Friday, July 26, 2013

A good time


Very few things these days causes me to want to blog. The reason is that I have a large camera and it’s just too heavy and too risky to bring to every function. But, I do feel immense pressure to document every event, every smile, every new thing, but I thought to myself that I wouldn’t miss a month or two out of Daniel’s life, and as it turns out, I have missed a BUNCH of documenting. I already wish that I would have blogged MORE so that I didn’t forget certain things. And then I think about all of the moms from the beginning of time that didn’t have blogger or sophisticated baby books, or even a camera. How did they ever survive???

Today while I was getting ready for an evening out I was thinking: “Ya know, even if I don’t take every picture that needs to be taken, or remember every detail of all things that were said cute, that are now being said correctly, and even if I don’t document every park trip, there is one thing that is for certain at the end of my official mothering days, and that is, when his (Daniel’s) car pulls away, whether to college or with his new bride, I may have a camera in my hand, but I will have my husband by my side, and I will know, I HAD A GREAT TIME!

And for me, that is what matters. I am having a great time.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Appreciating life



Hey Guys,

I watched this video today about an 18 year old that died of a type of bone cancer. I cried nearly through the whole thing. It’s long, but I assure you that this will surely put things into perspective for you today as you are going through miniscule problems. I was inspired and drawn to this young man and his family. I do urge to take notice of that last few minutes as he described the uncertainty of “IF there is something on the other side.” I am so thankful that we have a hope of a great and merciful God waiting on us. I was also really drawn to the love story in this video.

I am thankful that God has given me this life to live, and I am surely thankful for the blessings he has blessed me with personally, Dennis, and Daniel. We are not ourselves guaranteed tomorrow or are we promised that we will get to hold our children until the day that WE die, but possibly, until THEY die. I am not trying to be morbid but it’s true that we are to appreciate our days together with each other as we wait on the Lord.

Here’s a little perspective for you today. Please watch. I love you all! Smile

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Tell her “you’re sorry”

**My friend Lisa sent me this email today as I have been pondering if I should make Daniel say that he is sorry knowing that at two years old he does not actually mean it. Do you remember your parents making you say this, and then you say it, and then they say: “say it like you mean it?” I was hoping to avoid this altogether, but as it turns out, there is some purpose behind it. Enjoy this article! from:

Parents frequently ask me if it is wrong to require their children to apologize when they are disrespectful or disobedient. Usually, their concern is that, by doing so, they might be training their child to lie. Wouldn’t it be better to wait for the child to apologize on his own when he feels genuine remorse, rather than to just repeat an apology he has been taught?

It is definitely commendable to want your child to speak and act only out of right motives. And yes, godly obedience goes beyond just saying the right words – godly obedience is right actions plus right motives, doing the right thing for the right reason. Godly obedience is what Christian parents want to instill in their children.

But how is godly obedience instilled? How is it trained? The answer might surprise you. Unlike adults who learn by reasoning, young children learn by doing. Adults want to be convinced that a course of action is the correct one before they will pursue it. Children, on the other hand, learn to perform the correct action before they are developmentally able to assess the reason it is correct. Doing the right thing actually precedes understanding why it should be done.

Parents intuitively understand and employ this “training truth” with young children in many areas:

  • We train them in the language of courtesy before they desire to be courteous (please/excuse me)
  • We train them in the language of gratitude before they desire to be grateful (thank you)
  • We train them in the language of respect before they desire to be respectful (ma’am, sir, Mrs., Mr.)
  • We train them in the language of prayer before they desire to pray (“God is great, God is good”, The Lord’s Prayer)

In short, we teach our children the language they need to interact with others well before they have any real concept of or value for why such language is necessary and good.

Because of this, I would answer the question “Should I require my child to apologize?” with an emphatic “Yes.” If we faithfully equip our children with the language of courtesy, gratitude, respect and prayer, why would we not also equip them with the language of forgiveness? Is it not equally important for them to know? How would training them to apologize encourage them to lie any more than training them to say “Thank you” before they are truly thankful? Would it not seem unloving to leave them verbally empty-handed when facing a situation where forgiveness needs to be sought?

the liturgical child

Children are wonderfully liturgical creatures: they love repetition. This accounts for their ability to enjoy the same book or video over and over again, their attachment to a bedtime ritual or a particular pair of socks, their tendency to shout “Again, again!” when they ride the carousel. Children are wired for repetition because repetition helps them to learn.

