Saturday, December 13, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
The author gives challenges, and then you submit your pictures and they will be posted with your solutions. Check it out! This week we built paper towers out of an old catalog. You can see my kids' pictures with their towers on Think!
Here are some extra pictures of the aftermath of our tower building. If you want to see the tower pics, go to the link above.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Now I am driving a nice mini-van that is costing me about $25 a day. Fun.
Monday, October 13, 2008
I went to the library Saturday and browsed the shelves. I had 20 minutes before they closed and it was very hard to pick out the 5 books that I did. A Beverly Lewis novel, a Thoene novel, a dairy-free cookbook, a history book about Alexander the Great, and What Your 4th Grader Needs to Know.
I'd like to start reading 1 book a week. I finished the Lewis novel, The Preacher's Daughter. It was okay. The story was good, but the writing was not that great. We need more modern Jane Austens. I flipped through the 4th grader book and was disappointed. It was less of a checklist and more of a lesson plan. Not what I was expecting. The cookbook looked good. I might find a gem or two in it to add to my repertoire.
I'd love some suggestions for good books. Any genre. Although I won't read fiction if it doesn't reflect Christian morality.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
1. Throw or give away everything you are not using. Be brutal. Sentimentality is a huge hinderance to a well-organized home. Can't part with Little Sally's paper turkey at Thanksgiving? Give it to Grandma and let her deal with it. Unless you're like me, then just trash it.
2. Keep things in logical, not traditional, places. For example, at one time I kept my children's clothes about 10 feet away from the washer and dryer. I was blessed with a house that allowed me to bath them, cloth them, and put their clothes in the laundry hamper right next to the washer/dryer all in a space of a few feet. It meant that I kept my kids clothes in the spare bedroom/office rather than in their rooms upstairs. So what? Think out of the box.
3. Books - If you have kids and books, you know it can be a pain to teach them to put the books back on the shelf correctly. I put my kids books in plastic dishpans so they can flip through them. It's easier for the kids to put the books away and it's easier for them to see their choices.
4. Have a place for everything. If something doesn't have a place, find it a place or get rid of it.
That's the extent of my organizational expertise. Hope it helps you. If you have any tips of your own that may benefit my poorly run home, feel free to educate me.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
EXPENSES > INCOME
Sigh. I don't want to steal from the house fund. I really don't. At least we haven't had to run the A/C in two days. It's been so nice outside. Praise God for blessing us with cool weather.
I should quit complaining. It could be much, much worse. We could have NO money at all. It's a luxury to be able to choose between going without something and using money in savings to get it. I just need to quit doing the bills. If I don't look at the balance sheets, I can't get bummed, right?
Monday, September 15, 2008
Friday, September 5, 2008
Emma displaying the seed pod, now empty after Joanna's purge.
Lacy's mugging for the camera waiting for some other girls her age to arrive. One did eventually.
Jordan sharing grapes with Emmalise. His food detection radar was on high alert.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Joanna's comment: "Mommy, I don't think I want to go to Keeper's again because everybody was talking all at once instead of one at a time and it was too loud!"
Lacy's comment: "Mom, I can't believe that the one person I met was born in the same month of the same year and her favorite animal is horses, just like me!"
Mommy's comment: "When I figure out all the exits for these silly freeways, I'll be much happier, and possibly even on time."
Friday, August 29, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Sunday, we went to church at the closest Baptist church to us. Justin and I picked a Sunday School class to go to that seemed to fit us according their descriptions. In this Sunday School class, I met three other homeschoolers. They had children that matched the ages/genders of my children. Two of them offered me their phone numbers without my asking. I talked to both of them on the phone this week, and they told me they are trying to start a homeschool group around Hutto. They have about 10 moms interested. They met tonight, and I was able to join them. Get this.....out of the 7 moms there, only 1 didn't use Sonlight (that's the name of the curriculum I use for those of you who aren't in the know). Three are using Core 2 (that's the level) just like me. They are all Christians, and they were extremely nice and friendly.
Anyway, it seemed almost too good to be true to find a small group of homeschoolers that were still new enough to each other that I wasn't this totally new person trying to fit into a group of old friends. Only 1 person there was known to everyone before the meeting. I am excited about the possibilities. The beautiful mommy running it this year is super-organized and wants to plan seasonal parties, 1 field trip per month, a weekly park day and 1 mom's meeting per month. She lives a block over from me.
