Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I Got To Go On A Little Trip!

I have really been missing my friend Rohnda lately, so I asked Jeromy if there was any way I could fly to Minnesota to go visit her. He coincidentally needed to use a few vacation days before the beginning of the month so that he wouldn't lose them, which meant the timing worked out really well. He agreed to keep the older kids, so Ellie and I flew to Minnesota last Wednesday and were able to spend 6 days with my special friend. Rohnda had a large part in my becoming a Christian (we were neighbors in Hawaii) so we have a special bond. It was nice to get away for a little while, talk way too much, and watch a few too many "chick flicks." Her husband went on a trip Friday, so I was able to keep her company and help her keep her mind off of not going for a visit to Hawaii with him. It was hard, but she made it! I didn't bring my camera, but Rohnda took a few pictures to prove I did indeed come to visit. Ellie's birthday was on Sunday (a birthday post will follow) so we bought her some gluten free cookies to celebrate with and sang to her throughout the day. I am glad to be home and missed my family desperately. I had never been away from Bennett and Rachel for that long, so it was hard. I had a wonderful visit, but it is always nice to get back home. Thank you Rohnda for a wonderful week!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Computers.... You love them and you hate them.

At a recent computer expo (COMDEX), Bill Gates reportedly compared the computer industry with the auto industry and stated,

'If GM had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving $25.00 cars that got 1,000 miles to the gallon.'

In response to Bill's comments, General Motors issued a press release stating:

If GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would all be driving cars with the following characteristics:

1. For no reason whatsoever, your car would crash........
Twice a day.

2. Every time they repainted the lines in the road, you would have to buy a new car.

3. Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason. You would have to pull to the side of the road, close all of the windows, shut off the car, restart it, and reopen the windows before you could continue. For some reason you would simply accept this.

4. Occasionally, executing a maneuver such as a left turn would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would have to reinstall the engine.

5. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, was reliable, five times as fast and twice as easy to drive - but would run on only five percent of the roads.

6. The oil, water temperature, and alternator warning lights would all be replaced by a single 'This Car Has Performed An Illegal Operation' warning light.

7. The airbag system would ask 'Are you sure?' before deploying.

8. Occasionally, for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the door handle, turned the key and grabbed hold of the radio antenna.

9. Every time a new car was introduced car buyers would have to learn how to drive all over again because none o f the controls would operate in the same manner as the old car.

10. You'd have to press the 'Start' button to turn the engine off.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bulllet Points

Since it is almost 11 am and I need to take a shower still and shouldn't be blogging I will quickly update all 5 of you on Markwort news:

-I had my first midwife appointment yesterday and got to hear the little 13 week heartbeat. What a precious sound that is!

-I have been extremely faintish lately which I also was with Bennett's pregnancy. I am also a bit underweight which seems hilarious to me because I have actually seen myself in the mirror. The dizziness might just mean I need to eat more and more often. Yuck, I hardly want to eat at all, so that is a tall order. It all seems so Victorian to me and I wish I had a fainting couch, although I would do without the corset.

-I have read 5 books in the last two weeks. I haven't read a book prior to that in the last year. I am not a very balanced person.

-Ellie weighs 16 pounds. The last time I weighed her, she weighed 9 1/2 pounds at 4 weeks. She is following the same pattern that Rachel did. She is really low on the weight curve at a year old and then she will spike big time in the next year. I doubt she will get as gigantic as Rachel is (previously known as the world's largest two year old.)

-I am taking Ellie with me on a trip to Minnesota to visit my dear friend next week. Jeromy is going to take the older two camping by himself. Yeah, I totally think he is crazy, but he is much more of an optimist than I am :)

-I am working on a reading program with Bennett called the Victory Drill Book (I used it when I was in Kindergarten. Yes, it's still around!) It is a "how many words can you read correctly in one minute" test that you pass when you reach 30 words for a Kindergartener. It is broken down into short vowel sounds to start with and he has already passed short a and e. I also have been working on phonics rules with him loosely while we are reading books that have them in it. I have started using first grade curriculum with Bennett as he was bored with the Kindergarten stuff. He is more challenged and alot happier now.

-Rachel has learned: letters in her name, counting to 20, recognizing most numbers 1-10, saying her alphabet correctly- still working on l-m-n-o-p, counting 10 objects, knows all the basic colors and shapes, draws a circle and a line. Boy she is a squirmy one. Homeschooling her will be more challenging than Bennett.

That's about it. I better go do what I should be doing now! (I still need to go make hamburger buns too. Yes, make. Gluten-Free eating is labor intensive, and I haven't felt up to baking lately, so we are out of everything!) Have a great Tuesday!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Need a Professional Organizer?

