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I Am... Mama and Writer

First Mama.  Then Writer.  Though, of late, the latter has consumed a great deal of time as I work to get things in order to potentially be ...

Sunday, September 13, 2009

New-ish Stuff

Can you believe she'll be a year old in less than 2 months now? I marvel over that each day!

A couple of weeks ago, now, Tea gave me a HUG!!! It was probably right before she turned 10 months old. It was wonderful and I felt giddy with warm-fuzzies. :)

She has taken some steps without holding on to anything. BUT she's still not willing to strike out on her own. Still a bit of a scardy-cat like Mama. :( ahwell... they can't all have only good qualities. ;)

Tea LOVES to play the face game. While nursing she grabs my finger and points to parts for me to name. Sometimes I'll ask about a part and she'll try to point to the correct one. It's pretty neat how often she gets some of them correct (like nose, lip, hair, and chin) and others wrong.

I think it was about 10 days ago that I realized Tea was telling me she needed to get her butt changed when she came over to me fussing. The way she was fussing was basically the same as asking for some nursing time. So I nursed her. But as I held her I could SMELL her. When I commented that she needed butt change, she smiled SO huge! She wasn't super happy to be popped off the boob, but she WAS happy to get a clean butt! Oh, and Chris, I stand by my phrase "butt changed" because I'm changing her butt from a dirty to a clean state. ;) (Chris, my brother-in-law, made fun of that phrase, in a kind way, when he and my sister visited a while back.) Anyway, since that first realization, Tea comes to me each time she needs her butt changed! She's SUCH a smart baby!!!



This little lady is excited about learning. She asks, almost every day, to "do school". As a result she is in lesson 20 (out of 100) of my favorite book. She recognizes her numbers well (out of order) and seems to understand that they represent a number of things (only the first five, but still).

She started Dance again last Thursday and LOVES it. Tap is still her favorite, but she happily "tolerates" ballet. Kat is super excited about going on stage. She still doesn't understand that it won't happen for quite a while.

Kat still LOVES to color. She asks for the crayons at least once a day. Very recently she started coloring one picture more than ONE color! Actually, she's adopted big sister's rainbow theme. :)

That provides a nice segue into the idea that Kat still absolutely adores Ria and thinks everything Ria does is golden. Thankfully, Ria is mostly a good girl. But MAN... it sure is rotten when she isn't!

Daily "school" activity has grown. She used to do mostly just Reading and Math. Then we added piano when Mary Kay, her teacher, moved into town. Now she does those daily as well as: Writing/Penmanship, Spelling (almost every day), Science (about 3 days a week), History (4 or 5 days a week), Bible Character Study (daily), Spanish (4-5 days per week), and Language Arts (4-6 days per week). I would like to focus on fewer subjects each day and accomplish the weekly goal in concentrated packs of time, but Ria does better with more variety. So, we do variety! She LOVES Astronomy (her Science subject for this year) so far and still loves Math. YEAY! Hopefully she'll like History better than her first day with it. All in all it's going very well, the introduction of more work. I'm so glad.

Ria still loves Dance. She was disappointed that she didn't get to go to class this past Thursday. But because the studio is in transition, her class doesn't start until this coming Thursday. She's very excited to get back into it. Hopefully things will work out so that she will be able to continue through, without interruption, until her recital at the end of the school year. If you think of it, and want to, please pray for our van. If we have to pay for another repair anytime soon, THAT will eat up the budget for Dance (which is obviously higher with 2 in it now).

Ria finished the Chronicles of Narnia series last week. She's only got a couple more books by Laura Ingalls Wilder (and one by her daughter) left to read in that "series". She continues to enjoy the Nancy Drew Mysteries (she LOVES mysteries!) and read the most recent Magic Treehouse book in a couple hours, just for fun! ^_^ She's a big reader! She does enjoy other entertainments, but throughout the day (after "school") she often sits with a stack of books from her room to read! I'm so lucky!!!

