Monday, October 29, 2012

I will give you rest...Matthew 11:28

After lunch today, Goldilocks was being a bit cranky so S started to get her ready for her nap.

S: "Time for a nap, Goldilocks."
Goldilocks: "Noooooo."
S: "Fine. I'll go take your nap."
Goldilocks: "Noooo. My nap."

It worked.  She trotted off happily to get ready for bed, satisfied that she was saving her nap for herself. She has no idea who she is dealing with. :) Even though we smile at the antics of a two year old, how often do we fight the rest that is offered to us.

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light -Matthew 11:28-30

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock...Revelation 3:20

Toddler mom tip:

Never leave the house without a house key.  

Never.  Even if children left in the house are capable of unlocking the door. 

Why? Because children old enough to successfully unlock the door may wander out on the porch to watch you put the dogs in their crates.  And just maybe the toddler will want to come outside, too. In her fumbling with the door handle, the door might lock.  

Then there will be a toddler inside, crying to come out.

There will be a boy on the outside, crying because he can't get in.

There will be a mama wishing her cell phone was in its case on her waistband instead of inside the house being charged.

The dogs were confused when I opened the garage door again and climbed over their crates while praying that the door between the house and garage was unlocked.


I liked G's version that he shared with S when The Man and the older kids arrived home a bit later.  
I was crying because the door was locked, but then Mommy BURST through the garage door and unlocked the door.
It kind of makes me sound like a superhero or something.

The kids were happy until I told Goldilocks that we were done with outside and we all were staying inside.  She had put both of her shoes on and had one glove and one mitten on her hands.  Mean mama made her take them off and put them away.

I couldn't get too upset with G for leaving the house.  I seem to recall his mother did that once upon a time when her mommy went outside to get the mail.  The neighbor had to break a window in that case so her little brother wouldn't be left alone in the house.

All's well that ends well.  I need to come up with a good place to stash a house key outside.  It's probably just easier to spend some time teaching Goldilocks how to unlock the doors, but that could create a new set of problems.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Harvest...Genesis 8:22

The mornings and evenings are starting to get chilly.
I enjoyed my sweater all day today.
I think it is safe to say that summer is over.
I'll miss it
I won't miss riding in my van with no air conditioning in 110 degree heat...but otherwise, I'll miss summer.
I canned some tomatoes on Sunday and I have a few more to put in the dehydrator. 
I don't think there will be many more this year as the frost has already nipped part of our valley.

Last week a patient brought me some gifts.  

Aren't they cute? Too bad they aren't toddler friendly. I'll have to find a place for them other than the dining room table where Goldilocks likes to play.

I do like pumpkins. They are pretty and practical. I found this one tonight.  
I'll enjoy its prettiness for a few weeks then I'll throw it in the oven and bake it. I bake my pumpkins whole.  I just take out the top rack in my oven and poke a few pumpkins with a fork a couple of times. I bake them at 350 for an hour or so until tender. When they are cool enough to handle I cut off the top and scoop out the seeds (season & bake for a treat) then cut and scoop the flesh. I use it right then or freeze for pumpkin soup any time of the year. Yummy and easy. My kind of baking. November 1 I'll start looking for them at a deep discount and spend a day baking pumpkins.

It is really not practical to keep a huge pumpkin on my table, though, so I was excited to see a picture on a local facebook site of a canning ring pumpkin. Cute. Fun. Easy. Cheap (free!). Toddler friendly.

After raiding my canning lid and ring drawer, I collected a few dozen rings.  I specifically looked for ones that were dented or a bit rusty. I chose to just use the golden colored ones and left the silver and white for another time.
A bit of scrap ribbon from the craft box and some cinnamon sticks from the cupboard and the pumpkins were complete.  G and Goldilocks LOVED helping gather up the rings and threading them on the ribbon.

