Monday, November 29, 2010


Takin' Care of Mama


Know why?

because it is always full of new beginnings.

a new week, new ideas, new attitude, new efforts, new goals.

My November goals to drink more water, move some, & choose healthier foods was challenging. I mean seriously, this is the month of Thanksgiving right? I have drank more water, and I did go for A walk....yesterday. =)

I have gotten up early a handful of times to have some quiet time w/ the Lord.... which leads me to Decembers goals.

Fitness: Indeed I have a desire to begin walking again (note "new attitude" above).
We have a membership to a gym down the street, so I cannot have a "fair-weathered" excuse. Snow I go....

Nutrition: a repeat goal (note "new efforts" above) towards 6 small mini meals, and to continue to drink a healthy amount of water.

Spiritual Health: (note "new goals" ) I love my concept for a spiritual triathlon (15 min each of praying, worshipping, and reading the Bible).

My focus on new ideas is in reflection to this time of year. Chaos, stress, ...these are the things that creep into my December. I have improved my approach to Christmas over the last few years, yet... this year I seek something a bit different... more peaceful, more calm, more grace... a time to be still, listen, seek... to show my children the true Spirit of Christmas.

To approach this blessed season with a fresh newness to share God's love in our simplest of days

This series is encouraged by Mama D

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thankful for....

my kids!
Joe, &

The in-laws family-
this would be Fred's stepmoms' family. Cindy is sitting by the beautiful Husky. They are all lovely to visit with!

The Turkey Bowl?
My dear husband & the older boys play football with the hometown folks every year...and every year "something" is dramatic. This year? Fred's face met up with someones head...knocked out, dislocated worries, some guy on the field popped it back in place...and he was good for eating the Turkey Dinner!

Xbox 360
A few games of spongebob & teenage mutant ninja turtles kept Bryson busy while we were setting the table.

This is Fred's little sister. We all love spending time with her. She is the same age as our Nick; and yes, she is loved on and picked on as much as with our own kids. =)

Dad (aka Grandpa)
Fred's dad is always a hand-on Grandpa. From marbles to rough housing to croquet to playing golf at the local golf course, he always finds ways to spend time with the kids.

I am so very thankful for family, to be able to spend a relaxing time with them, and to continue to make wonderful memories...

Thank you God for each simple gift that lays within our days, and may our everyday moments continue to be filled with your Grace...Amen.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010




Oh, I had some lovely intentions...really I did.
Our school studies for Thanksgiving week were outlined w/ purpose. And oh, the grand plans I had for our "Thankful for Each Other" party... crafts, games, prayer, snacks, & a movie.

Yep, I sure did... then it snowed. Who keeps kids inside studying when there is fun to be had?
Not this mom!
Frigid temperatures insist on icy roads, so when we were going to have our party, we now are hitting the road to stay with family a day earlier than planned...

We will open our Thankful letters before we go. Each child wrote a word to each sibling. Anything from "she's ok" to "He's crazy, I like that" to "I'm glad I'm bigger" to "He's funny & outgoing". Ha, did you expect it to have more meaning? Heartfelt & thought pondering? Oh, I did... but hey, welcome to our simple world. ;^)

Does anybody struggle with the attempt at a perfect holiday?

Does this effort rob the joy out of the intent?

I am a planner, a type A personality, I want things perfect. What I have discovered over the years is that to strive towards perfection steals the desires and efforts of pleasing others.

Holidays are not about the clean house,
not about the decorations,
not even about the food,
it is about the people.
Those whom we care about, adore, love.

So during this holiday of Thanksgiving...
I will slow down to...
embrace a small child,
listen to a talkative young lady,
pay attention to a quiet guest,
hug the host,
& whisper a grateful message into each ear that is near me this day.

Give thanks to the Lord, His love endures forever.............

Monday, November 22, 2010

with the


Dominoes gave us an example of follow-the-leader...

Forts were made, and fans were used....

...and we had plenty of fish activities for the week.

Gg week included puzzles, size sorting,

magnets, & tracer pages of Gumball machines.

Ff activities were based off Abeka curriculum.
Gg activites were found here ~love this gal for simple preschool busy activities!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Soccer in the North

Little brothers love to watch big brothers play. =)

Little sisters hang in there patiently as big brothers play. =)

Nick is # 5. He's back to playing in the games after 7 weeks off due to a bone injury.

Most times he wins the ball....

and sometimes

... he doesn't. ;^)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Praising God for Mothers, Sisters, & Daughters.

We went to a Mother/
Daughter Tea yesterday!

I *heart* my mom! She is beautiful!
She taught me about unconditional love.
She also taught me that mistakes get made,
we learn from them, and we move on to better things.
I am blessed to be living with her for this season..., I have a sister (love you sissy!!!) and I have a dear s.i.l. (*wave* to Chanelle)...but today I am sharing about sisters-in-Christ.

Our Mother/Daughter tea was at a church... a black church. A God glorifying, hope honoring, spiritual seeking, gospel gleaming, praise precious church. These beautiful ladies give fresh perspective on "sisters"-in-Christ. They sing, they praise, they worship, they pray (and pray they do), they dance, they rejoice, they relate, and they let down their guard and kept it real. AND they looked good, lol. NOT that that matters ;^) The hats, gloves, and shoes of these women were stunning; but they are the first to admit that they share, borrow, and bargain shop; but I am not talking about the outer beauty. These "sisters" know that Christ is their King, and they treat themselves (and each other) like the precious jewels they are.

