Nieces

We are so wonderfully blessed to have 3 sweet girls that we get to be auntie and uncle to  (and cousins).  They are all a huge blessing from God and entirely different not only in looks but temperament.  I have not yet blogged about them but they are such a huge part of my life that without any pages starring them this blog would be incomplete.  So without further ado, our nieces (oldest to youngest) and some of our favorite things about them:

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This is Brooklyn.  Or as I like to call her B, Miss B, or Beezer.  If I had to pick only one word to describe her it would be JOY.  She is easy to laugh, loves to play peek-a-boo, and is stubborn to boot.  She was born in October of 2011 and is now a whopping 15 month old.  Her story of how she came to be in our family is indeed a miracle and the working of God’s hand.  Right now what I love most about B is her spunk, her belly forward walk, her joy at seeing Uncle Shawn, playing chase with her and her contagious laugh.  We are truly blessed to have her only 7 blks away and my only complaint is that her mommy (my sister Jessie) doesn’t let her come stay with Auntie enough.

100_3075 SAM_0312 SAM_0315Photo: I love my cousin!!

Our next sweet niece is a little girl we don’t get to see very often except via facebook or text because her mean parents (my sister Keesha and BIL Chris) live in Texas.  A state that is altogether WAY to far away.  Now Miss Molly or Miss Molly Mac is a sweet cherub born in December 2011 but it wasn’t until July 2012 that we finally got a real glimpse at this sweet face!

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Now if I had to pick one word to describe Molly at 13 months old it would be DARLING.  She just charmed the socks right off of her aunty.  My sister told me that Molly isn’t much of a cuddlier but she let me love all over her.  We shared quite a few moments of cuddling and it was {almost} enough to sustain me for the next 6 months.  My favorite things about Molly right now are her cheeks (LOVE), her crazy hair, her babbles, exploring everything she’s not supposed to (to her mother’s irritation:p) and her seriousness.  That was one thing I didn’t expect…for her to be so serious.  She’s always smiling in pictures but she’s quite serious in person.  I LOVE IT!  Love and miss her!!

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Our newest sweet niece was born in November of 2012 to my sister-in-law Laura and brother-in-law Brandon.  Lexie really and truly had me wrapped around her finger at birth (just like the other 2:p).  She is the first baby that my “babies” have gotten to hold and like me they LOVED it!

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The word I would use right now to describe 2 month old Lexie would be PRECIOUS.  The things I’m loving right now about Lexie: cuddles and snuggling, watching all the newborn movements, kissing those sweet cheeks, her dimples and just plain loving one her.  She is working on rolling from front to back and while I’ve not been there to witness it myself I’m a pretty proud auntie:)  I can’t wait to see what kind of personality this little one has.  She was given the middle name Sue after Shawn and Laura’s sister and if she’s anything like her auntie she’ll be a firecracker…can’t wait!!

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At the Dentist

Remember my “new me” post?  One of my goals this year is to scrap 50 pages for each child.  Well, 1 done and only 49 to go!  WOOT!  Here is a page I did for each of the kids first trip to the dentist.  Simple layout so I could get them all done in one night!

First Dental Appt - Page 001 First Dental Appt - Page 002 First Dental Appt - Page 003 First Dental Appt - Page 004

Nn-Nest

As indicated by the title the 4th unit was Nn-Nest.

Theme: God takes good care of me.

Science: We looked at all types of nests, some like the “typical” tree nests, some built in the tree trunk itself, those hanging from trees, those on the ground build in sand, mud or rock, those floating in water.  This was all very interesting and the internet had a lot to view.  We talked about how important the nest is for safety, rest etc.

Activities:  The nest unit fell right in line with Thanksgiving, so I incorporated a bit of that into the unit.  For her badge we made a hand-print turkey sitting in a nest.  The badge is awesome (if I do say so myself) and it incorporated more skill practice: shapes (oval eggs, circle turkey, triangle beak), cutting, writing and gluing. It turned out super cute.  These badge pages that she is doing will be put directly into her scrapbook. 101_2901

As another fun activity, we made edible nests with sticks (Chinese noodles) and grass (shredded wheat).  We molded the sticks and grass together with mud (peanut butter and melted chocolate).  The recipe only made 3 so we doubled it (math).  Henceforth that is unnecessary as the nests were HUGE!  We put eggs in (jelly belly’s) and then enjoyed EATING them.  They were delicious!101_2904101_2908101_2910

