Puzzles!!

So maybe I’m just plain crazy because it isn’t like I don’t have plenty to do around here, but we have become a puzzle family, and I am so happy about it.

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I have enjoyed puzzles for many years, but mostly at Thanksgiving or Christmas time. Well, this past Christmas we moved a chair upstairs to make room for our tree….I never loved the chair, so I decided we should leave the chair in its new place and put a table in the living room where the tree had been…”You know, so we can do puzzles together. ”
Josh gave me his normal look when I want to change things around. It takes him a while to come around OR he just says no. I’ve recently learned that it’s better to ask for help moving everything back than ask if he thinks it is a good idea. Like a few months back I had him on the phone, mentioned I wanted to expand my family picture wall, heard him groan a bit and say something about doing it later. I enlisted Mack to help me move a book case out of the living room and got to hammering nails in the wall. When Josh came home, it was pretty much too late to turn back.

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And it turned out great, if you ask me. See, Josh tends to be a perfectionist. He likes thing done really, exactly right. I, on the other hand, am not a perfectionist at all. I could have used a few doses of obsessive compulsive or something. It’s just not in me.
All this talk reminds me of the time he went to see his dad and took Mack with him.
I painted our dark cherry dining room set…and painted the walls of the dining room.

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It also turned out pretty good. No doubt, it could have been even better if I waited for Josh to join the fun, but it is done.

Ok, so back to the puzzle table. Josh actually does like this now! And the kids, especially Ruby and Mack, have come around to enjoying putting the puzzles together. We have good conversations around this table. And wouldn’t you know I did a little research and found lists of benefits to doing puzzles! Like this little snippet:

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There’s more where that came from, too!

I even became some sort of rewards member of a puzzle company. Who would have thought?!

So, if you’ve been dying to know if you should put a table in your living room for puzzles, I strongly encourage you to do so….while your husbands at work.

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14th Anniversary❤️

Today is the day, 14 years ago, that Josh and I got married. It was a beautiful Saturday in January 2001. I loved everything about our wedding, especially the groom!

I was reflecting on our 14 years and thought about our first months in St. Pete, FL. We lived in a one bedroom apartment and enjoyed the sunny, beautiful weather pretty much everyday for the four months we were there. I remember our one bedroom apartment when we moved back to Georgia. It was near downtown Alpharetta. Then, we moved to another one bedroom apartment….guess we were gluttons for punishment. We’ve lived in Woodstock for about eleven years now, if you don’t count that “wonderful” year we built a house in Alpharetta, lived in it a little over a year and then came back to this house.

Josh has had a few different jobs.

We’ve had three kids….in under three years.

We’ve had the opportunity to travel to some pretty amazing places…ElSalvador, Cancun, Israel, Los Cabos, Indonesia…Josh more so than me…Cuba, Iraq, Iran, India, to name a few.

There’s been change all throughout our fourteen years. I wouldn’t say we’ve lived a boring life together.

Our love has grown, it’s been challenged, it’s been confirmed and it still remains true to one another, but our love has not stayed the same as fourteen years ago, and I’m thankful for that!
Our bodies have changed. Didn’t you read that we have three kids? Well, they didn’t just fall from the sky into our home.
Our hair has changed.
Our home decor has changed.
Our towels finally changed! After fourteen years of use, I got rid of all of those old towels and bought fresh ones! Thank goodness for the change of towels.

But what hasn’t changed is God’s faithfulness in our lives. He has been with us each step of this journey. He has been the constant when life seemed out of control. He’s been the One teaching us how to forgive and how to love. His steadfast love has remained the same, day in and day out, in good times and bad, in sickness and in health, when we’ve had money and when we’ve been broke, and anytime in between. I’m thankful to walk through life with Josh by my side….even more grateful that He loves The Lord and wants Him to lead us.

Happy 14th Anniversary, Joshua Lee. You’re the best.

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Your lovingkindness, O Lord, extends to the heavens, Your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
Psalm 36:5

So she does listen to me!

