Wednesday, May 6, 2015

A Bump in the Road

It's been quite a while since I blogged.  The New Year came and went.  Then, January 27'th, we hit a bump in the road.  My husband, age 40,  had a stroke.  That day will not be forgotten.  

This is how it went:

I woke up hearing the shower running at 5:30am thinking to myself, "He sure is taking a long shower this morning before work. He must be really tired and trying to wake up or his neck is bothering him again."  (He is usually out the door by this time in the morning.)  Then I heard him dry heaving.  I jumped out of bed, knowing in my mind that something is wrong.  Opening the bathroom door, I see him half hanging out of the shower with his head trying to get over the toilet.  I asked if he was ok, and what was going on.  He said he got dizzy and the room was spinning.  I helped him up and helped him onto the toilet.  He was in a daze.  He wasn't responding right.  "Something is off" I thought to myself.  I helped him up, got him dressed and helped him to the couch.  I asked him a few questions to see if he was ok and he was sluggish.  I told him, "Something isn't right.  I'm taking you to the ER."

He was transferred from our local hospital to a large hospital in Columbus, OH that specializes in strokes.  He had a stroke.  

I will never forget these next words after we found out he had a stroke:  "He has an artery dissection."  What?  

Guilt came over me.  I told my husband that if he didn't quit smoking and didn't start eating better, he was going to have a stroke.  How I wish I could take those thoughts and words back.  I know in my right mind that I wasn't the cause, but guilt is what I felt along with panic.  I didn't let my husband see my panic.  I held it together.  I was strong.  I told him that it was going to be ok and he would be back to normal soon and we would get over this.  God has always taken care of us and watched over us and I believe he is still in control.  

But when I got in the car to come home,..................... I fell apart. Every time I left his side at the hospital, I fell apart.  I KNEW God was in control, but I felt so helpless, worrisome and scared.  I prayed all the way home.  When I walked into the house to my children, I kept it together.  I was strong, positive and level headed. When I felt myself falling to that point of loosing control of emotion, I went to my bedroom and the damn opened.  But soon after, I wiped my tears, took a deep breath and opened my bedroom door back to reality.  My kids, my husband needed me.  They needed me to be strong, level headed, positive, on track, and present.  My boys are older so they didn't need someone to be here to cook for them or keep an eye on them.  They pulled together and kept things at bay.  But I came home every few days to make sure all was well and to re assure them that all will be ok.

My husband came home after a week in Columbus.  There was only one day (a few days after the stroke) that he experienced deficiencies from the stroke.  His left hand wouldn't work like he wanted and he had very slurred speech.  He would say things that were 'off', that he normally wouldn't say.  But PRAISE GOD, he was healed and now back to normal!  

I thank God for all my MIRACLE BELIEVING, PRAYING friends and family!  When the doctors follow up with my husband, they cannot believe that he walked away with no deficiencies, but I can.  I have an awesome and powerful GOD who still heals today. We need to believe, pray and keep faith when we hit these bumps in the road of life.  God is the same today as he was thousands of years ago and will be forever.

I am going to try and get back to blogging soon.  We have 5 new female additions to our family ......... SHEEP!  So much to blog about, so little time.  ;)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

New Year, new organization!

As each new year creeps in, I find myself thinking about re-organizing.  Kind of like spring cleaning, but only winter.  ;)  This time of year, the accumulation of "stuff" gets almost out of control.  With Christmas behind us, not to mention more 'stuff' to put away, I can focus on where each thing goes in my house.  Pinterest is a great resource to find organizing tips.  They have several boards on organizing.  Let's face it, when we are organized and have less clutter, our homeschool days seem to have a better flow.  The kids are not excited about their Christmas break coming to an end either, so let's take the time to check some of these boards out and see what great organizing tips we can find! Just type in the search bar 'homeschool organizing'.  :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014


Do you ever feel like you are being pulled in so many directions that you are going to tear into pieces?  If so, you must be..... a mom.  Let's face it ladies, when our children are not feeling well or down in the dumps, they either take it out of us or run to us for comfort.  That is our job right?  I'd like to say no, but yes.... I'm afraid it is.  

When I was married, I had the choice "....for richer or poor, sickness or in health, 'til death us do part"....or something like that. ;)  But when you become a parent, there are no vows.  You are a parent.  Congrats!  

My youngest had a fever a few days ago and he is 11 years old. The whole time, he wanted his momma close by.  I am 41 and sometimes when I am sick, I would love to have my momma close by.  I wish!  The truth is, momma's are the secure comfort they need.  The tender loving care that they need and no one does it like momma.  I remember leaving my youngest home with daddy one day (many years ago) for a short time while he was sick.  He was so upset!  I told him that I'd be right back home (can't remember where I went, but it must have been real important because I know how my boys are when they are sick).  He called me on my cell a few times, which was ok. I hurried home and he was so relieved when I walked in.  Daddy was here.  But mom is who they wanted....needed.  ;)   

So, as moms, we are torn in several directions most of the time. Well, let's face it.  We have 'stuff' to do and MOM is the only one that is going to do it.  Well, at least in my house.  My husband is the sole provider of our house, also works long days and hours, so I do the running around, taking care of the boys.  (So please dads, don't comment about being left out.  This is how it goes in my home.)  Let's see, we have soccer practice one night a week, soccer games 1/2 day per week, church Sun. am, youth group one night per week and we cannot forget all the homeschool events and activities during the week as well.  Sometimes, I get tired!  