Aa-Apple

Technically the next unit we did was Ll-Leaf but apparently I was behind on documenting as I have not one picture of the entire unit.  Needless to say the unit’s lesson’s revolved around leaves.  We went out and collected different leaves and categorized them. we painted around them for Evie’s badge.  The theme was: I will live and grow in Jesus.  In science we talked about how important it was for the health of the leaf to remain on the vine/tree by removing a leaf from a flower and moving it off by itself (it was tired of remaining with the plant and wanted to do things by itself).  Obviously, the poor leaf didn’t make it:(  This followed the truth  that if we want to grow and be strong both physically and emotionally then we (the leaf) too must remain with the vine (Jesus).

The 4th unit was Aa-Apple

Theme: If I stay in Jesus, I will have much fruit.

This is obviously a very yummy unit:)  We enjoyed eating apples and talking about them.  In math, we graphed colors/numbers of several different apple types. We looked both at color and also put them in order of biggest to smallest.

As mentioned, each unit also focus’ on learning the sound of the letter and recognizing words that start with the //a// sound.  This letter is “different” from the ones we’ve learned thus far in that it has both a long and short sound.  During this unit we are only focusing on the short sound.  This is the lead in to Evie learning to read.  Usually, when we learn the letter and sound, we focus on the letter as it sounds at the beginning of a word…like astronaut.  In the case of vowels, we also talk about the sound WITHIN words like man.

The fun part of homeschooling is that we get to bring in home tasks to our lessons.  On one of those days we made our own applesauce (I also learned a few tricks for next time to make it even better).  This is the only day I took photos for this unit.  Evie and I did math (measuring and counting) as well as learning safety (with knives) and cutting.  She enjoyed the task immensely and the reward was tasty!!

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Mm-Moon

The second unit we studied in the My Father’s World was the letter M and the moon.  One thing I love about this curriculum is that we get to present real world information to Evie, and on things even I didn’t know or at least no longer remember.  I also LOVE how learning about the subject, like the moon, makes the theme even more real.

For instance, the moon is just rock and as such has NO LIGHT OF IT’S OWN.  We see it because it REFLECTS the light of the sun.  One of my favorite verses is Matthew 5:15 “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”   But you see we too have no light of our own apart from the light of the world…JESUS (which we learned in unit 1, Ss-Sun).  Therefore, we are like the moon in that we REFLECT the light of Jesus.  One of my favorite activities in this unit was standing in our dark bathroom, in front of the mirror.   Obviously, with the light out you can’t see yourself.  Using a flashlight as the “sun” I shone the light at the mirror and BAM! there we were because of the light reflected onto us.

Theme for Mm-Moon: I am the light of the world.

Here is the badge Evie completed showing the phases of the moon:

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Besides documenting the phases this way, we also did an hands-on representation of the phases using cookies…it was fun and delicious.  An additional reason I love homeschooling?  Our “moon” phases was also our bedtime snack, while in our pajamas:)

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Ss-Sun

Most know that Shawn and I have choosen to homeschool our children.  The “babies” of course are too young for school but in a few short months they will be off to their first year of preschool (thanks to FPU, we’re already saving up:)) Evelyn, however, has been excelling in her home “classroom” and we are loving it.

The curriculum we are using is from a company called My Father’s World and we chose it instead of other more “formal” programs for several reasons. 1. I loved it’s Christian emphasis.  Each unit has a principal theme for Evie to learn.  2. I wanted curriculum that had unit’s.  3.  The teacher’s manual has the curriculum all laid out for me and finally 4. the unit’s were well rounded with reading, movement activities, art activities, singing etc.   The Kindergarten program started with a 10 day study on Creation and then the rest of the year is based on the alphabet, but not in alphabetical order.  Each unit we study a letter.  How to write it, the sound is says, and words/objects that start with the letter.  Along with this we study the item associated with it.

While Evie didn’t get to “go” to school as normal, we still had a first day of school and took a photo to commemorate.  Here she is:

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The first unit was the Sun.  We had fun reading about the sun, learning about it and we talked about how it provides light to the Earth.  This correlated with the principle theme: Jesus is the Light of the world.  Here is a few picture of the
“badge” activity.  We got the template for this from another mom and I love it.

