Sunday, September 30, 2018

We Bought a Farm: Making Jam

This video.
Makes me so happy.
Free grapes from our friend Kymberly.
Community coming together to make jam together.
A kitchen that does exactly what it was designed to do.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

In the Water

The weather wasn't the greatest during our Vermont week, but we still got one good day of water fun!!!

With Grama Joni (front left) and Ms. Lee (far right)

This moment was so funny. Isaac stuck his oar in the water and the ground sucked it up and they went flying past it and had to go retrieve it. We all had some good laughs!

Friday, September 28, 2018

TF Homeschooling: 34.5 pounds of grapes

This is me on a Two-Family Homeschool Day (TF Homeschooling). Today, we had a family friend visiting so there were actually ten kiddos with us. You can see all ten with Aunt Hannah Grace poking out at the very back right:

Here's what ten kiddos can do in about 45 minutes. They can gather 34.5 pounds of grapes. On Sunday we will make grape jelly. 

There are moments that I think: I love this life.
Today was one of them.

If there is even a glimpse of truth ...

When I went to high school with my friend Cathy, she wasn't really living for God. I am not even sure she knew Him. But as the years have gone by, she has turned to Him and made him Lord of her life. She has not had an easy life. She has had a pretty stinky life by many accounts. She really has gotten the short end of the stick time and time and time again.

Cathy recently posted this on her Facebook page, and I asked permission to share it. I think it is such a beautiful and honest truth that we need to hear and be aware of. 

I love you Cathy. I'm proud of you.

I’m mad at God. I’m actually angry at God. I’ve had a familiar conversation with Him recently and said some things I shouldn’t have. It’s not the first time I’ve been angry with Him. I can bet it won’t be my last time either. 
Why do I get the short end of the stick all the time? Why don’t my prayers get answered? Why does He give me the desires of my heart only to take them away once I’ve become attached? Why do I feel invisible to God? Why does He allow so much heartache and disappointments in my life? 
I have 100 questions swirling in my head that I honestly can’t answer. I don’t know why He lets these things happen to me or what His plan is for my life. I need to stop trying to answer questions I have no business trying to answer. Instead let the One that made me finish His masterpiece. Yes, I’m a masterpiece. I was created by the Perfect One and He doesn’t make mistakes. 
If there is even a glimpse of truth in this picture, it’s something I don’t want to miss out on. This picture is exactly as I picture my first day in Heaven. This is the picture that keeps me going when my depression is too heavy. 2 Corinthians tells us to walk by faith not by sight. So, as a Bible believing Christian, that’s what I must do. I should stop trying to answer questions and instead keep my eyes focused on the things I do know. So far this is all I came up with: Yes, Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so. I think that’s a very good beginning. 
I have since had a better conversation with God and apologized for my words. He is waiting for our hug. So am I.
-- Cathy

What Makes Hannah Happy

I continue to work to learn how Hannah's mind work. She is so different from my other kids and her interests so different than my own, that is hard to figure out how to inspire and encourage her. But the big thing is that she likes to work/help/dress up/be a grown up ...

I had Hannah help me put felt pads on the bottom of all eight of our dining room chairs to prevent the floor from getting scratched.
She did SUCH a great job. She did all the chairs. Abigail helped a bit, but it was Hannah who had the attention span to stay with it. 
I asked Hannah to help set the table. She did a fantastic job.
Although I did have to laugh at the paper towels napkins she gave everyone. Ha ha ha!

Friday Funnies

Hannah asked for a cheese sandwich. This is what was left when she was done with it. 

This Ronald McDonald was in the Burlington airport advertising the Ronald McDonald house. Abigail said: "Who is that guy with the clown face? He's kind of creepy."

Thursday, September 27, 2018

TF Homeschool: So Happy

I absolutely love homeschooling with our two families. I cannot even put into words how much I am enjoying being a homeschool mom this year. I plan to write about this more, but schooling is fun for us this year. I really think that doing this with our friends and having an "incentive" to finish our work (if you get this done you get some time off to play cars or do gymnastics with your cousins) has really  made these days a ton of fun. We love it.

Here are some pictures from our Wednesday homeschooling day. Grama came over and with our great big giant squash tough the three older girls how to make bread! Here are some photos from that:

Studying Georgia O'Keefe over the last few weeks has been really fun. We are doing this with the program Yellow Spot and just having a wonderful time. Yesterday we did a CityScapes activity. Check out some of our work:

More Vermont snaps