Monday, July 25, 2011

From Our Babies in Heaven

I found this poem today on a forum I joined. I was having a rough day. I would have been 33 weeks today, and my heart aches for my little one. I hope that God sees fit to allow us another child. I know it's in his hands, but the unknown can be hard sometimes.

A message from our angel babies.......

I have not turned my back on you 
So there is no need to cry.
I'm watching you from heaven
Just beyond the morning sky.

I've seen you almost fall apart
When you could barely stand.
I asked an angel to comfort you
And watched her take your hand.

She told me you are in more pain
Than I could ever be.
She wiped her eyes and swallowed hard
Then gave your hand to me.

Although you may not feel my touch
Or see me by your side.
I've whispered that I love you
While I wiped each tear you cried.

So please try not to ache for me
We'll meet again one day.
Beyond the dark and stormy sky
A rainbow lights the way.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

It's My Birthday!

Today is my 32nd birthday. While I’m still in shock at being in my 30’s, I am so thankful for all of those years. Each and every day of life is a wonderful gift.  I realize that there are people who don’t get to live to 32. Despite life’s challenges, I love where I am and who I’m with. I hope the Lord allows me another 32 years.

Here are 32 things about me 

  1. Each morning when my alarm goes off I think of ways to not have to get up.
  2. I love hot chocolate and Shirley Temple movies on a cold rainy day.
  3. I don’t like to wear shoes.
  4. I love crème brulee and wish I had a kit with the blow torch.
  5. I share my birthday with my brother in law and I love that.
  6. I despise blue jeans (always have), they have never fit me right, not even when I was skinny. I can happily go the rest of my life without ever having to try another pair on.
  7. My life has ended up in a completely different direction than I originally set out for. I’m so happy about that.
  8. My parents had to put me into a religious group home when I was a teenager because I was totally out of control. This saved my life.
  9. I met my husband (in the group home) when I was 15 and we hated each other. If you would have told me then that one day I’d be married to him, I would have laughed myself silly.
  10. I found out I was pregnant with twins a few short months after graduating High School. 
  11. I started smoking cigarettes when I was 13 years old, it took me until I was 29 to be able to quit for good. I quit cold turkey March 1, 2009. It’s embarrassing to admit. It’s such a horribly strong addiction and nearly impossible to quit. Without the support and encouragement of my husband, and lots of prayer, I don’t think I ever could have.
  12. I have a hard time finishing things that I start. I tend to get really excited about something and then the excitement dies off and it falls by the wayside. For this reason alone, I will never attempt scrapbooking.
  13. Sewing and crafting are relaxing to me. 
  14. I love loud yelling preaching.
  15. I wish I would have played an instrument when I was a child. 
  16. I love cooking for my family. My husband and kids are the best people to cook for. Every night at dinner they tell me how good the food is. This makes me want to cook for them again.
  17. I never ever thought I was the SAHM type. I set out with a career and thought that is what was best. God had a different plan for me. Being home these last 4 years have been the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done.
  18. I have great parents. My mom stayed home with us during the day, and worked at night. I never even realized she was a SAHM until I was an adult. My dad, even though he didn’t live with us, still saw us 4 or 5 days a week.
  19. I am addicted to reusable shopping bags. I have to refrain from buying them at every store I go to. My favorites are the ones from Trader Joe's with the surf boards on them.
  20. I think Rice Crispy Treats are the grossest thing ever made. Just the thought of them makes  gag.
  21. My favorite period of adolescence was 7th and 8th grade. I’m not sure why, but I can remember that part of childhood better than any other part.
  22. There are many things that I’ve done in my life that I hope my children never find out about. I would be devastated if I disappointed them.
  23. I am eternally grateful to my friend who led me to the Lord.
  24. I act like a big silly dork with my kids. They love it.
  25. Disneyland is one of my favorite places. I love how friendly and clean it is. I love it so much I spent my 30th birthday there with my husband and no kids. ;)
  26. Being married is more wonderful and more challenging than I ever would have thought. There are things I’ve learned about humbleness and love that I never could have learned otherwise. I can’t imagine living life without Adam, he is my best friend.
  27. I dislike my handwriting and am guilty of trying to change it constantly.
  28. I am the queen of biting off more than I can chew.
  29. I want so badly to have another child. I love babies, and I wish I could have 10.
  30. I don’t have eyebrows. Well, I do have them, but they are so blonde you can’t see them. This makes my forehead huge, so I dye them a light color brown so that they are visible.
  31. I have a terrible habit of talking before I think.
  32. My favorite dinner is white people tacos; I could eat them every night.


