"The primary goal in the education of children is to teach, and to give the example of a virtuous life."

Saint John Chrysostom

The Slow Pace of Progress

Posted on May 21, 2015 in All Posts, Family & Friends, Foster Care & Adoption | 1 comment

The Slow Pace of Progress

Today was a bit of a rough day.  We’ve had far worse but we’ve also had better.

Some of our best progress with the big boys is when Les and I talk to them together.  Alone, they tend to tune us out, but as a pair – we can usually see a light at the end of the tunnel by the end of the talk with them.  It’s almost like a once or twice a week therapy session with them that lasts around an hour each time.

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Behind the Scenes

Posted on May 10, 2015 in All Posts, Foster Care & Adoption, Homeschooling, Orthodox Christianity | 2 comments

Behind the Scenes

Our family had a first today.  We celebrated a name day with Thundercake, merging two family traditions for this occasion.  I wrote about our name day tradition again here in my informational spot and now I’m giving a sneak peek behind the scenes in my reflective spot.

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The Book

Posted on May 9, 2015 in All Posts, Foster Care & Adoption | 2 comments

The Book

Countless nights, I laid awake in bed with part of a story for my book being written in my head – unable to fall asleep regardless of my body telling my mind goodnight hours before.  All those times, I wished I had a scribe in my head taking notes I could then simply transcribe to my laptop in the morning…and then there’s reality.

9 chapters written.  9 out of an outlined 10.  Yet, I find myself avoiding the hardest chapter of all.  I find myself struggling to think about my emotions, my actions and reactions…the hole it ultimately left in me.

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Backyard Learning

Posted on May 7, 2015 in All Posts, Family & Friends, Fine Motor Skills, Homeschooling, Low Muscle Tone | 2 comments

Backyard Learning

Niki broke out a pack of water balloons for her brothers yesterday and taught the boys how to fill and tie them.  Two of the boys still need therapy activities for fine motor skills so this was great practice and motivation to do the work! You want to be part of the water balloon fight?  Then you have to tie the balloons yourself.

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One Down, Four to Go

Posted on May 6, 2015 in All Posts, Family & Friends, From Our Kitchen | 5 comments

One Down, Four to Go

My Niki is home!  After 4 months, experiencing her very first roommate drama, and learning how to design baby clothes for a major company – she’s home!  At least for a few days anyway.  Sigh.  I’ll take what I can get these days. (She has a year round program until she graduates since they built in 5 internships, one every other semester, for their program – so her next semester at the university begins next week.)

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Please, Grant Me Strength

Posted on May 1, 2015 in All Posts, Foster Care & Adoption | 3 comments

Please, Grant Me Strength

Another day has elapsed.

A peace has blanketed my home once again.  I find myself staring into the soft glow of my laptop, letting my fingers tap against the keyboard underneath, and reflecting on my day after a failed attempt to lay down and drift off myself.  My mind keeps racing as it looks back at our day.  And thus…I find myself tucked away in a corner of my room, trying not to wake anyone, as I begin writing once again.  Feeling myself unravel as I pour my thoughts and emotions across a screen.

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Our First Hike in Indiana

Posted on Apr 28, 2015 in All Posts, Homeschooling, Road Scholars | 1 comment

Our First Hike in Indiana

I took the boys to the state park less than ten minutes from our house today to go exploring.  They have miles and miles of hiking trails in there.  We explored two hours worth of them.

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Making This House Our Home

Posted on Apr 19, 2015 in All Posts, Garden | 3 comments

Making This House Our Home

Our high today was 75!  A glorious 75 degrees!!   I know that when I’m pregnant my hormones are still not “normal” because I FREEZE in the wintertime…but only when I’m pregnant.  Otherwise, I enjoy cool weather.  The best way to describe the cold for me when I’m pregnant is…painful.  I avoid going outside at all costs.  When I go to the store, I’m literally layered and will only go to one store, so they better have everything I need there.

I can’t describe how excited I am to have warmer weather again!  We spent the entire day in our backyard doing yard work, gardening, filling in doggie holes, playing, relaxing, grilling, and eating.

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Together Again

Posted on Apr 13, 2015 in All Posts, Family & Friends, Orthodox Christianity | 2 comments

Together Again

Niki flew in for the weekend and Zach N. was able to drive up to spend some time with all of us as well.  It’s one of those things where your oldest child is growing up and becoming more independent so you simultaneously miss them fiercely but are also so excited to see all the fruits of your labors as you watch them maturing and succeeding on their own.  I find myself savoring every moment I have with her before she gets married.  More than likely her or Zach N. will get a job far from us since they both have these wonderful opportunities with their internships – so I’m thankful for even the briefest of visits with them these days.  It was especially nice having these two around because every time I turned around they were loading the dishwasher for me.  Niki also made Eggs Benedict for all of us one morning. Yes…it’s nice to be spoiled like that once in awhile.

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Not Every Lent Looks the Same

Posted on Apr 7, 2015 in All Posts, Orthodox Christianity | 3 comments

Not Every Lent Looks the Same

Each year we find ourselves on a journey during Lent. Traveling that long and arduous pilgrimage – focusing on others more than ourselves and realizing it’s much harder than it sounded.  After all, going to church at the end of a long day, multiple times during the week becomes weary very quickly as we realize we’re worn out and don’t have much left to give.  Giving up some of our favorite foods in order to save money to give to someone else more in need than ourselves is difficult.  I worked hard to attain these comforts and I’m not willing to give them up easily!  Going to confession is just downright embarrassing and that takes a lot of work to force myself to go.  Immediately, our own wants and desires make themselves known and we find ourselves either making excuses for why we didn’t go to church or have to push ourselves to show up.  In those moments, we realize it’s much easier to put ourselves first – even before God.  We struggle with this realization with differing levels of difficulty but as we attend the Paschal liturgy and listen to the powerful sermon of St. John Chrysostom, we are incredibly thankful for God’s abundant mercies upon us!!!

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