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Monday, February 25, 2013

Time to Shape Up! Update at Week 6

I am behind on this post.  These updated pictures were taken last week.

I have to say I am not doing well with this personal challenge.  With only a week and a half left before Jack turns a year old, I know I will not reach my goal.  But.... I'm okay with that.  I will reach it eventually even if it's not in the time I allotted myself.  :)  And I'm making some progress.

I have a ton of excuses to give as to why I'm not doing well with this, but I'm not going to give them.  Why??  Because excuses don't matter.  They are just that.... excuses.

I do want to share that I have a thyroid disease that negatively affects my metabolism.   I only share this so that anyone out there with a similar issue can know that thyroid problems make it much more difficult, but not impossible.  I am determined to get to my former physique in spite of it, and not let it be an excuse to quit.
So I am going to continue this post until I finally do reach my goal.  

 I weighed in at 118.4 last week.  That is only 3.4 pounds away from my 115 goal, but the body fat percentage is the real determining factor in progress.  Here are comparisons between Day 1 and Week 6.  My midsection has shrunk a little and you can see a different in my inner thighs.  You can't tell in the pictures, but my shoulders and back are a little more defined, too.  There isn't a whole lot of difference, but that's ok with me.  Slow and steady wins the race, and I am slowly making progress.  :)

Day 1
Day 42

Day 1

Day 42
Day 1
Day 42

GOAL- Pre-Jack

Thursday, February 21, 2013


I wish someone would have been in the room videotaping Arden and I during this dialogue.

I was making some paper flowers for a craft and Arden was helping.  I was paying more attention to my craft than I was to the conversation I was having with her; otherwise I would have caught it sooner.

She's got paper flowers in her hands and is playing with them:
Me:  "Those are tulips."
Her: "Lips?"
Me: "Those flowers are tulips."
Her: "Lups?"
Me: "No, tulips!"
Her: "Ma'am?"
Me: "Tooooo- liiiiiiiips"
Her: "liiiiiiiips"
Me: "No!!!  Tulips"
Her:  "lips"
Me:  "Arden, they are tulips. Tulips.  Tulips.  They're called tulips."
Her: "Lups?"

I kid you not, this went on for a good two minutes.  Like I said I really wasn't paying attention to our conversation.  I was getting irritated with her for not understanding what I was saying.  Honestly I thought she was just messing me with by playing dumb.  I'm sure we sounded so hilarious and stupid.  I finally looked up from my craft to see she had two paper tulips in her hands.

If you haven't caught on by now, she thought I was saying the flowers were called "lups" or "lips" (she couldn't quite catch that part because I must say tulip differently depending on how fast I'm talking) and there were TWO of them.  Two Lups.  Duh.


You may not think it's cute and maybe I'm biased, but this kid constantly has me rolling.  I think she is so funny and cute. She's got a great sense of humor, and I love the way she expresses her thoughts.

I like to keep records of my kids' mispronunciations and the funny things they say so I can look back and enjoy them.  They are my favorite.  I get sad when they finally learn the right way to say stuff.  I have handwritten slips of paper of funny things Halle said when she was little, and I really enjoy going back to reminisce her early years every once in a while.  They really do grow up so fast, so I try to capture as many memories as possible; they are very special to me.  I mean, really is my baby boy already turning one?!!!!

First I'll start out with the way Arden currently says some words.  

*"I squirrel my tahn."  I twirl my baton.
*"Do you want to be ten with me?" Do you want to pretend with me?
*"You nember?"  Do you remember?
*"mess-ghetti" spaghetti.  I actually think her word is very fitting.

Arden sometimes doesn't know a particular word, so she'll do her best to describe it to you.
"I was sleeping and there was a scary monster behind my eyes!"  I had a bad dream.
"When I was sad my eyes were wet and my nose was wet and tickling me." I started tearing up and got a runny nose.

