Monday, December 27, 2010

An empty house

Today I'm all alone. The Boy is at work and all my darlings are with a friend. She braved having all of them over night. Hmmm, we'll see how that went once I go pick them up.

What did I do all day? CLEAN! What else? Yes, I am almost caught up on the mountain of laundry that I tossed in the playroom in an effort to keep it out of sight be efficient, we do have to walk past the playroom to get down the hallway. :)

I tackled the girls sleeping room, and gathered the hundreds of books that seem to have been unable to find their way back to the bookshelf this past week and a half. I changed sheets, vacuumed mattresses, scrubbed bathrooms, did dishes, scoured the stove and now I'm blogging a bit before I have to go pick up the kiddos and head off to work.

I love cleaning when the girls are gone, seriously I love to be able to tackle a big ol' project and get it done without someone tearing apart another room while I was distracted. I feel so accomplished right now. Off to work I go though!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Homeschool Motivation

This year has been the hardest year to date as far as getting Beanie to complete her work in a timely manner. By timely I literally just mean getting it done before the learning period ends. That's usually 15-20 days, not counting weekends or days off.

Don't get the idea that I'm forcing her work on these ten page essays or anything like that. I'm not. I'm just trying to get through the day with most of her work completed. Oh, and I would love it if she would stop turning in work that isn't complete. Yep, had tons of that this year! I mean come on, does she really think that I'm not going to notice that she didn't do problems 11, 19 and 25? Really? I think that she assumes sometimes that I don't actually look at her work. Much to my dismay I have to look at every single thing she writes down. Why my dismay you might be asking yourself? Simply put - I'm a busy person and I don't particularly care about the the rise of Islam or the cellular structure of plants.

After repeated talking to her CT and Beanie and The Boy we came to the conclusion that she feels like she's overwhelmed with the amount of work that is required of her. Alrighty then. Well my dearest daughter, hate to break it to you but that's life is what I really want to say. Alas, I don't. We come up with the plan to reduce her book work and increase her projects, for some subjects. Subjects like history, something that she dislikes more than green peas and cabbage soup topped with veal.

We'll see how this goes........please, please, please let this work! I'm sure that I will have grey hairs by the time she finishes 7th grade.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Holiday Card Exhange

Over here, at Couponing to Disney (one of my very favorite blogs - ever! oh and she's a Bama girl too, so that makes her even better), Kristin hosted a fantastic holiday card exchange. Now why would I give my personal address to a bunch of strangers, ummm, they're totally not strangers - duh! I talk to some of these same people everyday, lol! Other than that, we love getting mail. Okay, good mail that is!

So, basically, we all email Kristin our addresses, and she grouped 20 people together to exchange cards with. My girls have had the best time receiving their cards. When the mail man comes they run to the door, screaming "MAILLLLLLL", on a side note I think we are the highlight of his day, lol. Who else can say that they bring smiles to a whole families faces 5 days a week? Besides, the cute girls screaming about his goods has to make his days right? Alright get your minds out of the gutter people - geeeeeez! I meant his mail goodies!

We have looked up all the towns that our cards came from on the map, and talked about how far away they all are. When they included all their families names, we talked about how large their family was in comparison to ours and other fun things like what awesome monuments their state has. Awesome way to incorporate some quick learning in when they weren't looking.

Overall this has been the most fun, and we can't wait to do it again!

Thanks Kristin!!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Thrifty Decor

I absolutely love a bargin, and I love to create. So when I finally convinced The Boy to let me do just that for the latest piece of furniture we bought I jumped at the chance. He EVEN WENT WITH ME searching! WOWWZZA!

Now I'm a shopper, deep down to the core. The Boy is not so much one. Nope, maybe a fourth of the way down, but definitely not to the core. He's a get in, grab, get out kinda shopper. I'm a let's look around you never know what you can find unless you look kinda shopper. Needless to say this doesn't mix well.

To make this as easy as possible we dropped the kids off at their enrichment classes, and set forth on our mission. We searched several thrift stores near the school, and even tried a Big Lots. I found a fabulous pair of hot pink pants for Beanie and a great pair of dress shoes for us (we now share shoes since she's the same size) that still had the tags on them. Five bucks - bargain!