The photos don't do them justice. I really like them and I'm thrilled at how easy and practical they are.  When the season is over they'll go right back in the drawer until next canning season...or until we make apple sauce in a few weeks.  The wonderful thing is that I won't care a bit if I have to take a pumpkin apart to use the rings and then put it back together a week later.  They were that quick and easy to do!

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Let his spittle fall down...1 Samuel 21:13

G is turning into a little man.  His maturity and helpfulness are such a blessing compared to the antics of some of his siblings.  The only real challenges with him are his allergies and his speech (which we suspect is allergy-related).  His big brothers are his translators when I can't understand him, but that is beginning to change.  Slowly, he is becoming accustomed to saying words with the correct sounds.  Sometimes I have to have him repeat phrases several times before I can put it together with the context and decipher the meaning.

Today after church we were sitting on my bed and he was telling me something absolutely hilarious.  At least he thought it was funny; I couldn't understand.  After about six tries I finally got it.  My immediate elation at finally understanding him was slightly tempered by the realization of what he said:
I like to slobber on my arm.  It is just like lotion.
I suppose maturity is relative.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Dwell together in unity...Psalm 133:1

Goldilocks turned 2 on Saturday. 
In the few weeks leading up to her birthday she has been gearing up for what many call the "Terrible Twos." She is a wonderful, sweet child, but she does have her moments of testing her independence and limits. Fortunately for her, we won't have any of it. She has tried, without success, to share her obstinate attitude with everyone. She is learning that it is much more fun to sit pleasantly in her highchair and eat than to sit on her bed during suppertime. The consequences for hitting, biting, and (a new one this week) pinching aren't fun either. G was having a hard time with her pinching the other night and I had to explain to him that even when Goldilocks chooses not to be nice to him, he still needs to be nice to her.
Home/office schooling is going.  I'm not sure how well, but we're plugging along. Even though The Man wasn't in the office here in town today, the rest of us went in so I could take care of some things. Before lunch a child wandered into the office area quite offended. Someone had not been nice to the child. Poor child. G overheard the lamenting and went over to the child.

"I want to tell you something," said G. "Mommy said when Goldilocks is not nice to me, I can still be nice to her. I think you should be nice to ____________." Offended child and I tried hard to keep our faces straight while offended child nodded and agreed with G.  

G will turn 4 at the end of this month. I am so happy that he was not only listening to me, but he remembered and was able to apply the principle to another situation!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

And the bat...Leviticus 11:19

We spent four years at the seminary. Four years.The Man and I both received all kinds of instruction in how to handle situations in churches.  None of it prepared us for tonight.

The night was dark by the time The Man and the older children returned home from the midweek service at the church.  As the kids were tucked into bed, The Man told me that he was returning to the church and asked if I wanted to go with him.

I grabbed the camera and he grabbed his gear.

Tools every pastor needs:  fencing mask, head lamp, fish net, leather jacket and gloves.  The folks that had stayed after the meeting to clean the church confirmed that "it" was still in the fellowship hall.  Apparently doors left open to let cool breezes in can also let bats in.

Our church doesn't have a belfry, so it had to settle for a place high on the wall in the fellowship hall.


The bat is now safely outside catching bugs.
Some pastors fish to get creatures into the church...some fish to get them out!  The Man does both.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Bear ye one another's burdens...Galatians 6:2

We are home! The weather was perfect for the church backpack trip.  G walked the entire two miles to the campsite.  Goldilocks was carried most of the way, but she did enjoy getting down and walking with The Man.
She chose her own outfit, by the way.  She convinced someone to put the orange one-piece romper on her when everyone else was getting dressed.  Before long she was back with the denim jumper on asking someone to button it for her.  A few minutes later she returned with a pair of jeans.  I drew the line there.  We are still potty training, and I didn't want too many layers to deal with!

The Man's pack weighed over 70 pounds, but that was before Goldilock's pack was tied on there (G had a backpack, so it was only fair that she also had one).

