Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How Do You Pull Your Kids Teeth?

Ivy's had a loose tooth for awhile and she's been really crying about it.  She would go to eat something and it would start bleeding.  She didn't want me to pull it and would scream if I tried.  Finally, last night I said enough was enough and we were gonna pull it.  I tried pulling it out but it seemed a little stuck.  Then I remembered what my dad did with a string and made a knot around the tooth.  I gave it a tug and it came right out!  She started screaming because of the blood and ran to the bathroom.

Once she saw she wasn't going to bleed to death and could actually eat food she started laughing with relief.  She literally talked about her lost tooth for two hours straight.  She had never lost a tooth before so she keeps looking in the mirror she's so excited.  My dad used all kinds of creative ways to pull teeth.  Usually I'd be screaming hysterically and then laugh crazily in relief when it was over.  Haha.  

One day my kids asked me what the tooth fairy does with all the teeth.  One of them piped up and said that it was because the tooth fairy had no teeth and needed some.  Heh heh. Yep, tooth fairies are flying around with no teeth and looking for some.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Church Shopping and People Judging

Lately I've been noticing something and it got me thinking yesterday about it a lot.  There are sooooo many churches out there. In America you can find them everywhere.  I at least have 10 within one mile of my house.  There are all kinds of churches with all kinds of people.  The same theme I've been hearing is "I don't go there because of THOSE people.

I've been guilty of thinking like that.  Although, I've been to the same church for 12 years I've definitely had negative thoughts here and there.  I think everyone has in mind their favorite type of church. Some look for the programs, others the style of preaching, the beauty of the building, style of worship, sports offered, etc.  Some want it ALL.  Well, I grew up in church so I've heard a ton of reasons why.  The only one I've been guilty of thinking is negativity about the people.  I had been majorly hurt in the past (who hasn't?) and so for many years I would go to church and just try to keep to myself.  Often, while sitting in my seat, I'd look around and just watch all the interactions around me while getting my kids settled for the service.  Once the service was over I would pick up my kid from nursery, get my kids together, maybe say hello to a couple of people and just head out.  I did this for over a decade as a way of protecting myself, never giving thought to how it might look to other people.  Keeping to myself could of come off as snobby or disinterested.  

Ashley playing over the floor vent
Recently, I decided to turn look in the mirror at my hesitancy.  I hadn't gotten close to many people while trying to protect myself.  In the process, I even managed to become shy and really had to push myself just to go up and shake someone's hand.  Even worse, I began to make judgments in my mind towards others.  I had enough of my excuses and decided it was time to reach out again.  No more listening to the negative whether from myself or from cynical people. I have never been shy and always extremely outgoing in the past.  I started to say hi to people I made silent judgments about and spent at least 5 minutes asking about their day.  In the last few weeks I've been shocked at the transformation not only in my attitudes but in seeing my horrible perceptions of people slowly melt away. 

Kyle and Ivy (Right) playing with their friends after church
First off, no church is perfect.  No church has it ALL.  Some might be mega and give you everything you can ever dream of in a church but the preaching or teaching is lacking big time.  That's top on my list above all else.  Does what he preach line up with the bible?  Is there a comprising just to keep the numbers up? There will always be mean, nosy, annoying, and even downright obnoxious people (at least a couple).  Pastors can make mistakes in a judgement call or a rebuke, people can make mistakes in how they treat someone, and I've made plenty. If there is a perfect church, I would ruin it as soon as I walk in. There is just no such thing.  Sure I've been offended but there is a BIG chance I've offended others at some point.  Sometimes without even realizing it.  

I've  been looking forward to service more than ever since I decide to lay all my dumb judgments aside and give people a chance.  If anything I had to repent of my attitudes.  It's been a blessing to be more involved and get to know people better. The church is like a family.  You can't choose who's in it, only how your attitude responds to them.  How has my attitude been affecting my kids?  It definitely rubs off on them.  I've been really encouraging the ones old enough to walk around by themselves (8 and up) to get to know other kids and make friends.  It's been a joy seeing them more excited also.  I absolutely love our pastor and his teaching which is most important to me.  Sure our kids have Sunday School and Children's Church but after that there really are not many other programs.  However, that's at the bottom of what's important to me so that's not a big deal.  As far as people problems?  Well, it happens.  Just like in a family.  You just forgive and move on.  I would hope people would do the same for me.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Buying New Doesn't Always Make Cents

A few months ago I learned another hard lesson about wasting money and how buying new doesn't always work best for us.  I had been buying used for the kids or shopping clearances for several years now.  I was shopping in the mall a few months ago and decided to do something nice for Ashley and get her a brand new pair of shoes for $20.  The new look lasted all of two weeks and then it looked like they had been thrown under a truck.  I've gone to a thrift store and bought nicer shoes than that for $2. 

