Birthday Girls

In the past I have done a post for each child on their birthdays, but this last couple of months have been crazy getting use to our new schedule (Aaron started his new job on Dec 4th) changing bedtimes, school times etc, that I am going to combine the girls birthday posts.

Flora turned 7 on Dec 18th. :) and Clara turned 8 on Jan 14th. IMG_4186 IMG_4187 IMG_4183 IMG_4182 IMG_4018 IMG_4027 IMG_4025 IMG_4022 IMG_4020

 

Our Family

This afternoon I felt the need to take some pictures, and since it’s been a while since I got one of our whole family, I quickly got everyone’s clothes right and out we went. We were not gone long, as it was cold, and I want to do some more…but here are a few.

We were all getting cold, but I love this one.

We were all getting cold, but I love this one.

My goofing off with the camera settings. Andrew was just hugging Clara. So sweet

My goofing off with the camera settings. Andrew was just hugging Clara. So sweet

My Blessings and Me. :)

My Blessings and Me. :)

Daddy and his goof balls...Not ONE of the pictures were they all smiling nice. This one made me laugh! :)

Daddy and his goof balls…Not ONE of the pictures were they all smiling nice. This one made me laugh! :)

Love my family. I am so very blessed!

Love my family. I am so very blessed!

 

 

Happy Thanksgiving

“May not and ought not the children of these fathers rightly say: “Our fathers were Englishmen which came over this great ocean, and were ready to perish in this wilderness but they cried unto the Lord, and He heard their voice, and looked on their adversity, &c. Let them therefore praise the Lord, because He is good, and His mercies endure forever. Yea, let them which have been redeemed of the Lord, shew how He hath delivered them from the hand of the oppressor. When they wandered in the; desert wilderness out of the way, and found no city to dwell in, both hungry, and thirsty, their soul was overwhelmed in them. Let them confess before the Lord His loving kindness, and His wonderful works before the sons of men.”
William Bradford, Of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647

Let us remember those brave men and woman, and why they came. Let us remember that this day is not about the food or shopping, but about remembering that we are truly blessed.  Blessed to be able to gather with family and friends and remember, for now and always, that God is the giver of blessings. I pray that each and every one of you have a blessed Thanksgiving and safe travels.

Perfect Beef Stew for Fall

For lunch today I made a beef stew, and it turned out so well I wanted to write down what I did (I usually cook stews/soups off taste and they are never the same) and share it with you all.

Fall Beef Stew:

In a soup pot brown 1-2 lbs ground beef.

Chop one onion and through in with beef as it’s browning.

chop and add 4 carrots, 4 parsnips, 4 turnips and celery to your liking.

Add two cans diced tomatoes. Fill you pan to just cover the meat and veggies with water or beef broth(or more if you want more of a soup vs a thick stew). I buy Organic beef broth paste from Costco, so I use water and that. Season with salt, pepper, garlic and a pinch of thyme. Let cook over med heat until veggies are done.

Everyone liked it, even my pick soup eater :) It has a delightful spicy sent, but the turnips cooked up enough to fool the kids into thinking they were potatoes…. A win in my book. It’s fast, simple and add some homemade bread or corn bread and dinner (or a hot lunch) is done quickly. Is healthy and perfect for cold fall/winter weather.

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A Gracious God

This last week has been hard. As in high stress bringing about tears, bad attitudes and just all in all feeling down. My poor husband didn’t know how to help me. My poor kids were worrying. I realized that while they knew Daddy didn’t have a job yet, that I never pointed out the many blessing we have had, that has helped us through the last month and 1/2 since the Ambulance closed it doors. I saw them, but for their little eyes, it was harder to see. I was failing in point them out.

A dear friend, and one of the people who has offered me tons of support and encouragement told me one day last week, ” I often noticed that job opportunities came J’s way just when I needed encouragement.God knows just what you need. He will provide.”  I have been thinking about that a lot, and decided we needed to get back to our normal schedule (everyone does better) and focus on what’s really important. Counting our Blessings. I have started to point out the blessings to the kids…. God is providing every thing we need…. We are not going hungry (not even close) ….we have a nice warm house, and wood to heat it with….. we have family and friends who are praying for us and our needs…we have extra work from the church…

Today I was able to sit them down and tell them one more. Daddy has a job offer. Aaron was scheduled to do part 2 of a 2 part interview at a local care facility this afternoon. This morning at about 9:30 he got a call from the head nurse. She let him know she had called his references, and based off those, and his experience there was no need for a second interview. They wanted to offer him the job. I can not tell you how huge of a relief this is. He has until Friday to give an answer. God has also answered another prayer. He has an interview for a job at the hospital on Thursday….it may work there, it may not, but either way, he has a job. How great and wonderful is our God!

