Saturday, 31 May 2008

Payback

My teens sometimes make my brain weary and my heart heavy.
My 3 year old tires out my body and my patience.
But my grandbabies are rest for my soul.
Thanks for reproducing my dearest children.
It's only fair.
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Friday, 30 May 2008

Peer Withdrawl

One of our children displayed a need for parental involvement in their personal growth and so pleasures were withheld until that necessary growth was observed in them.

Or as David would say, "They took my cell phone away."

David also has finished up his last few days of high school. What that means to him is no contact with the living world as he knows it. His fingers are lying limp in his hand, unable to text anyone. There are no teachers to ignore while he laughs with his friends.
He's wandering around the house like a caged animal. He really doesn't know what to do with himself being cut off from his friends.

When he was younger he was homeschooled. He spent hours inventing things and enjoying being home. I put him back in school in his early teens and he wasn't happy about it at all, but he got used to it. Watching him now, strengthens my resolve to keep the younger kids at home for the rest of their schooling years.

Yesterday, he
took the ceiling out of his Jeep because the material was sagging in one spot and completely tore it out, went to Wal-Mart, bought new material and glued it back up. That's bored with a capital B, but he's busy again.

David will be going to boot-camp in a few months, which is probably a good thing. He's rocking the nest.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Headed Home

We said good-bye to our daughter and family last week as they headed back to Africa. They will be staying in the country of Cameroon until they can safely re-enter Chad. I didn't cry when they left......I was glad they were moving closer to where they want to be.
I do miss the daily walks and talks and the kids overflowing their house into the yard and street and my house.
No one has run over a bike since they've left or interrupted our schooling or left the front door open.
Boring.
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Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Survival

We finished up our science class this year with a unit on survival skills and we decided to put our knowledge to the test with a Survival Hike Out. We did bring tents and toilet paper, but other than that, we roughed it. Okay, I had my cell phone too.

We hiked about 3 miles along the Appalachian Trail and camped between the C& O Canal and the Potomac River.


The girls learned to pee in the woods without wetting their underwear; we all learned to build a fire and cook over it; everyone devoured smores and told really horrible campfire stories, and I remembered what great kids I get to teach every week.



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Friday, 23 May 2008

How Do I Look?

Costco is one of my favorite stores because you can get everything and it's all big. But this year I got something crazy there....my bathing suit. I just picked it up from the pile, put it in my cart and bought it. No trying it on. No wanting to hang myself when I looked in the dressing room mirror....none of that. Just in the cart and home. And it fits perfect. It did come packaged in a weird way though. It was on this plastic faux manikin. I tried the bathing suit on for James and asked if he liked it. He said, "Yea, it's great, but I'd rather see you in this one, " pointing to the plastic package.

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Ducks and Daughters

Yesterday we found 2 little ducks in our pool. They were swimming around and around, not able to fly and feeling like a..... duck in the wrong water. There was no mom in sight but I'm sure she would have been upset to see the mess her babies were in.



James made a rescue with a net after chasing them for a few minutes.




They were so adorable, but we knew they couldn't stay with us.
We took them to the creek and watched them paddle off - doing what they're supposed to do.


The McKenzie's are leaving today to go back to Africa. It's been wonderful having them here, but they have to go do what they're supposed to do.
(And you can come back to our box, any time!)
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Thursday, 15 May 2008

Someone Wasn't Watching

For Mother's Day this year I was showered with beautiful jewelry. I loved all of it, but it wasn't my favorite gift. Sunday after our big family dinner, my husband and two of my daughters went out of town and left all the kids and grandkids with me. There were lots of them. We had a great time and I thought I had everything under control until Tuesday afternoon. I heard Layla come around the corner saying,"Get this off." Apparently she had found Grace's purse and decided to use her dark brown lipstick as face makeup. She knew she had done a no-no and was upset with herself but became really tearfull as I tried every thing I could think of to get it off. Nothing budged it. I finally consulted the highest authority (goggled - "lipstick off toddler") and used baby wipes with baby oil. Worked like a charm. And the best news is that Lane hasn't fired me as Grandma Kate.

Monday, 12 May 2008

Homeschool Formal

Last weekend we had our 3rd annual Homeschool Formal and more than 50 kids, all looking so very elegant, danced the night away.
Parents stayed and not only looked snappy, but weren't so bad on the dance floor either!

If you were there and you want to order pictures, go to....
Steve's Smug Mug.
(All proceeds go to their trip back to the mission field.)

Saturday, 10 May 2008

Puppy Pals

Witt had a new friend over yesterday, Benji Blieu. Benji was adorable and very tolerant of Witt, who insisted on jumping all over him, trying to start a puppy rumble. They shared a meal of Iams puppy food while Joanne and I talked. Much to Joanne's dismay, Benji left his business card on the side of the couch, in case Witt wanted a reminder of his visit.
Benji is a great dog and he's landed himself the perfect owners!

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

In the Summer Time when the Weather is High

It's right on the edge of summer these days.

*It's mostly warm enough to wear shorts and sandals but your legs are still as white as a piece of computer paper.
*The pool is open but you would die of hypothermia if you stayed in more than 5 minutes.
*Box Elder bugs are mating on every possible surface of my house but no hummingbirds have visited.
*School isn't out yet, but everyone is sick of it.

Then last night the adults sat out on the front porch talking while the kids ran around in the yard till long after dark and way past their bed times. The adults talked, the kids played......summer was so close I touched it.

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

The Buzz on the Bees

Our science class has been rather buggy lately. We're studying insects, which has been fun for most of us, although one of the girls in the class when listing 3 insect characteristics, put down-
1. ugly
2. creepy
3. sneaky
I was actually looking for stuff like...invertebrate, 6 legs, etc.
Yesterday we had a day in the bee yard with James and the kids were able to observe the bees up close without being stung. James erected a screen tent next to the hives and with his assistant Elijah (perfe
ct grandson), showed the kids how bees live.

It was exciting and scary....what kid doesn't love tha
t?!

Thursday, 1 May 2008

Take a Chance on Me

One good deal for a child going into foster care is that you're a complete unknown. You have a new family presumably ready to expect the best of you. If you were a liar, thief, nose picker.....you fill in the blank....it's a chance for reformation. As foster parents, we often get a quick bio. on a child they place with us. These reports are mostly vague and unless it says, "tried to kill last foster mom", I give the new kid a clean bill of health and let them decide who they're going to be here. With a fresh start, positive encouragement and meeting the God of the Universe, many kids run with it and overcome baggage they've carried all their life.

And some can't/don't. I know that these kids don't want to continue the hurtful things from their past, they just don't have the ability to break away. Negative behavior patterns of generations are so fixed in them that the effort to change develops slowly and often not in time. You can almost see the word "DOOMED" written on their face. It's heartbreaking. And yet you pour everything into them, pleading with the Lord for healing and release. How many have we seen leave our home with just some surface polish and a still unchanged heart?

And this is a small picture of God's dilemma with man. He's holding out a new life and all the good things and sometimes we choose the junk. I know He's crying too.