Bennett informed me this afternoon that his official job in our house is "organizer." He went on to tell me how he likes so much to organize things and likes things to all be put away and neat. This was after this morning when he went through every room in the house, including the bathroom, and picked up and put away anything on the floors and counters, organized the shoes in the closets, made the beds etc. He didn't just throw things on shelves and under beds either. He put them away neatly and organized the other things already there as well. I didn't realize he was doing this until I looked around and thought that maybe I should vacuum because the floors looked pretty clear. They were ALL clear! Way to get your mom in gear, Bennett.

When I was pregnant with Bennett, I had thought I wanted to have a girl first. In a large family, I imagined how nice it would be to have a daughter who could be my little helper with the cooking and household chores. I didn't realize that the Lord was answering my prayers in a different form. He gave me Bennett who is 50 times more helpful than Rachel on her best day. From the age of two, Bennett has helped with the laundry, dusted, put his own toys away, cleaned floors. No we aren't running a little sweatshop, he has always wanted to help. He is still that way and looks forward to the day that he can start cooking for me too. He loves that he is big enough now to carry in groceries and unload the bags. It is quite remarkable, and I am very thankful for this special little boy. (Disclaimer: Yes, he gets the "everything in its place" from me, but he has taken it to another level. The messy shoes in my closet weren't bothering me enough to do anything about them. They drove him crazy every time he came into my room. I feel bad for his future wife, he will run a tight ship!)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Lady Named Irena Sendler

There recently was the death of a 98-year-old lady named Irena Sendler.
During WWII, Irena, got permission to work in the Warsaw Ghetto, as a Plumbing/Sewer specialist.

She had an ulterior motive...

She KNEW what the Nazi's plans were for the Jews, (being German).

Irena smuggled infants out in the bottom of her tool box she carried, and she also carried in the back of her truck a Burlap sack, (for larger kids).

She also had a dog in the back that she trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto.

The soldiers, of course, wanted nothing to do with the dog, and the barking covered the kids/infants noises.

During her time and course of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 kids/infants.

She was caught, and the Nazi's broke both her legs and arms and beat her severely.

Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she smuggled out and kept them in a glass jar, buried under a tree in her back yard.

After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived it, and reunited the family.

Most, of course, had been gassed.

Those kids she helped were placed into foster family homes or adopted.

Last year Irena was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize....


Al Gore won for doing a slide show on Global Warming.

(author unknown)

Monday, September 8, 2008

The County Fair 2008

We made our yearly pilgrimage to the county fair once again this year. We never miss it, and as usual, fun was had by all. Jeromy took a half day on Friday and rode the bus to the fair with the older two kids after they ate lunch, so that they could get in hours of rides to make those wrist bands worth their exorbitant price. I stayed home, napped with Ellie, and brought dinner, so that we didn't have to eat fair food. (It is SO expensive and never very good!) We looked at the animals, the kids rode more rides, and then we went and watched the rodeo for an hour or so until the cotton candy ran out and the kids wanted MORE RIDES!

I love seeing the huge smiles on the faces of my happy kids!

Rachel's favorite ride was the HUGE slide that I was shocked she could climb all the stairs up to. She looked so tiny, and she got so brave that she was pushing herself down the slide with her hands so she could go even faster. What a daredevil!

The mini roller coaster.

Jeromy and the kids in front of a police assault vehicle. Jeromy thought it was so funny that it is an armored vehicle made to withstand anything, but you couldn't touch it.

Rachel coming down her slide.

Serious Bennett laughing like that just cracks me up! I love seeing him be silly.

While walking through the cow barn, we stopped to talk to the owner of the longhorns. He was sitting inside the pen with his cattle which seemed pretty brave. He told us that they were completely docile, and he pointed out to one of them that he said he rides all the time. He asked Bennett if he wanted to ride one and of course he did. The kid has no healthy sense of life preservation. The cow looks pretty innocent in this picture, but he kept trying to see what was on his back.

The cow actually started poking Bennett with his horns, and Bennett started looking a little nervous. I think the owner noticed too because he pulled Bennett off at that point. As if a lesson needed to be learned about not riding animals that can gore you, here ya go!

This is the only ride that Bennett was afraid of two years ago when they went on the rides. He cried the whole time because he was so scared of the spinning. This year was quite different. He wanted to ride with the fastest spinners possible. This group of innocent looking girls was just the ticket to crazy amounts of spinning. He was loving it.

Ellie on her way to a meltdown past her bedtime.

Ellie having the meltdown!

The last ride of the night. The lines got so long, so we were glad that the kids got in all their rides earlier in the day. I love the headlock that Bennett has Rachel in.

Me enjoying the blessing of my children.