Monday, August 27, 2012

Rough Start

I've tried to stay encouraging on this blog... not trying to "look perfect" but to keep things in perspective... my hardest days are no where close to the challenges others face daily... my family is safe, fed and comfortable. We are incredibly blessed!

But these first couple days of home schooling this semester have been ROUGH. Daily I heard whines and complaints. And daily I lost my cool and have had to apologize and find an activity that restores peace. And daily our work space has been covered in beans or uncooked rice (no need to tell you the culprit).

I just think we all enjoyed the simple, playful days of summer (after we moved).

Sure we stayed busy and the kids and I had a little school work mixed into the play times, but starting again with the "Three Rs" LOL and a "school schedule" has been a challenge for all of us. ALL of us! I'm totally in the mix with them:)

And I guess it's just going to take some time getting into the swing of things again! And Momma figuring out how to best organize our time this year.

Hoping summer comes around again soon:)

I kind of stunk getting down any of the kids' silly quotes this week. But you can still share some of yours;)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Busy but Good

The kids played with beans a lot as I read with them this week (as we started to get used to staying in the school/play room with one another all morning). But even when beans are supposed to stay on the blanket they always manage to find a cute way to escape off...

this week it was "bean soup".

Totally MY fault for having a kitchen set in the schoolroom;)


They were happy for more than an hour playing with beans;)

Then setting up a store to sell their "bean soup"!

And yes, the school did get cleaned up.... but there are plenty of beans still lurking around.

Thankfully Friday is clean the school room day, so I'm positive more will be found:) Might even make it a competition to see who can bring me the most... LOL!!

Between the boys playing store together and these sweet moments...


my heart has been happy too:)

My two year old sticking cotton balls in his ears as he tried to convince his Daddy to mow the lawn...

but his Daddy has been busy too. Working on something really HIGH up... I"ll be blogging about it soon in a post called "When you really need to PRAY for your husband and be sure his life insurance policy is up to date!" LOL... just kidding;)


One of the reasons this has been such a busy season for us... besides schooling starting, college classes starting and LIFE, has been Brian's shed project! I'm totally NOT complaining because I did encourage him to build it himself... because he can!! He rocks;)

It's been LATE nights. Eating dinner when it's too dark to see outside so we could eat dinner together. Cleaning the kitchen at 10pm. A busy 2 yr not falling asleep until later:/

And I tell you... he is ONE BUSY 2 yr old. With Daddy working on the shed. And Momma inside cooking dinner he gets into TONS of stuff... I mean he helps out around the house;)


Like feeding the cats;)

So sorry for the lack of posts. It's a busy but delightful season:) We started school this week, I'm trying to stay ahead of my college classes, oh, and the 2 yr old:)


Linking up to {phfr}, Weekly Wrap -Up, and Moments to Remember!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Finding Intestines & Washing an Elephant

Chris was reading to me from a Dick and Jane reader:) He's my reluctant reader and so I was excited that he had initiated some "fun" reading with me;)

I had to chuckle though as he was reading to me but paused to tell me,"Mom, this really isn't a very nice book because they don't use good manners. No one says,"please" or "thank you"!"


During our nightly bedtime reading, I was reading a book with Nate about body parts. And we turned into a "can you find this body part" with Nate. Little Nate was pointing out his nose, arms, legs, neck and belly button.

Chris stumped Nate with, "Can you find your intestines?"

Nate said, "I not know."


We were discussing what we would do together after dinner. Brian suggested Charades and acted out an example. Brian's example was buttering and eating a piece of corn-on-the-cob. The kids "got it" right away:)

Chris gave it a shot;)

He started pretending to be washing a "window" but at a strange angle.

We guessed the obvious... "washing windows", "doing karate",etc.

We finally gave up.

He was acting out...... washing an elephant!!!

We decided to play Uno:) LOL!!!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Back-to-School Pics

Taking our back-to-school pictures has become a fun part of our "getting ready for school" tasks;) The kids were excited to get into our school room and do some crafts (and yes, even some history this week... yipppeee!!).


And the we gathered on the front porch steps to take our pictures this year:) It was kind of sad and fun to have a new background this year!


We also took some individual pictures;)





I have a lively little bunch:)

 I love this picture.... it screams to me "you are crazy to stay home with this crew"!! Even on the hard days when all of us (or at least some of us) are dealing with the grumps, this picture reminds me of the reality of schooling together at home... they are young, silly, cute and I am fortunate to be at home with them!!


