Saturday, December 29, 2007

Out of the mouths of babes

If you are a listener of KSBJ, you may have already heard this, but for those of you who aren't listeners or like me, just never heard this conversation, I can tell you, it is worth the few minutes to listen...

Monday, December 24, 2007

And Unto Us a Savior is Born!


Merry Christmas! We will see you in 2008!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

What a nice way to draw Advent to a close!

After Mass, we packed up the vehicles and headed out in search of Christmas lights to behold.

We found a few neighborhoods that truly embraced the Christmas spirit and many even had Nativity scenes!

Thanks to the Neen Family, we had hot cocoa, WITH marshmallows! The kids had a blast and I hope that this quickly planned outing becomes a new tradition.

Finally, the little bladders and hungry tummy won us over and we returned to the house for a few pictures, bathroom privileges, and some dinner.

Amazing that all the kids looked at the camera at the same time!

The Girls!

The Guys!

The Guys and the Dads

The folks responsible for all those kids!

And let's not forget Santa's cutest elf...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


I've been meaning to post the latest Fishism for a few weeks. Better late than never I suppose.

Aunt Marli experienced this one...

Fish: Aunt Marli, what's that place called that's not Heaven and not Hell? I think it starts with a "P"...

AM: Purgatory?

Fish: No, I think it's called the Pizza Parlor...

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

RoseMary is now a saint!

For all of those who have been praying for RoseMary Teresa, I wanted you to read about the last day of her life from her Uncle. What a beautiful, loving family and how I wish I had even a small amount of the faith that they have shown through this time in their lives. Please continue to pray for the family and those who are most affected by her death. She lived a short time, but every day of her life was a miracle and truly a gift from Our Father.

Uncle Joe shares:
RoseMary Teresa should not have lived one day
according to the experts. And she didn't, she lived 45
days, each day packed with, and powered by love. Love
completely surrounded this beautiful baby from the
time she was in her mothers womb through her birth and
throughout her entire life.

Last summer, when Mary and David received the news of
RoseMary Teresa's condition before her birth, they
made a conscious choice to love this baby completely
regardless of the fact that they knew it very well
could break their hearts. But they chose the path of
love, regardless.

Mary's mother used to say that joy and sorrow are like
two vines growing together. If you want one you have
to take both and then completely trust that Our Lord
will provide the grace necessary when the time comes.

Mary and David had deliberately chosen to always live
each moment with RoseMary Teresa, celebrating and
cherishing her. They would not worry. They would trust
confidently in God's Mercy and Providence, knowing
that he would care for them and whatever needs they
might have. There would be no "bad days" for RoseMary
Teresa. There would be no days wasted to worrying.

Yesterday, Sunday December 2, began just as everyday
had begun for RoseMary Teresa. She was peaceful,
surrounded by the love of her mommy, her daddy, her
brothers, her grandparents, her aunts, her uncles, her
cousins, and all of you, her new spiritual family.
Mary and David were continuing to live each moment in
gratitude for their most precious RoseMary Teresa.

At around 5 o'clock, they noticed that something had
changed with RoseMary Teresa. It was a slight change,
but when you love someone as intensely as they do
RoseMary, you notice these things. They called
RoseMary's doctor. He came to the house as he has done
so many times before, an act of kindness and
generosity which helped to make their lives just a
little easier. He arrived around 6:30pm. He examined
her, listened to her heart and confirmed that her
heart was indeed failing.

It was her fetal valve. It was closing. It had
persistently stayed open despite what the experts said
should have happened. The doctors thought RoseMary
Teresa should have died in the first day. The fetal
valve was still open, though, and was providing the
extra assistance to her heart, which was keeping her
alive. It should have closed sooner. In most cases,
within 3 - 5 days. Maybe in a very few cases, it may
stay open for two weeks, tops.

Our Lord, in His supreme generosity had given RoseMary
Teresa to us for 45 days, and was now, in his infinite
mercy, love and wisdom, bringing her back to Himself.

