Tuesday, August 12, 2014

First Day of Kindergarten

Today was officially Max's first day of Kindergarten.  I had to commemorate with some pictures.  And a blog post.  It's that big of a deal.  
I was probably worried most about homeschooling Max this year.  The other kids had a chance to go to school, to make friends, to learn what that is all about.  Max got preschool, but he's not going to get public school… at least not now.  As I prayed about it, though, I got very strong confirmation that this is what is best for my family.  So here goes!

The other kids fist day of kinder pictures look oh so different from this poor orphan child.  He got himself dressed while I frantically showered between his math and Sam's.  He's wearing a long sleeved shirt in 95 degree weather, the favorite pair of orange shorts handed down from Sam that have no waistband and keep falling off his little bum and my personal favorite...

Yes, that would be socks and spiderman flipflops.  He needs a haircut and his feet are permanently dirty, no matter how hard we scrub.  (like the sandwich on the floor?  Yeah, I left that in so all you other moms can feel good about yourselves.  Keeping it real:)  I let him pick out a backpack, he picked the only ugly one that pottery barn even makes… but I don't really care because not many people will see it.  It's really for those rare days when we have to do school on the go (or on the run!).  

Here's the thing though… he's already 1/4 way through his kindergarten reading curriculum.  His math skills are pretty good, so we're doing 2-3 days worth per day, he'll be doing first grade math by March at this pace.  He loves feeling so smart, he can't wait to read as good as Sam so he can hang with his big brother.  He's pleased as punch that he doesn't have to leave for preschool, but asks to do more work all day long (even when I say PLEASE, just go PLAY with RUBY!!!  I have 6th grade math to do!!!)  He's happy as a clam… so I can't feel too sorry for him.  His little friend from church is in his taekwondo class now, and some more little Max-sized boys joined our co-op.  Yeah, not such a bad deal.  So, as far as a first day of kindergarten, not too shabby.  Awesome for me, I didn't have to put a backpack on my baby and send him away for 1/2 of his waking hours.  Win.  

Ruby didn't want to be left out.  So here she is:)  She's still cute:)

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sam's Baptism

Ok, ok, I am really lame a how long it's been since I've blogged.  But I wanted to post Sam's baptism program, I just finished it and I wanted it for the famly album… here it is!

I can't believe this amazing book loving, microscope exploring, joke telling kiddo is already 8!  Where did the time go?  I'm so glad he's part of our family.  As Max says, our family is awesome!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Happy Halloween

Halloween wasn't quite the same this year… I usually have pictures taken and up way way early… but I was busy racing during the first halloween party.  It's a small miracle that I got everyone ready to go in time to snap pics this year:)  So, Happy Halloween from:
 Dora the Explorer (Ruby knew who she was, but I think most of the houses we went to assumed she wasn't dressed up…:)
 Cleopatra (thank you Wal Mart aisle, study of Ancient Egypt, and makeup by Aunt Crystal)
 Ironman.  I love four year olds:)
Ninja.  He was very specific about wanting to be a ninja this year.  I keep telling him that being a black belt is almost like being a ninja, I don't think he believes me.

Spartan Beast

So, Jared and I signed up to do this crazy crazy race.  13+ miles (my garmin at the end read 14.98 miles) and 26 obstacles.  He wanted to do it last year but I was running a half marathon that day, so instead he stayed home with the kids.  I told him we'd do it this year but it wasn't untill I saw an Amazon Local voucher for half off at the last minute that we decided to do it.  
 It was really fun.  The weather was awesome, we were with friends, one of which who didn't really run, which was ok.  It's hard to run with mud in your shoes anyway.
 Every obstacle you can't master, you have to do 30 burpees.  I hate burpees.  Luckily, I only couldn't complete 4 of the obstacles… same as Jared.  Except that he totally did the raise a bucket of concrete one and I could not, but I totally schooled him on the climb across a rope hanging over a lake and ring a cowbell one.  I'm still proud of that.

 See?  Isn't he just a stud?  You should have seen him, just leaping over those 8 foot walls…. amazing.  That's my man.

