About Me

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Indiana, United States
Updates on our homeschooling family with ten children, a handful of chickens, a couple horses, three bunnies, and six cats. Visit our website at PeacefulHome.net


Grocery Spending

Food Only

Oct 2010 - $231.39

Nov 2010 - $998.22

Dec 2010 - $340.29

Jan 2011 - $855.15

Feb 2011 - $203.17

Mar 2011 - $916.52

Monthly Average $590.79

Weekly Average $137.85
Our family's website, PeacefulHome.net, is in the process of changing hosting companies and is currently inactive. Our plan is to move this blog over once construction is complete. Please stay tuned for updates!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Pre-Teen Uglies

What’s for Dinner: Chinese Pork and Rice

At the Sewing Machine: Those blackout curtains

On the Scrapbook Table: A mess to be cleared away this weekend

One of my dearest friends and I were talking today and I've been mulling the discussion over ever since: How much of our children's behavior should we accept as normal or a phase, and when do we need to step in and halt the ugly in its tracks. Specifically, that lovely pre-teen female eye rolling, glaring looks, and other forms of rebellion with which we are familiar and may have adopted a time or two in our own youth (or so I've heard). Tune into any sitcom, and the children usually treat their parents as nothing more than a doormat. The putdowns fly without consequences for their behavior. The world has accepted this as normal, and raising children is something to be endured, not enjoyed. This is exactly what Satan wants us to think.

If we are raising children for the glory of God, we need to help them obey the fifth commandment to honor their mother and father. How do we do this when everything inside us is screaming "Wipe that look off your face, or I'll do it for you!?" Proper training for obedience early on certainly gets everyone going in the right direction. However, more than anything, having the child's heart will prevent so much of the angst. Spending time with them in meaningful fellowship will do so much more than a lecture on expected behavior. The child that is driving you the most crazy is the one that needs your attention the most. Don't send them away to think about what they've done, said, etc. Pull them right into your life and what you are doing at the moment.

Emelie and I enjoy cooking together. Preparing meals for 32 plates a day (as she likes to point out) gives us ample opportunity to be in the kitchen together. It is also a wonderful opportunity to practice serving others and putting the needs of others ahead of our own (even when she does have a new horse magazine to look at). When our children serve others, it forces the focus off themselves and the fit they might be throwing. Not to mention the sense of self-worth they comes from being truly needed to keep the family running smoothly.

When the behavior starts heading downhill around here, although it's so tempting to start blaming the children, I need to try to remember to examine my own behavior. Have I spent meaningful time with them lately? Have I been available to listen to their stories? Have I been praising them or only seeing their shortcomings?

As I'm standing near the edge of that unknown precipice of the teen years, I pray that my children's hearts are knit to Bryan's and mine. Only with God's help can we train up our children in the way they should go, so when they grow up they will not depart from it.


This beautiful girl doesn't know the meaning of the word disrespect!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Breakfast's Ready!

What's for Dinner: Lasagna, Bread, Green Beans

At the Sewing Machine: Blackout Curtains for the Boy's Room

On the Scrapbook Table: Big Mess!

Those that know me would say that I have a schedule for just about everything. It's the only way to function around this funny farm without going loony myself. Breakfast doesn't escape the scheduling ritual. It makes it easier to shop for a month of breakfasts at one time and almost eliminates fussing over the selection because the children know what to expect.

With the cost of cold cereal reaching obnoxious levels (and questionable nutrition contained therein), we have cereal only a couple days a week since my kiddos think nothing about putting away a box or more at one sitting. Most of our breakfast meals are prepared hot in the morning. Since I'm not known for my morning glory attitude, that's another benefit to already having an answer when Jacob pries my eyes open at 6:30 asking "What's for breakfast, Mom?" Here's our breakfast menu for a week, with a recipe to follow:

Sunday: Cereal & Granola
Monday: Hot Cereal (Coco Wheats, Malto-Meal or Oatmeal)
Tuesday: Bagels or English Muffins
Wednesday: Muffins (quick and easy recipe below)
Thursday: Cereal & Granola
Friday: Toast
Saturday: Pancakes and Sausage

How do you turn a $.50 box of Jiffy Muffin Mix (yield 6 muffins) into 24 muffins for six hungry kids?

