Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Our Beautiful Bookend Baby

Two weeks ago, on November 29, 2016, we were blessed with this beautiful sweet face...

Amber Louise Jacobs
Weighing in at 9lbs, 9.7ounces and measuring 21.5 inches.

Here's our birth story - 


There are two things I dread about a csection:
1. The IV
2. The spinal block

Nope, not the surgery itself. Not even the recovery. Just those two parts that involve needles that I can feel. Apparently I have difficult veins so I always end up covered in bruises. Then the spinal block is just plain scary! And this time around it was quite painful. AND it didn't work nearly as well as expected. The "pressure" was so intense it was painful and I was on edge the whole surgery just waiting for it to fail! PRAISE THE LORD it did not.

Meanwhile, my amazing doc was training a nurse on her first csection assist (you did amazing, Emily! Thank you!) and I overheard him say, "See how thin her uterus is? I can open it with my finger. This is why we do sections earlier. If we had waited another week, her uterus would have ruptured."

WHAT?!

Finally, our sweet Amber Louise was born! After 30 excruciating seconds of no breathing, she finally let out a single cry then was laid on my chest where she nursed for the rest of the surgery! Poor Derek barely got to hold her the whole first day!

Before closing me up, my doc asked us to confirm that we wanted a tubal done. After lots of prayer, a very difficult pregnancy, a scary painful surgery, and a nearly ruptured uterus, we both confidently gave the thumbs up.

Derek did get a couple minutes of snuggling Amber while I was transferred onto a different bed to be wheeled out of surgery (I could already move my toes at this point! So glad that's over!)

I was convinced that this would be the hardest recovery because I hadn't worked out in months (which was by the grace of God!! He knew that my baby was big and my uterus was weak. I'm oh so grateful for His intervention!) and because it had been such a rough pregnancy. But...

It has been the easiest recovery of all!

I credit it to my surgeon, my Plexus, and most of all my God.


So here we are, two weeks later, on our Bookend Baby's due date. We are all healthy. We are all so happy. We are all so blessed.

And Amber Louise is by far our easiest babe! She sleeps two 4-5 hour stretches every night. She eats like a champ. She is completely unfazed by the chaos that is this household. She fits right in with no effort.


I'll tell ya, there are moments when the weight of our decision to get a tubal weighs so very heavy. In fact it brings me to tears sometimes. It helps to remember the times when I was very confident of being done with pregnancy because God did make it clear. But the weight of such a huge decision... well I can't carry it alone and I'm grateful that I don't have to.


Moving into the chapter of life where baby bearing is over and it's all about baby raising is incredibly bittersweet. So I'm soaking in every last baby snuggle I possibly can and allowing myself to even get a little excited about what's next!

Stretches in my arms while I type this :) 
Happy Due Date to our precious LouLou. We adore every little thing about your sweet self!


Friday, October 14, 2016

My Why

This morning I was mulling over why I joined Plexus and decided to pursue the business side of it. It is totally and completely outside anything resembling my comfort zone to be a part of something like this. And so many times in the past when I considered joining a company like this, God always gave me a big fat NO. But over the last few months it seems God has been sorta preparing me for when Plexus showed up in my life.

I found Plexus because I was in search of the best probiotic out there. I didn't realize Plexus was it so I went a different route. Meanwhile, God was nudging my heart toward some kind of home-based business. But He was still saying no to the options I thought made the most sense. Instead, during my many middle of the night restless leg episodes, I kept thinking - "I should be taking Plexus."

Finally, I gave in with Derek's blessing, knowing that the only way we could afford supplements even just for me would be to pursue the business. And for the first time ever, after years of asking God if He wants me to be a part of this business or that business, He finally gave me a green light! It has been freeing and exciting and terrifying!

My WHY has always been (even when considering other businesses) to be able to afford to take care of my family's health. There were many times I would break down in tears telling Derek how desperately I wanted to naturally care for our family but how discouraging it was to not be able to afford it!

Because of Plexus, I now have the opportunity to afford the best supplements for my family!

