Friday, December 31, 2010

Change...

I wasn't sure what to call this post. It's kindof hard to write, hard to put into words why I'm doing what I'm doing. I am almost 100% sure this is what's going to be best for our family at this stage of our life. Rod and I have talked immensely about this. We've weighed the pros and cons...discussed the advantages and disadvantages of both situations...and decided what was in my best interest, in the kids best interest, and our family as a whole's best interest. I know not everyone will agree with me, and that's okay. Life is not about wanting everyone to agree with your decisions. (Note to self: believe that last statement!!)

I'm putting Mikaela and Eli in public school. Ew...public school. That phrase sounds dirty! LOL. I mean...the school we're talking about has about 250 students PreK - 12. It's less than a mile from my house. They don't teach evolution or acceptance of homosexual lifestyle or gay marriage or abortion or anything "like that".

I understand that 'secular' curriculum has a humanistic worldview, as opposed to a God-centered worldview, which is my number one reason I didn't want them in public school. I also realize that what a child learns at home takes precedence over what he learns at school. (from my experience.)

 I understand I will be away from my two oldest children, 5 days a week from 8-3ish, for 8 months out of a year. (2 weeks Christmas break, 1 week Thanksgiving, 1 week spring break, various holdiays throughout year) I also realize that I have spent almost their entire lives so far teaching them, raising them, loving them, guiding them. They spend those first 5 crucial years side by side with me, not day care or 3 year old preschool or anything like that. Heck, I even teach the preschool sunday school class.

I understand that they will be influenced by peers; they will hear curse words; they will witness bullying and mean girls and the like. But I trust that the upbringing they have recieved from us and the salvation of their souls (both have accepted Jesus) and their common sense and compassion will PREVAIL over any evil they encounter. I'm not 'throwing them to the wolves'. They (unfortunatley) have heard curse words from extended family (despite our protests and complaints...some people just can't help theirselves, others just 'let it slip') and they have never said an ugly word. They are both friendly and desire friendship, they aren't bullies.

The reasons I'm putting these reasons is not just to convince myself (lol). It's because I feel like I have to defend myself. I don't know why. The few people I've told have been supportive, if not overly enthusiastic. I'm not very 'excited' myself, but I know this is what needs to happen.

Homeschooling is wonderful. It's fun, it's a thrill teaching your children to read, write, and think for themselves. It's rewarding...it's challenging.

I have however been a little overwhelemed off and on over the past 6 months or so. (Since Silas was born, in other words.) I barely have the energy to do school. After I clean and cook and balance the checkbook and clean some more and cook some more and nurse a baby all day long and deal with a VERY NEEDY two year old, I just don't want to sit down and do school. Blame it on a little post partum, blame it on having 4 children and a husband and laundry and cooking and cleaning, blame it on me...whatever. I have been stressed out way more than I ever have. I have been so fatigued and exhausted and wore out. I have been on emotional rollercoasters, ups and downs, highs and lows. I have been angry, I have been happy, but I have lost my JOY.

I feel like they would be happier in school. Mikaela especially wants friends! Who could blame her? There's only one girl at church even close to her age, and we don't go on Wednesday nights, so she only sees her on Sundays and sometimes sleepovers. Eli has no friends at church, except a select few that come sporadially.

Eli needs the structure and discipline of Kindergarten. He thrives on it. And I have to say, our life is less than structured. Mikaela needs the challenge. They have both been bored to tears, playing with toys, yes; playing outside, yes; but they want to go! Well...Mikaela is dying to go. Eli isn't so sure, but he's a little excited.

Mercie needs time from me. She has had the least amount of time with me of all the kids, except Silas cause he's younger. She craves attention and has been acting out to get it. I try to fit her in with everything else, but it's hard having to do school, too, and entertain other kiddos, to.  Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but I'm trying to do what is right!

I will miss them, but I know they are both trustworthy, hard working, well behaved children, and I know they will thrive.

