Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Birthday Rebecca!!!

Happy Birthday to my beautiful Rebecca! I can't believe that you are 13 years old already. That sounds so old in some ways - and yet you are still my little girl. What an amazing 13 years it has been to have you in our family!

I've been thanking God for you since the day I found out about you (on Christopher's 2nd birthday). I haven't stopped thanking Him either! What an incredible gift He has given us - and many others - in YOU! I wanted a daughter named Rebecca even before I was married. I'm so very thankful for you as you are more than I ever hoped for in a daughter.

There are so many things I could write about you - I'm not sure where to start. Perhaps with your precious heart. Your heart that reaches out to others - constantly. You are always wanting to help and often find ways to do things on your own. You began giving things to the homeless on the way to church. You started your own business making and selling bracelets to raise money for babies with heart problems (like your little sister). You are eager to participate in other projects like Samaritan's Purse and making things for the children in the local homeless shelter. Just recently, you decided that you wanted to have birthday gifts be a donation to Reece's Rainbow, an organization that helps with the adoption of children with Down syndrome from other countries. You are a beautiful example to me of a giving and selfless person.I love your creativity and eye for beautiful things. I enjoy seeing the things that you make – like the beautiful ornament last year for Christmas. I appreciate your attention to detail and desire to make things special – like at our recent Japanese meal. You went above and beyond anything I would have done by making placecards with Japanese characters, hanging lanterns and making the table beautiful.


I love your willingness to help others – starting at home. You do so much for all of us. I am thankful that you are willing to help your siblings in so many ways from fixing meals to helping with therapies and schooling. Our home runs so much smoother because you are always willing to jump in and help wherever you are needed.

I am thankful for your work ethic. You are a hard worker who will do things without waiting to be asked. You are diligent in doing your chores and ready to take on extra when asked or needed. You work hard and with a good attitude. Your example is a blessing.

I am thankful that you know Jesus as your Saviour. It’s so evident in your life – from the way you treat others to the way that you live day to day. I’m thankful for your desire to be more like Him and to reflect His love in your words and deeds. I thank God for you Rebecca and for the ways that you teach me more about Him.

There is so much more I can say about you sweet girl! Rebecca, you are beautiful through and through. You are a precious child of the King. I’m so very blessed to call you daughter and am so thankful for these years we’ve had. I’m looking forward to many more.

Happy Birthday precious Rebecca!

I love being your mom and I love you! 


Sunday, November 23, 2008

NOV - Quick Catch-up on a variety of things

Well, now that November is almost over, I'm going to write about some of the things that have been going on around here. 

Football - Christopher's team played in the Championship game the first week-end in November.  He team was undefeated this year going into the game.  It was a beautiful day - and great game too if you were a Saints fan!  I loved watching them play and appreciated again the good sportsmanship that is stressed to these young men!  It was an excited season!

Praying for a player who is hurt while the game is stopped. 

Keepers of the Faith - For the month of November, we worked on the Pie Baking badge.  Yum!  I think this one is going to be enjoyed by the whole family.  The girls learned a variety of things about types of pies and types of crusts.  They also made a pie to take home.  If you want to read more, you can visit my KOF blog post here

Field Trip - We had planned to attend a field trip which was cancelled at the last minute.  Really last minute due to weather.  Since we were already on the road, we made a spontaneous trip to the Science museum.  First though, we made a short stop at Krispy Kreme for a yummy mid-morning snack.  We watched the doughnuts being made and enjoyed our treats.  I had a pumpkin one and it was so yummy.  Eliana tried a little of it - though not much.

Next to the Science Museum in Raleigh - a great place for a rainy day (plus it's free!).

This little girl loves to climb and found a little nook behind a display that was just the right size for her.  Speaking of size ...

I love photos from behind and this one I thought was really cute of little Eliana and her big friend Dillon.

We attended a program on animals while we were there.  The teacher allowed the children to touch some of the animals - a rabbit, snake and bird.  Eliana was thrilled with this!  Can you see the delight on her face?  The teacher was quite taken with Eliana.  I like it when other people enjoy my children.

