Saturday, July 31, 2010

Scenes from this week

One day this week seemed particularly peaceful and pleasant around here so I had to document it. 

Maybe it was the cooler weather or just the fact that we were home all day... 

Shasta daisies are a cheery view from the Baby Room window.

Two happy little friends...

And two bigger ones.

And Mercy, during a brief break from playing "babies" and helping me with James...

And this: My yard sale find of the week...

TEN BUCKS for this baby! It's sturdy enough for Mercy to use it for stairs up to her lofted toddler bed. That Bob will be making. Soon, I hope.  

I can't wait! 
(I want to get Josiah out of the closet!)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Poor I was, and sought for riches,
Something that would satisfy,
But the dust I gathered round me,
Only mocked my soul's sad cry.

Feeding on the filth around me,
Til my strength was almost gone,
Longed my soul for something better,
Only still to hunger on.

All my life, I had panted
for the drink of some cool spring,
That I hoped would quench the burning
Of the thrist I felt within.

Halelujah! He has found me! 
The One my soul so long has craved!
Jesus satifies my souls longings,
Through His blood I am now saved.

Well of water, ever springing,
Bread of life so rich and free,
Untold wealth that never faileth,
My Redeemer is to me.

Clara Tear Williams 1875, Peterson 2004

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Buggy Rides Again!

After several years of providing homes for wasps in our driveway... The Bug is back in action!


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Little Jo Part 2

Change the list of requirements back there at the end of my last post just a little for each child and mulitply by five children and you get a picture of the expectations for parenting on any given day of the week in our family. It's kind of mind numbing when I think of it that way. 

So I don't. And I'm not here to say that I just take it one day at a time and it will all work out in the end. The kids will be fine, right?  

I guess I just don't get a sense of peace from that kind of reasoning when I'm faced daily with my lack of self control while in the misdst of training my child in self control.

When I consider all that Josiah and his brothers and sister need from me daily, it's sad to me that I so often choose to kind of check out after bedtime rather than to recharge for the coming day with time in the Word or prayer or extra sleep, even. I don't think those are the only downtime activities allowed for a busy mom.  But I see my need for digging deeper into what God has for me for wisdom, patience, perseverance, gentleness, self-control, a cheery spirit... and when that quiet moment comes, I fill it with something else.  Honestly, I tend to swing from shock and awe at my sin and how it affects my family to an indifference stemming from the lie that if I just get more "time alone" to veg or shop or eat chocolate or have adult conversations, I'll deal with that whining/sulking/tired child better next time.

This post is still about Josiah... Don't worry. 

Josiah is one of my many little reminders of my need to soak up God's promises to me, daily, so I can pass them on to him.

I love you, Jo! See! I found your smile- I knew it was there somewhere! We'll get through this rough spot, Buddy!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Little Jo Part 1

Josiah has changed quite a bit since he became a big brother last Fall.

At age 18 months, he really was our baby still. 9 months ago, he only had two little teeth on the bottom. I didn't want any more to ever grow in because they were so cute! He slept in the Baby Room in the crib. The high chair was his place at the table. James arrived and Josiah moved into the Big Kid Room to sleep. He moved up the ranks of chairs around our table and now sits on a stool from Ikea. He clears the napkins from the table after each meal and is slowly learning to do it cheerfully.

Josiah at 18 months

As the spread between our oldest and youngest children grows, I find that we are more often living at a pace that is either toddler/baby-friendly or decidedly not toddler/baby-friendly. Even a simple school day at home doesn't always seem to accomodate all the ages and stages in our home.

  This particular event wasn't unfriendly to Josiah. It was just way past naptime.

All our kids have a special place in our family and they will all occupy different roles as they grow... right now,  Josiah has become The Child Who Doesn't Quite Fit. 

What this tends to mean on a daily basis is that Josiah gets a little bit left behind. Not quite old enough for the independence his big brothers and sister share, he spends a lot of time asserting very loudly that everything is "Naughty" and that he is "... NOT a BABY. YOU a BABY!"

