Homeschool Conference!!!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Look at all those beautiful little feet two people can create!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Once Upon a Time...
There was a young girl who dreamed of one day meeting her handsome prince...

Well, much to her dismay, she met many a disappointing toad, never finding anything that resembled her dream prince! She tried and tried, she kept her chin up, she believed in others, she hoped and she continued to dream of a happily ever after ending, but life kept dishing out one toad after another...
Just as she was about to "Give up" thinking all was lost, that the handsome prince we all dream of was nothing more than simply a dream and not a reality, it happened!
He appeared, not on a white shining horse, but definately the knight in shining armor. How his eyes shined, how he made her heart skip a beat, how she dreamed of what life might be like to be in his arms each day, how she dreamed he would always remain the prince she'd so desperately hoped, dreamed and longed for, that he would never change and become another disappointing "toad".
Well, that young girl was me and that dreamy prince, yep, he is my hubby! And he hasn't changed, hasn't become a toad, he still makes my heart skip a beat, his eyes still shine when he looks at me, and he holds me in his arms every single day...

I feel so full of gratitude for the man that I married, for the way he cares for and loves me. He does the sweetest little things that still make my heart pitter patter and when he comes up behind me just to grab me for a dance in the kitchen, I feel that I am the most blessed woman ever! A man who still loves me, tells me daily and more importantly shows me on a continual basis. A dear husband who puts me on a pedestal even when I may not deserve it, the man of my dreams. He is my dreamy prince with eyes that sparkle when he looks at me ~ this is one of the ways that I REALLY know he loves me, I can "see it", I can feel it, his love makes me complete.
After all these years and all these kiddos, he is still my knight in shining armor, he can still sweep me right off my feet. He makes me laugh and fills my days with joy...
He is strong, yet soft...
He is bold, yet tender...
He is serious, yet light-hearted...
He is

and because of him I am
Living my Happily Ever After Dream...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Can School Go On???

One of my biggest worries with being sick is how to do all the schoolwork.
How do you teach when speaking just a few meager words takes your breath completely away? How do you read all those great stories? How do you answer questions? How do you explain that new math concept? How do you praise when one of them "gets it"?

Well, it has been a little bit of a challenge this past few days. I still cannot read aloud to my kids, but I have been able to talk a little here and there. And wow, can I be a great listener... Maybe that's a lesson all in itself...hmmmm

I have seen great things happen this week. My little Cassie keeps asking if we can do history ever again. It's only been a week and a half since I could actually read aloud to them, but they miss it. This is such a good thing! It's the little things in life that we cherish the most, especially when we can no longer do them. Hopefully just another week or so and I'll have that treasure back...keepin' my fingers crossed :)

But here is what is taking place instead of our normal routine, with me "being in charge". My little 9 year old has decided to pick up reading an assortment of books. I just have to laugh, he is picking up my bad habits, can't just read one book at a time, he has started three ~ all in the same morning. Now he reads a page or two from one and moves on to the other. I just have to smile...
Check out his choices:
Hardy Boys,
and Uncle Tom's Cabin.
All I can say is he is ambitious --
may take him until he reaches 12 to finish Uncle Tom's Cabin, or he may read it for a bit and put it away...whatever he chooses, I am okay with, I am just so thrilled to see his interest and desire!

The little girls have been researching everything there is to know about ocean life, birds that fly south for the winter, among so many other topics. The creativity and puppet shows have been outstanding! They have come up with some fantastic recipes...can't wait till I have the strength to actually stand and prepare a meal again. Watching their little minds go to town is so sweet and inspiring.
Natalie is really missing baking. She came up with her own little rendition of banana bread last night. She went into the kitchen, cut up a bunch of bananas, got out the sliced bread and cinnamon and thought she'd just mash it in. Sounded great to me. Then she wrote her own recipe for cherry pie, it was adorable. In fact, it was so adorable and hysterical, that I just need to share it...

take 2 cups powterd soogar (powdered sugar) and 1 cup woter (water) and 1 cup flowr (flour). Mix it up bake 5 mints (minutes) then take owt (out) and dump 1 can cherre sos (cherry sauce) on top. Its dun! (It's done!)

(We'll be attempting her recipe very soon...sure glad it doesn't have anything disgusting in it, cause I will undoubtedly be the guinea pig!)

My big boys have been doing great taking care of what they know they need to stay on top of. Luckily, I can work with them just answering a few things here and there and they are able to keep on. We did a huge lesson on Latitude and Longitude this week...hooray, after balloons and globes and oranges they've got it!!! Danielle is so good at just handling herself that I just review her work and smile with approval. Don't know what I'd do without my older kids...they are just priceless to willing to help pick up the pieces when I cannot. To me there is just nothing greater than to see that teenagers can have compassion and caring and put others ahead of themselves. Their willingness and love is inspiring and rewarding to me, I am one lucky Momma!

