Thursday, November 15, 2012

I'm Still Alive

Hey All!!!
Sorry, I haven't written in awhile.  I've had to take a little break and try to get a new routine down.  Things had not been running smoothly, so I've been trying a few different things.  So just to update you on different areas of my life right now.

~ I went to see the Maxwell's last month, with two of my "besties", Whitney and Lisa :)  We listened to two different sessions, one for Mom's on "Scheduling" and one for Dad's and Mom's on "Keeping our Children's Hearts".  They were both really good!  And totally inspired me to get back on a routine.  They do what is called "chore packs" and I will post a video at the end of this post, so you can check it out.  I had read about them before, but kinda put it off on the back burner, but we are now doing them and they are going great!!!  Teri, the mom, did say, that she thought some of her boys were going to take their chore packs with them when they got married.  I was so glad to hear her say that, because there are some days I feel like the kids may never get the simplest things ;)  They also talked in the second session about Family Worship/Bible Time and how important it was.  He gave the illustration that if you don't read the Bible to your children daily, it's like starving them for a day of their spiritual food.  He even went as far as to say, if your family forgets to read the Bible, then parents don't eat for the next day.  Then you can feel the pain in your stomach, that your heart and life is actually feeling.  It was definately a good idea to make you aware of how important Family Worship is!

~ My BFF, Melisa, and I have been working hard lately on preserving potatos (they have been on sale at our local Aldi's for .99 cents for a 10lb bag!!!).  We've also been researching and trying out different freezer/crockpot dinner recipes for our families.

~ I've been pinning alot of organizational ideas and tools lately on pintrest and going through Fly Lady's webpage with a fine tooth comb.  I've found all kinds of usefull ideas and I hope to put some of them into play very soon!!

~ I've been re-reading Large Family Logistics.  It's one of my favorite books.  Don't let the title scare you, if you have just one or even two children, it is a wonderful, wonderful organizational book!!! 

~ I read Created to Be His Help Meet.  That was an eye opener!!!  I know there is alot of people out there that would totally disagree with this book, so if you are feminist, you might need to pray alot while reading this!  But it was definately something I needed to hear!  I get so bent out of shape sometimes when I feel like Ronnie does not help me enough or isn't doing what I "think" he should be.  This book gave me a whole new prespective!

~ And I started reading Homeschooling with a Meek and Quiet Spirit.  I'm about half-way through the book and it's been really convicting!!  I definately suggest reading it, even if you don't currently or plan to homeschool, it has a lot of ideas of how to deal with anger and disorganization. 

~ This past month, I went to Mom's Night Out with our local homeschool group, where we were discussing the book Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe.  It was really good to talk about our downfalls with each other and to realize we need to stop comparing ourselves to other families who seem to have it all together, when in reality, they really don't either :)

 * Things I'm currently working on:  Revamping the Schedule.  It just wasn't working, as much as I loved it, there were some kinks that needed to be worked out.  One of the things that Teri Maxwell suggested, was doing any preschool work first before you school the older kids.  Otherwise, she found, she would put it off until she was finished with the big kids and then she didn't have the energy to worry about it.  And since we have 2 "littles" running around the house tyring to interrupt "school time", we're going to start doing preschool time in the morning and regular "school time" for the big kids in the afternoon at quiet time while the 2 littles are down for nap.  I'll let you know how it works out ;)
  2nd thing I'm working on is:  Trying to stay up when I get up to get Leigha.  I've been going back to bed alot and then getting up when the kids get up.  But, it puts me so far behind on things like getting schoolwork copied and myself ready and so on.  I make to about 10:00 each morning and think, "If I had stayed up this morning, this would have already been done!  Why do I do this to myself?!?"  Well, mainly because sleep is my best friend!!  So my goal is to try and start getting to bed earlier ;)  Yeah, I'll let you know how that goes too!

A big part of being organized is realizing and taking account for what is NOT organized or NOT working in your daily life and trying to fix it!  So don't be discouraged when you have to take a time-out and step back and start over :)

Proverbs 14:1 The wise woman builds her house; but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.

Have you felt overwhelmed lately??   Do you have any great "Organizational Tools/Ideas"?  Read any good books lately? 

Here's the Chore Pack video.  This is Courtney from Women Living Well.

