Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Kitchen Learning for Mama

When it comes to Pecan Sandies - more time in the fridge isn't necessarily better. I left them in overnight, because I was too tired to make them. Not a good idea. When I got them out, they were too hard to roll, so I just kind of "clumped" them together. The second batch was better and easier to roll - which means they are also sticking together better and not crumbling before your eyes.

More is not better when it comes to putting food coloring in the sugar. Paige comes in to the kitchen and said, "Mom, I think you put too much food coloring. It's lumpy and moist!" Thank you Paige! My 10 year old daughter knows more than I do about baking.

More is not better when it comes to letting the Pecan Sandies cool down, so that you can actually touch them and roll them in the moist sugar. Didn't work. They were too cool at that point, or the sugar was too moist. Alas, the microwave to the rescue! Heat those babies up and poof. Uuuh, still didn't work. But at least they are warm enough now to stick to the clean, white, not colored pretty sugar.

Landon comes in 'dying' for a cookie. I put a pretty little cookie on a napkin for him. Cries from the dining room come quickly! "Mommy, my cookie is falling apart," he says. I reply with a gentle, "it's okay, just keep eating it over your napkin." Little pitter patter steps into the kitchen reveal he didn't obey and JUST EAT THE COOKIE! "Mommy, I don't want this cookie anymore," the little ungrateful cutie patootie tells me.

And so are the days of my life.... :) I love them!

post signature

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Eating Cold Cereal Isn't Sinful!

I just felt led to share this with those of you who read my blog, in case you might think otherwise - I don't believe eating cold cereal is sinful! Or any food for that matter.

1 Timothy 4:1-5

But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.

So, if all I had was cold cereal in the house, then that is what we would eat and we would do it with thanksgiving! The same goes for the white flour filled pre-made frozen biscuits that are about to be sitting in my oven! Those will be gratefully received after we have our green smoothies this morning.

As most of you know, I've struggled with my weight for a long time. Up and down went the scales - like a yo-yo! Unfortunately, unlike a yo-yo, the weight never dropped and stayed forever.

(Just put those biscuits in the oven and realized I really need to clean my oven! Something has dropped in there and is burning up! Yuck!)

Back to the weight thing... So many times I have looked for a program, a method, a diet to fix the problem I've had with my weight.

My resent search for information on health wasn't at all related to my desire to lose weight... at first! The true and primary reason that I went searching for a more health-FULL way of eating was because of the very extreme bouts of tiredness I was feeling. I was having a nap everyday, feeling lethargic every morning (before I drank my coffee), having a lull after my coffee until lunch, feeling irritated and just over-all "blah". I knew this could not be how God intended me to feel, considering all the littles I have to keep up with. Hence my search for foods that He truly created for me to eat and have the energy that I need to keep up with all these little blessings.

Yet after I started the challenge, temptation crept in and I thought "hmmm, I could lose a ton of weight if I just followed these steps...". I'm sure that it was spared on by me reading something about someone losing 167 pounds on a raw diet or some such idea. While I don't have anywhere near that much to lose, I'm sure I thought "well, if she could lose that much, I could easily take off what I have."

But as we know from James...

James 1:13-15

Let no one say when he is tempted, "AC)">I am being tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then AD)">when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when AE)">sin is accomplished, it brings forth death.

So, while I'm sure I could lose a ton of weight eating only green smoothies and plunging into an all raw diet, eventually, I will indulge my flesh if I'm trying to follow a set of rules; according to Paul.

Colossians 2:20-23

BA)">If you have died with Christ to the BB)">elementary principles of the world, BC)">why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to BD)">decrees, such as,"Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!" (which all refer BE)">to things destined to perish with use)--in accordance with the BF)">commandments and teachings of men? These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in BG)">self-made religion and self-abasement and BH)">severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against BI)">fleshly indulgence.

That scripture became very real to me this morning when I was reminded of it after feeling led back to The Lord's Table Bible Study from Setting Captives Free (which is a ministry that offers free Bible study course in several areas that keep us in bondage). See, after all the green smoothies that I have drank, I haven't lost any weight. It's because in the afternoon and evening, I indulge my flesh.

I don't need another yoke of slavery...

Galatians 5:1

A)">It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore B)">keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

...and yet I do believe that God created foods that are BEST for us. So, how do you balance that?

I have to come back to why I was seeking out a more healthful way of eating in the first place - because I was tired, listless, and worn-down (sound like a Vitameatavegamin commercial?). So, based on food alone, I have to know that what I was eating wasn't working and I need to go back to the basics of what God originally created for me to eat.

You might think at this point that I'm talking pre-flood and that we aren't going to eat meat or animal products. Ha! We now have 2 cows grazing pasture on our farm, and I will thankfully partake of the meat our soon-to-be steer, Steak, will produce for us! Our next venture is going to be chickens and I will gladly have my children gathering eggs for us to eat!

But, I also have to remember that we need a balance and moderation and I haven't indulged my flesh just once to end up overweight, but many many times. Green smoothies won't make you lose weight if you are indulging the flesh all afternoon and evening, as I have been. However, green smoothies will give you a ton of energy, while helping you to get in a lot of greens and fruits and helping you to balance out your meals for the rest of the day.

Keep up the green smoothies, but don't be deceived that eating cold cereal will somehow make Jesus love you any less or will give you a magic pill for losing weight. I've honestly never thought that my eating right would somehow win me favor with God. I know that God loves me abundantly and couldn't love me any more or less than He does right now - overweight with a green smoothie in my hand!

p.s. Occasionally Big P will ask me to get some cold cereal as he loves it for a snack and I love to treat my honey to something special like that. :) However, as much as my children love cold cereal and would eat it every morning if I allowed that, they know they are hungry within 20 minutes of eating it and I'm still trying to teach them to have good, healthful eating habits.

post signature

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Green Smoothie Challenge - Update & Recipes

So how is the challenge going for those of you who have taken it? Please post in the comments and let me know what you think so far.

Today was Day 10 for me, Day 9 for Big P, and Day 7 for the rest of our crew. We are all seeing amazing results!!

Just to list a couple of them:

  • Big P and I have had dramatically reduced cravings. I am going to add in an afternoon green smoothie because the cravings tend to creep up on me around 2 in the afternoon.
  • Not hungry until lunch. With a quart of green smoothie, I don't feel the need to eat anything else for breakfast and I'm not really hungry until lunch time.
  • The kids aren't needing snacks. They just don't seem to want to snack as much. We have very little processed food in the house right now, and they are running to the fridge for things like grapes or oranges when they do want a snack. These are by my prompting, it's like the greens have gotten in them and the craving that they are having are for things actually good for them. These are essentially the same things that Big P and I are seeing in ourselves.
  • Reduced trash! You are probably like "what?", but because they aren't snacking as much and I'm not filling up the pantry with processed snacks and foods, there isn't a whole lot of trash going out of our house! Funny, huh?
A few days ago I purchased several young coconuts and have been using those in my smoothies in the morning along with the "Festival Blend" of fruits from Costco. This includes: strawberries, papaya, mango, and pineapple. I'm realizing that this combination of fruits isn't the best for me and is bothering my tongue. The Triple Berry mix from Costco is working out great for Big P and the kids, because it turns your smoothie purple, whereas mine has been VERY GREEN the last couple of days.

