Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Christmas Card by Shutterfly

Christmas Card 2010

According to Shutterfly, if you imbed a picture project from Shutterfly in your blog and then email a link to the post they will email you a code for 25 dollars off your order. I am pretty sure this special is still going on. Anyways, here is this year's Christmas card. The photos were taken by my friend Tracy Carr when we were in Augusta, GA visiting our friends. Photographing my crew is no easy task! She did a great job!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Getting Along With Friends

So, the Character Clan came to visit us in October. It was a truly fun visit, marred only by some GI problems. The kids all got along well, Megan and Ceili Rain picked up where they left off by sharing food . . .

Laura has acquired an American Girl Doll since the last time we hung out with our friends. That is her, in the middle. Her name is Annabelle, and she is the result of many months of allowance saving and some generous birthday money gifts. The other two came in the big Crimson Van and I am happy to report the dolls behaved themselves and had a lot of fun playing together.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Dairy Farm

While in Wisconsin we got to visit a REAL LIVE DAIRY FARM. Okay, we were thrilled, excited, and amazed. The kids of the family we visited thought we were nuts to take time out of our visit to go visit their barn. It was awesome seeing the cows get milked, their feed being unloaded from the silo, and to get to hear about the mild going to make good 'ol Wisconsin Cheese!

What could be more fun for a 2 year old boy of the suburbs to get to play on a really, really, really big "TAC-TOR"? He wasn't the only one who had fun . . .Laura and Jack ran off with kids their age to go find the horses in the pasture, and Megan stood around looking cute.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Blogging By Association

Later on we had some friends come visit. Not just any friends, some very special friends who carted their 6 little ducklings in their big Crimson Tide van and drove to our house. Here is Abbie's blog post of our trip to the park while they were here. No sense blogging something that someone already has . . .right?

And they took Laura to the Creation Museum since Jack was not feeling up to travelling, and they have a blog post about that too. We were super bummed to miss the trip with them, but we plan on attending sometime soon

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Now THAT's A Garden!!!!

While visiting the extended fam in Wisconsin, we got a tour of their garden. I say "tour", because you need a tour. It's not like my garden that you can just kinda point at and say, "Look, there's my garden" and people can nod casually in it's general direction, and move on, their lives unaffected.

Here Lauren, Jack, and Laura were helping Aunt Heidi pick pole beans, they were yummy to eat later.

That's Kevin, haulin' the beans . . .He's a big strong boy, a tad bit older than James, he is too OLD to be called adorable, but he sure is a super sweet kid! We enjoyed talking with him, and James had some fun playing with him!

This is my niece Lauren. She is absolutely adorable. Aside from being as cute as a button, she is sweet and says lots of fun words, like my Mom and Dad's favorite "Bratwurst". While we were visiting, Megan was still in her wild hair phase, but since I have cut her some bangs and her hair heads south instead of north, she and Lauren look a lot more like cousins.

My brother picking beans with his daughter. Sure, I should have flipped the picture, but I thought you might be impressed by his ability to stand horizontally. It is just one of his many talents!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Four Wheelin', Pickup Truck Drivin' and Rollin' with the Bovines

Over Labor Day weekend (2010, I'm not THAT far behind in blogging) we went to visit my brother John Pat (John for those who met him in the early 1990's and beyond), his wife Heidi, and their two (soon to be three) children Kevin and Lauren. They live in northern Wisconsin, a mere 15 hour drive from our current homestead in KY.

One of our fun adventures was a trip to Heidi's parents' farm. Heidi's dad is a very industrious farmer. We toured the cow pastures and saw the ponds he made for trapping muskrats. He even has a Christmas tree farm that he started years ago. We loaded up in the truck, John (my John, known as Jay to most people who met him prior to the mid 1990's) rode the four wheeler through the pastures.

Here are Laura and Kevin on the four wheeler . . .Jack really enjoyed the adventure more than he appears in this picture.

What?? OCT What??

I am looking at the calendar, it is OCT 26th?? What?? Where did OCT go, and it certainly has not been a month and a half since we took this picture . . . Well that just means there is a lot of blogging to catch up on, lots of adventures to relate and lots of pictures to post. Stay tuned!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Dear God, Thanks for the Free Unit Study

Dear God,

I know that I should be thankful in all things, so in the spirit of that command I would like to issue my most sincere thanks for the hands on Science experiments you have been providing with us all week. Although I had full intentions in continuing with our Apologia Astronomy lesson on Venus . . .you saw it fit to give us a hands on - real life - immersion science lesson in the stomach virus.

This prayer is not for the weak of stomach, so if you find yourself in that category you may want to start praying silently to yourself for a while.

