Sunday, November 28, 2010

Humbling Mommy Moment-Blog Re-post

  I came across this blog post and wanted to share it with all of you! It is so funny how I have evolved as a mother and a wife. I sometimes sneak out {when my husband is home} while our two older girls nap and am AMAZED at how EASY it is to *just* have Ce Ce (6months old) with me. {Trust me, I am saying that VERY jokingly---having 1 child is full of challenges. It is now all really relative in comparison.}Now, when we had our first daughter, it was a huge transition for me to go from being a very successful career woman to a stay-at-home Mom, but now I can honestly look back on *just* having 1 child and fondly reminisce about taking naps with her. Ahhh, the "good ole days," LOL! Enjoy the blog post, I hope you find it amusing, too!

Maybe you have been there. I remember having my one toddler. I was so patient. So kind. He was always breastfed to sleep. He was worn in a sling. He was loved all the time. He never cried for long periods. I was such a great mom. It was nice.

I remember seeing other women with two or more children. "Why are they so crazy?" I would ask myself. "Why are they so overwhelmed?" Or a really great one, "Why do they keep having kids when they don't seem to be handling the ones they have that well?"


Sorry, I just needed to take a moment to laugh out loud at myself and my total arrogance and lack of understanding.

Fast forward. I now have three. There will be another one this summer. OH MY GOSH! Four kids.

I actually once saw a friend of mine take a tranquilizer because she was having such a hard time with her kids. I think I was just kind of in shock.

I get it now. I am not saying I take tranquilizers, just that I UNDERSTAND why you might want to on certain days. Just saying.

When you have more than one child you start to learn a few things:

~ You are not a perfect mom. Maybe with one you were. But not with three, and sure as heck not when you are full term and have a few others who can easily outrun you. Yelling starts to look REAL good.

~The first one (or second or third) was just easy. You were not actually doing everything right. It was actually just the child. (Oops on all the times you gave other women advice on how to get their baby to sleep through the night, huh?!) No, you don't have any special knowledge, you just got lucky.

~The other one, was just hard. You did not do anything terribly and horribly wrong. Neither did that friend you had with the "naughty" or "out of control" toddler. It was just a harder child or a difficult stage and you were just seeing them at a bad moment.

~Everybody has bad moments. You might have to have a few kids before you see yourself have a bad moment. But wait, it is coming. Sometimes you see a mom in one of her horrid moments. Don't judge her. It is just a MOMENT. She is not actually crazy and it will pass.

~Even though you appear nuts, you love your kids and want MORE. Yes, your hands are full. No you can not afford them. Yes, you sometimes mix up their names. This is not actually an indicator that you have trudged too far down the path of insanity. It is just LIFE. And life can be hard, but children are still awesome. You see the beautiful moments, where everybody gets along and where there is just a touch of the divine in your home.

~There is a reason women with more than one child say things like, "Yes, but I have 4 kids!" like it is an accomplishment. Or the other thing those mom's say, "You only have one."
They are not actually trying to insult you. They just know that with only one child there are a few things that you might not understand yet. And the whole. "I have X amount of kids comment," well, it is kind of an accomplishment. And it does explain some things in your life. Like the the messy purse/car/ or emotional state.

So, to all those mom's out there who I looked at with horror as you yelled or lost patience or cried in public. I apologize. I get it. I am getting mine. Thank you for actually making it look easier than it really is.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving Week {Part 2}

So, this is a continuation of our Thanksgiving Week Wrap-Up.
We have really had an awesome week and our Thanksgiving turned out to be incredible!
 Our original plans included some extended family coming to visit, but they changed their plans and so we had a nice and quiet Thanksgiving at home--well, as quiet as it 
can be in a family of 5, LOL!!

The girls were VERY helpful and really learned a lot in the area of "practical living" this week. We did a LOT of cooking and incorporated math in the measuring (fractions, ounces, weights, measures etc) as well as some science in the baking and cooking techniques we used.

We probably all remember doing this as children and I have been wanting to do this with our children as well. We studied how plants absorb water through their roots and did the celery in dyed water experiment as our {Science Spotlight}. The girls loved it and love seeing how the stalks are changing colors and the stems have colored "veins" running through them now.

The girls did an AMAZING job helping us prepare the Thanksgiving dinner!! I am a firm believer in teaching children the artful skill of delicious (and usually very healthy) cooking from a young age! Our girls all love to cook and we love having them help in the kitchen (though it takes a lot longer and is usually a lot messier, it is so worth it!)

Our menu included: Roast turkey with mushroom pan gravy, macaroni and cheese, corn casserole, sweet potato souffle, greens with smoked turkey, sauteed green beans with bell peppers and onions, mushroom sage dressing, orange-infused cranberry sauce, rolls and homemade butter. For dessert, I made my Grandma Daisy's famous two-layer baked cheesecake and a sinfully good pecan caramel tart in bars. It was all very delicious!

Elle and Em had such a fun time creating the decorations for our Thanksgiving dinner! They insisted we still eat in the formal dining room and they wanted to set the table 
with the good china, too!

Our plumply, dumply pumpkins, our giving tree and our thankful jar all 
proudly displayed by our girls.
 Here is a peak at some of the spread we had---I wish I knew how to cook for a few instead of an army, lol!

 Yes, I know--my turkey falls apart (even though I truss it) and it doesn't look nearly as pretty as the ones on the magazine covers, but it tastes so tender and juicy!! 

