August 31, 2010

Evan jammin out to big sister's CD's

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Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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Blog spotlight and tipping...

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Ok so I decided to do another blog spotlight, especially since she posted about something that is a hot spot with me!

My awesome friend (for about 8 years now, though we have never met in real life) over at Life Unscripted posted about her job as a waitress, and the lack of tipping that goes on in the food service industry.

Many people just don't realize that those that are not in management in this industry just DO NOT make the money most people think they do!! I remember managing a Papa Johns. I made about $10-ish an hour, while my drivers made MAYBE $3-5 BEFORE tips!! (Yes people see a sign in the window of a local pizza place that says deliver drivers wanted, up to $10/hour...what they do not realize is that they MIGHT make $3 an hour, pushed up to $10 by TIPS!)

People in the food service live off their tips. So, if you decide not to tip that night (and everyone else around you does the same) your waiter/waitress/delivery driver might not even make it home because they can't afford the gas! (Pizza drivers pay their OWN gas)

I also remember driving for Dominos in college. I got the MOST tips from the POOREST sections and the LOWEST (if any) tips from the RICHEST!! Though as I went through life, I realized that many rich people are brought up to believe that only THEY deserved to have money because they worked OH SO HARD for it, while those that didn't make enough were apparently lazy. (You know, because driving around God's earth to deliver your pizza is easy, or waiting on a bunch of tables with customers who were never taught patience is fun!!)

Ok rant and ramble over :)

Just remember...tip well...because you are leaving your food in the hands of strangers...;) no telling WHAT they can do to your food...:)

Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!







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August 28, 2010

Testing app

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Testing basic post BlogBooster-The most productive way for mobile blogging. BlogBooster is a multi-service blog editor for iPhone, Android, WebOs and your desktop

# 381 Ramblings Of A Stay At Home Mom

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My awesome followers got me to 300, but now I am back to 381! I see they also added more blogs...I LOVE looking through them all (and even vote for MY favorite!!!

Please click the Top Baby Blogs logo below and vote for me...and I don't mind at all if you vote for others!! I do!


Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!


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August 27, 2010

Take me out to the (free) ball game!

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So earlier this week, Chris's company took the staff out to the Valley Cats Game. We got to sit up top at the picnic benches, and have free hamburgers and hot dogs :) We also got free hats and (I got) free beer. Our seats were box!!! We had a blast (and could never afford the cost of what they paid for this lol)

Here are a couple pics from the game!






We all had a blast! I hope they do this again. :)

Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!



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Love The Wiggles? Head on over to The Angel Forever!

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My friend and local mom over at The Angel Forever is holding an awesome giveaway! She was contacted by the PR department of the Wiggles and was asked to review and give away a DVD. This DVD looks AWESOME!

best of wiggles

If you love The Wiggles, head on over! She has a few "game rules" but nothing my followers can't handle!!! 


Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!



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And Wyatt doing the Macarena Months. More for Video Friday!

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Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!



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Cute Vid Memory---My then 2.5 year old doing her Macarena Months!

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SO proud of herself!!! 
Macarena Months

Becka | MySpace Video



Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 26, 2010

New Recall

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NEWS from CPSC
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
Office of Information and Public Affairs 
Washington, DC 20207 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 26, 2010
Release #10-327 

Firm's Recall Hotline: (800) 428-4414
CPSC Recall Hotline: (800) 638-2772
CPSC Media Contact: (301) 504-7908

Magnetic Maze Boards Recalled by Lakeshore Learning Materials Due to Choking, Intestinal and Aspiration Hazards

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed. It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.

Name of Product: Magnetic maze boards

Units: About 18,500

Manufacturer: Lakeshore Learning Materials, of Carson, Calif.

Hazard: The magnetic maze board's plastic wand can separate and expose a magnet that can be a choking hazard to children. Also, if a child has more than one of these toys and the magnets detach and are swallowed, the magnets can attract each other and cause intestinal perforations or blockages, which can be fatal.

Incidents/Injuries: Lakeshore has received ten reports of wands separating and magnets detaching. No injuries have been reported.

Description: This recall involves wooden magnetic maze boards. The wooden boards have a clear plastic sheet that covers small wooden or plastic pieces located inside a maze. A plastic wand containing a magnet in its tip is attached to the board by a cord. The wand is used to move items inside the maze. The top of the board reads: "Who's Hiding in the Garden?," "Who's Hiding in the Ocean?," "Magnetic Counting Maze," "Magnetic Alphabet Board" or "My Community Magnetic Board."

