Monday, February 25, 2013

God Answers Prayer...

On Saturday we went to a Lowe's Kid workshop... the project was the Grave Digger monster truck.  When I registered the kids we had a long discussion about skeletons, zombies, blood, guts... that kind of stuff.  I'm not a fan of any of that and see no reason at all in celebrating death.  If you can't tell, I've very opinionated about this! So when we saw a picture of the "Grave Digger" I suggested that instead of putting the skeleton stickers on the monster trucks we could bring them home and paint them instead.
That was our plan!

So at the workshop my literal son made a show of how gross the stickers were and immediately took them and threw them in the trash... okay -- we have a whole new set of lessons to work on... AGAIN! But we made the trucks!
 We brought them home (or so we thought)... and later that evening when we went to paint them... we could NOT find Ethan's monster truck... anywhere.  We searched everywhere -- several times.  I hate when things are lost... it makes me feel like I am losing my mind.  We started to question whether or not Ethan's truck made it home... did it fall out of the van when we were at the Dollar store (the only stop we made on the way home)?  Did we leave it at the workshop?  
After searching for over 30 minutes... I saw Ethan crumbled on the couch.  His face was sad and he said to me, "I've been praying God would help me find my truck, but He isn't!  Does He even hear me?"  Wow... a big thing in a life of a child.  I remember God answering my prayers at that age and knowing He was real -- here before my eyes my son was going through one of those moments. 
My mother in law called and I told her about it and she suggested that I take him back to Lowe's and ask if they had another kit. I hadn't thought of that... Lowe's is seriously 1/4 of a mile from our house... so is Home Depot... funny huh? 

So I loaded my sad boy in the van and we drove over there.  They were out of kits, but someone had left their "stickered" monster truck at the workshop. They gave it to him as well as another wood kit to build a boat!
On our way out to the car Ethan exclaimed, "My worst day ever just turned into my best day ever!"  We had a good talk on the way home about how God always listens to us and even cares about a "Grave Digger" monster truck.  I hope this lesson has sunk deep into my little boys heart... God does hear us... even when it seems like He is miles away... good lesson for Momma's heart, too!

*** the next day we found Ethan's other monster truck... 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Our Valentine's Day...

We had a great Valentine's day...
We started the day with our pink, heart pancakes.... Ethan was determined to learn how to flip pancakes... he did pretty good -- about a 50% success rate -- for a 5 year old that is a 100%!!!
 I think food coloring is amazing... makes everything fun!
 We had milk in our fancy cups... and valentine's day treats...
 Love this picture of my BIG girl!
 After breakfast we made sugar cookies to decorate!
My kiddos love to decorate cookies.... lots and lots of sprinkles!!!

Then we made plates of cookies and delivered them to the kiddos friends (and Daddy).  They were pretty excited about sharing the love with their friends... it was a special day!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Spin Art....

I bought a salad spinner at IKEA last summer.... for the sole purpose of doing spin art.  Then I realized how wonderful a salad spinner is... and I've been using it in the kitchen since... next time I'm around an IKEA I'll have to buy another one and make it just for art.
My salad spinner has actually been sitting still for the past 2 months.  I can eat salad -- unless I make it.  Last night was the first time I successfully made a salad without ... well you don't need to know. I didn't eat it... but I MADE it!  I'm looking forward to my Mother visiting at the end of the month... she makes the most awesome salads and soups!

Well... seeing the salad spinner reminded me of my desire to do spin art with the kids!  
 So that is what we did after lunch... I cut circles out of card stock that fit perfectly in the bottom of the spinner... Then I let the kiddo squirt whatever colors they wanted... We learned not to skimp on the paint... our best paintings were where we piled on the paint....
 They loved it that I told them... ADD MORE...!
 The spinning part was super fun.  I loved the intensity in their faces!
Each painting turned out completely different... it was fun!
 My favorite part was the marbled paint in the bottom of the spinner... so pretty!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

"Sick" Science Experiments...

Now-a-days... I hear people exclaiming "SICK!" to describe something super cool... So I thought I would share about some SICK experiments Ethan and I did today!  We stayed home from Church this morning because Ethan is fighting a bad cold (hence the double meaning of SICK experiments)... Micah took Eden out for a date after church so I wanted to make Ethan's morning special.... nothing speaks to his heart like science projects... especially something that involves a chemical reaction.
Oh a QUICK story... before our SICK experiements: I love Ethan's scientific mind... He's been asking for a microscope for a LONG time... I've been saving and looking.  A friend and I were chatting and the subject came up and I asked her to keep her eyes open when she went thrifting. Well, she was at another friends house and they got to chatting about Ethan... together they got on Ebay and found Ethan a microscope... it was a special gift.  I'm so thankful for their thoughtfulness and kindness.  He loves it!
 Anyway, this morning I found a recipe online for Elephant toothpaste...
Put 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide, a squirt or two of dish soap, and a few drops of food coloring in a 16 ounce jar... then in another cup mix 1/4 cup water and a package of yeast (or a couple teaspoons 2.5 to be exact).... then pour the water/yeast mixture into the big glass.... WATCH OUT!!!! 
 It is AWESOME... it foams so much!!!!
 Ethan used red food coloring so we had pink toothpaste... next time he wants to use green.
Then we did a typical baking soda/ vinegar explosion....
I love this shot!  Perfect timing... we used blue food coloring.  It is fun doing little projects that don't require that many ingredients, but have fun results... we will be making the Elephant toothpaste again... that one was just plain SICK! 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Blessings of Pajama Life

This morning I broke down and just cried... I cried all morning long.  I'm so tired of being sick... 2 months of nausea -- and I'm at 14 weeks so everyone tells me I should be coming out of this stage, but from my two other pregnancies I don't have much hope.  In fact the sickness seems to get more aggressive during this season (at least it did with the other two... and it is following suit with this one).  I throw up more, I sleep less... I'm nauseous all the time. 

