New Baby Break


We have a new baby! 

I'll be taking a blogging break while we adjust to life at home with our baby girl! 

I will be back soon.

Pregnancy - 41 Weeks


 41 Weeks Along

No pregnant mama necessarily wants to reach this point. The due date has come and gone... still no baby. 
People call to check in, to see if they've missed some big news... nope, still waiting. 

How I feel: ready
I'm trying to be patient
I'm trying to enjoy these days while I can focus on my older children.  
And I'm trying to rest up. 

We will be induced soon, if baby doesn't come naturally. 

We are ready for you, Baby Flutter, and will see you oh-so-very soon!

Family Photo Friday

 It's Friday which is when I try to post a few family photos.

A week or so ago we had our homeschool co-op end-of-semester program. One of the classes that performed a song on stage was the "Armor of God" class. My kids were not in this class, but my son was so impressed with their costumes that he immediately began talking of making some armor at home. 

It wasn't long before he and his sister had homemade swords and helmets. And this led to a number of discussions about the armor of God mentioned in Ephesians 6.

It also led to some birthday gifts that fit the theme as well.

This picture doesn't show the stickers as well as I'd hoped, but my son chose stickers to represent each member of our family to put on his shirt. He put a smiley face on for Dad, Mom, sister and himself. Then he added a sticker of a gift for Baby Flutter. So sweet.

My hubby and daughter were busy in the kitchen making soft buttery pretzels. Mmmm.   

My kids worked together to put up our Christmas tree this week. Team work at its best.

My son loves drawing and creating with the dry-erase board. He was very proud of himself when he drew this awesome picture of a firefighter, fire truck and burning building. Great job, Buddy! 

Happy Friday to you!

Pregnancy - 40 Weeks


40 weeks along

 I am really big. 
I think I'm waddling with each lumbering step I take.
It's hard to stay on my feet for long.

We're thankful that we've made it into the month of December, which is when our "real" insurance took effect. For most of October and all of November, I was covered with a temporary insurance (that would NOT have covered labor/delivery) and the rest of my family was without any coverage. But now... we're ready!

A day or so ago I had a burst of energy and was able to do some serious nesting. 

I've been craving peanut butter for the last few weeks. 

I continue to have indigestion all day long, regardless of what I eat or avoid eating. I'm up in the night at least twice for a potty break and to sit in the recliner at an incline to help with the middle-of-the-night indigestion. 

I do believe that we're ready for this baby. 
Each last-minute item has been checked off. 
We're ready to welcome you to this side of the world, 
Baby Flutter!

Kindergarten ABCs


My son has been working hard to learn his ABCs. 

He's doing very well and is starting to string together letters to make words. He's proud of himself, as he should be. 

Here are a few pictures of him working on putting together two different alphabet puzzles we have - one uppercase, one lowercase.

I've struggled, as many homeschoolers do, with how hard to push my son in the area of reading readiness. I struggle to not compare him with his older sister, who learned to read at age 4. My boy turns 6 this week and is much further behind than my girl was at that age. But he wasn't ready sooner. It seems that recently the light bulb has gone on and he's grasping the letter sounds and combinations better than before. Another example of how you can't push kids to do things they aren't ready for - they will learn them when they are good and ready (whether it's potty training, learning to read or tie shoes). 

Happy Birthday, Little Man!


My little man turns 6 this week! 
This birthday seems extra special, at least to me, as I'm carrying a baby due on his exact birthday. I'm recalling what pregnancy was like exactly 6 years ago and that birth experience... and how quickly the last 6 years have gone.

It's quite a privilege to be a mom to this little man. He's taught me to lighten up, to laugh more, to enjoy life more, to let go of the reigns of control more.

He's all boy. He's into swords and guns. He loves to be active, to hit and kick and run and jump. But he's also got a very tender heart. He likes to snuggle and take naps next to Mom.

I'm so thankful to be his mom and so thankful to God for putting him into our family.

Happy Birthday, Buddy!

Church Community Meal


Before Thanksgiving, our church hosted a community meal. This was a full Thanksgiving spread - with turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberries, rolls, corn, and pies for dessert. And it was free for everyone. Over 200 people were served, with the majority of those being non-church folks.

My husband helped in the serving line. 

The kids and I (and cousin Racquel in this picture) helped with the eating. :-)

I appreciate the fact that our local church looks for ways to serve our broader community, through meals like this and also through providing a "clothing pantry" with free clothes for anyone who needs them. On a weekly basis, an average of 50 people visit the clothing pantry, which is available to anyone without cost or obligation. 

At times like these, I appreciate my fellow church folks truly being the hands and feet of Jesus in our world. 

Homeschool Co-Op Semester Ends


We took part in a homeschool co-op this semester, as we've done for the last few semesters. Our co-op has been a wonderful addition to our homeschooling, providing social and educational opportunities for my kids and for me. Our co-op is made up of about 50 other local homeschooling families, all of whom are seeking to honor the Lord Jesus Christ within their families. Our group is committed to scripture memory and prayer, which is one reason why it's a big blessing to all who participate. I've written before about our co-op, so if you want to read more click here
or here.

My 5th grade daughter enjoyed these classes this semester: US Presidents (learning a little about each one, learning about the office and perks of the President, holding a mock election), Gym, Creatures that Defy Evolution, and Pinterest Crafts (some of the craft/art projects are on display in the above picture). She surprised me greatly by LOVING her Gym class. I hated Gym with a passion when I was younger, so I guess I expected her to feel the same way. But she loved the games and especially the weeks focused on learning to play volleyball. 

