Monday, March 29, 2010

Fresh Air

The day has come that I have been waiting for since October, I have multiple windows open. Let the fresh spring air come in!!!!!!!
We still have snow but since it was an extremely low snowfall year break up should be fast this year. I hear the drip, drip as I type and even on the shady side of the house!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


This will be short because I am home alone with Benjamin and he is on the move. Benjmain is sick again, UGH, double UGH! Yesterday he was fine and then volcano nose erupted today. I am not happy to be missing Wednesday evening services at church. He has been fine for a week and then he was in nursery at church on Sunday and here we are again. Not happy, I repeat I am not happy about this.

BUT, I did have a very wonderful overnight trip to Anchorage with two friends! Did you get that? Overnight with friends!! It was a great trip. Our wonderful husbands sent us all to Anchorage to shop, they are great! Thanks to my husband for getting the whole idea going(and my friend's husband for talking my husband into the overnight part), he is great! We flew out Friday morning at 9 am, with last minute free upgrades to first class!  By 10 am we were leaving the airport and on our way to the mall. We shopped and ate at restaurants that we do not have in Fairbanks and shopped at stores that we do not have in Fairbanks, I did go into Fred's to go to the bank (I had to get $$$$!) We shopped until the last store was closed and then we headed to the hotel for talking until late and finally a little sleep. Up again to shop until time to go to the airport. I can honestly say it was one of the most relaxing trips I have ever taken in my life even though it was short. We had little to no time restraints which this mom cannot seem to ever get away from. 
School this week has been good with today being the best day. I had some good science notebook pages created today, I left them with very open ended instructions and it was interesting to see what each one did with the same information.
I have been having a tough time lately seeing the  enjoyable side to my blessings, mainly the older ones, I have been taking time to step back and enjoy them and see how unique they each are and how much they do desire to do what is right and good and to see their struggles when they don't. Guess what? I haven't had any bad days at all in a few weeks, funny how that happens. I lowered my expectations and things are much better.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Completely off the subject of this post but....don't forget to spring forward!

Why do I not "follow" one author in my Bible study, child rearing, or even home education? That is a great question, thanks for asking.
I do not follow one person's teachings because it would narrow the scope of my learning. If I only followed one person's teaching on child training, child development, home education, etc. I would  be trying to live up to someone else's  expectations. You see, I did that once, I won't do that again. I also let a book cause problems in my marriage because we(my husband and I)  read something in a book, and I set my expectations to that thing. We tried, but the expectation was too high and it honestly didn't work for our family. I was often disappointed which led to a downcast attitude and conflict in the marriage. Not necessary at all!  I finally prayed,  let it go and lowered my expectations, everyone is much happier, well, I am at least. I often feel for people who set these high expectations of their spouse. You see, my husband and I cannot have weekly date nights nor do we want to. (GASP! can you believe she just said that?) We do not need to leave our home to have a date and it makes those few times a year when we do get the opportunity to do such a thing, even more special and enjoyable.
I have learned over to the years not to follow one person or philosophy, outside of the Word of God. This keeps me well read and informed. Obviously, there are some authors that I would not touch with a ten foot pole but that is not for this post. I am talking quality stuff here.  I just read some things around the internet this week about people who followed the teachings of one particular family and the stuff wasn't good. I do not want to be anyone else, they are just human and I do not know their true heart or motives. Remember when Anne, yes Anne of Green Gables, asks Marilla something and Anne says something to the effect of (not quoting exact here) oh, what you miss? Well, if I read only one home education book or only one child training book, then oh, what I might miss!

What I have been doing

Besides keeping my children home and away from other people(we have left home three days in a row for quick, mommy run in errands), I have been enjoying a little extra working around the house, soaking whole wheat flour and baking, and washing bedding.

I have been baking bread with this recipe (doubled) for a few weeks now. I recently started soaking overnight before making bread. This is what I do. I put the flour and about 2-3 Tablespoons of yogurt, yogurt whey, or vinegar (or I use 1/2 cup buttermilk to make my 2 cups liquid measurement) which leaves me 1/2 liquid leftover for later.
The next day when I am ready to make bread, I put 1/2 cup warm water, the yeast, honey or sugar in a measuring cup  and stir to combine. I place this mixture in with the flour and the remaining ingredients and let the dough hook do its work. I let the dough rest in a covered bowl for a bit and then put into bread pans and let rise, for quite a while. Bake and enjoy yummy bread.
What I have found:

  • it takes the dough longer to rise

  • it takes the  longer to bake (take its temperature, bake until 180 degrees)

  • if I soak the flour I will make the bread, cinnamon rolls, pancakes, waffles, etc. 

