Thursday, June 23, 2011

Morning Funny

Me: "Ladybug...why does your hair look so messy?" (and btw we're talkin' MESSY!)

Lady: "Betuz I was seeping!"

Me: "Who took your hair out of that ponytail?"

Lady: "Wiggle!"

Me: "Wow! From across the room?"

Lady: "Yeah...I need my hairbots!" (hairbox--that holds all her hair stuff.) :0)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Special Birthday and Unscripted, Imaginary Play WITH...railroad signs.

Today is a VERY special day at our house! Mr. Snug has turned 8 years old today! He is extremely excited for a few really fun things coming up! 1. Going to Red Robin for his birthday dinner. 2. Starting swimming lessons this weekend. (Late to be learning how to swim, I know.) :0) 3. And last but not least, getting baptized soon! We are super proud of him and all he's learned and accomplished in his life! He is a really great kiddo' and fits perfectly into our family!

We love you oodles, Snug-a-Bug! We are excited for all of the learning and growth ahead of you and are proud of the good boy you are becoming! We know that you will continue to be a force for good in the world! Happy Birthday Buddy! We hope your wishes comes true!

Dad, Mom, Luv, Cuddle, Wiggle and Lady

Yep...that's right folks. I said railroad signs! Luv is playing right now. She is sitting on the floor, here in the loft and using a couple of her brother's railroad signs from his train set, as people. She's built a block tower and seems to be acting out a story involving a prince and a princess! "Hop down from the tower, into the wagon to your prince!", she says. And then...they smooch! When I raised my eyebrows at her as she looked my way, she said "Mom! They JUST got married!" "Okay, I am SO glad!" I said with a smile. I LOVE that she understands the very important truth and importance of marriage and incorporates it into her play! She makes me smile! :0)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Even MORE about scheduling...cuz I'm still workin' on this! :0)

We went on a fabulous trip to Half Price Books this past Saturday! I LOVE this store and haven't been there for a while, so we stocked up on some things we had been needing, wanting and looking for. Some of the goodies that I found...

The Well Trained Mind by Susan Wise Bauer (I'd always heard a lot about this book)

Pocketful of Pinecones by Karen Andreola (Found on Simply Charlotte Mason website)

Janice VanCleave's Big Book of Play and Find Out Science Projects (This is Fab!)

So all three of these books are seriously answers to prayer for me! They each speak to a need we have in our family, or something that I have felt really prompted to spend more time and attention on for us!

The Well Trained Mind ~ though I just barely started reading it last night, I can tell that it's going to help me in my own studies IMMENSELY!

Pocketful of Pinecones is written in story form and is about Nature Study and how a homeschooling mother inspires her children to learn through Nature Notebooking or journaling. I am LOVING this!

And...Janice VanCleave's book about science is SO FABULOUS because we tried to do something called "I Wonder" time, in our kidschool, not long ago. This book is all about chemistry, physics and biology but is phrased in the form of "I Wonder" questions. Now...we really can do "I Wonder" time as a family, and not feel like we are flying by the seat of our pants about where to find our information! I am completely stoked about this one!

There's only one thing missing...some sort of resource for studying the Founding Fathers, the Flag, etc. I am on the hunt for a free or inexpensive resource to help us stay focused and organized about patriotic studies. I'll let ya' know what I come up with or find! Feel free to offer any ideas or suggestions about this! Thanks!

Friday, June 17, 2011

More About Scheduling

These are some of my brainstorming thoughts, that I wanted to get down before I forget them:

Threefold Family Focus: Truth, Joy and Sweetness (The Story We Tell Ourselves About Ourselves), great classic read-aloud

Family Mission Statement and Family Vision: Posted on our wall (recite more often)

Patriotism Focus: The Founding Fathers, The Pledge of Allegiance, The Star Spangled Banner and understanding about the symbolism and meaning of our nation's flag

Gospel Focus: Family History, FHE, Flannel Board Scripture Study and timeline, Gospel Standards, The Living Christ

Family Logistics: Sunday FEC, Quarterly Family Vision Meeting, Job Training, Teaching Self Government, The Closet Mastery Program, Leadership Education Family Builders Group, Friday Co/Op, Play Day Co/Op, never ending medical appointments, Re-visit the Reminder Wall and decide whether it stays or goes

You Not Them: Scripture Study and Scripture Journal, Prayer and quiet time alone, The Gathering Project (or is this too much right now???)


