Thursday, September 30, 2010

Breathing Easier

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I mentioned last week that life has been a little ‘intense’ for me this month and as of yesterday I feel like I’m breathing a little bit easier.

{deep breath of relief}

Last night I officially finished reading through the Bible in 90 Days {hooray} and while I am so thankful that I read through again, I’m also looking forward to having a little bit of extra time free each day.

I’m sure I’ll use it to exercise or something.

Probably something.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Yankin’ the Techie Rug Out from Under Them

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The technology rug has been yanked out from under our kids. Almost two weeks ago, I HAD it. As in ‘up to here’ and literally crying because of the behavior of one of our kids ~ which included the phrase “I can do it if I WANT to.”

Oh, really?

As of that night, we pulled the plug, batteries and what-have-you on literally everything. No tv. No Wii. No Leapsters. Nothing.

They cried. They fussed. They whined. And then you know what?

They lived.

All of them have started drawing more {to the tune of a ream and a half of paper}. They have been playing games, building, playing the piano, reading, and PRETENDING.

We did watch one movie together as a family on Sunday night, but otherwise it has been amazing to watch them kick up the creativity several a gazillion notches. 

Bliss, I tell ya. Bliss.

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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Overheard During Playtime

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Here’s just a few snippets of conversation I’ve overheard in the last few weeks between a few of our kids.

Not sure what the preface to this conversation was…

L: Just ask mom. She’s run a few red lights and stop signs and she hasn’t gone to jail.

Z: Yeah. She just hit a house.

{Sad, but very true}.

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The girls were playing ‘house’ outside last week…

L: {playing the ‘mom’} You need to go and clean up your room. It’s a mess.

M: Ok, Mom. I’m going to go play in the garden first.

{M runs off to play and returns about 2 minutes later}

M: Mom! Thanks so much for cleaning my room for me!

L: I didn’t clean your room for you. I took all your stuff to Goodwill. I told you that if you didn’t clean it up, I would donate it.

M: {gasp}

Gee…I wonder where they got THAT idea??

Head on over to Mary's at Not Before 7 for some more Tiny Talk Tuesday!!

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Monday, September 27, 2010

10 Things My #Relevant10 Roomie Should Know…

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It’s true. I already know my Relevant roommate , Carisa from 1+1+1=1, have met her hubby and kids {and she’s met mine}, but there still may be a a few things that she doesn’t know about me.

Or maybe things that even you don’t know about me.

Another of the Relevant attendees, Brooke, has a link-up to post 10 Things That My Relevant Roomie Should Know and I thought since Carisa was kind enough to give me a heads-up about a few things, I should probably do the same for her.

1. I will come bearing my Keurig. Maybe even a coffee cup or two. And creamer. Sadly, we have two of these lovely coffee makers. Coffee on demand is essential.

2. Me on large of amounts of caffeine can be frightening, so you might want to hide the K-cups after awhile.

3. I will also come bearing a white noise machine. I like familiar sounds and don’t want to wonder what is going bump in the night. We’ve slept with one ever since we lived on a fire-truck main road…so it travels with me.

4. I am horrible with names too ~ so Carisa, we’ll have to come up with a secret plan to memorize names while we are there. Or just hide in our room, since I do know your name, this might be the best plan.

5. Pronouncing my name might be tricky. Go ahead ~ try it right now. Jolanthe. Want to know how to say it? Yo-lawn-tha. But you can call me Yo and I won’t even blink twice hearing you say that.

6. I have difficulty focusing on too much at once and have a tendency to veer sharply off course quickly. Carisa already knows this about me and helps me focus, but my attention span can be equivalent to that of a gnat. And I wonder where my kids get it from.

7. I love dark chocolate. Sweetened. That just seemed important to note.

8. I talk a lot. And I can be loud. I also like to laugh. Consider yourself warned.

9. I may or may not talk in my sleep. There is also a slight possibility that I may grind my teeth. I could wear a mouthguard, but seriously ~ would you? I’d then start drooling and that could really lead to some interesting blogging on Carisa’s part, so I think she’ll just have to suffer through. :)

10. I am ever-so-thankful to have Carisa as my roommate ~ and know that she understands the whats/whys behind me. :)

Can’t wait to see you all in a little more than 3 weeks!!!