My son is in Kindergarten and he chose these classes: Frog & Toad (they read books from this series and did crafts/activities related to the book's theme, such as kites or cookies), Gym, Animals, and Legos. I was not too surprised that my boy would also LOVE Gym class, since he has boundless energy. He really enjoyed all of his classes, though. Creating new things in Lego class, learning fascinating facts about animals, bringing home fun craft pages from Frog & Toad... he enjoyed all of it. In the picture above, he and his Animals classmates were classifying different stuffed animals into groups of birds, reptiles, mammals, fish, or amphibians.

Last week we had our last day of co-op and our end-of-semester program. All of the kids go on stage to recite the verses they've memorized, which was Romans 12:9-13 this semester. And we enjoy a night highlighting what classes and activities took place throughout the semester. 

 Now we take a break for a few months before the spring semester starts up. It is a joy to be a part of this group! 



 My kids. 

Soon there will be a third to add to this group, but for now it's these two. Constant companions. It will be interesting to see how our family dynamics change when the baby arrives. Three children sometimes means that one is often left out, but the age spacing of our kids may affect that a bit. Time will tell how it plays out for us.

My girl. 
She wants a little sister, so we've had to talk about the possibility that she'll be disappointed if the baby is a boy. She's 10 years old. She goes goo-goo ga-ga over pets (especially dogs) but generally is not all that maternal when it comes to being around babies and small children. We'll see how she handles having a baby in our home again. She enjoys baking and working in the kitchen, so I expect she'll be most helpful at meal times.

My boy.
He wants a little brother, so we've had to talk with him about the possibility of disappointment too, if the baby is a girl. He's a few days shy of being 6 years old. He's always had a tender heart for babies, so I think he'll take to our little one right away. I expect he'll be a big helper - grabbing diaper changing supplies or pacifiers or whatever. 

The age span will make things especially interesting. My oldest is 10 years old. By the time our baby is that age, my oldest will likely be moved out of the house. Kids grow up, that's one of life's certainties. What a joy to be a part of that process, as they grow and learn and mature and change.   

Field Trip: Survive Alive & Fire Safety


 Last week we enjoyed a field trip to a local children's museum that hosts a fire safety program called "Survive Alive." 

Local firefighters led the students through discussion about fire safety, showed a brief video and then demonstrated how to get out of a house on fire. 

There is a "house" inside the museum that is used for this field trip. The group enters the house and is in the bedroom. They are taught how to roll out of bed, crawl under smoke, feel the door for heat, and open windows if needed. Every child practices getting out of the house safely.

They met a real firefighter in full gear and were able to ask questions of him. They learned that he may look a little scary if he was in your house in the dark of night, but that he can be trusted and is a helper.

Kids practiced finding an outside meeting place and then using a phone to make a real 911 call, providing the information the dispatchers need.

The kids practiced "Stop, Drop and Roll."

This field trip was very well done and the kids all seemed to enjoy it. Until now we'd only talked about fire safety, but never had actually practiced these things. Now we need to practice a real drill at home.   

Pregnancy - 38 Weeks


38 Weeks Along

We're down to less than 2 weeks until our baby's due date. 

We now have our hospital bags packed. 

We now have the baby's car seat situated into our van. 

Everything seems to be ready. 
There is little to do now but wait.  

We love you, Baby Flutter, and we are excited to meet you face-to-face soon!

Family Photo Friday


Friday is here again which means that I try to post some family photos from our week. 

We have the car seat ready for our baby. My son wanted to pose with it. Next step is putting it in our van to make room for baby.

My daughter loves the movie "The Sound of Music." One day she came up with this nun outfit. Love it! 

It's definitely fall in our neck of the woods. Lots of leaf-raking has taken place. Our kids like to get in on the action. 

Happy Friday to you! 
November is already half gone, so make each day count!

We Love Reading


We love to read. 

My husband is currently reading "The Mouse and the Motorcycle" to our son before bed each night. Boy, oh boy, is my son enjoying this! Watching him cuddle with Daddy and enjoy books just melts my heart. 

A week or so ago I grabbed this picture of my daughter reading a book about trains to my son. 

My daughter has lots of books that she is reading as part of her 5th grade homeschooling curriculum. Included in that are also some books that I read aloud to the kids. My son, though only in kindergarten, loves to listen in on those too. I don't mind admitting that I enjoy those books a lot too and often learn new things myself.  

We love reading!

Pregnancy - 36 Weeks


36 Weeks Along

I'm tired. 
My indigestion used to be a nighttime-only occurrence. 
This week, however, it started to bother me all day long. Ugh. 

I made a few last-minute purchases this week for Baby Flutter. Little by little, we're crossing things off the "get ready for baby" list. 

We look forward to seeing you soon, Flutter!

Creative Kids


My kids are very creative. 

One day this week my daughter created a spider out of some crafting cord. She attached a string and had herself a very realistic-looking spider puppet.

 Then she created a second spider puppet for her brother. 

Then they added a box-lid "stage" with a web (including some caught bugs for the spiders to eat. 

They put on quite a puppet show and enjoyed this type of play for most of the day. 

I love their creativity. I love days when they play well together (no, they don't do so every day). I love that homeschooling gives them the opportunity to play and learn together.

Pregnancy - 35 Weeks


35 Weeks Along

35 weeks along = ultrasound that confirms all is well (and reveals that Flutter has lots of hair and apparently chubby cheeks; Flutter also weighs in at a normal range around 6 pounds currently, which makes it highly unlikely that Flutter will take after older brother and be extra-large at birth)

35 weeks along = tired mama

35 weeks along = weekly doctor visits 

35 weeks along = some false contractions 

35 weeks along = indigestion that keeps mama up nightly  

35 weeks along = mama better get a move on the last-minute to-do list because the last minute is quickly approaching!

35 weeks along = just a few short weeks until we meet Baby Flutter