I've had a lot of time to reflect and to sit back and watch. It's hard to not be right in the mix full time, but it has been a blessing to see what they will do with themselves and truly to see that they miss their routine.

Just today, Bryce took over the girls and helped them to create the greatest Thanksgiving Crafts. They were busy for hours and so very happy! And they are so ecstatic to go and share the place cards and napkin holders that they made today to decorate the Thanksgiving table.

And there's another biggie!!!
I always host Thanksgiving Dinner and I LOVE doing this. But not this year...I guess I will just have to sit back and let others "serve and take care of me". Sure hope this passes soon! It is so much easier and happier for me to be giving to others, but I am so very grateful for the love and support of such a wonderful family and outstanding friends! I am so blessed!

So to answer my original question that I've been dealing with for the past few days, can school really go on when the mom/teacher is not up to par?
A resounding YES is the answer!!!
It's different, but not in a negative way, rather in a positive enriching way.

Maybe this is just what some of us need -- to let things go a little and let them explore who they are and what they love and to help them realize how much they do really enjoy learning. Because, after all,
it really is all about
Learning to

Sunday, November 21, 2010

My Personal Vacation???

You would think I would have had all the traveling and time away from home that a person could ever need after our very busy past few months.
But I had my very own vacation, all alone (a few visitors here and there, but I have a pretty protective hubby that kept it very hush-hush, so I would have quiet time).
This was not the vacation I would have planned (or would ever plan again), but I do have to say the service was impeccable, I was waited on hand and foot and every whim I had was fulfilled with the simple push of a button. I didn't have to cook for myself, get a blanket when I was cold, I could have even had someone else shower my body (that one I did not go for, that was a little too personal!)
The food was a little less than desirable, but they had some great ice water and orange juice and the graham crackers weren't too bad.
I had a T.V. at my disposal with the remote all to myself, no one to fight with over what we should see, no little kid shows, although I was tempted a couple of times, but thought I'd indulge in something new. I have now officially watched enough T.V. to last me for at least 5 or 10 years!!! I am happy to say that I saw programs I have never seen and watched a couple I haven't seen in a very long time. T. V. is a very rare thing in our home, just nothing good to watch, but here...I had cable or satellite or something like that, there was bound to be the greatest things ever (well, maybe for some, but I think I can now do without, again, I had my share for the next few years) But, let me share the highlights...
Food Network was pretty amazing, the Design shows were fabulous (if only I had the energy to do any of what they showed, but maybe soon I will),
I now know who Dr. Oz is, and no Momma's out there who were just like me, not the wizard of Oz, but a man named Dr. Oz. He was a pretty smart cookie from what I could tell...learned a few new things, just hope I can remember them long enough to put anything into action.
I also watched Oprah, saw Barbara Streisand sing, what a lovely voice! Saw an interview of Cher...I'm tellin' ya, that woman just does not age! Wouldn't want her life, but love her voice, too!
Let's see what else did I watch?
Well, a whole lotta news, yep, it's gonna snow and snow, if they are all right. Not really sure what the temperature might be, cause every channel had a different idea on that one, but my best guess is "Cold".
Saw, or listened to when I would doze off or when I would need to close my eyes due to content (I still need to be good, even though no one else was watching), the top 40 country songs of the decade...that was pretty good and it helped to block out all the noise in the hallway and surrounding rooms.
And finally I slept in a bed that served as a pretty great recliner...I could sleep whenever I wanted, didn't matter the time of day or night, no one really cared, in fact they were thrilled each time I went to sleep (not that they didn't wake me up every other hour, but then they'd leave me to be and with any luck at all, I'd be off in dreamland again.)

If you haven't already guessed where I spent my little vacation, yes in the hospital. How dumb is that??? Who on earth wants to go the hospital for a vacation? Who planned this? Well, I'm afraid I may be a little at fault...
Monday I was complaining that I never have any time to get to all of the things I need or want to do, had myself a little pity party and guess what happened? That very night I started getting sick. So do yourself a favor and don't complain!!! By Wednesday evening, my hubby had me in the emergency room, I couldn't breathe, I couldn't think, I was going downhill very fast, it was not a pretty situation.

