Tuesday, March 25, 2008

For the past few days I have been having a debate with myself over whether I am pregnant or not. Yesterday I couldn't stand the suspense any longer and loaded the crew into the van and headed to town. We stopped at Walgreens were I was glad that three of my young ins' can't read (at least not the words "Home Pregnancy Test"). I quickly tracked down the aisle that stocked the needed item. Then I swiped one off the shelf as we shuffled past. To help distract Isaac from asking me questions I did a quick u-turn and headed for the 50% off Easter section. I let them each pick out a package of candy and then it was off the the check out to try to get it scanned before Isaac could read the box. I think I succeeded, because he didn't ask me about it.

Once home I quickly took the test which came back negative. I didn't think it would upset me too much to see that I wasn't pregnant, but it did. I settled into a funk for the rest of the day. I guess I had talked myself into wanting to be pregnant (I always have found pregnancy an exciting time). I spent the rest of the day quiet sad over the revelation. However, around 8:30pm I got into the shower. Once there, in the peace and quiet, I started my nightly conversation with the Lord. This may seem a bit odd, but it is the only time when I am awake that I can be alone. So, I laid out my woes to God and just as quickly this verse popped into my head. "Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always." I Chronicles 16:11. I decided I needed to seek God's face and I asked that Him to make His will clear to me. My mind was suddenly filled with reasons why another baby would not be God's will for me right now.

  • Getting up every 2 hours to nurse a newborn. I'm already tired.
  • Changing endless diapers and outfits. More laundry? I already can't keep up
  • Less time to give my precious children. There are days I feel really guilty about not giving each of them all that I feel they need.
  • Lauren/Toddler- need I say more?
  • I really want to put 100% into home schooling. That's hard to do with a baby.

Of course these are all negatives. But, I didn't want to dwell on the positives for too long or I would be back singing the blues again. Babies are precious. I have loved each and every moment with each of mine, but I think God was trying to show me that now is not the time for us to have an addition to our family. Maybe, down the road a bit, that will change. Only God knows for sure.

Today I think God was trying to prove his point because Lauren was at her toddler finest. She had a horrible morning, crying and clingy. So much so, that I thought she was getting sick. At lunch time I sat her in her high chair and she just bawled. I tried to entice her with some fruit, but nothing doing, she wasn't having any of it. I scooped her up and headed to her bedroom, where she continued to sob. Poor little one, she finally drifted off in my arms. No lunch for Lauren, just sleep.

She finally woke up at 3:00 in a much better, yet more destructive, mood. I sat with her and played, while Joel and I talked about his day. Then as I began preparing dinner the fun began. I was busily chopping up items for tacos, when I realized it was way to quiet. I moved through the house calling her name, no response and no sign of her anywhere. Finally, I heard I little noise coming from behind the drapes in the living room. There she was practicing her gardening skills on Isaac's potted ivy. Potting soil covered the window sill, the floor, her hands, and her impish, grinning face. I vacuumed it up and went back to making dinner. I once more glanced in her direction to make sure she was behaving. She was taking off her pants. Not unusual. Anytime there is any of her laundry laying around she changes her clothes. A few minutes later though, I caught her opening Caleb's school drawer ( a drawer in a plastic filing cabinet) and removing a purple marker. She preceded to decorate her thighs in purple. This she attempted once more before I could distract her with something else. After dinner, Joel was packing his lunch and I was cleaning up the kitchen, when I noticed Lauren was in the sitting room with an odd package in her hand, stuffing fistfuls of something into her mouth. It turned out to be the bag of shredded cheese that she some how had swiped off the table. Once more the vacuum was put to use.

