Category: the children (page 1 of 2)

Birthday Girl

9 Years Ago today, my darling daughter was born. It was the day before Thanksgiving, and that puts her Birthday squarely on Thanksgiving Day on occassion, but always so very near-by.

The birthday girl isn’t feeling so well, with some sort of chest congestion/cough thing going on the past few days. Over all though, she is doing well and definitely getting older, getting less and less “toys” and more “things” to do things with, crafty mostly. She got her first camera today

It’s from The Limited Too, is cute, and features are just right for a beginning-digital girl.

I got disney princess paper plates and napkins for the Birthday Cake time. Of course she appreciated that, but her older brother was all “i’m not going to eat off of THAT” about it. :rolleyes: Boys.

It’s not like he has to go through tons of girly stuff, with just one sister, and two other brothers now. KWIM? I’m not the girly-est Mama around either.

Eventually he caved and had the cake and ice cream.

Now it’s time for a breather, the Thanksgiving/Birthday week long prep and occassions is over. Christmas is coming fast. I hope to get some things done in the house and with education this week. I hope to. Hope is promising, from this side. πŸ™‚

November – Holiday Season begins

Holiday Season is right around the corner. It’s November now, which means in our household we have Thanksgiving and then our DD’s Birthday, or visa-versa, depending on the year. (She was born in 1998 on the 25th, the day before Thanksgiving.) This year Thanksgiving is three days before her b-day.

It always makes for a more hectic last-half-of-November than ever since 1998.

I’m in the mood for Pumpkin Pie, which it doesn’t have to be Turkey Day, November or December to have, but I haven’t made any “out of season” this year, I haven’t done much cooking overall (with a new baby in the house!) At this point I consider it best to wait until Thanksgiving Day to have Pumpkin Pie, but the urge is so strong to have some NOW so I don’t know what I’ll do in the coming days leading up to TD. Why do I consider it best to wait? So I’m not “Pumkined OUT” by TD, which is possible if I give in to my urge now. FWIW. :blush:

The weather has been cooler lately. Finally Summer has broken in NE Georgia. It’s still getting quite warm, into the 70’s, some days, but getting down in the 60’s at the most at night, all the way down way into the 40’s many nights. This makes things seem more Fall-like, and gets me in the mood for Autumn/Winter thicker clothing, crisp new clothes that just wouldn’t work in the Summer, no way. Boots are my love, for instance, and jackets.

I’m still not fitting into my old things to wear, post-pardum 4-months, so I’m going through my things and trying to figure out what I’m going to do about it. I hate buying “fat skirts” and such, when I know they won’t be needed. I’ve gotten away with wearing my summer skirts just not done up, they stay on and the openings don’t show with my Nursing (BF) Blouses usually covering them up fine. That won’t cut it for the cooler times outside, nor inside the house eventually (as Winter sets in.)

I’ve been Dresses/Skirts only for quite a few years, and did cave to wear pants sometimes when I was pregnant (starting in late ’06) and have a couple of pairs of jeans now for the “transition” but I don’t like them, I am supposing I wouldn’t mind some jeans now if they fit me nicely, but none actually do (since I’m still toting baby fat, which is alright since I am BF the baby, of course. It’d just be nice to have something to wear that looked good and fit nice. :rolleyes: Especially for “winter” wear.)

My DD got a toy sewing machine last Nov. for her BD, but since I was newly preggo then and since and also now have a still “little” baby, I hadn’t showed her how to use it yet … but the other day she was bugging me about it and I told her to just get it out and read the booklet about it. So she did that and started pestering me about this and that in the booklet, and I finally just had her get the machine by me and I showed her some stuff … and thus I now also have the ‘sewing’ bug and want to find a place to put my big machine so that i can use it. Lastly I used it way back in 2000/2001 when I had my 3rd baby, to sew for.

I have had the idea to make nice simple things for DD and myself all along, but I just “haven’t” done that. I really want to and now that I am so blah shaped, it’d be nice to have skirts that worked the way I need them to, you know, custom made by one’s self. I’m going to do that, therefore. I have gotten my DD to want to make T-Shirt Dresses since I told her how easy they are to make, and she wants to get a purple T-shirt for that purpose and is nearly wearing me thin talking about it, so I will have to be sure to find her one ASAP – and get to a fabric store as well.

I did get some Hanna Andersson dresses and tights and leggings and socks and clogs, this week, for DD. Every thing like that has “Blossoming Pink” in it. Also got another skirt and blouse that are not “pink” at all. So a custom made T-Shirt dress that has a purple top will have to have NO PINK in the skirt at all, IMO. In any case, the HA stuff is really nice, a good base for getting more things to mix and match with, every day wear. The blouse I got is has a peter pan collar and buttons up the front. It’s white Pima interlock cotton, long sleeves, very fine yet not “too fine” and will go well under the winter jumpers she has (I bought them a couple of years ago, big on purpose to have later, and later is now!)

We got the boys a few new things from Osh Kosh this past week, as well. Jeans and shirts. The baby too, as well as Carters for the baby. All three of the boys have shirts from Osh Kosh that match each other. A is 7 years old and I have determined (since last year) that he actually looks great in Orange, so he has an orange plaid flannel shirt, R is 11 years old, he and Baby Q both are blonde haired with blue eyes and have fair blue-toned skin and look awesome in blue, so they have the same dark blue plaid flannel shirt as each other, in respective sizes, R has 12 and Baby Q has 6m πŸ™‚ All three have neat Osh Kosh jeans too, so I hope to get a nice Brothers photo with them wearing all that stuff, very soon.

