Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year

2007 is winding down.

My niece is spending the night. We just finished decorating our time capsule. This year I had the kids answer a series of questions. Favorite color, food, restaurant, song,activity.... Who is their best friend and why. What they want to be when they grow up and sharing some of this years memories and accomplishments.
I will take these questionnaires, along with some trinkets, a cd of some of my favorite pictures and songs. I may add some other things over the next couple days. Then it will be sealed up and stored in the basement until 2018. That seems like so long away. 10 years that is how long it will stay sealed shut.
I have a time capsule hubby and I made New Years 2000. It is to be opened 2010. Only 2 more years. DS can not wait to see what is inside. And since I have long forgotten, either can I.

Happy New Year! God's richest blessings in the coming year!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

My Three Words

Per Mindy's request...


Good Morning America had a segment about 2007 in three words. Check out the link to see some creative ways others have expressed themselves in three words.
I would love to see what YOU have to say. Leave your three words here or link to a picture or video you have posted.

I Have Declared...

Today is "Help Yourself Day!"
Now upon first glance it may appear that I am offering whatever is mine, you can have it; not so.
It means do it yourself, help yourself, Mom is not doing what you are capable of doing...
You see my dear sweet daughter has been playing me. She loves to see what see can get mom to do FOR her. For example: socks, shoes, wiping her bottom and as was the case last night, feed her.
That was too much. How hard can it be for a four year old to put the fork in her mouth? With food on it? Really not all that hard. I have seen one year olds do it. My own one year old in fact. You know the now 4 year old that has forgotten how to do basic life skills.
So this morning I declared,"Today is help yourself today. You will be doing all things by yourself." She pouted and made a declaration of her own,"You are SO mean!" That's is up for debate...
First task, socks. No problem. She goes about her day. Then comes the bathroom. "Mommy wipe me." To which I kindly reply that she is to do it herself. That I will watch to make sure she gets it all. She is not thrilled but realizes that I mean it.She uses 3 times the necessary amount of toilet paper needed to accomplish the job but SHE DID it! For lunch she helped make her quasadilla and then poured her own salsa, stating that today was help herself day. (Smile)
After lunch she decided she wanted to go play outside in the snow with her brother. Which means snowsuit and all outdoor paraphernalia. She asked for help with the snowsuit but I told her to first try to do it. Low and behold, she did it. Then came hat, mittens and boots.She did them all, (gasp) without any difficulty at all. Perhaps a bit of pride and accomplishment.
I am rather enjoying this day. I realize much of her behavior is for attention. I would much rather dote my attention playing games, reading together, baking and the like. It is so much more enjoyable.
This declaration may just end up sticking around for a while.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Sudoku Returns

After taking a very long break from Sudoku, less the occasional puzzle my dad humors me with, I returned today with a vengeance.
I did 31 puzzles today. 31!!! I may go do a few more before bed. My fastest time was 2:20.
What a fabulous lazy day!

Friday's Fragments

Our Christmas was wonderful. Fast paced and full of chaos. About an hour into each family celebration it was obvious the grandparents were not used to having kids running around their homes. Let alone kids hyped up on sugar and Christmas excitement. Ah good times.

On Wednesday, DD went to one cousins house for an all girls sleepover; my poor brother barely survived. DS went to another cousins to sleepover. I had grand visions of cleaning the house from top to bottom. No kids. No hubby. My thoughts were to crank the radio and groove my way through the cleaning. So imagine my surprise when I walked in the house and hubby was parked in his favorite chair, curled up in a blanket, watching TV. Deflated. I grabbed an assembly project and by the time that was complete, all resolve to clean was gone. Without my music I just could not muster the motivation. (Sigh) Hubby was feeling better the next morning so I had two blissful hours of music magic. And the living room looks great.

Once I booted cleaning out the window on Wednesday night I made plans to join a girlfriend at the movies. We went to see Enchanted. Super sappy! Also very funny. Not sure if I am going to let the kids watch this one yet. The lady in front of us at the theater actually took a picture of her daughters horrified face when the evil stepmother was working her evil. There are a few scenes that I think I would rather the kids NOT see. However, since watching this movie I am sappily singing my way through each day. Dreaming of true love's kiss, of course.