I love my kids, and the hardest part abot putting them in school is the separation from them. I am going to miss those two like crazy!! I wish I could just keep them home, and not worry about their education. But unfortunately I can't do that.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas

We had a fun Christmas. Actually, we had 5 fun Christmases! We celebrated with Rod's dad, grandma, his 2 baby brothers, and his brother and wife on Thursday morning. Thursday night, we went to Rod's mom's and stepdad's. Friday we went to Rod's other grandma's. Saturday we had Christmas morning at our house, went to my grandparent's for lunch, and my mom and dad's after that. We made some good memories, as always, and Rod videotaped everything!
The kids before opening gifts Christmas morning. Silas was still asleep, and *gasp* we started the festivities without him! Don't worry,  he woke up half way into opening presents, so he didn't miss everything.
 Eli wanted some legos so bad, and he has really enjoyed building with them.
 Mercie needed her OWN scooter , or "tooter" as she calls it.
 Mikaela wanted a horse for her American girls. Rod also made Mercie and Mikaela a bed for their dolls.
 Silas got this train, but Mercie and Eli have had a blast playing with it!
 Thier stockings, stuffed full.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Cookies

Yesterday we went to my sister Ashlie's house and let the kids decorate sugar cookies. It was a blast!




Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Some Pictures

We have been busy over the weekend! Friday night we had practice for the kids Christmas play at church. Saturday night we went to Rod's mom's and ate dinner. Sunday was church and Sunday night was the Christmas play - which turned out really cute! Mikaela was Mary; Eli was a camel; and Mercie was a star. They all did great and knew their one line. Mikaela and Eli didn't want big speaking parts, but after the play they both said next year they want to 'talk' in the play!





                                Merice and cousin Bryton before the play. Aren't they sweet??



My handsome men.

                  And Happy Half Birthday Silas!!
You are 6 months old today! It's hard to believe 6 months ago I was in the hospital getting ready to deliver you. You are a sweet baby. Here are some facts:
*You are still breastfeeding, no bottles or pacis.
*You do not sleep all night. You sleep with mommy and daddy and nurse throughout the night.
*You have tried applesauce about 5 times, and you like it okay.
*You ate a few 'puffs' yesterday. (peach mango flavor)
*You got your two bottom teeth December 13.
*You weighed 20 pounds 2.5 oz yesterday.
*You roll all over the house.
*You can sit up for a little bit at a time, as long as I'm close to catch you if you fall over.
*You must be rocked to sleep or fall asleep nursing.
*You reach and cry for me.
*You love your bath.
*You have a bald spot on the back of your head.
*You tore the paper on your Christmas present from Mikaela!
*You are a beautiful sweet baby and I don't know what I would do with you! I love you so much, Silas!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Things I Love...

1.) a nice ice cold diet coke
2.) the sweet noises Silas makes when he's nursing
3.) the precious look on Mercie's face when she's sleeping
4.) the way Mikaela and Eli get so excited over simple things, like being able to feel Silas' first tooth
5.) watching a good movie with my sexy husband, cuddling on the couch together
6.) when my sweet husband cooks me dinner AND cleans up
7.) keeping my laundry caught up (this means washed, dryed, folded, and put away, 2 loads a day)
8.) my new border in my bathroom!
9.) my nephews
10.) anticipation for Christmas! I still feel it like a child...
11.) wrapping Christmas gifts
12.) having a freshly mopped floor with NO footprints
13.) warm cookies
14.) wearing clothes for the first time ( I don't wash first I love the feeling of NEW clothes)
15.) a clean refrigerator
16.) hugging my sweet man when he gets home in the evening
17.) did I say a nice ice cold diet coke?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Great Website

I have been reading alot on raisinggodlytomatoes.com. It's a wonderful website with tons of good Godly parenting information and advice. Right now I'm reading about tomato staking AKA supervising  your children constantly to avoid any bad behavior or habits that could get started and to be available to immediately correct bad behavior and encourage good behavior. I know this is good advice, because I've noticed that when I send the kids off to play alone, it ususally causes problems. They either fight, or argue, or someone gets hurt, or a big mess is made, or they whine, etc. When I'm playing with them or even just in the same room as them, they play much better. Not to say kids shouldn't ever play alone, because everyday Mercie takes a nap and Eli and Mikaela have quiet time and it works well most of the time. And I can't sit and play all day. I have a nursing baby and clothes to wash and a house to keep clean and meals to cook. But I think I'm going to try to be near them all the time, to keep them around me or keep them in a neutral room, like the living room, so I can keep a constant check on what's going on. Preventative parenting, where I don't have to discipline, just correct.

