Abigail's Hair This Week

This is Abigail's hairstyle for this week:

Yes, her styles can last a WEEK now.  Not just a day or two, or even three.  A whole week!  This is HUGE!  I don't know if it is that her hair is getting longer (it is 8.5 inches stretched at the crown), I am putting in styles in smaller sections and that are more protective, or if she is easier on them.  I think it is the first two...because it is NOT the last one!

It took me right at 2 hours to complete this style before church on Sunday morning.  (I am beyond thrilled that I am getting quicker and neater with cornrows.)  

But getting her ready started the day before - Saturday afternoon.  We spent about an hour taking out her previous style, 20 minutes shampooing and conditioning it, 30 minutes of her letting the deep conditioner sit on her hair (she had plastic wrap and a towel covering it)...and then I spent about 45 minutes doing the LOC method and banding it into 5 sections (already parted for this style I knew I'd be doing the next morning).

I have (finally!) begun faithfully updating the "Hair Gallery" post that is on the ride side-bar of the blog.  I want to be able to compile all of Abigail's hairstyles in one spot.  

I don't want to come across as boasting about her hair.  But, well...I **am** so proud that I can do her hair now.  There are few things I have worked so hard at in my life.  I have purchased multiple books, follow multiple blogs, belong to multiple hair/skin care groups on yahoo and FB, and have watched HOURS (and hours) of videos on YouTube.  I have learned much good and helpful information.  And I have learned (the hard way) many things I should never do again. I have cried literal tears of frustration/worry about her hair (when she was about 6-9 months and needing more done to it and I was just starting to understand all I needed to know).  I was so worried that I wouldn't do right by her, and then wouldn't be able to pass along to her the knowledge she'll need to care for and style her own hair.  I have worked long and hard to get us where we are and the fact that I am not embarrassed for black women to see her hairstyles now?  Still amazes me.    

There is still so much for me to learn/practice...but I see the light at the end of the tunnel now.


Miscellany Monday, August 22, 2016

This (empty) bag?

Ingredients:  organic mangoes

Saving my life right now.  

I am still trying to decipher what foods my body can tolerate - and which are contributing to my autoimmune issues (Hypothyroid).  I haven't had any dairy in months.  I only have eggs once a month or so (and I'm not entirely sure I should even be having them at all).  This is in addition to the regular things that are not allowed on GAPS (all grains, sugar, etc), because we are 6 months into doing GAPS again.  "Treats" are hard to come by with the restrictions I have right now.  So this "treat" that feels totally indulgent and "illegal" but is so totally legal?  Wonderful!

This bag of dried mango (organic, non-GMO certified) is HEAVEN for me right now.  I buy one bag a week...and I won't tell how quickly I scarf them down...


WHY had none of my (so-called) friends let me in on the "secret" of how wonderful "Fixer Upper" is?

HOW did it take us so long to discover this show?  The four oldest kiddos and I are having a BALL watching it together!  After the two youngest are tucked in bed, we head to the family room to snuggle up and watch the next episode.  

Joanna is so very talented...and beautiful (and the fact that she is 1/2 Korean is not lost on my Asian kiddos...it is nice seeing your race represented).  And Chip is crazy with a capital C!  (The ROACH!)  They are so funny and so great together and their four children are precious.  We love trying to guess which of the three houses the current couple will choose to buy and renovate.  And then we love to follow along on all the feats and foibles of the demo and construction and decorating.  

The only bad part?  We're almost caught up on the past episodes.  :(


We have about one acre of pasture that is fenced in for the cows to roam on.  They have not been able to keep the growth down in there lately.  I love mowing, so I planned to do it...but Jas said it would make more sense for dad to drive his tractor down the road and cut it for us.  

G was so happy we went with that plan.

That boy loves him some "might machines"!


Back story:  We began the process last month of trying to get Chelsea pregnant again.  We didn't like her being so big pregnant through the hottest part of the year with George Franklin...so we planned to wait a little longer than normal (leave her "open" a little longer than normal) to try to avoid doing that again.  Well, it's time now.

We were hoping that A.I. process took. 

But when I was out in the pasture with Dad and Gabriel (someone had to open all the gates to let them from one paddock to another and such), I witnessed firsthand that Chelsea is apparently NOT pregnant yet.  I will spare you the details, but GF made it apparent that Chelsea's hormones were telling him she was not pregnant.  

Jas called our A.I. Tech guy and he came out Friday night and again Saturday morning (two visits - approximately 12 hours apart - is standard procedure for the actual insemination part).

It took two rounds (exactly like this - one that was artificially prompted, and the second where she appeared to be in "standing heat") when she became pregnant with George Franklin.  We are hoping to get good news in a few weeks!


This photo was taken at church two Friday nights ago at a special worship service at our beloved church.