Molly bought herself an iPod with Christmas money. I had previously noticed that she would take selfies on my phone a bit too often. I had a little talk with her about what it could mean when someone takes multiple selfies a day. I encouraged her to not take selfies, or at least make it a rare occasion.

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Sooo, this afternoon when I was working on a puzzle, I could hear Molly talking to her friends in the back yard. Molly had her iPod with her taking some pictures. I heard someone say something about a selfie and then Molly said, “I probably shouldn’t take selfies. My mom says it isn’t the best practice to take selfies everyday. Once a week is ok, but that’s probably enough. ”

Cracked me up. At least she was listening!

In Over My Head

Psalm 29

Ascribe to the Lord, O sons of the mighty, Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.  Ascribe to the Lord the glory due to His name; Worship the Lord in holy array.

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters; The God of glory thunders. The Lord is over many waters.  The voice of the Lord is powerful, The voice of the Lord is majestic.  The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; Yes, the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.  He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, And Sirion like a wild ox.  The voice of the Lord hews out flames of fire.  The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; The Lord shakes the wilderness; The Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.  The voice of the Lord makes the deer to calf and strips the forests bare; And in His temple everything says, “Glory!”

Woa. Sounds pretty intense—trees breaking, thunder, flooding, lightning.  The forests are stripped bare.  Who is behind all of this?  And why won’t it just stop?  Well, it goes on to say,

The Lord sat as King of the flood;  Yes, the Lord sits as King forever.  The Lord will give strength to His people.  The Lord will bless His people with peace.

Reading this Psalm Tuesday morning was a beautiful thing.  I was reminded that when storms come into my life, I can be sure that The Lord is the One sitting over the flood and sitting as King forever.  I can trust Him!

Just this week I also came across a song on Ann Voskamp’s blog by Bethel.   It’s entitled, “In Over My Head.”  It speaks to me so deeply.

(I’m not sure why, but the video may not be able to be seen.  If not, look it up for yourself and listen to the words!!)

The pull of this world to stay on shore and avoid storms and difficulties is strong.  I want ease and comfort so many times over trials or hard circumstances…which I am sure is a normal thing for most people, but when you know the King who sits over the flood and storm, and you know how He cares for you, then part of me wants to be drawn into something bigger than me, something that I can’t perfectly control.

As I have been praying for God to re-direct my heart into His heart, I’ve been greatly encouraged because He has helped me!  He has re-directed my thoughts away from some of the material, earthly desires that won’t matter a bit at the end of my life, and into His heart, allowing me to rise above the junk that distracts me way too easily.

And I have been drawn to this song because she sings about stepping away from the shore and into the waters of whatever God calls you to.  Now don’t get me wrong, I love that song, “Oceans,” about walking on the waters wherever God leads you.  I do.  But I relate more to being ” in over my head…..sink or swim, it makes no difference when I am beautifully in over my head.”

The Lord sat as King over the flood;  Yes, the Lord sits as King forever.

“Come and do whatever You want to….Further and further my heart moves away from the shore.  Whatever it looks like, whatever may come, I am Yours!….And You crush over me; I’ve lost control, but I’m free.  I’m going under, I’m in over my head……”

….and it’s a beautiful thing.

A Day in the Life of Dorminy Home School

I follow a lady on facebook with a page called Simple Homeschool. She often lets other families contribute by sharing what their days are like. You get anything and everything. It’s fun to read how other families homeschool. Sometimes I can relate to the moms that share…especially when their kids are super close in age, which I have found to be a blessing when home schooling, though it nearly killed me when they were toddlers! Sometimes I don’t relate at all…like when all the kids are in high school. Either way, I learn a little something from each family’s day.
And last week a good friend of mine, Mary, came to see me and just through our time of chatting, I learned about a chart she uses. She sent me one she uses for her daughter, and I went to work creating my own for each of my kids.
Sooo, here’s how today went for The Dorminy home school….and I say TODAY because if there is one thing I’ve learned, each day tends to be unique. Our routine is a loose one, that is for sure!!

