February 27, 2007

Cleaning out!

Well, not much to report here! I've spent about ten hours over the past couple of days going through all of our children's clothes...newborn through size 6 boys and girls!!! Ugh. There's just sooooo much! The storage room has been a disaster and my clothes have not been organized since we all moved around, so I finally tackled it. I bought enough containers for everything-no more white bags with holes in them! And I went through and tried to keep only the things I LOVE and will pass the rest on to someone else. (If I don't love it, it will never be on their body anyway.) My newborn boxes are still a bit big, but those things are all so cute it's hard to get rid of them!! I must say, it's so hard to believe my kids were ever that small!!! Those clothes are so teeny, and they were too big at first! It goes by so fast...

Anyway, I have two black bags and two white bags of stuff to pass on...that feels good! I've tried to limit to one container for each size, but that gets hard with winter stuff as they get bigger. Those sweatshirts and fleeces take up so much room. Anyway, I tried. And my storage room will be much emptier for it!

Now I'm ready for spring! Seeing all those cute little girls cotton dresses has me ready for spring so Mattie can wear them all! And I love seeing her little chubby legs in action too, something I miss during winter. Another of my favorite things in spring and summer is seeing little boys getting dirty. I think it is so cute to see them with dirt all over from just being boys!!! (I'm all about girls getting dirty too...I think one friend used to comment that her kids always came home from my house all dirty.) Anyway, thankfully, we have a little bit of spring weather this week...enough for Jacob to burn off energy riding up and down the driveway at least.

I'm off to do my Bible Study for tonight so I can take Mattie out to enjoy the warm weather when she wakes up.

February 23, 2007

A few school things...

Jacob and I talked about moon phases this week with our book, Owl Moon. We talked about why the moon changes shape and what each shape is called. He was just eating a round cookie, took a bite out of it, and then it was crescent shaped. He said, "What kind of moon is this now? I think it's the wassing wibbous (really waxing gibbous) one!" He chose the wrong kind of moon, but I was impressed that he even remembered the word!

Then yesterday I told him it was time to do some school stuff...he said, "Let's just do my owl stuff instead!" That's fun because it lets me know he loves what we're doing enough that he doesn't even think it's school! I have really enjoyed doing school the way we're doing it now. I loved all the things we learned about owls this week...like an owl family is called a parliament. And that there are two kinds of owls...ones with heart shaped facial disks and round facial disks. Never noticed that before!! And that those things sticking up aren't really ears...their ears are located next to their eyes, and are not symmetrical in their placement! Very interesting...

And then here's our animal classification chart we did. Jacob has loved sorting all the animals, but was frustrated that most of the ones we did at first were mammals. He wants to see some arachnids (spiders), he says.

That's about it for now!

February 22, 2007

Woohoo for Jacob!!!

Look, Mom! No training wheels!!!

Yesterday Jacob told us he was going to ride today with no training wheels. Today he went outside to play and reminded me he was supposed to ride without them. So I took them off, pushed him once and off he went! He still has a little bit of a tough time getting started, but he's doing great otherwise!

Reading, riding a bike, next thing I know he'll be graduating from college!

QotD: What are 5 things you're good at?

At Val's encouragement, here goes...

List 5 things I'm good at:

1) Being consistent with my children
2) Keeping a cool head
3) Communicating and encouraging others to communicate
4) Remembering information I've happened upon
5) Cutting hair

Pickin' Boogers

Riding in the car on the way to church last night...
I was driving, Jacob was in the backseat right behind me.

Jacob starts picking his nose. (We've been talking about this lately and when I catch him, I generally send him to the bathroom to take care of his nose maintenance.)

Me: Jacob, would you like a kleenex?
Jacob: But you can't see me.
Me: Yes I can, there's a mirror right here. Would you like a kleenex?
Jacob: No thank you. I just think I have boogers in my nose and it's a lot easier to get them out with my fingers.

No shame!!!

February 19, 2007

We had an exciting night!

So we were all winding down for the night around here. Robert was getting Mattie in bed, I was reading to Jacob. As Jacob and I are talking about primitive life (we're reading Little House in the Big Woods), I see a blur in the living room. So, I do a double take and say, "I think there's something in here." Okay, so I see it again...there's definitely something flying through my living room!! And it's a bat!!! So, we're a little more primitive around here than I realized!!

As we quickly get the kids downstairs (a benefit of downstairs in-laws ), Robert comes back up to do some bat chasing. I settle down on the downstairs couch to finish our chapter. We can't stop right in the middle!

Well, I eventually head back upstairs to help. We put Mattie in bed once we realize our visitor is not in her room. Then we find the bat upstairs, just hanging on our wall.

Well, after thirty minutes or so of watching it fly around, hoping it doesn't get mad and fly at Robert, and searching under stuff in our storage room (if only I had actually cleaned that room last week like I planned!!), he finally traps it in a jar. My knight in shining armor!! And now I have a whole new perspective on his working out of town...

