Saturday, November 27, 2010

O Christmas Tree

(first, let me say, I HATE indoor flash photography...bleck!  How horrible does the above photo look?  But at least I realized quickly!  ;)

So today we did the whole "put up the tree" tradition.  I LOVE decorating for Christmas...and this year Ezekiel was SOOO excited about everything.  I'm smiling just thinking about it as I sit here typing.  

Sadly I didn't have that same attitude all day.  About half of us are feeling under the weather around here and because of that I needed a lot of helping "finding a happy heart" today.  I'm so grateful that, as we're reminded in the catachism, "the Holy Spirit alone" is able to change our hearts.  

I'm so grateful for this time of year.  Grateful for the focus of the season (JESUS, not gifts!  lol ;) and the continual reminders of what an amazing God we serve.  One who's plan, from the foundation of the world, including sending his Son to earth as a baby.  

(when did my baby get so big?  And so darn pretty?!?!)

We've stressed so much that Santa isn't what Christmas is about, that he was just a kind man that lived a long time ago, and that we're really celebrating Jesus's birth...that I'm a little worried that one of the kids is going to get us into trouble by telling some other little kid that Santa isn't real.  We've talked about how some people like to pretend Santa is real and all that...but...any ideas?  

Grace was all about helping daddy pick out ornaments!

and this little dude...I think he hung everything on two branches!  lol.  So funny.

Alright, so, that was random but I hope you had a great Thanksgiving!!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

One for the Boys

Lest you think I only have girls...or don't sew for boys...

I made this faux layered hoodie for my little dude and his BAB buddie Wheels from some of my husband and I's old Early November shirts (it's a band!  lol ;)

I also have to share this little fact that I was UBER excited about today!  Wheels has a growling "voice box" in his paw and it just up and stopped working a week or so ago.  No night at bedtime it worked, the next morning...nada.  So we took him in to the Build -a- Bear store today to see if they could fix him...and not only did they do surgery and put in a new growler, it was all complimentary!!!!  I was so excited  that I didn't have to pay for it I used the money I was planning on spending for it to buy these:  

I mean...they were JUST like the ones 'Zekiel had on...and it was just too cute to pass up!  lol

and just for fun..a few more of my cutie and Wheels...

I LOVE the one above...and want to play around with it some more, I think we could really rock that sunflair.  :)  

On a side note...when Zeke was going to bed tonight he informed me that Wheels needs some jammies...probably Cars you can be watching for those!  lol ;)

Monday, November 22, 2010

It's Monday...

and in our house Monday means Classical Conversations.  We're part of a Classical Conversations community that meets once a week and works on memory work, science projects, public speaking and Bible together.

Classical Conversations is a place where the parents are still the final teachers and the classical model of education is presented in a way to empower and equip parents to go home and continue giving their children the tools to learn for a lifetime because we believe that the purpose of education is to know God and make Him known.

I read on another blog today that the back of the t-shirts their children wear on field trips reads “Non shcolae sed vitea discimus.” We learn not for school, but for life.   I LOVE that!!!  (oh, did I mention that my 4 year old knows about five different latin verb tenses?  I'm a big fan of latin.)

So, what's a typical CC (Classical Conversations) class day look like?

We arrive a little before 9 and drop the littles off in the nursery (children must be at least 4 to be part of a CC classroom.)  However my almost 3 year old wanted to stay with us today and I must say he did quite well in class!

At 9 we kick things off with our scripture memory work.  This year we're memorizing Ephesians 6:1-24 (one verse a week for 24 weeks.)
Then one family does a presentation on anything they want, from a family vacation, to pets, to favorite books, and then prays for us before we head for the classroom.

Once we're in our classroom we start with new grammar (and by grammar, I mean the foundational information we're learning about 6 different subjects including english grammar.)
Our subjects are
english grammar

and we also go over our timeline cards at this point.

Once all our new grammar is complete we have a small break for snack and potty time.  Then we start in with our public speaking.  We go over a new public speaking "rule" each week to try and work on (such at articulation, the 3 second rule, gestures, etc) and then each child gives a short presentation on an assigned subject (next week they're supposed to bring and talk about their favorite stuffed animal.)

Next up are science and either music or art.  And at the very end we play some sort of review game to help them remember everything we're learning.

Finally...and I'm sure this is the kids favorite part!...we all eat lunch together and then the kids run around and scream like the crazy people they really are.

Sorry this was such a long post with no pictures to break up the monotony, but hopefully I'll have a few videos in the future to help you get a better visual of the things we're learning!  :)  Props if you made it this far!!!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Gratitude for so much.  Big and small.


I feel like God has been inundating me with reminders of all that He has bestowed on me.  Reminders to be grateful.  Reminders that  "I can only feel one feeling at a time, and I choose to give thanks at all times. Fight feeling with feeling!"

