Sunday, February 21, 2010

Winter Blues

How I long to see these flowers in my front yard again! Winter is so long here. It makes me depressed. I'm cold all the time...tired of trying to keep warm.  I sure am grateful for my electric blanket though, but it's too big to drag around the house during the day : )  We have a little electric heater that we sit in front of during the day when I'm doing school with the kids. That's helpful.

 I'm sitting here in a quiet house (kind of nice) because I just didn't have it in me to get up and go to church with my family this morning.  I cleaned up the kitchen...had lots of pots and pans to wash. I put a rump roast in the oven because my dad is coming for dinner today. It was his birthday last week & we weren't able to get together, so I thought it might be nice to make him a nice meal. He's been having some financial struggles and doesn't have the money to treat himself to meals like this often.

We will be having my famous homemade mashed potatoes (at least they are famous in my family : ) , corn, a salad and of course roast beef with gravy. I think I'm going to make him some banana bread to take home, once the roast is done. I need two ovens : ) He's doesn't really like sweets, so I don't think I'm going to make a cake for him.

I took my 4 year old daugter to a different dentist this past week. I was hoping to find a dentist willing to work with us, in regards to a treatment plan that I was comfortable with,  for her decayed teeth. The only option I was given was to sedate her and he also blamed me for her tooth decay because I nursed her to long. Oh joy!...I guess this is all adding to that depressed feeling. I know it will pass, and the warm weather will be here before we know it....just venting : )

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Our Weekend

We enjoyed a long awaited family get away this past weekend. We drove 6 hours to northwestern New York , so that our son could participate in a race. It was a two day race. Each day he raced 4.9 miles. There was some pretty impressive competition but he did well considering. He placed 11th out of twenty-seven ,4 dog teams. Although the trip was mostly for him, everyone had a great time at the race and the kids loved sleeping in a hotel and going out to dinner : )
Arriving at the race site.

Our daughter standing at the finish line, waiting for her big brother.

My son at the finish line on the second day of the race.

We arrived home late Sunday night. We spent yesterday getting everything back in order. I'm getting ready to start a pot of homemade chicken broth, for soup we will be having for dinner. Then I will get our school day started. Have a great day!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Advantages of Homeschooling

So often when the subject of homeschooling comes up with those that are not familiar with it, you here many of the same questions. "What about friends for your kids?" "What about sports?" "What educational level do you have that qualifies you to teach your children?"  To the latter , I can't come up with a better answer then.... we are their parents...we want what's best for our children....what better teacher then a loving parent.

We as parents know our children. We know their interests. So we encourage and help them persue their interests, the best that we can. They don't need "school" to learn and do the things they love. Actually, I believe one of the biggest advantages of homeschooling is that our children can pursue  interests,that they might not have had the opportunity to pursue had they been in school. As a homeschooling mom I have tried to instill the love of reading and learning in my children. Some of my kids LOVE to read and others not so much, unless of course it's something they are interested in : )  The children of mine that don't love to read are more hands on kind of learners and that's okay. 

Although we do incorporate textbooks into our homeschooling, I've always appreciated real life learning in our homeschooling. I find my kids remember the most that way.
As each new year of homeschooling draws near, I try to take the time to ask my children what they want to learn about or do in their homeschooling for the year.

 One of those years I asked this question, my son said he wanted to learn about mushing and wanted to build a dog sled. So we started researching. We found a blueprint on the internet to make a sled.  My husband who is woodworker by trade helped my son make his homemade sled. Even my son's grandfather had imput on making the sled with his experience in making rocking chairs (homeschooling is family friendly too, even grandpas can participate) We added two more huskies to our family ( we already had two dogs at the time, one of them being a husky). God brought great mentors into my son's life. My son is well on his way to really pursuing his dreams. So what's my point....don't allow the unknown, fears, and doubts of homeschooling, to hinder you.  God is our guide, no matter where our children go to school. He knows the plans He has for our children .

  Below is a picture of my son back in Jan., at a race where he placed first in his class.

Friday, February 5, 2010


After yesterdays post on my home, it got me to thinking about  my dream home. Okay, that does seem a little contradictory to being happy with what you have, but I have to say, I thinking there's nothing wrong with dreaming : )  So let me tell you what my ideal home would be. A log cabin in the woods or an old farmhouse...particularly Victorian, like this one . I love this blog! The author takes you through her Victorian home remodel. Her and her husband do alot of the work themselves.  I have to tell you, this is a beautiful home and she really has some great decorating ideas and she finds great things at thrift shops too.  I will slowly be putting up links to some of my favorite blogs and this is one of them.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My Home

Being a stay at home mom for over 14 years has brought many blessings and struggles to me.  One of the first struggles I experienced as a stay at home mom was loneliness & feeling useless. I use to think if I could bring home a paycheck I could offer so much more to my family. The Lord has brought me a long way in that area, however, and now it's hard for me to imagine being anywhere else but home.

