Deut. 6:4-7
"Listen, Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is One. Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Raising Homemakers

Wow! I am so excited, I just stumbled on a new website that is all about Titus 2 women, young and old, married and single who want to learn and pass on the ability to run our householdswell for the Lord. (and I'm sure our families will benefit)

Check it out!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A new MOM blog and some giveaways!

Hop on over and check out this new mom blog and see what they are giving away!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Paper Mache

So, the paper mache penguin turned out great, but I will say that we are not a typical family in the way that my kids like messy projects. No....after a few strips of paper mache and Big sis could no longer avoid getting a bit on her hands, she was done.

He's pretty darn cute if I do say so myself :) (He should be, mom worked very hard on him!)
Black and White party at co-op. The kids all did great on their projects!

Yes, if she were in public school, she may have done this. Yes, I probably did this when I was little. But truth be known, I don't remember didn't have any influence on who I am or my education. Quite frankly....I'd just rather skip it next time ;) Does that make me a bad homeschool mom? Think what you'd like, we like to be outside, we like to bake, we like to read, we like movies (gasp!), and darn-it, we like our workbooks! This folks, is why we are in a co-op, so the co-op teacher can get the mess out, she can get the paint out, she can clean it up, and I get the finished product and happy children and no stressed out mommy!!!! (and then we go home and work on our workbooks....)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Sans Training Wheels

Okay, so I know your kid has been riding their bike without training wheels for quite sometime...mine could have done it too, she just didn't believe that she could ;)

Plus some of the fault lies with us, I've been telling Kelly we needed to do just this for sometime now. Take her to a big open parking lot and just show her that she can do it!

What do you know, but Kelly got her going, ran behind her holding on for all of 10 seconds and she was off on her own!

She can do it!!

Now the little one was getting her fun in too, but on the new scooter. We have also told her that she can ride her bike without the training wheels since she has such great balance on the scooter.

She doesn't believe us....oyvee!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Missing our friends!

Friends are so important....even more important when you don't have family that live close by....even more important when we as a family decided that we needed to "invest in our friends like family."

Our friends that just moved to Colorado were friends that we invested in like family. As far as I am concerned, they are family. I love their girls like I would nieces; their son, just recently started actually talking to me! (this is HUGE, as he is quite shy!) Their baby, I could just eat up her endless cheeks and never grow tired of watching her explore her world. Their conversation... never at a loss for something to talk about: religion, politics, news, our kids, adoption, homeschooling, or just struggling to catch up from the past week over the noise level of 7 children :) In her, a fellow homeschool mom that has been doing it longer than me, but we could still commiserate about our kids' quirks. (Come on, I know your kids are perfect angels at the kitchen table during school...aren't they?)

Other things I love about them: they're a big family, they're passionate about their kids, they are strong Christians, they do some things different, but not extreme, and they put the adoption bug in my ear.

It's funny, what started out as a wonderful friend for my sweet daughter, instead turned into family friends.

We are so blessed and all around better people because we know the Delays.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Kid Bedroom #1 is Finished!

Here is the bedroom, minus carpet before the painting began.

WOW! That is really pink!
We had some great helpers!
Almost finished!
Final touches, sponged cream over the pink to tone it down! :) Months ago I bought ribbon to spruce up the curtains and I finally sewed them! They are so chic! :)
And no, my children never make their bed....

Well, one bedroom down, next the baby room. Little sis wants the baby to sleep in her room, but I told her she would change her mind AND a baby boy wasn't going to want to sleep in such a PINK room.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

My First Bulbs!

I am so excited! Like a kid at Christmas, I love Spring....but this year is a little different. Usually, the first sign of good weather, I splurge at Walmart or Lowes and get a bunch of flowers that I plant on a marathon day. Then I drag the family (the kids are usually already helping) and I proudly show then the spring flowers....that the store had, but I planted....that someone started from scratch. This year, I skipped the first part and have just been watering ever so often, and today...a drug my family out to the yard to see the first bloom! The one I planted (last fall)! Now the daffodils have been blooming, but, some of them were already there, so that doesn't really count in my book...I just added a few more. But the crocus, that is totally new, and, this fall was the very first time I had planted bulbs. So naturally, I'm quite excited to see the fruits of my labor. God is so good, just when we (I)think we can take no more cold, no more brown, no more winter, He sends some of the best color all year long.