I also picked up a little bottle of stevia glycerites. This is supposed to be better than the extract by itself and isn't as concentrated as the extract, in terms of sweetness. I've been adding that to each pitcher of the purple smoothie to sort of round out any sourness from the berries. If you don't have stevia, you could just add a tablespoon of honey.

Here's how much green smoothie my family drank this morning:

Big P: 1 quart
Me: 1 quart
C13: 20 oz. (he's been drinking smoothie then eating a ton of breakfast and getting hungry before lunch, so we up'd his smoothie, which he was in total agreement with)
P10: 1 pint
B5: 1/2 cup (even after 7 days, we are having to "convince" him that he needs his smoothie, but about halfway through his this morning, he seemed to "get it" and started gulping. I had to make him slow down and chew.)
L3: 1 cup (this boy can eat and loves his green smoothie)
A1: 1/4 cup (another one that is taking some convincing, but after spooning it to him for a few mornings, he's slowly getting it.)

A couple of friends have been asking for recipes, so here are a couple:

The Purple Smoothie:

1 frozen banana
1 cup triple berry mix (from costco: blackberries, blueberries, raspberries)
4 frozen strawberries (also from costco)
4 handfuls of spinach (heaping handfuls)
2 cups water
1 dropperful of stevia glycerites

Tropical Island Green Smoothie:

water from 1 young coconut (add water if needed to make it to 2 cups)
meat from same coconut
1/2 frozen banana
1 cup of "festival blend" fruit combo from costco
4 handfuls of spinach

One from a friend:

1 banana
1 orange
1 handful of blueberries
3 handfuls of spinach
2 cups water

Oh, and this morning I found in the fridge 1/2 an orange and a peach that was going to go soon, so I threw those in the blender with some of the smoothies.

Where's the cheapest Blend-Tec?

The cheapest place I have found it is on Life Begins Raw.

So, how many greens are too many?

Well, this may be a bit too much for those of you who don't want to know all the nitty gritty. But, for people like me, this kind of stuff just makes me do a little dance!

post signature

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Green Smooth Challenge - Part 2

I've had a few questions that I wanted to address as well as mention a couple of things I didn't in my previous post.

Chew Your Liquids and Drink Your Solids

You might be thinking "What? Yes, she has indeed lost it!", but alas, I have more info to share. When you chew your food really well and mix it with saliva, it starts to breakdown the cell walls of all that raw yumminess and therefore your body can absorb the nutrition and digest it easier. So, make sure you kind of "chew" your smoothie before swallowing it down. I'm not talking using your green smoothie as mouthwash, just a little "chew" then swallow. Don't forget to chew all of your other food really well.

Onto Green Smoothies and Off of Stimulants

I've already talked about the exuberant amount of money that Starbucks has gotten from me in the past, so I don't need to go into that again. Instead, when Big P changed his schedule, we started making coffee at home - "to save money". Ha! We threw our health out the window and soon we were both extremely addicted. I would have 2 large mugs every morning - which was around four 6 oz. cups of coffee! Did you know that you can get addicted with as little as one 6 oz. cup of coffee each morning or two to three 12 oz. cokes (a coke being any carbonated beverage!)?

I decided to ditch the coffee and get onto green smoothies and the last three days have been difficult, which just went to show me how addicted coffee could really be. The first day was okay, the second I spent most of the day "foggy brained", and the third (today) I ended up with a migraine. Big P found some Excedrin Migraine in the cabinet, which I happily took instead of using one of my $75 shots, only to find out that Excedrin Migraine has some caffeine in it. Gee! Big P decided to ditch coffee with me and he has had headaches the last 3 days. We think the end is in sight, though!

This should be an encouragement for you to try the principle of replacement and get onto green smoothies and off stimulants. I'm not sure what the exact numbers are for coffee, but after a coke your immune system is compromised for a complete 30 minutes. In our family, it takes a good week for everyone to get over something once it gets started, so I'm putting my foot down and saying that I will not purchase soft drinks any longer. They were never really a thing for me. I have told my children that if we are at something special, they can make their own decision on those things, but they may end up sick. I'll still nurture them and take care of them, because I'm a mama and that's what I do. :)

Doesn't It Taste Horrible?

To this I will say a big, hearty "NO!!". You can easily make going to green smoothies a easy transition for everyone by adding more fruit than greens. Mixed berries will make a purple smoothie instead of a green one. With a banana, you will have a creamy texture, which we are finding very yummy. You'll want to eventually get to 50/50 on both greens and fruit, but don't push it. Stick with very neutral flavors of greens. Spinach is a great choice and you can get a 2.5 lb. bag of it at Costco for $4.29. That's a whole lot of spinach! You can freeze it, too. It won't make a good salad, but it will be perfect for smoothies. Costco has a large bag of mixed berries, too. It has a very yummy fruit flavor. You'll be shocked at how good it is! And don't forget the power of a opaque cup with a lid!

When Does the Challenge Start?

TODAY! October 1st! Robyn of Green Smoothie Girl recommends a quart of green smoothie per day for adults. She serves her children 1 pint each in the afternoon when they get home from school, before they have another healthy snack. Right now I'm drinking 1 quart and Big P asked me to bump him up from 1 pint to 1 quart, today! Woohoo! I'm going to start my big kids out at 1 cup each and the littles one at 1/2 a cup and slowly increase to 1 pint for the bigs and 1 cup for the littles before breakfast. "Gotta drink your green smoothie before you have some of the yummy ______ (whole wheat pancakes, banana nut muffins, apple oatmeal, etc.) mama made for breakfast!" :)

Water, Water, Water

Drink it! Plain and simple! Half your body weight in ounces, each day. Don't gulp it, sip it. Your body can handle 1 cup every hour and if you don't drink it all at once, your body will use it and you won't be sending most of it into the septic tank. It's pertinent to helping your body flush those toxins.

Doctor Recommends Green Smoothies

I heard from a friend today that she has meningitis, which started as West Nile Virus. Because it is viral, there isn't a whole lot that her doctor can do for her right now. He suggested prayer, rest, and nothing but green smoothies. She needs nutrient dense foods right to flush her system and clean her blood. What does that tell you?!

