Tuesday, February 24, 2009
In the midst of this, I am grateful for the quiet repose I enjoyed today while my older two children took piano lessons. Sometimes I try to run a quick errand during this time (which often adds to the stress because of the time restraint), but today we chose to stay and linger until the lessons were completed.
Entering the piano teacher's house is like stepping back in time. It reminds me of visiting my grandparent's house where things were mostly in order, but there was always a cluttered pile or two to make you feel comfortable. The decor is outdated, but warm. Knickknacks and delicate items abound; quite unlike my home where any such things end up broken. There is an abiding stillness that rests upon the house. Immediately upon entering, one feels the need to remember one's library manners. The second time we visited, we were scolded by the teacher for being a distraction during the lessons. We have not repeated that error again. Instead, we find something quiet to entertain ourselves.
Today, my youngest daughter attempted to copy sketches of birds after I read a picture book to her. My son read quietly while he waited for his lesson to begin, and my eldest daughter finished an English assignment and read her own book after her lesson. Meanwhile, my middle daughter enjoyed the selection of books from the retired teacher's days of instructing elementary school students. Everyone was exceptionally still.
While the children were independently occupied, I seized the chance to peruse a photography book that I had borrowed from the library, enjoying this rare, quiet opportunity! Periodically, my heart swelled as words of praise from the teacher in the next room made their way to my ears.
I breathed a silent prayer of thanks for this wonderful opportunity for my children to learn to play the piano.
I thanked my Lord for their diligence in practicing throughout the week, and their joy in learning to play.
I prayed blessings upon their godly teacher and her home.
I praised my Heavenly Father for His faithfulness in providing not only our needs, but our desires as well.
It was a splendid hour; a soothing escape from the busyness, a quiet repose. I just had to come home and share it with you! I pray that in the midst of your own busyness and stress, you are able to take advantage of the moments of quiet that present themselves to you. May you be mindful of God's presence with you, and His bountiful gifts. May you be refreshed as well.
Grace and Peace,
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Where has my brain gone, and when do I get it back?!?!
Tuesday, I showed up at my kids' piano lessons a whole hour late, and I didn't even know it. Fortunately, their teacher had had a cancellation, and both of my kids were able to receive lessons. She was very gracious, and we had adjusted the time, once, a MONTH ago! I have no idea how I got so mixed up! And the fact that I was clueless about it....hello?!? The kicker? I'd just lectured my kids about how they needed to look at their calendar planners every. single. day. (Blush) My calendar, of course, had the correct time. I never used to need to look. Once I wrote it down, it was cemented in my brain, and I just remembered. Lesson in humility, anyone?
Then, today, I completely forgot about my youngest daughter's dance lesson. I totally and completely forgot. We arrived home later than anticipated from Zoology Co-op, and I was determined to sit down and do Bible study with the kids, since we hadn't done it in the morning. Just after we prayed, one of the kids asked about dance. I looked at the clock and realized my daughter's class should be starting at that exact moment. So, quick! get changed! jump in the car! and off we go. Fortunately, it's only 5 minutes from our house!
There are other things I'm struggling to remember. Most of them are new adjustments to our schedule since the first of the year, but that's been over a month now! I don't know how many times I have completely spaced that my husband has Tuesday Prayer Breakfast on Tuesday, and that I need to make something Monday. This isn't rocket science. It's not even physics! Actually, I'm sure my husband would point out that it is physics, because physics is everywhere, but I can't in all honesty blame my inability to remember to bake muffins on my complete inability to understand physics; though it's worth a try. Perhaps if it were Calculus, I would remember. Hm.
All that to say, I'm tired of forgetting! It's embarrassing! I'd much rather be sensible and reliable than flighty and ditzy. My hair is not the right color for ditzy, and I'm not about to begin dying it just so I can get away with being flighty. No offense.
Now what was it I was supposed to be doing before I started blogging?
Grace and Peace,
Monday, February 16, 2009
Squinting eyes from the reflection of the sun off the snow. Wooden sleds, purchased in Germany 30 years ago, continue to delight my family!
Making their way through the thick snow, up the man made hill built specifically for this purpose. It seems we weren't the only people with the idea to go sledding!
One sister watches, while another helps the third up the hill. It warms the photographer mommy's heart to see such unprompted care and thoughtfulness.
Big brother head first on the big sled. No fear!
Slightly more timid, but having fun nonetheless.
She's actually running up the hill, pulling her sled.
This girl's energy amazes and exhausts me!
Truth be told, they fight for turns with the inner tube.