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Bible in 90 Days {#B90Days} ~ Week 13 Check-in

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Bible in 90 Days- join in July 2010

After reading bunches on vacation this week and managing to stay on track, I’ve decided that I really like the book of 2 Corinthians. It may just be things that I’m going through at this point in life, but there were several things that just struck me while reading this week.

In 2 Corinthians 3, verses 6 and 17, Paul talks about the Spirit and the LIFE that exists where the Spirit of the Lord is. And where the Spirit is…there is FREEDOM.

A bit later in 2 Corinthians 4:7-9, I love the image of a ‘treasure’ being inside a jar of clay ~ and also knowing that:

“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”

2 Corinthians 4:8-9

As of today, I have only four more days left until I am finished up with my reading, so I will be wrapping up my reading on Day 88. This is my second time having read the Bible from cover to cover, and both times were while following along with the Bible in 90 Days Challenge hosted by Mom’s Toolbox.  Amy will be starting the challenge back up again in January if you are interested in joining along.

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Friday, September 24, 2010

Camping Wimps {yes, we are…}

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We were supposed to be going camping this weekend. But we’re not.

The temperature is in the high 90’s and not promising to cool down much. Call me a wimp, but trying to sleep in a super-hot tent with a lovely chance of rain to boot just isn’t sounding like my idea of good times.

The friends we would have gone with would have been super-lovely. Perhaps we should have them over for dinner tomorrow night to make up for it????

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Fall Into Reading 2010

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fall into reading

I’m not surprised that it’s fall already…but somehow the time since the Spring Reading Thing 2010 and now has flown by! This is my third year joining in on Fall Into Reading and I LOVE having a place to record my self-inflicted reading challenge.

And also look back and see all that I did accomplish. :)

In July I started reading through the Bible again following the Bible in 90 Days reading plan and I am just a few weeks away from finishing that endeavor. As always, I’m sure that there will be additional books that will find their way into my stack over the course of this reading adventure, but for now here are the books that are in my ‘stack’ to read during the next three months.

Fiction

~ Love’s First Bloom by Delia Parr

~ Surrender the Heart by MaryLu Tyndall

~ Masquerade by Nancy Moser

~ The Vigilante’s Bride by Yvonne Harris

~ Take Three by Karen Kingsbury

~ Eighth Shepherd / Ninth Witness / Tenth Stone by Bodie and Brock Thoene ~ all are a part in the A.D. Chronicles series

Non-Fiction

~ Grace-Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel to go along with the Flag Page game that we’re ‘playing’ with our kids to learn more about their personality types.

~ Disciple Like Jesus by Alan Melton ~ started reading, but want to finish it up

~ The Bible ~ reading the rest of the NT by the start of October {from Acts through Revelation}

~ Wild at Heart by John Eldredge ~ I keep hearing I need to read this, not just to understand my husband better, but to gain a little insight into my boys.

~ The Soul of C.S. Lewis by Jerry Root ~ using this as my morning devotional

Fall Into Reading 2010 is hosted by Katrina at Callapidder Days and runs from September 22nd til December 20th. If you are interested in joining up, or learning more, be sure to stop by and visit!

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

In the First 24 hours of Vacation…

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Our van is completely intact and looking rather lovely since it’s trip to the body shop for repairs after the tree incident.

Right before we left the house, Kaleb cut his own hair. It’s not looking like he has a promising career as a barber.

Kaleb woke me up at 3:40 am Monday morning because he had peed all over his sleeping bag. A certain mom forgot to put a pull-up on him before he went to bed.

On the bright side, the pee didn't soak all the way through because the sleeping bag is water resistant.

On the down side, it was dark and I was feeling around trying to figure out where he had peed and stuck my hand in a ginormous puddle of pee.

Did I mention it was 3:40 am?

