Friday, December 11, 2009

Santa Letters

I thought I would show you all the letters the kids wrote to Santa. We like to have them write the letters so we know what they want and for fun. The rest of the season we concentrate on what others want and the true meaning of Christmas. The first is Eden's. She did it all on her own. Next comes Israel's letter. He did the opening and closing and I wrote what he told me to.
I wrote Celestial's for her as much word for word as I could and she drew the pictures. Luci is still too small to do one.

Also, as an update on the babies, each ultrasound has said something different about the genders so we really have no idea what they will be. The doctor says he will be shocked if I even make it to 36 weeks so they will most likely come by March if no earlier. I will be starting bedrest in 5-6 weeks and will get steroid shots in 8 weeks to help their lungs mature. I will try to update more as we go along. Merry Christmas everyone!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Lots of catching up to do.

I thought it was about time I got caught up on this thing.

First are pics of the kids at our wards trunk or treat:











Then come the pics from when we were carving our pumpkin. We carved it on Halloween and it was a good thing cause down here they go bad in two days. Israel slept through it so he isn't in any of the pics. Celestial was hilarious. She didn't dare touch the insides.






























Finally is the pic of the kids on Halloween with our neighbor Sarah. It rained most the night so we weren't able to get very much trick or treating done cause it was pouring. We were all soaked and freezing.



Moving on now, I saw the doctor a couple of weeks ago. We miscarried one of the triplets earlier and now only have twins. The doctor thought that they were both boys but couldn't tell for sure because his ultrasound machine isn't very good. The next week I saw a high risk specialist that has a very advanced machine. They were able to zoom in on the babies. Baby A is 100% a girl.





The pic on the left is of her legs and shows her as a girl. The one on the below is zoomed way in and has an arrow pointing to what you need to look at and if you can't tell that is a girl...





We think Baby B is a boy but he kept his legs closed and the one time he opened them he stuck his foot in the way so we don't know for sure yet but I do have an ultrasound every week now so we should know in the next few weeks. The doctor also said he thought he would be putting me on full, complete bedrest by week 24 or so. He said as in your legs are broken and you have a 105 degree fever. No making meals, grocery shopping, or caring for the kids. I have had trouble doing everything by myself as is (since there are certain things I should not be doing) and have been trouble getting the help I need so I knew staying here alone wasn't an option. I called my mom and we made final preparations for me to go home for a while.

She will be flying out to Florida in two weeks for a conference anyway so we are going to meet her down there with our van loaded full of stuff we need and will be driving back to Idaho from there. We will be staying until I am comfortable with handling everything on my own and have a way to get back (driving back alone with six kids just doesn't seem like a good idea). I will be having a neighbor watching the house for us. Now we just need to figure out what to do with the animals and how to care for the lawn come spring. We have started packing and preparing and two weeks we will be out of here. The kids are so excited. And I am looking forward to having help and maybe even a break once in a while.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Thanksgiving poem

T’was the night of Thanksgiving,
But I just couldn’t sleep.
I tried counting backwards,
I tried counting sheep.
The leftovers beckoned,
The dark meat and white.
But I fought the temptation,
With all of my might.
Tossing and turning,
with anticipation.
The thought of a snack
became infatuation.
So I raced to the kitchen,
Flung open the door,
And gazed at the fridge,
Full of goodies galore.
I gobbled up turkey,
And buttered potatoes,
Pickles and carrots,
Beans and tomatoes.
I felt myself swelling,
So plump and so round.
‘til all of a sudden,
I rose off the ground.
I crashed through the ceiling,
Floating into the sky,
With a mouthful of pudding,
And a handful of pie.
But I managed to yell
As I soared past the trees
Happy eating to all,
Pass the cranberries, please!!
May your stuffing be tasty
May your turkey be plump.
May your potatoes and gravy
Have nary a lump.
May your yams be delicious,
May your pies take the prize
And May your Thanksgiving dinner
Stay off of your thighs!
by Lauren

Monday, October 26, 2009

A day of homeschooling an ADHD child

My son Israel is severe ADHD. If his medications are right on, you can't really tell too much. The problem comes when the meds are off. For example, in the mornings I have to get him to concentrate long enough to take his meds. Seems easy I know, but not so much. It usually takes me hours to get him to concentrate enough to get a drink and swallow their pillows. That is how easily distracted he is.

Today was no different. It took me two hours to get Israel to take his pills and it was too late in the morning to put off school any longer so we had to get right into school. We started with our regular routine and then went into our school subjects. First off was handwriting. Israel had the letter Z today. He was supposed to trace and write four Zs. That is it. Eden, on the other hand, had quite a few V,W,and Xs. She was done with the entire page before Israel had done one Z. My conversation with Israel went like this:

"Israel, here are your Zs. Get started. Israel, where is your pencil?"
"I dropped it."
"Pick it up and start."
"Now I dropped my eraser."
"So pick it up."
"Pop! Pop! Pop!"
"Israel, what are you supposed to be doing?"
"I don't know."
"Your Zs. Where are your Zs Israel. Israel, look at me. Where are your Zs." He then points to them. "Good, now start." He then starts playing with his hair. "Israel, what are you doing?"
"There is something in my hair. I think it is toothpaste. I need to cut it out."
"No Israel. We can wash it out. First do your Zs though." He continues to play with his hair. "Israel, you are concentrating on your hair very well, now try concentrating on your work."
"I need a drink and there is dog hair in mine."
"Fine, you get a drink." I wait for a few minutes and then go check on him. He runs and hides. I find him and he has scissors and is about to cut his hair so I take the scissors and send him back to his work. He continues to play with his hair so I drag him to the bathroom to clean it out. He decides he has to change his clothes now. He comes back and gets something on his shirt and has to change again. He came back with a Hulk shirt. No biggie, right?

