Tuesday, April 29, 2008

I've Been Blogging Too Long Today!

You Are Cilantro

The bad news is that there are some people who can't stand you.

The good news is that most people love you more than anything else in the world.

You are distinct, unusual, fresh, and very controversial. And you wouldn't have it any other way.

This is great!

I get the same questions in public and I only have 4. Aren't people rude? Anyway, this is very cute. It is about 5 minutes but it is worth watching.

Monday, April 28, 2008


We had a relatively calm day. I cleaned out Maci Clare's closet, which was a major undertaking. This child has more clothes and shoes than a normal teenager. But I did get the ones that are too little tagged for the next consignment sale.
It rained all morning and the water is standing around the edges of the pool. When Jim got home, he tried to dig a small trench to let some of the water drain off. When I looked out the window this is what I saw.

Jack was running through the mud and water.

He was running around and around the pool, laughing wildly.

And he stepped up on the concrete and left muddy footprints all over the deck. His daddy was not very happy but it came off.

When they were getting ready to come in, I took a picture. He was nasty and cold.
But he had a lot of fun!
Update: I took some of the pictures of Jack off because Southerner got me thinking. I don't want my child posted on perverted websites.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I'm Tired!

Leaving behind another busy weekend and looking forward to another busy week and I need to rest. I know my children and my husband are exhausted. This weekend started out with a small barbecue supper with close friends. It was great to get to see all our friends we only see once or twice a year. They were an hour away so the drive itself with 4 children was tiring.
On Saturday. baseball, baseball, baseball! We decided to take Lucy to the baseball game too. I feel sorry for her now that she has to stay tied up. Poor dog! But she loved being out with us.

Lucy stayed in the outfield with her grandma.

Brotherly love

Run, Gabe, Run!

Keep your eye on the ball!

I did manage to get up and go to a few yard sales. There were just a few in our area. I just can't justify driving (and using all my expensive gas) to get a cheap treasure. As much as I love to go to yard sales.

I bought these frames for $3. The smaller one is brand new. It still has the cardboard on the back and corners. It was only $1.

I only found 3 yards sales in our town but on the way to the baseball game, I convinced my hubby to stop at one and I got this.

This basket is huge and it has the cloth liner. I paid $3 for it.

I bought this shelf for $2. Two of the pegs are missing but I want to paint it to look "antique" and use some of the old doorknobs from our old house as the pegs.
So I did Okay but I would like to have more time to hit a lot of yard sales. A friend that we were with on Friday night said there were 85 sales advertised in her town. Boy, am I jealous but with gas prices like they are, I'm still not sure it is worth it.

Anyway, Jim did play one softball game and then we did get to go out. We went to Outback with another couple. We had a great time and I ate way too much.
On Sunday, we went to the late service and then we had a shower for my sister in law at our church. It was really fun and it was great to get to see all of my extended family. We just don't get to see each other enough. One of my blogging buddies, Windy, got to come to the shower. (She is also my cousin's wife.) The shower was great!

There are 4 generations in this picture. I love this!

This was a great end to our busy weekend! I'm heading out to try to find a frame for this picture. I don't want to wait until the next yard sale.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

My Latest Project

Shannon at Rocks in my Dryer posted pictures of a few wall hangings she found at Pottery Barn Kids. I went to the website and they were 29.99 and up. I thought I could totally do it and I did. Here is the final result.

This one is for a baby shower that we are going to tomorrow night. I thought it turned out really cute.

This one is for Zane's room. We are decorating in a hunting theme. This picture is not the greatest but I think you can still see what it looks like.
These were very easy to make and a lot cheaper than $30. I think I'll make more for the other kids. I'll try to post pictures of those, too.