I can't wait to hear from those of you who are doing this! Come on! You can do it! It only takes 21 days to make a habit and a green smoothie is something you can take anywhere.

As a bonus, I will tell you that quart sized jars don't fit well into car cup holders and you might end up with green smoothie running down your console and your husband and oldest son outside helping you clean it all up - so that you can go to Costco and buy more spinach for your green smoothies. A lidded container that fits in your cup holder is best for green smoothies!

post signature

Monday, September 28, 2009

Step #1: Green Smoothie Challenge

I'm sorry it's been so long since I've posted anything. As usual, I'm in an organizing mood and "trying to survive" mode at the same time! I've been extremely exhausted lately. I wish I could attribute it to being pregnant, but I truly don't think that is the case. Lately I've been very convicted about eating habits and have a true desire to shape up my body to be a wonderful dwelling place for the Holy Spirit. In the process, I must teach my children about eating the way that God desires us to. He created all kinds of wonderful fruits and veggies, nuts and seeds for us to eat and yet how many of these do we actually get into our diet?

It doesn't have to be complicated, but I think I have made it much more complicated because I've tried to take our "normal" diet and make it healthy and I just don't think that's the way to go about it. Doing things that way has you purchasing all kinds of processed foods with an "organic" label or paying double the price because this is the "healthy" brand. Soon enough, your pantry may be filled to overflowing with organic/healthy processed foods that are doing no more for you than their conventional counterparts.

Several years ago I was turned onto green smoothies by Serene, Pearl and Vange. That was probably 2005. I tried to make them and even kept it up for a while, but I was eventually turned off because they weren't a regular part of my diet and I was the only one drinking them. It's just not as much fun when no one else is on board. Can I hear an "Amen!"?

As I read through the book of Daniel and contemplated my exhaustion, I knew there had to be a better way. God could not really desire for me to live in a lethargic state with all my littles running around. With the desire for more children but lacking energy to keep up, I started going back to the Bible on the matter, and thus, back to the basics. Even before I purposely went to the Bible on the subject, God was using my quiet time with Him to spark in my heart a desire for eating right.

Searching for a raw granola recipe for a friend, I came upon a site that really caught my eye - I'm not hyperlinking yet - so don't go anywhere! Robyn has such GREAT information, that is very sound so far, and very much in line with the Biblical principles I have been searching out. She makes climbing the mountain to a whole foods with 60-80% raw diet, possible. She has "flattened the learning curve" for those that want to massively improve their diets.

Warning: I believe that Robyn may be Mormon. I'm not sure of that, though. She mentions God several times in the portion that I have read, but she also has several references to evolution. Now, I'm stable enough in my beliefs that I can look beyond that to see the truth in what is written, as all truth is God's truth. Evolution is not from God and it is NOT the truth - so I ignore those references. It's a case of "chew the meat and spit out the bones" and in this circumstance there is plenty meat (Truth) with a few bones (Lies). I'm VERY leery of reading anything that is not Biblical and therefore, keep my secular reading down to a VERY MINIMUM.

My plan is to document my journey through the next year as I rejuvenate our family's diet always going back to the Bible and what God says on the matter, while using the 12 steps to Whole Foods plan to get us on track. I'm evening plotting the plan out on the calendar.

Because Robyn offers the 12 Steps to Whole Foods ebook on her website, I'm going to try not repeat information here, but I would like to share a bit about what I learn from all the resources I'm reading right now. I'm also reading: Serene Allison's Rejuvenate Your Life!, Renee Ellison's booklet Turbo-Charged Nutrition for Peak Performance Kids, and Stormie Omartian's Greater Health God's Way.

So onto more good stuff...

We all know that we need more greens in our diet and yet how much salad can one actually eat in a day. The serving sizes that the government recommends are really hilarious when it comes to veggies; as a 2" piece of cucumber is considered a "serving".

Anyone can make a green smoothie. I have a bosch blender currently and it is working fine for making my green smoothies. I have to work it a little for frozen fruit, but it's still going. The plan is for us to save and purchase a Blend-Tec HP3A. We used to own a Vita-Mix, but sold it so that I could get a grain mill. The Blend-Tec will do both grains and literally almost anything else you would want to blend and it's the same price as the Vita-Mix.

You want to drink about a quart of green smoothie a day. So, I'm issuing this challenge to you and would love to know who is going to take me up on it. Get your children in on the action. You simply must read what Robyn has to say about getting your children on board - they should not have a choice! You are the parent!!! Renee Ellison says the same exact thing.

1cup of water
lots of spinach or chard - you want to stick with the neutral flavored greens at first
blend the heck out of it for 90 seconds
put in a banana - to make it creamy
add in your fruit

Robyn makes it easy on her youtube video:

So who's in? 30 days! 1 quart a day! 15 servings of raw fruits and greens! Leave me a comment!

picture from:

post signature

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Scripture Memory System & Freebie

A good friend sent this to me over a year ago, I'm sure. We used a different system last year (spiral bound index cards). While that system was great for what we needed at the time, I think this is going to be so much better. We memorize Scripture together as a family, and pretty much all memorize the same Scipture verses. A friend also mentioned that she is going to alter this system a bit and color code the cards for each family member so that they just have one box. I love this idea!

Basically you have a box where you will keep index cards with Scripture written on them. A card is studied daily until you can say it together. Then it is moved behind one of the various tabs where it is studied on an: Odd day, Even day, Day of the Week, then ultimately once per month. Sonya of Simply Charlotte Mason put it together and describes it best.

We memorized James 1 last year, and started on James 2. I want my children to keep these verses fresh in their mind. Time is limited, so I decided to type them out on the index cards instead. I formatted the file for 3x5 cards and have included it here for those that want it. You can then add more verses that you want to memorize.

post signature

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Scrapbooking the Simple Way

A friend of mine from high school (found via facebook) saw that I was an avid scrapbooker. She emailed me to ask how to get started. She had many questions and just wanted to get started inexpensively and easily. She was clearly overwhelmed with all the choices there are now. I was scared to answer her at first. It's been so very long since I taught scrapbooking classes. So much of what I do now is just second nature and I wasn't sure I could formulate it into words. As I started typing, it just came flowing out and I gave her hints and tips that have taken me years to learn. I'm a digital scrapbooker now, but occassionally I pull out the paper scrapbooks and enjoy scrapbooking with P10. As I was typing, my mind was flooded with the memories of my beginning scrapbooking days, scrapbooking friends, and scrapbooking get togethers. What fun we had!

At the end, I thought "hey, this is pretty good!" and thought it might be helpful to some of the people that follow my blog, but aren't current scrapbookers.