The Family gathered. For the next 4 1/2 hours they
prayed, they sang, they spoke to RoseMary and each
other. Mary wanted to sing "Now Thank We All Our God"
as she and David had done every morning of RoseMary's
short life. But she couldn't find her voice. Their
family doctor started singing in his rich deep
baritone, the family soon joined.

David held RoseMary. Mary was right next to him
caressing her. Both providing comfort and protection,
helping her to be still and peaceful. Mary rubbed her
head and face. RoseMary always loved when her mommy
would do this, showing small almost imperceptible
signs of her pleasure whenever her mother touched her.
The boys were there, her big brothers, praying softly
for their only sister. Her Aunt, and uncles were
there. Many of her cousins were there in that family
room. RoseMary's doctor was there. All praying.

Mother Teresa was there with The Blessed Mother,
invisible, embracing their RoseMary Teresa.

Our Lord was there. As Mary said, He was flooding the
room with His Peace. The peace and love from all of
your many many prayers and sacrifices.

Throughout this whole time RoseMary Teresa was
peaceful. There would be short little struggles, then

It was sometime between the 5th Joyful Mystery, the
finding of our Lord in The Temple, and the Salve
Regina that our beautiful, perfect, RoseMary Teresa
was gently cradled by Our Blessed Mother and Blessed
Mother Teresa of Calcutta and taken from our presence
and into the Full Presence of Our Lord.

David had been holding his finger softly over
RoseMary's heart and he felt it slowly flutter and
fade. He called the doctor who had been quietly
praying with the family this whole time. The doctor
confirmed that RoseMary Teresa's spirit was gone from
her body. RoseMary Teresa moved from the embrace of
her earthly father and went into the embrace of her
Heavenly Father.

David gave RoseMary's body to Mary who softly cradled
her child, weeping quietly and giving her precious
daughter back to The Lord, saying "Oh RoseMary, I love
you so much. I love you. Thank you God. Thank You for
this gift. I take what you give and I give what you

There was such a sound in her voice. In her voice was
tremendous sorrow, joy, gratitude, and trust in God.
If you heard it, you would never forget it. I will
never forget it.

After the Rosary, there was weeping. There was also
rejoicing, for our RoseMary Teresa who was now
enjoying the perfect happiness of heaven. On this the
first Sunday of Advent, Christmas had come early to
RoseMary Teresa. Everyone sang, they sang "Hail Holy
Queen" and other songs to Our Blessed Mother. They
sang "Father I Adore You, lay my life down before you,
how I love you" and the verses that follow.

Father Peter gave David a place in scripture to read.
Psalm 23 The Lord is My Shepherd...

The Psalm says, "Goodness and Kindness will surround
me all the days of my life." RoseMary's life literally
was only "days" and throughout her entire life she was
surrounded only by goodness and kindness. So much

After David finished reading, RoseMary Teresa's 4 1/2
year old brother Francis, looked up and asked, "Is
that book about RoseMary?" Father Peter said "yes,
it's also about you and all of us"

Everyone then had a chance to hold RoseMary Teresa.
She was so beautiful. So perfect. Each of her brothers
and family members held the body of their now departed
sister, each saying their quiet "I love you's".

Mary and David were reflecting today on the life of
their little girl. They have no regrets. It was a
perfect life filled with love. Every moment was lived
to the fullest. As Mary said "When you become a
parent, you don't just bring a child into time, you
bring them into eternity." On Sunday night at 11:05,
RoseMary Teresa entered into Eternity.

As Mary and David heal from the suffering from loss of
their daughter, they are also joyful. Mary says, "they
are just so happy for RoseMary".

There is no way to thank all of you for giving so
much. All of your prayers, all of your sacrifices. As
the Missionaries of Charity wrote several weeks ago,
"God's ways are not our ways, they are infinitely

Today, The Missionaries of Charity wrote to Mary and

"In the midst of the sorrow of no longer having
RoseMary Teresa to hold and care for, you have the
immense consolation of knowing with absolute certainty
that she is in Heaven. And so the Vicinanzo family can
humbly boast of its first saint. She is surely smiling
upon all of you and sending blessings your way from
the arms of our Heavenly Father (and after Jesus and
Our Lady, I bet Mother Teresa is first in line in the
heavenly court waiting to hold her!)