Monday, October 8, 2012

I love you.......Be Careful!

  Five little words, I say every morning.  I have said them every morning for over 9 years.  But this morning when I said them, they had a whole new meaning, and Ronnie new exactly what I meant when I said this morning. 

  "I love you.....Be Careful!"

  For those of you who don't know, my husband was in the military for 9 years (4 years of which was before we were married.)  So this is just something military wives say, especially before a deployment.  But he has been out for almost 4 years now.  And this morning, I said these words with the most sincere heart ever!  And I didn't even realize until it was out of my mouth, but we totally knew.....

  Ronnie had to go back to work today, for this past week our world has been turned upside down.  My husband lost his best friend, and my best friend lost her husband. 
   He was a lineman at our local REMC and while doing a routine poll load up, the pole jumped off its cradle and killed our dear friend instantly.  And nothing in our lives have been the same since. 
  He was an amazing man, and he didn't even know it.  He was an elder at our church, but he preferred to be called an "overseer", because he was so young. ;)  But he was sooo wise for his age!!!  Our preacher kept describing him this week as gentle, and that is about the best term I can come up with also.  About 6 months ago, Ronnie asked him to be his mentor, and he gladly accepted, and has been that and more to Ronnie ever since!  Personally, our lives have not been the same since he and his wife has entered them.  We have hung out and went out to eat numerous times and Ronnie is like a teenager all over again around them.  He would just laugh and laugh, and I would apologize because I said he never acted like that, and my dear friend would just smile and say, "Don't worry about it!  We love you guys!"  He and his wife were leaders of our small group at church, and I have watched my husband become this amazing man because of them. 
  And it's not just us that was affected, he was this way with everyone he met!!!  We had just become so close in the past year, that this hurts so deep!  There are a million other stories of how he touched others lives! 
  I keep looking at the couch, where he used to sit when they came over.  And I keep looking at the wood stove, that he just helped move in this past weekend and the little pile of ash in the yard, that he dumped out of it before he brought it in. 
  Ronnie has been so lost, he wants to call him, but.....    And my heart just breaks for my friend, his wife.  I can't take my mind off of her.  She has been so strong and an amazing woman of faith!!!  She just keeps saying "You just never know!  We always need to be ready!"  Yesterday, she whispered in my ear, "Love on that man of yours!  And go do things as a family!"  And she's right, she's totally right, because this life is just a vapor.  And I've never seen it more clearly, even when we lost Hannah.  But on the inside I'm aching for her.  She says, "Love on that man!", and I say, "But, that's not fair, because you can't now :("  She and I have shared everything over that past year.  (Along with my other dear best friend Melisa).  She is sooo much like me!  (We don't always agree, but we still love each other!)  And I just keep thinking, I don't want to hurt her by her seeing me with Ronnie.  I know it's silly, but your mind does silly things in a time like this! 
  We have had a some other couples over from our church and small groups this week, that were close to all of us.  Ronnie and I would just walk around our house looking at each other, like "where do we go from here?"  And he didn't even live with us!  It's killing me thinking about her having to do the same thing!!!  All of our other friends said the same thing at their houses, so it was nice to pull in together like that and cherish each other for a few more moments, because you just never know when it might be one of them!!!
  Anyway, back to this morning, now that our lives have turned upside down, we've been doing some soul searching.  And we want to make sure everyone is ready for that day!!!   Our friend was sooo ready, he was an amazing Christian, inside and out!  He was a great leader, great husband, great father, everything!!!  We want to make sure we are doing what we are supposed to!  Also, realizing that either of us could go at any time now, we are trying to get all of our affairs in order.  Looking into life insurance, naming guardians for the kids, making sure we're raising the children right, etc.  Because, no matter how careful we are, it's God's timing, not ours.  He can take us home whenever He decides too!  So we want to be ready! 

