Bible Bowl Weekend

It’s Monday morning, post-Bible Bowl tournament weekend. I’m so tired and considering quitting everything I ever signed up to do. I should probably never make decisions when I’m feeling this tired!

 

We actually had a really good time. I was so proud of Isaac and Audrey! They did so well and were so well-behaved and kind. Ethan was at home with Nathan because he is in the big Bowl program now and this trip was for the beginners. Ethan had his own tournament in Franklin. Their team was undefeated for the day and they had a great time!

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Audrey, Isaac and a bunch of other kids, coaches and parents went to Louisville and competed with 39 other teams, stayed in a hotel, went swimming, played at the Renaissance Fun Park (arcade, mini golf, go carts. . .) and participated in Southeast Christian’s Kidway worship service. It was Audrey’s second time and Isaac’s first time. They are already planning to go back next year!

It is a long weekend for the kids though. We always have a point where the kids sort of lose steam and get a little crazy. The other sponsors/coaches and I decided to re-enact what the kids do:

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Tornado Day!

A New Laptop and The End of Sickness (Hopefully)

I have a new laptop! My old one had an “s” key that didn’t work. The kids get it now. It works fine with an external keyboard 🙂

If I can remember to keep giving Isaac his antibiotic for his ear infection, he should be able to kick that pretty quickly. Why is it so hard to remember to give it to him? Poor Isaac! It came on really quickly. He hadn’t complained about his ear at all and until last Wednesday morning. He said it hurt a little before I dropped him off with the kids for Bible Study. By the time I picked him up, he was miserable. We went straight to the clinic. The doctor took a look and said his eardrum had not burst “yet”. He had to get a shot in the butt. Not the most pleasant experience, but he perked up very quickly! While we were waiting in the waiting area at the clinic, Isaac was sobbing 🙁 It was so bad that the people there were begging the receptionist to give him Motrin.

Mondays are busy for us. Isaac has speech therapy in the afternoon and often Audrey has a therapy appointment in the morning. Today, we just have speech. Isaac should be done with speech therapy by the end of the school year! I can’t wait!

We got some good news about the final chapter in our saga with the house in Winsted. We were told to prepare for a possible tax bill. We found out last week that we didn’t owe any taxes from that loan being written off. We are using the money we saved for practical things 🙂 Some of it will go in our car replacement fund and some will go toward our house to get us closer to not having to pay PMI.

I’m feeling discouraged today. We have had some good news that has been great, but some of the other daily things are weighing on me. I’m hoping a walk will cheer me up.

 

The Plague

There are so many people sick in our area. It’s really crazy. On Friday, the school district we are zoned for cancelled classes for the day. They decided it would be best to have all the kids and teachers away from each other.

Ethan was gone last weekend for a middle school trip with our church and a bunch of other churches. He came home and then went to a Super Bowl party that included all the middle schoolers and high school kids. Monday morning Ethan woke up sick. By noon, I decided I was going to have to bring him to the doctor. He could hardly sit up in the waiting area at the doctor’s office. He felt so miserable. They checked him over and tested him for strep and the flu. The results were that he tested positive for type A flu 🙁 Boo!

Audrey wasn’t feeling great on Thursday and I had her stay home from tutorial. She still had a fever yesterday. I don’t think she is as miserable as Ethan was. He slept most of the time. She isn’t that sick.

And then on Thursday evening, Nathan felt like he was getting sick. By the time he went to bed he had a fever and felt miserable. So, Nathan stayed home yesterday and we’re hoping everyone can get healthy over the weekend!

 

 

Well, Hello 2017!

Hello 2017!

I’m going to pretend that I’ve been hanging out here all along without any long breaks 🙂

All my words that normally come easily to me are stuck. I feel like all the words are used up and might never return. At least the good words. I have a lot of things I can write that I feel like won’t be shiny enough. However, something is better than nothing. That’s why I’m writing tonight.

What’s happening here?

The year started with some new goals. I want to limit my time spent online, simplify my schedule, lose 20 lbs, have a more consistent Bible/prayer life and a few other things.

Here are a few things I’ve learned in working on these goals:

  1. My days go much better if I don’t start them with social media. I’m trying to not check any of that stuff until noon. I was letting other people’s posts set my mood for my day. Not the best idea. Some days I’m better at this than others.
  2. In working on simplifying my schedule, I’ve had to say, “no” to some things. Some of these are good things, but I don’t have room for the best things if I do too many of the wrong “good” things.  I stepped down from a ministry role and got quite a bit of push-back. It was stressful and made me sad. Dealing with passive aggressive behavior is frustrating. It also confirmed that I made the right choice. I’ve spent too much time and energy doing things just because I don’t want to disappoint people.
  3. Working on my weight loss is going alright. I’ve lost weight simply by counting my calories and eating less than I was before. The hardest thing is that I’m under a lot of stress right now. My favorite way to deal with stress is to eat junk food. I’m really missing being able to use that coping mechanism! On the other hand, I’m proud of the fact that I’ve been able to make healthy choices in the middle all the crap that keeps coming.
  4. I finished my workbook for All Things New. That’s a Bible study on II Corinthians. I really enjoyed it and I’m looking forward to teaching it starting in just a couple weeks!

Here are some specific good things that have happened in the last month:

**We found out that Nathan’s car could easily be repaired. We were worried the transmission would need work. We were relieved it was something less expensive!

