Thursday, August 11, 2011

Found an abandoned post from last year

It has occurred to me that I no longer have a baby. Not even close. One of my sweet friends just had her third baby, a girl after two boys. When I held that tiny girl I fought back the ugly cry. There is something magical in a newborn. I had the moment of realization that we are securely past this stage. These children are growing up. Fast. My once intentional and occasionally successful attempts to "train" them in the way they should go and write His words in their hearts...I am counting down now -what's left to teach because I am seeing the light of the "setting them free" train coming around the corner.

I still want flash cards- I want charts and smiley faces and "good job" stickers. Let me keep training!! I am NOT finished. Now that I have some lessons so desperately needed to be taught, I have a very distracted audience that doesn't respond to my cute techniques. I knew this would be the tricky part.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Warming up to fall...Outdoors in October

Before the snake.
Best. Team. Ever. "Fever"
Magnolia Leaf Pom-Poms. Too cute.
So fall is kinda nice. I truly have had some good times outdoors this October.

We started out one Sunday afternoon on a nature hike. Sadie packed snacks and water bottles, digging tools, a butterfly net and I grabbed the camera. We were set to go-- less than a mile to our local nature conservatory on Mars Hill Road. We had crossed the creek (as seen in the first picture) which was a bit nerve racking for Sadie--already she was rethinking her adventure. The "bridge" over the creek was 5 ft. high and 18" wide to walk on. Although I image if we had fallen- we would have landed on our feet, Sadie wasn't sure. Maybe she was sensing that in just about 20 more feet she would almost be bitten by a snake. That's right, next sight up on our hike was a pretty big, pretty green snake 2 inches from my baby's foot! With the power of the Spirit, (cause I fainted on the inside) I reached out and pulled Sadie back and Riley snapped a shot of it. The snake reared up and then rolled back into a hole in the trunk of a tree. The picture doesn't show the ferociousness of the reptile. It had large red eyes and smoke and... For real, Sadie and I sadly relented back for fear of another near death experience. Riley wasn't happy about that. We decided to buy a gourd at the St. Florian Pumpkin Patch and paint it instead. Good times in nature.

The next Sunday the kids have over some friends. I couldn't help but feel good inside that all the kids spent the entire day outside. They played hide and seek, football, some made up game and you know I had some craft projects going...especially after Lynnsey Beth complimented my "creative" side, nothing swells my ego more than a 6 year old telling me I am special--you think i am kidding? I crafted it up the rest of the afternoon.

We made pine cone ceiling fan pulls. (don't judge me, they will be the hit at all the holiday parties, just wait) and natural bows for all your Christmas gift wrapping needs using, again, pine cones and tree twigs. Ok enough on that, don't want to give away all my secrets...The girls also cheered (be still my soul) using pom poms made of magnolia leaves. I think that might have been the cutest thing I have seen all year. I spared you the many pictures I took of that cuteness. Well, maybe just one more...

To continue with the fall nostalgia...every Monday and Saturday has been super quality time with my soccer team "Fever". We are a young, green team that has brought me all sorts of emotions in a way I didn't expect. Although not the best on experience or talent...(we have lost every game so far) we have made a huge improvement in not only our game but our attitude and interest in God. It's truly been so cool to be a part of---so hear this- what God did...

He reminded me this week to "just ask". So many times I forget to pray for the details of things that are important and I think God likes when we get specific so we can see how He's paying attention to the details.
Now I have yet to pray for us to score a goal this season, I mean seriously pray you know... It truly hasn't been about scores and goals with these girls. But this day, it felt like it was time. I asked God this morning to let them score a goal. They had before but it had been a while.During the game--- I knew God was going to answer so I asked specifically for a certain girl to score. She is the one I am holding especially close in my heart and if God chose her to be my scorer--I would so feel His presence- and confirm me that I am on the same page with God about her. Not 5 minutes passed and she drove down the middle, never let up and kicked it in the net. My God is so cool.

Of course--I started crying and felt like we had won the world cup. We didn't win the game. But we won the game. I can't tell you how pumped we all were when it was over- I am pretty sure that Ben Campbell (our ref) was wondering if we had watched the game..ha! I am blessed to have Gates be my co-coach too. He and I have had some well needed time together and I am so proud of his leadership skills.

I can't forget the 2nd grade field trip to the various farms. From cow, to horse to deer and goat--the kids got to experience farm life. Smells and all. My favorite part...pickin' cotton. You can't grow up in Alabama and not love a good romp in the white fields on fluff.