Sold by: Lakeshore Learning Materials stores nationwide, its catalogs and online at www.lakeshorelearning.com from January 2009 through May 2010 singly or in sets for between $30 and $40.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately take this toy away from children and contact Lakeshore to receive a free replacement product.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Lakeshore Learning Materials at (800) 428-4414 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, or visit the company's website atwww.lakeshorelearning.com

To see this recall on CPSC's web site, including pictures of the recalled products, please go to:
http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10327.html





********************************************************

'CPSC 2.0' Launches Product Safety Agency into Social Media -- Learn more at http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml09/09346.html

* Visit our new blog, OnSafety at www.cpsc.gov/onsafety

* See our videos on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/uscpsc

* Follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/OnSafety

* See our photos on Flickr at http://www.flickr.com/photos/uscpsc

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from thousands of types of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. The CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard. The CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals - contributed significantly to the decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.

To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, call CPSC's Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or CPSC's teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270. To join a CPSC e-mail subscription list, please go to https://www.cpsc.gov/cpsclist.aspx. Consumers can obtain recall and general safety information by logging on to CPSC's Web site at www.cpsc.gov.





Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby.Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!


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Guest Blogger: I Confess – I Quit Baby Sign Language

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It was my daughter’s fault. You see, she popped out of the womb wanting to communicate.

She spoiled me.

She started signing for milk when she was six months old, and she picked up every sign just as quickly as I could teach them to her. She was a Baby Sign Language machine.

And I loved it. Oh, didn’t I love it. I bragged about it. I showed off in public. Especially in front of my in-laws. I was the best mother around. My daughter was my proof.

Then I met my son.

He came into this world quietly and stayed that way. He was calm and undemanding. I know, can you believe I am complaining about it?

I began introducing signs to him when he was about five months old.

When he was ten months old, he still wasn’t signing back.

I tried everything. I signed to him constantly, everywhere. I played the games -- I did the drills. I begged him to sign back but he would just smile at me and look cute.

So I quit. I was embarrassed. I had failed. I didn’t want to keep signing to no avail in front of my mother-in-law. I gave up. I basically told my son that if he didn’t want to communicate, then that was fine with me.

Then one day several months later, I forgot that I had quit, and in the heat of the moment, with my son screaming, I asked him if he wanted something to eat, and I made the sign for eat. And he jammed his entire fist into his mouth and looked at me like I was an imbecile. So I turned to get him something to eat, and I asked him to sign for please, and I reminded him how to do it. And he smiled and signed for please. I couldn’t believe it. I had not taught this child anything for almost three months, and then all of a sudden, he became a bit of a jabberbox.

Today, my son is eighteen months old, and he too, is a signing machine. (No thanks to his quitter of a mother.) He loves to sign and is good at it, and I continue to introduce new signs, now that I’m back on the wagon.

What’s the moral of the story? Well, I can think of a few of them. First of all, if I can be a signing mom, anyone can. So if you have given up or gotten frustrated, it’s never too late to start signing again. And if you feel like giving up, go ahead and take a break!

And secondly, some babies are just on their own schedule. For whatever reason, my son just didn’t feel like signing when I wanted him to. When he was ready, he signed.

I didn’t need to panic. I didn’t need to quit. But in the end, it is okay that I took a couple of months off. And he never needs to know. (Please don’t tell on me.)

This guest post is brought to you by the Baby Sign Language site. Visit us for more tips on on how to get started with baby sign language.





Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 24, 2010

What your child should know before Kindergarten!

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School is fast approaching, or already in session for some...so here are some tips about what your child should know before they enter Kindergarten, to make their and the teachers jobs much easier, and to help your child succeed!



As an early childhood educator, it saddens me to see many 3 and 4 year olds who are not even close to being prepared for Kindergarten. So may parents rely too much on their day care or preschool to teach their children, and, when they don't do an adequate job, the parents get upset.

Problem there is, parents are a child's first teachers, and what is learned at school, should be enforced at home. This is very important for a child's future school career. A 3 and 4 year old child needs to be prepared for the competition ahead of them throughout their schooling.

More importantly, education starts at birth. The moment your baby is born, is when they should start learning about their world...talk to them about colors, textures, smells, and do forth. Signing and reading are both excellent ways to help your child start to understand their world.

These tips were given to me by a fellow mom and Kindergarten teacher who says every year she needs to hold kids back because of their lack of skills, and that any TYPICALLY developing child should be able to do these things by age 5.

