Friday, December 31, 2010

End of the YeaR-Fun Things!

As some of youknow this year I fell into a position of being a personal assistant to Tangie Baxter.  This is a wild and outrageously fun job to have.  If you have ever had an experience of Tangie Baxter you will know the enthusiasm she has for creating and the energy she exudes is beyond belief!  I seriously spend most of my time, collecting her thoughts and ideas and organizing so she can draw from them.  Tangie is also a big believer in giving things.  She has this amazing series of kits called Field Notes, and has done the original and then II and III a fall and winter version.
These are remarkable kits and truly can be used for nature or art journaling (digi style).  As a home school mom in the day and digi scrapper at night, having both worlds collide is beyond fun.
I have done layouts of science experiments, layouts of school of my children making their own nature journals and I was able this month to make a desk top!  I love it so much, and Tangie has allowed me to make it available FREE to you! Just go to her Team Blog and click the DOWNLOAD LINK! It is made from her newest addition to the Field Notes, number III {Winter}.
The download does not have my schedule on it, but a blank calendar for you to fill in and personalize!  I hope you enjoy and I hope this year is filled with joy and new experiences!

Good Morning!!

It is the last day of the year!  I am so excited! Going to head up to Oroville for some laughter and fellowship with friends!  Not a late evening, just a few hours!  I wanted to share Christmas morning with you.
It is 5:43 AM.  Tony and I are up.  What is wrong with this picture? My children are not up! We stomp around the house and finally they awake! 
The look of wonder as they march in the living room!!

This picture of Eric just grabs my heart, how grown up he is to me now.  Funny how you don't see it day to day, then I upload a photo and I stare at my children, and how fast they are growing up. 
Okay, I have to tell of a gift from Abby, it totally caught me unaware.  I knew she bought it at the 99cent store and it was flat, but I did not know what it was.  I opened it and burst into laughter:

What is it, I could not stop laughing!  I am so glad Tony had the camera! I got laughing and then Abby joined in:
It is a calendar of yoga poses, but not just regular yoga poses, poses done by dogs!
The kids complete baffled Tony with this gift! It was arrows! The kids and Tony do archery every week, and it is a great thing, and having your own arrows is a good thing! 
Anna loved the Ripstick, and hey her arms should be strong now, after breaking them so many times? Right?? right?!
 Eric was just so thrilled to have a tool box of his very own, and spent the morning getting everything arranged just right! 
 Gabriel, was just so thrilled Christmas had come and so surprised at the bike I think I will always remember his astonishment and joy!
After breakfast, we broke open Abby's Karaoke machine!
More on the happenings and playing with Christmas gifts later!  I need breakfast now! 

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Recap Christmas!

Ah, went on a walk yesterday because this yellow orb some call the sun came out!  I had to reintroduce myself to it's warmth!
 I walked to Winco, to get some things and back.  My kids said they weren't even embarrassed that I tied the tortilla chips to the outside of the backpack.  (I admit, it was a bit strange looking).
It is nice to be moving, and the sun always gives me a better outlook on life.  Summer time girl, and a whole lot of years in the desert! 

I want to give everyone a glimpse of Christmas in our house.  We pass down the age old tradition of opening one present Christmas eve.
I wonder what it could be? I just wonder? 
Surprise! It's pajamas!  Oh wait, a twist, the boys have pj's and the girls have robes!  woot! I love how the girls are looking to see what the boys got! This kills me! 
This is the first year the kids actively participated in the gift buying.  They saved their money, and with help from us were able to buy and wrap presents for each other and Tony and me.  Their faces say it all, Tony is opening his Christmas Eve present:
A robe!! It is so soft! Tony was very happy!  He has an old terry cloth robe that is 4 or 5 years old and he didn't even know that a man's robes could be this soft!
Next up, Mom (me):
I got a chain saw, wow, comfy! A poulan? I will say, it is one of my favorite colors, is that puce?
We packed the kids off to bed, and then headed to the church to pick up hidden gifts!  This is the first year we had wrapped the day before when we were not exhausted.  That really does make for a relaxing Christmas Eve.  We set everything up, in anticipation of the early morning to come.
Then sat and just talked about Christmas', our first, the many without children, the first with Eric,the insanity with 4 and the joys of the season.  It was nice.
No, I didn't get a chainsaw, my kids and hubby blessed me with a beautiful robe, and these fuzzy pj's.  I haven't worn pj's due to not being able to find them in my size for years.  Now, that my size is diminishing, finding them is a bit easier.  Now they are not the most flattering, and I am not one to model in my pj's, but here ya go:
It's late, and life is good!  Tomorrow read about the big Christmas morning!!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Piano Arrives

