Last time I wrote we were looking forward to playing in our Chicago back yard...how quickly things change!
We have moved to Columbus, IN. Elias got an offer from Cummins and we couldn't pass up the opportunity to come back home. We spent the summer renting from my parents and house hunting and we have just officially moved in to our new home as of last week.
I FINALLY finished my last college course on Saturday. No more school (well...for me)!
Anna will be turning 7 in a month and Logan will be turning 2 at the end of January and some time in between we will add baby #4 to our family. Lord willing everything will go smoothly and we will have baby girl Lucia before Christmas.
So we are taking our summer break from schooling this year in the winter :)
Ok so the report...
Logan is 14 mo. Favorite activities: blowing kisses, vrooming his cars, asking to be tickled, tickling back, climbing and opening things he shouldn't. New skills: finding his belly button, walking, stacking his blocks, smashing fishy crackers with one finger. New words: Bible, Barney, Maria and Anna.
Maria will be 4 on the 30th. Favorite activities: playing pollies, coloring, math (no joke!) Favorite things: Princesses, mermaids, jaguars and bones. New skills: reading, writing her name on walls and furniture (argh!) Not calling Logan a monster 100% of the time.
Anna is 6 going on 16. Favorite activities: (her responses) Go to movies and parties and eat dessert and play with kitties. (She has been to a movie about twice in her life so far) Favorite things:Dolls, princesses, art, science, cats, and chocolate. New skills: writing legibly, pedaling her bike, pouring her own milk, typing.
Anna is officially homeschooling. Maria can't bear to be left out. Luckily Logan still takes a long morning nap.
I have just enrolled in school again after a 4 year hiatus. I have 3 courses to finish my English major. It is refreshing to think academic thoughts again.
Elias is rejoicing that all our house/yard projects passed inspection - we're done! I'm looking forward to the kids playing outside once it gets warm.
We are very blessed.
I thought that I had better simplify - so all year have been facebooking instead of Pleo-ing. I missed Pleo - especially the groups. You just can't find them anywhere else. So I'm back. Now I gotta go tend to the babies - more later.
Okay I'm officially a horrible pleonast member... Logan is 6 weeks old! He is (so far) an incredibly easy going baby. His birth was similar - 3 hours of labor 5 minute delivery (no joke!) He generally spends alot of time in his wrap - kangaroo style, or in his swing where Anna loves to seranade him - her favorite tune at the moment is "jingle cats" :) We are getting back to a normal routine faster than I expected...Schooling, going to the library, etc. I am so used to waking up in the middle of the night from Maria and the last trimester that apart from being totally wiped out at bedtime I don't notice a big difference. I am waiting for this newborn honeymoon phase to end and the reality of 3 kids to set in (People keep telling me its like a bomb dropping). In general I just cannot believe how blessed we are. I am so proud of Elias for how he completely took over that first week and has continued to pitch in with the girls and the house much more than I expected. Anna and Maria are much closer friends than before the baby came and although more playing together means more squabbles, they are learning so fast!
I feel like a braggart when I talk about my family. I could keep going on and on. I can wholeheartedly say that my cup runneth over...God has blessed us to no end. It is a sobering thought when I try to understand the responsibility such (physical and spiritual) riches imply. I know I am completely and utterly unworthy of the blessings we enjoy. I just pray that God will also provide us opportunities to share them and eyes to see those opportunities and the will to pursue them fully.
Well here we are nearing the end of fall - Thanksgiving is around the corner... We have had a revolution in our home and it is called homeschooling. Because I want to do 2 hrs. of schooling 4 days a week, I suddenly have the motivation to make routines for so much more...I am keeping up with housework better than ever before because I want the bulk of it done before 9:30 when we start school. Maria's potty training was so simple since are days are already so well ordered - she just graduated to going out wearing her Doras this week. I have also cleaned out 4 extremely cluttered closets this quarter and started a music class once a week at my house, while we have several remodeling projects in and outside the house! (no thanks to pregnancy discomforts).
I can think of very few reasons for this very uncharacteristic productivity and they are 1) Flylady's routines 2) getting the routines done before schooling 3)The girls full schedule thru lunch time means they are content to play until naptime and ready to rest thru the late afternoon. I wish I had "preschooled"!
We are using Sonlight Kindergarten for bible, reading, history and science and Math-u-see for math. I love that the materials are already broken down to the day and have a four and five day option. I only need to do preparation for science. Anna knows what we will be doing and can go get the next book for us to work on. We are reading an extra bible story a day and memorizing scriptures (which we use as copywork. She usually wants to do more than we can fit into schooltime.
As far as the material itself goes though, I am pretty disapointed. The biography book is a "church history" series - including John Calvin, One of the first female preachers, etc. So we aren't using that. The "History" text is a Useborn Encyclopedia and surveys a potpouri of unrelated social activities - 4 pages spent on all of human history (starting of course with the evolution of our species) then on to food, arts, sciences, religions, crafts, holidays, etc. each treated in a two page spread and covered in one day. Not only is the worldliness of this program distasteful (we just skip over the worst pages) but I doubt that Anna will retain anything at all from this book it is so shallow! Science is better, but still pretty random. I definetely will not do sonlight after this year, and am already looking for something else for history (I think I like the classical approach - 4 yr rotation from ancient to modern starting in 1st grade) I may try american heritage for the rest of Kindergarten and then make the switch. Sonlight makes unit studies look deep.
If anyone knows of a good history series (maybe Susan Wise Bauers?) please please please pass it on!
On the baby front...Lord willing we are having a boy! I am due Feb. 6th and I'm having a much rougher pregnancy than with the girls, but I am so grateful to have a 3rd that I really don't care ("we" weren't sure about having more than two) - and I am so excited (tomboy that I am) to expand our families horizons past princesses and fluffy white kitties (not that there is anything wrong with those things - I never discourage!) and so excited that Elias can have someone to share guy stuff with (I am actually more excited than him about it being a boy).
Elias has found a handyman and turned into one himself. They have torn out the existing driveway with pickaxes, refinished the flood damaged basement, enclosed the very ugly front porch, sided it with shingles and installed windows (we get cars stopping so people can gawk now!) and dealt with some nasty sewer problems. They will mix and pour the final section of concrete for the drive on the next sunny day - and Elias has 3 herniated disks and an ever shrinking department at work - needless to say I am proud.
So thats where we are...busy, happy, slightly crippled, enjoying each day until its over and enjoying sleep more than ever before!