Back to the mulling I was doing this morning... After time in my War Room God opened my eyes to another very important WHY:


Marie is in a ballet class with girls several years older than her at a level that is challenging to her. Dance has never been challenging to her. And making friends hasn't been difficult either. But now she's in a situation that makes her nervous, shy, and feeling insecure. She doesn't have any friends in the class and when encouraged to talk about it, she mentions how she's not sure she'll be able to keep up with the moves. She lacks the confidence to face scary and uncomfortable things.

Just like her momma.

God has called me to do something that my human nature simply doesn't want to do - leave what's comfortable to do what's right. I want to be that example for my biggest girl. I want to be able to wrap my arms around her and teach her about confidence in who she is as a Child of God, about how pursuing dreams means facing hard things, about how true joy is pushing through the hard, uncomfortable, scary to find the beauty on the other side.

Marie is my WHY.

These babes (and their dad!) are my WHY!



I'm sure as my business grows, the WHY of simply wanting to afford supplements will fade and a new WHY (pay off the house? go on vacation? grow our giving?) will take it's place. But my core WHY will always be my family.

What is your WHY for pursuing your dreams???


((Curious about Plexus?? Contact me!! I would LOVE to help you pursue your dreams!!))


Friday, September 30, 2016

This is my journey - Update #1

It's time for an update on my new journey with Plexus because there is already something to update on only 10 days in! I also want to tell you a little bit about a cool opportunity to try Plexus Slim and learn more about it!

Let's take a look back at that list of woes and see what Plexus is already up to...

All-day Nausea - this went away at about 15 wks pregnant but it was replaced with a general feeling of... well the best way I can describe it is "yuck." This yuck disappeared within a couple days of just taking Slim!
Debilitating fatigue - Oh I still am tired, I mean I'm growing a child! But I haven't crashed to the point of uselessness in days! 
Depression - I still feel unmotivated sometimes. I know this isn't depression but it is usually the stepping stone. The overwhelming desire to do nothing followed by feelings of uselessness and frustration and failure has significantly decreased! 
Anxiety - I believe God was giving me victory over this before Plexus. But Plexus has helped with leveling out my emotions which was totally unexpected!
Excessive weight gain - Well I am pregnant so weight loss isn't the plan. But slowing down the weight gain would be nice. We shall see at my next appointment but I'm not holding out hope as I have not helped Plexus with this at all!
Mood swings - As mentioned above, I've noticed a leveling out in my emotions! Now I still lose it way more often than I should, but I'm so grateful for the small victories!
Brain fog - I'm not sure about this one yet.
High blood sugar - I passed my second glucose test with flying colors! And I didn't change a single thing about my diet. I simply added Plexus exactly one week before the second test.
Insomnia - Restless legs still make falling asleep difficult, but once they calm down, I sleep so much harder than I was!
Restless legs - Not much improvement here... yet.

The bottom line is that there has been an improvement in almost all the areas that I struggled with most! I've also noticed a significant decrease in appetite! Which is a huge bonus for this lover of food.

I wish I hadn't waited so long to join Plexus! It's truly been a God-send and I just can't help talking about it! And there's so much more Plexus could potentially help you with... skin issues? diabetes? allergies? stomach pain? detox from chemicals like chemotherapy? ???

What health struggles are you having? I don't in any way claim that Plexus is the all-around miracle cure! But I'm blown away at how it is helping me and countless others out there. Maybe it's not for you, but how will you know unless you try??

Here is a super easy way to give Plexus a try: 



It's a Facebook bootcamp! Here are the requirements:
  • Sample a 7 day trial pack of Plexus Slim (Contact me to order!)
  • Participate in a closed secret Facebook group with the other bootcampers.
  • Give me HONEST feedback at the end of the 7 days.
  • Get a 60 day money back guarantee if you don't think it's for you.

You can ask questions and learn all you need to know about the Pink Drink that is Plexus Slim. You have nothing to lose! (Except maybe a little extra weight??) 

Will you join me for just 7 days beginning October 10? Leave a comment, message me on Facebook or Instagram, or text me! 

There's so much more I want to talk about but I will spare you. Until next time at least ;) 






Thursday, September 29, 2016

USA RoadTrip - Florida

We have only been doing RoadTrip once a week at our homeschool co-op which means pictures and creativity are severely limited. 40ish minutes with 15 kids flies by! But I am loving studying, learning, and teaching all about the US of A!


