Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas pictures

Just a post to share kids at Christmas...

Christmas Eve and Santa Claus...

Christmas Eve PJs...

Christmas morning fun...

Merry Christmas everyone!

We had a wonderful, relaxed Christmas here.

Other than being violently ill the weekend before. Oh, and teaching on my birthday. Oh, and a last minute Christmas activity on Christmas Eve up at the church. We did enjoy going for a drive and seeing Christmas lights when we all felt better. And Santa Claus needs to come earlier in the night so Mom and Dad can get some sleep!

After Christmas, Dad took Friday and Monday off so he had a 5 day weekend. We completely rearranged the kids' rooms so Michael and Benjamin now have their own space separate from their 4 little brothers. Mom and Dad are now in the old boys' room. The 3 younger boys minus Christopher have Mom and Dad's old room, Michael and Benjamin share the laundry room with the laundry (but the rest is all their own space!) and Emilie is back in her room on her own. The whole house feels like it has more space. The GeoTrax now have a home in the little boys room and not in my family room hehe. Timothy is in a toddler bed instead of a bunk bed but we think he's ok with that. Other than almost falling off while asleep last night... hmmm.

It was a ton of work moving 2 sets of bunkbeds and a lot more furniture besides, but we were done by yesterday evening and had a lovely anniversary dinner. 13 years!

Life is good.

Here is a picture of my family last Sunday. New Christmas sweaters on the little boys. Michael's suit he got for his birthday. Benjamin with a new-to-him suit coat. Emilie with a Christmas dress and sweater. Tom with a Christmas tie. And I'm behind the camera. This is at our church building right before Sacrament meeting... I knew there was no way we'd get this after church!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas is coming...

Which usually means ornaments coming off the tree, packages waiting to out in the mail... Little People Nativity set spread all over the house (hey, at least the kids know who goes where!), secrets being kept (mostly) and good smells of cookies... wait, I haven't baked any yet. School stuff finishing up (yeah, homeschoolers get vacations too!) Christmas music and movies, Christmas countdowns on the wall...

(we have 4 of them from the Friend going right now... it gets to be a lot but it definitely has helped our family focus!)

Here are the links...

Benjamin and Samuel picked THIS one.

Michael picked THIS one to do with Christopher. Our family has done this one before. You also need this page.

Timothy didn't really care, but we think he's doing this one with Emilie. This is one we put on cardboard and do every year.

Nathanael is doing the one from this year's Friend, with Dad's help. Here is the link if you would like to print it.

Another idea is to look at past December's Friends and look through the table of contents.

I love that the Church magazines are online.

Last night was Family Home Evening. We didn't really do anything Christmas related but played the game from last month's Friend and read scriptures together. Treat was M&Ms :)

Friday, November 21, 2008


What are you thankful for?

I am thankful for: (in no particular order) (also added by my family now...)

7 healthy children
1 child in heaven who has taught us so much
8 siblings who still love me lol!
our parents, both inlaws
computers that work
good health
our church family, past and present
our church leadership
this beautiful Earth God has given us stewardship over
good movies
hot chocolate
the 4 seasons
our country
the men and women who keep our country free
the scriptures
scripture study with my family
home education
living prophets
General Conference
inspired local leaders
more friends
old friends
new friends
pictures, family pictures, and digital cameras
phone calls
air conditioning
good books
childrens' books
St. Patrick's Day
New Year's
my husband's employment
one on one time with each of my children
the Ensign
the Friend
the New Era
Winnie the Pooh
cold cereal

More to come... we're just getting started here!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Life's a laugh...

I've been accused of not having a sense of humor. What? "You need to laugh more, Tab, don't be so serious." This person apparently doesn't know me at all.

What ISN'T there to laugh about in a house with 9 people living in it? All different ages, tastes, opinions, senses of humor?

Whether it is laughing at the 7 month old's face as he smooshes a pea, or the nearly 12 year old laughing at a pun he'd just understood from mom, we're full of laughter. Or giggles. Or grins. Or all of the above.

We aren't laughing at each other, we laugh together and I think it brings us closer every day. We watch movies together whether it is Pooh (yes there are funny parts for those of us older than 3), Wall-E (yesterday!) or Lord of the Rings.

It isn't crude or inappropriate humor either, though the 3 and 5 year olds get off on potty humor at times. I think that's just the nature of little boys. Ah, to go off in gales of laughter at the word "poop".

And then there's the ringleader. Maybe that's usually Dad, but sometimes it's 10 year old Benjamin.

Maybe you can just tell from this photo...

Now, is this really a family who takes themselves too serious-ly? Even Timothy can't get enough of figuring out his Dad... and Mom... and the car, covered in spiders... so he wasn't looking at the camera.

Try again...

So, we amuse our selves. We also play games together, entertain each other, and read together.

From the Proclamation on the family, given by a modern day Prophet of God, we read "Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities." Not that we don't work hard at the rest, but we are getting this in too, and laughing together often.

Get to know us.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Just for laughs...

Here's Christopher laughing.

7 months old.

Meredith inspired me to share a video, thanks!

Ignore the messy computer desk.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Is this our house?

