Tag Archives: Children

Do Things Scared

There are some massive changes going on in our family this summer. While we’re all excited for them, I have to admit, I’m honestly terrified too. Us moms, we ultimately just want our kids to be happy, well adjusted people, who aren’t turds. I think that’s something we can all agree on. Of course the pathways there are numerous and everyone seems to have an opinion on “what is best”.

As of July 1st, I will be hanging up my hat as a homeschool mom. It’s kind of a struggle, I feel like I’m somehow losing my credentials as a mom. That by not homeschooling I’m giving up and taking a shortcut. 

I shared a few weeks ago about the possibility of our oldest four going to school in the fall. The decisions have been made and teacher assignments are in the mail. Avelyn will be going into second grade and Henry, James, and Ellie will be going to kindergarten.

Academically I think those are the right choices for them, my concern remains for the social aspect. My kids are going to be a full year to two years older than the kids in their grades. Ultimately, that’s not a big deal, because who cares how old you are when you graduate high school.

It’s more my concern that they will stick out. I’m also hoping that their maturity and age will set them apart from their classmates in a good way, that they will have the strength to do and say what is right, and not cave to the negatives of peer pressure.

So yea, I’m nervous. I’m scared. But I’m also hopeful and excited. I think it’s the right time.

People have also assumed that we’ve thrown in towel on homeschooling, we haven’t. It’s just not what is working for us right now. Maybe in a few years we will come back to homeschool, maybe we won’t. We have always said we will take it a year a time. I can’t predict or know what’s going to happen.

The other big change this summer is that the kids are going to overnight camp! It’s just for two nights, but still, that’s a HUGE deal in our house. Our church diocese has a camp they run all summer long. The kids were excited to try their beginner camp, so we will see how it goes.

I’m hoping and praying that it goes well; particularly since I have one child that does not do well with not being home, not that any of them are fantastic at being away. I’m just hoping I’m not making any midnight drives to pick kids up from 3 hours away.

So, yea…big changes for us. Good changes, but still scary. It’s a good thing my motto for the past year has been do it scared.

 

 

Peter Turns THREE!

*sob, sob, sob* yep…all the feels and tears on this one.

  • Weighing in at 33lbs
  • Standing tall (or short compared to his siblings) at 38.25″ (he’s my smallest of the kids)
  • He’s become a bit of a trouble maker: Does something and immediately screams that Henry did it.
  • He’s solidly in 3T now
  • Wearing a size 9 in shoes
  • Down to one nap a day and it’s a fight to get him to go down, but once he does…he sleeps for a few hours.
  • Can count to 12
  • Showing interest in writing his name and drawing
  •  Loves playing in water
  • He’s a HUGE fan of Rescue-bots and Paw Patrol, especially Chase in both shows.
  • Favorite books are We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, Flip Flop Fish, and Love is a Handful of Honey
  • Still loves his Goki and get’s very upset when someone takes it
  • He is a daddy’s boy through and through. He told me last night he doesn’t love me and doesn’t like when I tuck him in, that he wants daddy. Nice, right?

Life Happens – Where I’ve Been for the Past Year or So

I know I kind of fell off the face of the earth for the past, umm year, is it? It’s been a while since I posted anything of any substance, anywhere, longer since I posted anything about my family. I still have drafts I wrote last Summer that I have every intention of publishing…someday. In all honesty, life has been a bit of a struggle for me, the past few months, the past year.

I read something about stress-levels post multiples and how post-partum depression hits later than with singletons. I don’t know if 6 years later is feasible or not. Maybe it is. At just the time they say it hits (2-3 years of age), we had Peter, which didn’t give me the chance to breath…life marched on. There was no time to feel “depressed”.

There’s still no time, but it’s there. The tired, the not caring, the overwhelmed. 

And this is where I always freeze up when it comes to sharing, because no one knows how or wants to admit that they don’t really like themselves or their life sometimes. At least I don’t. And there’s another part that if you are liking who you are becoming or what you are doing, there’s a problem with that too.

