Saturday, January 31, 2009

Survived Chicken Pox Epidemic

As many of you know, the 4 youngest recently came down with chicken pox within 24 hours of each other. Woohoo! It’s over! Knowing it may be coming, the kiddos had a long list of activities they wanted to indulge in while quarantined – you know, things like cartoons and Shirley Temple movies, pigging out on ice cream and pudding popcycles, long luxurious baths, etc etc. So, we were all prepared!

A week after they had all been exposed, I began watching like a hawk – and began hearing words like these:
“Do you have to look again, Mom?”
“You want me to lift up my shirt AGAIN!?”
“What’s this spot, Mom?”
“Is this a freckle or a chicken pop?”

I was hoping for 1 or 2 to break out, since we have opted not to get the vaccine. But never did I imagine they all 4 would break out at once. At first, I was not sure this was a good thing. But then, thinking on it all for a few moments – better a few tough days than having it all spread out over 8 weeks. My children were gracious enough to plan this over a holiday weekend – Dad had a 4 day weekend, and with C and L to help out we made it through! They each had a real good, but not too bad of a case. I am thankful they are strong and healthy and grateful to a God that makes our bodies amazingly resilient.

Even chicken pox are a reminder of the awesomeness of our Creator. Just as He has blessed us with 8 children, not one of them being the same as another, each of these invalids broke out in different ways. R’s spots were concentrated mainly on her scalp and face with many here and there and everywhere. G had the most on his upper torso, front and back. N’s were mainly down his backside from waist to upper leg. E had a few sprinkled here and there throughout, but really not concentrated in any one area. OK, call me strange, but these are things I pondered while up most of the night with an uncomfortable two year old!

Ahhhh, yes. Another milestone. Praise the Lord!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Speech Class for Today

N is now 4 1/2 years old. He is following in his big sister A's footsteps - he still doesn't have the 'r' sound quite mastered. It makes for interesting conversation at times. Here's what I heard one day recently:

N says to his baby sister "Wanna come play caws with me?"

R asks "Caws?"

N: "No! I said Ca-wuhs"

R: "Oh! Play Ca-wuh-rus!"

N: "Yeah!"

And off they run to play. . . hmmmm anyone care to translate? Can you say 'cars'?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Today’s Math Lesson

G is now 6 ½ years old, a very bright little boy. He has a very sweet spirit and I love him to death – his big brown eyes make my heart melt. But sometimes………Well, let me tell you about our math lesson today.

We had a page full of clock faces. He had to figure out what time each clock was showing. Underneath each clock, there were two answers, one correct answer and one wrong answer. Beside each choice was an oval. You know the “Color in the Oval Next to the Correct Answer” kind of oval.

He had no problem reading the time on each clock, but before he could fill in any ovals, he had to get a feel for the lay of the land. I could see the wheels turning. He scoped out the rows and columns, then planned out how to attack the page. “Should I fill in the ovals from left to right, moving down the page row by row? Do I move from top to bottom and move over column by column? I know!” (Mom sees that light bulb going off behind his eyes) “I’ll start at the top of the first column, move down and then over to the bottom of the next column, working my way to the top. Then over to the top of the third column and down. Up, down, up down. Ok, now I can get started.”

Now, the directions say to color in the oval next to the correct answer, like the one in the sample problem. He painstakingly fills in the oval, as neatly and completely as he possibly can. But his pencil doesn’t come close to filling in that oval as dark as the black ink used in printing the sample oval. He nearly wore a hole through to the next page trying to ‘blacken’ his oval! Next he realizes his pencil point has strayed outside the line. Thank the Lord for those big pink school erasers!

Well, after a short conference and a nudge from time to time he was off and running. Don’t ask me how long math took us this morning – though we are learning to tell time, I did not watch the clock. Having lunch nearly ready is a great motivator – once he realized it was nearly time to eat, he finished in good time!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Today's Vocabulary Lesson

2 year old R was helping me get a pile of laundry folded.

Me: "We have a lot of clothes to fold, don't we?"

R: "Yah"

Me: "You are a great helper! You are doing such a good job"

R: "Yah"

We work side by side, Mom folding and sorting, R rearranging.

R: "Look! Lots a' clothes!"

Me: "Yes, we sure do have a lot of clothes"

R picks up her jumper and says "Look! This is MY clo!"
Me: "Clo?"
R: "Yes! This my clo, too!" she says, as she picks up her nightgown.
OK -
more than one garment = clothes
single garment = clo
Some days I learn quite a lot from my little ones, and I think sometimes they make more sense than the adult world! How do we ever teach them this crazy language of ours?

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year Everyone!

This year it was rather quiet as we saw the New Year in. C had 3 girlfriends spend the night (the R sisters) They are lovely young ladies and we thoroughly enjoyed their company. They humored me by joining me in a game of ‘Catch Phrase’ (a Christmas gift from my aunt) and didn’t mind a bit when the younger set weedled their way into their fun and games.

New Years Day -- G received a cool handy-man set for Christmas and has been itching to put the tools to work. So Dad and E, G and N hid themselves away in the workshop. Every few minutes one of them would pop out for this or that, emphatically stating “Now, don’t you come in here, Mom! Make sure you don’t even listen!” OK, now, these words are often heard around here throughout the month of December. I have 2 beautifully crafted lazy suzans on my dining table and a lovely CD tower standing by the stereo to prove it. But on New Years Day? Aren’t they supposed to be watching football or something?

Well, after breakfast, 3 young gift bearers walk into the kitchen with Cheshire grins spread across their faces. “For you Mom!” E puts a very nicely crafted, very pink birdhouse into my arms. Dad got a lesson in patience, G tested out his new tools, E was able to put her interior/exterior design talents to work (yes she is the one that picked pink) and N practiced being a handy helper. Oh, yeah – and now I have a pretty pink birdhouse to adorn my backyard!

Friday night, as usual was pizza night. We are working on cutting back on television time, so it was game night rather than movie night. A rip-roaring game of dominoes! Yep, with 4 players ages 6 and under, it makes for a very exciting game. G, while off in The Land of Daydream turns his half-full cup over his shoulder, dumping his watered-down soda down his back and onto the floor. R begins announcing the colors of all the dots on Mom’s dominoes. Then while I’m seeing to R’s bathroom emergency, everyone lets N take my place (so he added 3 dominoes to my stash rather than playing the 3 I had lined up – we’re just having fun, right?) Dad and I are tied for the lead going into the last round. Triple score for this round – and guess who wins? Not me! I come in just a couple of points of being last. Yeah, that’s right. We’re still having fun.

Saturday – L is busy concocting who-knows-what in the kitchen. N says “What’cha doin’ in there?” G answers “I think he’s having an experience”
Let me explain -- the Kitchen is often where science takes place at our house. You know, as in Science Experiments. I suppose that is an experience! G just needs a few more vocabulary lessons, I guess.
Anyway – L was heating up leftovers for lunch. Hmmm, maybe that IS an experience! Or was it an experiment after all? You can be the one to decide (he he he)

Oh yeah, and on Saturday my 4 Littles were exposed to chicken pox. So we shall soon see what the rest of January will bring!

Sunday we had a wonderful Lord’s Day. Only the R family was able to be with us. But sweet fellowship it was! After our service and potluck dinner, L brought out his guitar and joined Mrs R and her girls with their stringed instruments. They regaled us with their renditions of familiar hymns and praise songs. It was a spontaneous, impromptu idea. Something we ought to form into a habit.

And today, Monday -- we implemented our new schedule/routine/school plan. A little rough, but generally a success. We were more productive today than we’ve been in quite some time. I’ll give it a grade of Satisfactory, with room for improvement.

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