I'm studying Exodus in my current Kay Arthur bible study and let me tell you what, those Israelites can be convicting in their grumbling and ingratitude!  Moses and Aaron reminded the people that, "Your grumbling is not against us but against the Lord."  (Exodus 16:8)  I know that God is going to bring that verse to mind the next time I open my mouth to whine about something.  To complain about how good I've got it.  God has blessed me with the circumstances I'm in and I'm choosing to be grateful.  I'm choosing joy.

I've been inspired by Lindsay to start a notebook of gifts.  A journal of gratitude.  When a tiny thing I'm thankful for flits across my mind, I'll record it.  When a complaint or whiny attitude attacks me I'll chose to write something I'm grateful for instead.

Because really, Christ is saved me.  He's sanctifying me.  He's conforming me to His image.  Those are ALL reasons to have a heart overflowing with gratitude.

Now, I challenge you to join me, and Lindsay and Ann, and choose JOY through gratitude.

Friday, November 12, 2010


You absolutely can't do it in your own strength.  You can never be strong enough, smart enough, resourceful enough.  Putting others first just doesn't come naturally.  Laying aside what you want, to serve another with grace and contentment - that is what God calls you to.  You can do it only when you rely on the strength that Christ works in your, the love that he supplies, and the perseverance that the Holy Spirit provides.  
                                                                                                                -Ginger Plowman
                                                                                                              Heaven at Home

This is something I need to be reminded of daily.  Christ's love, Christ's strength, Christ's grace, Christ's patience, all of these working through my and pouring out into the lives of my little family are the only way I will ever be able to please Him (or make it through a day without having a temper tantrum for that matter!)  

One example from this week of Christ's grace flowing through me that I'm so grateful for happened on Wednesday.  I've been trying to do a better job of keeping things picked up...and of making sure the kids help.  This doesn't always go over so well.  Like most kids they LOVE making a mess but aren't so keen on cleaning it up.  So Wednesday morning I asked my 4 year old to pick up the toys in the living room (because we'd been doing a good job of keeping stuff picked up there weren't very many!) and she decided to throw a big fit about it.  Normally this would have earned her a spank and then she would have had to pick up the toys away, but I decided to try something different.  

I told her after she finished picking up all the toys she could pick out ONE toy, and that was the only toy she would be playing with for the rest of the day.   Wasn't too tramatic right then, she thought hard about it and then chose her doll house (smart kid!  Way to get a lot of toys all rolled up as one!)  

Anyway, the whole one toy thing didn't seem to impact her much until naptime, when she wanted her doll Fiona.  

THEN, THEN it was the end of the world.  She was tired (it was naptime after all), she and Fiona ALWAYS sleep together, and she was just done.  A large fit ensued.  Normally, in my own strength, by this time in the day, I probably would have been close to loosing it.  I probably would have told her (in no uncertain terms!) that she was acting spoiled and selfish and if she didn't stop she would have to be punished.  BUT on this particular day, because God was pouring out His grace through me I realized what a teachable moment this was.  

I sat down on the edge of the bed and calmly told her I understood how upsetting it was to not have Fi for naptime.  I reminded her how blessed she was to have Fi at all and we talked a little about how much she loves her.  Then I pointed out that the main reason she throws a bit fit about picking up her toys is because she isn't grateful that she has them.  We talked about how God has blessed us with so much and that he expects us to be responsible for what he's given us, for her this means taking care of her toys and picking them up when she's asked to.  Finally we prayed together and thanked God for Fi and all the other toys and then asked that he fill us both with grateful hearts that would rejoice in taking care of the things he has bestowed on us.  

Now, I can't say that all of that made a lasting impact on my 4 year old, but it DID make a lasting impact on me...and it DID stop the fit and allow her to sleep (even without her doll.)  

So, that's it.  Why can't I remember how much better things work out when I do them in HIS strength and not my own?!?!  

Monday, November 8, 2010

Because We're Dorks...

We all (as in every single person in the household, all five of us!) were very excited about the box that came today.

How often is it that a single box brings something for everyone in the family?  Pretty much never around here!  But today, today was different!  Today the UPS man brought ONE box...with FIVE stunning, pretty, shiny new.....

nalgene bottles!!! 
 Because, like I said, we're dorks (and I had a coupon for 50% off my entire order!  Score!!)  

Anyway, we're all thrilled and I'm all into things being color in general Kessa has purple stuff, Grace has pink stuff, and Zeke has green stuff (not sure what we'll do if the new baby is another girl though!  I mean, if it's a boy, that's easy, it'll get blue!  lol)  

Ok, I'm done with my dorkiness for one night...but I'll leave you with one last picture!  ;)  

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

It's Finally Fall!

I know it's been ACTUALLY been fall for a long time...but now my blog looks all pretty and "fallish" too!  :)  And thanks to Virginia I finally can stop being annoyed by my header been off centered!  Thanks V!!!

And..I know it's too late now, but did you vote?!?!

Because if you didn't maybe you should go sit in a corner and feel like this:

(leggings by Fancy Pants Designs, dresses by BabyFish Designs)
but I'm sure you were all good responsible citizens and voted right?!  :)  

So instead you can be proud of yourself and feel like this: