Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Not Quite Ordinary Observations

For Today...Tuesday, September 30, 2014

In the great outdoors...perhaps the last hurrah of summer. We’ll see.

Within our four walls...much sneezing and sniffling.

A heart of thanksgiving...that colds are the worst health problems we typically have to deal with; for my amazing husband; for the sunshine; for my incredible co-workers.

A heart of prayer...for everyone around us struggling with the fall colds and allergy mess that comes with harvest season; for friends dealing with work issues; for a precious friend facing a transition; for rain to refill the water tanks on Marulaon so the Choates can return to the village as planned.

Random observations...colds are annoying no matter what, but I think warm weather colds are especially so. Cozy sweatshirts, hot showers and beverages, and mugs of soup are my favorite comforts when I have a cold. But this warm weather makes them less than comforting. Yes, you can go ahead and throw stuff at me. I know I’m crazy.

My silly children...are all a little groggy today. We’ll see how school goes!

Thoughts from the kitchen...chicken pot pie. Next best thing to chicken noodle soup.

On my bookshelf...planners! And if they’re on my bookshelf, that means they aren’t on my desk anymore. And if they’re not on my desk anymore, that means the prep work for next year’s planners is almost done! There’s going to be some great stuff in HEDUA’s high school and college planners next school year. And I’ll actually have a high schooler who will use one! Exciting!

Projects...plotting and planning for Christmas. Shhhh…I can’t say what because I have a daughter who now reads some of these posts! 

Sounds of the moment...I can’t hear much because of the congestion in my ears, but I think I do hear the children chattering in the background, a little music, and Doug turning pages of a review book he’s reading.

From Hibbard Academy...a short week this week. Steven just finished learning about Columbus in history and is learning about light in science. Angela just finished Australia in history, and I’ve gone blank on where she is in science. I know she was learning about memory, but she’s moved on from that. At least I remembered that she was learning about memory! Ha! Both of them are working on capitalization, and I think all three kids are dealing with fractions. Fun stuff. Olivia is very independent these days, so I have a hard time keeping up with where she’s going in science and history. She absolutely loves Dr. Wile’s Exploring Creation with Physical Science. It’s right up her alley! Together we’re reading Out of Many Waters and learning about the plight of the Jews during the Portuguese Inquisition. I never knew!

A favorite thing from last week...seeing all three kids stretched out on the floor around the radio listening to the Razorback game Saturday. It’s not so much that they were enjoying the game. It’s more that they were enjoying it around the radio. With all of our modern technology, we can easily lose our ability to listen. But, if you want to keep up with a football game on the radio, you have to listen…and remember what you’ve heard. They were having so much fun and were keeping up with it well. It was precious!

The planner...working our hardest to get everything essential done by the end of the day tomorrow. Then, an extended family weekend. I think the word “zoo” might be jotted down on the calendar. It’s been a while, and we’re excited!

Because visuals are fun...Steven received a whole stack of belt loops, stars, and pins at his Scout pack meeting last night! He was excited!

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Friday, September 26, 2014

Celebrating Olivia

Summer is birthday season in our home!

I posted the special birthday photo posts I love to do each year, but I never shared our celebrations! So, to my digital scrapbook, here I add the celebrations of the summer, beginning with:

The Celebration of Olivia!

We had just returned from Dallas, so she was perfectly happy with a calm, low-key birthday. Every now and then, her birthday falls on Memorial Day, and this was that year. So, it was easy to just take the day off!


We started with her breakfast request – pancake-wrapped bacon on a stick! Fun!


There was also some fun piled up in the Fuf in Mommy & Daddy’s room to watch Thor on the “big screen” (projected onto the wall).


And just some good old-fashioned “we like to be together” time.


Steven loves to tackle Olivia from behind after she sits down at the table for lunch. A birthday tackle is extra special.


Daddies have to get birthday tackles, too.


Olivia chose a peanut butter cheesecake instead of a decorated cake this year. She asked that it have a Doctor Who touch, though. What could be more fun than chocolate TARDISes and Daleks?


Especially when you put them on top of a no-bake peanut butter cheesecake.


Olivia had several fun gifts this year. Building sets always fascinate her, and this one was robotic!


Angie always makes such fun and creative cards for birthdays. This year she made Olivia an airfield diorama that included C130, Lego, and Doctor Who creativity. Inside the TARDIS, she put two Lego minifigs that look like Olivia’s favorite Doctor Who characters.


The came Angie’s gift – a stuffed TARDIS. I think Olivia was happy.


