Thursday, September 30, 2010

Thankful Thursdays

Today I am thankful for a gorgeous fall day. It's warm, but not hot. The leaves are changing colors and the sun is out. It was a perfect day for a walk to the park by the train tracks. The kids climbed, ran and were pushed on the swings. At the end of the park time I let them run to the top of the big hill, and then run down. When we got to the bottom of the hill a train came by...YES!!! We have missed the trains the last few times we've been at the park and Murray has not been happy about it. So, I am especially thankful that we were able to see a train and enjoy this nice weather before it comes to an end (as I know it will sooner or later).

I am also thankful that a week and a half ago as I was menu planning I just happened to think today would be a good day to make some chicken noodle soup. Murray and I have been fighting off a cold all week (and I think our noses are losing) but I am beginning to feel a bit better today and chicken noodle soup sounds and smells delicious. So, I'm hoping after not making it for months my non recipe works out well...I tried a few new things this time. Maybe come dinner time I'll be thankful we have money in the budget to order a pizza...but so far, it's smelling pretty good.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I Wake Up

For an hour and a half today this is what Murray kept saying to me as he played with trains, read books, and just stomped around his room. He was supposed to be sleeping, but every time I went back into his room to put him into his bed he said "I wake up, Mommy, I wake up!" He was very proud of himself for waking up and just didn't want to sleep...apparently the 3 minutes home from dropping Lucy at preschool were enough to keep him going. I'm hoping he sleeps well tonight and maybe even a little late in the morning. He's been sniffling and sounding hoarse and I'm afraid he might be getting the cold I've had this week. I am also hoping that this is not the beginning of the end of nap time! I am in no way ready for my sweet little boy to give up his rests that make him even sweeter in the middle of the day. He was happy until about 4:30 with no nap, but I was thankful for the nursery and midweek tonight to get us through until bedtime. Hopefully it was just a one day strike! I'll tell you would be just like Murray to give up his nap before he's fully potty trained! He just decides on his own when he's done with certain phases of "baby" whether I like it or not!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Up on the House Top

Up on the house top
click click click
fixing and painting
is our Dad Nick...
OK, well the song may be a little cheesy, but that is what we did today. After sleeping in a bit (until 7:45) after getting up twice in the night; we spent the day doing chores around the house. On an the middle of the night I told Murray to go back to sleep for a long time and he responded "I hope to Mommy." He sounded exasperated, like he was just as confused as I was as to why he was awake at 3 am. OK, back to our day...we ended up cleaning bathrooms and putting toys away. Then we all got dressed, put coats on and headed outside. Our gutters needed some cleaning in a few areas and a portion of the wood had lost its flashing so Nick painted it with some outdoor paint to protect it until we get that replaced.
The kids thought it was so great that Nick was on the roof. They ran around the house pointing and yelling/cheering for him as he worked. They also were very interested in the big tall ladder he was using to get up onto the roof. So, after waiting patiently and being great listeners they each had a turn to climb the ladder (with Nick close behind). What an adventure this was! It was great to see each of their personalities come out as they climbed. Murray was absolutely fearless, he climbed up to the top of the ladder without hesitation and Nick plopped him to sit on the edge of the roof for a minute. I wish I had my camera...he was so proud of himself being so high up!
Lucy had been talking excitedly about climbing onto the roof the entire time we had been outside. Negotiating down the age she was allowed to go onto the roof from 10 (what I suggested) to 5 (what Nick suggested). She was all about walking around on the roof with daddy. Until she got about 5 rungs up on the ladder. Then she started saying "this is really high" "I'm not too sure about this" and finally "I'm scared Daddy." She did make it to the top of the ladder and timidly sat on the edge of the roof where Murray had sat, but it was not the exciting adventure she had imagined. That being said, she was proud of herself and she is glad she did it...but I'm not sure she'll be climbing onto the roof to help anytime in the next few years! (I can't say I'm too upset about that).
After a super busy weekend, this was a perfect family day at home beginning to prepare for winter. It was great to spend time working together and to enjoy the finished projects by grilling outside and playing baseball in the yard...although I admit I watched from the window, it was a bit to chilly for me!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Thankful Thursdays

Today I am thankful for an extremely busy week. While it isn't always fun to have your schedule be so full you can hardly manage it, this gives us the opportunity to cut out the excess and to rely on people the way we normally may not. All week I have been preparing for this is as packed full of things as a weekend possibly can be. I will be juggling and managing both my time and my patience as I go from one event to the next all while being a mom and a wife. However as yesterday reached it's busy peak I was able to rely on Nick to help with lunch for the kids and more importantly in a quiet moment I was able to say "the rest will wait" and share a few special moments with my little Murray man. Sometimes a kick out of the usual routine forces us to make our usual busyness lay at the side to realize we need to make time for the important. While my house will need some TLC next week to recover from the neglect of this week, my children won't wait and I'm thankful to have the opportunity to prioritize them this week.