6:00am- I woke up, spent time in The Word and prayer, I drank lots of coffee

7:30/7:45am-Kids start waking up, they usually make their own breakfast, but today I cooked bacon and cinnamon rolls
We all talked at the table about random things and about how the day should go

8:20-I taught First Language Lessons to the girls…predicate nomitaves, linking verbs, state of being verbs, helping verbs, direct and indirect objects and a dictation exercise

Mack takes a spelling test on a cool spelling app where I record the word and then he can play my voice saying the word and type it in!

8:45-Kids go do chores and devotions
-Mom starts laundry, walks on treadmill, showers for the day

10:00-All three kids are working on math

I checked Mack’s math, he goes to make corrections.
I checked Ruby’s math, she goes to make corrections.
I already checked Molly’s math test and had her make a couple of corrections while I was upstairs getting ready.

I taught Mack his First Language Lesson (reviewing types of sentences) and writing, which is copying a sentence from a classic today. He also wrote Proverbs 1:3 today and learned the letter C in cursive and practiced A and B.

I taught History and we talked about Montgomery Ward and Sears and Roebuck! I was so interested. I had no idea Montgomery Ward was a person. Very cool to learn all about these men and the first mail-order shopping! We’ve come a long way!

The girls practiced Bible Drill while I started preparing some lunch…leftover potatoes and Bagel Bites…it’s usually leftovers or sandwiches or pizza.
Mack read outloud to me while I was in the kitchen. Molly read to me while I ate and she waited for her lunch to be ready.

Kids cleaned up living room. I cleaned the kitchen.
Ruby practiced Ukulele and Molly played around on her piano.
I helped Mack make a zip line for his Lego man. I folded two loads of laundry.

We all kind of dispersed to our own spaces for time alone. Molly watched a show. Ruby played a game on her iPad.

Just now (it’s 4:00), Ruby read Mack about five library books.

They are all watching 19 Kids and Counting while I try to talk myself into starting dinner. Sometimes they help me in the kitchen. Sometimes I want to be alone in the kitchen. Just depends on lots of things.

So that was today in our life. We will likely have a very different day tomorrow. I’m an unschooler in many ways, but I can’t quite make that leap to just letting them pick what they want to learn, but I’m intrigued by people who do!! I still like my curriculum that guides us, but I also hope I am learning to listen to what interests each kid and take the time to help them pursue those interests.

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Good readers get peanut butter cookies and milk!

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This is the view from my treadmill…verses I’m memorizing and a calendar to keep up with the days I actually exercise. And a funny pic of my family many years ago! It reminds me that they change so quickly!

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Here are a couple of examples of the charts we are using around here to put more responsibility on them to take ownership of their day. So far, so good.

Ok, so now I really must get in that kitchen and get to cooking. A mother's work is never done! Haha!
But seriously, when is the mother's work done?

Anybody?

I have for real helpers!

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I spy two girlies that were excited to peel and cut up potatoes that we will eat for dinner! Now that does my heart good!!! They’ve come a long way to be able to use a knife and want to help. I’ve come a long way in actually letting them!

We started using a chart this week that I made and will tweak every Sunday night. It’s been amazing at helping us all stay on track, while putting most of the responsibility of owning their day on the kids! I love it. And it shows me and each of them how much they do every day! I was greatly encouraged by seeing the chart in its final copy…we do a gracious plenty around here!

And there’s a great game I would recommend to any elementary aged kids learning how to count money. It’s called “Money Bags.” Mack gives it two thumbs up.

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I’m a blessed mama and sure am thankful for my time with each of these kids!

He is PERSONAL

At the end of last year I finished reading the Bible through for only the second time.  I did it for the first time when I was 36 years old, and I cannot tell you the benefit it was to my soul and my mind.  That is meant to be encouragement for anyone, but especially for someone younger….don’t put it off because it seems too daunting or because you would rather eat raw eggs than make it day after day through Leviticus!  I actually really like Leviticus now!  I have a book that has been a HUGE help to me in my daily reading of the Word.

