Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween

Wishing everyone a safe and happy Halloween today! 



This year, we have a "Thomas the train".....


a "Captain America"....


and a "Wonder Woman." 


Yesterday the kids celebrated Halloween at school with fall parties and parades. In the morning I got to go to Ben's preschool class to see his class put on his finger plays and sing songs and beat on a pinata. Ben was a little overwhelmed at times and I am not sure that he was feeling 100%.....



Then yesterday afternoon, Bill went to Jacob and Rebecca's school to watch their costume parade. I stayed home with Benjamin as we weren't sure if he is coming down with something or not. Bill said that there were a lot of creative costumes at their school including a "crazy cat lady, a Minecraft skeleton, and a birthday cake costume. 

As for today, I am not sure what we will be doing. If Ben is feeling up to it, we might go trick or treating....but I don't want to push it. We will have to see what the rest of today brings! 

Are you doing anything for Halloween? 
What is your favorite Halloween costume? 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Went to the fire station today

One of the things that I have never been able to do with my children is to be a chaperone on one of their school field trips, as when Rebecca would go, I had Jacob and Ben at home. Or when it was time for Jacob to go, I had Benjamin at home. Or I had work obligations....


That all changed today. This morning, I accompanied Benjamin's preschool class on a field trip to our local fire station. Benjamin has a hard time with transitions and new things, so I wanted to go so that if he had a meltdown then I would be the one to help. He does have a wonderful aide, Margene, who also went, but I didn't want to put the pressure on her of picking him up if he ended up having a tantrum.


 It was Benjamin's first time on a school bus and he did great. The whole time on the bus, he kept saying "bus" with a big smile on his face.



He loved the firehouse. The firefighter went over the new rules for calling 911. He taught them to dial 9 1 1 green (or call), since so many people only have cell phones. He also taught them to stop, cover, drop and roll if they are ever on fire. They have added cover your mouth to the standard stop, drop, and roll rule. They got to practice crawling under smoke (a bed sheet).


Ben really only got scared when the firefighter put on all of his gear and made the breathing sounds. But he was always curious.



He loved getting to go into the firetruck and an ambulance.


When they were all done, each child got a junior firefighter helmet to take home with them.


Overall, he had a great field trip experience and I feel so blessed that I was able to go on it with him and his class.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

2015 Jack-o-Lanterns

Sunday night, for family fun day, we decided to let the kids carve their jack-o-lanterns for this year. 

The kids have been asking to make their pumpkins ever since we got them last week at Walmart. 



We set the kids up at our kitchen table and set to work. Bill cut the tops off of Rebecca's pumpkin and Benjamin's pumpkin. I set out to help Jacob. 



The kids kept saying this is gross, but the 2 oldest cleaned out their own pumpkins. 


 After cleaning out, we let them each design their own faces. 




Benjamin drew circles for his eyes and Bill helped him with his nose and mouth. Ben kept calling his pumpkin an apple. No matter how hard we tried to get him to say pumpkin, he argued it was an apple. Silly kid. 

Jacob drew his and then I cut it out. He knows that I am huge Green Bay Packers fan, so he said his pumpkin face was Aaron Rodgers' face. LOL

Rebecca designed her own and cut out her own design with the carving kit that I had.  She said it was her silly pumpkin. 


 Personally, I think they turned out really cute.

 After we placed them on the porch and found candles to put in them, they looked even better! 


We capped off the evening by watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and eating some apple pie. Overall, it was a fun family evening! 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Father-Daughter barn dance

On Saturday night, Rebecca's American Heritage Girls troop hosted a Father-Daughter barn dance. They did this has a fundraiser for their fall service project-- raising money and collecting items for the local humane society. Bill and Rebecca attended. They took their admission cost of a bag of Kitty chow. 
 


Personally, I think they were the cutest cowgirl and most handsome cowboy to attend! ;)  


As well as the goofiest! :p


Have you ever attended a barn dance?

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Jesus take the wheel....

