Saturday, January 10, 2015

Feeling Numb

We have waited 5 months for information and now that we finally have news I feel NUMB. You mentally prepare yourself for every base on your list, but no matter how hard I tried I favored and dreamed of living in Europe again. Most the books I read take place in Europe in various time frames throughout history.  Europe is in my blood, and one day I will be there to live again, but sadly not this time around.
For the next 3 three years we will be experiencing something totally different. Kadena, Japan.  When I got hubby’s text I felt a weight lifted in the fact that we finally knew what the heck was going on, but when I read Japan my heart fell.
It is 6800 miles away from my family and friends, a 16-hour time difference, and I haven’t found tickets for cheaper than $1,300.  I don’t foresee lots of visitors, the houses are SMALL and so that means LOTS of stuff must to go and both our cars must sell.
Back in August I told the girls that we had to be prepared for Japan even though we had no desire to go there.  In 13 years I have never said, “ I didn’t sign up for this”, but last night I caught myself saying that.  I know given time I’ll enjoy this assignment, but now it is a far cry from what I hoped, prayed, and dreamed of.  That is my fault for letting myself get carried away in the daydreaming process of returning to Europe because after all this is the military and we really don’t get a say in anything. We just put down the four places in order of most wanted and pray.  I must say I’m not completely depressed by this but I’m not swinging from the chandeliers either.
Girls are making a list of things they are excited about doing, learning to scuba dive is one and I can still teach Zumba.  We are just getting started so give us time a the list will grow.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Saying Good-bye to 2014

As I sit here on the eve of the New Year and look back on the last year I can honestly smile with contentment. I feel complete and happy.  Who cares if we still don’t know where we are moving to or if we are? I mean we were only supposed to find out in November, but who keeps track of silly stuff like that? Certainly, not this nut typing.  We are mostly healthily, happy, and excited for 2015!!

Going over last year's Resolution I think I did better than I thought I would. Not that I doubted myself, but you know what I mean? Right? Life happens.

 I read more, even though I didn’t reach my goal of 125 books, which normally would have been easy for me, but to challenge myself I added that I had to finish EVERY book I started, whether it bored me or not.  I can be a book quitter, if by the first page or chapter I’m not sucked in I'll put it down.  So this was tough for me, and part of my resolution.  This is why I only finished 50 books. At first I was rather disappointed, that the number was so low but the more I thought I about it the better I felt, because I finished every last one.  I think I would have had to hire a maid to feed my family and clean if I read any more than that. Phew…

I can’t say that I completely stopped yelling, but I have certainly cut back.

Overall, I thought I had a better attitude and therefore was Happier and I tried doing more things with the girls.  While I was home visiting, one of my sisters told me that she was amazed with the change she saw in me.  I seemed stronger in the Lord, happier, more relaxed and funnier with the girls.  I got misty eyed. Oh don't judge me, I’m a basket case. It was just so nice to hear that someone could notice a change. Especially someone who had seen the crankier self!

I don’t know as a female if I’ll ever feel “in shape” especially after kids. I did run my 5K this summer, which was a big thing for me. Not sure if there are anymore in the future.  I’m just not a runner, everything jiggles and hurts—No matter how great I feel and look after.  Think Zumba will just have to be my form of cardio.  I do feel that I make wiser eating choices, and as a family we stay active. 

Loving my hubby… Could be one of easiest things to do. Ok except when he leaves his hair in the sink, then I go a little crazy.  Since I was a little girl I knew there was just the right man out there for me, and he is it! Seriously there is NO else that could put up with me, think what I’m thinking at the same moment, make me laugh, smile and just makes me crazy, wonderfully happy!

This year I’m not making a Resolution. I’m sure I’ll have goals throughout the year, but I’m setting myself free this year of sitting down and writing out what I want to do.  Let’s see what I’ll accomplish in 2015!! Bring it on Baby!!

May your New Year Be Amazing and Blessed!!

Lots of love,

Monday, November 3, 2014

Home is where....

I’ve for the most part always embraced our life so far. Travel, experience, yada, yada, yada and well you get the picture.

Virginia it never really bothered me although it was difficult for the first eight months because we lived in a very UNSAFE area. We didn’t know how dangerous at the time because we were overly excited about the private beach and pool.  Shortly after our eight-month mark hubby was deployed and I was packing up our super tiny place, storing it, and going home for the next six months. Bittersweet.  When he arrived home we moved to another place that less ghetto (it had two doors instead of just one). Luckily hubby made some friends when he was gone and I was introduced to their wives and we became friends! Sadly we missed family, but it was bearable.

Chickpea came along and shortly after we received our orders to Italy and Life was Grand. Life in Italy was a total Dream (Crappy Fiats, Gelato, Vino Rosso you name it). We had an AWESOME group of friends who are now family. By our Lords grace we were given Sweet Ladybug who was born half way through our Italian tour. After her birth our grand European tour kept on getting better and better.
Our European tour finally came to and end as we headed to Vermont for hubby’s schooling. Vermont left me with a feeling of freezing aloneness for the first year and a half. My reprieve came when dropping off Chickpea off at school and saying “Hi” and “Bye” to Miss Porter (who was my only social outlet/local gossip de jour). Hubby’s senior year I finally made friends, but I was so ready to leave Vermont that I probably didn’t invest as much of myself as thought I did.

Ohio oh sweet plain not much going on Ohio our 6th of 6 choices on our list of places to go (I can blame myself since I created the list). Oddly our time in Ohio really hasn’t been that bad and I must say that it has been our quickest adjustment EVER!! However, it has brought insecurity, jealousy an awareness of what we are missing to the surface.  Hubby and I were able to find a perfect church for us here in Ohio. Since finding our AMAZING church I’ve realized these people have known each other since the church opened its doors or their WHOLE family lives in this area.  I think that is the hardest thing because we have been the outsiders for so long.  That outsider feeling hasn’t just been the church, but also at Co-Op, Karate and it seems everywhere we turn people are rooted here. Our roots don’t even break the surface, but we have made a home here.  Even with friends, church and activies we miss our family even more than ever before.

