Tuesday, November 30, 2010


...something that makes up for an offense or injury

The Husband was helping my sister's ex-husband with some wiring in his house. My sis and I were upstairs with the kids. The guys said they were going to have to turn the power off for a minute. Of course we should have remembered that they both are joksters. When the power went off, there was a giant "BANG" and someone yelled. Like they had been hurt. Then there was no response from the basement. Panic. That's what we did.
Bill's house was built a LONG time ago. The basement steps are only 5-6 inches wide and extremely steep. I started for the stairs. I had to know if they were ok. I was holding the baby. My sis saw where I was headed and she jumped in front of me. She ran for the stairs and kinda kept running when she hit them. Then she fell. First on her left arm, rolling to her right shoulder and taking the last 6 or so steps on her back/butt.
The guys were fine. They had been playing around with us. Poor sister was hurt. Badly. We thought she broke her arm. It ended up being bruised. Everyone felt awful.

The Husband decided to finish painting her kitchen for her. He knew she'd have a rough time trying to grasp the paint roller with her arm hurting. He felt he owed it to her. I went along. As I was rolling on the paint, I was thinking about how the Husband was doing this to make up for her getting hurt. In a way, I was too. After all, her running in front of me saved me (and the baby) from a fall down those treacherous steps. She didn't expect any of it. It was an accident. She wasn't upset. But we were. We wanted to "fix" it.
Even after we were finished painting, it didn't erase her fall. She still had the bruises. Of course she was thrilled to have her kitchen finished. But I still felt just as bad about her fall. I bet the Husband does too.
I thought about Jesus. How He is the atonement for all my sins. I take that for granted. I know that I can't atone for my sins in the way Jesus did. All I have to do is repent. But maybe I need to feel a bit more saddened by my sin. To really think on it. To really remember the price Jesus paid. And to be more thankful.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Outside my window...a fine white powder has fallen from the sky. It's winding down now, but left enough to turn the road white and cover all but the tops of the grass. I love snow!

I am thinking...about sipping that first cup of new coffee this morning. Blueberry Morning....it sure smells delightful.

I am thankful for...the Husband's step-mom. Not only is she wonderful towards him, she is one of my best friends.

From the learning rooms...kind of a relaxed learning this week with a sprinkle of math and history.

From the kitchen...broccoli cheese soup, spinach salad and an apple, cranberry bread pudding.
My friend is coming for lunch.

I am wearing...jeans and a blue hooded sweatshirt.

I am creating...a welcoming environment.

I am going...away with my husband this weekend. I'm so excited! He planned it and surprised me with it.

I am reading...the same 2 books over and over again to the Baby. She loves her books and the repetition.

I am hoping...the Baby does ok being left overnight with someone for the first time.

I am hearing...the hum of the corn stove (it sits right by the computer) and the Baby hollering at Leeny.

Around the house...my kitchen counters are cleaned! Oh happy day! They are usually cluttered so I am enjoying just walking in the kitchen and admiring their bareness.

One of my favorite things...SNOW! And it's started up again. I didn't even know we were supposed to get any.

A few plans for the rest of the week...hopefully some home time except for the night away with the Husband. I thought I would be home all week, but so far I've been gone everyday.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing.

This picture was "accidental." The girls were just sitting waiting for us to leave and the photographer caught this. I love it!

Have a great ending to your week!
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Monday, November 22, 2010

Christmas Card 2010

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

Family Pictures

So it was time for a new family picture. We haven't had one taken since 2007.
Our neighbor started a photography business. You'd think we'd have pictures taken more often since she's so close. But it's hard to make the time.

The bigger this family gets, the harder it is to get everyone looking at smiling at the same time.

This would have been my favorite shot, but Bubby and Leeny were acting like clowns.
I may frame this one anyway. It will be great for memories.

I love pictures taken outdoors.

This one will be on our Christmas Cards.

It was actually pretty fun.
The kids made us laugh a lot.

The End.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Outside my window...the frost is still clinging to the grass in the shady spots, but is loosing the battle to the sun. A red-breasted woodpecker is pounding on the power pole. There isn't much of a breeze today and the sun is turning everything shades of gold. I love watching the sun come up.

I am thinking...about the old hymns that I grew up singing in church. I wish we sang more of them today. I really need to spend more time teaching them to my children.

I am thankful for...living in America. Even though there is so much wrong in our country, it's still an amazing place to live.
I'm also thankful that my Grandad and Grammy are home from their cruise. I missed them.

From the learning rooms...I think today will be a day of math and some games - maybe some Mad-Libs too (great way to cover parts of speech).

From the kitchen...I'm really craving Taco soup, but I think I had better make Lasagna. Bubby has been asking for it for weeks.