He seems to be doing all that he can to make sure that he isn't forgotten...

I don't think I even posted about his 2nd birthday... But it did happen, way back in March.

A 2 year old with older siblings ages 7.5, 6 and 4.5 has to make the best of living in an older child's world. Sometimes this means going to bed when the big kids do and making up for it by sleeping from 1-4 almost every afternoon. 

I don't feel too sorry for Josiah. It pleased God to place him in this family, with this birth order, with Bob and I as his parents. Josiah has the benefit and the blessing of three older siblings attention and care. He gets to be a big brother to James. And he gets to play with his brothers' Legos!


He's just in a place that requires quite a bit of training and as many stories and songs and chase games and smiles and pretend food meals and real opportunities to be my helper that his daddy and I can give him.  

To be continued...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

There's no turning back

I just finished performing minor surgery on Josiah's transitional object. Afoo the Elephant had a permanent trunk trim. I stitched him up so that the part that spends most of it's time in Josiah's mouth is gone. I did this sneaky deed kind of suddenly but I've been considering it for a long time. I felt like it deserved some explaination when I brought Afoo to Jo at bedtime. On the fly, I told Jo that Afoo had a pretty bad owie and that we could put a bandaid on Afoo's nose.

Josiah was open to this kind of um logic even while his sister and brother were chanting in disbelief "Mommy cut it off. Mommy cut it off? Mommy cut it off!"

He selected the bandaid that Afoo might like while simultaneously making the crying sounds a small injured elephant might make. A tight hug for Afoo from the proud Josiah and I put them both in bed to read books.

Painless parenting move towards better dental health or complete Mommy fail? Only time will tell...

Monday, July 5, 2010

Independence Day Recap

The Obstacle Course

The Food


This is what I get when I say: Look Serious. Most of the fireworks we saw came from a group of people detonating thousands of dollars worth of explosives illegally in my inlaws undeveloped neighborhood. They were camped out where those little white dots are above Mercy's head. It was awesome!


Michael, his s'more and the loud boom

Firework Time
Mercy prefers sleeping to loud fireworks

Happy Independence Day!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Jamie James

It's time to do a little updating on how our little kindergarten grows. I used to make notes to myself in my journals on how each child was progressing and changing at each new stage. Rather than dig out a journal and feel the pressure to fill in all that has happened since I last wrote in it, I'll happily record it here minus that pressure-y feeling. I would probably have to start with James' birth story or maybe even Josiah's.

It's been a long time since I've written in those journals!

I think I'll start with the littlest sprout, James. 

At 9.5 months, James is on the cusp of toddlerhood.  No longer a sleepy newborn, he begins to have a little boy look about him. He crawls after his siblings and "crumb hunts" under the kitchen table. He pulls himself up at the playtable and babbles at the big boys while they remove the Lego choking hazards from his reach. He sleeps contentedly all night and through most of his 2-3 naps during the day. He is SO relaxed.

His big goofy teeth fill his little chubby mouth. James joins us for most meals at the table but still nurses as often as he did at 5 months of age; four times during the day. For all the yummy food he eats, he sure doesn't make us change many diapers. Where is it all going, James? You don't seem uncomfortable but sometimes I wonder about your personal habits!

James' days are filled with an outpouring of affection from his brothers but mainly from Mercy. She runs for a burp cloth when he spits up, feeds him at the table and wipes him with a washcloth when he's all done. She is generally apart from him only when I separate them for naps or for some other reason. Usually that other reason is to give James some... space. I'm thankful for her devotion to him and for the view I have, watching their relationship grow. I wonder what you will be like, James, as a big boy, with this mini-Mommy as your big sister?

I'm going to miss your baby stages, James! I know you aren't a big boy yet but it sure seems like you are growing and changing so fast...

 We love you, Jamie James!

Six years of Michael

Our second born son is SIX! 

Happy Birthday, Michael!

We love you inside