Cute Story
Yesterday I pulled Jack's jeans off of him so he would be comfortable while napping.  After his nap I made a poor judgment of how much time I had in order to leave my house.  I was rushing around trying to get the kids ready in order to make it on time to a class at the Y.  I couldn't find Jack's jeans.  I yelled at Arden to hurry and get dressed while I frantically searched the same spots for the jeans I knew I JUST had before Jack's nap (isn't it funny how you always keep searching the same spot over and over again as if the missing item will magically reappear.)  "Arden!  Get your shoes on!  We have to hurry!  Where are Jack's pants?  Have you seen them?"  "I don't know, Mommy.  Mommy!  My hair is messy!  You need to brush it!"  I figured I must have set the jeans down somewhere and wasn't thinking straight because I was in a hurry.  So I gave up on the jeans, changed his diaper, and pulled out a fresh pair of pants from his dresser.  Mind you, this is all happening in about 2 1/2 minutes.  Arden is running around trying to find missing shoes and telling me her hair is a mess and I need to brush it.  Get the picture?  Not a "mom who has got-it-together moment."  She gives up on me fixing her hair and is still trying to put on shoes while we're running out the door.  I take a look at what she has decided to wear.  She's got on a long sleeved shirt, high waters, and dress up shoes.  I don't care at this point that she looks like a neglected child since I'm rushing, but make a mental note that she needs new pants. Most of Arden's jeans are too short on her because she is so tall and skinny.  It's chilly outside and I really wish she'd put some longer jeans on, but am not too concerned since my class starts in ten minutes and I really don't want to miss.  I mean, she's going to be inside anyway.  She's not going to freeze in the one minute it takes to walk from the car to the inside.  These are all of the things going through my head  as I'm strapping in the kids, making a bottle for Jack, and trying to fill up my own water bottle.  

Whew!  I made it to my class in the nick of time.  

After class I'm no longer in a hurry and am able to think straighter.  I go to the childcare center to pick up my kids.  Again I see Arden's short pants and think to my self that the poor kid looks pitiful in her outfit and crazy hair.   It's not until then that I realize what happened to Jack's jeans.  She was WEARING them!  I'm laughing hysterically at this moment.  I try to explain to Brian why this is so funny but he just looks at me and and gives me a courtesy chuckle.  It was obviously a "you had to have been there" type of moment.  Either way I thought it was hilarious that 1)she looked like a fool, 2)she didn't realize she put on her brother's clothes, and 3)she is so skinny that she is able to fit in 6-12 month clothes.  Arden thought it was really funny when I told her she was wearing baby boy clothes.  She laughed along with me once she realized what she did.  

I thought the jeans were uncomfortable for her to wear, since they are almost too small for Jack.  But I guess not because she went to bed in them and slept the whole night with them on.  This is her this morning after she woke up.. with her brother's jeans still on.  
In the picture they almost look like cute capris.  Trust me when I say they were not cute in person.  

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Life Lesson Learned

We have all heard,

"Don't ever leave valuables in your car."

"You can never be too careful."

"It can happen anywhere."

Well it did happen.  In our driveway.  On Saturday night.  Probably about 4 in the morning. 

Brian and I were out on Saturday night and didn't get home until close to 3 am, so it was sometime after that.  We didn't know until we sent Halle outside around noon the next day to get the trashcan.  (We were in Jack's room working on his floors and needed the large trashcan from outside.)  Halle ran inside in a panic to tell us that Brian's side truck window was shattered.  We run outside to check it out and sure enough there's glass everywhere.  His work laptop is also gone.  Stolen. 

Brian usually brings his computer inside the house when he gets home from work everyday.  This time for whatever reason, he didn't.  He forgot about it and it was sitting behind the driver seat in his very high truck on the floorboard.  The truck was pulled up close to our garage, not in the street.  Someone must have been walking up and down the street with a flashlight peeking into all of the car windows looking for something valuable to take. 

This saintly person used a screwdriver to pry between the doorframe and window, thus shattering the window.  This person not only busted the window, but did body damage to the door, making the repairs very costly.  Although that computer is highly important to Brian, we are thankful that the laptop was the only thing taken.  But also we are very angry because of all of the damage done to the truck.... just for a computer. 