"Israel do your work now. You only have four Zs and Eden has done all hers and is starting on math. You will have less time to play if you don't get this done."
"Why is Hulk green?"
"We can talk about that after school Israel. Where are your Zs. Israel, where are your Zs?"
"Why does Hulk have hair? Monsters don't usually have hair."
"Israel, do your work. We will talk about this later. Where are your Zs?" He points. "Ok, start."
"This Hulk up here looks brown. I thought Hulk was green."
"Israel, your Zs!"
"Is that a snake?"
"Israel I don't care if there are snakes all over the floor, just do your work!"
"Something just flew by me. What was it?"
"Israel, look at me. Where are your Zs. Good, now write them." I finally got him through it and pulled out some addition. "Israel, what is 7 + 4?"
"Why is this ink brown instead of black down here?"
"Israel, what is 7 + 4?"
"And why does the 9 look like that? That isn't write. They should type it the way we write it."
"Israel, what is 7 + 4?"
"11."
"Good, write it down."
"Is Luci watching her potty movie?"
"Israel, write your 11 right here." Then he runs into the living room to see what Luci is doing. "Israel!" You get the point. So, that is a glimpse into what a typical day can be like for him. And people ridicule me for letting him be on meds. I am sorry, some kids need them. On them, he gets through his work usually in an hour or so. Could you imagine being so easily distracted? I know I am very thankful I am not ADHD or ADD.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Perfect homeschool example

So we were doing our usual homeschool stuff today and we were talking about temperature for science. We had a thermometer and checked the temps inside, outside in the sun, in the shade, room temp water, ice water, and between the kids hands and had the kids guess the temp before we checked it. We then talked about what temperatures are used for. Then, I thought we were done. The kids immediately grabbed the thermometer and mixed the room temp water with the ice water to see what would happen. They were amazed. Then Israel asked for hot water to try it with. Then they wanted to try boiling water (had to use a candy thermometer). Then they took it outside to see if it had become warmer since we were out there. Israel even took a bath with it! They were so fascinated! Had they been in public school, when the subject was over, that would have been that. Now my kids were able to guide their own learning and learn so much more than I had planned and enjoyed themselves. What better example of homeschooling can there be?

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Big freaking news!

What is that you ask? An ultrasound? Yep. A baby? Not exactly. Look close. It's three babies. That's right... TRIPLETS!

I went to the doc today and he wanted to pinpoint the due date so we did an ultrasound. I was not concerned about multiples. First we saw the twins and I was shocked. It was a little while before we found the third. I could not believe when he said there are three.

We are doing another ultrasound to make sure there aren't more than three and also to check on the third. He is a little concerned about the size. So we should know more in a week. I will be seen weekly until we know if I am going to carry all three. Prayers for that would be great.

As for what we are gonna do with seven kids and Ben in Iraq, I have no idea. We are just playing it day by day. We need a bigger van, a triple stroller, more carseats, etc. It is going to be interesting for sure.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Israel's birthday

Today is Israel's 6th birthday. We started it last night with his birthday party. The kids had a great time giggling while trying to blow up the balloons.


video

He had a few friends over and we had a treasure hunt to find the pinata (which I made) and then broke the pinata. We had a few problems with Israel being overly excited and he got to the pinata before we were ready so I had to put it back together as best I could.

The kids had pizza, chips, and fruit for dinner with some juice and we turned on the old transformer series to watch while they ate. Then we had cake and ice cream. Israel told me he wanted chocolate cake with chocolate frosting and M 'n Ms on top and chocolate ice cream. Definantly my kid. My friend Verna offered to make the cake and in less than 24 hrs she came up with this:
Isn't it perfect? Israel was so excited and loved it! When Israel opened his gifts he was very excited to see that had got guns. Four water guns that become one from one friend and a really fancy Nerf gun with a laser from my mother in law. He loves them! And so did the other boys that came. Unfortunately, the extra bullets my MIL sent to go with the gun are not the right ones, but don't worry. Luci found a great way of playing with them.


Some of the boys were not old enough to spend the night so we only had a couple spend the night (which was fine by me). Ben made the mistake of turning on Narnia for the kids at around 10 pm so they were up until around 1 am. Then they were up by 7am this morning and guess who was up with them last night as well as this morning. Me! When I got up with the kids I made cinnamon rolls as Israel had asked me to do. Then we had Israel open his gift from us. We got him a bike and a bell to go on the bike but we only wrapped the bell. I had the bike waiting outside. He opened the bell and I told him he had to do it outside. He was happy with the bell, but kinda disappointed you could see. Then he went outside and saw the bike. He loved it! Israel isn't the type to show much emotion. His excitement is more of a quiet excitement, but we could tell he was excited. He just kept thanking me for getting it and rode for quite a while. When I have a chance I will try to upload the video cause of course we had to get it on video.

As for the rest of the day, I am still waiting for the other kids to go home, then who knows what. Ben is taking a nap and has tons of Army stuff to do today but I am hoping we can get atleast a little family time today. We will see.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

No updates

Ok, so I have been really bad about updating the blog but there are reasons. Ben is gone right now, we are still homeschooling as we go year round, the kids have been sick, I am in school right now, and sometimes it feels like nobody reads these things. It is so hard to know or not. So here is the deal, if you do indeed read any of these blogs, leave a short (or long) comment to let me know so I don't feel like I am just writing for the air around my home. Thanks.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Me, held up at gun point?

So this is what happened on Friday night/Saturday morning. We had a friend text us and it was really weird. Ben called him to find out what was going on and he was on pain pills and drinking. His wife has been cheating on him in the past and has been doing some shall we say rebellious stuff now that makes him wonder if she is again so he was really upset. He took off in the car and she joined but he wouldn't let her drive. So he was drunk, on pain pills, driving angry, and texting all at the same time. Not a good combination. He stopped by our house and we were not going to let him go. Then we found out he had a loaded, cocked gun in the car. We made his wife get out and stay with us and he took off. We were scared to death he was going to kill someone so we called the police but just was it was going through, the phone died.