I am wearing...my bathrobe. I'll soon be wearing my usual, jeans and a sweatshirt.

I am creating...still working on my "brain." I'm looking forward to dragging out the Christmas decorations.

I am going...to try and get this Baby to take a nap. She awakened with the Husband's alarm this morning and really needs some more rest. Mommy needs her to get some more rest. She's a crab!

I am reading...the same books as last week as well as The Best Christmas Pagent Ever and The Great Turkey Walk to the kids. Even the Husband has been listening in on The Great Turkey Walk and enjoying the chapters he hears.

I am hoping...that Rosario, our Compassion child, gets all the stuff we mailed to her before Christmas.

I am hearing...the hum of the corn stove, cartoons and the intermittent fussing of the Baby.

Around the house...a vacuum that needs put away, the disassembled baby swing, no longer needed, ready to be returned to my sister. Otherwise the house is pretty orderly.

One of my favorite things...spending time with my dad's side of the family. We have so much fun and laugh till our sides hurt.

A few plans for the rest of the week....visiting with a friend, taking Bubby to do his Christmas shopping, getting the girls fitted for dresses (cousin's wedding) and possibly attending a play.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...

The Bug and Bubby. This was his Kindergarten year. We were learning about deserts before making a trip to Arizona. We planted some cactus and if I remember correctly, we drowned them.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Lived In

Saturday morning found us all home. No soccer games to rush off to, nothing on our calendar. We slept in and got moving pretty slowly. Being on the go the 2 previous days, had left our house kinda messy. So we straightened things up and did some laundry. The house looked pretty good and it was only early afternoon.
The kids played the rest of the day. The Baby followed them around. When she napped, I laid on the toy room floor and read to the big kids. We had a tea party for supper, even Bubby participated. I spent time reading cookbooks, messing around on the computer, watching tv and doing nothing productive. It was wonderful.
Then bedtime came. Everyone was in bed and I took a look around the house. OH MY! A pink camo child's play rifle lay across the bathroom sink, kept company by a pile of the Husband's clothes on the counter, (not down the dirty clothes shoot). His boots rested under the computer. A toy car seat with a stuffed butterfly was in the middle of the kitchen floor and bits of popcorn, from the tea party, scattered around the table. A pair of boots and dress-up clothes were forgotten on the toy room floor, right where we walk. The sink had amassed quite a collection of dishes - tea cups and saucers, bowls and spoons. There was stuff everywhere. Not like a destruction zone, but in a very lived in sort of way.
It made me sad. First, because I struggle with wanting my house to stay picked up. And then because the realization that someday it will stay picked up and I'll miss my kids (maybe not the mess, but most assuredly the kids).
I teared up sitting on the edge of Leeny's bed. If you saw the girls' room, you'd tear up too.
Each girl had several dresser drawers open, shoes on the floor, clothes scattered about. There were purses on the rocking chair and little girl treasures in every corner. That's where I had my realization. Kids=messes. I know I knew that, but somehow it became more real. More ok.
Some of the stuff that the kids make messes with, I'd like to throw away. Not because I don't like their stuff, I just don't like where they leave (or scatter) it. Examples - the Bug's purses, dress-up, nail polish that she leaves all over her room. Bubby's books and magazines that he leaves on his bottom bunk and around his bed even though he has a bookcase right next to it. Leeny's, well you never know what she's going to collect (once she cried over not being able to sleep with a chicken heart).
These things are what make them who they are. Obviously not in a spiritual sense. Bubby without books and little trucks and tractors, the Bug without her girly stuff, Leeny without whatever it is she's into, the Baby without dragging stuff around....oh, my house would be picked-up alright. But I don't think it would be a lived-in home. And a lived-in home is what I want.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Looking Back

I was looking through some pictures from 2009. These pictures made me chuckle and remember the fun and laughter we had. They also reminded me how much I miss my Aunt D. She lives about 2000 miles away :(.

The Hubby got called away to restore power to an area hit by a terrible storm. The storm was called an "Inland Hurricane" and the devastation was worse than was originally thought. He didn't have enough clothes with him. The kids and I missed him terribly. So Aunt D, the kids and I headed to see him and do laundry.

Aunt D makes life fun. Lots of fun. We spent the night in the hotel. While I was out visiting with Mike and some of the linemen, Aunt D was putting her hair goop in the kids hair. They all wanted spiky hair like her.

This is what I walked into.

Aunt D is Memaw J's sister. Both have incredible sweet tooths. This is what my kids acted like after the massive amounts of sugar and junk were consumed.

*Aunt D wasn't mad, she was telling me NOT to take her picture. Better smile next time Aunt D, bet you didn't plan on showing up on my blog. hahaha!

