Archive for Family

Time with MoMo’s horses

Merideth and Grant love to go out to the barn and see MoMo’s horses.  Here are some pictures from Percy the horses first b-day party!  Yes, the horse had a party.  He also had a shower when he was born given by MoMo’s co-workers.  Really it is just an excuse for them to all get together to eat, ride the horses, and see each other.  Although they came with apples and carrots for Percy’s presents.

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This baby had just been born the day before

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It’s pumpkin carving time

One of our favorite things to do in the fall is carve our pumpkins.  We had promised the kids that we would carve their pumpkins Sunday afternoon.  I laid down with Merideth to take a nap and at 4:20 Grant came in and woke us up and said “you said we could carve pumpkins, dad is sick so you will have to do it with us.”  I drug myself out of the bed, realizing that the carving would have to be done quickly if we were going to get to Awana on time.  Now, I’m not real good with knives, I have a bad habit of cutting myself and we had promised Grant that he could carve his own this year.  Well, I didn’t know I would be the one doing the carving by myself when this promise was made.  Thankfully Momo had brought the kids a pumpkin carving kit and it contained small saw like knives that were very easy for him to handle.  Grant chose the moon and stars picture.  I drew it for him and he did the carving all by himself for the first time.  He did a wonderful job and his pumpkin looks great.   Merideth wanted a face with triangle eyes, a heart nose, a fish mouth, and bibles for ears.  She chose this because of something Mrs. Stricker did for us at her house as a way to share the gospel with others.  Now, I can’t remember exactly what she carved on hers or what they all stood for so I’m not sure that we did it exactly right but that is what Merideth wanted anyway.  She did remember that when we clean out the insides that is like God cleaning the yuckies out of us and then you put the top on to seal God up inside of you.  She needed help carving, but liked to use a little scorer to make holes so that the cutting would be easier.  They both had a great time and were excited tonight to see their pumpkins lit up.  This morning we roasted the pumpkin seeds and had them for a snack.  Notice the shirts that the kids are wearing.  I got the idea from Family Fun magazine and made their Halloween shirts this year.  They loved them.

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Visit to the Pumpkin Patch

Last week we made a trip to Begg’s Pumpkin Patch down in Blodgett.  For those of you who have never been it is a lot of fun for the kids.  We went with our homeschool group as a field trip. To start off we watched a little movie about corn and how it’s grown, etc.  Then  we rode on the wagons out to the patch to pick our pumpkins.  This is not the part that I enjoy with either of my kids.  They take forever to pick their pumpkins and to top it off my friend’s daughter had gone with the us and she didn’t want a pumpkin that had dirt on it.  Well, that is pretty hard to do in a dirty pumpkin patch.  I finally had to say you are all taking the pumpkins that are in your hands, the trailer is going to leave us if we don’t get back on.  They were satisfied with that and happy to get back to the play area.  Grant and Merideth both love the long bumpy tube slide and the duck races.  I think this year’s favorite thing might have been The Twister.  You go in a tunnel and walk across a bridge and there is a large tube with glow in the dark stars on it that is turning around you to make it fell like your moving.  It was pretty wild.  The pig races were also a hit.  We enjoyed spending the day with our friends from our group and even saw some other people there that we knew who were there with their schools.

 

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Karate

Grant is taking karate two nights a week from a man named Mr.  Welch.  He is such an amazing christian man who teaches the kids as a ministry and doesn’t charge money for the lessons.  The school is called KICKS (Kids in christian karate school).  We go every Tuesday and Thursday nights for 1.5 hours a night.  Grant has quickly learned how to do push-ups, that’s what happens when you aren’t listening.  He has heard many times “give me ten.” I’ve been amazed though at how much more focus he has now than when we started.  He loves to spar, but is not quite as aggressive in his pads at karate as when we are home and he is in the backyard playing with the neighborhood boys.   The other night he ran and hid behind a punching bag, in the middle of a match.  We asked him later why he did that and he said “I was camouflaging myself from the person I was sparring with.”  As part of the class they have to memorize bible verses.  They started with the Lord’s Prayer and that is part of what they do to earn a new belt.  They also have Bible Study on Tuesday nights in which Ms. Riehn is teaching them to do the inductive method of study.  It is a great opportunity for the kids to learn from such a caring, loving, and generous man like Mr. Welch.