So, here it is, in it's very raw form:


Sorry this is so late in coming....

Okay, the jist of it is, if you want to keep this an affordable hobby, you have to simplify. Ditch the idea of using ribbon - unless you want to tie it in your hair! LOL

Before I was a digital scrapbooker, I didn't use 3-D products at all. They bulk up your albums and that is not a good thing. They are pricey, and they cause you to spend way too much time putting a page together.

First, I want to recommend the book Photo Freedom. You can find it on Amazon and sometimes Barnes & Noble. This will really help you to see your pictures and not be overwhelmed with thinking you have to get them all into scrapbooks. Not gonna happen, so don't sweat it! You have more important things to do - like take care of your family and scrapbook! LOL

You want good albums - this is your most important investment. I would recommend Creative Memories albums and pages. Everything else can be purchased elsewhere although CM does have good products. They also USED to promote the idea of simplicity, but I think they have really gotten away from that.

This is my favorite adhesive:

But in truth, anything that is acid free from Walmart works fine. Also the liquid mono-adhesive is really great!

You can find these things at Hobby Lobby.

Paper and stickers - stick to acid free and you'll be happier if you get something that looks good to you and you don't just buy something because it matches your theme. So, if you are scrapbooking a circus page and you find circus stickers, but you don't LOVE them, don't use them - don't buy them! Instead, find some bright geometric shapes or something, because you are more likely to use them and like that page later than if you just used the tacky stickers because they had a clown on them! Make sense?

Copying is the NAME OF THE GAME in scrapbooking. There is no reason you have to pull out all the stops and try to be creative here. Your son will love looking at his scrapbook if you actually put it together and he won't care how "plain" it is, or what you used on it. Don't sweat it. Grab a copy of a scrapbooking magazine at Hobby Lobby or B&N. Find a layout you like. If it is of a little girl's first birthday, but you have pictures of your son's first camping trip, you look at the general layout of the page - where she placed the pictures, where she placed the paper and stickers and you use what you have and place it similar to where she did.

When you get better at "scraplifting" you can flip that page on it's side and use it as a guide that way - giving you a completely different look.

And if you have a local scrapbook store or creative memories consultant, there is nothing more fun than gathering together with some friends and putting some pages together. They are there to help you if you get stuck - which you won't if you read above and take my advice - and it's just fun to show off your creations and have everyone oooh and ahhh.

I have put together about 20 scrapbooks over the last 9 1/2 years and I can truly say that your child will find so much joy in seeing those pictures.

Now, I'm just going to touch a little bit on journaling... DO IT! That's where you write about the picture. Here are a few simple prompts to get your mind to going when you look at the pictures. Who? When? Where? Why? When you get more comfortable writing you can say how you were feeling that day or "It was such a bittersweet day to see him graduate from Kindergarten. I was excited he was growing into a big boy, but I was sad it was happening so quickly." You also don't need to write about every single picture. If you are putting a page together of some time ya'll spent at the playground, it will be OBVIOUS that he is sliding or he is swinging, etc. On this type of thing I would focus on writing something like: DeSoto Creative Playground September 2009 The truth of the matter is that I needed a break from the house, so we packed up a lunch and headed to the playground. It was a nice break for both of us. He played while I sat down on the bench to read xyz.

It doesn't need to be hard! Really! Just get started and you will see. Don't let perfectionism creep in either. You don't need to make prize winning pages or write novels. These books are for you and your family. If you make it too hard, you won't do it and that would be sad. :(

I hope this helps you get started. Let me know if you have any more questions and thanks for giving me the opportunity to share about something I really love!

Your old (and getting older!) friend,


post signature

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Book: Breastfeeding and Fertility

My mama would say that I've been a "readin' fool" lately. I just finished Breastfeeding and Fertility by Jenny Silliman last night.

I haven't met Jenny, but I know we would become fast friends if I did. Well, I may just hush and listen to her talk. She reminds me of a young Nancy Campbell. In fact, she quotes Nancy several times in the book.

Jenny's sweet spirit and calming encouragement really resonate in the pages of this book. Along with that, the ending of all 20 chapters has a resounding theme - breastfeeding delays fertility.

In posting this, I fear (okay, probably not the best word, but work with me) that some may think that I nurse my babies to delay fertility. In truth, this is not the case at all. When we decided to leave our family size to the Lord, we did just that and fully believe that God opens and closes the womb. Understanding that, also means understanding that God has designed a woman's body to nurse her babies for, what the world would call, an extended period of time. In the Bible, we see over and over wonderful references to the nursing mother and from further research, we find that babies were generally weaned between 3-5 years. Personally we don't go this long and I have never tandem nursed my babies. Usually about 2/3 of the way through a pregnancy, I will completely wean the youngest one and even this is a very slow process.

Here is how long I have nursed my children: C13 (never nursed :( ), P10 (11 months), B5 (20 months), L3 (22 months), A1 (15 months and going strong!). My cycle has returned at varying stages, but it was very dependent on how I nursed, and still no cycle with A yet.

My last two babies haven't had bottles. My last 3 haven't had pacifiers. My last 4 have all slept with us or close to us. Even with my oldest, before Big P and I got married, C13 would end up in bed with me along with a bottle (that I laboriously had to get up and make in the middle of the night). With my 4th, L3, I ended up starting my cycle at 7 months because I wasn't eating enough to sustain a good milk supply. I had a miscarriage not long after that.

With A1, things have been very different. He would not eat the solid foods I was trying to give him at 8 months, 9 months, 10 months, 11, and yes, even 12 months. At his first birthday he was treated with pudding instead of cake or anything of the like - because he would just gag.

In the midst of my frustration, I cried out to the Lord for Him to show me what to do. He gave me a peace in the midst of my self-created storm. I then went to the bookshelf and picked out Breastfeeding and Fertility. This was merely for breastfeeding encouragement, not the fertility side. Because I was in the middle of several projects, I just read the back cover and was immediately relieved of my frustrations.

The very things I was resenting and rejecting where the very things that God made my body to do, total mothering!

I was freed. No longer would I be concerned with what others thought about my nursing exclusively at his age (12+ months). He is on some solids - up to 2nd baby foods and 3rds on some things, at this point.

Jenny covers everything in this book and at the end has a list of 20 books she recommends on breastfeeding and mothering. Some of the chapters go into forgiveness (asking for forgiveness for not completely mothering at times, forgiving your own mother if she didn't nurse you, etc.), weaning, sleeping and more. Another reason I really I felt like I could relate to Jenny is because she has struggled with being overweight as well. She talks about nutrition, losing weight while nursing, and a small portion on what she has coined as W.E.A.L.T.H.S. (water, exercise, air, light, thoughts, healthy eating, and sleep - that's another post). She even covers, to a small extent, getting things done around the house when you are total mothering - including wearing an ERGO. I love my ERGO, but honestly I haven't worn it much to carry baby around so that I can get things done. Yesterday I strapped A1 on my back and went to town. He was so happy. Oh, and he is walking some for those that think it's absurd that I would carry a baby of his age on my back!