Okay, this was the deal, The Acting Co. here in Yuba City was having a play.   Someone gave them a piano for a prop, on the request that it didn't come back to them.  Give it away.  Our piano teacher, knew we were looking for a piano and free was the price we had planned.  
The kicker was, the last showing of play would be over at 4pm on Sunday afternoon.  The piano had to be picked up in the window of 4:15pm to 5pm.  We have an evening service and prayer is at 5pm.  I could feel stress in my tummy.  Tony says, "Don't worry, I have it under control."  I believed him and let it go! 
Tony called Leeland, a man that comes now and again to church (Lisa's son) and he explained, it was not a trick to get him to church, but Tony needed help.  Would he mind coming and due to time constraints mind coming to church also?  Leeland said yes! Tony rented a U-Haul with a ramp.
The crazy part is we had just had a week of rain, non-stop California winter rain.  Tony said, he prayed, God, I can not move this piano in the rain, I need a window of no rain.  It stopped raining after morning service and got windy. Wind means the ground dries up faster.  

Down came the piano, excitement and anticipation!  Tony in another life long ago was a furniture mover and he is real smart on how to get things in and how to do it without killing yourself. 
They had to bring it up two steps and through the hall and then swing it around thur our kitchen/dining area~
Our living room the home to the piano, was a garage and is now the living room, it has two pretty deep steps down.  Tony is evaluating how this is going to happen!  It was some heavy muscle work, and we were so excited to see the piano in it's new home:
 It has some life wear on it, but it cleaned up really nice and the piano teach brought a bench the next day! It is beautiful and has lovely tone!  I sat and began doing Susan Mammen's piano class! The girls and I are gonna do it together!
So, we then rushed to the church, picking up folks and changing and all! We got there in time, had a fun service and we treated to Taco Bell!  It was so much fun, Lisa and Leeland, Anna Louise and us chowing down on tacos!  The best part is the altar call:

Leeland rededicates his life to Jesus, and his mom is praying right next to him.  This is why we are here.  God gives us the desires of our hearts, a piano for my home, and souls that cry out for Jesus!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

sorry for the mess!

pounding out a new year and new blog design!
header should be up tomorrow!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas to YOU all!

I am posting this and then shutting down for a while! Baking cookies and wrapping presents, and might sneak in a nap! I wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas!!
Be back after Christmas with funny pictures and the craziness as I prepare for our next semester!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Get out the contact paper! And other fun things!

