30 October 2009

10 Things I Want My Daughters To Know

1. My love for you is not conditional. There is nothing that you can do to earn my love.

2. How delighted I am in you.
I take great joy and interest in every detail and nuance of your being and personality.

3. I will always be your biggest supporter and cheerleader. Encouragement, support, and kind words are the well-spring to live. I will choose my words to inspire and build-up, not tear down. This includes any future interest in meeting your birth mom. I will be there too, to personally thank her.

4. The reason why we discipline, train, correct and create boundaries is for your benefit and growth. As difficult as it may seem sometimes, we take the time to do this because God has chosen us to be your parents. That means that He has entrusted us to train you in the way that you should go.
-Proverbs 22:6

5. Communication is crucial. We will always encourage you to respectfully speak your mind and share your feelings. There are no secrets in our family.

6. God has a special plan for your lives. I pray that we can help you to cultivate your gifts, talents and desires to serve the Lord and help others in whatever you do.

7. We are privileged to be your parents. God truly outdid himself when He designed our family. This is the greatest example in our lives of how God gives us immeasurably more than what we can ever ask or imagine. -Ephesians 3:20

8. We do not seek anything in return for our devotion in parenting.
Our greatest desire is that you would grow up to be independent young women with a strong spiritual relationship and dependence on the Lord.
We want you to live your own life.

9. We are not perfect. Even though God thought that we would be the perfect parents for you, the fact is that we are all human- by nature, flawed. There will be times when we will say, "I am sorry." We will need forgiveness, wisdom, and grace.

10. We love each other very much and promise to be together forever. We will strive to create a warm and stable environment that you can trust and rely on. We pray that as you become an adult, home will be a safe place where you will not only look forward to visiting but also look back on with the fondest of memories.

27 October 2009

4th Annual Valley Walk 4 Life

Benefiting the Crisis Pregnancy Center.

Daddy's girls.

Theme for the year.

Morning warm-ups.

Grace getting her groove on.

Daddy and the girls catch up to Josh and the boys.

Grace gets a boost.

A beautiful (and warm!) morning.

Faith makes a sprint home.

Thank you Lord!

Family photo after the walk.

Let the games begin!

Grace getting her arm painted.

Trapped in the bounce house!

Sissies.

I can't believe how fast the Walk 4 Life crept up on us this year! This was the first year that we all walked as a family. No more double stroller to push! Yay! High school students volunteered at all the check points so Morgan was able to walk instead of volunteering this year. As always, it was fun way to spend a Saturday morning, supporting a great cause!

24 October 2009

Week 7 Skool

Collecting manna after our bible lesson.

busy bees.

All the manna.

Teagan works on painting his letter G.

Grace was happy that the letter of the week was "G."

Playing hot potato.

Action shot.

Silly face #1.

Silly face #2.

Silly face #3.

Silly face #4.

Working on our fine motor skills and a great "G" snack.

Gotta love homeschool- where else can you learn to use chopsticks at school?

Teagan.

Show-off.

Faith decorates her Halloween treat bag.

Grace is so proud of her Rhonda the Rectangle.
She cut out and glued all the pieces.

Spreading peanut butter on our rectangle snack (graham crackers).

Dance party! We learned about slow and fast dancing.

Simon says...

And then there were 2 left...

Our winner, Gracie!

Grace makes a "G" with her play-doh.

We also made shapes, letters and numbers.

Faith made a chocolate chip cookie.

Faith designed her own Moses costume.

We've just completed week 7 of school. The kids are definitely getting the hang of how it works. I love it that my kids ask in the morning, "Mommy, what are we going to learn about today in school?" It was actually Shannon's week to teach this week but I filled in for her since she was out of town visiting family and friends. Now, I have a 3 week break before I teach again. There are so many positives about our co-op but one thing I am grateful for is the fact that as teachers, we are allowed the time to prepare our week's lessons well in advance. Therefore, when it's our week to teach, we are much more prepared to give our kids our best. At this stage of preschool, there are lots of activities to plan ahead of time and our co-op schedule allows us the gift of time so that we can plan in more detail. So far, here are my observations about the benefits of homeschool...

*immediate parent-teacher conferences.
*healthy snacks
*clean environment
*discipline issues are addressed immediately. Nothing slides!
*they play together in a closely observed environment.
*they are learning to take turns, encourage each other, and follow instructions.
*we can often talk about God and prayer throughout school time.
*the kids are learning to pray on their own.
*dancing, jumping in the bounce house, and playing outside is encouraged.
*strong friendships are being formed.
*as moms and teachers, we get to witness immediate growth and accomplishment.

Most of all, I'm loving the fact that homeschooling allows me to have some intentional and engaged time with my kids. If we weren't doing school, I would probably be spending my time doing laundry, cleaning the house, running errands, or allowing my kids to play on their own. All necessary things but without balance, they can also just be barriers that hinder me from actually taking the time to be intentional about mothering and teaching. I am so thankful and blessed for the opportunity to ease into homeschooling through our co-op. Love you girls!

21 October 2009

Grandpa's Birthday

Happy 77th Birthday Grandpa!

We celebrated by taking him to Murph's Gaslight on Tuesday night for a home-style chicken dinner. The girls were so sweet. They kept telling him that they loved him throughout the night and gave him lots of kisses to remind him. Needless to say, Grandpa couldn't get enough. Just one year ago on his birthday, he had open heart surgery so we are incredibly thankful for the ability to celebrate another year. We look forward to many more birthdays to come! We love you!

18 October 2009

Dinos and Darlings

World's Biggest Dinosaur.

Hello Mr. Brontosaurus.

We climbed upstairs to the gift shop.

Faith found a friendly tiger.

Creationism is not by chance.

Classic Cabazon Landmark.

Fearless Faith meets T-Rex.

Daddy shows him who's boss.

Kylie, my darling niece.

Grace loves holding her cousin.

The girls sang her "Rock a bye baby" and "Jesus loves me."

Our favorite Gomo.

The girls playing with Uncle Rich's pokey hair.

On Saturday, we made a quick trip to visit my brother and his family. On the way to Orange County, we stopped off for lunch at Cabazon and decided to check out the world famous dinosaurs. This roadside landmark has been there for over 30 years- basically, as long as I can remember coming to Palm Springs as a kid with my family. Funny though, I don't think I've ever stopped to see them. It turns out that the landmark is an interesting place to learn all about dinosaurs, man and creationism. We didn't have time to go into the museum part of the exhibit but next year, we thought that this would be an excellent family field trip for our Pre-K class. They can learn all about fossils, ride robotic dinosaurs, pan for gemstones, and learn about how God created every creature on earth. We did however climb up into the belly of the brontosaurus and visit the kitchy gift shop. It was a fun little rest stop!

From there, we visited my brother and his family for the day. We loved seeing them and my little niece, Kylie. She's adorable and growing so fast. The girls enjoy holding her, singing to her, reading her books and playing together. It's so cute. My brother is a great cook and never lets us leave without making us a delicious dinner. It was wonderful, as usual! I am so thankful for my one and only brother. We look forward to seeing them again for Thanksgiving in just 6 short weeks!

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