Friday, May 31, 2013

Around Here

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… lots of time swimming now that the pool has opened.

… watching summer freckles appear

… delivering drinks and lunches while the husband and a crew of teen helpers worked like crazy on our rental house for three and a half days.

… softball playoffs this week. Crazy fun to sit on crowded bleachers with the parents and go a little bit nuts when the kids make a good play. Tonight is the quarter finals!

… finishing up what I think with be our curriculum plans for next year and glad to have that project done.

… getting ready to go through One Thousand Gifts with some mama friends starting next week.

… wanting to put succulents all around the house

… finally starting a new book: The Shadow of the Bear: A Fairy Tale Retold by Regina Doman. Sarah at Amongst Lovely Things tipped me off to this author and truthfully, I have had a hard time putting this book down.

… contemplating blogging more regularly but wondering how and what to say and finding myself more than a bit rusty in this space.

Off to start our Friday. Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

An End of the School Year Daybook

Outside my window... it’s warming up. Mid-eighties today and my girls (one in particular) have mentioned how they are dying in the heat. August is going to be a rude awakening.

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I am thinking... up summer plans and routines (and fall curriculum choices and book lists). The opportunities to make fun plans and lists never ends thankfully!

I am thankful... for park days with our Classical Conversations friends. Truly, it’s a struggle to get going most of those Tuesdays to get a picnic packed and out the door when I have piles of laundry and lists of things to tackle here. However, I always come home with cheeks sore from smiling and laughing with the other mamas and very tired and dirty kids. It’s a good thing.

In the kitchen... scraping by until Saturday and I can make a massive grocery run. I may have have to make a quick Aldi run for a few basics (like sandwich bread and lunch meat) but hope I can get through to the weekend with what I’ve got. Dinner may get very creative.

I am wearing... my red jogging capris pants and a white t-shirt.

I am creating... thinking of creating a summer mini-book like I have used for December Daily in the past (something similar to this). Surely I have enough scraps and bits that I can put this together from my stash. I’m excited about this summer and the two months that we will be breaking from “formal” (home)schooling and want to record it in a fun memorable way, outside Project Life. As far as Project Life … I am dreadfully behind. DREADFULLY. I have been getting pictures ordered and tucked into the album, but the journaling is laughably absent. I miss working on it and need a big catch-up day pronto.

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I am going... to watch the oldest’s first softball playoff game tonight! Seriously so excited for her and her little team. They had a great season and it was so neat to see my girl blossom and improve out on the field over the past several months. She has really, really enjoyed playing this sport and I can’t say enough good things about the dads that have coached the team. So very encouraging to her who had really never picked up a softball before.

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I am reading... hahahahaha. Reading? What is that? That has slipped TOTALLY off the radar of things I can get done in a day of late. When I sit down in the evening and prop my eyes open for 2.7 seconds, I usually peruse a blog or two, but I haven’t picked up a book in weeks. At the beginning of the month, I read Kimm Crandall’s Christ in the Chaos and it was a wonderful parenting shot in the arm for me.

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As for other reading, the list of what I think I want to try and read this summer is somewhat laughable. This is just the stack that is beside my bed and doesn’t include stuff stacked on my desk or loaded on my Kindle. On the top of my list that I want to try and hit: a slow read-through of Educating the Whole Hearted Child by Clay & Sally Clarkson; The Wind in the Willows (because I’m leading the Reading to Know book club in July on this one!); Animal, Vegetable, Miracle which has been on that nightstand for over a year I do believe and needs to be read. And so many more.

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I am hoping... to wrap up our school year this week. We’ve got all our days under our belt, but N1 has a handful of lessons that she needs to finish in her 3rd grade math book – easily knocked out this week – that we want to tackle so we can enter June with a clean slate. She and I will be spending much time this summer with some multiplication flashcards and get those suckers committed to memory but, otherwise, she has finished well for this year. However…

I am learning… about struggles in reading with one in our home. What I hoped last fall was a personality struggle with learning to read due to general busy-ness and energy has turned into some legitimate clues that I may have a munchkin that has some bigger struggles than previously thought. This summer will consist of switching up her reading with a new game plan and bag of tricks to help her process letters in a way that helps her more. New territory for me in our “classroom” and am praying for much wisdom in this area…

I am looking forward to... our Classical Conversations practicum next week – three days of encouragement in the world of classical homeschooling and time with other mamas that I love as well as meeting some new ones.

Around the house... over the last two weeks I have snuck in a little purging and hope to hit most of the rooms in the house over the summer. The kitchen (and pantry) was hit hard one day last week during lunch (i.e., a can of shortening – never opened! – from 2010 made its way to the trash. Eww). The boy’s room was cleaned out of many of his little baby toys that he’s really too old to play with (sniff, sniff). It was time, but it’s never easy, that’s for sure.