So, as you can see, my hands are full right now and God truly knows best!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Monday School Day

I couldn't quite get fully motivated today. We got a good start on school and accomplished all of the basic subjects, but after lunch I fell behind. My goal was to get science, history and reading done with each of the boys. Jacob read to me, Isaac and I did history then Lauren woke up. School was put on hold and I don't see us finishing everything on my to-do list today. I'm trying not to beat myself up for it. Some days just don't go as I plan. I'm attempting to console myself with the thought that they did spend some time building awesome LEGO space ships today. Creative thinking and inventing at its finest?!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Celebrating Jesus

Yesterday we spent the day remembering what God did for us through his son Jesus. We did a couple activities to help the boys think about Jesus' sacrifice.

We started out with the traditional egg dying and we all had fun being creative. Lauren had a blast dropping the eggs from a considerable height, into the cups of dye. She ended up with a polka dot masterpiece all over her upper body. She also had to taste test each egg and sampled the dye once or twice too!

Later, after Lauren went down for a nap, the boys made a diorama of the tomb were Jesus was laid. I gave them a few ideas and a few supplies, then let them create. They made almost the whole thing out of two cereal boxes and a paper towel tube. The only things that weren't recycled materials were the tops of the trees and flowers. We had some great discussions while we worked and I hope it helped them think about what Jesus did for us. I think they did a great job!

Not the best picture of the boys, but here is the scene they created
Lauren tasting her first colored egg

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Need Chocolate Quick

I have been riding the monthly emotional roller coaster for the past few days. The ups and downs are quite the trip. Today was my weepy day. So, I broke down and made a batch of Chocolate No-Bake cookies. I'm sure I'll eat more than my fair share. I've only sampled a couple. Hmmm- I think I feel better already. I'm sure I'll save a few for the kids.............maybe!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Quiet Day

We had a quiet Monday. It was restful and much needed. Sometimes Mondays can be so crazy around here. Getting back into the schooling routine, after a busy weekend, can prove to be a little difficult for a couple of my dear children. However, for the most part we had an easy going day with a little extra fun thrown in.

On St. Patrick's Day we are always visited by a mischievous Leprechaun. He does the craziest things. He gives us green milk and a box of Lucky Charms for breakfast (not exactly nutritionally sound, but lots of fun). He leaves us notes telling us he's hidden four leaf clovers that we need to find. He scatters gold coins all around the house (gold foil covered chocolates). Makes us play silly games to win chocolate treats. You get the picture. The little guy is a bundle of excitement!

The boys get such a kick out of this. Isaac (11) has me figured out, so he played Leprechaun this year. I'm pretty sure Jacob (9) does too, but he still pretends he doesn't! Caleb (6) caught me this morning depositing a four leaf clover with a balloon surprise on the antique dresser in our living room. BUSTED! Oh well, they still had tons of fun. Caleb was really sad when the Leprechauns tricks were done; so he told me with a sad, sad look on his face. But, there's always next year. I'm sure the little Irish man will be back for more games and fun!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

This N' That

Yesterday was so beautiful, spring can't come soon enough! I was able to put two loads of laundry on the line. The ground underneath was still a little mushy and muddy, but that didn't deter me! I love the smell of laundry that has dried out in the fresh air, especially sheets. There's nothing like climbing into bed at night and smelling the great outdoors.

After lunch we drove around the corner to my Grandma Smith's house. She has been getting weaker each day and the boys really wanted to see her. As soon as we removed our shoes at the door, Lauren took off into the living room. She immediately started to remove all the pillows and blankets off of grandma's couch and throw them on the floor. I'm not sure why she does this, but it is the second time she has done so. While Lauren dismantled grandma's couch, the boys and I talked with grandma and Maribel (one of the ladies who cares for grandma during the day). Jacob gave grandma several hugs and told her how much he loved her. He is such a compassionate little guy.

Ten minutes later the boys discovered there were two geese and a Blue Heron in grandma's pond. Off they went to explore and discover the mysteries of grandma's pond. A pond that has held children captive for generations. Lauren and I stayed 5 more minutes and then left grandma with hugs and our love.

