Chapter 12 {2011}

Eliana came to me one day complaining that she never has any fun. Well, if you know me, you know that I try to make school fun. So, I pulled up my learning blog and showed her some of the fun we have had recently, then I asked her if we could make a list of all the things that she thinks is fun. Here is her list in the order she gave them to me and exactly as she told them to me. . .

Elli's list of things that are fun:

  • doing school

  • having gifts

  • drawing pictures together

  • spending time together

  • being thankful for what we have

  • finding stuff

  • making people laugh

  • watching movies together

  • shopping together

  • taking pictures

  • going places together

Elli's little love language seems to be gifts and quality time. =) She is turning 5 next month so I've been trying to do everything on her list.

Sweet little thoughts from Elli. . .

Elli's little love note to me. 12.2.11

"Mommy loves me and I love her. . ."  and something about me being the best mom in the whole wide world. . . and a few other sweet thoughts. :)


Sweet Sleeping Boy 12.3.11

Luke used to video the boys at night when they were younger. He misses doing that. I've tried a few times to photograph the older boys while sleeping. . . but they won't let me.  Malachi has been sleeping with Dylan lately. He used to always only sleep with Nathan but Nathan makes him scratch his back for 20 minutes if he wants to sleep with him. Nathan LOVES having his back scratched or rubbed, and Mali loves him so much but 20 minutes is too long for him. Dylan is so easy to get along with (and I imagine Mali gets to sleep much sooner). 

Boaz is growing. . .he's adventurous and busy and always keeps me on my feet. He's found a way to climb up on the children's school desks. . . via the rain gutter book shelf. I found him one day on TOP of the desks, reaching for the thermostat. . . everything that was on the white board and desks were strewn about the dining room floor. He's walking now. . .and busy as EVER and I love every second of him and his little life.


In our homeschool this month we've been rowing a book a week. We've rowed: Mike Mulligan and His Steam ShovelWarm as Wool, A New Coat for Anna and Very Last First Time. I ♥ homeschooling and I ♥ our curriculum!

I have the next three rows planned out and I've been working on our school plan for next year. I ordered several more books to make our Five in a Row collection more complete for Volumes 1-3 and I'm hoping that I will have enough books to get us through one more year. I also ordered Volume 4 and the literature package for the next year. I was nervous to buy Vol. 4 because of the price tag, but it looks good.

We are also plugging along in our All About Reading and All About Spelling ~ more to come soon on my learning blog. 

I'm so blessed to be teaching a curriculum that I love to teach and that my children love to learn with. :)

The older boys are doing well with My Father's World. I'm due for an update on my learning blog and may write one soon. We are scrambling to finish up our first 18 weeks by the first week in January. We are supposed to have our semester break that week.

This month, I am so thankful for so many things, but a few that stick out to me are. . .

  • Boaz turning one year old this month - we are so blessed to have him in our family

  • falling in love with my husband all over again and that he is so supportive and helpful {and loving}

  • support, friendship and fellowship {I long for more at times but am content with what Father has for me in this season of my life} 

My favorite meal this month was Mexican Lasagna. It is like enchiladas - definitely a keeper! I've made several pans of this.

I made these for a game "night" one day. 

I also made homemade salted caramels with pecans, brownies and a few other sweets that would incriminate me. I need to get off this sugar kick I am on. I've been fighting a cold and I win if I stay off sugar.

Luke is so sweet to think of me often. This day, he took me to get a peppermint mocha (with a half a shot of decaf).

Another day, he left some yarn (in my favorite color) and a new set of knitting needles by my computer with a love note.  He does little things here and there and I don't always think to write them down. . . but I notice and love each and every one.

Once he said something sweet, and I looked at him sideways and gave him a BIG wink. ;-) LOL This is funny because Eliana does this whenever I praise her and she has the CUTEST wink (so I try to do it just like she does).  It made him laugh. :)

We had a family over for dinner today. It was a nice time of fellowship. Of course, when the 16 of us get together it is always fun. . . and noisy. Love it!


It was Luke's idea to invite them over. I've not been brave enough to make the move myself. Most days it is hard enough to get up, feed everyone, do school, chores, etc. that I can't imagine having to make sure the house is clean AND cook a nice meal for company.  I made up most of the food the night before, Luke and the boys helped me clean and it went well. He has a list of people that he would like to invite over (or have me bake for) - mostly people that are lonely or old. :)  

Eliana just looked so sweet that I had to take her picture this day. . . 


Bo was playing so sweetly with his digger truck. . .


and making the cutest motor noises. :)

I've not been feeling well this week (12.14.11). I think I have a very mild case of the flu - headaches, weakness and dizziness. I'm so thankful that I did not get a full blown case of influenza. I did have a clumsy moment and tripped and flipped over the baby gate. I was only a little sore, thankfully, and not really hurt.