Stay at Home vs. Working Mom Part Two: Opinions

This is not really what my second installment was supposed to be but after a comment that was made last night, my decision was made. My husband and I are trying to swing a short night out Saturday night. This means that he will miss one of the two softball games he plays on Saturday night. One of the guys on the team came to me and said, "I can't believe you are making him miss a softball game to take you out to eat." (This was said by a teenager but still). First of all, I'm not making him. We both feel that when we get a chance ( a chance being a free Saturday night with no kid stuff and my mom volunteering to babysit for free), we should take it. If that means he misses a softball game so be it. What is more important? Our marriage or a softball game? But that is material for another post.
Anyway, I politely told him I needed a break and he went on to say, "A Break?! Why do you need a break? You don't even work?" Boy did that hit me the wrong way?
Do people really think that because I am a SAHM that I don't work. I probably work more than the average man because as a SAHM my job never ends. Even as I sit here, taking a small break from the everyday things, I am constantly thinking about the things that need to be done to keep my household running. It really bothers me that people have the opinion that just because I stay at home and run my household, I'm not working.
Listed below are just a few of the things that I consider my daily job:

1. Manager: I plan meals and grocery shop for my family each week. I take care of all paperwork that comes in from school or church or other outside activities. (This seems to be taking up more and more of my time lately.)
2. Chef: I cook the meals that I plan every night.
3. Chauffeur: I drive children to school, practices, church activities, and any other events that require my driving skills.
4. Dry Cleaner: I do all the laundry in our household.
5. Maid: I clean the house which means washing dishes, cleaning bathrooms, vacuuming, dusting, etc.
6. Nurse: Taking care of sick children and any boo-boos that occur (which has been quite often with 3 boys)
7. Disciplinarian: I am usually the one who takes care of the discipline that is dolled out in this house.
Not only do I do these things, but long after my family has gone to bed, you can find me folding laundry, packing lunches, cleaning the kitchen, and numerous other things

So if that doesn't warrant a break, I'm not sure what does? When I worked, I did get a break. Most people who work do. Whether you are a teacher or work in an office, you have an hour (give or take) to yourself. That time as a teacher is usually spent doing school stuff but not always. Most SAHMs don't get that. Usually if I get time away, I am trying to grocery shop or take care of things for my family. I don't get a break form my kids or my job. So if my husband and I want to miss a softball game to get to spend some time away, then we should be allowed to do that with no negative comments from others.

What do you think? Do you think that there are lots of people with the opinion that if you stay at home, you don't have a job? Have you had people say things to you about "not working" or "you don't have a job"? I'm curious to hear your opinion so give me a shout and let me know what you think.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Little Bragging

Today, Gabe was awarded a limo ride to a restaurant. He was one of 16 students at his school who go to do Limos For Learning. The kids had to read 20 minutes everyday and keep a journal of what they read. Everyday a parent has to sign the journal to prove that the student read. OF course, his slacker mom, almost missed them leaving in the limo because I didn't know what time the limo was going to leave. But I drove up just in time to snap a few pictures.

Here's the limo: Lincoln Navigator

Notice the champagne glasses in the background.

Gabe and his best friend were both chosen. That made it extra special.

This was the sign on the side of the limo.

There they go!

What a great incentive for reading!

Monday, April 21, 2008


I thought I needed a restful day but I didn't get one. Maci Clare had her 1 year check up. She only weighs 17 lbs. 3 oz. She is in the 2nd percentile for weight. Can you believe how little she is? But she is such a tough little tomboy. I have the pictures to prove it. I took these this morning.

In her brother's football shirt.
with her first knee boo-boo!
By the way, she lost the photo contest. She lost to a dog! Can you believe that? There is another one coming up so I'm waiting to find out what the theme is and I my enter another picture.

I thought after the doctor's appointment, I would run to Walmart and try to score a few deals. Jack screamed off and on until he fell asleep. But I did get some good deals. Here's what I got:

2 packs of Huggies Clean Team wipes
2 Glade Scented Oil Warmers
6 Tubes of Colgate Total Advance Clean
2 Suave Shampoos
1 Suave Conditioner
1 Suave Hairspray
1 Nexcare Bandages
1 Cattleman's BBQ Sauce
2 Bush's Grillin' Beans

Total after Coupons = $6.57
But after I got home I looked at my receipt and realized she didn't even send one of my $3 coupons through so it should have been $3.57.

What do you do if they don't send coupons through? How do you prove it? My mom said I should take my receipt back and tell them at the customer service desk but how do you prove you had the coupon? Is it even worth fighting for? What do you think? I need some insight from other thrifty shoppers.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

What A Weekend!

