Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Rainy Day Inspiration & How Sister Dressed Nate

It's still rainy, and the kids haven't gotten out in the rain as much as they would LOVE to:)

One of their "school"/Awana actvities this week was to draw pictures of things God made, by looking out the window and drawing what they could see. Of course, it's been rainy so there wasn't MUCH to see out the window.

I pulled open our front door so the kids could all see at one time and have a better view. The kids loved it.

They all spent quite a bit of time sitting in front of the door, watching the rain and drawing.I thought it was soo neat how much they enjoyed the new and simple "art" space!!

As you can imagine, most of the pictures involved rain and water:) Chris drew whales jumping out of the puddles he saw in our front yard... LOL!!! A little imagination added in there:)

And Lydia's favorite picture was a girl getting wet in the rain:)

And just for fun, I'll share how Anna wanted to dress Nate today! I will preface the picture by saying it's a little challenging to dress him right now b/c it's between seasons, he's between sizes and the "cloth diaper bottom"!!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Last Trip to Grammie's Pool

Happiness Is...

A couple of warm (very hot) days spent with Grammie at the pool.
It was COLD:)

But it was soo hot outside!!! Nate wasn't excited about the water,

but his siblings swam until their lips were blue;)

And the kids were delighted to have Hannah Grace come to visit as well!!


They had soo much fun at the pool together!

Here's a throwback moment, the picture above reminded me of this one....
Summer 2007!!

You can find some other picture posts at Wordless Wednesday, 5 Minutes for Mom and Go Graham Go!!

Tiny Talk Tuesday

Anna (6 yrs) was practicing her Awana verses in the van on the way to Awana. She was working on two separate verses on in Jeremiah and one in Levitus, but every time she would say the reference she's say "Luke-a- miah."

We'd correct her and she'd giggle and then try it again. But she's start again with "Luke-a-miah".

On the way home from Grammie's house on Saturday, Anna recognized where we were a couple of miles from the house. So she started to give "hints" to Chris and Lydia about where we were.

Anna said,"Chris and Lydia, do you see anything that you have seen before?"

And then as we approaches our little town....
Anna asked, "What town is this?"
Chris said loudly and confidently, "Bethlehem!"

In my post yesterday, you might have noticed Lydia's (3 yrs) newest boo-boo. She really busted her bottom and top lips inside and out, and cut her top front gum!! When we first saw her, there was BLOOD pouring from her mouth.

Once we got her cleaned up a bit and could tell what some of the injuries were, we also started working on calming her down. Finally the thing that worked was reminding her that she heals fast, like her scrape on her elbow from last week was already starting to heal.

So at church on Sunday, one of our church members asked how her lip was and Lydia responded, "It's healing fast!"

Poor little thing! But I'm soo thankful she was OK!! And that she seems fine with her injuries b/c she's "healing"!
And this is how you can find Lydia completing her schoolwork during the day!! Wearing her little "sweetie pie"!

I thought it was sweet!!

Check out Not Before 7 for more kiddie quotes;)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Umbrellas not needed...

After a full morning of schoolwork (after our LONG weekend!!!) we were all hoping for a fun break after lunch.... but this rain won't let UP!! It started raining last night and it hasn't stopped.... so glad we traveled and played at the beach last weekend when it was soo sunny and hot;)

But the kids insisted that they'd have fun outside in the rain. They wore their "Crocs" and brought their umbrellas.... and ventured OUT!

But as I watched them I realized their umbrellas had been abandoned! And they were soaked!!

They had a GREAT time!!
Do you feel the love???
And after their baths they asked if they could go BACK outside after their naps:) Must have been as fun as it looked:)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

TIny Talk Tuesday

Last Monday at the grocery I had to all but tied up Lydia and Chris from taking all the coupons out of a blinkie. The coupons were for pasta and my kiddos LOVE pasta... so I think they were thinking that we'd eventually purchase some if they got enough coupons??

On Tuesday I got an email about "super doubles" at Harris Teeter. Chris was at my side so I thold him that I might be able to use his coupons at the sale.

He looked concerned and said, "You mean, we might have to eat pasta the rest of our lives!"

Like they don't already!! LOL!!

Lydia has started writing letters.... it makes this "homeschooling momma" get soo excited!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it when my kids progress to a new level without my "pushing"....

we all enjoy it more;) So here are her "works" ;)

Lydia has been busy rehearsing her Cubbies memory verses:)She really likes the first two:) She was practicing this week and saying them super fast and she made a silly mistake;)

She said, "God.... loved us, and sent His kid. 1 John 4:10"

Anna has been doing some timed tests with her math facts (Saxon curriculum)! She LOVES racing the clock!!

This AM while she was busy scribbling all the facts she could in a minute I walked into the other room to grab something, as I got back into the kitchen the buzzer was going off and Anna was just calmly sitting there with a HUGE grin....