Silas is almost 6 months old, and a precious baby. He is still ALMOST exclusively nursing, as I have introduced applesauce once and he kindof liked it. He loved the taste, but wasn't sure exactly what to do with it! He is ALMOST sitting up alone. He can for just a bit, but can't always catch himself when he goes to fall over. He rolls around everywhere! His first tooth just peeked above the gum yesterday, so it's ALMOST all the way through. He is still waking at night to nurse a few times. He is still sleeping with us most of the night. I have been starting him out in his bed, and the first time he wakes, I bring him in bed with me and nurse him until he goes back to sleep. He naps off and on throughout the day, not on any particular schedule. Which is fine by me. He's the first baby I haven't put on a schedule, but it's working just fine. He still must be rocked to sleep for his nap if he doesn't fall asleep eating. He is so sweet and precious and I love to rock him and nurse him and kiss him...He is growing way too fast, and I'm doing all I can to hold on to a few precious moments.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sick Kiddos

Late late Tuesday night, my sister, her hubby and their two boys got in from Wyoming, where he's been working the past 2 1/2 months. Yes, that long since I've seen my sis and nephews. (and brother in law).

Wednesday, we spent the day at my moms, and my other sister (who lives in Baton Rouge) came in as a surprise! We all hung out and visited. It was good to see them.

Thursday, we all (my sisters and I and the 6 kids) went to eat pizza. It was good, but after we had been home for a few hours, Mikaela started throwing up. A few hours later, Eli threw up. I held my breath all night, praying that Mercie and Silas and me didn't get sick. Mikaela was sick all night, but nobody else got sick, thank God!

Friday, Mikaela and Eli were puny but felt better. We just hung out at the house, catching up on laundry and cleaning.

Today, they are 100% better, and we are well, but my sister started throwing up this morning!

Fingers crossed NOBODY ELSE GETS SICK.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Girls Day

Yesterday, Mikaela and I (and Silas) went on a girls day! We went shopping last year, and she decided that every year we will have a day just for me and her to go Christmas shopping. We had to take Silas because he's still  nursing and he's only 5 months old.  We had so much fun!! She used her own money and bought Silas and Eli a present. She had already bought Mercie one a week or so ago. I think it's so sweet that she thinks nothing of spending her money on her siblings. She just wants them to  be happy. She bought Eli a 'sleeping costume' (aka pajamas) for his Build a Bear and Silas got a shirt from gymboree. For Mercie, she had bought some necklaces for her doll (which she's getting on Christmas). We went to the mall (which is an hour and a half away from our house), Target, Lifeway, Family Christian, Michaels, and Ross. Mikaela loves the Christian bookstores! She will look at all the devotions and books and flip through them, wanting everything!

I am so thankful for Mikaela and getting to spend time with her. Thanks to Rod for keeping Eli and my mom for watching Mercie. We had an enjoyable day and I can't wait til next year!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Our Morning in Pictures

I thought I'd take pictures of most of what we do in the morning for school. Just for those of you who may wonder what exactly our 'school' looks like. This is not everyday, of course. Some days we do more of something, some days we may not do as much of something, some days we may just do crafts or games. This is just what we did today.

 Mikaela and Eli working on their math worksheets. Eli was using wooden sticks as manipulatives on some of the problems.

