Monday, January 30, 2012

Mundane to All but the One not Here.

In case she is wondering about life at home, here is what has happened over the last few days.

Thursday was our normal piano-library-shopping afternoon.  Grandpa and Grandma came over when we got home to do their laundry.  They helped work on the puzzle we had started a couple days before and ended up staying for supper (Hy-Vee pizza).  After they went home we turned on the next disk of Oracles of Delphi Keep and finished the Times Square puzzle.

Friday was a mostly normal day with schoolwork and meals.  The anomalies were orthodontist appointments for Nathan and Abby and the funeral Dad did in the evening and Grandma awoke with the stomach flu.

Saturday afternoon Jeremiah came over and stayed overnight. He brought the movie Tron and they watched it prior to going to sleep in the basement.  Dad looked over Ellie's fable and I read Pride and Prejudice.

Sunday morning I found out that Uncle Matt got sick the night before, so our Sunday family dinner was canceled.  Grandma was feeling a bit better but still not strong enough to attend service so Grandpa sat with us.  Ellie sat with Aunt Michele to help with the girls, with Emily coming to my lap after the Lord's Supper.  Dad ended up not having Bible Study because right after the first service was complete, he was asked to go immediately to Dennis's home who was near death. Fortunately he could as Dennis's home is only the block behind the Peach's.

After church and choir practice we ate sausages and waffles, Jeremiah went home, Nathan went to Dawson's to sled (about two more inches had fallen during the night, which meant Nathan was up and shoveling prior to early service), while Sam played Lego Universe and Abby played on American Girl and Ellie listened to music.  Dad and I watched The Mouse That Roared and took a nap.

About 4:30 Aunt Michele called to see if the girls could come over while she took Uncle Matt to the ER.  He had a sore throat and a lot of neck pain and his fever wasn't coming down.  He tested positive for strep throat and today is feeling a bit better with anti-biotics and higher doses of pain medicine.  The girls were thrilled to come play and enjoyed the snow while Emily couldn't figured out why Hannah wasn't here.  Grandma is better, but her legs are now weak.

Today we all slept in and had a lazy morning.  But when Dad left for the funeral home (Dennis was called home Sunday afternoon) and then to visit another sick member, we got busy doing our chores.  We finished by lunch time when Dad got back home.  Ellie is finishing her fable and will submit it today - don't forget to submit yours! Now after Dad comes back from helping Grandpa and Grandma, we plan to listen to the end of Oracles of Delphi Keep and start the Pooh and Friends puzzle.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Dude - Ride the Wave!

I've been at this mom/teacher thing long enough to not worry (too much) about why something works and instead just quickly grab hold of it and ride the wave till it hits the shore, or someone wipes out.

This current wave consists of me daily writing on the white board what is required for the day's school for the three youngest.  They get to it, writing their initial by what they've finished, and don't run off to hide or play before it is done.  The only order I require is piano practicing (yes I list it), everything else they do as they want.

Although I find it interesting that they all choose to do Math relatively first.  That is fine by me.  I stay at the table the youngest is working at in order to answer any reading questions he might have.  I'm also close to answer any questions the other two would have who are either at the same table or the table in the next room.

I also know that as well as it is going now this wave will die, but like all surfers, I hope this one lasts till the shore and if not, I'll wait for the next one.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012


We've been delighted to find around the house little notes left for us by Hannah.  We have no idea how many are to be found but following are the ones so far discovered.

In the freezer on top of the meat:
"Go ahead and eat all the ham while I'm gone.  I don't mind.  Pax ex - Hannah"

In the freezer on top of the strawberries:
"Don't eat too many of these while I'm gone.  :-) Hannah"

On the floor by the movies:
"Hey guys- Remember - watching LOtR without me is a crime punishable by death.  :-) lots of love, Hannah"

In the shower:
"Hello 1st person to take a shower since I left.  Be sure to get nice and clean :-) Hannah"

On the pull out shelf of our roll-top desk:
"Hello whoever found this.....  :-)  Hope you're having a wonderful day.  I miss you and love you.  Lots of love, Hannah"

Found under the bottle of dishwasher detergent:
"Thanks whoever is doing my kitchen chores :-) You totally rock.  Hannah"

Found under the piano books:
"Make sure you practice lots now that I'm not here to. :-) Hannah"

Found in the Playmobil:
"Hey little kids!  Have fun playing Playmoil! Love, Hannah"

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


I didn't know just how nervous I would be for Hannah.  We feel like Gandolph as she has passed beyond our sight.  We found a website last night that tracks the flight status of a plane.  So we were able to see how long the plane was in the air, the route it was taking, etc.  We watched it till we went to sleep.  Upon awaking early for Bible Breakfast, David checked it again and found it was 18 minutes from landing.  The plane landed early and now we assume she is on her coach (bus) headed towards Cambridge.  We await word for her safe arrival, trusting in God's protection, and trying not to cry, but to attend to our daily duties.