What you may ask is keeping me so busy? Well, this week was the start of ballet class for Lucy (unexpectedly) as well as the start of my teaching of learning lab (on the same day)...a bit chaotic but quite enjoyable. I am also doing final preparations for the mom to mom sale at our church this weekend. So rewarding once it's in full swing (and even more so when it's over), but a bit stressful getting everything ready and turning away last minute moms who want a table. What a great fundraiser for our church though! We have our district president preaching at our church this weekend and Nick and I have the privilege of dining with him and his wife along with the Bush's on Saturday...and lastly, but probably the most important, on Sunday we will welcome little Mathias into God's family as his sponsors. I am so excited to share this special day with such a special little excited I volunteered to make the cake...which will be a creative outlet in the midst of this busy weekend.

I'm thankful that we're all healthy and that I am capable of managing a busy schedule...I'm thankful for a little burst of summer weather as we head into fall...lastly I am thankful for 2 sleeping children upstairs which means I should have happy children later this afternoon. Today is a very Thankful Thursday!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What Murray's Been Up To...

Now, just in case you forgot that there are two adorable children living in the Koschmann house, I figured I'd update on Muray today as well. I can NOT believe how big he has grown. He is talking better and better each day and starting to put sentences together to describe the world around him. It's quite amazing to see. He also is still very active and very much a boy. He loves running, jumping, and hitting balls...or anything really. He's also been into building houses and towers with his legos or doing anything Lucy does. He loves his sister and loves to follow her around and play with her. They are really interacting well these days and aside from the expected arguments they play quite well together. Here's a few pictures of my sweet little boy.

This is how Murray builds houses...on top of cars!

Murray Playing cars in the kitchen. A few weeks ago Nick made a giant road on

the cardboard from our new patio table.

Murray painting! He loved it. I can't remember the last time I let him paint.

Growing Up Too Fast

Grandma Koschmann left Lucy a few back to school presents. In these was an adorable sweater with a matching belt. So, Lucy got all dressed up for school last Wednesday. I couldn't believe how big she looked. After getting her dressed and her hair braided, to the side per her request, I sent her down to tell Daddy "I'm ready to go to High School". Well, she gladly went down and announced this and then added "and then I'm off to Hollywood". Oh Lucy! What a personality this girl has.

A few days later I put her in a pair of old jeans with holes in the knees. They're from last year and she was just playing so I thought they would be fine. She became so excited and said "Thank you mommy for getting me pants like all the big kids." Lucy has apparantly been observing the fashion of the high schoolers and was excited to find out that she too could wear pants with holes in them! Yikes!!!

Crafty Lucy

Lucy has really been interested in paper, scissors and glue these days. I posted the flags she made and she has just been into everything and anything that involves these elements. She is constantly saying "I need to do a project Mom!" I do help her get started sometimes or offer suggestions, but for the most part she is doing them independently. Although they do leave a trail of paper throughout my dining room I am really enjoying her creativity and she is getting better and better at picking up after herself.

Here are few activities from last week (It's been a little busy so I'm behind on blogging). She wanted something to do so I suggested making a paper chain. I did help cut the strips and showed her how to use the glue stick and hold the circles together while they stuck. But she went to town with it. She worked on it on and off for most of Thursday and the end product was quite impressive.

See, the chain ended up being taller than she was. I couldn't believe it! She keeps talking about adding to it, so we'll have to see if she does and I'll post a picture of the "finished" product if it grows any longer.

Above is Lucy painting. She is constantly asking to get the paints out and I finally let her on a morning with Paddy was over. I was surprised that it wasn't as messy as it used to be. A testament to how much bigger the kiddos are getting. Even Murray got involved and kept his hands clean. He didn't like them getting messy so he ended up having a washcloth next to him that he kept wiping his hands on. We ended up with a a pile of paintings after this day...because after these paints we did some water colors! Once again...I'm enjoying being home so they're doing these crafts at my table!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thankful Thursdays

Today I am thankful that my little boy who can be so stubborn is so stinkin cute. He and I had a battle of the wills over nap today...he just didn't want to miss any of the action. Who can blame him? Paddy was over this morning, and usually Murray goes to sleep before he leaves, but today he wouldn't. So I knew I had a small window after Paddy left before the other kids got here. He screamed, he cried...I pulled in the big guns. I sat next to him and rubbed his back and then stood in his doorway. I used to do this when he was just transitioning to a toddler bed. I knew he would fall asleep, I just hoped it was in time! Well, he sat there staring at me. Then slowly it happened. His head bobbed once, and he jerked it back up eyes opened determined to stay awake. This went on for about 10 minutes, the whole time I was stifling a giggle...finally he laid his head down and took a two hour nap! So, I am thankful for naptime and the fact that I got to watch my little boy fall asleep. He woke up happy and ready to play.

