Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thankful for Mercy

Today began as any other day. My oh-so-groggy self stumbled out to the coffee pot to aid the waking up process, and wishing for the day when I will be well rested enough to enjoy mornings again. I don't like not being a morning person.
Things started going quite well after that. I got a shower before the children were awake, read my Bible, fed Wesley and read some of my most current Kindle read.
We had breakfast, the children were helpful with chores, and then we headed to town. We traversed Delaware to make all our stops, and while I fed Wes in the parking lot at Meijer, I surprised the children by popping in a DVD for them to watch. They were pretty excited to not have to sit bored while Wesley had his lunch.
In Meijer we weighed sweet potatoes and bananas, figuring out how much each would cost. Added water jugs (filled ones + how many left to fill = how many all together), and other such math lessons for the day. We picked out a special treat for a late lunch, and headed home.
After lunch we had a blessedly quiet nap time. I am still trying to figure out why I can never fully wake back up after nap time. I just feel all foggy and groggy, and wish to just go back to sleep. I wonder if my body is just so overjoyed at the prospect of getting caught up on sleep that it really starts sleeping hard...and then I have to wake up long before my body is ready.
Regardless, that's when things started going downhill today. Children got up from naps grumpy. And thought it would be great fun to just annoy the dickens out of each other. Books were thrown, marker board creations erased maliciously, feelings were hurt, tattling was done. Various training and/or discipline tactics all seemed to fail. Attempting to make the evening turn back to pleasantness, I asked the kiddos if they could pick anything for supper, what would they have. They picked cold cereal. Well then. That's easy enough! So we had cold cereal, hard boiled eggs, and oranges. Kid friendly and easy for Mom.
But as soon as supper was over, it was back to bickering, disobeying, aggravating, lying, etc, etc.

Mommy cracked - I disciplined in anger. And then I had to apologize. There is nothing more humbling than having to apologize to these little people. We ended with children all over my lap and having a family prayer time to confess our sin to our faithful and gracious, ready to forgive Savior. Ever thankful for His loving kindness and tender mercy.
And though I had originally told the children they were going to bed early, I told them to head back out to the couch, and we cuddled around and read 3 chapters in "My Father's Dragon".

When we were finished, Sam snuggled up to me and said, "Mommy, is this like mercy? We should have been punished and go to bed early since we were so naughty. But then you said we could cuddle and have a story. Is that mercy?" I told him yes, that was just like mercy. "I like mercy, Mom." Me too, buddy. Me too.

New Little Artist

Kenneth has discovered the fun of drawing. And yes, he is drawing farm machinery.

Friday, October 19, 2012


My little WesleyMan is the snuggliest little fella. Now if he could just learn that it really is ok to not be held ALL the time, our ears would all appreciate it.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


"Spring, spring, spring!"...the first lines to one of my favorite children's books. Do you know the title?

At any rate, we are LOVING the spring weather that feels more like late May or June weather. I'm working on a long post telling about our busy winter, but for now, here are some pictures of the kiddos. The first one is my current favorite! :)
Playing in the warm sun is so much fun!
"Hey, Mom! Take a picture of me jumping!"
"Here I go!"
Heidi had to get new clothes. She was especially happy
about the new sweater with the pretty ruffle! And the shoes.
But you can't see those in this picture.
Heidi's first ice cream sandwich. Yes, she liked it. Just a little.
And now I realize that I don't have any pictures of Sam from the last couple days. He must have been sleeping when I pulled out the camera. I'll have to fix that later today!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Toddling Teapot

How can she already be cruising around the house?!
She is somewhat vocal in the video, but it is mild compared to the jabber that is usually going on! Right now she is sitting IN her little basket of books, having dumped all the books onto the floor. She is reaching out, picking one to read, and jabbering all about the pictures, then putting it on the other side of the basket and grabbing another one. Talking non-stop!

I think I need to get a better video camera. this is on my old iPod. We have so much fun recording the kids, but the videos don't turn out that well.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Little Conversations

Heidi has started to have animated conversations with us. It is quite entertaining. She got a little less animated when she saw me with the iPod, but she still had things to say. (watch her feet, too...she has done that when she's excited since she was tiny. I love it!)

Monday, October 24, 2011

A day on the farm

The clock reads 12:30a.m. A cellphone rings. But wait. It is not just a cellphone. It is an alarm. Set by the farmer. He crawls out of bed, pulls on the jeans and shirt he'd put in the kitchen before going to bed early. Dressing in the kitchen so as not to awaken his sleeping wife.
On the kitchen counter he finds a lunch box packed with goodies, an insulated mug of his favorite ice coffee, and a little scrap paper note that was scribbled by his wife after she prepared the foodstuffs and before she went to bed. Just something simple, reminding him she loves him.
Grabbing keys, and glasses, he heads to the field with the empty semi. Due to some prior planning, the pickup truck is there and waiting. He drives that to where the combine is parked and gets in the combine cab, heading back to the field where the semi is parked. And he begins to shell corn.