Not only did G walked the entire way, but he became an expert at pointing out the horse poop along the trail.  In case you are wondering, his pack contained a pillow, a blanket, Curious George, a toothbrush, two pairs of underwear, and a harmonica--all important wilderness essentials!

Don't feel too sorry for The Dog, he practically crawled from the vehicle to the trail head with his pack of dog food.  After showing off his puppy dog eyes, the pack was removed from him and put on Painter, with J carrying the chain for Painter.  The Dog is no dummy. 

Especially since once the dog food was eaten and we were ready to come home, the pockets on the doggie pack were the perfect size to hold the diapers and underwear of Goldilocks that didn't stay dry.
It was a beautiful trip, but I was glad to get home, and Goldilocks is happy to always be within a 10-second sprint of the bathroom.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Am I a dog...1 Samuel 17:43

Dear M,

Hi. How are you? Your mom left the computer on the porch, so I wanted to take this opportunity to say woof. I hope you are having a good time at that place called college. Do they have any dogs there?  If they do, I'm sure they aren't as good as I am.

Guess what?  We're going backpacking today!  I'm not sure why they call it backpacking, because it doesn't have anything to do with my back, and I certainly don't pack anything.

I want to let you know how much you are missed around here.  The other folks still feed me and pat me on the head and stuff.  But it just isn't the same.

Speaking of food...I wonder who will be carrying my food on this backpack trip for me since you aren't here to do it. 

Oh, I have to show you a picture of this ridiculous contraption your mom made.  I have no idea why they buckled it on my back. 
If that wasn't enough, they put a bag of dog food into each pocket.  A LOT of dog food.  Why, it is enough food to last me and that other beast at least two days. As you can probably tell, I was very annoyed that they put that thing on me. I was so glad when they took it off. I hope I never see it again.

Then your mom rigged up some other bag, put a chain in it, and tried to put it on the beast's back.  Of course, he just stood there and refused to move.  Your brothers talked about what they would do if he refused to carry his chain.  Hmmm.  I wonder where he's going to take a chain.

Well, it looks like they are loading up things now. I better go. I need to find out who is carrying my food for me.

Your faithful friend,
The Dog

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Teach them diligently...Deuteronomy 6:7

I'm borrowing my first day of school blog title from a few years. We DID start school on Tuesday.  Here are the kids in their little room at the mercantile building.  This is the "delighted" version.  I'll post the version with the flash over on facebook.

I could try to come up with a creative explanation for the tilted picture.  I think it is easiest just to say that I took a bad picture and I don't feel like straightening it right now.  So sorry.

The kids worked for a while, then I started hearing suspicious sounds.  A quick peak out the back office door revealed they were playing learning about the principles of aerodynamics. I told J to measure first to make sure he wouldn't get scalped while zooming under the table.
It would have been terrible to have a first day of school made up of injuries, staples, and stitches.  Even Goldilocks joined in on the fun.

The two little ones were sick yesterday.  Since S wasn't feeling so great either, he took yesterday morning off to stay home with them. J stayed home in the afternoon so S could do some school.

Today we will get ready for our backpack trip we are leaving on tomorrow.  Tomorrow we will be backpacking.  Back to school on Monday!

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

I might learn...Psalm 119:71

I've said we're going to start school "after Labor Day." Now I'm contemplating WHICH day after Labor Day we are tomorrow? next week? I'm not feeling very motivated today, but I don't foresee that changing with the calendar pages.

I need to go back in to the office today, so I think we will do a dry run with our new school room with no patients in the building. I am not sure how we are going to do and balance everything, but we can all learn together.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Indignation...Job 10:18

Last Thursday the kids and I rode down to the big city with The Man. He works in a clinic down there 3 days a week, and sometimes we go along to do our shopping and visit the library. This time, I printed off The Man's Friday schedule and held on to his cell phone (he had his office number forwarded to his cell phone). As people called throughout the day to make appointments I was able to schedule them immediately instead of them leaving messages to be returned the next day. By the time I picked The Man up Thursday evening, his schedule for Friday looked pretty full.

