It's a Wonderful Life…

with the Mace family.

Happy New Year 2015

(I actually had this written and was planning on posting it over a week ago.  I just needed to add a few things, but lack of sleep has made it hard to remember to do it.  Another post will be coming shortly)

It’s been a week or two since I posted, so I thought I should probably write something.  Whenever I go to long without writing a post, I forget some things.  We are into our third week of school after Christmas, and still very slowly getting into the swing of things.  Over Christmas, I review what was and was not working in our school day and made some changes, that seem to be working.  B is growing more independent in his studies, doing science and history with us, but needing me for his writing curriculum.  On the other hand, Gav is very dependent on me in every subject.  While this might seem like solutions to this would be easy, it truly hasn’t been.  Gav needs more breaks than we had going, and needs to work in shorter bursts.  Gav needs to start earlier in the morning, but B is wanting to sleep in and start later in the morning.  Really it was about coordinating time for B and I to do writing at just the right time, and working everything else around that.  The hardest part has been getting myself ready for school as early as Gav needs, as I am not a morning person and take time to wake up.  Of course, it’s winter and dark in the mornings still, even on sunny days, which doesn’t help with the waking up factor.

So anyway, things are working out, school is getting done at a decent time and B is actually getting his work done by 2pm or 3pm every day.  The days of him constantly doing school work are done, our schedule that we started the year out with has really helped B with that.  It’s such an accomplishment for him, he’s been working hard at focusing and getting it done.  We still have days were he has forgotten something, but who doesn’t.  This year we also made our own planners tailored to  each of us, and I know that has helped B out a lot with being more organized.  He gets a weeks worth of homework on Monday, and that enables him to work ahead, which often times he does.  We also have character goals and academic goals that we work on.  Over Christmas we reviewed these and found B had met one academic goal (Getting schoolwork done in a timely manner) and two character goals (Being more patient and kind, Work on being more honest).  I thought I would share his goals for the 2nd half of the year, which started this week for us.  Academic goals:  1. Become better acquainted with multiplication facts, 2. To have a better attitude when it comes to writing, 3.  Read and learn more about animals.  Character goals: 1. Be a better friend, 2.  Be more helpful.  B and I sat down at the beginning of the year and wrote these together.  There is one academic and character goal per quarter.  I was very proud of him and put stickers on his goal sheet for those he reached.  In 9 weeks, we will revisit them again and see where he stands.

Gav also has goals.  His academic goals that he reached are: 1. To be able to write a sentence, 2. To be able to read with very little help grade level books, 3. To be able to skip count by 2, 5, 10, (which he has partially reached, needing only to skip count by 5’s to reach this, which he will in his math book).  Character goals reached: 1. To pray every day to be more obedient.  I was really proud of Gav when he came up with his character goals.  After listening to B and I set some, Gav knew just what he wanted to work on.  With no help from me, he listed his character goals.  These are the ones we will be working on:  1. Be more gracious to God, 2. Listen better to my teacher, 3. To be more kind to my friends.  His academic goals are: 1. To be prepared for the next math book, 2. To be able to write fluently and read at grade level with no help, 3. To learn cursive (which we added in Dec. per Gav’s request).  This is the third week of cursive, and it’s slowed down a bit.  Gav’s enthusiasm has waned a little, but he is keeping at it and driven to do it.  We are powering through all the other subjects.  It’s really amazing how much he has picked up on his own.

Well not much more going on around here.  Just busy with the usual!

xoxo

Amberly

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

While it’s been a few days since Christmas, I thought the title was appropriate since I am posting videos from that day.  I took a bunch of videos, pasted them together, and I am now providing them for you to watch, or not.  The boys had no knowledge of being recorded, but only thought I was taking pictures.  Though I suspect B had his suspicions.  I wanted you all to see what we usually do on Christmas day, every bit of it.  Now there were times I wasn’t taping and that was when the boys were busy playing with their toys or looking at something.  Since we’ve no place to go, we go at a slower pace, letting them enjoy what they got and from whom.