For quite some time I've considered myself a mother who loved all things natural. But accepting what is and completely embracing what God created you to do - those are different things and now I understand that thanks, in part, to this book!

art print from:

post signature

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Workbox Freebies

I needed a little break this morning while the 4 oldest were in the pool, so I decided to do a little "mock" digi scrapping that benefited our schooling - since that's the mode I'm in right now.

We will be using workboxes with our oldest 4, including C13, but his will be a means to an end, which I will post about later. Although I feel that the workbox system is WONDERFUL for all homeschoolers, our world runs on paper and digital (planners and such). I think that children should be trained, albeit slowly, into running on the system that the rest of the world runs on (disclaimer: I'm only speaking of the area of workboxes and planners.).

So, after that little rabbit trail, let me return to what I came here for. I made the boy scout workbox numbers for C13 and then just kept going. With her permission, I used Simply Susan's Let's Go Camping kit on all of it, except the red numbers, which come from To Everything A Season. (another rabbit trail here: all of Susan's products are $1 - yes, you read that correctly! ONE DOLLAR!!)

Here we have workbox numbers for a boy scout (hiker boy), a girl scout (hiker girl), camper girl (which has a girl with marshmallows and marshmallows instead of a hatchet), and camper boy (boy with marshmallows and marshmallows instead of a hatchet). Sorry, they are out of order! :( Images are linked to a 4shared folder that will contain all the workbox items I build - .

post signature

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Recent Homeschooling Reads

I finished a couple of books recently and I thought since I had "reviewed" them on Shelfari, I would share about them here. I must preface the below "review" with the fact that I'm not a book reviewer. I'm also trying to get more selective in what I read, because it takes me a while to get through a book. Not because I'm a slow reader, but because I'm a slow reader! LOL Really, I love to ponder on what I read. I'm not much of a fiction reader, so often times I'm reading stuff with a lot of meat to it. I like to read, pray, implement, read, pray, implement.

For The Children's Sake by Susan Schaeffer Macaulay

This was a really incredible book that took me some time to get through. Mrs. Macaulay gave me plenty of meat to chew on and in many aspects I felt true conviction. I love how she summed up Miss Charlotte Mason's teaching so well and in a way where I wasn't really left wanting more. I would love to read Charlotte's books in their entirety, but for someone just getting started in this method of education, of life, this book would give plenty to think on until they were ready to digest more. My copy will be put in my daughter's hope chest, because I think this teaching is really that crucial.

I also must say that I'm now eager to read the rest of Mrs. Macaulay's books as well as Edith Schaeffer's (Susan Schaeffer Macaulay's mother) including The Gentle Art of Homemaking.

Sue Patrick's Workbox System User's Guide

I really loved this book. She gives so many great ideas for review activities and helping your child work through difficult areas of schoolwork. On a logistics note, I felt like I was left hanging a bit on the actual implementation of the system. She goes over it in various parts of the book, but I thought she should have done a "review" or gone into a bit more detail. Also, she is very adamant that you must use all of the details of her system exactly as she has designed them. We are going to use magazine boxes on shelves - they are cheap and easier to store. Many other ladies have come up with great systems that I think will work well. Overall I think this is going to be an incredible way to organize our school day.

We are implementing this system using cardboard magazine holders from IKEA. Also, there are some aspects of this system that I won't be using, that seem, at least to me, a bit too classroom oriented. I'm just choosing to spit out the bones.

Photo from:

post signature

Friday, June 26, 2009

2009-2010 Curriculum Choices

Ahhh, you probably wondered if I had sunk into the deep recesses of the earth, didn't you? Nope! I've just been curriculum researching and shopping. Now I'm putting things together for our upcoming year.

I did so much research - so much! I also did a ton of praying and dedicating all of this to Him - the one who knows us all best.

So, are you wondering what we decided on? Now, I must preface the below list with the simple truth - these are OUR choices. This is freedom, to me. Knowing that the things we chose for our family have all previously been chosen by another family is gratifying. Pioneers have gone before us in using these resources! The fact that this combination has probably not been chosen by any other family is fascinating and freeing. Real freedom is not caring if anyone has chosen this combination or not, but that God has chosen this combination.

No doubt if you have read much of blog for any length of time, you realize that I have issues with sticking through something. I'm a visionary! And idealist, some may say. Let's not sugar coat it, please - a perfectionist. Them's the facts! :( What I am learning is that it is a not a trait to be desired. It is not highly looked upon and can be really really bad for your family and namely your children. Because I feel like these curriculums have been chosen by God for our family, I will stick to them. It is truly frustrating for me, and them, to be changing because of something that can be tweaked, or a part skipped. The habit of "upgrading" is also a really bad habit to start in your children.

So, without further ado, here are our choices for homeschool curriculum for the 2009-2010 school year:

C13 - 8th grade

Devotional/Quiet time: Selection of Kay Arthur studies
Math: Math-U-See (continuing where we left off)
English: Rod & Staff English (would Charlotte pick this, probably not, but it is very comprehensive and perfect for my "Perfect Paul")
Spelling: Spelling Wisdom from Simply Charlotte Mason
Science: Apologia's Exploring Creation with General Science
Worldview: Thinking Like A Christian (I wanted him to do a specific worldview study and kept thinking that we were going to do Starting Points, then I found the "perfect" curriculum for him and knew that we couldn't fit in Starting Points and World Views of the Western World)
We decided after much prayer, to go back to our original plan of Starting Points and World Views of the Western World. C13 will not be doing Blessed is the Man and instead, will be starting Starting Points this year.
History/Theology/Worldview/Literature/etc.: Blessed Is The Man High School unit study (this is really an INCREDIBLE curriculum and perfect for him. He needs a liberal (broad) education to pursue his career plans of becoming a history proffesor. It is also rigorous course material.)
Foreign Language: Rosetta Stone Spanish (continuing)
Typing: Rapid Typing (found this free online!)
Business Math: Business Math Series from Simply Charlotte Mason (this is just a fun summer project that he will be starting on Monday. He is doing the bookstore one! Very cool!)
More History: We will also be purchasing Through the Ages, so that C13 can find books pertaining to a particular era on his own. Yes, this boy loves history so much that he grabs it anywhere and anytime he can get it!