The kids and I had just walked into the Goodwill store to browse when the phone rang. I answered it as I removed the schedule and pen from my pocket. It wasn't a patient, but a pharmacist wondering why The Man hadn't responded to faxed refill requests. I knew The Man had many problems with this particular pharmacy. I knew that within the past year I have called and talked to one of the employees about the inappropriateness of leaving personal patient information on our home phone voice mail--especially when our message only has a number and no name to identify it as belonging to The Man. The list of problems goes on with this pharmacy to the point that The Man is just about ready to no longer call or fax anything to this pharmacy.

Since I've only been helping out in the office for about a week, I didn't have any firsthand knowledge about the particular case. I told the pharmacist that The Man was out of the office, but I'd check into it and be able to help him Friday morning.  

Five minutes later the phone rang again. This time it was the patient that the pharmacist had just called about. She also wanted to know what was going on.  She stated she had known The Man for many years and trusted him, but she was beginning to wonder what was going on because the pharmacist had told her that The Man was the only doctor that they had problems faxing things to. She suggested that we had problems with our equipment. Grrrrrrr.

I was able to schedule 3 more appointments for Friday before leaving the Goodwill, but I certainly wasn't feeling a lot of good will. I was very annoyed and upset that the pharmacist had suggested to a patient that The Man was at fault for her not getting her refills. How dare the pharmacist blame my husband when they were the ones with all the problems!

That night when we got home, we assigned the children to unload the van and help the little ones to bed, then The Man and I got in the pickup and went to his office. I sat down at the computer and pulled up the fax log for the last few months. I sorted them so I could see all the faxes from the pharmacy in question. There were only a dozen or so that had come in from them since The Man updated his computer in June.  Out of those few faxes, only 3 were for that patient, and none of them were for the drug the pharmacist had asked about.  

As I looked at those 3 faxes, I noticed one of them had been sent to a different fax number, then the fax number crossed out and The Man's fax number written in beside it.  BINGO! The pharmacy had been sending the faxes to someone else's number! Satisfied with my detective work, we went home.

The next morning the pharmacist called again. This time I asked him what number he had been sending that fax to. When he replied with the wrong number, I politely informed him that that number wasn't, and never was, The Man's fax number. However, I knew they did have our correct fax number since we had received several faxes from them. Oh. Then The Man talked to him to straighten out the patient's prescription. The pharmacist never apologized, but he did say he thought it was all straightened out in the system.

A few minutes later I talked to the patient to let her know that the situation had been resolved. I did emphasize to her that the fact that The Man hadn't "returned" the faxes had nothing to do with our equipment! 

Even though the situation was very upsetting to me, I'm glad that it spurred me to figure out the underlying problem, so hopefully the patients can be better served in the future. I'm also glad that the situation wasn't our fault, and that I handled it as graciously as I'd want the other party to handle it if it had been our fault. I know that I have and will make mistakes.  When I do, I hope I can admit my mistakes, apologize, and move on.

The rest of Friday was a blur for me. At 5:00 The Man left to do a home visit and I stayed for another 45 minutes to wrap up some things that needed to be done before the weekend. There are still a lot of other things I need to do before The Man is back in the office on Wednesday, but I'll go in tomorrow and work on those. Well, maybe I'll do it Monday.  My house was very neglected last week and it shows! 

P.S. Next time you call your doctor's office to schedule an appointment, will you imagine the person sitting at a desk, or walking through a Goodwill store? ;-)

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

See through a glass...1 Corinthians 13:12

As I mentioned last week, I've been helping out The Man in his office. Today was the first day the kids and I were there just as long as The Man. Since The Man's office is in just one corner of a very large, mostly vacant space, S and J enjoyed having the unused area to fly paper airplanes. G and Goldilocks loves spinning around on the doctor stools. Sacagawea spent most of the afternoon sitting in the sunny new schoolroom crocheting. We have that one room in the building set up with a table and chairs for the older kids to use when we start school next week.  