My crocus in the back yard.
The daffodils by the mailbox. I won't take all the credit, but I did do some of the work ;)

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Marriage Advice (not from me!)

So, a friend of mine has a great blog, where she had some unconventional marriage advice. Someone commented that they were not sure and wondered what others thought. Personally, I think she was dead on! Please head over there and see what you think.

As for me, the best thing for my marriage was when we took a class at church in 2004(ish) where we read the book His Needs, Her Needs and used the workbook that goes with it. Now, let me tell you off the bat, my marriage is pretty good, we don't fight too much (hubby mostly won't fight with me, even when I try!), and we get along pretty well. But, what I saw in this book, that it wasn't about me! Ha, who'da thought?! I don't know if we would have ever had major problem over this concept (for both him and I), but maybe little things here and there might have been simply harder without this knowledge. And even though my marriage is great at times, we have to work at it being great. I highly recommend getting this and reading it together.

Dana's ideas are all A+ ideas in my book. My favorite is naturally #5! Not because I don't sometimes struggle with this, when my head hits the pillow at night, all I really wanna do is sleep! But, yes.. sex does cover a multitude of sins.. And ladies, don't we want to be the ones to put that spring in his step?

So, what do you think, what should we do to make our men happy?

Monday, March 8, 2010

I need a teacher workday

Again! Hey, public school teachers get them, the kids have to stay home with mom and dad and the teachers get to plan, plan, plan!

Seems like it was just January and I was begging hubby to take the kiddos to the zoo, on his day off, by himself. All so I could organize, plan, and catch up on some grading. Well, here I am wishing for another such day. It was wonderful planning out what I wanted to do with the kids each day, but this morning I turned my page on my planner and it was blank :( I can only "plan" out days so far in advance. Otherwise if we get behind those plans, they don't jive with what we are really doing and then, let's face it, it makes me feel oh so behind. We have been keeping up with my said pace pretty well, but it's been a while since I graded papers (they are mostly graded since alot of work is done with mom looking over their shoulder, Big sis, less and less though) or planned out our days beyond the workbooks.

What do we do besides the workbooks, you ask. Well, I try to plan out all my extra "homeschool" stuff that I get or I will forget to use it! Ha! Both kids get time on the computer, my favorite site for them to use is but Bis Sis has truly outgrown this site. I would love any suggestions on a good learning site that doesn't have to many mindless games that I can direct my 2nd grader to! I also have the Learning Palette which they both can do a little math, phonics, or reading comprehension. Emma also has alot of flash cards that I seem to always forget about unless I schedule time for it. I also try to schedule time for puzzles or coloring or any of these other things mentioned randomly so that it breaks up the boredom of the worksheets.

There's not even a free day at home until Thursday or Friday to think about planning, let alone without kids :( Oh well, we will manage!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

I've lost my Mod Podge!

That's right I can't find my mod podge! And I'm not happy about it. You see, I have just about all the crafty, homeschool stuff you could possibly need after years of "browsing" for my scrapbooking and stamping needs in Michaels and Joannes for shopping therapy. And, about a year ago, I had the best scrapbook room I could have ever dreamed of. The best part, everything had it's place. It was organized mess, I could find everything right when I needed it (usually).

This is my beautiful craft room a year ago, okay, so it wasn't always this clean, but you know crafty people, sometimes we don't have time to tighty up while we are creating.

Well, we had grand plans to close in the garage and make it a school/craft room. :) Here I am, 9 months later, I still have a garage being unused other than to store junk. I know, my sweet hubby just hasn't had the time to finish this, there's no one to blame. I have packed alot of my craft room up into the attic till said garage it finished and now, we have moved the girls into the craft/playroom so that we can redo carpet and paint.

I want to throw a 2 year old tantrum right now! I own mod podge, I have a school project that I want to do and I can't find my mod podge!!!!!

This is the same room, right now....... :( The saver in me just can't go buy any when I know I own it......somewhere.....maybe in the closet......maybe in a box in the attic......anyone, some sympathy here.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Homeschool Recourses

These are some of the websites that we use.

Homeschool Share

SC Homeschooling

Our Curriculum


Kid Websites
Starfall -ABC's and beginner reading

Enchanted Learning - printables on anything!
There is a $20/year charge that is well worth it. I use this all the time for my K and 1st grader.