I love my husband. I love my kids. I love our home. Sometimes it’s all too much though, too much noise, too much stuff, too many personalities, too many to-dos. And all the too much means there’s not enough of other things…quiet, clean, brain power, focus, clarity.

My mind gets swept along the raging river, bashing into rocks and being sucked under the waves. Sometimes, I’m able to keep my head up, manage to keep afloat amidst the debris, and other times I’m sucked into one of those underwater crevices of a rock and the panic sets in.

They tell me that this is normal, that it’s just “motherhood”. Then why do I feel so alone, despite opening up to others, that no one really is drowning in this as much as I am. I don’t honestly think I’m failing at this, I think I’m doing a pretty darn OK job at mothering these 5, but why does it feel like I’m the only mom that wants to walk away from it, from them?

Last summer my book club read “The Awakening”, and most of the responses of the other moms was how could she leave her children, that she was so selfish for all she was doing…and all I could think was how I “got” what she felt. She would do anything for her children, except kill her “self”.

I’m sure there are many Christian moms that would read this, clutching their pearls, at the very thought of not dying to self, of not living solely for their children. I’m sorry, I can’t, and I don’t honestly think that God wants me to become a shell of a woman for the sake of my children. I don’t for one minute believe that I am supposed to entirely relinquish my interests, identity, or any part of me for my role as a mother.

That said, it’s finding my self, finding the time to remember who I was before any of this, that feels impossible. The part that makes it so impossible is that I’ve always lived for someone else and what they expected of me, so it’s not just FINDING my self, but actually LEARNING who I am, and in that there is a struggle.

When you start figuring out who you are, what your interests are, who you want to be, you have a tendency to piss off people, to disappoint people. You become no longer willing to just make every one else happy, to be a doormat. Suddenly, there’s a whole other part of you. Your interests and opinions and feelings don’t line up with what people expect you to do and be. And that can be a very hard place to be.

It’s very often pointed out that the marriage/husband should be the focus of a family, because after the children are long gone, that will still exist…and it’s true. Your children are your’s for a season, your husband will be your’s until death do you part (baring anything else). But here’s the thing, YOU will be you until forever.

What happens when a spouse dies? You’ve lived your entire life for that person only to not know how to function when they’re gone. I don’t want to do that either. I don’t want to curl up in a ball and not be able to live if something were to happen to my husband, and I know he wouldn’t want that for me, just as I wouldn’t want that for him, no matter how old we were.

Now that I’ve taken this whole big thing to explain what my mental state has been for the past year. I have been in a constant struggle between taking care of my children and husband and taking care of myself. I don’t have an answer on how to manage it. I don’t have a solution.

Sometimes I feel like me. Sometimes I don’t want to get out of bed (I d0 anyways). I’m not sure that there is a way to find a balance between the two, because as soon as I feel like me, I’m hear that I’m failing my family. It’s lovely really *note sarcasm*.

I think the hardest part of my writing and being active on social media, is that I don’t want to be open with certain people in my life. I honestly don’t want to share my struggles with nosy relatives, the neighbors who are just going to gossip, but I don’t know how to cut those ties without insulting someone. So I shut myself up instead. At the time it seems easier.

That said, I am seriously considering going private again as a blogger, because I know I need this space. There are a lot of things that I want to mull over and share and process here, and hopefully in the near future I will be sharing more about things that are going on in my life.

Henry, James, and Elanor Turn Six

Henry 

  • Standing 3′ 11.5″
  • Weighing 53 lbs
  • No more Georgie! But he still has to have his oma blankie at bed time
  • Very much into nerf guns
  • Loves Ninja anything
  • He’s still saying he’s never getting married, that he and his friend Roran are going to be ninjas together
  • His laugh is the best…I hope he never loses it
  • He’s definitely a lefty
  • He’s been fantastic with his math
  • Counting and identify his numbers and letters is still a struggle
  • He is still my most snuggly baby….he’s quite content to sit in my lap
  • He definitely has very strong opinions on things, whether it’s clothes or food, or anything else. He knows what he likes and sees no reason to be flexible about it.