The kids were all excited to talk about Florida because Florida means DISNEY and BEACHES!! Since they all seemed to know all about those two things, we totally skipped them and went to the lesser known aspects that they ended up really enjoying!


1. This is a fun book that has not-as-well-known stories in it from each state. It talks about how Florida became the top producer of citrus fruits, specifically oranges. Hint: A man from China named Lue Gim Gong had a whole lot to do with it! Of course we enjoyed some orange juice while we learned.





2. Manatees (aka Sea Cows): We talked about how these gentle giants are endangered and it is now illegal to hunt them. The kids loved the fact that you can swim with a manatee! We browsed pictures in google images. I mean, how adorable are these huge weird-looking creatures?!

Source
3. This video of the Discovery taking off from the Kennedy Space Center was a huge hit in class!



The fun you can have studying each state, especially a state full of fun like Florida, is limitless! I'm trying to be content with the once a week thing because I really need to be. It's just where we are in life right now! But it's hard because there's so much more we could do! But hopefully the above gives you a good jumping off point!

Next up- Georgia!


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Family in Photos


Family are the friends God chose for you.



This makes family relationships very important in my mind.



I am so grateful to be married to a man who recognizes the importance of family.


It is one of our passions as parents to raise our kids understanding that family is a gift from God and we are to cherish these relationships. Prioritize them even.


It is one of the many reasons we homeschool.


I've been blessed with probably the best family there is. So it really is easy for me to love and cherish my family. For that I am oh-so-grateful.


I believe having been raised to cherish family, and raising my family the same way, has and will instill this value even when it's not easy. It isn't always easy for us, but valuing my people makes it worth it.


Thank You, God, for my people, my family, my dearest friends.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

This is my journey.

The first question people seem to always ask me when they see my pregnant self is:

"How are you feeling?"

Depending on how close we are I've said anything from, "Oh, I'm okay," to "Pretty awful actually."

This pregnancy has been hard.

But let me back up a little.

Even though I was taking better care of my body than I ever had when I had Roger, my hormones simply didn't care and recovering from having him took... well... I'm not sure I ever did manage to fully recover.

About a year after he was born, it only got worse.

Fatigue
Lack of motivation
Depression
Anxiety
Excessive weight gain
Mood swings
Brain fog
Struggle to get pregnant

Then we did get pregnant. Praise the Lord! And for about a week after the positive test I felt like a whole new person!

And then it hit.

All-day Nausea
Debilitating fatigue
Depression
Anxiety
Excessive weight gain
Mood swings
Brain fog
High blood sugar
Insomnia
Restless legs
More weight gain

I am not complaining about being pregnant.

I love that I get to carry around our Sweet Amber Louise all safe and sound inside of me. I have not forgotten for a second what a precious gift it is to be able to get pregnant and carry full term! I cannot wait to hold her in my arms. Because I've got to be honest, I much rather wake up 18 times a night because a tiny babe needs me than because my hormones (and trips to the bathroom!) make me!

When the nausea finally subsided, I went obsessively researching for the best supplements to take. I knew I needed a probiotic (so do you, by the way!!)

Enter Plexus.

Fought as I could, God kept bringing it to my mind. I love my Melaleuca products. I cannot live without my DoTerra Oils. So the last thing I wanted to do was jump into yet another company. But testimony after testimony, and all my research, and the middle of the night promptings of the Spirit led me to here:


So I'm diving in and taking the challenge to try these products out:
-I'm committing to taking the Triplex for the next 3 months which will take me up to Amber's delivery in December.
-I will post updates regularly - at least once a month.
-Hopefully, when my final tiny babe enters the world, I'll be hooked to these excellent, natural, gut-supporting supplements. And maybe you will be, too!

If you know me even a little, you know that I am an organic, non-gmo eating homeschooling gardener who uses all natural cleaning products, refuses vaccinations, uses essential oils in place of meds 99% of the time, and is gradually ridding our kitchen of all things plastic and non-stick. I might be a tad what they call "crunchy." So I'm not about to take supplements that don't fit into our lifestyle. I'll be sharing more details about ingredients and benefits of each supplement I'm taking in future posts. So stay tuned!