I haven’t uploaded any baby pictures to the web still, as I haven’t yet gotten those announcements sent out :veryshocked: I’m appalled at myself for this. I have finally determined that I like one photo I have from September, right after Baby Q turned 3 months old, which I like enough to duplicate, so I’ll use that one, or maybe take something in the next couple of days that will be good enough, and more recent … and have wallet or some other small-ish size photos printed out at a shop, to include with the announcements. I really, really, really intend to get this done THIS COMING WEEK!!! I hope I can do so.

So with all that pressure, needing to get some sort of warmer clothing figured out for me, get the right clothing ready for the children, and get the announcements mailed, and plan Thanksgiving and V’s 9th Birthday, plus wishing to really start sewing parts of us girl’s wardrobe, and bake for the holidays and get things ready for Christmas, which hopefully will be a Christmas Card that will get mailed this year (for the first time in many) … pressure … it’s heavy, tight, pressing down.

On a good note though, I have a more comfortable bed now: we got a topper for the mattress at Costco this week. It’s a micro filled top with something like 3 inches of memory foam beneath that. It was a pain to open and unfold … the foam was vacuum sealed into a tiny (for it) package. Literally the hardest work I’ve done all week, or in many, many, months. That is on the mattress and I have a waterproof/allergy cover over that (it goes around the whole mattress, zips up to keep all ickies out of the bed) then a thin mattress cover and the sheets. The next thing I want then is a memory foam pillow (with an allergy cover sealing it) as the memory foam is a dream to be on, no pressure points. Lovely to sit up in bed and feed the baby now, just need to get the pillow situation fixed to complete the comfort. Sleeping is nice too, no need to shift around finding a comfy way to be, I mean, just choose what direction to lay in, and if it’s the way you want to be, it’s comfy now.

A second good note: I now have a chair in the “dining room/living area” next to the kitchen. The couch was moved downstairs and I was without a nice place to be with the baby (not liking the “basement” as it is currently) and wanting to be on the main level with the baby mostly anyhow.

So I now have an Ektorp chair and a Bromma foot stool, with white covers. From IKEA, for those not familiar with those product names. Our couch is an Ektorp Corner sofa 2+2. (corner seat with 2 seats on each side, a couch with 5 seat cushions that can hold up to 6 people if you don’t mind sitting right by someone, not bad for visiting, just annoying for basic TV watching, reading, with children, everyone wanting lounging space.)

What is so great about that IKEA Ektorp line? The styling is classically beautiful, in my mind’s eye, and the outside of the couches and chairs are slipcovers entirely, so it’s easy to get a clean couch when needed or wanted. Unzip all the cushions and take the cover off of the frame, into the washer, then drier, then back onto the frame and cushions. It’s work, but worth it. The chair is even easier since it’s just a chair, compared to the corner 2+2 couch. Not only that though, the next best thing is: extra slip covers. The white is cheap, $29 to get an extra set. Other colors start at $79 and go up. The couch, we can get a color we like for $199,a complete new set of slipcovers, making the couch so versatile, brand new-like when wanted. We only have one set of slipcovers for the couch and also the chair right now, but will be getting extra’s sometime sooner than later, I hope. I also want to get an Ektorp Loveseat, which has a really cheap white slipcover set, just $11 … FWIW

To have all this furniture it will be separated in the house we live in now, but I hope to have a house with a very large family room someday …

For now though, I’m more comfy in the main living area again. A place to rest, feed the baby day or night other than in bed, watch TV, read, or even nap … a nice chair that is Mama’s and no one else may sit in it unless I say they may, which is no one. πŸ™‚

Baby Announcements and Birthday Prep

I didn’t “force” myself to make the Baby Announcement the day I wrote about it, but I was inspired suddenly the next day and spent a chunk of time and got it done … sans an address list — so they aren’t sent out and no where near ready for that since I have nothing in the way of an address file anymore. I last would have used one in 2005 when I made Christmas cards, but didn’t send them, and where that information is, is a mystery in this house (it’s so very, very, horribly disorganized for so many reasons.)

I’m making a list of who needs an announcement now, and I hope I can find the address to send each one to. :blush:

I don’t have an actual photograph to send out, I did use a photo as the front of the card, but printed out with a black-only laser jet printer. The picture then is more “copy machine” looking, an old-time look that’s kind of quaint in it’s own way. I had intended to get a decent photo chosen and just get it mass duplicated at a shop to send with the announcements, but that’s something I haven’t spent enough time with, looking at the digitals that I have taken and finding one I like enough to work with like that. I still have time to do so, since I don’t have an address list ready. πŸ˜‰ We’ll see therefore.

My dear baby didn’t look so swell the first month. His face was really broken out in different rashes off and on and that makes photos look horrid. I was also watching A Baby Story on TLC often in the first month after Baby Q was born, and was very sensitive to how nice those TV babies face skin was, while my own dear baby was so cute but had icky skin … πŸ™

So that is why I struggle finding a good photo, though I do have nice photos here and there, but just not one I’d send out as a “one and only” introduction, from the first month really, and then the ones since then where his skin looks great are just great little shots of this and that, but still not one of “here he is” to appreciate his beautiful blue eyes as in an introduction to him via photograph in the announcement envelope.

I might just get something situated here this week to get a more formal-like portrait of cuteness since I can prop him up on his tummy and he’ll hold his head up now, and he smiles and laughs too. Not a newborn any longer, but who says an announcement has to be sent with a newborn photo? If that’s a rule, it’s not one I am going to necessarily follow … flexibility is my sort of thing anyhow. πŸ™‚

Dear hubby isn’t around today thru Wednesday enough for me to get a photo to a shop for duplication, so this is something I have some time to create before having to get it out for printing. That also gives me time to find the addresses I need — less self-pressure — whew!