RoseMary Teresa will live on in all of our hearts and
we shall always be grateful for the way she has
enriched all of our lives."

Please keep praying for RoseMary Teresa's family. And
remember, RoseMary Teresa is now in heaven, pray to
her for your needs.

Thank you all for your many prayers. Each of you are
now and forever in the prayers of our entire family.

God Bless You.

P. S. RoseMary Teresa's funeral will be held this
Wednesday. I will send the details in a second email.
Mary and David would like you all to know that you are
all, each of you, most welcome to attend.

Never say never

I never thought that I would see myself doing this...

You know you are busy when

Your son asks if you have had a chance to talk with his father about the new computer he wants to buy, (for the 10th time) and you still haven't. The said son's response is, "Boy, Mom, it's easier to get a bill passed into a law than for you guys to get time to talk!"

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Jane! Stop this crazy thing!

I had a moment to catch up on a few of my favorite bloggers today and could not pass by Laura's post. You have got to read this. It is crazy, but unfortunately, it is reality. Supposedly, Texas has voted it out of third grade, but I wonder when the replacement books will begin to be used. Also, is the curriculum used in other grades? My older kids were in public school for a few years and I was appalled to hear the little sayings and finger tricks that the girls were taught to help them recall their math facts. I am sure this was the beginnings of the "Everyday Math" insurgence.

I liken this to the "Whole Language" experiment that was performed on us in the 70's. Ridiculous and ineffective. Unfortunately, I don't know that the cries of parents and teachers will be heard over the sound of money changing hands between school districts and publishers.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

November has flown by

I can't believe we are already nearing the end of another year. It seems we just began this one! November has gone by so quickly and I have been way late in posting. Honestly, I can't make too many excuses because we are busy living. At times I ask myself why I blog. It takes time away from the family. Time that I could be doing something else. I sometimes contemplate closing the blogs and I might someday, but for now, I will blog as I can. I know many of my fellow bloggers feel these same feelings.

The month started out with All Saint's Day. We had a wonderful time out in the country at a very generous homeschooling family's home. They opened up their home and their land to us urbanites as we celebrated the Feast of All Saints out in God's most wonderful creation, nature.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

You have got to be kidding me!

Attention crazy people!

Kohl's is opening on Friday at 4 AM for your shopping pleasure! I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this on tv last night.

There is only one reason to get up at 4 AM, and it does not involve shopping!


Ok, you know it is going to be an interesting day when, upon applying your makeup, you suddenly realize that you just lined your eyes with red lip liner.

Does so much to wake up those tired eyes!

The lip liner now resides in the garbage can. I never used the thing anyway!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Latest Fishism

The other day as we were riding home from the doctor's office, Fish asked me how hot the sun was. I told him that I didn't know the exact temperature but that it was very hot.

He asked what would happen if we got close to it. I told him that we would get very hot and we could "melt". (I couldn't bring myself to tell him that we would die!)

He then asked me if it was hotter than "H". Assuming he was speaking of Hell, I was about to tell him no and explain that Hell was the hottest thing and perhaps even take the opportunity to give a quick catechism lesson on Hell and why we don't want to end up there.

Before I could, however, he added, "you know the H I am talking about?"

Me: "Yes, Fish."

Fish: "It's the one next to the 'C' "

Me: "What?!"

Fish: "The one in the tub!"

So much for me thinking I know what my son is talking about! I couldn't help but smile the rest of the way home! And I skipped the lesson on Hell...

What exactly do we do?

BOY, am I wiped out! Ran close to 10 miles today and then spent a few hours at the Children's Festival working at a table for Kid's Directory. They were kind enough to let me hand out cards about The Woodlands Learning Center to help us promote the PACE and Master the Code programs. For those of you who don't know what we do, we train the brain! We do not do any academic tutoring, but rather we provide a series of cognitive excercises which help to strengthen the weak learning skills which keep a student from being as successful as they could be.