By four years of age (or sooner), a typically developing child should be able to:


  • write their full name 
  • count to and write numbers 1-20 and possibly more
  • say, write, and recognize all 26 letters of the alphabet 
  • know their address, phone number, and parents names 
  • drink from a regular cup 
  • go to the bathroom on their own 
  • recite the days of the week 
  • recite the months of the year
  • dress themselves 
  • brush their own teeth 
  • know how to share and take turns without whining or arguments 
  • shapes/sizes
  • colors 
  • reading at least 100 basic  Dolce sight words (2 and 3 letter words) 
  • do a 100 piece puzzle by themselves
  • know how to follow rules 
  • walk in lines 
  • sit at a desk (unless, of course, you are sending them to Montessori or the like) 
  • understand simple concepts (yesterday, tomorrow, night, day, today) 
  • hold a writing utensil the correct way 
  • color inside the lines 
  • basic letter phonics 
  • retell a story
  • know the main parts to a story and the main characters
  • know how to keep their space neat and organized, and take care of their own belongings
  • separate from their parents with no crying or fussing 
  • pay attention for up to 30 minutes in a lesson or activity
  • cut a straight line with scissors
Many of these can be taught through songs and fingerplays, signing and more! You do not need to sit down with a workbook or at a desk, there are many ways to teach your child!!

That is the basics they should know before kindergarten! PLEASE help your child know these concepts. When a child does not know basic concepts entering Kindergarten, it hinders the teachers ability to teach the rest of the class. It may actually hold the class back, which will not properly prepare them for 1st grade (and so on). This is a highly competitive world, and we want our children to succeed! 









Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!








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August 23, 2010

I LOVE my CiCis!! Giving away a coupon for a FREE child buffet!

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So when I moved to Raleigh, my friend Lisa got me addicted to CiCi's Pizza.  The kids and I went there A LOT on their breaks (when they went to year round school) and even more on weekends. The manager knew me by name and the atmosphere was always great! 


The new one opened a couple months back, and we have been a couple times. It is not easy to take all 4 on my own...I do plan on taking the older 2 like I did there, so they can have a younger brother free day! :) I am SUPER excited that they have one here in Albany now...I sure did miss my CiCis!! 


Since I don't go there as much as I would like (no $$ hey have 4 kids lol, these places get expensive!) I have a few FREE Child Buffet coupons I got from their cup giveaway. I am giving away 2 of these to 2 lucky winners! I will also include a few extra BOGO coupons with them, to spread the CiCis love!! 


So comment below if you want to win and at the end of the week, I will pick TWO lucky winners! Tell me what your favorite pizza toppings are and how you like your pizza crust! 





Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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some tips for developing your child's language skills right from the start

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The more you expose your baby to language, the stronger his verbal skills will be. Language acquisition is a gradual process that involves many facets of development including listening, imitating facial expressions, playing peekaboo, and babbling. Your child will learn language naturally by hearing it used in context when you sing, read, talk, sign, and listen to him.


• Your Baby: At two months, he coos and babbles. In his first year, he’ll begin making vowel sounds (oohs and aahs), and then move to new sounds and vowel-consonant combinations. Your baby is also learning the art of conversation. Bring your face close to his, and talk to him. Ask him a question and let him respond. He is learning that conversation is a two-way street.

• Your Toddler: In a verbal growth spurt, your toddler’s vocabulary expands from about 50 to 200 words. When your toddler displays emotion, give him the language to identify it. “You’re happy!” or “I can see that you’re sad.” You’ll enhance his emotional intelligence as well as his vocabulary.

• Your Preschooler: Playing rhyming games is a fun way for a preschooler who is developing phonemic awareness – the recognition that sounds make up words. Encourage him by making up rhymes and laughing together.







Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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Condensing 2 blogs into 1

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So this has become my main blog. My Learn and Grow Blog has not been as active as it was. SOOOO

All my ramblings, whether it be my kids, parenting, signing, etc... will now be here! SOOO

If you follow there, please follow here!

Thanks friends!






Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 19, 2010

Bad mommy...no drink for you!

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So I wake up this morning and think...there is something I am forgetting...or forgot. So I lay there for a bout 10 minutes then is comes to me......................

Nick's middle school open house was last night!!!!

UGH! Bad mommy me! It was supposed to be one to show him and us around and let him get a feel for where his classes are. Well, guess he will have to figure that out on his first day, huh? this prompted me to get all 3 of the older kids school stuff into ONE place!

My poor guy, going into middle school and now mommy is forgetting to do things for him lol. Guess he will just have to find his way around the real world alone from now on :)

So that might be a pattern...once you are out of elementary, you are on your own! Well, you can still live here, and eat our food...but you have to at least walk to the bus alone and find your way around your school without us there :) Sorry, no more following buses on the first day for you.

