Time for a Slumber Party

More or less.

Some people have this misconception that families with many children, especially homeschooling ones, are eager to get away from each other.

david colors

It’s certainly true that my children love being with their friends. They beg for play dates and park dates and cantaloupe chucking dates (okay, that one hasn’t really come up yet but you never know). They are still in mourning for the homeschooling co-op. The week just doesn’t seem complete without us rushing off to “fake school.” The moms, of course, have coffee mugs raised in relief that another co-op year has finished. Somehow we are able to ignore our children’s sniffles and sobs.

With all of that said, my children really and thoroughly enjoy playing together. Most of the time. I’m not saying if you offered them ten dollars they wouldn’t sell their brother or sister in a heart beat. Still, in a few days they would be really, really sad about their loss (that is until they moved all of their things into the now empty room).


David and Sarah are buddies. They do school together, read books, watch movies, play dolls and soldiers (sometimes simultaneously), run around outside and so on, throughout the day. They are often thrown together during the older trio’s school time. At least once a day we have to ask them to play a little quieter. Their very involved Playmobil/Match Box cars/marble games can get a bit rowdy.

I wouldn’t think, at the end of a very family centered week, this would be the request Sarah would pose.

“Can I sleep in David’s room?”

A sleepover? With your sibling? Your sibling with whom you spent most of the day? Aren’t you a little tired of him? Ready for some of your own space?


I went up to see how they were doing this evening. It was, after all, bedtime, and I’m a good mother, ready for kisses or chastisements (as the situation requires). They were happily ensconced in their sleepover positions.

slumber party!

Let’s see, we’ve got stuffed animals, coloring books and Prismacolor pencils, pink pillow, Michigan State t-shirt, and big grins. I think they’re all set.

Night kiddos!

Project 365 – Day 145

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Summer Bible Study

“What are you going to study in the Bible this summer?”

Several people have asked me this question in the past week. With summer right around the corner, the activities that occupy our days are rapidly coming to a close. It’s a delight to have longer days (well, in terms of day light anyway) and less structure to our week. At the same time, much of that “structure” is what kept me in the Word and in prayer.

BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) has a rule (or “guideline”) that says if you want to participate during the discussion time then you have to have completed your lesson. If you wanna talk, you gotta do the homework. The principle behind it is that the people who have worked on their lessons have presumably prayed, studied, and thought about the questions and should be the ones primarily involved in the discussion time.

Well, if you know me AT ALL, then you KNOW I always have my lesson done. The guideline/rule is a very effective one for me. :) It does have the side benefit (unintentional, I’m sure) of getting me in the Word every week. Despite the goals I set for myself (every year!!), I don’t usually do my lesson on a daily basis (ducking here as my wonderful BSF leader reads the blog) but throughout the week, whether it is over two or three or four days, it is completed. I am reading and studying the Bible. Hopefully even applying the principles to my life. Powerful stuff.

Then there is my Moms In Touch prayer group. Every week I meet with 4 or 5 other homeschooling moms to pray for children. We focus on an attribute of God and pray scriptures over our children. Very powerful stuff here.


Nothing like having a teenager in your life to bring you to your knees in prayer, if only for the funds to feed him.

Now along comes summer. Ah, sunshine, warm days, perhaps pool time and vacations. Although we continue a good bit of our schooling throughout the summer, the atmosphere is more relaxed. We tackle some inside projects. We meet friends at the park. The kids have camps they attend.

Where is the accountability of a weekly Bible study? I am a shallow person, I admit it. I am flaky and lazy and often content with “life as it is.” Maybe calling me happy-go-lucky, contented, and optimistic puts a better spin on my character. How about sinful and self-indulgent? That probably puts me in the same category as, oh, all humans.

“What are you going to study in the Bible this summer?”

This is a very real and pertinent question. My heart’s desire is to be passionate for the Lord, to long to know Him better, to be changed and transformed into His likeness. The people who ask me this question know that studying the Bible is the only way to accomplish these things. If I want to live life to its fullness in joy and truth and faith, if I want to understand who God is and what He desires for my life, if I want to know how to raise my children and love my husband, if I want to find salvation and freedom from my sins, then I MUST remain a diligent student of God’s Holy Word. This isn’t an option, a recommendation or a vague possibility; it is a necessity.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (I Timothy 3:16-17)

So, when my mother (an amazing Godly woman who blesses and encourages me every time I speak with her) says she and my Aunt Kate are going to do a study on grace this summer and asks if I want to join her; I immediately write and say, “Send me the book! I’m in.”

aunt kate and mamie

Aunt Kate and Mamie in Texas, August 2006

When a friend says the church is going to have a women’s summer Bible study starting in June, do I want to help her lead it; I say, “Yes! Let me know what I can do.”

Kirsten and Michelle

Kirsten and Michelle at the Women’s Retreat this April.

When another dear friend says she wants to meet this summer and do some sort of informal Bible study with a few of the women in our neighborhood; I say, “Absolutely! Let’s go for it.”

I am not a super, spiritual mighty woman. I am more like a Bible study/prayer serf (aiming to be a prayer warrior one day). I do, however, know that I have to surround myself with people who encourage my faith. People who want to keep themselves in the Word during the busy summer months. I’m not trying to over commit myself or appear self-righteous and holy by agreeing to all of these different studies. Summer is busy. The church group will only meet every other week. The study time with my neighbor will constantly be interrupted by vacations and family schedules. My mom, aunt and I are separated by thousands of miles so we obviously won’t be meeting on a regular basis.

