Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Happy as can be!

Notice the vibrant smiles? Yep, it was like this all day as they enjoyed every little nook and cranny of their new playset! We hunted for buried treasure, took turns being pirates on an abandoned island, served as 'mates' on a sea ship and set up several fun obstacle courses - what a day! What a lovely day indeed! I even managed to fit in a 'chat' with one of my nearest and dearest! ;-)

Monday, May 26, 2008

Happy Memorial Day!

And it's finished - yay. . .hip, hip, hooray. . . way to go Daddy! Our Daddy is so handy and we are ever so lucky to have him. Thank you Huney for working so hard and faithfully to get this done for our little men - I can only imagine the adventures we will have enjoying it.

Daddy & I kicked up our feet and relaxed on the deck and watched the boys enjoy their new club house. Later we all retreated to the house and took a wonderful nap, yes all 6 of us. I just want to say a special 'thank you' not only to our veterans on this very special day that honors them but also to all the men and women who still continue to give so selflessly of themselves and sacrifice daily so that we can enjoy and appreciate our freedom. It's because of them that we get to enjoy the simple things in life. . . like a nap. God bless them and keep them safe!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Day 2 & 3 of Playset building

You can see the succession from the 1st pic when we began Saturday afternoon, towards the last pic when we completed the roof on Sunday evening. We then moved on to the 'tunnel area' and the swing and trapeze area. We were soooo close to be completed today but we were missing a bolt and since it was almost 8pm on Sunday, we decided to call it a day.

Saturday was also our Meat Buying Club day, so with that and yard work that Daddy was doing we didn't actually start until about 1pm Saturday, so not a bad 2 days with the progress that was made. We WILL finish tomorrow, so it's all good! ;-)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Thank God it's Friday!

Our big boys writing sentences. . . "What are they writing?" you asked, well read on!
Yep, we took a detour from our scheduled/planned studies today and took some much-needed time to discuss the importance of respect and listening. (Turns out they DO have ears today - I checked and they were still intact!) ;-)
We started our morning out with a trip to the Strawberry Festival with some friends (God bless those friends - we hope to see them again some time. . . especially after today! lol). . . and let's just say that things were downhill from there for a bit. When we returned from our morning out, I decided to refocus our lovely children whose hearing seemed to have disappeared. After a discussion about respect and listening and a review of our "family rules", things seemed to turn around (Praise God!). We reconnected over oatmeal and raisin muffins and a nice cold glass of milk. (To my loving husband - I know you're wondering if you'll ever see anything this week besides food on our blog. . . I sure hope so Babe! lol) Are ya all sensing a "theme" the last few days??? Yeah, it's been challenging the last couple of days but we ended on a positive note. All 4 of our men had stacks of books out and were reading to themselves and each other. . . what a lovely site to see - sorry no pic of that, I'm whooped! And I know you Mamas know what I mean! :-)
Sidenote: As I close this week, Daddy and I are sitting here listening to 3 sweet voices singing back in their bedroom. . .God bless them. . . and God bless us! ;-D

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Peaceful ending to a not so peaceful day

Today was another challenging day. . . soooo I planned a nice, peaceful dinner. Praise the Good Lord that Daddy was home tonight - boy was I happy to see him! We had steamed broccoli, roasted garlic cauliflower, some cheese slices (thanks to some friends we are enjoying raw milk cheese again - yay!), delicious and juicy strawberries, and some homemade bread smothered in yummy honey. Yes, I love to cook and bake. . . and what a stress-reliever it is for me. Today I cooked ALOT! ;-)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Thanks to our farmers

Every other Thursday is 'egg day' - the day the eggs are delivered to a friends house and we go and pick them up. I know my husband is laughing at this pic, but seriously, have you ever seen such lovely eggs?! These eggs are not only the most beautiful eggs but the yolks are incredibly gorgeous - just a lovely, vibrant orange color. Eggs (along with our milk) is the substance behind our household food. . . used daily for baking and cooking. I know it probably sounds silly to some of you (yes, you too Huney!) to describe eggs in this way. . . but it's sometimes the simple things that just delight me so. . . especially when it comes to food! lol God bless our farmers!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Doctor Dolittle

This is our current Read Aloud, so to kick us off to a wonderful start, I made animal pancakes. . . the boys thought they were pretty cool! We had some penguins, seals, and bears - and boy were they yummy! lol

Sunday, May 18, 2008


L-R: My SIL and niece (aren't they both beautiful?!), my Dad & Aunt M, my cousin K and her beautiful family, and a pic of just us girls! (K, me, Nana P, SIL, Aunt M)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Time spent with family. . . relaxing