After Lauren's nap I took her outside. She headed straight for the big mounds of snow that were still left in the drive way. On her way there she got side tracked and took a few moments to splash through a mud puddle left by the melting snow. She is definitely an outside girl. She just can't get enough of it. Coming indoors always imparts some sadness for her. That's a polite way of saying she really dislikes it and we are forced to listen to much crying!

Isaac, Jacob and Caleb spent a good portion of the day playing outside. This time of year is so refreshing and they enjoy exploring the stream and riding their bikes around the driveway. They came in later for hot chocolate with pink cheeks. This time from being overheated, instead of from the frigid air.

It was a day full of blessings, fresh air and God's promises.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Mud Buddies

Mud, Mud every where! Wow, we are surrounded by mud! Spring must really be near. To traverse our road you almost need to be a professional mud bogger (I'm not exaggerating)!

The boys went out this afternoon to slip and slide in the mud. They called me out about half an hour later, all excitement. They had found a few shoots of green in my flower gardens.
Jacob said to me, "Isn't it amazing mom!"
To that I readily agreed, "truly amazing."
Later, when Joel looked out the window he announced that the boys were playing in the miniature pond that surrounds their swing set. They were taking turns laying on their tummy's on the swings and kicking back and forth through the muddy water. At one point, Caleb grabbed up a handful of mud. For a moment I worried he might launch it at one of his brothers. Fortunately he relinquished it. He decided to wash his hands in the puddle and then use his pants for a towel. Needless to say, when my mud buddies came in the house they were in need of showers!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Little Taste of Spring

Can it be that spring is just around the corner? There is still snow on the ground here, but the sun is shining brightly. It is beautiful outside today. The sky is a gorgeous blue color and the birds are singing sweetly to one another. The boys played outside for at least an hour and a half today in just sweatshirts. I am anxious to see the spring flowers poking up in my flower gardens. The first hints of green always bring me excitement and I begin to plan feverishly for new additions to my gardens.

I have spent my day, for the most part, as usual, teaching school, doing laundry and preparing meals. However, I did get a call just after lunch from the lady who helps take care of my grandma. Grandma had fallen in the bathroom and she was unable to get up and Maribel couldn't lift her. I left Isaac in charge and went to help get grandma up. This is the first time I have had to help, usually my parents or aunt or uncle are around. But, today I was the only one available. I was just glad I was able to help. It did take all my strength and I believe some from the Lord, to get her up to her feet. She has gotten so weak over the past few weeks and she couldn't help me at all. So I was lifting dead weight. She thanked me several times for helping her. I made sure she knew I loved her and that I was always willing to help. It is hard to see her slowly slipping away. Her body seems to be slowly shutting down. Her mind is still pretty sharp though and we all enjoy spending short amounts of time with her.

I know I have been blessed to have a close relationship with my grandma. I also am glad that my boys have got to know her and love her. Their lives have been enriched by knowing her. My life has too.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Vanity, Vanity

I recently learned something new and surprising about myself, I'm not as vain as I thought I was!!! It happened the week we all came down with influenza.

Joel was in the midst of the worst of the flu, he was really feeling quite ill. So, being the helpful, willing, caring, selfless (need I go on!), wife that I am, I told him I would load the wood burner for him. We have an outdoor wood burner and I have tinkered with it some, so I figured I could handle it. Plus, Isaac and I had loaded it the night before, with what I felt like was success. So, I trudged out to do the animal chores and keep my family warm.

After feeding the animals, I was feeling pretty poorly. But, duty called so I opened the doors to the wood burner and then opened the pole barn where Joel had a stack of wood in a wagon. I preceded to find a good log that I could fit in the burner. One problem arose, I had used most of the smaller pieces the night before. So, I was left with huge honkers. I hoisted the first piece and chucked it in. It went in crooked, not good in the wood burner world. I grabbed the big metal poker and pushed and prodded it into a more proper position. All the while the flames began to roll out of the door and smoke was bellowing in huge clouds into my face. I backed out of there gasping, choking and spewing. I laid my head down on the wagon to catch my breath and ease the searing pain in my chest (the flu was not helping my abilities at this point). I went back and repeated the hauling, chucking, poking and prodding episode several more times till I got it partially full and just had to give up.

