So much has happened since I last posted. I'll go through my calendar and fill you in.
I put my two youngest daughters back in our local charter school where they're in first and second grades. I still have one daughter at home who is waiting for a spot in the third grade to open up. It's been good for her at home, but I am not diligent enough lately to enforce the learning that should be taking place. One son is changing schools, so will only go to the classroom two days a week instead of five.
We celebrated our 33rd anniversary. Joel had his 13th birthday, but unfortunately he was sick so we didn't celebrate like a 13th birthday should have been celebrated. Isaiah and Elizabeth both had their birthdays as well.
I decided that I wanted to get a job so I enrolled in a First Aid/CPR class, a food handler's course, got a typing certificate, applied for jobs, took tests, and went on job interviews. I interviewed at the post office and a school district. After sitting in the post office training and interview I knew that was not the job for me. My life would not be my work and that is what they were asking of the job applicants. I accepted a job at the school as a special education classroom asst. three hours a day, but had a knot in my stomach for a few weeks, sicknesses and personal issues kept creeping up in my family, and so I decided not to go forward with the job. It was a perfect job, perfect hours, but my job is in my home, for now.
My girls have been taking Amharic classes on Fridays. I took a class or two, but got behind and haven't been able to sit in the last few classes. Hopefully once they start back up in January I'll be able to sit in on the classes and catch tidbits of information that are handy to know.
James earned his driver's license. It helps to have another driver in the house. We bought back a car we had given to Sarah, and plan on letting James use it to drive around, but somehow I have lost both sets of keys. I have no idea how that happened, but it did. As Joe has been at home less and less it is really nice to have another driver around.
Speaking of Joe........he's going into the Coast Guard and has an April 15 boot camp date. I cried for days every time I thought about it. The thought that he won't be here any longer was tearing me up inside, but I know it's what he wants and part of his life plan, so in that I am happy for him. Just sad for me that I won't get to talk and see him every day. He's now working at Turning Point full-time since his first college semester is over. He would leave mid-semester so he withdrew his enrollment for the second semester.
My 8th graders have been learning about the Holocaust. They've been reading their textbooks, non-fiction, one went to the Museum of Tolerance, and two had two survivors come speak to their classroom. I'm glad they're learning about such important things and seeing and hearing first hand from those who experienced it. The speakers that came to the classroom were about the same age at the time of the holocaust as the students they were speaking to. That left an impression, to be sure.
I went to Jesse's for ten days. He and Sage have a new baby girl, Jaidyn Avery. She's as cute as a button. She gave her mommy a hard time during labor, but we all agreed she was worth it. Sage delivered at a birth center and I was able to attend. It was my first time in a birth center and I was impressed it. Even though her labor was very hard, she was able to work through it with Jesse's help and she did it medication free. The day before I left Jaidyn decided to make her appearance so I only spent about a day with her, but ultimately I wanted to be there for Jesse and Sage during the birth should they need any help, and that goal was accomplished.
I've had my sewing machine out and attempting to sew here and there. I made a wet bag for Arianne for her cloth diapers. I'm trying to sew a pair of rubber pants for a baby. I've also been working on a Bucilla Christmas stocking, but I need really good lighting for that, so if we're watching 24 then I can't work on it.
My son-in-law is here for the month of December to spend time with his family. Unfortunately he has to go back next week, and I know his little family will have a hard time without him. Hopefully time flies and May comes sooner than later.
We were able to go on a field trip to the beautiful San Diego zoo yesterday. Steve and I had our three grandchildren three and under, plus our youngest three girls. We did very well and had a great day. Steve took the first picture before we went in. He wanted some reference if anyone got lost during the day. When traveling with small children it happens. A lot. We didn't lose anyone yesterday!!
One time I lost a son there for forty-five minutes. I was a nervous wreck. He on the other hand was walking around looking at the monkeys. Another time I lost a son when we were there with elderly relatives. We had stopped and were debating if we should go on the bus tour or not. He took his time into his own hands and actually went to the bus tour spot and stood in line. Once we went to LEGOLAND and a son told the security officers he was "losed." And yet another was lost at Disneyland. Our youngest son got away from us. My husband told security our son wouldn't ask for help (he's a non-talker to strangers and pretty much to people he knows anyways) he would just walk around until found. And that's what he did.
Another strategy we have used before is placing a business card or our number in the child's pocket in case they're lost.
One of the adoption seminars I've attended in the past suggested having photo albums of pictures of and for your adopted children. As I thought about it I that was something that was missing in our home. It wasn't intentional, it just played out that way.
Back in 2003 a wildfire raged through our area and we had to leave everything behind. The next time a threat came through I grabbed all the photo albums. Since then though I had not had pictures printed much less placed them in photo albums.
My older kids have tons of pictures, but not so much for my younger crowd. I decided to start tackling that task. I bought a big photo album from Target that holds six 4 x 6 photos and more photo pages can be purchased to keep adding. So far I have the photos from when Addis & Abi Mulu first touched the water from the Pacific Ocean. I don't think they had ever been to the ocean since Ethiopia is landlocked. I think they had been to a lake before in Ethiopia, but not the ocean.
Pics are from June 2008
These are two of the pictures included. Weren't they cutie pies?
I have been preparing all summer to school my three youngest girls at home. We did well on Tuesday, our official start day. However, my face froze up (I'm guessing from stress) and my 2 1/2 year old grandson wasn't real keen on the idea of keeping quiet during school (I was taking his playmates away.)
A few of the girls came with me to pick up their older sibs from school, and well the enticement of friends, fun, and so-called freedom won over. We enrolled them the next day. Except.....the classes were now full and my second grader needed to go back into the first grade class. One of my girls was repeating first grade anyways, but in many ways she does better than the one who was promoted to second grade. My girls were not happy campers.
A few days went by and by Friday two of the girls withdrew from school. Two second graders sitting in with first graders was NOT going to cut it in their book. Then the third grader (the one who really needs to NOT be in a group setting) wanted to withdraw also. This week they're all three home.
We received permission from our church to use a classroom during the day so we could have somewhere quiet to go. Except two mornings a week BSF is there, which means we shouldn't be.
I'm tired. Do I REALLY want to do this all year long? I've done this for twenty-five years now. These girls put a different spin on it though. All three are high-maintenance and low tolerance for each other which are two reasons I did want to keep them home this year. The bonding. Between them. Between us for the third grader. She is absolutely a different child when she is not in a group. I thought about this yesterday and it could be that the classroom setting takes her back to her time in the orphanage, and there was where she was criticized and had to look out for her self.
We're trudging through our A Beka readers, our Saxon Math, our Rod & Staff spelling books, and loving our Blessed Heritage history.