We learned many wonderful things. We learned about viruses, that they are mean, that the doctors really can't do much for you when you have one, and how they can come and go. We learned the word "Contagious" and "Susceptible" as we have watched them start with one person and then move on to someone else. We learned the full scope of the GI tract, that when a virus is in your tummy it has two ways it can get out (Three if you count the nose).

We learned that sometimes these viruses make a person so weak they can hardly stand. These people sack out on the couch for days at a time. Other times the viruses have a potency that gives 2yo boys a high fever and a slightly grumpy disposition. Sometimes when 1 yo girls get the virus they seem like they may have recovered completely and then suddenly demonstrate that they haven't after consuming a large sippy cup of milk. (At the lunch table, when mommy just sat down with her bowl of soup, immediately after asking, "Hey, How are you feeling Megan?")

I realize now that this incident was actually a pop quiz. It gave me the opportunity to witness the speed at which my oldest two children can evacuate the kitchen. They even did it with their eyes mostly closed and their fingers pinching their noses. I now have the utmost confidence in their emergency exit skills.

We observed the soothing effect of ginger ale on a stomach, the clean smell of bleach being used about the house, and the true capacity of our washing machine. I would like to say a special word of thanks for the washing machine.

I believe, however, that we have met all the requirements of this Unit Study on The Stomach Virus. We would like to submit our coursework for your grading, and then continue on with our study of Venus.

Thank you Lord,

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Getting Ready for Auntie Beth

As we were getting ready for Auntie Beth to visit (last month) the kids realized that they could all fit in the downstairs shower . . .

and speaking of which, there are other places that James and Megan like to hide

Saturday, August 14, 2010

We went to Louisville

While Auntie Beth was visiting we went to Louisville . . .can you guess where we went by the pictures?

There was a carousel . . .

And inflatable jumpie things . . .

And a playground (wher eother moms were getting nervous with the 2yo's playground skills) . . .

Have you guessed yet? Well here ya go with a better clue, around the playground was a baseball diamond

Yep, it was a baseball game! ( A far cry from our AAA Rochester Red Wings at the now retired Silver Stadium) There were also fancy concession stands, shaved ice carts, and we had a great time watching the Louisville Bats. The stadium is incredibly close to the famous Louisville Bat Factory, which we will tour at some point. We did actually watch about 1 inning of the game before taking advantage of all of the diversionary activities. It was also military appreciation night, so that is why the inflatables were there. Thanks for a great night Bats!

A Really Cool Thing Happened On The Way Back From GA

A really cool thing happened on the way back from GA, and fortunately I had my camera ready:

I have a video of it actually changing, but I am having trouble posting videos . . .which is a shame because I have some really cute ones of the kids. I hope we get another 100,000 miles out of our van! In case you don't know (or have forgotten) we bought our van the day before Jack was born. It is now 6 and 1/2 years old. It has travelled from in and through a bunch of states (20 of them, multiple times) and it has always proven reliable. We have a few more trips planned for the next few months. . . more on those trips when they happen.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I Disagree With Your T-Shirt

I was standing in line at Kroger. I had my four little ones with me. I was stopping by for a few groceries, and did not expect the long lines that I encountered there.

I was ecstatic earlier when I had found a shopping cart that was perfect for grocery-getting with my kids. The front has a car for James, and the seat in front is there for Megan. The older kids were sadly out of luck as they had to walk (and sneak a ride on the sides when the aisles weren't too crowded) As I sat there in line keeping Megan happy by letting her play with my Debit Card and Military ID, I noticed that James was at a perfect height to reach for the King Sized Reece's Peanut Butter Cups that the grocery stores so thoughtfully position in the checkout area. I bend over to remove the tempting treat from his hand and I hear a gentleman say, "I disagree with your T Shirt."

The T Shirt is a staple in my wardrobe. It has the picture of some Mommy sized sandals next to some child sized shoes and it reads, "Motherhood, the toughest job you'll ever love"

I fought all natural urges to kindly offer that the gentleman take charge of my four children, usher them through the checkout, load them up in the minivan in our oppressive summer heat, drive them home and feed them some lunch before he make such a statement.

Instead I said, "I bet you would prefer the fatherhood version" (My husband has that version)

"Yes" the man replied. He told me that he is still being father to his 42 year old son. I gave him a compassionate smile and said, "That is a lot of years of parenting" I do not know the reason why he is still parenting his adult son. I could think of a lot of reasons. He could be physically or mentally handicapped, he could have suffered from a life lived in the grips of alcohol or drug abuse, he could be staying with dad as he goes through a painful divorce, he could be a soldier who has not transitioned back to life after serving his country very easily.

