Tuesday, August 31, 2010

School Starting

We did our first whole day of school yesterday, which meant that by 10:30 am I was completely run over. The "how do I do this? what does this mean? which notebook do I use? should I be done or do more? is this right?" storm just about did me in. So yesterday afternoon, as I wrote out a menu plan for the week, I decided to assign my children times when they could ask me questions. In doing this, I felt as if I was going against everything big homeschooling families cherish: "oh, the time with my children.....they can ask all the questions they want to and I'm just never too busy to answer them." I will absolutely not make it through the first half of September, or in the case of yesterday, the first half of the day.

So, the toddlers get me from 7:30 to 7:50. Eli gets the next 30 minutes followed by breakfast. It's Levi's turn from 8:45 to 9:15, Sadie's turn from 9:15-9:30 and the toddlers again until 10. The older girls get their turn until noon. Day One? My eyebrows are still above my eye sockets. Everyone got school done earlier than usual. I could remember who was learning what.

So far, Day Two definitely exceeded Day One. Only 178 more days to go.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Discussion with Levi

After watching the 3 minute trailer to the documentary "Don't Waste Your Life Sentence: Voices from the Louisiana State Penitentiary," we decided to buy the 37 minute video after church today. The video documents our pastor, John Piper, giving a sermon to inmates. We were talking this afternoon about when to watch it since our whole family wants to see it.

Levi asked what the Louisiana State Penitentiary was for. Images of unspeakably horrific crimes went through my mind, but I decided instead to gear my explanation for an 8 year old. "Well," I slowly began. "If you stole someone's car, you would go to jail in Stillwater. But if you RAN OVER someone in the car you stole, you would go to the Louisiana State Penitentiary. It's a prison for some of the worst people in the United States."

"oh......" said Levi, slowly and carefully, already large eyes somehow bigger. "What did John Piper do?"

Monday, August 16, 2010


1. I helped Emma get the baseboard off her wall. Then I made coffee. I told Emma I would buy her a crowbar and an espresso machine for when she grows up. Both are profoundly satisfying.

2. I am not the soccer coach of Levi's team this year. That is very, very good news.

3. The thought struck me yesterday as I was in the midst of.... something: "I think I'm getting used to this." (this meaning 2 toddlers, a baby, 7 children, etc.) Also very good news.

4. I needed Elmo or Thomas or even Dinosaur Train to babysit the other day. Turned on the tv. There was Kelly Ripa. There were Kelly Ripa's arms. Her arms give rise to many spontaneous thoughts: how long does that take? would I want to look like that? and honestly, does she ever think about wearing sleeves? I tried to watch her go on about whatever the day's news was, but then I gave up. All I could see? Arms. And I didn't want them babysitting.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Who Would Have Thought...

On our drive to Chicago, I expected that my husband and John Piper sermons would be my main form of entertainment. Was I ever wrong.

Turns out Wisconsin has Threatening Pigs. We'll have to save any sightings for our next trip.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Up North

We just got home from a trip to Duluth. I love Duluth.

We spent one night at the Sheraton, then two nights at the Inn--free breakfast in the morning, free smores at night. Joel went to a conference. The kids swam, wave boarded, walked around, ate ice cream, played fiddle at night for the people at our hotel, went
running along the lake and watched the "Tall Ships" come in and out of the harbor.

Lizzie and Zeke had their first Lake Superior experience. They threw rocks, climbed on rocks and fell off rocks. Sadie sucked on rocks.

I made the kids take a bike ride on a "double surrey."
And all this time, we were within walking distance of a Caribou.