I shuffled indoors with an intense desire to collapse. However, as I entered the house I became aware that a strange odor was following me. I rushed to the bathroom, gazed into the mirror, and discovered the horrible truth. I had singed off portions of my bangs and hair around the sides of my face. Okay, I thought I can handle this. Then a moan escaped my lips and tears slid down my cheeks as I saw that my eyelashes had been reduced to half their original size. You must understand I have always received compliments on my long eyelashes and it is one feature on my face I can say I really like. I stood there a few more minutes bemoaning my loss and then out of sheer exhaustion I turned, walked to our sitting room and sank to the floor. I just didn't have the energy to care that deeply.

The next day I was talking to my friend Lori and laughingly told her the whole escapade (she has had to fill an outdoor wood burner too, so she was quite sympathetic). I thought that I would be more devastated by the loss of my wonderful eyelashes, but every time I look in the mirror instead of tears and sorrow, I feel like giggling. It really makes me laugh when I put mascara on the stubby little nubs!

Ten years ago this probably would have really upset me for some time. I have to say I am glad to report I have obviously done some growing up since then. I guess raising four children, being a wife and home school mom has put many of my ideals into perspective.

Vain, not so much!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

For the Love of Home Schooling

It has been another lively day at our house. At this moment, Isaac, Caleb and Lauren are playing ring around the rosies in the kitchen. Lauren is laughing hilariously! She loves it when her brothers play with her. Jacob is crashing his lego spaceship into the dining room table and then building it up again. The noise level is at a crescendo! Just as quickly as they started the previous games they switch to a rousing game of hide and seek. Caleb is counting, none to slowly. Jacob slithers under the desk where I sit typing, Isaac hides behind the recliner and Lauren gives away her brothers positions. Then its giggles, pounding feet heading off down the hallway, and more counting!

Joel is at a fire department meeting tonight, so I am on my own with our precious hooligans. He has been newly appointed as a captain and tonight is an officers meeting. Plus the new fire truck they ordered just arrived, so I'm sure all the guys are inspecting every hose and switch! I'm sure I won't see the whites of his eyes for awhile! Its quite okay though, it gives me time to write out my thoughts from the past few days.

The last three days of schooling have been successful. We have been able to accomplish all of our subjects each day. Isaac and I just finished up the last of our reading and map work on the Civil War. I learned just as much as he did, I think. Jacob, has been working really hard on his school work. This is a big change from a few weeks ago, when each moment was a challenge. I'm not sure what caused the turn around, but I am extremely thankful for it. He is doing wonderful with his reading and math and I have seen big improvements since the first of the year. Caleb is a sponge learning all that I place in front of him. Kindergarten has been easy for him. I hope he will continue to have a love of learning as he grows.

Today was the first day that Lauren didn't fuss through the mornings lessons. I think toddlerhood has her in its foul grip, because life definitely hasn't been easy with her. She is so clingy and whiny, it makes for difficult teaching. I have tried many different tactics with her. Some days sitting her in her high chair with crayons and a coloring book works (it did today). Other days she just tosses the crayons or tries to eat them. I also have had to resort to having one or the other of the boys take her downstairs or into another room to play so that at least two of the boys can have a bit of peace and quiet, if only for fifteen minutes. It is hard to concentrate when your baby sister is bawling.

Even though we have our tough days of schooling, the days when things go smoothly make up for the down days. The past three days have helped me to remember why I love home schooling so much. I treasure the moments I have snuggling on the couch with my children reading a great history book or learning a new bible verse. I love to see my children playing with each other and actually enjoying each others company, like they are this evening. I adore their giggles and smiles. I cherish the hugs I receive as they tromp past me to yet another hiding spot. I'm enraptured when they so freely tell me they love me. I'm blessed to know each of my children intimately and I know I have gained this through home schooling.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...