur Santa Claus and dinosaur reindeer. It has dinosaur music and someone reads the book. I like listening to the music, it’s so silly. It’s like the movie Night at the Museum only with dinosaurs and Christmas. 

Mommy Review: I wish the CD beeped or told you when to turn the page, that is quite disappointing. Despite that Dino was able to figure out by what is being read when he should turn. I love the graphics and plot of the book. Very cute and creative for any kid who loves Dinosaurs. Though Dino was quick to point out that this is not real, dinosaurs are not around and Santa Claus is NOT a dinosaur. 

Kid Lit Blog Hop

La La bought me some cool things to store all my amazing art. I get to keep my weekly paintings and drawings in the plastic bag. Then each weekend I get to decide what I want to display on the wall, and what I want to keep in my portfolio. Mommy says only three art works in each section.  

I want to keep all my art work, but Mommy says we can’t keep it all. She says it’s all special, but we don’t have the room. Mommy will take pics of art I don’t have room for, but always want to remember. 

art collage

That’s So Nice

FTSF collage nice


Finish the Sentence Friday

“The Nicest Thing Someone Ever Did for Me…”  


Man, I am sitting here trying to think. I feel awful that I can’t remember all the wonderful things that have been done for me…makes me a horrible and evil person, right? Seriously, the only thing on my mind this Thursday afternoon is parent orientation for kindergarten tonight.

That’s right, I am writing this on a Thursday.

That’s right Tony and I are going tonight to meet the teachers, sign up for classroom screening, and get more information and resources than I think I can handle.

I have so many questions….

  • Will he be mad if I give him a packed lunch and the other kids buy school food?
  • Is the school food organic/NON-GMO?
  • What if he doesn’t learn to zip up his own jacket?
  • What if he doesn’t make any friends in the classroom?
  • What if he is incorrectly placed in a classroom and he needs more challenging work?
  • What if he’s being pushed too hard and feels inferior?
  • What if he need extra support?
  • What if he’s just too busy with his body and gets picked on by the teachers instead of being taught differently?
  • Does he need a backpack?
  • Does he need pencils and paper?
  • What if doesn’t like his new school or teacher?
  • What if he gets bullied?
  • What if the moms in the PTA are mean and ostracize me for being a working mom?
  • What if I am pressured into volunteering when I don’t have time?
  • What if he’s ostracized because his mom can’t volunteer?
  • What if he makes friends but I HATE the moms?
  • What if the kids don’t like him and he never has any friends?

See it just goes on and on. Hubby is relaxed…well he’s more worried that because he’s a custodian at another school in district Dino will get picked on…or have less than others have. As for all these worries he’s says I’m crazy.

So, in all this I did not finish the sentence at all. I will say that Dino is able to pick out the sweet and wonderful things people do and will say, “That was so nice.  ______ did that for _________ and that was nice.” I hope he is able to use this skill in school to make friends, learn, and be successful. I hope he is able to make friends and be friends with everyone. I hope he continues to use his manners and be respectful of others, but not letting others walk all over him. I hope he stands up for himself with pride and respect. I hope he loves learning and continues to learn and question everything. I hope he starts learning and never stops. I hope school begins his journey of changing the world.

backpack Collage


I was hoping they would give us more information tonight, instead they will mail everything to us in August. I am glad hubby picked up summer reading information at his school. I can get started on introducing Dino to reading series and books he will see in school. They didn’t have any of that at this school. I guess all the parents will be running around in August fighting over school supplies.

I am looking forward to his mini kindergarten to get to know the teachers and fellow students. I am looking forward to bus orientation so he can feel like a big boy. Hubby is also looking forward to walking Dino to school most mornings.  

It was nice to see some moms that I already knew. Dino will know some friendly faces and hopefully make long lasting friendships. 

 What is the nicest thing someone has done for you?