Everything Has Its Time

Ecclesiastes 3 To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:
2 A time to be born,
And a time to die;
A time to plant,
And a time to pluck what is planted;
3 A time to kill,
And a time to heal;
A time to break down,
And a time to build up;
4 A time to weep,
And a time to laugh;
A time to mourn,
And a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones,
And a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace,
And a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to gain,
And a time to lose;
A time to keep,
And a time to throw away;
7 A time to tear,
And a time to sew;
A time to keep silence,
And a time to speak;
8 A time to love,
And a time to hate;
A time of war,
And a time of peace.
Because of their privacy, I've not said their names in this post, but in your prayers please pray for my dear friend and her children.   Also, the surrounding family.  Specific prayer requests:  strength, wisdom, understanding, and healing!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Our New Schedule 2012

  Well, it was that time..........time to come up with a new schedule.  We all were starting to get stressed and just needed a pick me up!  So here it is.  We started yesterday, and I don't think Satan liked it, because he sent every possible distraction.  But we're going to stick to our guns and pray without ceasing today :)

5:15 - Mommy wakes up and gets Baby Leigha (the child we baby-sit) and puts her in bed.
   *Then depending on the night, I either stay up or go back to bed for an hour or so.  (My plan is to stay up, but if you have too high expectations, you will just feel like a failure when you can't fulfill them!)

6:30 - Wake up Ronnie and fix his breakfast and lunch, kiss good-bye and send off to work.

7:00 - Jump in the shower and get ready for the day.

7:30- 8:30 - Put dishes away from the dishwasher, fold a load of laundry, check e-mail, write blog post, read devotional, and start breakfast.

8:30 - Wake up children/Breakfast

9:00 - Morning Chores (I'll give a break down of chores and daily work routines later)

9:30 - School with Derek (Lindsay plays with the babies/watches Leapfrog)

10:30 - School with Lindsay (Derek continues any extra work and starts his spelling and typing on the computer)

11:30 - 10 min. toy pick-up, Lunch Prep

Noon - Lunch

12:30 - Babies go down for a nap (Lindsay has to lay down until Leah falls asleep, this gives her some rest time and makes her feel like she's helping Mama ;)
* Rest time for Derek consists of listening to an audio book while laying down.  After Leah falls asleep Lindsay may lay down with Derek and color or read.)

2:30 - 3:00 - Babies wake up/Snack Time

3:00 - 5:00 - Free Time / Afternoon Chores

5:30 - 10 min pick up and Get ready for Daddy :)

Depending on the day and what's scheduled, we normally have some kind of Evening Activity and then Supper.  If not, we all work outside while it's nice then supper.

Then Bathtime, Get ready for Bed, Family Worship and Bedtime!!! :)

No, I'm sure we will not stick to the time just exactly, but it gives us a good standard to try and live up to.  And it also lets the kids know what's coming up next.  And my children do soooo much better on some sort of schedule.  All children need boundaries, depending on yours, depends on how strict a schedule you may need. 

Do you have a schedule?  Do you keep the same one?  Do you start a new one every school year? 

I'm linking up at:  The Modest Mom, A Wise Woman Builds Her Home, and Raising Homemakers 

Monday, August 20, 2012

First Day of School

  We actually school year round since I got sick last fall and had to take some time off.  It's easy for us if we just stay on schedule all the time and take off when we need to for holidays, fair, and just whatever.  We pretty much took the whole money of July off for 4-H and we just got back into the swing of things two weeks ago.  We started most of our new curriculum, except for finishing up some history from last year.  So my kids moved up a grade level in reading, math, and such.   Lindsay is much farther ahead than a regular kindergartener, but for 4-H and sports purposes, she is "in" kindergarten. 

 This was a cute idea I've been seeing a lot of homeschoolers do, so I thought I'd try and do this every year for their scrapbooks (that will be done one day when they all move out;). 
  Derek has been very adament about being a conservation officer for sometime now.  That is the motivation that gets him through his schoolwork most days, when he feels like it's too tough.  When ask what she wanted to do when she grew up, Lindsay very quickly said piano teacher.  She has been working so hard on her lessons here lately, and I know if she keeps up the hard work, she will make a wonderful piano teacher someday!

  I'm sooo very proud of how my kids are growing and maturing everyday.  Trust me, we definately have days where we all feel like we may pull out our hair, but overall, I can truly see God's blessings in my precious children!!

Friday, August 17, 2012

School Room or Not?

  I have a friend that has the cutest little school room in the whole world!!!  It's not like a whole classroom, but a room away where she can store her school stuff and a table for the kids to sit around, a couch for reading, and a computer area and such.  It's adorable!!!

  However, in our house, there is no extra room for that here (even though my hubby has some really neat ideas on how to add one), so this is how we school....

