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.