James

  • Standing 4′ 3.25″
  • Weighing 60 lbs
  • Probably the more mature of the three. I sometimes forget how old he is and expect things from him beyond what I do the other two.
  • Has the most massive temper…and Avelyn does a perfect job of setting it off.
  • Loves helping in the kitchen and is always wanting to cook something up
  • He’s big….it’s an understatement. He’s strong, and the days that I can throw him over my shoulder are numbered
  • He loves doing his school work, and honestly between the three he’s probably the more rounded when it comes to his numbers and letters.
  • He’s doing ok with both, but the letters are still a struggle.
  • He has a very kind heart, even if he does fly off.
  • He loves to push….push…push. He definitely is the one who pushes me the most.
  • He’s all about doing what the adults are doing…going in the woods, etc. He’s the one that’s the most interested in hunting.

Elanor

  • Standing 3′ 10.46″
  • Weighing 48 lbs
  • This one…phew! She’s exhausting. I love her like crazy, but she takes a ton out of me.
  • We’re always on an emotional roller coaster. One minute fine and the next in tears.
  • I think we’re dealing with anxiety or ADHD or something.
  • She canNOT focus on her schoolwork.
  • School is the biggest struggle with her. She doesn’t seem to retain anything from one day to the next.
  • She can count and identify a few numbers, letter are not happening.
  • She loves playing with dolls
  • Loves her big sister…she has a really hard time on the nights when Avie goes somewhere for a sleepover
  • Ellie’s love language is absolutely touch. She wants to be next to you constantly. I can always tell when she needs to be loved on because the tears happen more and more constantly.

 

IN THEIR OWN WORDS

HENRY

1. What is your favorite color? Blue
2. What is your favorite toy? Nerf Guns
3. Favorite thing to play? Rainbow Tag
4. What is your favorite fruit? Cherries
5. What is your favorite TV show? Ninjago
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Eggie Sandwich (scrambled egg on toast, with avocado and pepper jack cheese) 
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Mack-y-doodle (mac n cheese)
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Meatballs and Pizza
9. What is your favorite snack? Chip and dip
10. What is your favorite outfit? Batman shirt, black hoodie, and jeans
11. What is your favorite computer game? Lego Star Wars
12. What is your favorite game? Shoot guns with Daddy (Nerf)
13. What is your favorite animal? Dogs
14. What is your favorite song? Transformers’ Theme Song
15. What is your favorite book? Flip Flop Fish
16. Who is your best friend? Roran
17. What is your favorite cereal? Honey nut cheerios
18. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Invite my friends over
19. What is your favorite drink? Milk
20. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas and Birthday
21. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? North Carolina…The beach
22. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My oma blankie, teddy bears
23. What do you want to be when you grow up? A ninja
24. Favorite place to visit? Roran’s House
25.  Least favorite family rule? Obeying
26. Favorite thing about our family? That we play together and go to the pool

JAMES

1. What is your favorite color? Orange
2. What is your favorite toy? Basketball launcher
3. Favorite thing to play? Rainbow Tag and hide and go seek
4. What is your favorite fruit? Sour apples, peaches, and plums, and pears
5. What is your favorite TV show? Transformers Prime
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Egg in a frame, and dippin’ eggs 
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Oooey Gooey Grill Cheese or Turkey Avocado Sandwich or Liverwurst
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Meatloaf
9. What is your favorite snack? Chip and dip
10. What is your favorite outfit? Spiderman Pajamas at night, and my Captain America Shirt and Sweatpants
11. What is your favorite computer game? Disney Games
12. What is your favorite game? Lightening McQueen Racing and Descendants
13. What is your favorite animal? Fishes
14. What is your favorite song? Hush Little Baby
15. What is your favorite book? Harry Potter
16. Who is your best friend? Abby, Roran
17. What is your favorite cereal? Honey nut cheerios and Rice Crispies…mixed
18. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Talking to Roran through the fence and playing at his house
19. What is your favorite drink? Lemon Ade, and apple cider/juice
20. What is your favorite holiday? Halloween and Christmas and Summer
21. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? North Carolina…The beach and Hershey Park
22. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Hootie, Flaggle, and Crockie
23. What do you want to be when you grow up? Car and Motorcycle Racer
24. Favorite place to visit? Baba and PopPauls, and Oma and Opa
25.  Least favorite family rule? When I have to go to bed.
26. Favorite thing about our family? My brothers and sisters, because they play with me, but not that much, because Avie doesn’t play with me, because she doesn’t like me.