I am up thinking. Ladybug's feeding pump beeped at me, and now I have some things on my mind that need pondering for a moment. What are ya' gonna' do, right?! I have to take a quiet moment where I can get it! :0)

I have been really struggling to make sense of our schedule lately, and to get us back to something good like it used to be. We used to get up every morning and focus immediately on a routine involving morning learning and devotional. I loved this for a while, but eventually found that it threw us into a daily routine that felt a little too rigid and structured. I think we just took that "All or Nothing" mentality a bit and I felt like the kiddos' play and free time fell to the wayside too much and that they weren't learning to work the way they needed to and then when too many things became all-important, nothing was. Fast forward to now and it seems once again, like we've gone in an "extreme" direction. In an effort to balance everything a bit more, we lost our groove for a great learning experience! What is a mother to do? So many options and so many ways to foster greatness or throw a road block in our day! It is really mind boggling!'s an aside for you: An outside family member keeps mentioning to me, that life is often unfair for our children, because there are those who struggle with medical issues and then there are those who lose out on opportunities because one or more kiddo's are sick or compromised in some way and so the family can't do this or that. This statement makes me sad. I try very hard, to give our children the opportunities that I feel prompted they need! But I also feel that as a family, we need to stick together! I know there are valuable lessons that each child is learning, when one of the children needs extra care or keeps us from going here or there. This family member has insinuated that our other children are going to resent me, for not allowing them more opportunities, because of family circumstances. I sure hope that's not the case, but I feel strongly, that our family dynamic was divinely designed and that we need to stick together and support and serve one another! I wish sometimes, that people would keep their comments to themselves, about their outside view of our life. I am doing the best I know how, and I know that the Savior will make up the difference for each of us! Or maybe...I just need a thicker skin! :0)

So... I think this all boils down to allowing too many of the "non-essentials" to become too important. (This, by the way, is quite easy to do, in any family!) We've all heard that saying about how if everything in life is important than nothing is. This completely sums up how I am feeling lately, and we just HAVE to get back to those absolute essentials for our lives and our days. I am sad to admit that our Family Home Evenings have really suffered recently. I even have a little FHE in a Jar, and yet we can't seem to be consistent with FHE. I know my family really needs this! I think I struggle most, in trying to plan a lesson, organize who will do what (or rather just stick to what our FHE Wheel tells us,) make sure there's a treat (I actually think this is a really important part of it), and then carry through with all of it, even when Mr. isn't home from work. (Have I mentioned how insane his unpredictable work schedule is driving us all, including him, lately? Ugh...that's totally for another post!) :0)

It's SO hard to find and then KEEP balance and harmony? Why does this have to be SO difficult? I'll answer my own's that darn satan and his overwhelming desire to get in our way and take the sweetness from our lives! I imagine it like this... life is joyfully proceeding and harmony and balance abound, BUT WAIT! The adversary can't have THAT going on, so he throws stones in the road to trip us, and puts roadblocks out to hedge up our way! It is amazing to me at the simplicity of his job, sometimes, and how easily he sneaks in to throw us off course! It's another one of those things that is MAKIN' ME CRAZY! (Do I really need more craziness? I am quite sure I've got plenty of that to share! Anyone want some, I am full!) :0) Guess what else has fallen by the wayside? FEC! (Family Executive Council meetings.) How do ya' like them cookies? This fabulous, weekly planning tool that brought so much harmony to our lives, has been completely non-existent lately. Goodness...there is SO MUCH TO DO! I can't ever seem to keep it straight! I focus my attention over here, and then something behind me falls apart. I turn to fix THAT, and then that other thing goes "Bye-Bye!" I have determined that Heavenly Father is an amazing, Master Juggler! I plan to ask Him for some private, juggling lessons! I am quite sure He knows all about this sort of predicament I am in! He always keeps things together so beautifully--I think I just need to ask Him again, to be my tutor through all of this! Will I ever get it all together? I really hope so! As of right now, my kids are going to grow up with a very sure understanding that their mama was a bit cuckoo! Goodness me, I HOPE they don't just have memories of all the places I was lacking as a mother, when they grow up! I've really got to get it together better! Any suggestions about how to KEEP it together once I GET it together? :0)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

I LOVE this blog!