Aren't I terrible :)

I am sure he will do JUST fine in middle school. Though I might cry like a baby even more then I did when he started kindergarten...what will I be like  when he goes into high school?!

Good luck out there Nick! I know you will do great :)






Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 15, 2010

Why do I do this to myself every time?

Posted by Becka
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I have come to the conclusion...again...that I am way too nice. I let people get away with things and it comes back to bite me. I have been like this since I was younger. Probably why I lost all my good stickers/toys/books and so on...gave them to what I thought were friends, who just wanted to take advantage of me.

I seriously don't know who to trust anymore...if anyone! Ok there are a select few, and they know who they are...though there are some who THINK they know...but no, it is not you!

So i have decided to weed out those that are a toxicity to me and my children, and separate myself from those that decide to screw me over and then proceed to turn it around on me, and make ME the bad guy...when it is they who break their word and decide to turn what I thought was a good friendship into an acquaintanceship based on lies and deceit.

So, from now on, I am not playing Mrs. Nice Girl. If I have known you less then 3 years, don't ask me for favors without expecting to give me some sort of compensation. if i have known you for more then 3 years, but I am still now sure what your real intentions are, then I expect something for something, and not nothing for something.

Those that I would never think of asking for compensation for anything, you know who you are!  

So please, if you do not want to be a real friend (honest, trustworthy, reliable, not wanting to use people around you for your own personal gain, respectful, non back talking, non back stabbing, etc...) then please, remove yourself from my life, so I have less people to remove myself!

And remember...I always find the truth out somehow...so lying to me is pretty useless! (Because I use all my resources, and I have many)


Todays rambling has been brought to you by the letter B and the number 8 :)





Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 14, 2010

A dad blog in the spotlight!

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So the other day I got a Facebook friend request from someone I didn't know...I usually ignore them lol. But then I saw his blog and HAD to accept! This guy is HILARIOUS! He has one son, and lives with his partner in California. His posts are awesome, and the tone I was aiming for when I created this blog.

I am loving reading the older posts on this one!

You can find his blog HERE. I will be checking back often for new posts!





Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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August 13, 2010

Michele dancing to Camp Rock 2

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That's my girl!







Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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A blast with a little friend and more!

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So this is the last day of us watching my friends 2 year old. He is such a cutie!! Wyatt actually asked for him over last weekend and one day when he was not here. I think they found new best buds :) Though, it made me realize, I DO NOT want 5 kids lol. If anything, my house is a disaster at the end of the day, and guess who gets to clean it! <------ HA!

BUT they had fun making said mess, and that is all that counts! He fits in with my kids, who are always busy, want to be outside, and want to build things...of and they all want to eat me out of house and home. typical little rug rats :) Would not want it any other way!

But now, I am seriously thinking of putting an ad in the paper for the school year, to watch 1 or 2 kids during the day (I THINK I can only watch up to 2, with my younger 2 home? I have to read the state laws on that, before I do that)

Luckily, unlike many teens out there...I have almost 20 years experience and a Bachelors in Early childhood Development and Education. NOW all I need is more CPR training and to get my certification. I know it is not a requirement, but it would surely make ME feel more confident! Especially with my classes.

Speaking of classes, I have 3 potential families...well had. Apparently only 1 now! I got more interest in Raleigh then I do here!! It does not seem like classes like this are very popular in this area...even Kindermusik seems to be scarce. Lucky for me, i have a friend who teaches it, so we can help each other out :) I do wish I had a facility to teach them in though...I have emailed a few with no reply...one of them them the place my friend teaches Kindermusik in. Kind of miss the KM studio I taught in down in NC!! Though, I think that is not there anymore?

But I do have one class starting the 28th...well skipping the next weekend after that for a wedding...but at least it is a class, and another baby who can learn to communicate with their parents! That is the best part!! I love teaching and being around kids. Though, I have also been reminded why I don't work in day cares anymore! You get a bunch of women together for 9-10 hours in the same room/building and there WILL be drama...sometimes more then you really want to deal with! HA

I do think, though, that once the older 2 are back in school, that I will be able to blog more often. Especially when Wyatt is in school.

Well, off to the races so-to-speak. Thanks for checking in, and don't forget to visit my blogs new FACEBOOK PAGE.















Stay at home, business owning mom of 4 young kids, Nick the Sportsman, Michele the Princess, Wyatt the Wild One, and Evan the Baby. Bachelor in Early Childhood Development and Education, with 20 years experience. I could not ask for anything more!




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