The last few days have been crazy. Last Wednesday, our dog, Lucy, disappeared. On Thursday, when she still wasn't home, I knew someone had her. I told the boys when I picked them up from school and the mourning began. Zane spent most of the afternoon in the woods yelling "Lucy". Gabe spent most of the afternoon crying.
I made Zane come inside and we made flyers to put out but the printer would not print because it was low on ink. So we decided to wait until Friday afternoon and then we would go put up signs everywhere.
Friday came and we stopped at the barn next to our house and asked the lady who runs it and she told us someone down the road had Lucy. They had been at our house but no one was home. So when Jim came home we all went to get her. Happiness has returned.

Friday afternoon, I met Zane's garden club at The Children's Garden downtown. While I was in the car waiting a woman came over to talk to me. I took my bottom retainer out and it's gone. I looked everywhere. The only thing I can figure out is it was knocked from the car when I scooted out. Anyway, our trip to the garden was great. It is hidden under a bridge in the middle of downtown and I didn't even realize it was there. We will definitely go back this summer and take a picnic.

While we waited Jack ran around and played.

Ms. Jones read the kids "Peter Cottontail" while sitting in this part of the garden.
They had a statue of Peter and a fence. They had parsley and lettuce planted and
stepping stones that had the other veggies in the story on them.

I couldn't believe Maci Clare sat this still. She listened to the whole story.
all the kids fight over her.

On the way home, I stopped at a Yard Sale. I got several things but this was by far my kids' favorite purchase.

Dora the Explorer Tea Set

Guess what we did Friday afternoon?

We had a tea party!

Friday night, we went to a fabulous wedding. Our good friends, Jamie and Alison were married. Instead of "The Bridal March", Alison walked down the aisle to "There She Goes". There was several worship songs by my favorite, Hillsongs and the bride wore tennis shoes with her wedding gown (even though you couldn't see them.) It was a great wedding. And my dad agreed to babysit for free for us. Thank you, Daddy!

Saturday morning, we awoke to rain. It always rains on Saturday. A day of baseball was the plan. When we got to the game it was pouring and we didn't stay. Some of the parents stayed and the kids played anyway but we really didn't think that was the smartest idea for us. So we left and went to eat Japanese food. Delicious. So much better than standing in the rain.

We went up town (Pickens) to the Azalea festival where my dad's church had a booth. By then, the sun had come out. We stayed for a little while and then went home. Jim had a softball game at 5pm. I didn't go. I stayed home with the little kids and tried to get organized for a busy Sunday.
I opened the door and let Jack and Maci Clare play on the deck in the water table. I heard Jack yelling and this is what I saw:

Maci Clare had climbed into the water table. Oh well!

On Sunday we went to church. I had to work in the children's department so I missed the service. I really miss being in there but I feel like I need to serve too.
Then, to eat at KFC and to the nursing home to see my grandma and we didn't get home until 4:30.
Now I need another weekend to recover. Is everyone this busy?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Go Vote Now for Maci Clare;

It's time to vote for my Spring picture of Maci Clare. Everyone please go vote. Voting closes at 8 pm central time on April 21. Here is the link to vote:


and here is the picture for you to view one more time.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Is blogging really deadly?

Did anyone see the article in The Week Magazine, Blogging: A Deadly Profession. What's your opinion on this?

What's Wrong With This Picture?

My Shopping Trip

Last night when my hubby came home from work, I left the kids and went to try to score some bargains. I think I came out great (and, by the way, so does hubby).
Here's what I got at Food Lion (minus Jack).