He'll also continue with Scouts this year. We are part of an incredible homeschool troop where Big P participates. It is an AWESOME troop - with Bible study at campouts and devotionals at meetings. The dads even have a testimony time when they meet each week!

P10 - 5th grade

Devotional/Quiet time: Selection of Kay Arthur studies
Math: Math-U-See (continuing where we left off)
English: Rod & Staff English (scheduled in HOD)
Science: Apologia Zoology 3 - Land Animals of the Sixth Day (scheduled in HOD)
History/Bible/Spelling (Dictation)/Literature/Hands-On stuff/Poetry/etc.: Hearts for Him Through Time: Creation to Christ from Heart of Dakota (everything EVERYTHING is scheduled for you!)
Literature: Drawn Into The Heart of Reading from Heart of Dakota (also scheduled in above)
Foreign Language: Rosetta Stone Spanish (continuing)
Typing: Rapid Typing (found this free online!)
Business Math: Business Math Series from Simply Charlotte Mason (this is just a fun summer project that she will be starting on Monday. She is doing the pet store one! Very cool!)
Art: Artistic Pursuits (we are going back to AP this year and very excited. I bought the kit from Miller Pads & Paper this year so that we had everything together. It was the reason we didn't finish it last time.)

I believe she will be continuing with Keepers at Home, although I really want to have a more Christ-centered focus for the group and am praying about how to make that happen. She is starting a sewing class on Monday that goes through the summer.

B5 - Kindergarten

Phonics: Happy Phonics (this is going to be fun! Learning to read with playing simple little games - no song singing! LOL)
Math: Math-U-See Primer
Bible activities/Early math/Dramatic play/Art projects/music: Little Hands to Heaven from Heart of Dakota
Art: Artistic Pursuits

L3 will be doing Little Hands to Heaven along with B5, of course. A1 will just be along for the ride. :)

As a family we will be using several resources for other things we want to do through the year.

Devotional with Mom: Our 24 Family Ways; 21 Rules of This House; Doorposts character tools
Nature Study: Hours in the Out of Doors; Pocketful of Pinecones; Outdoor Hour
Physical Education: Physical Education for Children Schooled at Home (Big P will be doing this 2 days per week
Literature: Drawn Into the Heart of Reading (even though this is a scheduled part of P10's curriculum, we will be doing this as a family with kickoffs for each genre with our friends); Bookclub (This year we participated in a book club with friends from our homeschool group and it was so much fun!)

post signature

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Reminder Cards

As referenced in my last post, I thought I would share what our reminder cards are.

These aren't the same for each child, because each child has different chores, but I thought I'd give you the "jist" of what each set probably contains. These aren't "extra" chores, these are just the basic necessities for living in our home and being part of our family. We do pay our big kids for bigger, extra chores, because 1) I would pay someone else to help out in these ways if I didn't have time to do it myself, 2) This gives us an opportunity to teach them money management skills, 3) they pay for most of their own "stuff" includes all extras and fun things and some essentials - underwear, socks. The more you are responsible for, the more you make, and thus the more you are responsible for paying for. Our oldest son pays his dues for scouts each week and they both tithe off of their money.

Morning Reminder Cards:

Morning - get up and be in a good mood
Scriptures - read your devotional, a chapter from the Word, and do a lesson in your Bible study (this is different for each child and only applies to the ones able to read)
Make bed
Clean room
Get dressed
Brush teeth
Morning chore (trash for 13 yo; silverware job for 5 yo; laundry switchover for 3 yo)
Breakfast & cleanup (table for 13 yo; dishes for 10 yo; put up your plate, etc. for 5 & 3 yos)

After morning - After noon Reminder Cards:

Chore (vaccuum & dog care for 13 yo; mail, rabbit care, plant care for 10 yo)
Morning school (this has now changed to only "school" for the summer which is math and reading lessons - see other post)
Lunch and cleanup (same as above)

Evening Reminder Cards:

Quiet time (nap for 3 yo; everyone else read quietly)
Project time
Dinner & cleanup (same as above)
Brush teeth
Evening (which means go to bed without any problems)

Each one of these "sets" earns a ticket - tickets are redeemable for a variety of things and 2 can be used for 30 minutes of screen time each (1 hour total screen time per day - computer, tv, etc.). Now with summer upon us, they are using the Wii and Outdoor Challenge for exercise in the afternoons or evenings. They are not playing any other "games" on the Wii, except for the Wiikends.

I think everyone should check out accoutable kids and consider purchasing the book. It has some psychological stuff in it, that I'm not real fond of, but there are just a few bones in the book as a whole. Very practical and easy to implement! I'm feeling less and less like a nag!!

picture from:

post signature

Summer Routines

We are back from vacation - didn't even know we were gone, huh?! We went to Eureka Springs, Arkansas and then Branson, Missouri. It was a long vacation (10 days), but it was very busy and we (Big P and I) decided we wouldn't do a vacation like that again - so jam packed. We were both very exhausted afterward and we've had to actually get our children used a slower pace again.

I'm working on my Home Management Notebook again and so I needed to come up with some Summer Routines. When I posted about that on facebook, some friends asked me to share those. I thought the best place to do that was here in case some of my followers wanted to know what we were up to. I think we are actually going to take a summer this year. We always school year round, but will just be keeping up with math for the older ones and reading lessons for the 5 yo.

You'll notice that the children have "reminder cards" listed below. I'm going to post those in another post, because they are part of our Accountable Kids system - which we are loving. I thought this would be enough to get some mama's minds pumping. We have found that routines work much better here rather than a schedule. The difference? Instead of things set at a specific time, we just do them in order and have more of a "time block" for things. We try to have breakfast around 8, lunch around 12:30, and dinner around 5:30. Bed is 8:30 for littles and 9 for bigs. We just flow through the rest of the day within on those time frames.

Trying to keep things simple here is always a monumental task - but one I'm learning to enjoy very much!!

Summer Routines



Quiet time
Get ready
Breakfast in oven
Boys morning routine
Daily Cleaning

After Morning – After Noon:

Outside Play
Time w/ Big P
School w/ B5 (reading lessons) (L3’s nap)
School w/ Big Kids
Zone Project Time


Wii Fit
Pick Up
Boys to bed
Read Aloud
Big Kids to bed
Next day prep
Scrapbook or Sew
Call Big P

Big Kids


Quiet time
Morning Reminder cards

After Morning - After Noon:

“Extra” chore time
Afternoon Reminder cards
Project (Scouts or Keepers)


Evening Reminder cards

picture from:

post signature

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Apologia Notebooks

Apologia is now producing notebooking journals that accompany each of the elementary science books. Both Botany and Astronomy are now available. You can see samples on the Apologia website for Botany here and Astronomy here.

We are going to be using Botany this year with P10! She has already planted some morning glories at the mailbox.