    

    

    

   

 

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Time with Momo

Momo is  Chris’ mom.  She and Grant have always had a very special bond.  She and Merideth love each other now, but when Merideth was little it was more of a I guess I’ll have to deal with you if we’re together attititude.  That is because Merideth only liked her mommy when she was a baby.  As I type this entry, Momo, Grant, and Merideth are upstairs watching Finding Nemo.  When Grant was 2 and Merideth was a baby Momo would come every Wednesday Night and keep them while Chris and I went to Growing Kids God’s Way Class.  Momo would bring Happy Meals and they would pick this movie every single time.  She even bought Grant a little table to set beside his little recliner so they could eat in the living room.  At the end of the movie they would dance to the jazzy music.  I wanted to come add this and as I am they are upstairs saying now he’s gonna do this or then he did that.  I guess Nemo will always be a movie that my family, including grandma will never get tired of.

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How our home school came to be

I wanted to share how our home school came to be.  Let me go back to when I was in college.  I have a degree in child development.  I was going to have a daycare and protect and care for all of those children out there whose parents were working.  I thought how great it will be to have a job that will allow me to still be with my own children while I work and do something I enjoy.  At this point in my life, I wasn’t married and the thought of staying home with my children never even occurred to me.  Of course I would work, isn’t that why my parents were paying for me to go to college.   My own mother had stayed home with me until the summer right before I was in 2nd grade and I loved this, so why didn’t I think of it to?  I had a very hard time at first whenever she returned to work, my sister was babysitting me and as much as I loved, adored, and looked up to my sister, I cried, and cried, and cried, and snuck to the phone and called her and begged her to come home.  Eventually, I did adjust and was blessed to have grandparents, and family friends that I was able to stay with in the summers following that when my sister was gone from home.  Now, don’t think that my parents kicked one child out and kept another.  She is ten years older than me and left for college.    In 1998 I got married, moved to Florida, and got a teaching job at a child care center there.  At first, I was still very idealistic and thought I could really help these little children while they were away from mom and dad.  I enjoyed working with them, but the 10 hour days of caring for someone else’s children, where parents expected you to do the potty training, breaking of the pacifier, teaching of the letters, etc., etc., etc., and with dealing with other workers who are doing it just as a job, and not something that they love, made me very quickly realize that this was not what I wanted to do with the rest of my life.  Chris and I made the decision early on that when we had children I would be home with them, at least until they started school.  I didn’t want someone else to have these early years with my children that I saw so many other parents missing out on.  Those simple little things that I even sometimes now take for granted, are so special.  We decided never to depend on my income to live and by doing this it made the transition very easy for me to stay home whenever I became pregnant.  Now, fast forward to the year 2003.  We had Grant.  What a blessing he was and still is to our family.  Right after having him there were times that Chris would mention home schooling.  I would immediately shut the idea down, telling him that most home schoolers were  weird and that kids needed to be in school for socialization, and to be the salt and the light.  As a matter of fact, whenever we lived in St. Louis I had shared these thoughts with some home schoolers whom weren’t weird at all, I just didn’t get think it was right for them to keep their children away from other children and I was really sold on the salt and light idea.  This wonderful, christian lady so sweetly talked with me and said,”we are doing what we feel God has called us to do, our children can still be salt and light without being in the school system.”  She never was rude, hateful, or any of the things that I have probably at sometime already been when defending my reasons for home schooling.  I since then have talked with her and apologized for the way that I treated her.  So all that to say, Chris wanted me to consider home schooling and I wouldn’t.  He didn’t bring it up all of the time, just occasionally.  Then, something really scary happened.  God, started dealing with me.  Right before Grant turned one, I could not stop thinking about home schooling.  For about two weeks I kept running into people who home schooled, I would turn on the radio and hear something about home schooling, I couldn’t get away from it no matter where I went.  I told Chris that I was thinking about it, and of course he was thrilled.  You know, thinking back this is one issue that even though Chris felt very strongly about, he never pushed me about.  I can see now that God was also working in him as he prepared me to answer his call and obey him.  Sometimes, I resist and fight Chris when he wants to do things a certain way!  Sorry honey!  I went back and forth talking to people who were for it and against it for several more months.  I had almost convinced myself not to do it and then we began a class at the home of a home schooling family.  The class is Growing Kids God’s Way.   By this time we have Merideth, she is a baby and Grant is almost two.  After seeing this family, and watching them interact, I realized home schoolers are not all weird, they can very much be the salt and the light and yes these children knew how to carry on a conversation with you.  Imagine that, they didn’t go to school, but knew how to communicate and actually seemed interested in what you had to say when speaking to them.  They were just normal kids whose parents had decided to school them in a different way, than that which is traditionally done.  I finally responded in obedience to what God had been asking of me for more than a year at this point.  Now, came the hard part TELLING OTHERS OF OUR DECISION!!!  For me, who has always worried what will other people think, this was difficult.  But, I am also the type of person that once I make a decision I want everyone else to know what it is, and how it will be accomplished right away.  After we answered the questions of: Is that legal?, How will you get their diploma?, Will you use a curriculum?, Will you do it forever?, etc, etc, things began to get easier.  One grandma offered at first to pay for private school, but now she is one of my biggest advocates and is very proud of her grandchildren.  The grandpa’s are still not to keen on the idea, but are very loving and sweet even when they don’t agree.  Something else we have been blessed to have in our marriage are parents that did their job.  They raised us both to the best of their ability, then gave us wings to fly.  They don’t try to meddle and tell us what to do, even though I know that is sometimes very hard.  I am now way past caring what anyone thinks abour our decision.  That same home schooling mom who had us into her home for the parenting class said something that has stuck with me,”when God calls you to do something, he will equip you to do it.”  I believe that with all of my  heart.  I don’t mind when people ask me questions about home schooling.  I am very happy to answer them, but I don’t like it when they decide to play the role that I once played of trying to convince me it is the wrong thing to do.  Although, I probably deserve every minute of it.  I do feel like now that I am getting better at responding in love, and not anger when confronted about this decision.  So yes it is true, there are home school kids that are weird, loud, shy, slow, smart, little, big, etc. those same kids would still be that way if they were in school so praise the lord that their parents are keeping them home and protecting them until they are able to withstand this world that we live in.   Come spend some time with our family and you will quickly see that we are the  same people that we were before we started home schooling and after being around my kids for about 5 minutes you will also realize that you won’t get to do much talking.  They are like their mom, they love to talk and tell you everything that they know.  