I love the price; $1 at the Dollar Store where everything is guess??? YEPPERS!!! ONE dollar!!
We finished our Plant section of Biology this week, and that meant going over trees, and leaves and different types of trees.  Coniferous and Broadleaved.  We went on a leaf picking adventure, then "classified" and stuck them to the contact paper!  I am telling you this stuff is just fun!!  Kid friendly and mom enjoyable.
Anna taking careful inventory of her leaves.
Gabriel says he doesn't enjoy Science, but I watch him get into these hands on things and think he likes it more than he is letting on.
Here is Abby, and I have to tell you I was amazed at how many different leaves there were just in our yard! I love California!!
We now take a quick chicken break:
Last Wednesday, the sun was out! We are in the middle of California winter.  Cold and rainy, but every few days we get this glorious shiny blue skies and air that is so clear that I have to be outside in it, especially knowing that ol' storm is headed our way the next few days!!
Our landlord is a Walnut farmer.  He brings us this huge paper sack of cracked walnuts every year.  The first year we cracked them that day, so happy for walnuts.  The second year (last year) we were in home school and life was just hectic, so they sat in the bag in a corner of our dining room.  Then these tiny white worms began to show up on my ceiling.  I was infested! The walnuts!! Oh boy, oh boy, I scrubbed and scrubbed, and even wound up painting the walls!  My landlord laughed and laughed (and paid for the paint!). So when the bag arrived this year, out on the porch they went:
The were attacked by our chickens who devoured a bit, and rained on, but they were NOT coming in my house!!  Since it was sunny, the girls and I sat down for an afternoon of giggles and shelling of walnuts!  It was a blast:
We also have bible studies on Wednesday and it was our Lisa's birthday.  She is so much like family and the kids really love her. The each made cards for her and gave her before the study started:
As you know, Eric is in Guitar lessons,and is doing pretty good.  He had done song service for us in the past, but had a hard time with the songs and all.  He is really has improved so much.  Poor Tony, he had to clap!
Eric did great! I was just the proud momma! After the study, we had a cake for Lisa, and Anna was so excited to carry the burning cake!
She had to come down two steps, and you can see her little face, a bit apprehensive, but it went perfect and without a hitch!
We sang off key Happy Birthday in a traditional way, and Lisa blew all 46 candles out! I was surprized that Anna didn't get sunburn from the candles. Yeah, she is on the verge of the late 40's! bha ha ha ha 

okay okay, it wasn't 46 candles, it was just 20, but it was a bonfire I tell you!

It's Sunday afternoon, and my honey and Lisa's son (Leland) are picking up our free piano! Eric's guitar teacher also does piano, and found this one for us!! It is a prop for a play and the last showing is today, so it has to be picked up at 4:15!  We have not even seen it! I am so excited!! I don't even know if it has a bench or what color it is.  The teacher said it is nice and a spinet!?? I will take pics and share tomorrow!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Rain is here for a bit!

I am not a fan of rain.  I enjoy the sunshine, blue skies and warmth that surrounds me.  Rain and gray are a bit depressing.  I can usually go a few days, and after that I have to fight the pressure of the gloom that rainy days produce.  I have yellow walls in my dining room and where my computer area resides.  We are expecting about 10 days of the wet stuff, and just finished about 3 days of it, with a short respite of one blue glorious day!  During the last rain, I fought back with art!  Since we had gray to inspire us, we did rainy days inside, but with laughter from my kids.
We are using a nifty curriculum for Art that was passed down to us from another homeschooling family.
Atelier, ( Each module includes 1 DVD  with detailed lesson plans.) We watch the lesson, it is a nice lady and a class of 8 children. She talks about the work we are going to do, asking questions of how and what you would do in the situation. What do you see when kind of questions.  Then explains how to do the particular lesson.  There are fun little extras to do.  Splattering paint! Oh what fun!  She then shows the kids actually doing their own pages.  This helps my kids to see how they do it!
We got a whole bunch of tempera paints, and this was the day to use them!
I loved how each one of my children had a different view of what they were going to do!  They really had fun with the paints!
The intensity that Eric had was a joy to see.  It so helps when the "Older Brother" does it too!  He helps me with keeping a good attitude! YEAH on him!!

This is AnnaBo, doing the nifty splatter technique, it was hard for me to watch her do it, as she is left handed and it looked awkward.  But she did it splendidly!
Next we cut out silhouettes to attach to our rainy paper!  This was the tough one, we couldn't use a pencil, just the paper and scissors.  This was frustrating, but we laughed and muddled through it.
This was a tough one for Anna, again the left handed and scissors, but she did so good! 
Then we proved that patience and art are not our forte'! Waiting for paper to dry, bha!  We just got out the Elmer's and attached the cut outs.
Again, each had different perspective and some stood while finishing their page.

We were rather proud of ourselves, finishing and pressing in to do even the parts that were hard.
Tada, the final product hanging in the hall on our ART strings!