Meet little "C", our newest addition to the family! She is the proud daughter of my baby brother and SIL - what a doll baby. . . and such a happy little girl!
Our 4 little men were quite smitten with her, as you can see in this shot! Too bad they live so far away, we could offer up some extra hands (as evident in this pic! ;-)
Daddy holding "C" and the boys getting ready to take turns holding her. You can also see my cousin's little girl, "M", to the right - the boys just thought she was 'it'!
What a lovely day just spent hanging out with our family and visiting and enjoying each other's company! Praise the Lord for family and the time we get to spend together!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Mammoth Cave

This is the old historic entrance, you can see the stairway down - it actually goes under a slow-trickling waterfall. The view was just breath-taking. While they don't use this entrance anymore, you can still go down the stairs, unless the water level is high, then they have it blocked off.
These shots are from our tour that we did - the Frozen Niagara tour, it was phenomenal! And just the right substance and length (time-wise) for the boys.
This shot was at the very end of our tour and on the bottom level of the cave. Right across from this was an amazing waterfall. It had been shut off the previous week because of the water level; we were blessed to be there when we were and get to experience the bottom level - just incredibly beautiful.
This is from the first level of the cave and you can really see some of the structural levels and texture in this shot. The spots appear pretty narrow, however, they really were not this narrow in the walk-way, which was nice.
At first glance these appear to be large spiders (at least to us they did), however, they are really crickets. Daddy and I cannot remember the name of this particular cricket - anyone know? Hmmm. . . we'll be searching this out! :-)
Mammoth Cave National Park actually has over 365 miles of caves. . . WOW! We were blessed to have the tour director that we did - his family was actually 4th generation diggers and his wealth of knowledge to share was just incredible. We also had a very small tour - it was just our family of 6 and then 2 other couples and that made it really enjoyable. The boys had questions the whole way thru and the small size of our group made it possible for them to ask all of their questions. . . and what a wonderful, patient man he was to answer them all!

Dinosaur World

Here are my 5 handsome men. . . the lights of my life!
Here you see littlest man & I, ds3 on the left just intrigued by all of the amazing dinos we were blessed to witness. And of course ds2 just smiling. . . as usual!
Here are the 4 boys at the beginning of our walk thru all the different types of dinosaurs. The pic shows how huge these replicas truly are!
Another shot inside the museum - it was just amazing.
Love this shot of the big boys - ds1 was wrapped around s3 & s4 with shear excitement and they were literally holding him up! :-)
Here are our little men showcasing their fossils that they found during their fossil dig - pretty cool!
Such an amazing time we had. . . all of us! It was great fun for Daddy and I to watch their facial expressions and body language as they took all of this magnificence in. They had over 100 life-size dinosaur replicas. The big boys are just enthralled with Dino's so it was a wonderful learning experience to be able to see and name the ones that they were familiar with and distinguish which ones were meat-eaters versus plant-eaters. The museum had some fabulous pieces that we got to see as well. They also had a paleontology area to view. We went and had some lunch and then returned for a 'fossil dig' which the boys thoroughly enjoyed. They got to dig for awhile and then they were able to choose their 3 favorite fossils to keep and take home (which is what you see up above in the last pic). We spent about half a day here and then headed on to Mammoth Cave National Park (I'll post those pics separately).

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Breakfast Surprise

Today was a VERY busy, full day! I had an eye appt @ 9:30am so I needed to be up and have all the boys up, dressed, fed, loaded up and heading out of the drive at 9am. I got up with my dear, sweet husband and got in the shower and got myself around and ready. Then I took the dogs out, fed them and then made sure the boys clothes were laid out and ready for them to slide into after breakfast and teeth brushing time. I headed back to my bedroom to finish up a few things and ds1 came in with a huge, vibrant smile and said 'breakfast is ready Mama!' He had made breakfast for all of us and had the table set and ready! What a sweetheart and such a little helper for his Mama! When we make oatmeal, we make a huge batch so we have leftovers for oatmeal muffins. . . well, he had taken the leftover oatmeal and warmed it up in the microwave and added our ususal, milk/honey/cinnamon/butter, and we sooo enjoyed it! I was so incredibly proud of him. I've noticed over the last couple of months that they will readily get breakfast around and ready. . . without being asked. . . what a wonderful, welcome surprise!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mama's Little Secret

Meet the Oreck Orbiter. . . my little secret to quick, efficient cleaning! lol This bad boy cleans it all. . .hard wood floors, laminates, tile, stone, carpet, upholstery, etc! I LOVE it! I have cleaned our wood floors on my hands and knees for the last 6yrs because everything else under the sun would leave marks and that drives me bonkers! :-( In my pursuit to make better use of my cleaning time, I came across this lovely blessing. We are fans of Oreck - they're a great company with awesome customer service, fabulous products and they stand behind them (which is pretty hard to find these days!). . . so I figured, "what do I have to lose?" I tried it out and you couldn't pry it from hands now! (kinda like my breadmaker! lol) Oh and one of my nearest and dearest ask about "corners" and so of course I set out to find the answer. . . yep, it's a breeze! You can move the bonnet (the padding you see on the bottom in the pic above) up and then it runs very nicely around trim and corners - such a godsend! Ladies. . . you've got to try this out!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