Now December was a blur, but a something remarkable did happen.  Gav got his first loose tooth, and lost it two days before Christmas!  It was so tiny and he’s just adorable with a small hole where that tooth used to be.  He was so excited to lose it because he “really hates having a loose tooth.  It hurts.”  And for a kid with a high pain tolerance, it must have been pretty bad.  He couldn’t eat much, and I was cutting things like his sandwich just to make it easier on him.  It won’t be long before it happens again, but for now all teeth are staying  put.

Also, as it tends to happen when we take our cars in for an oil change, we got new vehicles, or at least new to us.  Obviously this doesn’t happen every time we take a car in for an oil change, it’s just that when it does, it coincides with one.  N and I had been leasing and we had a year left.  Honestly, we didn’t plan on anything changing, but wanted to inquire about some things so we could think on them over the next year.  We wanted to own our cars, and we wanted to have a minivan or a vehicle with third row seating.  But we also needed to know if we could afford that and what we were looking at for monthly payments.  We looked at some things, test drove a few, and honestly we weren’t sure about the minivan.  I wasn’t thrilled with what we were shown, especially considering we would have to lease for 3 years and then pay on it for 6 years to buy it in order to lower our monthly payments (which really was our goal).  But lo and behold, a used one, only three years old with less than 30,000 miles on it was being shipped in.  So we filled out the paperwork in order to hold it, with the opportunity to say no to it if we did not like it.  While I wasn’t super crazy about going from my Prius to a minivan, I did really like it.  It was in great condition, and much nicer than the new one.  Also, we could buy it and still lower our monthly car payments.  So I got that, and N traded his Rav4 for a little Audi to drive back and forth to work.  And while I’m still not crazy about the minivan (I loved my Prius, perhaps a little too much!)  I love the space it gives us and with wanting to grow our family, we will need.  Trips are going to be so much nicer in such a roomier vehicle!

On another note, we start school back up again this week.  We took the week before and the week of Christmas off.  Gav will start learning cursive writing, at his request.  It was something he was begging me to teach him.  I gave him a goal of completely his spiderman writing book by Christmas break in order to start learning cursive, and he did it.  His desire to learn cursive stems from him wanting to be able to read it.  I’m not sure he will take to it, or even really learn it this year, but I am willing to give it a shot.  I’ll try to keep you informed on how it’s going.  Heading off into the second half of the year in a few weeks will bring some changes.  In science, we will start Botany, Math will be getting a little more difficult for B as he delves deeper into Pre-Algebra, and Gav might be starting the next math book if he keeps going like he is.  Gav has really taken off in reading, so I am hoping to be trying some easy chapter books with him by spring.  Music theory is going well for B.  He isn’t really thrilled but knows this will help him later learn an instrument.

At this time of night, that’s all I can really think of.   We love you and wish you all a great week!  xoxo

 

 

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B’s birthday trip

This is going to be a short post as I am going to encourage everyone to talk to B about diving with sharks.  There are six short videos we bought from this experience, I am posting the ones that will be of most interest to you..  He was in the cage with two other divers.

The first video shows how close some of the sharks came to the cage.  B is the left in the cage, he stays there the entire time.

In the third video, B is the first head of hair you see.  It’s to show you a view from inside the cage.

Hope all is well with everyone.  I will try to put a few more posts up shortly.