My niece and nephew got a Wii for Christmas. When I first took my Wii fitness age, it said I was 80 years old. My niece took pity on me and helped me to the door. I returned yesterday and played bowling and dance dance revolution. We had so much fun. I got the new highest score and my nephew had to go again to try and beat it. Heehee. We are both currently B students when it comes to DDR.

Tracy, I am glad we were able to get together. So many times throughout the year I wanted to give you a hug. It was great to be able to do that last night. You crack me up. Praying 2008 is a fabulous year, complete with British accent.

After reading Wendy's post I decided to join her. Check out the sidebar to see the latest addition. The plan is to update miles as I swim, bike and run my way through the new year. Training has just begun for my next triathlon. Which will be in June. I will probably add a few 5K's and maybe a half marathon to the lineup as well. I would also LOVE to do a bike trip traveling across Michigan. Keeping track on the sidebar will hopefully motivate me to stay on track. Anyone care to join me?

God bless and have an awesome weekend!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Friday, December 21, 2007

Pretty...

Coming in the door, Daddy asked, "How's my pretty girl?"
Little girl replied, "I'm your pretty princess, Kasi (our dog) is your pretty girl."

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Why I Cry...

Last night we were watching the finale of Biggest Loser. I had streams of tears rolling down my cheeks. My husband asks, "Why? You don't even know these people." I think I told him to leave me alone.
But Why? Why do I cry at TV shows? Or baptisms? Or kids singing in choir?
Here is my answer.
I cry because a life has been changed. I rejoice for the man who lost 150lbs and can now play with his kids. I cry knowing he is happier today and healthier. A life has been change.
I cry at baptisms, because a life has been changed. They have surrendered their lives. They have been saved. They will never be the same again. Praise God. I cry because they have publically proclaimed, "I am a child of God's."
I cry when kids sing because there is power in song.There is power in the spoken word. I cry knowing these kids are grasping biblical truths. I rejoice for these kids are moving heaven and earth. Something happens even in the hardest of hearts when a child sings. Lives are changed.
I cry at silly things too. Like at parades; when the marching band passes by. Reminiscing tears.
I get misty eyed when I see my kids grasp the meaning of something new.
I cry when I am angry and I cry when I am sad.
But mostly, I cry when I see a life changed.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Winter Storm


Not sure the actual accumulation...I do know we got A LOT of snow.
Called the church and unlike all the other churches in the area,ours is OPEN. Since hubby and I are both serving this morning, it looks like we are on our way to church.

Update: Hubby had to go into work to clear pathways there. I attended church with the kids. Driving was slow going as plows had not yet cleared the roadways. Surprisingly enough I was not the only one at church.There were nearly 500 there for first service. And the snow still accumulates

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Ministering Words

I just got news that my sisters father-in-law has passed away unexpectedly.
On my computer at the time was this link I was planning on watching. God's timing is perfect. I was just ministered to by a 13 year old boy from Texas. Listen to this broadcast from Sky Angel(89.3) Logan Henderson is wise beyond his years. I hope this ministers to you as much as it did to me.



Please pray for my sister and her family as they mourn.

So We're NOT Normal...

As Patsy Clairmont would say...Normal is just a setting on your dryer.

Hubby and I both received packages in the mail yesterday containing our Christmas gifts to ourselves. Evidence#1 that we are not normal; we give each other money to get what we want rather than buy gifts for each other. I got my new GPSr Garmin 60CX, WOOHOO! And hubby got an electric guitar. And we do not wait until Christmas day to enjoy our gifts to ourselves. Mine was out of the package loaded with way points and out on the trail in less than an hour. Perhaps this is evidence #2. But really the true indicator of how un-normal we are. We let our kids open their main gift from us last night. Heehee. It was so much fun. Complete randomness, we decided to let them open their "Want gift." We sent the kids to their room for a moment to prepare. They giggled their way there. Then one at a time we let them open their gift. Incredibly cute as they giggled and tore away the paper or in DD's case threw off the blanket. I think the below pics express well how they feel about their new gifts.





And as a measure to try and be normal...we will make them wait for the remaining gifts. :)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Oldies But Goodies

My mom has been cleaning and found some old pictures. Enjoy!

All four of us kids in 1981.

Me holding a kitty...

And my sisters work should LOVE this one!
Check out those outfits. Yikes!

My mom entitled this one "My little angel."
I am pretty cute.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Gabby Crump...Amazing

This little girl is amazing!
And super cute!