  For the most part we school around our dining room table.  All memory work, math, phonics, handwriting, and such happen here.

Sorry for the mess and indecency, but this is how we school in the mornings ;)

All our schoolbooks are kept on the bookshelf and
games are in the drawers under our computer table.

All reading, bible, catechism, history and some science happens in the living room on the couch.

  Some schooling even takes place in the bathroom.......

Sometimes, school happens in the kitchen........

Making snow ice cream last winter.

  Yesterday, school happened at Spring Mill State Park. (Sorry, I have no pictures, my camera ran out of batteries :(  We loaded up our books and grabbed some lunch and went and found a picnic table by the creek and had an awesome time doing our schoolwork out in God's amazing creation!!!  Once the kids were finished up with their work, I took a timeout of my own and worked on lesson plans while they played!  We are definately going to be doing a lot of this, this fall!!!  (I promise to get some pictures :)

  The main thing is, it doesn't matter where your school takes place as long as you put God first and the children are learning something new each and every day :)

  Do you have a schoolroom?  Where is your favorite place to do school?  What does your schooling look like?

I'm linked up to:

Friday, July 27, 2012

School Year 2012-2013

  Well, it's almost that time of year again, for the most kids to be heading back to school.  So it's time to start getting lesson plans ready and picking out which curriculum to choose!  My favorite time of year (along with convention time, when I get to purchase new curriculum!) 

  This past year we decided to mainly homeschool year round.  This gives us the opportunity to take a week off here and there whenever we may need it.  We found out last year when I got sick, how quickly we can get behind!  This way we can stay on top of things and give a little leeway for life :) 

  For the most part, I use Heart of Dakota for everything, I kinda pitch in a few things here and there, but I use their manual as a guide.  So here's the run down of what we have been working on so far and what we will be doing for this first sememster.

Derek - 2nd Grade

Bible, History, Science - Heart of Dakota curriculum
(which includes:  Christian Liberty Press History and Science)

Math - Singapore Math 2A & 2B

Reading/Phonics - Heart of Dakota's Emerging Reader's Set
and Christian Liberty's Adventures in Phonics Level B & C

Handwriting - A Reason for Handwriting Book T
(I suggest this book for learning cursive, it has block print and then moves on to cursive)

Spelling - Heart of Dakota lists

English - BJU English 2


Lindsay - Kindergarten

Bible, History, Science - Heart of Dakota curriculum

Reading/Phonics - Finishing up Teach your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
Adventures in Phonics Level B

Handwriting - A Reason for Handwriting Book A


Leah - Preschool


   Well, that about sums it up for the year!  I'm excited to see what God has in store for us this year!  And I hope you all have a wonderful school year also!!

What curriculum will you be using this year?  Do you use a complete set or a different variety of curriculums?  Are you struggling in a certain area?  Do also like Heart of Dakota?

Friday, July 13, 2012

My prayer

As I sit here in the quiet of the morning.....

The children are all still sleeping....

I wonder what God has in store for my day.

I pray for strength, wisdom, and patience....

For I know, it will not be an easy road.

Because I am a horrible, wretched sinner....

And it is Jesus that I was my children to see,

instead of me.

I pray for my oldest, a son, to one day become

a stong, Godly, man. 

To desire to do what is right and a yearning

to help and love others with his whole heart.

I pray for my two beauties, that one day

they too will crave God over fleshly desires.

I pray for Jesus to shine through their hearts

so that everyone can see Him and not theirselves.

I pray for my husband, the man of my dreams...

I am so blessed and thankful for who he has turned out to be.

I pray for strength, wisdom, and patience...

For I know, it is not an easy road.

Linked up at:

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A calm deep breath......

I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.....Phillipians 4:13

I type this as I'm struggling with child training myself. 

Trying to instill Godly character into my children. 

To have a calm and patient voice.

And to smile at my children and husband even when it seems impossible.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Have I grown?