Just as a pastor in a church that uses a liturgy each week would not assume that his congregation possessed genuine faith because they repeated the Apostles’ Creed, we parents do not assume that our child feels genuine repentance just because she has been trained to apologize. But we give her the right words trusting that the right motive will attach to them as she matures.

Just as the congregation needs to witness their pastor live out the truths of the liturgy as he ministers to them, so our children need to witness us live out the truth of the language we teach to them. A child who sees his parents apologize with genuine remorse when they have wronged him learns quickly to do the same. Every time we apologize to our children we give them a picture of what mature, genuine apologies sound like: “I am so sorry I hurt you with my words. If I were you I would have felt so scared and sad that Mom yelled. It isn’t right for me to speak to you like that. You are precious to me. I love you so much, and I don’t want to do that again. I didn’t honor God and I didn’t honor you. I’m praying God will help me to stop. Can you forgive me?”

older children and apologies

Should we require older children to apologize? As our children grow, they become developmentally able to link right motive to right action. They become capable of seeking forgiveness without prompting and without memorized words. An older child who has demonstrated genuine remorse in the past (and has seen it modeled by parents) is probably ready for a different approach when an apology is needed.

  • “That was a big outburst. What do you think needs to happen next?” {I need to apologize} “Yes. Would you like to do that now, or do you need a few minutes to think about what you want to say?”
  • “I think you know what the right thing to do here is. I am praying the Holy Spirit will show you your need for forgiveness. We’re ready to talk to you when you’re ready.”
  • “You should apologize to your mom. Why don’t you take some time to think about what you want to say, and when you’re ready, come tell her how you feel about what happened.”

And then, yes, wait for genuine repentance to manifest. If it is slow to appear, you may need additional conversations about how unforgiveness harms relationships, and you may need consequences to drive home the point. But a child who knows the security of having a parent who quickly repents and forgives will typically run to do the same.

So, yes, require an apology from your young child. Don’t let fear of raising a liar keep you from training your children in the liturgy of repentance. Model what godly repentance looks like for them, train them faithfully in the language of forgiveness, and pray that the Lord will use your words and your example to bring about genuine repentance in their young hearts.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Presley’s First Birthday Photos

I don’t normally post my business photos to my personal blog, but this little girl belongs to a family we adore, and since not everyone uses facebook; I thought I would go ahead and post them here. Presley is a sweet girl, and I am enjoying watching her grow up!










It ended something like this, but that is okay, she was really patient with me for a long time! Open-mouthed smile

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Early Intervention

When Daniel turned 12 months old, we went to the pediatrician for his one year check up. The Dr. IMMEDIATELY asked me if Daniel was walking. I said “no.” He wasn’t. He actually wasn’t even close. So……… he said that we needed to come back at 15 months old to make sure he was walking. Well, he still wasn’t. So, they referred Daniel to an organization that would come help him if he was “delayed” a certain percentage. He tested, and he qualified for once a month services.


So, they come every month, and then every 6 months he gets officially tested again to mark his progress in fine motor, gross motor, and speech. If he continues to show a certain percentage of being “delayed,” he stays in the program. He currently receives services for all three areas.


This is Hope. Normally we have Megan, but she is on maternity leave. I really have enjoyed both girls very much. Daniel continues to show improvement each visit. And it’s also so awesome that I have this constant benchmark to keep track of his growth!


The picture below is a “test” to see if he can figure out how to get the crayon out of the container. He figured it out! Smile 


If you look closely at the picture below you will see some markings on the paper. He was supposed to draw a circle, vertical line, and a horizontal line. He managed the circle, but left us hanging on the lines! He also was supposed to fold the paper, but he wasn’t interested. Instead he wanted to “read” this book. IMG_0273

to date: Daniel is 27 months old. According to statistics he is:

33 months old regarding his speech.

30 months old regarding his gross motor skills.

24 months (3 months younger than he is) regarding his fine motor skills.

