Tuesday, September 27, 2011


My side kick has spread his wings and ventured off into a new world. Amidst an obscene amount of tears (from the mother). Seriously! The first day Shane went to school seemed eternal! He bounded off the bus with a huge smile and an, "I loved it!!" Which made me cry again since he didn't even seem to miss me. I think I have issues! Day two rolled around and suddenly school was horrible and he hated it. Or so he said when it came time to get on the bus. I will spare you the details since it is one of the worst mornings of my parental history but suffice it to say it ended with me bodily hauling him into school. Ugh! But he bounded off the bus that afternoon and has willingly woken up and gotten on the bus every morning since.

Hands down one of the most conflicted decisions we have ever made in regards to one of our children. Shane has always loved being home schooled! He is a home body by nature and needs lots of down time to operate well. He loves being with his younger siblings and is my right hand man! He is such a content young man! Something I have wanted so much to cultivate in our children but his natural tendency towards contentment has made it easy with him. I would say that is one of our biggest hesitancy's in putting him in school. That the constant stimulation and busy days would lessen his ability to self entertain.

Life just started feeling like it was stacking up and I was beginning to go under! So much to get done everyday and literally no time to just sit for a few minutes. Between schooling Shane and Tristan, paying bills, keeping up with the books for Mark's business, taking care of the house, etc it felt like too much! Now, I know there are some women that could manage and do it all well but I have come to accept that I am not that woman! I have compared and compared for far too long! I read blogs of other families with more children than us who seem to run everything perfectly while schooling their children but it wasn't running too smoothly anymore. I didn't feel like I was doing anything well but everything was being done sub-par. There was high stress and little peace.

I am incredibly grateful for a supportive husband who finally heard through all my jumble and helped make a good decision. And honestly, we have been blessed with some of the best teachers on the planet for our boys! Of that I am sure!! So accommodating, loving and encouraging!!

I still miss him everyday! Literally everyday!! But I have found that I am able to get all my work done throughout the day and then focus on the kids in the evening which has been awesome! I work with Tristan and Eden in the morning for a while on school work and then I dig into what needs to be done that day so that I am available to the boys when they come home. And I am able to focus on the rambunctious girls throughout the day! Change is always difficult but I have learned something about myself through all of this: I still compare myself too often with other people which makes it difficult to hear His voice. I need to care more about what He has called me to than anything else. So for now that is what I am working on in the midst of retrieving a little girl from the cupboards!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Snippets of Life

I challenge you to find a better way to wake up in the mornings!! Before school started for the year and I had to be up and moving by a certain time we spent quite a few mornings snuggling in bed together. Most mornings all three of the younger ones found their way into our bed. This particular morning Eden was still in her bed. To be honest Heidi finds her way into our bed often enough that she probably thinks it is her bed just as much as ours. And you never know how you will find Eden when you check on her after she is asleep.

Seriously, this is how she was sleeping on this particular night. Amazing!!

I scooped her up and tucked her back into her bed.

We have had some changes around this house over the past week which I will talk about soon. The biggest change is Shane is now getting on the bus with Judah in the morning. I felt like my heart would nearly break, I cried more tears than I thought possible and am starting to settle into a new routine. More to come....

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


It was a beautiful, warm and fall like day which brought out the hooligans! All sorts of piratey things were being said (or grunted) and vile creatures were being slain. Shanes words to me were, "It's perfect! I am even missing some teeth!" Eden jumped right into the aarrghs while Tristan seemed a little lost in this world void of numbers. It will take him a bit more practice to perfect his pirate skills.

And one fair maiden found her way into all the action! How I love our kids and their imaginations!

Thursday, September 8, 2011


While I know what we experienced at our house yesterday was minor it still caused quite a bit of annoyance. Our sump pumps are still running this morning but the basement is now dry thanks to my hard working husband! He worked literally the entire day yesterday with the shop-vac to get things dry. Very thankful that a majority of our basement is stained concrete floors so we don't have to replace flooring. We will have to replace some trim and a few minor things but at least our area rugs seem to be drying out! Smells a bit damp but nothing major. I am really feeling sorry for my home town of Lewisburg that is getting hit really hard. Makes me sad knowing there is a lot of devastation to come! Our front yard around noon yesterday.