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Monday, September 20, 2010

Bible in 90 Days {#B90days} ~ Week 12 Check-in

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Bible in 90 Days- join in July 2010

I am loving reading through the gospels. I think it’s interesting that so often when Jesus performed miracles, he would tell whomever he had healed to not tell anyone {which they of course did}. Then there is one instance in Luke when Jesus actually told someone to go and tell ~ and I wonder what the difference was between the two occasions.

Reading through the gospels is also so interesting to see the different accounts/viewpoints between the four men. The approaches are all different, and yet each shared different tidbits that help round everything out together.

Last week I didn’t ‘check-in’ and update on my status…mainly because we had company the week prior and that put me so far behind it was almost overwhelming.

Ok…it was VERY overwhelming.

While many were plowing through the New Testament, I had a lot of reading to still finish up in the Old Testament, basically from Nahum on. I should have been on Day 71…but was still on about Day 66. Starting Thursday I tried to catch up as best I could and did manage to make it to the NT and then today {Sunday}, I finished up the rest of the reading for this week also. As of today, I finished Day 77…meaning I only have 11 more days of reading and I will be done!

If you are interested in learning more about the Bible reading challenge, you can read more about it at Mom’s Toolbox. This reading challenge will be wrapping up in a little less than 2 weeks, but plans are underway for a new challenge to begin again soon!

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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Intense & Somewhat Overwhelmed

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This past month can pretty much be summed up in one word for me.

Intense.

School has started back up and we’re gettin g back into the swing of things. Co-op has kicked back in and I’m busy planning and teaching there. I’ve also taken on a few extra ‘side jobs’ that are wrapping up this month. Kaleb’s sickness is finally coming out of his ‘funk’ and after almost five weeks…and I am ever-so-relieved.

I know that saying I’m ‘busy’ seems so trite {sigh}, but this is the most-overwhelmed I’ve felt in quite some time.

This week we’re heading out of town to spend a few days with friends in Williamsburg and I am so very, very excited. To relax. Slow down. Have fun. At the end of the week, we’ll be going camping again, but this time we’re heading even deeper into the woods.

These four little faces mean the world to me.

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I may not be happy to see the mosquitoes, but I will be so happy to just unplug.

And INTENSELY enjoy my family.

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Jade Green is the Color of Boogies

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Laurianna was using our colored pencils to create something the other day and she stopped as she was working and held up one of the pencils to show me.

“Mom. This jade green pencil is the color of boogies.”

Zachary was standing right behind her and immediately stuck his finger up his nose and said, “I’ll pick my nose and check for you!”

I can’t make this stuff up, people….

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Where is the Earth?

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I posted this on my homeschool blog to {ahem} encourage other moms, but figured if you don’t read that blog, you would miss out on a good chuckle. :)

At the expense of my children, of course.

We were out late with the kids watching some fireworks last week. My brother, who has a super-cool iphone app to look at the stars and planets, was letting the kids use his iphone. They held it up and found Venus and Mars and some of the  different stars.

We switched back to looking at the planets and McKenna got all excited that we could see a few of the planets:

“That’s so cool! I can see Venus!! Where’s Earth?”

My brother looked at her and tried hard not to laugh and just patted the ground right next to him.

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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Book Giveaway: A Slow Burn ~ Mary Demuth

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A Slow Burn by Mary Demuth

Emory Chance is still coping with the death of her daughter Daisy and determined to find her murderer. The police are still searching and Emory’s safety is at stake when they realize that Daisy’s murderer is taunting and stalking Emory.

Prior to Daisy’s death, Emory made more than her fair share of bad choices. Emory swims daily in guilt, unable to forgive herself for her choices or accept forgiveness from others or God. Will Emory be able to accept and understand the power of forgiveness and be released from the shame that has encompassed her for so many years?

My Thoughts

I read Daisy Chain, the first book in the Defiance Texas Trilogy, and was hooked! A Slow Burn continues the heart-breaking story of Daisy and the mystery behind her kidnapping and murder. While the overall plot is something that make my mom’s heart beat ever-so-fast, the underlying themes of forgiveness, sacrificial love, and redemption are overwhelming and make the series a must-read.

Find Out More

~ Visit Mary Demuth’s website

~ Join Mary’s Facebook fan page or follow her on Twitter

~ Buy Mary’s book at Amazon.