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Fall has arrived

And with it, comes the beautiful crisp weather we have been dreaming about all summer. For us, it was a hot one. And I mean yucky hot! Do you remember me mentioning most people don’t have air conditioning out here? That’s because it’s typically only hot about two weeks out of the summer. Yeah, not this summer. It was unusually hot and unusually dry. I am thankful we don’t have the humidity out here because that would have just made it worse. There were days, and by days I really mean weeks, where the temp in our house did not drop below 78 and that was sometime after midnight, and only until the sun rose again and brought the temp to 85 or higher by noon. There were even days when it was cooler outside in the evening than it was in the house. This might not seem hot to all of you, but do it without a/c and you will find it’s uncomfortable at best. Plus, our place was in full sun all day, not a speck of shade. We all stunk! But thankfully there were more days that were bearable, though hot, than unbearable. It’s still dryer here than normal, but the rain is coming. I look forward to the rain and the beauty it brings. So much has changed and happened in the last few months. Let’s start with the most recent and try to work our way back.
Most of you know we have moved. We didn’t plan on it, but our previous landlord decided to sell the property we were renting. Even then, we didn’t foresee such a quick move. The couple had also put their house up for sale. It sold quick, like within 3 days of putting it up for sale quick. So they wanted to move into where we were living and gave us 30 days. No one could have foreseen their house selling so fast!  So like madmen, we searched for a new place and packed.  We talked and dreamed about moving to B’ham, how close we could be to everything.  But we only found one place there we liked, but didn’t love.  It honestly looked like we were going to take that one, when one popped up in the city we live in.  Since N was out of town, I checked it out and fell in love with it.  It was everything we wanted, including a fantastic price, except in wasn’t in B’ham.  It became my first choice, even though we didn’t know if we would even get it.  That night our second choice called and said we could have their property.  We asked if we could pray about it, hoping to buy some time.  To make the long story short, we got the first choice!  So we are still in the same town we were before, just a different street.  It is a blessing!  We have a nice size fenced in backyard that has three raised garden beds with compost already put in.  There is a two car garage, to offer plenty of storage space.  The boys love it and this is the house they were hoping for after we saw it.  This was the first time they got invested in a place after seeing it.  Our kitchen in large enough because of a breakfast nook to house both a dining table and a homeschooling table.  It is smaller in some areas and larger in others, but over all it feels like a home.  The neighborhood has plenty of families living here and we have already met some of them.  The only thing that would make this place better is if it weren’t in the city limits so I could get chickens and a cow.  Yes, as crazy as that sounds, I want them.  I am looking into miniature cows that produce enough milk to feed a family of four for a week.  But I will save this dream for later.

I should update you all on the boys now.  B had an ortho appt. last week and has new colors on his braces.  He gets them changed every time.  He also has a thicker wire on the bottom and it’s looking like more brackets will be added at his next visit in Nov.  He is wearing headgear, but only has to at night, though he has worn in during the day as well.  We are still homeschooling.  This Wednesday we will add music theory bi-monthly to his subjects.  This is being taught by a friend of ours who was classically trained in music.  She has an amazing voice and plays banjo among other instruments.  Growing up, her family played music and sang together, touring and putting out cd’s.  We are very confident in her abilities to open up the world of music to B.  B will be learning to keep a beat, which he can’t do, but needs to be able to do in order to pursue an instrument.  He will also learn how to read and write music as well. While not the most fun class, I believe he will gain a lot from it and I know his teacher is great with kids and can make it fun.  The other subjects he is studying are going along very well.  He really enjoys Latin and is wanting to teach our new neighbors what he is learning.  These lessons will really come in handy when we start studying botany in the second semester.  B is also in youth group on Wed. nights and he even did a lock in back in Aug.  He stayed up all night, but fell fast asleep in the car as N drove him home.  He had a blast and got to know a lot of the older teens.  Back in Aug, B asked us if he could help out in a program our church was starting for the kids on Thurs. nights.  My B is volunteering and giving his time to be with younger kids on Thurs for an hour and fifteen min.  Through this, I am hoping he learns to pour into others and to love and be kind.  He really does well with little kids, and we’ve had lots of parents comment on that.  But it’s so very true.  B is gentle and patient with them.  He willingly teaches and helps them do things.  Of course, we don’t always see this with his brother, but you know how that is.  While you can already see how busy B is, he might be adding two days at the gym to it.  Our gym is doing classes for middle to high school age kids.  It is half an hour every Tues. and Thurs. where they run and do other activities.  We are going to check it out this week to see if it’s something he wants to do.

Gav is Gav, always interesting and entertaining.  He is getting the hang of reading, though he likes to say he doesn’t know how.  But he can read, and quite well for the little we have focused on it.  He started a spelling book and encountered spelling words for the first time last week.  Before it was working on phonics sounds.  His list is only six words, but like his brother, he doesn’t like to write.  The struggle begins again with this one.  Thankfully, he loves math and has really taken off with it.  At this age, it’s not incredibly hard, even for him, but he really enjoys it and finds it fun.  I love when a subject is fun for them.  He is a busy one and we struggle to get through history and science now that they are a little more involved.  But I think he will get used to it, especially when we hit more of the fun stuff.  Gav got baptized a little over a month ago.  It was a big day for him.