I am also thankful for thunderstorms. What an awesome testament to creation and God caring for it. Thunderstorms just wash away the dirt and grime and liven things up a bit. It almost feels like a fresh start for the gardens. I know fall is fast upon us...although our leaves on not changing the weather has cooled down quite a bit....but it's still nice to see the grass get a bit greener just one more time! I really enjoyed the thunderstorms outside today and watching the kids watch the wind blowing the rain sideways. What a fun day!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Diary of a Potty Training Mom

So, I think I'll leave this up today as we make yet another attempt at getting Murray fully potty trained. I know he's young, but I also know that Lucy was potty trained by this point, and I know he gets it because as long as he's naked he's successful. Alas, fall is upon us and so is chilly between colder weather and my tiredness of his naked behind, we're giving underwear a try again. I'm setting the timer for 20 or 30 minute increments and having him sit.

It's 10:30 in the morning and so far we've been fairly successful. We had 3 successful potty breaks, and then a poopy accident, however he screamed for me as it was happening and cried about it. This is a step forward...he's never seemed to care about an accident before. Hooray...maybe we'll get there in the next few days! (We'll see if this optimism continues throughout the day). He just sat and didn't we'll see what happens in the next 20 minutes.

10:58 am SUCCESS!!! dry underpants and pee pee on the potty!!! Now it's time for some painting before lunch...well, at least 25 minutes of painting before we try again.

Success again!!! dry underwear and pee pee in the potty!!!

Well, we had 2 more accidents. I ignored the timer and let him go a few more minutes and he was slightly wet. Then he sat and did nothing but while eating lunch he had an accident. Thus ends the morning. He's in a diaper and taking a nap now....we'll give it another try this afternoon.

This afternoon was an epic failure. We went through 4 pairs of underwear in less than an hour. I guess he had told me he didn't want underwear and he proved it! So, he's back in a diaper. We'll give it a go again tomorrow morning...maybe we'll wear underwear in the morning and diapers after nap for the next few months? This boy is certainly throwing me for a loop!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Thankful Thursdays

Today I am thankful for quiet moments in a busy house, and folded laundry put away in drawers. It's nice when you can enjoy the end of a busy day with the task you hoped to accomplish actually accomplished.

I am also thankful that my dear friend Lisa had a healthy baby boy today. God blessing a family with a child is truly a magnificent gift and truly something to be thankful for.

and now...back to my's been a busy day!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

From our Garden to our Table

What an adventure we had at the Koschmann house tonight. We had picked over 4 lbs of tomatoes out of our garden this week (from only 1 plant) and just didn't know what to do with them. After discussing it for a few days we decided we would make an attempt at making some pasta sauce. So, we researched a few recipes online and found one that was simple and to the point. We picked a night where we thought we had nothing going on and planned to make a family event out of cooking dinner. So, when Nick arrived home we all went to the garden to get the last few red tomatoes. We then boiled water and I carefully dropped the tomatoes in while Lucy and Murray watched closely. After 2 minutes we put them in ice water and began peeling the skins off. I thought Lucy and Murray would have loved this...they did not! They thought the tomatoes were slimy and gross. So Nick and I enjoyed peeling and cubing the tomatoes, Lucy and Murray played with the ice and water. Then we all went out to play while the tomatoes drained.

Lucy helped with most of the recipe while Murray played. What an adventure to let her mince garlic and cut basil. She also added the red pepper flakes to taste (a bit too much for me...but I guess that's how she likes it). The house smelled delicious as the sauce simmered for 30 minutes. We all were able to enjoy our dinner...although Nick took his to go because he had a last minute meeting to attend. Delicious! Lucy says that tomato sauce from the store is much better than from our garden, but Nick and I strongly disagree and will definitely be making sauce again sometime!! (maybe soon if all those green tomatoes turn red...). I just enjoyed being able to show Lucy and Murray that we can make our own food. Something that I think is lost by going to the store to buy everything we need...not that I mind going to the store and buying what we need...but, it's nice to make things from scratch now and then!

Here's a few fun pictures a little closer...I think if you click on the collage it will allow you to view the collage bigger.

