Friday, August 29, 2008

The Birth of a Train Ice Cream Cake

I must really love this my oldest boy! This truly was a labor of love. There are a lot of things I would do differently, and I think that I hope that I have a chance to do it again! Jonathan said "Thanks Mommy for making me an ice cream train cake. I'm going to love it!". That made it all worth it!

(You can click on the picture and it will enlarge it so you can see it better.)

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Grab The Tissues

My mom emailed me this video today. I have seen this team highlighted on the Ironman coverage on TV. I leave you with one there something that, if you child dreamed of being able to do but couldn't, that you wouldn't find a way to make happen?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Happy Birthday Sweet Baby J

Manly Man (that would be your dad) and I love you very much and hope that you have the best day ever! Your birth was our second best ever! I came up with "Sweet Baby J" when you were a few days old. We continued with that name and eventually shortened it to "J." Then Jacob came along and "J" was a little confusing for you I think. You are still my Sweet Baby J. I feel all gushy thinking about your birthday. You didn't want to come were snug as a bug. But when you made your appearance into the world, you came out in style, with the coolest hair ever! It was highlighted and spiky! I instantly fell in love with you. What mother doesn't? You were really cute though. So cute that I was almost a little nervous about your brother being born! (Love you Jakey!) You melted my heart instantly. When we picked your name, we wanted you to be a loyal friend, just as Jonathan was to David. I can see already that you will love fiercely and will fight when an injustice is done, to you or someone you know. You have that passion in you. And so young. It must frustrate you at times, that you don't know how to handle it all right now...but you will. God will use you, if you will let him.

I could snuggle up to you any time, even though you hate it. I love that when you are sick, only I can make it some what one else. I love the way you tell me that you love me. I love it when you hug me. I hope that one day, you will look at me with a great sense of love and a little pride.
Now, on to the embarrassment...

Happy Fifth Jonathan! We love you!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The First Week of Homeschool

(GRRRRR...I tried to post this yesterday, but blogger wouldn't upload my photos!!!)
August 18th officially marked our endeavor into homeschooling our boys. We aren't sure how long we will home school...we're taking it one year at a time. So, Jonathan is in kindergarten and Jacob is three. Jacob has been the most challenging part because he so wants to be able to do everything that Jonathan does, but really isn't able to yet. He tries though.

We are following the book The Well-Trained Mind (it is a classical education "guide" if you will). Formal classical education doesn't start until 1st grade, but you can start in kindergarten with the basics...handwriting, math, and phonics.


Handwriting: Zaner-Bloser (they teach continuous stroke which makes it easier to transition to cursive wish they would have taught Jonathan this in preschool since we are having to redo a few letters!)

Math: Singapore Math (I love math and really want my kids to love it and maybe even excel at it too...they teach multiplication and division together, since they do go together!)

Phonics: An Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading (the boys are both do this...why not let Jacob learn his sounds right?)

We start with a Bible lesson and then go on to the other three...I let Jonathan pick which to do first, math or handwriting, then we do the other and then phonics. I will have to do another post about what I am going to do with Jacob, after I see if it works.

I would have to say that I enjoyed the first week, and that I can honestly see us doing this for at least a few years, if not all the way. I am not sure if we can afford it though, me being at home and not working. We will have to see.

Here are a few snap shots of the first day.

Here they are at the table working on handwriting and tracing lines.

Here they are being horizontal and vertical lines.

Here they are learning phonics.

I love that I can teach on the floor!

I am trying to implement a rest time for Jonathan during Jacob's nap. He normally piles up with me to watch some TV. I am trying to be more proactive about the TV time. Don't get me wrong...I turned out OK and grew up watching a lot of TV and I think there is a place for TV, but I am starting to wonder if the attitudes we are getting from our boys are coming from the TV. Hmmm??? So, I will let you know how the rest hour and a half goes. Today, it went tell. Jonathan went to his bed with some mazes, which he loves, and a few books. He did great! I slept, showered, and worked on the computer a little.

So, I imagine that my schedule will change a hundred times or so. Once I get it tweaked a little I will post it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Jacob's Funny

Jonathan: How many planets are there? 7?
Me: No, there are 8.
Jonathan: What does Pluto make?
Me: Pluto would make 9, but it isn't a planet anymore.
Jonathan: Why isn't Pluto a planet?
Jacob: Because Pluto is a dog!!!!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Melt My Heart (x 2)

I just finished our Bible study for the morning with the boys. I am using a one year Bible for children and as asking them questions after I read them the lesson for the day. I started at the beginning even though it is August. Today's lesson was about Adam and Eve being sent away from the garden because they had sinned. After the lesson, I prayed for us that we could stand strong when tempted and that we would try our best to obey. I also prayed for the boys to have kind hearts and loving hearts when their friends came over in a little while. After I said the words "kind hearts and loving hearts", they both, at the exact same time, sat up on their knees and kissed me on my cheek, one on each side! I started to cry and could barely finish the prayer. I am truly blessed! Thank you Lord for these sweet boys and for the chance to be home with them!