When someone steals your personal belongings:  You feel violated.  You take it personal.  You feel unsafe.   You feel helpless.  Most of all, you feel pissed off.  You are pissed that people in this world are selfish, and you are pissed at yourself for not taking more precautions.  Then at the same time you are pissed that you have to take precautions in the first place.  Why can't people just be honest and respect one another? 

And seriously, bad guy, why can't you be more considerate when breaking into someone's vehicle?  You are already stealing something precious.  Can't you at least try to minimize the vandalism?"  Kidding, of course.  But really, come on!

Poor Halle, she was in tears.  She was scared because a "bad guy" had been so close by.  Arden kept saying over and over, "This place is not very good."  They were both shaken up.  Arden didn't want to sleep in her bed that night because she was scared of the bad guys.

Well we learned the hard way. "Don't ever leave valuables in your car.  You can never be too careful.  It can happen anywhere."

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Why, why, why?

OMG, the "why?"s have started with Arden.  I specifically remember them starting with Halle at age 4, so I guess it's due time for Arden, too. 

"Why do I have to put my shoes on?"  To go to the store.  "Why do we have to go to the store?"  To get food.  "Why do we have to get food?"  To make dinner.  "Why do we have to make dinner?"  To eat.  "Why do we have to eat?"  Because we'll be hungry.  "Why will we be hungry?"  Because we haven't eaten.  "Why haven't we eaten?"  It keeps going.......  I finally say, "Because!!!  That's why!"  and she'll respond with, "Because why?"  Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

All.  Day.  Long. 

This kid already talks and talks and talks, and is the most persistent person in the entire world.  Brian and I joke that she will either be a telemarketer or collections agent, both which don't take no for an answer.  She just does not stop.  Adding the whys to that......  I may have a breakdown. 

If anyone needs me I'll be in the corner banging my head against the wall. 


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Pinstrosiversary- Makeup brushes

With a three year old running around my house all day and an eleven month chasing after her, my house NEVER stays clean.  I am really good at cleaning, but not so much at keeping it clean.  My mom understands what it's like, so she comes over twice a year to do an overhaul on my house.  I am so thankful that she does that.  She and my sister both came over yesterday to help me with some deep cleaning.  My mom scrubbed my shower, washed my blinds, did my floors, etc.  I scrubbed the grout in my bathrooms, washed the baseboards, among many other chores that required elbow grease.  My sister organized my daughters' rooms and closets.  It was so nice after a long day of hard work to just sit back and relax and enjoy how tidy my house was.  I knew it wouldn't last long, so I relished in the moment.

I was determined to get a few areas in my house organized; the areas that tend to get messy the fastest.  One spot in my house that I wanted to organize was my vanity area.  I can never keep it straightened (this one I can't blame on my three year old.)  So I bought a small corner shelf for my lotions, and I picked up some small apothecary jars for hair bands and other stuff.  I also wanted to organize my makeup and makeup brushes.  It's the small stuff like makeup brushes that can turn my vanity into complete chaos.  

I saw this picture of a way to keep your makeup brushes upright and readily available.
makeup brush holder missjanet

I thought this would be great for me, especially since I have at least triple the amount of brushes and am always losing them!  I decided to use potpourri instead of marbles, though.... might as well give the filler dual purpose.


After doing this, I realized that I had so many makeup brushes that I really didn't need a filler to keep them upright after all!  Ha!  Oh well, at least this small organizational task made me hunt them all down and put them in one spot.  I'll be more inclined to keep them organized since I put time and effort into it.... I hope so anyway!


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Pinstrosiversary- Crochet Hats

I was in a crochet mood the last few weeks.  I made about ten hats and am now making a few for people that have ordered them.  I've made a Batman mask, newborn caps, a fireman hat, etc etc.  I searched Pinterest to get pin-spiration.  Some patterns I followed to a T and some I did my own thing and just used the picture as a suggestion :).  Most came out decent.  I'm not a pro at crocheting by any means, but I can get by.  Here's a few that I made.