Since the office is only 2 miles from our house, we just zipped home for a lunch of vegetable soup hot from the crockpot. J and Goldilocks stayed home in the afternoon so she could get her nap and the rest of us returned to the office.

The Man graciously offered his arm to help me learn to draw blood, but since I can't seem to get the hang of taking blood pressures, I'm not sure I'm ready to poke people.

At least for the next week or so I think I'll stick (pun intended) to answering phones, faxing, scanning, learning the ins and outs of his emr software, and figuring out what to do with the windows in the exam rooms. The paper towels he hung up to cover the windows last February are shrinking, so I think it is time for something a bit more (what's the word I'm looking for here??) appropriate. Yes, that's a good word.  Appropriate.

I've also spent quite a bit of my "spare" time cleaning the office and surrounding area. I cleaned some things a bit too well.  

"Where's the sticker that was here on the window?" The Man asked me this afternoon.  

"I peeled it off and threw it away yesterday when I washed the windows."

"Find it and put it back."

"Are you serious?"


As I dug through the trash and found (Yay!) the sticker, The Man explained that it was the bar code the courier scans when she picks up lab specimens and NOT a price/product sticker that someone failed to remove when the window was installed. Oops! Since I had carefully folded it over onto itself so it wouldn't stick to the wastebasket, it was still nice and clean and stuck back to the window.  The lab courier confirmed for me that it still did its job!

I don't know how long I'll be over there full-time, but I know we're all in for an adventure.  I also don't know what all God has in store for us (ha...another pun--not intended--that a few should get) with this next step in our journey. I hope we can glorify God and be a blessing to others in our community.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The beast his food...Psalm 147:9

G: "Chip, chip, chip, chip...[Robot voice] I am a chipmunk."

After several seconds of repeating the above line he realized no one got what he was try to convey.

G: "Chip, chip. I am a chipmunk. Someone please give me a chip."

S: "You are a silly boy."

G: "No, I am a chipmunk!"

Happy Monday!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

His good promise...1 Kings 8:56

Goldilocks just reminded me of another word that she knows: moon!  We just came outside to wait on the rest of the family to get home. I'm so glad it cools off so well in the evenings.  She's picking a bouquet of tea roses, watching the birds, and scolding the dogs.  "Dogs! No, no, no!"  I'm not sure what they've done that she thinks is so terrible. They are just lying in the yard waiting for the van to drive by and into the driveway.
Tonight is the last installment in the 8 Steps to Wellness program our church has put on the last several months. This morning I thought I was well enough to go, but about lunchtime I figured out that I only wanted to spend time in bed or on the couch.  Right before they left I took some mediation so I could be upright and take care of Goldilocks while they were gone.  The Man is one of the presenters tonight, so I didn't think it would work out well for him to take her along.

We don't have as many helpers with this month's program so last night I was asked if I had any thoughts for a centerpiece.  The meal has a oriental theme, so this morning I got up and made these (yes, I'm fully aware that the origin of these is here in America).

They are "promise cookies" and each one has a Bible verse tucked inside. 

Since the food served at the wellness seminars is always vegan, I followed/adapted this recipe.  The instructions didn't say anything about them not being crisp!  After a few trials and temperature adjustments I got something that looked like a fortune cookie, but they had the texture of a crepe.  A gummy crepe. A few were crisp.  A few were too crisp. It was agreed that they need more experimentation, but considering I've probably only eaten a dozen fortune cookies in my life, I don't think we'll spend a lot of time on it. 

It's a good thing they are just for looking at.  They are edible and quite tasty.  However, with the broad range of textures, none of which resembled a fortune cookie, I told The Man to forewarn everyone that they may not wish to actually eat them.