I will leave you with the video below.  xoxo

 

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Strawberry Picking

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B showing off two large strawberries he found.

Around here, berry picking is a huge deal and once one berry is ready, they all follow in succession.  We went strawberry picking!  I think the boys had a blast and we are going to go raspberry, blueberry, and blackberry picking as well.  And quite possibly peach picking.  Still thinking about this last one as we have to travel quite a distance (think hours) to do so.  Wondering what we will be doing with all these berries?  Well freezing them for now, but have plans to make jams out of quite a bit of them when the weather cools down.  The rest will get used up in smoothies or frozen yogurt.  These berries will be eaten up by next year for sure!  More berry picking on the way!

It’s been hot here.  Yuck!  We have no a/c, so it hasn’t been super fun.  Thankfully it hasn’t been all summer and it’s just a few days here and there.  The boys and I have been getting out and going to parks.

New news:  N and I will be going on an Alaskan cruise on the 19th.    And the great thing is, everything is paid for.  Nate will be working some of the time, so I will be taking advantage of the onboard gym and sitting on the deck outside enjoying the scenery.  This is going to be a huge blessing for us and we are both looking forward to some much needed quality time.  We will get to see Juneau, Sitka, Ketchikan (all three are in Alaska), and Victoria, B.C.  If you look at a map, it’s not that far into AK, and I would really love to see more.  This is just going to give us a taste of AK and I am excited.  The boys will be at home with our neighbor as their caretaker.  They play with the neighbor kids and I have been enjoying their mom’s company.  It works out really well.  This will be our first time away for this length of time.  They are really looking forward to having friends sleepover and playing with them every day.  I will post more when we get back for sure.  I hope all is well with everyone.  Enjoy the pictures.  They aren’t much, but I was enjoying picking with the boys myself.  There was a lot of “Mom, come here” and “Look at this one”.  A little hard to snap pics with all that going on.

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Gav filling his own little bucket.

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B with our bucket. He’s such a handsome boy.

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Gav tasting the goods. He had to be sure those strawberries were tasty!

 

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Ch Ch Changes….

As the title suggests, a lot of changes are going on.  The first being a new computer!  Now I can get back to blogging, not that I did it all that frequently anyway, but you know, I can post whenever I want:)  While it’s not super important, we got rid of the laptops (except for N’s work one, that one kind of has to stick around) and bought a family computer for all of us to use.  Hmmm, I see typing lessons in someone’s future!  And just another non exciting piece of news, we got a bookshelf!  First I guess I should tell you we have ridiculous amounts of books.  Our boys bookshelves are full, like really full, as in so full B is going to need another and Gav is ready to get a bigger one.  And that’s just our children!  N and I had boxes, and by boxes, I mean 10+ of books in the garage because we ran out of bookshelf space.  We own heavy books, so we can’t just get one of the cheap ones, we have to get real wood bookcases.  And those are much more pricey.  We’ve just kind of put it off, keeping the books in boxes in the garage and hoping we didn’t need one of those.  Now we only have 4 boxes we couldn’t fit.  Big success!  And it only cost us $20 + two dvd stands we traded to get it.  Score.

Ok, now onto more exciting, or at least more relevant news.  B has braces!  What?!  Yes, you read that right.  On the 17th of this month, they were put on.  So the Monday a week before, he had two baby teeth pulled and handled it like a champ.  The following Tuesday a mold was done of his mouth and a few x-rays.  The 17th he had the braces put on.  It won’t start out a full set as he still has more baby teeth to lose on the top.  They will be placed on the permanent teeth he has now, and the others as they come in.  Head gear, to be worn at night, is looking like a possibility.

Back to school we go!  May was a rough month, where B just didn’t want anything to do with schooling.  So N laid down the law, and told B if he wasn’t going to school, he was working.  B was put to work around the house.  After a week, B said he was ready to start school, but we again started with problems, so it was back to work.  Our stubborn son has realized (at least for now) school is so much easier and this week has been a dream comparatively.  He’s had schoolwork done and has been able to play outside.  Sticking to our schedule is helping and definitely making it easier for him and me.  July will begin Latin lessons for B.  We will have finished Reading Comprehension, Spelling (hopefully), and almost done with Writing, though this last one I’m not sure about.  I don’t know if we are going to take a break or not.  We will be finishing Science and History in July/Aug. and then we will pick up cooking and typing.  I’m really going to try to limit school to two hours, and that’s including the school work that needs to be done.