I found this cute free tutorial for a Spiderman Hat on Pinterest

This was mine.  It was hard to get the eyes sewn on the hat in a manner that made them look like eyes.  I had to redo it a few times.  It was also a little difficult to get the webbing just right.  But the beanie itself is a good pattern to have for a small child.  There was definitely a learning curve to get this right.  Maybe my next one will come out better.
I also saw this on Pinterest.
crochet Rapunzel hat

It inspired me to make a Rapunzel/Tangled wig.  This is what I came up with.  Not the best, but I learned a lot when dealing with LONG pieces of yarn, and my daughter likes it.

For the fireman hat this picture inspired me.  Such a cute newborn picture!
Newborn Crochet Firefighter Helmet
I wanted the shape of the hat to look more like a fire helmet so I used this pattern.  I just modified it to fit an infant rather than an adult.


This is mine.  I think it came out cute!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Pinstrosiversary - DIY Portable Barbie Doll House

Like most girls, my daughters love Barbies.  My oldest daughter, Halle, scolded me the other night when I was joining them in their playtime; she informed me that organizing their Barbie box was not "playing Barbies."  Well I just say that depends on who you ask!  I thought it was fun.  So as you might figure I don't like Barbie clutter.

I almost had a heart attack when Halle (the one that scolded me) asked for a Barbie house for Christmas.  I had made it over ten years without having to buy one of those overpriced, bulky, ugly houses.  N ow with three kiddos and toy overflow I certainly did not want to add that to my house now!  I pretty much laughed at her for suggesting it and shot her down.... shot her down bad.  Then I felt bad after Christmas came and went when the poor thing made her own house out of cereal boxes and cardboard boxes (from Christmas presents.)

So this past weekend I decided to do something that I had pinned on Pinterest.  I saw that a lady had made a Barbie house out of three ring binders.  It is collapsible and portable and stores well on a bookshelf.

Tutorial on how to create doll houses using three ring binders.- Awesome!

She has an excellent tutorial.  This lady used a lot of stuff from around her house as the supplies and printed online images for her wall decor.  I also printed online pictures.  I have no idea which sites I got the pictures from so if they are yours please let me know so that I can appropriately source!

We headed to the store to get the binders.  When we were there we compared the height of Barbie to the height of the binders and realized that Barbie was taller.  We didn't want her to be taller than her house so we bought some small tri-fold project boards instead of the binders.

This was a great craft for she and I to do together and my three and 1/2 year old "helped" too.  The hardest part was thinking of ways to make the Barbie furniture out of things we already had lying around the house and the raw materials I bought from the store.  I used some of the ideas that the original lady did, but I came up a lot of other ideas to make mine unique.

This took me a day and a half to complete.  While the rest of America was watching the Superbowl, I was sewing Barbie curtains, ha!  All of fabric came from scraps that I had or old clothes.  

Barbie Bedroom.
Barbie Bedroom

base made out of cardboard box
reversible comforter
The bed is constructed out of styrofoam and hot-glued together.  The styrofoam that you buy in the craft section is really expensive so I bought a $3 styrofoam cooler instead to use.  The scalloping on the headboard and footboard is from the cooler lid because it came that way.  I bought my son some training toothpaste while I was out shopping, so the cardboard box that it came in became the base of the bed!  I also made a reversible comforter for the Barbie bed made out of a old Hello Kitty shirt and a tank top.  

Barbie Kitchen.
Barbie Kitchen
 My kids already had a fridge and kitchen island, so that helped fill the kitchen.  The island was originally a brownish color so I painted it green to match.  I also painted a green stripe on the fridge.  I used a $0.97 wooden board as the table top.  Halle painted it and glued scrapbook paper to it to make it look like place mats and plates.  The base of the table is a painted upside play-doh cup hot-glued to the wood.  The chairs are made out of Popsicle sticks and marker caps (we have tons of marker caps because my girls always forget to put the caps back on markers and they dry out.)  The fatter the marker cap the better Barbie sits without falling over.  The vase is also a marker cap hot glued to the table.