A few days ago Ria said to me something like, "I'm so glad you wanted me to take piano! I just LOVE to play piano!" The thing about that is that she doesn't seem to remember that she asked to learn how to play piano. That fact is kinda funny to me because she obviously only remembers the time she's recently passed through of wanting to QUIT taking piano, but she's glad I wouldn't let her. Jess was actually willing to let her quit, but because of my own issues with giving things up way too easily (less endurance than I would like), I feel really strongly about enabling our kids to have stronger self-control than I developed as a child.... Thus, not quitting things on a whim. If we did, we would've left Dance class the week she complained. It was only a week (one day's class) that she didn't want to continue. She loved it before, she's loved it since. If she wanted to quit dance again, we would make a deal about giving it a certain number of months to continue and then she could make that determination. But I think doing it on a whim is just not the right way (for US). That's what works for us and Jess is glad to support it, since we had a discussion about the subject of quitting, in general. Thankfully he seems to have the gift of discernment pretty naturally! Sometimes it just requires a little effort on my part to begin to paint a possible outcome of our actions for him to see how things could continue on a wrong course from there.

The Girls
Ria and Kat still pretend Tea is their puppy sometimes. She's still called Muffie, as a puppy! :) Tea still crawls away from me (more and more, actually) to search out her sisters IN THEIR ROOM. They play so nicely among each other as well as together! Tea actually enjoys bath time now! I think she didn't enjoy it so well before because she didn't GET that it could be enjoyable. I had her watch her sisters a couple months ago and since then she's LOVED it. Of course, they take baths together. Ria and Kat love to have "their baby" in the tub with them. They've asked if I will leave her to play with them. I've made a deal that I will start to leave the room once in a while for short periods of time when the baby is 15-18 months old. (That's still a ways off, right? heehee) I'm so lucky my girls enjoy each other so well and WANT to spend time together!

Still working hard. He is still working 12+ hour days Wednesday through Saturday. Sundays are still 3pm until about 10:30pm. Unless their not. Sometimes he has to go in early (like 1pm, or 8am!) and some days off he actually has to work... or do inventory. *sigh* I think this is what it will be for a time, though. As much as the girls would like to have him around more (and I certainly wouldn't mind), we have to sacrifice now to experience the reward of it later. Thankfully, Jess loves his job (most of it). He rarely complains about the parts he doesn't love.

He's been fishing more recently. And since we have PE on Tuesday mornings, he'll get to sleep in one morning a week! I hope he does.

A buddy of his from the Club will become a Daddy soon. And another buddy from Church, too. So, Jess has become the experienced Father! Isn't that cool? Those guys really are lucky to have a good example of how to be a good Dad in Jess.

Mostly his life is consumed by work and just hanging out with us. :)

I'm still working on learning about the politics stuff. Mostly, though, I've been trying to share what I know with people I meet and spend time with. It's difficult to find that so few people know what's happening (especially when subjects as important as our Parental Rights hang in the balance!).

In other news about me... I'm going to begin working on becoming a La Leche League Leader. I know, right. :) About time, don't you think? Well, I think it's perfect timing.

My time has been consumed lately. Most of it is eaten by lesson preparation, but I'm still trying to read ahead (of Ria). All in due course for a homeschoolin' Mama, of course.

I'm also trying to read to become a better person. I recommend THE PROPER CARE AND FEEDING OF MARRIAGE. It's helping me change my heart and thoughts about some things that I know I need to change.

There have been more outside "time eaters" since the beginning of the "school year". Good things (and, obviously, since I'm DOING them, I deem them the best for the circumstances). One "time eater" is the PE group we're meeting with once a week to get outside and spend time with other homeschoolers and for the girls to have exposure to a wide variety of sports. It is good fun and SUCH balm to my feelings of NOT belonging anywhere I have been for the last 3 years (actually much longer than that). I've found more women who think/feel as I do about conception planning (or not), child rearing, God fearing, health, nutrition, treating illness, and education (of course) than I think I've ever found in my life before becoming involved with the homeschool groups around here. And yes, that does include, in large part, ladies from Church. It's nice to feel a sort of belonging!