Check out those teeth!!! (He was safely in the jar, by the way!)

And all this just in time for our animal classification chart which we're doing tomorrow! The funny thing was, as soon as I saw him on the wall upstairs, I said to Robert, "I wish I had Stellaluna to read to Jacob tonight!!!" (A story about a bat, for those of who who are not in my 4-8 year old literature world.)

Oh yeah, and when we showed Jacob the bat in the jar, he said, "Ohhh. It's so cute."

February 18, 2007

Snow Day!!

We got some snow!! We decided to go to the third service today so we could get the kids out to play in the snow this morning. We figure it's a once-in-a-three-or-four-year chance! Here are some pics...The abominable snowbaby.
Let's see how this bike rides!
"Thomas has run in to a terrible problem...there's snow on the tracks!!"

Just checkin' it all out...
She loves her big brother!
Group shot. (Not bad for 9:00 A.M.!)
Don't you see the snow here?? This was just a cute one of Mattie on Valentine's Day. Jacob gave her a Valentine and she was thoroughly enjoying it! (And isn't that outfit cute?)

February 15, 2007

What we love about our kids...

Well, after Robert's card, Robert and I decided to do the things we loved about our kids. Here are the lists we wrote and want to put where they can see them. Jacob loved reading his list and knowing we made it for him together.

Things Mommy and Daddy Love about Jacob


You have a sweet spirit.

You are such a great big brother!

You love to share your lollipops and candy.

You are a good track-hoe driver.

You are so smart!

You are a great helper.

You love to snuggle with Mommy & Daddy.

You like to have fun.

You are a good sport about your enzymes.

You are a good friend and want good things for other people.

You love Mattie so much!

You are a great reader!

You love your daddy and mommy.

You are quick to apologize and ask forgiveness.

You are compassionate.

We love you just the way God made you!!

Things Mommy and Daddy Love about Mattie


You are so spunky!

You love to smile!

You love to laugh!

You love your mommy and daddy.

You love your big brother.

You are quick to learn new things.

You are very curious!

You love to be around people.

We love you just the way God made you!

We are so thankful for our kids and the individuals God has made them to be!

February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day!

This year I decided to get creative. I made a card for Robert that's perfect for him, instead of trying to find a Hallmark card to fit the bill. Here's some of what I wrote...

Roses are red,

violets are blue,

These are all the reasons

that I love you…

I love your loyalty.

I love that you’re hardworking.

I love that you make me laugh.

I love that you are a great daddy!

I love that you love me just the way I am.

I love it when you make up funny songs.

I love that you trust me.

I love that you want to be home with us.

I love that you love the kids so much.

I love that you’re easy to please.

I love that you are merciful with Jacob.

I love snuggling next to you on the couch.

I love that you don’t think of yourself first.

I love that you forgive me when I screw up.

I love that you’re letting me see more of your heart.

I love getting more comfortable with each other every year.

I love your blue eyes.

I love your handsome face.

I just love you, just the way you are.

Happy Valentine’s Day

February 13, 2007

How much does God have to do?

In my reading through the Bible, I've been reading about the Exodus this week. This morning I got to this part in Exodus 14:31...

"And when Israel saw the great power which the Lord had used against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and they believed in the Lord and his servant Moses." NASB

God had just parted the Red Sea for the Israelites to escape the Egyptians. What struck me as odd was the fact that God had sent 10 plagues up to this point...frogs, locusts, turning water into blood, flies, etc., and not to mention killing the firstborn of all Egypt, including the firstborn cattle! (I never noticed that before.) And the Israelites didn't fear God and His power until God parted the Red Sea!!

How much does God do for me when I am unimpressed? I pray that I have a thankful heart and that I don't become calloused to all the wonderful miracles he performs on a daily basis...like waking up every morning, my kids' breath, the sun rising in the East, giving Robert health so we have a roof over our head, giving me a conscience so we can respond to the Holy Spirit and stay close to the Lord, giving us food allergies (as opposed to leukemia), giving us clean water to drink and healthy food to eat every day, freedom, a healthy marriage to sanctify me, a family who can't get enough of each other, kids who love me, the opportunity to share Christ with a lost person, oceans that don't wash our country away, mountains that stay put, salvation...

God is so faithful and powerful and loves me more than I can possibly imagine!!!

Mattie's Birthday Celebrations

Well, we're done with all our celebrating. Mattie is officially one! Here's her first cake experience. This was at Aunt Candace and Uncle David's house. We got together for both birthday girls (Mattie and Hannah) on their birthday. Mattie wasn't so sure about the cake at first, but it didn't take long!

Here is her cake.

And Mattie girl enjoying her cake at her party! She jumped right in this time!!

And her happy zebra!! (We're hoping this will curb her climbing efforts!)

February 07, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mattie!!