 I found these magnetic numbers and math figures at the Dollar Tree, and we use them on cookie sheets. I put a problem and he puts the answer, or he just puts the whole problem and answer.
 Mercie playing with wooded magnetic letters (melissa and doug).
 Eli put together the puzzle of the United States. I bought this because they were having a hard time grasping the concept of city, state, country. Eli calls it the world puzzle, and I'm trying to get him to understand that the US is not the whole world. Guess I need to get a world puzzle too!
 Mercie in the play room playing a diego matching game. One of the few moments she has been quiet and still all day! :)
 Mikaela and Eli working on math puzzles. Got these for $5.00


 Eli's handwriting. Pretty good X's, don't ya think?
 Loooove these books. This one is the 1st grade level we jus started today. Mud wasps and paper wasps. Pretty interesting, and well written for young children.
 Also love this book. It's what we are using for history right now. Stories of life in England and on the voyage to America and Holland and various places in search of religious freedom. Very captivating stories.

 We started Foundations by Anne Elliott for our Bible Study each day. We have a memory verse each week and on Mondays they illustrate it. This weeks is 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (we are only going to memorize 16 though.). Eli drew a church because I explained the concept of doctrine. Mikaela drew Noah's family because the verse says 'righteousness' and she remembered that Noah was found righteous. Pretty smart kids. Oh and Mercie drew a church, too.








 Mercie helped me cook lunch today. Cheese toast! It's just miracle whip on wheat bread with a slice of american cheese, baked until crunchy. We usually have it for breakfast, but I figured it was just like a cheese sandwhich.


A few things I didnt get pictures of :
Mikaela wrote a book report on Junie B. Jones, "Aloha-ha-ha"
Mikaela did her spelling
Eli and I did 'phonics' with the wooden magnetic letters and magnetic board. I would give him a word to spell like 'pig' and he would spell it. Then I would tell him to make it 'big' and then 'beg' etc. It shows him how the letters and blends work together. We have stopped using his phonics book for right now because it jumps from sounds to reading in one lesson! We aren't ready for that yet. He enjoys this better, anyway.

Like I said, we don't follow lesson plans or anything. We just work on what we need to work on and move on when we're ready and read about what interests us at this particular moment.




Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Beginning of The Season

Thanksgiving has come and gone in a flash. We alternate celebrating at Rods family and my family every year. This year we went to my dad's parents and had so much fun. It's always fun to see relatives you don't get to see very often. The kids had fun playing with their cousins, and my aunts involved Mikaela in the dinner preparations, which she LOVED. She loves feeling older and important. Eli ran around the yard with one of his cousins and Mercie, 'scaring' us with fake snakes and shooting a Nerf gun. Silas was the star of the show, being the newest and cutest baby. He has been rolling all over the floor lately! Sunday, he learned how to roll from back to front. Now he can get anywhere he wants by rolling. It's so funny! He'll be under his crib, under our tables in the living room, under the Christmas tree.

Which...we put up Thursday! It's so cute with a mixture of homemade ornaments and store bought ornaments.


 We made these little reindeer with small pots, pompoms, wiggly eyes, pipecleaners and ribbon.
 Cardstock and buttons.
 Recycled Christmas cards we made into ornaments!
 Cut out felt using cookie cutter for gingerbread man and paint pens.
Couldn't resist posting a pic of my sweetheart.

And presents already under it! The kids are each getting 5 gifts each this year. Only 2 big ones, and by big I mean in size not dollar amount! I'm spending $100 or less on each of them. They will get some small stuff in their stockings, but nothing expensive. We don't need alot of toys and they don't need clothes. Silas is only getting 1 or 2 though, being he'll only be 6 months old on Christmas. I just love this season of family and togetherness and presents and of course celebrating the birth of our Lord.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Yesterday the kids and I made a Thankful Poster. We just cut out pictures from magazines of stuff we are thankful for and glued them to a poster, which I hung on the wall to remind us to be thankful.
Since it's Thanksgiving tomorrow, I thought I'd just share a few of the many things I am thankful for.

1) Most of all, I am thankful that GOD saved a wretch like me.
2) My husband. I am so in love with that man.
3) My kids. They bless my life so much.
4) Abundance. We don't lack for anything.
5) Health. None of my family has faced major health issues.
6) The fact that I am able to homeschool my children.
7) My church and the ability to worship freely.
8) My parents. They are marvelous.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Happy Birthday Mikaela

It's hard to believe that my oldest child is 8 years old today. It seems like not too long ago I was heading to the hospital to give birth to her. A ton of emotions rolling through my mind - fear; excitement; anticipation. After a long hard labor (complete with 6 hours of pushing due to a swollen cervix), my sweet baby arrived into my life and forever changed it.