I have a birthday to get ready for this week as well though. My almost 7-year-old has requested Fettucini Alfredo for his B-Day Dinner. I make it myself occasionally, and he’s also had it in restaurants a couple of times. I’ll make it and grill some chicken breasts and have a salad. I haven’t made fresh pasta in a while, but I’ll break out my grain mill for the first time since Baby Q was born to grind Kamut to make “Nourishing Traditions” style pancakes (fresh ground whole grain (like the Kamut I use) and yogurt mixed together and soaked overnight, or 12-to-24 hours, this makes the most delicious pancake — silky, fine texture, healthily filling feeling, not bloatey full or fat full feeling. It makes the grain digestable easily, and that is better for you, more nutritious therefore, and it’s actually more pleasing to the palette than any white batter pancake.)

I’m going to make a chocolate layer cake with chocolate icing inside and vanilla outside, and those cake decorations that come on a sheet of paper from the grocery store. I used to put too much on myself and do a Wilton decorated cake, but I never was super pleased with the results and got too overinvolved and spent too much time and effort on the job, and was frazzled in body and mind from it, so a few years ago I stopped that maddness and just make a nice homemade cake instead since. It’s loved more, I think, as well. Those store decorations are edible and add the “zing” the children love, and that stuff is awful (the stuff in candy is anything but whole food) but in such small bits it’s OK for a few birthdays a year (soon to be 4!)

It figures that I finally get the announcements created and put a bigger job on me for the week of the birthday than just the birthday. But that’s the way it is, I’ll feel better after it’s all done, if it can all get done this week. πŸ™‚

Things about September

It’s September now, my oh my, time sure as flied.

Baby Q is 2+ months old and getting cuter and cuter, of course. He’s getting longer and fatter — smiles a lot, and laughs. He’s very active — very strong. He holds his head up, just isn’t a pro at it yet, but his daily strength conditioning exercises are working out well for that and his legs and arms. πŸ™‚ He’s able to push himself here and there while on his back, nearly able to turn over at times, it won’t be too far down the road for that.

We had been traveling a lot, and finally are home for a time. Baseball (MiLB) was our August pastime which took much of our IRL time. We saw games in Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina, and North Carolina. 3 different leagues — The International League, Florida State League, and The South Atlantic League.  We mostly combined that traveling with hubbies work travel needs.

The MLB season is getting nearer to the end, while the MiLB (minor league teams) regular season is now over and in playoffs — we have thought of trying to see a playoff game in Augusta, but don’t know if we will. We do watch our favorite MLB teams on TV and PC and are happy to see our favorites each (Him – Det. ; Her – NYY) doing well as can be, still “in it” but not “on top” — yet. NYY is the leading AL-Wild Card of late, though πŸ™‚ The last two games have been fun to see, with Seattle falling apart in the 7th. They are the team to keep down on both sides of the AL-Wild Card game … NYY is on top of them and Det. is right below them. NYY took 2 of 3 this week. Det. took CSW last night in extra innings, which hubby is happy about. They have one more game in the series today — NYY is off today. Det. starts a series with Seattle on Friday. So I am rooting for Det. in that case, but don’t want them getting too rowdy less they try to really take over the AL-Wild Card. Things are possible for Det. to take the AL-Central Division — and for NYY to take the AL-Eastern Division — but it’s not a sure thing, and since NYY is on top of the AL-Wild Card it’s just important to me that they stay on top of that while trying to rise up to the top of the AL-Eastern Division. Of course, hubby wishes for Det. to do that in the AL-Central Division. :shocked:  πŸ˜‰

Little niceties: Boston lost last night, while NYY and Det. both won. And Joba Chamberlain got his first W in the majors with that NYY win (with the Yanks taking the lead in the bottom of 7th while Joba was the pitcher of record, having pitched a 1-2-3 top of the 7th relief session.)  πŸ™‚ A-rod got two homeruns in the 7th as well. Yup, they batted around and he led off with a single homerun and then had a 2-RBI homerun near the end of the inning. Fun stuff to watch the MVP of the AL *the Should Be MVP* that is.

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7 years ago today I was about 3 days “overdue” with baby #3 — and had another week to go, though I didn’t know it then. So that means my “baby” — who had that status his whole life, until just recently –  will be 7 years old in a week. He was my 1st homebirth baby, something that was so wonderful. He was a great baby, easy, and turned into a tornado, being very extroverted, while my first two are introverts (which doesn’t mean they aren’t “tornatic” themselves, just not “most of the time” like their little brother is.)

I never imagined back then, 7 years ago, that I’d have a newborn in the house 7 years later. Not that I didn’t think I’d have no more children, I have always thought I’d have more than 3, but letting it happen in God’s timing, it just didn’t happen until much later than earlier.

The years in-between were somewhat hard, with getting pregnant finally after 4 years, then losing that baby very soon after finding out. After that it was harder, not knowing what would happen, and feeling the loss deeply, so the joy of finding myself expecting not long after I turned 40 was so lovely. πŸ™‚

So, I have a little baby to take care of while I have a child’s birthday party to plan … it’s been a llloooooooonnnnngggg time since that was the case. I also STILL have to create the baby’s birth announcement :blush:

I didn’t get that annoucement made in the first month, and knew it’d be hard, so I didn’t do it, but also knew I’d be traveling to FL just after the first month of the baby being born, for a wedding, and figured I’d get the annoucement made after that. BUT … we have ended up doing more and more traveling since then, the work/baseball travel … and I’ve not been home long enough to do anything with it, though I could have gotten it some or mostly done if I’d wanted to I bet, but I haven’t wanted to, not having a clue what picture I want to use and how to use the cards I got for the announcements (blank to print/stamp/scrap onto.) I had ideas, but since getting the supplies I needed haven’t liked what I got to make what I thought of … having changed the ideas around and just phooey-ing the whole thing hoping to get “inspired” by something all of the sudden, and waiting and waiting … so today it’s bugging me more than ever, and waiting must end and I HAVE to force spontaneous creativity today. –eewwww.