Something for me to remember on this Sunday....



Hope you have a grace-filled Sunday! 

Saturday, October 24, 2015

My new toy and apple goodness



Last weekend, Bill, the kids and I picked over 80 lbs of apples at an orchard in a neighboring town. We have been eating plenty of apples this week. I have also been processing them. On Monday, I had the day off tutoring and the kids were home from school due to teacher-in-service, so I decided to make crock pot applesauce and a pie with some of the apples.



I peeled, and peeled, and peeled more apples than I can count. ALL by hand... After I got them done and in the crockpot and oven respectively, I hopped on the computer and looked into an apple peeler. I had seen one at the orchard, but I didn't want to pay $26.99 for one.

I found one on Amazon.com...it got good reviews and it was on sale for $14.00. Yes, please. Placed my order and it was here on Wednesday.




It works good. Some of the apples that I tried on it were overripe, so they would not work on it...however the ones that were not soft at all worked perfectly on it and it saved me so much time. The contraption peels, slices and cores the apples for me!

I used it yesterday to make another crockpot full of applesauce (which I froze) and then I used it again today to help me peel apples for an apple pie, an apple crisp (for my mom) and another crockpot full of sauce!








And of course my kids have enjoyed all the lovely apple goodness! They can never have enough apples!!

What is your favorite thing to make with apples?



Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Adventure Bible: Ruth and Naomi

BOOK DESCRIPTION::

Level two I Can Read Bible stories based on the Adventure Bible-the #1 Bible for kids.


In this level 2 I Can Read, written in the tradition of the popular Adventure Bible, young readers will learn the story of Ruth and Naomi.

In this retelling of the Old Testament story, young readers learn how love and honor are rewarded by God with great gifts, like Ruth meeting Boaz and being part of establishing the line of King David.

Perfect for beginning readers ages 4-8, learning Bible stories on their own.

MY THOUGHTS::

I know I have said it many times, but I love getting these Adventure Bible : I Can Read books to review. I find they are a wonderful way of sharing Biblical stories with my 3 children in a way that brings the Bible story to life in wonderful illustrations and using words and sentences that make sense to their age level.

In Ruth and Naomi, we hear the story of Naomi the widow who goes back to her homeland with one of her daughters-in-law Ruth. Ruth loved Naomi very much and worked hard to care for her. God rewarded her kindness and goodness by the good things that came into Ruth's life, including her new husband Boaz and a new child.

My kids liked the story and the illustrations. My 6 year old was able to read the story, with a little help on the pronunciation of names. I liked how the author offers a simple lineage at the end of the story that links Ruth and Naomi to the lineage of Jesus.  

Overall, I would recommend this book.

DISCLAIMER::   The publisher, Zondervan, provided me a free copy of this book through Booklook Bloggers program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

  I review for BookLook Bloggers

Monday, October 19, 2015

APPLES!!!!

Yesterday we had an intentional family fun day. I had planned out a couple of activities to help us spend some quality family time together and to just relax.

After coming home from church and changing, we headed out.

Our first stop was lunch at Wendy's, per the kids request. It was our first chance to go inside the new Wendy's that they just redid and it was a lot bigger inside than out.

After lunch, we made a quick stop at Goodwill to drop off 2 large boxes of stuff and 3 garbage bags full of stuff. Feels good to get stuff out of the house.

Then it was off for family fun.


We headed out to Legend Hills Orchard to pick some apples! The weather was chilly (we had a freeze warning the night before), but sunny and so it made for a very pleasant time picking apples.

The kids had a blast.



Benjamin loved picking the apples, and he kept saying "Me apples" (meaning my apples)! He also wanted to be the only one to carry the bags! LOL



Rebecca and Jacob both had a great time as well.



We picked several varieties, including red delicious, golden delicious (my favorite) and granny smith-- with the promise that I would make a pie this week. I also want to make some crockpot applesauce for the freezer!