$20 new shoes after 2-3 weeks
These shoes were super embarrassing to today I took her to a thrift store and found her several pairs of shoes.  Okay, so it's shocking to know these shoes were used yet they obviously have faired way better that the new pair I had bought.

Shoes already used $2

Guess which ones I kept and which ones I threw out?  I used to be picky but then I realized kids grow soooo fast and I've learned how to be extremely picky instead in the thrift store.  Sure, there are people that just grab anything off the rack but you don't have to shop that way.  Just think, either it looks fantastic or not.  It should look new or pretty darn close to it.  If you try something on and have to talk yourself into buying it, DON'T BUY IT.  That just creates more clutter in your closet because you'll never wear it.  I found Ivy two pairs of shoes and Ashley five pairs.  I'm going through their outgrown shoes tonight and quickly getting rid of them so nothing piles up that we don't need.  As soon as I got home I dumped those pink shoes in the garbage.  Here I bought those pink shoes for $20 new yet I just bought seven new looking pairs from Goodwill for less than that.  Fashion does not have to be sacrificed for the sake of saving money.  

In fact, last night I bought myself two maternity shirts from Ross (a discount store).  I went into the dressing room with six shirts yet only came out with two.  The reason is that four of them I liked but since I stood there trying to talk myself into it, I knew I shouldn't get them.  Two that I tried on made me say "Wow!" so I bought them. I am in need of nothing else so I just checked out and left.  When I got home, I got rid of two items in my closet.  Shirts I didn't like but kept because I didn't have many maternity shirts.  I'm keeping my rules about whatever is brought into the house, that many items need to be taken out. I love my home so I need to keep it clutter free! 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Feeling Like a Loser Mom Today

My kids school at home but every Friday they go to a school just for homeschooled kids.  It's actually a public school and they get to go and take part in P.E., Art, Music, and take some basic classes on Math and Language Arts.  They really love going on Fridays.  First off, my alarm doesn't go off today and just by chance I wake up at 7:55am.  We have to leave literally in 10 minutes.  Well, I couldn't stop getting sick from morning sickness so I had to hope the kids were getting ready like I told them to.  I tried doing Ivy's hair and then got really sick again.  I couldn't even get the words out, "Everyone get in the van."  So on our way there Ryan remembers that he didn't get his backpack.  He begs and begs me to turn around but I knew we'd be late if I did.  He said one of his teachers can be really mean about it. I felt so bad because I remember how that felt.  Finally we make it there, I still can't find Ivy's library book they keep asking for, and I notice that all the kids at school are dressed in pajamas.  Ohhh!  It's pajama day!  Now my kids are really sad and longingly looking towards all the kids in their pj's.  :(  Why can't I remember anything?  They only go to school once a week so it's not like they got a reminder the day before.  After they went to their classrooms I just sat in the van for a bit with a sad heart.  I guess they'll have to wait another year in hopes mommy remembers pajama day.  It's times like this I get frustrated at myself for having a poor memory and not having it all together.  Or even close.

Finally we get home and I'm happy at least to not have to homeschool all day and just get housework done.  It's cute seeing Ashley and Caleb play together.  Ashley got the bubbles out and entertained Caleb.  Caleb was clapping and laughing saying, "bubbles!" over and over.  When she grew tired of it he picked up the bubbles and was trying to figure it out.  He would blow raspberries but would only get one bubble out here and there.  When I took this picture he was saying, "Help, Mommy.  Mommy, help."

Thursday, January 26, 2012

How to Restore Deleted Files on Your Computer

Do you ever neglect to do something that you know is SO important but figure nothing bad will ever happen?  That is so me.  My two older sons school on the computer through Switched On Schoolhouse.  Every single time they are done homeschooling it asked me if I would like to back their work up onto a disk.  I always just back it up onto the computer because I wouldn't know where the blank CD's were.  I knew I just needed to do it one day.

