Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Day 2 News and Technology

Here we are  on this beautiful Wednesday, Day 2. You know, I like counting the days. It gives me something to show the passing of time.Each day feels like an accomplishment that way,probably because each day IS an accomplishment. I know other military spouses (and soldier too) who Don’t like to keep count.In fact my husband is one of those who doesn’t.He says counting makes his days seem to go by slower. Eh, to each there own right?

Anywho! Todays plan was fairly simple.Stay home and do some school and cleaning.We were successful in that attempt for the most part.Until I realized that I was out of trash bags..Grr! I get into the “stay home” mode and I don’t want to get out of it.Mostly because I don’t want to get out of my jammies!I have been looking into buying a new cell phone  though and figured if I had to go out for trash bags I may as well get my phone too. After a short time picking the phone I wanted (that’s the perk of doing your research ahead of time) and waiting what felt like a year to the kids(they told me so over and over and over again) I am the owner of a new phone.The only problem with this is that it took me FOREVER to figure out how to use my last phone! :0) I am not terribly technologically savvy. Tonight once the kids are in bed I will sit and play with my phone a bit and try to figure it out!

I think today I saw the beginnings of the emotional effects this deployment will have on the kids. The boys being older tend to handle things very well.We talk about missing dad.We pout together,cry together on occasion and keep on trucking.It’s the little kids who are the hardest to handle IMO.They know a major part of there life has changed and they DON’T understand why. Hannah (our 4 yr old) has had a rough day trying to listen to me. From screaming (she swears she was singing) in the cell phone store to poking her sister and making HER scream, its been a long day. I am trying to remember to be patient.I know what she is going through is hard. I am proud of myself today for keeping my cool with her.I am positive it has something to do with my prayers this morning because I specifically asked for patience!I knew I’d need it! I know there will be days that I don’t keep my temper.Days that I will feel overwhelmed and feel like I have failed. But today (thank you Heavenly Father) was a good day.

I got some disappointing news today from my sister.She is currently pregnant with my newest little nephew Mason.I have blogged before about the fact that he has Spina Bifida as well as clubbed feet.The biggest concern for him in utero is whether he will develop Hydrocephalus.Here is a brief definition “also known as "water in the brain," is a medical condition in which there is an abnormal accumulation of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in the ventricles, or cavities, of the brain. This may cause increased intracranial pressure inside the skull and progressive enlargement of the head, convulsion, tunnel vision, and mental disability. Hydrocephalus can also cause death.” There have been monthly ultrasounds checking for fluid build up in Masons brain.It’s a common condition for babies with Spina Bifida.The worry is if it develops early in utero the only way to fix it is to deliver the baby and do surgery.Then you not only have the heath issue that come with the SB but you also have premature issues as well.Todays appointment showed that the fluid is starting to build up in Masons brain.Now it is a balance act to see how long the doctors can let him stay in and keep growing and developing without waiting too long and having the hydrocephalus get bad. I am worried for my nephew, I’m worried for my sister and brother in law and I just don’t like knowing I am not there to help out and be a support to them right now.  My comfort is that in all things God is in charge.He knows what He is doing in Masons life and even if we cant understand Gods plan we CAN rest assured he is the author of it all.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Day 1

Its day 1 since the hubby left for Afghanistan and day 1 can be a hard day.I was prepared with a fun list of “to do’s” to help pass the day.

I was up and showered about 8am and started with a bit of cleaning we hadn't done over the weekend.Then on to breakfast and school with the kiddos.

Justin called about lunch time which brightened everyone's day.He was in Maine waiting to get on his flight to Germany.After that it was off to our favorite place THE LIBRARY!Everyone right down to the baby loves the library.I knew it would be a good place to go today.It was made doubly exciting because we found out they are doing another reading program!Read books and come in for prizes Yay!As well as having holiday themed crafts every Saturday.

Next was on to the boys haircuts.If you would guess this was the boring part of our day you would be wrong! The boys have a very traditional daddy who likes nice short military cuts on his boys.Mommy however is a bit more relaxed.So when daddy leaves the boys get Mohawks ;0) I know it seems silly but it’s a small thing that brightens their day.


Last on our list for today was the grocery store.This was definitely not the best part of the day BUT we all survived it and now have lots of goodies to eat in the house.

Aside from all of this today the thing that Surprised/Pleased me the most was how much seeing all the familiar military surroundings made me happy. I wasn’t sure if seeing the uniforms,the Chinooks (helicopter type air craft),strykers and humvee’s would make me miss my hubby even more.During both of Justins other deployments I had gone home to our very civilian home town.Instead of upsetting me today seeing all that made me feel very close to my soldier.Instead of “leaving it all behind” I can stay and feel that much closer to him by staying close to the military.

Now the kids are in bed and I can relax and mentally check off one day.Yay!

So It Starts


He packed his bags


He got his uniform on




He said his goodbyes.

12 Months seems SOO long…TOO long.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Parental Rights What Could Be More Important?

I wanted to share a link to a video by . I think it is undeniable that our rights as parents are being infringed upon by the government.The extent to which it is happening is alarming. Please take the time to watch this video to educate yourself on whats going on and visit the website to see what you can do to help support our parental rights.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Yummy Vegetarian Dinner

I am not a vegetarian. I'd love to be one honestly.I ate vegetarian for about a month recently and didnt miss meat at all.The only hitch came along with my husbands stubborness ;0) He is a meat and potatoes guy with a BIG emphasis on the meat! I got really tired of taking my time and energy to make a dinner just to have him go to the kitchen and make himself something else.Granted I give him bonus points he never asked ME to make him something else.He's not dumb, he knows that woulda got him a wooden spoon upside the head! I also got tired of making a meat containing meal for my family just to have to figure out something else for myself.
We found a great compromise.When we sit down to plan our meals we plan half the meals vegetarian and half with meat.That way everyones happy.
Tonight I tried a new vegetarian meal and it was FANTASTIC!It would do great as a side dish too! Its a yummy veggie and grain filled casserole.


