29 Jun 2017

EDUCATION.COM - Make Learning Fun and Easy For Your Child.


If your like me, the education of your child/children is extremely important and giving them the best start in their education is essential.
Learning doesn't come easy to all of us, but the team at Education.com have taken learning to a new level, providing fun and interactive ways to help your child learn. 

When Jennifer from Education.com approached me and asked if I would like to publish a fully prepared activity exclusively to craftypjmum  I jumped at the chance. 

Here is an example of what is available:



What's My Number?


It's important to have a good understanding of numbers and their values. This guessing game combines logic with number sense. It suits all ability levels, as players' questions can be simple or complex. All you need is a deck of cards to get started with this fun math game! Work in teams or individually, with any number of players. Why not invite the whole family to play?


What You Need:
Deck of playing cards with the face cards (jacks, queens, kings) removed




What You Do:
  1. Have the first clue-giver draw one card from the deck at random.
  2. Tell the player who correctly guesses a card earns that card and the right to be the next clue-giver.
  3. Encourage the other players to take turns asking mathematical questions in order to figure out what card was drawn.
  4. Let the clue giver know that he should respond to each question with a yes or no answer.
  5. If the guessing players get stumped, the dealer should give out a few mathematical hints. (e.g. if you add 5, subtract 2, and multiply my card by 3, the total is thirty)
  6. Have the current clue-giver pass the deck to the new clue-giver.
  7. Play until the deck is depleted or set a time limit and when time is up, the player with the most cards wins!

Pop on over to Education.com and learn more about this great program, and put your kids on the right path to learning with guided lessons.
With over 30,000+ teacher-approved educational resources.
Engaging games, songs, worksheets, Interactive exercises and many more.
Easy to use on their own, with parents or teachers.


* this is not a sponsored post 

27 Jun 2017

AND THEN THERE WERE THREE




It is true, I have always been a cat person. Cute and cuddly, I just cant go passed all the fury goodness. This week I took my cat loving to new heights and our family welcomed a brand new fur baby into our home. So I guess it is only fair to give myself the title of crazy cat lady and my family, well they totally agree....


Abby { Old Nana }

She is the original fur baby.
The leader of the pack.
Abby is almost eleven years old and with the nick name of  "Old Nana" you can imagine that she tolerates nothing from anyone. This includes the two newest additions.
She is lovable, gentle and will cuddle up to anyone provided that she is in the mood.
She does have some very bad habits though....
She loves to eat salt and vinegar chips and BBQ shapes.
She is not allowed to eat these by any means but sneak them as much as she can.


Penelope { Penny; Guts }

Penny was only six weeks old when we fell in love with this tiny fur ball. Now she is two and I cant imagine life without this beauty.
She has spent two years trying to befriend Abby without success but she never gives up on her will to win.
Penny is noisy, I have never heard a cat meow so much.
Every single night Penny goes through what we call crazy hour. She goes absolutely crazy running around the house like her tail is on fire.
Penny is a proper princess. She demands to be fed before I have my morning coffee and needs to be settled at the foot of my bed before I snuggle down for the night.

Nancy;

Nancy is our newest addition joining our family last Friday.
She is two years old and we adopted her from the RSPCA after she was abandoned.
She is so sweet, preferring the males of the house to me at the moment, but she is slowly warming up to me.
Abby is not bothered with her at all. I think she is to old to care anymore. Penny however is very curious. She follows Nancy everywhere. This house is her domain as far as she is concerned and gets quite upset if Nancy sits in any "her" spots.
There has been no fights between any of them that has caused any concern, so for now we share our home with three very different but very beautiful little ladies that make life far from boring.

Linking up for this weeks IBOT with Kylie 

beck xx

FIVE YEARS




Five years ago I pressed published on the first post for Craftypjmum. You can read that post here 
Short and sweet, I welcomed you guys to read a handful of amature posts that maybe someday some of you would click on and read.

Imagine my surprise when you did read them, and even more surprising, some of you are still here reading my offering of useless ramblings. If I am honest it is all kinds of wow and I want to thank you for sticking around.

I wasn't sure how long this blogging adventure would last for me. But as the years have past it has bought so much joy for me as I essentially write an online diary of my life. Maybe one day, when I am old and grey it will help remind me of the adventures that my life has taken me on. But until then I am happy to continue oversharing useless pieces of information with the hope that you will all keep clicking on the links and reading them.

