No Greater Joy

No Greater Joy

Friday, January 22, 2010

From One Homeschool Mom to Another...

I'm currently watching my kids, along with a friend, play Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader on the Wii. I'm realizing how much I don't know in the process! We had some icy weather here in the Midwest this week resulting in my husband having 2 days home with us. Although many kids were out of school, my kids don't have that problem since they're homeschooled. At this point they really don't even ask about days off much anymore. Because my husband was home, we were actually able to accomplish more on those days since he could entertain GEM during some of our work time. It was refreshing to get more done! We even accomplished some art which I am not very good at doing. We did crayon drawings and washed over them with watercolors. I'll post a couple of pictures. They did some with their names, so I won't show those. It is so fun and exciting for me to see the girls learning so many things and watching their excitement at learning every little thing. At this point we plan to send HEM to public school next year where her daddy teaches part time. She is SO excited for this. I think it'll be harder for me than her. It's hard for me to relinquish control of her education! I hope she has good teachers that like involved parents. HAHA! I know homeschooling isn't for everyone just as public school isn't for everyone. HEM will have the opportunity to have Christian school, homeschool, and public school education when all is said and done. I'm so proud of my children and their tender hearts and curious minds. I'm proud that that are compassionate and eager to learn, creative and obedient. I am very blessed and will not take for granted how fortunate I am that God has given me these children to care for. I'm especially thankful that even in today's economy we can still find a way for me to be home full time with the girls. The time with our children will seem to flee from us as quickly as our favorite song is sung. I have really been thinking more about how to cherish the time with my children so that I don't regret my decisions in the future. At least with the homeschooling I feel I have given my girls a part of who I am, a clear understanding of my priorities, and conversations that I don't have to share with a stranger. My husband and I are the main influence and no one has their best interest at heart outside of God. I hope all of you homeschool moms feel blessed by this reminder. Some days are hard. We may not get a paycheck or adult conversation much, but we get hugs and kisses! :)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Steadfast Love of the Lord Never Ceases...

I feel like the days have been creeping by. I go to bed each night praying for a settled mind and a peaceful night's sleep. I will ask those of you that like to pray to remember me if you would. I can't really put a finger on what's gotten to me so. I think it's a combination of waiting for my blood tests to confirm what's going on with me, my grandmother's test results (coming tomorrow), and finances (you know...paying bills, medical bills, a new garage door, new roof needed, etc.) Sometimes the last is hard because I feel bad for not bringing in any income. I know my job is priceless, but I know I have the capability of bringing in a decent salary. Honestly there is little desire to be in a classroom for me right now. I know God could change that, but right now my desire is to be home. I feel blessed to be surrounded by my children and my home during the day. I feel blessed, too, to have my friends check on me, pray for me, and read my blog. :) I have felt a dark cloud of depression lingering over me lately, but I am so far able to keep things in perspective and not allow it to consume me. I remind myself of God's graciousness and steadfastness. It gets me through days like this.

Friday, January 1, 2010

My 2009 Recap

Hard to believe another year has begun today. Many people are excited to be rid of the previous year and hoping for something better in the coming year. I look back on 2009 knowing there were some trying times but also seeing the blessings that it brought.

January: We began the new year with many of our friends in our home. I celebrated yet another birthday. We also said good-bye to our friend who has almost completed one of her two years serving missions.

February: My husband and I celebrated our 11th anniversary and GEM's 2nd birthday.

March: My husband was in S. Korea when we were in a car accident. God provided all our needs! My EMM celebrated her 7th birthday and I enjoyed my first attendance at the Hearts at Home conference. I thouroughly enjoyed the Go Fish Guys in concert there, too!

April: I got to take HEM to the Revive Our Hearts Conference. It was a great bonding time for us and a scary wake up call to the danger facing my children's innocence.

May: I spent a weekend with my friend in Chicago and began preparing for my next homeschooling year at the big sale there. I was blessed to celebrate Mother's Day with my family. HEM got her braces on finally. We also got to see our two oldest daughters perform beautifully in their dance recital.

June: My husband celebrated another birthday. I got to see old friends at a graduation party for someone I had known since she was 2! Sadly on the way to the event I got the news that my grandmother was diagnosed with stage 3 stomach cancer. She was given 6 months, maybe more with treatment. (She's still here!! :D)

July: We had our annual 4th of July event at our house and enjoyed the fireworks with friends despite the rain that afternoon! HEM went to horse camp at Hidden Acres for the first time (and it was my first time being there, too). All the hard work for VBS came together and I was blessed to see the fruits of our labors as we saw 7 children come to know the Lord!

August: Our family drove down to Georgia so that the girls and I could spend 6 weeks there having quality time with my grandmother. As a family we enjoyed a day trip to the St. Louis Zoo (a fave of the girls). I also got to attend my 16th year high school reunion.

September: Enjoyed my final weeks in Georgia including a trip to Panama City with the girls, my mom, and step-mom. My mother-in-law was able to fly down too. We got to enjoy the GA Aquarium and experience the Creation Museum on our journey back! We also celebrated HEM's birthday and then had to say good-bye to friends that moved to Maryland.

October: One of the people that introduced Sean and I got married. We were able to be there to celebrate with him and his new wife and see some old friends, too. I spoke for the first time at our women's retreat introducing my testimony to a wonderful group of women.

November: My grandmother celebrated her 84th birthday! We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with our family in our home.

December: I finally got a physician who has discovered some of my health "abnormalities" and am making progress to get back to normal! We celebrated another Christmas together as a family and also celebrated the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. As the year ended we were blessed to have friends over to bring in the new year with us.

So what will 2010 bring? I really can't say. It will reap many things I sow and there will be things that I have no control over. I wonder will my grandmother get to enjoy much of 2010 and will we all stay healthy and well? Will I take advantage of the opportunities to share my faith, to grow stronger in my relationship with my Lord? Will I go without things I want for the sake of others and to give in the name of the Lord? What accomplishments will my beautiful girls have? How will HEM do in school next year? How will I do with HEM at school next year? :)

May we all take advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead and not dwell on the negative things, but be blessed with all the positive things that God gives us this year! Happy New Year to all my family and friends!