 It took us 6 1/2 hours… I'm pretty sure that's not something to brag about.  But it was FUN!  I was hungry by the end, that's pretty much my worst complaint.  A few days later I was covered in bruises and a rope burn, but to be honest, I expected much worse.  Good day with the hubs.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Smax

This is the Smax.  Though they are a lot of work, I'm pretty sure they are some of the best decisions I ever made.  I love them.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

School Days

Homeschooling.  What a life changer.  

I find myself doing things I never thought I could do.  I reguarly stay up until 12 doing things like folding laundry becuase there is no time during the day.  Tonight I found myself cleaning the rug in the living room and the carpet on the stairs at 10:00 at night becuase I just couldn't take it anymore.  Then I get up at 6:30 and run because if it doesn't happen then it's not likely to happen.  

I find that I am really enjoying spending time with my children.  And they are enjoying being together.  They both have a few good friends that I make a point to do playdates with, but they like playing together.  I remember one day in particular where we worked straight from 7:30 until about 2:00.  I was exhausted, and I was thinking, seriously, I should send them to school, this takes just as long.  Then, as I was cleaning up the kitchen after school I heard peals of laughter coming from upstairs.  They were playing.  If it had been a normal school day, Pearl would be in her room plodding through her homework with piano lessons and taekwondo still on the list.  Now they have time to play.  That made it worth it.  

We got our first visit from our Credentialed Teacher (CT) last week.  We went over Pearl's work and she's doing fabulous, just as I expected.  As we went over Sam's, I was explaining what I was modifying for him and what we were doing to target his weak areas.  At one point, she stopped, looked at me, and said, "I just don't see how his schooling could go any other way."  Exactly.  That's why we are here.  

And I really feel like they are getting an excellent education... better than at school.  Really.  They are happy to learn, they never whine or complain or contradict, they just do what I ask them to do.  They are happy.  They are getting bigger because they actually eat lunch every day.  They have time to do things like Spanish and Ukulele and Guitar and Piano and Sewing.  They are going to be very well rounded children.  

So, I guess the bottom line is that I feel like I'm really being a good mom doing this for my children.  I feel like it's necessary for Sam especially, and I'm happy to spend so much time with Pearl.  Really, I like my kids.  The housewife thing is an utter fail most days, but Jared is so helpful and picking up the slack and thank goodness I still work one morning a week so we can have a housecleaner, heavens, I'm not sure what I would do without that!  It's worth it for the kids, even if we have to have sandwiches for dinner three days a week:)  

Here is some of what we've been up to...

Posing for the camera...

Having  little too much fun with our first Language Arts book, the Willoughbys.  It's hilarious.  Read it.

And... what it all really looks like


I have rarely seen this kid so focused on a fine-motor task...

Pearly got ambitious... Sam just wrote Sam, Pearl wanted to write a prophecy from Mark of Athena.  It was too long.  

Lego Pyramid... it was harder than it looks

Lego Pyramid

Did we really do Cunieform Tablets?  I found proof the next day...

Max gets right in there... but he doesn't have the staying power for coloring that Ruby does!

Really, cutest thing ever.  Love Sam and his Ukulele.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

My Grandpa

My Grandfather passed way this week at the age of 90.  I've had the unique opportunity these days to be neighbors with my parents as they cared for my grandparents these last few years.  My parents have sacrificed so much, their time, their house, and a lot emotional wear to care for my grandparents.  It's been a blessing to be able to visit, try to serve them in little ways, and be part of the there life.  A couple of examples I want to remember:

For several months I got to cut his hair, I really enjoyed being able to do that for him.

He seemed to enjoy seeing my children when they'd stop by for a visit, to get a cookie, or bring them a treat.  Pearl especially will be able to remember him.

Toward the end he was having a hard time, he wasn't always with it.  The last time I saw him he had just come home from the hospital.  I sat with him talked with him, which was hard for him.  I helped him shave, which he wasn't really up to so I got about 1/3 of the way, but grandma thought it was a good idea.  Then he gave me a hug, probably the biggest bear hug he had ever given me (up to the end he was a surprisingly strong old guy), and he told me he loved me.  Not a bad send off.