Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Heavy

I was sharing with Jamie this AM that I just felt burdened. I've heard some things over the past week that just weigh heavy on my heart...
5 very young siblings taken from their families and dropped off at a foster family with only the clothes on their backs.
An attempted suicide by someone we know.
A brain tumor taking the life of a little 7 month old nearby.
Friends waiting for medical test results.
More people losing jobs and not being able to make ends meet.
A young boy killed trying to break up a fight.
Families ridiculed for their multi-racial families.
Patriotic hymns changed to sing praises to our president. Newsflash...he's not the Messiah!
Honestly, what is this world coming to? Where are the people willing to step up to the plate and take responsibility for their children? When will people realize that racism is wrong...wrong in every sense. God made us ALL. He chose the very color of our skins. What gives someone the right to ridicule another because they look different? Maybe that person ought to take a good LONG hard look in the mirror. Where is the grace and forgiveness for others? Where are friends and families in time of need? When will Americans stop being so materialistic, and start putting their money where God tells us...to help others that are less fortunate. I read nowhere in the Bible where God says that he will shower blessings upon those who are dressed stylishly. When will people realize that gossip hurts...hurts the one gossiping, the one hearing it, the one being gossiped about.
I'll be the first to say that I have so many areas in which I need to pray about improving in my life and asking God's guidance so that I make the right decisions. What about you?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Zoo

No, not our zoo at home...a nearby zoo! We had a homeschool field trip today. The weather was perfect, and the kids and I ended up with our own docent, Miss Karen, to take us around the zoo. We haven't been to the zoo since Jacob was about 2 years old. Not sure why...it's so much fun and we didn't even see half of the exhibits today. The kids like to hang out and look at everything, so it takes a long time to get through the exhibits...which I'd rather have than just rushing through to say "We finished!" Jacob also enjoyed talking about all the types of trees with our docent.
Highlights: amphibian house, meercats, prairie dogs, and the polar bear exhibit.

Jacob, the praire dog.

Amarin, the prairie dog.

Uh...Charlie the flattened prairie dog? No...just tired of walking.

On our way into the polar exhibit

Amarin thought it was very cool to sit in this cubby-hole and watch the seals swim right near him. One swam up without him noticing, and when he turned back to look, he screamed in surprise!

Soccer Games

Here are the boys in full swing. They are all doing well and having a lot of fun. When I tell Amarin that he needs to get ready for soccer, he jumps up and down, yells "yeah!" and gets ready at the speed of light!


Jacob (purple shirt) and Amarin (to his left) get to play defense or offense
together once in a while.
The cheering section

Kick it, Jacob! Two goals so far this season...

Nice leap!

Run, Charlie, run! So far...two goals this season. Ok...so one of them he kicked past the net, picked up the ball to better place it, and then made his goal...but it was a goal!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Wardrobe Malfunction

Charlie likes to dress himself. He will change his clothes four or five times a day, especially with the changes in temperature that occur right now during the day (40 in the AM, 75 later in the day). So, today I was giving the boys their haircuts, and finally it was Charlie's turn. He hopped up on the stool, and I'm cutting...and cutting...his hair really needed it! As I started to brush him off, I noticed his attire. He had changed...again...but this time decided to wear a pair of Amarin's "shorts," aka. boxer undies! We laughed and tried telling Charlie that he was wearing Amarin's underwear, but he didn't budge (imagine that) on his wardrobe and insisted they were shorts. Once again, I'm glad we are surrounded by many trees. And, yes, he is sticking out his purple tongue. Hey...doesn't every kid get a lolly after a haircut??

Friday, September 18, 2009

Surround Sound

We went out tonight for some very yummy Thai food (Amarin ate like a horse!) and on the way home Jacob shared his thoughts...which tend to be quite humorous, in a dry sense.
He said, "Hey, Dad. You know how you've always wanted surround sound? Well, now with all these kids in the van, you finally have it!"
We burst out laughing. (Well, I did. Jamie's still dreaming of a real surround sound). But, it's so true. Jacob and Charlie are loud enough, but add in another boy who's becoming more confident with the language, and who bursts out in Thai once in a while, along with Laura's giggles and squeals...we have ourselves one of them there real redneck surround sound systems!

This is what it can seem like is behind me when I'm in the driver's seat! Can I get an AMEN, moms?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

2 Good Books

For those of you who have spare time on your hands (ha!) and are looking for something good to read, I have 2 recommendations:

First, Bryson City Seasons, by Walt Larimore, M.D. These are stories of a small town, Christian doctor several decades ago.
Second, Finding Home, by Jim Daly and Bob DeMoss. Jim Daly is one of the heads of Focus on the Family, and had a rough, to say the least, childhood. I couldn't put this one down and was through the 226 pages in about 3 days.
Happy Reading!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A Friend's Letter

My friend Mickey's blog is private, but she gave me permission to share this letter that she wrote to our president, and I couldn't have said it better myself (which is why I'm sharing her words and not mine). Our country is going down a path it has never seen before, and I have to say that it really puts knots in my stomach. So, without further ado...

