Sunday, August 30, 2009

Went To Church Alone But Ended Up With a Date

(Ha ha. I love the title. You'll have to read on). Today, on Sunday, my husband had to work. He's probably done that maybe twice in 10 years because he hates to miss church for something like that. Since it was an emergency, he was working at his project and had to miss both services. Anyhoolahoo, I didn't want to miss church just because my husband isn't there so I thought I'd better just be brave and bring my five little ones with me. Two kids? Three kids? No problem. Five is a little more scary for me. Here is a good reason why. Little Ivy gets these ideas in her, or she misunderstands what I say and does something embarrassing like this example I'm gonna give you. About 3 weeks ago I told Ivy during song service that when papa gets off the stage and sits down, she can sit by him. He is part of the platform singers. She THOUGHT I said "Go sit by him right now". So before I could react, Ivy went walking out of our row of chairs and right up to the platform to sit by Papa! I was horrified and so embarrassed because I knew I had to be the one to go get her. My goodness! With a red face I walked up to the platform and took Ivy by the hand from my dad and led her back down. She was just smiling not understanding why pastor and everyone was smiling too. So I really have to keep an eye on my four year old. Everyone thought it was cute but I was embarrassed! Ha ha! (It's funny now, not then). When you have more to look after, going to retrieve one of them is a little harder. I never let my kids walk around the church by themselves, they always stay by my side. So back to my point about going alone today. It went well, I loved that time with my kids sitting with them during service. :D Yay! We even came back without daddy again for the night service, of course. We go twice on Sundays and once on Wednesday nights which is also my ministry night.

So after the morning service, since my two older ones were going to their friends house, the twins, I only had three with me while loading up in the van. The parents pulled up and said they also would like to also take Ivy. Um okay! She was excited. Then they saw Kyle and said he was welcome too. "Wow, are you serious? Okay. You sure??" Then they saw Ashley and said she could come. I said no to that one just because Ashley takes big naps and needed one. Ha ha. So driving home with just Ashley, do you know what I did? I called my hardworking honey bear at home and asked if he'd like to go on a date with me and take a lunch break from his designing project. He said yes! So we ate somewhere together with just little Ashley. Then we went home and I took a huge nap just before heading back to church. It was just a great day. :D

p.s. I have to say though, that when my kids aren't with me, the house is waaay too quiet. It's kind of weird and it quickly makes me miss them. When our kids are gone like this my husband and I both realize how much we like having our size family.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Please, Please, Please Tell Me It's Because I'm Pregnant

This is my sweet husband after working hard on an early morning shift. He came home and passed out like that and Ashley just snuggled right up with him and read a book. She loooooooves books.

I caught Ashley surrounded by all these books on the floor quietly looking at pictures with a sticker in her hair. Ha.

My friends, I've been an emotional basket case lately. One moment, I'm at peace and happy homeschooling the kids and the next I'm crying. Big alligator tears. I'm up one moment and then I crash really hard the next. I don't get upset like that in front of the kids but I go into another room. My son Ryan is super sensitive to stuff like this and he can't stand it when he catches me crying. I can sniffle a mile away and he knows it. He's so sweet. He'll find me and cuddle up to me for a long time without saying anything. (He's gonna make a great hubby). I've been like this for a little over a week and I'm hoping it's just pregnancy stuff! Goodness gracious. I promise that normally I'm a very happy person. I've even been saying stuff without thinking. My poor husband will be like "what?" Then I bumble like an idiot trying to explain it correctly. I know what I meant to say and I think my mouth incorrectly decoded what my brain was thinking. Then I have to hug Charles and apologize (for the tenth time that day). Oh, Jenny, please come back. This crazy pregnant lady is ruining things for me. I don't want to end up on the couch tomorrow night.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

My Daily Routine and The Snake I Found

Mornings are important to me. Now that I have a routine going, it goes something like this.

* 8am Family wake up time

(fill in time for relaxing. Eating breakfast, Bible reading and prayer, writing a blog, checking email, snuggling with kids, making important phone calls)

* 10am is chore time for everyone and getting dressed for the day.

