Sunday, September 29, 2013

Latest PW Meal

This was pretty good.  It was like a french dip only a little more flavorful.  I took a roast and cooked it with rosemary and peperoncinis.  When it was done hubby shredded it and I put it on big hoagie rolls.  To complete the sandwich, I placed sauteed onions on top.  

Instead of fries or chips these days, we make green fries, one of my favorite recipes from Trip Healthy Mama.  (I get the irony, though, of a PW recipe and a THM recipe all in one meal.)

Anyway, the result was a delicious weekend/game day meal.  It was easy and delicious and I think we will definitely do it again. . . .

Friday, September 27, 2013

Birthday Boy

My baby boy is going to be eight!

I remember well the night/morning he was born.  We were on our way home from ballet and I had to stop by some one's house to pick up three outfits.  Two said big sister and one said baby brother.  I was having my mom and sister over for dinner.  I was going to make spaghetti.

When I got home, I just wasn't feeling good.  We ordered pizza instead.  I am almost positive it was a Wednesday night because it was the season premier of Lost.  Well, right after dinner our cable went out.  We were a little distressed by that!   But, a little while later it really didn't matter much because I was pretty sure I was in labor.

So, we headed up to the hospital.  Which actually worked out pretty well.  While I was in triage having contractions, hubby was in the lobby watching Lost.  Now that may sound a little insensitive.  But, trust me, it isn't!  I do much better on my own.  I don't need anyone rubbing my head or talking to me.  I was a little disappointed that I couldn't go watch!  He would come to the room during commercials and tell me what was happening.  Of course, after the show, he stayed in the room with me.

I was in labor for about 12 hours.  Boop arrived about 7:30 in the AM.  It was a little hairy toward the end.  There was some pressure problems etc. but it all turned out beautifully.  My mom was there and a few hours later his big sisters joined him in my hospital room.  (When I look at pictures from that day, it is crazy to me how young everyone was.  LM was 2 1/2 and NG was 4 1/2).

I do remember he just fit right into the family.  Such an easy baby.

He really is a blessing to our family.  He has such a servant's heart.  He wants to help.  He loves to learn.  And he asks tons of questions.  He is a hugger and he loves to be near.  He is very affectionate and a tad bit sensitive.  With all these girls around he is going to make a great husband some day!

We are celebrating his birthday this week.  We had a family dinner this past Sunday and he had a great time with his cousins.  He got a model airplane and a remote controlled helicopter and a yo-yo.  He loves them and is so thankful for them.  And has been playing with them all constantly.

This weekend my mom and brother are coming to celebrate.  And on Monday hubby will take him to an airplane museum and out to lunch.

I am so, so thankful for my baby boy and what he adds to our family . . .

Monday, September 23, 2013

Alone Time

For the last couple of years, I have been trying to figure out a way to spend time with each child, alone.  We have planned dinners or treats or staying up late when daddy was working.  But, most of that has fallen by the wayside.  Daddy doesn't work late anymore and our school days have gotten a little longer as everyone has gotten older.  And life has just gotten plain busy.

I have made charts and schedules all in attempt to get alone time with each one.  Then one day it dawned on me.  Almost every single day, I read to each child individually.  Including EG.  We sit on the couch together and read a book.  It might be history or literature or an Aesop fable.  But, it is just me and one child.  We cuddle or I rub a head as I read.

It may not be a yogurt or a game.  But, it is something.  I think sometimes as a mom, I try to hard to do certain things.  Check off certain boxes of good mothering.  And if I would just sit back and see the way we live, a lot of those things are done naturally.  Just within the context of us homeschooling and living.

I know there are times when a yogurt will be "necessary."  Or staying up late with me will be a treat.  But, as the days fly by, I am thankful for these little blessings tucked into every day life . . .

Monday, September 16, 2013

Bottle Rockets

Literally.  Rockets handmade out of soda bottles.  The goal was to see how well each family could follow directions and make the rocket out of a soda bottle, some cardboard, a glue gun, water and a bicycle pump.

A bunch of families got together at the church and made them and then saw whose worked the best.

Boop's first attempt didn't work out so well.  Boop and Daddy made some adjustments and then it was too the moon!  It flew crazy high!

