Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Last days of Summer 2015

Well, the summer is coming to an end for all my kids.    
But until then, we've been cutting, cutting, cutting. 

 With all the fruit we've been getting from Birch's, we ended up getting a dehydrator.  We eat as many as we cut, so it takes a bit longer to prep than I thought.  And I haven't worked out all the details that might change the length of time the fruit is drying... but it is so yummy! 
 We are all loving it.

Katy is preparing for Senior pictures with Aunt Priscila. We tried on MANY dresses this week and found a few lovely ones.  She has a friend coming over to help practice make-up and hair today and tomorrow.  So excited!

Mom is excited if I think about it in baby steps.  Look, Senior pictures.  Look, new class schedule. Look, you need all my financial information for scholarship paperwork.  
But if I think about how she won't be here next year.... sadness.

Jacob is having a wonderful month.   Swimming, friends, sleepovers, cousins and food.  What more could a boy ask for!  That's him on the rope swing.  

My new phone/camera - is a lower quality than my previous phone.  That's ok.  It's a choice I made, and for the most part, I am enjoying not being on my "phone" all the time.  But I miss the camera from the Nexxus.  Guess I'll have to start carrying around a real camera, now. 
 Whoa... that feels so old school.

Emily and Becca, both have their own devices - not for calling or texting yet, because they are always with us!  But they have email, google hangout, Pinterest, and Spotify. 
It keeps them real "busy".  
Let me know if you need their contact info.

Amanda is off to camp this week.  It is the first time she's been gone 5 nights.  She's been to this camp before (twice) but as a jr. camper and it was only for 2 nights.  She was SUPER nervous this past week and kept worrying about it.  Sometimes, alternating between tears and laughter.

So Darren talked with her about Philippians 4:6-7

Which means one day we were driving home and she says, "I'm really nervous about camp."  Then proceeds to bow her head, put her hands together and say, "Jesus, give me peace." 
 I LOVE that Amanda!   

Once I dropped her off, she still needed hugs, but she found her friends and she was off.  She did stop to turn around and wave to me.  My heart be still.

Claire has turned into a great swimmer this year!  Her favorite is the mermaid (dolphin) - but she's getting better at freestyle and back stroke, too. Claire also decided to get a pixie cut as well, she wanted to match the sisters.  She looks a little like Fantine. 
 It's just hair.  It will grow back.

This is how I feel, too.  Every time someone asked for a pixie cut....

Darren has started a new client, who lives on the East coast.  So his mornings will be starting 2 hours earlier, which just about coincides with the new school year.  No one wants to get up early.  
We want to soak in the last few days of summer!!!!

We got to visit with a friend yesterday that just moved out of the city, onto their own little farm.  We sat in the hammocks and talked in the shade.  All the kids want to move to a farm now.  We are pretty sure the ratio of work:hammock is something like 3:1 or 5:1 maybe even 10:1.  
They don't believe me.

Hope you enjoying your last days of summer, too. 

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Sing the Word

We've been talking about how to get more scripture into our life.  Specifically, where we can see it -so we can read it and say it out loud and memorize it! 

My personal favorite is using a dry erase marker on any surface I can get way with  - 
white board, mirrors, windows, washing machine (so far it comes off ours), 
so I can see it as I walk around my house.

But there was a time when I had more kids in diapers than out... and they couldn't all read very good.  Well, some of them (KATY) came out reading, but a few of the others have had to learn.
It was our first year using Sonlight and we got the best scripture memory cd  -
 "Sing the Word from A to Z".  

Now, being married to a musician means that the music in your home might have to pass certain ...criteria.  For example, a certain purple dinosaur was never allowed (even I have ears)
but we still sing songs we learned from The Backyardigans.
"There's an echo, there's an echo, in this canyon, in this canyon."

So, of course, that magical criteria spilled over into any music we listened to in our home.
We looked for real songs with real musicians and real singers.
Including, the sweetest bible memory CD - "Sing the Word" by the Harrow family

The parents were real musicians and they put scripture to music for their kids to sing.
Do you remember seeing the  twins sing the books of the bible?  Sing the Word.

Jacob loved "Iron Sharpens Iron" and "The Battle is the Lord's" (about David and Goliath).  
Jacob and I read and sang and talked and acted out David and David's mother sooooo much,
that we even went through a season of being Goliath and Goliath's mom. 
 Of course, I have no pictures of those scenarios, but here's a few others you might enjoy. 

Everyone needs a turn to fight Goliath.

Do not even point out that David used 5 smooth stones. 

We all know the story, but Dad is always Goliath...

and we all have to practice taking down the bad guy.

*****Now back to MORE SCRIPTURE IN OUR LIVES. *****.

We still sing some of those songs we learned.  I think we ended up with 4 or 5 of their CDs.  

Sadly, CD's get scratched, lost and even forgotten.
But with our new push to get more scripture in, guess what Katy made me on Spotify....

my own playlist of all our favorite Sing the Word songs.

Isn't it sweet how some songs bring back a memory AND a memory verse with them. 

xoxo Jenn

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Capes, Timelines and Original Stories

Thursday was the end of the trimester for my peeps.  Amanda and Claire had a party and showed off their work on the formation of the earth and the medieval unit they've been studying. We braided hair, wore lovely dresses, and our fancy red capes. 

And a big shout out to Mr. Clark and Mrs. Dunton!

Each of the girls have been working on their own 40 ft timeline of the earth scroll. 
 Amanda brought hers home.  We tried to take a picture down the driveway, but we had to call in reinforcements because of the wind...