Spelling

A week and a half ago, the boy bombed a spelling test for the first time. Which left me with a choice. Do I continue on and issue the next list of spelling words? Or do I take a week to review the tricky words and concepts he missed. Hubby and I discussed and decided to do a week of review. As hubby put it"One of the benefits of homeschool is that you can take time were needed."
I looked through some stuff I had for Spelling Power. And used some great ideas,that really worked.
On Tuesday, I had him spell all of his words and recorded them on an audio tape. Then we played them back so he could hear himself spell the words.
On Wednesday we used some paint and with his finger, painted the words as he listened again to the tape.
On Thursday, I went back over the all 7 lists and had him verbally spell each word to me. Any words he missed he taped on the audio tape.
On Friday, he retested and got 100%!

So for each and every list now, we are going to tape them on Mondays after he takes the pretest.
It totally works for him. The Spelling Power activity box had some many great ideas. I think we will try something different each week.

Monday, December 10, 2007

The Smell of Horrific

With cold weather in full blast, I tend to make more soup. So, on our way home from church yesterday, chili sounded really good. I made some with cornbread and for lunch we ate up. Shortly after dinner the smell of horrific had arrived. All of us contributed. It was beyond terrible. It was so bad, we had to sleep in separate rooms last night. It may be awhile before we do that again.

Caching

In October I lost my GPS. I was completely befuddled on where it could be. So for 2 months I have not been geocaching. (Insert sad sympathetic music here.) Then on Saturday just before the geocaching event. I found it. (Halleluia!) It had been in the cellphone bag when I got my cellphone. And there it stayed for 2 WHOLE months. (Sad I tell ya.)
At the event the kids and I went out for an hour and found 5 caches. We got to meet other cachers whom we had not yet met. Names in logs that we have seen MANY times, now have a face to go with it. We shared stories, laughed and sang the 12Days of Caching song,which was a hit. The team that always beats me to a new cache got the honors of singing #7 First to Find. Very appropriate. It was a great event, great food(Cancun) and the kids and I had a great time.
Since the event, my geocaching love has returned. We went on three finds yesterday. 2 had published while I was without me GPS and the other had too dense of tree coverage in the summer. It was great to be out caching again.
Too top it all off, last night I bought my long desired GPS (Garmin 60 CX) on Amazon.It should be here in a week. I am very excited. Perhaps I will cache this winter away afterall.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

The 12 Days of Caching

I wrote this while singing in the shower the other day. I will be attending a banquet for geocachers this afternoon. I hope to debut it there.
Day 10 has a story. Scroll down to the log for climbingcachers.
You know the tune,feel free to sing it as you read.It sounds better this way

The 12 Days of Caching

By Climbingcachers

On the first day of caching my partner said to me:

1 Just Follow the GPS

2 Where is the trail?

3 Who put this here?

4 I have to pee

5 I AM NOT LOST!

6 Who's going in?

7 First to Find

8 Who's signed the log

9 Look at this coin

10 Gun it and we'll make it

11 I think it's poison ivy.

12 I'm going home

Friday, December 07, 2007

Books of the Bible

Shortly after his sister shared her video of reciting the Old Testament, the boy finished memorizing the whole bible. All 66 books. Below is his video, in super speed. He was going so fast he skipped one of the books. See if you can figure out which book he skipped.

video
37 seconds.You may need to turn up your volume. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Christmas Where?