Summer ends this month. I’ve got to get that announcement done this month. My previous baby turns 7 this month. I’ve got to get stuff done for that really soon. And there is just so much more about this month and the time is flying. :shocked:

Babyfour Update

Please see the update on babyfour.

Clothing, clothing, baby and mama’s

I am so tired of late, of course, being in the first trimester of a new pregnancy. I’m finding it hard to do so many things, motivation to cook is fairly nil. I’m not having “morning sickness” but just feel anti-to-making-food. πŸ™ Well, that’s alway’s worse when the night before is a bad one, or, as in the case of yesterday, I didn’t get a nap and when on a ride with Frank on a couple of appoindments he had … the whole family went, of course. We stopped in a little store we’d seen before, that has nice clothing for babies, and up to size 6x in girls and 7 in boys, plus nice wooden toys and such kinds of stuff. Then we decided to go to the mall and see what kind of maternity clothing was there. Ah, the bad day afterwords is alright, for I know how painful the journey was and the worstmentless of it, or doing it again.

Yes, eBay is the place for shopping for maternity clothing!

I have been going through my stuff, and having a hard time with most of it, memories, but I will not wear most of it again. I only wear dresses now, and hate wearing “shorts” or “pants”. (plus, my stance on modesty keeps me happily in dresses!) I do wear tights or leggings under dresses, that’s just not the same as “pants” or “shorts”. So then, I have a nice black jumper from 1995/96 Motherhood Maternity, it needs dry cleaned. Then I need to find my blouse I usually wear with it, but probably need a new one. Anyhow, that was one of my farorite things to wear in the past pregnancies, and I find now, looking at it, that it’s rather short πŸ˜‰ My tastes have changed remarkably. Anyhow, it’ll work alright, as it is below the knees.

Another favorite is a dark blue dress with white polkadots. It’s a long dress, nice coller,swingy skirt, and it’ needs dry cleaned too. It was folded on a shelf, and I took it down and was looking at it, and found a funny spot of white on it and there next to it was a worm (the white must be a webby thing that it hached out of). Uh Oh. It was probably about to start eating clothing. Yikes! Good thing I was prompted internally to look at doing something with my maternity clothing.

So that leaves me with shirts and weird stuff.

I have three things coming to me that will be great to wear out and to church. eBay, another “of course”. Very good deals, all of them.

I’m watching another auction right now, and it has 4 dresses in it, and oh I’m hoping to get it. They’ll be the things I wear at home or some of them also out.

I’ll be seeing about putting some of my stuff I don’t want up on auction soon. Plus I have a load a particular brand of Chr. Romance books that I’ll sell in one or two huge lots.

What I make in those things is funding for other eBay purchases.

All things listing on eBay are more difficult for me now that we don’t have a digital camera again (the one is out for repair, hopefully warranty in full effect and coverage!) So that’s why I’ve not been listing things since the first few I did, as the camera has been unreliable when it was here, and now is gone. I may gather a great amount and take the fewest pictures I can muster with my film camera … a thing I don’t want to do.

I find it interesting that I was starting to sell baby clothing, and considering how much of it to sell … when the camera was then oblesy not working right, and then one buyer left a nasty feedback without contacting me … and my heart wasn’t in it anymore … then just some weeks later, I find that selling my good baby clothing isn’t the best thing to be doing πŸ˜‰

I’d been wondering for a couple of years if I should give away or sell my baby things … and was reticent to do anything about it at all until December finally. Hmmm.

This is mostly due to our belief of leaving our family size to God’s planning. We don’t “try” to have more children, nor “try not to” have more children. Considering that, we at this point have 3 children, and one on the way, in over 12 years of marriage. It’s wonderful that God is blessing us with another child, which I’m so thrilled with, as I love babies and “at least four” is what I’d considered all my life long as “being right for me”.

So all this coming together, baby clothing, feeling able to give it up finally, then finding I will need it afterall if all goes well. It’s just very interesting to consider.

Another thing, I had the crib set up as a daybed in our bedroom last year. We moved our bedroom furniture around over New Years, and the daybed has been apart, and I was going to set it up in the dining area. I hadn’t gotten to it yet. With the resent advent of our news, I now can save that set-up time and just put it up elsewhere as a full fledged crib instead, later. πŸ™‚

Please understand any mis-spelling I’ve done in this post particularly. Sometimes I just don’t spell well, my fingers fly and my mind speaks the word, but my fingers spell it wrong. Pre-old-age-disease? Lack-of-mineral-or-vitamem? Not-enough-good-literature-reading-these-last-few-years? Ah, my new excuse — Pregnancy-brain? πŸ˜†

I’m too tired right now to attempt spell checking, when my spelling don’t work so well with any spell-check I’ve got on my computer πŸ˜‰

I’m in need of posting. I’ve done very little the last week. So here are my thoughts! It feels good to get them down on a page of something, whether paper or internet. I love blogging. πŸ™‚

New part of this site

Click here for the newest part of this site. Officially opened on March 6, 2004 …

Movies for Family

Elizabeth G. asked me about movie suggestions in the comments under Updates and Rambling Talk. So here goes: For Elizabeth G. and anyone else who may care about this!

In our home we have several Disney movies, mostly the “older” ones, Toy Story, The Little Mermaid, and the ones before that. I’ve been alright with it, but mostly do not consider them the BEST to do, since many of them are built on Classic Stories that are far superior to the Disney-ized versions.

That said, I love “Sleeping Beauty” of all the Disney versions of fairytales, it has a sweeping musical score and good triumphs over evil most definitely in a battle of evil vs truth.

