Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Birthday Cake Coke Floats

So as I mentioned before, in my Birthday Cake Batter Coffee Recipe, I had a hard time coming up with something tasty for my birthday. I decided to forgo dessert (baby hasn't been enjoying pastries) and stick to a drink. I got to try a birthday cake batter float in Niagara Falls and loved it! So that's what I made, with the help of Rainbow The My Personal Unicorn.

Ingredients You'll Need:

Coke (or Diet Coke or Root Beer or Caffeine-Free Coke)
Birthday Cake Batter Ice Cream


The only birthday cake ice cream our store had wasn't birthday cake batter ice cream (there's a difference! One is birthday cake batter flavored and the other is vanilla ice cream with chunks of cake and icing ribbons.) so Rainbow and I made our own cake batter ice cream. (Thanks to the birthday present from my amazing husband!)

All you do is make vanilla ice cream and add a bunch of cake batter. Yummy! Place ice cream in bottom of a glass and pour coke over.

It's so delicious! What a decadent way to enjoy a float on a special day! :)
 Try More Amazing Drinks!
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Monday, July 15, 2013

Free Lesson Plans: Fraction Game

We love fractions!
  Photo by justJenn- see Recipe

The Fraction Game


This is a great game to help students with fractions. It gets them interested in fractions, helps their skills with determining which fraction is larger, draw pie charts of fractions, simplify fractions, making fractions equivalent, and perhaps a chance at converting fractions to percentages. (Optional.)


Help students become more familiar with fractions.

Base Knowledge Needed:

Simplifying fractions
Making fractions equivalent

Grade Level:

Preferably 3rd
I did this with 5th grade students that needed help with fractions. It would be great to start this out in 3rd grade when they’re first learning it. Apply it any time to help students struggling with fractions- even in high school.

Common Core Standards:

  CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.1 Understand a fraction 1/b as the quantity formed by 1 part when a whole is partitioned into b equal parts; understand a fraction a/b as the quantity formed by a parts of size 1/b.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3 Explain equivalence of fractions in special cases, and compare fractions by reasoning about their size.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3a Understand two fractions as equivalent (equal) if they are the same size, or the same point on a number line.
    • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3b Recognize and generate simple equivalent fractions, e.g., 1/2 = 2/4, 4/6 = 2/3. Explain why the fractions are equivalent, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.3.NF.A.3d Compare two fractions with the same numerator or the same denominator by reasoning about their size. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with the symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.A.1 Explain why a fraction a/b is equivalent to a fraction (n × a)/(n× b) by using visual fraction models, with attention to how the number and size of the parts differ even though the two fractions themselves are the same size. Use this principle to recognize and generate equivalent fractions.
  • CCSS.Math.Content.4.NF.A.2 Compare two fractions with different numerators and different denominators, e.g., by creating common denominators or numerators, or by comparing to a benchmark fraction such as 1/2. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two fractions refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual fraction model.

Built-In Interventions:

Friendly towards auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learners

Includes a good deal of practice on the same skills
Based on students’ interests

Possible Interventions

Student Aid 
Teacher Aid

Necessary Tools:

Pizza/pie/cupcakes/cake/candy such as M&M’s, Skittles, or any other type in a bag.


To make this lesson the most effective, do it about every day between other activities- it refreshes the students and gets them excited about math. The great part is you can begin with putting the fractions on the board yourself, but as you continue the students really enjoy creating the fractions for each other! All you have to do is sit back, watch, and make sure the math is correct! It’s great seeing students taking charge of their own learning.

Candy Style:

Take two bags and place a given number in candy in each bag (they don’t have to be the same.) Ask a student if they would like a fraction of one bag or the other. Ask the rest of the class if they agree or disagree with the decision. Give the student the number of pieces they chose of the candy.
Fill one bag with 22 pieces and the other with 15. Tell them how many pieces of candy are in each bag. Ask the student, “Would you like 11/22 of this bag, or 13/15 of this bag?” or “Would you like 6/11 of this bag or 4/30 of this bag?” Mix it up a little to throw them off guard.

Circle or Bar Style:

(Obviously you can do any shape you want, I just stuck with circles and bars.) Bring in a baked good or food in a circle or rectangle shape. Ask students what fraction they would like. Ask the other students if they agree or disagree with the decision. The first time you do this you take two of the items out and cut each into that fraction to show them in concrete terms how much they could have had and how much they chose. After the first time you can just display on the board each fraction. Give the student the fraction they asked for.
Bring in some cupcakes. Ask the student, “Would you like 1/3 of a cupcake or 2/5?” or “Would you like 6/18 or ½?” or “Would you like 2/6 or 1/3?” Cut the cupcakes and give the student the fraction that they chose.

Optional- if you want you can then convert the fractions to percentages- for example, “Shaniqua chose 1/3 of the cupcake, that’s 33.33333%, she could have had 6/12, that’s 50%.” 

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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Great Grilling Burgers

 My husband makes my favorite burgers. They're so flavorful you're tempted to eat them by themselves without any toppings. They're moist and thick and so utterly delicious! I love when he makes them for me. :) This time Leo The Lion Fluffiefriend helped out.

Ingredients You'll Need:

2 lbs Ground Beef
1/4 Large Onion- Chopped
5 Cloves of Garlic- Diced
1 Tablespoon Liquid Smoke
1 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Onion Powder
1 Tablespoon flavoring of choice- steak sauce, worcestershire sauce, ranch dressing, bbq sauce, ect
1 Tablespoon Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Oil
1 Large Egg
Vinegar or Beer to pour over burgers


Mix the ground beef, chopped onion, garlic, liquid smoke, salt, garlic powder, onion powdered, flavoring, 1 tablespoon vinegar, oil, and egg together.
Form into patties.
Place on grill. Pour a little vinegar or beer on top.

Flip twice to cook to medium. Each time you flip the burger pour a little more vinegar or beer on top. Serve and enjoy! Yum!
 More Yummy Recipes!
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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

My Personal Ponies and Turtles

Normally I'd just post this in my +Google Page, Facebook Page, and Pinterest, but I'm pretty excited about both of these, so here we go!

Violet's Silver Lining has two new fun stuffed animal options- My Personal Ponies and Adorable Turtles!

My Personal Ponies contains the My Personal Ponies, My Personal Unicorns, and My Personal Pegasus. All of these stuffed animals are specially designed for you! I got the idea from a friend who kidnapped a bunch of my stuffed animal horses to sell at a horse show in Colorado. She mentioned how much people would love to have a stuffed animal pony that looked just like their horse! What a cool idea! :) So here we go! The My Personal Pony you can make completely realistic- from the coloring, to the socks, to the face markings, whatever you want! When you order just give me all the specifications. A picture would be especially great to make sure it is exactly the way you want it!
I've included My Personal Unicorns and My Personal Pegasus as well since I designed and created a unicorn for Christmas that perfectly fits my friend's personality. She told me what kind of a My Little Pony she would be if she could be one, so I made it for her. You can make the pegasus, unicorn, or pony of your dreams too!

The Turtles have been, by far, the hottest selling stuffed animal at the market.
I keep making them and people keep buying them! I am having great difficulty keeping up with the demand! So I've put them online, so the people who are interested, but found the turtles gone by the time they came back. I have never had one last at my stand longer than 3 hours.
They are utterly adorable. They're naturally extremely huggable. Their little arms just seem to hug. It's so cute I've kept one for myself. (I generally try not to, it's hard, but usually I can resist. :))
Check them out on Etsy!
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