While I love (love!) the picture of G getting his worship on...

....when I look at this picture I see the man in the top left.  

That is Mr. Rodney.  He was helping with the AV team there in the back of the sanctuary.  We were sitting just to his right, and I noticed he was singing his heart out (along with everyone else in the room), even though he was "working".  

Two nights after this event (so, Sunday night), he and his precious wife were in our Community Group meeting.  

One night after that, he was gone.   Absent from this life...present with the Lord.

A driver going the opposite direction went off the shoulder, overcorrected, and ran head on into Rodney's truck.

We never know when.  We never know.  We must be ready.  Am I ready?  Are you ready?


New Sidebar Pictures

It was time.

Way past time, actually.

The pictures on the sidebar of my blog over there on the right?  WAY old.  Over a year old.  That is forever when you are talking about children.  

So the picture of 8-month old Abigail (who is 2 now)?  Gone.  To replace it, I had a hard time choosing between these two very recent pictures:

This is "yesterday" recent.

I ultimately decided on that first one.  I cropped A's face out of this sweet picture that Noah took as we left church yesterday:

Love it.  And love how much Noah loves his littlest siblings.  He was so very proud of himself for capturing this pic of them together, as well he should be.

From that same picture, I also cropped out G, so he could have a new sidebar picture also:

Not the very best angle ever, but he'll have to just be glad that I didn't choose this as his new sidebar picture....

....because it sure would capture his everyday attitude to a T.

I have a post underway about our "little" girl turning 13.  

This is one of the shots our friend Mrs. B took during the photo shoot to commemorate E becoming a teenager. 

She is so beautiful it makes me want to cry. 

Mrs. B also took pictures when Jas and I celebrated our 20th anniversary way back in March.  I decided it was time to move that picture into a sidebar picture...

 ...instead of the pic we snapped ourselves celebrating LAST year's anniversary.

Now....to go get updated pictures of the remaining three kiddos.....



Several of the women at our church recently began offering a beginner yoga class.  Because of little (and not-so-little) "I'm 43 y.o. now" aches and pains, I had been thinking for a while that I would like to try yoga, so I was thrilled when I got the email announcing this class!

I got myself a mat and went to the inaugural class last Monday.  Bottom line: I loved it!  

We did a video from Atoning Yoga.  These videos are "grounded in Scripture" and the class "contains a 'breath prayer' that is inspired by a Bible verse and repeated throughout the entire practice."(from their site)  

But the classes are Monday, Wednesday and Thursday at 5:30 p.m.  Right when Jas is arriving home. Right when we should be sitting down to all eat supper together.  

Group classes are just not going to work for this mama right now.  So, I decided to try to do some at home.  The kiddos were interested in seeing what all this yoga-hubbub was about.  They were VERY interested.

Not only did I almost immediately get ejected from my mat...I had lots of "helpers" who decided they need to hug me and berightwithme...right then:

LK really did the video with me...the others, not so much.

The three oldest lost interest pretty fast, but the three youngest hung in there until the bitter end.  It was so cute seeing Abigail attempt a downward dog pose (and she did pretty good!).  

Group classes won't work for me right now at church...OR at home.

So now I have started doing yoga in the morning, before my shower.  I am still doing just very basic beginner stuff.  But boy can I feel it.  And it feels good (after it stops feeling not good).  I found a beginner video on YouTube that I really like that, while not Christian, doesn't have anything included that a believer would be apprehensive about.  

Jas even did it with me this morning.  Woohoo!  Go us!



This boy....

...is a party waiting to happen.

(And considering that several more of our children are like that also - with the remaining being more reserved - things are always hopping around here!)

Now that G is so talkative - downright articulate, even - he comes out with some funny stuff.

Here are some things that Gabriel is currently saying, that he won't say forever...and I never want to forget:

Gabriel is a HUGE fan of music...but he calls it "muskick."

Anything that happened before today, happened "last day."  I have to listen real hard to his stories to figure out what previous event he is talking about, because while he could be talking about something that happened last year, or last week...he claims it happened "last day." "Remember when such-and-such happened last day, mama?!?"

If G thinks something is real neat or awesome, he says it is "impressive."  "That was an impressive shot!"  (This is straight out of his daddy's mouth.)

When G does not know the answer to a question, instead of saying, "I don't know,"  he says, "I can't know."  (with a shrug of his precious little shoulders)

And finally....Noah relayed this story to us, of a conversation he recently shared with Gabriel: Gabriel observed to Noah that Abigail does not have a pee-pee like he does.  Noah said that no, she doesn't, because she is a girl.  Gabriel - in a move of great generosity - offered to buy one for her.


2016-2017 School Year

We are underway in our 9th year of official homeschooling!

