Sunday, January 31, 2016

Apologia Biology Module 7

What's Schoolin'?

I don't really have time to organize this right now so I'll post as-is.  Our enrichment meets 2x/week for 1 hour each time and this will be a 2-week module. 

Day 1: Pre-reading strategies and videos for DNA replication/transcription/translation/protein synthesis/RNAs. [Possibly strawberry DNA video if we have time]
Day 2: Study Guide due.  Go over Study Guide and OYO questions.  Create DNA model with Twizzlers and colored marshmallows.
Day 3: Extract DNA from strawberries (I may have them watch the video of it before class for homework).  I don't think I can stomach doing it from our own saliva in class! Videos for mitosis/meiosis/mutations/virus/gene expression/cancer.
Day 4: Test

Video of experiment 7.1 (Pea DNA extraction)

Thinkwell videos:

Online interactive activities and quizlet quiz:

Videos, etc:

Edible DNA model:

Isolate DNA from strawberries:
[That's a huge URL.  You can try the strawberry DNA extraction poster here: ]

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Apologia Biology Module 6

What's Schoolin'?

Here are some links that I'm using as resources for Module 6 (parts of the cell).  We will be making cell models but I'll give them the options of edible/inedible and individual/group.

Pictures of slides for the module experiment.  This is great since with my new classroom setup it is hard to use microscopes for all of the students.

Another link with pictures of slides. 
This is for the plant cells:

Great resource with links to several incredible edible cell posts with pictures.  This really is an amazing link!

Intro to cell video:


Amoeba Sisters Videos:
cell respiration and mitochonria
Animal cell coloring page (I didn't use these since we were doing cell models):
Plant cell coloring page:

There are some online activities here and games:

Interactve online activities:

I use quizlet vocabulary for test bonus points (10 multiple choice/both/worth .5 each for a max of 5 bonus points):

What's Cookin'?

Some dinner ideas for this week (with children's input):

Crock Pot Lasagna (with kale hidden inside - shh!)



Chicken Enchiladas

Homemade Pizza

Need to prep:

Soak/cook beans
Precook rice
Precook 3 pounds grass-fed organic ground beef from Aldi's!
Prebake chicken

Public Domain Images

The New York public library just released its public domain images digitally. Great resource for making educational materials!

Article about it:


Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Chicken 'n' Dumplings

What's Cookin'?

I used THIS recipe for my inspiration but below is what I actually did.  This recipe makes a double batch but somehow we didn't end up with very many leftovers!


2 Tbl butter
2 pre-cooked chicken breasts; cubed
2 quarts organic low-sodium chicken broth (I like to use Real Salt)
1 package frozen mixed vegetables
3 Tbl flour
6 button mushrooms (totally optional - just happened to have some!)
Salt to taste
Adobo seasoning to taste
Pepper to taste

2 C flour
1 teaspoon UNrefined salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 C (homemade) buttermilk (After mixing this was a bit dry so I added an extra splash of buttermilk)


1. Melt the butter in a large pot.  If using mushrooms, sautee briefly in the butter. 

2.  Add the 3 tablespoons of flour and stir into the butter. 

3.  Slowly add the chicken broth, stirring constantly. 

4.  Add the chicken and packet of vegetables. 

5.  Turn on medium-high heat to bring to a boil while you make the dumplings.

6.  Make the dumplings -  Mix the dry ingredients; add the buttermilk (more as needed). 

7.  Add spoonfuls of dumplings to the boiling broth.  Cover.  Boil for 20-30 minutes or until the dumplings are done.  I gently stirred after about 10 minutes and mine were done at about 20 minutes.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

All Hallows Eve

What's Schoolin'/Celebratin'?

Today is what most people celebrate as Halloween.  We celebrate All Hallows Eve and focus on studying/celebrating the saints.  This year it will be oh-so-simple due to oh-so-many constraints but this is what we have planned.

Halo cake:  This was dd's brilliant idea as we thought about what we had on-hand.  We just happen to have a cake in the freezer begging to be decorated and eaten.

Halos: We'll enjoy some Halo clementine oranges for snack.

St. Lucy's Eyes:  Grapes - morbid, I know!

St. Francis' Guessing Jar: A jar filled with Annie's cheddar bunnies [See THIS post that inspired this idea].

Movies:  We've checked out several saint biographies from the local library AND Amazon Prime has quite a few for free download for Prime members.  I'll update later with a list of what we watched/checked out/discovered.