We thought we'd add a "class picture" to the picture taking this year:) FUN!!

Linking up to the Not-Back-to-School Blog Hop "School Photo Week"!

And our back-to-school pics from last fall and 2010... the look soo little;)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Pitt-Pitt with the Grands

We ventured out on our last "big" summer trip to the southern grandparents last week. It was very nice to get away from the continuous "to do" list around the house. And it is always nice to be at our parents' houses.... they love on the kids (and us), they feed us and we get to relax a bit and enjoy our time with family:)

Grandma and Grandaddy were very adventurous for this trip:) Since we had only 2 fall days, they had plans for us which included lunch with Great Grandma, swimming, putt-putt, shoe shopping with Anna and time for Mom and Dad to have a "date".... told you they were adventurous and ready for us:)

IMG_0511And as usual with vacation, I want to have the camera by my side...

but it's often left sitting on the counter as we enjoy the sweet moments... like biscuit making with Grandma, eating hot dogs with Great Grandma or the 100th game of Uno with Uncle Scott, Aunt Bea and Grandaddy:) Or Nate's first jumps alone in the pool!!!

I did take pictures of the Grands taking the Grands (and some parents and an uncle) putt-putting. The kids were determined to call it "pitt-pitt"??? Silly little things;)

Grandaddy gave the kids mini-lessons before we headed out for the course!

No matter how fake or "played up" the putt-putt course is.... it always has a pretty look to it. This one was no different. The kids loved the little bridges, dyed blue/green water and the cave:)




IMG_0562The kids had a good time...

but so did the adults:) It's fun playing a game (especially with kids) just for fun!

All the adults enjoyed getting the ball in in just a stroke or two:) Definitely some putt-putting talent in this family:) LOL!!

Loves Brian's relaxed smile after his big "hole in one"!

There couldn't have been a happier little boy when Chris found out he could ride in his own "go cart". He was soo proud out there driving around:) His sisters could have had a chance but declined:(


The funniest thing was watching the kids trying to get the ball into the hole;) I went with Nate (and Grandma) since he's sooo busy:) He was a hoot!!!

He'd put the ball right next to the hole and then hit it in:)

I took a video of Nate chasing Grandma's ball, picking it up, setting it next to the hole and hitting it in! Helping Grandma, of course;)

Nate couldn't ride the go-carts like his big brother. To say he was upset... is down playing his crying, climbing over the railings and fit he threw. So I brought him inside the arcade to calm and distract him.


It definitely worked:)

He didn't even know he wasn't really playing... gotta love the age when they don't know what they are missing;)

And while we enjoyed all the activities! The best thing about vacation for us is seeing our family:) We got to see everyone and we even got to see Great Grandma twice:) We had to get a picture with her... even with a fussy baby:)

Linking up to {pretty,happy,funny,real} and Moments to Remember.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Tiny Talk-ing

So Nate is the "baby" of the family and has totally been playing up that role AND his desire to be a "night owl". Seriously..... this kid would easily stay up later than us if we didn't finally just turn off the lights on him (us with him)!!

We have to giggle though when we are finished reading books with him and he sweetly says, "more book read me please"
And I'm totally a pushover :( How can I not read him Goodnight Moon one more time just to hear him whisper "hush"???

Or as I'm trying to leave the room he says "more ice" (meaning water in his cup). I reply,"I just gave you more water and ice in your cup." And his response is shaking the cup and saying,"more ice, ice more please". Determined!!


One of our children demands creative discipline. We've read the books, we've followed the suggestions and our little one requires us to be on our toes. This week we started limiting TV... more importantly at night when we all like to gather to watch a movie (or at least a part of one).

This week our little rascal had their TV time limited. And we had borrowed a movie from the library that we were all excited about watching. So we began watching the movie on their night of "no TV".

What we didn't bargain for though was the tender-hearted one who couldn't stand their sibling not watching the movie with us. They asked,"Couldn't you just spank [the kiddo] so they can watch this with us?"


And the quote to show you just how honest my kids are.... LOL!!!!

At Grandma's they said,"We like coming to Grandma's because we don't have to do chores!!!"