PACE and Master the Code helps all students, young and old, those with diagnosed difficulties such as Dyslexia, ADD, Asberger's even Autism. However it also is very effective with those who do not have a diagnosis per se, yet seem to struggle, require additional tutoring on a consistent basis, fail grades, seem unmotivated, etc.

You can check out our company website for more information.

I am so thankful to have found PACE and Master the Code because it was able to help two of my own children that might have been life long strugglers, especially with reading. Being able to offer this to others blesses my family in many ways. My prayer is that we bless them just as much!

Friday, November 09, 2007


Fish has pneumonia. I wasn't expecting that one, but my poor little Fish is really sick. I don't think I've ever seen him feel so bad.

He is going to be fine, thanks to our wonderful medical miracle worker, but in the meantime, we are having him sleep right next to me. I am not sleeping well, so I awake exhausted. I'll be heading back to bed in a little bit for a quick, or maybe not so quick nap.

Did you ever wake up and think, boy I LOVE my bed? Well, I really do. I can't wait to see it again!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

What in the world?

I can't believe this one...
I am not a huge Robertson fan, but I was under the impression that he believed the unborn came before our Federal deficit. Guess I was wrong.

I was blessed to find this information on this gentleman's blog. Be sure to read his posts regarding his journey to the Catholic Church.

No prize for me

I received an email today from NaBloPoMo discussing how the creator will issue a prize at the end of the month. Hmph. I didn't know that! If I had realized that then I would NEVER have missed posting!

Ok... who am I kidding. I would still miss posting. The sad thing is that I posted a few posts to my running blog last night. I wanted to post here, but I had convinced myself that I already had and needed to wait until today to post so I wouldn't forget.

Guess what? I posted on Tuesday. Not yesterday. What has happened to my brain? Not enough doughnuts I say, not enough.

Speaking of doughnuts, how do we get to a point where we have two ways to spell it? I mean is it donuts or doughnuts? Did a doughnut shop owner decide it was cheaper to have a sign made with only 5 letters?

English is so goofy. We can read, or it was read. We can wind up the cord or we can listen to the wind howl. We can present a present to someone. But do we eat donuts or doughnuts? These are the questions that plague my mind at o'dark-thirty when I can't sleep. When I think about the post I am going to put on the blog tomorrow so I don't have two posts in one day. When I realize that the dork in me has no clue what I am doing from one moment to the next. And when I decide that I will post all of my failings in a public forum. Why not? No pride here! (yeah, right!)

On the more serious side, please keep our little Fish in your prayers today. We've been dealing with a high fever all night. He is wiped out and of course we worry with his inclination for seizures.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


I was able to take a few minutes in adoration today, and I am so glad I did. I have been able to do this the past 3 or 4 weeks on Tuesdays after my run. I go into the adoration chapel, sweaty, stinky, and dressed in running gear. Thankfully, there are not many others in the chapel at the time. They don't seem to mind my presence, but I try to sit far away so as not to offend them with my yucky self.

It occurred to me tonight that Christ doesn't care how I show up, just that I do. He knows the worst parts about me, why should I be hesitant to show up as I am at that moment. It would only be another excuse for me not to go.

I picked up a nice little book that delivers a pretty powerful message. The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence seems to be exactly what I need right now. I was first intrigued by Brother Lawrence a few years ago when Mamabear gave me a book mark with a quote from him on it. When I saw this book sitting on the shelf, I knew it was meant for me to read. I love the simplistic message that it has.

I truly crave adoration. I need that time to bring all of those concerns directly to His feet. I feel such a sense of peace when I am able to leave them with Him and return to my family.

I was feeling a bit discouraged today as I mulled over the many stories of sinful behavior that I am hearing about in my community. I actually started thinking about how nothing could ever change the state of the world. Then I remembered, God has already won this war.

