Thursday, February 28, 2008

We're a team!

Everybody is pitching in even more than usual to help our lives flow smoothly these days. Even Katherine helps out!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Quick update

Our e-mail and phone have been out for the last several days, and we've missed keeping in touch! Life is fairly boring around here right now since we're all "hunkered down" with school for everybody, but here's a taste of the bedtime routine at our house:

Friday, February 22, 2008

Update on Benjamin's Eyes

Another great report from Benjamin's appointment yesterday:
He only has to wear his eyepatch for 1 1/2 hours (instead of 4 hours) each day, and he saw better than 20/20 in his weak eye for the first time. We go back in June for one more appointment and will receive a list of doctors to check out in Australia. Thank you for you prayers - it is a joy to tell Dr. Gross that Benjamin has people all over the world praying for him!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Learning Swahili

I didn't realize that I couldn't turn the video like I can a picture once I put it on the computer, so you'll have to lean your head to the left to watch a bit of my language learning session this morning. If you hear Alice (my language consultant) say "Mama Benjamin", she is speaking to me. Each of us in the group has children, and we are called "Mama __________ (the oldest child's name). Since two of us have a Sarah as our oldest, I volunteered to be known by my Benjamin.

Thanks for praying for us to find child care while Aaron and I are both in school. So far, we have four days a week covered! So many sweet people are putting aside their own schedules to help us out, and we are very grateful.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

We're still here!

As you might have guessed, with the increased homework load the blogging has taken a lower priority. But before I go listen to my daily fifteen minutes of Swahili, I thought I'd fill you in on how we're spending our week.

Tomorrow (February 20) is the anniversary of the toothpick patent in 1872. Try this website for some toothpick fun!

Thursday is the United Nations "International Mother Language Day" to help raise awareness among all peoples of the distinct and enduring value of their languages. I think we must celebrate this every day. In addition, Benjamin has an eye appointment, and Olivia and Katherine will get some shots while we're in Dallas.

Friday is George Washington's birthday, and we'll celebrate by eating some slow cooker cherry cobbler with some friends after supper and reading D'Aulaire's "George Washington".

Saturday is National Banana Bread Day and George Frederick Handel's birthday, so maybe we'll bake banana bread while we listen to the Messiah.

I'm hoping to get some video of my Language Consultant teaching us in the morning so I can give you a small taste of what I do during the 8 o'clock hour.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Tying up loose ends...

As promised, here's a picture of Sarah's award winning car from the AWANA Grand Prix. Her "Tootsie Roll" car won 2nd place for design! No Choate's car was very fast this year, but we had a great time at church eating chili and cheering for each other.

When I walked into the living room this morning, I found Benjamin reading his Bible to Katherine for "Jesus Time". He is really maturing into a thoughtful young man. For Valentine's Day, he used his AWANA bucks to buy me some "diamond" earrings.
Please keep praying for us to find regular child care while Aaron and I are in class. We have people to come on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, but we are still searching for somebody to come on Thursdays and Fridays. The kids are doing great with both Aaron and me in school, and I know that your prayers are keeping our family running smoothly!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!"
I John 3:1
We love our new silicone heart shaped baking cups! Our family started the day with mixed berry muffins...

...moved on to heart shaped PBJ for lunch, and concluded with heart shaped sugar cookies for tea time. I'm beginning to think that we really like to celebrate with food. Thanks to the grandparents who sent special things to help make our day so much fun!
Katherine is at such a fun age - we all delight in her!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lincoln Logs

Here's our version of the "Lincoln Log". We opted not to ice our log because we were afraid the cake would tear, so we just put our Nutella on the side. It was yummy!

Lincoln's Birthday

Amidst all of the homework being finished around here, we wanted to share a fun recipe for Lincoln's birthday. We hope to enjoy this delight after supper tonight.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Three Cornered Hat

We made three-cornered hats to wear while we study the Colonial Period. Notice that Sarah decorated hers to fit her personality.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Happy Chinese New Year!

We made "chinese lanterns" to celebrate the Chinese New Year. It is the Year of the Rat, although a friend told us that a more correct translation is the Year of the Mouse!

Who does Katherine look like?

I know my grammer stinks in the title, but I ran across a baby picture of Benjamin and was shocked at how much he and Katherine looked alike. What do you think?

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Sleeping Baby

Nothing is sweeter than a sleeping baby! (or an awake baby, too) We lay in the dark this morning just before the alarm went off listening to Katherine "talk", and I was so thankful that we got to hear those precious sounds once again. Children are such a gift!

This "onesie" was made by a friend from seminary who embroiders and sells them - check out her website!

Morning at the Dallas Symphony

We enjoyed a fabulous morning at the Dallas Symphony listening to a children's concert.

Our family had a box all to ourselves as we heard about the three ingredients of music: melody, harmony, and rhythm. We had agreat view of the cello section, too!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Happy Shrove Tuesday/Pancake Day!

Aaron decided to include his Scripture Use class in our celebration of Shrove Tuesday (aka Pancake Day), so he made extra pancakes and bacon this morning to serve to his class during his final presentation. He finishes this class tomorrow, and then we both start back to school next Monday.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Playtime with Daddy

Katherine and Daddy laughing together yesterday afternoon. Aaron is her best play buddy!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Zoom, zoom!

Yesterday, the kids began making their cars for the AWANA Grand Prix.

We don't get all fancy for the race, but we do have fun!

The race is next Sunday, February 10th, and we'll let you know how our cars placed.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Happy National Bubble Gum Day!

Thanks to Aunt Melissa, we had a blast celebrating National Bubble Gum Day!
We used a "Make Your Own Chewing Gum Kit" to make fruit and peppermint flavored chewing gum this morning.

The kit supports the rainforest by using chicle instead of a synthetic base for chewing gum. The chicle reminded me of the feed Grandpa uses for his goats and cows. Olivia is trying to figure out the chicle in the picture above.

You melt the chicle in the microwave, and it turns into ooze. Can't wait to put it in your mouth can you? It smells like lanolin!

Then, the kids took turn mixing, and mixing, and mixing...

and mixing some more to make sure the powdered sugar and flavoring were all absorbed.

The best part - tasting your handiwork!