We actually began two weeks ago.  And honestly, it started out rough. (Just like the previous school year ended.)  But after tweaking and adjusting - and a couple of meetings with our principal (aka "Daddy") - things are settling into a good rhythm now.  A really good rhythm.  Phew!

We are back to using My Father's World for our core curriculum.  We are in Year 4 of the chronological history cycle - Exploration to 1850.  

I just really heart My Father's World.  My Father's World is a good combination of Charlotte Mason and Classical methods, that has me very involved with the children in the core subjects of Bible, history, science and geography.  We switched away from it during the last 1/2 of last year (to Mystery of History), because with a 1-year old and a 3-year old...I just had to.  But thankfully, we are at a place where we can get back to learning together!

We are doing an inductive study of the book of James this year.  AND...we are memorizing the book of James.  The whole book.  It is not a particularly long book...and we have all year to do it.  They have us learning about 4-5 new verses a week...and we are off to a great start!  I am so excited about this.  And since we practice this memory work at the kitchen tables over meals, G and A happen to be learning it too.  Gabriel amazed us with what he spouted off this morning (I really need to video it!).  

Here is what else the children are working on this year:

Abigail's sign says it all.  She takes her job very seriously...and she excels at it!

Gabriel is officially in Pre-K now.  I have chilled a lot since my first were this age (a LOT), and I still am not sure how formal we'll get with anything with G this year.  Mainly we'll just continue to read a lot of good books (he (and A) love to be read to).  He has already picked up many letters and numbers just through reading and...well, living, in a household.  If I want to get more formal, I have the book I used with E and N when they were leeeeetle, Little Hands to Heaven.  Other than that we have enough educational games and manipulatives to fill up 6 or 7 (or more) of the cubbies on our bookshelves.  In short, we'll do just enough formal schooling to not interfere with the very important job of being 4-years old!

Saxon Math 5/4
Spelling by Sound and Structure-5th Grade, by Rod & Staff
Reading Comprehension workbook by Evan-Moor
Daily Language Review workbook by Evan-Moor

Saxon Math 6/5
Spelling by Sound and Structure-6th Grade, by Rod & Staff

Noah came to us a month or so ago and said that he wanted to skip 7th grade.  After thinking about it, I realized that he was already doing the same work as Elisabeth...so, why not?  I am thinking/planning that our children will do some dual-enrollment when they get up in high school, so the issue of when they graduate from high school will be very flexible anyway.

Saxon Math
Read and doing Progeny Press Guides for Amos Fortune, Free Man and Swiss Family Robinson
Spelling/Vocabulary (from this site)

Saxon Math
Read and doing Progeny Press Guides for Amos Fortune, Free Man and Swiss Family Robinson
Spelling/Vocabulary (from this site)

We made the switch for all four from Teaching Textbooks to Saxon Math about 5 months ago.  It has been the hardest thing we've done in school...and I have no doubt that it was the right move.  I needed to be more hands-on with math.  Teaching Textbooks was good/appropriate/needed while we went through the season of having 2 newborns in the house...but now Saxon is where we need to be.  


Miscellany Monday - July 25, 2016

I'm feeling the need to dump some pictures off my phone and camera.  

These make my heart smile.

Sometimes...when you live in the deep south where the heat index has been (way) over 100 degrees....

...you do your chicken chores dressed like this....

...and then you go jump in the pool!

As Noah worked on some school work on the computer back in our master bedroom, he heard a big thud.  This is what ran into our window:

It apparently was ok (thankfully)...it flew off after a couple of minutes.


Thankfully this happened on Saturday, which meant that daddy was here:

He doesn't look too upset in that first one, does he?

Well, it didn't last long.

I so wish I had taken an "after" photo, when he was smiling big again.  

It took Jas approximately 2 seconds to pop my big vase off G's arm...which only confirms my conviction that Jas can do anything.  And do it well.


You can always tell when Noah was in charge of getting the two youngest dressed for the day:

He loves those babies something fierce!


We had a Family Fellowship Supper at church last night.  So much fun!  The church provides meat and drinks, we all bring sides/salads/desserts.  

Elisabeth brought these yummy sweets that have become a go-to recipe lately:

These little gems only have four ingredients.


Banana, peanut butter, cocoa, honey

And then sometimes we add walnuts to the top, so that would be five.

HERE is the recipe for FUDGY MUFFINS.


This is what A's hair currently looks like....

...and I personally think it is so cute!

These are box braids.  I haven't counted, but I would guess 25-35 of them.  It took me 4 hours total (divided over 3 different sessions).  I decided not to put beads on the ends and just twirl the ends (they hold because her hair is so curly).  The beads weigh her braids down and keep them hanging down straight, so I knew these wouldn't hang down exactly straight, and that it would be ok.  

Now...to see how long they last.  4 hours work that lasts a week is o.k.  4 hours work that only lasts a few days would NOT be o.k.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...