Well, the other day when the laptop pooped out on me I did a scan to delete any viruses.  Guess what got deleted?  Chaz's SOS and work!  Aghhhhhh!  I was so excited to have 3 computers again to work on and this had to happen. I spent the entire day yesterday trying to figure out what happened and see if it can be fixed.  I cried not knowing what I was gonna do.  Sure, I could reinstall the program but I had not created backup disks.  Oh my.  I literally spent the entire day searching for deleted files using a program.  Most cost money and even with the scans I did I wasn't finding anything.  I finally had to quit so I could get everyone ready for church but I was soooooo vexed.  I tried to be a good mood when I got there but I was just sooo sad.  

Once we got home I decided to try and do a system restore for 3 days ago rather than 2 days ago that I tried before.  I told Charles I would stay up all night if I had to till it was fixed.  Around 12:30am the system restore was finished so I tried to pull up Chaz's homeschool and WOW, it worked!!!!  I checked and even his backup was there on the computer so I immediately backed it up onto disk like I should have looong ago.  Then I started the process up uploading all my pictures onto Picasa online just in case something like this happens again and stuff is lost.  Wow, lesson learned!

Since I got the black laptop fixed, which meant all 3 computer were working again for homeschool, do you think anything else went wrong? Of course.  The next morning the power cord on my silver laptop broke.  We are back down to two working computers.  Phooey.

If system restore doesn't work there is a program you can use that find things you did not mean to delete and can't be found.  Here is the video of how to do it and what program you can use.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Does Anyone Else Find Patience More of a Challenge When Tired?

Yesterday was a crazy day but then ended well.  Just as soon as I finished blogging my laptop pooped out on me.  Everything went bad and even the mouse driver stopped working.  Instead of doing my chores I spent the entire day doing system scans and trying to figure out what happened.  Finally I just had to wait on it to get ready for company coming to my house.  Luckily my house is super easy to clean and it only took an hour to get everything back into shape and even the bathrooms sanitized.  (Boys can quickly unsanitize a bathroom.  Especially when five live in the house).

My friend and I wanted to make something super yummy so I made a Better Homes and Gardens meatloaf and she tried out a new recipe for making delicious mash potatoes.  Then I cooked some chopped onions in butter and added some green beens.  We made a ton of food.  About 6lbs of beef !  Wowee!  Don't be fooled by the picture.  It's taste so much better than I can take a picture of.  Alsooo, I ate way more than that.  Tee hee....  My husband woke up the next day and didn't want breakfast.  He wanted leftovers.  

I think my biggest struggle with patience is at night time when I'm super tired.  I LIKE to read books to my kids but often by the time I clean up the kitchen from dinner, get everyone's teeth brushed and ready for bed, I just want to collapse in my own.  Sometimes I just fight that feeling and read to them and other times I just say I can't.  Mommy needs some quiet time and I need it bad.  Just a half hour alone, even better an hour, makes me feel back together again and rested.  I feel so guilty though.  

I have to say that I give them my full attention all day long, even outside of homeschooling.  However, I feel guilty for just wanting that last hour of the day before I fall asleep to have it in quiet.  Maybe I just need to start laying them down earlier.  I think if I had them in school all day I would force myself to always have that time with them.  I checked on them 15 minutes later after I laid them down and was happy to see they were all quietly reading books.  After I knew they were settled I did scans on the computer that lasted all night long so it can be working again. Thank goodness!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Living a Life Without Clutter

We have a new tire on our car again so now we're not stuck!  By tomorrow we should have our van's tire replaced. Whew! Just in time for church and my kids going to school on Friday.  I don't mind being stuck in my lovely home so much.  Just simple errands and missing out on church is what bugs me the most.  I love my home and enjoy it just as much as when we first moved in but getting out is nice too.  :D

Oh my gosh. This is such a funny cartoon.
I was expressing to my mom of my frustrations of only having two computers for schooling the kids.  They have book work and online work so it's been tough sharing it between four kids, a blogging mommy, and a daddy who loves computers too.  Some days I'm not able to get on the computer till way later which is fine, but I have to check for reviews and adjustments sometimes.  Regardless, their homeschool comes absolutely first.  Well, my mom took one of our older laptops home with her to do some work on it.  It's a good laptop but just had some problems and would constantly disconnect from the internet.  I eventually gave up on it and put it away.  She fixed it up so now we'll have 3 working computers.  Yeehaw!  Thank yewwww!

