Friday, March 30, 2007

Here is a really fantastic contest from 5 Minutes for Mom. Enter to win the new Dyson Slim. Isn't that amazing? A Dyson. I don't know about all of you, but my vacuum sucks, and not in the way it should. Hee Hee. For your chance click over to 5 Minutes for Mom and enter.
My kids have always been home educated by me. I love having them home but at times I'm thinking why in the world would the Lord have picked me to teach my kids.

And then I go through the questions... Where are they supposed to be? How do they compare to the public school? Am I totally messing them up? Are they learning at the pace they should be? Is it wrong that I'm not teaching the capitals of every country in the world, geometry, trig, and the theory of relativity to my kindergartner?

Ok, I'm not that bad, but when I look at people that seem to really have this homeschooling thing down I feel that way. We homeschooling parents are constantly putting a lot of pressure on ourselves.

So this year my kids are virtual schooled.

Actually that pretty much means nothing except that the kids are counted as public school kids, the are able to join band, sports, field trips, and have general access to the school. The also provide us with a computer, curriculum, and a teacher/tutor as we see fit. The school has worked very well with us and we are able to use as much or as little of the curriculum as we see fit as long as we are supplementing with something comparable. We supplement a lot. Actually most of it is supplemented.

All that to say we are public schooling at home and so the kids did the state mandatory testing. My kids have never been tested for their grade ability so I was actually looking forward to this to see where I need to improve or where the kids are doing well. I am well aware of the pros, cons, and controversy of testing but I just wanted to know.

We got the results this week and both kids tested (it starts in the 4th grade) were proficient or advanced in all areas. Woo hoo! This is not bragging by any means, this is a huge sigh of relief. Maybe I'm not totally messing my kids up. I still don't strongly rely on testing but it is nice to know where I need to concentrate a little more and what the kids strengths are to help develop that. Ok, enough already.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

*Updated on 5-9 for Real Mom Truths Mothers Day Contest*

Real moms don't create kids, they steer kids

With children you are dealing with different personalities each with different strengths and weaknesses. Learning to enjoy each child for who they are and how Christ made them is so essential. We all need to steer our children toward Christ, and to help them learn and grow, expanding their horizons. What we need not do is try to change them into someone that they are not created to become. Real moms don't compare their children to each other and expect one to be like the other. Real moms see the differences as a great thing because not everyone is used the same way in the kingdom and we rejoice in that truth.

Enter the Real Mom Truths Mothers Day Contest! The winner will receive this amazing 4G iPod Nano and Chocolate gift set, plus a link to their post on True Mom Confessions on Mother's Day

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Critter Fest: Budweiser Frogs Lizards and Ferret!! 18 clips!

Learning about advertising today and so I had to show some of the best commercials. I found this and thought others may want to remember and laugh along. Enjoy

What is love and what does it look like? I have been in a semi-debate over this issue for a while now and I would like to get as many people's opinions as possible. The debate we have been having is over romantic love and what that looks like. Is there a song that really defines love? (some suggestions have been Every Breath You Take by The Police or I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton) How do you know that you truly love someone or that someone truly loves you? If you could choose exactly how someone would love you what would that look like? Please let me know what you think. If you cannot leave a comment you can email me. I put my hotmail address on the sidebar. I really would love lots of thoughts on this matter so if you know someone else who could add into the conversation please tell them to come on over. I will put in my own thoughts after a time. Thanks all!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Dreams. Sometimes I wake up and just think, "HUH?!?!" For those of you who don't dream often, I envy you. I dream. All the time. Even during naps I have dreams but most don't stick with me for any length of time. Others stick, like last nights.

I was out with some friends and somebody asked me when my baby was due. When I looked down I was VERY pregnant. So I went to the calendar to find out my due date. (what?!?) I misread the calendar at first and thought I had only two weeks left, but then realized I was looking at May instead of March. (yeah, ok!) Next thing I knew it was the day I was able to take the Octuplets home. Yes, Octuplets. The rest of the dream was me running around trying to take care of them all and failing miserably. At least that part would have been true.