Just then she said he texted her he was coming back to get her. When he pulled in we again were trying to get him to give her the keys but he refused and I grabbed her arm as she was getting in the car and refused to let her get in. I was leaning in his window talking to him just as the police pulled up suddenly (we had no idea the call had gone through) and since they didn't know what was going on cause of the phone dieing, they had come flying into the yard, jumped out of the cars, and pointed the guns as us yelling "get away from the car lady"! I backed right up and they immediately got our buddy out of the car and cuffed him.

Long story short, he just passed the breathalizer so they couldn't arrest him but knew that cause of the pain pills he wasn't where he should be driving. They found the gun and lucky for him, since the caught him pulling out of the driveway but still in the yard, they couldn't do anything. Had they been one minute later and caught him in the road, he would have been in a HUGE amount of trouble for carrying a loaded, cocked gun in the car without a permit and drinking would have added to it.

So they had us keep the gun until the next day and had his wife drive home. Didn't do much good as he took the keys when they got home, but she wasn't in there. As soon as they left, he tried to get us to give him the gun but we refused. He is so mad and refuses to speak to us ever again but we did what we felt was right. Could you imagine how mad he would be if we had let him go and he had killed his wife or some other innocent person? Anyway, that was in the middle of the night and Ben had to work the next night so he didn't get much sleep at all but says he would do it all over again. I just wish our buddy could understand we were trying to take care of him. You should NEVER drive even angry. Certainly not angry, drunk, on pain pills, and texting all at the same time. Please people, be smart. Even when you don't care about yourself or your family, there are those of us that do and you will only make it all worse if you end up hurting or killing someone else.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

My sweet boy

It is just ripping out my heart to see my little Israel. I am not sure how much is chemical, and how much is because daddy is not around much, but he is in a deep depression. He is 5 and already is having depression like an adult. He cries all the time. He wouldn't eat a thing all day today. He just has this sad look on his face and won't even go out to play. He sleeps 15+ hours at night and is starting naps again. He sleeps with me every night with his arms around me and his head on my shoulder and freaks if I even move. I was falling off the bed last night and didn't dare move.

It is just breaking my heart and I know it is going to get much worse when Ben is actually in Iraq and gone completely. How am I supposed to help him? I can't just sit back and watch. Sometimes I just hold him and want to cry feeling so helpless as to how to help him. I wish the politicians in charge of all this war stuff could see what they are doing to the helpless, innocent children. It's really tearing me to pieces.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Mine!

Luci's latest word that seems to fascinate her is MINE! She was drinking from her sippy and the cat walked by and she said, "Mine. Juice Mine. Mommy, cat take my juice. It mine." Then she picked up her shoe and said, "Mine. Shoe Mine." then walked over to a sleeping Celestial and said "Mine. Shoe Mine" again. Then again to me. She just has had this thing lately about telling me everything that is hers is hers (and somethings that aren't hers) and thinking everyone or thing is trying to take it from her. Can we say possessive?

Sunday, May 17, 2009

So, I am reading this book...

I just started it. It's called Heros at home. I ordered it from MilitaryOneSource.com . Did you know that military can order books for free from them including shipping? I have received so many awesome books that I love! If you have a chance, read: "The Long Road Home" by Martha Raddatz, "While They're at War" by Kristin Henderson, and "Going Overboard" by Sarah Smiley. Military or not, awesome books!

Anyway, so I am now reading "Heroes at Home" by Ellie Kay. I just started but found a chapter with a cool exercise in it. Try this.

Step One: Think about all the things you enjoy most in life right now. These must be things that are on the outside of your home, and they cannot be your own family.

Step Two: Narrow your list to the top three.

Step Three: Walk over to the trash, and throw it away. You just moved and no one cares.

Now, image doing this over and over again with very little warning to places you have never been. This is the life of military. Only with the military the spouses get to do it alone most the time. No one to take turns getting up with the baby (and the baby may not even know Dad when he comes home). No one to fix the garbage disposal. No one to go on a date with, accompany her to the principal or doctors' office. No one to share the funny little thing that Holly did or Hunter said that only the other parent would find so endearing. No one for Hunter to play catch with or take Meg to the father/daughter party. No one to kiss tenderly, wipe her tears, and most of all, no one even to know she cried herself to sleep or to snuggle with at night.

Those are some of the things Ellie Kay lists in this chapter. She isn't looking for people to pity military wives, just understand where we are coming from when maybe we seem emotional, air headed, or can't seem to get the kids to behave. The book goes through the lives of different military spouses with different experiences. I don't know about you, but I love learning about other people lives and experiences, military or not. So, gives these books a thought, and if you happen to see some parent at their wits end, just remember there is probably a very good reason for it.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Update on curriculum and kids

Curriculum update on top. If you just want to read about the kids, skip to the bottom.



So a few weeks ago we started a new curriculum. It's a living books curriculum following the Charolette Mason method (reading entertaining, historically accurate books instead of textbooks and lots of hands-on and outside time) from http://www.livingbookscurriculum.com/ . I thought I would update ya'll on how it is going. So far, I think it is the best one we have had by far. It is not perfect. I would definantly change somethings. There are some typos that make lesson preparation confusing at times but for the most part, it is soooooo easy to prepare the lessons is a very short amount of time. Most the books are so wonderful and I love all the classics (like Pollyanna, Pinocchio, and The Jungle Book) though there is one book that is great for older kids but not so much for the little ones so I kinda summarize it. I love the nature study outdoors stuff. My kids are the types that love to spend all the time they can outside. They do not provide math so I am still looking for a better one to fit my kids than the ones we have used in the past. Right now I have kinda a mix of different ones. All in all, I would definantly order this again if I had to do this all over again (thank heavens I don't).