The view from our front porch towards our garden. I haven't brought myself to go look at my garden yet because I am afraid of what I will find. First, lost all the corn to the silly bear and now will probably loose all my potatoes, sweet potatoes and lima beans to the flooding. I feel worse for my boys who have their pumpkin crop growing nicely. This is their big project and how they make money so it will be sad if it is completely destroyed. A good life lesson though. And really I feel trivial complaining about it since there are probably lots of farmers in the area who will have a huge loss on tomato crops. We will be fine but those folks who depend on their crops as their livelihood will have some difficult months ahead.

Towards our backyard.

What good is a bit of flooding if you can't have an underwear party and run through the humongous puddles! This patch of green was dubbed "the island."

Right out our front door. It looks way worse than it really was. Our house was not in imminent danger of flooding.

It was fairly deep though. They were not allowed to go near the creek. They were only allowed to play in the puddled water. The creek was moving too quickly, was too deep and I had a horrible dream the night before so they were not allowed anywhere even close to the creek! And if anyone decided to push me on it they were done for the day! End of story.

Sometimes you need to just observe the change in landscape from the front porch in your underwear.

Hopefully by the end of today things will be dried out thoroughly enough downstairs that we can get everything back in its correct place. If you do not live in this area please be praying for the folks who are loosing possessions, homes, crops, etc. Not fun times for a lot of people!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

School is in Session

Well, Judah has settled right into his new classroom and last year as a an elementary student. Commence the weeping and wailing now! How is it possible that he is in 5th grade already? Today was a bit exciting as we are getting copious amounts of rain causing flooding and road closures. He was a bit apprehensive to get on the bus this morning in case he couldn't make it home but didn't want to miss his second day.

Shane is another story altogether. He hasn't been able to get started on any of his work due to a glitch in the system somewhere. His curriculum and supplies somehow did not get ordered until the end of last week so we are quite a bit frustrated at this house. He might be finding himself getting on the bus soon if things don't get ironed out. Either way, tomorrow is his first day going to the elementary school for art! He is cautiously excited!

Tristan loves doing school which I have known for a while now. He will sit for hours and keep plugging away and I have to ask him to take a break.

Here is the alligator he colored. Muli-colored too which was puzzling until he explained that all the red spots are where the alligator had been shot! Someone help me now!

And Eden has decided that cutting with the scissors is her new calling in life. So we have bits of paper floating all around the kitchen. It keeps her occupied and that is reason enough to keep giving her paper for her new found love!

And Heidi just likes to climb on the counters the entire time (feels like the entire time) getting into the cupboards and digging around for everything she is not allowed to have. Again....someone help me now!!

Tomorrow I will tell you about the great flood of 2011 that happened in our yard and made its way into the basement as a most unwelcome guest. Just keep breathing deeply, right?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Fast and Furious...

has been the unwelcomed pace of the last few weeks of summer! Goodness! We have squeezed in lots of fun and exhausting days. We have had parties, cook-outs, canning and freezing food and a bear that ate all the corn in our garden. Judah ran another 5k. This time to help raise money for a woman fighting cancer in a local community. He really enjoys running (he does not get that from me) and I wouldn't be surprised if he pursued running as a competitive sport.

We (mostly the kids) have consumed their fair share of popsicles this summer. They are always better when shared with a friend!

We made a trip to Lake Tobias where we got up close and personal with lots of animals.

Judah was in his element getting so close to an elk. Although I think I heard a collective gasp when he loudly said, "Dad! Can you imagine shooting an elk this big?"
Running on to the next exhibit! In typical fashion it was a near sprint from one exhibit to the next.

A tired little girl looking at the bison.

We fed some ducks at a park which my young ones thought was hilarious! Clearly, we do not get out much!

We have endured many cheesy grins....

celebrated a sweet cousins birthday....

woke up to a humongous spiderweb......

taken some moments to relax and ponder life...
and tried out the new skill of holding a baby!!! Heidi was a bit unsure about holding her new little friend but has been playing with her babies nonstop since little Charlie left this afternoon.

And now we jump into school tomorrow!! Hopefully we can make it through this first week of new schedules unscathed and with everyone still happy. Judah will jump on the bus in the morning, Shane will be going into school a few times a week for his art and music classes and will do his other main classes at home and Tristan will become a full time student! And I will probably be drinking lots of coffee this first week or two and sending up lots of pleas for help from my gracious Father!