Other than that, most of the Disney movies I really think are better suited to adults, really, who have the actual tales in their minds, and can understand them a bit better as Disney versions. I think children should be grounded in the truer versions before seeing adaptations on screen. FWIW

I love watching movies, but have always, since I can remember nearly, have loved to read. Reading filled my childhood and teen years, with little TV compared to most peers. This is something that I’ve failed at to some degree with my family so far, letting them see way too much movie-ism. But I’ve tried to be sure it was certain things only. In the past we had the Dish (satelite) and we watched alot of Babies being born, houses being built, houses being decorated, and food being prepared or talked about. Since September 2001 we’ve been without that, and so it’s these movies mostly, in this post, we’ve spent time with as a family. Russell is reading, but not super duper yet, not devouring, and I’ve not been diligent enough in reading aloud. I read aloud “The Velveteen Rabbit” a few months ago. I’d never read it, nor had it read to me. Oh, I got to the end and started bawling. My children looked at me, like “What’s wrong with YOU?!!!” and Russell asked, “Daddy, why is Mama crying?” \0/ Certain emotional issues are certainly not meant for THEM yet. I must do more reading. πŸ™‚ Joel Chandler Harris is some of my favorite stuff, and it’s kind of over their heads right now too. πŸ™ I do firmly believe that stories are grand for chlildren and adults alike, but that children NEED classic tales and fairy tales. True stuff, the Bible for one, is dry and exciting and firmly on level with any human to read and understand, with the grace of God. But if a child grows with it, it sinks in, the beauty of the drama, and fairytales properly approached add to the wonder.

Other than that, then there are classics that can be read, and films of them viewed:

National Velvet -rated G, 124 minutes 1944 Mickey Rooney and Elizabeth Taylor. It’s a classic that can be viewed as a family and discussed. Rights, wrongs, and what drives one and what should drive someone …

To Kill a Mockingbird – not rated, 2 hrs. 10 mins., 1962 Gregory Peck (Oscar winning performance) Not for the very young, but for maturing children with parental guidance, it’s a classic tale of a sleep southern town, Peck defending a black man accused of rape, and Boo Radley … it’s a sweet story, grippingly told, but not for children to watch alone.

Both of the above movies you may or may not want your boys to see at their ages, we have both on DVD, and you are welcome to borrow them and preview them, Elizabeth, if you’d like to.

Then there’s the classic “Quiet Man” John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara, 1952, not rated.

I guess what I’m getting at with the movies so far is that fluffy childrens’ stuff is pure candy, and that’s a bad diet. So a good movie to chew on is more in order, IMO.

Then there is a movie that is different, it’s a western type, but really different … “The Rare Breed” is about an Englishwoman (Maureen O’Hara) who brings over a prized English Hereford bull, to America in 1880, he is sold to a wild Scotman, and [O’Hara] hires [James Stewart] to help her and her daughter transport the bull to the new owner. It’s an interesting tale of what one family did to change the fate of the Texas Longhorn. So it’s sort of dry, yet not, very educational, and worth a peek to take a leap into learning about the history of what happened, if one would like to in their home or homeschool.

Then lastly, there’s a sweeping epic with many lessons to learn in it. “Big Country” starring Gregory Peck, Jean Simmons, Carroll Baker, Charleton Heston, and Burl Ives. 1958 2 hours, 47 minutes, not rated. It’s about a western ranch and water rights and a sort of feud over them with another ranch. The first rancher, his daughter brings an Easterner home, to marry him. That’s Gregory Peck. He is a different character than the rest, and branded eventually a fool and discarded … but the story is about being honest. And seeing what happens to old men in their folly of feudism. It’s a gripping story … hard, honest work is applauded in this movie. It’s a good tale for boys, IMO.

I like all the above movies particularly. They are for adults, and children with supervision.

Other things then, for children, we have some Pooh Bear stories on DVD, which I like too. And Beatrix Potter “Peter Rabbit” which are classic tales brought to animated life very real like her own drawings. Perhaps your boys are “too old” for this kind of stuff, but maybe not. This is stuff that I really like to watch myself, and if your boys every have read Peter Rabbit or Pooh Bear, they might really like to see these.

As I said before, all these movies we have on DVD and you are more than welcome to preview them.

There’s rather a derth of “decent films out there”. Oh, well one new one “Finding Nemo” by pixar studios, an arm of Disney, is actually sort of cute, and very pretty to see. We have that. The children enjoy it.

That’s a start. Let me know if this is the kind of thing you are looking for, or is there another angle you’d like? I am not recalling the exact ages of your boys Elizabeth, but know they are older than Russell, so … πŸ™‚

Oh, some other reading that has good movie adaptions is Jane Austen. Sense and Sensability, Pride and Prejudice in particular. Good reading for the whole family, read it then see the movies together, yes, we have them. Emma, Persuasion, too. I admit to not have read them before these past months. I love the movies, I love the books so much more. These are written by a woman in the early 19th century, but that’s not stuff just for women. My husband likes S&S, and P&P, the last one the more, the movie that is. Our pastor likes S&S the movie and the book … for one. Really nice character portrayals in word, and in the acting.

πŸ™‚

Little Flock in our yard

Victoria called me to her room a bit ago, said there was a red-headed bird, like a woodpecker that she was looking at. I asked her if it was on a tree, and she said “No, it’s on the grass”.

So I went in there and lo and behold, it wasn’t a woodpecker … it was 25+ American Robins looking for worms in our front yard. This is the biggest batch of them that I have seen this year (so this isn’t particularly scientific data). I counted, definitely, 25 and there were more coming in when I stopped counting, not too many more.

So what this means in terms of Spring? We have rain forecasted for today through tomorrow, off and on. The radar is showing quite a large mass of rain heading NE, so whether it actually hits us or not … we are forecasted a high temp of 53 today, and tomorrow a high of 60 degrees F. πŸ™‚ No sun though, not much at the least.

