Monday, February 14, 2011

A Valentine appreciation of "No Words"

When "Cowboy" and I were married, my NANA sent me a newspaper clipping for our 1st Valentines day! This is what it said:
 "Lasting Love What keeps Couples Together? ,"  Pearson referred to the Velveteen Rabbit.
 "It doesn't happen all at once," stated the Skin Horse, a character in the book as he told the Velveteen Rabbit about becoming Real. "You become. It takes a long time.  That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily or have sharp edges or who have to be carefully kept."  "Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you gets loose in the joints and very shabby.  But these things don't matter at all because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand," the skin horse added.

I have found this to be used as a metaphor for many things in life LOVE and GOD are just a few!!!!

We were very busy at our house today!!!! Little screams and giggels flowed in the air all day as our day was full of Valentines fun!!!!  We made Red velvet cake for a few family members and for "COWBOY"!!!!!

"June Bug"  hmmm think I can get my fingers in there before she notices!!!

Hope my sister doesn't come in here, she will take my job away!!!

Then the best part!!!  Last year I made a fruit basket for the bible study group I am in, it was so much fun and the girlz had helped me!!!  I had forgotten all about it until "Bugs" asked if we were going to make those yummy STARBABBIES  again!!!!  LOL. I remember how we had chocolate everywhere and so had she!!!!  So this year I picked up the berries and our tradition has made it to another year!!!

Smells like summer!!!
"Its just one mom, please can I have it!"
I had the girls dip the berries into melted chocolate and they loved it!!! Wow next year I will remember to get 3 containers of berries as we ate half of them before we even started!!!
Can we all say Sugar!!!!

A little of this
And a little of that!!!

And Wow....Happy Day to Daddy!!!

We even had  some left over cake batter so I put some Oreo's in the bottom of the cupcake holders and dumped it in!!!! At one point in time I could not find out what had happened to the Oreo's I placed in the cups....hmmmmm.....Ooooo I see now!!!!

 That is where they went!!!! hmmm and only the icing is gone!!!!  I then let the girls ice the cupcakes and lick the spoons!!!!  We had such fun this afternoon!!!!

 I am so thankful for those sticky fingers, frosting faces, and sugary screams and giggles!!!! LORD I love the life I have, maybe I don't like the way it goes some days but I always love it!!!

One Last Moment!!!
 What a wonderful Valentines Day!!! First let me set the scene!! We (Cowboy and I) do not do much for Valentines day, we never have.  Sometimes a night spent in the kitchen or a dinner out, but we keep it simple.  I am not one that wishes for roses that will die, or a big piece of jewelry just because its February 14th. It just is not us!!!  In fact the "Cowboy" is a simple man!!! A glance may give you the idea he is quite, possibly stuck up, or that he chooses to not be bothered!!! Then there is the glance that the people who really know him see, his children and I see!!!  The large hands filled with calis's, tanned by the sun, fine lines stained by Gods soil on his palms!!! The man who is always thinking!!! A man who provides for his family the same way generations before him have, an old soul, this would be my "Cowboy"  A cowboy that gets down on all fours and peels the giggles out of our 2 little girls!  "Cowboy" has taught me that some feeling are not worthy of words!!

Last evening  while I was busy thinking of the things to do with  "Bugs" and "June Bug" today, "Cowboy" told me he was sorry but he had not been anywhere to pick up anything for Valentines day, in fact his exact words were "I JUST HAVEN'T HAD TIME"  which to any woman means, I just didn't make time!!! This is pretty normal around our house!!! Cowboy and I do not make much time for each other.  It seems like between the crops, kids, and cows there just is so little left!!!! I am not very good about this any better then him!!! I have poured my heart and soul into our family.  Our children do not lack for my attention, I have a huge garden, I love to bake, so there does not seem to be much left for him either!  That being said I gave a "WHATEVER" face and carried on my way!!!!

This morning when I came down the stairs to start my STRONG coffee, this is what I found!!!

