Friday, May 28, 2010

The Reading Corner

Recently I moved some furniture around the house. We needed a change and some more organization to most of our school materials. Our house doesn’t have any spare rooms left for a play or school room so the dining room is where all the action takes place. Thus this is where I moved the little bookcase necessary to house school things.

I put up this years material and then brought up from the basement last years material. It was so funny to watch the kids sit on the bin I brought up and just peruse what was there.

Kiersten was meeting up with some old friends and remembering stories read before and Isaiah was picking up the science experiment book and finding thing after thing he wanted to try again. Katie, she just wanted to see what the other two were looking at so closely.

The only damage done thus far was to the small occupant on top of the bookshelf just now…a caterpillar we found on a walk. Poor guy has been tossed around a bit and then dropped. Insult to injury if you ask me.

Anyhow, back to the reading corner or area. It is a blessing to have things organized and up for us to find all in one place and I am looking forward to adding many more years worth! I know the kids are as well. (We’ll worry about logistics later. : ) )

Thursday, May 27, 2010


I have been debating and seriously considering alternate schooling options for our kids come Fall. I have been nervous about #4 coming and could I handle it all (still am). Will I do a good enough job? Will I still have my sanity at the end of the day? Will my kids’ have theirs? How will I be able to keep up with day to day things, school and a new baby? Just mountains of questions and insecurities about what I can or can't do.

So I did what any grown woman would do…I confessed to my husband. I made my fears known to him and asked him how he felt about tentatively enrolling the 2 oldest in the public school system next year. That conversation did not go at all how I had envisioned it going. It wasn’t bad. It just wasn’t what I thought I would hear in response. My Beloved was quite opposed to doing the public school thing.

After that conversation I had to think on the situation a bit more. Another Mom informed me our state offered ‘virtual’ schools. These types of schools allow your child to be registered as a public school student and yet still do school at home. They would receive a laptop, have an on-line teacher and all school materials would be sent to us at the state’s expense. It sounded like the next best thing- the in between of sending them to school and full time home schooling.

But the more I thought on it the more I realized this situation might be even more stressful than doing the home school program we do now. I mean, my kids aren’t big enough (at least the little guy isn’t) to do on-line courses without help. They would still need my physical help for quite a bit AND I would be at the mercy of someone else’s schedule. That pressure of marching to another person’s tune didn’t sit so well with me.

The other thing that made me seriously reconsider doing the virtual schooling option was checking out their curriculum. We predominantly use Sonlight and there are things here and there I don’t love. However, one of the things I do love is the reading material that they have selected, both for us to read together and for her to read on her own. The stories are wonderful. The virtual program didn’t really have a reading program and the math was a bit weak. It just was all around unimpressive. I don’t mean to sound snobby about it.

Then I looked at what we would be doing this year through Sonlight, Core 3 – Introduction to American History, and I got excited again. The Biggest Man has also been making his own strides with reading and we’ve started a different Bible program just this week to bring him into all this schooling business too. That has been neat to see him join the fold a bit and take an interest in learning.

I still have time to say I want to do the virtual school option…but I think I just might pass. After all, even if we can’t stay on schedule in the Fall we can always extend through the Summer and just try to enjoy doing the family thing together.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Baby Dilemma

Why is it so hard to come up with names for boys’? We are just stuck. We have a few, and I mean very few, ideas but nothing that really strikes us.

It isn’t that we need a totally original name and yet I find myself poo-pooing those names that are more common and highly used… like Matthew, John, David. These are all good names…but not ones I want to use. We have talked about Ezekiel, Eli, Caleb and Ethan. No middle names at all. Hard to head that way when you cannot even come up with a first name that just hits home.

Maybe it is especially hard this time because we both feel like it is a girl. We had trouble coming up with boys’ names when we found out we were expecting the first time. In fact the name we had chosen for a boy, if Kiersten had been one, we recycled when we found out what #2 was. (The only child we found out the sex of ahead of time.) We didn’t even discuss other options. We just went with what it took us so long to come up with the first time around.

With Katie we had an ongoing bet about the sex…so there was something there, in me at least, that made having a boy a possibility. Not that our guts are right about the sex of this baby, but the since we are both on the same team it makes it seem almost unnecessary to come up with a name and yet we know we need to. Does that make any sense?

Now girls’ names? Oh, we can come up with a list of 10. We have one in mind, subject to change. We are thinking Megan, Maegan, Maeghan (spelling it isn’t something we are solid on as of yet : ) ).

