When I was 17, I was diagnosed with a visual tracking disorder, much to my surprise. It might have been noticed when I was younger, if I had an eye exam earlier in childhood, but I always passed the school vision "exams", so no one knew that I needed glasses.
By the way, don't trust the school vision exams. I should NOT have learned to drive without glasses. It scares me now that I was attempting to drive around town and out in the country without them. I remember my dad saying to me, "Didn't you see that deer? You should have slowed down!"
And no, I hadn't seen the deer...or the sign...or lots of other things that are important to observe while driving.
My oldest daughter also has this same visual tracking disorder. Thankfully, our educational strengths are in language and reading, so we must have wanted to read badly enough to overcome our "disorders." Ha!
The optometrist asked me if I enjoyed reading and doing any close-up work like stitching or art. When I responded with a wholehearted, "Yes!" he was surprised. He told me that most people with my vision problem do NOT like to read or do anything that requires close-up work.
Over the years, the only difficulties I've had after getting my first pair of glasses is that it is challenging for me to follow a string of numbers or objects without my finger helping me count them. Or reading a lengthy chart that has small print. Or...well, actually quite a few things, including reading some web pages, too. I can do it, but it is not as easy for me as I'd like. It slows me down.
While this isn't medical advice, I recommend that each child be taken to see an optometrist just prior to starting kindergarten. It is amazing how many children should be wearing glasses, but no one realizes that they need them until they are a bit older.
As a member of the TOS Crew, I was given the opportunity to use and review three products from See-N-Read this last month. The first product is their See-N-Read Reading Tool.
The See-N-Read Reading Tool is a solid plastic non-glare tinted transparent rectangle with a one-line clear reading window. It has been designed to be non-glare to eliminate reading and vision difficulties. Readers can clearly focus on the open, white space as they read text, but their eyes may also glance ahead at what they will be reading next to help with context cues.
When my younger, more distractible daughter was reading a couple of years ago, she struggled with staying focused and also with pages that seemed "too white" or had any type of glare. This particular See-N-Read Reading Tool would have helped her tremendously back then. At her age now, she finally doesn't need something like this as much, but she did like trying it out anyway. It definitely wasn't distracting or frustrating to her when she gave it a try.
The See-N-Read® Reading Tool comes in the following sizes:
The See-N-Read® MemoryMark™ is a similar tool in both sizes, but the clear reading window has been cut out on one line so a person is able to use this open line for highlighting text with a marker, pen, or highlighter. The MemoryMark™ sells for the same prices as the See-N-Read Reading Tool.
The third product I received from See-N-Read was a digital download of their Electronic Reading Tool. This is the one tool that is most helpful for me these days! Even with bifocals, using the computer at mid-range vision is not always easy for me. By occasionally using this eReader, it allowed me to track lines and words with more ease, especially when I was tired. This program can rest in the Taskbar of PCs so that when I am online or working on my computer, I can set it to work at full screen, although I can adjust the size smaller, if desired. It automatically adjusts to fit the lines of text that I'm reading.
Here is a screenshot of my homepage here with the eSee-N-Read Electronic Tool being used as I focus on the homepage of JoyInOurJourney.com:
I like the fact that I can still read "through" the eSee-N-Read without distraction, yet it allows me to focus on a specific line of text. I'm planning to learn more about using Excel in the next few months, and I can see that this tool will be a huge help to my poor, aging eyes (!) as I work on spreadsheets. Without it, trying to maintain the correct place on the page will be more challenging.
If you'd like to learn more about See-N-Read and their tools to assist middle-aged folks like me (!!!) or young readers who have difficulty tracking from word to word or line to line, I think these three products have tremendous potential! You can use any of these contacts, below, to learn more about this company's products. I do recommend all three of these tools!
Disclosure: See-N-Read provided me with free See-N-Read reading tools for the purpose of our family's use and review of these products. No other compensation was provided.
I didn't start drinking coffee until I was in my late 30s, mainly because I didn't care for the, uh, well, bitter taste in coffee. I've always liked coffee-flavored foods, though, so I finally figured out that if I made coffee sweet and creamy enough, it would be good, right? Right!
I discovered that I did like Starbucks' Mocha Frappuccino®s, so a few times each year, we'd buy one for each of us. They're not cheap, you know! Our girls like them, too, although we did find out that in our area, we can buy Dutch Bros.' frozen mocha coffee drinks at about 1/3 less price than Starbucks' beverages in our area, and they are almost just as good, if not as good.
Eventually, we bought a powdered mocha mix from Costco and began making our own frozen blended drinks once a week in the blender at home. They taste okay, but are definitely not like Starbucks or Dutch Bros.
Last week while enjoying some out-of-town guests in our home, I found two recipes for mock mocha frappuccinos. I have tried one of them so far, and it was very, very good and about as close to Starbucks as you could get without driving there yourself. I'd like to try the second recipe this weekend, too, though, because one serving has about half of the calories of the recipe I'm posting here for you.