These are the lovely creations I received today from our little men. . . they are so incredibly beautiful and unfortunately this picture just doesn't do them justice. I sat looking at them for quite some time, just basking in the beauty. . . they're just intricate pieces of art and because they were created just for me. . . well, I am just touched beyond words. I am going to make a collage with them and frame them. As I sit here typing this update to our family blog the wonderful aroma of Rhubarb-Strawberry crisp is filling our home and making our tummies growl in anticipation. . . this wonderful treat was made by none other than my dear, handsome hubby (a.k.a. my own personal chef!). He asked me what I wanted to eat, I told him, and off he went setting to work. . . yummy!

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Phase 1: Playset building begins

This is the beginning of our morning. . .the start of our project. . .phase 1, day 1
Ds4 helping out. . . trying out his 'hammering' skills
Daddy and I worked all morning and into the early afternoon to get the foundation and base of the 1st floor of the clubhouse in place. . . it's starting to take shape (notice all our little helpers!)
I got the little men and myself some lunch and we took a break to refuel our bodies. Our very hard-working Daddy declined a break and kept pushing through.
We got the 2nd floor up and completed the flooring and bases - looking good!
This is how we looked at the end of day 1, not bad I think.
Tomorrow is supposed to be an overcast day with "chance" of showers. . . we are so hoping that is not the case, as we're wanting to complete our project tomorrow and the rain would certainly interfere with that goal / timeline. Praying for rain only through the night and NO rain for tomorrow.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Our "girls"

You can see the queen in the 1st shot, right after we picked her up from our groomer's. . .don't ya just love those sweet little pig-tails? It's hard to believe she's almost 7yrs old already. In the bottom shot you'll see our newest member of the family - she's 8wks old now, wow, she's a big girl! :-) She is settling in quite nicely to our family and even Montana is starting to play pretty well with her - she has established herself as alpha dog and so Georgi is quite aware of the pecking order! lol

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Super Tuesday

We just returned from voting this morning - it's 'Super Tuesday!' Notice they each have an 'I voted' sticker? The big boys have been accompanying me to the poll for as long as I can remember and today was no different, except we had another little one in tow. It was funny to hear them asking all of these questions of the people there about voting. . .they were the hit of the show! lol We've been discussing voting and how it works and our responsibility to seek out the candidates who best match with our family philosophy and who can help enable us to do God's work for the better. . .they're so inquisitive and I just love it. Oh, and funny thing about this shot, you can see ds4 has his finger up in the air and he's saying 'Go Vote!' How cute is that?! lol So, do your part, and be sure to vote!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Learning Anywhere

One of the most wonderful things about homeschooling is the ability to pick up and go (or not go!) and be able to do your learning anywhere. This was a wonderful attribute when we were traveling with Daddy for work. Today we had breakfast and then started on our lessons, which we started in our Play Room but then moved outdoors to the deck to enjoy the fabulous sunshine and warmth. Here you see us enjoying a game of alphabet bingo. . .which was followed by some Math Brainteasers (sooo fun to watch them get hyped up and excited about their Math story problems!). They love their math! We followed this up with some yummy, fresh vegetables and some hummus and refueled for an afternoon of play and planting. We headed out to pick up some flowers and more potting soil for our deck baskets and decorative pots. It was so cute (and rewarding for me!) to listen to them talk about the growth process from the seedlings into the starter plants. . .and the discussion of whose would be the biggest and why! lol ;-) Then we just hung out and planted our flowers - we actually got them all planted so we're ready to start on the beds next!

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Wow, what a morning. . .full of creativity and expression! The big boys and I headed out to the Art Studio and littlest man and Daddy headed to check out and finalize our plans for our new Play Set. Well, the big boys had their 1st experience on the Pottery Wheel - you talk about some fun, woohoo! I have been eyeing the pottery wheels for about a year now and checking them out and doing some research on the different brands, etc because they are such a big investment. Today just sealed the deal for us. . .we will definitely be keeping our eye out for one. While the initial cost is a bit salty, we have 4 children (+2 adults!) that will be able to use this and that divided down over say. . .the next 12yrs, is more than reasonable. We LOVE our art teachers - they are so wonderful, full of excellent talent, and always take the time to give us direction in where our best options are to accumulate different supplies and access items (like a kiln) for our area - they're just such a blessing!

We also had our 1st Drama class today and that was great fun! Our little men really enjoyed it and were singing the songs all day long. . .all of us actually! :-) The Drama teacher thinks we may have some little actors among our crew! I thoroughly enjoyed watching them and their facial expressions and demeanor while doing their different forms of expression - such a hoot! It was amazing how they really got into it!