Saturday, September 29, 2012

2 Girls

Two baby girls
Born on opposite sides of the world
Faced with difficult beginnings
Not knowing the love of Jesus.

Two little friends
Now in loving homes
Free to safely play and be "princesses"
They know Jesus!

(While visiting her friend, Jenna got a matching hair-do!)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Band, Boxes, & Building

Busy, busy, busy.  
Just thought I'd add a few more b's to the title of this post!
But it's a beautiful kind of busy.
The kind that makes me so thankful for the flexibility found in our homeschool.
And reminding myself that these are a few of the reasons we choose to homeschool.

Marching band.  Jacob was in another parade last weekend and, thankfully, he was not too sore at the end.  Jamie joined a few other dads and walked in the parade, helping in whatever way was needed (usually picking up flying drumsticks!).
So glad we found a private school that will allow him to join in their band!

 Volunteering at our local food bank.  Today, instead of packaging ready-to-eat meals, we packed survival boxes.  They hold toiletries, food, and Bibles.  Our food bank was out-of-stock because they had shipped 5 semi-truck loads of these boxes to LA after the latest hurricane.  We had a blast filling the boxes, and helping to keep the assembly line moving.

 The older boys helped Jenna count the right number of items.

 Enrichment classes are so much fun, especially when the boys get to use their imagination!
Char and Amarin love legos, and this class is "preparing Amarin to be an engineer..." so he says.
Char's right in there, too, building and creating.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Game on!

Tonight was Jacob and Amarin's first soccer game of the season.
We're so happy that they're on the same team.
They have two of their friends on the team, too, and that makes it all the more fun!

 They have the biggest, most attentive cheering section, too.
Um.  Hey, guys.  The game's in the other direction.
Notice Char's shin guards?  He needs to wear them to help the boys warm up.
He's "sewious" about this stuff.

Since they play for a Christian league, they always start with devotions.
The head guy told them that they would be sure to have soccer time AFTER they heard the gospel message every week!

Char and Jenna started their own little soccer clinic with some friends.

The game started in a fast and furious way.  Both teams were doing great.

SCORE!  Jacob got the first goal of the night!

Amarin, being a year too young for this team, was allowed to play with Jacob if he could keep up.  We think he did great tonight.  He smiled throughout the whole game, just loving it...but stayed scrappy.  He had some great plays, and almost made a goal, too!
He did get kicked pretty hard at the end of the game and is really limping.  We'll see how he's fairing in the morning.

Monday, September 10, 2012

She Dances

The Sanguine Personality:  cheerful, confident, optimistic, hopeful.
Whoever came up with this personality must have used Jenna Mei for the profile because it suits her perfectly.  The world is hers to enjoy, and the world WILL enjoy her presence...she's sure of it!

Just look at this smile on her first day of dance class.

 Here I am, world!

 Leave it to me to forget my camera again, so the camera on my phone had to suffice today.
There is currently only one other girl in her class, so they had lots of one-on-one attention.
Jenna loved that!
When the teacher called the girls for class, Jenna walked to the door, turned around with a big smile and wave, and called, "Bye, Mom.  Bye, boys." And walked right in for class.

They did some tumbling which was hilarious.  The teacher tried supporting Jenna for a bridge (back bend on the floor) and Jenna kept falling and laughing because she's so ticklish!

She said her favorite was tapping.  After seeing how she bangs those shoes on the floor, I'm thinking the garage floor will be the practice place for tap.  They marched to music around the gym, and she waved and giggled as she walked by.  I don't think the smile left her face the entire time she took her lesson.

 They also did bar work.  Watching these little ones trying to "plie" is quite comical.  Of course, I'd end up looking like a pretzel on the floor, so I won't laugh too hard.

When we got home, she changed out of her leotard and put her dance bag by the back door...she's ready to go back for more lessons tomorrow.  Ummm...think we have to wait until Monday, sweetie!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

March on!

Marching band season has begun!
Today was Jacob's first parade.  He was excited and nervous.
Probably most nervous about carrying a crazy-large, heavy sousaphone.

This isn't their regular uniform, but since the weather is warm still, they wore something a little lighter and more casual.  They looked great!

 Jacob isn't quite sure about the shoes.  They aren't on the top fashion list, but they are comfortable and durable.   However, this morning he found the word "womens" on them.  Now he's sure he's not overly fond of them!

 The weather was perfect for a parade...sunny, warm, with a nice breeze.
We lined up on the sidewalk about 40 minutes ahead of time to be sure we got a great seat!