This was amazing - I learned so much!

All Soul's Day [Dia de los Muertos]:

HERE is a quick recipe for Soul Cakes

Pray for Us November candy/treat bags:  From THIS blog.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Enchiladas with Sour Cream/Green Chili Sauce

What's Cookin'?

 Sour Cream Enchiladas

I used the filling left over from THESE chimichangas to fill the enchiladas.  THIS link was my inspiration.  Below is how I made the sauce.


2 Tablespoons butter
1/3 C diced red onions (optional)
1/4 C flour
8 oz organic chicken broth
1/2 jar Herdez green chili sauce
8 oz Sour cream


1. Melt the butter and cook the onions until slightly tender. 
2. Add the flour.  Stir constantly until the butter is absorbed into the flour. 
3. Slowly add the broth, stirring constantly, and then slowly add the green chili sauce. 
4. Cook, still stirring constantly, until it reaches a slow boil and continue 1 more minute. 
5. Remove from the heat and add in the sour cream. 
6. Cover the enchiladas with this sauce.  Top with grated cheese - I used 2 handfuls... Maybe 3/4 cup?
7. Baked at 350F for 20 minutes.  Let it sit for 10 minutes before serving.

PS:  Even my mom liked it!  Enjoy!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Oven-Baked Chimichangas

What's Cookin'?

I used THIS recipe for inspiration and adjusted to our needs/ingredients/leftovers.  This made a double-batch of filling so I am using THIS recipe for inspiration for chicken enchiladas with the remainder filling.


2 cups pre-cooked rice (I try to keep some in the freezer for faster meals)
2 pre-cooked, diced chicken breasts (also from my freezer)
1/3 C chopped vegetables (I used Cascadian organic Swiss chard from... the freezer)
1/4 jar of green chile sauce (Herdez is not organic but has real ingredients and is in glass)
6 tortillas (thawed earlier from... the freezer)
2-3 TBL butter (yes, I keep that in the freezer, too!)
Oil/shortening (small amount - enough for ingredients to not stick to the pan)


1. Heat oil/shortening in a pan and mix together the rice, chicken, greens or leftover vegetables of your choice, chili sauce.  You may need to add a bit of water.

2. Put approximately 3 tablespoons down the center of each tortilla.  Wrap them up chimichanga-style:  fold the 2 short ends over the filling and fold the longer ends overlapping the short ends with one long side over the other.  Put seam side down on a baking dish or pizza pan with about 1 inch between chimichangas.  Melt the butter and generously brush all around the outside of each chimichanga.

3. Bake at 400F for 10-15 minutes or until barely beginning to brown.

4. Serve with fresh salad or fruit and more chili sauce or sour cream.


Monday, August 10, 2015

Homemade Cold Cuts for Lunch

What's Cookin'?

Homemade Lunch Meat.  Ingredients:   Meat.

I know, almost too simplistic to post, right??  I sliced this today and thought I'd go ahead and post in case it helps someone think outside of the deli-meat-in-a-package box.  When I looked at the price of the roast (and balked at it!) and then thought of the price and yield of the packaged deli meat, the roast won cost-wise compared to nitrate/nitrite-free lunch meat.

I used a drier cut of roast for this and cut it after it had hardened in the fridge for a day.  There are over 20 slices although I may use the smaller pieces to make a sandwich spread if I have time before it is eaten.



Saturday, August 1, 2015

Necessities for the "Salt Life"

What's Summerin'?

As we head out to the beach for the day I snapped a shot of our homemade sunscreen/bug repellant and homemade version of "Swim Ear."  We named it "Surf Ear" since we mainly play in the surf... Definite necessities for a Salt Life!  We are off to spend some family time between hospital/nursing home visits before we all go separate ways.  Why do children have to grow up and go to college or leave home??? Sorry to say, it doesn't get easier for me to let them go!  I know, I know, it's the natural order of things and it is as it should be... The kids have been great with all of the stress but we all could use some distraction, togetherness, and fun :).

For the "Surf Ear" I just use 1/2 white distilled vinegar and 1/2 alcohol.  Works great for us.  This formula was given to me by my MD a long time ago.

Who knew how much carrot seed oil stinks??? I found out during our annual week beach vacation in June (during a MASSIVE mosquito outbreak)  that mosquitos don't like it either - yeah!  They would actually fly into my leg and swerve away!  The sunscreen works great.  I just used shea butter, almond oil, beeswax, and carrot seed oil.  No coconut oil.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015