Ok, on to the kids. Luci is now walking and talking like crazy. She will be 20 months on the 19th. This morning she said to me, "Mommy, I want down please." She loves to tell the dogs, "Deliah, leave me lone." (Their names are Delilah and Jezzabel but she calls them both Delilah, who BTW hid a garbage sack from me that I can't find but that is another story.) She insists on being with the kids at all times. She loves the outdoors and as soon as she wakes up tends to say, "Outdide, Outdide". I have to watch her closely cause she loves to walk up the road. The other kids tend to leave the door open too and I will find her outside every time. She is very attached to Ben and when he isn't home on time she will wonder around the house calling, "Daddy, Dad, Daddy" and if he doesn't answer she will go into our bathroom and find something of his (yesterday it was his electric razor) and carry it around until he gets back. It is amazing how many things are missing now.



Celestial has taught herself to add and reads small words. She has really been pushing her limits lately and driving her dad and I nuts. Her hair is finally growing and is past her shoulders by a couple of inches. She has the little boy across the street, Brody wanting to marry her. Even with her pushing it lately, she is still our easiest kid so far.



Israel is now bald. He talked his dad into doing it and I was shocked (the pic looks like he has more hair than he does). But he wanted to look like Daddy and he loves it. His reading has really taken off lately and so has his math. He is able to sit longer through school and having much fewer tantrums. He used to Hate to draw but now he loves it. Ben bought him his own notebooks for drawing and making paper airplanes and for a while, every prayer he said (which is almost all we have) he thanked Heavenly Father for the notebooks. He made a whole bouquet of airplanes and put them in his Easter basket and has made pictures for all of us and uses tape and staples to make books. He has really turned into quite the artist.




Eden had her hair cut finally. It turns out I am the ONLY one that has ANY idea as to how to take care of her hair when it is long so we got it cut so she or anybody else that needs to can care for it when I can't. She looks really cute and she loves it. She has been quite the helper around here and hasn't been sick much at all, yeay. Now if I could just get her to keep her room clean...




As for the rest of us, we are preparing for Ben's deployment. He is in WLC right now until the end of May. He will leave for NTC a month or so later. They have a month there and will be home for a little bit (with field trainings to keep them gone) and then off to Iraq again. We are looking forward to getting out and returning to Idaho but we have just under five years left. The kids keep begging to go now. They really miss my family. All in all, we are doing pretty well. I know things will get more difficult with Ben leaving, but we will just have to enjoy him while we can.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Another greeny missionary

So we found out we had another new missionary coming in this transfer so a friend of ours invited us over for a green dinner. We had green meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans. I brought green homemade rolls and we had a green drink in green cups. We also all wore green over there.

After dinner, Ben and the senior missionary went out to check the transmission fluid in my van and brought with them some food coloring and Karo syrup. Ben had the senior missionary slam the hood down and he let out a scream and the missionary grabbed the other missionary. When they got out there, Ben had his hand covered in a rag with the red Karo syrup so it looked like he lost his finger. At first the greeny was shocked and then was ready to start first aid, but in the process Ben ended up squirting him with the syrup and he realized it was fake.

Finally just as he was leaving, Ben and the senior companion gave him a drink. The lip of the cup had Ambesol on it. The greeny was a little suspicious but after Ben promised him a few times that he didn't put anything in the drink, he finally took a drink. He said it was good and then realized his lips were tingly.

So, it wasn't as good as the last time we had a greeny, but it was a fun night that I think they all enjoyed, including the greeny.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Anti-homeschoolers

I have always had a problem with people who are very opinionated about something, but don't do the research for it. Why try to convince me something if you have no idea what you are talking about? It has always been a pet-peeve of mine no matter what the subject.

Lately I have noticed a whole bunch of anti-homeschoolers that are that way. They do EVERYTHING they can to try to convince me to put my kids in public school and expect me to listen to them, but when I try to tell them why I choose to homeschool, they refuse to listen. Do you really expect me to take your advice when you refuse to listen to my side?

It has happened to me many times and yesterday, the kids psychiatrist did it. He insisted they needed to be in school so I could have a break and they could be socialized. Everytime I went to tell him about the socialization my kids get from co-op classes, extracurricular activities, etc he would interrupt me and refuse to listen. I never got to explain that they don't have recess and they don't know how to handle kids with ADHD and other "issues". I didn't get to explain that my kids are too advanced but would be held back for missing too much school or that I want my kids to spend time with their dad before he leaves on deployment or that the kids would make fun of Israel for still having to wear diapers (could you imagine what he would go through?). The list goes on and on but he wouldn't hear a word of it. Does he really expect me to just turn around and put the kids in school with all these concerns in my head without him listening to me? If you want me to listen to you, you may try listening to me too!

And please, if you are totally for or against something, anything, do your research FIRST. Before you try to bring others to your side of the argument.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

He will be a wonderful daddy someday!

This morning as we headed to church, Luci got in the car with her cereal. Now, this is Ben's new car so he doesn't want food in there. So after she was buckled in her carseat, he took it away. That broke Luci's heart and she started crying. My sweet little Israel leaned over and put his forehead against hers and took his right hand (he was sitting to her right) and rubbed her little chubby cheeks. She melted right into him and calmed right down. He has always been so great with her. Even when she was first born there were times we could not calm her down but he had no problem. He really loves and takes care of his sisters. He really is going to be a great daddy someday.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

A sweet video my cousin sent me.

Thanks for the video Brian.

These girls are 6, 7, and 8. Eden says they sound better than Hannah Montana and since she loves Hannah, that says a lot. Plus I always love hearing the National Anthem. Check it out.

video

Eden has a pretty good voice and so does her friend Samantha. I wonder if they could do something similar. Hmmm...

Sunday, March 29, 2009

New Curriculum

Yesterday we received our new curriculum. I have kinda made our own this year so I could take the time to make sure I purchased the best curriculum for our family and I think we found it. I have always really liked the Charolette Mason Method of homeschooling. For those of you that don't know what it is, I will explain.