Another area I struggled with (and still do at times) is contentment with my home. I don't know how other SAHM feel but for me being home so often I notice the condition of my home, ALOT more.  There are so many things I would like to change and I find myself getting frustrated when we can't afford to. I would see what other friends homes looked like, compared to mine and that would bring more discontentment. The Lord is teaching me though. Teaching me how to be content with what I have. Over the years I've learned to  get creative and found a few things that allow me to decorate and make my home cozy and comfortable but still do it within our means. They are ...using what I already have, garage sales, flea markets, thrift shops, clearance shopping and paint.  

 In the first picture below is a set of pottery dishes (with flowers) that were passed down to me by a family member. I knew that I wanted to display them but realized you didn't really notice them that much against a cream colored wall.  So I found paint that matched one of the colors in the dishes and painted just the wall that the dishes would be displayed on. I think it really makes the dishes stand out.  Although the picture doesn't do it justice.
In the dining area of my kitchen all of the things you see in the picture (except for the curtains) I either found on clearance, at a flea market or garage sale or they were given to me. The dining table was given to me. I sanded it down and painted the legs and put a fresh coat of polyurethane on the top. The table has gotten too small for our family, but I am eyeing a dining set that I found at second hand store. Hoping to save some money to purchase it.
This last picture is a view of our living room from the kitchen. I love how it's all open. I can always see what the kids are doing when I'm busy in the kitchen.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Homescool Fears & Doubts

February already! I can't believe it's been a few months since I've posted anything on here! Our life has been busy and full of decisions. So much going on and so many discouraging moments. At this time, homeschooling has been one of those discouragements. Every new year of homeschooling I'm filled with enthusiasm but then something happens and I lose it. I often ask myself why am I doing this? It doesn't seem to be making a difference in the lives of my children. Things are not as I hoped they would be or how I expected them to be. I feel like I've failed.

Just recently I had an acquaintance ask me about homeschooling. She has small children and has just begun to think about homeschooling. She's thought she might like to do it but is already having her doubts and fears. I tried so hard to encourage her but also be honest in the fact it hasn't been easy, at least for me. How do you encourage when you feel so discouraged? I can't but God can. Just thought I would share what He sent me via email ; ) This is a daily devotional I'm subscribed to, hardly ever read them but this one caught my attention.

Homeschool Fears
Thursday / January 28, 2010

Satan really takes advantage of homeschoolers. When you jump into something different, such as teaching your own children, you become susceptible to his attacks of doubt and fear. Unsure of your abilities, you second-guess your decisions and desperately look for affirmation and direction. Added to those doubts are questioning remarks and comments from those who don't homeschool, and soon you begin to think, "I could really mess up my children's lives if I do this wrong!" The multiple battlefronts of spiritual, emotional, and physical attack call for reinforcement from the Lord. Only His divine strength, wisdom, and power can counteract Satan's fears.

The apostle Paul understood how it felt to be attacked by Satan. When addressing the church in Corinth, he stated in 2 Corinthians 7:5, "For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; without were fightings, within were fears." I'm sure at times Paul must have questioned if he was doing the right thing when he went on his missionary journeys to establish the early churches. Not only did the other apostles criticize his work with the Gentiles, but he also suffered at the hands of his fellow Jews and the unbelieving communities he tried to reach. Add to those fears the beatings, shipwrecks, and other persecutions, and it's no wonder he was afraid. Still, Paul continued to trust in Jesus for every need and even his very life.

Are you tired from Satan's attacks? Does it seem like when you find victory over one fear another one develops? Dear one, I wish I could tell you things will get better, but that might not be the case. The battles will probably remain. You see, if Satan can't keep your family from believing in Christ, his next goal is to keep your family from living for Christ. If you're feeling weary today, run to your Commander and Lord and let His love empower you to face every fear. In Christ's name and by the power of His blood, you will defeat Satan. Besides, the worst way you could mess up your children's lives is if you don't fight. Don't let the fears win over you! "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith" (1 Peter 5:8-9a).

Lord God, I recommit myself and my family to You today. Strengthen us to stand strong against the fears and discouragement that Satan brings to our homeschool. Let me see the plans and purpose You have for us and may our lives glorify You. In the dear name of Jesus, Amen.