Here's the breakdown.
2 2.5lb. bags of frozen Chicken Breasts
100 Glad Sandwich Bags
200 Ziploc Sandwich Bags
Beechnut Biter Biscuits
3 boxes of Hamburger Helper
Food Lion Bag Shredded Cheese
4 bags of Yellow Corn Bread Mix
2 small containers Daisy Sour Cream
5 Jars of Gerber Baby Food
Gerber Baby Spoons (pack of 2)
Food Lion Baby Wipes (Travel size)
Cheese Danish from the Bakery
Italian Bread from the Bakery
12 Pack Scott Bath Tissue
2 Cantaloupes

Total Before MVP card and coupons = $72.83
Total After MVP card and coupons = $25.99

My savings were $46.84

Next I went to Target but I didn't take a picture but here is the breakdown:
1st Transaction: 5 12 packs of Pepsi products
Total after coupons = $13 + a $5 gift card.
2nd Transaction: 4 Eggo (10 count) boxes
3 bags of Lay's Cracker Crisps
2 Colgate Total 6 oz Toothpaste
3 camoflauge buckets (for Zanes's room)
3 pink buckets (for my craft room)
1 Basil Grow Kit
1 Strawberry Grow Kit
1 Lavender Grow Kit
1 box of 3 different styles of grosgrain ribbon
A cute shirt
3 boxes OCelo Soap Pads
3 packages of OCelo Sponges

Total before coupons and gift card = $41.65
Total after coupons and gift card = $$16.86

Monday, April 14, 2008

Spring Picture Contest

Photo Contest at writefromkaren.com

Karen is having a photo contest with a Spring Theme. Here is my entry. Ya'll go vote for Maci Clare's picture now.

Vote here:

Sunday, April 13, 2008

God Speaks!

I think God is telling me something. I've had a bad attitude about some things at church. I'm not sure why except maybe the devil was at work because I left myself open to him. We started missing a lot of church in January because of sick kids. It seemed every time we went to church at least one kid would get sick and then it would go through the whole family. Our church is huge and I know with that many kids in and out of the classrooms and nurseries, it is hard to keep kids well. Anyway, we kinda just got out of the habit of going and I was still making excuses not to go. We still went to home group and participated some activities at my dad's church (which is a lot closer to home). So I told myself that my kids were still getting what they need. But I knew in the back of my mind, that I wasn't doing the right thing for me or my family. I felt very guilty every Sunday. ButI just didn't feel ready to go back to church.
But God begin working about 3 weeks ago and this is what he did:

1. March 30: While reading my usual blogs a couple of weeks ago, I came across this. Why the Church? Bottom line, Jesus wants us to grow his kingdom.. to build His church. So why am I sleeping late and missing what Jesus has for me and my family?

2. April 5: My middle son, (who by the way, has got "it" spiritually) said, "Why are we not going to church?" No explanation needed, right?

3. April 5: While looking for some inspiration for a short devotion to present to our home group, I found this devotion by Lysa TerKeurst. The verses that stood out to me in this were Colossians 3: 15-17. I did not have the "peace of Christ". My attitude was rotten. How could the Word "dwell" in me? I wasn't even going to church. This devotion said that we have to choose to have the peace of Christ. And choose to be thankful. And I realized I had to choose to get up and get moving on Sunday morning.

4. April 6: So Sunday morning we were at church and that's when we heard the "Unstoppable" sermon.

5. April 7: On Monday afternoon, I received a magazine in the mail from Joyce Meyer Ministries. The whole magazine was about having a good attitude.

6. April 13: This morning was the second "Unstoppable" sermon. Our pastor asked us "Are you a convert or are you a disciple?" Convert being a person who is a Christian but doesn't do anything but "church watch". Disciple being a "do-er".

So what now? I am working really hard to change my attitude. I don't want my children to grow up thinking I have a bad attitude about church. No church is perfect just like no person is perfect. That is why Jesus died, to take care of our imperfections. I need to take responsibility for my attitude and choose to have the "peace of Christ rule my heart". I want my children to know that it is a privilege to get to go to church and worship. And I don't want to raise a family of "church watchers".

What God wants from me now remains to be seen. But I'm sure He's not finished and I will let you know what is to come.

One of my favorite songs seems really appropriate here so I am leaving you with this video from Hillsong.

Spring Break is Over! What am I still doing awake?

Our Spring Break has ended. It was really hard to get everyone to bed at their normal 8:30 bedtime, but they were all there by 9:30. (We'll have to do better tomorrow night.) This was a great week of fun with my kids. I hope that this is just a preview of the summer fun we will have. We ended our Spring Break with a our normal Sunday morning church routine and a nice visit with 2 new babies.