Then she showed me her math facts.... she had completed them all and was soo proud of herself;) Her grin said it ALL:)

Check out Not Before 7 for more kiddie quotes;)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Nursing and Food Allergies

I've been wanting to share about our nursing experience thus far....

Anna was my first little nurser and she was sooo easy.... of course, I was a new mom, a new nurser and not sure how everything worked! I had the soreness as my chest got used to nursing a babe and a little engorgement, but no big problems besides Anna's constant and HUGE "spit ups". Her spitting up was actually reactions to dairy coming through the breastmilk.

Chris was a horrible nurser.... we had latching on problems, more food allergies, he never really sat long enough or was even interested in nursing. After visiting with lactation consultants at the hospital, we finally got him sort of straight and we nursed until my pregnancy with Lydia affected my milk supply... poor little Chris:(

Lydia was another great nurser like Anna. She would take forever to eat... but she did a great job nursing and if you've seen pics of her as an infant, she was well fed:) LOL!!

Thank goodness, Nate has also been a great nurser!! The first weeks my goal was to nurse, nurse, nurse!!! And Nate hasn't stopped!!! I seriously never got engorged with him. I have felt "full" only a handful of times because my little guy eats around the clock!!

Nursing Nate has also been unique because he eats soo quickly!! He takes less than 10 minutes to feed at each nursing session! He's just super efficient!

While nursing Nate has been "easy"... there are always challenges... and ours is food allergies!!! Because Anna, Chris and Lydia all have food allergies, I've again decided to eliminate our problem foods from MY diet (directions given to me by our allergist when our other children were diagnosed!).

An obviously PLUS is that I loose the baby weight FAST... I'm just a few pounds from my whoo-hooo target weight!! But honestly, while it's nice to have the preggo pounds gone, I'd MUCH RATHER keep some of them if it meant my kids didn't have food allergies!!!!

Another CON is that I really have to think about what I NEED to eat. Since dairy, eggs and peanuts are all sources of calcium, fat and/or protein, I have to be sure to eat other foods that fill in the gaps that are left in my diet. I think my lack of energy and Nate's not sleeping through the night might have something to do with my diet... so I'm in the process (constantly) of examining my diet and trying to get in what Nate and I need!!

Another CON is that during these "short" nursing months I have to watch EVERYTHING I eat. I was reminded this week.... I ate a chicken sandwich at McD's ... no cheese... but I don't let the kids eat them because one of the many ingredients is dried milk. Well the next afternoon, Brian was feeling sick and Nate was SOOO fussy. Brian finally remembered eating the chicken sandwich with me and then Nate had a huge spit up.....


Which leads to another PRO which is that through nursing we have been able to predict what allergies each child has had based on what they were sensitive to! This is really nice because the kids don't actually have to consume the "problem" food themselves and we know which foods to test at the allergists.


Totally eliminating




is a lot easier said than DONE!! It's a constant battle of my self-control... not eating what I really want to eat... pizza, ice cream or a Snickers bar!!! Oh, man writing that was torture!!!

but it reminds me of two things:

1. food is "just food", needed to fuel our bodies!

2. The constant sacrifices of parenthood, and in my case, motherhood!!! We carry this baby which can be soo hard on our bodies, we go through labor, then we sacrifice daily for our sweet babes!!! I happen to sacrifice some of my favorite foods for this short season!

But the sacrifices don't end after nursing... LOL!! They don't even end when the kiddos go to college!!!! I know of a sweet local mother who has been with her adult daughter since July because of complications from surgery... this mother has sacrificed soo much to care for her!

Just a reminder to me of the sweet and demanding call of "motherhood" !! May I be found faithful to this amazing calling by God!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Smirk Photo Challenge

The kids helped with our Church Clean-up Day on Saturday!! Oh, it was great to get pictures of the kids hauling mulch with the grown men... and the kids gladly worked.

At one point they all "rested" and got some cool drinks! Anna sat on the church stairs with one of our members...

who tries to be serious and grumpy!! But once you get past his tough, hardworking look you'll see he's quite the opposite.

We caught him (with the smirk to prove it) "teasing" the pastor's kid... and she obviously didn't think he was funny!! LOL!! Looks like she drank something gross...

My obvious regret is that Anna isn't totally in focus!! Welcome to "just learning"!

But I LOVE the different generations pictured! And getting that SMIRK was a "perfect" shot because it's not often displayed from this fellow:)

It's a fun challenge this week:) With all the smirks... we'll have plenty of smiles!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Like I need an Excuse....

.... to take more pics of Nate:)

When the You Capture challenge was Our Choice... I knew what my subject would be;) But I really did TRY to go manual and do a little more than hit the "feeling lucky" button on Picasa!!

