Happiness Tuesdays #22

Happiness Counts!


I am beginning Happiness Tuesdays to tell you some things that make me happy and to share with you quotes, websites, and photos to make you happy!


Happiness Tuesdays #22


Three things that make me happy:

1) visiting Hawaii in 1972 and again in 1974 with F2

at the Volcano House on the island of Hawaii

those were the days...:)

2) visiting Hawaii with Chad, Scott, and 2 of their friends in 1999….Oahu, Hawaii, Kauai

on Oahu, at a luau

at the beach on Kauai

standing on the lava field on Hawaii

C and S reenacting their parents' photo

3) visiting Oahu with my 2 favorite guys:)

love these 2...and love Hawaii

searching for a perfect beach

on a boat cruise:)

visiting the same place 30 years later, bringing F2 with us:)

another luau and enjoying the beauty of a sunny beach day at Waikiki

I LOVE Hawaii…I have no idea why it is so special for me, but the weather, the ocean, the sky, and the people are amazing! I’d go back in a minute!! Anyone want to go???

Taking Chad and Scott to a place that was so special for  F2 and me brings me such happiness!


Happy Parenting!

D and C

Remembering a Veteran

My dad, Robert Gordon Horn, was a veteran of WWII.

in the service in the early 40's

His mom, my grandmother..Maud Jowett Horn…kept this service record from the time he entered the service until he finished:

this contained photos, a record of all correspondence sent and received from my dad, and newspapers articles

My dad was a member of the Army Air Corps (before there was an air force) as a bombardier:

my dad, far left first row, with his flight crew

My parents were married in June of 1943 and in January of 1944 my dad was sent overseas.

before being deployed

He was shot down over Germany in Feb. and was missing in action for all of the 6 weeks of lent. On Good Friday, my mom was notified that he was alive and a prisoner of war in Germany. He was a captive there for 15 months before he returned home at the end of the war. He was one of the lucky ones to survive the action of World War II.

Luckily my dad was able to come home and begin our family:)  He served our country and should be remembered for that. But he also served our family until his sudden death from a heart attack when he was only 44. We remember him today….


Honor all those who have served in the past and those who are continuing to do a huge service to all of us who live in this great, though sometimes flawed, country. God Bless You!


Happy Parenting!

D and C


Kids Who Care

The idea that kids are capable of an incredible empathy for others can sometimes seem like a ‘pie-in-the-sky’, Pollyanna, view of how the world actually works. But kids are so open to a plan of helping those who need it that all it takes is some encouragement from the people around them. Today, I’ll show you one of the most beautiful projects our school ever undertook….and, because of what has been happening with tornadoes and floods lately, could be an important project for other people to try.   Just a thought…:))


For Make a Difference Day in 2005, right after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, our school decided to have a Kid Caring about Kids Backpack Project. We asked people to donate money, items, time…whatever they could. At the same time we also held a new and used book drive. We collected school supplies, hygiene items, and things for babies. We bought 450 backpacks and filled them with these supplies:

one of the 6 tables filled with supplies

our 450 filled backpacks

our 1200 books, organized by age level

The kids then filled a trailer and our SUV which son Chad and I drove to New Orleans. We left on a Thursday after school, took Friday off because we needed to arrive at our NO school before they got out for the weekend, drove and drove(from Michigan), and arrived about 2 hours before the end of the school day:

some of the devastation we saw

the health dept. allowed this school to reopen 3 months ahead of schedule because the school families did so much of the clean up themselves

When we got the the school, the children all came out to greet us:)  We helped pass backpacks out to them and enjoyed spending time in the classrooms.

kids choosing their backpacks

spending time with great kids

wearing beads received from our new friends

So, you may ask, why are you showing us this now?? I believe kids do what they know…if they know that they can and should help those in need…they will!! Hopefully you can come up with a helping project that your kids can be proud to be a part of…whether through a school group, church or scout group, or even just as a family of compassionate people. There is need everywhere. Find where you can be of help – and go for it!!


Happy Parenting!

D and C





Happiness Tuesdays #21

Happiness Counts!!