Dear Victoria was happy to learn the real name of the bird, and didn’t bat an eye when I remarked that there were so many of them, not just one. It seems one bird, twenty-five birds, nah, same thing practically speaking πŸ˜†

It’s still early in the day. Must be a morning thing, she DOES know what a Robin looks like, and has ID’d them fine in the past.

Well, if she feels remotely like I do, she’s not in top form … πŸ™

Conversations of the young

Overheard:

Asa was in Victoria’s room early this morning.

Victoria said “That’s zero. Asa it’s zero. Do you know what zero is?” pregnant pause, silence.

“It’s nothing” said Victoria, answering herself.


I imagine that whatever it was they were referring to, Asa must have been standing there with his right-hand thumb in his mouth, just watching. Victoria was being very know-it-all. Asa was polite listening, but didn’t care much for the delivery. πŸ™‚

The players: Victoria, female, 5-years-old; Asa, male, 3-years-old.

Tom and Jerry

My children were oohing and ahhhing over something in the other room, so I went to check it out. They had a Tom and Jerry coloring book of mine and were looking through it, and overly impressed with Mama’s past coloring of some of the pages [the ones that I had already colored].

I love to color, still, at 38 years of age. I colored these pictures in my late teens or early twenties, I think. So, no, I wasn’t a “child” per se. Russell thought I was when they were colored. So he has plenty of time to catch up to crayon coloring ability with me.

They unanimously voted these ajoining pages as “The Best”.
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New Photos coming soon

I recently found a stash of photo’s … something that I put away. I’m seeing these photo’s as if I’ve really not seen them before. The year 2000, December. Cute little children. So I’ll be getting them ready … I just have to decide which are what, since there are two rolls, both not developed until March 2, 2001. They both have Photo CD’s, so obviously I thought these rolls important when they were taken in for developing. It feels silly, not remembering stuff, and having to guess about your own life, not so long ago. I truly mean to write a log when I take photos, I just never do. Immediate memory thinks far memory will be no problem. I should know better. I guess that just is something we can’t always convince ourselves about.

Well, since there are Photo CD’s that means I only have to take them into Photoshop Elements, what I currently use, and resize them for the Web, and make thumbnails. Easy, easy, easy to do. When I have them done, I’ll get them on the Photo Log.

The biggest star of these photos is of course Asa. He was about 3 months old then. So cute!

Happy Birthday to Asa!

Happy Birthday to Asa! He is 3 today. Three years ago he was a sweet newborn baby boy, born at home earlier in the night.

He got a Radio Flyer Tricycle today, he’s able to peddle and is just such a big boy. His bigger sister got on it and they decided it’d be fun to have him sit on the step that’s on the back of the bike … he fell off when she went where she was not supposed to … and he got an egg on his head and scratched up his cheek. Poor thing. He’s just fine if it’s HIM riding the bike. So now he’s looking tough boy. Glad I got some photos earlier of him with that sweet clear face.

This is a tough day for me, I’m in the throws of allergies still. I sure wish I weren’t. So things aren’t as fancy for Asa’s B-day as I’d like, as if he really cares. He’s having a fine time with a few new toys, never wrapped, still a surprise when he covers his eyes, then opens them to the view of a toy truck, or earlier the tricycle, and later another toy truck. We are giving him one here, another there, etc, piecemeal them out.

I have a cake to ice still. It’s a Black Magic cake, with a few improvements. I use to go all out and do a Wilton cake for each child, but that is something I gave up entirely last year. It’s tough for me to make all those stars. Who needs that stress. If one is good at it, fine, but hey, I make a nice normal cake, stacked or in the pan. That’s nice too! Tastes just as good, maybe better πŸ˜‰

Well, we have another younun’s b-day coming up in less than 3 months. She’ll be 5. She’ll be a bit more picky!

Photo’s online, whenever they are processed. 5th in line is this roll of film.

A New Pledge, and other ideas on learning at home

I’ve been reading different things about education lately … hence these ideas:

I haven’t liked the term “Home School” or the answer to the question: “What grade are you in?” or “Are you ready to go back to school” and the myriad of others that abound.

It didn’t bother me always to use the term “home school”. But it has since our children were born. What is “school”? Well, we don’t do that. We don’t do the opposite either, what’s known as “un-schooling”.

I’ve determined things like “home educate” were better. Recently I saw someone’s license plate that changed my mind … it was a state educator license plate, one of the specialties you can get from the DMV. They hold the word “educator” differently that I do. I can’t use it in any way to make sense then.

Here’s what I’ve thought up today:

Family.

Family Learners.

Well that proves it, there’s no way to say it. It’s a long thing.

“We don’t do school. We stay home and learn things in life as we live. We learn how to read and read books. We write. We learn lots of things.”

What about those books you can buy, “What Your Child Needs to Know in Second Grade” or something like that. Our eldest is 7. He’s not in the school system. He’s not in a grading system. Some people talk to me about it and say “Well he’d be in ‘such-n-such’ grade IF …”

Nope. That doesn’t work. Can’t put that structure on our family. We don’ t fit it.

We are a family first and foremost. The children come along and learn as they grow up, and learn how to do everything they need to, and to know everything they should. It’s not the job for the State to do anything about it. It’s not the job for anyone else to do something about it. It’s OUR job, as a Family, to do something about it.

I know that most families are happy to utilize other things to educate their children. I won’t say they should think on things as I do. My problem is with the intolerance out there for our way.

Connected to this is the idea that people are afraid for the children of lesser families, that they’ll drown if the State isn’t involved.

Well, it’ll take many years for people to lose their dependence on “Big Mama, the Educatin’ Arm of the Great Leviathan”. So meanwhile, how about just making an allowance for many modes of education, including Family Education. I’m not saying most people should do what we do. I’m not saying our way is the only way. It’s right for us. That’s what I’m saying. And it’s the right way for some others. Just not the masses of “homeschoolers”, not to even think of the government civilian training centers inductees and instructors of all opposite truth.