Going Manual....

over exposed... SOOC

but the lighter color I thought turned out decent when editted;)

Hmm??? They seem dark to me,especially after the first one!
we were in the shade, but still super cute!
(double chin!!)
(sweet smile)

Here's an attempt to edit a drool picture into Black and White... I chose this one b/c droll is pretty classic at this house AND the picture didn't seem "crisp", you know?


My Picasa edit attempt:)

here's another attempt at B&W (I editted it in color and then did a filtered B&W)

WHat do you think?? I'm a newbie, but I'm open for suggestions!!!


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Brother's Model

One of the challenges, I face, homeschooling more than one child is trying to tailor "together" subjects for each of the different age groups and abilities and interests! I, in NO way, have perfected this.... I'm convinced after 2 years of homeschooling that I have a TON more to learn:)

But each time I feel inadequate or that I haven't "properly" taught my kids a certain subject....

they teach ME!!!

Yesterday, I was again taught!

We pick and study a topic from an children's Earth Science. And then from there I find activities, books, illustrations,etc that help the kids understand.

Yesterday we worked on Day and Night. We covered the basic day/night information and then talked about, eclipses, specifically a solar eclipse. We watched an online video and saw a great interactive activity:)

The kids always pay attention for the first 30+ minutes and then I start to loose them... unless they get to color, cut and paste:) LOL!!! I'm never sure how much Chris and Lydia get....

but Anna has to complete a notebook page with facts for her binder, so I can review and check how much she has retained!! Yesterday though she struggled to get her 3 facts... probably because she was doing it later in the afternoon when we had the "afternoon crew"!! She tried and tried to figure out how to write her last fact....

about solar eclipses!!

Excuse the misspellings,etc... she's a young & new 2nd grader and I wasn't able to sit with her and help since I had a very active household at that time of the day...

7 kids total... 3 outside, 2 doing homework and 1 sleeping.... yes that only makes 6...

the 7th was CHRIS... I found him in the school room cutting and coloring paper. Oh, my gut was to fuss at him for getting into stuff WITHOUT asking....

Then I saw his creation....

YES!!!! DO you recognize it???

He heard Anna trying to write a sentence about a solar eclipse. And he MADE one!!!!

He came out of the schoolroom with his "model" and started to show us how he could model an eclipse!!! She saw it, wrote her sentence and was finished....

She had been reminded (re- taught ) by her brother (the one playing on the floor while we were reading!!). He (like the others) just amaze me that they retain sooo much! And can recall and even make "models" of it. And I really LOVED the fact that he did it to "help" his sister... to show her!!

Makes me soo thankful that we have chosen to homeschool our kiddos during this season... as challenging as it seems some days!! I am thankful to have my house FULL (of children, books, learning, prayers for Daddy & friends, yes and even picnics) during the day!!

You can find some other picture posts at Wordless Wednesday, 5 Minutes for Mom and Go Graham Go!!!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

My Favorite Shot

I've been wanting to post this picture of Nate I took this week.... it was soo good and I was waiting for a great post to share it in:)

I saw this photo challenge called "My Favorite Shot" and this one is my absolutely favorite of Nate at 4 months... so far:)

Thanks to Sarah @ loving my life for posting hers!! She's soo on top of all the photo challenges/ blog hops out there;)

Tiny Talk Tuesday!

Lydia (3 yrs) has been asking all week for us to work in the "blue book". The "blue book" being the learn-to -read curriculum we use! AT 3!!!! LOL!!

Honestly, I'm not really surprised because she wants to be like her older siblings, one reading and the other working in the "blue book"! But also not surprising since Anna and Chris also expressed interest at 3.5 yrs old too:) And my teaching philosophy is "when they ask, start teaching!"

Now the question is where to fit time to read with Lydia in our daily (already crammed full) teaching time!


Chris saw some soda in the fridge this week (very unusual at our house!) and immediately started to ask what he needed to eat in order to be allowed to drink some! LOL!!

He asked what kind it was and I told him "Dr Pepper"! But he must not have been listening very well because the rest of the day he called it "Dr Seuss."


And Nate's been "reaching out"... he loves to grab toys, dinner plates, glasses and Daddy's face "fuzz" LOL!!!


Finally I'll share what Anna asked me last week (I'm trying to remember if I have shared it on the blog, yet.... I"m so plagued with mommy-brain... LOL!!!).

As she was working she asked, "Mommy, why is 2nd grade so much easier than 1st?"

This is both good news and bad news to hear! I"m SOOOO GLAD that she is enjoying school this year I know part of it is that I"m working more to make history fun. And we are getting into a "routine"... so she knows what to expect each day!

But I also want her to be challenged!! So this week we intentionally got a book that was a little above her reading level for some of her reading time!