Here's a few close-ups she took...

And Amanda's story - complete with illuminated title.

The Story of Heidi
By Amanda Petersen (7 years old)

Once upon a time, there was a beautiful village.  One day, an old wizard came into the town.  He cast a spell on the town so that everyone would burn down their houses.  On the day of Pentecost, Heidi came and told King John what was happening.  He decided to send a knight to help.  King John knew of a secret water - whoever drank it would make peace.
Heidi and Sir Lancelot set off on their journey.  They had to travel a long time across the sea.  They got on horseback.  They had to cross a bridge.  A very ugly knight came out and said, “None shall pass!” 
Heidi was frustrated.  “How dare you tell me what to do!” said Heidi. 
“None shall pass!” said the ugly knight.
Sir Lancelot said, “Hush now.  I challenge you to a duel!”
“Okay,” said the ugly knight.  “What happens if you loose?”
“I will give you fifty grand,” said Sir Lancelot. 
They agreed.  Sir Lancelot won.

They walked and walked for a long time through the forest.  They came upon some bandits.  They were wearing masks and carrying sacks.
“Help!  I’m tied up!  Help!” called a farmer from a lake in the forest.  In a flash, they were there. He was about to drown. They untied him. 
“Thanks for saving my life,” said the farmer.
“You’re welcome.  Would you like to join our quest?” asked Heidi.
“Thanks, but no thanks. I’ve got to farm the land,” said the farmer.
They said goodbye.  They were almost there.

The last battle was when they faced an evil knight that guarded the secret water. 
“You may never drink the water.  Ha, ha!” laughed the evil knight.
“But we have to make peace.  Please, I’ve got to drink to save my village and my house.  I’m begging you,” said Heidi. 
“You may never drink from the water,” said the evil knight.
“I will do anything,” pleaded Heidi.
Sir Lancelot interrupted and said, “Let her drink or I will fight you to the death.”
            They fought for hours and hours. He shed some blood, but Sir Lancelot finally won.
            “Now, let me drink the water,” cried Heidi.  She finally drank the water.  She put it in a barrel.  She went home and saved her house and her family. 

Lancelot had to go to the hospital for eight days.  He got out of the hospital.  The King was very pleased with him.  He saved Heidi. They had a big feast.

They all lived happily ever after. Heidi and Lancelot got married and had 20 children.


Great job, Amanda.  Great job!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

I Painted the Deck!

Since I have all this free time with the kids in school.
I thought I better use these last few sunny days to paint the deck

The house was clean ...

I had finished unpacking the last of the boxes
 from Papa's house.

And the first ones...

I had finished painting Jacob's room.  

Oh wait - I did paint his room
the first week of school.

The driveway looked good. 

Real good.
I can even park the van and the car side by side, again.

And the garage is organized,
thanks to Amy and Priscila helping me throw a bunch of OLD stuff away.
Everything over 20 years old had to go! 

But it got filled back up, somehow....

Who really needs to get in the garage in the winter, anyway?

So, I focused all my energy on the deck this week...

and power washed and painted! 

We even moved all the deck furniture into the shed.

Just in time, too.  Looks like the rains are about to start again.  

Guess I'll have to find something else to do with all my free time!

Look out Fall, here I come!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Why I'm walking....

This weekend, I'll be walking in two different 5K races.

The Color Run  is just for fun. It's The Happiest 5K on the planet! Priscila and I will walk with a group of her friends. You walk, run, dance and at each mile marker you get colored.

The Walk to Defeat ALS is for real.  We will all walk this one - kids, parents, grandparents, friends. Many people are collecting donations to help fund research so someone can find a cure.  Some are walking it to honor a loved one.  Some are prayer walking it.  Some are walking or riding because they have ALS.

This morning, while I was pushing Claire around the ponds, I was thinking about the races and why I was walking...

I’m walking because I can. Because my legs still work and my lungs still work.  Because I can still talk and swallow and breath.  My grandfather, Don Couch, and my mother-in-law, Delight Petersen, couldn't do those things.  So I walk for them, in defiance of a disease that slowly deteriorated their body and trapped their fully functioning minds inside.  I walk for them, because they couldn't.

I’m walking for their beloved caretakers. My grandmother, Nell Couch, and my Father-in-law, Bill Petersen. I want to honor their sacrifice of love, time, energy, tears and heartache. They couldn’t fix it. But they gave all they had to the love of their life while their best friend withered before their eyes.

I’m walking for those who are struggling through this disease right now. They will be there, walking and riding along side us. Holding on to precious moments that are slipping away faster and faster than they can see. They are still holding on to a thread of hope… that somehow this is all a nightmare and they will wake up soon.

I’m walking for us. For all the loss we’ve felt. For all the times we sacrificed and begged and pleaded and cried and hoped and someone died anyway. And our broken hearts haven't recovered yet – but we still make it through our days. We are in this together.

I’m walking, because I can.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Pictures I didn't take...

Katy's new shower curtain

Polly Pocket sized Beast

Pucker up - Becca (or Emily)

Yes I do have blue eyes.

The cousins are finally here!

You're a lovely dancer.

Looks like Katy's reflection in this one.

So fresh and yellow and everywhere!

Got, milk?

Yep, they are still blue.

Can we watch another episode?

Polly's houses and plane.

Pooh Bear waiting for his computer turn.

Watch me put these dishes away, baby.

Who put all those socks on the floor next to the recycling?

Self portrait of ... ME!

A flip flop for your wine glass...

And a piece of trash.