Thursday, June 28, 2012

Time-saving kitchen tip

My late grandma used to have a saying about how you can get to be as old as a cow and still learn new things. In German, the saying rhymes, so it makes more sense than in English, as cows don't get to be very old. Her point was, we are never done learning, and I often hear myself repeating her words in my head. 

Here's something I just figured out this week.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Prenatal update

As of today, I am 35 weeks pregnant. For those of you who are wondering, here are some random pregnancy updates in no particular order:

- We have a name! I think. Unless my husband changes his mind at the last minute and vetoes it, or unless we look at the baby and the name seems entirely unfitting. In any case, we won't tell until after baby is born and it's official. Hints: It's a Bible name, and it does not appear in the list of 100 or even 1000 most popular baby boy names. 

- Speaking of baby names: I refuse to reuse any first initial. Labeling items with one letter only is crucial to my sanity. With 26 letters in the alphabet, we should be okay for a lifetime of reproduction. :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Summer Break!

Yay! Yesterday was our last day of homeschool. This has been a good year. We stayed on track the whole time, even when the severe morning sickness hit. The only sad part? I cannot believe how quickly this year has flown by. Seems like just yesterday, it was September and we started the new school year. 

Way back when I was a rookie homeschool mom to one eager little preschooler, I told a (very seasoned) homeschool mom and friend that my plan was to always homeschool year-round. After all, no working adult gets the whole summer off, and idle kids have a way of getting into mischief. She didn't laugh out loud at me, but I'm guessing inside she was laughing. Summer breaks are for mom as much as they are for the kids! I couldn't imagine NOT having one.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

But does it increase drug use among mothers??

Interesting article in the news last week: Do family dinners really reduce teen drug use?
Contrary to previous findings, a large new study finds that family meals may have little effect on reducing teen drug use long-term

Few would disagree that sitting down to dinner together as a family is a good thing.
[Evidently, I am one of the few. By dinner time, my ears are bleeding from all the laughing, squabbling, talking, giggling, screeching, blathering, yelling, singing, ... all day long - eating the last meal of the day with yet more noise is sure to cause indigestion.]

It can help families eat healthier, encourage meaningful conversation and according to some addiction researchers, it even keeps kids from using drugs.

["Encourage" conversation? WHY??? Clearly, these parents must have very different children than ours. We are still trying to figure out how to get them to be quiet once in a while.]

My only question is: Do family dinners increase drug use among homeschooling mothers of many? Now there's a study worth looking into.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Questions and comments

Though I do not get to respond to them as often as I would like to, I truly do love getting comments (well, most anyway), and answering questions. 

Of course, being a busy mother to six children, combined with my need for extra sleep while pregnant, I rarely have the time to thank everyone individually for their kindness, or respond to certain questions. But rest assured, your comments are much appreciated, and usually put a smile on my face! 

I will try, maybe once a week or so, to answer questions that pop up throughout the week in a separate post. For some reason, my "Q&A" label is not working correctly at the moment, but hopefully I can figure out why. (edited to add: I was able to get the issue resolved, and the new tag is now working)

Also, my apologies to those of you who have left (unpublished) comments with your email addresses, and specific questions you would like me to answer. You are not forgotten, I promise! 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Redneck Nascar

John has been reading all he can about stock cars, racing, Nascar, and the like. Not sure how he got all into that, but the subject fascinates him. 

His older brothers also just recently started noticing different brands of "cool" cars, and call them out to each other whenever we see one in public. Must be a boy thing? 

 Waiting to get a ride

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Who am I kidding?

Sometimes I fool myself into thinking Annie looks like me.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Death by Music

Long, long time ago, before we added six loud children under our roof, I used to enjoy the piano. In fact, back in another life when I was young, single, and carefree, I used to PLAY the piano. Okay, so I never got to be good at it, but that's another story. The point is, I used to like music. 

 Solomon at the piano recital - he told me loved how LOUD the grand piano was. Uh, sure, we'll get one of those really soon.

Somewhere along the way, thanks to loud screechy kids who are always making some form of noise, resulting in a partial hearing loss in my right ear, I have come to detest sounds of most any nature. Okay, so maybe that's a slight exaggeration. I have just had to learn to tune out little voices chattering with each other all day, every day. The hearing loss is actually quite handy for that.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

We should all be so lucky

Being pregnant, and usually with six kids in tow, I sometimes get asked:

"So, is this it?"


"Is this your last one?"


"So, are you done after this one?"

or any variation along the same lines.

My favorite response is to say "I hope not! After all, I'm ONLY thirty-three years old, so I should have at least 10 more years in me!" ***smile*** followed by "We just still think children are a blessing."

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

It's gonna be a loooong summer

And a hot one, at that. 

Here in the Phoenix area, schools go on summer break at the end of May, and resume in late July. We typically do not start homeschooling until after Labor Day, so our summer break usually begins later, in mid to late June. Same this year. 

However, all of June and July, the local libraries are hosting various summer reading programs, and as part of that bring in special performers and shows. Because we live close to many libraries, we are usually able to see everything in July (there are so many repeats between the various branches), after spending June finishing up our school work. 

This year, with the baby due August 1st, I am determined to see as many of them as we can in June. For one, it's still slightly cooler (hahaha - who am I kidding??). Plus, it gets harder to drag six kids out with me every day, and July is set aside for getting some final pre-baby projects wrapped up. These include: buying and laundering baby clothes and diapers, reorganizing our bedroom after my husband (hopefully) installs floor-to-ceiling cabinets along one wall, precooking and freezing breakfasts and dinners for at least 2 weeks post-baby, doing a trial set-up of the birth pool to make sure it works fine, etc. Oh yeah, also in late July, is the annual homeschool convention. I don't care if I am in labor, that's not something I want to miss.