Thankful Thursday

I am thankful for...

1. Manly Man working so hard for us
2. second chances (and third, and fourth...)
3. the right to home school my children
4. homeopathic allergy relief "medicine"
5. friends who really know me
6. Jacob's laugh that I have to get on tape because it is just way too hysterical!
7. my family's health
8. health and dental insurance for all of our upcoming things that need to be taken care of (next on the list...wisdom teeth out for me...if I can be brave enough)
9. Jonathan randomly hugging me, kissing me and telling me he loves me
10.God not giving up on me, even when I don't believe Him...Lord help my unbelief!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A Pseudo-Mistreatment

The Nester sponsored another mistreatment party and I am a day late. Always my luck, but hey, I got it done!

This was Jacob's bed. It didn't have a comforter or even a quilt or blanket that "covered" it the way it is "supposed to." I didn't order the matching stuff to go with his brother's bed because it was a little expensive and because we are hoping to get bunk beds soon and change their room to a fire fighter's room theme-y thing.

I decided to finally get him a "real" comforter and found a reversible one (navy/red) at Kohl's for only $20 (on sale)! I got one for Jonathan also. I have been wanting to have some sort of bed skirt, but not ruffles...they are boys. I haven't wanted to pay for one though. Honest. I got some stuff from my mom's house last weekend that has been there for about a year now. In one of the storage tubs was a set of navy blue twin sheets.

That poor flat sheet didn't stand a chance. I just tucked and made a flat pleat and safety pinned it in two places and wala....(how on earth do you spell that word?) I had a bed skirt!

All in all, I am pleased with it. It will work for now, until we do the bunks and don't need a way to hide stuff under the bed!

***Side note....I showed Jacob his new bed.

Me: Jakey, come look at your new bed.
Jakey: Wow, it is even bigger!
Me: Now you have real big covers.
Jakey: That means Daddy can't poot in it!

Makin' Mama Proud

I haven't enjoyed the Olympics as much this year as in the past. Perhaps it is because they are just way to darn late to stay up for. Yes, I am that old! I have always liked watching the is as close to ballet as the Olympics gets so, in some way, it is nourishing to my soul. I watched the last 8 or so miles of the women's marathon this year...that was inspiring! I have enjoyed running, but I highly doubt that I will ever run a marathon. But, never say never. The diving competition is also pretty intense...I always fear a head being cracked open on the has happened! I have seen a few minutes of fencing, rowing, indoor cycling this year.

I think I spent more time this year watching swimming. Perhaps it is the sheer power that swimmers seem to possess as they push through that water for anywhere between 20ish seconds to 15 minutes. I watched the men's 1500 meter race...30 lengths of the pool...that is intense. Perhaps my intrigue comes from the fact that my swimming skills are sooo bad! Maybe it is because my boys took their first swim lessons this summer. I do know one thing however. I was captivated by Michael Phelps and his push to make history this Olympics. I remember him going for it in Athens and not making it, but still doing a remarkable job. I found myself drawn to the TV to watch his races, cheering him on every stroke. I was filled with so much pride for him, like he was my own boy. I watched the interview that Bob Costas did with Michael Phelps and his mother, Debbie Phelps, after the 8 gold medals had been won. I was taken back by the way that Michale looked with so much honor on his mother. I believe that he is just as proud of her as she is of him. He searched for her during every race, every medal ceremony. He gave her his flowers, as if paying tribute to her for everything that she has done for him. It was beautiful. I can only hope and pray that one day, my boys will look on me with a little bit of pride and a whole lot of love!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Manly Man's Monday

Thanks Manly Man for all you do for us. Thanks for loving me through it all. Thanks for putting up with me, especially lately. I know it has been a bumpy road, but I love you and love being married to you!

Thanks for a wonderful birthday trip to the mountains. It soothed my and the mountains. And, I loved that we finally found that old store...if only we could find the water falls!

I love that you took the day off to come to the boys' "show" that last night of music camp. I love the way you hugged me when you saw me for the first time in 5 days. I still love you even though you forgot to notice my new hair cut and color when I got home.

I loved drinking coke from a bottle with you and having that yummy burger. I really loved finding that gas for only $3.45!

I'll miss you this week. Remember, you are doing it for us all and in the long run, it will be worth it. I love you! Here's to some good lasagna coming your way!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Yep...It's The Pollen

I did some research and found this site that gives the pollen forecast for your zip code. You can also do a history search for the last 30 days. Ragweed is in full bloom again and so is Jonathan's nose. Poor thing, his eyes are watering and nose is running. He even wore his sunglasses inside the mall today. I have started back giving him his homeopathic allergy medicine that we found about a year ago, but it takes a few doses to really start helping a lot, so in the mean time, he is taking benedryl too. He has been on claritin, singulair, and zyrtec as different points in the past 2 1/2 years, which just seem crazy to me, but we took him off due to some side effects. I feel much better about this all natural allergy "medicine" than anything else. So, I must venture to get some tissues after Jacob wakes up because Jonathan, and Jacob a little, have been going through them like crazy! By the way, anyone out there have any good, natural remedies for allergies, besides honey?
By the way, all I have had to eat today is cookie bars and half of a turkey sandwich! Ha! Can't wait for the period to start!!!!