  • I am still learning

I have been wanting to make granola for a couple of months now, I don't know why it takes me so long to do things.
What I did: 
I put:

  • 3 cups oats

  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds

  • 2/3 cup pecans, chopped

  • 2/3 cups almonds, chopped

  • 1/4 cup flax seeds

  • 1/3 cup wheat germ

in a baking pan and toasted them while I put:

  • 1 cup honey

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar or  Rapadura 

  • 2 Tbsp. butter

  • 2 tsp. vanilla (add at the end)

in a pan on the stove to heat. Poured this over the oats and added dried cherries, cranberries and golden raisins. Stirred and baked until heated, probably about 30 minutes(I didn't time it and I did almost burn it!)

Then, I made chewy granola bars from a recipe from my grain co-op. I will definitely make them again. All the kids liked those.

Now, what is for dinner?

Thursday, March 11, 2010


I read a good blog post today about homeschool over at Epi Kardia. The part after she talks about surgery and before the Survey part. I wholeheartedly agree with the author about not looking at someone's life (or homeschool) and thing they have the perfect life. They probably don't. My friends and acquaintances often mention how "together" I am. I really laugh because I am not all together, I tell them to stop by my house unannounced and see what it is really like around here, then see how not together I am. I lose patience daily, I wonder if my children have ears and brains multiple times a day, there is always something messy, out of place and something that could be better organized. ALWAYS! One really does not have a good grasp of the life of another unless one spends vast quantities of time with said person.  I give a horrible first impression, I know that I do even though I don't like that I do. I am not easy with unfamiliar situations thus why I don't do first impressions well. Once I get to know someone that is a different story. I could spend every day with family and friends, the more the merrier but do not put me in a room of strangers, they might just remain strangers.  I am working on this.
I can say this though, this week of sick children (which are much better by the way, mainly still coughing only), we have not had our regular schedule, and I have gotten so much accomplished.
We have

  •  kept the boy's room in check and took care of a couple of small things in there

  • cleaned and organized the girl's bedroom (the closet still needs major work but that is for another day)

  • picked up and dusted and dust mopped the family room floor daily this week

  • swept and mopped the dining room, kitchen and family room and bathroom

  • laundry, the daily duty

  • kept the kitchen going

  • did a little shelf organization in the dining room

This would not have happened had we had a regular school schedule going on.
I did inform the blessings that they will resume regular schedules tomorrow morning, including school, yes, I know it is Friday (our day off), but Daddy has to work tomorrow so we are getting in some practice for next week!
IF I can ever get myself disciplined for year around school which I would love to do, then I honestly think we would do a three weeks on and one week off schedule, just so I could keep up with projects and cleaning.....I can dream, can't I?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A new day has dawned

I feel refreshed this morning, Baby Benjamin didn't wake me up any last night. For that I am thankful. I was able to get about 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Amazing!
I think we will still take it easy today, or at least the kids will. You know it has been amazing that even though they are not doing their chores things are running fairly smoothly. I am taking up their slack (although Levi did do his chores yesterday afternoon, it was nice for someone to bring in the wood).
I placed a homeschool order with cbd this weekend. I ordered Mystery of History 3 a chronological Bible, some Bible maps and charts and the new Apologia Elementary Science book!!!!, anatomy and physiology!!!!!!!!!!!    Can you tell I am sure excited about that book? We will begin as soon as we finish our current book, which is almost finished. This will be Levi's last Elementary science book with us before he begins the General or Physical Science in the fall.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Not so much

Well, I didn't do much in the way of organizing today, unless you count cleaning the kitchen, I did organize the dishes out of the dishwasher! We also gave the family room a cleaning tonight before settling in for more movie watching. We will have to slowly wean ourselves back off of movies. We usually do not watch much tv during the week and actually none during the day.
Benjamin still has a runny nose, although it is clear, and he coughs occassionally. Levi is doing well with only an occassional sniffle and cough. Elisabeth, well, bless her heart, she has it about as bad as Benjamin, runny/stuffy nose, coughing, sore throat, tired, poor girl. Judith had more energy today but is sniffly and coughy, yes, I just made up those two words.
I am thankful for every day that I wake up without a sore throat.
I am thankful that my children seem to be improving instead of declining.
I am thankful that I should be taking a trip next weekend to Anchorage! Yipee!
I am looking forward to attending a curriculum fair in April.
I am thankful for sleeping blessings and I am off to join in on the sleeping!