Another chapter in our adventure. With God leading, every step of the way. What a comfort.

 

Cute Kids and A Romantic Space

This last week we have been working on house projects while Aaron has some down time. We have endless projects to wrap up and now seems to be a good time to do those we already have the needed items to do. One of them was the loft area we made over the dinning room and kitchen. At first I envisioned putting the kids books and puffy pillows up there…but that changed to other ideas, and finally on Idea # 1234565434 we decided to move OUR bed up there. The floor space is about 13×13 but the ceiling is low, a hair over 5 feet. Since we are not known to jump on the bed, we though we would give it a go. I have tried to create a romantic getaway space for my man and my self. I LOVE it. Every time I go up there I smile, thinking about it makes me smile. It’s cozy, warm, inviting and just enough room for our bed, night stands and a small book shelf for a few things. The kids love it too, and I am keeping it a quite space. A relaxing space. A Space to just be. TO read,knit, rest and enjoy :)

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Enjoying our first real stick to the ground snow fall :)

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Sweet Sisters

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Sir Boy

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From the living room looking up. Dinning is to the right, kitchen to the left.

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Andrew helping Daddy by handing tools. The small door goes into the storage part of the attic.

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I am standing on the pull down stairs that are in the dinning room (the way up and down)

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Yesterday I sat up there and watched London hospital and knitting on some socks for a friend. Peace.

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Our sunset tonight was stunning. A Perfect FLORA sunset. PINK!

 

Snippets

If you are friends with me on Facebook none of these pictures will be new. I have been taking, and sharing more pictures on Facebook so my mom can see them. Snippets of our every day life. I realized I have not shared anything on here (I am being such a BAD blogger!) in ages!

In these last few weeks Aaron finish his CNA class getting the top score in the class of 20. Took his practicals and written state tests and is now a CNA and actively looking for employment. He has been keeping busy doing some handman work for a friend, and working for our church as well.

School as been going well with the kids, and we are so enjoying everything we are doing this year. I think a favorite is Art. Since Monday’s are always hard to get back into the swing of things we do our core subjects (Bible, Math, Reading, Spelling and Andrews stuff) and our Extra for the day is Art. :) Tuesdays we do History, Wed and Thursday we cover Geography and Friday is science. One day a week the girls also have violin lessons from Miss Jenny. Once Aaron has a job we are going to go swimming at the pool that is close one or two days a week for PE :) Not that they need extra movement, but it will be nice to get out of the house and do something different.  Since we only have one car at the moment, we tried the free bus and it worked pretty well.

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We adopted an abandoned dog. She is the sweetest thing and my shadow. I am her person.

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Andrew and his buddy Ella. :) Ella sleeps most nights with Andrew, on top of Andrew and some times Andrew comes to our room and says “Ella took my spot” and he LOVEs it :)

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Miss Loo Looking lovely for church :)

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Trying out the bus with the cousins. :) 4 of the 6.

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Life is quite colorful with Miss F

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My sweet kids raked a big pile all on their own, and their own idea!

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Light house art. :)

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Working on his first model plane with Daddy.

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My deep thinker :)

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My mom and her coworkers hired me to make a quilt for another co worker that is having a boy. The quilt was fun, despite MANY sewing machine issues! :)

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My pallet wood framed world map. This hangs above our couch and we love to look at it often.

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Andrew and I had our date and went to see Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 2.

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We have our first snow….well first snow that is trying to make the ground white.

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First Two Weeks

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Our First Art Lesson/Project. Sunflowers! :)

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Flora’s Sunflower.

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Andrew’s sunflower. We are using free lessons from http://www.hodgepodge.me/2011/01/pastels-plus-links-to-tutorials/ for our Monday Art lessons. :) We are loving them!

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FLora working hard. The kids LOVE school

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Andrew’s perfect letter of the week last week. :)

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Clara at the hall desk.

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Reading out loud to Millie.

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The first day Aaron wore his scrubs the first things Flora said was” Daddy! You look kinda cute! ” *snicker*

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Wednesday of last week this little bit and her Mama (my sister) came for a visit. They headed home yesterday…and while the visit was too short it was wonderful!