Charolette Mason was a huge name in Education in England in the late 1800's-early 1900's. Her ideas were that kids learn at their own pace. They need to have lots of time being in and learning about nature. They need to be learning from what she called living books. Living Books are books that are classic and grab your attention and teach you. They can be biographies, historical fiction, historical non-fiction etc. The point is to have a real education and not just to regurgitate facts for a test and then forget them. There is a lot more to it, but that is the very basic idea.

So I saw an advertisement in a homeschooling magazine I have for www.livingbooks.com and decided to check it out. They follow the Charolette Mason method and send you these amazing books and everything you need like a planner, possible schedule, and extra ideas. This year, the kids will be reading books like the original Pinochio, Pollyanna, and many other classics. In science, they will be learning about animals, plants, and planets.

As soon as the books got here, the kids went nuts! I barely had the box open before I had a million little hands grabbing them. They looked at the books for hours and have been telling everyone they see all about them. Usually when I get a curriculum I know whether or not it was a good choice and lives up to the advertisements. So far, this one does. I really think we will enjoy this one and the both the kids and I are going to learn so much. I am so excited to start the new curriculum! Yeah for homeschooling!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Top 50 reasons we homeschool

We are asked SO many times why we homeschool and the list is really too long to list every time so I narrowed it down to 50 that I will list here and hopefully that will help some of you understand why we do what we do.

Reasons I homeschool my kids
1. It is what is best for my family.
2. My kids are more advanced than their peers and need to be able to learn at their pace.
3. I get to decide what my kids are taught. There are things that my kindergartener just shouldn't know about yet.
4. I get to raise my children. Not their peers or other adults with who knows what ideas in their heads.
5. Our school district doesn't have recess and buses K-12 together and then the kids not in high school yet have to take another bus to their schools. That is a lot for 5 year olds.
6. My husband is gone with the military a lot so we get to spend more time with him when he is around by taking time off when he is here and doing more when he is gone.
7. Learning is a lifestyle for us, not an 8-3 Sept-June thing.
8. My kids get a real education with the classics and learning instead of just spitting out random facts to get by until after the test.
9. We get to go on as many field trips as we want.
10. More hands-on learning. When we learn about the tide, we go to the beach to see it.
11. My kids get a break when they need it and can continue on much longer when they want to.
12. I can choose the best curriculum for my children.
13. I get to teach my children my values, morals, and character instead of societies. Look where society is going and what it is doing to our kids. I want more for mine.
14. I don't have to get up at the crack of dawn to get my children dressed and fed and off to school where they are so tired they don't learn well anyway.
15. My kids are ADHD so I can break up the day however I see fit for my child's learning and attention span.
16. What I teach an older child naturally filters down to the younger child(ren) making learning must easier and faster for siblings.
17. I don't have to worry about drugs, shootings, or any number of other things schools deal with daily. As a friend of mine said, if the Amish have to worry, we all do.
18. I get to allow my child to do, think, discuss, and explore in ways not possible in a classroom setting.
19. Constant positive reinforcement and gentle correction. No abusive words or actions that scar my child's psyche. Imagine being able to learn to read while on your loving mother's lap with gentle encouragement instead of other kids teasing you.
20. My kids don't pick up swear words or other undesirable language at school.
21. My kids get to learn life skills like cooking, cleaning, sewing, gardening, etc in a real home environment and not just one class in middle school.
22. My children don't have to be scared to go to school cause of a bully or teasing.
23. I am there for my children when they need to talk.
24. We get to build a really close family bond. My kids are best friends.
25. Unlimited possibilities for extracurricular activities that interest my child and they aren't limited to certain hours outside of school.
26. Socialization in the real world not just with kids their own age where they are told to sit down and shut up.
27. If my kids want to study airplanes, we study airplanes. If they want to become a paleontologist, we can study dinosaurs. They get to study what they are interested in and therefore retain more information and enjoy learning more.
28. Free one-on-one tutoring.
29. I really know my kids and who they are, not who they pretend to be.
30. My kids don't have to switch schools every time we move (which with the military is often).
31. We can vacation during the off seasons without missing out on school.
32. I am learning so much along with them.
33. We can accomplish more education in less time.
34. Education still takes place on snow days, sick days, weekends, and holidays.
35. My children beg for school on days off.
36. I get to build my children up before sending them into a world that will try to push them down. They will be more prepared for dealing with things like sexual pressure if it doesn't start at such a young age.
37. My kids start foreign languages much earlier than most public schools.
38. Don't have to pay for registration fees, supply lists, and other fees required by public schools.
39. I teach my children to be self-directed learners and not rely on their teachers to teach them in an entertaining way.
40. Homeschooled students regularly score much higher than public, private, and prep schools in tests for academics and socialization and have a high trend of completing college.
41. My kids can finish what they are doing and their thought processes without being interrupted by bells.
42. My kids don't have to ask permission to go to the bathroom and are allowed to take their medication without having to leave class. They won't be suspended for taking a tylenol for a headache or cramps.
43. Grandparent day can be any day.
44. My kids get sick a lot and would be held back some grades for missing too much school even though they are much farther advanced than their peers.
45. My kids get to pray over their food.
46. I don't have to get a note from the doctor every time my kids get sick.
47. They get to be independent thinkers instead of "herd mentality" or following the in crowd.
48. No school fund raisers!
49. My kids have the time to volunteer to help others in the community while others are stuck in school.
50. Four words: No Child Left Behind. Need I say more?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

That's what happens when a one yr old potty trains herself

I have had no thought what so ever to potty training Luci. After all, she is barely 18 months. When we moved into the house, we just put the kids potty in the kids bathroom cause it made sense. Suddenly I started noticing Luci walking around without diapers every once in a while. I would then have to go on a hunt to find the missing diaper. Usually it would be in the kids bathroom and I would find a little tinkle or something. Today, she came walking in the kitchen without a daiper and I headed into the kids bathroom and looked down and there is was, IN the potty this time. I guess she figured it all goes to the same place anyway.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Immunity anyone?