* 10:30am Homeschooling begans

* 12pm Break for lunch

* 12:30 Resume homeschooling

* 1pm Ashley's naptime

* 3pm Break for snacktime

* 3:30pm Resume homeschooling

* 5pm Prepare dinner

* 5:30pm Homeschooling stops and family chore time begans

* 6pm Dinner

* 7pm Family bible reading

* 7:30pm Kids brush teeth and get on pajamas

* 8pm Prayer time with daddy, kids personal bible reading, and bedtime

I'm serious that I follow this schedule every single day and rarely deviate from it. Accept of course for Sundays when we attend service twice in that day and Wednesday nights. So it's important that the morning starts off right because it can throw part of the day off for me and then I'm like "Oh man. I'm all outta sorts." (Yeah, I still say "like" a lot like a teen) This morning I started off really tired. So, so, so tired that it was hard to drag my 8 month pregnant body out of bed. I remember the quote my pastor said the other night "Make good habits and become a slave to them" so I went to look for my bible so I could start off the morning in the scriptures and prayer. I can't find my bible and I remember that it was in the van from the night before where I left it. My husband was gone at work with the van. Then I go to make my coffee and I can't because machine isn't working. Sniff. "Okay! What's going on around here?" I finally just go grab my pillow and lay on the couch for a bit while the kids talked around me. When my husband comes home around 9:30am, I go and jump in the shower without saying a word. Hey, I knew a shower would be soothing so I grabbed one while I could. :) That put a smile back on my face and so I finally came back out into the living room to rejoin everyone. The only thing is, I hate starting my schedule late. It's fine if I do all that stuff before 10:30am when I'm supposed to begin the day. I think I started around 11-11:30am which isn't too bad. It's just that I've found such comfort in a routine that now I love sticking to it. I love having the same breakfast, lunch, and dinner times. My kids love the routine too. Believe me when I say I was NEVER a routine person! I'm extremely spontaneous. But you know, it just wasn't working for me anymore with my size family that is growing. It just seemed to create chaos. You know that quote I said earlier about making good habits? This is one I'm happy I made because it makes life in the day just more peaceful. Well, my peaceful is not having chaos and kids fighting. To you that might mean a bath, candle, and a book. Whatever works.

*Little Ashley above just loves the snake costume and asks me to put it on her everyday! I had to catch it on video how she was chasing Ivy around. Don't ask me why Ivy doesn't have a shirt on. I do dress her everyday. She kept trying on her brothers clothes all that day so her clothes were continually changing. In that video she is wearing Kyle's church pants with no top. You know, it's cute now, but this is gonna have to stop eventually. The no shirt thing. :)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