Mikaela is a wonderful, pleasant child to be around. She is full of humor and wit; she is incredibly smart; she is a joy. She is a big helper to me at home - she holds Silas while I'm trying to cook or clean. She bathes Mercie most nights for me. She helps Eli with his math. She helps me cook. She helps me fold and put away clean clothes. She helps me clean up after dinner. And she does it most of the time without complaint or arguing.

I am so proud of Mikaela. She asked Jesus to come into her heart June 22, 2009. She reads her Bible (her real Bible) every night, and even asked for a copy of Jesus Calling for her birthday. She is very spiritual for her age, and asks deep thought provoking questions.

I am so thankful for Mikaela and what she means to me and her daddy and her baby brothers and sister. She is very special and loved very much.

Happy 8th Birthday Mikaela! You are a treasure in this family. We love you!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Busy Weekend

We had a busy busy weekend! Mikaela's birthday party was Saturday. I would love to post pictures today, but my camera batteries were dead so I didn't get any pictures. Rod videotaped it, and my mom took pictures, so I'll have to post pictures when I get some from her. She had a blast! It was a fun party, and she had her best friend Eden spend the night with her. Some of Rod' family was in visiting from California, and they came, also.
Sunday we had Thanksgiving dinner after church, and it was so good! We had a good time of fellowship with our church family, and then my hubby took me shopping.
I really racked up on some stuff! We went to Michael's because I had to get some supplies for our homemade Christmas gifts. On both sides of the family, this year we are making gifts instead of buying them. This is going to be great, because those gifts are treasured more. Plus my kids don't need anything! Rod and I are going to buy them each a few gifts, but nothing, NOTHING, like we usually do. I also picked up some wooded alphabet tiles and few wooden brain teaser puzzles just for fun. We also got some things to make some ornaments for our tree this year.
Then we went to Ross Dress for Less, and I got some amazing deals on some homeschool toys and games. I got a Melissa and Doug chalkboard/magnetic alphabet board/dry erase board for $10; Melissa and Doug lacing animals for $5; a huge USA floor puzzle for $6; a childrens USA encyclopedia for $7; a math game for $5; a DVD and flashcards for Mercie for $3; wooden alphabet puzzle for $10 and some gigantic workbooks full of great worksheets for $2.50 on clearance. Then we went to the Dollar Tree and I got some wooden magnetic numbers, a few beading and lacing sets, lots of craft supplies, 5 educational books, USA map coloring book, a create your own calander, and a few baskets.
I had a blast! I have been wanting some of these things for the kids for a while, and it seems like I got everything in one day! We are trying to move away from school at home and do more spontaneous learning. I want to have a huge selection of educational toys, books, and games for the kids, and focus more on hands on learning, and less on 'let's do this worksheet, then this worksheet, then this worksheet...' etc. The kids love worksheets (not math or writing, though). Eli loves sequencing, patterns, matching, etc. Mikaela loves graphing and charting. Mercie loves to have anything that looks like their worksheets!
We are taking a vacation from school this week to rest and enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday and Mikaela's birthday (which is actually tomorrow).

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful that where sin abounded, grace abounded much more! (Romans 5:20) I am thankful that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us! Despite my sin (and trust me, there's been alot of it), Jesus loves me. He LOVES me. How can He love me, when I've been so mean to Him? When I've ignored Him, when I've disobeyed Him, when I've disrespected Him, when I've put Him behind so many other things, when I've tried to 'fit' Him into my little box? I'm so thankful that He doesn't keep a record of our sins...I'm so thankful He throws them as far as the east is from the west...I'm so thankful that when I ask His forgiveness, I can put on His robe of righteousness...I'm so thankful that He is full of GRACE and MERCY and COMPASSION and LOVE. I'm so thankful that, even though I am a wretched sinner, even though I am no where near close to where He wants me to, He is still moving in my life and His grace is still abounding.