I am pondering... and realizing that I may have a diaperless house within the next six months. Hard to believe that we are almost at the end of this season of parenting. A certain someone has absolutely no interest in actually wearing the cars underwear that we have in his dresser, but we sure do talk about them a lot. : )

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One of my favorite things... Sally Clarkson. : ) I may have mentioned her once (or a hundred times) here. I had the chance to hear her in person at the Teach Them Diligently conference in Nashville last week and it was just wonderful. I went to three of her sessions, took copious notes, and was most encouraged in my journey as a mama in how to parent as well as encourage other mamas in the journey. Good, good stuff.

A few plans for the rest of the week… softball playoffs most nights if they don’t lose! Cleaning up the school room and packing things away for the summer! Swimming if it’s warm enough! Fun summer things. : )

A peek into my day...

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Hello summer 2013. We are ready for you!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

My Weakness, His Strength

Well, look at that. I blogged. But not here. : )

This month’s post is up over at Jelly Telly!

This past weekend my husband and our three oldest children attended a wonderful homeschooling conference. For two and a half days I was inspired, encouraged, exhorted and challenged as a parent. … and then there was Monday morning.

Read the rest here!

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Saturday, May 04, 2013

Around Here

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Photos from our Classical Conversations end of the year night. Top picture is N2’s class (she is on the far left); middle is N1 (she is in orange, 2nd student from the right); and the bottom is B and me (she is standing next to me).

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Last day of CBS until fall. E’s teacher is a gem. We are really going to miss her next year when he moves up into a “big boy” class.

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A big adventure coming up for one of the girls this summer.

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This boy + this dog. The girls were the one that wanted the dog, but the boy is the one that loves him the most I think.

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Roses that have started blooming this week.

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A few moments sitting on the back patio on a Friday afternoon. Dad and girl playing catch (not seem are a boy and dog rolling around on the ground in between them). Fresh coffee. Notebooks of ideas. Herbs from a wonderful family gifted to us.

A blessed and very full week.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Hello May Daybook

Outside my window... the day is starting around our neighborhood. I hear birds and the sun is up. It’s supposed to get up into the 80’s today and I’d love to be able to get some of that sunshine on my skin.

I am thankful... that the end of our school year is in sight! Spring fever has hit all of us and we are in the homestretch! We have approximately 15-20 days left (depending on what girl) and are looking forward to a nice break from formal school days in June and July. N2 has completely all of her 1st grade work and has started on her 2nd grade material and N1 is not far behind … our 3rd grade math is what we are buckling down on right now.

In the kitchen... lots of baking for end-of-the-year gifts for the munchkins’ different teachers. Nutella peanut butter cookies and chocolate coconut granola were whipped up this week and I have had to use all the will-power I have to stay out of both of them. Those nutella/pb cookies? Can’t say enough yummy things about them and so super easy. I actually even made an easier version by buying a bag of peanut butter cookie mix from Target to whip them together. So so good.

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I am wearing... my grey capri pants and two tank tops from Old Navy. Will add a cardigan to the mix before I leave the house today!

I am creating... time in my schedule to catch up with Project Life. I have been printing pictures … and that’s about it. Time to catch up.

I am going...grocery shopping. It’s a new month and I have the empty fridge to prove it. My fresh stuff has been slim pickings so I’m excited to restock over the next couple days. There will also be a last minute run to Target today for some tights that a girlie has to have for a choir/dance rehearsal this evening. Nothing like waiting until the last minute.

I am reading...

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I am hoping... and praying for a friend who’s husband was in a serious accident a couple weeks ago. My heart is so heavy for her and I have had her on my heart and mind so much.

I am looking forward to...life slowing down just a wee bit this week. Last weekend was the official end of soccer, although B has one makeup game this coming weekend. We had our end-of-the-year celebration for Classical Conversations last night and now that is on hiatus until fall. This Friday is our last Bible study of the year, Sunday is our little girls’ choir concert, and next Wednesday wraps up Awana. I’m looking forward to some breathing room in our schedule!

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Girl with the game ball!

I am pondering... these two posts on living big, living dangerously and doing the hard thing that you are wanting to do. Lots of pondering and maybe… some doing.

A favorite quote for today...

Yet I will exult in the Lord,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds’ feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.

Habakkuk 3:18-19

One of my favorite things... I hesitate to admit this … but running is quickly becoming a favorite thing. Right now I’m sneaking out of the house three mornings a week to go run at our local rec center and it is becoming addictive.

A few plans for the rest of the week… I think I mentioned all the wrapping up of all the things this week / weekend? That’s where I’ll be. And the grocery store to feed people during all of said wrapping up.

A peek into my day...

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She can’t put these books down. This is where I insert “I told you so”. : )