Thursday, July 26, 2012

She's Here! {or the one with TONS of photos!}

The moment we have been waiting patiently for for nine months finally arrived last friday night! Baby Girl decided it was time to officially join our family and enter into this world!

What started out as what I thought were back pains from sleeping wrong, quickly turned into full-blown contractions! We arrived at the hospital at 2:01 am {saturday morning} and she arrived 1 hour and 22 minutes later at 3:23 am - weighing 7lbs 3oz and, much to my surprise, was born naturally!! {if you know me, you know how much of a shock this is!!}

So, without further ado, I introduce to you, Heidi Joy!!

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Caleb is absolutely awe struck with his baby sister. Wanting to "pet" her and kiss her and constantly hold her hand. He has taken to her far better than I ever imagined that he would

Emma surprised me at first. She was a little reserved around the baby -  not wanting to hold her or kiss her or hardly look at her. But, once we got home from the hospital, that all quickly changed. She has embraced her little sister -  the one she prayed for - with such a loving and caring heart!

I cannot wait to see the relationships that evolve from these three. What a joy it is being a mama!

Welcome to the world Heidi Joy! Your daddy chose right when he picked your middle name, for you have brought us so much Joy since the moment we found out we were expecting you!



"I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD." ~ 1 Samuel 1:27-28


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Being Thankful for the Here and Now

The summer is passing by a little too quickly. School will be starting soon for us and I need to get myself started on getting organized. Since the baby has yet to make her appearance, I have been taking every opportunity to start cleaning things out, making room for the fun new things we have purchased for this year!

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We are still waiting on 4 more books to arrive, then it will be time to start planning!

Throughout this process of reorganizing and finding room for all the new, it is easy for me to let my mind wander to what I wish I had - a house with an extra room to use as our "school room". Unlimited homeschool funds to buy whatever we wanted. Pretty shelves and desks and chairs. Yep, my mind wandered about all that today while I sorted, threw out, and re-organized all of our supplies.

But, not long after, I was brought back to reality and reminded that I need to be thankful for the here and now. Not the if only.

Thankful for the freedom to choose where and how my children are educated.
Thankful for the fact that I get to be their teacher.
Thankful for the money we do have to buy the books and supplies that are needed for our preferred method of homeschooling.
Thankful for wonderful homeschool curriculum available to teach my children His Truths.
Thankful for websites like this one {and this one} where I was able to purchase a few of our textbooks for more than half-off!
Thankful for a supportive husband.
Thankful for a supportive family.
Thankful for the wonderful homeschool support and community I have found through social media.
Thankful for children who are eager to learn and are making this whole experience all the greater.
Thankful for the guidance from my Heavenly Father.
Thankful for the step of faith I was not scared to take.

I am going to go into this new school year being thankful for the here and now and not let greed and envy steal my joy out of this wonderful journey!



Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy! ~ Psalm 47:1




Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Brotherly Love

Yesterday was the start of Vacation Bible School for the week. We were hoping not sure we were going to be able to attend, being that I am 5 days away from my due, but lo and behold, we did! Up and out the door earlier than normal, with two excited little ones, one excited for all the right reasons. The other, not so much!  Caleb was not quite grasping the fact that he is a year too young to attend VBS.

We waited in line, signed Emma in, and walked her to her seat. "I love yous" and "Byes" were said and Caleb and I headed back out the door. Oh, but it wasn't easy. He, of course, threw a tantrum that he couldn't stay with Emma. I kept saying that he wasn't big enough and that he could go next summer only to be responded by his sweet voice saying to me, "but mama, I am big and strong. I wear underwear now!" {sigh} His tantrum ensued the whole way to the car. Literally kicking and screaming. {sigh, again} I felt bad that he was wanting to be with his sister so much. This separation was bothering him, a lot. So, I did the only thing I knew to do - bribed him with a trip to the park on our way home. This immediately calmed him down and the excitement from earlier returned.

Thankfully, we have a really nice park literally 2 minutes from our home. However, since it was only 9:15 am, we were the only ones there - at first. Caleb ran from slide to swing to slide again, all the while looking like a little lost puppy. Then, I see him doing this:

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My poor little buddy, so bored without his best friend! I was giggling while also feeling so sad for him. I tried my best to be "fun" for him - 9 months pregnant and all - but mama just wasn't cutting it today.

Then, all of a sudden, fun appeared.  A little girl the same age as Emma arrived at the park. Caleb immediately grabbed a football and asked her to play. His sweet smile returned to his face!

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Time flew by after that and it was time to go back to pick up Emma. Once Caleb saw her, he gave her such a big hug and said, "I am so glad you're here, Emma!".  All was well in his little world once again. That is until tomorrow - when we drop Emma back off at VBS!

The simple joy my children bring to me each day! My heart overflows! How blessed I am!!



Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. ~ Ephesians 4:32


Monday, July 16, 2012

Blessed in Love

His alarm goes off - 6am. He crawls out of bed, careful not to disturb those of us sleeping around him. Downstairs, he stretches and hydrates then heads out the door for his early morning workout. Five days a week his morning starts out like this.