Although she requested a Doctor Who birthday, it isn’t ALL about DW for her these days. She has such a variety of interests. Steven’s gift to her reflected one of them. He was a little disappointed because it didn’t get here in time for her birthday, but she was just happy to find out what he bought. He got her a hardcover copy of Inkspell, a book she’d been wanting, sequel to Inkheart. She was so excited! She absolutely loves fantasy.

She got a few of other things from us – Hog earrings, a fun new t-shirt, a much-needed summer nightgown. But the most fun was watching her open a gift of something not quite so new.

For years, we’ve had a back-up for Bunny. We learned very early on that it’s wise to have at least two of a favorite lovie. We decided it was time to reveal our secret. So, two well-loved bunnies ended up in a gift bag on her birthday. This picture is blurry, but I think you can still get the essence of her reaction! It was awesome! 


So, we now have Bunny and BunBun. And yes, she CAN tell them apart! (Although, she did have trouble that day figuring out which one had been out with her in the weeks leading up to her birthday. She’s still not too sure about that.)


Another fun birthday has come and gone! And the teen years are officially here. Looking forward to a lot of greet teen birthdays!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Not Quite Ordinary Observations

For Today...Monday, September 22, 2014

In the great outdoors...a forecasted high in the 70’s. Yay! It’s been a mild summer, but that doesn’t make me any less ready for fall. My favorite season!

Within our four walls...the need to make a couple of tweaks to our most recent library rearrange. I have a portable table that won’t stay up all the time, but I want to have a good place to set it up (other than right in front of the bookshelves where it is right now!). It gives me a place to stand and work – I need that!

A heart of thanksgiving...for the blessing of friends who love us and our children; for software that lets me plan ahead in school but then make changes easily as needed (My Well Planned Day) – more easily than in my beloved paper planner (which I still use for day-to-day schooling); for new work tasks that are beginning to “click.”

A heart of prayer...for one of our farmers to get his combine fixed quickly, easily, and inexpensively; for the rest to continue to have smooth harvests; for our family to have a smooth few weeks in preparation for a few months.

Random observations...Why do I fight getting up on time in the mornings when I know I’ll feel so much better and the day will go so much more smoothly if I will just go ahead and do it? This morning has run so well because we got up on time. I’ve just got to get that in my head at 5:00 when that nasty alarm goes off.

My silly children...are really quite marvelous. It’s such a blessing to be their mom, and it’s a blessing to see the many things God teaches me through them. Yep, they’re pretty awesome kids.

Thoughts from the kitchen...we’ve given the kids each a day of the week to make dinner. Olivia’s day is Thursday, Angela’s is Friday, and Steven’s is Saturday. For the time being, they frequently still need help. But, there will come a day…I look forward to that day!

On my bookshelf...the need for a plan. Okay, so that’s not on my bookshelf, but it’s related to my bookshelf. I’ve managed to get a handle on much of my schedule: school grading & planning/prep; a work flow for my HEDUA work week that seems to be working smoothly so far; a writing plan. But I still need to schedule in regular reading and keeping up with blogs. Getting there!

Projects...we laid out Christmas projects over the weekend. I’m getting excited! 

Sounds of the moment...soft piano music as Doug and I work on our top of the morning tasks.

From Hibbard Academy...two more weeks of not-quite-full school schedule. Ah, ‘tis fall in the Hibbard household. But, that’s okay! We’re making good progress anyway. And we’re having fun. These are such delightful cores! It’s fun revisiting with Angela what Olivia and I thoroughly enjoyed together. And, with Steven I’m rediscovering the books we loved five years ago. Has it really been five years? Then there are the new things to enjoy with Olivia’s brand new core. Yes, I love homeschooling!

A favorite thing from last week...watching Angela being surrounded by girls who were fascinated by her. Olivia, Angela, and I went to share some Jordan fun with local GAs last Saturday night. We all put on Jordanian dresses. The girls have outgrown their own…but they could wear mine! How did THAT happen?! Fortunately, I had three different styles in my closet, so there were enough for all of us. I never really had the chance to get pictures, but take my word for it – they were cute!

Anyway, we started the evening by just talking about Jordan. But, when that was over, I told the girls they could come up and get a closer look at some of the Jordanian treasures I’d brought. Several of the girls crowded around Angela instead. Olivia nudged me and said with a smile, “I think they like Angie!” They loved Olivia, too, making sure to run and give her hugs before she left. But Angie was the same age as many of them, so that drew them to her in a different – and very precious – way.

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The planner...normal until Thursday when Doug and I get to go enjoy the annual pastor’s conference at OBU, continuing to learn under our former professors. We so look forward to this every year! Then on Saturday, we’ll have our association’s annual one-day missions event. Our family will be here in Almyra helping with a block party.

Because visuals are fun...cat lady! It’s amazing her skirt stayed black!

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