Sunday, May 15, 2011

Oh my goodness!

I just cannot seem to get my act together enough to hit this blog like I should.  With that said, we have been very busy, for us that is.  Our family tends to be rather inward focused - we homeschool, don't do too many playdates, and most days eat all 3 meals together. It works for us, but that also means that we really think through activities that will take us outside of our home - geez am I making us sound like hermits?? We're not!  Since it's been a while since my last post here's an update:

Last month Jack worked diligently to get his pine car ready for the AWANA derby.  He and Jeff spent some time working out the design Jack had drawn up and then Jack sanded, painted etc. to personalize his car.  It looked great and after a heated competition, he won first prize!  We were so proud of him!

I'm trying to edit together the footage we shot that day down into one clip, but until then here he is with his trophy and car.
He and Ella-Kathryn also got to participate in a kid's fishing tournament last weekend.  Jeff took off with those two around 7:45 last Sat. morning and they didn't get home until4!  Long day, but they had a great time and Ella-Kathryn took 3rd prize for her age group! 

Here she is in her Bass Master's fishing hat and free t-shirt.  Her goody-bag included a ton of fishing gear - tackle etc. for which she now needs her own tackle box!  Again, I've got some clips that need editing so I'll post that later. 
Both she and Jack had their spring choir concert tonight.  They both did very well - Ella-Kathryn got to do the motions with a little scarf for the first song - something she was very excited about.  It really was precious to see her between her two friend Camille and Cadence!  They are all such sweet girls and God has really blessed her with their friendships.  Jack's choir did a whole performance and he did have one verse to say. I am pleased to report that he was not nearly as goofy as he was during the Christmas one and he was given sunglasses meant for a boy this time!  Overall, it was a fun experience for both kiddos. 
Ella-Kathryn as finally chosen an activity!  After a free class last month, she decided that she wanted to try gymnastics.  We found a great place in Bentonville - smaller than some of the very large gyms around town, and a bit less expensive.  She has a blast every Thursday night.  I am continually amazed by her innate self-confidence and her terrific sense of humor.  She is one of the older girls in her beginners class and she literally has no background knowledge in this area.  Yet, each time she goes and is introduced to a new skill, she gives it her all and if she messes up, she simply laughs at herself, shrugs it off, and tries again!  For someone who was painfully shy and horrible self-conscious, it is truly overwhelming for this mamma to witness such self-assured-ness in my one and only daughter! 
I am trying to reinstate my morning quiet time and while it is great to get a few minutes start on the kids in the morning, more often than not, I am joined by my Will after only about 15 minutes.  Oh well!  I ask the Lord to bless those few moments alone with Him and then I try to enjoy my time with Will.  I do often try to set him to another task, reading or drawing, so that I can finish up my time.  However, I have noticed that if he and  I can sneak in a bit of time at the beginning of the day, he too has a better day.  He has really been struggling lately, hitting and hurting his siblings, angry outbursts, screaming fits, and while this morning time is not the silver bullet, it certainly plays in nicely with our overall plan for getting this boy back on track! 
Ryan is, as always, such a delight.  Even when he's exercising his lungs at full upper range, he really is a hoot and it's fun to see him growing into an active and wild toddler!  He loves to be outside, which can be a bit challenging at times, and will ask to have his shoes on just in case he might sneak out the door:)  On nicer days we've all been heading out to do school outside that way Ryan can be where he wants to be, but we're not sacrificing our day's work.  We ventured out to the new splash park in B'ville last week - basically a concrete pad out of which water shoots at various angles upwards etc.  The kids had  a great time and it was perfect for Ry as he could walk all over the place and I didn't have to worry about him being "in" the water just yet!  He got really brave after the first half hour and started putting his face right over the holes - his face when the water shot out...priceless!  I did get some pics on my phone but Jeff's going to have to show me how to download them:(  I am a techno idiot.
I'm trying to plan out our next school year - I've got most of our curriculum here, I just need to map it all out so I can see where the gaps are.  I still need some kind of art instruction book.  Art is not my strong suit.  Ar History, yes, but the technical side, not so much!  I am sooooo excited for Crystal Bridges to be opening in the fall and have already asked Jeff if we can forgo eating for a month so that we can get a family membership!  That request was not well received:)
Ok, enough for now - my bed is calling my name...