Shopping trip to Costco. I have to laugh because we went several places before Costco but I didn't spend ANY money. I laughed that I wasn't in the mood to spend money. . .um, just not anywhere but Costco. LOL. I think we spent the most we have ever spent. Besides groceries (sugar, vanilla, chocolate chips, whole wheat pancake mix, orange juice, turkey bacon, roast beef and rolls for Sabbath since we were shopping on prep day, potatoes, cheese, lettuce, tortilla chips, olive oil, stewed tomatoes, crackers, truffles and salted caramels. . .),  I bought Luke some running shoes ($40), printer ink ($55) and Adobe Photoshop Elements 10 ($80). I tried to get him to put the last one back (having second thoughts), but he insisted.

We had lunch at Q'doba before shopping (me and Costco on an empty stomach. . . uh, uh).


I love Q'doba because it is the ONLY vegan/vegetarian friendly restaurant that I KNOW of. The cheese is clean (no animal rennet) and the beans are vegan. And everything is homemade.


After our trip - waiting for Luke to load up the Burb. . .

Eliana had a salted caramel and Bo wanted it. . .

I've caught him several times with treats that WERE the older kids' - that boy.

Later that evening. . .


Nathan is my helper in the kitchen but the older boys were at Grandma and Papa's watching a football game so Malachi stepped up to help. Love what a BIG boy he is when he is the biggest in the house.

Co-op order came today 12.18.11 ~ a case of organic juicing oranges (of which I have been juicing) a case of apples, some RRL tea,  a case of organic corn tortillas, a case of olives, shampoo bars, a 5 gallon bucket of Biokleen, chicken feed. . .

I was excited to get these old fashioned shampoo bars. Organic shampoo is expensive and doesn't always work the greatest. These bars are about $4 (so half the price at least).

I haven't tried it yet, but the boys like it. It's supposed to leave your natural oils so you don't need a conditioner. I've tried it on Bo and Eliana and their hair is soft and combs easily. So far so good. Love the little wooden crate to hold the bar. 

Also excited to get a case of RRL tea. I've been on a coffee kick {decaf} and needed to get off it. I love RRL and it is good for me. I drink it with raw honey and half and half (if I have it) or milk. 

Nathan got his first deer hunting with Pop and Grandpa L ~ here he is standing in the back of the truck with the deer.


Here is a text I want to remember. :)


It's kinda fun to text with an online friend - makes her feel more like an IRL friend. :)

Something else that made me smile this month:

Tea from an online friend. Thank you!

It's so pretty.


That is a special tea tasting mug. :) Designed for the senses. 

And might I just say that this tea is "heaven." Heaven for mamas with babies. :) 

Another thing that made me feel special:

Eliana was all over this spa basket. It also came with some special things for school. Sending out a special thank you to another dear online friend. :)

I feel so blessed to have thoughtful friends. . . even if we have never "met."

Eliana and I spent some time together today - just us.

We rented a movie {and then lost the movie and had to buy it, ha ha!}.


We went shopping to buy a gift for Boaz.

She was having a hard time deciding and it was getting close to dinner time so I had to encourage her to choose. She picked out a corn popper, but I think she would have liked to have more time to shop. . . she's like me - she wanted just the perfect gift. I think Bo likes it, though. :)

Then we went to Starbuck's drive through for a hot cocoa.

And I owe Starbucks $1.33 because I couldn't find my bank card (which was actually Luke's because I couldn't find my wallet). I retraced my steps back to WW, but couldn't find it. I called Luke and had him call the bank - and we ordered new bank cards and started using our other account (the one I use for online purchases and savings). Dylan found my wallet in the diaper bag! I've been so scatterbrained lately. :-/

I put Bo's shoes on him so that he could walk next door to visit Betty, but he wanted nothing to do with walking in those shoes. . .


. . . until he got outside. He LOVES being outside. 

I'm still planning on making homemade marshmallows (the kosher gelatin I ordered came today - 12.28.11) but I went ahead and made the hot cocoa stirrers to have with hot cocoa for the new moon this month.  They were SO good.  SO glad I decided not to do both projects at the same time! 


We've had some good snow falls this month followed by some sunny weather. I love this time of winter as it is new and doesn't seem so long. January and February are cold and long and I long for spring.

Today (12.30.11), it was so nice. I took Mali, Elli and Bo for a walk to the video store to return the new DVD I ordered (love Amazon Prime 2 day shipping). He was nice and said if I ever find the old one I can trade for the new one. I'm pretty sure it is gone. I think Bo may have thrown it away. Elli went through that stage where everything on the floor was "trash." I can still hear her cute way of saying it. I once found my cell phone in the "trash" though!

After the video store, we walked to the library and I let Bo out to walk.

And play.

More from this month: A Day in the Life of Bo and What I Love About You for his 1st Birthday. ♥

Jordan helped me think of the title for my post - chapter 12 is for month 12. :)