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Welcome to my family blog. I have been married to Mike for over half of my life. I love my Savior, Jesus. I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom to six terrific, interesting children. My 3 oldest were born to me in my younger years, while my 3 youngest were given to me by God in my older years. I am very blessed. ~Cheri


False Alarm

Last Tuesday, Seth got a call from his recruiter that there was possibly an opening to leave for boot camp 6 days later (would have made it Monday).  Did Seth want to give it a try?  Oh yeah!  Monday morning came around, and he still did not know anything.  Then he got a call that said to show up at the office asap.  He did.  So, while he was gone for 2 days, I cleaned out his drawers, organized his stuff, threw other things away.

He traveled to the MEPS station with high hopes of leaving for book camp on Tuesday.  But, he did not go.  He was on stand-by that whole time.  So, he is still on the wait list...still hoping.  My feelings are very mixed.  I'm glad to still have him with me, driving me crazy, but I know how badly he is ready to leave.


I Don't Want To Wear A Dress

When I came home with her in 2006, I thought for sure I had a girly girl.  She spoke in a small, sweet, voice.  There was nothing loud or obnoxious about Eva. 

Her room was pink.  Her bedding was floral.  Her closet was full of dresses. She loved all things shiny.  She even loved her princess shoes.

She enjoyed her girly movies and Barbie's The Princess and the Pauper.  Now, she informed me that her favorite movie is the exciting one called The Buccaneer, starring Yul Brenner and Charlton Heston!
She hated bugs and getting dirty.  She was a girly!  Or so I thought.  Today before church, she informed me, "I don't want to wear a dress."  What?  Today, she wore brown pants with a white butterfly shirt.  At least it was a butterfly.  That is still kind of girly.  But, then again, it is a bug.  Almost like these that she carried around in her pockets, dead or alive.

And these.

Oh, well.  I tried.  She's not as girly as I thought.  But, my oh my, how I love my non-girly girl.


An Early Christmas Present

Jordan gave Seth an early Christmas gift (just in case he leaves on Monday...but that's another post).  Can you guess what this is?

I thought it looked like an egg beater.  Any guesses?
It is a head scratcher.  Ivy, Eva, and Joy were all scratching Seth's head one day, so Jordan thought it would be the perfect gift.  Jordan and I actually walked around the store scratching our heads with this thing.  It feels incredibly good.  I cannot even describe the sensation.  I used it so much I got a terribly knot in my hair.


Just Because I Have These Pictures

Last night, Jordan's Navy recruiter came over for some official document signing.  It was a good time with questions asked and answered.  Less than 6 months until Jordan leaves for the Navy.

She is very, very excited.  That is really an understatement.  She'll have boot camp in Illinois then head to school in Pensacola.  Not too shabby.  I'm sure we will be heading down to enjoy some time with her after she's been at school for a while.  After school?  Who knows?  Her job is usually shore duty, not on a ship.  She is really hoping for somewhere in another country.

And, we have this guy, Seth. 

He is not scheduled to leave until August, but he is in a holding pattern at the moment.  He is on a wait list to ship out.  It is possible the Marines can call one day, and he leave the next.  There is a lot on his mind.  And mine. 

So, I'm finished talking about my kids leaving.  That is, until they actually leave.


Look What I Found! (Math)

I happened to be going through some school books, and came across this Math house that I used with Jack around 8 years ago.  It had a quarter inch of dust on it because it was sitting on the top of a big book shelf.  So I dusted it off for Eva and Joy.  They were quite excited to play with the felt numbers and sticks.  I really like it because the girls get a visual of the number houses that cannot have more than 9 in each house.  They seemed to catch on pretty quickly.  So, in this picture I asked Joy to "do" the number 46.

As you can see, Joy has the 4 bunches of 10 in the Ten House, and she is counting out 6 sticks for the Ones House.

Joy was successful, so we gave Eva a turn for the number 30.  See the problem?  She did not realize it until she actually put the sticks in the house and could see that they did not make 30.

Eva is very good at transposing numbers and letters.  If I ask her to pick out the number 76 on the chart, she'll usually pick out 67 instead.  Now that she realizes she makes this error regularly, I can see her mind working overtime when I ask her a question.  She's a little slower to answer, but I'd rather she get it right than get it fast.  She has come a long way from not even being able to combine a consonant with a short vowel just this time last year.


Never Allow...

...your clumsy 5 year old and wild 6 year old to race down the hallway.  If you do, this could happen to the clumsy one that gets shoved into the wall by the wild one:

She may or may not need to be driven to the doctor by the big brother while sitting on her mother's lap who is holding a bloody cloth to her daughter's head that might need to be glued together with dermabond by her nice doctor.


A School Day With Joy

When I finally get around to schooling Eva and Joy, it is usually some time after lunch.  Jack and Ivy do their school in the mornings, and I do what I can with Seth, Eva, and Joy afterward.  Now Joy can make any teacher cry, I'm sure.  Throughout my mornings, I hear from Eva, "Mom, can you tell Joy to stop ________!"  You can fill in the blank.  It happens every, single, day, without fail.  (As I'm typing this, I've heard it twice.)