We seem to always be sick. Eden and I especially. I don't know what it is. We wash our hands constantly, eat healthy, the kids are homeschooled so they don't get bugs from there. Last Monday, I came down with some stomach bug. The pain was bad enough that Ben got off work (which is really tough in the military) to take me to the Urgent Care. I told him I didn't need to go cause they wouldn't do anything for me, but he was concerned so we went. Ofcourse, they said it was probably a bug and I just needed rest. Lol, right.




Fast forward to Friday. I started feeling a weird tickling sensation in my stomach. Then Eden started coughing. By the end of the day, Eden and Celestial had temps of 105, Israel's was 104, and mine (I NEVER have fevers!!!) was 103.5. Luci so far only has diahrea and Ben (as usual) has no symptoms. Where does he get his wonderful immunities?




Our bodies ache soooooo much and our throats hurt and I have been throwing up. Sometimes we feel like we can't even breath. I figure it must be influenza. Oh fun. And while all this is going on, Ben is in the field for three weeks so I am a single mom of sorts.




Thanks to being sick all the time, I have had to cancel the kids portrait sessions three times now. We miss church about half the time and Eden has been missing Girl Scouts. The housework is behind and so is the school work. Just think, if the kids were in public school, they would be held back a grade for too many absenses even though they are doing work way above their grade levels. Thank heavens for homeschooling.




And for those of you who don't know, we have two new additions to the family. Jezabel and Delilah.




They are both very calm and very attached to me. They won't go anywhere without me. They won't even go outside without me so when my neighbor came over to take them out for me since I am so sick, they refused.
Jezabel is the alpha female. They are sisters. They are full blooded american bulldogs. They are very obedient and the kids really love them. They are protective of the kids and when I let them out in the yard, they stay in the yard until I tell them they can leave.
Anyway, so that is what is going on with the Frahs clan now. If any of you have some immunity to share, we are in desperate need.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

It actually snowed today!

For Idaho, no big deal. But for southern Alabama, BIG DEAL! It never snows here. Ben woke me up this morning telling me it was snowing and it still is! The kids were so excited. Especially Israel. He has been wanting snow so much. They played in it with our neighbor, Sara for a while, except Celestial. The poor girl has a fever and threw up on me last night so I am making her rest. She would love to play but is NOT feeling up to it and I am sure the snow will be gone by tonight if not tomorrow.

Luci's eyes were huge as she looked up and stuck her hand out. I tried to take a pic but we are watching a neighbors dog for her while she is out of town and just as I had the camera ready, he ran her over and now she won't let me put her down. But she is lovin the snow. I do not like the cold, but I do like the idea of having a day or two of snow before we go back to our spring and summer weather. I love the south. The weather is so perfect for me. The cold weather in Idaho is one of the few things that make me nervous about moving back. That and not being near big places like Atlanta and Montgomery for things to do when we need to get out. Man I love it here!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Georgia aquarium







On Monday, we headed to Atlanta to take the kids to the Georgia Aquarium. It is actually the worlds largest. We really enjoyed it. When we first went in, we got to see jelly fish. Israel loves Jelly fish! They even had tanks with a black light in them.





After the jelly fish, we went to a huge tank that had just about everything. The feed the sharks and whales to the point of being stuffed so they won't eat the fish and then put everything in together. I think that is probably the area where we stayed the longest. We just watched all the different animals. Israel has always loved water animals and they had all his favorites like the hammerhead shark, sword fish, whale shark, sting ray, and many more. Even Luci was loving it. All the kids were jumping up and down and shreaking. The other people got quite the kick out of the kids and all the kids knew about them. Israel has this little pad that has pictures of water animals and you push one and it tells you all about it. It has games and quizes and stuff and the kids love to play with it and then tell me all they learned. It was great for them to be able to see these animals they love so much. They kept pointing to all the animals and telling me what they were a million times over. We would hear people behind us chuckling as they heard them.




After we left that tank, the others went a bit quicker. We were able to see Baluga Whales (which Israel said he wished he was one), Otters, and were able to tough Anenomes, sting ray (they clipped the stingers), small sharks, hammerhead fish, and some others I can't remember. The Anenome were actually so soft you could barely tell you were touching anything. It was so cool! One little boy next to me at one of the touch tanks said, "I am reaching my hand toward a shark. It just feels so wrong!" I got a laugh out of that one.


They also had a small play area for the kids which they loved. Even Luci got to play for a while and didn't want to leave. The kids were disappointed when we had to leave. All in all, it was a great day. I love being able to do this stuff!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Double Trouble



We have had an interesting weekend. Ben had Friday off cause the guys had been in the field most the week and had very little sleep. So on Friday, we had the new missionaries over for lunch. But here is the catch, one is a greenie straight out from the MTC. We knew this so we set something up with his companion. They tracted the neighborhood. It just so happened that before they got to us, they were chased by two big dogs. So their hearts were already pumping. They got to our house and knocked on the door. The kids were also in on this so they wouldn't spoil it.




Ben answered. He was wearing his Cav shirt and Veteran hat and a very long, sharp knife on his hip. They introduced themselves and the greenie proceeded on with the normal way they do things while tracting. I asked who was there and Ben said the Jehovah Witnesses. He corrected Ben. Then Ben kept asking who they were and why they were here. I acted all upset they were there. Finally, Ben took his knife out and proceeded to rub his face with it. At this point, the greenie started to back away as his comp was trying not to laugh. Ben invites them in and the greenie refuses. So Ben invited them again and the greenie backs away some more and refuses again. Then Ben reaches out to shake his comps hand and pulls him inside and shuts the door. Just as we did that, the senior comp says, "Oh-No" thinking that the poor kid would take off. The greenie hears the "Oh-No" and freaks. He came flying threw the door and saw us all there watching and smiling, some laughing and realizes what is going on. He looks at me and says, "You are the Frahs, aren't you?"