So Much More to Life Than Pasta Roni

Well, for starters when I got married, all I knew how to cook was Pasta-Roni with corn thrown on the side. I thought having to take 1/2 hour to clean up the apartment was too hard so I usually just left it. When I got pregnant with my first, we had only been married for 11 months. I was so scared. In fact, I was in denial. I loved the baby! I just couldn't believe a real one was in there. When I had him, I was surprised they let me take him home. Ha! I didn't know what in the world I was to do. 3 months later I soon discovered that you can nurse and still get pregnant. So baby number 2 was on it's way! Gasp! I was still trying to figure out how to put a diaper on fast enough to not get peed on! After my second son was born, that's when the transformation in me began. I soon stopped grumbling about being woken up in the middle of the night. I learned that it was okay if I got peed on once in awhile. The shirt is washable! Having Irish twins can be fun when you are trying to pull one off of the other. My newborn would be laying on the floor while my one year old would just crawl across him to get to the other side of the room. Several years down the road I'm now pregnant with baby number 6. :D I've learned that a pregnant tummy can be cute because now it's round with a purpose. I don't have to suck in my gut for 9 whole months! Ha ha! My kids make it okay for me to go play in the aisles of Toy's R Us. I don't look weird trying out that little bike down the aisle. After all, I'm testing the strength of it for my son. Ahem. Sitting around the dinner table with 5 kids under 9, it gets loud but it's like having a party at my house every evening! Why go elsewhere? It really is fun answering all those questions in the grocery store from others of "don't you know what causes pregnancy?" I love answering "No, finally someone to tell me! My parents deprived me of sex ED in fifth grade! Please share." Are they all yours? "No, I get lonely at the store so I borrow all the various neighbor's kids to keep me company. Tantrum kids are even better!" Nothing is more fun that sitting in church with my little ducklings and when one of them passes gas loudly, since you can't see them in the pew, people turn to look at me. I just smile with a red face and shrug my shoulders. It wasn't me! Ha ha. You know how all this has changed me? I don't have this flaming pride that gets in the way anymore. I know now that things happen. I've learned that I'm not perfect and I shouldn't expect others to act perfectly every single day of their lives. Which means more forgiving. People have bad days too. So don't let pride stop you from saying sorry to someone. Or letting them over in your lane. Or letting that poor guy that only has two items in the checkout in front of you since you have 150. Children make you stop thinking only of yourself for once. It forced it on me! I needed it. Life is so much more interesting and fun with children. I've taken the time to learn more recipes besides Pasta Roni and corn. Cleaning is not such a burden because I have my Hero Helpers at my side cleaning along with mommy during chore time. Even though their chores are much smaller. I've learned to laugh a lot more and I even created a blog to share my adventures with the world! With one autistic child, I've learned to have more compassion in life. I can see life through a different set of eyes now and I've learned empathy and what it means to reach out to those in need. I've realized what an awesome husband I have when he's never too busy to change a dirty diaper. Having kids not only makes me laugh, but they taught me that there is so much more to life than just Pasta Roni and Corn with a remote by my side.

Life After Games

I'm not one of those people that are AGAINST games. I love games myself. However, having Autism in the mix can shake things up a little and make things difficult. When you have a kid that that has a mind that is extremely obsessed by games. Eat, thinks, breathes games to the point of starving himself because he can't imagine doing anything else, it can make life tough when games are pulled from him. Even when I had time limits. He would pace and obsess until it was time again for games. Even if it wasn't till the next day. I couldn't talk to Chaz about anything else because it was like he was in a zone. Anyway, after painting that picture for you, I think maybe you'll understand why I sold both our game systems. So what do we do now? Life is a little different. I did take the time to find kid friendly, learning type games on the computer. Like PBS KIDS and stuff like that. They have a link to all of them on the computer. So this is what our family has been up to since Life After Games!

Kyle has learned that he LOVES puzzles. He has taken this one apart three times to redo it again. I'm a puzzle lover myself so this is awesome.

Handcuffing their little sister is another way to pass time......

The boys have discovered how much they love my absolute favorite comic Calvin and Hobbes! They'll sit and read it for a long time.

Homeschooling takes me about 7 hours a day so that's where a lot of my time goes. It WAS easier when I could work with one kid and the other kids would be playing games. It was SOOO much easier. But the price to pay was just too high so I have to find other ways. Trust me, I felt like crying when the game systems were sold too. It was worth it though. :) I got my Chaz back.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Dear God... Please Let This Be a Better Week!

Last week was a really, really, really, really, really, really hard week. No joke. So much happened. I fell out of my normal cleaning routine, which is at night after kids are in bed. The day times are just too busy to be focusing on cleaning because of homeschooling, diapers changings, child training, la dee da. You know what I mean. I LOVE all that but the joy is taken away when you have to clean, clean, clean in the middle of all that. So I learned a neat routine at night so when I wake up, the house looks fantastic and I only do maintenance stuff. Well, since my husband gets up so early now, I'm getting tired sooner at night. So I just need to start my routine sooner. I'm just really thrown off guys.