One thing I have learned throughout the years though, is that Mom needs her time too.  If Mom isn't healthy, happy and functioning on all ain't gonna get done people!  Mom needs a good book to read, a bubble bath some nights, a beauty shop visit or just a new hair color at home once and a while, a night out to dinner with her friend(s), even a day at home alone occasionally.   This is soooo important ladies!  It helps keep our sanity and reminds us that we aren't just moms, but strong women and wives also.  

Sometimes when I hear my boys bickering and then I hear "MMMOOOMMM", I just cringe.  I know that an argument or fight has occurred and I just want to go hide in my bedroom until it passes.  I don't of course.  We handle these things because we are THE MOM.

Now, I have listed so many negative mom moments here, I want to take a moment to write down some positives that make it all worth while.  

Here are my list of positives:

I get to take care of my sick children.
I get to correct them and walk them through their arguments/fights.
I get to take them to soccer games and practice.
I get to take them to church and youth group.
I get to take them to their homeschool events/activities.
And I get to listen to them yell "MMMOOMMM"!

God bless us Moms.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Home Canning

As a child, I remember eating tons of food from home canning.  Potatoes, tomatoes, pickles, apples, pears, peaches, pickled eggs, etc.  I, until recently, forgot how wonderful these foods taste!  If you don't believe me or you've never eaten a home canned food, you need to do the taste test!  

I bet everyone knows at least one person (young or old) who cans.  If not, you must live in a huge city. ;)  Ask for a can of anything!  Then go buy that same type of food in the store, canned.  For example:  green beans - buy a can of green beans and then taste a home canned one.  OH MY GOSH!  You'll never eat old canned stuff again.  hee,hee.

As you know, I homeschool.  Well, during canning season this year, we are homeschool canning!  I just can't get both done completely so I combined them.  Nutrition is part of our science class, so that is what I am teaching my sons.  I am teaching them how to preserve our food not only for a 'rainy day', but for health reasons.  Lets face it, you really don't know exactly what is in those cans you buy off the store shelf.  Over the years, there have been reports on mice feces on the tops, bacteria, and even a human finger in one!  Yes, I read it.  Gross!  Now please don't post that I am insulting you if you don't can.  It's not for everyone or maybe you don't have the means to can.  Personally, I don't like canning in general, but the results are SO WORTH IT!

So here is what we have been busy canning this week:


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Hint: These were sold as 'deer apples'.  For those of you who don't know what 'deer' apples are, they are apples that may have some bruises or not perfect enough for the stores.  But look at these!  Gorgeous!


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 A neighbor brought these over to us.  He grew them in his garden and he had too many.  :)  Yippy!  The small potatoes that you think may be too small to eat....wrong!  They are perfect for canning!

The end result:

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So I challenge you to take the 'canning challenge' and taste the difference between the store canned food and home canned food. And this is a great learning experience for my children!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Day of our 11'th Homeschool year!

Can it be?  11 years?  I am astound.  How can this be our 11'th year of homeschooling?  It goes by so fast.  

It's been a while since I have blogged but I have good reason.  We moved about 12 miles away, my oldest flew the nest, but I'll keep that for another post, and it's canning season.  Shall I say more?  So I am homeschooling just the two now.  B is in 6'th grade.  He is 11 and I must say doing very well in math.  He will be starting 7'th grade (Pre-Algebra) math this year.  D is starting his senior year. Can that be?  Goodness.  He is 15 (will be 16 in Nov.).  We are excited for him to be almost finished and onto college.  Again, that could be another post in itself.  ;)

Our Daily Routine-

So our daily routine has changed a bit this year with some of those changes in mention above.  

Here is a guideline of what a homeschool day in our house looks like.

I wake up first, have coffee and read my Bible.  (This is a must for my sanity as a homeschool mother.  I'm sure most would agree.)
My youngest, B, wakes up and eats breakfast while watching a cartoon.  I allow him to watch one 20 min. cartoon, eat, and wake up.  In the pic below he has his little purple frog on the end of his pencil.  Sometimes it's the tiniest things that make a homeschool day thrive.  

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After the cartoon and breakfast, he brushes his teeth, gets dressed and gets his school work out.  We started out today, being the first day of school, going over our curriculum and setting our goals in order of priority.  First, we set a few spiritual (Godly) goals. Second, we set some family goals.  Last, our third priority was our world goals.  Then we moved on to 'what mom expects of me this year', which are basic ground rules.  For example- no TV, video games, or computer until school work is completed and chores are done.  I have a chore chart on the refrigerator (that is color coded.....I'm so proud) for the boys.