We ended up picking 4 huge bags of apples. The bags held 20 pounds of apples each, so we picked over 80 pounds of apples! I ended up paying about $0.60 a lb for the apples. That price makes me happy! We also ended up picking up 3 candy sticks for the kids ($0.15 a piece) and a jar of  "Traffic Jam" jam-- it supposed to be a mix of  peaches, strawberries, raspberries, cherries and cranberries. Sounds really good.

After we left the apple orchard, we ended up stopping at my parent's house, as they live nearby and hanging out with my mom and dad. Benjamin has been hollering that he wanted his "Nanny" all week. (My kids call my parents Nanny and Pappy). We ended up going to dinner with them as well to Rooster's and enjoying some wings and watching some football.

In my opinion, it was a very good family fall fun day! (Although any day that I get to spend with my hubby and kids is a good day!)

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Fight Song

I hope everyone has a wonderful Sunday!

Today is the first day that I am intentionally have a rest day/ family fun day! A few weeks ago, I was driving the kids to school and I heard this song on the radio and it really resonated with me. I am ready to live MY life and to do things that are good for MY family. I have become so engrossed in trying to live up to different standards that others have set that I have lost sight of what is important in my life and that is to have a wonderful relationship with my husband and to be a good mom to my kids. I am ready to live the best life that I can live according to MY standards.

So for today, I hope you find inspiration in this song. I know I did!




Have a great Sunday!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Noah's Voyage


BOOK DESCRIPTION::

Noah’s Voyage tells the story of a brave and faithful hero of the Old Testament. Written in the I Can Read level two standards, with age-appropriate vocabulary and concepts, young readers read about Noah, a simple man with great faith and trust in God. When God asks Noah to follow his directions, build an ark, and put two of every animal on it, Noah and his family do what they are asked, knowing God would not steer them wrong.

This I Can Read! series of Bible stories makes use of the unique features found in the NIV Adventure Bible such as “People in Bible Times” and “Did You Know ”.

MY THOUGHTS::

I love receiving these Adventure Bible I Can Read books in the mail for my kids to read. Noah's Voyage is the latest that my kids have read. This is a level 2 Zonderkidz reader, which is meant for ages 4-8 and is a reading with help book. My 8 year old was able to read it to her brothers, ages 6 and 3 with no issues and my 6 year old was able to read most of the words, but needed help with some of the names. All 3 of my kids loved the story and the illustrations. My 3 year loves pointing at all the animals.


As a parent, I was impressed with some of the Biblical accuracy that this version of the Noah story told. This story includes Noah's age, the names of his sons, and how long the Earth was flooded. I have found that many times Biblical stories are glossed over for children. I love how the Adventure Bible: I Can Read books add context, while keeping it kid-friendly.

Overall, I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for an authentic re-telling of Biblical stories for kids.

DISCLAIMER:: The publisher, Zondervan, provided me a free copy of this book through Booklook Bloggers program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

  I review for BookLook Bloggers

Saturday to-dos....



Today is all about getting annoying things done so that tomorrow I can have a rest day. I have been thinking alot about taking a rest day or a family fun day once a week and I truly feel that our entire family needs it. That may mean that I have extra cleaning to do on Saturday, especially if I fall behind during the craziness of the week, which is more apt to happen. I also plan on starting a new chore system with the kids next week, that I hope will help alleviate some of the cleaning stress around here. We shall see.

Back to today...today I am going to try to get some things done that have been annoying me, as well as some regular chores.

Here is what is on tap for today:
  • take apart fans, clean them and store them for the winter. (Hubby took air conditioners out yesterday and stored them)
  • menu plan for next week
  • do all laundry-- probably at least 5 loads-- washed, dried, folded and put away-- CURRENTLY WORKING ON 8th LOAD!!!
  • write and schedule at least 4 book reviews (I am SO behind on these!)
  • make peanut butter kiss cookies with kids
  • clean out from underneath living room furniture
  • clean off desk area--piles, piles EVERYWHERE
  • AHG birthday wishes on facebook
  • make chore charts for kids
  • clean out van
  • fill up van for Goodwill drop off tomorrow
I think that will keep me busy for today, especially since it is almost noon and I have only done 1 thing on my list....Better get moving....