ANOTHER thing is my laptop is not working for now. Ivy was drinking milk, not right next to it, but a little bit aways. Actually, she was a safe distance away and not being crazy or anything. Her milk spilled and it literally jumped far over to my laptop! The keyboard was covered but I didn't know right away. I only saw the milk around the laptop. So now when I try to type, letters get stuck and you get a nnnnnnnnnnnnnn for a long time and it just goes and goes. Ivy told me sorry. I know she wasn't being careless and she wasn't even next to it. One thing I've always been proud of with my kids is that they are really respectful of how they treat their things. They are not destructive in any way. I've trained and trained this with them rather than just copping out and never getting them toys. But I was sad about the laptop because it's also my homeschool computer. :( So that won't be happening this week. I can just hear the kids now. "Yessss! No school this week!" Ha.

So another bummer was Ivy falling and hitting her chin so hard you could see her bone in her chin. I hope the scarring is not too bad. :(

This picture is of a scorpion I found in the girls' room!!! Good thing I saw it in the day time! We smashed that sucker. Good riddance. That is freaky that it was in my girl's room though. Dumb bug.

This week I am gonna devote my mornings even more to God. Like giving our tithes, our firsts tenths of our earnings to God, I want to give the first of my day to Him. I do usually but sometimes I wake up and I'm so busy I just start getting things done and getting breakfast and stuff. I know though that giving my day to God rather than me at the steering wheel is the best thing I can do. God is my strength. He even gives joy in the most mundane of tasks! I love being home with my children! I love that He's given my husband a job where I can see him more in the day. I love that He has provided for our needs in the roughest of times. (Not talking wants). For that, I'm so grateful.

"Lord, I give this week to You. Help me to put you first in my mornings and every aspect of my life. In the words I speak, the thoughts I think, and help me to be a true listener to people who need an ear just to listen. Help me to honor my husband in his decisions and please help me to find joy even in the most tedious of tasks. I pray for peace in my heart and in my mind. Thank you for entrusting these children in my care. I want to bring them to you everyday. I love you! Amen"

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Friday, August 21, 2009

Another Eventful Night at the ER!

Guys, I know my life is full of events, challenges, joys, setbacks, despair, fun, and craziness..... but don't be jealous! I know you wish you could spend all night in an ER with your kids and one crying baby. I mean. Who wouldn't? Ha ha. No seriously. On the way to the hospital, with Ivy holding her chin, I told Charles "Man, my life was so boring before kids." Here is what happened:

Kyle and Ivy were running in the house, which is all tile, and Ivy tripped up. She landed on her chin. She came crying to me and I saw her bottom teeth bleeding. She put her hands up to her face and then they were just drenched in blood and all down her chest. I went to go clean her mouth thinking that was where the blood was coming from and Ivy was just screaming and screaming. That's when I saw her chin and ((shudder)) something white. It was the bone in her chin. I, trying to be the cool and brave mom, jumped from fright. Which was nice for Ivy since she was already scared. To top it off, the boys came in and said "Oh my gosh. GUYS!! I THINK IVY MIGHT DIE!!!" Then Ivy started screaming louder. When I told her she wouldn't die, not to worry, the boys started to tell her what the doctor was going to do and that he was gonna give her shots and stitches. I was trying to yell above Ivy and the boys, who were also yelling, to tell them to stop scaring Ivy. They weren't trying to, they were just freaked out too. I could hardly get a look at the ouchy because Ivy was holding her chin. She saw the hole herself and was hysterical. Charles was gone and I called him on the cell. He was home in 15 minutes. I told Charles that it could be him or me that took her in to the ER. Ivy is real close to him so I knew he would go. Well, I forgot that this family does EVERYTHING together. (I can hardly go pick up milk at the store by myself). He insisted that we ALL come even though we'd be in the waiting room. It was already really late. The kids and I had to get up at 5am. So off we headed together because, by golly, we do everything together! Thankfully Ivy fell asleep on the way there. When we got there, to the world's awesomest ER, they took Ivy in right away. The kids and I stayed in the children's area for the next few hours. They had a TV in there and I had to keep changing the channel because of all the crud that kept coming up in front of my boy's eyes. We don't have a TV so commercials of ladies in their bra and underwear is shocking to us. (Shouldn't it be?) Finally Ivy came out and Charles told me how it went. She had 10 stitches with 1 inside because it was so deep. Ivy was hysterical till she saw the male doctors and then she was just smiling away the whole time she was there. They would talk to her and she would just smile and smile at them. Thank goodness for male doctors because it kept her smiling at them and still so they could give her stitches. They didn't have to restrain her in a scary way because they have a way of doing it where kids don't know. They offered her a pretty gown that had no arm holes. Also a pillowcase like blanket to go over her that was cute too. She didn't know they were restraining her arms. Then a nice male doctor, who she liked, was holding her head and talking nice to her. She she was super still. She's 4 and she flirts. Goodness gracious. She'll see her doctor in 5 days to remove them.