My family should not be drinking a full-calorie beverage like this every morning, but for those of you who are able to do that, I think you will love this money-saving recipe! You will find that by making this particular liquid "mix", you will spend the equivalent of ONE Starbucks frozen beverage in ingredients, but your "mix" will be able to make at least ten to twelve 8-10 oz. glasses of mocha frappuccinos. That is a big money saver for those families and individuals who are trying to be more frugal with the frills of life.
And face it, mocha frappuccinos are a "frill." Not a necessity, although some people think so.
Basically, there are two methods of making your mix. Both versions seem to work equally well and will taste great. Just use the version which you prefer. You'll be storing the liquid "mix" in a sealed container in the refrigerator, and whenever you would like a mocha frappucinno, you can pour 8-10 oz. of the liquid mix into your blender with an equivalent amount of ice, and you will have a freshly made frappuccino!
Mock Starbucks Frappuccino:
Make strong coffee (espresso style), double or triple strength. Chill in refrigerator overnight or until cold. If your blender will handle the full recipe, add first 4 ingredients to blender and blend thoroughly.
My KitchenAid blender will handle 56 oz. of liquid, so this seems to work out well. Otherwise, blend the ingredients in a large bowl and then pour half batches into the blender to mix well. Or, simply make one half batch and combine it all in your blender.
This is your basic mix, and it should make at least ten 10 oz. mocha frappes. Keep mix stored in the refrigerator, but only as long as you would safely store milk or cream. When you are ready for a mocha frappe, combine 1 cup (8 oz.) mocha frappe mix (per person/serving) with 1 cup or so of ice (per person/serving), and blend well in blender. Pour into glasses. Top each glass with whipped cream and drizzle with chocolate syrup, if desired. Serve.
Original recipe: The original recipe said to blend the hot, fresh coffee and the sugar in your blender until the sugar has dissolved. Add milk/cream and chocolate syrup and continue mixing, about one minute. Pour mix into a heatproof container to chill in refrigerator. After chilling, store it in a sealable container in the fridge, but only as many days as you would normally store milk or cream. To make the beverage, combine equal parts of mix and ice in a blender, and blend on high until smooth. Pour into glasses; top each glass with whipped cream and drizzled chocolate syrup, if desired. Serve.
Other options: 3 Tbsp. of cocoa powder dissolved into 1 Tbsp. of warm or hot water should be the equivalent of 1 Tbsp. chocolate syrup. So, for the large batch of mocha frappe, you would combine 2-1/4 cups cocoa with 3/4 cup warm water; frankly, even though this would be lower fat, I think it would be more expensive. That's a lot of cocoa powder!
Well, I can say that everyone who tried our little mocha mix frappuccinos seemed to really like them! While we won't be serving these frequently, due to the calories, we will be enjoying this recipe occasionally. I really like the way I can spend around $4.00 or less for the main ingredients, and end up being able to make $40+ worth of mocha frappuccinos! I just love this frugal idea! If you give this a try, please leave comments below and let us know what you think about them! Thanks.
I know, I know. You've already taken down your Christmas decorations and your tree; you've set aside those delightful family photos that arrived with newsy Christmas cards.
I know that some of you may even be a bit "tired" of Christmas.
Whether you wish for Christmas decorations to stay up year round inside your home, or you took them down on the day after Christmas, there is always room in our hearts for the biblical account of the Christmas retelling of the birth of Christ.
And if you are one of those people who took down your Christmas decor on the day after Christmas, don't tell my husband. He would be appalled!
Since children don't seem to mind what time of year it may be when the Christmas birth of Christ retelling is shared, you may be interested in this new DVD that not only shares the birth of Christ...it also contains three art lessons that revolve around the birth of Christ.
The Gift of Love: Drawing Children to Him by artists Gloria Kohlmann, Heidi Shorts, Pat Knepley, and musicians Jan Roper and Kevin Dukes will provide your family with one more opportunity to more deeply understand the message of Jesus Christ.
In The Gift of Love, the Christmas retelling is brought to life through the captivating expressions of chalk-art, music, and drama.
In addition, three art lessons may be viewed on this DVD:
What did we think about The Gift of Love DVD? We enjoyed it! The girls thought that the retelling of the birth of Christ was well illustrated by the artist. The art lessons that we were able to view were clearly demonstrated and designed for students to work at their own pace. Thank goodness for the "pause" button on our DVD remotes, right?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
WalMart and P&G sponsored another Family Movie Night...and we enjoyed it!
Up to this point, Sally Danville's life has played out just as she hoped it would.
A beautiful and free-spirited musician, she and her fighter-pilot husband, Jason, live life on the go, free of domestic responsibilities.
But with a single phone call from Child & Family Services case worker, Dorothy (Phylicia Rashad, "The Cosby Show"), she learns that things don't always go according to plan.
Sally (Brooke White, "American Idol") is met with the news that her best friend from college has died in a tragic accident on a Peace Corps mission and has named Sally the legal guardian of her four kids - three of them adopted from third-world countries.
Now Sally and Jason (Joe Flanigan, "Stargate Atlantis") must quickly learn to parent this instant family and help the kids deal with the culture clash of life in America. Change of Plans is both humorous and heartwarming, revealing how fulfilling life can be when you look beyond your own plans and invest in the lives of others.
Hi! I'm Julieanne!
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