During my reading at adoration, it was said that Brother Lawrence said that "he was not shocked at the misery and sin he had heard about every day but on the contrary, considering the malice of which the sinner is capable, he was surprised that there was not more of it. He prayed for the sinner but knowing God could right the matter whenever he wished, he did not allow himself to be too upset. " (pg 24)

This is exactly what I needed to hear from the Lord tonight. Thank you, Lord.

Sunday, November 04, 2007


Need I say more?

Busy, busy, busy

Time gets away from me so easily these days! Before I knew it I was back in bed after a day full of beautiful moments spent with my family and friends.

As a little girl, I yearned for a close family. A large family. A family that longed to be together.

I can honestly say that all of my dreams have come true at this point in my life. My husband and our children spend nearly every moment of the day together. We start each day with our morning meal and end each day with our evening meal, together. We even have the wonderful opportunity of having lunch together and many other moments during the day.

I have always longed for this, especially when Mark was working away from the house 6 - 7 days a week. Now, he is home. And I am so thankful. We are a team in every sense of the word. Watching our family work together, as so many others do, is such a wonderful thing. Is it perfect? Hardly. But it is ours. And it is a total expression of God's love. Complete with bumps in the road as we all grow closer in holiness on our path home to Our Father.

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Well, my streak was already broken! I totally missed posting yesterday, but I guess that means I can post today, twice, in lieu of yesterday? OK... I'm making up the rules as I go along, but that is ok.

I mentioned that my theme would be thankfulness. I thought this would be appropriate as we head into our "thankful" season. Thankful for food, for family, for our faith, friends, etc. I knew exactly what I wanted to post about first. My dogs. That's right. My dogs. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not putting my posts in any sort of order. They will come as the ideas hit me. So please don't think I am more thankful for one thing (like my dogs) than I am for something else ( say, my children). I am not.

I couldn't help but think about how very thankful I am for the dogs that have come into my life. Ever since I was a child, there has always been a special dog that I feel connected to in some way. I can't imagine my life without them in it. I don't understand how someone can not have a dog. It just doesn't fit into my paradigm. Sometimes, I have thought, "wouldn't it be nice to not have a dog!", but then I see those big beautiful eyes (they ALL have them) and I realize that I will probably ALWAYS have one. They just melt my heart.

They are first and foremost, unconditional in their love. They don't care if you've forgotten to feed them in the past, given up their walks for the last few weeks, only have a moment for a quick pat on the head. They take what they are offered and are so happy to have it! They cheer us up when we are down. Offer comfort when we grieve. Provide companionship when we are lonely. Protect us when we are afraid, and best of all, they clean up the kitchen floor after a messy toddler throws his food all over the place!

As I head out the door for my morning run, Hannah wimpers because I am not taking her with me. But as she ages, her ability to keep up with me for the mileage that I have to cover today diminishes. Maybe, just maybe, I'll have time to take her for a shorter run when I get back...

Thursday, November 01, 2007

National Blog Posting Month

Today begins NaBloPoMo, National Blog Posting Month. You can read all about it here, but the short version is that those who are interested are going to post everyday during November.

It's been a long while since I posted everyday on this blog. I have decided to give it a shot. I will be posting on those things I am thankful and grateful for. I will also be posting on my running blog, but that won't count as my daily post.

I double dog dare ya to join me!

Day of All Saints

I thought I'd post a few pictures of the future saints I am trying to raise. Notice the very unsaintly mother still has piles of laundry to fold... (thank goodness her saintly mother in law came last night and took care of that!)

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Homeschooling with Teens

I swear they told me to look into the sun... I think I was set up!

Birthday Recap

Last weekend we celebrated Boo's birthday by having his Godfamily over for dinner. Unfortunately, I didn't remember to grab the camera until just before they were leaving. By that time, Boo was not up to cooperating for a picture with his Godparents. I did manage to capture a quick shot of their littlest one...

On Sunday, we celebrated with our extended family. I always love birthdays with the little ones. The excitement and wonder of the moment is so beautiful to behold.

Who is more excited?? Boo, Foo, or Lem?