I am beginning Happiness Tuesdays to tell you some things that make me happy and to share with you quotes, websites, and photos to make you happy!

Happiness Tuesdays #21

Here are 3 things that make me happy:


1) a beautiful wedding with a beautiful bride…

2) going to a Bob Seger concert…

...and yes, I do!!

everyone notice my seat #, happened just by chance (or did it?)...yup, I sat in seat F2


4 sweetie-pies at the concert:) it was fantastic!!!

3) I am so happy to be grateful for where I’ve been and where I am now, for those who have been with me and still are now. I am happy that I can feel grateful for both gifts and trials, for they both help me grow:)

Because I’m so excited about this growing blog….I will be doing a giveaway with some new goal posts!!! When we reach 200 followers or 300 comments, we have a special item to give to some very special person. Just so you know where we stand right this minute…158 followers and 197 comments!! Jump in and join the happiness parenting party!!!


Happy Parenting!

D and C

Helping Kids Succeed

There are many avenues to help kids succeed both in school and in life.

*They need to explore many opportunities at school:

music/drama, Science Olympiad, physical fitness of any kind, safety patrol and/or service squad

All of these activities can enhance kids’ knowledge and their ability to get along with others.

*They also need to explore opportunities outside of school:

maybe your 'soccer kids' might say this to you:)

taking care of/ training the dog teaches responsibility

how many things will your child try...

Find what your kids like to do and have them follow-through on it…

There will be chances for you to teach effort, determination, responsibility, and other wonderful traits with any and all out-of-school activities you choose to do.

*…and then…what about all those opportunities for your kids to take part in “caring for others” activities??  Helping them learn to want to help others can not be overemphasized! No matter how bad your life may seem at times, there are  always others whose lives are worse. Encourage your children to donate their time, their love, and their hands to making someone else’s life better!

Our school today participated in Kids Against Hunger. The students raised nearly $4000 which was used by the organization to buy food supplies. Families came to the gym today and packed enough food for 11,000 people to have a meal. Check out what that looked like:

big truck came and was unloaded

kids got ready and learned what to do

filling and weighing the bags, very precise

lots of help on a beautiful Saturday morning

from empty bags, to full bags, to packed up boxes, to travel all over the world!!

Kids Against Hunger was a great experience for the families that attended!

There are so many ways your kids can learn to help.  Need ideas?? Let me know and I’ll add a list of them in a future post!

Our kids’ success is always what we want, so go for it!!


Happy Parenting!

D and C



End of School Year Checklist

Here we are near the end of the school year for most of us. Let me share a few ideas for completing the year with success:

Check in with your children’s teachers!

Use email for quicker and easier to understand responses from teachers…especially this time of year. Their time is stressed!  Ask: How are the kids doing? Are they improving? What kind of encouragement or help might they be able to use over the summer?  Ask about behavior as well as academics. Good behavior shows a willingness to learn, to show effort, to be kind to others. Isn’t that what it’s really all about?

Check in with your children:

Ask them:  How did the year go? Did you learn everything you should have? What could you improve in? Are you happy with your grades and/or your knowledge? Are you proud of how you behaved – did you try hard, were you helpful to your classmates and teachers, do other people think you are kind? What kinds of things would you like to learn about this summer?

Summer Work:

Read – Lots – comic books, joke books, picture books – whatever will work! Whatever kids read will enhance their comprehension as long as the reading is below their frustrational level. Slightly easier books create more fun in reading.

Practice Math Skills – clocks, maps, construction, recipes – anything to practice numbers.

Social Studies and Science and all other subjects can be a part of everyday life. Ask questions, help answer their questions – encourage curiosity.

….and then:     Have Fun!!!   Every moment is a teachable moment…make it a happy one :)


Happy Parenting!

D and C

Happiness Tuesdays #20

Happiness Counts!!

I am beginning Happiness Tuesdays to tell you some things that make me happy and to share with you quotes, websites, and photos to make you happy!


