Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Post Half Marathon Me

I would love to say that I have continued to run.  But that would be so far from the truth.  I think I have run three times.  I am kind of bummed that I have accomplished such a major event and now it has just kind of gone by the wayside.

Two things I have figured out are:  I am totally goal oriented.  I have no goal so therefor I have no motivation.  I did try to fit into my bridesmaid dress and it was kind of tight so I thought that would be a little bit of a motivator.  And it was.  For about a day.

The other thing I figured out is that unless I have a goal for running, running gets pushed wwwaaaay down on the list of priorities for the day.  I can't justify running when there are meals and school and laundry and church and errands and the list goes on and on.

Yesterday, I finally made myself walk first thing in the morning.  I have a new, not so ambitious plan.  It looks something like this.  I am going to start out just walking a couple of times a week.  I want to build the habit of exercise back up.  I need to exercise.  Not to loose weight or to build muscle or anything like that.  I need to walk/run because I want to be healthy.  I want a good heart and good lungs and capable muscles.  Plus, I love the time I am alone.

I also have realized if I don't get it done first thing, it just won't happen.  So, we have been working on our morning routine.  I feel we have it down so that the minute the kids get up and start with their breakfast, I can go ahead and walk/run.  They have a buddy system now to check up on each other to make sure "stuff" gets done in my absence.  We use the heck out of the dry erase board.  Today was successful.

I walked for 30 minutes.  It was cool and sunny and smelled of spring.  I am hoping to repeat our success tomorrow . . .

Saturday, March 28, 2015


A week ago Friday, EG got to spend the morning with a very good friend of hers.  It was her friend's birthday and her friend's mom took them to get pedicures and shopping and then out to lunch.  They had such a great time!

This is a picture of EG getting her feet washed (and boy did they need it.)  Her feet are super ticklish and she was holding on to the armchair because she was giggling so much.

We are truly thankful for our forever friends . . .

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Color Relay

After spending the weekend dancing their feet off, the girls talked us into letting them participate in their Youth Group's color relay.  I say this because in the very first picture, Little Mama still has on her stage make up on to be followed by the color dust!

One thing I love about the girl's Youth Group is the Pastor encourages student leadership.  About a half dozen youth have applied to be student leaders and they get to teach some Sunday nights, they lead group discussion AND they get to organize fun games and events for the kids.  Plus, the whole family is always welcome to participate.  At least three other younger siblings were running around getting colored.

This event was to kick off a new teaching series and as you can see, the kids had big fun.  There was color dust everywhere.  By the time we left, our people were finally wore out!  I am thankful for these kids.  Many of which we have known most of their lives.  They really are a great group of young people . . . 

Monday, March 16, 2015

What We Did This Weekend

I am once again very thankful to my friends who take pictures.  Otherwise I would have no pictures of the girls' benefit performances last week!  The above pictures are of them in some their costumes.  Once again this year, they put on a ballet performance to raise money to bring dance to hurting and abused women and children and to possibly provide a place to dance in an area of town where that might not otherwise be possible.

The girls and all of their friends have been rehearsing and practicing for months, really.  And they spent almost the whole weekend at the School of Music where they put on both performances.  We invited our neighbors who came.  And EG has a special relationship with the postwoman and invited her and she and her daughter came!

After the evening performance on Saturday the whole cast had a sponsor reception.  All of the dancers were to mingle with the many donors that the ballet company had to help put on the show.  Then, after Sunday's performance, many little girls who had attended the show had backstage passes to meet the dancers.  All of it super cute.  (And super tiring.)

I was able to see both shows.  Boop and Daddy and Grandma came on Saturday.  When I watched it on Sunday, once again I had tears in my eyes.  To watch how both of my daughters (EG too but she didn't dance she was an extra) have grown in their dance.  Nature Girl has the gift of grace and truly has a gift for ballet.  I could watch her dance all day.  Little Mama is always smiling and always enjoying herself.  She is developing into quite a dancer as well.

It was a long, busy weekend, but I think definitely worth all the work and effort by so many . . .

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Singing and Dancing

Nothing could make a Mama prouder than watching her children use their talents and gifts God has given them to lead worship and glorify Him.  Both of my girls love to sing and dance.  Not only do they sing and dance at practices and rehearsals but they sing and dance around the house.  Constantly!

A couple of Sundays ago, a bunch of Youth Choirs from our area lead worship at a local church and it was fantastic.  It is always amazing to me how well they do and how much they all enjoy it.  Our Music Minister was there and he said we have a tendency to look up at all the young people and think this is our future worship leaders.  But, he was quick to point out that really it is our youth leading us in worship right now, right then.  It was kind of cool to think of it that way.

This year the program had an interpretive dance and both the girls and quite a few of their friends participated.  It just took the program to whole other level.  It was amazing to watch them.  Our girls were able to dance at our morning church service as well.  It is really neat to hear how other church members enjoy watching them.

I have never been shy about bragging on my girls when it comes to singing and dancing.  To watch and listen to them is one of my greatest pleasures and blessings.  God has blessed them richly . . . 

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Week Two

I can get use to this no school thing.

It has been hard training myself to take the time to reteach habits and develop good character.  I have let so many things slide because I feel like there is never enough time to get it all done.  And one of the most important parts of being a parent is to instill good habits and develop good character. Those things, I believe, last a life time and are so important in no matter where you end up as an adult.