The Giveaway

Would you like to win a copy of A Slow Burn ? I have one copy to mail to one of my readers! Leave a comment on this post ~ be sure there is a way for me to contact you. The giveaway will be open until Tuesday, September 21st at 8pm.

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This book was provided for review by Zondervan. All opinions expressed in this review are solely my own.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Brotherly Love

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For all you moms out there that attempt valiantly to get a great picture of all of your children together…and then fail miserably because one child is always doing something to throw the entire picture off, I’m here to encourage you. As your children get older, it will get better.

Or not.

Case in point, my brothers and I this past weekend. We were all together this last week and my mom wanted to get a picture of the three of us. Considering my youngest brother is now 33, one would think this would be a piece of cake.

I’ll just let the pictures speak for themselves.

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We finally did get one with normal faces from a certain brother…but everytime I look at the picture of myself, all I can think about is “Thing” from the Addams Family. Remember Thing?

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See for yourself…

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My poor mother just wanted one nice picture. This has me wondering what to expect years from now from my four. :)

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Friday, September 10, 2010

The Co-Pay Phenomenon

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Kaleb just hasn’t been quite ‘right’ over the last month. He’s had a weird cough, running temperatures off an on, and overall just isn’t acting like himself.

Unless a co-pay is on the line.

I know I’m not the only parent who has experienced this phenomenon. You know, your child is deathly sick, you call the doctor in a panic and quickly haul your child to the doctor’s office.

Where they run around like a crazy person, laughing and talking up a storm with no indication that they are anywhere close to being sick.

Apparently, the opening of my wallet somehow releases ‘healing’ endorphins that run rampant through a little body. Go figure.

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Top Five Reasons I Should Model for Downeast Basics

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I’ve mentioned once {or perhaps a hundred times} that I’m going to be attending the Relevant Conference in October…which is just a little more than a month away!! One of the sponsors for the conference is DownEast Basics, a company that has some gorgeous clothing for women ~ clothing that I’ve been drooling over ever since I received their most recent catalog in the mail.

While at the conference, DownEast Basics will be hosting a fashion show and five of the ladies attending will be modeling a brand new outfit for them. That said, here are five reasons that I should be chosen to model for DownEast Basics:

1. My wardrobe is sadly lacking in things that have not been purchased from the $5 pile at some large chain stores. While affordable, those shirts offer little in the way of style. This mom needs to inject a little style into her wardrobe.

2. Four kids + lots of hands = stains galore. I’m lucky to find a shirt available that is clean enough to wear out in public. Or doesn’t make me feel frumpy. I’m 37 and I really don’t need any more reason to feel frumpy.

3. I really need more incentive to exercise. Getting up in front of 200+ women means that I will be seen. No hiding. Exercise as I know it {or rather don’t} will have to kick it up a major notch.

4. If I’m up in front of 200+ people, there is always a good opportunity for laughter. Due to my tripping or doing something to embarrass myself. I’m sure you all would like to laugh, and if you do, I might as well go down in style.

5. It’ll make my husband happy. The outfit I picked out is gorgeous {I think!!} and so will my hubby ~ so ‘nuff said there!!

Here’s what I would choose to model for Relevant ~ the Dozen Roses top.

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And just because I’m brave and daring, I’d choose the white top….because white clothing and four children are virtually non-existent in my house. I love that it isn’t quite fitted and has a little ‘give’ ~ for those of us whose bodies haven’t quite been whipped back into shape {after having four children}. It also has a nice long torso…another thing I love because I’m not exactly one that falls into the ‘average height’ category.

No outfit would be complete without bottoms {dear Lord, help us all}, and the Tall and Trim trousers would go great with the Dozen Roses top. I definitely have the ‘tall’ part down…and could use all the help I can get in the ‘trim’ area {ahem}.

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But since I have to choose from their new arrivals line….I would probably pair the shirt with the Destiny Skirt and hope that my white legs don’t scare you all off!

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Thanks so much to DownEast Basics for the chance to win! I can’t wait to see everything in person in just a little over a month!

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