So the laundry. Apparently most of the guys didn't bring enough clothes. Aunt D and I did laundry for lots of men. She is the laundry queen! I don't remember how many loads we did, but it was a lot. It would have taken me forever by myself.

The facility was not so great. In fact, I'm not real sure it had ever been cleaned. But it was the ONLY laundry with power. At least the linemen's clothes smelled better.

The kids had a ball! The girls thought the laundry carts made perfect baby carriages. Even better was when the started pushing each other around like they were race cars. Of course the racing was mostly due to the fact that they were hyped up on sugar and junk food. Again.

Who knew doing laundry could be so much fun!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I Want to be a Duck

Well not literally. But I do want to act more like one. Now before you get the wrong idea (I'm not going to start waddling around and quacking), let me explain.

When ducks build a nest to lay their eggs in, they line it with feathers. Not a big surprise I suppose. Ducks instinctively know that they want the best nest, a soft nest for their babies. But it is where the feathers come from that I want to emulate.

We have chickens and they molt. There are feathers all over the place. Almost always. I would assume that where there are lots of ducks, there would also be lots of duck feathers laying around. Hence, lots of feathers for lining their nests. But ducks don't use those feathers.

Ducks pluck the feathers right from their breast. The feathers that are deep down. They are the softest. And sometimes, they hurt to pluck. But it's the best for their soon-to-be babies.

So I want to be a duck. I want to always choose the best for my kids. And sometimes (well, lots of times for me) that means making the hard choice. The choice to put them first even when it hurts.

When my ears are tired and the Bug wants to talk about who knows what - Pluck! - I need to listen. When Leeny and Bubby are pestering each other - Pluck! - It's time to disciple them.
When the Baby is fussy and I've got a zillion other things to do - Pluck! - I need to comfort her. When I'm on the phone or computer or reading a book and a need arises - Pluck! - I need to take care of it.

The molted feathers are easier, half-listen to the Bug, yell from the other room for Bubby and Leeny to stop pestering each other, let the Baby fuss. Talk on the phone and ignore the kids, do my own thing. All easier. And it's easy to justify the "molted feathers" with any number of things like, at least I'm home with them, etc., etc. But it's not what's best.

Sure there are lots of "molted feathers" laying around. Our culture tells us to just use the molted feathers. They are still feathers after all. But God calls us to use the feathers that are deep down. So, I want to be a duck. Pluck!

Saturday, November 13, 2010


Some things are just so good, you have to share.
Like Pudding Pops.

Even when they get you all messy.
Big sisters are the best!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Tootsie Rolls

The Bug and I found a recipe for home made Tootsie Rolls. What could be more fun than making them? Making them with friends.
And since our friends are homeschooled, we all could count this as art, home-ec and even *gasp* socialization.

This is the Bug with one of her best friends, Curlyjo. They are so sweet together.
The little chef, Leeny. Her friend Tiny Love is Curlyjo's sister. They have lots of fun together. But you have to keep a close eye on them. They are very curious. Kinda like George (the monkey). You just never know what they'll come up with (or get into).

Bubby. Poor guy, always surrounded by females.

This is Tiny Love. She is Leeny's best buddy and partner in crime.

This is my friend, Cindy. But I think the Baby has now claimed Cindy as her best friend. They ate suckers together.
So, the tootsie rolls? The kids enjoyed making them. It was like edible play dough and very tasty. Kind of like fudge.
*Tip - If you decide to make these and your recipe calls for milk, use dry milk powder. Do NOT use regular milk. Trust me on this one.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fort Friendship

It is becoming increasingly difficult to find a park that holds Bubby's interest. I guess that is normal given he is almost 11. But it's kind of sad. He has always loved to play at the park and could so easily get lost in imaginative play.
Then we met a friend at this park. Oh My Goodness! This park is AWESOME!! The kids had soooo much fun. And Bubby? He was like a little kid and can't wait to go back.

The whole park is built like a fort. All wood. Tons of things to do. You could easily spend 3 or 4 hours here and not have to worry about kids getting bored.

Leeny and her pal B. They are so cute together. Both enjoy life so much.

Bubby and his pal S. They were hard to catch in a picture. They were on the move in their own little world the whole time.

The Baby enjoyed the park too. It will be much more fun for her (and Mommy) when she can walk a little better.

Morgan and H. They were very excited to spend some time together. It had been much too long since their last visit.

The park has all kinds of little tunnels and twists and turns. You never know where your kids might pop out.

She wasn't really impressed with the swing. The Baby wanted to be in the mulch and with the big kids. Oh the misery of being a baby!