Barbie Bathroom.
Barbie Bathroom
I only bought three tri-fold boards so this is actually the back "wall" of the kitchen.  The original site used a small oval bowl and clip-on earrings to make the tub, but I couldn't find a small oval bowl at the store.  I did find this cute french bathtub at Michaels, though!  It was 40% off so it was about $10.  This was my most expensive purchase by far.  I painted the rim with gold so it would match.  Instead of a finger bowl for the sink like the original site, I used a small coffee cup.  It is glued to a dollar store candle holder.  I painted them both pink and added a gold rim.  The inside of the cup I left white.  The handle of the cup is turned toward the back so it's not visible.  I glued tulle to the corner to look like a shower curtain and a small wooden rod for the towel holder.  The bath towels are made out of terry cloth from an old baby doll outfit.  Since the bath towel on the wall doesn't move I made an extra for the girls to play with.  I originally decided that Barbie doesn't need a toilet because it's an eyesore and my kids really don't need to pretend Barbie going potty, lol.  My daughters insisted that the room wasn't complete without one, though, so I found a cute pink toilet pic online (well, cute as a toilet can be anyway.)

Barbie Living Room.
Barbie Living Room

ottoman/coffee table made out of  ceramic cup and craft paper 

"bean bag" made out of dry rice
I saved this room for last because I had no clue how to make a durable couch out of styrofoam or cardboard.  Finally it hit me, and I realized I was a genius!  I cut a corner out of the cooler, so the couch is actually one solid piece!
the bottom right corner of this styrofoam cooler is what I made the couch out of.
the original cut of the couch.  I trimmed the edges down to make the arm rests lower than the back.
I then "upholstered" it with an old corduroy toddler skirt.  I didn't have any rhyme or reason when upholstering it.  I just cut and glued until it was covered.  I really didn't care how bad my job was.  You could definitely put more care and actually use a ruler if you wanted.
The pillows I stuffed with toilet paper (I did that with the bedroom pillows too) because I didn't have any pillow stuffing.  The bean bag is fabric stuffed with rice.  The lamp is a painted Barbie stand and a Mason jar lid covered in paper and ribbon.  The ottoman is a dollar store ceramic jewelry holder turned upside down and covered in scrapbook paper.  I pulled some leaves off of one of my artificial house plants and glued them to a marker cap.  The rug is just a piece of thick scrapbook paper and the throw is scrap fabric.  

Total project cost - about $40.  Not bad compared to the $100+ ugly big Barbie dollhouses.  And it's custom.  And we had fun making it.  The best part is that the rooms are collapsible and portable!  They easily slide under the bed and out of the way!  The furniture can be stored along with the other Barbie accessories.
all three boards collapsed. 
I still have two free spaces on the boards for another two rooms.  I plan on adding a patio/backyard and a gameroom.  Someday.

Four Words

Jack has four words. His first word was mama, but he has since retired it.  :(  I can't get him to say it for anything.  Boo!

His four words are "Dada," "baba" for bottle, "Hi-ha" for Halle, and "i-yah" for the rest of the English language.

Depending on the word he is trying to say, "i-yah" sounds different.  For example, a brush may be "i-YAH" and car may be "IIIIIIIIIIII-yah."

"I-yah" sometimes comes out sounding like a Karate chop.  You know, like "Hi-yah!" but without the h.  He says it likes this when he's really excited.

Congratulations, now you know how to speak Jack.  

Pinstrosiversary - Icecream Cone Cupcakes Pinstrosity

It was my husband's birthday so I was excited to try out this pin.

Pinned Image
I loathe making cupcakes.  I hate pouring the batter into each little liner, the liners folding over and making a mess, and having the batter drip on the cupcake pan between each pour.  Ughhh.  I'd much rather pour the batter into a big fat pan and be done with it.  I also hate peeling the liner off when eating the cupcake.  It's messier to me than just using a fork. 