We live in our pajamas... unless we have to go somewhere.  It makes for a whole lot less laundry... This season is difficult for me... I struggle to make meals -- I throw up every single time I open the fridge... I throw up every time I try to plan what to MAKE for dinner.  The house is always a mess, there are always piles of laundry, toys everywhere... the bathrooms are always dirty... Eden's hair doesn't get combed, the kiddos bedrooms are scary. I told Micah the upside of this -- is that at least he now knows what I "do" on a daily basis -- our house is normally in order, our bathrooms are clean, laundry is folded (maybe not put away, but folded), the dishes -- well, lets be honest are rarely done... these days -- very, very little gets done. 
 I came up with the idea of teaching Ethan how to wash dishes.  Of course at first it was exciting... now it is a chore, but he does a GREAT job (and at least the breakfast dishes have been done all week!).  He also helps me during meal times -- getting what I need out of the fridge so I don't have to open it.  He has been kind and very compassionate towards me.  He loves to help -- and tells me so.  
I count this as a blessing. 
 I know the kiddos are doing well.  Life is different for them... we aren't as busy... there isn't as much "education" going on, but we are surviving.  We read library books and play games. From the couch I enjoy watching their imaginative play... I'm not as busy doing chores -- so I see more, hear more.  
I count that as a blessing.
 I've been trying to come up with some fun experiments ... a friend has been texting me ideas from the preschool class she teaches.  She texted me an awesome picture of a marble maze her class made with pipe insulation.  That stuff is cheap... and so it was a great lesson in gravity and momentum.  Our maze is less impressive that hers, but still cool. 
I count simple, inexpensive projects as a blessing!
We eat simple lunches... cheese, apples, and popcorn are our staples... a picnic lunch while listening to records makes simple food fun!
I count these "fun" extraordinary, easy moments of inspiration a blessing.
 
Sickness visited our house.  Eden has been sick for the past week.  The night I stayed up with her all night long... I wasn't nauseas... a miracle. Even though she was sick... I bundled her up and we went on a little walk... she talked the whole way -- I love her chatter!
I count the extra cuddles, hugs, and kisses a blessing (not the cough she shared).
 We got a few bags of left over banana's from Micah's school lunch... we made banana bread.
 My kids love to cook... 
I count little chefs and free bananas (as well as warm banana bread covered in butter) as a blessing.
 Due to Eden's sickness we "missed" our Home Depot class... but the kind Home Depot people let us take some kits home so we could complete our project at home...
I count Home Depot as a blessing.
Yesterday we had a valentine's making party... The kids wanted to make valentines for all their cousins.... they have 17... I told them good luck.  I think we may have enough for the Grandparents.  I'll pretend we are sending them to the cousins... 
I'm thankful how a 3 dollar box of chocolates, colored paper and glue makes a party.

Our simple life is a blessing ... it is so hard for me to make it through the day, but we try... one day at a time.  I count a good cry as a blessing -- made me feel so much better....

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Water Beads...

I've read about kid activities involving water beads, but had never seen them in the store.  My kids played with them while visiting friends and I learned that water beads can be found in the floral sections of JoAnn's, Michael's... and even at the dollar store.  Save your 1/2 off coupons and a large jar is around 2 bucks.
 This past weekend we gave them a try... they are very fun!
 Just beware... they bounce -- everywhere!!! I built a "light table" by putting a few sets of Christmas lights in a plastic container... then putting another empty container on the top... the top container was perfect for "containing" the water beads that didn't bounce! 
I loved how the light illuminated the water beads!

 Water beads feel incredibly cool... if you put your hand in a pile of them... you'll wanna play with them... trust me.  I had several visitors the past few days... and each one of them played with the beads!
Micah even played with the kids for a long time... we got our marble set out and created a few ramps for the water beads to travel down.
 I would say... we are definitely going to be playing with water beads... again real soon!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Science Class

Sorry, I've been absent... been so sick -- It's been boring laying on the couch for 2 months... We do little things here and there... read lots of books and have played a million games of Candy Land...
Blowing bubbles on the table... Ethan did a great job of blowing bubbles inside of bubbles... I think the mixture they used was just Dove soap and water.
One thing we do every Tuesday is Science Class at the Children's museum.  We LOVE IT!  They have a little 30 minute lesson that is geared towards 3-5 years olds... and I always marvel at their experiments and the way they get kids excited about science. 
One week the kiddos made their own soda pop... they chose watermelon!
One week they made their own play dough (learning how to use measurements)... this past week we learned about shadows... 
My favorite lesson was on germs.  They had a microscope and talked about how it helps us see things that are super small... like germs.  You can fit like a 1,000 germs on the top of a pin... for illustrate germs the teacher gave the kiddos a thick lotion to put all over their hands.... then she poured glitter all over their hands.  She had them touch the table and her arm to show them how germs are spread!  Then they got to wash their hands with water... some germs came off... then with soap... it showed how important it is to WASH your hands!

I'm thankful that I have other people's creativity to lean on -- during my time of absolutely no creativity! I look forward to the day when I am not so sick!