In my opinion, we have a very normal, middle of the road, child. BUT, I do enjoy and benefit from these girls coming to hang out with us, and they are great at giving me strategies and tips to help him overcome and practice his “short comings”

I am so thankful that Daniel just thinks that they are coming to play with him! Smile

Friday, April 26, 2013

Encouragement for those afraid to Homeschool

If you know me, and we have discussed this topic, you pretty much know that I have known and planned to homeschool Daniel before he was even born. It is something that I have a strong desire to do. I have a conviction that for our family it is right. I have 1,000 reasons for doing it. I won’t list them.

I fear talking aloud about this, and blogging about this because it comes with unexplained annoyed reactions from some people. It makes them feel uncomfortable, it causes them to shift in their chair, possibly bite their nails, and I am unsure why, other than, they think that I/we impart judgment on their decision to not do this. In the majority of situations, they don’t believe they can do it and I believe that they can!! That is our only difference in opinion. So, although FOR ME this is a pretty easy decision to make (though will not be easy to do, I will admit) I know of a lot of people that have a lot of reservations. I was reading another blog (Ashely) and I found this awesome article that she found from:  that I know has encouraged at least one other mom to possibly rethink. My hope is that you might rethink it is as well.

1. I am not a good enough mother.
That is a lie. The truth is that we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength.  Bottom line, you are good enough-with God’s help. If any of use were already good enough on our own we wouldn’t need the Lord to guide us.  We wouldn’t need to rely on Him.  We all have real emotions as mothers, and have strengths and weaknesses.  So does every teacher out there! But I do believe, that if you have the conviction and calling to homeschool, that with God’s help and good resources you can homeschool your kids.
2. I am not patient enough.
None of us are patient enough! No homeschool mom or any mom will tell you that she is patient all the time with her kids.  We all need God to help us and we pray for strength and patience.  There are days I want to pull my hair out and I am inpatient with my kids.  There are sick days and hormonal days.  There are tired days and strong-willed days.  But all of those hard days and trying moments are quickly overshadowed by the best parts of homeschooling.  The nurturing, exploring, praying, and delight of learning that comes with homeschooling and brings such pleasure, that makes those hard days worth it in the end.
3. I am not organized enough.
Homeschooling makes you organized.  What this looks like for some families will be different than for others.  You do not have to have it all figured out and have all your ducks in a row to start homeschooling. You will not have a perfectly clean house.  You just start, and as you move along, you grow into this lifestyle of home educating that will be organized in the way your family needs. It won’t be perfect and that is okay!
4. I don’t know enough to teach my kids.
There is no way any one person can know everything they need to teach their kids.  If you think about a classroom at school, that person is teaching to one grade level or to certain subjects they have been trained in.  But we as homeschooling families learn right along with our kids. We will have our strengths and weaknesses.  It is a blast to re-learn the things we forgot from our school days.  We don’t have to know it all!  We can research and learn and there are a myriad of resources available to help us. There has never been such a wonderful time as now for homeschooling with all that is available. You can do it!
6. My kids won’t get enough social interaction
This is the number one thing that most people worry about when deciding to home educate.  I have never had anyone tell me my kids were weird and unsociable.  You are the model, and if you have your kids in social settings with you and they learn from you, then they will know how to be social.  You can find wonderful ways to get your kids the social interaction they need, but you might be surprised at who they want to spend the most time with!

7. I can’t afford  to homeschool
Money is always a concern. If the mom stays home to educate and you have to live on one income it can be challenging.  I have seen God provide for families ( for us) in ways that they they never thought would happen.  When we are called to do something, doesn’t God always provide?  The same can happen for you.  Begin to trust God, and see what will come about.
8. My kids will drive me crazy
Yes they will! But they will also become wonderful companions and you will have the pleasure of seeing their beautiful minds open up and delight in learning. God will stretch you and grow you as a mother in this area–trust me!
9. I couldn’t be with my kids all day long
This is a challenge if you aren’t used to it.  It is something you grow in to.  If you have your kids in school now it takes some time to “un-school”.  One thing to know is that as your kids are homeschooled they won’t need to be “entertained” all of the time.  Homeschooling truly does become a lifestyle even more than a way to learn and teach. You all relax in it, and your home will soon have a rhythm that won’t seem contrived.   But there is no doubt that moms who are home all day with their kids do need breaks.  Make sure you schedule them!
10. Will my kids fall behind of those in school?
More than likely they will do the opposite. Your kids will actually be ahead in most cases. The lovely part of homeschooling is that your kids will never know if they are behind or ahead.  Home educating is a wonderful option if  you have a child who is falling behind and needs more attention, or if you have a child who is gifted and is being held back by a classroom setting.  You will be surprised at what you can do with your kids in the time you have with them, and they can thrive in the loving relaxation of home whether behind or ahead.
11. My family members don’t support homeschooling
This is a tough one.  If you have a spouse or family members that do not support homeschooling then I would begin to pray.  I would educate yourself and those around you the best that you can.  This is a subject I will address in a future post all on its own. I have some suggestions. 