Thursday night, our friends and home group leaders, Brad and Melonee, got a call from DSS. They now have a 7 day old baby boy named Cohen. He is sooooo precious and they brought him for his first trip to church. Congratulations, Brad and Melonee.

Then we went to Badotti's (that's what my kids call grandma) house for a visit with Baby Tess. My kids really love her. And Uncle Jim got to hold her today, too. The visit was way too short but Sunday afternoon is always like that to me. Everyone has to be back at church (except us, we don't have Sunday night church).

A great end to a great break. Now back to real life.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

What do we do on a Friday night?

Gabe had a friend over last night. So, of course, little bro, Zane was feeling a little left out. We piled in my bed and watched The Game Plan. Cute movie, but I was a little restless and bored. So, this is what I did...

This was the first, when Zane didn't realize what I was doing.

Then, when he realized, he was hamming it up.
And it wouldn't have been as much fun if we hadn't tried to wake up Jack.

And we almost succeeded in waking him, so we quit. It was fun while it lasted.

CVS Savings

I decided this week was a good week to let you in on how much money I save shopping at CVS. So, I went at the beginning of the week because we needed diapers and pull-ups. I got 2 packs of pull-ups and one pack of diapers for $6.78 out of pocket. (If I hadn't left my $6.50 ECB at home, I would've gotten it for 28 cents out of pocket.) But $2.22 per pack is not too shabby.

Then my second trip to CVS was this afternoon. Before coupons my total was $42 and some odd change. After coupons and ECBs, $1.18! And this is what I came home with.

1 Lever 2000 8 pack
3 Excedrin 24 count
2 Adidas Deoderant
2 Sunsilk Shampoos
2 Sunsilk Conditioners
2 Hershey's Candy Bar (I just had to throw these in for fillers because it wouldn't let me use one of my coupons without it.)

And I got back $8 in ECBS.
Now, if Pampers would just go on sale. I could stock up again. I love CVS.

To see what everyone else got this week, head over to Money Saving Mom.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Friday FUN: Not So Fun

Our last day of Spring Break has turned out to be a bust. My plan was to go to Table Rock and go hiking and picnicing (is that a word?) and maybe get in a little fishing. Last night as I was cleaning my nasty bathroom, I bent over and out went my back. So I am sitting in front of the computer on a heating pad downing 3-4 Advil at a time. I am having trouble moving around and especially lifting babies. So hubby went to work this morning and came home to meet a LG repairmen (this is another story for another time). He decided to stay at home the rest of the afternoon and get some things done and help me. This is what he's been doing since lunch.

I just woke him up to get Maci Clare out of my lap. She has decided she wants to be attached to my boob all the time. Just when I thought the nursing was dwindling. She is using me as a pacifier and with my back messed up, I just can't wrestle her around to make her stop. Oh well, I guess one day, I will cherish these days.
Earlier, the kids went on the deck and played in the water table that I bought at a thrift store for $4. Great way to spend $4.

It really was not quite as warm as it looks in this picture. But, remember, I'm trying to be a "yes mom".
Gabe has a friend coming to spend the night tonight. We have a baseball game tomorrow morning (barring no rain) and Jim has a softball game tomorrow afternoon. We were hoping for a quick date night tomorrow after the game so I need to start looking for a babysitter now.
Oh well, maybe the end of my Friday will be better. Does anyone have any suggestions for making the back pain go away? I'll take anything at this point. My Stay at Home vs. Working Mom post will continue in the next couple of days. I'm looking forward to hearing some other opinions on this matter.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

A Day at Home and Saying Yes

This is what I need to be taking care of.

But it is Spring Break! We are hanging out in our pajamas today. We did try to organize our board games. Let me rephrase that. I did. This is what the boys did.

Played "Hungry, Hungry Hippos"
I read a post over at Katherine's blog, Raising Five. She was talking about being a mom who says "yes". This really hit home with me. I do say "no" a lot. This week I've tried to put saying "yes" into practice more often. So today... I said "Yes" to...

this for Breakfast (even for Maci Clare)

and this for Lunch (I did give sandwiches, too).