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Awww!

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Some quite time with her boy.

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I had a quite Sabbath home, time to visit with my sister more, and time to enjoy my thrifted tea cups and some spiritual tank filling.

As we are starting our third week of school, I though I would share some pictures of our first two weeks .  Aaron has started his last week of CNA class, and 4 days of t\it are clinical times. Lord Willing a job comes soon. Please be praying on those lines. I am so very proud of my man, who is so very highly thought of by his instructor and so far at the facilities he is doing his clinical times at. He truly enjoys helping people.  

We pretty well have out school week and daily schedule ironed out and things are going well. Our day looks something like this.

7am: everyone awake, breakfast, make beds and get dressed. Coffee.

7:45-8am: Morning chores. Kids feed critters, quick tidy make sure table is clear and ready. Mama put in laundry, starts dishwasher and gets school things out for the day.

9:30-10. We start school. Mama has another cup of coffee. We start with Bible. Reading, say our memory verse and then copy work. While they are working on copy work I turn on the kids Praise on Pandora and they work quietly.

10-10:30 Math and spelling for the girls. I work with Andrew on his Letter of the Week.

Noon: lunch and a break (play out side, in bedrooms, mama tidies lunch mess and gets on the computer for a bit and move laundry and my daily chore.).

1:30 or so: Reading and Extra for the Day. Monday is Art, Tuesday is History, Wed and Thurs are set aside for Geography and Friday we explore something for science. During Reading time Andrew is working on independent activities or watching an educational dvd/show. His school work does not take long at this point. He joins back in for the extra of the day.

3-3:30 we are usually done. Some times we take longer, if we have an extra activity that is taking longer etc. Violin Practice happens now.

4-5: Daddy is home and the kids show him what they have done while I work on dinner.

5:30 Dinner

Kids are in bed by 7:30 (we have very early risers. Clara will sleep the longest. Flora is ALWAYS up by 6am..if not a bit sooner. Since Aaron is getting up at 5am this week we are in bed by 9 as well.

Right now we are school lightly on Fridays. Just read books aloud, math, Bible and our extra. Right now this is working. We are getting enough work done. And in our state we done have to have a set amount of hours, which is a blessing.

Back To School

We are now in the middle of our second week of our school year (we started after the Feast of Tabernacles) and things are going quite well.Aaron class is going well too and as of today he is 1/2 way through the 3 weeks.  I decided this afternoon to take some back to school pictures of the kids. Here they are :

Clara Back to School

Miss Clara

Flora Back to School

Miss Flora

Andrew Back to SChool

Mr. I Can’t NOT Make a Goofy Face Andrew

Group back to school

My Sweet Kiddos! :)

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She is looking more and more grown up…its hard to believe she will be 8 in Jan.

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Such a big heart-ed little girl :) Almost 7!

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My sweet boy who is loving school.

 

On Change

You can ask my mom, for some reason, this lady right here doesn’t care for change all that much…until it happens, then I am all for adventure etc.

In our family a BIG change is taking place. Tomorrow morning at 4 am Aaron goes off call, and his job is done. He will no longer be an EMT for our small community. He tried to get hired on at the Fire Department (who is taking over all EMS calls) but God closed that door.

Tomorrow morning he will drive away from home and start the next chapter of his life. He will be training as a certified nursing assistant for the next three weeks, then apply for a job at the hospitals in our area. After that, we he will be getting as much schooling done as he can while working. His end goal: ER RN and a Flight Nurse. ( I am SO proud of my awesome man!)

As I was baking cookies and packing his lunch today I have been praying. Praying for wisdom, knowledge and for God to show me how to help support my man, and help the kids during this BIG time of change. All they have ever knows is this. This will change. And you know what. It’s ok. God provides, God opens doors that need to be open and shuts the ones that need shutting. God knows what will happen, and while it might not look like what we humans have pictured in our very limited minds…God knows! He tells us not to worry.

God will give me strength as I start our home school year tomorrow, I KNOW there will be days where schooling a K, 1st and 2nd grader will make me certifiable crazy. I KNOW there will be days that are long, hard and I will miss so very much the ability to say “Please take your math and ask Daddy for help”. But that’s ok. I know God is there, my heavenly Father who loves these children even more then I do. I also realize that Math, while important, is NOT more important then loving on these sweet things and doing my best to show them how much God loves and cares for us.

So, as for change,….bring it on. I am ready!