Love the ball on top of the hat!
I want you to know that after taking these few shots, I packed the camera away safely in the van and climbed the hill myself to play with the kids in the snow. We all had a (mostly) wonderful time!
At the end of the day, my older daughter nursed an injured wrist while my youngest complained that the sun hurt her eyes, and my son squeezed in as many trips down the hill until I insisted we leave. Only the middle daughter was up for a photo-shoot.
It would have been even more fun if Daddy could have joined us, but a fun time was had by all nonetheless. And now spring can come.
Grace and Peace,
Saturday, February 14, 2009
- I confess that I am not one of the fabulous moms who made a special breakfast of pink pancakes or heart shaped waffles; instead, my dear husband brought home donuts after going out for breakfast with a local pastor (while I slept in).
- I confess that I did not purchase nor make valentines for my kids (and I hid the card I bought for my husband so well, that I have been unable to find it). My husband did purchase cards and stickers for all the kids and me, and all the kids made valentines for each other, their dad, and me.
- I confess that I didn't make a fancy lunch; but we enjoyed using our Wendy's gift cards (a Christmas present from Great Grandma), and I sat at a table with just my son. I even shared my Dr. Pepper.
- I confess that I didn't plan any fun Valentine's Day activities, but we all enjoyed a trip to the dollar movie theater to watch The Tale of Despereaux (very good!) which was a special treat!
- I confess that I did not plan a red dinner; but my husband made tomato soup (RED) and grilled cheese sandwiches (while I "worked" on the computer & prepped tomorrow's Sunday School Lesson)!
- I confess that there was no unit study on the origin of St. Valentine's Day, nor were there books from the library. We did enjoy the Valentine Party/Poetry Recital with our homeschool group on Wednesday though.
- I confess that I did not even make the traditional heart-shaped, raspberry jelly filled, sugar cookies. Maybe my mom can do that with the kids when she comes over tomorrow?
- I confess that I did not buy my beloved a gift, but I have made my bed for two weeks in a row, and kept my bathroom straightened! I was surprised by a dozen red roses yesterday...I usually only get roses after I have a baby; it's been a long time, and I don't expect to have any more babies, so it was quite nice to get roses again!
- I confess that I did not arrange for a babysitter or plan a date, but my husband did, and we have reservations tomorrow night at a place that he claims will delight this carnivore.
- I confess that I'm blogging instead of tucking the kids into bed, but I did let the girls take a bath in my jacuzzi tub instead of a shower, and I did play one song on Dance Praise with my son.
- I confess that I did not get my "Christmas" letter finished/mailed by Valentine's Day like I jested that I would. I'm such a slacker! And no, I can't let it go, I have a box of photo cards sitting on my desk collecting dust. They will not wait until December.
- I confess that I just haven't been in the Valentine's Day mood, and really didn't put any effort into making it special for my kids and husband. I'm glad that my husband did, and I'm grateful that my kids did. In the end we had a nice family day despite me, and my lack of creativity.
If you're one of those creative moms who planned ahead to lavish love on your family today, I tip my hat to you! If you're not; know that you're not the only one! Next year, I really do think I should at least make my own Valentines for the kids. I know they'd appreciate it. I felt badly when I saw the stacks of Valentines, and none from me. Maybe I can even plan a Valentine's Tea like my mom did for me one year. That was such a fun time! She was such a good mom! Until then, perhaps I can redeem myself on St. Patrick's Day; everyone loves Corned Beef and Cabbage, and green is my favorite color! ;)
Grace and Peace,
Thursday, February 12, 2009
I just love the way her mind works! It's no wonder I've always been such a Math geek! ;)
So if your kids hate Math or are struggling with it, send them over to my house. We'll sit around all day dividing chocolate evenly. Imagine how the test scores will soar after that!
Grace and Peace,
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
I'm a little discouraged because we planned the poetry recital in conjunction with our homeschool group's Valentine's Party in the hopes that more families would participate, but of the 45 children that are attending the party, only nine of them are reciting poems (4 of them my own). Perhaps when the other children see how much fun a poetry recital is, they'll want to participate next time. I just hope that people don't show up late and either straggle in through the recital or skip the recital altogether. Pray for my attitude, it obviously needs an adjustment!
1ds11 is reciting White Fields by James Stephens
In the winter time we go
Walking in the fields of snow;
Where there is no grass at all;
Where the top of every wall,
Every fence, and every tree,
Is as white as white can be.
Pointing out the way we came,
--Every one of them the same--
All across the fields there be
Prints in silver filigree;
And our mothers always know,
By the footprints in the snow,
Where it is the children go.