**We visited a school that we believe Ethan will be attending starting next fall. I think it will be a good fit!

**Nathan and I have lost more than 20 lbs between the two of us!

**Isaac was baptized! (not this month, but in December)

**I’ve been using cash to pay for groceries and it’s helped decrease our spending in that area considerably! Hooray!

** We have an appointment with a psychiatrist to discuss some medication options for one of the kids and I’m hoping this will bring relief to some of the distress we’re experiencing with some mental health issues.

That’s the news from our family! Thanks for hanging in there with us!

This and That

I just started reading this book. If have any interest in learning to write in a way that people would be interested in reading it, I highly recommend it. It’s only a little over 100 pages and it’s a little paperback.

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The kids and I have had some extra time together lately while Ethan has been at his STEM scouts meetings. It’s so interesting to see Audrey and Isaac play with each other when Ethan isn’t there. The dynamic completely changes.

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The big news here is that is supposed to rain tonight. We’re in a pretty severe drought right now. I don’t remember when it last rained. The ground is very dry and we’re under a burn ban. Last weekend, when we left church, I could smell smoke. The sky was all hazy with it. I guess there were big fires happening in West Tennessee and Georgia and the wind caused the smoke to make it all the way to us.

The house next door to us is under contract and we will have new neighbors in January. I heard that this is a family that has children. I don’t remember the ages, but I think there is a baby on the way too. Speaking of houses for sale, I noticed that our old house is listed. It feels really strange to see it for sale– and for so little. I wonder what kind of person will buy that place. For $90,000 it can be all yours!

The countdown is on for Thanksgiving. I heard Christmas music on the radio today!

Microsoft Store Opening

Ethan’s STEM scout group was invited to do a robotics demonstration at the grand opening of the Microsoft store nearby. He had so much fun!

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Aren’t the lab coats fun? STEM Scouts has been a great opportunity for Ethan.

We’re enjoying a holiday break from our tutorial. Our Thursdays are our own until January! It feels good. The homework load for everyone is lighter for a few weeks as we just work on Math, Reading and Language Arts.

Trip To The Zoo

Saturday was the day that the technology team at Nathan’s workplace took everyone to the zoo!

I wondered if it would actually happen because it coincided with the “great Tennessee gas panic” and we only had 100 miles left in the van. I got up early on Saturday and found gas and only had to wait behind one person.

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Safely fueled, we made our way to the zoo. We brought our umbrellas because we heard it was supposed to rain on and off through the day. Sure enough. It rained. And rained. And rained some more. We walked over to the barn to see the cows while we waited for the rain to let up a bit.

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Later the kids had their faces painted.

 

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Because of the rain, we didn’t stay too long after they fed us lunch. We made our way to the reptile building. We looked at lots of disgusting snakes, spiders, and other critters.

I’m pretty sure I took a nap when we got home. 🙂 That’s what rainy Saturdays are for, right?

Thursdays

Thursdays remind me that I am weak 🙂 Even though we are 6 weeks into this school year and every Thursday we have the same routine at our tutorial, I still finish out the day completely exhausted.

This was today’s schedule:

5:45- Get up and shower and get dressed.

6:30- Kids get up, get dressed, eat breakfast, finish packing their bags.

7:30- Leave the house and head to WalMart because I don’t have anything for lunches for the kids.

8:00- Arrive at the church where we have our tutorial and bring all the supplies in for the class I’m teaching at the end of the day.

8:15- Teacher meeting.

8:30- Tutorial opening program

9:00- Help get the 1st graders to class and assist the teacher for the next two hours.

11:05- Send the 1st graders to their next class and welcome the 2nd graders to our class. I now assist a different teacher with the 2nd grade class.

12:05- Gather Ethan, Audrey & Isaac and walk out to the van and drive across the street to a park for lunch. A bunch of our friends are there. We hang out with friends and eat. It’s 90 degrees and I’m dripping sweat 🙂

12:45- Drive back to the church and get the kids to their classes.

1:00- Assist in the teacher with one more hour of 2nd grade.

2:05- Get the 2nd graders to their final class of the day and head to the class I’m subbing for today.

2:06- Teach Lego, More to Math to 11 kids in 1st and 2nd grade.

3:05- Kids get picked up by their parents and I tear down the classroom. Fold up 4 tables and bring them upstairs to the storage closet. Go downstairs and vacuum the classroom and set it up for Sunday school.

3:30- Wrangle my own kids and the Lego Math supplies and head home.

3:50- Get in the door and sit down and don’t get up again. Everyone is on their own because I’m toast.

 

I do not know how teachers do this all day every day!

Well, Hello There, September!

It’s September! The month of school starting (except for this area starts in August) and everything else starting.

We’re a month into our tutorial for homeschool. Ethan is taking History, Anatomy, Composition, Geography and Engineering Crash Helmets. Audrey is taking Science (Flying Creatures), Tennesse History (and the textbook is so bad…. it’s slowly killing us), Composition, Brain Games, and Girl’s Book Club. Isaac is taking Astronomy, Fine Arts, PE, Cantering the Country (US Geography/History), and Lego Math.

We’re also doing Math, Language Arts, and Reading on our own.

Ethan starts STEM Scouts tomorrow. This will be his second year.

All three of the kids are doing Bible Bowl this year. Ethan moved up to the higher level and Audrey & Isaac are in the beginner level.

Isaac also has speech therapy on Monday afternoons. We skipped today because it was grandparents day and the speech teacher told us there would be an extra 600 people on the school campus. 🙂

 

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Nathan and I just started watching through Murder, She Wrote on Netflix. Nathan has never seen it before! It’s so delightful. Jessica Fletcher has the most snazzy running outfits and says things like “Fiddle, Faddle”. I highly recommend it if you are looking for a fun show to watch.

Happy Fall, everyone!