Once home, he showers and heads back out the door to begin his work day. He has been so very blessed with a job that he can actually say he loves. Not many people have that same privilege and he knows it.

He works all day, comes home, and plays with the kids. Spends time talking over the day with me. Makes me laugh and just allows himself to be present here with us. Our little family!

I know I do not say it enough, but I truly appreciate the hard work he puts out for this family. The sacrifices he has made for me to be able to stay home and raise these precious blessings of ours. The joy and love and laughter that he brings into this home - making it such a wonderful place to be!

And it is important for me to show my kids just how much their daddy means to me. To give him hugs and sweet kisses and tell him I love him in front of them. Allowing them to see these simple acts of affection and appreciation is so important to their little lives. Allowing them to see how a man -  and a woman - united in marriage by God, are supposed to love and respect one another. It will help pave the way for what they should look for in a future spouse. This is such an important lesson for them to learn.

So, today, I will make sure to take that extra second to tell him thanks. To give him that hug and kiss before he walks out the door for the day - no matter what I may be in the middle of doing. To put me aside and just let him know how truly thankful we all are for him!

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Linking up with Lydia!
 
 
 
 I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine. ~ Song of Solomon 6:3
 
 
 

Friday, July 13, 2012

A Teddy Bear Picnic

We love our library!

Besides the shelves full of wonderful adventures that allow for us to escape from reality for just a short time, it also has a lot of fun programs to attend.

On Tuesday, I took Emma to A Teddy Bear Picnic. It was so cute - I have to say! The idea was to bring along your favorite Teddy Bear as well as a lunch and head to the library to sing songs, listen to stories, and enjoy a picnic lunch with your Teddy Bear. She was beyond excited to go! Being the animal lover that she is, she had the hardest time deciding which Teddy Bear should attend this most wonderful event with her. {Caleb came along too, however, when we got there, he decided he would rather play with the train set than attend the picnic!}

With her lunchbox packed and Teddy tucked safely under her arm, we left the house and headed to the library!

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All the children sat with their Teddy Bears and their lunches. They even got to dance with their Teddy Bears. Cupcakes were served for dessert and shelves of books about Teddy Bears were on display for us to check-out. Another tough decision for Emma, deciding which book(s) to get, so we ended up getting three different books about Teddy Bears.

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We can never leave the library with only three books, so we looked through the shelves and ended up leaving with eight. {which is still on the light side for us!} In case you are interested, they are:

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1. The Grizzly Bear with the Frizzly Hair by Sean Taylor
2. Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson
3. Baby Bear Sees Blue by Ashley Wolff

4. How Dalia Put a Big Yellow Comforter Inside a Tiny Blue Box by Linda Heller
5. It Wasn't Me! by Udo Weigelt
6. Taking Charge by Sonia Levitin
7. Zink the Zebra by Kelly Weil
8. The Fisherman and His Wife by Rosemary Wells

Have you read any good books with your children lately? We are always looking for recommendations!


Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 1:6




Thursday, July 12, 2012

Sewing for Baby

I mentioned before how much I just love these little pants! Ever since seeing them mentioned on Amanda Soule's blog, I have been wanting to make a pair. Then, when Lydia showed them on her blog, I knew I had to order the book and get to sewing.

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I am so glad I did! Are they not the cutest things ever?

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I made a pair for a friend with a matching appliqued onsie and two pairs for our baby girl! The pattern is wonderfully written and once you get the material all cut out - my least favorite part of sewing - they sew up pretty quickly.

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I used up all of the horse and polka dot fabric, so instead of making a matching appliqued onsie for the pairs I made our baby girl, I am going to knit up a little red sweater or cardigan to match! But, hmm, no red yarn in my knitting basket. Oh no! Guess I am just going to have to buy some! ;)

The pattern is written for up to 24 months! Two years worth of cute little pants! I need to buy more fabric!



Linking up with:
needle and thREAD



Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. ~ John 14:6


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Yarn Along {15}

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I am making great progress on the Chevron Baby Blanket. I am at the half-way point. There are seven different colors in the blanket and I am just about finished with the fourth color. I am loving the way it is turning out. And this yarn is so soft. It will make the perfect snuggle blanket for a squishy newborn! However, I now have requests, from both Emma and Caleb, for a blanket just like this one to call their own!

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Last week, while sitting poolside on those awfully hot days, I managed to whip up this adorable hat and bootie set for a sweet friend of mine who is due to have her baby boy about a month after my little girl is due to arrive! Both patterns were so easy that I am definately going to have to make a few more sets - a set for my little girl and a few to have on hand when I need a last minute baby shower gift.


I am still reading Into the Wilderness. It is a great book and I really think if I didn't have so many other things on my mind at the moment, I would be able to read more of it and be done with it by now - but that is not the case. Instead, I am enjoying reading it at a slower pace and plan on finishing it as well as the rest of the series before years end. I made that one of my reading goals for the year!

What have you been working on?


Linking up with Ginny!