I am just over-awed with the way God is taking of every minute detail of my life. Ordering things so I won't be lonely and my children will find friends with common interests. The only thing lacking is trees. There are no trees here. It's worse than Corpus. The Bible says the Lord can move mountains, so I think He could probably put some mature trees up in my backyard. I think I will start praying for that. It would definitely be a miracle and a witness to His divine power.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Our agent called today and said that these people want to close as soon as possible. They are not even doing any inspections! I cannot tell you how thrilled I am. If we can close before Sept. 16, I won't even have to make another mortgage payment. God is so good to us! I can't believe the house is going to sell so fast. Other houses in the area are taking 6 months to sell.
Keep us in your prayers! Hopefully everything goes very smoothly.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Lacy loved the green slide because it was fast. Poor Jordan was about an inch too short to ride. Mom and Dad tried the slides too. Sorry, no pictures. ;)
Joanna loved tubing in the lazy river.
Ethan liked the river as well.
Jordan spent almost the whole time in the lazy river. He didn't ride in tubes, he just bounced along.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Last week we ended up sleeping in CC Thursday night and traveling up to Austin Friday morning. We went to Justin's uniform fitting, then the property management company to sign our lease and collect our keys. We got to our new home at about 4:30pm Friday. Everything went so smoothly that I found myself wondering why I had worried myself sick all week. We ate some dinner (we had skipped lunch), unloaded a few things, took showers, and raced to the AFD family night orientation. It wasn't very family friendly. Justin found out a little bit of what to expect the following Monday, and the family members had a chance to ask questions. The kids were restless and bored. We did get to tour the facility. We saw the weight room, the tower, the obstacle course, and the fire trucks. They are doing EMT training for the first 6 weeks and won't get to the firefighter training until October.
The academy itself is hard work. He's got four days under his belt and I heard him say it was officially harder than boot camp. He's not the worst in the class nor the best. Physically, it's very demanding. The schoolwork will start in earnest next week. I am thankful that Justin has already done the EMT training, so this will hopefully just be a refresher for him. He's going to do great. If he's the class valedictorian, he gets his pick of station.
I went to a homeschool meeting on Monday night. The people were nice and they had alot of things going on. They have a Keepers club for Lacy, but no cub scouts for Jordan. I will have to keep looking for a pack for him.
The kids and I went to Hutto Baptist Church on Wednesday morning to ask about their services and look around. I think we will go on Sunday and check it out. It reminds me of Annaville about 5 years ago. They don't have AWANAS though, so I will have to keep looking for a club. I wish I had a little more time to unpack and get my bearing before having to venture out, but everything starts the last week of August. I am very thankful we homeschool and I don't have to mess with school registration and supplies and all that.
Well, that's all I am going to say right now. If you think of something else I need to post, leave me a comment and I'll get to it. I hope to get some pictures up soon.
One last thing - A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who helped us move!!!!
Brett and Kara Bennett - Kara watched Ethan while Brett did some majorly heavy lifting
Fawn Colburn - she watched all the rest of our kids
Matthew Gibson - Also did some majorly heavy lifting
Jim Curran - I think he packed half of my house for me!
my MOM - She packed the other half as well as helped UNpack it when we got here. She made us a nice meal before she left. She also got us boxes and tape and drove Justin's car up for us.
Justin's MOM - She took care of dinner for us the week before we moved while we were busy packing. She watched our kids, let us sleep at her house the night we moved, came up to the Family night orientation and ended up watching the kids outside so I could listen. She helped us unpack. She unpacked most of my kitchen, and did an excellent job of putting stuff away. I've hardly moved anything.
Stephanie and Anthony - They drove here Saturday and helped us unload and unpack everything.
Kathy Daly - the real estate agent who put up with Ethan's screams as we looked for a house and later our panicky calls as we waited for approval
I hope I am not forgetting anyone! We could not have moved so soon if it wasn't for everyone's help! Thank you so much! Y'all are the best!
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
A couple came and looked at our house last night. This morning they are trying to obtain financing and make us an offer. This is exciting! Also, someone else is coming tomorrow morning at 10:00am to look.