Fun, but so, so hot . . .

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Boop the Builder

The boy loves to build!  The above pictures are just a couple of things he has done over the summer.  He and his friend built the plane!  Since we have been home from the beach he is obsessed with military planes.  He has been reading about them, drawing them and memorizing the stats and names of them.  This week he started building them out of Legos.  

He is a boy so he does need some physical activity.  But, he totally needs mental activity.  He needs to exercise his brain.  He will sit for hours and build and draw and read about what he is interested in.  At one point, he had 5 encyclopedias in his bed.  Every night this week I have been telling him to put his stuff away and go to sleep.  At 10PM!

I am sure part of it is that he is my only boy and he just thinks differently.  And I am not familiar with it.  But, I just love the way his brain works!

Anyway, I am just so impressed by what he does . . . 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Television Time

We don't watch a whole lot of TV.  The occasional movie, the occasional sporting event and HGTV as a treat.  (OK sometimes Duck Dynasty.)  Anyway, 4 year old EG was sitting on the couch yesterday and says to me "Mommy, how much would this house be listed at?"

Hmmm, methinks we watch to much HGTV . . .

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Our Turkish Friend

Back in January we started studying the country of Turkey using Ann Voskamp's geography book about the Holy Lands.  The book is awesome.  It had the kids pretend they were on a kilim (a Turkish flying rug) and for a couple of weeks we "toured" Turkey.  We learned a lot!

One Saturday we were in the grocery store.  We had a young man bag our groceries and he had a very unusual name.  Much to my kids embarrassment I asked him his name and where he was from.  Believe it or not, he was from Turkey!  He has been in the United States for about  2 years.  Well, let the friendship begin!

As he took our groceries out to the car I told him how we were homeschoolers and we happened to be studying Turkey.  I then asked him if he would mind if we asked him questions about Turkey and the language as we went through our book.  He was more than willing.  So, for the next couple of months we would seek him out as our bagger and on the way to the car we would ask him all kinds of questions.  One time I brought a book we were reading and asked him to pronounce some of the Turkish words for things in the book.  He was more than accommodating.

I asked him how he came to be in the United States.  It turned out his wife is from here and he met her while she was an exchange student in Spain visiting Turkey.  (She actually works in the same office as my sister!)  So, they got married and he decided to go to school here.

About a month ago he told us he was going back to Turkey for a visit during summer break.  He hadn't been home in quite awhile.  He asked us if there was anything we would like for him to bring back!  I thought that was so sweet.  I couldn't really think of anything specific at the time but just said anything that would represent Turkey would be great.

Well, he got back last week and we saw him at the grocery store this past Saturday.  EG recognized him from across the store.  Both she and Boop were excited to see him.  He ended up being our grocery bagger so we asked him all about his trip.  He had brought back some gifts for us so we invited him over for dinner on Monday, along with some other friends we were having over.

He couldn't come to dinner, but he did say he and his wife would stop by.  We were thrilled.  So, on Monday are Turkish grocery store bagger and his lovely wife came to our house to give us our gifts.  It was so sweet and we enjoyed visiting with both of them.  He brought us Turkish Delight which is a Turkish dessert (Boop secretly hoped that would be one of the gifts.)  Also, he brought us a beautiful wall hanging that has 7 silver elephants hanging down with white and blue beads in the center of each one and a large cobalt blue stone on the bottom.  It their culture it is meant to keep evil spirits away.  He also brought us a figurine of Nasreddin Hoca, a very popular folklore character from their culture.  The kids recognized it right away.

We enjoyed the gifts and were very grateful for them.  We enjoyed getting to know him and his wife a little bit better.  We look forward to seeing him on Saturday . . .

The elephants and amulet sold at the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul.

Nasreddin Hoca.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Beautiful Ballerinas

This year we skipped the ballet pictures that are done through our ballet company.  For all three girls, it would have been crazy expensive and the pictures are OK.  So, I had this great idea to have our babysitter, who has been taking our yearly pictures, take the girls' ballet pictures as well.

We just got around to it this past weekend.  The following are just a few of the pictures taken that she posted on Facebook.

I think they turned out awesome.  They were just what I wanted . . .