Lucy's First Day of Preschool

Well it's here...a new school year. As much as I'd love for summer to last forever, the start of the school year brought cooler breezes and the promise of a changing season. I'm excited for Lucy to be in the afternoon class this year because it means that we still have the morning to play. This morning we did lots of projects to keep her excitement at bay. We colored on large cardboard and made a giant "toodles" (a character from Mickey Mouse). She also created her own American Flag and used craft sticks for a giant pole. Murray thought it was a pretty great flag and wanted one of his Lucy helped create one for him. When he saw the finished project he said "beautiful". They marched around with their flags for a good 20 minutes.

Above are the pictures of Lucy and Murray with their flags....below are some of Lucy on the porch ready for school. I can't believe she's 4 and headed off to school.

Lucy was all about posing for pictures this year. 3rd year of using the

apple backpack and it's holding up great!

Lucy really wanted Murray to come up and say goodbye to her...he really wanted to go with her to preschool...and apparantly didn't want to stop to pose for pictures.

Lucy was a pro at school. While they asked us to stay with them for the first day...she really didn't need me. She was excited to check out the dress ups, although strangely she didn't want to try any on. We spent lots of time reading, building with the giant waffle blocks and playing playdough. She sat great at circle time (which was mostly information for the parents) and then sang 2 songs with much gusto. Made me glad we decided to stick with the same teacher from last year so songs and routines would be familiar. I'm excited to see what the year will bring as we make decisions about kindergarten.

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Thursday, September 2, 2010

Skip to My Boots

It's a quiet night...the kids are in bed and Nick is at work doing some counseling. So, I thought I'd give it a go to put some pictures in a blog. Nick came home from work tonight and asked the kids if they wanted to go on a puddle hunt. Of course they eagerly agreed. So after finding rain boots and getting all set we headed outside. Lucy marched down the sidewalk singing "Skip, skip, skip to my boots" she thought this was quite entertaining.

The above pictures are of them hunting puddles. Below I'll post a few of them enjoying the puddle jumping.

I know I have more pictures of Murray, but for the first few pictures the camera was out of focus...and let's face it, Murray's a boy so he just enjoyed it a bit longer than Lucy did...once Lucy had water in her boots she was more concerned with that. Murray jumped until his diaper was saggy and his pants were falling down they were so wet! All in all it was a fun pre-dinner activity.
(and I posted pics in a blog for the first time!)

Thankful Thursdays

In an effort to continue blogging I'm going to strive to write about something I'm thankful for each Thursday. As I sat through a huge rainstorm and pondered what I was thankful for I ended on this...having the ability to stay home full time with my kids.

I tried the part time work thing last school year and it wasn't for me. I am so incredibly thankful that Nick and I were blessed with being poor the first few years of our marriage which taught us how to live on next to nothing. God is good and HE has provided for us in ways we would have never imagined. After deciding to stay home again this year I will now have a full house on Tuesdays and Thursdays watching kids of 2 different friends. What a blessing! I love a full house and the joy of being able to be the one near my children is truly a gift. I realize I will never get these days back and I love being the one to answer all of Lucy's random questions. Just today she asked "why does God want fire to come to a house?" what a perfect opportunity to talk about our fallen world and God's ability to bring us back from something that hurts us or makes us sad, we also talked about God providing. So glad I was around to answer that one. So today I am thankful for my home and the ability to serve my family in it. I'm thankful for being able to answer Lucy's questions and hear all the giggles and let's be honest, the whining. What an awesome career choice I've been allowed to make to stay home and be a mother and a wife.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV)

This past week this verse has been on my mind. A friend of ours from college lost her spouse unexpectedly leaving her with twin 2 year old girls to care for and a void in her life that I can't even begin to imagine. Needless to say I have found myself in the midst of my daily life with a prayer on my lips and in my mind. Prayers for her peace and comfort, prayers that the girls will grow up and know that they were loved by their dad. Prayers that this family will find strength in God to continue on.

I've pondered this verse at various points in my life. When I was younger I remember thinking...what a ridiculous thought, no one can pray continually...without ceasing, it's impossible. When I was in college I remember meditating on this verse and striving to do just what it said. Praying as I walked between classes and praying at every moment of decision, trial or triumph...I had a lot more free thoughts in college. This tragedy has brought me back to this verse, brought me back to the realization that while most days at most moments my thoughts are not my own...they should be. While I give so much of myself as a mother, my thoughts are one thing I can take back as my own. Yes, I do still need to think about the laundry, where my children are, what day it is, what's on the calendar...but while making lunch or changing a diaper I can be praying. So that's what I have been doing. I've found myself praying more this past week...yes, praying for my friend and her family, but also for my own. Praying for my children as they assert their independence or obey what they're asked. Praying for my wonderful husband and our still young marriage

While my heart has ached this past week for my friend and her family, I have found renewed joy in praying without ceasing. It's amazing the peace God offers...if only we ask...if only we listen. I challenge you to begin your prayer...and then continue without ceasing.