Snowy FHE

The snow started falling last Monday, and we had a lovely FHE activity. We all ventured into the snow and played around. Because I am blogging a week late, I can’t remember anything beyond having fun in the snow. I assume Monday was a happy day.

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School term organization

I am so excited! I spent most of Sunday afternoon and evening planning out our 2017 school year. I stumbled into some wonderful Christian home schooling sites, and I stole some ideas from them. My favorite site suggested naming the school terms after things that will point us to Christ. I stole the names and themes of her first four terms straight out, and then I tweaked the remaining terms to conform to the restored gospel.

Our terms are: Epiphany Term: Jan 2-February 10. During this term we will focus our devotionals on the manifest divinity of Jesus Christ. We will celebrate the coming of the Magi and also focus on the baptism of Jesus, the wedding at Cana, and Peter’s declaration that Jesus is the Christ.

Lent Term: February 20-March 31. During this term we will focus on our need for repentance and the atonement of Christ. We will discuss the cross of Christ.

Ascension Term: April 10-May 19. During this term we will focus on the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. We will focus on the omnipotence of God.

Apostolic Age Term: June 21-July 21. During this term we will focus on the establishment of the early Christian church. We will read the writings of Paul.

Restoration Term: July 31-September 1. During this term we will focus on the restoration of the original church of Christ through the prophet, Joseph Smith. We will focus on early church history.

Fulness of Times Term: September 11-October 19. During this term we will study the teachings of modern prophets. We will discuss what constitutes the blood and sins of our generation, and we will talk about how the gospel illuminates the way in our day and age.

Millenium Term: November 1-December 8. During this term we will study the second coming of Jesus Christ. We will discuss the need for preparation and why we look hopefully toward this great event.

Obviously, we will do additional things during our homeschool time besides having gospel conversations and scripture study. But I love the idea of naming our terms after Christian themes that will point us toward Christ.  I am going to quote Melodie Adams, who (as far as I can tell) came up with this wonderful idea. This is what she says about her school Epiphany school term:

“I want my children to see that Jesus Christ is our greatest treasure, and that in adoration of who He is and thankfulness for what He has done, we need to use our time, energy, money, and talents for His glory.  In response to His grace, we take dominion of the realm He has given to us and make it a more beautiful place.  This includes both our physical surroundings (household chores) and in our relationships with others (etiquette or manners).”

I’m so excited. But for this to work, I need to get to bed so I have some energy for tomorrow!

Ammon in his bear hat

I have a minute while Ammon is napping and the girls are watching Saturday’s Warrior, so I thought I would throw up a post with some oldish pictures. I forgot to post these before, so here they are!

Ammon loooooves his bear hat and bear mittens. He will often bring them to one of us and have us put them on him. Then he will beam and wander around proudly while we ooh and ahh. Ammon actually loves to accessorize in general. And by accessorize, I mean he loves to wear socks, shoes, hats, and gloves. The fact that he doesn’t immediately tug the above things off is a marvel (to me, at least. At his age the girls couldn’t keep their hats on to save their lives.).

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Lydia is the best babysitter. Sometimes if we absolutely need to get something done, we just close the door on these two. Lydia is extremely conscientious and attentive, and Ammon loves his older sister.

Lydia is the best babysitter. Sometimes if we absolutely need to get something done, we just close the door on these two. Lydia is extremely conscientious and attentive, and Ammon loves his older sister.

The day after Thanksgiving

This morning we went to breakfast with Vince and Jordan. We intended to go to Joe’s Diner, but it was closed. We wandered down State Street, and the first open restaurant was Yamato’s, a Japanese restaurant. I’ve never had Japanese food for brunch, but hey–I didn’t have to cook it, so great!

15181165_10209075386815491_4463213463529953036_nAfter brunch, Abe took the girls to Qualtrics. He was able to work (sort of) while they played in the building.

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I put Ammon down at home and he took a four hour nap. I couldn’t believe that tender mercy. I was so tired from yesterday that I slept a lot while he slept.

We had dinner tonight with Karin, Jay, and Jere. It was great to see all of them.

Now Abe and I are going to watch Captain America. We are working through the Marvel movies slooooowly. I also want to watch I Capture the Castle because I just finished reading the novel. The protagonist is so charming in the novel that I am a little scared to watch someone try to portray her, but I did love the book so much that I am willing to risk  it just to dip back into that world for a bit. However, we certainly don’t have time for both movies tonight. Maybe tomorrow…

Happy Thanksgiving!

Behold the labors of the day:

img_0959The three pies I also baked did not make it into the picture. My mom is the unsung hero in all this who did dishes the entire time I was cooking. I cooked all day, I think. That means she did dishes all day. Thank you, Mom!!!

While we were in the kitchen, Abe took the kids, Vince, and Jordan (who arrived last night from L.A.) to Qualtrics.

img_0945 img_0941 img_0936 img_0933 img_0934Nick joined us for dinner and we had a very fun, lively conversation about politics. He enlightened us all.

And now, for my bed.

FHE with Jan, George, and the Marshalls

I didn’t blog last night because I fell into bed at 9:30pm. I was tired.

Even though I gave this girls the week off, Lydia and I still did an hour and a half of music. I folded six loads of laundry and baked rolls and cookies. Oh! And Abe and I ran in the rain, which was soooo fun.

We had dinner in the evening with the Marshalls and Jan and George. Chelsea made the most delicious soup and we all had a grand time.