Trains were the theme for the day, wait, who am I kidding, they are the theme for everyday right now. Boo loves trains! He lives and breathes trains. Last Saturday our parish had their annual children's festival and we were blessed to have a real train to ride!

The older children participated in our Tae Kwon Do School's demonstration that was put on as part of the entertainment portion of the festival. They did a tremendous job.

Of course, we had to include our traditional birthday kiss picture into our day...

Just in case you've forgotten...

Life is precious. Please continue to pray for sweet Rose Mary Teresa!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

More on The Golden Compass

The Catholic League has produced a short video explaining their position on this movie.

You can view it here.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Join us in Prayer

For sweet baby Rose Mary Teresa. You can read her incredible story here.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Boo is Two!

Another year has ticked away. Where all of those precious moments have gone, one can only wonder.

The memories of when you were so little will always be with me, as I watch you grow up even more every day. My sweet little Boo. I love you!

He helped pick out which cake mix the children should bake.

The kids had a good time fighting over who would put what on the cake!

The finished product, complete with a birthday train.

The party!

We have a Cardinal!

How blessed we are in Texas to have one of the newest Cardinals. Archbishop DiNardo was named a cardinal today along with 22 others.

Pope Benedict XVI Names Archbishop DiNardo as Cardinal Designate

HOUSTON - Today, October 17, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI named 23 new Roman Catholic Cardinals.

Among them is Archbishop Daniel DiNardo, from the Archdiocese of Galveston- Houston, who reacted at this appointment with the following words: “I am deeply grateful to the Holy Father for his kindness in appointing me and for his trust in allowing me to be placed in the College of Cardinals. May I immediately add that it is also very humbling and surprising! I promise him my fullest communion, loyalty and obedience.” Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston Communications Director

Along with Archbishop DiNardo, Pope Benedict XVI named 23 new cardinals from four continents to join this elite rank of the Roman Catholic Church.

Archbishop DiNardo, became the chief shepherd of the Archdiocese of Galveston- Houston on February 28th. 2006.

With this new appointment, DiNardo will serve as a member of a body of advisors for the Holy Father and while he will travel to the Vatican approximately twice a year, he will remain as chief pastor of the more than 1.3 million Roman Catholics in the Houston-Galveston area.

Pope Benedict XVI stated that he would elevate the prelates at a Vatican Ceremony on Nov. 24th.


Beware of a new movie set to be released in December. I saw this being advertised when the last Harry Potter came out and it looked so good. The preview stated in was in the same category as Narnia or even The Lord of the Rings. Unfortunately, this is so far from the truth, it is scary.

*** Edited to add, the name of the movie is The Golden Compass. Thank you to my loving daughter, Bean for bringing this error in my post to my attention.***

The movie is based on the books by Phillip Pullman, _His Dark Materials_. In these stories, the Catholic church is the villian. Pullman is an admitted atheist.

You can read more about this here. I plan to read this trilogy myself so that I can speak from my own impression rather than just following the advice of others. For now, I can assure you that my children will not be seeing this movie.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

15 days

That's how long it has been since my last post! At least on this blog. It seems my running blog gets more of my attention right now as I am attempting to train for the marathon in January.

I hope to post more often here and probably will with the holidays right around the corner. For now, just a quick mention of things going on in the house.

We are still very busy with The Woodlands Learning Center. It has become a lot bigger than I initially thought it would be, and amazingly, it has also become a great way to share my faith. I have been so touched by the families that come to us. They all have their own share of struggles and I can listen, sometimes offer some insights, but most of all, I can pray for them. What a privilege to be able to do so. We have been blessed by meeting these families.

The children are all doing well. Bean just returned for a "Re-Born in the Spirit" retreat and had a wonderful time. I look forward to getting on a retreat myself in the Spring.

Foo and Lem are happy and healthy and keeping busy with church and Tae Kwon Do.

Fish is playing basketball and still doing Tae Kwon Do. He is one of those kids that really needs to be physically active to keep his mind focused as well. His schooling is going well as Dad is his primary educator now. I try to do some things with him and he tells me, "No thanks.... I'll wait for Dad." My feelings are only slightly shattered, but honestly, he has been needing this time with Daddy for a long time. I am so thankful that he has it now.