My sister that just came back from South Africa for 6 years, her family is being stationed here in the states.  I'm glad that now she isn't so far and we can visit.  They are a super cute family and a joy to be around.  Jodee was the one that taught me how to declutter fast and if it wasn't for her I'd still be pulling my hair out right now.  I spent a couple of days with her at her house they were staying at temporarily.  It's pretty much emptied out because it's being sold.  Well, I loved it!  I love the feeling of just a quick and easy cleanup every day an so when I went back to my home after staying there, I went right to work.  I'm super grateful and have truly woken up each day with peace knowing I have more time for my kids and husband now that I've ever had before.  Now, I've had so many friends ask me how I did it so I'll just put it here.  I know this is so simple for some but all the other ways I tried just wasn't working. :D

1. Empty out one room completely as if you are moving except for major furniture you know is staying.  I moved everything into the living room.  

2. Get a bag or box labeled "Giveaway" and "Throwaway".  Then I put back what was obvious of what was going back into the room and I would put it back immediately.  As I was filling up the room with my favorites and for sure staying, I knew quickly when to stop because I loved how nice it looked.  I didn't want to reclutter it because the room looked so beautiful without all that stuff!  It made it sooo easy to throw all the rest out.

3.  At the end of the day take a break and go donate the stuff.  If you want to do a yard sale make sure to take the stuff OUT of the house completely.  I put everything onto our back patio.  

4.  Each day I did one room and I did not stop for 8 days.  I made sure each room was completely and totally done with all the messes cleaned up from it before starting the next room.  We ate very, very simple that week because I didn't need to be making bigger messes that would make me feel discouraged.  

5.  If you blog, blog your successes!  After my whole house was finished, since I didn't want to do a yard sale but my friend did, she came and picked up all the stuff off my patio.  

I hope this helps, my friends!  :D  I so wish I had known to declutter like this waaaaay long ago.  I did our household clothes as a whole separate project with washing everything and laying them all out to see what we'd keep.  I gave each boy a bin and only let the toys in there that fit.  They are getting older so they really wanted their own bins of their belongs rather than all mixed in like when they were little. They each have their names on their bins.  The girls were easier so they share one bin and only the toys that fit in there stay.  They each kept only 2 stuffed animals.  :)  If you do go shopping for a new clothing item, make sure to go home and throw that many out so the clutter doesn't build back up again.  :D

Monday, January 23, 2012

Gross Video of How Chicken Nuggets Are Made...Choke

I was reading on Snopes about a rumor surrounding how chicken nuggets are made.  The picture they show is disgusting but I guess there have been some regulations put in place over time.  Still.....  here is a really gross and interesting video on how chicken nuggets are made.  Jamie Oliver wanted to see if kids would eat something if they knew how gross it really was.  For example, a chicken nugget.

I Think Life is Playing a Prank On Me

What an odd last week it was and then how it spilled into the weekend.  There was good and bad mixed in.  When you work for a school district, you don't get paid when the school is on break.  As least not everyone does.  Since we knew a month was coming where there'd be no paychecks we prepared in advance.  We paid double on our bills and even set money aside for things that might come up.  Well, my husband's car died last week so there went our savings to get the expensive part we needed.  Thankfully, his father is a mechanic (a really good one at that) and fixed the car.  Then, as soon as it was fixed, the tread fell off our van tire while I was driving on the freeway.  So we had to park that.  Luckily, he still had his work car to take back and forth. This weekend him and I took turns going to church since we all can't fit in the car.  He rode the car with 4 kids to church in the morning and I took 4 to the night time service.  I grabbed an extra kid from a friend to take home with us and while heading home I got a flat.  I was able to pull into a nice hotel and park it.  We went inside with 5 kiddos and I made them quietly sit in the nice seats while I made a phone call home.  My husband couldn't come get me because we couldn't drive the van so I had to call a friend. She rescued me and took me home but now our dilemma was figuring out how Charles was gonna get to work.  My mom calls about an hour later asking where I was.  A couple was gonna treat me to eat at a Mexican restaurant after I dropped the kids off but I never showed after church.  Darn!  Whyyyyy?  Of all times to get a flat.  I was gonna get out by myself with my mom and some friends.  She came by, had me take her home, and borrow her car so we can take it to get the new tires we need.  Hopefully tomorrow both of our vehicles will be fixed.  Sigh.  By the way, I got a flat in the car directly across the street from where I had to pull over the van last week. 