One day old...the first day we met her. We thought she was beautiful! She was so content, a great nurser, and very strong.

One month old. She was a very happy baby!

Two months...her first Easter. I bought this dress almost as soon as we knew Mattie was going to be ours, trusting that all would go as we hoped.

Three months old. Love those chubby cheeks and big blue eyes!

Four months old...learning to survive in the bathtub with Jacob!!

Five months now...sitting up and beginning to crawl. She definitely figured out there's a world around her and she wanted to get around!!

Six months...this is one of my all-time favorites. Mmmmmm, I could eat her up! This is the week she learned to pull up and open drawers to find things. My life has never been the same!

Seven months and still happy as ever...as long as she gets her morning nap.

Eight months...she loved going outside to play in the swing. She loved crawling around too, but she ate too many rocks!

Nine months...I can hardly believe it! She began to stand on her own, but knew crawling was a much faster way of getting around.

Ten months...her first Christmas. We got the best gift of all this year...her!

Eleven months...her first day in control of the spoon and the applesauce. She had a blast!!

And one year! That's today. I can hardly believe it. It has gone so fast!!! And she has been a tremendous blessing, more than we could have ever imagined. God has been so faithful in building a love between all of us. You would never know she's adopted.

Happy Birthday, Mattie!!!

February 04, 2007

The most important thing to teach my children...

In my Bible Study we're reading A Woman After God's Own Heart by Elizabeth George, we read this week about imparting God's word to our children. Now, I work very hard each day to teach Jacob Math, reading, critical thinking skills, appropriate behavior, and many other things. But this statement in this week's study woke me up:
"We as Mom's can do many things for our children, but teaching God's word must be our passion. Why? Because God's word, the divine law...has value for salvation and value for eternity."
That was a light bulb moment for me. Does Math have any eternal value? Does Phonics stir Jacob to love Jesus more? Then why am I so diligent about teaching the three R's to cross off a school day when I struggle to remember his Bible reading or scripture memorization?

As you can imagine, this has been a week of reevaluating our schooling priorities. I know I am responsible for preparing Jacob to successfully provide for his family, and academics are important. But the most important "subject" I can develop in Jacob is his love and desire for righteousness in Christ. Now that's a vision statement for our homeschooling career!!

So this morning, Jacob was praying this morning at breakfast and was thanking God for Mommy, Daddy and Mattie, our house and good friends, the good food He gives us, and the sunshine. What a blessing for Jacob to know that God gave us all these wonderful things!

And a couple of Wednesdays ago we were riding to church and I thought I'd check to see what spiritual info had sunk in thus far...

Me: Jacob, do you believe God loves you?
Jacob: No because I don't know what believe means.
M: Hahaha, Okay, to believe means to understand, to know that something is true. That being said, do you believe Mommy and Daddy love you?
J: Yes indeed! [Yes, he really said that!]
M: Do you believe God loves you?
J: Of course!
M: Do you believe you have ugliness in your heart?
J: Yes.
M: Do you believe that Jesus died on the cross because He loves you so much?
J: Yes.
M: When you die, do you want to go to heaven and be with Jesus forever?
J: No, no, no! [Okay, I'm momentarily discouraged. Obviously we've missed something critical!] I want to stay with you forever! [Okay, that was worth a wrong answer.]
M: [Moving on...] Well, we're all going to die someday. Even Mommy... So, when you die, do you want to go to heaven where you can be with Jesus forever or go where you'll never have the choice to be near Him?
J: I want to go to heaven where we get to praise Jesus all the time!
M: What does "praise" mean?
J: To sing songs and tell Jesus how much we love Him. You know that, Mommy! [How sweet is that?]

Mmmmm, that conversation was such a blessing to me! "I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth." 3 John 1:4 I know Jacob has a long way to go in his spiritual walk, but I firmly believe that Jacob "believes" and understands as much as he is capable right now. I'm not waiting for a prayer of salvation, because I could con him into that today. (And I don't want to hang my hat on that either. ) The Lord has blessed what we have done so far. Jacob's heart is open to hear God's truth! This is where I go from here...

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in the house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up." Deuteronomy 6:5-7

First, I need to love the Lord with all of my being. Fill my heart with Him. Then I am to teach Jacob and Mattie all the Lord is teaching me. That is the most important thing I can do for my children. Reading and Math won't get anyone in to heaven.

February 01, 2007

Guess where I found her today?

I'm going to have a weekly thread called Where's Mattie??

Today I went in the kitchen and found her in the second drawer. I got her down and distracted her, though not for long.

This was what I found next!! And look at that sheer joy on her face as she throws a handful of sugar into the open drawers below!!

How she did this all silently, I don't know. And I thought I could get away without installing cabinet locks!

I know I seem completely surprised every day. You'd think I'd expect this by now! I guess I keep thinking she'll be content with a new altitude for a few more days before climbing higher. Silly me!

And I promise, I DO monitor my children!!