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tossing Time Again

We have been in our new home for nearly 6 months. In a few short months we went from 900 sq ft to 800 sq ft and then to 1550 sq ft. The final move was so exciting, almost like moving into a mansion with all of this fantastic space. However, it also has somehow caused our "stuff" to increase. Slowly our extra space is diminishing. As I look around I wonder how on earth we fit all of this stuff in our previous home. It's definitely time to get back to declutter mode. I don’t know about you, but too much stuff around makes me grumpy, full of anxiety and extremely stressed out.

 It was around this time last year that I was blogging about my, Operation Declutter, to rid our home of 500lbs of clutter. I didn't quite meet this goal but I did make a huge dent, and it felt amazingly better. I'm brushing off my declutter skills and attacking our house before it gets too far out of control. I'm not sure if I'll be weighing the clutter this time (I don't have a scale). I do plan to start in the very top corner of the upstairs (my bathroom) and then work my way down to the very bottom opposite side of the downstairs (the bottom bathroom). I will be going through each and every drawer and closet to toss, toss, toss. 

Declutter Plan
  • To leave no drawer/closet/under bed untouched
  • Sort all items into one of four categories.
1.     Throw away
2.     Give away
3.     Sell
4.     Keep - Reorganize

This is one of the best times of year for me to get rid of a huge quantity of "stuff". Our church holds its annual Christmas in July Rummage Sale on the last Saturday of the month. This is the end of our Missionary Month where the focus is on the Missionaries that our church supports. All of the proceeds (except for the youth snack booth) are divided up and sent to our 10 Missionary Families. I will be donating some things there and also holding a garage sale of my own. I will also be selling some things online through Etsy, Amazon and eBay. 

Today is my starting day, and I'm hoping to just work work work and get this done in a couple of days and not drag it on. The longer it takes the less motivated I become. It also is the kids' summer vacation and I want them to enjoy their time off of school, we have only 4 short weeks left. 

And into the chaos I go....


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Getting Ready for the Next School Year

This weekend I've been working on all of our lesson plans for the upcoming school year. We will start back in full swing on August 15th. I am almost finished with our Kindergarten plans through the end of September. I will post more on that later when I'm finished.

For Kiley and August's 8th grade year I have just finished the outline for their US History. I am not going to be using one main textbook this year because they are very limited in information and are pretty boring to read. I have not decided on all of the books we will use yet, but we will be utilizing our public library and the wonderful world of the internet. Here is the outline for this year, this is just the minimum that we must cover.

8th Grade US History

1.       End of 7th Grade Review and Magna Carta

2.       Declaration of Independence 1776

3.       Lincoln’s presidency: Gettysburg Address 1863, Emancipation Proclamation 1863, Inaugural address and second inaugural address 1865

4.       Lives of leaders and soldiers on both sides of the war. War Department General Order 143: Creation of the U.S. Colored Troops 1863.

5.       Developments and events in the war, General Lee’s surrender at Appomattox. Surrender of Fort Sumter via telegram 1861 Articles of Agreement – surrender of the Army of Northern 1865 Virginia.

