No Answers.

My appointment with the orthopedic doctor this morning wasn’t what I’d hoped.

The disappointing truth about IT Band issues are that there is no one thing that works.  It can quickly resolve itself sometimes and other times it lingers for years. Yes, years.

He looked at my x-rays and didn’t see anything wrong. He doesn’t recommend surgery or injections because he’s not sure it would work and they might make it worse. So, he recommended sticking with physical therapy and going to the chiropractor.  At this point, I think I need to choose between my physical well being and my emotional well being (which doesn’t really work since they impact each other) because I don’t think we can afford all these doctor appointments as well as my every three week visit to my counselor. We have a huge deductible and our HSA contributions are only going to cover about half of that amount. On top of that, I can’t take the kids with me to all my appointments. I have to work them around nap schedules and when other people can help me watch my kids. And if I need a babysitter to made these appointments work, I get to pay for that too.

The whole thing just sucks. It really does.

It probably doesn’t make sense to most people. Why would anyone want to exercise?  Well, what if you found something that you enjoyed doing, made you feel better emotionally and physically, helped with you keeping your weight under control and gave you a much-needed break. After incorporating it into your life, what if you were suddenly unable to do it? The one thing you really liked? The one thing you really were kind of good at you can’t do it anymore and there was no explanation for why you can’t do it or if you ever will again.

I feel let down by my body.

One Is the Loneliest Number (for Isaac)

Ethan and Audrey have been shipped off to Wisconsin for a few days. Ethan was so happy this morning. He told me that he was so happy that he felt like crying. That’s pretty big for a 6 year old boy. I’m not sure how tonight will go on our end. Isaac talked for a long time before going to bed. Just a short while ago, we heard him crying. Nathan and I went in his room and found several extra stuffed animals in bed with him and he was sad. I really think he misses Ethan. We got him up and snuggled for a while and then changed him into cooler pajamas. We’ll see how the rest of the evening and morning go.

Speaking of morning, I have an appointment with an orthopedic doctor tomorrow. I could use some good news on that front.

Now, to bed with me.

Beautiful Day

I would love to order an year of weather like today.

The weather was perfect today. I wish we could have spent more time outside, but I was waiting around for a contractor to show up to look at our roof and he didn’t come when I expected. It hard to make plans when you aren’t sure when you need to be home. I did end up with some fun photos later though.

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Sweetness

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It looks like Isaac is trying to figure out what in the world I’m doing.

Tooth 2

I’m pleased to announce that Ethan has lost his second tooth! This time he didn’t swallow it. It has been very loose for a couple of days and he refused to let Nathan or I touch it. We just keep asking him periodically how his tooth was doing. Today, at lunch, I asked him if his tooth had fallen out. He felt for a moment and declared that it had fallen out! He denied swallowing it. That left one option with a mouth full of food. Yes, I asked him to spit out his hot dog and bun so I could see it. And then I look through his chewed up food to find his tooth.  What kind of mother does that? Yes, I found the tooth.
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Isaac thought that he was supposed to be in the photo 🙂 Oops. I tried again.

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Ethan rocks that orange pop mustache.

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Sometimes I let Ethan and Isaac have a little brother bonding time before I make Isaac go back to his bed. I’m letting them play a little longer in their room tonight since I put them to bed early.

Just a typical Monday around here!

Read Aloud Book Lists

It’s been a quiet evening and I’ve capitalized on it by going through my book lists. I have a handful of them floating around the house. I’ve pieced my own list together from recommendations from other homeschool moms and online resources.

Five In A Row

Charlotte Mason and more

Read Aloud America

I haven’t figured out the best time of day for our reading time. We would have less interruptions if I waited to do it until Isaac’s nap time, but I really like having that time for myself. I want Isaac to benefit from the time too. Maybe mid morning?

 
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I chose The Monster at the End of The Book to read tonight. I think I first heard that story at my grandparents’ house. I love sharing stories with my kids that I enjoyed when I was their age.  We also read this book tonight:

It’s one of a set we got from the Fairchild’s for Christmas and I love it! The illustrations are yummy and so is the rest of the content. Maybe it was the fact that I baked cookies tonight that made me pull out this book!

What was your favorite childhood book? I would love hear your ideas. Crazy Dave, how about you?

Countdown to School

After doing some research, I decided that our school schedule would follow a more balanced calendar approach. So, we’re actually getting ready to start school in a little less than a month! The idea of the balanced calendar is that our school breaks are spread out throughout the 12 months instead of having a 3 month break all at once. It’s the same number of days of school, but it’s just spread out throughout the year differently.