I can do everything through him who gives me strength. ~ Phil. 4:13

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Lately, I Worry

Caleb Muscles

He runs into the bathroom for the fifth time in the past ten minutes, proclaiming he "has to go". Each time I follow behind him, helping him up on top of the potty, only for him to say, "nevermind". My patience is running thin and I do not want it to show because he has been making such great progress! Potty training this little guy has not been fun. It has been quite the process. So, for him to be doing as well as he has been for the past 4 days, well I do not want to do anything, or say anything, to ruin that!


When he finally does run from the bathroom with a huge smile on his face, I clap and show him how proud I am of his accomplishment! Just another part of the job - cheer squad!


In between the many bathroom visits, I was able to sit and sew for a productive amount of time. Sewing for my baby, a friends baby; sewing just for fun! It gives me great joy to hand someone a handmade gift. It makes me feel even more joyful when I know and see how much they truly appreciate it! Such a feeling of accomplishment .


My normal day ensues - laundry, playing, lunch and dinner prep - all the while thinking that in a few short days another person will be living here amongst us. To be completely honest, I do not even feel pregnant at times. I look down and rub my belly just to remind myself that this is real. She is coming! It is so surreal!

I'm nervous, excited, scared! I do not know what to expect! Sounds silly, huh? This is my third baby - how can I not know what to expect? When I was pregnant with both Emma and Caleb, I ended up with preeclampsia.  It, in turn, resulted in me having to be induced, with both of them, at 37 1/2 weeks. So, I technically never experienced natural labor. Thankfully, this time I do not have any syptoms of preeclampsia. But that means that I will now get to experience the joys of natural labor and I am terrified! I worry at night about not making it to the hospital in time. What will we do with the kids? Will my inlaws make it to my house in time to stay with them? What if I am out and my water breaks? What will I do? Please tell  me I am not the only one who thinks like this!

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow.
It empties today of its strength.~ Corrie Ten Boom

My days are consumed with potty training, laundry folding, playing, swimming, joy, but the worry comes at night! And I do know that when she does comes, I will look back and realize how silly I sound and how silly it was to worry. But, until then, I am holding onto these words:

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; 
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10



Monday, July 9, 2012

Watching them Grow!

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My babies aren't babies anymore!

This is something that is so very hard for me to admit.

She's starting Kindergarten this year. Miss independent already - always wanting to help me out as much as she can. Those God blessed mommy instincts already starting to show! Helping to put on her brothers shoes. Folding the laundry with me - without being asked. What a blessing she is!

He is finally getting the idea of being potty-trained and being without a diaper all day! {it's been quite the process!} As wonderful as this is, it is just another milestone to cross off the list - so bittersweet! And soon, he will be the big brother! How big he really is going to seem to me once baby girl arrives! But I know he will always - always - be my little man!

Mothering is hard! There are good days -  bad days! Laughter and tears! But, I have to say, the hardest part of being a mama is watching them grow and mature and get older, seeming to need us less and lessBut, our children will always need us. It's the ways they need us that change! Each season different than the last. And I want to make sure that I am present for each moment. Not just here, but willing to listen and take the time to show how much I truly care about whatever it is concerning them at that exact moment. Whether it be the fact they cannot find their Buzz Lightyear, or the stuffed baby tigers mommy, to worries over friends and getting their drivers license. Every moment I will treasure. Being their mama doesn't stop when they turn 18. I will always be their mama! I will be the one they can always trust! I will be dependable, non-judgemental, helpful, and loving, in every way possible! I will show and teach them Jesus while they are young so that when they are older, they know how to live and walk with Him all the days of their lives!

I am 30 years old and still rely on my mom for so much. Advice, friendship, laughter, and comfort. She is the one who I know will always be there for me. Offering me support and encouragement. Ready to help at any time! She is dependable! And I want to be that same mom for my kids.

Mothering is the hardest job any women could ever have! But it has the greatest reward!

My kids are going to outgrow many things in their lives, but one thing I know for sure they will never outgrow and always need is me! I am so very thankful for that!


Linking up with Lydia!

 
 
Teach your children to choose the right path, and when they are older, they will remain upon it. ~ Proverbs 22:6
 
 
 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Yarn Along {14}

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Between the scorching temps keeping us inside {or poolside}, baby nesting at it's highest, and too much cuteness on Ravelry, I managed to knit up this sweet baby cardigan in the past week! It is such an easy, quick, knit...perfect for a last minute baby shower gift - or last minute the baby needs this sweater right now, even though it is summer and she will not be wearing it for at least 3 months, knit!

I am waiting on buttons that I ordered from Etsy for a finishing touch of cuteness. I couldn't decide on which ones I liked better, so I ordered both sets and will decide once they arrive. I can always use buttons for something, so the ones that do not get chosen will not go to waste!

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I also cast on a Little Hoodlum Sweater for Caleb. He is the only one of my children that has nothing hand-knit by me and the guilt is setting in. Since his favorite color is green, this yarn was perfect for him and this little sweater should get much wear this coming winter!