6.       Reconstruction and effects on political and social structures of different regions.

7.       Wade-Davis Bill 1864

8.       13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Abolition of Slavery 1865

9.       14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Civil Rights  1868

10.   15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Voting Rights  1870

11.   Dawes Act 1887

12.   Sherman Anti-Trust Act 1890

13.   Keating-Owen Child Labor Act 1916

14.   Inventors: Thomas Edison-Light Bulb 1880

15.   Articles of Confederation and the Constitution. Declaration of Independence 1776, Articles of Confederation 1777, Constitution of the US 1787

16.   Federalist Papers, No. 10 & No. 51  1787

17.   Powers of government set forth in Constitution, Fundamental liberties ensured by the Bill of Rights. Constitution of US 1777, Bill of Rights 1791

18.   Ordinances of 1785 and 1787.  Northwest Ordinance 1787

19.   Interstate Commerce Act 1887

20.   Alien and Sedition Acts 1789: conflicts between Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton/emergence of two political parties

21.   Basic law making process. Constitutional provision for citizens to participate in political process, monitoring and influence on government.

22.   US Physical Landscapes, political divisions and territorial expansion during terms of Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison. Louisiana Purchase Treaty 1803, Jefferson’s Secret Message to Congress – Lewis & Clark Expedition 1803,

23.   Washington’s 1st Inaugural Speech 1789, Washington’s Farewell Address 1796

24.   Rise of capitalism. Jackson’s opposition to the National Bank. McCulloch v Maryland 1819, Gibbons v. Ogden 1824

25.   Political and economic causes and consequences of the War of 1812, major battles, leaders and events. Treaty of Ghent 1814

26.   Influence of the Monroe Doctrine 1823, westward expansion, and Mexican American War. Andrew Jackson’s Message to Congress  'On Indian Removal'  1830, Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo 1848-

27.   Pacific Railway Act 1862

28.    Development of the agrarian economy in the South, significance of cotton and cotton gin. Patent for Cotton Gin 1794

29.   Election and presidency of Andrew Jackson (Lewis and Clark expedition and removal of Indians- Trail of Tears).

30.   Homestead Act  1862  Check for the Purchase of Alaska  1868

31.   Texas War for Independence, Mexican American War,(Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo 1848)

32.   Northwestern Ordinance 1787  in education, banning of slavery in Northern States

33.   Slavery issues and annexation of Texas and California’s admission to the union as a free state. Compromise of 1850

34.   State’s Rights Doctrine, Missouri Compromise 1820, Kansas Nebraska Act 1854, Dred Scott v Sanford 1857, Lincoln Douglas debates.

Doesn't that look like so much fun?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Independence Day

In Congress, July 4 1776

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America 

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.—That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.—That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it; and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.—Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their acts of pretended legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the Lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free People.
Nor have We been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.—
WE, THEREFORE, the REPRESENTATIVES of the UNITED STATES of AMERICA, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do.—And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
Signed by ORDER and in BEHALF of the CONGRESS,
PHILADELPHIA: PRINTED BY JOHN DUNLAP.The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:
Column 1
   Button Gwinnett
   Lyman Hall
   George Walton
Column 2
North Carolina:
   William Hooper
   Joseph Hewes
   John Penn
South Carolina:
   Edward Rutledge
   Thomas Heyward, Jr.
   Thomas Lynch, Jr.
   Arthur Middleton
Column 3
John Hancock
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton
Column 4
   Robert Morris
   Benjamin Rush
   Benjamin Franklin
   John Morton
   George Clymer
   James Smith
   George Taylor
   James Wilson
   George Ross
   Caesar Rodney
   George Read
   Thomas McKean
Column 5
New York:
   William Floyd
   Philip Livingston
   Francis Lewis
   Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
   Richard Stockton
   John Witherspoon
   Francis Hopkinson
   John Hart
   Abraham Clark
Column 6
New Hampshire:
   Josiah Bartlett
   William Whipple
   Samuel Adams
   John Adams
   Robert Treat Paine
   Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
   Stephen Hopkins
   William Ellery
   Roger Sherman
   Samuel Huntington
   William Williams
   Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
   Matthew Thornton

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