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Posts Tagged ‘family’

Decided to start this year off right, with a pan of gooey, sticky cinnamon rolls.  It is a new year, and time for some new beginnings.  New traditions, more fun, and less rules.

I have really missed writing here, and want to resume.  However, I will be taking a new rout this year.  I am no longer focusing on pretty pictures or deep thoughts.  I am not going to kick myself for sharing the nitty gritty of everyday life.  My goal is to find beauty in the everyday things.  Today, it was the joy of my family as they consumed these rolls.  It was the butter and syrup bubbling all around them, as they cooked.  It was Daniel, joyfully dancing around with his first loaf of bread, proudly sharing it with everyone.  These are the beautiful things.   What are the beautiful things in your life?

* * * * *

To make these rolls, I melted 3 tablespoons of butter in the pan, poured in some corn syrup and sprinkled on some pecans.  Then  rolled a batch of Hop Yeast Bread dough out into a 12″ x 18″ rectangle, buttered it, sprinkled on cinnamon and sugar, then rolled it up into an 18″ long log.  Sliced the rolls and placed them in the pan to rise.  They were baked for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  To serve, dump pan upside down onto a sheet of waxed paper and scrap all the gooey topping onto the rolls.  Eat while still warm.

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With the sun shining brightly and storm clouds in the West, the boys pitched their tent in the back yard Saturday evening.  We had planned to go camping, but sickness had changed our plans. 

Not to be defeated, they decided to camp at home, and really, I think they  enjoyed it just as much as a trip into the mountains.   All the elements were there:  We had a campfire, cooked in the dutch oven, ate burnt food, because no one wanted to wait for proper coals to cook on.  Caleb had a fish that he had caught earlier.  He cooked that over the fire himself, and the rest of us had steak, which was not burnt.  All in all, it was a good evening, and everyone was up on time to make Church and Sunday School, despite having camped out.

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Migrating birds are one of the many joys of spring, and this spring has been no exception.  We have enjoyed many species of birds in our yard, and the children have fallen in love with their visits to the river.  The first Sunday we went, we just wanted to spend some time alongside the water.  We were not expecting anything other than a little R&R.  Little did we know that we would be greeted by flocks of hungry birds. 

Down to the water’s edge, for a better view, the boys went.  The hungry birds flocked to their hands.   “What can we feed them?”  They cried, in wonderment. 

“Well, I do have a bit of bread in the car,” I told them. 

“Yea!”  They cheered, running for the vehicle.  They returned with all the bread they could find, armed and ready for the feeding frenzy.

At first, the birds were careful to keep their distance, but then a white duck, and escape from some farm, began to nibble from Benjamin’s hands.  A Canadian Goose soon followed suit.  Next thing I know, they want to bring some birds home! 

“Mom, I’m sure I could catch one!”  “See, Mom, they like me.  This one is eating from my hand.”  “Please!?!”  

Of course, I understood, but still had to say “No.”  After all, “Where would the poor ducky live?  We don’t have any water in out back yard, and the ducks like to have water.” 

But boys are full of solutions.  “We could turn on the hose for it,” Adam suggested.  “I could make a pond for it,”  Caleb declared.  “Mom, this one really likes me.  I know it would be happy at our house, even without water,” Benjamin persisted.

Still, I held my ground.  When the last of the bread was gone, we said our good bye’s and headed home, with promises to return another day.

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This last month, I was very blessed to be able to take a visit to my parents farm, where I grew up.  While there, I attended two graduations for cousins of mine, butchered a beef, visited with lots of relatives and really enjoyed the time.   I was able to meet my brothers new girlfriend and talk to my youngest sister, who has estranged herself from the family.  It was a real blessing.

While I was there, I realized that I had completely lost sight of why I had begun this blog, and realized why it had become such a chore to even look at.  Now that the focus is restored, I hope to do some rearranging and share more often. 

Have a blessed Sunday.