                                               * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I am also thankful for my children. They have been memorizing scripture the past 2 1/2 weeks, and memorizing it well. Ephesians 4:32; Psalm 46:10, and this week Proverbs 12:22. Even Mercie is memorizing, just from hearing them say it over and over. I am so proud of them! I am also memorizing it, and it's a blessing when Daddy hears them reciting the Bible.

We have a new game that we actually got out of the ABC devotional book. It's a thankful guessing game. It's kind of like I Spy. We each take turns, giving clues about something we're thankful for. "I'm thankful for somewhere we go to learn about Jesus..." "CHURCH!" The kids love it, and it helps them to understand all the things we have to be thankful for. They get pretty deep with it, too. Mikaela said yesterday, "I am thankful for something we should live by" We were guessing, the Bible, the commandments, etc. She said, "FAITH." Of course, we can get silly with it, too, but we are thankful for the silly things!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

I Am Trying To

1.) Give more honor to my husband. He is worthy of respect. He is a wonderful loving husband, and a playful fun father, and a hard working provider for our family. Yet, sometimes I am critical of the things he does (wrongfully). I make sarcastic remarks toward him. I don't always have a good attitute toward him. I want to give him honor, because he is the leader of my family and I love him so much. Whether or not he deserves respect or honor, though, is irrelevent. God commands us to be submissive and honor our husbands. And by honoring our husbands we are honoring God. By being submissive to our husbands, we are submitting to God.

2.) Be more patient with the kids. Too often I lose my patience, my temper, and my emotions with my children. I want to speak more lovingly, react more compassionately, and discipline more gently.

3.) Have more joy. The wife and mother creates the atmosphere of the home. When Rod comes home, I want the atmosphere to be joyful and peaceful. I want to sing praises around the house all day, and make our home a place where the Holy Spirit continually dwells. I want anyone that enters our home to feel the Holy Spirit. I want to keep all bitterness, anger, selfishness, rebellion, hatefulness OUT of my home.

I am reminded of that childrens song, "He's still working on me, to make me what I outta be..."

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thankful Thursday


I am participating in Thankful Thursday today! So here are the top five things we are thankful for today.

1.) Mommy - A beautiful day and picnic at the park with the kiddos and my mom today.

2.) Mikaela - "Having a mommy that loves me."

3.) Eli - "Going to the park today."

4.) Mercie - "My stroller." (baby doll stroller)

5.) Silas - Well, if he could talk, I'm sure he's most thankful for his big brother and sisters who entertain him on a daily, hourly basis, and his mommy who totes him around all day long.

I always like reading my mom's thankful Thursday post, here.  It's a reminder to thank God for the little things He allows us to enjoy every day.

And now...for a recipe that is DEE-LICIOUS.

Boil a package of boneless skinless chicken breasts AND a package of pasta, any type.
Shred the chicken.
Add a jar of Ragu, Roasted Garlic Parmesean sauce to the chicken.
Add a can of Italian diced tomatoes to that.
Pour noodles into a casserole pan.
Sprinkle some mozzarella cheese over the noodles.
Pour the chicken mixture over that.
Bake until bubbly!
Enjoy.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Family Bed

The older I get, the more and more my views change. I can remember not too long ago when I couldn't even imagine sharing MY bed with babies.  And last night, as I lay next to my sweet Silas, and glanced over at Mercie on his other side, and my hubby squished against the wall on the other side of me, I felt joy!

Joy at knowing my youngest daughter felt comfort in our bed. She doesn't always sleep with us; she starts out in her toddler bed in the room she shares with Mikaela. But there are some nights she just needs that security, that comfort of being next to us.

Joy at knowing my sweet baby can roll over and nurse whenever he wakes up hungry, or just the comfort of nursing for a few minutes to get himself back to sleep. Joy at knowing he feels safe and warm next to Mommy.

It's not always comfortable when you have 4 (sometimes 5 and sometimes even 6) bodies in a bed, even if it a king size bed. I wouldn't have it any other way. One day, they will be too old to even want to climb in our bed. One day, they will have their own bed with their own blessings crawling in it with them!

