Saturday, May 31, 2008

Holy is the Lord

This song has been on my mind a lot this week. Andrew Peterson is one of my all-time favorite Christian singer-songwriters. This is a very powerful song, made even more so with excellent editing from the TNT movie about Abraham. You will need your hankie for this one:

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

School's out!

Have I mentioned how much I love being the principal?

Each year we continue formal studies in language arts and math over the summer break, as well as whatever informal studies we can dig up! (No pun intended...)

This year, though, I'm going to take a couple of weeks off and tackle our closets and basement! The weather is still cool enough outside so that the kiddos can get out there and play most of the day, and mommy can get busy decluttering and organizing.

We've taken more time off than usual this year, but as I've heard so often, that is the beauty of homeschooling. We'll have all the time in the world to catch up when the weather is too hot to get outside this summer! We're probably going to jump back into the middle of things around the beginning of July. If anyone knows of a great unit study for the 4th of July, I'd love your recommendations!

Until then their main subject will be:


Alas the best-laid plans...

I had truly meant to show you pictures of my clean refrigerator and dining table, but I took the pics without my memory card in the camera and I haven't yet worked out all the kinks to get those to where I can post them.

Now that my fridge is clean (and empty!) I'm finally starting to meal plan. I looked at tons of sites last week on the best way to get started, and here are some of the helpful links I've found:

I've gotten a lot of menu planning ideas
from Life as Mom recently. Here's a link to Meal Planning the 1950's Way . I think this is a fascinating idea and would save me loads of trouble...if we were eating more meat. As it is, we've cut way back on meat to save on cost and calories, and it just gets too depressing writing out "pasta" or "vegetables" for every night of the week. Maybe after I get a larger recipe bank built up I'll be able to categorize better and utilize this idea.

And here is a link to her last week's menu plan.
(And a quick note...looks like she also posted on meal planning today, but I haven't gotten around to reading it yet!) Instead of listing out the menus day-by-day, she lists the number of dishes she will have for each type of meal. I'm not sure how to explain it better than that...just go check it out! I think that this will work fabulously at our house, as we typically change our minds about what we'll be having for dinner, or inviting people over at the last minute. Truthfully, that's one of the reasons I've been procrastinating about meal planning. I guess this takes away my excuses, doesn't it?

I love the way that Michele lists her menus at Frugal Granola. Here is her most recent. She lists items to do along with her daily menu so that everything will be ready for the next day! I'm hoping to incorporate this somehow, I'll have to let you know what I figure out on this one.

And for those of you who like more specific meal planners, here's a link to some beautiful FREE meal planners from Heavenly Homemakers. She also has tons of meal planning and
healthy eating ideas on her blog.

I'm actually excited about grocery shopping this week! I'm starting out with just three days' worth of meals until we find a greater variety of healthy meals that we love. Baby steps...


Please continue to pray for Beth and Jimmy...

Sunday, May 25, 2008


I have tried to write this post so many times since yesterday, but I just couldn't seem to finish it. Can you all pray for my dear friends Jimmy and Beth? They were expecting their first child in October, but Beth went into pre-term labor on Friday, and precious Caitlin Faith did not survive.

Please, please pray for peace and healing for this precious family...

Thursday, May 22, 2008

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

It has been an absolutely gorgeous spring day today! We were up to Lexington and back by a little after noon, so we all headed outside to enjoy the weather:

I had just remarked to Ben that he stuck his tongue out just like his daddy did when he was concentrating. Kate decided that she'd try to...not exactly the idea, but cute just the same.

Daddy came out and played "monkey in the middle" with us after a few minutes. Ben really gave his mama a scare! He was the "monkey," and we went for the ball at the same time and ended up on a heap in the ground. I landed on his arm, and he let out the worst sound I'd ever heard...I just knew that I had broken his arm. I jumped up quickly to see if he was okay, and he grabbed the ball and took off running! What a stinker!!!

Jonathan caught this shot of Kate losing a battle with the swing:

After we played a while in the yard, we started off for a walk. There is a memorial forest directly across the road from us, and we are always surprised by what we find there!

Most of the bullfrogs jumped away when they heard us talking, but one brave little fella stuck it out:

They are in the process of installing these features by the wetland habitat. They're not functional yet, but I know we'll enjoy them!

Our walk didn't last long today...we thought it was going to shower about five minutes into it, so we headed back to the house. Of course, after we were inside, the sun came back out! There's always tomorrow, though. I've found a neat nature walk challenge that I'm getting ready to start with the children, so I will be posting that soon!