Prussian models of education are not what a Biblical family should seek to place around their child. I can recall when I was in “school”. I saw the main thing was “Patriotism”. Learn to automatically stand in lines, raise your hand. “Turn your books to page … “. “Stand and salute the flag:

‘I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, under God indivisible, with liberty, and justice for all’ … sit down now.”

Ugh.

That’s one thing I can’t wipe out of my brain.

How about changing it.

“I pledge allegiance to God Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, to His Son, Jesus Christ, who came to earth as a man, died for our sins, and purchased eternal life for all chosen before the foundation of the earth, and to the Holy Spirit who leads us, our God, the Holy God, three persons in one. I thank God for giving us a Holy Nation, a land devoted to You, under Your Law and Guidance. We humbly ask you to make us righteous, raise up leaders who will do your Will. Keep us in constant love, and care. And thank you for the States Rights that our leaders believe in to be true and good for a Godly Union of Land, and a Union that IS divisible and bound to no one but God, as States each have soverign duty to apply law under Him.”

That’s a rough draft, written on the spot here this morn. Too bad the last part isn’t exactly how it is, but only how it should be.

States Rights aren’t the same as when I say The State, either. Limited Government doesn’t have a structure called “The State” in my book.

Well, I got through school believing in States Rights, how come? I read books. I read what would be called today, Living Books. Biographies, history … that was what I loved. Did I get through school? Not really, I got my GED. Simple little test that was. πŸ™‚

Life isn’t about what kind of school certificates and degrees one can obtain. Nor to be a Statist Dem or ‘Publican. It’s about learning to Love God and to do His Will. To live righteous lives. To truly live well.

Part of that is eating. It’s a big deal to think food comes from a supermarket. We want to counter that notion. Food should come from regional producers, and most should come from farms direct. So our children are home with me, we read and do stuff, and part of that stuff is farming stuff. It’s a good education.

The children are still young. 7, 4, and 3 [on Saturday]. From what I know about me and my husband, and what I see in each of them … we are a family that seeks after knowledge with a vengeance. Fear not for us. We are learning about farming, but will be able to converse on a myriad of topics. Proficient in what we are talented in, and knowledgeable of what other things we need to encounter. It’s not up to a curriculum company to tell us what to learn. Nor the State, nor the Nation, nor a book at Costco.

We don’t believe in Big Government. Different governing entities for the last few centuries have wanted to control their populations with education. That’s scary.

Read the Bible, and good books. Learn foreign languages. Know how to do math that you need to use, and learn how to learn on your own, so that you can pursue higher information about anything if you desire to do so. In our home, we all learn together. So I am 37, and still learning. I love it. I’ll be learning in this life until I can’t see or hear or feel or smell. That’s what we instill in our children. To pursue knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

That Gorgeous September Moon

I just went out on the deck with my Canon Rebel 2000 after spying the moon through the glass of the French doors.

It was gorgeous, looks full, but not exactly quite. I took at least 3 or 4 photos with my longest lense, using a night-time mode. I sure hope they turn out alright. I’ve never really taken night body pictures. Only moon in daylight sky … when aiming at the moon.

After I did that I came in and searched for moon phase info. Couldn’t find it easily on accuweather nor on Weather.com. I didn’t have the patience to REALLY search there. I found a naval site and found a plethora of info. So I got the most relevant data to me for now, and find that the moon is 99% waxing gibbeous tonight … πŸ™‚ It’ll be FULL officially tomorrow sometime after High Noon. Gorgeous pictures if they come out, of a waxing practically full moon, the best view of this September 2003 Full Moon that might be had perhaps. We can’t vouch for tomorrow nights sky conditions. At any rate the view in real life is simply wonderful. A yellow gauze of light around it, the man on the moon looks very cheesey tonight, and very happy too.

Just as I was about to post this Asa came up and looked outside, and guess what he said “I saw the moon!”

Which reminds me of his birth. Ah, I have a connection with the September Moon, [minus any mystical weirdness –it’s totally a romantic notional connection] I knew there was something drawing me out there with my camera.

In 2000 I was overdue with our third child. The Full moon was approaching and the midwife and I joked about waiting for the full moon, or something like that. Well, the night I went into labor, the moon was waxing towards Full. Proof following:

2000 Phases of the Moon
Universal Time

NEW MOON FIRST QUARTER FULL MOON LAST QUARTER

d h m d h m d h m d h m

JAN. 6 18 14 JAN. 14 13 34 JAN. 21 04 40 JAN. 28 07 57
FEB. 5 13 03 FEB. 12 23 21 FEB. 19 16 27 FEB. 27 03 53
MAR. 6 05 17 MAR. 13 06 59 MAR. 20 04 44 MAR. 28 00 21
APR. 4 18 12 APR. 11 13 30 APR. 18 17 41 APR. 26 19 30
MAY 4 04 12 MAY 10 20 00 MAY 18 07 34 MAY 26 11 55
JUNE 2 12 14 JUNE 9 03 29 JUNE 16 22 27 JUNE 25 01 00
JULY 1 19 20 JULY 8 12 53 JULY 16 13 55 JULY 24 11 02
JULY 31 02 25 AUG. 7 01 02 AUG. 15 05 13 AUG. 22 18 51
AUG. 29 10 19 SEPT. 5 16 27 SEPT. 13 19 37 SEPT. 21 01 28
SEPT. 27 19 53 OCT. 5 10 59 OCT. 13 08 53 OCT. 20 07 59
OCT. 27 07 58 NOV. 4 07 27 NOV. 11 21 15 NOV. 18 15 24
NOV. 25 23 11 DEC. 4 03 55 DEC. 11 09 03 DEC. 18 00 41
DEC. 25 17 22

2000 Moon Phases

Here’s the exact time of Full moon on that day for us: Full Moon on 13 September 2000 at 3:37 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

Asa was born at 1:57am approx. September 13, 2000. So it was full, like now, just not “absolutely officially”.