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Even in those chapters where you wonder if there is any application to your life at all, ‘ol G. Campbell shows you that there is.  I usually buy it used on amazon.com.  I’ve found it for as low as .57!!!  Someone doesn’t know what they have if they are selling this book for cents, but I gladly ordered it!  Check it out if you you’re looking for a help in your reading of God’s Word.

Instead of reading the Bible through this year, I decided to do a plan where you read the Psalms through two and a half times and read the Proverbs over and over each month.  So far, I am loving it and it is proving to be just what I need!  I also dusted off my Prayer Book for Josh….not that I haven’t been praying for Josh….I have just not been as specific as I want to be.

I have been struggling with a sense of purposelessness (is that a word?) for a while.  Just wanting to KNOW that I am doing exactly what God has called me to and feeling pulled to be involved in a couple of other areas in order to feel more important or that my time is being spent well.  It’s funny because I would tell any other lady that  chose to stay home and teach her children and use her time to invest in her husband, kids and home that this was, indeed, extremely worthy work!  I would tell her to persevere, to ask God to show her the value in her eternal investment.  YET, here I was wondering if this was all I was made for.  ALL, like molding, training, teaching, loving, knowing my children.  ALL, like putting my husbands needs as high priority, helping him to be all God has called him to be.  ALL, like daily taking care of my home–laundry, dusting, cooking, making it a welcoming place for all who live here or visit here.  That’s “ALL” I do every day.  Ho-hum.  🙂

So yesterday morning I was GREATLY encouraged when I read in Proverbs 22 and Psalm 22, and The Lord had a very specific word for me and it GREATLY encouraged my heart in my calling and in my purposefulness!  I am also encouraged that I should do the right thing at the right time and in the right way.  I never know what the days are leading to…one day I won’t have three kids at home, and I want to learn all I can learn now in this season because I am certain all these days are leading to future days and new works God may call me to.  I want to be ready!  But I don’t want to spend these days wondering if I am doing enough….that’s why it is so important to spend time with the Lord.  He wants me to know His will.  He even wants to encourage me where I am and give me confirmation when doubts do arise.  I love how personal He is, and I sure am glad I didn’t miss His presence and guidance yesterday!  Or today, for that matter.  He is so good.  He is a personal God.

So, what else around here?  Just getting back into our school routine, which I love.  I really do.  It’s has rhyme and reason, yet it is so laid back.  We have the greatest conversations in the everyday life.  These are important people I’m discipling!

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We are reading and cooking and doing puzzles!

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And Timothy started on Tuesday…Mack loves his science class.

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And right now we are anxiously awaiting friends from Tennessee.  We cannot wait to enjoy their company!  Pictures to come!

Maturing

This morning Mack came upstairs and let us know he hadn’t eaten breakfast yet. I asked him why not. He said that Molly wouldn’t fix it for him! (Let the record show that Molly almost always fixes his breakfast!)
“She said that she would tell me what to do,” he said pitifully.

“Well that’s a good thing. Very nice of her to teach you how to make oatmeal,” I said.

He pouted around and told us several more times that he didn’t eat breakfast and Molly wouldn’t fix it for him.

Josh and I told him that she was trying to help him.
“Why wouldn’t you just do what she said so you could have breakfast?!?”

He was appalled. “Well, I’m not gonna take direction from her!”

That stinker. Willing to take a hot bowl of oatmeal from her but not willing to learn how to do it for himself.

Dear goodness. Being the baby of the family with two older sisters and a mom AND being cute is probably going to cause him to be a stinker unless there’s some intervention.

Goal of this week: have Mack proficient in making his own breakfast!!

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Moustache

Mack told Josh that when he saw Josh without his moustache and beard after having seen him with it for many weeks that he thought Josh would be nicer. Too funny! Josh did look more burly with his facial hair, and I was getting used to it! But when he shaved the beard and was left with only the moustache, we both agreed it just couldn’t stay. I hope one day…maybe when he is 50 or so…he can keep the scruff. But for now, we are glad to have his “nice” face back!

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