And they don't!! But that's definitely not the only reason we all love going to Grandma's:)We had a great visit with them last week and I'll get up some of our trip later;)

Link up what your kids are saying!! Record and remember these sweet memories;)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Cousins, Jamestown and Pey

As I mentioned yesterday, last week we were able to spend time with extended family. My children got to meet and play with my (step) cousins' children at my parents' house.

My timid kids were a little worried about being at Grammie and Pey's with other children they didn't know. Silly little things;) But once all the kids were together they meshed soo very well:)

We had 3 8-yr old girls, Chris my 6-yr old, 2 5-yr old girls and one boy, 3 yr old Hannah Grace and then my 2 yr old Nate;) My parents remarked they couldn't remember the pool being filled with soo many younger kids before;)

We stayed at my parents'  for 3 days... so we got meet up with them in a couple of different places. The weather didn't always cooperate with us though:/ But it made some pretty pictures;)
the clouds looming over the sky.... I love the beautiful new route we have to take to get to my parents'.
a rainbow after morning plans were "washed away"

all the cousins lined up (minus Nate) and my parents' beautifully done backyard

And no one as was smiley as Nate who finally jumped into the pool when Grammie got in with him;)

It really wasn't long before the kids all settled in together and really enjoyed one another. I was soo thankful for the start of  friendship that was built between the cousins. 

One of the fun places we got to go with them was Jamestown, VA. After studying the first settlers in our studies last year it was really fun to go and "experience" what they lives would have been like. Everything was set up very simply so the kids could walk around and explore, play and speak with the "actors".

And it was even more fun to be able to go with kids of like ages!! They did a lot of the activities together. (I was just thankful we had soo many adults helping to keep an eye on the kids and that Jamestown was not very busy!)






Little Maya snuggling with a fox skin.

And Chris braving the heat to watch and listen to the Indian girl explain how she made her own bow and arrows. Chris was inthralled;)

Pey trying on the soldier's armor

We were very thankful that my aunt, uncle, cousins and kiddos came down. They made the trip as part of their summer vacation and so it was an honor to be able to spend some of the time with them.

Especially for my dad, though!! It was really great to have his sister and family down. To see all of them and be able to be around the pool and even visit Jamestown with them. He loves having company and getting to see new places, Jamestown was a place he had been asking to visit for a while.

He looks good... even healthier than last year at this time. He has gained weight and is able to get out more. That being said we thought it would be a good idea for him to use a motorized wheelchair at Jamestown when we saw that they had them. And they were free to use:) Such a blessing for my dad who does tire quickly especially in the heat and trying to keep up with grandchildren;)


Nate loved Pey's "wheels"!! And I know Dad enjoyed Jamestown a lot more since he didn't have to do all the walking himself. It was definitely a blessing!!

For those who have been praying for my Dad (our Pey) please keep it up! I'm never how much to share... but his cancer count numbers are high.  The side effects of chemo are felt constantly. He is still getting chemo twice a month with a couple of doctor's appts. throughout the week.

Thankfully my mom is now working closer to home. My dad has a couple more events/trips planned that he is looking forward to in the next few months that are keeping him occupied planning. And his faith... I think the reason he can smile is that he knows deep down that "God is going to take care of him".


And we cherish all the moments we get to spend with our family. Precious time... busy, loud, sometimes a little frustrating.... but precious!

Linking up to {pretty, happy, funny, real} and Moments to Remember.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Cousins and Second Cousins

Last week we spent most of the mid-week with extended family.

My step-father (Pey) had his sister, nieces and their families come to visit and spend some time enjoying the local area. I remember visiting them each summer during our family vacations. One of my cousins is just months older and we share our name;) LOL!

Having our kids meet and play together was a lot of fun;)


I'll be sharing more of our adventures later in the week:)

More Wordless Wednesday at  NapTime MomTog, 5 Minutes for Mom,  Mama to 4 Blessings, Go Graham Go

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Reluctant Jumper & White Boy

The kids are still playing Uno... daily!!! I really think they ask to play Uno more than they ask to have something to eat!! It's too funny! And very loud when they play! LOL!!

The funniest thing though is Nate running around (trying to snatch cards) and saying "New-no!! New-no!!!"


"I don't want to be a white boy anymore" he tells me.


And then it all makes sense why he plays in the woods for hours and comes out "covered" in mud....

 every time he goes outside!


Link up what your kids are saying!! Record and remember these sweet memories;)