On a different note, Knight was home yesterday and we did a lot of spring cleaning. The house looks good and now I can just focus on school today. And laundry. It's clean, it's dry. Now it needs to be folded and put away. Ahhhhh Paradise.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

I grew up in a military family. My dad was enlisted when he first started his career and then he became an officer. I remember him going to Officers Training School but honestly I did not know what that meant. My parents didn't make it a big deal to us. Maybe my older sisters knew the significance of it, but I never did.

Because we moved around so much, I have only one friend that I am still in contact with from my childhood days. A couple of years ago, after we were grown and married, we were talking and she said something about the social divide between officers and enlisted men and their families. She told me she could always tell who were the officers wives when they went to the store on base. After asking some questions she let me know that her parents were always nervous about her coming to my house because my dad was an officer and her dad was enlisted. This was the first time I had ever heard that there was this social divide, and honestly this was the first time that I knew her dad was enlisted.

My parents just had taught us to be kind to everyone. They never really did teach us about status or social class. I had learned about the cast system in school but I never could get my mind around the fact that people didn't interact between different social classes. Maybe I grew up naive, but I never did believe someone was better than me because of what they had or who they were, and I never thought someone was worse than me because of a different lifestyle than I was used to.

It is a lesson that I hope to pass on to my children. I hope that they can respect everyone as a creature of God. Since He is not a respecter of persons, I know that we shouldn't be either. And I also hope that they know that there will always be someone who has more than them, and someone who has less than them. It is great to work hard to achieve goals and dreams but if you do it at the expense of another or you should never look down on another for having different goals and values than you are pressing for.

For my parents instilling this in me, I am so thankful. What a blessing to have that lesson taught to me so thoroughly.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

I worked with Knight today, didn't sleep well last night, and I have to get ready for the ladies retreat. So here is just a quick peek into a conversation overheard between J-Bird and me.

J-I know that Grampa was in a war.

Me-Yes, he was.

J-Do you know what side he was on?

Me-He was in the Army

J-No. I mean what side was he on?

Me-The war was in Viet Nam. Is that what you mean?

J-No. I mean do you know if he was a red coat or a blue coat.

At least he remembers something about wars. Makes a mother proud and want to just call Grampa so he can ask for himself.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Wordless Wednesday...

In hopes music makes plants grow better

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Updates on our family life...

Yesterday was a field trip to the fire station. The chief of police was able to come and talk to the kids about his department and what they do, and then the fire chief talked to the kids about the fire station. All said and done, the kids learned a lot. The kids liked going into the bus that transports the fire fighters the best, but they also were able to see a real "jaws of life". Very informative and both of the chiefs let the kids know that they have females on their staff so if you are a girl interested in these careers that it is very possible.
The other thing going on in the house is that Knight and the kids have planted a garden upstairs in the sun room. They have planted peas, broccoli, bean, and spinach. The kids have heard that music will help the plants grow. So they go in and sing to the dirt. Rara was up early this morning and first thing she did was go and sing to the garden. Gotta love it!
This weekend is a retreat for me. I am trading in the controlled chaos at home for some controlled chaos "up north". I am heading up with 40 of my closest friends to have a time of relaxation, sessions, food, games, and shopping. Hopefully I will not come back completely wiped out like I am every other year. I am sharing a room with only one other person and she knows how psychotic I really am so it should be a great time. For those who are concerned about my roommate, she is bringing her stun gun in case I get too out of control! ;-)
Knight is going to switch his route around next week if all goes well this Friday. We have been trying to figure out how to get two days off in a row without it costing us a lot of money and thanks to an idea I had after reading a blog, I realized we do not have to stick to "normal" weekend times. We home school! So our plan is for Knight to work Tuesday through Saturday and we will do school those days and do our merchandising on Saturdays as we have been doing. We will take Sundays off and hire someone to take care of some stuff on Monday. It shouldn't cost us too much and yet it will free up some family time that we will be able to do some things out of town every once in a while.
That is the news from our home front. Now onto the rest of my day.!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Baby Got Book (OFFICIAL)

This is so funny! I got this from I'm Toni at In the Midst of this season. Knight wanted me to put this on for you all to enjoy. He had someone specific in mind so I hope that they see it.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

I think I love having parties. It always sounds like a good idea and I have big plans. I decide that this would just make the day neat. So then I actually invite some people. That is when reality hits.

