Saturday, March 27, 2010


Ancillary. Do you know what it means? I did not, much to my husband's irritation. I know what it means now. Of secondary importance. I just have to say that I am not the only one who did not know what it means. Of the 5+ women I have asked so far, none knew it's definition. My husband does not believe me when I tell him this. He thinks it impossible that I or my friends do not know what ancillary means. I'm not stupid. I'm not an airhead or ditsy. I just didn't know what ancillary means. To my husband's credit, he's not stupid either. (obviously, right? He knows what ancillary means). He is a CPA with his MBA and often talks in a language about his work that, although I can understand each, individual word, I don't have a clue what he's saying. Of course, there are times when I am talking about the children, his children, and he doesn't have a clue what I am saying either. (*giggle, giggle*)

Anyway, this is all in good fun. I am now one word smarter than I was before. I've actually even used several times since our conversation. I do find it a little ironic though. When I was in college, some of my friends used to tease me because of my large vocabulary. I knew words they didn't. hummm. I always say I used to be gifted because I was in the gifted class when I was in elementary school. I'm usually half joking when I say "used to." Could it be that there is more truth to that than I realize? Nah!! :)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Big Debate

A friend of mine recently asked me my opinion on the whole schooling thing; homeschooling vs. public vs. private school. Actually, I shouldn't say "verses." It's not fair to pit these 3 different types of schooling against one another. It's not a competition. Neither is our children's education. All of these schooling methods can be great. If you've read anything in the "about me" section of my blog, you know we send our kids to public school. We LOVE the school our daughter goes to. My straight forward, no beating around the bush opinion about it all is, you gotta do what works best for your family. We moved to this particular area because we knew private school was not an option for us at the time and this area is known for it's top notch public schools. I considered homeschooling for about 3 seconds mainly because I didn't like the idea of becoming a slave to the school calendar. I wanted to maintain the sense of freedom that we had enjoyed for the first 5 years of my daughter's life. Besides, it takes a special person to be able to homeschool. I have several friends who do it and love it. I know it would not work for our family. I don't have the patience or desire to be organized and disciplined enough to homeschool. Plus, since I have experienced having 2 out of 3 kids in school, I can admit that I kinda like having that time of not so many kids. Don't get me wrong, I love having my kids around. I love when they are on a break from school and am sad when the break is over. I can, however, appreciate the times when they are in school and I am able to go to the grocery store unaccosted, or only have to have 1 kid in tow when I have a Dr.'s appointment. Anyway, you get my point. Homeschooling is great, just not for us.

So that left us with 2 options, Public or Private. Then we looked at how much private cost and that left us with one option, Public. And like I said, we really love the school Kristin goes to. She has had a great experience there. No, she does not receive a Christan education while at school. She gets that before school, after school, in the evenings, on the weekends....You get my point. She may not be getting an education from a Christan worldview from 7:50-2:20, but she is getting that from us. That is our job as her parents. No matter where they attend school. Our daughter is very aware that not everyone in her class loves Jesus or goes to church. And that pains her. She wants to tell people the truth. If only we all could be so bold and childlike in our faith!

Occasionally, we think of moving away, like maybe even to FL to be near my parents. (Don't get too excited, Mom. We just like to fantasize now and then.) One big thing that would hold me back from a move like that is the schooling situation. The public schools there don't hold a candle next to what we experience here. I think we've been spoiled. We most likely would go the private school route if we were to move there. However, going to a private, Christan school would not diminish our job to help our kids grow in the ways of the Lord or memorize Scripture or talk about ways to relate to others in a Christ like manner or how to share the gospel. My friend who was asking me my opinion on the subject finds herself in a similar situation only reverse. Her kids are in a private school that they love but may be moving soon and is unsure what to do about school. My quick answer is, it depends on where you move to. What are the public schools like where you are moving? I know of a website that is pretty good and tells you info on schools all around the country. It's They give schools an overall rating between 1 and 10 and then break it down in several categories. You can see things like test scores, teacher student ratio, even things the amount of kids on free and reduced lunch and ethnicity.

Having been a teacher myself (in not great schools, mind you. On the website, the first school I taught at got a 2 out of 10 rating and the second school a 3), one piece of advice I can give even if you find yourself having to send your kids to a school that is not your top choice, is to be involved. Make yourself known to your children's teachers, principal, any and everyone at school. Find ways to volunteer there as much as you can. Meet your child for lunch. Stay in constant contact with the teacher. Much of this contact, you may need to initiate. That's fine. Do it anyway. Stay on them. If your child's teacher knows you personally and knows how involved you are and knows that the lines of communication are completely open between you and the school, your child may be treated differently. Better. The first school I taught at was an inner city school. I never even met all my students' parents much less had any kind of relationship with them. There was one student, however, whose mom was very involved. As her teacher, I was very aware of this. I knew that whatever went on in the classroom was going to be reported back to this parent. I also knew if she had any questions or concerns, she would be at my classroom door. It made a difference to me as the teacher and I'm sure it was a positive thing for the child.

I have another friend who's kids were attending public school in this area, but then moved to a town known for not good schools and since private school was not an option for them either, decided to homeschool. As far as I know, it's working for them. I'm pretty sure she never before thought much of homeschooling her kids, but when left with no other options, they have made it work.

In the end, we are Christans. We are raising our kids to love and honor God. Our life is being a child of God. We can do nothing without behaving as so. Our life is entwined with being followers of Christ. It's part of who we are. It doesn't matter where our kids go to school. Public school does not change or alter this in us in the slightest. We live in a fallen world. Private school is part of that fallen world. It's not a safe haven. It is temporal.

