Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My Accomplishment for Today

My big accomplishment for today was taking down our Christmas tree. It's so nice to have the living room back to normal. The birds are happy to be back in their normal spot. Maiden got her room REALLY clean. She had some great motivation since she'd been invited to stay the night with her best friend who is on school break. I told her she couldn't go unless she got that room cleaned. Yes, I'm a card carrying member of M.O.M.S. (Mean Ole Mama Society).

We traded out one child for another. Biggun, my best friend's son has come over to stay the night. The boys didn't think it was fair for Maiden to get to go have a sleepover if they didn't get to do something special too. Right now it's just me and da boys hanging out.

We've been working at putting into effect some of the principles we learned in this book, Have a New Kid by Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman. While we may not agree with everything he says, there are still lots of things we can learn from him. The main thing I've been focusing on is, "B doesn't happen until A does first".

In other words, say my kids are throwing a fit because I told them to take a break from their video games to do some things for me. Then a bit later, they want their friend to come over for a play date. My answer is going to be, "No, not until I see an improvement in those attitudes and a willingness to help out around the house." The situation above where I wouldn't let Maiden go to her friend's house unless her room was clean is another perfect example. It's a work in progress. I'm a work in progress. I have to remind myself, so are my children.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

My Word for This Year

It seems that the thing to do this year, rather than making New Year's Resolutions, is to choose a word that encompasses what you want out of the next year. This makes total sense to me. You can keep going back to that word to help you stay on track with doing the things that you've associated with that word for the year. My word for this next year is DETERMINED.
  • I'm determined to make spending time with Jesus every day a priority.
  • I'm determined to make my family first by clearing most of the other commitments I currently have off my plate. I've already taken some steps in this area following the Lord's leading. It's been a painful but necessary process.
  • I'm determined to stick to a consistent (or at least somewhat consistent) workout schedule. I also want to get my kids accustomed to a daily workout routine. I have a list of exercises that was provided to my kids by a friend who is a Personal Trainer. We will begin doing those exercises each day together, like many of us used to have to do in PE as kids. 
  • I'm determined to crawl out from under and conquer all the clutter that surrounds me! If I have to trash it, sell it or give it away, I want it out! I'm going to try to follow a recommendation from a friend to take a week and work on one area at a time, doing a little each day till it is tamed. I believe I'll start in the boy's room.
Can you tell where they've been stuffing everything when they are told to clean their room??
    And this is the other place that everything gets put.
  • I'm determined to work hard at becoming the wife my husband needs and the mother my children need.
  • I'm determined to make my home a place of refuge and comfort for my family and myself. A place where we will not feel embarrassed to have a friend show up on our doorstep with no notice. A place where we can all learn and grow in faith and love.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Our Homeschool Curriculum

Christmas break may seem like a strange time to be blogging about our curriculum, but I've been looking at different options for teaching my kids. I've concluded that is my favorite and what works best for our family. There are several reasons for this.
  • I tend to be "unwell" fairly often throughout the month between frequent migraines and having endometriosis. It is so wonderful on those days to be able to point my children to the computer and they can get their school work done without needing mom right there to teach them.
  • I love the fact that all the records are kept right on the computer. Anytime I need to see how my children are doing, I simply log in as the parent, click on a link and walla, there are their records. There is even a feature where I can print each child's record as a PDF.
  • My kids seem to really enjoy the content of the lessons. My daughter has been known to keep working on her Language Arts so that she can hear how the story turned out.
I also love My kids have struggled with spelling in their yearly testing in the past. Now we are using Spelling City. I like that I can use my own lists and tailor them to each child. I also like that they have keep record of my children's progress as well. I can look to see which words they are having trouble with and have them spend some time practicing those words. One thing I would like to see is some more games that appeal to older students. My 12 year old has complained that the games seem a bit too "babyish".

Oh, and I also like the feature that allows me to have my kids practice writing their spelling words in cursive!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Post-Christmas Shopping! Ack!!

It was extremely hard to get up this morning to go to church. We were needed to serve in the resource room or we probably would have slept and gotten up to go to 2nd service. It's always a blessing to be able to help the Sunday School Teachers. This morning I actually got to go hang out in the 3rd grade class for a bit. I was talking to one of the little boys who was telling me all about what he got for Christmas, (Lego Batman for DS) and how they had to wait and wait and wait for their neighbors to get home so they all could open gifts together. Then he commented about the coloring pages they had to color, "I'm actually not the coloring guy, I'm more of a worksheet guy." he told me. Too cute!!