"... he stubbed his toe on a pile of books, which was hardly surprising. Stacks of books were piled high all over the house- not just arranged in neat rows on bookshelves, the way other people kept them, oh no! The books in Mo and Meggie's house were stacked under tables, on chairs, in the corners of the rooms. There were books in the kitchen and books in the lavatory [bathroom]. Books on the TV set and in the closet small piles of books, tall piles of books, books thick and thin, books old and new. They welcomed Meggie down to breakfast with invitingly opened pages; they kept boredom at bay when the weather was bad. And sometimes you fell over them."

from Inkheart by Cornelia Funke


Monday, October 27, 2008

Recent pictures of my crew

These were all from July of 2008 at our local Sears Portrait Studio, where I worked part time until September. I'll post more... I went and got more pictures taken after these, but these are our most recent family pictures :)

Why I love homeschooling!

Kids are incredible. I love watching them learn, learning alongside them, and helping them learn.

Michael (12 in a month) is doing algebra. We discuss what he's learning and what he finds interesting, but he is mainly doing it by himself some days. He is learning Latin. He is learning Spanish (beginning). He is writing his own language and translating his poems he writes into this "Elvish" language. He is reading Eragon and the rest of the series (which we enjoy as well) as well as the Lord of the Rings. He has his 1st class in Boy Scouts, earning many merit badges, and working hard towards Eagle. He was the narrator of the children's program this year at church. He is doing Literature and Language Arts on top of all that. History and Science are somewhere in there too.

Benjamin (10) just earned his Bear in Cub Scouts, and is working on Webelos. He just earned his Traveller Activity Badge, which involved a lot of map work and research, as well as his Map and Compass pin and belt loop as well as his Geography Belt Loop. He likes his Math as long as I am there to do it with him. He is working on his Fitness activity badge (required for Webelos). He is reading all the Hardy Boy books as well as Harry Potter. He has read all the Magic Tree House books (I know, he's past that age now but he loves them) and he loves the research guides as well. He is very active and can hardly wait to do everything for scouts as well. He loves helping people. He is a favorite of everyone with small babies and all elderly members of our church. He likes to learn new things.

Emilie (8 1/2) loves learning. She also wants me to sit with her with math but she does 3 digit addition and subtraction problems in her head (so does Benjamin) and has no problem with new concepts. So I go between her and Benjamin when they work on Math. She loves Disney Fairies and has a set of the books she reads and rereads. Spelling is a downfall, but we're working on it. She loves to write. She loves the scriptures and learning more of our faith. She also loves to sing, dance, pretend, play, and help with younger kids. She wants to learn many different skills, and loves to cook. She has so much energy I don't know what to do with her some days but get it pointed in the right direction and you have something to be reckoned with!

Nathanael (5 1/2)learns by osmosis, apparently. He is reading at well above his age level and remembers things almost by accident. He understands concepts his older brothers and sister are learning without even trying. He speaks very clearly and is very accident prone. He now has cuts on both cheekbones, not just the one we took him to the ER for. He loves the Magic School Bus and anything to do with the shows or our computer games. He has too much going on to sit very long doing any bookwork (a great deal like Michael was, learning quickly and hating sitting to do anything) but I know he's learning. He likes his "writing practice" where I make him write something every day... like the big kids... and he comes up with fun things to spell and write. And then he remembers...

Samuel (4 in January) knows how to count to 100 but doesn't do it for show. He has known all his colors and letters for about 2 years now (Nathanael taught him). He wants to read but can't yet. He likes writing his name and doing his Preschool workbook. He loves matching games and helping. He loves to help with Christopher and Timothy too, even though Timothy is almost his size. He's learning to write and follow directions. He's learning all the time!

Timothy (2 in 2 weeks) seems to be learning more every day. Not too long ago he only said Mom, Dad, and Bubbles. Now he is trying to say car, truck, pickle, bye, ball, pooh, cookie, cracker, more... it's a start! I know he has a lot of people to talk for him but I was wondering if he'd ever even try talking! He follows directions and can understand everything we say and ask him to do... He is in a big boy bed but if he's not quite tired he doesn't stay lol.

Christopher (7 months this week) is trying to crawl. He can clap, make most noises and sounds, can imitate sounds, plays peek a boo, doesn't let go of what he wants to hold on it, sits up really well, scoots around the living room by sliding backwards... but doesn't do solid food at all. He wants ice cream, I think. Or steak. He's growing and learning every day too!

I can't believe how much all my children are growing and learning and I feel so privileged to be a part of it and witness it. I love being a Mom and I love this part of parenthood, being able to be involved in my children's education!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

School is under way...

That makes our home sound like a construction zone. Which I guess it is. We're building kids! Or you could take it as there is always something going on. Learning is always happening, even if it is not bookwork. Between the Summer Olympics, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Activity Days, reading, library days, getting ready for a big trip, playing, and regular school work, we're all doing something!

We started school August 4th. Mostly with just the basics, or some of them. We started the daily stuff that everyone is doing. Writing, spelling, scripture study together. Then we started Benjamin on his math. Emilie is starting her math too now. Michael will start Wednesday. We'll add in Language arts/ Literature/ Reading/ English soon. Michael would like to start Spanish as well and we need to add in Cursive for Benjamin. Science is everyday with everyone, as is History/Social Science/Civics. Sometimes it's not even at a set apart time (learning isn't compartmentalized anyway!) but we do a lot of learning everyday in all "subjects" if you just think about it. More about that some other day.

I have learning to clean up, haha.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

4th of July fireworks

Here we all are, first time (ok, we did have a family picture at Emilie's baptism) SECOND time that we're all in one picture...

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Still figuring out the blog thing...

Just experimenting. I haven't been good at the blog thing, more the website and pictures thing and emailing family and friends. However, with so many friends with blogs it would be nice to share. That's all for now.