Monday, February 28, 2011

I Would Have Blogged

But I have been dead.  I'm pretty sure I have been dead anyway, it's all a blur.  Actually, I should probably be slightly more accurate and say that I have been sick, but that would seem sort of like an understatement. 

For the entire month of February, I have either:

A) had a fever,
B) been recovering from a fever,
C) had bronchitis,
D) nursing a child with a fever,
E) trying to cohabitate with a husband with a fever,
F) been in bed
G) been trying to get out of bed
H) coughing up a storm
I) been strung out on some sort of cough medicine

I'll stop there.  We still have a couple of feverish girls around here, and I am still very slooooowwwly wandering aimlessly around the house trying to figure out what to tackle first... and then decide to lie down instead anyway.  This is most definitely some sort of horrific upper respiratory virus (or so the doctor says), that lasts and lasts and never goes away, at least not for quite a long time.  I have seriously never been this sick, for this long, in my entire life.   Just when you think you start feeling better, wham-o!!! Ya get sick again.

So, we are anxiously awaiting spring time and a germ free home around here.  I haven't even picked up my camera this month.   Now THAT is sad.  This past weekend we were able to open all the windows and air out of the house (thank you 60 degrees and sunny) and we Lysol-ed and sanitized and Norwexed everything we could think of, and we even bought new toothbrushes for every family member.   

Here's hoping for a better week, one that will involve clean laundry, groceries in the house, and a camera in my hand!  :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Morning Coffee

and these books start my day off right!!                        

Friday, February 18, 2011

Papa G

A visit from Papa G

Banana and Papa G share a love of birds

spent lots of time identifying backyard birds

he read lots of stories

and had plenty of snuggle time

perfect timing since mom was sick with the flu all week

papa had plenty of little girl hair to brush

and brush

and brush

We love you Papa G!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Banana's class at school has been reading the book Redwall by Brian Jacques.   They celebrated the book by having a Redwall Feast (Father Abbot's Jubilee Feast) and dressing as the characters in the story.  This was also to honor Brian Jacques life as a writer - he passed away last week, just as the class was finishing the story.

Hannah was so excited to dress like her favorite character "Warbeak" - a bird of course! She made her costume herself by recycling an old Egyptian costume and gluing feathers all over it.  She even made her crown from vines and berries from the backyard.

Her teacher is so creative! She made "Cavern Hole" - which was the classroom.  You had to crawl through the tunnel to get into the hole.

and inside was very dark and "cave-like" with just strings of light up above!  They spent their whole school day inside Cavern Hole.

My Hannah-Banana said it was the best day of her life!! Wow!

Her transition back into school has been better than I could have ever imagined!! She is soooo happy to be back.  She comes out of school every day just as happy as she can be!  Such an answer to prayer.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Monday, February 7, 2011

A New Chapter Begins

Today marks the beginning of a new chapter in our lives.  One that I was not ready for.... one that I knew loud and clear the Lord was telling me to begin, but I fought it and fought it ....... I wasn't ready.  I prayed and prayed that maybe I was hearing wrong... surely this can't be the right timing...... it just can't.   The answer I kept hearing??  "My ways are not your ways.... my plans are not your plans...... for everything there is a season"   But surely Lord, this timing is completely wrong!!  He reassured me..... it wasn't. 

My Hannah returned to our wonderful Christian school today.  Just in time for the first day of the second half of the year.  "But Lord!!! I cried... this is the same exact time you told us to put Punkin back in school last year!! What is this? Are we forever going to be known as the 'start school in the middle of the year family'?" ????   

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. 

Last Wednesday, Hannah (Banana) and I spent the day together back at the school she has attended from Pre-K 3 through third grade.   Every morning, the entire grammar school meets together for Memory Period.  A time when they work on memorizing, this particular morning they were working on a passage of scripture. The teacher stopped after this lengthy paragraph to explain exactly what these scriptures meant.   Every word that came out of her mouth went straight to my heart.   It was as if she was speaking directly to me.... these verses were about faith - faith in knowing when God tells you to do something, that he will DO IT.   Faith to let Him lead you... having faith enough to follow... knowing He will always guide you.... knowing He can move mountains...   With tears rolling down my face.. I knew. I just knew that HE IS faithful.  That Hannah couldn't be in a better place.   Even when I can't see how on earth this will work... I know....

 He. Is. Faithful.

I will always, always cherish the days I was allowed to homeschool our girls.  I knew that when God prompted our hearts to begin homeschooling, that it would only be for a season.  I loved every minute of it. (Well, okay, ALMOST every minute of it).  Boo and I will still have plenty of homeschooling time together in the months ahead... and then she will follow along with her sisters next fall when she starts kindergarten. She is already counting the days.  Boo joined Hannah for a few minutes at lunch today - she is going to miss her terribly.  It was so nice to see Hannah's very warm welcome before school this morning.. so many of her former teachers to give her encouraging hugs.. and old friends so welcoming and excited to see her again.

I will always be an advocate for homeschooling.  The benefits are enormous.  Maybe I will homeschool again one day.. who knows?   But I do know without a shadow of a doubt.. that we are following the path He has laid before us.   I know that the school God has placed us in is simply a treasure.... such Godly and loving teachers.... such biblical knowledge taught.... such opportunities.   I am simply in awe of how hard our school is working and doing everything possible to help Hannah succeed.  She has a renewed confidence in herself and her abilities, and everything possible is being done at school to ensure that it continues.   

Several people have told me recently that as they have prayed for me, they have had a vision of me standing and holding a sword in my hand.   Some of this has related to other circumstances going on in my life, but I now know that this is also very closely related to this decision that we have had to wrestle over.   My sweet Hannah needed some time learning at home after having some special struggles while learning at school.  Her mom needed to pick up her sword for her and fight for her and help her as much as a Mom can help. We are discovering some coping mechanisms to help her learn better... other warriors have come alongside and shown us how important it is for her to "jump back in" and figure out some other methods, to find her way..... It's easy to fall into a "safe zone" in a homeschool environment, and harder to push through some learning difficulties.   It's time for me to hand over Hannah's sword to other incredible servant-leaders who know exactly how to help her... in ways that I can't.  They will help Hannah carry her sword, until she is ready to carry it herself.

"Thank you Lord, for showing us how to lead Hannah, and the paths you have set before her.  We know you have created her in your image, so intricately and wonderfully made.  We pray that You continue to guide her every step, and we pray for the people you have put into her life to help form her into the person you want her to become.  Thank you for the gift of our school, and we pray that it continues to raise servant leaders that glorify you in everything they do.  Help us to remember to deny ourselves, pick up the cross, and follow You. "

The opportunity to homeschool has completely changed my views on parenting.  I am blessed that most of what I have learned will easily continue into our new lifestyle of having school at school and at home. 

Education commences at the mother's knee, and every word spoken within hearsay of little children tends toward the formation of character.  -Hosea Ballou
The job at hand is enormous, but we must seek God as our guide through every mountain top and every valley as we raise our children.


Friday, February 4, 2011

Family Ski Day

Homeschool Ski Day
Ski Round Top, PA

The perfect BFF family - everyone has a buddy.

24 degrees
having the slopes to ourselves
best part about winter

brilliant sunshine - does wonders for the soul
fresh air
smell of wood smoke

time with Daddy on the ski lift

watch out for that tree Banana!!
trying to help but laughing too hard - took picture instead

Boo skied right into "Aunt Webbs" leg, and ski wedged between her boot and ski - that takes skill

messages in the snow from the ski lift - and all over the resort

pretty ski girl
can't get enough of that sunshine

Michael Jordan on skis.