He was a great sport and kept laughing about it himself. He is a great kid. It also isn't the only thing this ward has put the poor guy through. He said he can't wait to write home about it lol.




Trouble number two happened shortly after Ben took the missionaries home. Eden turns 7 tomorrow so we set up a slumber party for her and some friends. Most said they couldn't make it so we weren't expecting many. Turned out more could make it than originally thought. I think we had nine or ten extra girls ranging in age from 6-8 years old. We had a ton of fun watching a movie, had a pinata (which Ben ran off with so the girls chased him down and attacked him), and cake and ice cream and gifts. These kids knew her well as she got exactly what she would have picked out for herself. Also, one of the girls gave her all the barbies she had cause she isn't interested in them anymore so the girls played with them for quite a while. Eventually, we tried to calm the girls down so Luci could sleep and any of the girls that were ready to. Unfortunately, one of the girls is really comfortable at our house and was mouthy. She, along with two other girls, did everything they could to keep the girls awake. I finally got them all asleep about 2:30.




At 3, Israel woke up screaming at the top of his lungs which woke up one of the girls' little sisters that was staying also (she is 4) and she woke up crying for her mom. I got the two back to sleep and Israel woke up screaming again. I got to him quick enough that he didn't wake the others. Celestial woke up a little later and she had had an accident so I had to change her (found out later another girl did too). Then, the girls were up at 6. I got up to make them pancakes and couldn't seem to do it quick enough. I finally got them all fed and they went off to play. Parents started to pick up around 11 or 12 with the last girl leaving at 6 (that was cleared with us ahead of time due to parents being out of town). It was really fun for the most part, but I was so tired. I would do it again though as I know the girls will all remember this, especially Eden. So a little trouble is worth it for lasting memories.


Thursday, January 29, 2009

Interesting Thomas Jefferson quotes

I have always looked up to Thomas Jefferson as well as tried to follow his methods of education with my children. Here are some interesting quotes that seem to prove to be true:

When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as Europe . Thomas Jefferson

The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not. Thomas Jefferson

It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world. Thomas Jefferson

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them. Thomas Jefferson

My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government. Thomas Jefferson

The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. Thomas Jefferson To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical. Thomas Jefferson

Very Interesting Quote
In light of the present financial crisis, it's interesting to read what Thomas Jefferson said in 1802:
"I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered."

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

She does things in her own time

Most of you know that Luci just started walking. She is 16 months old so a little late compared to my other kids. Ok, really late. Anyway, we weren't too worried cause all kids do things in their own time, seems Luci is making sure we realize that. Not only did she just start walking, but as I was watching her toddle around, she walked into the kids bathroom, took off her diaper, and sat on the kiddie potty we have in there from when Celestial was potty training. She is 16 months old. We have done nothing to try to potty train her and Celest hasn't used that potty in probably over a year so she didn't get the idea from her. The fact that she could toddle over there, put the lid up, take off her diaper, and sit down shows she is thinking pretty advanced for her age. Guess she just wants to make sure she does things on her own timeline, and not the norm. Sure sounds like her mom (who BTW was also the fourth child and third girl).

Saturday, January 24, 2009

7 goin on adult


I was so proud of my daughter today. She did something even most adults haven't figured out yet. She came to me earlier and told me she was feeling stressed and overwhelmed and didn't know why. Then she came to me and said, "I feel like yelling and screaming at someone for no reason, but I won't. Could you help me calm down?"
Most adults would go and scream and act like they have PMS or whatever, but she didn't. She came to me for help BEFORE there was a problem. How many people have that much of a handle on their emotions, much less a not quite 7 yr old? I know I still have a ways to go. So, I am very proud of my not so little girl.

Great video for invisible moms

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YU0aNAHXP0

Thursday, January 22, 2009

videoI had to post this. It is about time!!! I was beginning to wonder if it would ever happen! Actually, I was trying to look at the good side and say, atleast I don't have a fourth to try to keep up with. Once she started, she skipped the whole walking part and went straight to running, so now I really do have a fourth to try to keep up with. Ah, raising kids is so amazing!!!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

What a great, simple day!


Today started off pretty stressful, but ended up great! We decided we all needed a day out together as a family and Calloway Gardens is free for January and February so we decided to take advantage of it. It was beautiful with so much to do! Hiking trails, birds of prey, old pioneer cabins with pioneer furniture inside, a butterfly sanctuary (Israel's favorite), and so much more!


















After the Gardens, we took the kids to McDonalds and we RARELY go out to eat so that was a special treat for them. While there, a cute little two year old African-American boy attached himself to Eden and took her every where. It was so cute!






Then we came home and Ben lit a fire in our fire pit out back and we roasted sausage and marshmallows with a neighbor, Sarah. We really enjoyed it. The kids were so disappointed to end the day and have to go to bed. These are the types of things I plan on doing when Ben leaves on deployment again to keep our minds off of it. I love making memories like these! So simple, yet so wonderful!










Is anybody else a little worried by these outbreaks?

I enjoy growing my own food and knowing what is on/in it. That is why when we had the big Samonilla outbreak on tomatoes last year, I didn't have to worry. I grew my own. But this year, peanut butter and peanut paste (which is in sooooo many things)? That is one thing I actually buy instead of making. This is not the first time that there has been a peanut butter outbreak either. Is anybody else getting worried about all these Samonilla outbreaks?

Sure, most the time it doesn't kill, but dieing is not the worst of it! Have you ever experienced it? I sure have and when you are in the middle of it, dieing doesn't sound like such a bad thing. It certainly isn't something I want my kids to have to go through and they eat a HUGE amount of peanut butter. What is next? Cereal? Fruit snacks? Rice? I am glad I grow what I can, but there is so much I don't. It just worries me that the outbreaks seem to be getting more and more common. Am I the only one who has noticed this? I sure hope not. Maybe I should add peanuts to my garden this year. Hmmm...