 

ELANOR

1. What is your favorite color? Pink
2. What is your favorite toy? My teddy bear, Dr. Wiggles
3. Favorite thing to play? Barbies
4. What is your favorite fruit? Pineapple
5. What is your favorite TV show? My Little Ponies
6. What is your favorite thing to eat for Breakfast? Chocolate Chip Pancakes
7. What is your favorite thing to eat for Lunch? Pasta
8. What is your favorite thing to eat for Dinner? Spaghetti and Meatballs
9. What is your favorite snack? Carrots and ranch dressing
10. What is your favorite outfit? Pants with a tunic top
11. What is your favorite computer game? Pinkalicious
12. What is your favorite game? Rainbow Tag
13. What is your favorite animal? Bunnies
14. What is your favorite song? Can’t Stop the Feeling
15. What is your favorite book? Harry Potter
16. Who is your best friend? Natalie and Madison
17. What is your favorite cereal? Honey nut cheerios
18. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Go on the swings
19. What is your favorite drink? Water and milk
20. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas and Spring and Summer
21. What is your favorite vacation we’ve taken? Hershey Park
22. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? My oma blankie (it’s called Floki) and Dr. Wiggles
23. What do you want to be when you grow up? A ballerina teacher
24. Favorite place to visit? Roran’s House
25.  Least favorite family rule? Cleaning up the house
26. Favorite thing about our family? That we spend time together

 

Our Favorite Books for Thanksgiving

Last year I posted about our favorite Autumn books, with the caveat that I was also going to share our favorite Thanksgiving books, very soon. Well…a year later I’m doing just that. Sorry: Life happens.

I heavily ordered from the library last year, with the recommendations of ReadAloudRevival.com; It was wonderful! Next to Christmas books, Thanksgiving books are my very close second. The librarians were even impressed with the books that I had found, and always wonder how I manage to find such fantastic books!

I tried to keep this list separate from those that we enjoy about Autumn, because while the two are very similar, this list of books is those books that point us to God, being thankful, and the history behind Thanksgiving.

*This post does contain affiliate links: Please read my Disclosure Policy here.

Bold-Italic—Loved for Illustrations and Words
Bold—Loved for Illustrations
Italic—Loved for Words

Our favorite books for Thanksgiving…

 

History and Faith

Thank You, Sarah: The Woman that Saved Thanksgiving by Laurie Halse Anderson  (Author),‎ Matt Faulkner  (Illustrator)

Thanksgiving – A Harvest Celebration by Julia Stiegemeyer

The Pilgrims First Thanksgiving by Ann McGovern

God Gave Us Thankful Hearts by Lisa Tawn-Bergren

Give Thanks to the Lord by Karma Wilson

Giving Thanks: Poems, Prayers, and Praise Songs of Thanksgiving by Katherine Paterson

Our Favorite Books for Thanksgiving

Funny

Cranberry Thanksgiving by Wende and Harry Devlin

Sharing the Bread – An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving Story by Pat Zietlow Miller

Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson

Thanksgiving is Here by Diane Goode

A Turkey for Thanksgiving by Eve Bunting

Our Favorite Books for Thanksgiving

Seasonal Changes

In November by Cynthia Rylant

Sleep Tight Farm by Eugenie Doyle (Author),‎ Becca Stadtlander (Illustrator)

Traditions

Thanksgiving in the Woods by Phyllis Alsdurf

Berenstain Bears Give Thanks

Berenstain Bears Thanksgiving Blessings

 

DO YOU HAVE SOME THANKSGIVING FAVORITES?
WHAT BOOKS DO YOU AND YOUR CHILDREN ENJOY READing in the weeks and days leading up to Thanksgiving?