I have learned to cherish the moments when I am rocking Silas to sleep. Yes, rocking him to sleep each time he needs a nap, each night before bedtime. A few years ago, that would be unheard of to me! "He needs to learn to put himself to sleep." "He is too spoiled." A few phrases you might have heard me to say.  Now? Now I realize that you can't spoil a baby. You can't hold a baby too much. You can't give a baby enough comfort and love. So what if he needs to be rocked? I love to rock him! It's the time I can sit and enjoy the smell of his hair, the way his fist grabs my shirt, the way he'll look at me with his sleepy grin, and the way he looks as he's sleeping. So peaceful. So content.

I am just treasuring the moments because they are quickly slipping through my fingers. Each day that goes by, I just want to bottle it and save it. My children are growing so fast. Mikaela will be 8 years old the 23 of this month! Eli is 5. Mercie will be 3 in February. Silas is 4.5 months.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Picture Day

I took the kids to get their pictures taken yesterday, and on the way home we stopped at the park to get a few more. They turned out cute!! Here are a few:




Is it me or do I have the most beautiful kids in the world??


By the way...Mercie wouldn't crack a smile for the photographer! She just stared at him. Wouldn't grin, wouldn't change her facial expression. All of the pictures with her in them, well, everyone else smiled beautifully and did whatever was asked of them, but Mercie? She is just Mercie.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Quiet Time Today




Got these adorable fleece zipups from Walmart today for Eli and Silas for.....$5!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Christian Liberty Nature Readers...

are so awesome! We have the Kindergarten, 1 and 2 grade levels. Currently we are reading through the Kindergarten one. It's supposed to be read by them, but it's pretty tough. Mikaela can read it, but we are using it as a read aloud. It's an alphabetical animal book.Each letter has 2 pages that are dedicated to an animal that starts with that letter. A for alligator, B for beetle, C for camel and so on. The  kids love it and it's what we are using for science right now. Just reading and learning.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Scripture Memory Cards

I have been slacking on making my children memorize scripture since Silas has been born. It seems like all we can do just to fit everything into a day! But scripture memory is so important and I feel convicted to keep it up and make it a priority. I searched and searched and found what we are going to use at hubbardscupboard.org. That site has tons of verses, memory cards, coloring, puzzles and handwriting sheets for many many verses. We are starting this week with Ephesians 4:32 "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other as in Christ, God forgave you." It seemed fitting for this time in our life! I printed out the memory verse on 4 x 6 index cards and laminated them for each of the kids. We are going to keep them in an index card binder and add to it each week. So far they are learning it! Even Mercie, who says "Be kind and passionate to another".

I am also trying to get more regular with family devotions. It's so hard to do the things that are the most important. Why is that??? We started reading My ABC Memory Verses by Susan Hunt. We went through it last year, once a week, but it is a really great devotional. We don't memorize the scriptures, but just read the stories and it opens a dialogue. We are going backwards, though, from Z to A!! We are only on Y, but in a few weeks we'll be through and I'll have to find something else.

We also started our Louisiana 2 week unit study yesterday. We have a big outline of LA on a piece of posterboard and they have individual outlines in their ongoing lapbooks. We are adding to them each day, the capital and our city yesterday, the flag, seal and motto today, and tomorrow the state symbols. It's pretty fun and interesting to learn all the facts that I didn't even know! Like, Baton Rouge means red stick. I asked Eli what the capital of LA was and he shouted, "Red Stick!!" LOL.

I'll post pictures later this week of our memory cards and LA outline.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Fall Carnival Fun

Saturday night we had our church fall carnival. Or "tarn-a-bull" as Mercie calls it! The kids dressed up and had a blast. Mikaela was Dorthy from the Wizard of Oz; Eli was a policeman; Mercie was Little Red Riding Hood; and Silas was supposed to be a dalmation puppy, but he hated his costume as you can see in the picture below!

                                            Pumpkin Painting!



                    Screaming Silas didn't wear a costume to the carnival.

The carnival was fun. We had hot dogs and played games and won prizes and cakes. Eli is already asking when the next carnival is!