Hey, It's Jade! and family

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Happy 9th Birthday, Preston!


8 years old!

Six Years Old!

Five years old!
Four Years Old!
Three Years Old!
Two years old!
One year old!
One day old!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Halloween 2014

We had a pretty easy-going Halloween this year, as I just was not in the mood for much.  I was being a bit of a humbug, and the boys couldn't decide on what they wanted to be.  We purchased a Bilbo Baggins Hobbit costume last year on clearance for Preston to wear this year, only it was STILL too big for him.  And Callen kept saying he wanted to be "a Wolf again, no.. Mario, no... a wolf," etc.

A few hours before our little town's Trick Or Treat Around the Square began, the boys finally decided.  Preston would be Clark Kent - not Superman, mind you.  And Callen would be Fireman Small (one of our favorite books!).  Easy enough!  We had all the stuff to put Preston's costume together, and Callen wore an old costume from when Preston was 3 years old, haha.  And they ended up looking great!

Clark Kent
Fireman Small
In front of the firetruck!
Even Daddy got in on the dressing up while working on the yard!
We spent the rest of the evening watching Garfield, Charlie Brown, etc.  Didn't get a single trick or treater at our door this year, even though we were prepared!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Happy Fall, Y'all!

While it's still pretty warm around here, we're doing the best we can to take advantage of the fall!  My mom and I took the boys to Country Critters Farm in Alvarado today.  We had a lot of fun petting animals, doing a maze, picking out pumpkins from the patch, bounce house, hay/tractor ride and such!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Rough Week, But Not Entirely Bad

This has been a strange one, y'all.  Started off with me sleeping on my arm funny and then being in excruciating pain for two days.  Like, can't move my arm without gasping in pain and sobbing.  I cried while trying to wash my hair in the shower.  Never had that issue before.  After some prodding from friends, I went to the AMAZING Dr. Taylor at Crossroads Natural Health in Grand Prairie, and within 12-hours of her magic touch, my arm was 98% better.  I could move without crying... yay!

Preston's skin allergies had a nasty flare up.  We have been having problems with it a lot lately.  We went to the Asthma/Allergy doctor a while back and he was put on two rounds of antibiotics because the doc thought it was infection, possibly staph.  It got a little better... but it would flare up here and there.  Well, on Wednesday night it was so bad Preston could NOT stop scratching at it and crying, and he certainly couldn't sleep.  Michael and I tried everything we could think of to soothe him, but no luck... he finally passed out from exhaustion.  We broke down, and thanks to my parents, purchased some super expensive cream the doc has suggested (and we had used in the past) and we tried it yesterday.  His legs are less itchy, yes, but ... right before dinner, he started throwing up and continued well into the middle of the night.  I mean, really?  I don't know if it's related to his skin allergies, or something completely different.  I am just praying that when he wakes up this morning, we can be done with all of it.

In the middle of all this going on, I found a huge brown tarantula in the bathroom.  Hear that?  IN THE BATHROOM.  Now, I've come to be somewhat at peace with them burrowing their holes into our yard (Michael is NOT at peace with that), but when I find them IN my house, NOPE.  No, no, nuh-uh.
Callen is "rawring" at the approaching storm.
The highlights of the week have been getting to spend some good, quality one-on-one time with my friends Regina and Nadia.  Also, sitting and having a real, uninterrupted conversation with my husband on some serious things we needed to discuss.  Obviously, nothing bad or it wouldn't be a highlight, would it?  And, I dunno... the week wasn't entire wretched besides the overwhelming number of 'gahhhhh' that happened.  Here's hoping now that it's Friday, we can catch a nice break and enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

End of Summer 2015

I just realized I haven't posted the blog in a while, though I post them often on Instagram.  Here are a few from our summer to get you caught up.  ;)

ECCHO (Ellis County Christian Homeschool Organization) had an end-of-summer reading celebration at a little splash pad/park in Corsicana so we took a bit of a road trip to check it out.