"Fatherhood is a very important job" I added those words as a casual afterthought. It wasn't until a moment after the words left my mouth that I realized the truth of that statement. What an important role our fathers play in our lives, I see my husband. He encourages, challenges, and loves our children. He prioritizes time to help them grow in spirit and wisdom. What a blessing. I have a dad who worked hard and provided for a large family, who cared about our spiritual upbringing, and who is eager to love on his grandchildren. And I have a God. A God that does not stand distant upon a mighty throne, but craves relationships with His children. He encourages us, His sinful, ungrateful, self-absorbed children to call Him "Father"

So as I managed the rest of the way through the checkout line, loaded my kids in the minivan in the oppressive heat, drove them home and fed them lunch, I thought about this man, prayed for him to have strength in whatever struggles he is dealing with, and said a prayer of thanksgiving to my Father for all the fathers we have.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Standing in Line

Look, it's a bunch of homeschool kids, and guess what . . .they are being socialized, and they even know how to stand in a line . . .
*post created in the spirit of good humor*

Friday, July 23, 2010

Baby Watch Trip

My friend Abbie is due . . .past due . . .with her #6 Baby Bryant. Today she is going to be induced. The Transue clan took a trip down to GA to be there when he was born. Unfortunately he did not come a bit early, he didn't come on time, and he didn't come slightly late. But we sure did try. We arrived Monday afternoon. We left early Thursday morning. In the meantime we:

1. Managed 9 kids (or tried to)
2. Went to Monkey Joes (woo hoo for our miltary discount!!)
3. Tie Dyed Tshirts (fun, thank goodness for soft scrub with bleach)
4. Visited the YMCA pool (on a hot GA July afternoon)
5. Watched Jelly Telly
6. Took what we hoped would be a labor producing trip to JoAnns and Target
7. Ate Chineese Buffet
8. Fed children, bathed children, enjoyed children

Alas, she remained pregnant and I think we wore her and her family out. She said it helped pass the time, I am sure it did!

Sleeping arrangements

Group Pic the day we left (more on this to follow)

note tie dyed tshirts worn by some . . .

How super dads unwind after a busy day of work and kids

P.S. You can click on Abbie's link and follow her labor today . . .if you are interested. She is live blogging today (valid only on 7/23/2010)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

If I Could, I Would

If I could blog like this, I would . . . for all the moms out there, especially moms of little ones, take Missy's Maternal SAT today. Warning, laughter may ensue, please take all necessary precautions.

I have been following Missy at It's Almost Naptime on my blogroll for a while. Her blog never disappoints. I admire her heart for the Lord and her honest approach to finding joy amidst the challenges of motherhood.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July 4th

Our Fourth of July was full of . . . .
Little Girls with lots of ponytails

Little boys looking cute

Brothers and sisters hanging out on a train ride

Little girls playing in the driveway

And lots of love!

That "lots of love", was actually me about to fall on James.-Laura

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Go Fish Guys

Here are my Go Fish Guys . . .by the Ohio River in Louisville, KY

James inherited Jack's T-shirt, and Jack inherited Laura's. Wow, what a difference a year makes!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Uppercase Living

This is a project that has taken some time. It didn't take long to actually complete, it just took a long time for me to get started. It is a sign hanging in my laundry room. I got the saying from Uppercase Living, it is vinyl lettering that I mounted on a board that someone cut for me at Home Depot, and I painted it a neutral color. Most of the vinyl expressions are meant to be applied directly to a wall, but since we tend to move quite often, I thought it would be wiser to mount it on something that would move with me. Look out for more coming soon! I got names for the kids' doors and some nice sayings for our kitchen and our family photo display.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

How Can You Tell?

How can you tell that the little kids tried to open the cereal on their own?
Ususally they have also taken scissors to the bag, but I guess they gave up and put this one back into the cupboard, unconsumed.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Save, Save, Save

Jack and Laura have some pretty awesome piggy banks. This one happens to be Laura's.

Here is the message she has posted on the side of her pig. It says, "Save up for Molly doll, Don't let anythign stand in your way, you and her will have fun!" (An American Girl Doll)
She has been diligently saving, and although her goals keep changing, (She is thinking perhaps she should get a bitty baby because they are less expensive, and because they don't have hair . . .Laura's dolls don't have good luck with their hair) she is doing a great job staying on task!

Friday, July 9, 2010

James' School Work

This is what James was working on last Friday while we did our schoolwork. Yes, I realize I have been blogging a lot of James recently, but I promise to showcase the other kids more!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Remember, This Is My First Garden



The toys are a neccesity for good garden growth.

Just an example of what a couple months (almost) of Kentucky sun will do for your garden.I am just happy that things are growing, that I have gotten 2 zucchini squash that I have eaten, and that more things are coming. If I could get 6 pumpkins off of that pumpkin plant I will be thrilled!

Teenie Tiny Tomatoes

A Really Tiny Watermelon

But this watermelon has a sister growing in GA . . . she has a lot to live up to!