It hasn’t really hit me like it has since moving to Ohio that our girls will never have a childhood home; spend weekends with the grandparents, no growth chart marks on the doorframes. After 12 years of being married to the Military you would think that I would have gotten it by now.  Instead of moving to different houses within the same zip code from time to time, they get different states and countries.  Even though we aren’t close geographically they are still close to their grandparents and they really have a special bond that I hoped that they would have.  That leads to the unveiling of my plaque.

My friend has a plaque her hubby made that says, “Home is where they send us” I feel in love with it.  I wanted something similar without seeming like a total copycat, even though give her kudos it was a FAB idea and besides imitation as they say is the sincerest form of flattery.

I had planned on being super crafty, but when I priced the equipment needed for what I wanted to do it was just cheaper to buy it from this little husband/wife shop. So I sent them my ideas and they sent this back. I added the pink feet (craftiness complete!).  Hopefully in the next few weeks I’ll reveal the new link!! 

Friday, September 12, 2014

From Defeatist to Positive overnight!

I’ve felt guilty for being so negative in my last post.  The momma/teacher I was the first day of school was NOT how I wanted to kick off the school year.
That night when I was stuffing my face with comfort food God spoke to me about my bad attitude.  I wasn’t being a good example of how to deal with new things.  I had just talked to the girls about how if they are trying something new and they don’t get it right off the bat to not freak out. Taking it slow and practice makes perfect… Hello I was acting just like my nine and six year old but maybe a little more psycho.

After I adjusted my attitude and thought happy thoughts I went to bed.

Tuesday morning I didn’t stress about the alarm, got up, made strong coffee, made a delicious breakfast and put my big girl pants on and walked into the school room with positive thoughts.

We had a great day and I wasn’t as lost trying to use the teacher's manuals. I did delegate Hubby to teach Science and be the Math sub.  What a HUGE blessing to have my hubby give me a helping hand.  He is truly one of a kind.  Our Bria (pictured below) graduated to the reading mats (previously kennel bound due to bad behavior) and is now so much more enjoyable to do school with.

By Friday we were on a roll and totally enjoying it. We also went to our first homeschool organized Co-Op and the girls LOVED it.  I’m happy because two of my favorite HS momma buddies are also part of the group and our kids enjoy being with each other.

Despite all the positives I’m still in the mind frame that since we homeschool I need to run this super tight ship.  When I was homeschooled (HS) as a kid it wasn’t very popular to be a homeschooler and I remember my mom making sure that we didn’t do anything until after school hours in public.  Oh MY how things have changed. Now I feel that we can be more liberal with taking the kids to the grocery store mid-day if need be. One of the many reasons we decided to HS was so we could do school AROUND our schedule.  That would mean our schedule would be different from everyone else’s: correct? I still find it ironic that no one ever questions homeschooled athletes or stars about being sheltered or weird.

This year I decided to change the curriculum for a few reasons… We were using ACE Math and it was a constant battle to get anything done, but when we were getting anything done it was usually a tearful advent.  This year we went with Saxon Math for Chickpea and even though it is only the second week, she loves it, and is actually asking to do Math! 
BIG WIN for Mom!
For Ladybug I’m finishing up the Horizons Math K book and then starting Miquon Math.  Ladybug has always loved Math so it’s waiting to see how see likes the new stuff.

I was not impressed with the program I used with Ladybug for kindergarten last year so I bought this program second hand and LOVE it!  It is Institute for Excellence in Writing.  I'm using it for Reading and Writing and Ladybug just loves it and is already reading so much better.

I had planned to just use Story of the World for History (SOTW).  They have great extra reading recommendations, which the girls enjoy going to the Library to pick out.  I like ACE Social Studies because you learn things you would NEVER learn in public school. For example I introduced my hubby to Dietrich Bonheoffer whom I learned about in school (I used ACE as a kid) but my hubby had no idea who this guy was.  So I may end up ordering ACE Social Studies again and supplementing with SOTW.  When time permits we are using 50 States and where to find them (a FREE download from Homeschool Giveaways) for our Geography and also Kids Guide to American History.

We are using Apologia Science for the girls.  We are doing Zoology 1, which covers every thing that flies.  Hubby seems to having just as much fun as the girls are.  The girl’s favorite thing about this is they each get their own journal. Another great thing about is that it recommends doing science 3-4 days a week. This has been Fabulous for my hubby’s schedule.

I am continuing to use ACE for English/Grammar, Spelling, Creative Writing and Literature. When tested this last year Chickpea scored above grade level in all 3 so I figure if it isn’t broken why fix it?  I am adding English from the Roots Up for no other reason than because I want to.

This year I’m teaching them Sign Language and attempting Latin.  I’m using SongSchool Latin. I can’t really say how I like it because I just got it in the mail today, but I’m excited to start.  I can’t wait to use Discovering the Great Artist this year.  Since living in Italy I have a new respect for Art and hope to share that with the girls.

We start each morning with our Mother daughter devotional.  I’m not in love with The One Year Mother Daughter Devo, just because it’s probably better suited for older girls.  If I feel the subject isn’t for them then we just read the scripture for the day.   Either way it is the Perfect way to start the day.

It is going to be an interesting year since we just found out the hubby got a new job in the Air Force and will be being packing up the house sometime in April.  We are excited about this even though we have no idea where we might go.  There are only 4 choices, but I hope they let us know soon.

Have a blessed weekend!