On to a more fun and encouraging topic.  Remember all that crazy decluttering thing I went through?  Well, I had really been wanting to focus on hospitality and spending more time with friends since having more time.  My work load has been so much lighter so I've been happy to have friends come visit more. At least I've been much more welcoming to it.  I'm just relaxing and wondering what I'm gonna do with myeasy Saturday when a friend called from out of town. She and the kids (Chaz and Ivy's best friends) wanted to come and visit.  Sure!  They dropped in and while our kids caught up, we got to visit for several hours.  I made some steaks and salad and we had dinner together too.  They headed back out of town around midnight or so.   It felt refreshing to feel so much more open to last minute visitors.  :D  Yay for a decluttered house and more time for family and friends!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Dear Juliet: A Letter to My Growing Girl

Dear Juliet,

You are already 22 weeks along and growing inside of me.  Babycenter said you are almost 1 pound.  I feel your energy at night when I am trying to sleep but I always welcome your little thumps and rolls.  You have 6 older siblings and each one says they can't wait to hold you.  They said I waited too long to have you but I think you came at the perfect time.  Pretty soon I'm gonna take your older sisters to the store and let each one pick out a pretty outfit for you.  So no worries, we'll get you looking just gorgeous when you are ready to meet us.  Right now we are clearing out a room for you so we can paint and make it pretty in pink just for you.  I'm buying you a new crib and everything that will be your very own!  I can't wait to give you the perfect room where we can snuggle and rock quietly together. Where Ryan will read you books like he did for your older brother Caleb.  This time he won't break the crib because I'll tell him he has to read with you in the rocking chair instead.  Even if mommy makes you go to sleep, Caleb will make sure you are never bored because I'm pretty sure he will slip some hotwheel cars under the door for you.  Kyle will help find your binky if you are upset, and Chaz always like to pat the back to help.  Ashley will make sure you are looking pretty with the perfect socks and Ivy will pick out your outfits.  You are so blessed to have so many to look after you!  Daddy loves to hold his babies but I see a special look in his eyes when he's holding a little girl.  Something about daddy's and their daughters.  Try to give him a break though and not wrap him around your little finger too early.  We all can't wait to meet you but we know you still have a lot of growing to do.  We love you!

Love, Mommy

Friday, January 20, 2012

When Life Happens, Sometimes You Have to Laugh

See the tread gone?
We've had some crazy car issues these past couple of week.  Only being able to drive the large van but not the little car.  So Charles has been having to take the van back and forth to work every day so my kids haven't been able to go to school on Fridays.  The day we got the car fixed, I went with Charles to drop him off at his car so I could take the kids home in the van.  My husband insisted I take the cell phone with me in case I break down for since the transmission is going out.  I was like, "Yeah, yeah okay."  Well, I was driving home and we all her "BAM, BAM, BAM!"  The kids screamed and I pulled off the freeway.  While pulling off the freeway I was baffled that although it sounded like a I got a flat tire, it didn't feel like it.  I got out and saw that the tread had come off the tire and the loud sound was the tread hitting the metal of the van and bending it.

The tread bent the metal up
What it should look like
Since my tire wasn't popped I just drove really slow home and parked it.  As I was getting ready to mop the floor a bit later I started sweeping and thinking about how ironic it was.  How is it the moment we get my husband's work car going that we can't drive the van?  As disappointing as it was, at least the car was fixed on the same day and he can still get to work.  I figured I'd take it as a blessing.  Then, as I was sweeping the floor, this happens....

My broom falls apart!
Okay, now that is funny!  Haha!  We now need a transmission, new tire on our van, and now a broom.  Oh well.  Life happens, right?  For now we will have to take turns going to church since we can't fit everyone in the car.  Well, you do the best you can.  :D

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Changing My Kids Focus

Today is day 6 in my 31 Days to Clean.  It talked about a list to make each day of 6 items in priority order.  Every night before bed write down the top six things, in order, that you need to accomplish the next day (no more than six). Then, go systematically through the list, completing the tasks in order, crossing out each thing as you go.  At first I wasn't too excited about it till I read this STORY.  Then I read this part of the story and it made a lot of sense.