  I had to chuckle as I typed this title, because if you know me personally, you're thinking, well no!!!  Where is she going with this one?  Because, you see I'm 4'11 and I've not grown since the 4th grade (or at least that's the last time anyone noticed!)  I remember coming back from summer break and walking into my classroom the first day of 4th grade.  I was very excited because several of my friends were in my class this year, including, my all time (and every other girl in the 4th grade) crush, Richie.  Sometime around lunch time we would line up to get our lunch boxes and Richie came over by me and said, "Wow, Amanda, I think you actually grew!"  And he was serious!!!  I couldn't believe it!!!  One that he had talked to me and two that I had grown!!!  I was on cloud nine!!!
  Anyway, that really had nothing to do with my post, just made me think of it when I titled it ;)

  So I've been thinking about my New Year's Resolutions and thinking that I've been failing miserably!  Not to mention someone (out of the kindness of their heart) posted some really "nice" things after I posted them.  Which it's ok, I've been learning to tell the difference between signs of God and Satan trying to tear me down.  Anyhow, in all reality, they are truly just goals, something I want to strive toward, not something I must achieve each and every day!  It really got me to thinking, am I really failing or is that Satan also?  As I sit and look around my house, I realize, I truly have grown alot, especially in the past year.  If you had come over to our house(our trailer) a couple of years ago and given me a week's notice, this is what you would have found....

Everything in order......

Everything in it's place.....

Including the perfect in the window...

  But if you had come without notice........

  Well there are no picture of that!!!  For a reason!!!  I was terrible and it didn't bother me in the least!  I told myself all the time, other people's houses looked just like this, and if someone else wanted it clean, they could come do it themselves.....ahem.....  I know, not a good attitude, right?  The house was the one thing Ronnie and I ever fought about.  Coming from the military, he likes everything in a nice neat order.  I do too, to a certain affect.  As long as it has a place, I'm ok.  I don't like clutter, but if it has a home, and it's just out, well that's understood, at least I know it can eventually go back there. 

  For Ronnie's sake (and probably my mother and grandmother) God started working in my heart.  And I realized, I did have the wrong attitude all together.  Now, I'm not saying by any means that my house is in perfect order, especially on Monday mornings (you don't want to come over then!)  But at least now, I can feel a twinge of guilt when Ronnie pulls in the drive and the kids and I have forgotten or been to busy to pick up around the house.  And I clean now because I want to, not because I know someone is coming and I want to make a good impression. 

  So yes, I feel like I have grown alot.  I've not reached my goals, but I need to always be setting new ones.  And I know I will never have it all together, that's what heaven's for!  As long as I put on Christ everyday and have a little tune in my soul (which by the way, there are definately days, I fail!!!!), I feel like I've grown about 3 feet since 4th grade!!! 

  Remember we CAN do all things through Christ who gives us strength!!!!  Have a Blessed Day!!!

Thursday, March 29, 2012


So, I know alot of you are probaly going to think this is gross, but for the others that are from southern Indiana you can feel my excitement through this post!!

  So, yes, it is early, but it's been sooo warm here (except for this week), that Ronnie went out last Friday and found 5 small gray ones.  So yesterday while at work everyone kept telling him how many they were finding, so when he got off work, he called me and told me to get the kids ready we were leaving when he pulled in the driveway!!!

  ***Flashback***  When I was younger, my favorite time of year was spring!!!  It was lambing season on our farm and it was finally time to go to the woods and MUSHROOM HUNT!!!!!  That is one of my fondest memories with my dad.  (Excluding the part, of him yelling at me to slow down so I didn't step on any!  Anyone feel me on that one?)  Daddy and I would go for hours and couple back with quite a few, then fry 'em up and have mash potatoes!!!  Oh, my mouth is just watering thinking about it!!!

  Anyway, so we all piled in the van and headed out to "our spot", which can not be disclosed, for if you are an avid mushroom hunter, you know what "spot" I'm talking about!!!  Derek and Lindsay were full of excitement, because you know this only have a few days out of the year!!! 
  Well right off the bat, Ronnie found several.  And of course, the kids started running toward him, and he yells the famous words "Don't run, you might step on some!!!"  (I think it just is bred into the male body to holler this at the kids during mushroom season.)  For I had to remind him, to calm down, they all fry up the same! 