Daughters~ my daughter is lovely.
She adores doing things with me. Even simple things like making donuts together, or reading together. I love taking her to mother/daughter events. She lights up.
She had a nice time at the tea, too. She had a "twin" at the tea. A young girl, 9, came up to introduce herself. Both the girls were wearing the SAME dress. Now, as women, that is something we prefer not to happen....girls, on the other hand, seem to use it as a connection.
They were simply adorable.
Black girl, black hat, black gloves, black shoes;
white girl, white pearls, white gloves, white shoes...
yearning to be ladies; learning to be sisters-in-Christ.

May I always Shine His Light in a way that my daughter can follow His path....
and may she be much more graceful through it than I am!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

with the

Letter of the week: Ff

Katie-girl reads during Story Time.

Andrew helps count the Frogs, Firemen, & Fish.

Bryson loves helping his mama color!


Our Andrew thinks differently. He is clever; his brain just processess things differently. I, as his mom & teacher, am still learning how that works, and what school will look like for him.

Andrew has had reading lessons for a few months now. "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" I love this book....very effective & efficient. We are not getting very far. He does not want to do it. Is this rebelliousness...or lack of attention... or... too concrete?

So, I pull out an old book called "The Heart of Learning" from Oak Meadows. I researched this curriculum at the beginning of our homeschool journey. (9 years ago) Back then I was researching how to best help Nick absorb information while reading. The concept from this is interesting. It is not a Christian based curriculum; it has more of a 'Mother Earth' tone to it. None-the-less it has some fascinating concepts to guide the child while grasping how they learn... being aware of the mind, heart, & body.

I decide to approach "school" for Andrew at a different angle. Today we had Story Time & Table Time.

Table Time: A stack of paper...and crayons.
Too simple? ...not so much....

The crayons create softer lines than markers, so this was intentional. Andrew is an abstract thinker...he has a lot going on in his brain at once, but to create a concrete idea, it takes process.

His Lesson: Each of us have one blank piece of paper.

I draw grass...not a concrete line, but blades of grass...randomly across the bottom of the paper.

I talk about how grass grows from the ground.

He draws a sun...with a smiley face.

I draw a flower stem...from the grass upwards.

I talk about how flowers grow up out of the ground.

He draws the moon... with a smiley face.

I draw the flower...discussing the flower petals as I go.

He draws two people...he decides that it is him and Katie.

I let Bryson "color" my sketched picture I drew.

While I am "busy" with Bryson...

Andrew draws grass (blades of grass)

While I am talking with Katie (still at the table)...

Andrew draws the flowers (focusing on creating petals).

He begins to take pride in his project, and starts to talk about his creation.

The sun & the moon are Far away.

The two people are Friends.

Our lesson was on the letter Ff.

What I thought was lack of attention was actually very intentional...

and sometimes it takes a mama a moment to slow down, view things from a different angle, and to simply...listen.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Takin' Care of Mama

A journey of getting healthy,
both spiritually and physically.

Encouraged by Mama D.

My Week...

started with lots of ponderings, prayer, & some patience.

I came up with my Healthy Plan...and then I came up with the flu for several days. Nothing like the desire to get healthy when you feel really ill. ;^)

The first topic of my Healthy Plan is Fitness.

I like fitness.
I love being active.
I just never get around to finding time "for me" to get it done
(aka I don't find time for myself.)
Walking is my favorite; It loosens my joints, strengthens my muscles, slowly slims my roundness, and clears my mental thinking.

My fitness plan for this month is to just get started. How's that for big goals?

Next is Nutrition.

I already mentioned that I can't diet. But dieting is something temporary. It is a quick fix. Something that I see as a short term goal. I have to approach my nutrition as a life style change. As a way to get healthy. To feel better from within.

I cannot make rules. That becomes a diet.
You know, like:
*no sugar, no carbs
*limit to 1500 calories
*don't eat after 8 p.m.

I can, however, make guidelines.
*Balanced nutrition. This would mean adding vegetables to my meals. =)
*Drink less caffeine; drink more water.
*plan 6 small meals to keep metabolism up & hunger down.

My nutrition plan for this month is to eat small balanced meals, and to drink more water.

Last, but not least, is my spiritual health.

This mama needs prayer time, wants Bible reading time, and craves good worship music. I will seek this time in the quiet hours of the morning.

My spiritual goal for this month is the Spiritual Triathlon.
15 min. reading, 15 min. praying, 15 min. listening.

~Next week I will share my opinions about "the scale"
~why I think my health should be important to me.

So, what steps are you willing to take to be a healthier you?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Our Family Fall Nature Walk

Not too bad a picture for throwing them all under a tree.

Bryson was checking out the mushroom Daddy found. He tried to lick it like an ice cream cone. Thankfully this child has tamed down a bit, and didn't once run off towards the cliffs or hillside. This makes for a much more peaceful nature walk!

This completes our "year round" study of the environment at this particular nature trail. We started our observations last winter, and continued our research of wildlife and nature through all four seasons. Kind of a fun project to do.

Today's trip was to gather seeds & leaves, search for bugs, and to take note of which animals were still around.

It was a great outing, and the weather was beautiful. Days like these make me slow down my thoughts and be grateful for the more simple moments in life.