So goes this weekend. Actually, I am surfing blogs and I stumble across some St Patrick's Day recipes. I check my calendar. St Patty's day is on Saturday. We should have a party. Never mind that we have never done anything to celebrate it, I want to make green food and rainbow jello!

Yeah, I can be impulsive.

So Friday morning after getting a whole 3 hours of sleep I call up one family that has 4 kids that are the ages of my kids. I tell myself, this will be fun, and if I don't get the house clean, they have seen my "real" house anyway and I've seen theirs. Who else should I call? That is when it hits me. I am SO tired.

I talk to two other people and they have plans for Saturday so it can be a smaller group. That is better for me. We clean the house and go shopping. The menu has been decided on. We are going to have lime punch, bread sticks dyed green and shaped into shamrocks, stromboli's tinted green, dyed hard-boiled eggs, shamrock cookies, and green jello. The rainbow jello idea was killed when I couldn't find the cups I wanted to use and this was easier anyway. We head off to Walmart to pick up some ingredients and we can pick up some crafts for the kids to do while we are there.

I have a hatred for party games. I like things to be fair so I don't have to see people upset. So for any kids parties we have crafts available and the kids still have something to take home. My kids have done games, but they come up with them, run them, and supply the prizes.

Anyway, St Patty's day comes and the kids decide we need decorations so they spend the morning making and hanging decorations from doorways, the ceiling fan, the wall. It does look festive. The family comes, I finish the meal and the kids entertain themselves for 5 hours while us grownups talk. It was a fun day but Knight and I take a nap after they leave before we head off to work. Maybe I should do this more often.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

I was somewhere around 8 years old the first time I really had to deal with death. Not like the death of an animal. I remember dealing with that too, but this was different. This was a friend.

Scotty was 5. He was out playing and fell. He needed stitches in his chin. Because of a doctors' stupid mistake, his life was ended. If I remember right, the family had come over just the week before. His sister and I were the same age and we probably had amused ourselves by picking on the younger kids, but we all did get along pretty well. I remember my parents taking the phone call saying that he died. I know what room they were in. My sister came in and told me in gossip style "Scotty died". I told her to shut up and kicked her out of the room. I thought she was trying to make some sick joke.

Then my parents told us. It was real. Someone younger than me died. Someone I knew. Someone who wasn't sick. They didn't have cancer. The didn't get into a car accident. Just a little boy fell while playing and hurt his chin.

That is heavy reality for someone that age.

Later on as I was struggling with the fact that he was gone, I remember sitting on my dads lap on the recliner and he was rocking me and letting me cry. I know now that he was struggling to explain this to his little girl but he was probably struggling himself. He was trying to explain to me that I was not sad because Scotty was dead, but because he wasn't around anymore. I understood death, but I didn't quite understand my feelings. But I remember being there on my dads lap and knowing everything was going to be ok for me. Dad was there. He was the strongest man in the world. In that moment I knew that I was loved, I was safe.

Now I come to my relationship with God. The Bible tells us that we should think of and call God "Abba, Father". Or better translated, Daddy. I did not know God growing up. But when I think of Him being my heavenly daddy I picture that day and then I envision crawling up on Gods lap and he holds me while I cry. But I know that everything will be ok because I am with Him. I am loved. I am safe.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Since I have had trouble figuring out what to blog about I thought I would put my various "soap boxes" on as topics. It's really not that I'm in a bad mood, actually the truth is that I've been in a great mood today. I just figured I'd tell the small readership I have the things that get to me at times. And, although Poppy's idea about blogging about how she packs Kleenex up her nose instead of taking the time to wipe it when it runs is such a great idea, I think maybe I will use that for a WFMW if I ever decide to jump on that train.

First, I don't understand why the Lord thought Knight and I would make the perfect match. It's not that I don't love him, I really do. It's just that so many things are so different about us it makes for some pretty difficult situations at times. I don't like to be touched, he loves to cuddle. I live in emotional extremes, he is even tempered. I am not one to enjoy bodily noises, he shares them a lot. I am not competitive, he won't play if he can't win. Relations could be once a month for me, that does not work for him. I know that opposites are supposed to attract, but why? Balance? Wouldn't it just be easier if we were a little more similar?

Next, why is it that Christians seem to be so embarrassed to talk about issues and struggles we all have. I know that we can't share our dirty laundry with everyone, but why have such a taboo on things that most women are going through or that even couples struggle with. Even if it is not a struggle we hide the fact that the Lord created our bodies to have cycles that have the same thing happen every month, but shhh, don't say anything. Or if you are struggling trying to figure out how to keep your husband satisfied and have kids hanging on you, a house to clean, people to feed and you are just tired, not interested, bored, or things don't work real smoothly, people suffer in silence because there is a loudly unspoken rule that those things are not to be discussed. I'm not talking about embarrassing anyone or talking about sinful things or encouraging things that could be sinful, but in a good monogamous relationship things still may need a little help.

I know most of the people in my circles don't talk about this type of stuff, but I am so tired of trying to look like the "perfect Christian woman" (not that I ever got close to that!) I want to be real with people and I want people to be real with me. I know that I add to the problem as much, if not more, than anyone else. So here is me being real. My smile is real at times, and other times I feel like I am so deep in a pit that I can't even see the sky anymore but I still smile. Because I wouldn't want anyone to know that I am faking every second of my day. In weak moments I will open up and tell you what is on my heart but at the times I am hurting greatly, I probably won't share with you. I don't mean to hurt people with my privacy but I can't and won't share the most private of hurts when they actually hurt. I have done that and have regretted it.

So there it is, just a couple things that have been going on in my warped mind. Now that I've shared, feel free to run and hide! Hee Hee

Thursday, March 15, 2007

I completely don't have inspiration to blog today so I thought I'd put out this get to know me better survey. I found it surfing for inspiration and took out some of the questions. Now I feel like I'm signing up for some dating service or something like that. Hopefully I will be inspired sometime tonight to blog about SOMETHING! If any of those who read this decide to put this on your blog please let me know in the comments and I would love to read your answers.

Birthplace--Brindisi, Italy

Eye Color & Hair Color--Blue eyes, Redish hair

Favorite Animal--Platupus, it shows Gods humor

Favorite Musician--Casting Crowns

Favorite Comedian--Bill Envall

Favorite Food--Pizza type stuff

Favorite Drink--Diet Mountain Dew or Black Tea

Favorite Clothing--Jeans

Favorite Books--Francine Rivers Mark of the Lion Series

Favorite Season--Spring or Summer



Age you got married--18 years, 42 days (oh, how young and foolish!)

Age you had your first kid--19

Have you ever been drunk--Yes (I haven't had a drink in over 10 years though)

Have you ever gotten high--No

Have you ever been arrested--No

Have you ever been in an accident--Yes (the most major was when I was young and broke my collar bone)

Number of Tattoos--0 (but I have designed one that I want but won't get)

Number of Piercings--0 (not even my ears!)

Best physical trait--I would say my hair

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

I know this is supposed to be Wordless Wednesday but I wanted to share why this picture is so special to me.

This picture is from last Saturday when I went to visit my mom. This picture is from when my dad was teaching us adults Texas hold em poker (play, not real money). It was a lot of fun and Knight and I ended up with all the chips, which is great since we are the only non-gamblers at the table.
So why is this picture so special? Because I have such a great family and I know that they love me.
You see, my mom is in the red and my step dad is wearing blue. My dad is in the burgundy and my step mom is wearing grey and black. (Knight is in the green) My dad found out we were in town and came over to spend some time with us and we can all sit around and enjoy each others company.
They split when I was 12 but they still come together for the sake of the family. My sisters and I (I have 4) are able to spend Christmas with our family. Parents, step-parents, grandparents, and our families. I can't tell you how much it means to me that my parents can put their differences aside for all of our family. I am truly blessed.

Monday, March 12, 2007

When I was a kid I always looked at growing up in terms of numbers. When I turn 16 I can drive. When I turn 18 I can move out. When I turn ?? I will finally feel like a grown up. I am now a mother of 4, married for 12 years, and I am still waiting to feel like a grown up. Although certain things show me I am growing up.

Today we purchased a new couch. It wasn't the purchase that made me feel grown up but how we went about it. We actually thought about this purchase. A lot. We shopped around. We looked at different styles. We talked about how we would use the couch. We considered how long we would like this couch to be in our house. We went through the whole covering issue (leather, microfiber, upholstery, what is washable, durable, comfortable). Do we want a sectional, hide-a-bed, recliners)? Who would we like to purchase this item from? This took weeks.

Rewind to our first year of marriage when we bought a brand new car. We went out for a gallon of milk and came home with a pretty new thing that only had 2 miles on it but a hefty price tag. We put the amount of thought into that as we would have a new pair of jeans. We were young.

Fast forward to the present: We looked again on Saturday at the store we were hoping to buy from. The owners are our next door neighbors. Great people. Love the Lord. Honest. We wanted to buy from them and they carry quality stuff that should last for years.

So we went today and actually brought the kids. We wanted them to see some of the process and thought it takes. We wanted them to see the bill. Maybe, just maybe they will appreciate the sacrifice it takes to make this kind of purchase. We spent double on this set than we did on our last vehicle purchased. (ok, so we got our van for $700) We also got a pretty decent deal on this couch because it was a cash sale.

Then comes the other lesson, the fabric Knight decided on was not in stock in the couch we decided on. So we ordered it and the couch should be here in about a month. We would have never waited a month for much of anything when we were first married but now we are willing to wait a month for a couch. I truly hope this sets an example to our children that it is good to wait for things you want, and that it IS possible to pay cash for something like this. Maybe I am turning into a grownup.
I am in that spring cleaning mode. It's not that it's just that time of year so we have to do it. It's that I have been stuck in this house all winter long and have once again decided that we have way too much stuff and the stuff we need or want to keep does not stay in it's assigned place. "A place for everything and everything in it's place". I love that motto. (Those of you that have actually seen my can stop laughing now!)

Our house is not the cleanest, most well organized place on the block. I can find what I need in a very short amount of time so it is pretty well organized. I would love to have it look better all the time but we actually live here. I have kids who are kids. They play, fight, learn, work on projects, lounge, eat, and work in this house. Currently in my living room there is Payday on the floor, a couple books on the coffee table, clean laundry waiting to be folded, blankets, Magnetix, and a purse or two left from counting money. That is just the living room. It doesn't take much for it to look decent but it takes less time to make it look lived in again. Endless cycle.

I do go through my stuff and toss tons on a regular basis but, to be honest it is the books and school stuff that I get hung up with. We have done different curriculums throughout the years. I do look year by year on what the needs are of the kids and try to figure out the best way to go about meeting those needs. But yet I never know when or if we are going to revisit what we did in the past so I don't feel that I can or should get rid of something until all the kids have outgrown it. So here I am with lots of school items, loads of books, but yet I have 5th grade through kindergarten. I will lend people my stuff but I haven't had a whole lot of opportunity to do that. But there is plenty of stuff in my house I would love to get rid of.

So, thanks to Mommy at Helms Deep I have found Freecycle. A place you can advertise things you wish to give away for things you are looking for that others may want to get rid of. No money exchanged, just give and take. I now have a place that maybe someone will take some of the stuff I can't or don't use anymore. I know I can bring to Goodwill, or save it for our church's annual free "garage sale but I want it gone. But I would love to bless others at the same time. So, if you see lots of garbage on my curb, just know that I'm decluttering.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

I gave J-Bell a hair cut yesterday. She likes it short so we thought we'd share. These are the many faces of J-Bell. The bottom left picture is her most common face if she gets her way. We are off to enjoy Saturday with my mom. Yeah!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday 14?
14 positive things we have seen with homeschooling

1. For the most part, my kids are friends. They do get on each others nerves, but they also care deeply for each other and are involved in each others lives. I see them consider each other a lot more than I see them dismiss each other.

2. They are pretty self motivated with their school work. They go in and tackle it so it does not take all day. I have heard a couple times, "can you get me up at ___ so I can start school early. I want to be done by ____"

3. They have learned to love research. They choose what to learn about each week and are learning how to write reports. The blogs have helped since they want something to blog about. This is only for 1 subject this year but I have seen great progress in their writing, reading, spelling, and love of learning.

4. J-Bell isn't afraid to be who she wants to be. If other kids her age are into things she is not (boys, makeup) she will just go play with the little ones. I have seen her enjoy playing dolls with an 8 year old because the 13 year old sister was into makeovers.

5. None of my kids know what the name brands are. They have seen our budget, know that we do our best to provide with needs and wants, and know if they really want something they should save and watch Goodwill. It is not an embarrassment.