These journals are beautiful spiral bound notebooks that will save you time and money. You won't have to print and keep up with your child's notebook pages, buy and maintain page protectors, or purchase and compile binders...everything that makes notebooking time-consuming and labor intensive for mom. Also, your child will adore having their own notebooking journal.

Each of the notebooking journals include:
  • A daily schedule for those who like to have a plan or would like their children to complete the book on their own
  • Templates for written narrations, the notebooking activities and experiments
  • Review Questions
  • Scripture Copywork, with both print and cursive practice
  • Reading lists and additional activities, projects, experiments for each lesson
  • An appendix with beautiful, full-color, lapbook-style Miniature Books
  • Field Trip Sheets to keep a record field trips
  • A Final Review with fifty questions the students can answer either orally or in writing to show off all they remember and know at the end of the course.
Jeannie is giving away four Astronomy Notebooking Journals and four Botany Notebooking Journals to bloggers who post about this on their site. Visit her blog to learn more about this contest:

The contest ends on in one week on May 29th!

post signature

Monday, May 18, 2009

Homeschool Goodies for Sale

Everything from a smoke-free home. All items are postage paid. I accept paypal.
Please contact me by email:

Updated 5/20/09
Christian Light Education:
All are Sunrise Editions

Math 2 teacher’s guides - $9 (for both guides)
Math 3 teachers guide - $9
* Light units 301, 308, 309, 310 - $1.75 each (new never used)
Math 4 teacher’s guide and answer keys - $8
Math 5 answer key set - $4


God and the History of Art – $32
(includes both books, all paint and marker cards, and all picture cards – all but 2 are laminated)

Story of the World Volume 2: the Middle Ages - $8
(shelf wear on cover)

Story of the World Volume 2 Tests and Answer Key - $8
(brand new never used)

Buy both for $12


Wisdom’s Way of Learning by Marilyn Howshall - $8 - OOP
(pink version, comb binding is in bad shape, some highlighting and notes from previous owner)


Slow and Steady Get Me Ready by June Oberlander - $10
(very good condition, some wear on binding caused during shipping, bought new)


Progeny Press Guides on CD

Carry on Mr. Bowditch - $11
(brand new in unopened package)

The Giver - $9
(like new in opened package)


Is there Life After Housework? By Don Aslett - $3

Complete Guide to Full Time RV-ing by Billy and Jan Moeller - $10

Six Years with the Texas Rangers 1874 to 1881 by James B. Gillett - $8

The Giver by Lois Lowry - $4
(perfect like new condition hardback)

post signature

Project 365: Week 20

post signature

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Simply Free - My New Homeschool Philosophy

As I have been on this (what seems like a REALLY LONG) journey, I have been seeking God continually. I find myself in prayer at really strange times, asking what He wants for us; for Him to show us the way for us; what is His way for us, not my own, etc.

All through this time, a verse has popped up in my head every now and then.

Matthew 11:28-30 (Amplified)

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] 29Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. 30For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good--not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.

On the way home from Mardel's yesterday, God did it again. I had taken A1 and our basket down to the homeschool aisles. I filled it with every conceivable curriculum that I thought might be a good choice for us. The basket was full! We, then, headed to the Thomas the Tank Engine table where A1 cruised around and around the table, while I flipped through books and curriculum. (this is where I'll mention what looked like a great book for new (or confused!) homeschoolers - Homeschooling Methods: Seasoned Advice on Learning Styles by Gena Suarez).

I finally figured out what a "relaxed homeschooler" is and realized I'm not sure if I wanted to be in that category. And I read a section on Charlotte Mason and Ruth Beechick. As I read this section, I felt comfortable, gracious, and pleasant. Not the "I feeeeeel like having an ice cream" or "I feeeeeeel like not doing anything today" kind of feel, but a rest. I'm already very familiar with Charlotte Mason's views on education and I agree with her, even only knowing about her ways for a couple of years. The funny thing is, apparently I agree with Ruth Beechick, too, and I've had her books on and off my shelves for YEARS! I never got to them. Maybe I wasn't ready for the rest at that time. Maybe I wanted the hard, harsh, sharp way, because it is all I had ever known.

For so many years, I fought the urge to have an ecclectic choice of curriculum. I would look at friends who chose different things, instead of a boxed curriculum, with a sort of envy. I wanted that freedom, but I didn't know how to get it. There was a time when I used Konos, but the planning got to be too much and my children weren't retaining. Other than that, I've bought boxed curriculums. I would even say that My Father's World was boxed, because everything was included, except LA and math, and I even used several of their recommendations for that.

This year I'm adopting a new motto and philosophy that doesn't tie me to ANYTHING but Christ - Simply Free. It means that I'm simply free to break the chains of bondage to a particular curriculum, to the "traditional" classroom methods of education, to return to the old paths that God laid out at the beginning of time. See, Charlotte's and Ruth's methods may be new to us, but they aren't new to God.

Deuteronomy 6: 5-9 5And you shall love the Lord your God with all your [mind and] heart and with your entire being and with all your might. 6And these words which I am commanding you this day shall be [first] in your [own] minds and hearts; [then] 7You shall whet and sharpen them so as to make them penetrate, and teach and impress them diligently upon the [minds and] hearts of your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down and when you rise up.8And you shall bind them as a sign upon your hand, and they shall be as frontlets (forehead bands) between your eyes. 9And you shall write them upon the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

These things which God was telling them to teach their children were natural and they were taught in a way that the children could remember them, through feasts and traditions, etc. Not because He wanted the feasts and traditions to become rules to be followed, but because He wanted them to KNOW them, internalize them, and makes these truths their own.

We are educating our children for life, not for a job, or for college. I don't want to enslave my children to textbooks. Now, I realize there are things that they must know and do in order to follow that path with God has given them. C13 must take science courses even though he doesn't like science. He has to have a few courses for college credit to go on and do what he loves - teach HisStory.

Simply Free means that I can choose a textbook for my child if it will help him in his God-lead role, but I don't want to hinder him with textbooks. Blah! Simply Free means that if I choose to use flash cards to teach B5 his letter sounds (which I won't), I can. Simply Free means P10 doesn't have to go to college, just because every other homeschooler we know goes to college (or she could and do College Plus like C13).

Simply Free means - Get off my back, Satan - you have no hold over me!

Joshua 24:15 (NASB)

15"If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."

picture borrowed from Annie Lobert

post signature

Friday, May 15, 2009

Life Lessons from a 10 year old

This morning I took C13 to Dallas for his volunteer job. I only had A1 with me, so I went to Mardel's and piddled around looking at curriculum and coming to some really awesome conclusions on the way home while have a quiet time with God. Big P had been left with P10, B5, and L3 in his charge. I didn't have my cell phone with me (can you believe it?), so no one could contact me with questions about lunch, etc. So, when I got home, I realized that Big P had made hot dogs for lunch. The same hot dogs that were going to be used for another meal. He hadn't read the menu that said PB&J for lunch today.

