Sunday, November 24, 2013

Sweet Girl

In the women's bathroom at our church, there is a small collection of "take if you can use" items. Just random things. This evening, Anna brought me a small bottle of eye makeup remover and said, "Mama, I got this from the bathroom at church. The sign said to take it if you can use it and I thought you would like it. At first I thought you might be upset with me for taking it, but the sign said to take it if you can use it. First I thought of Grandma, but I wasn't sure if she uses eye makeup. And I really thought you would like it." 
I'm realizing that Anna is going through growing pains. I don't know what else to attribute the changes in her to, other than just growing up a little. I'm also realizing, with much heartbreak, that I have focused far too much on her negative behavior and not nearly enough on her positive behavior. She craves my approval and words of praise. She soaks them up like a sun scorched sponge. Is she kind and loving most of the time these days? Not usually. Does she do at least one thing every day for which I can just lavish her with praise? Yes-sometimes I just have to look extra hard! She wrote on her wall, with pen, in her room. And when I read it I started crying. Not because she wrote on her wall with pen, but because of the words she wrote. It was something like "She loves horses and wants to live in the country. She has 5 friends. She is sweet and kind and loving and soft hearted. She is Anna Rose." I cried because I have spent too much time harping on her not being kind and loving to her brothers, on being hard-hearted about her behavior and not seeming to care about her actions and their consequences. She IS sweet and kind and loving and soft hearted! I just need to remember to dig for those qualities...every, single day. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Pictures. Again.

I can't keep up with the blog! :( We've been busy with school, gymnastics, swimming lessons, co-op, being sick.....just life. So here are some pictures to catch up a little bit.

 Oh my. Dreams have come true! I still can't believe I have a baby grand piano in my house!!! I'm calling it my birthday present to myself. And it was free!!! The nursing home in Lyons just wanted to get rid of it because they never used it. It's not in perfect shape, but once we got it tuned it sounds great! Anna has been playing non-stop since we got it. She's perfected "Taco Fiesta" and is working her way through her piano books. I've so enjoyed listening to her play and playing again myself.

 We had some good friends stay with us over SC's Homecoming weekend. They have a 5 yr old, a 3 yr old, and twin 7 mo olds! It was such a fun weekend!! Isaac thought he needed to test out one of the pack-n-plays. He told me he was a baby cow. Oooookay.

 Jacob and baby Isaac

 Anna & baby Estella

 Waiting for the parade to start!

 I may or may not have even more baby fever now! ;)

 The big girls slept in Anna's room. Esther and Emma both ended up on the floor one night!

 Jacob was SO proud of himself for earning his jewel in AWANA! He's doing great in Sparks this year.

 We've been sitting with Scott and Amy at church...which means Anna and I get to fight over holding Ella! :)

 We also had my class's 10th year reunion Homecoming weekend. We had a huge turnout! It was a lot of fun catching up with everyone.

 Isaac always wants to sit in the back with Anna and Jacob. So, I switched things up and they're all 3 in the very back now. So far, so good. Anna is practicing buckling and unbuckling Isaac for me.

 Since our trip to Hawaii is less than 3 weeks away (squeal!!!!), the kids have been taking swimming lessons at the college. Isaac hasn't had any lessons, but he has no fear of the water. Bad combination! But he also doesn't like when he's made to go under water. After the first lesson, he told me over and over, "I no yike go under wawer!" The second lesson, he screamed the entire time he was in the water. Hopefully the next lesson will go a little more smoothly......

Since there is no lifeguard on duty, the teacher only lets Anna and Jacob in the pool at first, then it's Isaac's turn after they're done. Let's just say keeping Isaac occupied for 20 minutes, in his swimming suit, with an Olympic-sized pool to taunt him, is no easy task! So we walk around the pool and he has to stop at every ladder and lean down to touch the water.

I'll try to get some more pictures posted and get all the way caught up before Thanksgiving...

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Pumpkin Patch

We discovered a really neat pumpkin patch close to town. There are all kinds of things to do and everything but the pumpkins are covered with the $3/person admission. The kids had a lot of fun. 

He wasn't happy to be taken away from roping the cow! ;)