  All this time, I'm having to give Leah a piggy back ride, because she is not liking the woods!  We tried to have your pick some, but she wasn't too sure about that either.  But she sure would get excited when someone found some!  She even found one, while I was bent down picking another one that Ronnie had found!!!!  I couldn't believe it!!!  She was sooo excited!!  Derek and Lindsay both found two on their own also.  I was so proud of all of them. 
  As we were walking along, I kept praising God for such a beautiful day with my family!!!  I can't see like I use to, and I got a little frustrated, that I couldn't find as well anymore, but that's ok, my job nowadays are to encourage the kiddies to find them and to have fun!!!  I will take on the job of frying them up with some mash potatoes in the kitchen later on!!

  We ended up finding 38 in all, which in our family, that is 76!!!!  (We cut them in half to soak and get all the bugs out and when you fry them up it, make you feel like you have more!!;)

*Tip from Grandma*  If you want to make the last longer, after rinsing them lay them on a plate to dry for a few minutes.  The flour them, and lay them on a cookie sheet in the freezer for about 20 minutes and then throw them in a baggie to (try) keep all year.  Throw a few in the deep fryer with whatever meal you choose!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

All of it?!?! Really?

1 Corinthians 10:31 ~ So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it "ALL" for the glory of God.

  The first few years of marriage, and actually up until about the past year, were quite a struggle for Ronnie and I revolving around housework.  I didn't keep things up quite to his standard (which by the way is a military standard and the typical housewife should not be held by the same standards......just sayin'!").  I had always thought of myself as a decent housekeeper, I've been in many houses and definitely knew that I was doing better than most!  (Have you ever watched the show "Hoarders"?)  Anyway, I was tired of always feeling like I was failing and I know he was tired of coming home to a disorderly house, so I started studying.  Was Satan just using this to attack our marriage or was there really something wrong with me, what was the deal?!  Then I came across someone's blog post and the above verse and also heard Steven Curtis Chapman's song "Do Everything" on the radio and finally started to open my eyes a little! 

  I was supposed to be doing everything to glorify God and that included my housework.  Really?  Housework glorify God?!  How?  Well, I had to come to terms with the fact that yes, this is what God has called me to do and it may not be spectacular everyday, but I still need to glorify him with whatever I do.  And since my calling is a mom and a housewife, I should glorify him with my house "work".  But instead and I was getting upset because the baby squished crumbs into the rug and the big kids had spilled something again. 
  ~ I had given up on trying to please Ronnie with the house, because it felt like there was always something wrong.
  ~  I was trying to always make Ronnie happy and was getting discouraged when I should have been trying to please my Lord and then in turn bless my husband.
  ~  It's amazing what happens when you change your attitude. 

  Don't get me wrong, I still dislike dishes (even though my wonderful husband agreed to purchase a dishwasher last month!)  But now, I can see the difference.  I am working for the kingdom of heaven, not for just another day on earth waiting for my time to be over.  I need to be passing on this trait and wonderful world of being a woman in Christ on to my daughters. 
  So in conclusion, no my house is not spotless all the time, but I will say there is a difference in how clean it is now compared to before, now that I feel like I have a purpose/calling in cleaning it 700 times a day! 

    How about you?!?!  Do you ever feel overwhelmed with stepping on legos in the night on the way to the bathroom?  Or like no one ever notices what you did  get accomplished instead of what you did not?   Remember it's ok!  God sees it!!!  Have a Blessed Day!!!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Random Thoughts about this Miscarriage...