"Are those for me?" asked G.  So, when I was finished with the ones for the centerpiece.  I threw together a gluten free/flax free/soy free version of the vegan fortune cookies for G and J to eat or not eat.

Sometimes we joke that we eat food with nothing in it. Heh.

The dogs tell us the rest of the family is home. Good night!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

An image in the bed...1 Samuel 19:16

Baby S is now a toddler, but she will always be the baby of the family. However, we've decided to dub her Goldilocks here on the blog...keep reading and you'll see why. Of course, she has changed the most since my last set of postings. Next month she will be 23 months old. Today she weighs 24 pounds and is 31" tall. 

Here are a few words that I can think of off the top of my head that I know she can speak appropriately on her own: kitchen, hot dog, apple, orange, (ba)nana, grape, rice, corn, milk, cheese, butter, bread, jam, cookie, popsicle, done, yummy, water, shirt, pants, shoes, socks, table, chair, plate, spoon, car, boat, video, doll, baby, mommy, daddy, recognizable & appropriate names for all the siblings, hold me, please, yes, no, bed, light, (out)side, (in)side, help, stop, please, (thank) you, eat it, I don't know, sheep, pig, dog, cat, horse, deer, fox, bird, fish, cow, rabbit, hair, story, Bible, Jesus, Elijah, diaper, underwear, potty chair, poop, and yucky. I know there are probably a lot more, but basically, I think she is right on target for language development. 

In addition to repeating most words, she knows the basic body parts and will point them out when asked. She also knows the basic animal sounds from dogs and cows to lions. I never thought of making a list like this for the older kids, but with G's challenges, I realized that it is hard to remember when the older kids met the milestones, so I'm recording Baby S's here. 

Goldilocks started climbing out of her crib early in the morning on May 31. She used a rocking chair to climb back in later the same morning. That night she slept on her mattress on the floor. Since then, she sleeps pretty well in her own toddler bed, but when we can't find her, we check out all the other beds that Goldilocks might be trying out. 

Sometimes in the middle of the day she naps in M's bed. That pillow can make his bed too soft for Goldilocks.
Sometimes she climbs in bed with a sleeping S.  That lumpy kid can make the bed too hard.

But most of the time she can be found with a sleeping Sacagawea. She thinks Sacagawea's bed is just right.

As you may have noticed in the picture above with S, and more of the photo I posted a few days ago of S's arm...
Goldilocks got an owie on her arm two weeks ago today while we were eating supper.  The Man, who was sitting right beside her, got up to get something from the kitchen.  She stood up in her highchair and I told her to sit down.  Instead she attempted to climb out of her highchair.  Before I could get to her side, she rolled over the edge and hit the floor. [Just a note that she does have an adjustable highchair.  We've since adjusted it down to the floor, which she dislikes because she wants to see everyone while she's eating, but that's just too bad.  Better safe than have another spill!]  Over the next few minutes it was obvious that she had hurt her arm as she refused to use it, but it looked ok, as in no obvious breaks.  The Man decided to splint it with materials we had on hand and just watch and see how she did.  She did fabulous with her foam/cardboard/duct tape/ace bandage splint, and we kept it on her for a few days. Whenever it would slip off of her itty-bitty arm, she would bring it to me ask for "help" getting it back on. 

A few days later she had an x-ray to confirm she "just" had a greenstick fracture like S.  On that day, The Man made her a professional grade splint that expanded Goldilock's clothing options. We will keep it on for at least another few weeks, although she really seems to like it and she may want to keep it longer.  It hasn't slowed her down a bit.

Here is a picture of her new splint...G wanted to get in the picture too!