WOW I thought not because of the gift bag for me and the girlz, but because of the fact he remembered!!!! He didn't just remember the day he nailed it!!!! What a neat bag to take to the farmers market for my weekly trip to pick up honey with my mother in law, or for a field lunch during  planting.  I picked it up unopened and sat it in our office where it will sit until he comes home and we can celebrate together as a family!!!  But to "Cowboy" I say you are right,"some feeling are not worthy of words!!"

Thursday, February 10, 2011

REAL facts of life!!!!

Before I post of this weeks fun, I need to jump back to a few weeks ago!!!!  Our girls spent the summer raising, showing and loving a show pig!!!! This being said, Bindi the show pig was A/I and the days passed as we waited for babies!!!!
I thought WOW what a great way to learn and have hands on fun at the same time!  So I searched the internet and found a lapbook on PIGS.  I love this idea of LAPBOOKS it is a great way to learn.  So off to do a little research and I printed off pages for coloring, cutting, and gluing.  I also put together some vocab.  We learned words like sow, litter, piglets, boar, crops, grain, pork, leather, and crate.  We placed all these things in a simple spiral notebook to be added to over the year with different activities!   As the week of delivery came we counted down the days on the calendar, we read books about pigs from the library, and did pig crafts!  

I found that this notebook idea has worked out really well.  Each one of my girls has one for nature/science and then another one for reading books.  This way I can keep all of their activities together and they can show off there books to family members when they come over! I allow the girls to cut and past and color pages.  Now I DO help with some cutting and I supervised glue as I would have everything glue to the dinning room table if I didn't! LOL.......

Bugs is learning how to cut on her own!  She loves proving to me that she CAN cut the smallest pieces!!!!

Also she loves to color, she is trying to hold her markers like she does a pencil but it is still confusing. 

Coloring is "Butter Beans" specialty, she loves cutting too, she tries so hard to keep up with "Bugs"

Now when I say we help I mean we help!!!! My husband and I have always been the type to push work ethics and its amazing the lessons that come with them! Sometimes the things not planed are the best lessons.  

Like, scooping poop!!!! Bugs, learned the lessons of scooping poop this summer, "life is full of it so you better start now."  Then theres the bucket, June Bug helps with feeding and loves to do so!!!!


The hands on experience,  one of the other sows had babies and WOW we were excited, this made the wait for BINDI'S babies that much more important!!! But for the time being we would help with REBA'S babies.  We learned that pigs do to have belly buttons, eyes, noses and most important they poop!!!!

Now I am a practical mom, some think there are things children should not now about and at "OUR" house we go with the keep it simple but tell the truth!!!! Children have the greatest questions!!!! There are times I have to hit the PAUSE but and say hmmmm "Girls let me get back to you on that one"!!!!!  This week one of the largest questions that came with the pigs was "Mama how do they eat, and how do they know where to go?"  Well let me say this was our visual.......

O my I thought, well how am I going to relate this to a child but be honest!!!! So my explanation!!!! "Girls, God was all knowing and such a good designer, that when he made mommies he made them with built in baby bottles!!!!"  "These bottles have there own nipples and each little pig will have its own."  "This is how they will eat and be nourished by their mom."  They simply looked at me and said "Wow Mom that is cool" and I exhaled!!!!!
My husband bent over the crate and explained that we will know when Bindi is close to having pigs because milk will come out of her nipples, then he squeezed one.  Later as we were getting ready to leave we caught our girls checking to see if the time had come.