The Countdown

We have three days left. Three days! How crazy is that? Homeschooling starts bright and early at 8:30am on Monday morning. I am still having some mixed emotions about it all. I have a feeling that some of those may get hashed out here in bloggy land. A lot of them I have already mentioned, but haven't necessarily had them completely resolved in my heart.

I do have to say that I am really looking forward to starting school at 8:30 in the morning, being finished at 10am and then heading to the gym for about an hour, run errands and still get home in time for lunch. Lunch. Not dinner! Amazing to me how long a day in "school" can last!!!

Summer Time, Right?

I am still not sure if it is the end of the summer allergies kicking in on both of boys, or if a cold virus has managed to find its way into our home. Either way, I am not so happy about it. However, I am SOOO thankful for the past almost 4 months of no colds and 3 months of little to no allergy symptoms! Such a blessing!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Honesty IS The Best Policy

Whoever came up with that saying was a genius! I remember always being told that by my parents...who doesn't? Telling the truth was always the "right thing" to do, right? Then, somewhere along the line, we decided we didn't always want to hurt the one we were telling the truth to. We started to pad the truth, soften the blow. From there, we spiraled into lying. Some degree of lying, but lying none the less. We didn't always tell the truth. We tried to be self-righteous and say that we didn't want to push someone away,or hurt their feelings or something kind of noble sounding. But the truth was, we were lying. Then it became easy...almost a way of life.
I bet you are wondering if I am a compulsive liar aren't you? I am not really. I do tell lies sometimes. But I am learning. Learning that lying doesn't help. Trying to hide the truth doesn't help. Especially when you are trying to portray yourself as something that you aren't. There has been a lot going on around my house lately. And honesty is reigning, which means that Jesus is reigning. And that my friends, is always an amazing thing! The best thing! It is hard to ask to the hard questions. It is even harder to answer them honestly. In honesty, there is forgiveness. In honesty, there is hope. In honesty, there is healing. In honesty, there are no pedestals or "holier then thou" attitudes. In honesty, there is only love. And love endures! And love is the greatest of things.
I am blown away by the nastiness of my heart sometimes. How I want to hurt Manly Man for something he has said or done. How I choose to be mean to people, family and friends even. How I can be so judgemental about things I know nothing about! How I can decide that "I am not like them."
When I can be hard core honest, it is humbling to watch what the Lord can do. My words, actions or attitudes may seriously hurt someone. But when I choose to be honest about it, and tell them "yep, I sure was trying to hurt you by doing/ saying ___________" and ask for their forgiveness, the honesty touches the other person and brings about a softening of both our hearts, repentance in my heart and forgiveness in their heart. Honesty truly is the best policy. Of course, there must be tact involved. Nobody likes being told they look fat in a pair of jeans. There are appropriate ways to be honest and sometimes it is hard to find that balance.
I challenge you today, to be honest with someone, perhaps yourself, and definitely with the Lord. See what He can do with it. It will blow you away!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A Week At GG and Daddy B's: Water Surprises

The boys and I are in the Queen City having a ball! They are here for Music Camp at my parents' (GG and Daddy B) church. We have been keeping busy in the morning with camp, and the afternoons have been filled with trips to the pool, playing and eating yummy food! I spent some good time with my dad, while waiting 2 hours for a tow truck! My van died in the parking lot of my sister-in-law's country club! What cracked me up the most about that was all the men leaving the pool or the tennis courts asked if it was the battery. What gave that away? The hood up? My mom's car parked front end to front end with my van and her hood up? The JUMPER CABLES??? They breed some smart ones there huh? The van is now fixed, much to the boys disappointment...they were really enjoying riding in GG's car!
We took a trip to the pool at the Y yesterday. The wade pool was closed until this morning because of an "accident." So I had to get into the big pool by myself with the boys so mom and I tag teamed. She didn't want to get in because we were going to dinner after the pool. I had Jonathan in the pool for about 10 minutes and then switched. I got Jacob in and he was in for about 5 minutes when the lifeguards blew their whistles. I guessed it was for a break. I guessed wrong! Someone had pooed in the water! For real! I mean, come the water? The pool is clearly marked that only toilet trained kids can swim in the big pool!!!! So, we got out and I felt so gross! I wanted someone to pour alcohol over my head so I could feel clean! NASTY!!!
Anyone else had crazy pool experiences???

Friday, August 1, 2008

Time. Must.Stop. Now!

My youngest had sweaty arm pits last night. I noticed them as I was getting him ready for bed. Manly Man noticed them when he snuggled him through the thunderstorm last night. He smelled like a sweaty man! Well, time is flying by way too fast! Too. Fast! Both, not just one, but both of my boys are wearing Manly Man's deodorant. They are so proud. I just want time to stop! Can't they be my babies forever?

Jonathan at 1 week
Jacob at 1 week