Dear Mr. President,
I wanted to thank you for your concern about the civic education of my children. I understand that you have a big speech planned for next week. This speech is going to be televised nationwide....that's quite something. I'm sure you and your speech writers are as busy as bees honing and fine tuning this rather unprecedented oration. While not uncommon for a President to visit a school or address the student body, I don't believe than any of your predecessors have had such an activity put, LIVE, across national airwaves. It's rather exciting, isn't it?? I hope it goes well for you....but my children won't be participating.
While I appreciate your concern for their civic education, I don't need your help, or the government's help with this. I didn't vote for you, Mr. Obama. And before you put your nasty little trump card on the table, the color of your skin/your ethnic heritage had NOTHING to do with my vote. You could have been green with orange polka dots and it wouldn't have mattered. I didn't vote for you because of your ideology. Everything that you hold dear and hold as truth flies in the very face of my own values. I believe that every life is sacred...be it born or unborn. I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. I believe that my husband has the right to own and purchase firearms. I believe that no good can come from governmental meddling in the private sector. I believe that terrorists should be called just that and shown the same mercy that they showed their victims. I believe that America was founded on Biblical standards, by Christian men. I believe that illegal aliens are not entitled to the same rights as I am as a natural born American or as any other American citizen. I believe that men and woman who are able bodied should work and not be paid for their slothfulness. I could go on, but I think that fleshes out the point quite well.
You raise your girls and I'll raise my boys. Let me be their parent. Let me and my husband teach them what is right and wrong and what their roles are as responsible American citizens. That's not your job....you have your own children to teach. You have a country to run...further into the ground the way you're going. The only way you need to be in my sons' classrooms is as a picture on the wall. What you're trying to do isn't much different that what Hitler did...recruiting for the Nazi party in the German schools. Is that the legacy you want to leave behind? Do you REALLY want people comparing you to Hitler?
Our school system has chosen not to show your broadcast because of an outcry from the parents. My husband and I had already decided that our boys weren't going to participate in the viewing of this broadcast. Just so you know, I don't think that I'd feel any differently if the President were someone more ideologically compatible to my way of thinking. I maintain that it is not the job of the President to instruct my children on what kind of citizens they should be, what is good for this country, what they can do for this country. That's my job. You don't see me coming to Washington and trying to do yours, do you?
You be the President....I'll be the parent.
Thank you...Michelle Stinnett

I'm Reading!!!!

Amarin was total smiles after reading these two books ALL BY HIMSELF!!! We love BOB books...the are a "quick success" and the kids feel so pleased when they have read them alone. We are thrilled with the way Amarin is learning English. He is saying new words and phrases every day.
Happy, happy, happy with his BOB books.

Charlie "doing schoolwork" at home.

I asked Jacob how he felt about math tests...no words needed.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Donning Glasses

Ok...Laura is wearing her glasses to school. I wasn't sure I wanted to risk them being stomped on, and since Laura's vision doesn't seem too bad without them, she didn't wear them that first day. Today we tried the "old" pair. They were pretty grimy, so I'm guessing they were tossed to and fro a few times. I remembered the camera today, so here she is in front of her very first locker!
I have to tell you...I'm tired this week. I know a lot of people get their kiddos out the door early in the morning, but I'm just not used to this. And we go all day long, sleep, and do it all over again in the morning. I'm looking forward to Friday when we have nowhere to be in the morning and can do our school work in a timely, but relaxed manner. I have definitely been spoiled with our homeschool schedule in terms of not having to rush out the door every morning. As for my household, well, the dust will wait for me, and we have plenty of clean clothes in our closets.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Laura's turn

I'm such a dork. I took photos of Laura at home before we drove her to preschool. Then, once we were in the school getting situated, I remembered that my camera was in the van. UGH! A nice mom let me use her disposable camera to snap a couple photos, but tomorrow I'll have to take it in so I can post some photos.
Ready to take on preschool...looking mighty sweet, I might add.
Donning her new backpack...almost tipped her over!

Princesses, of course. Do you know how many preschool girls walked in with princess backpacks today? Jamie caught another little girl walking out with Laura's backpack by mistake! And I thought I had the only princess going to preschool....:) Daddy picked her up and said they were outside playing when he got there. The teacher didn't offer any info, so we're assuming all went well on her first day.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Soccer Time