We spent some time in a hands-on nature room.  There were discovery boxes, microscopes, dress-up, toys and more!  We enjoyed this spotaneous outing with our friends!

Visitors  - My Mom and Dad came to visit.  We always enjoy spending time with them.  Eliana really took a liking to my Dad and spent a lot of time playing with him.  I think he really liked that too!

Here are a few more things that I'll post about separately.

*Our FIAR homeschool group's Family Event - an amazing cooperative event!

*Eliana's dedication

*Awesome field trip

*An incredible ministry that our family is supporting

*Fashion event

We also have some fun upcoming things this week, including Rebecca's birthday in just a few more days!  It's hard to believe she is almost 13!  My baby is becoming a young woman right before my eyes.  She is such a delight to me!

More later - hopefully not too much later.  I'll end with a few fun pics of Eliana.  She is enjoying this twirly dress.  I love her facial expressions!





Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Last bit of October - a field trip to Jordan Dam on 10/30

Some of you may be shocked – but this is my last post for October – and I’ll be starting November ASAP. Yippee!!!  There are so many fun things I want to share. :-) It’s a good problem.   The not so good problem is our computer - it's very, very slow.  I keep thinking it's on it's last leg.  We'll see. 

This was another wonderful field trip.  We visited Jordan Dam.  We had beautiful weather which was so very nice! 

This is the dam.

This is the view looking in the opposite direction.  It's really lovely out there!

First, the rangers gave us a brief history of the dam to our group.  We were then split in half by age.  The younger children focused on learning a variety of things which would enable them to earn a Junior Ranger badge.  They learned about various animals that live in the area from snakes to foxes to squirrels and more. 

Then they went inside and listened to a story and made ranger hats to wear. 

At the same time, the older children were learning about water quality by playing a hands-on game called Macro-Invertebrate Mayhem.  It looked like a lot of fun.

We then gathered together again for a quiz.  Two groups (mixed ages) played against each other to see how much they knew and had learned. 

We then walked to the dam for a special presentation.

The younger children were presented their Junior Ranger badges.  It was a neat ceremony.

We then went to a lovely park, with lots of green space, at the bottom of the dam.  This was a great place for a picnic and to play.  It was a lovely day! 

Just had to include one of my littlest cutie pie.  Doesn't she look like a big girl?!

I'm so thankful for the opportunity to learn in this manner with my children.  It's really a lot of fun!



Tuesday, November 18, 2008

State Fair - Oct Retropost

Yes, I'm getting close to winding up Oct - and have much to share already about November!  I'm trying to catch up but our computer is very, very slow these days and it makes it hard to upload photos sometimes.   

 We went to the State Fair this year.  It's something we enjoy doing every year.  We had the pleasure of going with dear friends.  The food, the crafts, the rides, the animals - so much to enjoy and there is something for everyone! 

Just liked this photo of Joshua and Isaiah. 

Rebecca entered several items in the fair and won ribbons!  She entered a mobil.  She made paper stars and won a 3rd place ribbon. 

She also entered a Christmas ornament.  She made this as a gift for me last year and it is so beautiful - and fragile.  She won a 4th place ribbon for this.  There was a note on it that the judges thought this was beautiful and it would have won money had it not been so fragile.  This was meant to encourage Rebecca - and hopefully one day it will - though I think it made her a little sad.  It's a good lesson though on details and finishing things well. 

We enjoyed seeing some of the prize winning vegetables and animals. 

Daddy and his little girl! 

I should have gotten a photo of Christopher with food - he loves the variety and takes advantage of it too! 

This was in front of a really fun exhibit on foods in  North Carolina. 

Each of the children received a basket and then collected various foods through out the exhibit.  Even Eliana was given a basket. 

It was too big to carry for long - but it was still fun.  When the children finished collecting food, they were given money in exchange for the food.  They could use this to buy a bag that included an apple, peanuts and a pencil.  A good trade.

We enjoyed the rides - the bumper cars were a hands-down favorite for my family.  They did this one several times and I saw lots of smiles.  There is more - and more photos too - but in the interest of catching up, I'm going to stop here.  Here is one last photo of my little sweetie and I.



Sunday, November 16, 2008

Field Trip - Oct 16 to Duke Homestead - Retropost (again!)