I'm also quite the skeptic and am not looking for some quick fix fad. I found Plexus because I needed a probiotic, and I believe I've come across so much more! I'm excited for this support on my journey toward a healthier lifestyle for my whole family.

Gotta know more?? Check out my website HERE, check back for more updates right here on the blog, and maybe order yourself some Plexus and join me on this journey! I would love another fellow Plexus buddy and to be able to feature your story alongside mine!

To our journey!




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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

USA RoadTrip - Arkansas

We are working through the SouthEast this semester. We actually took a detour through Alabama awhile back so we started with:


1. These videos have been a new go-to for us with every state that they have available:



2. Of course we talked about the Crater of Diamonds Park because how cool is a place that you can search for diamonds and keep what you find?? We checked out some pictures from the website and made our own origami diamonds. We found the how-to on youtube.


3. This semester I'm not spending as much time on this geography class because we've added quite a few other things. So I try to focus on at least one interesting location in each state and a piece of history. For Arkansas we learned about the Little Rock Nine. Here is a good video we found for a summary (we read some miscellaneous books, too! Not all my kids' education comes from YouTube...):



A couple of my favorite resources for planning our "trips"-
Road Trip from COAH
Eight for Each State

Check out HERE for the other states we've studied!

Next up- FLORIDA!




Wednesday, September 7, 2016

2016-2017 Curriculum

We went to the Great Homeschool Convention this past spring and loved it! It was really the push that I needed to get through the rest of the year and even get excited about this school year! Now we are nearly 50 days into this new school year and we are still very happy with our curriculum choices! So here's the rundown:


Marie: 3rd Grade
Math - MathUSee Beta
Bible - Apologia Who is God?
Handwriting - A Reason for Handwriting/Journaling
Spelling - All About Spelling Level 2
Language Arts - All About Reading Level 3
Science - Apologia Astronomy
Geography/History - RoadTrip USA (using this and various resources)
Extracurricular - Co-op, Bible Quizzing, Dance, Sunday night Kids Club

Jack: 1st Grade
Math - MathUSee Alpha
Bible - Apologia Who is God?
Handwriting - a simple alphabet booklet
Spelling - All About Spelling Level 1
Language Arts - All About Reading Level 2
Science - Apologia Astronomy
Geography/History - RoadTrip USA (from this and various resources)
Extracurricular - Co-op, Bible Quizzing, Soccer, Sunday night Kids Club

Kempton: Preschool
Letter of the Week from COAH

Roger: Nap
Every day during school!

You might've noticed that Marie and Jack are doing a lot of subjects together. I am so grateful that this is possible! It is actually essential for sanity. I highly recommend it.

I would love to know what you are doing this year and what your favorites are!




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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

USA Roadtrip - Pennsylvania

We did finish out the Northeast last semester but I got pregnant and apparently that not only sapped all of my energy and my ability to function without nausea, it also sucked out any creativity I have! But I've got to share one more state as best as I can remember!

Pennsylvania is my favorite. It's always been a favorite. I had absolutely no idea as a kid that I would one day call it home. Now, not only does it lure me with its beauty and history, its people - my people - make me ache for it!

Pennsylvania

1. Of course I had to share some pictures from a couple of our favorite hidden gems:

Ricketts Glen -




Boulder Field -




2. We spent some time learning about the Amish. We live in Amish country right here in Indiana so it made sense to learn a little extra about their lifestyle.

We read some books...


We made quilts out of construction paper...

They were listening to Kidz Bop while making these...

We watched a barn raising on youtube...



3. The story of Milton Hershey is fascinating and inspirational. He faced many failures before finally finding success. His passion in life was serving people through providing affordable chocolate and lots of jobs. He built Hershey, PA for the purpose of serving people. A great role model for any aspiring entrepreneur! Make sure to look him up!

Visiting the Hershey Factory with the kids is definitely on the to-do list for someday. Meanwhile, we were able to get a taste (no pun intended! ha!) of the factory through some youtube videos. And of course we ate some Hershey Kisses!

4. Pennsylvania is so full of history. We spent a good amount of time learning about the Liberty Bell through various library books. One of my favorite little facts that I didn't know before was it has Leviticus 25:10 inscribed on it: Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof.