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Today we are heading to my sisters for a cookout and fireworks. Should be a great day of fellowship and yummy food!!

Happy 4th of July!



Linking up with Ginny!




Jesus replied, "What is impossible with men is possible with God." ~ Luke 18:27

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Our Summer Bucket List {update}

Can you believe it is the Fourth of July tomorrow? Where is time going? I remember as a kid dreading the arrival of the 4th because it seemed summer flew right on by after that and we were waking up the next morning heading back to school! {Thankfully my kids will never experience that dreaded feeling!}

Even though our summer, just like life, is quickly passing us by, we have not let many moments and days go by without enjoying them as much as we possibly can! Making the most of our summer while it is still here!

A little over a month ago, I wrote about our Summer Bucket List plans. We have been diligently working to check the most off our list as we can - especially the items that may be a bit more difficult to do with a brand new babe in tow! :)

The kids have loved seeing the items on the list come down and I am happy knowing that my kids are enjoying and getting to do all the things they requested this summer! Simple fun! Simple summer! Memories that we will have forever!

The first item(s) that got crossed off our list were the camp-out in the backyard and S'mores over the campfire! I think that this was Emma and Caleb's favorite activity so far! We picked the perfect weekend in June for it, too. It was still cool enough in the evenings that we were able to enjoy a campfire and sleep cooly in our little tent! However, this pregnant mama was not comfortable sleeping on a cot with Caleb and our dog Lillie curled up next to me. So, at about 4:00 in the morning, we grabbed the kids and the dogs and finished our "camp-out" inside!

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We are so thankful that Grandma and Pappy own a swimming pool! Many, many, days have been spent splashing around in the cool water - especially with the 90+ degree weather we have been having lately! Emma is quite the swimmer - better than her mama, I have to admit. And Caleb, well, he gets better each and everytime he enters the pool!

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Aside from splashing in the pool, we have been visiting our local spray park as well. And, the nice thing about the spray park is it is connected to a farm where cows, goats, sheep, pigs, and bunnies, live. So, we splash around a bit and then take a walk to visit the animals. Add in a picnic basket filled with yummy treats and you have a fun-filled day all in one spot!

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Most recently we had the pleasure of attending a movie at the drive-in. Drive-ins are starting to become obsolete, but thankfully we still have a few that are not too far out of the way - about 30-45 minutes. We packed our car with snacks, blankets, pillows, and lawn chairs, invited the cousins, and headed out! Giggles and smiles the whole time - not much movie watching!

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Aside from all of this, we have also taken the time to get some bike riding in as well as fun, family, nature walks. All simple fun that the kids love! I'm realizing that the simpler the plans are, the happier we are! No stress - just fun!

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With our family vacation to the beach not until September and little sisters debut anyday within the next 2 weeks 5 days, I see much more simple, summer, fun in our plans. And of course, checking the most off our Summer Bucket List!

What simple, summer, fun have you been having?



"I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning." ~ Psalm 130:6

Monday, July 2, 2012

Just for Me

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I pull out the boxes with all the saved baby things. Booties, onsies, sleepers, and sundresses. All so tiny - I can't remember any of my babes being so little!

I wash them all, reminiscing of the times Emma wore them and daydreaming of the upcoming times that you will wear these same, adorable, pieces of clothing - realizing how blessed you already are. How blessed we all are!

I place each item, clean and folded, in your drawers, thinking of you and becoming more and more anxious!

Your bed is made. Sheets washed and smelling baby clean. Emma placed the baby doll that she bought for you in the corner of your crib. The doll is all smiles, as we all are, awating for your arrival! I just pulled the fresh smelling, clean diapers from the dryer and a smile comes across my face! I cannot wait to see your little tush wrapped up in soft cloth!

A few handmade mama knits and sewn mama made items have been finished and are waiting to be worn. Each item created just for you out of love from me! Each stitch had you in mind. How fun it was to sit and watch each bootie, hat, and dress, come to life as each knitted and sewn stitch was made. 

And in just a few weeks {2 weeks 6 days!} I will get to see the handmade blessing that God created just for me. Each thread of your beauty He created with His Almighty hands out of love for me! You are His treasured possesion and He is trusting you to me! Just as He has done before with Emma and Caleb. How am I so blessed?

"For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them." ~ Psalm 139:13-16

Tears of joy flood my eyes every morning as I pray for you, your sister, and your brother. How I love each of you so much! Your daddy and I are not rich at all according to the world's standards, but we are rich beyond imagination with the gifts God has given us named Emma, Caleb, and you, sweet baby girl! Your presence is already abundant in our home and it hasn't even graced it yet!

Today I will sit poolside, watching Emma and Caleb splash around in the coolness of the water on yet another hot summer day, knitting a little sweater, for you, to wear when the weather cools this fall! Thinking all the while of you and how very anxious we all still are!

Soon baby girl!! And I am all smiles!! I simply cannot wait!!