 I even made homemade whipped topping for the pecan bars! (hmmm, now I have to sneak in the kitchen for one more;)

And since it was Ce Ce's 1st Thanksgiving and she is 6 and a half months old now, we decided to give her her first taste of food. We always have made our own baby food and believe in introducing green vegetables first in an effort to train our baby's taste buds to enjoy vegetables and then whole grains and fruits.
Ce Ce really enjoyed her green beans, LOL!

We also had one of our famous "Friday Family Movie Nights." We haven't had one in many months (I don't think even since Ce Ce has been born). The girls had a great time snuggling in the sleeping bags my Mom bought for them, popping popcorn and watching "Madagascar." We always enjoy movie night and hope this is tradition we will carry on for many, many years!

One of my fondest childhood memories was from spending time with my maternal extended family. Whenever we would see them at Thanksgiving, it was a family tradition to make turkey hash for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving. I called my Mother and asked her how to make it so I could pass this along to our family!

It was so good---now, to find other ideas for the leftover turkey and sides, LOL!!

And, finally---in preparation for Christ-mas---we brought up the Christ-mas tree!! We have never put it up this early, but now that we have 3 children, we know it will likely take a few days to get it all decorated. We have gotten the lights put on, but that is about all.

The girls were SOOOO excited to put up the tree!! I already got Ce Ce's embroidered stocking and cannot wait to hang them all on the fireplace mantel!

What?? Your girls don't dress up to put up your Christ-mas tree? LOL!!
Well, that has been our week thus far! Very full, very exhausting, but very, very blessed! 
We hope we are a blessing to you!

UPDATE: The tree and mantle are complete!
 Happy Holidays!!


Thanksgiving Week Wrap-Up!! {Part 1}

We have had a wonderful Thanksgiving week!! It started out a bit lagging because I was highly disappointed that our Thanksgiving was not going to turn out as "planned." BUT, God gave me the grace to plow through, remain flexible and make the most of what we DO have (counting my blessings and remaining grateful- "Give thanks in all circumstances." I Thesselonians 5:18 comes to mind)!

We did have a regular school week for the most part, but the BEST part of the week was having my husband home Weds-Sunday!! Oh, we LOVE when Daddy is home--it makes our days go even faster, but they are so much more fun! What is it about Daddy that brings the "fun factor" into the day?? I often wonder about this...

On our Learning Chart for this week:
Letter G, Number 2, and our Bible Verse "Give thanks to the lord, for he is good. His love endures forever."  Our godly character trait/action for the week was giving. Each week, we focus on a different trait to instill in our girls {got to make sure they are firmly rooted in a godly foundation.}

The girls had their memory verse totally memorized on Monday of this week! We are always amazed at their absorbent minds and how much they retain so quickly! Em really loved this verse and at the end added "his love endures forever and ever, and ever, and ever!" We thought this was so cute--I wish I could get it on video and post it here!

Letter G is for GYM!!

We recently joined a WONDERFUL Homeschool Gym class in our town!! The girls LOVE going each week and really look forward to it! Elle is old enough to formally be in the class, but the church has a wonderful play room for toddlers/babies and Em loves going there and playing while Elle is in gym class. Plus, the gym teacher is so kind, he allows all the siblings to join in some free play time between classes;-) I even get a chance to get some exercise and run around with the kids--it is a lot of fun for everyone! This is especially nice since it has gotten cold here and we will be spending more time indoors. Plus, it gives our girls another nice opportunity to socialize with other homeschooled children and their families. We have met some really nice homeschoolers through this class and look forward to 
taking field trips with them as well!

Ce Ce and Em playing while Elle is in Gym class.

Also, G is for Grandma! My Mother-In-Law has been coming over and spending some time with the girls recently. They always look forward to seeing her and 
getting special "Grandma time!"

We have had a blast reading all types of Thanksgiving-themed books this week! Here are a few of our favorites!!

This week's Science Experiment:
"G is for Glue."

 We had a really fun time making glue! The girls couldn't believe the goopy mixture was going to actually become sticky and hold!

 I LOVE how excited Elle gets about learning new things!

We created Books of Thanks this week in celebration of Thanksgiving. 
We had the girls go through some magazines and cut out pictures of some of their favorite things-things that they are thankful for. Then, they cut them out and glued them inside of a booklet we printed and colored a cornucopia. It was a great activity related to thanksgiving and a fun craft as well!

 Em REALLY LOVES reading her Book of Thanks! She keeps telling everyone "I made this" and telling all of the things she is thankful for--what a blessing;) Plus, Elle has been VERY patient and listens to her read the book over.and.over.and.over.again, lol!

Here is our Letter G drawer--(girl, glitter, goat, guitar) from our Alphabet Box. We always have so much fun with these little treasures! Em is even doing a really good job of coming up with words that start with the letter G;)

Just so I could get started on the massive amount of cooking we did for Thanksgiving, we let the girls have a little screen time on starfall. They really enjoyed creating an avatar and Elle did an EXCELLENT job reading and navigating the site!! I was so proud of how well they worked as a team and discovered lots of new and fun ways to learn using the computer!

We had absolutely NO idea what Em was making here, but she took her time and came up with this design all by herself;) She was so proud of her work--Elle wanted to hopscotch on it, lol.

 I guess it's not so bad when your kids would rather play with their
books than their toys, LOL! Elle did a pretty nice job of sorting her books by size. She also will sort them by genre.
 Here are some of their corn crafts for Thanksgiving.
 The girls thought it was really fun painting with q-tips! I wish I would've had some actual corn cobs they could've painted with--next time!

Well, there is a look at part 1 of our Thanksgiving Week! Stay tuned for more;)
As always, thank you so much for reading! We sincerely hope you are inspired by something you see on our blog! We appreciate your comments and wish you blessings!


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