I like the idea of this because less knowledge is lost, we don’t have as many unstructured days at one time (not that I couldn’t plan some different sort of structure apart from school), and we can take advantage of the nicer summer weather for outdoor projects.

I’ve made a weekly list of supplies for the first 10 weeks of school. It feels so good to have that done! Hopefully, this will eliminate last minute scrambling to find things I don’t normally keep here at home. I’m also getting ready to work on compiling a list of read-aloud books that will be appropriate for Ethan and Audrey this year. The last big thing that I need to do is to come up with a basket of toys and supplies that Isaac can use while I’m working with Ethan and Audrey. Keeping him occupied will be one of my biggest challenges!

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I let him play with stickers while Audrey was doing some coloring earlier this week and that worked out great!

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Ethan will be doing 1st grade this year and Audrey, since she wont be 5 until the end of September, will be doing some pre-K projects with me. I’m looking at using some of the resources from letteroftheweek.com and I’ll be reading lots of books to her. I don’t really see any reason to rush into Kindergarten since she wouldn’t be starting for another year if we weren’t homeschooling.

I’m really looking forward to blogging more about our homeschool experience this year!

Messing Me Up In the Most Beautiful Of Ways

I stole that blog post title from the review on the back of my One Thousand Gifts books by Ann Voskamp.

I’ve read a couple of things lately that have really challenged me.

The first one, from Heather Hendrick’s blog

And then yesterday I read another post that really stopped me in my tracks and caused me to start considering my attitude towards our money. I’ve been motivated to work hard to eliminate our debt because I want to have a little more breathing room in our budget. I was dreaming about what it would be like to have new carpet, a little extra money to put in our “fun” accounts and other things. I felt like God was tapping me on the shoulder and saying, “What if My plan for your finances doesn’t follow a popular financial expert? Do you trust me on this?” *Gulp*

You see, if I’m going to be honest here, I’ve never actually gone through any financial classes so I don’t know what they say the end goal is, but my end goal was more stuff for me and I thought that extra giving to those in need could wait until I have a little more in savings.

As Nathan and I look at our plans/finances, it’s my hope that we can say, “It’s all Yours, God. How can we best honor you?” It might line up with what we’ve already been doing and it might not.  And it wont look the same for every family. It’s so easy to look at other people and make assumption about their financial priorities.

I don’t want to be satisfied with “okay” for our family because it’s safe when God has something incredible to offer instead if we choose to trust Him.

** I feel a need to add this disclaimer** Please know that these thoughts are not a statement on the financial priorities of anyone else. I’ve been learning that this is a heart issue that has to do with one’s attitude toward money and not how much someone has or doesn’t have.

 

Ethan Knows What He’s Going to Do When He Grows Up

A while ago, Ethan announced to me: “Mom, I’ve got it figured out. I know what I want to do when I grow up. I’m going to be a scientist and for fun, I’m going to draw and beat box. It’s hard to decide when you’re good at so many things.”

Oh, the dilemma of being so talented!

 

And more counting of gifts:

 

A chubby toddler hand to hold on the way to the post office.

Bike races down the dead end street by our house.

Older brother praying for younger brother at bed time.

A full pantry.

Bedtime stories made up by Daddy.

Finding out you’re not alone.

Straw cups.

Sugar snap peas.

 

 

Happenings Here

It was our day to go to church for a Play and Pray time for moms and kids. I wasn’t sure if we should go today. The kids were still feeling a little tired from the weekend and I had a doctor appointment scheduled for this afternoon for myself and the timing of it didn’t work well for a good nap unless Isaac went to sleep early. I decided to just go anyway and I’m so glad we did.

In our discussion time, one of the moms mentioned a recent trip with her husband to a place where they used to live and she said that they were thinking about moving back there. It started a great discussion among us and we all discovered that we had recently gone through times where we just wanted to literally pack up our things, move and start over again somewhere else. It was funny and affirming to realize that we weren’t alone in our feelings. It reminded me of this post.

In other words, since it’s release earlier this year, I had been wanting to get the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. Nathan got it for me for my birthday and I have really enjoyed reading it.Explaining it would take another entire post, but I will use some blog space here to put into practice some of what the author discusses by adding to my own list of gifts that I’ve been given:

Laughing until our sides hurt at family reunion.

“Thanks you”s from my 2 year old.

A friend who was willing to watch my kids when she could have been enjoying a rare kid-free day.

Snuggle time with Audrey.

Foot rubs.

S’mores by a campfire.

Hugs.

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Mismatched clothes that Audrey picks our herself.

Mosquito bites that remind me that it’s not winter anymore.

Sudoku puzzles.

The timeless and unchanging Word of God in an ever-changing and unreliable world.