Ivy is showing me her stitches here but Ashley was not to be left out.

Ashley wanted me to take a picture of her chin also so she came up to my camera. LOL. You can see my dad and Ashley blowing kisses at each other.

My dad and mom came bearing gifts for the wounded... and of course for baby Ashley too. :)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

33 Week Pregnancy Update

(This picture resembles me all the time like I'm sure it does many moms. That's how I dress and do my hair too. I love that cartoon.)

Man, it was so hard getting to my appointment this morning. When I woke up this morning, my husband called me to tell me that his job called for a mandatory meeting. On my appointment time. He calls me to tell me that he had enough time to come pick me up really fast and take me to his job, sit in the van with the kids, while he goes in meeting real fast just before my appointment. He said, "can you all be ready in 15 minutes"? Um yeah. We were all laying in my bed in our pajamas. I looked at my five little ones and said "suuure." I hopped out of bed and got ready. That's about 2 1/2 minutes for each of us to get ready. We did it! (I've had emergencies like this before so we've had practice). We hopped in the van and I took him to his job. He only had a half hour he could be in there before we had to leave for my appointment. When it was time, I texted my dad who works with Charles. He had to get permission to leave early and we boogied. I was 10 minutes late but I made it. Once again they reminded me I have to take the 3 hour Glucose screening at a lab (not at home). Yuck. So this Saturday I'll be stuck there. I was kind of scared to step on the scale because I've been eating normal. (A Big Mac or two). It said I lost another pound! What?? I was shocked. So now I'm only gained 1lb this whole pregnancy. I think Daddy Forever is right. I'm not human. (That would explain things. Ha). She did another ultrasound and baby is 4 1/2 lbs. She pointed out that he has hair. Wow! None of my other kids did. They were all BALD. Laying on my back almost caused me to faint so I had to get up. I was gonna get a 3D ultrasound too but I couldn't lay back anymore. Bummer! Oh well. I've had a few already. :) Then I had to get the beloved Rhogam shot since I'm Rh negative and my husband is Positive. What a fast start to the morning! All the crazy rushing but somehow we made it. When we were all done, we were happy to just be at home and rest for a few.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Raising Adults vs Children

You know how we say we're "raising children?" I was thinking about it. We don't say we're raising "seeds", we say what we're raising. Whether it be corn, watermelon, tomatoes. I don't want to raise children. I want to raise competent, God fearing, family loving adults! Ha ha. I think if I raise them up to be video game lovers, then I would probably be raising children. Do you see those guys sometimes who you can just TELL they are video game lovers? They're in their 30's, still not married, they are wearing Star Wars t-shirts, with beards, glasses sometimes, and a nice little gut in the front. Sure enough, most of the time, I see them at game places. When you talk to them, all they seem to care about is the next game that's coming out. When Star Wars came out, these grown men with beards were camped out in tents 2 days prior in front of the mall, with TV's, and Star Wars gear. Some were even battling it out with fake light sabers. Soooo, my whole point of this is that this is what I fear I'm raising. Raising children. I want to raise adults! So Charles is seriously contemplating getting rid of games all together. Even though we control their game times, they tend to watch the clock and drool till they get their next game time. Have mercy! I've got to get a handle on this now before they start getting growing beards and getting a little gut in the front and carrying light sabers. I really want them to WANT to work when they are 16 or 18. Or go to college if they desire. The day my son comes home for a Thanksgiving meal wearing a Star Wars shirt and a light saber on the side, holding tickets to the next big sci-fi, I'll just faint.