Monday, January 23, 2012

What Did I Just Do?

We just put our oldest onto a plane that was flying to London, England.  She is by herself and will, upon arrival at Heathrow Airport, collect her checked bag, go through customs, and then find her coach (British English for bus) and board it to ride to Cambridge.

Yes Ellie will miss her big sister, just like the rest of us.

She will stay for three weeks with Jonathan and Rachel.  We are thrilled that they are offering her this opportunity.  And we are excited to hear all about what she is doing and seeing.

And yes, there were tears from my eyes but I keep telling myself that her Father in Heaven, who loves her so much more than I, is with her.  His guardian angels will watch over her and He will hold her in His hands, comforting her and keep her safe.

So tonight she is flying solo to another country.  When I awaken in the morning, she will have gained six hours and her first passport stamp.  Godspeed my dearest daughter Hannah.  I love you.

Friday, January 20, 2012

I love my Hubby

And I'm happy to turn over my kitchen for his hobby.

Tonight he brewed another batch o' beer.

This time he is trying an advantageous weizenbock which should taste just like our favorite Munich beer from Schneider & Sohns brewery.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Disposal Wins

Christmas weekend, I think it might have even been Christmas Eve day, I was doing dishes.  I let out the plug to drain the water, turned on the disposal switch, heard clanking, turned off the disposal, and searched for what was causing the sound.

I wasn't happy when I found this inside:

Yep the beautiful ring David gave me for our 10th anniversary isn't so beautiful anymore.  I didn't even feel it come off my finger.  Boo Hoo.

So that the same thing doesn't happen to my wedding ring, I took it in to the shop and they are resizing it down for me.  And one day, David promised he'll get my anniversary ring fixed as well.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Growing up I always wanted things put away where they go.  I had all sorts of knick-knacks in my room and knew where all of them were.  When I came home on break from college I remember telling mom, "Someone's been in my room" because the knick-knacks were out of place.

But then I had children, five of them, all born within 7 years.  The last three were born in a 2.5 year spread.  And when my mom would come to help me after each birth, she would always say something like, "I know I'm not putting this where you want it," or "I know I'm not doing this right."  But by then I was adult enough to realize that it was either that or wait till I got around to it.  And all you nursing moms and moms of toddlers, and moms of children know that doesn't happen as soon as mom would like.

So I became much more laid back.  Sure I still wanted things nice and sure I still ridiculously yelled plenty of times for my children to stop playing and to pick up toys or to stop making a mess with (insert appropriate noun).  But as time went on, I decided that I would deal with messes and clutter I normally couldn't handle because I didn't like the mother I was when the house was where I would prefer.

But now my kids have grown up, the youngest is nine.  And all of them have chores to do and we can whip the house into shape in just a little over a morning's time.  And I love it.  I love to have my house clean and tidy and to sit and read a book when it is all done.  I love to be the first to shower in a freshly scrubbed bathroom.

But I'm seeing that my natural pickiness is returning.  I'm noticing that my tolerance for clutter and dirt is becoming less and less.  And I'm trying really, really hard to not let that rule my life.  I'm trying to bask in the cleanness of the one day, and let the kids live the rest of the week.  Now that doesn't mean that I don't require, or yell, at the kids to pick up books and Legos and play-mobil, and whatever detritus has been left during the day.  It does mean, however, that I'm trying to fight my natural tendencies in order for my kids to not be afraid of living in the house.

Although I must admit that I was thrilled when my oldest son walked through the house yesterday and exclaimed, "Our house looks so nice when it is all clean."  Yes!  Oh and I also tell them (stolen from my good friend Melanie T.) that a clean house makes mommy happy, and a happy mommy is a nice mommy.

Monday, January 16, 2012

A Movie

David and I watched the movie, That Thing You Do, the other night. We really liked it and watched it again last night with our two oldest.

The girls, huge Lord of the Rings fans, liked that Howard Shore was the composer of the score, that Liv Tyler was in it, and kept hearing Woody's voice when Tom Hanks spoke.  David and I thought the premise of the show was good, the story line compelling, and that overall  Tom Hanks wrote and directed a very nice movie.  We all got a kick out of the antics of Lenny's character, and we all agreed this is a movie we would see again and even buy on dvd.

Monday, January 09, 2012

An Ordination on Epiphany

On Epiphany we went to the ordination of Jonathan, my husband's cousin, at St. John's in Wheaton, IL.  It was the most beautiful Lutheran service I've ever experienced. The two hours didn't seem like enough, I wanted more.  Jonathan will be a tutor at Westfield House in Cambridge, England as well as an associate pastor at Resurrection Lutheran Church in Cambridge, England.

David, Jonathan, and Paul
Jonathan, wife Rachel, and daughter Miranda

Jonathan's family

The beautiful kneeler upon which Jonathan knelt for ordination.

Rachel's family