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I made a pot pie for supper the other night, using up leftovers and topping it with a biscuit crust.   It is one of our favorite ways to enjoy bits of potatoes, rice and meat.  While I was using up leftovers, I also pulled the last few carrots out of the bag, before they grew any larger, and a few brussels sprouts. 

Cheers rang out!  And volunteers to peel carrots came running.  The big question thought, was, “How many brussels sprouts are there?” 

“Six,” I told them.  “One for everyone, except Gideon, because doesn’t care for them.”

A chorus of  okays rang out, and the matter was dropped.  When Manny came home, Benjamin excitedly told him what we were having, and Caleb told how he had helped to peel the carrots.  Manny cheered with them!

Then, with utmost gravity and big puppy eyes, Caleb sighed and said, “But, there are only six brussels sprouts, so we can only each have one.”  *anther deep sigh* “And Gideon doesn’t get any.”

Manny assured him that it would all be okay, and that if Gideon should want some, we could all share a bit with him.  This settled the matter, and we sat down to eat.

The pie was cut and served.  Everyone was enjoying.  Daniel, who typically won’t eat anything green, was admiring his brussels sprout as he enjoyed it leaf by leaf.  Then he noticed Gideon.  “Mommy, Gideon doesn’t have any!”

Me:  “No dear, he doesn’t like them.”

Daniel:  “Can I share with him?’

Me:  “If you really want too, you may.”

Daniel:  (full of smiles)  “Okay!”  Then leaning over to hand his brother a leaf, “Gideon, here is a leaf for you!”

Gideon took one look at it, and hid his face!  After that, the others didn’t feel quite so sorry for him.  🙂

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rub my feet

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One boy was complaining of not feeling well, so Manny began to rub his feet, hoping to drive the ‘ickies’ out.  In a matter of moments, he was surrounded, and feet of every size and smell were presented to him.

…This may be on of the best family shots I have gotten in a while.

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Picture found here.

little mother
little mother 

Play is a very important part of a child’s life.   Montessori defined play as a child’s work.  Whatever a child is learning or thinking on, he will express through play.  

When teaching something new, do not expect a child to start acting it out immediately.  Play comes when a child has integrated the information into his being.  For a young child, integration can take two weeks.  For an older child, accustomed to being taught, the time is reduced; but, even an adult needs half an hour to integrate a new thought or idea.

One afternoon, about a year ago, I heard the boys running up and down the hallway. Thunk.  Thunk.  Thunk.  Thunk.  Up and down, up and down they ran. 

There was also a strange grunting/chanting sound emitting from their mouths.  A sound that was not wholly human…

I went to investigate, and found the two oldest giving the next two piggy-back rides, up and down the hallway, stopping occasionally to throw their limp brothers onto the couch, and pretend to feed them.  It was very strange, indeed.

Finally they were ready for more.   They began to ask for more information…

After watching them run, for what seemed like quite a while, I asked what they were doing.  “An Orc run,” was the only answer I received, as they trotted past me with their brothers on their backs.  Big flatfooted steps they took, shaking the house as they went.

Once the concept had worked its way into their understanding, they played “Orc Run” to its full.  They played until their minds could wrap around the concept of strange warriors.  Warriors  who could run for three days, without tiring. 

What in the world?  “An orc run,” they had said. 

Oh!  Orcs! 

They had watched “The Lord of the Rings” with their dad, about a month earlier.  The concept of Orcs had been brand new to them then, and they had made no mention of them, except to refer to them as “The bad guys,” when talking of the battles.

Now the thoughts had come to some form of maturity, and they had need to act their understanding out.  Their first encounter with Orcs had been the “Orc Run” when Merrie and Pippin had been carried off… so there they where, pretending their younger brothers were Hobbits, and they were Orcs…

Thunk.  Thunk.  Thunk.  Thunk…  On and on and on they went.

They did a similar thing when they learned that the sun did not just disappear in the evening, to reappear in the morning.  That it was always daytime somewhere…

They set their playthings on a table, and stationed a ball for the sun.  The “sun” would move throughout the day, and at night it would be placed under the table. 

Play:  Exploring their understanding. 

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