Friday, June 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Seth

Happy Birthday Seth

Today our oldest son, Seth, turns 8 years old. He is such a joy to be around and is the sweetest big brother to his younger siblings. Although he loves all things "boy", he's pretty laid back and very easy going. And quite a gentleman!

We love you, Sethman! You are such a blessing to our family and we are thankful for you! Happy Birthday, big guy!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Revamping the Chore Chart

As our family continues to grow, it's been necessary to revamp the chore chart every so often. Whether due to a new home or kids getting older and more capable, it seems like I am revisiting this subject often.

This is a chart I made about three years ago. At the time, the youngest child on the chart was Sophia, who was three. As you can see, she only had the job of Toy Pick Up. I'm sure there were odd jobs we would ask her to do here and there, but this was the only official job she had. As our younger ones have gotten older, we've added them to the chart, but usually still beginning with one or two jobs at the age of three.

Our goal is to teach our children team work, service, and responsibility. Little ones love to be given jobs and their little faces just light up when you've encouraged them in their job. And I think the earlier we instill these attributes into our children, working together as a family becomes "the norm".

Here are their current ages: Chey 16, Celeste 14, Seth 7 (almost 8), Sophia 6, Chloe 4, Ethan 3. (Genevieve is 17 mos, so not officially on the chart yet. And of course, baby Jonathan is a newborn.) The most recent Chore Chart:

As you can see, due to number of "helpers" in the house, we all have very little to do day to day. I also have a separate Saturday chart with jobs like mowing, cleaning bathrooms, dusting, etc.

So what are some of the jobs your little ones are doing? And at what age do you begin actively training your little ones to do specific chores?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Funny Conversation

A Funny Conversation with the Sonic Lady

So I hit Sonic for my much needed large Diet Coke. I pull up to the window where I'm greeted by a woman who "knows" me well. She knew I had been expecting a baby and always asked "how much longer" every time I pulled up. So, today she kindly asks how much longer I have until baby. I reply, "Oh, I had a boy three weeks ago!" Without hesitation, she then exclaims, "And you're driving ALREADY?"

Ummm......okay......perhaps she thought I said three DAYS. Though I'm sure I've probably driven three days after a baby!

So I say a bit louder, "I had him three WEEKS ago", expecting her to say "OHHHH". But no....she continues to be in utter disbelief that I was out driving a mere three weeks after a baby. Confused, I asked her what the big deal was, and she said she did NOTHING for forty days after having a baby. FORTY DAYS? No driving, no sweeping, no HOLDING THE BABY (SAY WHAT???), no nothing! She then proceeds to tell me that they (whomever "they" is) wrapped up her abdomen and chest tightly for two weeks to help the belly go back down. Interesting! Of course, now I'm dying to know how one nurses if the chest is wrapped up. So I ask! She said she didn't nurse!

So by now lots of questions are running through my mind such as.........if you don't hold the baby, how do you care for the baby and BOND? Part of the joy of a new baby is the time spent holding and cuddling this sweet creation. Not to mention.......who's doing all the work when she's on this forty day rest bit? But I refrained from asking.

The funny thing about this conversation, aside from taking place in the drive-thru, was.......I'm thinking how very strange all of this sounded.....but from her reaction, I'm sure she was thinking *I* was the strange one, especially upon hearing that I have eight children. I mean, as much as I'd love to relax for a time after having a baby, there is just too much to be done for me to sit around for too long. Plus, I usually feel great within a few days of giving birth and am ready to get back to my routine.

It was clear this was probably a cultural practice. She was a very nice lady and it was quite interesting to hear a polar opposite mentality than mine. It was just funny how we each reacted surprised over the differences, but especially over the "driving already?" comment.

To each his own, right? ;-)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Celeste

We're so grateful for fourteen wonderful years with our sweet Celeste! It's been a privilege to watch her blossom into a mature young woman. She's bright, funny, caring, responsible, beautiful, and most importantly, she loves the Lord. She can cook up a storm in the kitchen, and makes the BEST brownies in the world. She can care for all of her younger siblings and manage the household, on her own. Did I mention she's amazing?

She's an incredible big sister......always willing to help. She's witnessed the births of her last six siblings, and is always ready for more babies.

We love you, sweet girl! You are special and a blessing to our lives! Happy birthday, Celeste, for you were fearfully and wonderfully made, indeed!

Ethan and His Sword

Always Prepared for Battle

Do you think he's dreaming of warding off fierce, fire breathing dragons?

Boys are so much fun! :-)

Friday, June 05, 2009

It's a Boy!


Jonathan Charles arrived June 3, 2009 at 4:16pm. He weighed in at 8 pounds 2 ounces and was 20 inches long. We are so happy to welcome our third son to our family.

What a handsome little guy!

It's time to go home!

Welcome home, sweet Jonathan. You are such a gift and we love you!

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