Christmas. My mom's favorite holidays. As a kid she would go all out. Then one by one all four of us left the nest, got married and had kids. You know, changing family dynamics. We now had in-laws and our own kids to include in celebrations. For a while I think we tried getting everyone together Christmas for dinner. 19 of us, trying to match up schedules. Crazy.
My parents gave up having a gathering many years ago. Rather than try to get us all together on Christmas, they come to us. They love this for many reasons. One they get to see each grand child in their own home environment. They get to see the cool gadgets and joy. They get to spend time with each family in a more meaningful way. Rather than a crazy 2 hours with 19, they get more intimate moments.
I think for my mom the empty home on Christmas day was too empty. She went from 6 to 2. Sometimes quiet can be too quiet, especially on a holiday. So rather than sit at home feeling depressed, they decided to get out and spend their day with their children. They confirm schedules a month in advance, but by now it is a pretty set thing. My brothers first where they have hot coffee. They spend about 2 hours there and then they head over to our place. If they have not already had breakfast they have some with us. Oh, and more coffee for my dad. They spend a couple hours with us and then head over to my sister's where they spend the afternoon and have lunch with her family. Then my other sister's in the evening where they have dinner. Are you getting the picture that they eat well on Christmas? Trust me, they do.
Another nice thing about doing things separately, it cuts down on comparing. I know my mom takes great pains to be as fair as possible with her gift giving. By doing it separately she doesn't have to worry that she bought one $50 item for this grandson while spending $50 on 7 for another.
What I love about it is this; I feel like I get to celebrate with them. Not endure mass craziness for an hour or two. They get to see each gift opened. Each expression. Impromptu dances, that may not have occurred had they been somewhere else with many spectators. They see each kid, at home, without restraint. They see how each of their kids are making memories for their own and they are a part of it.
For my family Christmas doesn't end when grandma and grandpa leave. It is out the door and on to the in-laws to celebrate with them.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Kid Speak

My son LOVES the Discovery Channel. Myth Busters, Dirty Jobs and Man vs Wild are some of his favorites. Lately we have both been getting into the Planet Earth documentaries. They are amazing! This weekend we were watching an episode and there were two male mountain goats fighting for mating rights. I asked him if he knew why they were fighting and he answered,"They're fighting to see who gets to marry the girl."

Little girl this morning explained to me,"Last night I logged off the Christmas tree lights, but Daddy turned them back on."

:)

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Advent

For the last several years my girlfriend has invited me to her church for a special Christmas tea. "Advent by Candlelight," each hostess decorates their tables with fine linen and china; while candles and lights adorn the whole room. This year I was pleasantly surprised to see Sooze there. Even though we rarely see each other, we both feel like we saw each other that week because of our blogs. Together we walked past the beautiful tables. Neither of us our girly girls, but we both have daughters that are. It was nice to have a moment to be a lady. Tea amongst women. What I really enjoyed was the devotion on ornaments. Are we ugly, broken, fragile or beautiful on the outside? The event an opportunity to put our focus on Christ, rather than the hustle and bustle of preparing for Christmas.

On December first, we started a new advent tradition in our home. I picked up this book, Advent Storybook, that has 24 stories leading to Christmas. It is about a little bear as he follows the star and the adventures he has along the way.



My kids look forward to each night as we tear off a link on our chain and then settle down to read the days adventure.


The chain has helped the kids grasp, how many days until Christmas. Which my daughter had been asking endlessly. Now she just looks at the chain and knows...21 days until Christmas.

Monday, December 03, 2007

On the BBC

Last night, hubby and I were watching a show on the BBC, Super Skinny Me. Two British journalist, healthy, intelligent, average size women, went on a one month Super model dieting frenzy. Each week they did a different crazy diet to go from a size 10 to a size ZERO. Crazy I tell ya. The women starved themselves, worked out like fiends and for what to drive themselves into depression and utter weakness. One started binging, purging and turning to laxatives as well. The other stuck pretty tight to the plan but ended up so weak she could not open the door to her office, she had to press the handicap button. The craze over size sickened her and she became very emotional.
Size. Who determines what size is best for a women? If the media had their way we would all be sick and gangly. I do feel that there is a point of too thin. I think there is a point of unhealthy. We need fat on our bodies to live. Without "some" we die.
I am glad I saw this program when I did. It reminds me to make healthy choices. I plan on entering back into training soon and I want to do it right. I want to eat healthy. Exercise in moderation and feel good about myself. I do not want to be a size ZERO, no thank you. I like food. Yes I do. I like my mental health even more.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

That Explains It

Unusually emotional, the boy took a 2 hour nap yesterday. He awoke much happier, enjoyed a nice dinner with some friends and we played games. WhooNu is a great game by the way. After our company left we got ready for bed. This morning little girl and I woke up at our normal time. The boy slept on. Since he has had a cough and not feeling his greatest, I let him sleep. A couple hours went by and I had some laundry to put away so I went into his room. One eye peers open and a declaration is made. "I still want to sleep." "OK, sleep all you want. You have already been sleeping for almost 12 hours; that's half a day." To which he replies, "That explains why I am so hungry!"
Um yeah, that might explain it.