God blessed them and said, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth." ~ Genesis 1:22


Linking up with Lydia!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

She's Here! {or the one with TONS of photos!}

The moment we have been waiting patiently for for nine months finally arrived last friday night! Baby Girl decided it was time to officially join our family and enter into this world!

What started out as what I thought were back pains from sleeping wrong, quickly turned into full-blown contractions! We arrived at the hospital at 2:01 am {saturday morning} and she arrived 1 hour and 22 minutes later at 3:23 am - weighing 7lbs 3oz and, much to my surprise, was born naturally!! {if you know me, you know how much of a shock this is!!}

So, without further ado, I introduce to you, Heidi Joy!!

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Caleb is absolutely awe struck with his baby sister. Wanting to "pet" her and kiss her and constantly hold her hand. He has taken to her far better than I ever imagined that he would

Emma surprised me at first. She was a little reserved around the baby -  not wanting to hold her or kiss her or hardly look at her. But, once we got home from the hospital, that all quickly changed. She has embraced her little sister -  the one she prayed for - with such a loving and caring heart!

I cannot wait to see the relationships that evolve from these three. What a joy it is being a mama!

Welcome to the world Heidi Joy! Your daddy chose right when he picked your middle name, for you have brought us so much Joy since the moment we found out we were expecting you!



"I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the LORD. For his whole life he will be given over to the LORD." ~ 1 Samuel 1:27-28


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Being Thankful for the Here and Now

The summer is passing by a little too quickly. School will be starting soon for us and I need to get myself started on getting organized. Since the baby has yet to make her appearance, I have been taking every opportunity to start cleaning things out, making room for the fun new things we have purchased for this year!

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We are still waiting on 4 more books to arrive, then it will be time to start planning!

Throughout this process of reorganizing and finding room for all the new, it is easy for me to let my mind wander to what I wish I had - a house with an extra room to use as our "school room". Unlimited homeschool funds to buy whatever we wanted. Pretty shelves and desks and chairs. Yep, my mind wandered about all that today while I sorted, threw out, and re-organized all of our supplies.

But, not long after, I was brought back to reality and reminded that I need to be thankful for the here and now. Not the if only.

Thankful for the freedom to choose where and how my children are educated.
Thankful for the fact that I get to be their teacher.
Thankful for the money we do have to buy the books and supplies that are needed for our preferred method of homeschooling.
Thankful for wonderful homeschool curriculum available to teach my children His Truths.
Thankful for websites like this one {and this one} where I was able to purchase a few of our textbooks for more than half-off!
Thankful for a supportive husband.
Thankful for a supportive family.
Thankful for the wonderful homeschool support and community I have found through social media.
Thankful for children who are eager to learn and are making this whole experience all the greater.
Thankful for the guidance from my Heavenly Father.
Thankful for the step of faith I was not scared to take.

I am going to go into this new school year being thankful for the here and now and not let greed and envy steal my joy out of this wonderful journey!



Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy! ~ Psalm 47:1




Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Brotherly Love

Yesterday was the start of Vacation Bible School for the week. We were hoping not sure we were going to be able to attend, being that I am 5 days away from my due, but lo and behold, we did! Up and out the door earlier than normal, with two excited little ones, one excited for all the right reasons. The other, not so much!  Caleb was not quite grasping the fact that he is a year too young to attend VBS.

We waited in line, signed Emma in, and walked her to her seat. "I love yous" and "Byes" were said and Caleb and I headed back out the door. Oh, but it wasn't easy. He, of course, threw a tantrum that he couldn't stay with Emma. I kept saying that he wasn't big enough and that he could go next summer only to be responded by his sweet voice saying to me, "but mama, I am big and strong. I wear underwear now!" {sigh} His tantrum ensued the whole way to the car. Literally kicking and screaming. {sigh, again} I felt bad that he was wanting to be with his sister so much. This separation was bothering him, a lot. So, I did the only thing I knew to do - bribed him with a trip to the park on our way home. This immediately calmed him down and the excitement from earlier returned.

Thankfully, we have a really nice park literally 2 minutes from our home. However, since it was only 9:15 am, we were the only ones there - at first. Caleb ran from slide to swing to slide again, all the while looking like a little lost puppy. Then, I see him doing this:

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My poor little buddy, so bored without his best friend! I was giggling while also feeling so sad for him. I tried my best to be "fun" for him - 9 months pregnant and all - but mama just wasn't cutting it today.

Then, all of a sudden, fun appeared.  A little girl the same age as Emma arrived at the park. Caleb immediately grabbed a football and asked her to play. His sweet smile returned to his face!

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Time flew by after that and it was time to go back to pick up Emma. Once Caleb saw her, he gave her such a big hug and said, "I am so glad you're here, Emma!".  All was well in his little world once again. That is until tomorrow - when we drop Emma back off at VBS!

The simple joy my children bring to me each day! My heart overflows! How blessed I am!!



Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. ~ Ephesians 4:32


Monday, July 16, 2012

Blessed in Love

His alarm goes off - 6am. He crawls out of bed, careful not to disturb those of us sleeping around him. Downstairs, he stretches and hydrates then heads out the door for his early morning workout. Five days a week his morning starts out like this.