This is a picture I snuck and took during church of my parents behind me. My mom knew what I was up to and quickly covered her face! Ha ha.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Another Birthday!

Yay! Another birthday. It's the time of year I look forward to for the excitement of the kids but I am scared at the same time. My boys are growing taller. Their language skills are better so they don't say "battabies" instead of "batteries." They ask about more complicated issues. They don't want to really sit on my lap anymore. If I kiss them on the cheek, they look around to see who saw. Thank goodness I still have some babies at home! I tend to be more protective of the boys and Charles more with the girls. All my kid's birthdays are two weeks apart so we've now celebrated 3 and in two weeks will be Kyle's and two weeks later, Ashley's. Then two weeks later, little Caleb is due. So it's a busy time for us! :) I'm so excited about meeting Caleb I can hardly contain it. His little sweetness and small fingers and toes. Sigh. Having kids truly is the greatest treasure there is.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Furst Dae Uf Homskull!

Haha.... love the title. :D This picture is of my boys at their homeschooling class they attend every Friday for their extra curricular stuff. They absolutely love it there. The kids that attend there are just amazing!
So today is our official day of homeschooling. There were a lot of bugs to work out in the system and it's gonna be fixed finally today. I have been homeschooling the last week to get a little head start. I originally started in July but then with all the sickness I had (that had nothing to do with pregnancy), I reluctantly had to put it off. Other than my sicknesses, this has been a fantastic pregnancy! Super easy. I rarely even feel pregnant most the time so it makes taking care of the household feel "normal". LOL. You know how sometimes when you're pregnant you just feel blah? Or tired? I never feel that way so it's just been an enjoyable experience for me. I love my doctor and love my 3D ultrasounds I get every two weeks. It's just been so neat! Anyway, homeschooling takes me about 6 hours a day so I have to get crackin'! It's so nice to be able to sit with each of my boys everyday and have that personal time with them. I would like to incorporate bible study into it with them before we start each day. Maybe pick a subject for a week and study that with them. I love having my boys home with me each day. :D I guess I don't like to share! Haha. Time is just too short and they grow up too fast.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Figuring Out High-Functioning Autism vs. Aspergers

Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger'sToday, the girls and I, had to be in the van for 11 hours straight so by the end of the day, we were just so tired and glad to finally be free. My husband suggested he take me to Borders and let me be by myself there while he is with the kids in the mall. I got a coffee and as I'm walking to the restrooms, I pass a book that just jumps out at me. "Look Into My Eyes" about an boy growing up with Aspergers. I grabbed it. Once I was able to find a seat to read a book, I then decided to go ahead and look for other books in this topic. My mind has just been reeling with questions and I haven't had any answers. So I asked a worker if she would show me the area for Autism.

A Parent's Guide to Asperger Syndrome and High-Functioning Autism: How to Meet the Challenges and Help Your Child Thrive

The problem is I always find books on just Aspergers or just Autism. What about those that are not as extreme? Maybe like my son who is more high-funtioning. I just jumped when I saw this book. A Parents Guide to Asperger Syndrome & High-functioning Autism by Sally Ozonoff (and others) . I lovingly held this book all the way to my seat. I set the other one aside for the time being. I devoured the first 3 chapters that were so helpful in understanding that in the Autism Spectrum, each of those children are different in how they behave. I once again looked at the list of how my son was first diagnosed and even stronger this time, I identified things. They gave examples of behavior and how different each kid could me. I was able to really see Chaz in some of the stories. While reading, I just cried.

It has been a long time since I've seen a doctor because I was really disappointed the last time I went. The doctor that initially diagnosed him had moved on with a different company. She was with Chaz for an hour and she saw him exactly as I see him at home. She had no doubt in her mind and was really helpful explaining it all to me. The second time I went in, I had a new doctor. He spent all of 15 minutes and changed his whole diagnoses to Bipolar. What??? Chaz was just sitting there calm and playing with some toys. He didn't see Chaz in his normal behavior that I see at home. Then he goes and just changes the whole thing and suggests medicine. That was it. Wham Bam. I never went back. That was 4 years ago.