"Because we are a pleasure seeking species. If something feels good, looks good and tastes good, the average person will likely abandon what's right or they 'forget' what would get them the most or what would be the best for them and others in the long run.  All for even the most fleeting instantaneous little pleasure..."

Often I would go about my day and just try to remember what needed to be done.  Almost always I forget something important.  Making a list of 6 things that need to be done in order takes that pressure off my mind.  31 Day to Clean gave me a pretty big task to do today but because I already did a lot of decluttering, it won't take nearly as long.  :)

For Christmas my kids got a new chess board and a pretty cool one too with storage underneath.  We've been keeping it on our tall table up away from little fingers that would get into it.  I love the idea of that being the "chess station" as we always keep it set up.  Next school year we are going to have the boys take a chess class.  It's a school only for homeschooled kids and they go only once a week.  You can pick their classes so that will be one of them and another will be learning instruments.  I really want them to learn music more than sports or at least put it as a priority over it.  If they want to take up a sport though that's cool with me.  Since getting rid of video games, there has been a huuuge behavior difference in my kids.  

I love it when the kids play chess and have really been encouraging them to ride their bikes, play outside, and be creative.  Last night the kids made a play for Charles and I and we really enjoyed it!  For Christmas this year we had a theme and even my mother-in-law was in on it.  No video games.  We just wanted to buy them either costumes for playing around the house, stuff for physical activity, which is why we bought scooters and bikes, and barbie dolls and doll house for the girls.  Seeing my kids be creative and playing in all parts of the house make me happy rather than them all crowding around a game system. I know it made life easier for me but I knew it wasn't good for them.  Of course there is nothing wrong with game systems, it's just they played or thought about it all the time.  It just got too crazy.

In the next couple of months we will be buying at least 3 more laptops for our home so we don't have to share so many computers for homeschooling.  Little Ashley is only 4 but she insists on "homeschooling" on my iPad.  There are some really neat apps on there all about preschool and learning so she has lots of fun with that. Baby Caleb will even climb up next to her and sit with her.  He sings his ABC's on his own, just not really clear.  How cuuuute!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Crazy Kid Prank and a Letter Goodbye

My son Ryan likes to play these big pranks on the family but I think the other day his went a little too far.  It still gave us a chuckle but only because Kyle started laughing....after about 10 minutes.  Charles and I were talking in the back room for a bit (about a half hour) and when we came out, Kyle walked up to us sadly and handed us a card.  He said, "Mom and Dad, I have something really sad to tell you.  Just read the card."

I opened the card....

It says, "Dear Mom and Dad, Ryan and Kyle don't have a working heart so I'm just telling you so we can say goodbye to you, Mom and Dad.  Love, Kyle and Ryan."

I looked at him confused and asked him why he thought that.  He held his neck and said he didn't feel his heart "beeping".  I smiled and told him that he wouldn't be standing there if his heart had stopped and then I showed him how to feel his heartbeat.  It took some really good convincing.  With Ryan smiling  behind him I asked him what was going on.  He purposefully showed Kyle the wrong spot to check and then told him it takes about a day or two to die once your heart stops, so Kyle figured he had enough time to write a letter and prepare us for it.  Ohhhh, I felt so bad for Kyle (my 8 year old) and reassured him his heart was still "beeping."  After he realized it was just a huge prank he was laughing about it with Ryan.  What a stinker Ryan is!  I kept the card because I thought it was sooooo cute.

I guess I'd want the chance to say goodbye to family rather than die instantly.  Some say they wouldn't want to be sad and would rather go instantly but since having so many deaths in the family, instant or over time with cancer, I don't know what's worse.  I've had family members die instantly and I wished I could've said goodbye, told them I loved them.  The ones that died over a period of time from cancer, I wonder more what their last days were like.  Does everyone act sad around them all the time?  Does knowing your death is coming soon make you completely depressed and hard knowing you won't see your loved ones grow older?  Agh.  It's just all such a terrible thought.  Alas, it's a reality that happens all around us.  I'm just happy my heart is right before God.  I'm glad I'm learning to quickly forgive wrongs, apologize quickly when necessary, and am learning that some things are not worth fighting about.  Each day is precious on this earth.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

31 Days to Clean - Priorities

(Day 5-31 Days to Clean)

I'm super excited about this post because I want to share something I just stumbled across this morning.  As I was drinking my coffee and lazily scrolling down posts on Facebook, my eyes widened when I saw the post 31 Days to Clean on Facebook.  What?  Yeah!  Sure!  I'm so excited to finally have a simpler house to clean as of late that something like this doesn't feel like I'm adding more of a burden.  I love a good challenge because I just completed one and still am feeling the victory dance.

