Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Top 10 highlights from 2013!!! (Part 2)

Yesterday I wrote about five highlights from this past year...today I will conclude my list! 

You can read yesterday's post:  HERE!

6.  Vacation to Lake of the Ozarks!

I love traveling with our family.  Every year we try to go somewhere on vacation and this year we visited the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.  Many people think this is around the Branson area...it is not.  A completely different area a few hours Northeast of Branson.  There was so much to do there!
You can read about it:  HERE!

7.  Homeschool Friends Meet-up group!

A few years ago I started a little meet-up group for homeschoolers in the Lincoln, NE area.  We made quiet a few friends from this group.  Some of the things we did this past year....definitely made my top list!

8.  Road Trip of a Lifetime part 2!

The kids and I RV'ed with my parents to Niagara Falls and New Hampshire this past fall!  If you click on September 2013 on the right hand column of my blog...you can read about our entire adventure!  Such fun times!  Such good memories!

9.  Market to Market!

Loved this!  78 miles from Omaha to Lincoln.  8 runners. 1 Van.  Go Team Sparkle! 
Can't wait until next year! 
You can read about it:  HERE!

10.  Seans new job...our new home!

I have written a million posts about our new life here in Grand Island.  We love our new home.  Sean loves his new job.  We have made quiet a few new friends here and feel connected. 

Here's to another year of creating memories!  Thanks for reading my blog...mom...and I am sure a few others:)

Monday, December 30, 2013

Top 10 highlights from this past year!! (part 1)

I blog because I don't scrapbook...and quiet frankly this is a lot cheaper and easier to do!  I like looking back at things that I do with the kids and family...and hopefully in the future my kids will do the same.

 Looking back at 2013 I realized we had a really busy, yet good year!  Today and tomorrow I will be sharing the top 10 highlights from our little family from this past year!  I will also include links from where I wrote about these events! These are in order in which they happened.

Hope you had a great 2013 and Happy New Year!!

1.  Jocelyn's baptism!

Last January Jocelyn got baptized!  It was such a special, special thing!  The Bible says that once you believe in him (the Lord Jesus Christ) that he died on the cross for our sins and rose again...by GRACE we have been saved through FAITH...we will be saved!  Jocelyn believes this...and gets it...so according to the Bible once she believes this she should be saved!  Even though I am not going in order of my top 10 highlights...this is pretty much the biggest highlight of the year!

You can read about it:  HERE and HERE!

2.  Skiing with Sean!
 This past winter Sean and I took up snow skiing!  We still have a lot of learning to do this year, but we started off by taking lessons at a hill in Iowa.  We went on a little weekend trip to the Vail, Colorado area and had such a good time....without kids! 

You can read about it:  HERE!

3.  My first half marathon!

I completed my first half marathon in May!  I am hoping to do the same one this next spring-- the Lincoln 1/2 marathon.  My knee is struggling again...so please pray that it will miraculously heal itself!

You can read about it:  HERE!

4.  This can jump in just about anywhere-- but homeschooling!

I just absolutely love being able to teach my kids what I want and be able to do it at our own pace!  I have a million posts about what we do here...but that is for sure on my highlights list!
5.  Family time!

We love to spend time with our families.  Most of Sean's family lives down in Southern Missouri.  It is important to us to have our kids (and ourselves) visit as often as we can and hopefully in the future when they grow up the bond will be strong.  Friends tend to come and go...but family will be around for ever.

Stay tuned for tomorrows post of the rest of my highlights from this past year!!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Doing unto others

Matthew 7:12: "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."

Luke 6:31: "Do to others as you would have them do to you."

Since my kiddos were little, my goal was to teach them to do unto others...AND not expect anything in return. I want them to see that life doesn't always revolve around just them. It is o.k. to do something for someone else...give them something, make something for them etc...and know nothing will be returned to them. Sometimes not even a simple thank you. It is sometimes a struggle just to get through our own day, but for me "doing unto others" is an important thing to teach them while they are young. An important thing to model. It has been a struggle trying to answer their tough questions of why we buy presents or send surprise gift packages to friends when nothing is given back. Why do we volunteer or help with certain projects? It is because the Bible says...do unto to others. Do. Not recieve unto others. Do.

Jocelyn loves making meals and goodies!

We had many little lessons just this past year of doing for others such as all four kiddos having some type of formal or informal birthday party with friends. I would make lunch/dinner and provide cake...but request that no presents be given. It was a hard thing for them to grasp at first because for little ones that is the thrill of turning a new age, but I wanted them to focus on the "do"-ing. We were providing entertainment, food, and fun. You know...they all survived and after the event no one complained about not receiving a gift in the physical form. Don't worry they were not completely deprived...they still received a few gifts from grandparents and aunts/uncles.

No presents here...but still a lot of fun with friends and laughter!

Now that my girls are getting older, I am slowly seeing signs of...YES!! They are getting it. They are now reminding me..."hey are we going to do such and such, for so and so this year." Love it when things start to sink in!

No my kids are not prefect in any way shape or form...but seeing that helpful heart of wanting to do, makes me smile!:)


Monday, December 16, 2013

Gingerbread House Party!

Today was a very exciting day for the kiddos. Actually I am not sure who was more excited...me or the kids? That is definitely a toss up! A gal from our co-op owns a cafe about 75 miles south of us in Nelson, Nebraska. She was gracious enough to host our group for a gingerbread house party. She baked all weekend, made a ton of frosting, and we all brought different candies for decorations. All of the kids got to make a "real" gingerbread house or graham cracker house. It was so much fun seeing how creative all of the kids were!

The younger kids displaying their houses!
Jocelyn building her house!
Me supervising my boys!
I helped him construct the house, but he decorated it on his own. I was quiet impressed!
He was really proud of his creation!
I didn't get a close up of hers...but it was really cool. She kept adding to it after this!

I am really grateful that we joined this co-op and have surrounded ourselves with a great group of Believers!