I've had writer's block for a few weeks now, and I figure it's time to get back on the horse!!!  I've been struggling mentally and spiritually with our miscarriage for a couple of weeks now.  I was scared to death when I got the last positive test, reasons being:  1)  It was so soon after my intestinal surgery.  2) It was going to be my 5th c-section.  3) I have a history for strange problems during and after pregnancy (such as HELLP syndrome, Bell's Palsy, infected uterus after surgery....).  The first couple of nights after realizing I was pregnant I laid in bed and prayed myself to sleep for comfort.  I finally got myself under control and realized Satan was using all of that to get to me!  My last two pregnacies and deliveries, except for the fact that Hannah had the Turner's, went very smoothly! 
  Then I felt this horrible guilt when I miscarried.  Thinking, there I went again, not trusting God!  I mean really, am I going to have faith or am I not?  And I know, that people would argue with me all day long, that it doesn't involve faith that it also involves common sense and he gives us the medical world today, so we should use it!  I strongly disagree!!!  I was perfectly healthy doing nothing wrong, so I thought, and look where I ended up in September and October, in the hospital for a week due to not being able to stop throwing up!  So to me, if something can happen to me while I'm "perfectly healthy" and God can take care of me, why can God not take care of me while I pregnant? 
  So this is where my struggle comes in to play.......It's been about 3 months since my miscarriage and it feels like an eternity lately.   There are exactly 2 years and 6 months between my living children, so in my OCD mind I felt like it was time to add another baby and this last pregnancy seemed to fit in the box for me.  Now, trying to make sense of the miscarriage and dealing with the loss, I find myself running into pregnant women everywhere.  While I am thankful that my body does have a little more time to heal from my last surgery, my heart still longs for another baby. 
  Derek cries alot for a brother and was so excited when we told him we were expecting again and so very upset when we lost the baby.  So my heart yearns for another little brother for him! 
  Please, don't get me wrong, I am very, very, very thankful and feel very blessed for my beautiful children here on earth with me.  But I feel very strongly that my calling here is to be a mother and a housewife, which in turn gives me the strong desire to have a full house! 
  In my prayer life, I've been trying to keep it very simple and let God lead my desires.  I have just prayed in his time.....and if that means never having another baby then giving me that contentment.  I am leaving it in his hands.  No pressure to us on "trying".  If it is his will then it will happen.  Because in the end, I know that in heaven, I will have 6 blessings to cuddle and love on!!!

Monday, January 16, 2012

"Survival" of the Littles ~ Part 4 ~ Picking My Battles

  My mother tells me all the time, "Pick your battles, if it won't matter tomorrow, it probably doesn't really matter right now."  And you know, she's right!!!  (I know, I know, I just agreed my mother was right, I guess that means I have officially outgrown my teenage rebel era.)  But, really, she is right.  Just to give you some examples, and then I'm sure you can find all kinds of way to put this idea into practice.

  Occasion #1 ~  I decided to clean out the fridge while the baby was awake.  So I knew going into it that I would have to stay calm.  (Sorry, Fly Lady, when I start something I have to finish it, I can't just work for 15 minutes at a time on a project, like you.  I'm trying, really I am)  At first all was well, I started her out playing in the floor beside me and she kept herself quite busy for sometime.  But as I started to bleach the shelfs, she started to notice all the bottles of different sauces and such on the floor and counter.  So she picked up the ranch dressing and started to put it back in the fridge.  I told her no, that Mommy needed to finish first and then she could help me put all the food back away.  So she obeyed and laid the ranch dressing back down, however the paper label caught her attention and she saw that it was like a sticker.  She started to peel it off little by little.  Now, if you know anything about me,  you know that I like everything just so, so.  The milk always sits on the same self on the right.  All of my rugs must not be messed up and must be even.  Anyway, you get the picture.  So it took every ounce of will power I had not to tell her no, because in all honesty, what was it going to hurt?  I would know tomorrow and the next day and the next day after that, that the bottle with white stuff in it was ranch dressing.  And it would keep her busy long enough to let me finish my chore at hand.  And she is old enough to pick up her own mess, so when she was finished I made sure she threw away all of her trash, so for a lesson, she realized she couldn't make a mess like that and not clean it up. 

   Occasion #2 ~ I told you a little bit in the last post about how she loves to be in the kitchen.  And how, this can if I let it, get under my skin very quickly.  She loves to rinse the dishes, while I wash.  I would love to just hurry and wash them and move on to the next thing, but I must continually tell myself, it's a great learning tool for both her and I.  Yes, sometimes, after she's rinsed a few things, she grabs a cup that is already clean and wants to play in the water with it and I cringe thinking that cup is already clean, but I have to stop myself and say, really what is she hurting?  Nothing!  She's playing with clean water and she loves standing by my side "helping" me.  It definitely teaches me patience and that everything doesn't have to go in a certain order like it does in my head.

  Occasion #3 ~ Giving up the high chair was definitely a battle for me!  I wanted the baby to stay in the high chair for a little while longer, because it's much easier to clean up the tray than the whole floor around her chair.  But she is very independent, as you can already tell, and wanted to be just like Bubby and Sissy!  So I gritted my teeth and started letting her sit at the table in a "big" chair. 