After spending many hours in ER, I was admitted to a room.
Test after test after test...
Ruled out were Heart Attack, Blood clots in my lungs and a couple of other things I cannot remember. Thank Heaven for those results... I think this was all a little too much for my Dear Husband to be thinking about, but I am okay.
What they did find was that I had come down with pneumonia with an asthmatic exacerbation. All I knew was I could not breathe and my chest hurt like it had never hurt before. They quickly had me hooked up to oxygen, which I stayed on full time for the next 2 1/2 days. They started breathing treatments to help me to breathe and to release the pressure on my lungs. I was pumped full of IV liquids, antibiotics, steroids, and oxygen. Saturday afternoon, I was released to come home with medications to help over the next 10 days.

So after the run down of all the not so great details, I really wanted to
think of some of the great things that happened in the hospital, it was after all, my vacation and I need to relish in the good moments!
I saw the first snowfall from my room...that made me smile! It also made me a little sad that I wasn't home to enjoy my kiddos with all of their excitement of the first snowfall! But it was a magical sight! There is just something about that gently cascading snow as it falls from the sky, snow is amazing to watch fall, no matter the size or the quantity falling, I just LOVE it!

Just outside my window was the flag pole fitted with Our American Flag as well as the Flag for the State of Idaho. What a treat! On my first or maybe it was my second day, it's all a little bit of a blur, I looked out the window to see a very blustery day ~ those flags were just waving about, it was truly a beautiful sight to see. I watched them until I fell asleep again. Amazing what seeing the Flag can do for a person, well at least for me :)

I had a lot of quiet time to reflect, to prioritize, time to focus on how blessed I really am. Maybe that was the entire purpose in my getting so sick...time to slow only worry about me (although I was very worried about being gone for so long, but my family all did just fine).

As Mothers I really think we get so caught up in all of our responsibilities that we get lost somewhere in the mix.
I am absolutely not suggesting that we become selfish to any degree, but I do think we need to take care of us first and that is what I have come away with. When I can make sure I am okay, then I will better be able to make sure everyone else is okay and their needs are met. But, when you are running like a crazy lady 24/7, as I have been doing for much too long, it finally takes it's toll.
It was surprising to me how the doctors and nurses reacted to my being in the hospital with pneumonia. I loved it each time they would say, "You are way too young to have this" doesn't that sound nice? Let's say it again, "You are way too young" LOVE it! Anyway, back to what I was saying, they questioned what I do and how I got myself so run down? Well, I gave them only a small sampling of what I do and they were a little taken aback. Glad I held back some of the information, I might have had a tongue lashing!

Anyway, this was all a very good lesson for me... and one that I wanted to share with all of my friends... slow down a little, it really is okay, take care of YOU ~ it really is okay and so important, and lastly, I said this a little bit ago, DON'T COMPLAIN, cause if you do, you just might end up in the hospital, too! Love you all!

For the next week or so, please send me messages on my email or here or facebook, since talking is very difficult. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and if you are traveling, please be safe!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Volumptous and Happy

For Family Home Evening last night, we focused on Gratitude. I know, not surprising for this time of year, but it was so sweet to hear what our kids are grateful for. I will spare you the list.

Well, this morning I was reminded of our conversations last night during my frustration of finding something to wear that wasn't too tight or too uncomfortable or, or, or...

I found myself grumbling about all of this extra weight and starting to feel sorry for myself. Then I had a thought...
I should be grateful to have a body. SO I went with that thought and am going to choose to look at myself through different eyes from now on. This volumptous body of mine is fantastic and I need to love it!!!

I may not have the body I wish I did, someday hopefully that will change, but until then I am not going to hate who I am and what I see looking back from the mirror at me. I have a fabulous body that is capable of so many incredible things...I can walk, I can play, I can explore, I can run (maybe if it's only for just a few short minutes, but I can do it), I can crawl around with my kiddos and get down on the floor to play games with them, I can skip down our lane or jump on the motorcycles or bikes to hang out with all my boys. I can do all things, because of I am blessed enough to have a body.

You could take that another direction...I could be starving, but I am not and these extra little curves are proof that we eat well ~ and if we ever run out of food, I'll probably survive a little extra time (I have my own food storage, there's a little attached on each hip) I know not a pretty picture, but when you are reaching to love your body as I am, you might as well look for all the reasons!!!

Another thought on that...I know that I had to fight hard in the pre-existence for my body, so why should I be dissing it here just because it's not as perfect as some other bodies prancing around. What an ungrateful thing to be doing!!!

SO, instead of beating myself up that I don't look like a teenager any longer, I will be grateful that my body made the teenagers that we have and remember that there is a time and a season for all things and to be grateful for all of these wonderful seasons of my life.

Here's to a Fantastic Tuesday...