Gav is reading, slowly, and just easy books, but reading.  And writing.  While he’s been able to write his letters, he’s been working on keeping them in between the lines.  He has started his spiderman alphabet book, which was a big goal for him as this is a special book.  It’s a bit more advanced than a reg letter book, so it’s had to be put off till Gav had more practice. Gav is also requesting daily to do school and has really come to enjoy it.  It makes my heart smile.  Gav has finished his cutting skills book and we will be starting his pasting book.  These are Kumon books that we’ve picked up at the store.  Gav really likes them and enjoys doing them.  The great thing is he can cut and soon paste too while we are reading our history and science lessons.  Gav continually surprises us with the things he learns and the way he interprets what is going on around him.

My little guy is growing up.  In the last few weeks, I’ve seen some behavior changes, ones that signal a new maturity has developed.  Those things I have been repeating are finally starting to sink in and we are seeing the fruit of our labor.  He has made some responsible decisions, and though little, show he is really starting to think before acting.  He has eagerly helped do things I know he would rather not do.  The boys helped pick up some weeds and bush clippings, and were rewarded with either $ or ice cream.  Gav picked $, but wanted to buy ice cream with it, and B pick ice cream.  So Gav and I ran to DQ, and he excitedly and joyously paid for his dipped cone.  He received change back, and you should have seen the delight on his face.  He felt like a big boy!  What B wanted took all his $, so he received no change back.  When Gav realized this, he felt really bad for B and gave him a quarter so he would have some $.  This was almost half of what Gav got back.  His kindness and thoughtfulness was beautiful to see.

Things at N’s work are changing.  His boss was let go at the end of May and as always, that comes with some changes.  He was working toward a particular position, which may not happen now.  The company is making some changes for the future, which we will find out tomorrow evening.  Of course, we are anxious to see if we are affected by these.  The position N was working towards would have had him home more and less travel.  He continues to do well with his company and we’ve recently experienced some perks.  We were able to get into a sold out concert by Michael W. Smith and actually had dinner with him, Nate’s boss, Nate, and Pastor Aaron.  Long story on how all that is connected.  It was really just a business dinner before the concert and didn’t really last that long.  I was so proud of the boys for behaving so well the entire time, even though they  were bored.  The link following is of a video that has gone viral, with Pastor Aaron and his little girl.  This song was part of the business talk, seeing if Michael was interested in doing it.  We shall see what becomes of it!  So who is Pastor Aaron?  Well, he is our church’s music pastor and this fall will be B’s youth pastor.

N has been playing on the church softball team this season and we have loved watching him.  Gav is the loudest (big surprise) and loves to cheer loudly for N and the team.  They have done really well this year and half the fun has been getting to know our church family a little better.

I guess that just leaves me.  Not much is changing for me, except my goal to hit the gym a little more each month.  I’ve been going, but my left knee has kept me from doing what I want and being where I wanted to be by now.  I got defeated for a little bit, but I am back in the saddle.  I feel as if I have finally reached that hurdle and my knee doesn’t bother me as easily anymore.  June was a great month and I am continuing that greatness into July.

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Snow Days

I peeked out the window tonight as I was readying the house for bed.  The snow angels the boys made today have been covered over by fresh snow.  There is little evidence that my two boys spent hours outside building a snow fort, making snow angels, running around, and digging in the still too warm ground.  It’s peaceful and silent out there, the opposite of the noise coming from it earlier.  Their laughter, talking, building, running, fighting, and screams of joy pierced the air in the daylight.  But fresh snow fell covering up little boy adventures.  Tomorrow holds promise for it all to happen again.

 

 

 

This video is  from the second day the boys went outside to play in the snow.  We are currently on our third day, but the boys won’t be heading outside.  They only lasted half an hour yesterday because of the wind and today the wind is whipping around much fiercer than the day before.  We can hear it howling from inside our cozy home.