I was going to put a new, clean bandage on before church today, but I was feeling yucky so she and I stayed home. It did give us another day to work on some new toddler skills.  Yes, those are training pants that she is wearing.  She's done reasonably well and I hope she is "done" before our church backpack trip next month. If she can learn to go potty by herself with one arm in a splint, that girl should be able to accomplish anything in life she sets her mind to doing!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Youngest son...2 Chronicles 22:1

Here are G's stats: 32 1/2 lbs and 39 inches tall.  It was more convenient to weigh and measure him since I'm helping out in The Man's office today and all the measuring stuff is handy to the computer.

He is still behind on his language development, but is slowly catching up.  His vocabulary is fine, but it is uncomfortable for him to make some sounds. With a lot of practice and a bit of bribery, he is developing new habits.  Sacagawea's real name is now pronounced in 3 recognizable syllables instead of the 2 he had been using for a while.  The current consonant sound we are emphasizing with him is the hard g sound.  He can say "giggle" when we ask him to, but it isn't a all-the-time habit yet.

We can usually decipher what he wants to say to us, but it is a challenge.  Sometimes we can understand Baby S easier than G. However, more and more he is able to explain things rather than just crying about them.

He came in crying the other day because "I picked up a stick and a bumble bee stinged me."  I thought the most likely culprit was a honey bee or a yellow jacket, but he seemed to be fine after I removed a splinter from his finger. 

G and I just got back from a walk to the bank to make a deposit.  It took longer than usual because G wanted to stop and smell all the flowers in the planter boxes lining the sidewalk.  So we did.  On the way back from the bank we stopped by the post office and picked up the new camera cord I'd ordered off of ebay.  Hopefully that means I'll actually transfer more pictures to the computer promptly and you will get to see more pictures here!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

A time to sew...Ecclesiastes 3:7

Now for Sacagawea's update.  She is 62 1/2 pounds and 53 3/4" tall.  She's been enjoying a summer filled with swimming lessons, water color painting, and playing with her friends and siblings. She's also spent a lot of time sewing all kinds of things out of treasures she finds in the scrap box. 

This morning she helped keep the little ones corralled in the kitchen.  Baby S has decided she'd rather use a potty chair or toilet than her diapers, so we'll be hanging out where there are easy-to-clean floors for a few days. They had a lot of fun playing together. I call this picture "Playmobil Meets Beverly Hillbillies."
I think I was the most thrilled when afternoon nap time rolled around.  Unfortunately it was over too quickly and Baby S is already awake again...with dry undies! Yay! Round 2 begins now.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Arm be broken...Job 31:22

S will be in 8th grade this year. He is also growing! He measured 60 3/4" inches this morning. His weight is 95 1/2 pounds, which he wants you to know includes his clothing. 
He fell on July 11 and injured his wrist. After a weekend backpack trip with The Man, I took him in for an x-ray on the following Monday morning. He is thankful that he is still young, growing, and flexible. His injury was "just" a greenstick fracture (If you don't know what that is--I didn't--go ahead and look it up.  I'll be blogging about it again in a few days.) and was given a wrist splint to wear for three weeks. As proof that time flies when you're having fun, we just now realized that he actually wore the splint for 4 weeks! 

Now that he's all better,  he's regaining his strength in his arm by mowing the lawn, washing the dishes, and all the activities that he couldn't do with the wrist splint.

(psst.  *I* know that you're reading, but I don't tell the kids unless you leave a comment.  I know it is a lot easier to give feedback on fb, but since I'm trying to get back into the blogging habit, please indulge us for a few weeks.  Let us all know that you're there. Thank you!)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Bring forth frogs abundantly...Exodus 8:3

Now for an update on the next son! J will be in 10th grade this year. He will be taking Algebra II, Chemistry Botany/Zoology (I knew that, but was confused when writing this post), History (medieval), English, music lessons (most likely trumpet this year), foreign language TBD, p.e., and other various activities. It will be after Labor Day before we start our school year, so we still have time to figure out a few things. I think he will be interested in starting driver training, but that will probably be in January or later.