So, there you have it. I hope this helps you if you have been thinking about doing this.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Villages Vacation 2013













And for my facebook efforts double recorded:

We had a WONDERFUL time at Dawn & Chris’ wedding, and enjoyed the whole weekend!

Here are a few pictures from that:

We are back to the daily grind now. Smile

What has happened?

There was a day when I felt incomplete if I didn’t update my blog on things we were doing. I always thought BEFORE I had a child, that AFTER I had a child that I would have so much more to blog about. Though this is true, my steam on updating has fizzled, and I was having a lot of trouble understanding why.

I think I have figured it out:

Facebook & Instagram.

My “blogging” has been replaced by other forms of “documenting.” I guess I assume that if I post our vacation pictures on facebook- and instagram our random lunches or play times, then my “blogging” is done. I mean, who wants to see the SAME thing over and over about us every where they turn? right?

I have also noticed that Facebook stalkers- and non-facebook users tend to blog more on their actual blogs than facebook users that also have blogs. So now I am stuck, which way do I prefer? Turns out, I prefer facebook. But, I still really love this place. It’s been my “voice” for so long. Is this beautiful relationship I once had to documenting slipping away? :- ) maybe. Just maybe.

Friday, March 22, 2013

When you give a mouse a cookie…

Daniel LOVES sweets. We were told at his 2 year check up that he had gained a good bit of weight rather quickly. He jumped from 25th percentile to 50th percentile in between visits. So we have been limiting his sugar in take. But, today, I was baking a lot in the kitchen and he couldn’t help but notice. Enjoy!


(this is the “more” motion. He didn’t get any, though.)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Isn’t that the term for when tons of things are together?

Well if so, this is what this blog post is about. I have neglected my real camera, so I am relying and catching everyone up using my cell phone. I know, not interesting, but, it gets the job done. Enjoy the past few months in bad photos:

I snagged this picture from Kristin’s blog, and it just made me think: ‘time is passing me by”

My blogging has been a struggle for me lately. I really have it on my mind a lot, but I just am having trouble having a desire to keep up with it.


to recap, he turned two.


AWESOME! He is saying so much! My favorite things right now are: "church” “help” “ready?”  “gogogo!” and more! It’s incredible. He is saying so much, repeating EVERYTHING you say, and really progressing. I was initially concerned about his speech, but I am very encouraged and proud of him.

This is a picture of him in the class that he shouldn’t really be in. He has finally transitioned to the older class, but he was really hanging on to this particular class for a couple of weeks.

Transitions have been challenging. Lots of crying, and fit throwing, but we are HOPING that we are over that for right now.

this was taken at Christmas time. Not a good picture in my opinion, but, we are together. That is what counts, right?

We have a great helper on our hands. He really likes to help me out around the house and “keen up”

one of my favorite pictures of him. Smile 

LOVE this one of him sleeping in the car. Sweet rosy cheeks! Winking smile 

this was taken the very last night we stayed in our new home! More on that later.

his latest mischief! :)

we also have a great eater- he is trying new things all of the time: fruits, veggies, etc.


Daniel loves to align his trucks up in a row. I once read this was concerning because of autism, but really, Dennis would do this, so I am not too worried.

a constant reminder for me.

proud of him! It has taken quite a long time for this to happen.

you know: just sittin’ by the fake fire. AKA: space heater

this is called “perfect shopping circumstances” I love this. What kid could complain about shopping when they have a bag of popcorn and a yellow truck?

in honor of many January birthdays, we gather at Cucci’s in Covington for dinner and Daniel enjoyed playing around with my dad. (And Ashtyn) Smile 

Weight: 28 pounds (50%)

height- unsure- (25%)

More later-

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