After dinner Chelsea told a Bible story, and then we sang Over the River and through the Woods while Jan showed us the pictures. She ended up reading most of the book to us because we all only knew the first verse.

After that we listened to Native American pan flutes and helped each child do some straw weaving. I felt like it was a success.

Abe’s phone with pictures of us weaving is at work. But I have pictures from earlier in the day as follows:

I spotted Mary falling asleep on Lydia and grabbed my phone camera. Lydia thought it was funny until after I took the picture. Then this scene dissolved into a whiny, "Maaaaryyyy, get off!!!" ...Mary thinks it's hilarious when she annoys Lydia, so of course she stayed on. Luckily I was saved by the coming of the garbage truck. Explanation to follow in subsequent caption.

I spotted Mary falling asleep on Lydia and grabbed my phone camera. Lydia thought it was funny until after I took the picture. Then this scene dissolved into a whiny, “Maaaaryyyy, get off!!!” …Mary thinks it’s hilarious when she annoys Lydia, so of course she stayed on.

My dad taught me to love garbage trucks. When we lived in Rome, he always made a big deal about watching the garbage trucks come around, and we would cheer them on from the window. My kids are equally fascinated with this event.

My dad taught me to love garbage trucks. When we lived in Rome, he always made a big deal about watching the garbage trucks come around, and we would cheer them on from the window. My kids are equally fascinated with this event.

Weekend post

Abe is basically having a break down from fourth quarter stress. He is contributing an amazing amount of work and energy toward our family this weekend in spite of the fact that he is coming apart at the hinges. We’re so grateful for how hard he works and are praying things let up soon so that he can start feeling better.

On Friday we took the kids to the new Orem playground. They loved it. Abe really loved it too. My favorite was when he was begging the girls to try some of the new slides because he wanted an excuse to try them himself.

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On Saturday we picked up our turkey in Salt Lake and then walked around Temple Square. We spent a lot of time in the basement of the North Visitor’s Center. I saw a sister from my mission, but I couldn’t remember her name!! Isn’t that crazy? It’s been over ten years since I left on my mission. Wow.

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Today I taught a lesson on teaching the gospel. It was surprisingly enjoyable.

This afternoon Abe read to Ammon. We caught the excitement on video.

William Wilberfoce, my hero.

In case I’m too tired after book club to blog…

Today I’ve spent most of the day madly reading about William Wilberforce. I am hosting book club, and so I made sure to finish the book that I picked out. Phew. Except–so much more than phew. I am now in absolute awe at the example of Christian discipleship that was William Wilberforce.

In terms of a mere mortal following the Master, I doubt he has had many equals. He did it all! He was a relentless, faith-filled, inspired, clear-eyed champion of abolition. He almost singlehandedly reformed the brutal, godless cultural norms of 18th century England. He championed the rights of the laborer, the rights of women, the rights of children. He loved and championed the rights of animals. He was one of the greatest orators in the golden age of oratory. He was a most devoted husband, and he fathered six children–and retired from public office to spend more time with his children (unheard of in his day).

He achieved the impossible. He brought about the abolition of slavery!!!!!!

He was also so charming, witty, cheerful that he determined–and succeeded!!!–at making Christianity “fashionable” again. He was the ultimate evangelist, and made lists of topics that he could broach with each of his individual friends to bring them closer to Christ. He was not a secular deist or a Christian in name only. He was a converted Christian, a servant of Christ. He loved Jesus. And he did all this while suffering immense physical pain his entire life long. His frail form housed his titan spirit.

While I read, Ammon toddled around his room playing quietly. The girls wreaked havoc on the house. I will pay for this in my pre-book-club clean-up, but for now, I am okay with it.

Here’s what I found when I ventured downstairs during Ammon’s nap:

I had neglected to attend to their lunch. No matter! They fixed it themselves. :)

I had neglected to attend to their lunch. No matter! They fixed it themselves. 🙂

Ammon pre hair cut

Yesterday Ammon got a haircut. I only have before pictures because once the actual cut started, he started screaming, crying, and convulsing. Poor little thing. I’ll try to remember to take an after picture tomorrow because I didn’t take any today either.

Ammon's hair pre-cut. I also took pictures at the actual hair cut, but those are on my phone far away from my comfy bed right now.

Ammon’s hair pre-cut. I also took pictures at the actual hair cut, but those are on my phone far away from my comfy bed right now.

Ammon shared his "K" at the baby story time.

Ammon shared his “K” at the baby story time.

Today I have been racing to finish my book, Amazing Grace. It’s about the story of Wilbur Wilberforce. Abe and I are watching the movie tonight and so far the book is so much better.

Pictures of play

We had a big day schooling and practicing, so I was glad when the children finally got a chance to play.

We had an impromptu play date with the Marshalls while Lydia and Olivia were in Let's Play Music.

We had an impromptu play date with the Marshalls while Lydia and Olivia were in Let’s Play Music.

Most of my shots are action shots, but I'm including them anyway.

Most of my shots are action shots, but I’m including them anyway.

We are so impressed with our neighbor, Robert. He's only twelve years old and he was entertaining all of the little kids so well! He even escorted kids home and played with Ammon. Abe came in marveling, and we all agreed.

We are so impressed with our neighbor, Robert. He’s only twelve years old and he was entertaining all of the little kids so well! He even escorted kids home and played with Ammon. Abe came in marveling, and we all agreed.

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