Unfortunately that is all I have for you of this great state. What do YOU love about my beloved PA??


((Find the other states we have studied HERE))








Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Our Picture Perfect Life.

Yesterday I shared this fun video full of giggles and happy faces. It was definitely the highlight of the day.
video


 Because yesterday was rough. Ugly. And as I thought about that post I felt convicted.. like I was straight out lying to the world wide web about life here at the Jacobs' home.

I don't believe in airing out dirty laundry on social media. TimeHop has done an excellent job of reminding me of those times I've done that years ago, embarrassing me to no end. Thankfully it was years ago and I have no intention of starting that back up.

What I enjoy seeing in my social media memories is shots of my now 4 year old all bundled up in his sweet tiny-ness sucking on a paci too big for his face. I love chuckling at quotes said by my mini-me when she was 3, and having to stop for a second to figure out if the pic I'm seeing is of Jack or Roger. It's uplifting to come across a post about how even tho it's been hard, God is good. And my favorite, seeing an old post from a friend that reminds me that I am loved.

After yesterday, though, I realized that in my attempt to stay positive on social media, I'm beginning to portray myself and my life as perfect, well kept, put together, admirable.

Oh boy, it's laughable just to type those things! That is not AT ALL my intention. There is airing laundry, and there is being real. I want to be real.

Because marriage, parenting, homeschooling, this thing called life is HARD. I know that I am not the only one who doesn't even sort of have it all together. The last thing I want to do is cause anyone to stumble - through jealousy or discontentment or hate - because I'm not being real.

This seems especially important right now as school has started up and parents are either facing homeschooling head on or wrestling in their spirit with the whole idea of homeschool. Let me give you some real when it comes to homeschooling around here.

I am going to prove to you that if I can do it, truly anyone can!

And we are only going to focus on yesterday...

I wasn't even all the way out of bed yet and I was already yelling at the kids. When breakfast was finally served, I locked the door to my bedroom so I could eat and vainly attempt some time with the Lord.

We managed a trip to the library which surprisingly is often a nice reprieve. Praise the Lord! But as soon as returning home, the chaos commenced. I hid in a book for as long as I could while letting the kids eat in front of the TV. Screens = sanity.

By the time I finally got up the strength to put the little two down for nap, it was pushing 2:00pm and we hadn't started school yet.

(School has been upstairs the last couple of weeks because I don't have the strength to deal with the mess...)
(Thank you, YouTube, for doing half of Kempton's schooling!)

Jack took an HOUR to read his short story. Aren't homeschool parents supposed to be all patient or something? Not this one. I might've lost it on him... twice. It's a miracle we survived.

Meanwhile, Marie keeps thinking that getting out the iPad or turning on her music or doing anything that isn't school related is acceptable. I may have lost it on her.

At some point it's time to get dinner ready and we are still knee deep in school. I realize that the little boys have been playing in their room instead of napping for the last two hours.

I definitely lost it on them.

Derek calls. I'm pretty sure I motivated him not to rush home from work, although he'd never admit to that. He does return home, though, and saves the day.

It's somewhere between 6 and 7pm and we finally finish the last of school (which I posted on instagram - the happiest part of the day).

And the things I'm not telling you? ...
... I don't plan ahead. I figure out what we're doing next as the kids work on the previous thing.
... crafts stress me out so I avoid them at all costs.
... I do a little school with Kempton maybe twice a week and only manage to do that because he loves it.
... I let Roger color and essentially destroy Jack's math pages after he works forever on them.
... I'm convinced I'm ruining my kids at least once a day.


I am the mom who should not be homeschooling and yet I am because God called me to it and is miraculously bringing us all through it.

Most days do not involved quite as much pregnancy hormones as yesterday, but it's far from picturesque ever. We struggle. We survive. We hate it. But we mostly LOVE it.

I am sorry for portraying our homeschool life as beautiful when it is mostly a, well, mess. But I want to close out this laundry airing realness with the whole point in sharing it all:

Homeschooling (marriage, parenting, life in general) is HARD but oh so worth it. Even after snapping at a struggling reader, my heart (eventually) overflows with joy when I get to experience the light in their eyes when it finally clicks; the giggles still readily available after a long, hard, ugly day; the knowledge that even though their momma can throw tantrums just as well as they can, their day is still infused with Jesus. It has been the most fulfilling calling of my life.