Now my children are peacefully watching "No More Baths" (a $1 thrift store find with a great message) and eating more apples (this time without the marshmallow cream).
So I am learning how good it feels to be able to say "yes" at least some of the time.
I'll let you know how the rest of the week goes.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Cute Story

Ya'll need to hop over to Tiddly Winks and read the cute story she wrote. It is funny especially if you are a Republican.

Jim is...

You Are a Colon

You are very orderly and fact driven.

You aren't concerned much with theories or dreams... only what's true or untrue.

You are brilliant and incredibly learned. Anything you know is well researched.

You like to make lists and sort through things step by step. You aren't subject to whim or emotions.

Your friends see you as a constant source of knowledge and advice.

(But they are a little sick of you being right all of the time!)

You excel in: Leadership positions

You get along best with: The Semi-Colon

I am... What are you?

You Are An Exclamation Point

You are a bundle of... well, something.

You're often a bundle of joy, passion, or drama.

You're loud, brash, and outgoing. If you think it, you say it.

Definitely not the quiet type, you really don't keep a lot to yourself.

You're lively and inspiring. People love to be around your energy.

(But they do secretly worry that you'll spill their secrets without even realizing it.)

You excel in: Public speaking

You get along best with: the Dash

Monday, April 7, 2008


Spring Break! We can all breathe a big sigh of relief. We all slept until 10am this morning. I couldn't believe it. My house is a total mess but we decided to do our grocery shopping today so we could have fun the rest of the week. My kids don't enjoy grocery shopping because I am a couponing queen. So it is sometimes a little time consuming (especially when I find a really good deal that wasn't planned and I have to look through my coupon notebook.

Anyway, we hit the thrift store first and we found 2 shirts for me, 6 shirts for Jack, 3 outfits for Maci Clare, a pair of baseball cleats for Gabe, a raincoat for Zane, a Drive time Devotions CD, 15 books (4 Goosebumps, 3 Magic Treehouse, one joke book, 3 board books, and several other miscellaneous books), and a Feature Film for Families DVD. It was a great day to go. I only paid $15 for all of it. We may go back at the end of the week.

Then we went to eat at a local pizza place. Then we hit Walmart (only because we needed to get some baskets for our organizing projects). I spent way too much money in there and I know why I stay away from there most weeks except to buy gas. Then we hit Food Lion where I got some really good deals using coupons and buying sale items. I got free butter, free baby food, 50 cents Huggies baby wash and free wipes. We then headed to CVS. I bought 2 packs of Pull Ups and 1 bag of diapers for $6.84 out of pocket and got back $16.50 in ECBs.

My dad called and wanted to take all three boys out to eat so Maci Clare and I decided to meet daddy for supper. (Jim was teaching a Financial Peace class tonight.) So to kill a little time while we waited on Daddy to finish, we went to Publix. They had several B1G1 deals but I didn't have coupons to make the deals even sweeter. But all in all it was a great shopping day. Overall I think I spent around $80. That is way under my budget for the week and I won't have to go back for a while. I can probably skip next week unless CVS has some deals to great to pass up. But I usually get out of there under $5. And I have all those new ECBs to use.
Tomorrow we're just going to get organized. Then we will try to do some fun things the rest of the week.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Welcome Back, Boys!!!

The New Kids on the Block are making a come back. I actually saw them in concert.

