Monday, January 30, 2012


Monday is laundry day here.

Josiah desperately wanted to fold his laundry.

There was no way that I was going to discourage Josiah from folding his laundry.

We carried the basket of clean clothes upstairs together.

He sat up on the bed and put a pillow over his legs for a table.

He dumped out the laundry basket on the bed so that he could see all the clean clothes.

He talked and rearranged his pillows.

He took a pair of pants balled them into the tightest ball he could and started a "pants" pile.

I tried to take a picture--denied.

He took a shirt and balled it into the tightest ball he could and started a "shirts" pile.

I suggested that he may need to fold them neater so that they would fit in the drawer.

He assured me his clothes would fit in the drawer just like that because he is folding them.

Another shirt on the shirt pile.

More talking.

More pillow rearranging.

Another pair of balled up pants on the pants pile.

I suggest that maybe Daddy and Aliza are playing downstairs.

He listens to the playing noises.

He gives up folding and runs downstairs to play.

I breathe a sigh of relief because that is as much patience training as I can handle in a day.

I finished folding the laundry.


If he had stuffed all those balled up clothes in his drawer I still wouldn't have discouraged a 3 year old from folding his laundry.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

100 Day!

 Today was 100 Day in Math. It was pretty cool that it was also Lesson 100, but I'm strange like that! One milestone that I have been watching for was to hear Aliza count from 1 to 100 by 1's. She loves to count to 100 by 10's. Last week in the car she offered to count to 100--I was more than happy to listen--and she did it perfectly.

Some other accomplishments today:

 I put off cleaning before a cousin playdate so that I could be served tea (water with an ice cube and a sugar cube--*cringe*) by my boy.

Aliza decorated her room with an entire coloring book of Lalaloopsy pictures she colored. These are just some of the pictures that now adorn her room. (The height of the pictures is so that Anna can't reach them.)

Aliza was introduced to the concept of the water cycle today. It was cute to hear her try to pronounce such words as: evaporation, condensation, and precipitation.

That's all. Tomorrow I will clean. I hope.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Oh Boy!

Josiah has been killing me recently. The things he comes up with are hysterical--to me.

In the morning Josiah likes for me to carry him downstairs and rock him. He does not like for me to tell him that it is time for me to "get ready for the day" so before I sit down Josiah informs me that he is a "strong magnet." And, boy, does he hang on tight when I try to get up. But, seriously, there isn't anything that can compete with time rocking my little boy.

Josiah has recently become controlled by his tummy. When it is time to sleep he'll come to me and say, "My tummy woke me up." At the library when he didn't want to sit for storytime he told me that his "tummy was ready to pick out books." Sometimes I'm ready to put his tummy in time out!

This afternoon I was ready to clobber him when I found wet toilet paper in the kitchen and puddles of, I presume, toilet water on the floor. I started scolding Anna and Josiah told me that he let Anna play in the potty while he USED it! Seriously!? Did Josiah really think that was ok?? Ugh!!!

 Anna really likes Oreos. 

Aliza referred to herself as "Aliza Flynn" at supper. I do not think the female character on Phineas and Ferb is who she should be naming herself after.

I can see that Aliza is making better choices when it comes to obedience.

Finally, I frequently wonder what issues I'm giving my children. I've probably been told this, but I remembered it again. The best tool I can give my children to deal with their issues as adults is the ability to forgive. I purposed again in my mind to model giving and receiving forgiveness. That means I need to apologize to them when I'm wrong too. Among other things being a forgiving person is a quality I desire for my children.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Now I Lay

The rest of the nap time story is that now I lay with Josiah until he falls asleep. He went a week without a nap and each day got worse until he took a nap again. Naps are what works for us. We pay for it at night, but either Jeremy or I lay with him again. 