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We Saw The Lego Movie!!

And it was epic!  That’s what the boys said, along with awesome and great and lots of other similar adjectives.  N and I enjoyed it as well, though the ending was a bit unexpected.  We saw it last Monday after we returned N’s rental car.  The boys were thrilled when they found out.  It was pretty empty too, not many people go in the middle of the day.  I believe this worked in our favor (and perhaps everyone else’s) because I think we laughed the most and probably the loudest.  There was so much in it, that we can’t wait to own it just to pause the movie to see everything in the background.  Lego sets were everywhere, some of them the expensive or hard to find ones.  Afterwards, N treated us to Cold Stone (YUM!) where we sat and talked about The Lego Movie and laughed some more.  I believe we are officially a geeky family:)  Seriously!  We’ve been looking forward to this movie since last year and I mean early last year.

Gav is sick, stuffy nose and fever.  The first real illness of the year.  I don’t count sniffles without a fever because around here they only last a few days.  So blessed to have a healthy family!  But Gav is a trooper, not letting it get him down.  I know it’s not serious if he still has all that energy.  The boys love being sick because they get juice, lots and lots of juice!  We aren’t a juice drinking family and it’s rare for us to have juice in the house.  For one, water is cheaper and far better for us.  And N and I aren’t big juice drinkers anyway.  Selfish?  Perhaps, but we are the shoppers so we kind of have a say and honestly it’s just not something we think about.  Just like when I go grocery shopping, I don’t seek out foods that I don’t like, even though N does.  I have to be reminded because it’s not very obvious to me to get those things.

B is getting new glasses.  His old ones kept breaking and we kept super gluing them back together.  They finally got to a point where that just wasn’t possible anymore.  He’s excited and I really liked the eye dr.  He was very passionate about the eyes and really should us some cool stuff.  Did you know you can see symptoms of diseases in the eyes before you ever notice them in the body?  Yep, you can.  We also got to see what eye cancer looks like in the picture that is taken of the eye.  I have the strangest knack for finding cutting edge eye dr.s .  This isn’t the first time, though it was my eye dr. in Va .He created a contact you where at night while sleeping and take out in the morning to have 20/20 vision during the day.  It had already been through the testing phase!  Incredible, right?!  I just love finding people who are passionate about what they do, it makes them better I think because they are always wanting to learn, which means they are always studying and keeping up with their chosen profession.  Besides, unfortunately it’s not often that someone loves what they do.  Inspiring!  Well all that to say, B gets new glasses which you will see in a video we are going to shoot within the next week.  He picked them out himself and he looks quite handsome.  He is growing up so fast.  B went through a growth spurt and is in the next size in pants (12) and almost there in tops (10/12).  I don’t want him to keep growing:(  But I am glad he is getting some height to him and won’t feel so short among his peers.  Though that won’t last long with everyone growing at different rates through the teen years.  I am excited for those!  B is such an amazing boy, so very caring and compassionate with those younger than him.  He has such patience too.  Though you don’t always see that when he is with Gav, when he does it’s really obvious.  I just love how he has grown more outward in showing affection.  He loves drawing/writing little love notes.  And we love receiving them:)  I really am excited to see the man he becomes.  But I am not in a hurry, time is free to slow down a little.

Well the boys are getting a little excited playing xbox.  Going to try to settle them down.  Hope all is well in your world.

xoxo

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Long Overdue

Yep, this post is aptly titled!  Sometimes I don’t know how time escapes so quickly.  The past few months have been a like a time vacuum, sucking it up without us even realizing it.  It’s Feb already, and I cannot acct for where the time has gone.  We’ve been doing the same old thing it seems.  But that can’t be possible because really we’ve done so much.

I’ll start with what we are looking forward to, The Lego Movie.  You all know how crazy the boys are about Legos, so I am sure you know we will be seeing this movie.  What you don’t know is that N and I have also looked forward to it too!  We love legos:)  In fact, we have all been collecting the Lego minfigs that are selling for the Lego movie.  Yes, even we have our own minifigs.  N is traveling so we won’t be joining the masses churning out to see this on Friday.  However, it works in our favor because we will be going during the day when it’s cheaper(!) and less crowded.  We are all excited to see this movie and have been looking forward to it for what seems like almost a year.