HAVE A GREAT SATURDAY!  
What do you have going on today?

Thursday, October 15, 2015

October 15-- Pregnancy and Infant Loss Day

REPOSTING  A POST THAT I WROTE OCTOBER 15, 2011....


Today is a very sad memorial day for me and for millions of other women and men around the United States and Canada. Today, October 15, is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day.

The Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance movement began in 1988 when then president Ronald Reagan designated October as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. The movement has gained momentum in the 2000's as more and more women and men realize that this is not an isolated group of women. The awareness campaign, originated in the USA, has spread through Canada as well. Unfortunately it is not a world-wide remembrance campaign. In the future I personally hope that that changes.




I have a personal reason for hoping that this changes. I am the mother of a child lost to miscarriage in September 2005.  I am also the mother of a son who was born still into Heaven. Travis Omar was born silently into Heaven on September 21, 2008. That night my heart was shattered, and although time has passed and wounds have healed, there is a still a piece that will always be missing.

After having my own stillbirth, I was astonished to find out how common it was in my circle of friends and family. I have had several family members who suffered stillbirths and who had been silent up until that point. I feel that it is because the subject of miscarriage and stillbirth and infant loss are taboo subjects that most feel are better ignored. That is not the case. You do not ignore when a 90 year old passes away, you should not ignore when a baby, no matter the age, whether still in the womb or not passes away. That baby is still a human being and does not deserve to be forgotten.



Although there is no international guidelines on the day of remembrances, there IS an  international movement called the International Wave of Light that asks for everyones participation that speaks to remembering the babies that have been lost. The International Wave of Light invites participants from around the world to light a candle in remembrance of all babies who have been lost in miscarriage, stillbirth, or in infancy, in their respective time zones starting at 7pm on October 15, and to leave the candle burning for at least an hour. This will ensure a continuous wave of light for 24 hours in remembrance. Will you be lighting a candle? I know that I will.

Even if you cannot light a candle, please say a short prayer or think of someone you know who has suffered a loss of a child. Maybe give them a call to let them know that you are thinking of them today. And if you are fortunate to never have experienced a miscarriage, stillbirth, and/or infant loss, say a prayer of thanks and give your children an extra hug to day.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Jacob turned 6 yesterday!

Time flies! 6 years ago yesterday, Jacob was born into our family. As Bill puts it... "Our family got a little bit goofier." LOL


Jacob is a goofy, loveable, football-loving, Seattle Seahawks-loving, brother and son! He is silly. He is extremely loyal. He is bright and smart.

Yesterday, we celebrated his birthday with a party/picnic at Ariel-Foundation park in our town. He requested that we have a party by the lake so that we could see the geese.



The party was a success. Thankfully, the weather cooperated and it was a little windy but it was sunny and mid 70s. The only downside was the bees were attracted to the food. :(

Both sets of Jacob's grandparents came (even Bill's parents whom we haven't spoken to since May came), my brother and his wife and their 3 kids came. My sister was home from college for fall break. My youngest brother came with his girlfriend. It was a nice gathering of people.

We had lunch, which was sandwiches, grapes, chips and pasta salad.

Jacob wanted a football themed cake so that it what he got!







He got a lot of nice presents including a Seattle Seahawks shirt, a Russell Wilson poster, a football, an electric football game, Star Wars toys, a Batman bank and a Spiderman light, as well as a couple of outfits. I was also given a gift card to Walmart from Bill's parents so that I can go buy Jacob some clothes for winter.



We spent some time down by the edge of the lake, skipping rocks. Our autistic, non-verbal nephew was having a blast throwing rocks into the lake and laughing.





Once home, we just relaxed around the house and the Jacob requested McDonald's for dinner, so that is what he got. 

Overall, Jacob said that he had a great birthday!

2019 Christmas Parade

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