Friday, August 30, 2013

Preparing for School

Today was our 7th day of school.  Woot!  That is an accomplishment in and of itself.  In the weeks leading up to the start of this school year I took each of the children out for a teacher/student school planning meeting (actually still have a couple to do!).  We went somewhere fun.  With food.

During this meeting I showed each of the children some of their new school books and one of their blank assignment pages for this year.  The work listed on each assignment page is for one week, and they will eventually get a spiral bound notebook with all 36 assignment sheets for the entire year.  We are still a 20th century family when it comes to assignment sheets.... I fill them in with pencil for each upcoming week.  My children do not have their own phones or digital devices, and the old fashioned pencil way still works well for us!

Also during the meeting each child and I discussed goals for this year.  Goals are not a new idea for us, but this year my husband and I challenged the children to come up with three goals for the school year: one academic, one personal, and one spiritual.  To help them with goal setting I showed them this picture:

This eliminated some early goal suggestions such as, "I want to do better in school."  ;)

As each child set goals for themselves, I typed them up in contract form and they, myself (the teacher), and my husband (the principal) all signed the contract.  The contracts will be posted in the school room all year, where the children can see them, remember their goals, and assess how they are doing.

Just the process of setting measurable, realistic goals was such a good exercise for the children!  It is not always easy to do.  I am hopeful this will help to keep us all focused and on track, and give us a sense of accomplishment at the end of the year when we see how we have met our goals.  We may not have done "everything" we wanted to do, or as well as we wanted to, but if we focus on a few things that are important and do those well, that is success!  (something this mama needs to remember too!)

Many thanks to my friend April for the goal graphic and the idea to post the contracts in a visible place!

Blog Silence

Our internet has been out for a week.  It is back as of a few hours ago!!!  Yippee!!!!

Several new posts coming soon.... :-)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Happy Birthday to my Hubby!

The day after daughter H's birthday, it was my husband's birthday!  I cannot adequately describe in words how much I love this man, and how thankful I am for him!  He is such a gift to me and to our family.

Instead of the traditional cake and ice cream, we celebrated with home-made chocolate mousse.  It was really good!

The children made cards for their dad, and due to our "new to us" pug dog, pug themed cards seemed particularly popular.

My husband is the new coach this season of son C's soccer team, so a few sons gave him soccer coaching gear.

The ever popular candy....

.... and movies.

Thank you, Lord, for the gift of my husband.  We don't have a perfect marriage, and we are such imperfect parents, but I thank you for all that you have enabled us to do right.  Making our marriage a higher priority than our kids is one of those things.  Please protect our marriage during these next intense years of parenting lots of teens, and encourage and strengthen my man.  Thank you, again, for the blessing of him.  I am so privileged to be his wife.  Amen.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Happy 14th Birthday!!!!

Daughter H is now 14!  We were so very happy to celebrate her first birthday in our family.   We kept a lot of secrets the week leading up to her birthday, which drove her CRAZY!  Haha.  Her very favorite card was this one from Grandma and Grandpa in WA.... a pug with ice cream on its face! 

She screamed when she opened this stuffed "doll" Yoda.   She has a thing for Yoda...

Odds and ends for her new bedroom!

My husband and sons played happy birthday to her on their air guitars.

After opening presents from her siblings we went putt putt golfing!  A first for H.

This is something I am actually pretty good at!

I love my family!

After golfing we came home and ate her adorable ice cream cake, and then she opened presents from hubby and me.

Happy birthday to our sweet, sensitive, beautiful, amazing daughter!!  We love you more than we can say, and are so proud of you!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

She's Home!!

All my chickies are back in the nest.  We celebrated with brownies and ice cream, because food must always be involved in celebrations with a bunch of teens!  (Okay, who am I kidding?  Food must be involved.  Period!)

My mama's heart is full and happy.

Friday, August 16, 2013

A Beautiful Bit of Happy

With the possible exception of our niece's wedding last summer, we recently went to the FUNNEST WEDDING EVER!

It is such a joy to celebrate the marriage of two people who love Jesus whole heartedly and who are starting out "right."  A marriage that makes people glad and gives them no reservations.  What a blessing!


The reception was held in the bride's parents' yard, and what a beautifully decorated yard it was!  I loved the casual, vintage theme.

Our boys consider the groom a good "older buddy." 

He, his brother, 

and his sister have all been role models for my children for many years.


 And the groom's mother is my dear friend.

We danced....

and danced.... (this little guy didn't stop for about 3 hours!)

and danced.

We talked.  We laughed.  We celebrated with and for people we love.  It was a beautiful bit of happy!