We are fortunate enough to live in a wonderful school district. If we never move, our children will most likely always go to public school. It is our prayer, that where ever they go in life, that they be lights of Christ in an otherwise dark world.

I hope this helps, E!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Why? Why?!

I am so tired of having to deny myself of the 2 things I love to do most; eating and shopping. I can't eat what I want as often as I want it because I don't want to have to apply to be on The Biggest Loser. I can't shop as often as I'd like without having to pay attention to the price tag because we are not filthy rich. We have a mortgage. And 3 kids (who by the way, luck out by getting a completely new wardrobe every season because they keep growing. *said with mock sarcasm in my voice*) I keep growing too! (probably due to the afore mentioned first love) Why can't I get a whole new wardrobe with the coming of each new season?! Oh ya, that pesky, not being filthy rich thing.

All I want is to be able to go on a good shopping spree and end the day with a good meal of something fried, something baked and something frosty. Is that too much to ask!?

However, tonight, after a long day of looking after sick kids, not feeling well myself and still having to fold 2 baskets of laundry (leftover from the original 5 baskets yesterday), fix lunch, cook dinner, clean up dinner, and still to come, baths and the lovely task of getting all 3 kids in bed and actually asleep (which for some reason, takes WAY too long), I was craving something sweet so I treated myself. After digging through the pantry trying to find something that would satisfy my unidentified craving, I found and opened up a big 'ol chocolate bar that had been hiding for who knows how long. (It still had a good 2 months on the sell by date, so I'm good). And it didn't stop there. Then after eating a couple of squares, it donned on me that I could make the already yummy chocolate even yummier. So I got out the peanut butter. Yummm. It was just me, a giant chocolate bar and a jar of frightened peanut butter. It was nice. I didn't eat the whole thing, mind you. I ate enough.

In case you are wondering where the kids are at this time, my hus took them to Chuck E. Cheese. Yep. All 3, by himself. Wasn't that nice? I kinda expected them to last about 30 minutes, but it's been more than an hour now. While I'm on the subject of how nice my husband is, let me just add one more thing. Since I was not feeling well today, he came home from work to help out with the kids. He was a good sport about it. He tried to work from home some, but also attended to the children when needed, one of which was under the weather too. And he did it all with out complaining or begrudging me. (at least not that I could tell). Thanks, hon.

Daylight Savings Time...

Need I say more?

p.s. Kristin is not pictured here. She is and always has been a morning person. She has no problem waking up early. She is always up early, therefore, daylight savings time did not have the same effect on her as it did the other 2.
p.p.s. I looked and felt similar to Elliott and Grace

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Butter Bread

Butter bread- bread with butter on it.

You know how when you were a kid, there was one snack type food that your mom made or bought you that you really liked and got excited about? We never had much in the way of snacks so that doesn't work for me, but it might for some of you. Anywho, for my girls, right now that thing is butter bread. Actually, it's not really a snack. I said snack because Grace is having it as a snack right now. It's usually a lunch or, dare I say, even dinner substitute. A butter bread sandwich. Sometimes, it's a before bed snack, but mostly a meal. They love it. Elliott had one for lunch today. Grace is having it as a snack and already asked for it for lunch tomorrow. Kristin is not as enthusiastic about it as the other two, but she will still request it upon occasion. It's the one thing in our house guaranteed to be gobbled up, even has requests for seconds. I usually have to cut them off.

Let me qualify the butter in butter bread. It's Country Crock margarine spread. I try to make it all good by using wheat bread for the bread part. That makes it healthy, right? Like how they advertise Froot Loops as having whole grain, as if that cancels out all the sugar. I think it does. :)

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Yesterday was the best day. You couldn't have asked for better weather. It was such a welcome change from the endless dreariness and cold we've been experiencing. My hus built the most awesome sandbox. Forty-nine square feet of sandy fun! Kristin even said, "this is going to be the best spring of our life!" They played in it for, oh, 3 or 4 hours. They are playing in it now as I type. In the past, we had thought about getting one of those nice, wooden play structures. We held off because I've never been convinced our kids would actually play on it enough to make it cost effective (like my business term? my hus would be proud). Plus, not having one of those things in our yard makes it all the more fun and exciting to go to an actual playground. And, a sandbox is a heck of a lot more cheaper! (did I phrase that correctly?) Seeing as how our kids love to dig up our yard on a frequent basis, I think the sandbox will definitely be played with. Now if I could just come up with a fool proof, mess proof way to get all the sand off before they track it through the house...

My next mission is to find a way to effectively and definitively fend off the mosquitoes that are sure to spoil their sandy fun at some point.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Just a little funny I thought I'd pass along.

While we were in the car this afternoon, Grace asks, out of the blue (she's famous for doing this), "How do they make blinds?" (why she was thinking about blinds while in the car, is still unclear).
Now first of all, I thought she said wine. (yes, our 4 year old likes wine, so I thought it not unusual for her to ask this). So, naturally, I said, "out of grapes." Undeterred by my seemingly completely irrelevant answer, she answers her own question (she's famous for doing this as well) with, "I think they get some dusty boards and put a string through it."

Uh, Grace? Are you trying to tell me something?
p.s. I know I used a lot of parenthesis in this short but poignant post. I love parenthesis. In real life, in my own mind, while I am speaking, I use parenthesis. (I love commas too if you can't tell). I'm always going down rabbit trails or making "side note" type comments and often think, "if I were writing this, there would need to be parenthesis here.

I can freely admit, my usage of parenthesis and commas and many other punctuation marks are a gross interpretation of grammar. If my journalist brother-in-law ever read my blog, I feel certain he'd be appalled. However, I'm fairly certain he does not read it since I have gotten no long, poetic emails from him explaining how bad my writing is.
That's it.