As far as chores go, each child has a list of weekly chores along with daily chores.  The weekly chores have gone by the way side as well.  So this week we have been working on getting back to those responsibilities.  Just realizing what day of the week it is and just getting the chores done to the very best of our ability.

Training in housekeeping is kind of two fold.  Maybe three fold.  First, I want my kids to be able to take care of a home properly.  Knowing how to clean a toilet or do a load of laundry.  Second, hubby and I both feel that chores are what you do to contribute to the household.  As a part of the family, those few chores are your responsibility.  Life is all about being responsible.  It helps in time management, realizing there isn't a cleaning fairy etc.  Lastly, if I didn't get help somehow, we really couldn't do all the things we enjoy doing.  Right after EG was born I had a cleaning lady.  My oldest was 7 and although she is a great cleaner and help, she was just too young to help me do all that needed to be done.  Once the cleaning lady left, it was up to all of us to keep the house clean and tidy.  Some weeks are definitely better than others!

Another area we worked on this week was our daily devotion time.  We have been pretty good about praying together and reading the Bible together and even encouraging individual quiet time first thing most mornings.  This week, my goal was to add in Scripture memorization.  So that is what we have been working on.  I have a system that I have used in the past and we will resurrect it and working on building/continuing that habit.  Just trying to encourage another life long habit.

Next week I am going to work on paid chores and start adding back some gentle school things.  Things that I really feel are the advantages to homeschooling.  My hope is to get back to nature study, Latin, timeline, art and composure study.  Along with all the domestic habits. . .

Wednesday, March 4, 2015


So, this week we are working on our chore charts.  (I really don't like calling them chores.  The top of their chart says "How I contribute to the family.")  We have been using the same chart for quite some time now.  And you would think it would be a habit to just do it, get it done and check it off.  And, it is for awhile.  But then we get busy and lazy and it gets done half heartedly.  By them and me.

I am taking the time, each day, to work with each child and their chores.  We do such things as wiping down bathrooms (always keeps the guest bathroom ready for visitors) and unloading the dishwasher.  In all honesty, the big girls rock at this and last week I even heard them talk about mentoring the little ones.  But that was kind of short lived!

I have been remiss in showing them, especially the littles, how and what I want done.  And so I am taking the time to do that.  I have been trying to get up a little earlier, although fairly unsuccessfully, to get my stuff done so I have time to help them with out feeling rushed.

That has been one of my attitude adjustments that I have been having to make.  Reminding myself we have nothing else to do but get our chores done right.  I have to resist the urge to hurry through so we can move on to something else.

I have had some time to teach basic cooking.  While LM and I were at dance Monday night and Boop and EG were helping daddy with the masterbath, NG made dinner.  Yesterday afternoon I was able to take the time to have Boop help me with last night's dinner.  I want the kids to know how and be comfortable with the basics of living.  Whether male or female.  To be honest, hubby is the true chef in our family.

But, again, I am just trying to solidify our foundation.  I know in a couple months, if I am not careful we will have to double check our work.  But, I feel if I take the time to really ground them in their morning and afternoon chores, if we get off base a little, it will be easier to get back on track.

I might add another layer to work on towards the end of the week.  But, for the next day or so, basic chores are my continued focus. . .

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Little Mama's Birthday

I have no idea what God has in store for this young lady, but I do believe she will make a great mother and wife someday!  I am not sure what I would do without her.  True to form as a middle child, she is definitely the peace keeper.   And so willing to help to make sure things run well.  Always happy and she has the greatest laugh.  She is beautiful outside but more importantly she is beautiful inside.  She loves her family, her friends and her dog.  She is super loyal.

Her birthday week started out with yogurt and a bunch of her friends.  They giggled and ate and played Catch Phrase.  (We love that game.)  Then on the Monday before her birthday her daddy took her to one of her favorite restaurants.  She is like her daddy in that she loves food.  Good food.  Then he took her shopping to get an ENO and she loves it.  She has hung it up in the front yard, backyard and in her room (although not very successfully there.)  She got a double nested ENO so she can "hang" with her siblings.

On her birthday we had a busy day so really didn't do much celebrating.  Although, we brought cupcakes to our Truth Co-op.  Then on the day after her birthday Sissy had her, me and Grandma over for a grown up meal.  The table was set beautifully and we just talked and enjoyed being together.  Sissy got her a monogrammed rain jacket and Grandma got her a monogrammed baseball hat and big, pretty monogrammed navy bow.

We may not have had a huge party, but I think she enjoyed all the little celebrations along the way. . . . 

Sunday, March 1, 2015


I have a devotion book I just love.  It is called Jesus Calling and it is a daily paragraph and it is written like a personal note from Jesus himself.  The paragraph is peppered with scripture.  This was yesterday's and I just loved it.  I tend to be one that makes my own way.  I am not a go with the crowd kind of person. (So much so I sometimes have to question my motives.)  For the most part, I could not careless what someone else is doing.  I desire to please God with my words, actions and deeds and I fall woefully short.  Sometimes, though, my desire leads me on the road less traveled.  So this was just so encouraging to me.

"You are on the right path.  Listen more to Me, and less to your doubts.  I am leading you along the way I have designed just for you.  Therefore, it is a lonely way, humanly speaking.  But I go before you as well as alongside you, so you are never alone.  Do not expect anyone to understand fully My ways with you, any more than you can comprehend My dealings with others.  I am revealing to you the path of Life day by day, and moment by moment.  As I said to My disciple Peter, so I repeat to you:  Follow me." 

Psalm 119:105; John 21:22

Kind of a aah haa moment . . .