Laying with a child until they fall asleep is one of the worst things to do in my book. It tests my patience more than anything else. It is like watching water boil. I never thought I would do it...much less be any good at it. I lay so still that I get sore and in the afternoon it is so hard not to fall asleep. Actually I did fall asleep one day last week and I was so scared I had slept for a long time. I ran downstairs to find Aliza (she and I have a deal that she has to be absolutely quiet until Josiah falls asleep), worried that I had left her in quiet solitude way too long, but I must have slept only a few minutes.

At night, though, laying with Josiah just gives me way too much time to think. One night I was just thinking and all of a sudden I realized that I had tears running down my cheeks. I had been thinking about dancing with Josiah at his wedding. Pathetic, I know. I decided then it was time to do some sit ups or something. See, Josiah sleeps in a sleeping bag in his train tent so I lay outside the tent on his floor. He can't see me. 

It's just a phase in life so I won't complain. Maybe I'll start thinking of some good blog posts while I lay.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Craziness of Late

 I may feel dull on some days, but my life is anything but dull. I have some pictures to prove it!

Josiah learned a new word: "demolish." He started with some baseboard in the kitchen that he thought needed to be removed. I held my breath that he would not be successful. He wasn't. He would come to me though with his "plans" and say, "Mommy, the plans say I need a grownup to help. That's you!" After a couple days he moved on to working on the steps.

Anna steals everyone's sippy cups. She loves sucking from a straw. I broke down and gave her a cup of her own.

Anna wanted the fork. So I gave it to her. She did better than I thought she would.

We were out of bread, milk, hotdogs and chicken nuggets. A shopping trip was inevitable and Jeremy was working ALL weekend. This was an "Ok. Everyone get in your spot and hold still. I'm going to take a picture" moment. You can only imagine what it is like to shop with them and the looks I get. One Mom tried to sympathize with me. She had 2 toddlers...strapped in...and she had someone with her who was holding the list!! I didn't feel too sorry for her. ha.

Anna's infatuation with the potty and the trash can drive me to the point of insanity!!!

Picking out books at the library is serious business. Having a stool is stand on is lots of fun.

This was all Josiah's idea. He brought the pan and spoons asking for a rope to put around his neck. He is playing the bass drum in a marching band. It was noisy to say the least.

Aliza's recent love is Lalaloopsy dolls. They are whimsical and cute. This week she told me that there was a so I let her check it out. Oh.My.Goodness. She loved it. There are games and videos and product lists with descriptions of the dolls personalities. Here she is talking to her Grandma Karen on the phone. Grandma is on the website too and Aliza is directing her to various pages and dolls and then Grandma would read the description to her. They did this for an HOUR. Anna was sleeping and I had some lovely time alone with Josiah. Thanks for the babysitting Grandma!
That's enough excitement for one post!

Friday, January 13, 2012

To Nap or Not to Nap

 We are in this odd sort of place with Josiah's afternoon nap. He figured out that Aliza gets to do some fun stuff while he sleeps in the afternoon and as of this week he is determined not to miss out. The problem is that he can keep himself awake only until about 5pm. Yesterday he walked away from his John Deere DVD and built himself a nest on our bed and fell asleep. Today he crawled up on my lap at 4pm and promptly fell asleep. He slept through all the household noise and me picking him up and laying him down--twice. Both days I only let him sleep about half an hour.
Taking a full afternoon nap had been keeping him awake very late at night. This way he does fall asleep earlier at night, but, man, he is grouchy and hard to be around in the evening!

This is a second child quandary for me because when Aliza was at this stage she laid with me in my bed and usually fell asleep. It's also a homeschooling quandary because if Aliza was at school I would still have an empty bed for Josiah to crawl into.

I don't know. It is sortof fun, though, to hold a tired little boy and have him fall asleep in my arms. Oh the joys...and challenges of being a Mommy.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Complicated Conversation

Aliza and I had a complicated conversation about the value of a dollar today. She is into Lalaloopsy dolls and wants to buy one. I told her that the mini dolls cost $7.00. Today Aliza told me that she was going to have a lemonade stand and sell lemonade for one penny a cup. She said she needed to sell 7 cups and then she could buy the Lalaloopsy.