United Streaming - great educational videos, you have to have an account which we get free as SC homeschoolers

Pick a pencil already!

He, he, would think this was a simple statement. If you send your children off to school on a bus or drop them off in carline (nothing wrong with that at all!) then you may not understand where I am going, so go ahead and grab your coffee so I can splain. If you do homeschool, you may already be chuckling, or cringing, depending solely on you precious children.

First, let me just tell you that I love my homeschool mom friends! If I didn't have someone to share our school "issues" with where they laugh and nod in complete agreement, I would probably think my children were special, and I mean "special."

So, you say, pick a pencil and please sit in your seat. Pick and pencil and stop sword fighting with it! Pick and pencil and do't draw on my kitchen table!!! Pick and pencil and stop fighting over the one your sister has!!! That's it, here is your pencil that mommy has chosen for you! and here is yours, no we are not trading, no I don't care if it was yours 6 weeks ago when you were drawing a picture to who knows who, this is your pencil for the day!!!!! (Aaaaahhhh, let's get started)

Ha! This is not even what my girlfriend and I were talking about, it's just the beginning!

The real drama at the kitchen table is once you have assigned them all their pencils, taught them a little math or phonics or whatever, given them an assignment.

One whines," I don't have an eraser on my pencil!"

"Well", I sweetly respond, "look where the eraser should be, who picked the eraser off?"

She looks down at her lap and I can barely hear "I did".

"Well, next time you feel you'd like to PICK off a brand new pencil's eraser, you will remember that you might NEED that eraser, won't you?" I ask, trying not to get angry again, since we have already had this conversation on the day I caught her doing the deed.

This pencil problem is fairly easy to fix as other times, we have a "favorite" pencil that has to do so much erasing work that there us no more eraser and it's no one's fault. So I bought 2 packs of 3 big gingerbread erasers back at Christmas time in the wonderful dollar spot at Target and they have a permanent place on the kitchen table. There is always one at hand.


in the car, when we are trying to get some school done while mommy runs errands, which is where the above conversation took place, oiveh!

Pencils are a pain in my side in the life of homeschooling, really. You'd think we had a gazillion laying around, oh wait, we do! Too bad half of them (usually that half they want to use!) are the "pretty" pencils, the cheap pack of Valentine or Christmas pencils that you buy and let your child pass out to all their friends. These cheap pencils are terrible, you sharpen them to perfection, because you know they have to be just right, nice and pointy, sharpened EVENLY around all sides (or your child, at least mine, might flip her lid) and then they write with it for about 3 words and the stupid lead falls right out!!!!! AAAAAHHHHHH! Yes, this drives my nuts!

You see, my sweet child is a little OCD, in comes my homeschool mom friends who have kids just like mine, (cool, we're not that special). So, she must have a nice sharp pencil, but naturally, she wants a particular one, usually the cheap one!

We've even tried the mechanical pencils, those are great to write with! Until she gets bored and starts clicking it and breaking it off in small mini-lead pieces while I explain long i and silent e to her sister!! And those suckers aren't cheap!

One day I will throw all the "bad" pencils away while my children are asleep and can't stop me and buy only #2 pencils (that is until the next holiday and they get a "goodie" bag with another cheap pencil..............

Monday, March 1, 2010

Monday Mornings in Homeschool World

Does anyone else think the above phrase is almost a bad word? Quite frankly, I do! LOL! For whatever reason, my children and I are completely on the same page about this, and that, my friends, is bad news! We don't like Mondays! Like me in the morning, I need a cup of coffee, and a few (silent) minutes to get used to myself. In the same way, I feel like my whole family takes Mondays to "get used to ourselves" for the week. Naturally, this is bound to turn out bad because as I would love taking Monday's to do this, the reality is, we really need to get school started. We need to usually play catch up on the co-op homework that is not finished yet (mayday! co-op in 24 hours!), we need to get spelling started so that we will get all the week's lessons in and have the test on Friday (whoever heard of a spelling test on Saturday or worse yet, the next Monday?!). But, here I sit, almost 8:30, Monday morning, snuggled up under a blanket in front of the computer wanting another cup of coffee and feeling zero motivation. At the same time, I am listening to my girls talking to and (I am assuming) playing, all quite civilized, with each other in the next room. Why, I ask you, would I want to interrupt that when I know the reaction will be grumbling, whining, and compete anarchy in the ranks?! Maybe they are smart enough to know that if they play nicely on Monday mornings it will prolong the "free time", or maybe they just like each other better on Monday mornings, who knows? All I know, is I am not a supermom homeschooler! I would like to get back into bed with my coffee and a book and let someone else teach spelling, multiplication, go to the post office, grocery store and catch my kids up on co-op. Any takers? Oh well, maybe Kelly will teach them when he gets home from work ;)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Crazy Weather Part 2

