Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Hailing Cabs in Chicago 101.

It was Julie's first time visiting Chicago.
My sister's lovely friend up from Florida....never before had a ride in a Taxi Cab.
To give her the full Midwest experience...we step by step taught her how to hail one.

Because...Not just anyone can do it. It takes skill. Technique. It's all about the motion in the wrist.

She caught on quickly....She did Fantastic!
Ever need to hail a cab in the Julie. ;)

Oh I love you in all your Fall-ish glory.
and I love you too.

So much to be thankful for.
In a world that distracts and causes discontent...remember all you have to be thankful for.
You can find blessings in the smallest of details.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Sometimes I just roll my eyes.

My eleven year old son turned in a paper written in Elvish.
I'm glad he is choosing to learn a foreign language...too bad it's one not relevant in the REAL world!
{mom rolls eyes}

When asked at the beginning of our lesson why studying history is important?

Child #1
"So we can learn from others. Learn about the things they did right and also learn from their mistakes.
It's also interesting to learn everything that happened in the past."
Child #2
"So we can answer when people ask us history questions...
there really isn't any other reason to learn this."
Child #3
" make our ancestors proud."

So glad we instilled a love of learning in ALL of our children. {mom rolls eyes}
I'll attribute the last two answers to it being Monday. Ha! {again, mom rolls eyes}

Don't get discouraged homeschooling moms. Every mom will at times feel like she's failing.
But there is a bigger picture...and that is what you need to focus on.
As my mom always says...Stay the course!

Someday they will love history. or not...that's okay too.
We all don't have to have a passion for the same things.
However, it IS important to know why studying history is important! {mom rolls eyes one more time}

Today is a perfectly perfect pre-fall day. 68. Sunny.
We are having vegetable soup and homemade breadsticks for dinner.
I'm resisting the urge to pull out the fall decor. Just a few more days..I can wait, I can wait, I can wait...
Okay, maybe just one little fall-ish something put on the table. Maybe.

Hope your week was off to a great start.
Happy Monday. XxOo

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Melting Like a Snowflake in our Hand.

We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand -
and melting like a snowflake.
Marie B. Ray

This was not one of those relaxing, grilling, fun-filled memory making summers for us.
In fact, it was the hardest spring/summer Jeff and I have ever gone through together.

It felt both long and short at the same time.
Long because of things we were facing...short because we had no time for things we wanted to do.

Things end of summer vacation, a camp-out, long bike rides and a hike around the lake.
Those things never happened.

God taught us a few lessons this past year. Lessons we needed to learn.
For good I have it, how selfish I am and wow am I materialistic.
I also needed to learn what trusting God meant...Again! because I tend to forget I need Him at times!

Jeff's job for many months demanded early morning hours that stretched late into the night...sadly I can count on one hand the number of times we actually sat down and ate dinner together during the months of June, July and August....and his last day off work? Who knows. I still can't tell you the last time he has had a complete day off! Add farmers markets to the mix and family time has been pretty much non-existent.

Also, we only have one car at the moment and that one car goes to work with Jeff everyday.
and as I wrote above ^^^....he is ALWAYS gone!
Which means...we're home. A Lot.  Trapped. Did I say trapped? I meant to say content. ;)

{Someday I'll write all I've learned from not having a car (or car payments, that part is really nice!)
Today is not that day.}

Today I write about making a choice to take a moment when you think you can't.
Which is what we did on Tuesday. We threw schedules out the window and spent the day at the lake.

This was a big step for my workaholic hard working husband.
Getting him to take time off work is not always an easy thing to do.
But he (maaaaaybe with a little coaxing from his oh-so-loving wife...) decided to make time.

My girls must have said thank you a thousand times. The boys had a blast. and I LOVED having my husband around! Him taking a day just for us (minus dropping off blueprints to someone who happened to be right by the lake! How perfect was that?!) meant the world.

I guarantee we all will remember that day for years to come.
Had he gone to would have been another hot day at home blended together with the rest of our days. Not that those are bad..but a special day every once in a while, a day that stands out like no other...those are the memory makers.

{and get parents were up at the lake too.
we had no idea they were going, they had no idea we were going. what are the chances?}

No matter where we are, life is busy.
The more and more I talk to people, the more I realize ~ Gone are the 9-5 Leave it to Beaver days.
and maybe just maybe only black and white TV portrayed such a life.
Listening to my grandma talk, she says my grandpa was always gone working hard too.
She remembers being home long hours alone with her kids.

This summer I was humbled by my outlook on life.
What I thought was important and what I was taking for granted.

I'm thankful God opened my eyes to things in the midst of the chaos before it was too late.
It's easy to assume life will always stay the same...but it won't stay the same.
I'm glad I have the time to change certain things I want to change.

We need to be intentional about making time, because time won't make space for us.
We also need to take a good look what we spend our time doing.

If you are a Christian, what are you doing to serve?
Are you teaching your children to serve? or complain? or live life for themselves?
Because I was doing a whole lot of complaining! and a whole lot of selfish living.

I encourage you to be hospitable. Talk to people in your neighborhood.
Find joy in the simple things in life. Make time for your family. Make time to help others.
and take, take, take those moments..because they are fleeting..
and they will melt like a snowflake in your hand!

Monday, September 9, 2013

A sampling picture and a little bit of nothing important.

Hey Sam, why don't you go and sample corn to the fine people of the market, said the father to his son.

This picture is a true story, no posing. He's usually a sampling machine, but this day....
A. He looks like an advertisement for childhood entertainment...Batman hat, Minecraft shirt.
B. He's not sampling, he's looking at.....birds? planes? Superman?

The orchard is open now, which means....
 I have to start working out to burn off all the
doughnut, corn salsa, hot cider, taffy apple, (insert other tasty fall foods here) calories.
Living 5 minutes....The temptation is just too much for my undisciplined personality!

We started school today.  It was the first day, so of course, Everyone Loves Math!!! {Ha!}
Tomorrow we're taking our first field trip. To the very educational beach. ;)

The weather is going to be superb. 95 and sunny.
Friday is supposed to be we're taking the beach while we can.
Plus..the beach is a great morning motivator! Work will be finished quickly I'm sure.

Finally, if you still have cucumbers growing (or not :)....these were incredible!

Here  is the recipe.
I changed a couple of things though...I used blue cheese (they were out of feta at the farmer's market)
Also, I used sun dried tomatoes AND peppers.
Oh...and I didn't roll them like the picture in the link.
My cucumbers weren't slicing nicely, so I gave up and put the mixture on top.
Definitely, definitely a recipe worth trying.

Hope your Monday was a great one.
Happy Evening to you.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Labor Day Weekend...a few days later.

There were farmer's markets.
There was the apple orchard.
There was a pig roast out at my brother and sister-in-love's house.

We sold. We played. We ate.
Yeah...that pretty much sums up our Labor Day weekend.

This is the last week before we begin our school year.
I should be getting lesson plans finalized..but hey, that's what Sunday night will be for, right?
For now I have pressing matters to tend to...
like repainting the school room and hanging up pictures of classical composers.

Happy Day to you.