Handwriting starts out with excitement for Joy.  "Okay, Joy, let's write a line of "s".  She starts writing one or two.  Then she joyfully shows me her snake-like "s" after each one she writes.  After about 5 of them, she's had enough.  Onto something else.  We are to copy the sentence, "Jan eats cake."  It seems like an innocent sentence.  Joy writes, "JAN EATS CAKE."  I then have to tell her she has to write it again because we don't use all caps.  She replies, "But, I like big letters better."  Now we are onto Math.  Imagine how long it takes Joy to write her numbers 1-30.  She doesn't just write them, she wants them in the boxes perfectly, no overlapping or anything.  In the meantime, she's half-laying on the counter, making faces at her sister, reaching over to take her pencil. "Mom, can you tell Joy to stop_________!"  Joy is learning addition.  She is supposed to color each box to represent each number.  Her boxes have to be colored to perfection, using different colors.  :Sigh:  Now, we are onto reading.  We cuddle on the sofa.  She starts messing with her socks.  She takes her book onto her lap and places her finger under each word.  Joy is learning the "Y" sound at the end of a word.  Her first word is Andy.  "Hey, just like in the movie!"  I look at her and say, "Joy, can we just read?"  Seth, who was sitting across watching all this, gets up and says, "I have to leave.  I can't take it."

I think Joy has a hard time focusing in school.  Everything we do reminds her of something else, causing her to get so side-tracked.  A lesson that should only take 20 minutes lasts twice as long with her.  But, look at that face!  It comes with a sweet, squeaky voice and a fiery temper.  She wears me out. 


29, 39, and 51

Those are the weights of my youngest girls.  Joy and Eva both came home weighing 15 pounds when they were a year old.  Ivy came home weighing 41 pounds and barely budged in her weight gain for the first 6 months.  But, she's caught up quite well.  I look at all three of these girls and think about how their nutrition may have played a role in their development, both physically and mentally.  I know that Ivy had food every day, but not very much, and she rarely had water.  I also know that she did not have a variety.  Everyday she had rice and soup.  I also know that Joy never had a bit of food ever until we met her, only bottles.  She had no idea what to do with the food I put in her mouth.  Eva knew exactly what food was and loved it.  She would focus on her food and eat anything in site very quickly, never leaving a crumb.  So, take a look:

Ivy and Eva are 2 years and 11 months apart.  Eva and Joy are only 8 months apart.  To me, the big difference comes with Eva and Joy, both physically and mentally.  Eva is 10 pounds heavier.  It takes Joy about 2 years to grow into clothes that Eva has outgrown.  Shoes take even longer.

Eva usually wants to be outside, exploring, playing, whatever she can do.  Joy, on the other hand, loves those things, too, but wants to be in my lap whenever she is inside the house.  Joy's emotional maturity is more at a 3 year old level.  She reads at a K level, and seems to understand her schoolwork.  Still, her temper, frustrations, rule her.  So, I wonder how much food played a role in my daughters' beginnings. 


Wordless Wednesday (or Jordan's Senior Trip to China in 2008)


It's Official

Yes, I'm now the mom of a Marine and a Sailor.  Today, Jordan signed for the Navy.  She took her ASVAB (an aptitude military job skills battery test) yesterday and scored a mighty high 94.  She was determined when she left on Sunday that she was only joining if she could get the job that she wanted.  She had a very short list of jobs, and she got what she wanted, thanks to such a high ASVAB score.  She told me that her job is working with intelligence and that once she joins, she can't discuss it (or she'd have to kill me?).  So, how does that make this mom feel?  Uh, a little weird, but extremely proud.  She leaves right after her schooling ends in May.  Jordan has researched and worked very hard on this since August.  I always knew that when she puts her mind to something, she will accomplish it.  Even though I may fail to tell her often, I am so proud of her.  So, 21 years ago Jordan I were doing this...

Life was grand.  (Please excuse my 90's hair and make up.)  Yuck.  Now, she's finishing up her 2nd Associates Degree in Criminal Justice and joining the US Navy.  I pray she always chooses what is right and seeks God with all of her heart, all the days of her life.


Ahh, A Teenager

Happy Birthday to Jack!  He is now 13.  Amazing to his mother that he is that old already.  I thought for sure that he still looked like this...

Not like this...

I love his eyebrows.  Why do the guys get the thick eyebrows and lashes that you have to rake, and I get the barely-there kind?

So, we celebrated with a little gift giving...

...and some cupcakes and ice cream.

Yep, he's embarrassed.  He has never liked being the center of attention, unlike his big brother.

And, instead of blowing out the candles, he decides to put them out with spit-covered fingers.

Jack's friend, Moxie.  Thrilled to be part of this family.


A Little Work.....A Little Play

We've been living in this house for just over 10 years.  The house was ugly...very ugly.  Want to see?

July 2001

The bushes were overgrown, the house dirty, but had potential.  Maybe.  I loved the land that came with the house.  We only had 3 children at that time and did not plan on having any more.  The children needed a place to run around and explore.  All the trees got a work out from Seth and Jack.  It was wonderful.  We have done so much work to this house.  The '90's must have been the year for sloppy, cheap house building, because this house was a mess.  It is a work in progress.  Mike did some more repairs to the front porch this week.

 Mike working on the porch and working on his regular job.  Isn't he cute?

 Putting Jack to work staining some wood.
 I just love all the land that came with the house.  Even the girls play outside all day and I don't have to worry about them. 
 Eva, hiding some treasures she found on the property.
 Her hidden treasures.
Our house in 2011...much nicer than 2001.


Wordless Wednesday

Circa 2000

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