Saturday, November 12, 2011

Curse You Dust Bunnies!

I wrote about our new home and the new chore charts we were trying out earlier this week.I thought today would be a good day for an update. Things didnt go so well.Not at all well if I am being completely honest :0)
The kids are always great about doing any chores I ask them to. Hannah loved her chart and kept asking me what she could do next just so she could color in the square when she was done.The downfall came I think because we have absolutely no schedule at all right now.With my husband off work for the past two weeks we have taken a break from school and schedules.Which has made finding time to work in those chores difficult.
The week wasnt a total loss though. I taught the kids how to do a few new chores. I also found that each child having their own chart to mark off is a good motivator for my littler dust busters!
Dad heads back to work this week and we get back to our schedule here around the house and I hope that will give us more success in the chore area!

Wish me luck!

Starting Christmas A Little Early

My husband has had the last two weeks off of work and we have enjoyed spending so much family time together.Here in Rainy Washington the fall weather tends to be dreary and wet.This fall though has been great!Tons of sunny dry days. Today wasnt one of those days though.So we decided it would be a perfect day to put up the Christmas tree. Since the hubs may be deployed for Christmas this year we decided to put the tree up before the turkeys even been cooked ;0) Here are some pictures!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Family Time

We took up the whole swing set and it wasnt even all the kids!

Our family came out for a week long visit last month. Four adults and 10 kiddos all under one roof!It was a fun,crazy,awesome week!The kids were so happy to have their cousins here to visit.Our only regret was that they couldnt stay longer!

Having fun at the Seattl Aquarium

Everyone snuggled up together ;0)

The best compliment

We all like to recieve a sincere compliment.It makes us feel good when others notice say, our clean home, our tasty meal or any number of other things.But the #1 sure fire way to make a Homeschool momma happy is to compliment her children.
My favorite compliments are the ones I get from people who have known my kids for a while but didnt know we homeschool! A friend recently spent some time at our house and told me just how smart our oldest is. "He is just so smart!" She gushed. My homeschool momma heart swelled with pride :0)

Chore Charts

I have NEVER been one to make a chore chart. I am usually a "take it as it comes" kinda lady. If the washer buzzes and I am in the middle of making lunch I'll call out to one of the kiddos to switch it to the dryer for me. If their are crumbs on the table (usually centralized in front of a particular childs chair) I'll call someone over to clean up the table. Of course this sometimes means that mom is doing the majority of the cleaning on her own, because the kiddos arent specifiallyc assigned any particular chore on a regular basis!
Of course in life sometimes things change ;0) With our new,larger home also come more to clean! We have been in the new house for all of 3 days now and I already could see just how exausted I would be if things didnt change.Or how messy the house would become if I was feeling less than energetic!
So I hopped on the computer to look for an easy printable chart I could use to make the kiddos a chore chart. I found tons of great things and these are the ones I thought I'd try out this week!

This website has all sorts of chore charts,reading charts,pet care charts,etc. I gotta be honest though, the thing that drew me to these charts was that each one had a different character at the top that I knew my kids would like ;0) Hey its the small things in life!
So for Hannah its Cinderella,for Isaiah Lego Yoda and for Justin Batman!
I'll post again the end of the week how the chore charts worked for us.An in the meantime if anyone has any tips or suggestions I am totally open to them!

Remembering Nevaeh and talking to our children about the hard stuff

This past week has been a sad one for us.Some dear friends of ours lost their daughter to cancer.Our daughters were born just a few months apart and every time I look at Hannah I think of Nevaeh and what her parents must be going through right now.
We have shared with our older children this journey that Nevaehs family has been going through.Praying and fasting together for them. Whenever something like this becomes part of your childrens life they start to have questions.
Some of the questions my kids have had are:
"Why did God let Nevaeh get cancer?" "Why hasnt anyone cured cancer yet?" "Why did Nevaeh die even though we were praying for her to be healed?"

These are HARD questions.Questions that I have asked myself at times. I think its so important to share with our kids that we too have questions when life is hard.Its ok to tell them when we are wondering about the answers to questions too.
I also think its important to search the scriptures WITH our kids.Pointing out the wisdom and answers that we can find there.
Times like these in our lives can shake our faith and our childrens faith but we can also draw near to God through regular worship,family scripture study and prayer. In everyones life trials come.Its how we learn to get through those trials that is really important.

A new Home

This weekend has been a really LONG one.It has included packing,picking up trucks,moving a lot of heavy furniture and lots of cleaning.All while juggling the kiddos!All of thats been worth it though for our new home!

We live on an army post in Washington state.Housing here is a bit different than in the civilian world.We are only "allowed" to have a certain number of bedrooms depending on the number of kids we have,their genders and ages. Now that Isaiah has turned 10 we FINALLY qualify for a four bedroom! To be honest the extra bedroom really isnt the big deal for me. Our two boys and two girls still share bedrooms.Its all the extra living space that came along with that extra bedroom!

Now its time to relax,hang a few pictures and settle in!