We continue to enjoy wonderful field trips with our Five in a Row homeschool group.  I'm thankful to be a part of the wonderful group of families.  We go on field trips every other month and I enjoy these so much.  One of our trips this month was to Duke Homestead which is one of our State Historic Sites.  (Click on the name if you'd like to visit the website.) 

Because we had a large group, we were split in half to participate in the planned activities.  We started with a film in which we learned what life was like on a farm in the early 1900s.  Next, the children learned how to play townball.  It is similar to baseball in some ways, though different enough that the younger children were not at a disadvantage in playing.  It was a lot of fun!

Listening to instructions.

My biggest and smallest boys.

It is hard to tell, but the bat is longer than a typical bat and flat.

The children ran clockwise around 4 bases (not including "home").  The tall sticks in the ground are bases.

Next, we did an archeology project.  The children worked in groups to discover things hidden in a box of sand.  They learned about measuring and recording data.  They then discussed what they might learn from the things that they found.  My younger boys loved doing this!

Lastly, we learned about food preservation.  They talked about types of foods eaten and how to save or preserve them.  They helped to churn butter and then ate some buttered bread.

When we finished, we had a picnic lunch at the site.  It was a beautiful fall day and it was a great time to relax, play and spend time with friends. 



Thursday, November 13, 2008

Catch-up post for Oct


We spent a lot of the month involved in sports - soccer for Rebecca (practice once per week and games once per week) and football  for Christopher (practice twice per week and games once per week). 

Soccer is a sport we've been involved in for the last 12 years.  I just counted, has it really been that long?  Christopher started playing the year he was 4.  One year we had 3 children playing - and Roger was the coach for 2 of the teams.  That was a nutty year!  This year, Rebecca is the only soccer player.  She enjoys the sport and is a good player.  I enjoy watching her run, pass, score - and just have fun!

Football is a new sport of us.  Christopher is playing in the homeschool football league.  There isn't a team in Durham, so he joined the Raleigh team that he played flag football with in the spring.  Unfortunately, the practices ended up being moved about 30 min away in a new location - which was about an hour away for us!  It was worth the drive though.  The focus on learning the sport, while also learning the importance of your relationship with God was wonderful.  They stressed being good team players, respect for others and basics of the game.  The spent time in devotions and prayers at every practice and game. 

Christopher plays defensive end.  He enjoys defense.  His team is strong - they were undefeated this year.  In some of the games, when they got off to a strong and early lead, the coaches would scramble their positions to try to balance things between the teams.  This helped to balance things out a little bit.

At one of the games, Christopher's team was off to a very strong, early lead and the positions were again scrambled.  Only this team the offensive players were on defense and vice versa!  It was fun watching Christopher play a different position - and really exciting when he caught a pass for a touchdown!!!  We were sitting at the end of the field and had a great position to view it all.  There was lots of cheering going on!  Eliana has even learned to sign "touchdown" which is really cute.


We loved having our friends from VA come down to visit.  We enjoyed lots of activities from watching football and soccer, making cards with our Keepers group and just hanging out having fun.

For those who are curious, we are eating paella and tapas to go with one of our FIAR book titles - The Story of Ferdinand.  It was a yummy meal!

We also enjoyed having my sister and niece visit us while Daniel was having his MRI.

Keepers of the Faith

We met in October to learn about card making.  This was my class to teach and it was a lot of fun!  We learned to work with different tools and do different techniques.  I had planned for each girl to make 4 cards.  It was fun to see how they did things their own way to add in their creative style.  Here's a picture of the girls with their cards.

If you want more details on this class, you can visit my KOF blog HERE.

I just thought this was a fun picture of Joshua and Isaiah being "spies" with the new spy kit they received for their birthday. 

Just a fun couple of pictures of Eliana.

 I love this cute little outfit on her. 

When we ask Eliana a question now, she will often do this.  LOL  It doesn't really help answer the question, but it does give us one more thing to chuckle about.

I still want to add in another field trip and some pics of our time at the State Fair - then I'll be caught up with Oct - and on to Nov.  ;-)

Blessings to you and yours!