Justin is almost finished with our garage apartment. The walls are painted, the bathroom sink, shower and toilet are all installed, and the kitchen cabinet is in place. He needs to finish installing the baseboards and put in the kitchen sink. Then I guess we'll clean the floor and hang the curtains. It should look pretty cute. We still need to paint one of the upstairs bedrooms. It's halfway done.
Yesterday we had our upstairs shower leaking through our kitchen ceiling. The plumbers repaired the leak yesterday, but we still need to fix the drywall where they had to cut through.
I've been packing and the kids have been watching WAY too much tv in the meantime. I can't wait for this to all be over.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Justin, Ethan, and I went this weekend to Austin to look at rental houses. We've applied for one ($70 non-refundable app fee-OUCH!) in Hutto, Tx which is about 15 minutes east of Round Rock. It's a nice area. The house was built in '02 and has no trees. Justin is happy because it's newer and has a big bathtub. I like the location and the price, but I am not too thrilled about the lack of trees. Hopefully we'll only have to rent for a year or two.
This week is going to be busy. Justin has to be in Austin on Wed. for a uniform fitting at 11am. On Friday night the Fire Dept is having a social event for the cadets and their families. This is optional, but we'd all like to go. Then on Saturday, Justin must attend orientation from 8-1pm. And we won't know if we've been approved for the house in Hutto until Tues. or Wed. We're hoping to move Friday. It's sure going to be a crazy week!
If we don't get the house (and we might not if they don't want to rent to a family with 5 kids), I don't know what will happen. Justin will have to go to Austin alone, possibly staying with members of the AFD who have offered to rent out rooms to the cadets.
On the bright side, we had a couple come and look at our house today. The woman came first and brought her husband back later in the afternoon. They loved the house. They said they would be in contact with an agent this week. Please keep us in your prayers. Selling this house quickly would be a huge blessing. It would give us financial peace. Justin salary will be dramatically lower over the next few months and paying for our house in Corpus on top of our bills in Austin is going to be rough. Praise God that aside from the house, Justin is debt-free. Our financial situation 3 years ago wouldn't have allowed him to take this job in Austin.
Okay, that's all for now. I will try to keep everyone updated daily this week, as I know things will be progressing quickly. Love to everyone! Keep us in your prayers!
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Then, he and the kids baked me my very own birthday cake. They frosted it together while keeping me out of the kitchen. They did an awesome job!
They are all singing Happy Birthday to me. Didn't they do a great job on the cake?
Monday, May 26, 2008
The cousins! Here's a picture of all the Slusher cousins. We got everyone but Ethan! Aren't they cute? I don't know how Grammy's couch will hold them all when they are teenagers!
Jordan's smiling at his Cub Scout ceremony, and for good reason! He's just crossed over from a Tiger Cub to a Wolf Cub! Way to go! He was so excited to get his yellow neckerchief and wolf slide as well as new book and hat. We even got him some new socks! He's all set for a new year of Cub Scouts!
Saturday, May 17, 2008
I'll try to post a picture of them. A professional photographer is supposed to be there to take pictures, kind of like at a prom. I do hope Justin tries to have fun. Or at least fakes it. ;)
Now today we were invited to THREE parties! Yow! I don't think we are attending any of them though. The Terilli's are visiting from Houston and Lacy and Daddy have a Father-Daughter Banquet to attend this evening. I hope Justin is up to going. He's been so tired from working non-stop. (no days off in about 2 weeks!)
Sunday, Lacy has her second piano recital. I think she's going to do beautifully. Then AWANA awards night is in the evening, but again, I don't know if we can do it.
Something about being at home and having my family and house in "order" is soothing and peaceful for me. I can't stand being on-the-go constantly! Now, some of you reading this might think, "what's the big deal?" Well, this is me. I know my limitations! I'm already longing for Monday when we can stay at home all day. I suppose this makes me a homebody. I can live with that.
Friday, May 16, 2008
a phone call to my mother
me: Hi mom! How's your day going? Hey, I was just wondering when Jim (my step-dad) and Blair (my step-sister) are supposed to get here today?
mom: What? You thought they were coming today? They are coming next Friday!
So my kids are all excited to see Aunt Blair, and their aging mother has the day wrong. DOH!