Thank you all so much for the past five years of joy, especially you JULES because without your help none of this would have gotten off the ground.

beck xx

20 Jun 2017

WINTER IN MY GARDEN


Now that Winter is here, gardens tend to get a bit bare. Most plants stop flowering and go into hibernation, leaving gardens to struggle in beauty.
Living in North Queensland however, I find Winter the perfect time to potter around in the garden. The temperature is perfect to prepare the beds for our harsh summers that bombard us with super hot dry conditions leading up to Christmas and the long wet season that usually follows.
Though we may not be lucky enough to grow the same plants as in the cooler zones during summer, our mild winters give us the advantage of growing them in our mild winter, and with so many gorgeous tropical plants at hand, our gardens here can supply us with beauty all year round.




Succulents thrive in our hot dry conditions, and by moving them out of shaded areas and into the winter sunshine, they will continue to put on a spectacular show. I just need to cut back on the watering.


Petunias are the perfect annual to add colour in any garden. With so many varieties available they are all kinds of stunning. These ruffled ones are my favourite and the colour is amazing amongst all the green.




                Natives bring beauty to any garden. I really need to plant some more at our place.


And who cant go past the classic rose ? This yellow rose has been going great guns for about four years now. It is the first one that I have had success in growing and it brings me so much joy. I love bringing the cut flowers inside and waking up to one by my bedside.

How does your garden grow in winter ?

Linking up on this dreary winter day with Kylie to bring some colour to your life...

beck xx

13 Jun 2017

CHANGES ARE HAPPENING


There has been something brewing in the back of my mind for quite a while now. Nothing extravagant unfortunately but something that is going to change the way our household runs right at this moment. Something that is going to require everyone who resides here to get up off their backsides and contribute more than they currently do.

Things are getting real around here much to quickly for my liking. My youngest son is only weeks away from sitting the QCE which means that I am not far off the end of my school mum days. That on its own is something that I am having trouble wrapping my brain around but the biggest thing is knowing there is a HUGE possibility that my baby is leaving home to attend University in Brisbane.

That is 953.6 km away                                                              
A 10 h and 45 min drive
Or a 1 h and 25 min flight

I really don't know how I am going to cope with this. Frankly I would like to bury my head in the sand and pretend that this is not going to happen, but the fact is it is going to happen whether I like it or not and very soon. What is making it very real and almost impossible to ignore is that price tag that is going to come along with helping my son reach his dreams.


I am not a mother who can sit by and watch my sons let go of their dreams. If I can, I will always try my best to make sure that they get as much as possible from this life. My ultimate dream is to make sure that my sons don't miss out, and to help them reach their life goals.

My baby son has a big dream, to attend JMC Academy to do a Bachelor of Film and Television. He has been aiming for this for the past few years and now it is within his grasp.


The dream, it comes with a hefty price tag, and so after much thought and weighing all the pros and cons up carefully, I have decided to try and re enter the work force.

On Thursday my Resume went out to all the available jobs that I am qualified for and now we play the waiting game with baited breath and nervous twitches with every ring of the phone. I do hope that it wont be long before someone takes a chance on me, that they at least give me the chance to Interview and that I haven't put myself out there nervously for nothing.

Fingers crossed

beck xx

Linking up with Kylie for this weeks IBOT

1 Jun 2017

TAKING STOCK - May 2017


The days are finally starting to cool down here. Some nights the blanket is needed which can only mean one thing, Winter is coming. Here in north Queensland  we tend to only have a few weeks of cooler weather in an otherwise predominately hot and sunny region. I am grateful for these weeks, the relief it brings is all sorts welcome.
The end of May is when the season starts to turn here, its when we finally start to get a taste of Autumn. Cool breezes and cooler mornings are delightful and better late than never. Its the one thing that I miss about living where we do, the different seasons and the changes they bring.

May was a busy month around these parts, and by joining in with Pips fabulous idea of Taking Stock, I present you with our monthly roundup....