All that being said - any help for a boy's name? Anything at all you want to toss in the ring?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Family Fondue Night

Recently my Beloved and I were able to have an adult night away…and yet not leave the house! : ) We had invited over some dear friends of ours whose children are well past the needing a babysitter stage. We had been trying to get together with them for some time…but do you go out? Stay home? What’s best? We finally decided let’s ask them over for dessert after we put the kiddos down. That way we have the best of both worlds. We can have the date night and not pay a babysitter!

Well, we knew that chocolate would go over extremely well with one member of the couple coming so we decided to try a Toblerone fondue. This is a much loved chocolate treat we hadn’t had until Christmas time when one family member gave us a large bar to share. Anyhow, we made the chocolate sauce and I had a little brand new fondue pot/heater thing with 4 colored forks we could place the sauce in on the table to keep it warm.

We chopped up strawberries, pineapple, bananas, green apple, pound cake, and then had Nilla wafers as well. Can I say scrumptious? Really, really scrumptious!!!

Well, Kiersten was a little jealous because she knew we were having people over and that we were having dessert…all without her. (We had to give her some talking to before sending her up to bed. You know, there is nothing you need down here so please don’t come down unless it is an emergency type of talk. Thankfully she obeyed and stayed up even though it must have been killing her! : ))

Our compromise was to have another fondue night the following evening with the kids. We already had everything…all the fruit and such. We just needed to make a fresh chocolate sauce to dip it all in. I am sure you can tell from the pictures that family fondue night was a complete hit! (Check the level of the sauce in the picture with the kids’ and I.) We did give Katie her own little dipping pile on her plate so the sauce would cool down and then she wouldn’t lose her fruit or her fingers in the other pot.

It was truthfully a simple and fun way to have dessert. This will be something we'll do again, that's for sure! I mean how can you go wrong with a bunch of fruit and a delicious chocolate sauce to dip it in?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Really Sweet

Believe it or not this post isn't about the kids! *gasp* This actually is about a call I received from my older brother the other evening. He called a few nights ago when there was a storm passing through the area that had a tornado warning associated with it. He wanted to check and make sure we were all right and just hi.

Now this might seem like no big deal to some but to me it was something special. My brother just isn't the keep-in-touch kind of guy. I don't know how to explain it other than to say he just doesn't. He'll come see you when you are in town. He'll send the occasional birthday card, maybe. It isn't a mean thing or an I don't love you or want to know you kind of thing it is simply the way he is...with everyone.

So when he called to check-up on us, and we don't live in the same state or even a neighboring state, it really meant a lot to me. I guess it is just the kind of season we are in because he sent me a funny birthday card this year, as only brothers can, and wrote a very touching note to go along with it. In fact it made me cry. Sure, my hormones are a factor as a result of the pregnancy but it was just that kind of sweet and loving note that isn't typical of him and because it isn't typical it just meant/means all that much more.

Anyhow, long story short he is a sweetie and working hard to pursue his dreams. He's also single and quite the looker for any of you single ladies out there! : ) Love you Jason. Thanks for checking-up.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Can I Just Confess...

that at any given moment in the day I either feel like I am an old man or a plumber?

Of course I must explain further. Here is my dilemma: my pants are either in need of constant pulling up (because the ever increasing size of my belly) or they are falling down and showing a bit too much of my hinder (because I have not pulled them up in the last 60 seconds or I have bent over).

You will be happy to know in public it is the old man I feel like. I don’t know why I associate the pulling up of my pants as an old man thing other than to say it just seems like you see a lot of old men adjusting their drawers. : )

As for the plumber association…in our family whenever someone was bending over and showing a bit too much of their backside we called it plumber’s crack. I know, I know! It isn’t P.C. or nice. I am just telling you what we called it back in the day. And cut me some slack, I didn’t have any sisters I just had brothers. Anyhow, I tend to feel a lot like the plumber when I am at home as I am forever bending over to pick something or someone up.

I am just so annoyed with pants right now and completely disappointed in a pair of maternity capri I bought the other day I almost cried. Why won’t anything stay up for the love of Pete?! I was able to take all of 5 steps in those pants before they were sagging. Yeah, those babies are going back. I know I didn’t have this much trouble with pants when I was pregnant the first time.

Am I just getting old and crotchety or do they really make some seriously lousy maternity wear for the every day gal? Any suggestions other than suspenders? : ) Heard that one already.

You can be thankful there were no pictures associated with this post. : ) I had to throw a laugh in there at the end of my grumbling!