A one time "time eater" happened last Wednesday. The girls and I were able to participate in a Community Service activity. It's actually in preparation for another one (on the 19th), so I guess it's a two time "time eater". ^_^ One of the PRIZE moments of Wednesday morning was when Kat was rinsing out some bottles. Ria, Kat, Tea, and I were in a room away from the rest of the volunteers. I'd just been thinking what a bummer it was that my kids were not going to get to work with others... that they had to get stuck with Mama AGAIN. And Kat says (almost exactly, if not exactly), "It feels good to work together in here!" And she said something along those same lines no fewer than two other times as well. I realized that it doesn't matter if they get to do the service/volunteer work with others or not, what matters is that they know what they are doing because the resulting feelings come regardless of who else is around! WHAT A BLESSING! I also realized that being put in a separate room gave us more time to increase the Unity in our family. And THAT is always ALWAYS a blessing!

Another sweet experience of that morning is the realization that Tea could tell what we were doing! AND for a while, she participated by taking the bottles we were rinsing out of the origin box and handing them to Ria who unscrewed the lid, took off a paper, and set them on the table for Mama to move to the sink. (Tea was a step in the process!) That didn't last long, but she participated, too! (And she is only 10.5 months old!) Isn't that awesome?!?!!

We did end up working with the other volunteers before all the work was done. I think the main organizer thought it was iffy that my little ones could contribute in any meaningful way. He and that other volunteers were pleasantly surprised, based on their reactions, at how well my girls worked and how MUCH they accomplished. Work that was supposed to last until Noon was finished at 10:30am. Now, that's not just because of my daughters, of course. But they didn't hurt the process, either (as I'm pretty sure some feared)! ^_^ What a good experience it was for me to feel that they were pleased and impressed and by so feeling, hope that Father may be pleased by our efforts to become civic minded and involved in our community! I know one of the volunteers was happy to get to know us because she heard me reading aloud to my girls in the public library a few days later and came to find me just to say hi. What a pleasure! I'm so thankful for the opportunity that homeschooling affords us ALL to be involved in the community in this way (and hopefully others as well, in the future)! What a blessing to feel that we can make a difference, little bit by little bit! :)

I haven't really lost much more pounds on the scale, but I've been hearing more comments about looking thinner. Ria has even told me that she thinks I'll have to get clothes that are small like hers soon. (Of course, she also tells me, at other times, that she loves my fat rolls!) ^_^ Who knows. I think I just look like a little bit smaller me... not as distinctly different as I would like to look (and how I feel I looked at my smallest points before). I do feel better (as long as I stay away from sugars and the carbohydrates that are NOT a part of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. My guts are better, too, as long as I stick to SCD. I rather hope I won't have to always remain so strict, but for now I do (and I have tested that recently). I'm all right with it. I'm glad to feel I am healthier and my guts are healing! THAT is a huge blessing.

I'm sorry, if you like to read my personal posts, that I haven't been writing as much here. I've been very busy, though. Well, just busy. :) I feel really mentally and emotionally well... even amid some really painful sorts of things that have happened recently. Heavenly Father is merciful! We are very blessed!!!


Feli said...

Wow... I cant believe your daughter read all the chronicles of Narnia. I am just half way through the series! hehehe...

Our family said...

It is good to hear about what you have been up to! =) I always love hearing about you, Jessie, and your girls, so thanks for taking the time to update us!! =) We love you all!

skate_swettie said...

how did I miss this yesterday, the day it was posted?!
so Glad to read about you ALL.
I am so sorry that you don't feel a sense of belonging among many (sisters) in your ward family.
Thinking about you lots, with love, mom

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