6. Teaching has become habit. Shopping, paying bills, cleaning, gardening, cooking, ANYTHING can be a teaching moment. Gardening can become a lesson on the importance of what roots you let grow in your heart, bills become math/budget lesson.

7. Other homeschoolers who's kids are friends with my kids talk to each other. If we are going to teach something big (like THE talk) we tell each other first, so that the other families are aware of what they may be talking to each other about. We also let each other know if there is something we notice.

8. Homeschoolers help other homeschoolers. We share ideas, field trips, books, advice. There is a common bond that I have seen. Normally we share a faith also, but we can normally talk learning styles, curriculum, joys and hardships. And those who have homeschooled through high school are invaluable with their wisdom.

9. It is touching those times when a lesson leads to more lessons. A history lesson led us to talk about salvation, a reading of Aesop's fables led us to talk about the dangers of credit cards, and a lesson on Hitler led us to talk about the importance of choosing the right curriculum's. I love those days

10. I love the fact that my kids are free to be who they are. They can be artistic, serious, love learning, and they are not getting picked on every day because of who they are. They know that they are loved by this family and the Lord. I truly believe this will make them more independent. They will be able to grow and become who the Lord intended them to be.

11. As busy as I am, it forces me to stay involved with my kids. I notice bad attitudes, loving gestures, right and wrong choices. I think if my kids were in school all day I wouldn't be real involved with what they are learning, and probably wouldn't ask tons of questions about school friendships. This is something in my personality, not a reflection on parents who send their kids. I know lots of people that send their kids and they are GREAT parents.

12. My kids are learning what it takes to run a small business. They see that it is a job that is 7 days a week, and really appreciate the days that we take some time away. They also know that trucks don't come loaded with product, and someone sells this all to the stores, stocks the shelves, collects the money. I have a vague idea of what my dad used to do in the military, but my kids KNOW what Knight does. They have gone with him and have learned how to do it.

13. Being with my kids all the time, they know the real me. They know the good, the bad, and the ugly so it reminds me that I can't be a hypocrite. They know that I struggle but they also see my heart. I am their mom, not their friend but yet they seem to think I'm ok (My screen saver says "Mom is cool" and they typed it!)

14. I am learning tons of stuff. This information would have been great to know when I was in school. Did you know that their is more than one way to do long division? And there are spelling/reading rules for almost everything. So nice to know!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Some idiot guy in Eau Claire made national news! Why is it always something stupid like this that makes the news? Personally, I think the movie title is perfect and I haven't even seen it.
Getting the kids to buckle up has been a struggle since they left the car seat. I'm sure it has something to do with the fact that I forget to do it all the time. I really don't mean to not buckle up, it's just something I don't think about. Personally I'm against laws mandating seat belt and car seats but I won't go their today. I am not against seat belts so we all try to remind eachother. It also might have something to do with the fact that they have never been in an accident, Thank you Lord, and quoting one of them "I don't plan on ever being in an accident."

Tuesday I wanted to go spend some time hunting the thrift stores. I had tried the night before with Knight. He is not a shopper and was also tired from working so hard for our family. Not a good combination so I gave up for the night. An appointment was canceled that I had and suddenly I had a free afternoon. WooHoo! Goodwill, here we come. Not really thinking about the phone call I got minutes before we left that told me how bad the roads are we hop into the van.

As I'm driving I do notice that the roads are getting a little slippery. I remind the kids to buckle up and tell them that the roads are dangerous.

We hit a couple stores and score some new games. I buy almost all my games at thrift stores because they are so much cheaper and almost always have all the pieces. We have a very well stocked game closet. I find some human anatomy and phsiology study cards (always looking for educational stuff) and I also find a couple new chapter books for the kids. I have a love affair with books. Not as much as I hoped to find but enough to be worth going out.

Driving home I notice a car is in the ditch in the middle of the two highways. I think to myself, "Awww that too bad. They aren't getting out anytime soon. Note to self, slow down even more."

Thats when I notice that I went a little to far to the right and slipped off the road. Not totally but enough to have to have to get over that little crease in the pavement at the white line. I'm not going super fast so no problem, right?

