Monday, July 21, 2014

Greenge and Grorange

That's Eva's "smile" face, her immediate response to your request for her to smile for a picture.
She has some grorange all over her face.  She had some non-dairy veggie lasagna and loved it.  

This is Eva's FIRST LOOSE TOOTH!  It's that front tooth that looks like it's disagreeing with the others on what direction to go.  

And this is our smiley girl.  Still has some grorange going on.

What is grorange, you ask?  And on that note, what is greenge?  Those are orange and green, respectively, from Eva's uncertain voice.   She sometimes gets orange and green confused, but no worries.  She can get by with grorange and greenge.  That way she's never wrong.

Can you sympathize?  Have you ever been uncertain of song lyrics and done some deliberate slurring yourself?  Personally, that never happens to me all the time.  

Thursday, July 10, 2014

the news lately

1. we went to moonshine beach again

  •     it's a lake beach that's about two hours away.  score. 
  •     Eva actually had fun in the water this time
  •     We took pictures but they're on our Real Camera and we can't find the cable for our Real Camera since we moved.
  •     I broke my no-personal-shopping rule and bought an "I'm a mom" rash guard-my new water uniform.  Where have these been all my life???
  •     We met up with Ruby's family (Kira Ruby, a sweet little miss from Eva's old stomping grounds) while we were in Branson and had a lovely lunch and afternoon together!  They live in Wyoming so it was an awesome, unexpected opportunity to be able to meet up
  •     Eva may have liked the water better but she has a new thing where she does NOT like to be away from home.  

2. we have started adoption paperwork again

  • the country is Hague so we are using an agency.  Hallelujah!  Agency adoptions are the way to go, seriously.  Adoptions are costly.  Using an agency brings your costs up a little bit, but it's way worth it!  They take care of things and that's nice. 
  • we are pursuing a specific child
  • this child has a lot in common with Eva
  • we're not at the stage where we can share a lot publicly but are looking forward to sharing more news when the time comes
  • there are no guarantees at this point in the process and we're trusting our Father completely
3. we've found land
  • we found a spot by the White River and we're hoping to buy some land and start building
  • we're excitel-ed!
  • Daniel, the planner, wants to get this done before we come home with our second child.
  • i love that guy
4. Botox Rescheduled
  • mid August
  • everything looks like it's going smoothly with our insurance
  • praise. God. 
5. vacation???  help!
  • I really want to go on a small vacation, just the three of us, before we become a family of four.
  • like, friday-monday small
  • we have been talking about visiting Northern California/SW Oregon for two years now. Two years.  I think it's time to make it happen.
  • I need to see the Redwoods and Eva needs to see the beach and Daniel needs a real vacation
  • we can get super cheap tickets through Allegiant Air-woot woot!
  • we are saving for an adoption and don't want to break the bank but we also want to be realistic about travel costs
  • have searched vrbo but would love to hear from anyone who knows the area???
In other news, our daughter is cute

have a lovely weekend!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Happy 5th Birthday Evalena Claire Claire!

Today is Eva's fifth birthday.

Oh my goodness.  That girl.

We got up this morning and started celebrating.
opened a gift this morning (outfit. kitty cat ballet flats.  For real.)
had eggs for breakfast (her current fav)
went to therapy (never a bad thing)
had her first latte all to herself (mama Carmen's.  she squealed)
rode in the cart for a few groceries (LOVES riding in the cart)
brought lunch to her daddy (loves her daddy:)
watched Pride and Prejudice (a treat as we have cut way back on movies)
had dinner of her choice (apples, almond butter, coconut milk...and she squealed again)
had cake for the first time (i shouldn't insult cake by calling it cake, but whatever.  it's like cake but no sugar...but, Eva liked it and she squealed. again)
opened the rest of her presents (art stuff and Nathalie Lete tea set and a red baby grand)
fell asleep early;)


It was a good birthday.

We are so thankful to our Father who gives good gifts.  Eva is such a gift.  Such a joy.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Fine Art 101

Eva's birthday is at the end of the month.  We tend to celebrate birthmonths around here rather than just the day.

Eva opened an early birthmonth present from her Granna and Pop-pop.  Art supplies.  The girl is smitten.  Except she would not smile for any pictures.

These were practice runs.  I drew some to show Eva how, and she copied.  In case you're worried, I drew the creepy smiley face.  It's hard to draw with your mouth.  Just sayin'.  

It was beautiful.  Eva would say, "I want _____ (insert color) please."  I would pop the marker in her mouth.  She would adjust the marker and draw.  She would then turn to me so I could take the marker from her, and we would repeat the process.  It was really wonderful.  I felt like a surgeon's assistant.

I mentioned Eva knows all her colors, right?  She zoomed through Pantone Colors.  I really like the book.  You can teach basic colors and also let kids learn that there are different hues associated with the basic colors.  

This one is Eva's independent and final product....but really I think she would have just kept going.  This girl loves to draw.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Reviewing Give Them Grace

As Eva and I go through our school year, I will be evaluating the books we're using.  As in giving my personal opinion.  Not facts, mind you.  Ideas.  Thoughts.