We started Enrichment Classes with ECCHO here in Midlothian.  Preston is taking Scooby-Doo Mysteries, Singing, P.E and Board Games.  Callen is doing Storytime Activities, Scissor Skills, Creative Play and Little Builders.  And so far (after one day), they LOVE it.

I took the boys to the American Airlines/C.R. Smith Museum for the Lego Castle Adventure Exhibit.  We had the place to ourselves for the most part, and the boys had a blast!

The boys have had a great time just being creative and playing.

Our little town was in the spotlight for a little while, when a hate group demanded the local elementary schools take down their dedication plaques because they mentioned God and has the words "Soli Deo Gloria" on them.  There were several prayer rallies and peaceful protests, and, for now, the plaques are back on display.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Michigan Vacation 2014 in a Glimpse...

Click image below to be taken to full slideshow.

RelientFrenzy's Story

A quick recap of our trip to Michigan and back!

Left on Friday, August 1st, as soon as we could after Michael got off work. Drove FOREVER to get to St. Louis, stayed with Sarah and Benjamin for the night, left early.  Arrived in Michigan by dinner time on Saturday.

Sunday was church, lunch at Pekadill's with Aunt Laura, saw Jason, swam in the COLD water at Duck Lake and Lake Michigan, played at a park.

Monday, rested, played outside and at the park, Jill hosted a book party with friends, guys went for mini-golf.

Tuesday, we hit three lighthouses on the West Michigan lighthouse tour (Silverlake, White River Light Station and Little Sable).

Wednesday was Michael's birthday. We hit the farmer's market, boys went out on the fishing boat, Jill and I went shopping, met up with Laura and Sarah, had tacos and birthday cake.

Thursday we went back out to finish the lighthouse tour with Big Sable Lighthouse, visited Pentwater and Hart for actual "authentic" Mexican food. Amazing!

Friday, blueberry picking, visited Grandma Kathy, Michael and I went to Unity Fest (saw Hawk Nelson, Britt Nicole and Matthew West), the boys spent time with Grandma and Grandpa.

Saturday we had breakfast with Brittany, Michael's neice, had lunch with Grandma Kathy and Aunt Laura, visited some of the old parts of town, including the cemetary. I stayed with the boys to prepare for our departure, while Michael went with his parents to see Phil Keaggy in concert.

Sunday, we left early morning and drove to Regina & Kevin's house, had dinner, met Layne Rogers for ice cream, slept. Got up and returned home on Monday evening!

Whew. I'm tired all over again just recapping that adventure!

Monday, July 21, 2014

First Week of School 2014...

Last week kicked of our first official week back in school.  At least for Preston.  We started My Father's World Creation to the Greeks, aka "4th Grade."  Callen will start doing more preschool type stuff once we get back from vacation in a few weeks.  All in all, the week went pretty smoothly, and Preston seemed to enjoy it.  As did I. 

We were blessed with unseasonably cool weather.  Like, we went outside, in the middle of the day, in July... and didn't die.  It was cuh-razy, but awesome!  We also learned about celebrating the Sabbath and what that entails, and tried our hand at having a special Sabbath dinner together on Friday night.  Because of our crazy busy schedule, it ended up being Hot 'n' Ready pizzas and crazy bread, but... the idea got across just fine.  It was a neat experience.  I hope we are able to do more of these feast celebrations as the year progresses!

Here are a bunch of pictures of the week...

All ready to go the night before!
Preston is a 4th Grader!
Keeping Callen busy!
Art, a lesson in frustration!
Chalking outside in the middle of the day, in July!
A google.
Worn out.
A puppet show at the library on Friday.
Sabbath dinner on Friday evening.
Flowers from my front garden bed for our center piece.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Celebrating 25 Years of UBAM, National Convention 2014...

I spent this past weekend with my Usborne Buddies in Paradise (aka Tulsa, OK) for National Convention.  Usborne Books & More celebrated it's 25th Anniversary this year and they went CRAZY for convention.  It was so much fun.  Despite hotel issues (which were themselves cray-cray), the whole experience was just what I hoped.  I was able to further bond with some of my teammates, including new ones!  We got great training, received a bunch of new titles and just had a pure blast! I am definitely motivated to promote to Team Leader in the VERY near future and am definitely gonna work towards earning a trip to IRELAND!  Oh yes, bring it on!