In the meantime, I held onto the initial diagnoses since it's made a lot more sense. Except that I have been feeling lost in the last 4 years having no one to guide me or help me through this. Seeing Chaz lately really take a down turn, I've come back to searching. When I once again went down the list of diagnosing AS-HFA, I was amazed even more how much Chaz fit into the categories. I read real stories of different kids. There can be so many traits and each kid can have different ones. Some of the stories, it was like I was reading about my son. That's why I cried. A sadness but then a relief. This book was giving me answers. Even touched on genetic issues which I thought was interesting. The rest of the book is how to work with them. That part I didn't get to read yet. I'm gonna order it on Amazon rather than buy in the store. ($14 savings). This book was like finding a treasure for me.

DSM-IV Criteria for Autistic Disorder-

Can I Teach Your Kid To Swim? Hee hee...

We went swimming about a week ago and I forgot to post! I love watching Charles with the kids. :D Such a fun daddy. My mom was there of course and got in with the kids. It was a pretty day to splash around! I love that Chaz and Ryan can swim on their own. You know, I used to pay for lessons at the YMCA but when they still couldn't swim after two years, I taught them. It took me all of 10 minutes to show them by going a few feet from the edge and making them swim to it! Wha-la! Anyone need to enroll their kids with me? Hee hee.... Now they are fishes and swim all over. Man, I should get paid to do this for a living. I wouldn't want to get paid by the hour because the kid might learn it in just 10 minutes. Ha ha. Kyle can actually swim too but when we have this many kids in the water at a bigger pool, I make him wear his vest for safety. Baby Ashley has a cute pink vest too.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Our Classroom


Okay, so I'm participating in the Not Back to School Blog Hop. I don't have as much homeschooling stuff as my friend because I just started it back up again. Also because some of their school stuff is online. Lots of resources I use are online. That is why you see the laptop. :) The books on the shelf are separated in order for each of my 3 sons. I just couldn't get it all in the picture. It's up HIGH away from my two little girls. Ivy is in the picture because she's trying to remind me that she is ready for school. She just turned four and the other day she asked if I'd make her another birthday cake so she can be five!

Somewhere Over the Rainbow...

Ashley here is seriously concentrating on looking at my Country Living magazine. I'm serious. She was into it for like 30 minutes. Do you know what made her look up and smile? Her daddy just walked in the door! I don't know why I get the Country Living magazine. Maybe it's because I daydream about living in the country. I do all the time. I wouldn't want to be waaaay out in the sticks. Just far enough away to where I'm not right in the city. I would like to be able to easily drive back into the city. As I was laying there in bed the other night, Charles starting talking about something. I said "shhh, I'm trying to read what kind of land and pasture is necessary for raising horses." After about a half hour he said "what are you reading now?" I was reading what kind of lambs are great for not having to shear. This is a big city girl who just dreams and dreams! Some of you blogging friends just make me drool by your beautiful pictures of the area around you!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Cleaning... A Balancing Act

Last night at church my sons came up to me with their friend and said they would like him to spend the night. When I said "sure", the boy pipes up and says, "My twin brother would like to come also." Oh good! Two for one. Ha ha. Of course I said yes. So today they all had such a blast together. There was no fighting over a kid because both Chaz AND Ryan had a buddy to play with. They were identical to boot! Ha ha. I could NOT tell them apart.