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At it again

I feel like I need a redo…which is perfectly timed as it is only 12 days into a new year.  A new year always makes me feel like I have a fresh start.  Why this is, I don’t know.  But I am going to embrace the chance to get this life “right.”  You?   So to start off the new year I am going to post my “new me” goals.  Resolutions they are not.  After all, miss even one day and wham you’re off track.  This list is what I’d like to focus my attention on in the new year.

1. Returning to pre-triplet size.  My ultimate goal is my wedding weight, maybe even fit into my wedding dress again.  For the record this is a loss of 35-45lbs.  That is less then a pound a week I need to lose.  Doable.  I’ve enlisted the help of my hubby this go around to keep me off the coaster and re-enrolled in Weight Watchers.  Right now I am pumped and getting geared up to re-vamp the kitchen.  My label maker is ready to rock-n-roll!  The picture below, while not my best expression, is me in October of 2009…2 months before I got pregnant with the triplets.   I did it once and I can do it again!!

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2. Scrapbook 50 pages for each child.  That seems like such a huge number, but truthfully a lot of these pages can be duplicated with switching out the pics.  I’ve been slacking in this department and consistently use the excuse of 4 little’s to get away with it.  No more.

3. The thing about Weight Watchers is that they go by a point system.  Shawn gets a whopping 45 points per day.  Me…29.  The good news: fruits and veggies have 0 points.  Now I’m all about fruits, YUM!  Veggies…not so much.  But I want to change that therefore another goal is to learn to make vegetables taste good.  Learn to roast them or add seasonings other then salt.  Pinterest here I come!

4. Organize my thoughts on paper.  I keep journals for the children plus this blog, but I’ve been lax in actually adding to them.  Like Mary I “treasured up all these things and pondered them in my heart” but my memory isn’t all that great at holding onto things as it used to.  To many kids stories, lists, and to do’s rolling around to keep track of.  I will pick a day to write in each child’s journal and to blog.

5.  Go to bed at a regular time.  Does this make me sound old?  I like a consistent bedtime because I’d like to become a morning person.  I’ve been trying to get up before 6 to start the day BEFORE the kids but continue to fail miserably.  How can I get up at 5:30 if I go to be at midnight?  So 10 p.m. to bed for me.

6. Two issues I have with my parenting: impatience and inconsistency.  I mean to deal with these this year.   I don’t expect the I will be perfectly patient but as God works on my heart, I will find that things don’t irritate me as they once did.  I know that part of that is to be consistent with getting up early to spend time in the word and prepare my heart for the day.  As for the inconsistency, that is with disciplining.  For that Shawn and I will communicate and develop a plan, and then stick with it:)

7.  Plan more fun and get out of the house.  The “babies” are not babies and as a family we could get out more and do more things.  Period.

 

 

Evie Turns 5

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Evie is 5, I can’t even believe it!  Sometimes she seems grown up in her thoughts and ideas, and then she’ll do something that reminds me she’s still very much a kid.  Of course, her attitude at times rivals that of a teenager and her looks, whoo-we, such sassy pants!  Still she has my heart and I adore her more every day.

The birthday girl:

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First, Evie’s age 5 favorites:

1. Color: PINK

2. Movie:  RAPUNZEL

3. Song:  “YOU NEVER LET GO” BY MATT REDMAN

4. Show: DORA

5. Vegetable: BROCCOLI

6. Fruit: GRAPES

7. Animal: HIPPO

8. Thing about Jesus: “THAT HE LIVES IN MY HEART”

9.  Food: PIZZA

10. Toy:  SQUINKIES

11. Bible Story:  “WHEN JESUS WAS BORN”

12. Activity with Mommy: “HELP MAKE THINGS (CAKE & JELLO)”

13. Activity with Daddy: “WATCH A MOVIE”

14. Kindergarten:  “RECESS”

15. Being a BIG Sister:  “HELPING

As for her party, we celebrated on her actual birth-day with a rainbow themed day.  Here are some picture highlights:

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Love this picture.  She has just been “surprised” with her own dollhouse.  No picture of it but it’s awesome and seems to be from the 70’s since the inside has some “shag” painted carpeting and retro clothes in the painted “closet.”  She loves it!  (I also love her rainbow nails, courtesy of Auntie Jessie).

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Evie and I made the cake together.  Despite a small happens-with-every-birthday-cake hiccup, the cake turned out pretty awesome!  This the first birthday party (out of 7) that didn’t cause major stress on my end.  Probably because I did a lot ahead of time.