President/CEO of UBAM, Randall White
5 generations of our team!

About 100 new titles are available today and they are AMAZING.  You definitely want to check them out at www.HeyJadeBooks.com.  Also, they rolled out a new kit special.  You can start your own Usborne Business for only $69 now through July 31st.  What a great offer!  Plus, hosting a party in July gets you Double FREE Books, our best hostess benefit.  JULY is already off to a great start and it's not even here yet!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Stupid Unknown (Medical Issues)...

"He is an excellent hurler." I actually typed those words out earlier in a comment on my Facebook page, in reference to Preston.  Truly, he is.  He gets it from me.  Poor kid.

This morning he woke up at 7am and got all ready and came in to wake me up because he was so excited about going to a church basketball day-camp.  I sent him back to bed because it was TOO EARLY.  Then, when I woke him up at the right time, he said "I have a headache... and a tummy ache" and ran for the bathroom.  Then he sat in the bathroom floor and cried because, "Why did I have to throw up today?!  WHY????"  I felt so bad for him, and I don't have an answer to his question either.

A very similar episode occurred just last week.  And about a month before that he woke up in the middle of the night with this same problem.  I'm glad he's an excellent hurler, but at the same time, I wish I knew why he had so much experience.  This has been going on for years, but never this close together.  I usually attribute it to simply "something he ate."  But I just don't know anymore.

I can't link it to any specific food, activity or situation at this point.  I don't see a pattern.  Which means I don't know what to avoid or how to fix it.  Stupid 'unknown.'

The 'unknown' already causes Michael's chronic migraines and nerve pain in his back/leg. He has had so many tests and they all come back positive or negative just as they should, no indication of what's causing his ailments.  The doctors just prescribe more tests, and at this point, we can't afford it anymore (nor the ones he's already had that have put us into more debt).  So... unknown, it is.

I just keep praying for complete healing.  Or, at least, a solid answer.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Homeschool Recap, Year 2013-2014

So, we are officially done with school for this 'year.'  Preston finished 3rd Grade and Callen did a few preschooler type stuff, but mostly he just played and tagged along with brother's stuff.  This school year did not go at all as I wanted it to, but we tried to make the best of it.  And all in all, we accomplished what we needed to. 

It was off to a rocky start because I didn't start us when I normally would have since our house was on the market.  We hoped it would be a quick sale, so I kept hoping we would be able to start when we were moved and settled.  But it wasn't, and we didn't.  And then, since we got a later start than I wanted, I felt like the rest of the year was rushed.  I didn't HAVE to do it this way, but I did.  Because I wanted to get back on track with the next 'school year.'  Anyway, we survived, and truthfully, that's what matters, right?  Lol.

Starting with Callen... I intended to do Before Five In A Row with him for the whole year.  But, we really only ever got through about three books (Yellow Ball, My Blue Boat and Jessie Bear What Will You Wear?), and he just wasn't ready to sit and have his own projects.  His 'school' became coloring and sticker books and watching PBS Kids most of the time.  He did learn about the continents a bit since he was around while I was teaching Preston, and he really enjoyed working on the big felt world map, moving the animals around and such.  He recognizes all of his letters and numbers, he knows what most of the letters sound like, can spell his name or recognize it when it's written on something, he has a great vocabulary and uses big words in sentences correctly.  And he finally learned how to pronounce his c's and g's, that was a major breakthrough right after his 4th birthday in March!
Coloring a continent!

On to Preston... we used My Father's World Exploring Countries and Cultures and we (I say we because I was learning geography right along with him!) learned about a lot of countries in the world.  While I don't expect him to have them all memorized and tons of details about each one, he got pretty good with the Geography Game, so I call that a win!  He got good grades in math was we went over multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, and more.  He learned how to form letters in cursive and they look great (while often his print is horrendous!).  We read a bunch of missionary stories and learned that so many other places and people in this world need prayer!  We also learned about animals from different countries and ecosystems in various part of the world, too. 