So, the conversation went something like this:

Me: Those hot dogs were going to be for another meal this week.

Big P: Well, I didn't know and I couldn't call you to ask. I'll get you some more hot dogs.

Me: It's on the menu on the fridge. Your impromptu meals end up messing up the week of menus I plan. (I said this kind of laughingly, but I was serious - read previous post where I explain that my sins are VERY evident sometimes).

P10: Mom, remember when you were listening to that thing the other day (she's talking about Todd Wilson and the Lies Homeschoolers Believe) and he said that if you say anything about the meals that dad makes, he won't ever make them again and he'll say "fine, do it yourself".

Big P: Fine, do it yourself (with a smirk)

Me: You're right, P. I'm sorry. Thank you for making lunch for them.

Me to Big P: It's pretty sad when your 10yo daughter has to remind you how to be a thankful and submissive wife!

post signature

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Project 365 Week 18 & 19



post signature

Get Real!

I was listening to Todd Wilson yesterday in the car. C13 and I were cracking up!! He was talking about Lies Homeschoolers Believe and he was pretty right on. He's funny, but he was speaking in a serious way about many issues that hit very close to home. He encouraged us to just "get real" with each other. He talked about how when we don't admit the good and the bad in our homeschools, we are a discouragement to other mom's who think we have it all together. And although I've experienced this on the side of being discouraged by someone who isn't real, I never thought that I might be guilty of not being real. So, I wanted to get real with you today, and hopefully you'll all still read my blog and want to be my friend - ha, does that sound like Jr. High or what?

I must clarify that while I'm about to divulge several "real" things, most of them I'm currently working on. I think there is a big difference in being "real" and being negligent.

I'm guilty of:
  • yelling at my children, sometimes several times a day.
  • being easily distracted and not following a schedule most days.
  • not "finishing" a curriculum in a couple of years - just keep plodding forward.
  • not cleaning my bathroom sink in a while.
  • absolutely abhoring the out of doors in the summer, so we stay inside and watch lots of movies. We'll have a pool this summer, so maybe it will be better?
  • spending too much money impulsively and then regretting it.
  • eating too much and exercising too little.
  • not having a quiet time everyday.
  • staying up too late for the simple fact that I'm indulging myself (tv, computer, or reading) and always saying that I'll do better and I never do for longer than a few days.
  • not making matching outfits for my children, although most of the time they are in clean clothes even if they have to get them out of the basket.
  • because of my lack of winning my children's hearts to myself, for nagging, for being inconsistent, and for not caring at times, I am dealing with some rebellion problems in my older children.
My children are very "real":
  • Because of switching curriculums so much, my 13 yo is still working on fractions. And even "realer" - I'm okay with that.
  • My 10 yo complains everytime she has to do the dishes (3x per day for the last 6 months). THIS IS ABOUT TO STOP - REALLY!
  • My 5 yo still drinks milk at night, in a sippy cup, in his bed, right before going to sleep.
  • My 3 yo whines A LOT about various things and runs around the house in his underwear.
  • My 1 yo is still nursing almost exclusively and although I'm probably supposed to be okay with that, I'm not. I really wish he would eat solids, get down to 2-3 nursings per day and sleep through the night. I'm just not willing to let him cry it out at this point.
  • And although you were probably hoping to see something here about how "real" my hubby is, the fact is that I see my own sins so much more than I see his, that it's hard to pick out his "faults" - now! About 6-7 years ago, that was not the case.
Everyday I'm thankful for God's grace and everyday I wake up learning to die to myself and live for Him. Everyday I fail in some aspect if not in several!

So, are you willing to "get real" with me. Remember - in order for you to be considered getting "really real", your "about me" list must be much longer than your children's. Getting real is about admitting where you fall short, not about where your children and husband fall short. We say it to our children everyday - you aren't responsible for what they do, you are only responsible for how you choose to respond.

And now, I think I've been very real and I'll try to sandwich this in to some other good posts, so it's not just "hanging out there"! LOL

post signature

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Late Night Planning

I was talking to a friend tonight (she is also the pastor's wife) and told her that I hadn't been getting to bed on time, like we were both going to do! She asked what I was doing and I told her planning and thinking about school stuff. She said "and it all has to be done this week?" I replied with, "well, no, but I'm the kind of person that throws myself into something full force and when it's done I can relax." Facts are that my life doesn't allow me to throw myself completely into something until all the children are in bed. That's not a bad thing, of course, because that's the season of my life (and I really love it!!). So, what do I do? I stay up too late throwing myself into something. Take it easy Christine! Chill a little, relax now that you know the general framework and style that you are taking with your children and GET SOME SLEEP.

And while I was on the Simply Charlotte Mason forum, I read this (posted by Sonya Shafer):

"Do not sit up late preparing lessons; what you seem to gain in preparation you lose by tiredness next day." ~ Charlotte Mason (in The Story of Charlotte Mason)

Amen to that! Charlotte Mason was a real genius and she must have known the mothers and teachers very well!

And to that I bid you all a good night. :)

post signature

Tuesday Mornings with Mama

In an effort to really tie heart strings with my children and even win their hearts back to me I am now implementing Tuesday Morning with Mama. Every Tuesday morning I'm going to have a date with my children - one at a time. You'll have to be at least 3 to get one of these, because up until that point you are with me all the time anyway. This isn't set in stone, but it's what I'm thinking.
So, this morning I asked C13 - "hey, do you want to go on a date with me this morning?" and he was like "yea, that sounds great!" So, as soon as Big P started getting up I told him the plans. We were already ready and had the little boys dressed and teeth brushed, etc. so that Daddy could do whatever he wanted with them (they just stayed around here and played, but he didn't have to smell dragon breath!)
C13 and I went to Starbucks and I bought him a Grande strawberries and cream. He's only ever allowed to get a tall - once per month! So this was a huge treat!
We talked about his plans for scouts, history, and we talked a long time about plans for next year's schooling. I wanted him to know that I really valued his opinion. It was absolutely delightful. I apologized for something I said yesterday and for not really giving him what he needed over the past 13 years. I was kind of lamenting about how awful I felt that I had wasted that time. He said "mom, we can pick up and go from here, building our relationship back up and loving each other. we don't have to think about the past. God will fix it." What wise words young man!
Next week will be P9(almost 10)'s week. Then B5, then L3. And then we'll start all over. :) I'm so excited!

post signature


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...