I will continue to post sweet pictures of focused, hard-working, and giggly babies because let's be honest, that's what I want to remember. But if anyone ever tells you that they could never do the homeschooling thing, refer them to this post. And maybe when you're thinking about throwing in the towel, remember you're not alone and HIS mercies are new every morning!!


If I can do it, truly anyone can!

Happy New School Year!





Wednesday, July 20, 2016

91% of Parents Ignore This Warning

A Daddy Draft

(For those of you intrigued with the title of this post, please understand that 87% of all statistics are made up, and such is the case with my title.)


Time and time again people look at my kids and tell me, "They grow up so fast!" I think the reason people say that may be because they realized it too late. It's almost like a warning to parents everywhere saying,
"Pay attention!"
"You're kids will be gone before you realize it!" 

"Don't waste a moment!"
"Be intentional with the time you have with them!"


Intentional...how can you be intentional as a parent? How can you be intentional when you have four little ones wreaking havoc on the house and wearing your pregnant wife down to exhaustion and all you want is to get them to bed so you can have a moment of peace and quiet? Lindsay and I have fought very hard to be intentional with our kids, always asking, "Why and How?" we do what we do. It was out of one of these many conversations that God gave me a fun idea that helps us be intentional at twenty different times in our kids lives.

"Daddy, my tooth is loose!" my daughter joyfully announced to me one day. My first thought was, "Are we going to talk about the tooth fairy in our family?" While I would say there's nothing wrong with pretending there's a tooth fairy, we decided in our family we are going to do something different.

When our kids lose a tooth, it is a reminder from Jesus that I need to be intentional with my kids. When one of my kids loses a tooth, I set aside time to sit down and talk to them about how our spiritual life is similar to our teeth. You see, we will lose all twenty of our baby teeth to make room for our new grown up teeth. In the same way, we are commanded in scripture to put off our sinful nature and put on our new nature (Col. 3:5-15). So, when Marie lost her first tooth, we sat down and talked about kindness and I gave her a pair of work gloves to remind her to be kind to others and serve them. I've also talked to her about love, joy, peace, and patience as she continues to lose teeth.

Jack just lost his first two teeth, almost within the same twenty-four hour period. For his first "Tooth Ceremony" I put all the kids to bed, made a fire outside, made milkshakes for him and me, and then went and got him out of bed to sit around the fire and chat. I spoke to him about being a leader and being a warrior. Jack was on cloud nine as he got to stay up late and have a milkshake when none of his other brothers or sister were allowed to. It was such a powerful moment to hear him take to heart the principles I was teaching him as I asked him to reiterate what I was talking to him about to see how much he was understanding. One of my key messages to him was that good leaders are not to be selfish, but to consider others above themselves (Phil. 2:3-8). When I went to put him back to bed that night, his younger brother had crawled into Jack's bed and was sleeping on Jack's pillow and had Jack's blanket. I told Jack just to sleep in his brother's bed and he said, "But I want my pillow and blanket." To which I responded, "Good leaders give up what they want so that others can have what they need."

With pride in his eyes Jack simply said, "Ok" and crawled into his brothers bed. It was an amazing time of speaking truth into Jack's life and being intentional with him.


"They grow up so fast!" I've never doubted this statement, but I feel an urgency in my soul to be intentional with my kids. I know my time with them is slipping away and I don't want to miss those important moments to speak truth into their lives. 

Parents, heed this warning: don't allow business to steal away these precious moments of intentionality with your kids. Have a plan, because without one you cannot be intentional. Every time you hear someone say, "They grow up so fast!" may it be an alarm ringing in your soul that forces you to ask yourself, "How have I been intentional with my kids lately?" Children are a blessing from the Lord; may we all cherish that blessing and not waste it. 


Thursday, June 23, 2016

mlkh

That title is no typo.

"mlkh" is the Hebrew word for "work."

Work is really important in our family.

Derek's motto is "work first, play later." I'll be honest, I'm not real good at that. I'm especially not good at making the kids live by that. But I'm working on it!