So my blog today is about drawing the line as to how much cleaning I do in the daytime. Today was an exception for me because my kids were so preoccupied with the twins over, they all didn't know what I was up to all day long. They were just so happy to have friends over. I used the opportunity to clean like a crazy lady getting caught up on stuff. By the end of the day, 5pm, the whole house was clean. Dinner served by six. I look around at some areas and I see messes again. I look in the bathroom after the kid's shower time and I'm horrified. Unrinsed toothbrushes on the counter, toothpaste that fell on the floor, a wet towel on the ground, dirty clothes left where they were taken off. I thought, "good grief, this bathroom was just sanitized and completely clean". I don't agree with mommy picking up after messes kids carelessly make. They just learn to be slobs. (I make them clean up their messes). Then I look in the boys room where all the kitchen chairs were brought so they could be used to prop up a tent they made. Kyle decided to empty out his old school backpack in order to see the contents. The only problem was, Kyle wasn't there. He must've lost interest and just left it on the floor. By the time the twins left, all the bedroom toys had been transferred to the living room..

So the question I ask myself, "Is it so worth it to spend so much time in the day toward a perfect house? Should I just worry mostly about the sanitary stuff?" Keeping dishes clean, toilets sanitized, Bed made, wash some clothes if needed, etc. As of now I make the kids do their chores twice a day. One in the mid morning and again before dinner time. When they do their part, it's great. What about in between those two times? Maybe I shouldn't worry about toys scattered around the living room, come 5:30pm, it's Ryan's job to clean the kid messes in the living room. What what about clothes that get left on bedroom floor? Chaz's job is making sure all clothes are in the dirty hamper at those two chore times. Ect. for books and games (cared for by Ryan), shoes left about picked up by Kyle. So maybe before, in between, and after those two chore times, I should just not worry about it and spend more time with my kids. Especially because homeschooling starts on Monday. I won't have all that time to worry about it. I'm tired of wasting my time worrying that the house STAYS clean all the time. Yet I don't want a dirty house. Sigh. It can be such a balancing act sometimes.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Guacamole Night

Last Friday night we were so happy because our church started up Bible Study every Friday night again. We usually go but sometimes they have breaks for awhile. So, the kids were happy about going and we went to the store so I could buy all the things I needed to make a guacamole dip. It's actually pretty expensive to make for just a small bowl. After making the dip at home we drove about 20 minutes away, pull up in front of the house and there are no cars! We're like "Wow, we made it before our bible study leader even." Our friends come out of their house to tell us it had been cancelled that night! What? We just stared for a second. They said that the leader and his family had cancelled because they were going out of town and forgot to tell us. LOL. We were so embarrassed! Well, we were mostly bummed because we were looking forward to bible study. So we headed back home.
But here is the funny part.... (and kind of gross)
As were heading home, I told everyone they have to all eat guacamole dip because it was expensive to make and it's not going to waste. "But mom!!! We don't like that stuff!" I told them, "Well, you're gonna at least try it buddy. All of you." The first one to climb up on the chair was my almost 2 year old, Ashley, to get a chip. She only takes one chip out, without trying the dip, chokes a little on the chip and throws up! Right next to the dip. My husband runs out of the room along with all the kids so they could hide. I said, "No problem guys, I can take care of it." I was gonna be brave about this. I grab a hand towel and throw it over the throw up. As I go to pick it up, the throw up just oozes down between my fingers and onto the floor. I said two words before I lost it. "Oh gross". Everyone gets quiet to see my reaction. I ran to the sink and started throwing up. My husband is laughing really hard. In between laughing, he is heaving and the sight of Ashley and I. Then ALL my kids start heaving! They are all surrounding me, asking if I'm okay, and heaving. I had to put the garbage disposal on twice I was throwing up that bad! LOL. 1o minutes later, my husband is still laughing and heaving, trying not the throw up, but still laughing. It was so chaotic in the kitchen between all the laughter, heaving, and throwing up. After I was done, brushed my teeth, I was laughing with all of them! After I calmed down I said, "get in there guys and eat some guacamole! "OHhh mommmm!" They go back to the now clean table and I hear "oh gross! There is throw up in the chip bag!" I ran and grabbed the bag. By this time, Ashley is all cleaned up too. I said "Lucky you, I have another unopened chip bag." We spent the next half hour laughing and eating chips and guacamole. Charles opted out though. He was just too grossed out. But hey, my dip wasn't wasted! What a crazy night.