#1. Give Them Grace

I found this book from Ann Voskamp's blog.  I chose this as a reference book because, honestly, it's a lot easier to show the Law than it is to show grace.  Mom, occupational therapist, primary caregiver, secretary, and now teacher are lots of titles that require instruction and with instruction often comes Law.  The Law can turn punitive pretty quickly.  I need grace.  I need to show Eva grace.

I want a balance between instruction that gives laws and grace that gives love and freedom.

Enter, Give Them Grace:

     "Yes, give them God's law. 
Teach it to them and tell them that God commands obedience.  
But before you are done, 
give them grace 
and explain again the perfect story of Christ's perfect keeping of it for them."

Love it.

The authors, a mother and daughter, are bold writers who are passionate about encouraging Christian parents to discipline and love their children using Christ's grace model.  I love that they took the time to write a book about thought-shifting rather than 10 easy steps...I mean really, how vulnerable and humbling would it be to challenge the quid pro quo Christian parenting system?  Kudos to Elyse Fitapatrick and Jessica Thompson's bravery and dedication to the gospel.

These are gems I found while reading.  We may all know these, but it's good to be reminded.
  • children's salvation is not in their parents' control (praise God, right???)
  • parents' and children's value and estimation with God are not dependent upon performance but grace
  • the Bible isn't a book of morals but rather a story of our Savior (think scarlet thread)
  • parents cannot perfectly follow the Law anymore than our children can 
  • ALWAYS approach challenges (negative behaviors) in light of God's grace to us all
  • as you both discipline and show grace to your children, confess to them that you too struggle with _____ sin.  Insert pride, rebelliousness, whatever.  Taking pride out of parenting helps to decrease the desire to "win" arguments with children.  
  • be vigilant in promoting grace both your rule-followers and your rebels.  "Children who make you proud and children who embarrass you must both be taught the deeper truth of the welcoming father: mercy trumps law." 
These are points I need to remind myself of daily.

Because I posted this book as a Reference for our curriculum this year, I do want to note that while I respect the authors and their perspective, I don't agree with them totally.  Naturally.  I don't think I agree with anyone totally on anything.  I'm listing points I am not on board with, as I'm advocating the book.

1. The authors take a pretty strong stance against Christian sects or Christian-like sects who promote morality and good works.  I don't think it's showing love to poke people in the eye like that.  I don't agree with the sects' stance either, as I believe that we receive salvation through grace and faith, but I think you can promote grace without needing a comparison for criticism.

2. The authors differentiate between "regenerate" and "unregenerate" children and it's reflected in the language they use to correct.  I don't agree with talking to children like that because they have YET to receive salvation.  Daniel and I pray with Eva and talk about OUR God whom we love and who loves us, rather than structuring spiritual conversations like:

Daddy+Momma with Jesus...........................................Unregenerate Eva without

((The authors do make a point to remind unregenerates of their hope that they may share in salvation))  We're just taking the speak life route. We're trusting God that Eva will receive salvation. 

3. The message reflects some reformed beliefs.  I am not of the reformed persuasion, so I have a different perspective.  Daniel and I had a good laugh about this.  Apparently Grace is code for reformed, and informed people know it.  And I should have known it when I got the book:)

Overall, I really like the paradigm shift to implement grace when guiding and parenting children.  The few things I don't advocate from their book aren't essential, in my opinion, just some points that I don't agree with. With any book, you glean.  And this book is worth the read, in my opinion.  Not in my fact, but in my opinion.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

School's in for Summer

Eva and I are going to start pre-school "homeschool" this summer.  Today.  This afternoon, actually.

Eva's ready to homeschool.  Can't you tell?  No pants.

We're taking it easy because she was sick on Saturday and again yesterday.  In fact, I think she's had more baths than lessons..We're done with viruses around here.

I'm really enjoying the books we got for Eva's pre-k curriculum.  I think Eva is too.  I'll share my favs as we go.  Here's to school without pants.

Really quickly though, check out the little drawer.  Drawing a circle.

The circle of fame.
Vertical and horizontal lines-child's play for this girl.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

We moved to the country

This is the view from the master balcony
Actually, we're outside city limits in a small town up here in NWA.  Not exactly in the country but the sound of crickets will still lull you to sleep.

Kinda reminds me of Kitty, Daisy, & Lewis'  Going up the Country

God provided us with a great rental.  We have a mont-to-month lease and our landlords are cool with our dogs.  This was the only rental we went out to see and we made the deposit that day.  God is such a good provider.

Eva is pumped about our New House and thus far hasn't seemed too stressed about the move.  I might have over prepared her the last two months with constant dialogue like, "we're selling this old house" "someone else is going to buy this house and we're going to move to a different one," "our stuff will all be at the new house, especially your rocker," "we will all be at the new house together," etc.

Life is good.  We closed on our Old House today and we're ready to move on to whatever is next. In the meantime, we're getting back on schedule with Botox and will be taking Eva to see an orthodontist for the first time too.  Yay for more scheduling with Type B Momma.