Boo is fast approaching two. He loves his trains. Whenever it is time to go to bed, he cries out for his "choo choo trains" in this longing tone that sounds like he might never see them again. It is so sweet that he loves so completely. I find myself thinking about Our Lord at these moments...(I know, weird) but to love Him so much that I cry out in longing when I am away from Him. Can I truly say that I love Him that much? I want to. But do I? I suppose I am longing for the longing, if that makes any sense.

More posts to follow in the next few days, but for now, enjoy these pictures.

The boys are dancing for us...nevermind the mess!

I can't believe how grown-up he looks!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

The Catholic Hack

Take a moment to visit a local homeschooling dad's podcast on Catholic Apologetics. Very well done, Joe!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Have I ever mentioned

how much I love Charlotte Mason and homeschooling? As I mentioned in an earlier post, we are falling into a nice flow to our days, no, not perfect, far from perfect, but for us, it is working and we are learning.

Foo was very inspired by a physics demonstration that he saw at our First Friday session. Of course the instructor is full of passion for the subject which would make ANYONE love physics, but especially my son. He has been completely immersed in finding out more and more about physics each day.

In the meantime, I've yet to pick a true science curriculum for him. He's never had a formal course in science, yet our years of hit and miss nature study, botched fun experiements, and his own curiosity have somehow provided him with a working knowledge of science terms and situations.

I would not have required him to have a formal course in science until High School and only then if he was thinking of a science background in his future. He, however, has been asking for one. He wants a fun one, one with experiments and "cool stuff!"

So, the hunt had begun but nothing was meeting his criteria, nor mine. Not only must it meet his ideals, but it must be living. It must be passionate. I decided that if it takes me several months to find a program, so be it. In the meantime, I'd let him pick different books, websites, etc to read and explore. Today, something happened. I found a website on Newton's Laws that was quite fun. He shelved History for the day (with my permission) and worked on demonstrating all three of Newton's Laws and then writing a brief conclusion. He is not completely satisfied with his conclusion and wants to try a few more experiments before he finishes his conclusion. At first he said, "I already know how this is going to turn out, but I want to prove Newton wrong!" I laughed and wished him luck. Several hours later, I found he had created a "vortex generator" out of an empty fruit can, balloon, cardboard, and duct tape. (Is there an engineer anywhere in this world that does not own duct tape??)

He went around the house all night lighting candles and using his vortex generator to blow them out. He was in heaven.

Tonight, after asking for some suggestions for a "conceptual physics" program that I might be able to do mini-unit studies with, I found a book that looks perfect for us.
Touch This: Conceptual Physics for Everyone appears to be exactly what we are looking for. If nothing else, I think it will give us a nice overview to each concept which we can then explore on our own. You can read a nice review on it here.

We have had so many years of imperfect homeschooling around here, in fact, every single one of them have been imperfect. I dare say, most of them haven't turned out anywhere near to the "plan" that I sweat and labor over for weeks on end before school begins, yet, somehow, through the grace of God, my children learn. My children are finding their own passions. It is a wonderful process to watch and to know that I haven't crammed anything into them. They have absorbed it instead.

I am so excited to watch each of them grow into the people they are meant to be. Every moment is an exciting journey that has me begging for more.

So on the days when we think, "I am doing a lousy job. I can't do this. They hate me. I'm not giving them what I should be. They'd be better off if I put them in school." Stop. Remember that HE is the one that is educating them. He is using us as the medium. We just need to listen to the needs of each child and not try to fit the child to the curriculum. As my dear friend, Cindy told me time and time again, "Do not be a slave to the curriculum (or the schedule), let the curriculum (or schedule) be a slave to you!" I am seeing the fruits of this every day. And it is sweet!

Friday, September 21, 2007

When mom has to leave the room...

and no one else is home, except the dog, be advised that the almost two year old can now open the pantry door.

(can't you just hear that dog saying, "I didn't do it, I didn't do it!")