Check out this post HERE! Her real name is Shannon, from what I gather, but she goes by The ReadHeaded Hostess. She is a seminary teacher and shares some wonderful handouts and information, including a FABULOUS idea for something called a scripture journal! Check it out!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Wiggle's Next (and hopefully last) Surgery

We are off today, to visit Wiggle's Cranial Surgeon. This doctor drives me bonkers! He never listens to me! I have been trying to get him to realize that Wiggle really DOES have a sub-muccosal (involving muscle) cleft palate, and he would never do anything about trying to really find out for sure. I finally pushed hard enough, and about a week and a half ago, Wiggle and I went and saw this doctor's nurse practitioner, to see about it. We're talkin' about a camera down the nose and everything! She and I geared up for some cookie tossin', but Wiggle was a champ and kept his cookies down. In the end, we all stood there with sweaty, disposable gowns on, for no reason. BUT...she did find that he has a cleft, and even got some crazy video of what is happening inside his head, when he talks. Anywho...I have officially decided that the medical profession really likes to waste your time and money! TODAY....we will see the doctor, so he can confirm that Wiggle does in fact have the cleft, that the nurse practitioner already showed me on video...and today the doctor is supposed to explain the surgery to me, and then we are supposed to schedule it. This will be Wiggle's 3rd surgery since coming into our care. (I believe it will make something like his 6th total surgery in his life.) As a mother, it's very difficult to realize how much Wiggle has had to endure without the love and care we now give him. Since he didn't come to us til' he was three years old, he's really been through a lot, without us. That is something that I know Heavenly Father will make up for us, in the next life. Wiggle is so brave! He's everlastingly happy most of the time, and he entertains us! He has struggled to eat his whole life, and as part of the many good things this surgery will do for him, we are hoping that it helps him talk and eat better! We will keep you posted! Please start praying for him! Surgeries like this, always make Mama nervous! Thanks! :0)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Summertime Love in the Family

I read THIS WONDERFUL BLOG POST today! My friend Rachel is such an inspiration to so many! I admire her SO much! She offers so much encouragement to woman and families! The outside world wants to degrade the sacred role of womanhood and motherhood. Rachel is the most inspiring person I know, at helping us as woman to embrace and relish in our divine roles as women! I can't read her blog without learning, growing and smiling! I hope you enjoy reading this today, and finding new ways to foster some summertime love in your homes and families! We must be vigilant in protecting against the powers of satan, in our minds and hearts and homes. May Heavenly Father bless us as we seek His will and His light! This is my prayer! In the Name of Jesus Christ, Amen!

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Robert Frost (1874–1963). Mountain Interval. 1920.

1. The Road Not Taken

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 5

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same, 10

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back. 15

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 20

I have LOVED this poem ever since I heard it as a child! I found a delightful version of it in the form of a children's story book, at Savers! (Have I told you how much I LOVE Savers?) This poem sums up my life!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Attack of the Stomach Flu

Well we completely missed the HIP Retreat. We are glad we didn't go. Not because we wouldn't have loved it (Boy would we have LOVED it!)....but because we would have had to throw our tent away, with everything we've been dealing with lately. You get the picture. It has taken almost exactly 2 weeks for a 24 hour flu bug to get all the way through our family. (And the Mr. hasn't had it yet. I pray it passes him by!) That's not the kind of record I want our family to be achieving, let me tell ya'! I had it Thursday night and Friday too, and I was grateful the Mr. was here to take good care of everyone including me, while I was down and out for a bit. We are ever grateful for him and his love and service and stewardship for our family! He is our protector, that's for sure...even from attacks of the stomach flu! :0)

We all love you very much, Mr. Man! Thank you for always saving the day (or the 2 weeks!)