Making : More of an effort to get those small jobs done around the house that usually get put off for another day.
Cooking : Jam Drops and a few more new recipes, its time to get my cooking mojo back.
Drinking : Way to many glasses of coke zero and wine and not enough water.
Reading : Slow Bleed by Tim Alder. This is the first Tim Alder book that I have read and now wont be the last. A page turner from the start.  A missing son, a kidnapper who's dead. An unusual description that caught my eye.
Laughing - At the Real Housewives of Sydney.....Seriously !
Wanting - A new rug for the dining room and not having much luck in finding what I want that doesn't cost the earth.
Looking - For the perfect piece of art to hang in my lounge room that is screaming out for some colour.
Wishing - That making choices in life was a lot easier than it is. Why do we make things harder for ourselves when it comes to getting what we really want in life ?
Enjoying - The cooler weather that has finally hit North Queensland. It always takes a lot longer for Autumn to show its face around here,
Waiting - For my bathroom to finally be finished. I really need to get it painted but need the tiling to be finished and the new lighting to be put up. Come on hubby get a move on !!!
Liking - Being on top of the housework and washing. Lets hope it continues.
Wondering - If every choice that I have made so far in life have been the best choices for my for me and my family. Things have been weighing on my mind lately.
Loving - Netflix. How did we live without it for so long ?
Pondering - Life, and how we end up where we are by the choices we make and if we have always made the best decision. Do you ever wonder where you would be instead if just one of your life choices were different ?
Listening - To Ryan Adams, Adele and lots of old eighties and nineties music since I gave in and downloaded Spotify. Again, why did it take me so long to jump on board with this fabulous app ?
Considering - What colour curtains to purchase for our living room. The ones we have now are definitely on their last legs and will not survive another washing.
Buying - More indoor plants. I have finally {without speaking to loudly} found a few that I am managing well and keeping alive for longer than a few months. Still working out the maiden hair fern though. I am determined to win this plant over as well.
Watching - Making a Murderer. Gossip Girl {yes I am late to the party there} and the final episodes of Pretty Little Liars. Another show that I swore I would never watch but got sucked into anyway.
Hoping - That the new seasons of Shameless and How to Get Away with Murder hurry up and come on. I am having withdrawals.
Cringing - At the behaviour of Athena X Levendi on the Real Housewives of Sydney. My goodness I do hope that women is not always like the person she betrays in that show. She is almost unbearable to watch.
Needing - A holiday desperately.
Questioning - Donald Trumps win in the Presidential Election still.
Smelling - The roses that have bloomed in my garden. They have been going fabulously this year.
Wearing - Jeggings from Kmart and wondering why I am forty two and just finding out how fabulous jeggings really are.
Noticing - That the early mornings are getting much cooler by the day and enjoying it immensely.
Knowing - That the year is passing very quickly and that my last baby will be finishing school soon, leaving me a school mum no more. Not sure how I feel about that to be honest. All kinds of mixed emotions are floating around in my head and heart.
Thinking - What my next chapter will hold once I no longer have school kids at home.
Admiring -  How so many other women seem to be living their dreams while I am still struggling with what I want out of life. I feel as though something big is missing and yet I am not sure what.
Getting - Tired of all the car trips I seem to be taking lately for my sons. I always seem to be sitting in car parks.
Opening - A new loaf of bread every single day. Why why why are my family always wanting to be fed ?
Closing - The windows when we go out and sleep at night when hubby is away for work because break ins are soaring where we live unfortunately. Can you believe that a family was home watching television with the lights on and yet some horrid person still tried to break into their home. What is the world coming to ? Really !
Feeling - So much sadness for the families caught up in the Manchester bombing. What kind of sick freak would knowingly target a place that would be full of innocent children. I cant seem to understand why people can do these horrific things.
Hearing - My kids laughing together and getting along. That makes my heart happy.
Celebrating - Mothers Day with my family altogether was lovely. Having my sons around on such a day was lovely. Also this month we celebrated son number three turning nineteen. How did we get here so quickly ?
Pretending - That the world is not as crazy as it is and keeping to my own little bubble. How nice would it be for the world to live in peace.
Embracing - My family daily and reminding them how much I love them. You just cant be sure what is around the next corner for anyone.

Well there was my May broken down into a few sentences. I hope that the past month was kind to you and yours. Can you honestly believe that today is the first of June and that we are six months into the year already. Its okay for time to slow down, no really....Please slow down.

beck xx

CHICKEN PARM MEATBALL SKILLET

Its that time of year again where you look for and crave comfort food. Not only does the consuming of such foods warm the body and the soul...