I tried to simply explain to her that one dollar is the same as 100 pennies. After a couple attempts at this angle I tried to tell her that one dollar is the same as 10 dimes. (She has learned about pennies and dimes in school.) She just couldn't wrap her head around this concept. When she got fed up with my explanations, Aliza decided she wanted to call her Daddy to see if he could explain it to her. I said that her Daddy would probably explain it the same way I did, but (since Aliza and her Daddy have a lot in common) I thought maybe he would come up with an angle that she could understand.

Then, in complete exasperation, Aliza said, "And if Daddy can't explain it to me we will look it up on the internet. The internet will be able to explain how much a dollar is to me."

Monday, January 9, 2012


 Today marks the halfway point of our school year. This milestone is marked by lesson number not by the calendar day. I feel productive when I see progress so pulling out the part 2 teacher's edition of phonics was very exciting for me.

Aliza has learned to write and read every letter of the alphabet and now they are quickly moving on to blends--as in a new blend every day! We'll see how this goes. Aliza may need to pay closer attention to her teachers than she has been.

This project was an alphabet book. The curriculum expected the student to complete letters A through E and so supplied those pages with pictures to color. Aliza, of course, wanted to do the whole alphabet. I cannot draw so there was no way I was going to fake my way through drawing pictures for that many letters. We needed a magazine full of pictures in a bad way. I said a prayer and told Aliza I would check the mailbox for a magazine. Sure enough, there was a Harriet Davis magazine and we found a picture for every single letter of the alphabet! I was super excited!!

I learned that Aliza is a better listener if her hands are busy. This bugged me for a while since school in my mind is sitting at a desk with your hands folded and feet flat on the floor. Sometimes it is play-doh, other times it is coloring books and at other times it is popcorn for a snack.
 We just finished a unit on all kinds of animals that God created. Aliza made a book of animals and we learned a catchy song with a verse for each animal. On the elephant day we made elephant biscuits.
I think it was on the elephant day that I had the distinct thought of "oh my goodness, in 2 years I'll have another kindergartener and will be doing all of this again!"

My thinking is that if I'm thriving and the children are thriving we will keep on doing what we are doing. So far that is true!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Winter Picnic

 It was one of those days in January that I couldn't let pass without being outside. We had a couple days this week where the temperature didn't get much above freezing and around here that means there will usually be a couple warmer days that follow.

Jeremy took advantage of the weather by going golfing and in my attempt to make the weekend feel special I took the children to the park and I promised a picnic when we came home.

My ears were cold by the time we got home so I kept Anna inside so I could stay inside! How fun though to send the kids outside for a picnic in January.

Josiah's idea of a picnic: Leave the food on the blanket for later and play in the sandbox.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

All Yours?

My sister decided on a bridesmaid dress and I needed to go to the store to buy it in my size. It's a long story about why I needed to go get that dress today...but suffice it to say that it was on sale (as in a 50% off sale) and there was only one in my size.

Against my better judgement,  I loaded everyone up after naps and off we went to a women's clothing store. A store that, on any other occasion, I would not have even thought of taking any one of the children with me let alone all three. On the way Aliza and I had a talk about good behavior and acting respectfully. She knew what was expected.

I was able to spot the dress on the clearance rack right away. I grabbed my size and another size that I thought would fit someone else and went to the checkout. The salesperson asked if I was ready for a dressing room. I declined. That would have been a nightmare!

By the time it was my turn to checkout it was obvious that I had 3 children with me. The ladies were talking to Anna and then I mentioned that I had 3 children and she asked, "Are they all yours?" I gave a confident answer of "yes." I question made me laugh because my parents were asked on more than one occasion if the 5 of us children were all theirs. I only have 3 and I got asked that question!? The clerk commented that the other children were quiet. It was true. They were BUSY (checking out all the accessories and trying on a few to my dismay), but quiet.