"Ducky" Projects

As promised, here are some "before" pictures of the ducky projects I'm working on...

The first is the dining room table. I'm still working through our attic closet, gathering clothes to give away. Almost everything on this table is going to another family or to Goodwill! I started stacking it on the table because that's where I've been folding it, and I wasn't sure where else to put it until I was finished.

From now on, though, laundry will be folded on our made-up bed. That way I will only need to make one trip upstairs on the days that I do laundry, rather than continuously cleaning off the table. (Or spreading out a tablecloth on the floor for a picnic!)

That, my friends, is the definition of an avalanche waiting to happen! We had several days of company last week, and it seems that nothing was put back in its place. (And Mom, if you're reading this, those are corn dogs in my freezer, but I can guarantee that they're better for us than doughnuts! Haha...)

As well as organizing, I need to give the fridge a good cleaning. I also need to make a list of what we have so that I can plan some meals to use it up!

I should be back tomorrow with some after pictures, as well as some great links regarding meal planning that I've found this week.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Acquiring Linear Waterfowl Status...

Buy at

In case you couldn't guess from the picture, that would also be known as getting your ducks in a row.

We have had a crazy day around the house today. Jonathan worked overnight last night, so the task fell to me to keep the kids quiet this morning. Usually that's not an insurmountable task, but we had workmen coming this morning to replace part of our sewer pipe.

Have y'all ever tried to homeschool when someone is coming to fix something? Or better yet, when the view from your dining room table includes a backhoe? Yeah...I may not have learned much, but I know that just wouldn't work.

So I spent the morning literally entertaining my children. We did have fun, but I am exhausted! And tomorrow will be another long day, traveling up to Lexington for Ben's appointment at Shriner's.

Umm...where was I? Oh yes, back to the ducks! Looking around my house, I am going to have quite a few projects to get done this weekend. The two most urgent are cleaning off laundry from the table and cleaning out the refrigerator. I will post some pictures of the "before" shots Friday morning.

What "ducky" projects do you have going on this week?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I'm Not Your Mother (Or I Ain't Here to Tell All Y'all What to Do)

You know, I've struggled a bit with this blog and its purpose. There's so much that I want to share that it becomes difficult to pinpoint a direction. But after thinking a great deal on transparency this week, things have become clearer.

I'm just here to be me. To share with you all the things that we're learning- the mistakes that we make, our daily struggles, and our victories, no matter how small.

I don't have it all together. I know that some of you can identify with that. My hope is that we can appreciate that in each other and accept each other unconditionally, but at the same time unwaveringly encourage each other to become more Christlike every day.

Ecc. 4:9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. (NLT)

Monday, May 19, 2008




windows work both ways
can they see You through me?

I yearn to peer out
but sometimes I can't bring myself to open the shutters
can't pull back the drapes
there's too much that could be seen
last week's smudges were never wiped off
there's dust on the windowsill.


there are days when life would be so much easier
with broken views from old shower doors
looking in from the outside
they know that I'm here
shape and movement
light and dark
I'll be myself
only diffused

one more try

for a moment all I see is wrinkled valance
tangled blinds
those same smudges

but there You are in the garden

I've forgotten how much I love to watch You work

we need just one thing:

the window might not be impressive
but because it's transparent
the view is

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Finally! Jonathan graduated Friday night with his Masters of Theology degree!

He's not completely finished with classes yet, as he still has a June term class to take, but at least we know he's coming down the home stretch!

His mom traveled up from Texas for his graduation. They look like they're in serious conversation here, but really they were just waiting for the food to be ready!

Our niece Grace also traveled up for the ceremony. We only get to visit with her about once a year, and she is an absolute joy and delight.

Ben in a thoughtful moment:

Kate, on the railing outside the Student Activity Center on campus:

Lily was exhausted that day, but after some watermelon at the indoor picnic, she managed a smile for the camera:

And the proud graduate himself:

Friday, May 2, 2008

Things that make me smile

A few "thingish things" from the past couple of days:

A girl needs accessories, right?

Warm, made from scratch, strawberry-banana muffins. (And of course, "help" making them!)

A gift from a sweet friend! A little desk for Kate to do her "school" work at while the older two are doing theirs.

The breeze from the concussion- er.....merry-go-round...

Just living it up in the sunshine!

Sisterly love.

And, of course, certain boys that stay on the go so much that the only pictures their mothers can get are of various blurry arms and legs!