I have three sick children and one who was fortunate to have a very slight case and seems much better (although enjoying the much relaxed schedule so far this week). Thursday night Benjamin didn't sleep well, so Friday morning we were at the clinic. We woke up Sunday to two not so well children and they were taken in, no strep. So, Sunday, Monday and Today have been lazy tv/movie watching days. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer and The Parent Trap(Hailey Mills version) both come on this afternoon, so it is not a total loss. Not what I had planned for the week. I am thankful for my Saturday evening grocery shopping trip. We have food and tylenol, we should be good for a few days! The principal has canceled school and all outings this week. (I have been reading history and science though!)
We will keep our children home from church Wednesday evening as well, even if they improve greatly today or tomorrow(which isn't going to happen). I really encourage staying home until completely well, especially nursery aged children as I know this is where Benjamin got this and brought it into our home. Ugh! Keep your sick children home, I know it is inconvenient  sometimes but for the health of your child and the children of others, come on.

Home with sickies, but glad to be home. Honestly, it is nice here. And I am thankful not to have to rearrange our schedules to determine who stays home with sick ones, I am already here and so are they. Plus, they don't get behind and have "makeup" work!
You know the old saying "When life gives you lemons...." well, I am taking the remainder of  this sickness to do some organizing....If I had only remembered to purchase those pants hangers Saturday night.....oh well.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Other updates

Judith's glasses were ready to picked up today Daddy took her to get them after I returned home from the clinic with Benjamin.
Photobucket I think she looks very cute in the glasses.

School goings on. We are studying the Middle Ages right now, which none of us are enjoying so we have accelerated the process to speed through to begin with exploration to 1850 in the fall. Levi did make a catapult last week though. Photobucket This is a great age because they can do most of this by themselves and I get to come in and go on about how great of a job they did! Photobucket And then remind him to clean up! He stills needs reminders to clean up.

May the Lord find us faithful.

What a way to end the week

Last night I went out with some friends for dessert. I knew when I left that my little climber was getting sick, after his nap he started coughing  just a little bit.


He was still awake when I got home so I took him and sat down to rock him. He just could not stay asleep. Needless to say, it was a long night.
After a trip to the PA, yucky throat and a red ear which is probably red due to the throat. Another round of antibiotics! Ugh! That church nursery!

May the Lord find us faithful.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Flying time?

One day this week I had a new post partially typed up and walked away to do something like remove a one year old from the top of the piano, yes he made it up onto the piano. I need help here people, climbing children, oh, today I am in one room and I think that Benjamin is with his older brother, but older brother is "occupied", Elisabeth was practicing the piano and Judith was studying her spelling words. I heard Benjamin making his noise that he makes when he needs/wants something but I could not leave where I was at that moment, I was occupied as well. I finally hear Levi say "Benjamin" in a surprised voice. Benjamin had climbed up to the top bunk bed. Ugh!!! So, when I am not posting here I am busy making sure that Benjamin does not climb bunk beds or any other dangerous activities that a one year old may attempt. I am absolutely amazed that he hasn't found a way out of his crib yet. I believe Judith was climbing out by this age. But she was obedient about it. She stayed in until I told her she could come out.
In other news my husband and his hunting buddy went moose hunting this weekend so there is some moose to be processed tomorrow. I the meat froze on the trip home so my husband "hung" the game bags containing the meat in the garage and left the van outside. Every time I walked out into the garage to get something from the fridge or freezer out there I had to do a double take. I probably won't post pictures of the meat this time but if you are interested here are past posts about moose processing.

Let's just say it will be interesting around here tomorrow with Benjamin who is seeming to be getting sick again, he had cough starting up today.....

May the Lord find us faithful.