Once home, he showers and heads back out the door to begin his work day. He has been so very blessed with a job that he can actually say he loves. Not many people have that same privilege and he knows it.

He works all day, comes home, and plays with the kids. Spends time talking over the day with me. Makes me laugh and just allows himself to be present here with us. Our little family!

I know I do not say it enough, but I truly appreciate the hard work he puts out for this family. The sacrifices he has made for me to be able to stay home and raise these precious blessings of ours. The joy and love and laughter that he brings into this home - making it such a wonderful place to be!

And it is important for me to show my kids just how much their daddy means to me. To give him hugs and sweet kisses and tell him I love him in front of them. Allowing them to see these simple acts of affection and appreciation is so important to their little lives. Allowing them to see how a man -  and a woman - united in marriage by God, are supposed to love and respect one another. It will help pave the way for what they should look for in a future spouse. This is such an important lesson for them to learn.

So, today, I will make sure to take that extra second to tell him thanks. To give him that hug and kiss before he walks out the door for the day - no matter what I may be in the middle of doing. To put me aside and just let him know how truly thankful we all are for him!

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Linking up with Lydia!
 
 
 
 I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine. ~ Song of Solomon 6:3
 
 
 

Friday, July 13, 2012

A Teddy Bear Picnic

We love our library!

Besides the shelves full of wonderful adventures that allow for us to escape from reality for just a short time, it also has a lot of fun programs to attend.

On Tuesday, I took Emma to A Teddy Bear Picnic. It was so cute - I have to say! The idea was to bring along your favorite Teddy Bear as well as a lunch and head to the library to sing songs, listen to stories, and enjoy a picnic lunch with your Teddy Bear. She was beyond excited to go! Being the animal lover that she is, she had the hardest time deciding which Teddy Bear should attend this most wonderful event with her. {Caleb came along too, however, when we got there, he decided he would rather play with the train set than attend the picnic!}

With her lunchbox packed and Teddy tucked safely under her arm, we left the house and headed to the library!

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All the children sat with their Teddy Bears and their lunches. They even got to dance with their Teddy Bears. Cupcakes were served for dessert and shelves of books about Teddy Bears were on display for us to check-out. Another tough decision for Emma, deciding which book(s) to get, so we ended up getting three different books about Teddy Bears.

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We can never leave the library with only three books, so we looked through the shelves and ended up leaving with eight. {which is still on the light side for us!} In case you are interested, they are:

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1. The Grizzly Bear with the Frizzly Hair by Sean Taylor
2. Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson
3. Baby Bear Sees Blue by Ashley Wolff

4. How Dalia Put a Big Yellow Comforter Inside a Tiny Blue Box by Linda Heller
5. It Wasn't Me! by Udo Weigelt
6. Taking Charge by Sonia Levitin
7. Zink the Zebra by Kelly Weil
8. The Fisherman and His Wife by Rosemary Wells

Have you read any good books with your children lately? We are always looking for recommendations!


Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 1:6




Thursday, July 12, 2012

Sewing for Baby

I mentioned before how much I just love these little pants! Ever since seeing them mentioned on Amanda Soule's blog, I have been wanting to make a pair. Then, when Lydia showed them on her blog, I knew I had to order the book and get to sewing.

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I am so glad I did! Are they not the cutest things ever?

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I made a pair for a friend with a matching appliqued onsie and two pairs for our baby girl! The pattern is wonderfully written and once you get the material all cut out - my least favorite part of sewing - they sew up pretty quickly.

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I used up all of the horse and polka dot fabric, so instead of making a matching appliqued onsie for the pairs I made our baby girl, I am going to knit up a little red sweater or cardigan to match! But, hmm, no red yarn in my knitting basket. Oh no! Guess I am just going to have to buy some! ;)

The pattern is written for up to 24 months! Two years worth of cute little pants! I need to buy more fabric!



Linking up with:
needle and thREAD



Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. ~ John 14:6


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Yarn Along {15}

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I am making great progress on the Chevron Baby Blanket. I am at the half-way point. There are seven different colors in the blanket and I am just about finished with the fourth color. I am loving the way it is turning out. And this yarn is so soft. It will make the perfect snuggle blanket for a squishy newborn! However, I now have requests, from both Emma and Caleb, for a blanket just like this one to call their own!

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Last week, while sitting poolside on those awfully hot days, I managed to whip up this adorable hat and bootie set for a sweet friend of mine who is due to have her baby boy about a month after my little girl is due to arrive! Both patterns were so easy that I am definately going to have to make a few more sets - a set for my little girl and a few to have on hand when I need a last minute baby shower gift.


I am still reading Into the Wilderness. It is a great book and I really think if I didn't have so many other things on my mind at the moment, I would be able to read more of it and be done with it by now - but that is not the case. Instead, I am enjoying reading it at a slower pace and plan on finishing it as well as the rest of the series before years end. I made that one of my reading goals for the year!

What have you been working on?