We had a surprise appearance in our worship service by Franklin Graham! Our pastor said in the 2nd service that he was praising God that he hadn't known Franklin was going to be there! He was pretty excited that he got to have his picture taken with him though. Now I can tell people that I went to church with Franklin Graham, (one time).

After a wonderful Christmas service at the end of which several people gave their lives to Jesus, we HAD to go shopping. The kids each had $60 in gift cards to spend and couldn't wait. So we made a trip to Walmart. Maiden chose a pair of boots, (she's been asking us to get her boots since last year at Christmas). That's not the most practical shoe for Florida and we tend to run short on funds, so the answer till now has been no. She also got 3 Barbies! She kept exclaiming, "this is the best day EVER!!"

ManBoy got a StarWars computer game, but couldn't find the DS game he wanted at Walmart.

RoboBoy started out with a soft-shot air riffle (which he's been planning to get with his Christmas $ for months!). Poor little guy! It would have helped if his parents had known that you have to be 18 years old to own one of those! The lady at the check out had to tell us that he couldn't buy it and I could tell she felt horrible when RoboBoy burst into uncontrollable sobs. But then she wouldn't even let MyHero buy it because "she'd know it was actually for RoboBoy."

We ended up going to GameStop and then Toy's R Us before everyone had what they wanted and was happy. RoboBoy got a nerf gun that's almost as big as he is and shoots rapid fire like a machine gun. Nerf bullets were flying this afternoon! ManBoy found the DS game he wanted, "Mario & Luigi, Partners in Time".

We finally made it home for a very late lunch and some chill/play with the new toys time. I spent my afternoon finishing up making the crocheted toys I made for the kids.
Maiden has Princess Peach, ManBoy is holding Mario and RoboBoy has a fruit bat, (he loves bats!)

All three toys together.

Princess Peach & Mario. Aren't they a lovely couple? If only Mario could protect Peach from getting kidnapped by Bowser!

Now I have to figure out how to make Yoshi for MyHero! RoboBoy wants a Bowser! I'm going to be busy!

Saturday, December 25, 2010


I'm having to put bleach in my dish and rinse water, let my dishes soak for one minute and then air dry. All that because of this:

There was a major water main break in the pipes that give us our water supply. At least we didn't have to go without water or even loose water pressure like lots of other people did.

It's still driving me crazy though. Why?? Because I'm a major germaphobe! The thought that I can wash my hands and still not be clean is almost more than I can take! And I wash my hands A LOT! I'm coping by keeping a bowl of bleach water handy.

The sad thing is that RoboBoy is developing the same germaphobia that I have. He may actually be worse than me, if that's possible! Well, come to think of it, I was worse as a kid. I've had to learn to let go of some of my germ issues. Having babies will do that to you. Can you imagine being a germaphobe trying to potty train a toddler?? They put their little hands on the side of the toilet to hold themselves up. Then you have to help them get their clothes back on while they put those little hands all over your arms for support! Ack!! Can I take a shower now??? Ok, so I'm still pretty bad. I'm going to go wash my hands now!

Friday, December 24, 2010

We have the world's GREATEST friends!!!

Although I may have to think twice about posting blogs like yesterday's again, (that was truly meant to be a funny but heartfelt thanks to God for providing for us.) We have friends, (who will remain unnamed, you know who you are) who asked to come bring us a ham bone for our beans. Nice cover guys! After they got here they said that they wanted to pay for a new hot water heater for us! MyHero and I both tried to dissuade them. Next thing we know another friend was on our doorstep offering to help install the new water heater! So we ended up getting a new hot water heater for Christmas!

God is soooo awesome!! I love how he uses his people to bless others!! You guys absolutely blessed our socks off!! Btw, the beans were really tasty with the ham bone in them! You should have stayed for beans and cornbread! Love you guys!! Next time it's our turn to bless you!
Celebrating the true reason for the season!!!
Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Thank you Lord!

Yes, I need to thank you Lord for that nice warm shower!! The water heater may be leaking, but at least it still produces hot water! The bucket under the water heater wasn't even a quarter full. I was even able to shave my legs without having to resort to the #8 guard and clippers! MyHero will be pleased! I think he was starting to wonder if there was some furry animal insisting on sharing our bed.

While I'm thanking you, Lord, thanks for the cans of Spam in the cupboard! Maybe you can help me think of something tasty to make with it? Perhaps Spam & Egg Omlettes? While we're at it, maybe together we can think of something to make with that canned mystery meat. It's supposed to be pork. I was thinking something with rice and the frozen broccoli that's in the fridge.

Oh and thank you for the 10 lb bag of beans sitting in a bucket in our kitchen! Also for the rice sitting in the bucket on top of it. We'll be eating good for a while!