But...... the idea of baking and eating the cake right out of an icecream cone really appealed to me.  What a great idea!!!!!

Except these are how mine turned out! 

Hahahaha!  I overpoured the batter, and the batter melted the sides of the cones.  You can also see that one of the cones turned over.  I should have put them in a cupcake pan so they would stay upright.  Since the cones are so tall (I used the jumbo cones) some of the cone-cakes weren't completely done.  Oh well, it was 6 pm on my husband's birthday so I just "made-do."

I cleaned them up the best I could and decorated them.
If I turned them just right you didn't notice the bad parts as much.  :)

Now for the taste test.  The cake-part was outstanding (after I baked them longer than I initially did.)  They were very easy to eat and my kids loved them.  The cone had a spongy texture though, rather than crunchy.  I did not care for it.  At least there was no cleanup, though.  No paper plate to throw away or cupcake liner to throw away.  The only clean up I did was my son's face!


Ok, so I am trying to win the contest for Pinstrosity's Blog, "Pinstrosiversary".  I have to submit projects from Pinterest that I have done between January 19 and February 19.  Seeing that I do something from Pinterest just about everyday, I have tons to blog about.  The more I blog about the better chance I have of winning.  Plus it promotes my blog!  So, if you are into DIY and Pinterest, then these posts may be interesting to you (especially the Pinstrosities!)  If you don't give a lick about this stuff, then just disregard all of the posts titled Pinstrosiversary. 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

It Keeps Going and Going and Going....

This is the saga of Halle's Science Fair project.  For her project Halle decided that she wanted to test three different battey brands to see which one was the most cost effective.  Halle learned a whole lot from doing this project.  These are the things that Brian and I learned from this project as well:

We are dumb.
Hmmmm, we are dumb.
Oh, and we are dumb.

Science is my thing.  I'm nerdy when it comes to science stuff, and I always aced my school projects.  I even have a degree in Biology/Chemistry.  But apparently that doesn't qualify me to help with a 5th grade science project.  Brian is a guy.  He's suppose to be naturally good at this stuff.  Nope.

Her teacher required her to submit a topic for her science fair two weeks before it was due for approval.  So that's only two weeks to do the project. We were busy the first week so she didn't get started until the week it was due.  Halle tells me that she needs to test three different batteries and do three separate trials.  She wants to see how long they last by hooking them up the old school way: connecting the batteries to light bulbs via wire.  She said that she did this at school in fourth grade with her Science teacher and that it was simple.  I believe her.

I took her list to the store:
3 brands of AAA batteries- 3 each
9 light bulbs

After debating hard over which batteries to get in order to keep the cost down as low as possible, I decided on Rayovac Heavy Duty, Energizer Max, and the regular Duracell Coppertop.  I was also in the craft section and saw some jewerly beading wire which is what I grabbed because I did not want to go to the Man section (you know, the automotive, tools, confusing and foreign section of the store that I'm not familiar with) and try to find wire there.

I get home and Brian just looks at the wire and then at me like I'm an idiot.  The beading wire isn't really wire at all.  It's pretty much plastic.  But he tries to strip the plastic off to make it work. I'm proud of him for trying to be resourceful.  I'm not proud that he didn't know you can't stick any ole battery to any ole light bulb.  I didn't know this either, but I'm a girl so it's ok.  Even after YouTube-ing how to connect light bulbs to batteries he and she still couldn't get it to work.  She says, "Oh, maybe it's because we used 9 volt batteries in class."  I'm done with the project at this point.  I've aided my kid with her project and provided the emotional support (yes her science fair packet said that our job was to provide "emotional support."  What???)  and Brian is more than willing to help out because he's a control freak like that.  So I go off to do what I do best.  Take a nap.

I woke up to find that Halle and Brian got smart.  They said screw the lightbulbs (haha I seriously didn't see that pun coming) and wire.  They went to Home Depot and bought some small LED light devices that took AAA batteries.  They placed batteries in each light and planned on testing them by observing which light went out first.  Unlike flashlights, these fancy lights could stick to the project board thus making a good display item.  Ok.  This could work!  No more messing with finicky wires.  Each light took three AAA batteries, so he had to buy more batteries, too.  Now Halle only had five days to complete the project, but  Brian was positive that the lights would go out within a day.  Halle could then perform two more trials with plenty of time to spare.