Another cellphone rings. It is a 6:30a.m. alarm. The farmer's wife rolls over and hits the snooze button. Four times. Finally she rouses from under the delightful warmth the electric blanket is providing. Stumbling to the shower, then to make coffee. Little boys with tousled hair patter into the kitchen. The baby calls from her bed. The day begins. Snuggles on the couch, a bottle of warm milk for baby. Little boys dressing and going about their chores while Momma dresses sister. Breakfast is cherry pie and peach crisp, left over from Sunday lunch.

The farmer comes in. It is raining. But that corn field is finished. The monitor in the combine telling of a good yield. Quietly the farmer's wife gives thanks. Now the combine is home and in the barn for a few morning maintenance things. After eating the final piece of cherry pie, the farmer picks up his Bible. Little boys snuggle around him on the couch. The farmer's wife picks up little sister and settles into the rocking chair. These moments she cherishes, watching little men learn from the man she admires and loves for so many reasons. From him they are learning to reverence the Scriptures, learning truths that will be added to and deepened as they grow. The short little prayer of a little boy overflowing with enthusiasm. Then the quiet, thoughtful prayer of her quieter, more deliberate little man who is growing up oh, so fast. Followed by the deep, steady voice of the farmer, giving thanks.

And then the morning moves on. Little ones find shoes and jackets. The farmer finds his pillow. The farmer's wife ushers everyone out the door to run errands so their hard working Daddy can sleep for an hour or two. Until the cellphone alarm will call again. Calling him to crawl back out of his bed to check the grain bin. The dry corn is dumping into the small bin, and it must not overflow.

Mamma and the children go north to the Ag lending office, and go south to the library and grocery store for a few items. All the while, singing Scripture songs, counting telephone poles, discussing important little boy things like the color of rain, and why winter is cold.

The rain ends. Home again for a late lunch all together. Then the farmer is off with a semi load of corn to the elevator. Children nap, the farmer's wife starts the washing machine and the dishwasher. Then sits down to read her own Bible. She naps, involuntarily. The telephone on the wall awakens her. No, the farmer isn't here. He's out being wonderful. Calling later will do no good. He'll still be out. She resumes her day, doing paperwork and housework.

Children are up, toys about. The play sounds an awful lot like what is taking place out in the barnyard and up the road in the field. Poking his head in the door, the farmer tells his family quick little snippets about his day. Little man laces up his boots to head back out with his Daddy for a second trip to the elevator. Baby girl squeals for Daddy hugs. Little man, still sleepy, curls up with his Mamma for a story and a snack before heading outside to his pedal tractor, tricycle, and wagon. Little sister is clingy, cutting teeth. Mamma snuggles her, looking at books. They fold clothes, sing songs, and talk.

A late supper of left overs is a standard meal for children and the farmer's wife during harvest time. The farmer pops in for a portable supper, and kisses all around. Supper is soon over, little boys help clear the table while little sister is readied for bed. Snuggles for sister, a song or two, and she goes nightie-night.
The farmer pokes his head back in to pray with his little men, a nightly routine that no one wants to miss. Then he heads back to the trucks. He is hauling corn away from the combine and grain cart and dumping it in the wet holding bin. And keeping watch over the grain dryer. The first season it is in use, and a few bugs have had to be worked out.

Little boys and the farmer's wife snuggle on the couch. A new story is begun. Four chapters later, they beg for more through their yawns, but Mamma knows best and herds them into the bathroom to brush teeth. Snuggles by the bed, more prayers and hugs, and then they are tucked in for the night.

The farmer's wife walks through the now quiet house. She eyes the full basket of clean laundry that needs to be folded, the kitchen counters that need washed, the kitchen floor littered with corn dust that needs vacuumed. She makes herself a cup of tea and ignores the never-ending duties while she checks her email. Scribbles a few revisions on the family schedule. Pulls out school papers and craft supplies for the next days' lessons. She turns on the yard light. Her silent "welcome home" for her man. And then she washes dishes, switches laundry loads, and writes a love note. Which she will put in the bathroom. On top of the clean pajamas she will lay out for her farmer Superman before she snuggles back down under that warm and wonderful electric blanket, thankful for her hardworking man.

As she finishes the last few chores before bed, the farmer pops in and urges her to come outside in his quiet, excited voice. He points to the northern sky. For the first time, they see a display of the northern lights. They stand hand in hand in the darkened back yard and gaze at the utterly clear sky streaked with reds and blues. It is amazing. A few minutes later they part ways - the farmer back to the field with an empty grain truck, the wife back to the house to warm up her nose and get ready for bed.

Tomorrow will begin soon enough, and she has to leave by 8:00a.m. to get parts for the grain truck that is broken down in the barn yard.