Jack has said for the last couple of years that he wants to be a "worker" when he grows up, just like his daddy. It's interesting given the fact that Jack is... well... not the worker in the family. He can always find something to distract himself with when he's supposed to be working. Doodling snails on his math pages. Picking his nails. Observing and crushing every bug he comes in contact with in the garden. Staring at the wall has been more entertaining for him than doing his schoolwork! "Worker" is not how I would describe him. But because he wants to be one, we keep pushing him, encouraging him, reminding him of his dream of being like daddy.


I know he'll get there. Because work is actually a blessing. As much as we would like to believe it, it is NOT a result of Adam's sin. It is a purpose to our existence.
The Lord God placed man in the Garden of Eden to tend and watch over it. Genesis 2:15
 This is why I love gardening so much. It's the original work. It brings me back to the basics. It connects me with my Creator in a way I don't experience otherwise. And it's an excellent way to challenge my kids to do hard work, wait patiently, and reap delicious rewards.


But it's not just gardening that I'm referring to. It is whatever work God has called you to.
"Work was never designed to be a curse. It was designed to be an invitation by God to participate in His creative nature." -Hugh Johnson (yup, my dad!)
((Trust me, I believe in rest! But that's a whole different post.))

 Now I'm off to become even more connected to my Creator by cleaning the bathroom........




*THANK YOU to my Dadda from whom most of the above wisdom came from. Love you!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

We are a family of 7!


We just returned from getting to see our newest little wiggly in an ultrasound today! Beautiful, strong heartbeat and super active - praise Jesus!

Here's the answers to all your questions:

Due Date? December 13

Was this planned? Yep. Well sorta. We'd been trying for 7 months so it certainly wasn't a surprise!

How am I feeling? The feeling like death is slowly passing. The debilitating fatigue is beginning to have its manageable moments. Truly praising the Lord for those things because I really wasn't sure I'd make it there for awhile. I'm also feeling LARGE as my food aversions have been intense (oh you know, things like vegetables and meat) while my food cravings have also been stronger than ever (pizza, chicken nuggets, mashed potatoes...) Looking forward to being a WHALE in a couple of months.

What are you hoping for? A girl. Of course. We've had a girl name picked out for 6 years now and we really feel like she belongs in our family. We believe God will bless us with our Amber. But we won't have any trouble loving another toe-headed mister. But that will probably be his name... Toe-Headed Mister. 

Is this the last babe? That is the plan.

Will you have another csection? Yes. Can I just tell you, while I'm typically a more natural, organic momma, I am so grateful for csections. I've come to terms with the fact that this is what God has called me to, and without the surgeries we would not have all of our sweet babes.

Are the kids excited? Very! Kempton has declared the baby a girl from day one. Roger is a little bit of a different story. He was already giving the baby the stink eye on the ultrasound.

Feel free to ask any other questions! We are so very grateful. Children are a gift... a sweet sweet reward. We are so thankful that we get to be entrusted with the care and raising of another gift!


Sunday, April 10, 2016

USA Roadtrip - New York

I love this homeschooling thing. Yep, I do.

Here's some of what we did for our study of...

New York

1. Color pages are very common around these parts. We use the pages from the Confessions of a Homeschooler Roadtrip curriculum. You can also find some from a quick google search, but the ones we use are the best I've come across! 


2. We enjoyed looking at pictures of Niagra Falls and New York City. I get all sorts of books from the library but I still don't understand how people ever homeschooled without the internet! We also read some books about the Statue of Liberty but I already returned those books to the library so you're just gonna have to find your own! Sorry!

3. We did a craft! Since New York City is called "The Big Apple," we did some apple painting! Cut the apple in half, paint it red, and dab it onto the apple print. Just be careful that your almost-2-year-old doesn't eat the painted apple...



4. We found a couple of fun living picture books:

In New York by Marc Brown
All the Way to America by Dan Yaccarino

I recommend both! But I loved the simple, cool story in All the Way to America that is about "a big Italian family and a little shovel." I think my attachment to it stems from that fact that I felt like I finally understood the concept of "living books" when I read it. It was like an introduction to a whole new, wonderful world of reading to my kids!

Next up- Pennsylvania!



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