We made it back to the car. Thankfully it was freezing cold so the children were not tempted to do anything goofy in the parking lot. The fancy dresses did not get hung nicely in the car. They got haphazardly laid across the passenger seat. And the children (and I) got rewarded for a uneventful trip with Chick-Fil-A for supper.

Oh yes! The dress fits perfectly. Just an added bonus.

Monday, January 2, 2012

60 Years...

 ...of loving, caring and sharing. That was engraved on the vase and became sortof the theme of my grandparents 60th anniversary celebration. It was an adult dinner with my grandparents, parents and siblings. (My sister, Laura, had to work and we missed her!) We celebrated life, commitment to marriage and our memories of Gramma and Grandad.

 Janell made favors of Gramma and Grandad's original wedding photo and a picture of Gramma in her wedding dress a few years ago.

 I made the cake topper and Meghan made and decorated the cake.

 Jeremy was taking the picture, but here we are after a lovely dinner at Market Street Inn. They had a most, ummmm, luxurious New Years menu. It was super yummy. For the price we paid, Jeremy and I made sure we ate every bite!

My Mom was beautiful. My Dad thought so too! =) I never want to take it for granted that I know my parents love each other.

It's not really surprising that I was the grandchild who wrote something to share after the meal. Janell and Brian were happy to let me do the talking. So...if you want to know what I said, keep reading!

60 years of marriage. Many people would wonder how it is possible to remain married for 60 years. I've only been married for 10 years, but I have an idea of how a couple stays married for 60 years. At our wedding Jeremy and I took basically the same vows you did. We said we would stay together in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer for as long we both shall live. It's as simple as keeping a matter what. Commitment. No matter what. When challenges arise you figure out how to make it work, no matter the cost.

Thank you for giving us your example of commitment not only to marriage but to faith, to a strong work ethic, to hospitality, and to family.

Gramma, there are times when I am pretty sure that I have inherited some of your personality and interests. I thought of a few things that I believe that I think you may agree with:
  •  A memory is even better when it documented in pictures, words or scrapbooks
  • Friendships are meant to last a lifetime.
  • It is far more enjoyable to bake a dessert than make a meal.
  • A pretty table makes for a better meal.
  • Planning a party is almost more than half the fun.
As I thought about what I wanted to share I had lots of different thoughts and memories come to mind. These are a few of them:
  • I remember singing with Gramma during Sunday School opening in Florida.
  • I associate shrimp pizza on Christmas Eve at Gramma's house in Florida with feeling sick because I was so excited for Christmas.
  • It was so hard to wait for Gramma to clean up the kitchen after a meal...I couldn't wait for her to play school with Janell and I.
  • I contributed to any self-esteem issues that Gramma has—the first time I saw her long hair down and I really did think her wobbly arms were neat.
  • We decorated the house in Oregon for Gramma and Grandad's 40th anniversary. Was that really 20 years ago???
  • Gramma and Grandad came to visit me at EMU. They took me out to eat at Shoney's and Gramma had an incredible carebox for me.
  • Gramma has told me and I have known for many years that Gramma and Grandad pray for every one of us and our children every single day. Thank you. That is such an incredible gift.
  • I remember the morning that I realized my voice was coming back. Gramma had told me right before that she couldn't think of me not being able to sing again. I was gingerly testing my voice and the only song that came to mind was Amazing Grace. I was able to sing a few lines and I ran to the phone and called Gramma. I didn't say hello. I just started singing. I don't remember what Gramma said, but I'm pretty sure that was the first call I made that morning.
  • Grandad, it is such a privilege to watch Josiah work with you. He is naturally a worker and for him to have someone available to him to work with is priceless.
  • Josiah's chosen seat at church is right next to Grandad. And if Grandad tells him to be quiet he (usually) listens.
  • Aliza was such a grown up little girl wanting to help Gramma unpack. I'm pretty sure she wore Gramma out on more than one occasion with her passionate desire to help.

I look forward to many more moments that add to my list of memories. I also look forward to things that you will yet teach me and my children that will impact our lives forever.