Thursday, October 30, 2008

Lesson in Faith

Today Emmy and I had a playdate at our house with her little preschool pals. I entertained the Moms and Emmy entertained: Adrian, Zeke, Ezra (Adrians twin brothers), Natalie, Will (Natalies brother), and Matthew and Tyler (twins in the preschool). We all had a really good time hanging out. The kids ate, played, and made a huge mess-it was GREAT!!

So why is this a lesson in faith? Today I was reminded of how faith is defined as believing when we cannot see. Even when life was difficult with Emmy, I was able to remain faithful to Gods promise that He had a plan for her. I held on to that faith and prayed that as Emmy got older she would become social-that she would make friends and enjoy the relationships that our other kids have had with their friends. Today that promise was fulfilled!! It was fulfilled in her laughter, her jokes, the mess (and the kids did shove an entire bowl of popcorn/cheese balls/and a bottle of water down our kitchen register vent), and the running around. While the Moms were chatting I kept thinking this is what life is all about. Knowing that God does come through on all of his promises. That prayer, while it may take much longer than we want to materialize, does really work. That wading through the food on my floor is a blessing that many wouldn't understand.

My baby has friends!! Oh my goodness that overwhelms me in a way that I cannot explain. I watched her run around and thought thank you Lord for this moment. Thank you for showing me that miracles do happen today-that if we open up our eyes we can see that our God does still listen. That he is ready and willing. That if we reach out and open our hearts he is waiting to scoop us up and hold our hands.

Gosh this was a good day. While those Moms were mortified as I scooped handfulls of food out of the floor vent I kept thinking if you only knew how thrilled I am to be cleaning up this mess-that it is a gift to have these kids here. That one year ago I cried because I wondered if Emmy would ever have a friend. And here she is today with a beautiful smile on her face (covered in cheese balls) telling me that she loves her friends and that they love her.

Once again I stand firm...you cannot look at this wonderful little girl without seeing the hand of God right before your eyes.

God is good. All the time. And all the time. God is good.

Monday, October 27, 2008

More cook out pics















Cook Out














We went to Grandma Choo Choo's for a fall cookout that ended up indoors. Right as we got to Towanda it got cloudy and the temperature dropped. The kids did play on the hill but were soon begging (rightfully so, it was freezing!) to go inside-oh wait, maybe that was me begging to go in??




video

Rusty











We had a visitor today, Tim and Christines dog Rusty. He is going to be staying with us for a week in November, so he came over for an introductory visit to see the pad. Need I say that the kids LOVED him??

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Costume Choices

Bear is Back!!!!!! Fiona is going as Bear in the Big Blue House
Emmy is going to be Tinkerbelle

Peris thought about being Mulan but has decided to dress up in a bathrobe, towel, and carry around several of her babies-get it..she is a tired Mom
Michael is going to be a ghost (white sheet with eyes cut out) and Ella is going to dress up as Trixie (a character from the book Knufflebunny-she really just wants an excuse to carry her Knufflebunny around).
We got out the treat bags so the kids are ready!! Bring on the candy!! Mom is ready for it too!!



Cooking School








Ella and Emmy (an unlikely pair) decided to play "cooking school" yesterday afternoon. They were giggling back in Emmys room. It was fun to listen to them pretending to be on the Cooking Channel!!


Friday, October 24, 2008

Moms Rockin' Readers

Well here is a solution to those morning time blues. I don't know about you, but I was not happy with the tone of our mornings at all!! After yelling my kids out the door on Wednesday I decided that something had to give!!! To combat the morning grouchies our family has formed a morning book club. Here is how it worked:

I went to Borders and picked up 4 copies of Harry Potter and the Sorceres Stone (a book the older kids have wanted to read). I came home and made special invitations that invited each family member to meet me downstairs the next morning for our first meeting. The invite went a bit like this:

You are Cordially invited to join the
Mom's Rocking Readers Book Club
Tomorrow Morning
At 7:20 a.m.
Please meet me downstairs to find out what book we will be reading..In order for
you to attend you MUST have the following done:
backback ready with ALL supplies (lunch, recorder, homework, etc.)
teeth and hair brushed
Dressed (including shoes, socks, coat)
Bed made
Here's a clue about the book....We will be reading about a boy who wears glasses..can you guess what the book is??
Love,
Mom-President of Mom's Rocking Readers
Derek gave each child their sealed envelope at dinner and they each made a guess about what we would be reading. Yesterday the kids were really excited and most importantly were ready by 7:20 for the start of our first book club. We talked about how it was voluntary to attend and how only good attitudes were allowed. The kids were stoked when I pulled the books out and EVERYONE had a turn reading. It was a smashing success!!! Thank you Lord for planting the idea!!!
I am happy to report that yesterday afternoon the kids really wanted to read more-we held out until this morning and it was a success again-YEA!!! We decided that tonight we would hold another meeting after dinner. The kids really want to read more as Albus Dumbledore is now on the scene........
What a wonderful way to send the kids off to school-after spending some good quality time together they leave with a smile and I feel great as well.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ella Montage








Here are some pictures of Ella in her 1st grade environment. The top 2 are from her fieldtrip to Glenn Oak Zoo (she probably has no memory of this park from when she was little), the middle 2 are from silent reading in the classroom, and the last picture is Ella working with an ISU student on a science project. She loves 1st grade!!!