Fall is ok i guess... with weather like we have been having it's truly hard to deny the peace you feel just by breathing in. I know winter is around the corner. But everyday i have the warm sun shine on my face is one less day the cold wind will not be freezing me. So day at a time. Praise God for another day. Behold October.

Coming soon..."Riley gets braces".

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Happy Eighth Birthday Sadie!

My funny little girl, happy birthday. I learn how to express myself with confidence watching you. Your character keeps promising me you will be determined, strong and tender-hearted all in one--I can't wait to see what all that means for you. I thank God for giving me the experience that comes with you. Eight years ago, you changed me and challenged me to be better. God is awesome and I will forever thank Him for my girl.

The Birthday Gang
Diggin' it...

All the pies.

Pie Contest: Everyone's a winner!

Sadie's "Most Entertaining" Pie

Trina's pie.

Sadie has been one surprise after another. Her unique mindset is never at a loss for something to do so when she announced she wanted her birthday to be a "dirt" party...I heard her out.  Trying to incorporate some good clean girlie fun into a party of mud pie's and straight up wet red dirt wasn't easy but I think I did pretty good...

After the party clean-up.
I couldn't help it...I planned for her boots
and shirt to match the buckets.
Sadie and her friends made their very own unique to them mud pies with whatever they could find from the yard, including brick pieces, dog food and even Frisbees .They planted seeds in mason jars and dug in the dirt mainly just to spread it all over them. A couple of the boys got in to the mud in a way like no one else. They were beautifully brown, sticky and happy.

Fun came again to some of us more than others...with clean up in a large tub, squeeze soap and a garden hose. Next up... "Dirt" cake topped off  with a bloom, gummy worms crawling and all. Sadie had the birthday she wanted.

I have to admit--I had a lot of fun myself and even though I wouldn't have thought to throw a "dirt" party for my little girl---to see her playing in her element and just being herself made me so glad I didn't talk her in to something more "girlie" or cute. She made me happy. 

Last night-- after the third time I sprinkled **Pixie dust** on the bedside table for the tooth fairy "Penelope", so she could fly back and answer Sadie's note she left her... I felt pretty sure there was a "girlie" girl in there somewhere.   :)

Monday, August 16, 2010

2, 6 and 8 grades...not quite ready for starting school days

Gates in 8th, Sadie in 2nd and Riley, 6th. With slick new cuts I hardly recognize the boys.

Students were showing Mrs. Smith they could already count to 100 with their eyes closed (what she claimed they would learn in 2nd grade)

Mrs Smith's 2nd Grade

No bow, no headband, not even a ponytail holder. *sigh

Shucking corn for the big "Thanks for DC" dinner.

i "end-capped" the idea from Southern Living and HAD to make this--in true form--i break the "don't try a new recipe out on company" rule.

The ice cream in which we adding everything dairy from the fridge. Turns out that works. Thanks Don Tays for the tips.

"Jump the Hosepipe" game
Starting school this year seemed to happen so fast and clumsy-like, it was almost like we were caught off guard. No one really needed to gear up on supplies, Sadie sent in a fee this year so we just had to show up. I think in some ways that may have backfired on my family's ability to transition.

We are all having a slow go this year but it did help that day one consisted of not only a new day of school but a house full of family and food that night. A lot of cooking and fun with Tony, Lisa and their family and mom and dad. We had so much fun hearing about every one's first day, grilling and swimming, playing games and eating and eating some more....

Now after one full week is over-- a week surely feeling like a full month. What in the world?? It seems prayerfully we are adjusting a bit better. I have now formed a practice I am not sure to keep up... the kids have an ongoing joke I play into everyday with a note in their lunch-box. To explain the joke...? It involves a small stuffed red happy meal toy from '06 Riley has named "Radish". Just know it's funny to only us.

Here's our little Radish.

Everyday Radish gets in to all sorts of trouble and it's well documented in our lunch notes. Gates' morning consists of coming downstairs--showered and dressed, chores accomplished- unzipping the lunchbox, taking the note out and tearing it into shreds and throwing it in the garbage. He reads it though, and even some day's will ask if it's written yet...I decided if he's reading anything I am writing--i will keep writing. One day the note said only this .."please don't tear this note in to tiny shreds". Still it's worth it.