My hope is that all of these different groups and studies will come together in a way that brings me the accountability and motivation and encouragement I need to remain in the scriptures. The words in Romans 12 whisper in my ears often these days:

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2)

If I am going to renew my mind and resist the world’s constant subtle (and not so subtle) pressure, then I have to be consistently filling my soul and heart and head with God’s truths. How am I going to recognize God’s will if I don’t know who He is? If I don’t ever read the Words He has spoken to me? If I don’t have a living, real relationship with Him?

For our anniversary (Wednesday), Tim gave me the cd, Glory Revealed. I first read about it on Boo Mama’s blog. She even included a youtube clip of one of the songs (click on her link and scroll down the page a bit to listen to the song). I fell in love with the title song and played it over and over. The artists and writers of the album wanted to produce a collection of songs directly from scripture. They succeeded in making a very powerful, moving cd. It is blessing my soul already.


Rachel memorizes songs almost the second time she hears them. She loves music and is constantly stealing my cds. I have to watch her all the time. We’re working on this obvious character fault.

I am passionate about making our home a place that honors and glorifies God. I fall and falter and fail ALL THE TIME but I try to be obedient and faithful as best I can. One thing Tim and I both desire is to fill our house (and therefore our ears and hearts) with music that worships the Lord. I’ve already written about the Seeds Worship cds that our family loves. Tim strongly encourages the children to find Christian music that they enjoy. He regularly buys us new music from Christian artists. There is almost constantly music playing in our house. This week I showed the older children how to create their own playlist on the kitchen computer (where we have most of our music loaded). What words and songs are they singing? Songs full of worship and wonder of the Lord. Truths about Him.

sarah, david and daniel

These rascals have been building forts again. No doubt they have been reading Proverbs 2 and are searching for wisdom and insight and other treasures.

I am excited because I just discovered another series of worship music written strictly from scripture, Word of God Speak. There are three cds in the series. My birthday is right around the corner (okay, it’s in July but I believe in really stretching birthdays out so we could start with the gifts now), maybe these new cds will head this way.

What are you going to study in the Bible this summer?

What are you going to do to keep yourself grounded in the Word and your spirit alert and ready to hear the Lord? Do you recognize His voice when He speaks? What words and images and sounds are filling your home and workplace? What songs do you find yourself unconsciously singing throughout the day? Is your conversation more animated about the latest season finales or the truths God is teaching you right now?

Kathy (humble, flawed servant seeking after her Master)
Project 365 – Day 144

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My Three Sons

It’s morning! Time for breakfast, school, chores and a little brotherly snuggling. Thank goodness there is always a camera at hand to capture these sweet moments. Look, no tears, fighting or name calling. They’re obviously still asleep.

three brothers

Joshua - I’m the long suffering big brother. My smile is calm and serene but notice my death grip on Daniel’s hand. This is definitely a battle I’m going to win.

David - This is such a comfy spot. I love Joshua. Let’s Wrestle, Josh!

Daniel - It may be early morning but I’m dressed and ready to play NOW! Yeah, Joshua, let’s wrestle. I think I can take you!

Ah, brothers! Where else can you push and pull and wrestle and fight and love your way through life?

And, if you are very, very blessed, one day you might end up with sons (and gourds) of your very own.

boys will be boys

Cousin Timothy, Tim, Joshua and Uncle Momo (aka Mark) Thanksgiving 2005.

Kathy – Mother to three boys/Sister to three boys/Wife of just one

I am obviously one of the Very Blessed!!

Project 365 – Day 143

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Sarah’s First Haircut

It was time. Time to get Rapunzel and do some work on those split ends.
long hair

Man, that is some LONG hair! Somebody, run and grab the scissors. Don’t, of course, grab the scissors and run. Everybody knows you don’t run with scissors. That would be plain dangerous. Safety first, people!

long hair again

One more look at the luxurious locks of my little lady. There is such grace and poise in her bearing.

As soon as I whipped out my scissors (with great care, of course, I read the notice on the package that says “Warning: scissors may be sharp!”) Sarah turned into Rapunzel Contortionist Girl and tried to watch me cut her hair. Now, with the boys this is a difficult feat, but with hair as long as Sarah’s it wasn’t impossible. It did, however, prevent me from getting a nice straight cut (and I’m only that good of a stylist in the first place). Thankfully, Rachel stepped in to help. Rachel, a sweet Princess of Long Locks herself, grabbed the dry erase markers and began to draw on the white board. This was the perfect distraction.

rachel helps

Sarah managed to hold still during her hair cut.

blue cape

She’s all done! What a beauty!

sarah's new look

I wouldn’t go so far as to say she now has short hair, but I did cut off quite a bit. Let’s do the comparison thing.

The Before Shot:

long hair

And After:


The Milestone of the Day – Sarah’s First Haircut!

Project 365 – Day 142

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We Have a Winner!

A big Thank You to everyone who took the time to leave a comment on the Favorite Blog Tim posted last week. It was fun reading what other people have enjoyed on the blog. I am having a hard time myself picking out some favorites. I think it’s because I would rather write new and future ‘favorite blogs’ rather than go back and re-read old ones. Plus Tim already picked most of the good ones. :)

On Monday morning Sarah (age 4 1/2) randomly selected a winner among the commenters. We had her pick a number (since the comments are numbered this seemed simplest). She did not know the names of any of the people involved in the contest. She did not know the significance of what she was doing. She was not bribed or cajoled in any way.

She was, however, extremely influenced by one thing, her own age. Not surprisingly, therefore, she picked the Number Four!!! That means, De’Etta (the wonderful mother of 9, wife to an Air Force chaplain, and a fellow blogger) is our winner!!

Congratulations, De’Etta! If you already have Third Day (Wherever You Are) cd, let me know and I’ll pass it along to some other blessed soul. :)


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