That little move to get us back on sends up spinning and sliding. Thankfully there was no one driving next to us. We were stopped by the snow bank on the side of the highway facing the wrong way. The wonderful gentleman behind us in a pick up watched us slide and then stopped to see that we were all ok. Then he pulled us out of the ditch. I thanked him and sent him on his way so we could drive the wrong way down the shoulder until we hit a driveway to turn around in.

J-Bell is freaked out. All the kids are a little shaken. At least for now. Later on, J-Bird exclaims on the phone to Knight, "Mom spun around on the ice. It was so fun!" Boys!

Last night I forgot to buckle up again and J-Bell askes, "Didn't you learn anything?!?!" Apparently, the kids did.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Wordless Wednesday


Monday, March 05, 2007

Sorry these photos is blurry but I couldn't get a better one. I was going to post this on Wordless Wednesday but I thought it needed more explanation than that.

In our house we have a lazy fish. I have never seen, nor heard of a lazy fish before but here is proof that they do exist. I took pictures of him lounging in two different places to prove that he is really alive. He didn't care for the flash so he swam away and hid in the fake rock.

This beta can swim, barely. He used to be better at it and something must have happened.

All he does is sit on the bottom of the tank with his head facing toward the top of the tank. His fins are not moving. He just sits there. When you go to feed him he will get up and eat if the food doesn't come right to him but he prefers to have the food go to him.

He has been this way for months. At first we were figuring he is ready for the royal flush treatment but apparently he is just lazy.

I think at times this could only happen in my house, but then I go to other blogs and realize everyone has those quirky things that just make you smile.

I have been reading Beth Moore's book Get Out of That Pit.

I will admit that these kind of books take me a long time to read. I love reading but I've never been into the self help kind of book. I will skim it but not really read it. And as good as the Beth Moore bible studies are, I have a lot of trouble finishing them because of how involved they really are. Well, I have had this book for a while and am making my way through it. It is really good. Last night as I was reading I came up to this paragraph.

So much of our propensity toward pit-jumping springs from the fact that
somewhere down deep inside, we just don't trust God. We think He's like all the
others who have cheated or betrayed us. As my friend, Chris Thom, says, "God is
not just a big us." Like Adam and Eve, we let the enemy taunt us into believing
God is holding out on us. Our drive for the proverbial forbidden fruit is our
innate belief that what we are denied is exactly what we want most.

Maybe this won't speek to others like it did to me, but I know how selfish I really am. And I also know how untrusting of others I am. And yes, I will admit, that does carry over into my relationship with my Creator. I am trying to be willing to have God change this (and lots more) in me. I am not one to "let go and let God" easily at all. Maybe I will be able to serve him in a way that pleases him.

On a side note, if you didn't know Beth Moore's Living Proof Ministries has a blog. Written by her and her daughter. Just thought some may be interested.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

I was out surfing other blogs and I found this post. I can relate to most of what she is saying. I think I liked it so much because it let me know that I'm not alone in how I feel about homeschooling. The author's name is Kendra and you can find her blog here.

What Non-Homeschoolers May Not Know • Jan. 10, 2007

Posted in Musings and Miscellany
We've been educating our children at home for ten years now. In those ten years, I have observed that there are expectations that non-homeschoolers can place on homeschooling moms simply because they lack the practical knowledge of what it means to homeschool.

If you are the mother, grandmother, sister, friend, father, or brother of a homeschooling mom, here are some things you should know:

1. Educating children at home is a full-time job. Don't get irritated if she consistently allows the answering machine to do its job. If she were a teacher in an institutional classroom, you probably wouldn't think of calling her during school hours, so try to realize that while still at home, she is keeping regular school hours, too.

2. Unlike homes in which the children are gone for eight straight hours, her home is in a constant state of activity. The children are not only home, they are home making messes. All day long. Their mother doesn't even have the opportunity to go into their rooms while they are at school and weed out the junk. And if she is like me, you might find odd homeschooly things lying around- like the month we had a dead turtle in the garage fridge.

3. Housekeeping and homeschooling are mutually exclusive. If she is doing her job educating her children academically, then her house is not being cleaned. If she takes the day to clean the house, then school wil not be accomplished.