  Now, like I've said before, I'm not saying give into bad behavior.  Do not allow hitting, biting, throwing tantrums, dilerberate disobeying, backtalking, etc. to go unpunished.  However, take a good look at yourself and if you are getting annoyed by little things, that really won't matter tomorrow.  Trust me, if you are, I completely understand how you feel!!!  But that still doesn't make it right.  And we are to continually be trying to become more and more like Christ.  So, today, remember to ask yourself, Will this really matter tomorrow? 

  I hope this encourages you today!!!  And have a blessed day!!!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

"Surviving" the Littles ~ Part 3 ~ Chores

   Incorporating chores in your children's lives is key to "surviving"!!  There are several things a young child can help out doing around the house.  Even children that crawl can sit beside you and put toys in a basket.  Teach children very young and they will absorb it quickly! 
  In our house, we have morning chores first thing in the morning, then school, then free time.  Work before Play, if you can teach this to your children, I firmly believe they will go far in life!!!  The above picture is Leah, age 22 months, doing one of her chores, putting Daddy's pop in the bottom drawer of the fridge.

   So here's a look at our day, hope this is some encouragement to you out there will "littles"!!!

  Morning is not my friend, and if I've been up a lot at night, then we tend to sleep in.....shhhh...don't tell anyone ;)  Derek, doesn't seem to understand the concept of sleeping in, so he understands he may wake up normal and have some quiet free time before Mommy and the girls get up.  However, if I'm already up or when I do wake up everyone begins on their morning chores, myself included! 

    1.)  Get Dressed (Mommy helps Leah with this.  I also change baby Leigha and my Leah's diapers at this time.)

    2.)  Make bed

    3.)  Put jammies under pillow, put sippy cup in the sink, and turn off night light

    4.)  Pick up room, anything that wasn't done the night before

    5.)  Breakfast/Brush Teeth

    6.)  Leah and I do dishes or start a load of laundry, Lindsay cleans the bathroom, and Derek does outside chores (feed dog, cats, and take out trash).

  Then we begin our school day.  After quiet time we also work on afternoon chores.  Wednesday is laundry day for the kids.  They each have their own laundry basket in their closets for dirty clothes and when it's their turn they take them to the laundry room and do their own load.  Both of the older two know how to run both the washer and the dryer.  Lindsay, right now, is responsible for both her and Leah's clothes.  Mommy, then folds and puts clothes away when they are dry.  They are both also responsible for stripping their sheets once a week and washing those.  Then Mommy puts new sheets on their beds.  I have other chores written on the fridge for other days of the week, such as cleaning light switch plates, baseboards, wiping down the kitchen trash can, fridge, stove, etc. 

   There are days, that my "help" can become a little overwhelming, but I have to keep in mind their "help" will not be perfect.  Leah, right now, LOVES, to be in the kitchen with me at all times.  And some days, I just want to hurry up and finish what I was doing, when here she comes pushing her chair over to help me.  So I have to take a deep breath and find her something to help with.  It is almost impossible for me to do dishes without her by my side now.  I wash and she rinses ;)  And when I cook, she is right next to me handing me things.  She's very resourceful, I can tell her almost anything in the pantry or fridge to bring me and she will, as long as it's not on the top shelf.  And I know in the long run, these are the moments I will cherish, when she's grown and gone.

   There are lots of resources out there, that I have used for ideas in teaching the children.  One of my favorites is Managers of their Chores .  Check out the whole Titus 2 website.  They have so many good books and training advice!  Another favorite of mine is Homemaking 101 from Family Vision Films.  Click Here to watch the trailer for the DVD

  I hope this is does encourage you with "littles".  And just remember, that all of your hard work does matter.  Even if you have to do it again tomorrow, you're working for the King!

  Have a Blessed Day!!!

Monday, January 2, 2012

2012: New Year's Resolutions

1.)  Read my Bible everyday!!!
(Ronnie and I have started reading together again, hopefully we can keep this up!)

2.)  Try to continually bless my husband:
Fix his breakfast
Pack his lunch
Make sure his clothes are clean
Try to keep the house picked up the best I can

3.)  Read to the children everyday; more than once is better.

4.)  Work on scripture memorization with the children more.

5.)  Less computer, TV, screen time.

6.)  Cook more at home:
Work on menu plans
Less eating out
Cook from scratch more

7.)  Rest on Sunday ~ No working!