Linking up with Ginny!




I can do everything through him who gives me strength. ~ Phil. 4:13

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Lately, I Worry

Caleb Muscles

He runs into the bathroom for the fifth time in the past ten minutes, proclaiming he "has to go". Each time I follow behind him, helping him up on top of the potty, only for him to say, "nevermind". My patience is running thin and I do not want it to show because he has been making such great progress! Potty training this little guy has not been fun. It has been quite the process. So, for him to be doing as well as he has been for the past 4 days, well I do not want to do anything, or say anything, to ruin that!


When he finally does run from the bathroom with a huge smile on his face, I clap and show him how proud I am of his accomplishment! Just another part of the job - cheer squad!


In between the many bathroom visits, I was able to sit and sew for a productive amount of time. Sewing for my baby, a friends baby; sewing just for fun! It gives me great joy to hand someone a handmade gift. It makes me feel even more joyful when I know and see how much they truly appreciate it! Such a feeling of accomplishment .


My normal day ensues - laundry, playing, lunch and dinner prep - all the while thinking that in a few short days another person will be living here amongst us. To be completely honest, I do not even feel pregnant at times. I look down and rub my belly just to remind myself that this is real. She is coming! It is so surreal!

I'm nervous, excited, scared! I do not know what to expect! Sounds silly, huh? This is my third baby - how can I not know what to expect? When I was pregnant with both Emma and Caleb, I ended up with preeclampsia.  It, in turn, resulted in me having to be induced, with both of them, at 37 1/2 weeks. So, I technically never experienced natural labor. Thankfully, this time I do not have any syptoms of preeclampsia. But that means that I will now get to experience the joys of natural labor and I am terrified! I worry at night about not making it to the hospital in time. What will we do with the kids? Will my inlaws make it to my house in time to stay with them? What if I am out and my water breaks? What will I do? Please tell  me I am not the only one who thinks like this!

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow.
It empties today of its strength.~ Corrie Ten Boom

My days are consumed with potty training, laundry folding, playing, swimming, joy, but the worry comes at night! And I do know that when she does comes, I will look back and realize how silly I sound and how silly it was to worry. But, until then, I am holding onto these words:

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; 
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10



Monday, July 9, 2012

Watching them Grow!

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My babies aren't babies anymore!

This is something that is so very hard for me to admit.

She's starting Kindergarten this year. Miss independent already - always wanting to help me out as much as she can. Those God blessed mommy instincts already starting to show! Helping to put on her brothers shoes. Folding the laundry with me - without being asked. What a blessing she is!

He is finally getting the idea of being potty-trained and being without a diaper all day! {it's been quite the process!} As wonderful as this is, it is just another milestone to cross off the list - so bittersweet! And soon, he will be the big brother! How big he really is going to seem to me once baby girl arrives! But I know he will always - always - be my little man!

Mothering is hard! There are good days -  bad days! Laughter and tears! But, I have to say, the hardest part of being a mama is watching them grow and mature and get older, seeming to need us less and lessBut, our children will always need us. It's the ways they need us that change! Each season different than the last. And I want to make sure that I am present for each moment. Not just here, but willing to listen and take the time to show how much I truly care about whatever it is concerning them at that exact moment. Whether it be the fact they cannot find their Buzz Lightyear, or the stuffed baby tigers mommy, to worries over friends and getting their drivers license. Every moment I will treasure. Being their mama doesn't stop when they turn 18. I will always be their mama! I will be the one they can always trust! I will be dependable, non-judgemental, helpful, and loving, in every way possible! I will show and teach them Jesus while they are young so that when they are older, they know how to live and walk with Him all the days of their lives!

I am 30 years old and still rely on my mom for so much. Advice, friendship, laughter, and comfort. She is the one who I know will always be there for me. Offering me support and encouragement. Ready to help at any time! She is dependable! And I want to be that same mom for my kids.

Mothering is the hardest job any women could ever have! But it has the greatest reward!

My kids are going to outgrow many things in their lives, but one thing I know for sure they will never outgrow and always need is me! I am so very thankful for that!


Linking up with Lydia!

 
 
Teach your children to choose the right path, and when they are older, they will remain upon it. ~ Proverbs 22:6
 
 
 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Yarn Along {14}

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Between the scorching temps keeping us inside {or poolside}, baby nesting at it's highest, and too much cuteness on Ravelry, I managed to knit up this sweet baby cardigan in the past week! It is such an easy, quick, knit...perfect for a last minute baby shower gift - or last minute the baby needs this sweater right now, even though it is summer and she will not be wearing it for at least 3 months, knit!

I am waiting on buttons that I ordered from Etsy for a finishing touch of cuteness. I couldn't decide on which ones I liked better, so I ordered both sets and will decide once they arrive. I can always use buttons for something, so the ones that do not get chosen will not go to waste!

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I also cast on a Little Hoodlum Sweater for Caleb. He is the only one of my children that has nothing hand-knit by me and the guilt is setting in. Since his favorite color is green, this yarn was perfect for him and this little sweater should get much wear this coming winter!