4. Place realistic expectations on her- she cannot simultaneously teach school, make three square meals, keep a house that looks like it has sprung out of the pages of Architectural Digest, have her nails done, drive children to extracurricular activities, and have all the clothing laundered and pressed. Something's gotta give, and in my experience, it is usually her personal care. So don't expect her to don the latest styles, have her roots meticulously dyed at just the right moment, and her aforementioned nails filed and polished to perfection. And while most of us aren't slovenly, we just tend to put some superfluous aspects of personal care at the bottom of the to-do list.

5. For many of us, homeschooling isn't an option. Many believe it is not only the best way for their family, it is the only way. Many see homeschooling as a Scriptural directive. When sharing a particular struggle unique to homeschooling, comments like, "Well, why don't you consider putting them in school? Maybe homeschooling just isn't your thing" aren't helpful. Instead, offer a listening ear and your fervent prayers on her behalf.

6. If you are truly concerned about the state of her emotions, home, children, or marriage, offer practical help to ease her burden. Personal time is at a premium for her, so consider offering to take her kids for the day so she can recuperate. If you like to do laundry, offer to come over and get the loads going, fold, and/or iron. If you like to cook, consider putting together some meals that she can store in the freezer for days when time is at a premium. If she teaches a broad spectrum of ages and grades, consider offering to come in once a week or more to teach preschool to the little ones. One grandma I know created "Nana U" for her preschool grandson (number five of seven) and not only did it ease her homeshooling daughter's burden, it created a special bond between grandma and the child.

But there’s a caveat here: ASK her what would be most helpful to her. Don’t presume to know what would help her. Taking the oldest children for the day might be fun for you, but it’s quite possibly not at all helpful to her. The living room might need to be vacuumed, but it’s not helpful if she’s trying to take a nap. Someone once told me, “If it’s not wanted, it’s not helpful.”

7. Think about what a financial burden homeschooling may be placing on the family. The loss of her possible income can be a real struggle nowadays, and you might be able to buoy her for another year by offering to purchase little things like simple school supplies. Gifts for the children like books on subjects of interest to the child, field trip fees, museum memberships, and the money to pay for music lessons or other extracurricular activities are the best thing you could give a homeschooling family. Not only does a homeschooling mom not need one more thing to manage or pick up, she would be thrilled to see you take an interest in the many academic items on her wish list.

8. Simple questions like, "How can I pray for you?" and "Is there any way I can help you?" are like a cool breeze in her life. Don't assume you know her needs- ask. You could just be the vessel God uses to carry her on through this very demanding and ultimately rewarding season of her life.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Welcome to the blogging party....
If you have never been here let me extend a warm welcome and introduce myself. My name is De and I have been blogging since Aug '06. What started as a way to keep the extended family better updated on our lives quickly became much more. It is our way to share this precious family with others, a way of self expression, and also a way for me to connect with the outside world. We are a Christian family trying our best to walk the walk instead of talk the talk, we are a homeschooling family with 4 great kids who keep things entertaining, my knight in shining armor drives a Little Debbie truck instead of a horse, and I am privileged to spend most of my time with my kids. I love sharing our paradise with other people and would love it if you would leave a comment so I know you came to visit and so I can stop at your place and visit you. My favorite past time is reading great blogs. Welcome and make yourself at home, and grab some nutty bars and swiss rolls while you are here.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Thursday, March 01, 2007

I think this is hilarious! Apparently even I don't live in the US. My last name does not exist in the US so none of us are here. Wow! I think I'm invisible. Can anyone see me?!?!?
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

I will tattle on myself. Yesterday things didn't go so smoothly in this house.

It all started with a not so good night sleep.

Then the little ones were making Ramen in the microwave and forgot to add the water so the Ramen burnt and melted the bowl. Start of the stinky kitchen.

Lit some candles to help with the smell

For supper I decided to make spaghetti and fired up the laptop so I could catch up on Prison Break while making dinner. I popped breadsticks into the microwave to thaw them before putting them in the oven. I forgot to take the twist tie off and so the bag caught fire. It was caught before it ruined the breadsticks so I got the fire out (breadsticks were still half frozen) and popped the breadsticks into the oven.

Prison Break started getting really good. I was stirring my spaghetti and my sauce. I forgot about the breadsticks! I caught it before they were burnt (thanks to PC stonewear) but they were crispy.

Ahhh, Paradise.