Soccer officially began today and the weather was perfect! I'm hoping we might have this weather right through Christmas....yeah, right. The boys are playing in a homeschool microsoccer league. It's small, not competitive in nature, and Christian. They pray before games, and coaches can pray with their team, too. Also, I know that there will no confrontations between coaches, or coaches and parents, and parents are expected to behave. We've experienced the opposite in another league and was NOT impressed!
I was able to bump Amarin up to Jacob's U10 team and he's doing great. They both really go after the ball and aren't afraid to get in there and "fight" for the ball. Jamie is coaching their team this year along with a good friend of ours. Our friend's son is on their team, too, which is one of the boys' best friends.
As for Charlie, he is on the same team as our friend's other son! I bumped him up from U4 to U6...this kid can run and kick the ball like nothing. He's not afraid of the bigger kids at all. Must be from playing with his big brothers at home. He loves playing and is very determined...and a bit of a ball hog. He was most excited today to get his own soccer t-shirt. "I a really big boy now." His favorite was playing red light, green light during practice. He just has to learn that red light means STOP, not run ahead of everyone else to the goal!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

My Baby

Charlie started preschool today. He has been asking for weeks when he was starting. We went for a visit last week and he kept asking if I could stay with him. For the visit...yes. Last night we put out his clothes and backpack for today. He was very excited when he went to bed, and woke up just as excited this morning. He kept saying, "I a big boy now." He got himself dressed and was ready to go...about 2 hours ahead of time.

"I a big boy now."

...with a very cool "Dora" backpack (yes, I know it's Diego.).

At 9:00, we all boarded the mom-mobile and headed to preschool. He jumped out of the van when we arrived, and I had to lasso him back to get one more photo outside with his brothers and sister. Then inside...more photos...and a few looks of apprehension. But I gave him a hug and said I would be back soon (with Grandma) and he was just fine.

"You come back for me, mom?"

The coolest part was when we picked him up and the teacher called his name to come meet me in the "welcome room." He ran as fast as those short little legs could go and jumped into my arms and gave me the biggest hug! I loved it! He had a great day, lost of fun, yummy snacks and I have 3 huge pieces of paper with paint and crayons to decorate my house already. I think I'm going to need more walls!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Pop!

Started at 9:30 AM, ended at 5:30 PM, and canned 43 quarts of tomatoes. We are officially ready for the chili and goulash season to begin! I happen to think canning tomatoes is fun. It's easy work, and though it takes all day, the end results are so worth it. The best part of canning tomatoes is waiting to hear each of the lids pop, knowing that's one more I don't have to reseal! Today, each time we heard a pop, Amarin and I both cheered. I don't think he really understood what the "pop" meant, just that it was a good thing!


Vacation time!

Already?? School just started! Actually, Jamie surprised us by booking a trip to our RonJon timeshare in Florida for November. We already rented out our week this year to friends, but RonJons sent us an amazing deal for one week, and with all the frequent flier miles we have, our flights are free, too. Jamie couldn't pass up this deal to go to sunshine! The pool area is a blast, we're on the ocean, and can see Cape Canaveral from our room. I would LOVE to be there when they launch a shuttle! We were laughing because the most expensive part of our trip will be the rental car...er, van...because our family can no longer fit in a car!
We've actually been trying to sell this timeshare to put the money elsewhere (a few more adoptions would be nice!). So, if you're looking for one....

Sunday, September 6, 2009

One More Beach Day

One more beach day today on Lake Huron...beautiful day...but definitely fallish. The breeze was out of the north which made it way too chilly for me to swim (I'm kind of a wimp). Not to mention, the lake is only about 65 degrees...can you tell we haven't had a real warm summer?? It was relaxing, and the kids enjoyed the water, sand, and rocks. They made their dad take them out to the sandbar. Poor boys came back with their teeth chattering!


The boys on the sandbar...Jamie, Amarin, Charlie, and Jacob's feet

And, I have to share Laura's new haircut. She has beautiful, silky hair. But it doesn't look so pretty after she's been chewing on it. So, off to the stylist we went yesterday to get a "bob." The stylist was NOT comfortable cutting off almost 7 inches of beautiful hair, and she had to "get her nerve up" about 3 times before she made the first cut. She kept saying, "Are you sure?" One time when she was asking, just for fun, I said, "No." I thought she was going to fall over right there!! I laughed but I don't think she quite saw the humor. I mean, honestly....it's just hair for goodness sake. It can always grow back. But it's done, and I love it. Even at the beach today, it wasn't blowing in her face, and she wasn't chewing it.
A little blurry...she doesn't like to stand still for the photos.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Great Words

I'm posting, but not really writing today. A bloggy friend has written a wonderful post today and I thought I would share it. Thanks, Linny!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New Specs

Are these not the cutest glasses on her? We just got them today and I like them
so much better than her last pair. Here's hoping she keeps them on her little face.


She kept winking at the camera flash.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Wanna Fight?

I hear this every day, usually from Charlie. "Wanna fight, Amarin and Jacob?" Meaning...let's pretend we're beating the tar out of one another, and fall on the floor in a big heap. Amid this "fighting" is lots of giggling, and "boy noises" that sound like action figure cartoons, as well as an occassional "Ow!" Boys...they are one big ball of energy! And those of you with all girls...don't ask me to explain it. Just know there's a whole lot of testosterone here!