Survival and Thankfulness

Right now, I'm in survival mode.

I shared a prayer request in church on Sunday.  Prayers for my sickly, tired, first-trimester self.

And...I cried.

That was embarrassing.
Probably more for my husband than myself, but at least he just HEARD about it because he was walking the church halls with our fussy, teething toddler.

But I guess it was good that I made a crying mess of myself because somehow crying lets everyone know that you're serious.

I know that this first trimester isn't going to last super long (even if it feels like it), and I know that we CHOSE to homeschool (even if I think we're crazy at times), and I know that we CHOSE to have our 6th child (holy cow), and I know that we CHOSE to...well...want to eat and sleep and live in a semi-clean house (that seems reasonable in this list of maybe not-so-"reasonable" things), but it sure is nice when people rally around you and say,
"What can I do?"
"Can I take your kids for awhile?"

"Can I bring you a meal?" 

 "Can I take your daughter to and from ballet for awhile?"  

"Just call me!  I can help!"

I am not alone, even when I feel desperate.

Thanks to my husband, who works so hard and then gets home and works so hard some more.

Thanks to my kids, who have been so helpful with cleaning, and making food, and taking care of their younger siblings.

And Thank You to those who are helping me during this time.
 The body of Christ, the Church, is a wonderful blessing.
Such a gift from our LORD!

Camping with Friends July 2014


Read this blog post this morning (after a weekend where I just got my first ever smart phone - an iPhone no less...)

"We mused over the Psalm of David this morning, and I stopped mid-sentence, because that’s when it came to me, and said to my kids: “Aren’t you glad David didn’t have an I-phone!”
Imagine it: Selfies with sheep. Status updates about how bored he is. Tweets about what a rough life he has. No doubt photos of the lion he killed WITH HIS BARE HANDS, the perfect makings of a narcissistic hot-head."

Yeah...I'm glad he didn't have an iPhone either.
Good reminders for me!


I Will Hide God's Word in My Heart...

Sometimes I wake up or go to sleep with a particular verse stuck in my head.  This morning I had the last part of these verses rolling through my brain and I hadn't even read them recently so I figured I should share them.  :)

Deuteronomy 31:6 

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Hebrews 13:5 

Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,

“Never will I leave you;    never will I forsake you.”


Trying something new this year...Classical Conversations

We've always done a mix of Charlotte Mason, Classical, Traditional, Unit Studies, and Delight-Directed Learning in our homeschool....which I guess would just be labeled, "Eclectic."
But this year, we've made a change.  A change that is big, but not so big.  A change that has me wondering how it can be so easy, but so complicated at the same time.  A change that has me scratching my head with thoughts of, Is this really all that is needed?  Am I doing enough?  Can it really be so simple to retain so much information?  Will they remember this stuff for years to come?  And when I verbalize those thoughts to families that have been involved in CC for years, the answers are, yes, yes, yes, and yes!

We joined a local Classical Conversations (CC) Community and we are really enjoying it!
There's a funny story behind how we came to be involved in CC.
Our kids had gone to a Christian school on Wednesdays for the past two years, but sadly they closed their doors this year.  At first, I prayerfully searched for a different school that could offer what Wednesday school offered, but didn't find what we were looking for locally.  We then decided that we'd just homeschool without any extra things added on, like we did our first three years of homeschooling.  BUT...I kept hearing about how great Classical Conversations was, so I decided to check it out a bit online and finally emailed the director to see if I could attend a meeting or get some more information.
Well, long story short-er ;) we had decided against CC and I was set to start the school year without any extras.  
On a Friday in late August, I went to a water park with a friend of mine.  While there, a lady approached me and said,
"Have we met?  Are you one of my CC moms?"
I had never seen her and she had never seen me, but she says she was "drawn" to me and was SURE I was going to be at her CC campus this year.  Turns out, she was the leader of the CC closest to me that I had emailed a couple of times!

It was a very cool, kinda strange, but God-ordained meeting that, once again, had us looking into CC.  
I discussed CC again with my husband that weekend and we kept praying.  A couple days later, I went to the Essentials parent meeting and paid my fee to sign up for the year.  CC classes started a week and a half after that!

The amount of stuff the kids (and I!) are already memorizing is amazing to me.  Most things are put to music, which is always a great way to memorize something (especially for my music-loving, but not always "school-loving" son.)

Before we decided to go with CC, I read Echo in Celebration: A Call to Home-Centered Education by the lady who started CC, Leigh Bortins.

These quotes so resonated with me that I wrote them down on a scrap of paper and am now writing them here so I can recall them at a later time when...say, my children are whining, "Why do we have to learn this??  I'll never use it!"

"Utilitarianism, teaching only what is useful, is a poor educational model for free men.  True education is more than useful or pragmatic.  It is beautiful and inspiring."
"Instead of saying, 'This is hard, I'm no good at it.'  I switched to, 'This is hard.  I wonder how I could make it easy?'"
"I will not just teach you about the things you like to do, because your children, spouse, boss and neighbors may need you to do things you do not like to do.  I will prepare you to learn any information and use it well."
 Such wisdom!

I'm interested to see how this year in CC pans out.  I tend to be really excited about things when they're new and then the excitement fizzles as the new isn't so new anymore.

But SO FAR, we're learning a lot, enjoying the memorization process, and having fun meeting new people!
Thanking God for how He directs our steps,


Too funny! (and true...)

I'm not on Facebook anymore, so when I occasionally have the feeling of "I just have to share this!" I usually just have to let it slide.  

But THIS...

It was too good not to share.  

I think that the advice shared in this post, coupled with showing our children how to serve others by serving our families, is great.


First Day of Homeschool 2014/2015

On Tuesday we started our 6th year of Homeschooling!

Oops...he forgot to add "1st Grade" to his paper

Tommy...   ;)

These are the books I chose to start the morning.  After reading through a part of each of these, we moved on to individual subjects.

This artist study is pretty cool.  It's from Simply Charlotte Mason.

We ended our first day of homeschool the same way we have for a couple of years now...by eating ice cream and heading to the (empty) park!  

Our first day went really well.  The next days haven't been as great.  Lydia has some sort of sickness and it's keeping her and I awake at night.  She's also pretty fussy during the days and wants to be held a lot.

Such is the life of a homeschooling family!
Trying to roll with it,

Linked up to the Hop


My Baby is 1!

Lydia shared (and will share) her birthday celebration with my oldest brother's daughter, Sophia.

They were born a little over 2 weeks apart.

What precious babies!

Happy Birthday Lydia and Sophia!


Blog for Girls

My oldest daughter wanted to find a Christian magazine for girls her age, but didn't find what she was looking for.  
So, we decided that she could practice some great writing, computer, and photography skills by starting her own blog, kind of like an online magazine, geared toward providing girls her age with fun activities and fascinating things to learn.

Head on over to Emilia Christine to see what it's all about!


11 Months of Cuteness

Thanks to my Mom-in-law, I have some adorable pictures of this sweet baby.

Oh my...I just love these kids that the Lord has given us!


Recently Celebrated...

 12 Years of marriage to my best friend.


And now...

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