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Today we are heading to my sisters for a cookout and fireworks. Should be a great day of fellowship and yummy food!!

Happy 4th of July!



Linking up with Ginny!




Jesus replied, "What is impossible with men is possible with God." ~ Luke 18:27

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Our Summer Bucket List {update}

Can you believe it is the Fourth of July tomorrow? Where is time going? I remember as a kid dreading the arrival of the 4th because it seemed summer flew right on by after that and we were waking up the next morning heading back to school! {Thankfully my kids will never experience that dreaded feeling!}

Even though our summer, just like life, is quickly passing us by, we have not let many moments and days go by without enjoying them as much as we possibly can! Making the most of our summer while it is still here!

A little over a month ago, I wrote about our Summer Bucket List plans. We have been diligently working to check the most off our list as we can - especially the items that may be a bit more difficult to do with a brand new babe in tow! :)

The kids have loved seeing the items on the list come down and I am happy knowing that my kids are enjoying and getting to do all the things they requested this summer! Simple fun! Simple summer! Memories that we will have forever!

The first item(s) that got crossed off our list were the camp-out in the backyard and S'mores over the campfire! I think that this was Emma and Caleb's favorite activity so far! We picked the perfect weekend in June for it, too. It was still cool enough in the evenings that we were able to enjoy a campfire and sleep cooly in our little tent! However, this pregnant mama was not comfortable sleeping on a cot with Caleb and our dog Lillie curled up next to me. So, at about 4:00 in the morning, we grabbed the kids and the dogs and finished our "camp-out" inside!

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We are so thankful that Grandma and Pappy own a swimming pool! Many, many, days have been spent splashing around in the cool water - especially with the 90+ degree weather we have been having lately! Emma is quite the swimmer - better than her mama, I have to admit. And Caleb, well, he gets better each and everytime he enters the pool!

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Aside from splashing in the pool, we have been visiting our local spray park as well. And, the nice thing about the spray park is it is connected to a farm where cows, goats, sheep, pigs, and bunnies, live. So, we splash around a bit and then take a walk to visit the animals. Add in a picnic basket filled with yummy treats and you have a fun-filled day all in one spot!

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Most recently we had the pleasure of attending a movie at the drive-in. Drive-ins are starting to become obsolete, but thankfully we still have a few that are not too far out of the way - about 30-45 minutes. We packed our car with snacks, blankets, pillows, and lawn chairs, invited the cousins, and headed out! Giggles and smiles the whole time - not much movie watching!

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Aside from all of this, we have also taken the time to get some bike riding in as well as fun, family, nature walks. All simple fun that the kids love! I'm realizing that the simpler the plans are, the happier we are! No stress - just fun!

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With our family vacation to the beach not until September and little sisters debut anyday within the next 2 weeks 5 days, I see much more simple, summer, fun in our plans. And of course, checking the most off our Summer Bucket List!

What simple, summer, fun have you been having?



"I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning." ~ Psalm 130:6

Monday, July 2, 2012

Just for Me

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I pull out the boxes with all the saved baby things. Booties, onsies, sleepers, and sundresses. All so tiny - I can't remember any of my babes being so little!

I wash them all, reminiscing of the times Emma wore them and daydreaming of the upcoming times that you will wear these same, adorable, pieces of clothing - realizing how blessed you already are. How blessed we all are!

I place each item, clean and folded, in your drawers, thinking of you and becoming more and more anxious!

Your bed is made. Sheets washed and smelling baby clean. Emma placed the baby doll that she bought for you in the corner of your crib. The doll is all smiles, as we all are, awating for your arrival! I just pulled the fresh smelling, clean diapers from the dryer and a smile comes across my face! I cannot wait to see your little tush wrapped up in soft cloth!

A few handmade mama knits and sewn mama made items have been finished and are waiting to be worn. Each item created just for you out of love from me! Each stitch had you in mind. How fun it was to sit and watch each bootie, hat, and dress, come to life as each knitted and sewn stitch was made. 

And in just a few weeks {2 weeks 6 days!} I will get to see the handmade blessing that God created just for me. Each thread of your beauty He created with His Almighty hands out of love for me! You are His treasured possesion and He is trusting you to me! Just as He has done before with Emma and Caleb. How am I so blessed?

"For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them." ~ Psalm 139:13-16

Tears of joy flood my eyes every morning as I pray for you, your sister, and your brother. How I love each of you so much! Your daddy and I are not rich at all according to the world's standards, but we are rich beyond imagination with the gifts God has given us named Emma, Caleb, and you, sweet baby girl! Your presence is already abundant in our home and it hasn't even graced it yet!

Today I will sit poolside, watching Emma and Caleb splash around in the coolness of the water on yet another hot summer day, knitting a little sweater, for you, to wear when the weather cools this fall! Thinking all the while of you and how very anxious we all still are!

Soon baby girl!! And I am all smiles!! I simply cannot wait!!


God blessed them and said, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth." ~ Genesis 1:22


Linking up with Lydia!

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