Also N and I are going to start the adoption process next week.  We are looking at adopting through the foster care system.  We expect this to take about a year because of all the classes we need to do and having to work around N’s schedule a little bit.  Next week is just the orientation where we will find out more info.  I have started an adoption blog for people to follow if they want to. (themacefamilyadopts.wordpress.com, it’s not set up just yet)  I know what you’re thinking, “But you don’t post often enough on here, and now your going to start another one”.  Rest assured, you will only need to check this one.  I will be posting the same things as far as the adoption process goes on both.  This blog is for family only, where the adoption one will be for both family and friends and much more public.  Just stick with this one and you all will be fine.  Besides, this one will be posted on more.  Or at least hopefully.  The boys haven’t really said much about it since we’ve told them.  I think right now it’s just an abstract idea and not quite real.  Once things start rolling, I think they will be more vocal.  With B, I think he will probably open up to his grandparents more than us.  But I am hoping that he will feel free to say how he is feeling and what he thinks.

B is still struggling to get school work done and manage his time.  Please pray for him about this.  We have started a timer method, which I have shied away from because it has caused anxiety in the past.  This seems to be working and he is done by 3 or 4pm.  He will also be schooling year round from here on out.  I know what you are thinking, but honestly we have already taken several breaks, more than public school and we are still looking at completing our year by the first week of June.  And B would like to learn quite a bit of things, and we can’t get that all done in nine months.  Summer months will be fun things, like learning to cook and sew, two things he wants to learn to do.  I am going to “make” classes to teach him and have the goal being he shops and prepares a meal by himself by the end of that.  With sewing, it will be basic skills like fixing a rip in the seam and attaching a button.  We will also focus on Latin and critical thinking skills with brain puzzles.  His actual school work will take less than an hour a day.  And we will  read books together that we have been wanting to do.  The focus is more together oriented.  He starts seventh grade in the fall, which means most of his work will be done on his own.  Something exciting happened for B.  He wrote a letter to the Lego company back in Nov/Dec.  The responded back with a one and a half page letter.  You should have seen the grin on his face!  I was impressed with their response to him and that they took the time to address what he wrote and answer him, even sharing something they are working on that his letter addressed!  Ask him about it because I know he would love to tell you and read it to you.  I am so very proud of him.  As you know he hates writing, but he the letter he wrote was very well done.  It was nice to see that he could put into practice what I had taught him last year.

Gav is learning to read and actually can read some.  He loves it and it is crazy how quickly he catches on.  We are also working on writing, but reading is really our main focus.  He is as crazy and funny as ever.  The spidey suit no longer fits and it seems he is growing out of that phase.  Sad but true.  He is having the hardest time with N traveling, and we are constantly struggling to stay in a routine.  I will try to get a video of him reading his Bob books.

N and I have decided to change churches.  We have been at this one for a year and a half, but haven’t made any friends outside of Sunday morning.  It’s not for lack of trying as we have opened our house up to others and invited them over.  We have also been active in church activities.  We are also not being fed spiritually and desperately need that.  We have been pouring into others without being poured into, which eventually led us to feeling a bit empty.  Our desire is to live life with families, and we don’t see that desire being lived out here.  It’s mainly just talk at this point.  We already have another church in mind right now that we are going to try out.  They seem to be what we are looking for and desiring for our family.  I have talked to B about this and he is a little sad, understanding of why, but feels he doesn’t really have much of a choice.  We talked about that though.  He knows why we are leaving and what we desire for him and our family.  Sometimes this happens, but I am so thankful we aren’t leaving because of something being done or said.  It’s on good terms, or as good as it can be at this point.  No one likes to hear a family is leaving the church.

I think that about catches everyone up.  Can I just say, I am jealous of all the snow you all have been getting!  It was warm enough for us to be outside on sunny days until last week.  Now it’s cold and the wind is bitter.  I sure would appreciate you all sending some of that snow our way:)

Have a good week!  xoxo

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Day # 7

Gav at the restaurant on N’s Bday.  We went out with some friends to celebrate and Gav was being goofy as always.

Gav and N fighting using light sabers.

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