All done with 3rd Grade!
 Even though we're done with school, in June we are doing a lapbook as we read through the easy version of Treasure Island.  And we will start up our new school year in July!  We will be doing My Father's World Creation to Greeks, and I will once again try out Before Five In a Row with Callen.  Looking forward to getting back on our year-round schedule so we can take plenty of breaks during the year and not get burnt out!

Friday, April 25, 2014

We all have a job...

I saw this image posted on a family-friendly company's facebook page.  And it got me a bit riled up, and instead of posting a crazy long comment on FB, I decided to bring it over to the long-forgotten blog.
I honestly don't know which way the person who created this card intended it to be read, nor do I even know which way the company who posted it intended it to be read.  Or, perhaps, the point was to leave it open for interpretation... because the comments below the post were cuh-razy, y'all.

Some women got all hyped up amen-ing it, reading it as sarcastic.  Like, I do ALLLLL this stuff because my husband has a "job." Look at what all is required of me, isn't that a job?  I deserve more recognition, he just sits at a desk all day while I blah blah...  He gets off easy "going to work" while my job is here 24/7, blah blah. Stupid stereotypical man's work vs. women's work, so old fashioned, blah bah.

I kinda giggled when I read it because I had literally just come in from mowing the rest of the yard after getting home from working most of the day at Power FM.  Now, I don't normally do yard work and I don't normally "go to work" much anymore.  While I DO take out the trash (y'know, man's work, har har), he is great about taking care of the yard stuffs.  Well, yesterday, he came home from a full day of work, and as he was getting out of the car, I was getting in mine to head to work at Power FM for the evening, so there was barely a "hello!" between us.  It's one of THOSE weeks.  So, after getting home from a full day of work, he was suddenly in charge of the children, had to make dinner for them, started mowing the yard and then they had to leave for AWANA across town (daddy chauffeur and chef, hmm).  He didn't finish the yard.  The next day (yesterday) was one of those days where he is gone before the sun comes up and gets home long after it's down, so he wasn't going to be able to finish then either.  He asked me to do it.  I admit, I pouted a tiny bit (that mean 'ole lawnmower hates me), but I did it.  I came home from MY work day, attended the kids, got out there mowed the lawn, made dinner, finished up school with Preston, etc.  And, you know what?  This morning I got out there and used the spreader to lay down bug-b-gone junk.  Boom.

All this to say that a family is a team.  You take on the role you need to.  Single parents have to do it ALL.  There are lots of amazing stay-at-home dads while the wife works and supports the family.  There are families, where (gasp!) BOTH mom and dad work.  What?  Then, there are lots of traditional-looking families where the man works, the wife stays at home and takes care of kids and house.  SO WHAT?!  Why is "tradition" so bad anyway?  If that's the way you and your spouse decide that your family is going to work, ROCK ON!  No one should shame you for being a stay-at-home-mom or a housewife, geez.  Yes, a mom's job is HARD, no one should ever deny that.  A dad's job is just as difficult.  I know my husband feels the pressure of having to provide for his family, and that's why he works 2-3 jobs at at a time.  It isn't ideal.  And it isn't because he WANTS to be away from his family so much.  It's because the economy sucks, and he can't work one job that pays him enough to make ends meet.  And we want to make ends meet, don't we?  His job is to bring in income, and my job is to make that income stretch as far as it can, and occasionally add to it with my little jobs.  We are a team.  He watches the kids while I work and I watch the kids while he does.  We have made the decisions together and we are happy with it.  And while sometimes I wished I was the one who was away from the house ALL DAY LONG (mama needs a break once in a while, right?), I truly love being here with my kids and being the one in charge of their learning and being.  I know that my husband appreciates me and recognizes it for what it is, my job.  And I love and respect him for being willing to do what he does for us so that we can be in this position.  My husband is wonderful, and while it does put extra pressure on me to do a few things that are considered men's work... OH WELL.