We had a great time and can't wait to go back. Of course, we'll probably have to wait until Spring.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Happy Birthday Bug!

Our Bug turned 9 on October 25. Usually by her birthday, it is very cold. But not this year.
Because it was so warm, we had a wiener roast and hayride. She had a blast! A couple of her good friends came over. Bubby and Leeny had a few friends too.
They enjoyed playing on the playground, running around like wild banshees and the hayride.

Then on her actual birthday, my mom picked up an ice cream cake and brought it out. She loves ice cream!

I loved celebrating the Bug. She is such a beautiful young lady inside and out. Her servant's heart is amazing. She is a delight to spend time with. I don't want to wish away her childhood, but of all my children, I am most excited to know her as an adult.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


Outside my window...feathers are flying. Some poor bird just crashed into the glass door. He must have poor eyesight because my windows are dirty. Otherwise, everything is golden. The sun just climbed over the horizon. Leaves are resting in the almost dead grass waiting for a strong wind to blow them away. It is November 9th and we are supposed to have a 75 degree day!

I am thinking...I could get used to getting up so early. (The Baby wakes before the sun when the Husband's alarm goes off.)

I am thankful for...days in November when the windows can be opened.

From the learning rooms...the usual. I'm trying to view all of life as the "learning room," not just when we're sitting at the table. For example, Bubby learned how to chop up a deer for the freezer. That's learning.

From the kitchen...roast beef hash (from the Bug's American Girl Cookbook), Sour Cream Biscuits (same cookbook) and Apple Crisp. Learning again - Bug's cooking.

I am wearing...jeans and a flannel shirt. This shirt is from high school and still one of my favorites. It must have been well made because it is OLD!

I am creating...my brain in a book. It's a notebook with everything at my fingertips. There is a section for calendar, cleaning schedule (yes, I have to have a plan or I get overwhelmed), school stuff, 4-H, Church stuff, menu plan /grocery list, etc.. I don't know how creative it is, but it sure is practical and extremely helpful.

I am going...to do lots of laundry today.

I am reading...two books thanks to my dear friend C. The first is, When You Rise Up. I think my toes will be VERY bloody when I finish that one. The second is, The Read Aloud Handbook. This might step on my toes too.

I am hoping...my dad enjoys his new job (starting next week) and that he realizes what an asset he is to the company. He needs a boost in his self-confidence.

I am hearing...the thud-thud of Baby hitting her head on my chair and then fussing because it hurts (she's ready for a nap), the Bug comforting her and the sound of The Cat in The Hat on PBS (which is driving me batty).

Around the house...a new ride-on toy for the Baby, laundry that is in the process of being put away, a table full of books, toys (I'd kinda forgotten how many a baby can scatter), shoes (again, thanks to the baby). Really, just a lived-in home.

One of my favorite things...snuggles from a baby and footed, fuzzy, baby-sleepers

A few plans for the rest of the week: hanging out at home, a funeral for our neighbor, minor surgery for the Bug, and hopefully some time with friends.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...

Have a great week!
For more Simple Women, go here.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

It's Heredity

True Confession...I don't wash my kids bedding as often as I should. I won't say how long it's been because I truly don't remember. But suffice it to say it's not enough.

Deciding to be super productive, I washed all the bedding. For all of us. IN THE SAME DAY.
As I was gathering the sheets and comforters, etc., I made a very important discovery....Pack-rat tendencies are a family trait. Of course it comes from the Husband's side ;).

Here is my evidence. The following was found IN Leeny's bed:
a bunch of stuffed animals, webkins and baby dolls, 1 pillow-pet, 2extra blankets, 4 pillows - this is normal stuff

a pair of pliers, 2 blue ink-pens, 1 red pen, 1 mechanical pencil, 3 pairs of P.J.'s, 4 or 5 different outfits, shoes, magnetic marble, shin guard, soccer sock, purse, Bop-It game, Leapster and the list could go on

What in the world do you need a pair of pliers for in bed? And shoes?
I can't figure out how she was sleeping in that bed and sometimes the Bug would join her!
I think I'll change her sheets more often.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

My mind is full of things to blog at the worst times....in the shower, changing diapers and driving. Then when I sit at the computer, I can't remember what I wanted to blog. I wish I could think my posts straight to my blog. But, I can't.
So, I'm just checking in. Making myself a list of things I know I want to blog about, but don't have the time right now. I also don't want to forget.

~The Bug's 9th Birthday
~Pictures of the finished house
~Ducks and what I've learned
~Homeschooling with games
~Look who's walking!
~Lying and forgiveness
~New Baby (Cow) - I'm NOT pregnant!

Now I just need to find some time to sit here and type.