For some answers to some questions you may still have go to  http://writingandliving.blogspot.com/ and click on her homeschooling section.  This is another mom that lives in my area that has done a wonderful job at answering some of the hard questions about home schooling. 

For all of my fellow home schoolers I will do another post later on Called The Bitter Home schoolers Wish List.  These are some responses that we sometimes would like to respond with when asked about home schooling.  They are pretty funny.

 
 

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About Us

I somehow managed to delete this from the top of the page, so I’ll just have to put it here for you to read.

I am married to my high school sweetheart.  This December we will be married for 10 years.  YEAH!  We have two children.  I cannot even begin to describe how much I love being a mom and wife.  I stay home with the kids and we home school.  The joy that homeschooling has already brought me cannot be put into words.  I also enjoy reading shopping, and I recently just started playing piano again.  Merideth loves taking gymnastics, and Grant loves taking karate.  Grant is also learning to play the piano.  They are both involved in Awana Clubs.  Chris is such a wonderful dad and his kids are his life.  He has pretty much put any and all hobbies of his own on hold for now, unless the kids can come along.  Whether it is taking a walk, wrestling, or just sitting and talking.  If his kids are there that is where you will find him when he is not at work.  How blessed I am to be married to such a family man!  As as family, we enjoy camping and our yearly vacation to the beach.

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