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Weekly Recap

Another week going by in a blur! This was the week of the "almost Hurricane", which I really thank God passed us by because I didn't even know about it's existence until it had passed. Talk about not being prepared!

We did have some drizzle one morning this week and I was able to capture this beautiful spider web complete with it's designer. We took several shots from many different angles and it is amazing how intricate and delicate these webs are, yet they are so resilient and hardy at the same time. Reminds me of the faith I see in so many people around me. Beautiful, never-ending, and stronger than anything else on earth.

We also captured some shots of Boo in his favorite pose, shirtless. He loves to take off his shirt especially right after he has been dressed!

Here is a shot of Fish and Boo riding their cars around and around and around and around and around (you get the idea) the house...

(you can also catch a glimpse of the tiling that Mark worked so hard on)

We are settling into the school year quite nicely. There seems to be a nice ebb and flow to our days. Of course I can always find places to improve, but for now, I am content with what we are doing and I'm not going to raise the bar just to say I can check a few more boxes off in our day.

Trying to live our day as a prayer. That is the true focus of my life right now. I think this is my biggest challenge and probably the most important. If someone can see me, but they don't see Christ, I am not doing things right. I strive to do this not to "be good" but rather because I love Him. And I fail everyday. But I awake again every day to try again. I suppose much like the spider who spins her web over and over and over again, never giving up hope, but knowing that one day, the project will be done and she can rest.

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Business of Life

Life is in full gear here, well, honestly, it is in overdrive. We are so busy, too busy it seems, but in the quiet moments, we try to savor the stillness and blogging is just to much of an intrusion. So the posts are fewer and farther between. I know you all understand.

In less then a year, I've gone from a busy homeschooling mom to an even busier, homeschooling mom running a business full-time from home! We are so blessed to be in this postion and we are even more blessed to be doing what we feel God has called us to do. In fact, I believe He orchestrated all of this for us.

In efforts to recap the events of the last week or so, I'll try to recall the highlights...

First, I must mention how hard my husband has been working the past two weekends to replace our flooring in the kitchen and guest bath. A few weeks back, our dishwasher leaked, actually, it flooded our floor UNDER the laminate which caused it to curl up and separate. It was a mess that he had to deal with all on his own while I was at a church meeting. When I came home, I had a lovely shade of concrete floor.

We were beginning to get used to the concrete, but decided we should probably go ahead and tile anyway. Being the frugal (read that "cheap") person that I am, I laughed at the bid from our local Home Depot. I reminded Mark how much we would save if WE did it OURSELVES...(read that, if HE did it!) He agreed, and spent last weekend with Foo laying tile. It made for a very tiring weekend and then week. He finished the job this weekend. It looks so beautiful. He and Foo did an amazing job, but now, WE (did I mention how much I love my husband?) must replace the countertops... they just don't match!

Last weekend was also Fish's birthday! We celebrated at Mickey Miss's house. It was a tough day for the family because of some things that had been going on, but all in all, it was a good day.

who is that masked man??

We've also been busy trying to keep up with Boo. He is really an active little guy now! His vocabulary is increasing every day with important words such as
1. Cookie
2. Mommy -there is just something about him saying this that melts my heart everytime I hear it!
3. Cookie
4. Daddy
5. Cookie
6. Go!
7. Cookie
8. Bye Bye
9. Cookie
10. Hi!
11. Cookie
12. George (as in Curious)
and many more. He is growing up so fast. I can hardly believe he is almost 2! One of the funniest things he is doing is at bedtime. He loves to remove his shirt, throw the blankets out of the bed and then scream because he is too cold to sleep. He also manages to get his leg stuck in between the rails of the crib and we have to help him get it out. He has some lovely bruises on his legs now as a result.

Godbaby came for a visit the other day. She and Boo decided to compose a few pieces. They were heavenly!

We had a very odd visitor as well one night last week. Mark had made burgers on the grill and as we were beginning to retire for the night, we looked out the patio door to find a little friend enjoying the leftovers...good thing the grill was turned off!