Where have all the leaders gone?

I got this in an email and liked it so I am putting it here for ya'll to read.

Remember Lee Iacocca, the man who rescued Chrysler Corporation from its death throes? He's now 82 years old and has a new book, 'Where Have All The Leaders Gone?'.

Lee Iacocca Says: 'Am I the only guy in this country who's fed up with what's happening? Where the hell is our outrage? We should be screaming bloody murder! We've got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff, we've got corporate gangsters stealing us blind, and we can't even clean up after a hurricane much less build a hybrid car. But instead of getting mad, everyone sits around and nods their heads when the politicians say, 'Stay the course.'

Stay the course? You've got to be kidding. This is America, not the damned, 'Titanic'. I'll give you a sound bite: 'Throw all the bums out!' You might think I'm getting senile, that I've gone off my rocker, and maybe I have. But someone has to speak up. I hardly recognize this country anymore.The most famous business leaders are not the innovators but the guys in handcuffs.

While we're fiddling in Iraq , the Middle East is burning and nobody seems to know what to do. And the press is waving 'pom-poms' instead of asking hard questions. That's not the promise of the 'America' my parents and yours traveled across the ocean for. I've had enough. How about you? I'll go a step further. You can't call yourself a patriot if you're not outraged. This is a fight I'm ready and willing to have. The Biggest 'C' is Crisis! (Iacocca elaborates on nine C's of leadership, with crisis being the first.)Leaders are made, not born. Leadership is forged in times of crisis. It's easy to sit there with your feet up on the desk and talk theory. Or send someone else's kids off to war when you've never seen a battlefield yourself. It's another thing to lead when your world comes tumbling down.

On September 11, 2001, we needed a strong leader more than any other time in our history. We needed a steady hand to guide us out of the ashes. A hell of a mess, so here's where we stand.We're immersed in a bloody war with no plan for winning and no plan for leaving. We're running the biggest deficit in the history of the country. We're losing the manufacturing edge to Asia, while our once-great companies are getting slaughtered by health care costs. Gas prices are skyrocketing, and nobody in power has a coherent energy policy. Our schools are in trouble. Our borders are like sieves. The middle class is being squeezed every which way. These are times that cry out for leadership.But when you look around, you've got to ask: 'Where have all the leaders gone?'

Where are the curious, creative communicators? Where are the people of character, courage, conviction, omnipotence, and common sense? I may be a sucker for alliteration, but I think you get the point.Name me a leader who has a better idea for homeland security than making us take off our shoes in airports and throw away our shampoo?We've spent billions of dollars building a huge new bureaucracy, and all we know how to do is react to things that have already happened.

Name me one leader who emerged from the crisis of Hurricane Katrina. Congress has yet to spend a single day evaluating the response to the hurricane or demanding accountability for the decisions that were made in the crucial hours after the storm. Everyone's hunkering down, fingers crossed, hoping it doesn't happen again. Now, that's just crazy. Storms happen. Deal with it. Make a plan. Figure out what you're going to do the next time.

Name me an industry leader who is thinking creatively about how we can restore our competitive edge in manufacturing. Who would have believed that there could ever be a time when 'The Big Three' referred to Japanese car companies? How did this happen, and more important, what are we going to do about it?Name me a government leader who can articulate a plan for paying down the debit, or solving the energy crisis, or managing the health care problem. The silence is deafening. But these are the crises that are eating away at our country and milking the middle class dry. I have news for the gang in Congress. We didn't elect you to sit on your asses and do nothing and remain silent while our democracy is being hijacked and our greatness is being replaced with mediocrity. What is everybody so afraid of? That some bonehead on Fox News will call them a name? Give me a break. Why don't you guys show some spine for a change?

Had Enough? Hey, I'm not trying to be the voice of gloom and doom here. I'm trying to light a fire. I'm speaking out because I have hope - I believe in America. In my lifetime, I've had the privilege of living through some of America 's greatest moments. I've also experienced some of our worst crises: The 'Great Depression,' 'World War II,' the 'Korean War,' the 'Kennedy Assassination,' the 'Vietnam War,' the 1970's oil crisis, and the struggles of recent years culminating with 9/11.If I've learned one thing, it's this: 'You don't get anywhere by standing on the sidelines waiting for somebody else to take action. Whether it's building a better car or building a better future for our children, we all have a role to play. That's the challenge I'm raising in this book. It's a "Call to Action" for people who, like me, believe in America'. It's not too late, but it's getting pretty close. So let's shake off the crap and go to work. Let's tell 'em all we've had 'enough.'Make your own contribution by sending this to everyone you know and care about. It's our country, folks, and it's our future. Our future is at stake!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

New Law going into effect on Feb 10

Not a lot of people know about this law, but if you don 't, check it out at:

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=85542

What were these people thinking? What put them in such a rush to create such a fiasco? Isn't the economy bad enough as is? Do they really have to make it worse?

The unemployment lines are going to be ten times longer. Clothing and other childrens item will be way more expensive and forget second hand, ebay, or craigslist. Things are just about to get much worse. I don't know about the rest of you, but the last year or so, I think I have lost all faith in these people. Between these huge, stupid mistakes and all the news stories about the crimes they are commiting (like trying to sell Obamas seat and accepting bribes in order to not prosecute criminals. The list goes on and on) I have lost my faith. I know they aren't all idiots, but the idiots are making them look like they are.

It just feels like things are falling apart some times. Like Satan has this huge hold on our country and I feel so helpless to know how to do anything more about it and I don't like that feeling. I LOVE my country. I just hope we can pull our heads out of our butts before it is too late. Well, that is my rant for the day. What's yours?