2dd9 has chosen an excerpt from Winter's Blessings by William Allen Bixler. The full text can be read here.
Pretty little snowflakes
Falling to the ground;
Here is one, there is one,
Ev'rywhere they're found.
See them fall so gently
Through the frosty air;
Every little snowflake
Has its beauties rare.
Soon the ground is covered,
With the pretty snow;
Then we see the snowbirds
Flying to and fro.
Do you think the snowbirds
Like the wintry day?
Do you think they're happy
As they chirp and play?
Happy little creatures--
Do not reap or sow,
Yet the Master feeds them,
Even in the snow.
3dd7 is presenting two poems. A Valentine by Eleanor Hammond is my personal favorite at this time of year.
Frost flowers on the window glass,
Hopping chickadees that pass,
Bare old elms that bend and sway,
Pussy-willows soft and gray.
Silver clouds across the sky,
Lacy snowflakes flitting by,
Icicles like fringe in line,
That is outdoors’ valentine.
The second poem is Jack Frost by Helen Bayley Davis.
Someone painted pictures on my
Windowpane last night --
Willow trees with trailing boughs
And flowers, frosty white,
And lovely crystal butterflies;
But when the morning sun
Touched them with its golden beams,
They vanished one by one.
Finally, 4dd6 picked out a simple fun poem: Chubby Little Snowman by Panonopus (as she pronounces anonymous).
A chubby little snowman,
Had a carrot nose,
Along came a bunny,
And what do you suppose?
That hungry little bunny,
Looking for his lunch,
Ate the snowman's carrot nose,
Nibble nibble crunch.
Grace and Peace,
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
FYI: If you're one of those
DISCLAIMER: For those of you who don't "get it" when I'm trying to be funny because I'm usually so serious on "the blog"; this post was written a bit tounge in cheek. If you don't appreciate my feeble attempts at humor, you are welcome to come back another day when I'm not posting at almost 2am.
Okay, now that that bit of business is taken care of....
We've had a lot of snow here in Indiana! Last week we got a little over a foot of heavy, beautiful snow. Last night, we got between 3 and 4 more inches. The result? A rare treat which I haven't enjoyed since I was a child: Snow Ice Cream.
First you need snow: fresh, clean snow. It's best to wait until a second snowfall, because then it's cleaner. You can even leave a bowl outside to catch the snow, or if you didn't think of that beforehand, just scrape the top layer of fluffy, clean snow off the ground. Really, it won't kill you; even if it's not totally clean. Remember, "God made dirt and dirt don't hurt!"
(Please note: Normally, gloves and a hat are required to be outside in such weather. Also, I gathered the majority of the snow myself to insure that it was really clean. This was an emergency snow run when we discovered that I hadn't gathered enough snow, and then turned into a photo op as well. I know you were wondering what kind of mother I was. First Acid Rain infested Salmonella poisoned Snow Ice Cream, then improper cold-weather apparel...now you know. Besides that, I was too lazy to put my boots on again.)
Second, you need a recipe: Snow Ice Cream I. (Please note the disclaimer at the top of the recipe, I really don't want to get sued over a random recipe on a random blog post!)
A few simple ingredients...
Yes, those are eggs. No, they will not be cooked before they are eaten. Yes, you do run the risk of salmonella poisoning. Consider yourself warned and eat at your own risk, but seriously people, in all the many times I had snow ice cream as a child, or for that matter homemade eggnog, or cookie dough, I never got salmonella. I'm just sayin'. (I do hope those words don't come back to bite me in the derriere!)
A few helpers...
The snow hat is a nice touch; don't you think?
Mix it together...
Pioneer Woman has nothing to fear...
Don't they look so excited? I was the best mom in the world...for a milisecond.
A "funny" story: One year my mom was making snow ice cream, and decided to send a bowl of it across the street to the quite large homeschooling family who lived in one side of a duplex. She was trying to be nice; neighborly. The children returned with the untouched bowl of snow ice cream and a message from their mother that they could not eat such because of pollution and toxic rain. Seriously. Now if it were you...? Never mind. Once again, consumption of snow fallen in inner-city Indianapolis has not killed me. I think one small bowl will be okay. Really. But consider yourself warned. Eat at your own risk. I did. ;)
(Insert picture of the mom eating Snow Ice Cream...oh wait, there isn't one...oops!)
Oh, and one more thing...LOL! :)
Life is short, every now and then you have to throw caution to the wind, and live with reckless abandon. Um, yeah.
Grace and Peace,