J rolled his eyes when I asked him to go weigh himself and measure his height. Hey, I need this information for the baby book, right? His height measures 67 3/4", which is about 5 inches taller than my height. His weight is 118 pounds (he hasn't passed me up there :P ). With a shoe size of 10 or 11, he passed up M's shoe size.

He has grown a lot this year and is dealing with the problems that can come with that, including, but not limited to, knee joints locking at inopportune times and pants that resemble tattered capris. I'm only sort of kidding about that last part.  We do have him properly clothed most of the time. He is just about at the point that he can no longer receive M's other hand-me-downs, and he does like to wear his familiar, comfortable clothes no matter how small or worn out they get. I usually don't mind what he wears here around the ranch, as long as he is presentable when we "go to town." 

The Man told J to just be careful how he bends and twists his knees since his problems usually occur when he is kneeling on the couch and shifts around. Yesterday he came in the living room to sit down on the couch beside me and I told him to be careful with his legs. "I should probably just cut them off," he said. I raised my eyebrows in surprise at that declaration. Then he realized that I was more concerned about his knees than the gaping holes in the knees of his pants!

We have so many tree frogs this year. In the evenings we can sit on the front step and watch the frogs hopping all over the yard. We've even had quite a few make their way into the house (ick!) which we've never had issues with before. 

I'll end this post with a picture I took in our front yard this past week. I'm sure the tree frog was very thankful for his long legs as he was able to escape the jaws of baby garter snake. 

As I said on facebook, maybe the snake will have better success next time. If you only go after the ones you're sure you can get, you'll never know your potential!

Monday, August 20, 2012

That he understandeth and knoweth me...Jeremiah 9:24

I'm ending my blogging hiatus and I hope I'm back for a while!  There is so much to update on, but I think I'll start with the oldest and spread out the kid updates over the next few weeks.

This little kid is at college.

That picture was taken in the fall of 1995 when we lived in Berrien Springs, Michigan. M has returned there, and is now an official freshman at Andrews University majoring in Engineering. How did he grow up so fast?

I'm not missing him as much as some folks think I should be. Probably because he was gone for 4 months this spring to AFCOE, and I've had no less than 14 phone conversations and 1 Skype session with him since I dropped him off at the airport last Thursday. He's also living with his grandparents near the university, so I'm not worried about him not being taken care of. We spent 18 years training him up in the Lord, and we'll let Him guide M the rest of the way.

He told me today that his final piece of luggage was delivered, so he has some of his Legos with which to study.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Thy word have I hid in mine heart...Psalm 119:11

I've added a new link to the sidebar. For over the past month, my morning computer time has been monopolized by a website that helps a person memorize scripture. This is the first software I have found that works well for me. Since I don't always have access to the same computer, it is helpful for me to have a web-based application.

Right now, I am polishing up a few passages that I've learned in the past:
Genesis 1
Deuteronomy 8
Psalm 1
Psalm 19
Psalm 40
Psalm 119 (learning...if I can learn the longest chapter in the Bible, I can learn anything! Right?)
Matthew 5
Acts 1 (learning)

I'm also "learning" several smaller passages such as John 3:16 & 17. These have helped me "learn" verses quickly according to the algorithm and are giving me the momentum to keep going.

Go have a look and feel free to tell them Tree River sent you!

Monday, April 02, 2012

Some new thing...Acts 17:24

Still crazy busy. Too crazy. Too busy. We're trying to remedy that situation. I've been recording most of the little things the babies are doing on facebook and not here. I really need to change that since the blog is much easier to find things later.

"Mommy, did you know M used to have TWO lizards????" G had heard this juicy bit of news from S and that was very exciting.

"Yes, G, I knew that." I was tickled that he thought it would be news to me, but then I recalled that the last one had died over six months before G was born. No wonder he doesn't remember them!

M has been gone from home for the last few months. We'll be seeing him this weekend for his last few days of childhood. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with an 18 year old baby.