Well, after our 6-7 inches of snow, almost exactly 2 weeks later, we hap 70 degree weather!!!

We enjoyed the beautiful day by flying mini finger kites.

Crazy Weather Part 1

So, 2 weeks ago, we had the most snow the area has seen in over 35 years! Only in the South would we have crazy weather like this!!!

We all had a blast first building a snowman and then a real igloo!!!

Friday, February 26, 2010

I am nesting!

I know, it's a little crazy, I'm not pregnant (though I would love it if I was!), but here I am nesting! I am nesting because God has made me a promise, He plans to make me a mother again! Not sure yet, if He plans to do it with a pregnancy (we find out next month if Kelly's reversal was successful), but even before a pregnancy, Kelly and I plan to adopt!!!!

I am so excited and so bursting with joy at just how big my God is! I give Him all the glory for making this happen, and I can't wait to see how it pans out!

You see, about 2 years ago, I had the baby itch bad. First, I took care of it with a cute little puppy named Parker. He is a great dog, a little crazy and hyper, but not so much puppy anymore ;) So, I stated oohhing and aaahhing over any and all babies within a mile radius. I would go googoo eyed over chubby little legs and tiny hands. Then in a the fall, we started talking about reversing Kelly's vasectomy because whenever I would casually talk about adoption, Kelly would simply say he really didn't think he could love a child that was "not his".

So, we jumped in feet first on trying to reverse a poor decision we made as a young couple, sleep deprived and still knee deep in diapers and pull ups. What a wonderful experience that was! A friend loaned us the money, the doctor was a wonderful Christian and I was sure God would give us a child. I was sure I would be pregnant and glowing by the new year, ha! God, in His infinite wisdom, decided to teach me some lessons in patience.....and humility (as, I was not pregnant, and on a bi-weekly basis someone I knew would get pregnant!). You see, He needed to soften my hubby's heart. Kelly first saw my heartbreak month by month as we had no success conceiving, and then a terrible tragedy struck Haiti at the end of January. The first hint that things were changing was when Kelly said something to the effect that we should see if we could adopt a child from Haiti.....what! Who is this man? I'm not sure I believed him until he said something else just like that later in the same week!

Well, I did what an other self-respecting wife would do and got on the internet and started research! I start reading blogs, looking at how to sites and giving him little bits of info. Then, we were at Winter Jam, the preaching time had a bit of info about some of the orphans world wide and specifically in Haiti. Then the guy was about to lead us in prayer and he told us to close our eyes and mentally put a circle around ourselves and ask God what He would have us personally to do for these orphans. I already knew as God had been leading me this way for a few weeks, He had already broken my heart for them, and I had already been laying awake at night thinking about these sweet faces who didn't have a mommy to tuck them in. But something changed in Kelly that night and I confirmed it as we headed home and I simply looked at him and said "You know that we are going to adopt, don't you?" and he replied, "I know". Yikes, how exciting!

Last night we drove to Columbia to an adoption seminar and got our feet wet, I look forward to diving in and figuring out where all the money will come from and starting the "paper pregnancy" soon, stay tooned!

So here we are! I am nesting today, cleaning like a crazy lady this morning, bribing the children to help me with money (the best part is, they want money to help save for church, for the orphans overseas!), I am cleaning because I can't stand to look at some of this mess one more minute, but also, because there is a child that God has promised us coming to my house. (I know, not today) Yes, I would love to get pregnant sometime, but I also know that somewhere in this world, there is a baby, or will be a baby, that is mine!

So today starts with the first of, I hope, many adoption blogs and the first of many prayers for the next member of the Cote family.