So she turned on the lights and waited.  And waited.  She checked the lights every so often.  She went to bed.  The next morning Brian took the lights to work to monitor them since Halle had school.  He brought them home.  He was CERTAIN they would die that evening.  Waited.  We went to bed.  We woke up.  The lights were still on.  The Rayovacs started to dim, but were on nonetheless.  The Energizer and Duracell were still going strong.  He took them to work.  He came home.  Still on!  Just die, stupid batteries, die!!!

Day 3.  Duracell and Energizer going strong on the left, and the fading, yet resilient, Rayovac on the right

Halle is sweating because she knows she has to do repeated trials and she wasn't going to have enough time.  Why didn't we buy more lights and test them all at once, you ask?  Well because the lights were $6 each and that would be another $36 to the $60 we already spent on this "little" project.  For all we know anyway, the Energizer and Duracell could last for weeks.  She tells her teacher her dilemma and her teacher just tells her that she should have started sooner.  Sigh.

 So.... being the honest people we are we do what any good parents would do;  we decide to cheat.  Brian and I want to fake that the batteries died and lie to Halle about it so she can move on with her results and finish her project.  We even concoct a plan to make our cheating plausible.  Shhhhhh.  We don't want to tell Halle because we don't want her to know that we are cheaters and that cheating is ok.  Plus she's a high achiever and wouldn't ever go for that.  I'm thinking, it's just a stupid science fair project, right?

But of course my conscience takes over and I head to the store.... again.... to try to find a solution to Halle's problem.  Halle recommended we find an electric moving toy that drains the batteries down quickly.  That's a great idea, but I don't want to have to buy 9 expensive toys!

She is two days away from the project being due.  We walk into the Dollar Tree hoping to find some electronic cheap device that will drain down batteries quickly.  I'm praying as I'm walking through the store,  "Lord please help me find something cheap for this project since we are trying to be honest and give honest results and teach our daughter the right way to do things."  I turn the corner and I see...... ELECTRIC TOOTHBRUSHES!  For a dollar each!  Woohoo!  They take AA rather than AAA, but at least they only take one battery each.  They surely will drain a battery quickly if continuously left on.  I purchase nine of them.  I then go to Walmart again and buy three different types of AA batteries.  We get home and immediately started jamming the batteries into the toothbrushes to get them going as soon as possible.  The first three toothbrushes wouldn't turn on!  Ugghhhhh, stupid dollar store cheap crap!  Thankfully after some more praying and banging them on the counter they turn on.  We now have nine dancing buzzing toothbrushes!
the nine dancing toothbrushes
Halle was able to complete the rest of her project in 1 1/2 days and turn it in on time!  She recorded her results and worked on her board the whole evening.  And it looked really good!  She was exhausted and didn't get to bed until midnight.

You're itching for the results aren't you?  Without further ado, the Duracell batteries (at $0.94 each) lasted the longest.  They went over thirteen hours.  The Energizer lasted 12 hours, and the Rayovacs (at $0.24 each) lasted only about four hours.  But when you look at the cost comparison the Rayovacs lasted the longest for the price.  It would be a pain in the butt to change out the Rayovacs three times as often as the Duracell, but still the Rayovacs were more cost effective, which was what she was testing.  So the solution is to buy Duracells when they are on sale!

This is the finished project board.  Those LED lights got their spotlight afterall (again no pun intended) by lighting up her display board.

Wire $2
Project Board $6
Lightbulbs $7
Toothbrushes $9
LED lights $18
Batteries $41
Ink for our printer $45
Doing something the right way and learning from your mistakes Priceless

If you are ever an overnight guest in our home and forget to pack your toothbrush, don't fret.  We have plenty!

I am so glad this is over.