Stay at Home vs. Working Mom Part One: My Story

I have been thinking about this for quite some time. You see, I was a stay at home mom with my first two children. Really, stay at home is not the correct term for what I did. I volunteered for lots of church work (day camp, VBS director, children's ministry work, etc.). Anything I could volunteer for to keep me busy, I was on board. When my first child, Gabe, was one, I decided to try my hand at being the Mother's Morning Out Director at our church. I started the program (which was an incredible amount of work on my part) and I was in charge from the get-go. Soon after we started this program, I started back to school to get my teaching degree and then found out I was pregnant with Zane. I had lots on my plate, but I still considered myself a Stay at Home Mom. My children went with me to work (2 days a week) and Jim kept them at night for me to attend classes at a local college. In a year and a half I had my teaching certificate and begin teaching part-time in a private school. I really wanted to teach in public school but had a hard time getting a job in our county. After that awful year of private school, I swore I would never teach in private school again and I quit. At the last minute, I interviewed for a position teaching part time 4 year old kindergarten. I didn't get the job because someone coming back from maternity leave interviewed for it too and she was offered the job. But I was recommended for another 4K position and I accepted this job. I was hired on a Wednesday afternoon and school started the next day. This was a very overwhelming event in my life. I had no lesson plans, no ideas, no assistant had been hired, and 20 kids coming to my classroom the next day. This was in August. In October, I found out I was pregnant with my 3rd child. That is when I had a hard decision to make. Continue to work (it took me 2 years to get in the public school system) or stay at home with this baby. Jack was born on June 1 and school ended the week before. I worked until it was time for me to go deliver (planned C-section). I struggled through the whole summer (the short 2 months we had out of school) with the decision. Finally, I decided to go back but this time I went back full time (2 half day classes) with 40 kids in my class. I worked and nursed and pumped and I was exhausted. I had never known how exhausted a working woman with 3 kids could be. But that year I was pooped. I never cooked and I crashed most days when I came home. We ate out almost every night. I had 3 kids at 3 different places and I was running myself ragged. But I decided if to go back the next year and work full time again. Two weeks before school started, I found out I was pregnant with my fourth child. I was thrilled but didn't know how I was going to do it with 4 kids. Maci Clare was born in March and I took the end of the school year off (with the exception of the last week so I could do home visits and paper work.) I loved being home with the 2 little kids. I started to pray about babysitting and what we were going to do in October. I still did not feel I had a clear answer from God. So at the end of May, I told my principal I was coming back. I was happy being a teacher. Wasn't that what I had worked so hard for. I wasn't willing to give up my job just because I had another baby. He was really quiet and I didn't understand at the time. After summer started, I realized how stressed I was about going back to school. The thoughts of leaving Maci Clare and Jack again, lesson plans, bringing things home, screening kids after school, all the other after hours work that a teacher has, not to mention the fact that I was driving 30 minutes one way to work and that didn't count to the time to drop Jack at the babysitter. The 30 minutes was just the straight shot to work. Then my answer came in the form of two things. My babysitter moved 5 hours away. And my first born son decided it was time to tell me that I was a much better mom when I was staying at home. I returned to the school July 25 (the day all the principals came back from the short vacation that they have) and tucked my tail between my legs and told him I wanted a year off. Then and there I found out, my wonderful family man principal thought I was making the wrong decision the whole time but didn't want to say anything. So here I am...8 months later.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

A Rainy Day Field Trip

Today we left at 7:30am for a field trip to Columbia, our state capital. The 3rd graders were so well behaved on the bus. I slept for most of the trip down. We went to Riverbanks Zoo and had about 1 hour to spend inside the zoo. It was so cold and we headed straight for Starbucks. (Couldn't believe there was a Starbucks at the zoo.) The first animals we saw were the brown bears and they looked like my boys. They were fighting. (All of my pics were fuzzy but I thought it was funny so I decided to show you anyway.)

Doesn't this look just like boys. They were so funny.

We went to lunch. WE ended up eating on the bus because it was so cold and it started to rain. After lunch, we went back in the zoo (in the rain). We decided to go to the barn (just for cover). I did get a good one of Gabe milking a fake cow.

After the zoo, we headed for the State House. This was a fast visit. I thought it was very interesting but just too quick. Our state representative, Davey Hiott, came down and talked to the kids. We watched a short video and then headed out for a tour. It was the fastest tour I have ever been on. We looked at...
the room where the Senate meets and...

the room where the House meets and...
the faux dome.

Then we took a few pictures on the front steps and...

returned to the bus and headed for home.

It was a nice day but Jim and I decided to take the kids back to the State House when we are not so rushed. We had a scavenger hunt we were supposed to complete but because of the rain and the time we didn't get to it. So we'll save it for a free fun day for our family. And now we are headed for Spring Break. Tomorrow is the first day. Hopefully everyone will sleep late including mom.