Riley takes his out every morning and reads it and puts it BaCk in the lunch box to read again later. Bless him. He even said that it makes him feel like I am thinking about him when I send a note. I love my boys-- even though they are like night and day- they both love in such unique ways---ways that help me understand love better. I am always learning watching those two.

I still can't believe how old my children are--sometimes I still feel like that girl who always dreamed of what it would be like to have a baby. Now, I have a teenager, a preteen and Sadie. In some ways I feel like a second grader when I listen to her day and her emotions from it. I am telling her the exact same things my mom and dad would say to me to ease her anxieties. It's one thing to watch the boys- some things I get, some things I don't. But with this girl--she has a lot of my personality and moods and temperament. We even play Barbie's the same. I just pray she likes me for a while longer.

So there it is, I am blessed. Another school year begun, another summer behind us. Off to the next task.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

stand in awe

I just spent the entire episode of  "Design Star" looking at minerals and gems from the Museum of Natural History. This takes skill. Now...from the above link you will be able to choose your path...  either gems or minerals. You HAVE to see.

You can zoom in on them and--AND---it will tell you where they "mined" them or dug them out.  So far, nothing exciting has been brought out from Alabama. Maybe I should get out the 'ol tools, shovels and such and head down to the caves and river banks. Don't think I haven't considered that.  

I have absolutely always had a thing for rocks. Not like precious stones or anything-- mostly rocks. There's just nothing like finding a flicker of quartz in a nasty rock by the creekside or digging up some crazy rock that you really feel like your hands were the first to touch. Fossils- hello, a piece of the past, embedded. Love it.

Not sure what that is fueled by but apparently it's been passed on to my daughter too. She takes all of her company first to her dig-hole, then to see her room. She set up camp last summer and dug so many holes in the front yard I am sure our new neighbors thought we were up to no good. 

 Now if I had the time, I would hunt down and post the picture of me at about the exact same age and at about the same distance from the road and in the same position -- all squatted down with my hands elbows deep in dirt and (get this) trying to SELL my rocks by the roadside. No lemonade stands for me. I sold rocks. Had a sign and everything. To me, that made so much sense. They were awesome. I didn't sell a rock that day. But one car did slow down...

I could have spent the entire day in the Gems and Minerals section in the Natural History Museum.  Rocks (i will generalize) are just so hidden and mysterious. So clever of God to put treasures in the earth that are unlike anything anyone has ever seen. Someday in heaven these same stones will line the walls of the New Jerusalem along with some we've never seen. I can't wait! Check out the link, no kidding---it's fragments of heaven unearthed on display in DC. 

Friday, July 30, 2010

Recent questions pondered...

1.  Why did people used to be smaller, then bigger, then back smaller then now big again?
2.  Why is God allowing some animals to go out of existence?  This seems so unfortunate.
3.  Why does my face get hot when I eat fruit?
4.  Why don't I just go ahead and take a dance class and get it over with?
5.  Why did Vic, the guy who fixed the washer today move here from NY?
6.  Is saccharine really as bad as the museum of American History proclaims? If it is I may be dying soon is all i know.
7.  What if people could see the future in their dreams? Just saying...
8.  How do ants get in my dishwasher?
9.  Can one survive on old turnips and dry bread?
10. Did Riley wash his hands over the tea pitcher before dinner?

Sadly, all of these thoughts have run through my mind just today.  I thought it might be interesting to get them out of my head and see if there was any consistency to them. I see a theme of food and the health/cleanliness of it all, existence, size with always a side from the dreamworld.

I wonder if I am running this dialog as a grown adult, what is going through my teenager's mind, my preteen and then my seven year old Sadie...I wish sometimes they were like that dog on UP where I could get in their minds and hear their unverbalized questions and even more so- how they work them out. But isn't it important about letting questions be questions for the purpose to analyze? I am going with yes. Now to leave with some analytical pictures mostly because I want to use the new picture download from blogger.

I never know what she's thinking. Love that girl.
This is my favorite picture of my children. It exactly depicts them.
All these faces listening so intently shows their personality so much.
I have no doubt his thoughts are surrounding the camera person.
He's either bored or really into what's going on. The beauty of being a thinker.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My World Cup

No World Cup trophy would make me more proud than this sweet victory. I found this in my camera. Forgot I captured my sweet Sadie in prayer! Priceless.

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How we live our day we live our lives. -Annie Dillard