We had almost given up and decided that we'd hit one more. There was a Goodwill on the way back to the school and we popped in there thinking that we wouldn't find anything. Boy were we wrong! We scored all kinds of fabulous things in there! SCORE!

We snagged a fold up rocking chair, like the ones that we take camping and to softball games, but it's a rocker! Super excited! The Boy picked out a gorgeous anniversary clock for Grandma. We grabbed some more Christmas decorations for the Kids Club at church - love cheap crafty stuff! The best deal was our fancy smanzy new buffet. Well alright when you see past the need to sand it and clean it you will see it's beauty.

It's very hard for The Boy and I to agree on household stuff since we have such different taste. I totally had to sell him on my idea. I even pulled up some pictures from here and here and here to show him what I meant. Finally he agreed and I happily skipped into Home Depot to pick out paint colors. Have I ever mentioned how much I love to paint. Truly I do. It's really a sickness I'm sure, but hey whatever.

One gallon of Sly Fox, a sample of Onyx and a pint of glaze later and we're off. A friend came over to help him sand the buffet down and by the time I returned from work that night they had done both that and the bar that has needed sanded our entire relationship. Whoo hoo! I tried to get him to do my table top too, but no dice.

One coat of Sly Fox and two coats of the glaze. Yes, we totally painted in the playroom. The garage was too cold for the paint, so we had to take drastic measures.
For the record, I do not recommend doing this. You see if you take the small people's play area they play in other areas. Sometimes they color on the wall while not being entertained as well, see final picture. You have been warned.

We love it! Not sure what we'll do about the hardware. I'm thinking we might paint it, but for now I like the vintagy look they give the piece.

P.S. Did you know that if you hit the edge of the wall with your hot pink little league bat while improving one's swing, it will most certainly dent the wall. Your parents are sure to notice when there is not any plaster on the wall. Ask Nanners how she knows this.

Officially Joining

Near our home there is a little white church that we drove passed quite regularly. We talked off and on about joining it. We never did. We decided that since The Boy was raised Christian and I was raised Catholic, we'd allow our children to decide the religion that they felt was best for them. We attended both services, at one or two different churches. We never really felt like we belonged anywhere though.

You see things are a little different for us, and we understand that. First of all we have 5 beautiful children, add that our relative young ages and the fact that we each had a child before we began dating plus sprinkle a little "we weren't married when our children we born" on top and you get quite the "you're not good enough to be here cause your a sinner" pie. We ate several helpings of that bitter dish before backing off completely. We just kinda figured that as long as we did the things that we believed were best, that we were raising our girls with the morals and beliefs that we laid down and felt were proper, things were bound to turn out okay. We have friends that both attend church regularly and some that don't attend at all. We have friends of various faiths and some that are Atheist. We purposely exposed our children to a variety of religions so that when the time came for them to make their choice they would be making an informed choice. Not everyone agreed with our approach, in fact almost no one did. We didn't mind, we're kinda used to that.

Eventually, my mom, (Grandma), moved to our area, and began attending the little white church. We dropped her off diligently each Sunday and picked her up after service. This went on for months. Finally one day I decided that I wanted to go with her. I can't explain why, I just knew that the day had arrived and I wanted to go. Something urged me to get up, get dressed, and walk through the doors of the little white church with her that day. The girls and I went. The Boy decided that he wasn't going to go. Alright, was this really okay? Yep, you know why? We'll I'll tell ya - NO ONE should push their beliefs on another person, and this includes your spouse. If the Lord wanted him to attend, he would tell him so. He would bring that same feeling to The Boy that I had felt. The one that would urge him to walk through the doors of the little white church.

About a month after the girls and I started attending church, The Boy and I had our marriage tested in a way that is indescribable. Terrible things were said and done, our faith was tested like it had never been tested before. People we knew and people we didn't know prayed for us, and we truly feel that those prayers brought us through that awful time. Now don't think that we came through unscathed, because we didn't. We did however come through it stronger and more prepared for life's trials and tribulations.

Fast forward months down the road, and our family now fills a pew at Cottage Way Christian Church. Our little white church. The one that is filled with people that we have grown to care about, people that make us feel welcome and care about us too. A few weeks ago, we stood as a family to make the good confession, and join our church family, officially. So today and many more Sundays to come you will find us filling a pew at our church. You can't miss us, we're the one with all the little blonde girls. *wink*