Happiness Tuesdays #20

Here are three things that make me happy:

All 3 happy things today come from the company called Simple Truths which has a website of inspirational, beautiful, and poetic books. Many of the books also include a lovely DVD…check out the site, www.simpletruths.com!

1) from the book Finding Joy by Mac Anderson:

2) from the book Sandbox Wisdom by Tom Asaker:

in case it's hard to read: "to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded." Ralph Waldo Emerson

3) from Charging the Human Battery by Mac Anderson:

I love this website and books because they are uplifting and joyful! Can’t we all use a bit of happiness in our days? Find your joy:)


Happy Parenting!

D and C

Truth in the comics!

How many times have you been reading the Sunday comics and said to yourself, “Oh, that is funny, but so true!!”   I have collected a few of these ‘truisms’ to share with you…do any of them make you feel a little squeemish….uh,oh sounds a little too familiar to you??  We all need to laugh at ourselves and then move on:

How about a couple of parenting cartoons:

I guess we're really all amateur parents, huh?


disheartening, but true!

How about a couple dealing with responsibility:

we do have to make them learn responsibility!

And on to the encroachment of technology:

I kinda like the 1954 look, how about you? Social interaction...hmmm!

Here are a couple of humorous everyday efforts:

be careful what you put in those brownies ;)

a lovely shopping trip with Dad

All these cartoons may be funny, but there may also be some truth to them…find ways to encourage yourself to be happy in your family life!


Happy Parenting!

D and C




More Vacation Hints

Are you still working on vacation plans? Summer will be here soon! If you’d like a few more ideas to complement past family posts  such as:  http://childhoodmyths.net/behavior/planning-family-vacations/

then here we go:

Here the boys are on Mackinac Island with the Mackinac Bridge in the background…which connects the Upper and Lower Peninsulas of Michigan…a great place for walking or riding bikes, no cars allowed!!

Still in Michigan,Scott and buddy Emily, near Houghton Lake, at a frontier store called Zubler’s. This was always a favorite when the boys were small.

Visiting Niagara Falls, Dad with the boys!

We met our Alabama family here at Wheeler State Park: boating, pool, hanging out with cousins.

We spent time in Tahquamenon Falls in Upper Michigan, part of the time with grandparents…lots of beautiful places for short hikes.

Part of one trip was spent exploring in Montreal, Canada…fun!

The San Diego Zoo in California was a special day trip during a California vacation. This photo was our Christmas card for the year!

During the years that we shared a boat with another family, we traveled to Put-in-Bay for 4 day vacations. We boated across Lake Erie (very scary for the chicken in me), spent time in their marina, and were able to use a pool available to boaters. That is where each boy truly learned how to swim…2 years apart. Great trips:)

We were Knight Rider enthusiasts from day 1, so we visited Universal Studios in California and actually got to see KITT!!   Wow! The boys still remember sitting in that amazing car!

I know I keep showing you examples of places that we have visited. I hope you take these ideas as a jumping off place for you to decide what places would make your family happy. But the most important part of family vacations is to have fun; if you’re not going to be happy, you might as well stay home and be grumpy:(

On your trips remember to give your children choices..but only choices that you’re happy with:

Do you want…..eggs or pancakes,   milk or juice,  gift store later or not at all???

Make sure you keep control…just make it cheerful control!


Happy Parenting!

D and C

Happiness Tuesdays #19

Happiness Counts!!!

I am beginning Happiness Tuesdays to tell you some things that make me happy and to share with you quotes, websites, and photos to make you happy!

Happiness Tuesdays #19

Here are three things that make me happy:


1) The Horn Family


Bob, Helen, Danny, and Diane Horn


My mom and dad...love this photo

Dan, Mom, and me

2) The Finkbeiner Family


F2 with the boys


The Finkbeiners at Mel's Diner in FL


me with my boys!!


this is what makes me happy:)

3) The Torch Lake Group Family


The Group in 1986


a few TLG ladies in FL

So why do these ‘families’ make me happy?? Lots of fun, lots of great memories to keep the happiness growing…

rememberTake those photos of all different kinds of families…they will bring you joy in the future!!!


Happy Parenting!

D and C