Sunday, October 19, 2008

Softball Game








We went and enjoyed the faculty versus graduate assistant softball game today at Underwood Park. Peris and Michael got to play and loved it!! The staff were really encouraging to all of the kids that played-it was really nice! I think these are going to be the last nice days that we enjoy!!!


Quiet

The kids have been with Grandma Choo Choo since Friday after school. The house is so quiet-it really does freak Derek and I out. Friday night we drove over to Rizzi's for a grown up dinner. It hasn't changed a bit!! Excellent service, beautiful atmosphere and food that is to die for!! We came home, watched tv, and fell asleep early-no stragglers came down into our bed, no potty emergencies, no bad dreams. Neither one of us slept well-go figure!!
Saturday Derek slept in until 9:30am and then we enjoyed an hour of hot coffee together. Again the quiet was almost eerie!! Daisy even seemed disturbed by it. Derek worked on his thesis and I did some laundry, moved some furniture around-fun stuff. We did run 2 errands, he worked on his paper again, and then we went for a long walk.
We enjoyed dinner at Tim and Christines house and then they broke out the Wii!! Let's just say that some people (who wear glasses, a ball cap, and a yellow henson disposal sweatshirt) are more competitive than they choose to admit!!! We topped the night off with a little Guitar Hero and then came home.
This morning it is quiet again-so strange!!! Derek is working on his paper and I am going to go shower before we get the kids. It was a nice break for us, but we are ready for the kids to come back home.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Homemade peanut butter and apples

Fiona and Dr. Coffman peeling an apple

The homemade peanut butter-"It was really good Mom!"

"These peanuts make peanut butter?"


Ms. Taylor with the blender-Fiona looks perplexed.



After the big trip to Tanners, Dr. Coffman (Principal at school) and Ms. Taylor (Vice Principal of school) came to visit Ms. Hatchs' class to make homemade peanut butter and to peel apples. The kids all loved it!!! The peanut butter was made from peanuts mixed in a blender, and the apples were all peeled by a manual peeler courtesy of Dr. Coffman. They are wonderful administrators-as you can see, these women truely love these kids!! We are really blessed!!

Fiona at Tanner's Apple Orchard






















Fiona and her classmates took a fun field trip to Tanner's Apple Orchard. She got to ride by Olivia on the way there (and Olivia was "chitty chatty" the whole way there) and then she rode by her best pal Mason (we heard there was a rumor that Fiona kissed him on the way home-it is an ongoing problem!!) on the way home. It looks they they all had a great time picking apples and pumpkins!! Thank you Kindergarten!!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy (actual) Birthday Michael and Ella









Our birthday streamer tradition-on the morning of your birthday you start off the day by walking through the streamers to kick off your great day!!





Well it is official!! Michael and Ella are 7 years old-when did this happen? I remember their birth day clearly. I woke up at 6:30am and rolled (literally) myself out of bed. I stood up and thought I had wet my pants. As I walked downstairs, I realized that it wasn't urine trickling down my leg!!! Peris was sick with a horrible cold and was so miserable as we ran around trying to get ourselves ready to go-my due date was still 5 weeks away and we were NOT prepared for the coming of these 2 little babies!!! We got into the van with little commotion and made our way to St. Francis hospital where the nursing staff put me in a triage room until I told them that I was pregnant with twins. I got moved quickly into a labor room and then had a lengthly discussion with the resident doctor who argued that my water probably had not ruptured-wrongo buddy!!! One bag of water had ruptured (Ellas) so Dr. Kindred was called away from his golf game, Uncle Tim and Aunt Nan arrived, Peris left with Uncle Tim and I got prepared for the c-section. I do want to note that my Mom was somewhere in the deep part of Southern Illinois (thank you Uncle John for going to get her), Dereks parents were somewhere as well, and I couldn't reach my Dad or Pat either. It was just crazy.
Michael came first at 11:26am and Ella followed at 11:27am. I still remember all of the people in the OR waiting for their arrival. Dr. Kindred, the resident, 2 nursery nurses, 2 NICU nurses (just in case), an anesthesiologist, Derek and me. Wow-we had NO idea how our lives changed at that very moment-well moments. I remember looking at those 2 little babies and realizing how lucky we were that they were strong and healthy. Michael was 6lbs even and Ella was 6lbs 1oz-and they were 5 weeks early.
My Grandma Wiser told me that one didn't want to come alone so he brought along a sister. And what a pair they are.
Happy Birthday to my angel babies.

Family Party




We had our family celebration on Sunday for Michael and Ella. Grandma Choo Choo, Pat, Pa Pa, Gramma P, Uncle Tim, Aunt Christine, Uncle Tom, Aunt Anita, Addison, Avery, Aunt Jessica, Berlyn, Aunt Jeni, Uncle Alec, Aunt Jayne, and Ridic were all here. Gosh I feel like I am leaving someone out-not intentional!!! It was a fun afternoon-Mike and Ella had a great time!!!