 Guess who else was in our parade?  Cindy Williams, from Laverne & Shirley!
I have no idea why she was in our little parade, but it was fun!

 And here he is, playing his heart out on that sousaphone.  He was extra excited this morning when he arrived at the school because 2 brand new sousaphones had arrived yesterday...just in time for the parade.  And the band director, being the awesome lady that she is, stayed until very late to be sure they were well oiled, and ready to go for the parade!

 The band members, ranging from 4th to 8th grade, did a great job.  Another parade next Saturday and he can't wait!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

School, and a long weekend

I suppose I'd better get caught up on my blog.  My kids will read this blog book years from now and wonder what happened to them during these missing weeks.  Well, I tell 'em....SCHOOL!
It has hit with a vengeance this year.
Compared to some of you moms, 4 kids to homeschool is not a huge number.
But for me, along with their activities, it's enough!

We started school over 3 weeks ago.  Schools go back early here, and Jacob had a week of marching band camp even before that, so I figured, why wait?  We'll slowly ease into our subjects, and we won't even notice a change in schedule.  Ha!  Fat chance of that!

Jenna is 5 and in kindergarten this year.  She loves to color, cut, sing, dance, and play. ABC's and 123's really are not a priority.  She's happy enough without them.  As a matter of fact, the number 9 caused a meltdown one day.  Not sure why (though the males in this house blame it on female emotions).  Blasted number 9!  She's experiencing AWANA for the first time this year, attends a homeschool co-op for art, music, and science, and will start dance next week.  She doesn't know what she wants to be when she grows up (becoming a Christmas tree is no longer an interest, thankfully), but I have a feeling she will be fine as long as she can talk, dance, and sing her way along.

My handsome boy, Amarin, is 10 and in 5th grade.  He has the typical math, history, grammar, spelling, reading, and logic, as well as anatomy, band (drums) and art at the co-op.  Piano is continuing, too.  He's really enjoying history and anatomy so far.  But he's most excited about his Lego engineering class that starts next week. This boy is all about constructing, fixing, and building.  LOVES it!  He says he wants to be an engineer someday, preferably with the Lego Co.!  Add AWANA and soccer to the mix, and he is one busy boy.  What amazes me is that when he came home 3 years ago, we started him in first grade work.  Yeah...he's doing great!

 Charlie, my 6 year old dynamo, is wrapping up first grade in a few months.  His reading has really taken off this fall and he's actually eager to try new books.  He's also waiting expectantly for a "big boy Bible."  The kids all have to be reading well before they can get a "real" Bible, vs. a kid's story Bible.  He has reminded me several times about his upcoming birthday!  Char's first grade work is accompanied by piano lessons, AWANA, and Lego engineering with Amarin.  At this time, he's wavering between becoming a policeman, and a preacher with his Bible on the Ipad.  Either way...he will be teaching somebody right from wrong with a "weapon" in hand!

 This is a big year for Jacob, and one that is bringing some challenges with it.  He has always been the one to whom most things come easily.  So, we upped the ante a little this year, and put him in high school.  He's carrying a hefty load including physical science, writing, grammar, U.S. history, algebra, German, and typing.  He's playing his tuba/sousaphone in a marching band, playing soccer, continuing piano lessons, and participating in AWANA and co-op.  He still finds time to read about collector cars, and right now, becoming a maritime pilot sparks his interest...or any other fun job that makes good money, doesn't consist of long hours, and for which he can earn a college degree on a tuba scholarship.  Let us know if anything like that exists!

 And with that all in motion, we decided to take a long weekend to visit family.
On the way, we stopped by Lake Michigan for a picnic.  We do miss living near these beautiful lakes.
I can't think of a more relaxing time than being by the water.  It's so soothing and peaceful.

 We didn't have bathing suits handy, so we waded.  I predicted that someone would be drenched first.
My prediction came true!  Just look at the innocence on his face!

 My girly-girl was a little more cautious.

Good idea to feel the temperature of the water before proceeding.

 I have no idea...flying?  KungFu Panda move?

 Keeping Laura out of the water is exhausting.  She LOVES being in the water and will not give in until she is in it!  Jamie and I had to trade off to spare ourselves from sore arm muscles.
 Skipping stones

 Laura was laughing so hard she could hardly catch her breath, and as always, ended up with a terrible case of the hiccups.

 Next came their first trip up a sand dune.  Jamie walked with Jenna...

 until she bailed because of "sore legs."  My boys would say...she's such a girl!

 Here come the boys flying down the hill.

 Charlie bit the  He was spitting sand and needed a drink badly!

We're home now and back in full swing.  I'm going to take a nap now.