Quick and Easy Muffins
2 C Complete Pancake Mix (the just add water kind)
1 Box of Jiffy Mix, any flavor (try apples & cinnamon)
1/4 C Oil
3/4 C Sugar
2 C Water
2 Eggs (optional, but we always have eggs around here!)

Preheat oven to 400. Mix until well blended. I bake mine in a greased 10 X 15 Pamper Chef Bar Pan and then cut it into squares. Much easer to clean up than a muffin pan. Bake for 20 minutes.

If you don't have a need for this quantity, try freezing the leftovers for a quick breakfast in the future!


Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Planning Nights

Brigitta feels that if you have to have a breathing treatment, do it in style!

What’s for Dinner: Broccoli Cheese Soup in Bread Bowls

At the Sewing Machine: Caleb’s Construction Jammies

On the Scrapbook Table: Preparing for Saturday’s Crop

Time is going by WAY too fast! Since Heidi blessed us with her presence, Bryan and I have found it to be more and more difficult to discuss what needs discussing: money, schedules, etc. Miss Heidi doesn’t like to settle down until around 11:30, and then it’s a mad dash for me to get some things done before I go to bed. Things were falling through the cracks.

This weekend, God inspired a plan that was perfect for my type-A nature. I ran it by Bryan (almost as compulsive as I), and he enthusiastically agreed. The jist is to have one topic of discussion every evening. Ours breaks down like this:

Monday – Home Improvement Projects

Tuesday – Finances

Wednesday – Weekend Planning

Thursday – Businesses

Friday – Chill Out

Saturday – Date Night

Sunday – School/work Planning

I posted a chart on the cupboard with columns for the different days. That way we can jot things down on the appropriate day as we think of them through the week.

Last night, as I nursed the baby, we discussed things we wanted to get done around the house – both big and small. We even came up with the most workable barn design to date. In all, a very productive talk!


Thursday, April 5, 2007

A Busy Thursday

What’s for Dinner: BBQ Meatball Sandwiches and Fries

At the Sewing Machine: Emelie’s Horse Culottes

On the Scrapbook Table: A Big Mess!

Today was our out on the town day. Emelie and Heidi had their well check-ups. Both are healthy and doing well. Baby is up to 12.4 lbs, Emelie is up to 58.5 inches. Only two inches away from my statuesque height.

I had Dr. Kelly check Brigitta, since I suspected an ear infection. She had that and more! A double ear infection, plus wheezing indicating a asthmatic episode. That’s a new one for us. So the child that didn’t even have an appointment came home with a nebulizer and two prescriptions. She needs breathing treatments three times a day for the next week or so. We’re praying she feels better since we’re celebrating her second birthday on Saturday!

Emelie and I went shopping for Itta’s presents and more. What a blessing to have an older child that is a joy to spend time with. Unfortunately, fitting her foot for Easter shoes is not always fun, but we finally found a pair that fits and doesn’t have a four-inch heel.

Friday night is our small group Bible study. We’re watching a video of a one-act play portraying John on the Isle of Patmos. Should be interesting!

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

A House Full of Friends!

What’s for Dinner: Turkey Ranch Wraps and Potato Soup

At the Sewing Machine: Emelie’s Horse Culottes

On the Scrapbook Table: A Big Mess!

Make new friends but keep the old.

One is silver and the other gold.

I learned that song thirty (gasp!) years ago as a Daisy Bluebird. Today I was reminded of its truth as my friend Cate and her five children visited from Pennsylvania. We hadn’t communicated much in the last two years since we both moved out of the old neighborhood. The busy-ness of life had just gotten in the way. When we first met we had five children between us--now we have twelve! Twice we were pregnant at the same time. We shared a lot of laughter and tears through the various struggles of parenting and just, well, life. Not to mention a whole lot of scrapbooking fun!

In other news: Bryan just installed a storm door at our front door to let in fresh air and lots more light. Wonderful! Looking forward to a relatively calm school day tomorrow and hopefully some much needed home organization.