Sooo, I don't have a Kindle but it doesn't matter.  You can go HERE to download the ebook or you can just go onto Amazon like I did and download it.  I just installed the Kindle program for my PC but I could have also installed the Kindle App for my iPad if I had wanted.  Anyway, it's only $4.99 so it's super cheap.  Since I use Swagbucks as my search engine, I get free Amazon gift cards so technically, I got the book for free.  :D

Anyhow, I didn't see the Facebook post till Day 5 but better late than never, right?  Day 5 is about Priorities and gives two tasks to do just for this day.  I think this can be every ones struggle throughout life.  Everyone and everything can pull on us in all directions.

Jeremiah 31:25   “In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there.” Mark 1:35

This one is a little hard for me because my favorite time to read and pray is at night time when the whole house is quiet.  I have kids with super sonic hearing that as soon as my feet hit the floor in the morning, at least 2 kids are immediately following behind me.  Soon after comes Ivy, then Kyle, Chaz, and last is always Ryan.  So, when I wait to read and pray when they pass out, I don't have to worry about that.  I don't know.  Would love your thoughts on that one.

“She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27

Training my children up in the Lord and teaching them every day is SO IMPORTANT.  More than just teaching them their reading and writing, I love to have some bible time with them geared more at their level.  In fact, yesterday the kids and I sat down to read from the bible and we decided that since it's the beginning of the year we would just start from the beginning again with the creation and Adam and Eve.  The kids absolutely love this time and always want to sing songs and have discussion afterward.  

Yes, stay at home mom do more than this... :D

The hardest part for me is saying no to people who have requests of me that would interfere with the priorities I have for my family.  I think people with smaller families, especially with kids in school, don't understand the challenge that can come with a large homeschooling family.  There can be misconceptions that people have about homeschooling and just don't understand all the work that goes into it.  It's more than just caring for our kids at home, I want to train them in other ways as well.  I don't want lazy kids that have a mom to do everything for them.  Lately we have been emphasizing that work comes before play.  It's important to finish our homeschool and daily chores before we can run off and play.  It was different when my kids were in school because they had such long school days and I knew they needed that break to just be kids for a bit before having to do their chore.  So, all this homeschool talks reminds me of a funny video I saw today.  Would love to share!

Another thing is making time to be there for my family without it being only about work.  Often, no matter what I am doing, if my husband or kids come to talk to me I give them a full listening ear.  There is no book or TV program (if I had a TV) that is more important. I save my book reading time for when my kids are resting.  Otherwise I'd be reading one or two sentences at a time before someone needed to come to me about something.  

31 Days to Clean gave me two tasks to do today.  :)  I'm getting right to it.  

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Day My 4 Year Old Ran Away...

Yesterday I had my friend and her kids over.  Her daughter Kerrianne is my daughter Ivy's best friend. Ashley is always that third wheel that wants to tag along in everything they are doing and she gets jealous or just sad sometimes.  So yesterday while I was talking with my friend in the kitchen, Ashley walked into the house and asked me if she could have the keys and some gas.  I asked her what for and she replied that she is running away.  Kind of playing along with her I told her that her tricycle doesn't need gas and the keys were hanging up by the door.  She grabbed her pink tricycle, a sippy cup of water and went out the front door.  We all watched and then quietly slipped out the front door to see how far she would go. Here it is in pictures.

Ashley walking her tricycle after quickly tiring of riding it.
Ivy and Kerrie saying goodbye
The kids running after her to talk to her.
The kids trying to talk Ashley into coming back home
The kids had it and just brought her back themselves
Ivy helping to bring her tricycle back

Ashley did not want to come back.  Her problem hadn't been solved.
Ryan had carried her most of the way back and even fell and hurt his shoulder trying to get her.
Charles held his little girl and told her how much we all loved her and never want to her leave us.

Then he let her pick out a donut from the bag.  She was happy again even with her tears still in her eyes.