It’s a nice moon, that September moon. The Full moon for September 2000 occured 12-something hours after Asa’s birth. The Full moon for September 2003 will occur 15-something hours from now, when I took the photos and felt the need to do so without prior thought of what’s written above. Interesting cooincidence. Close, not exact, but similar and my baby will be Three years old on Saturday! πŸ™‚

These photos will be in the Photo Log eventually. Film takes awhile, and there are three rolls ahead of this one, which is still in the camera.

Good Things going down

See my first post for today on my Eggreport. Something different happened when I first checked the hens today.

Then see my second post for today on my Eggreport. Something really big happened today, and something cool too. Which is which? Interchangeable, I’d say! Post comments here and there, or anywhere!

Fireflies

We are expecting it to rain anytime, accoring to the radar it should be raining πŸ˜‰

At any rate, it’s after dusk and I was outside and noticed a few lights flashing here and there around the fence in the back yard, under the Locust Tree. Sure enough, it was Fireflies!

Sounds like a silly thing to be excited about. Right? Well, it’s the first time we’ve ever seen Fireflies on our property. Exciting!

I called Russell out of bed to see them. Asa and he share a room, so since Asa was still awake, out he came too. Victoria was already asleep.

I showed the boys the Fireflies from the deck, then we went into the yard. We “chased” the Fireflies, trying to follow them, then I encouraged Russell to catch one.

Oops! I told him to catch it in his hands.

I should have done that differently. One dead Firefly.

It was interesting to look at it though. It was dead alright, but still rather intact in it’s body shape. It’s luminous rear end was lit up in a 3/4 power glow … poor little beatle. That’s right, not fly, beatle. Fireflies are beatles. Learn about them here.

This is an example of home education. It happens when you least expect it. It’s fun too!

Russell successfully caught two or three Fireflies after the first dud of a catch.

As we were going inside, Asa was waving so sweetly at the sky, looking for Fireflies and saying “Bye Firefwies!”. It was really nice.

As we were going in, I could smell the scent of Fireflies in my hands. It was a memory, not an actual real-time scent. It was the memory from when I was a little girl, chasing “Lightening Bugs” [as we then called them] and catching them in my hands, in jars, letting them go. They left a particular smell, earthy, and it’s burned in my memory. It’s one of those kinds of reminders that refreshes your outlook for how to communicate with the children. Fun, sweet times, and good memories will last forever.

My Desktop Today


Click for larger photo

Here’s what my desktop looks like today. A mess, but a nice background! Click on the picture to see a pop-up full-size version of this Sepia-colored recent photo of Russell, Victoria, and Asa!

Three New Items Added

Yesterday I had Russell and Victoria make new pictures to scan for the web.

Here you’ll find: Our House by Russell, and the flip side of that page: A Train Named Choo-Choo-Chug-A-Chug, also by Russell.

Here you’ll find: “Paperdoll” by Victoria.

An update on the children’s progress

Asa is really growing! His face has filled out considerably of late, he’s looking more “boy” than baby, actually baby is nearly gone. He’s 2 years, 5 months old.

He can answer the first three children’s catechism questions:

1. God

2. All things

3. For His own glory

Those are the answers. Mix the questions up and he still 98% of the time gets them right.

Currently, as I type this, he’s playing “Reader Rabbit Toddler” on the other computer. He’s in Bubble Castle, letting all those animals out of the bubbles, and then when the right amount are release he gets a song played. He’s singing right along with them, and in particular doing quite a good job with the Alphabet song.

We sing songs in the van or just anywhere in the house, and he’s really picking them up all of a sudden. He used to watch the other two on the computer on occassion, but not do well without help, now he doesn’t need help. He’s got many mouse-moves down.

Now, it’s Victoria’s turn: She’s 4 years, 3 months old.

She’s a young lady. She is learning her letters. She can name most of them. She can spell out signs when we are out, for instance. That’s one utilization of our surroundings I use to show them learning abilities.

She loves to write on paper. She copies things I write, or things out of books. She’s memorized her name, how to write it, and sometimes she doesn’t get it totally correct, but it’s close. Usually it’s just one-letter-wrong. Something flip-flopped or left out.

She “reads” “This little Piggy Went to Market”. Russell read it to her one day,and she memorized it instantly and follows the words on the page of the book, as if she’s reading. She’s mimicing Russell and everyone else who actually reads.

She’s raring to go! It won’t be long now.

She can click with the mouse with the best of them, very “professional” πŸ™‚ She play Toddler and Pre-School versions of Reader Rabbit, and they are just fun, not a real challenge. We have BUZZY the Knowledge Bug CD’s too, and the JUNGLE one Russell has been playing, and now Victoria is playing it too. They both are constantly chattering about this and that thing in this or that jungle, etc. when they play with that CD. It’s full of great activities, and it’s neat to see Victoria starting to do things that Russell is already doing on the computer.

Russell is reading everything. He can read outl oud very well, but usually doesn’t do a good job, his attitude needs work. He’s very intelligent, and of course, rather bossy, being the eldest. He’s losing his front top teeth slowly, they are looser now, but still there. He lost two bottom ones, but is still frightened about losing the top ones. He’ll be a typical 6-7 year old soon, with that big gap. Just not so typical in other ways …! Russell will be 7 the end of April.

He’s a very sweet boy, energetic, and very much more full of energy than that!

I’m going to get Russell to type some information for his web page soon. And that will introduce him to web design and HTML coding eventually. We’ll start with a list of books he’s read/reading.

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