Sometimes I let B decide what subject to do first.  But today we did Language first.  His least favorite subject, but with his little purple frog, he managed.  LOL.

We didn't cover all our subjects, but we completed math, language and reading.  This was one of the changes in our schedule I did this year.  In the past years, we just jumped right in and did a regular school day.  I noticed that with us easing into the day, not all subjects, it went more smooth.  The other change was that we discussed all curriculum - subject by subject.  We went through every book and discussed how we were going to use it.  That seemed to go over well.  It gave the boys questions and answer time (and some input of course) that was needed that may not have been answered at the time of them starting that subject straight on, full force.

D's first day, went pretty much the same other than the cartoons and breakfast.  He enjoyed a good cup of Chai Latte to start his day while I went over all his curriculum with him.  Starting his senior year, he needed some well deserved explanation of what he will need to get accomplished and what wasn't a concern in order to graduate next spring.  He honestly has enough credits to graduate now, but he doesn't know that and I plan to keep it that way.  ;)   I took a look at the pubic school credit examples.  They require 20 credits for basic and technical career path and 26 credits for college career path.  D has earned 22.5 as of now (before starting this senior year).  But for his best interest, we are going to do another 5 or 6 credits this senior year to bring him to a place where he will be ready to enter college. After all, he has plenty of time due to his age.

I was impressed how his attitude was good due to the change of explaining everything and 'discussing' things with him today while not giving him the FULL work load right off the bat.  Here he is taking his books to his room to start.

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His face in this picture is priceless.  This look he gave me after saying "I need a dolly to get these books downstairs".  He's a ham for sure.

So this was our first day of homeschooling this year.  It went great! I hope yours goes great too!  


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

2014-2015 Curriculum Choices

I post my curriculum list every year to share with others who are still searching.  I hope this gives you some ideas and new choices.  

Drum roll please ........................................

Here are my 2014-2015 curriculum choices:

For B (6'th grade)

Math - Math U See - Pre-Algebra (7'th grade math)

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English & Reading - aBeka - Language C

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& EPS - Explode The Code

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Science - Apologia - Exploring Creation with Astronomy

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Writing - IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) - Student Writing Intensive

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History - Notgrass - America the Beautiful

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 For D (12'th grade)

Math - MUS - Pre-Calculus

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English - EIW (Essentials in Writing) - Essays & Research Papers

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Science - Apologia - Exploring Creation with Chemistry

(Note:  He has already taken the following: Biology, Marine Biology & Integrated Physics & Chemistry.)

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History - Notgrass - Exploring Government 

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& Understanding the Constitution / online from Hillsdale College

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And finally..... some mission work (which God hasn't lead us to what kind and where yet), and both boys will be playing soccer and basketball.

  **Keep in mind, I buy a lot of my things on ebay as well as other homeschooling moms.  Also, Christian Book has a entire homeschool section!


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A reminder of that one day in Feb. - with daily pain, I will rejoice!

Feb. 18, 2010, I was in a very serious car accident.  I hit black ice and a tree kept me from flying into a very deep ditch.  I am writing about this today not to complain, grumble or whine about how I was cheated out of months of normal living during my recovery.  I am writing this because I want to tell all how blessed I am.

What I went through-

I broke 12 bones, 10 ribs (one rib in two different places) and one collar bone.  I punctured my left lung and jammed my skull (upper spine) as well.  I endured severe bruising on my right upper thigh, torn muscles in my back, side and left side of my knee.  Muscles were not just bruised, some ripped apart.  I was in severe pain.  Months of physical therapy was waiting for me.

There were times where I just cried and begged God for answers to why.  I told my husband one night that the only thing making me fight the pain was him and my family.  My three boys helped me so much while my hubby had to go back to work.  My oldest did the cooking, my middle boy was my nurse and my youngest was my entertainment since I was bed ridden.  

I refused to stay on the pain meds given to me.  After 2 weeks, pain or no pain I weaned off of them, knowing what I was in for.  I went through withdrawals:  jerking, sweats, nervousness, anxiety, etc.  I was only on these major pain meds for 2 weeks, how could my body be addicted already?  I honestly can understand why drug addicts won't give up their addiction, and I was determined NOT to be on these dangerous, addicting meds for one day longer.  

I share this with you not to get any kind of sympathy, but to let you know that the scripture in Philippians 4:13 is so true.  It says, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".  By the grace and healing of God, I was able to get through this time.  

One of my friends called me an "Overcomer". The definition of an overcomer is: to get the better of in a struggle or conflict; conquer, defeat: to overcome the enemy.  I never thought of myself as an overcomer, but I am.  But only by the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I do have pain EVERYDAY from these injuries.  I am reminded of this incident in my life EVERYDAY.  But I DO NOT AND WILL NOT take addicting pain meds.  I WILL REJOICE WHEN I FEEL PAIN!