I just laughed to myself as I looked at my husband and said "This is better then any classroom."  Wow what a teacher he is!!!!!  Later that night when I was making dinner and the girlz were in their pjs, I could hear them playing in the other room.  I knew they were building something as I could hear them giving orders back and forth and planning.  Later when I stepped in to see, there in the corner of our dinning room was a home made crate!  The pillows to my favorite chair, a laundry basket and a table chair.  But what was funny was the large stuff animal (yellow lab) laying on its side with all of these little stuffed pets laying right beside it as if they were nursing.  I just laughed and walked back to the kitchen.  I thought to myself "We really learned something today LOL!!!"
This lesson turned out to be more than I had signed on for, as our Bindi did have babies!!!  She had 6 babies and then we lost her!!! Now on the farm this is a way of life!!!!! In life this is what happens!!!! But to a child who has built a relationship with this animal and taken care of it, I must say our girlz were very torn!!!! We knew ahead of time that this was going to happen so I had a few hours to prepare the girlz.  I told them that sometimes things just happen.  There are things that I cant explain, I believe it is important that they realize mommy and daddy do not have all the answers!  When the morning came and we found Bindi the girls were with me, I felt so bad!!! But then there were the babies!!!! I had to get them off of Bindi and onto another sow!!! I took 3 and moved them, all was going well until I went to reach for numbers 4 and 5.  I couldn't reach them!!!! I stopped and thought and then it happened.  You, know one of those moments in life when you realize you are doing your job, you are being a great parent, and let me tell you those are ahhh moments in our house!!! Bugs, looked up at me with her big brown eyes and said "Mom I can get those babies."  "I said no honey I don't want you to see Bindi like this!"  She continued "But Mom you said the best thing we could do for Bindi now is to save her babies and thats what God would want us to do!"  Wow I hate it when my own words are used against me.............I just exhaled..............and then I realized she was right. I have to let her learn! I let her climb in there and hand me the babies one by one!!!!  We placed the babies in the new crate. All three of us watched as the babies began nursing off their new mom!!!! It was so peaceful in the that little shed, no sounds, all you could hear were the babies nursing and as I looked down at our girlz I looked into "Bugs" eyes and she nodded and smiled as the tears rain down her face!!! She had lost a friend her and "JuneBug", but she had also understood when I told her what God would wanted us to do!!!!

Driving home that afternoon I realized we were doing OK. Sure we have our fits, tantrums, but when the chips were down our girls were great and for that I praised God!!!! 
Some of the greatest lessons were not planned but painfully this week!!!! 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The life of a toddler in our home!!!

We have so many family members and friends that live far away and I am sorry to say I am not very good at keeping in touch with you!  This is an attemp to allow you into our little piece of the world.  Thank you for all you do for our family and the impact you have made in our lives may we impact others as you have us!  God Bless!
After much thought and discussion we decided to start preschool for "Bugs" in our home last fall!  After starting I realized "Butter bean" is going to be right in there with us!!!! They absolutely LOVED the idea and I am amazed every day at how well they do and thrive for more!!!! 
That being said, I am sooooo excited for this week!  We are doing a "LETTER OF THE WEEK PROGRAM", this week we will be learning letters "D" and "N".  I do everything off the work box system, which allows them to be able to explore and work through boxes themselves at their own pace.  I thought they would be to little but they do each box filled with hands on activities everyday.  I change them out once a week to go along with our theme.  I also add laminated pages of letter tracing, color sorting, bible verse tapeline, counting cards, discovery items, etc.  I also found a great blog that had a FREE preschool packet title doctors and nurses, I am incorporating that in our theme this week!  Yesterday my husband and I took inventory in our home and collected anything that could be placed into a discovery corner.  We found q-tips, band-aids, cotton balls, stuffed animals, ace bandages, painting masks, shower caps, toy doctor set from play room, and stethoscope.  This is a discovery area which they will play in for the next week.  I will add something new to it daily.  The best part is, this item does not have to be fancy or expensive for example, I printed x-rays off the internet of broken bones and laminated them.  I will add these one day.  I have a mini microscope, a little bear and puppy that cries and moves, etc.  Small items that were just laying around being put to good use!  One trip to the local library and I have a basket of children books that go with our theme for reading time. Along with this we fit in "Messy Mondays" (Kids kitchen activity),  Weird Wednesday (Science experiment) and Free Friday (Catch up on projects not finished, go on field trip, fun time or family night to celebrate the weeks goals).  Follow along as I guide you in the path our preschoolers take in our home!!!!  It may amaze you, but mostly it should making you laugh as these are moments in our life that take our breath away!!!