Wednesday, February 29, 2012
It's hard to believe our first baby is 8 years old! She is a sweet, kind, loving, helpful, smart, beautiful little 8 year old girl. She has a love for her baby sister (the other siblings too, but the baby usually gets the most spoiling), reading, horses, drawing, all animals really,nature, catching lizards, and telling jokes. She just started piano lessons and art lessons, so she's excited about that. Of course, she is a blessing to us and we are thankful God gave us the privilege of being her parents!
We love to plan birthdays around here and there's been much discussion in the last year about what theme Betsy Grace wanted for her 8th birthday. I think half the fun of planning birthdays is brainstorming ideas and jumping from one to the next until finally a few weeks or maybe month or two the theme is finalized! We went from an elephant theme immediately after her last birthday, to dogs, to a few other things I can't remember and finally she landed on a horse theme. Of course, I loved that idea because it was easy and I also love horses! We weren't doing a big party this year since we did that for her 7th birthday, so we invited our two sweet neighbor friends for a little vintage horse birthday party last Friday, which was her actual birthday.
The first thing we did was paint some cute little bobble head horses. Andrew insisted on painting too. Don't have a clue why I didn't get him a horse to paint...he painted a birdhouse instead.
Next came presents. She got a Little House on the Prairie craft book from her sister. Mommy and Daddy gave her a new 18 inch doll book and dress to match the book character, the Lady and the Tramp DVD, and her very own purple bible with her name engraved on it. I'm happy to say that was the thing she seemed most excited about. She has been reading it every night before bed and is taking it to church to follow along with her Sunday school teachers and during worship. Haylee gave her a very special present which was a shirt she sewed herself. It was actually her very first sewing project and she made it for Betsy. Very sweet. Hannah gave her some play horses and a Littlest Pet shop pet. What a blessed little girl!
Time for cake! We had so much fun making this cake. We did a strawberry pound cake (so it was pink inside!) with cream cheese frosting. The bottom two layers are 8 inch rounds and the top layer is a 6 inch round, I think. I made the horse out of fondant using this tutorial. Betsy Grace wanted an aqua cake with some pink and yellow thrown in, so we did the frosting in aqua and used fresh flowers to make it girly and colorful. The grass is coconut dyed with food coloring. I did the fence out of large pretzel sticks. Of course, I used my adorable chocolate mushrooms from World Market and just had to add a few tiny little yellow chicks as a surprise for Betsy. She loved it and I think it might be one of my favorite cakes!
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 10:50 PM
Thursday, February 23, 2012
Just a few cute pictures of our baby cowgirl. She's obsessed with shoes and whenever we are missing some shoes we know who the culprit is! Here she is very proud of herself because she snagged Andrew's cowboy boots and put them on the right feet by herself.
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 9:35 PM
Monday, December 5, 2011
We walked in to find the charming scene of Miss Lindsay sitting on the couch drawing pictures with Andrew and Betsy Grace. Scarlett playing the piano, and Juliana toddling around with a book in her hand. All is calm, all is quiet, all is happy. And then.....CHAOS!!! As I'm trying to talk to Lindsay and get the report, Andrew and Scarlett are fighting over who is going to bounce up and down on Ryan's legs. Betsy is interrupting every few minutes to explain her drawing, Juliana is whining to be held. I find rotten oranges in our fruit bowl, Ryan is trying to pass out medicine and vitamins in preparation for bed, then a wrestling match ensues in the playroom, someone is running in the house and careening around the Christmas tree. And believe it or not, Lindsay says they were good minus one small hitting incident involving Andrew and Scarlett's face.
After Lindsay is gone, we sit down to do our advent reading for the night which was thankfully, rather calm. Then, bedtime routine begins. Ryan puts the baby on the floor to change her diaper only to find that she has exploded out the back. There isn't much that rattles Ryan, but poop on the floor just about puts him over the edge, so I change the baby (on the changing table!) while he cleans it up. That disaster is over. Phew! Once the baby is in bed, I turn to my little man. He is potty trained now, but we still put a diaper on him at night. So, after his potty trip we get his diaper on and not 5 minutes later he's running to the toilet yelling, "Gotta stinky! Gotta stinky!" Really, we couldn't do that 5 minutes ago when he was on the toilet? I take his diaper off and he takes care of business, runs off to play. Less than 5 minutes later, he's running to the toilet yelling "Gotta stinky! Gotta stinky!" Seriously? Am I stuck in the movie Groundhog Day? So in the rush, I rip his diaper off as he runs. I follow him in order to help him take care of business and we return the living room to put the diaper back on, only to find that, without getting too graphic, I guess there was an "escape" into the diaper, which landed on the floor right under Ryan's propped up feet in our mad dash to the bathroom. Really?? Two poop incidents on the floor in one night? Not one hour after we got home from our blissful day out without the kids? Talk about a harsh return to reality! As Ryan was cleaning up the second poop incident and I was putting yet another diaper on my little poopin' machine, I could only laugh. I've always said that the last almost 8 years of my life have been about poop and snot. Wow, did they prove that last night!
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 9:21 PM
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 8:43 PM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
The Tooth Fairy is a bit annoyed tonight because she bought some special magic fairy dust a few months ago from Hobby Lobby and when she needed it tonight she could not find it! The Tooth Fairy is organizationally challenged, but very optimistically creative. She did finally find the magic fairy dust and stealthily sprinkled it on the bedroom windowsill, dresser, and pillows of two sweet little girls who left notes for her.
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 11:06 PM
Monday, May 2, 2011
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 11:54 AM
Monday, April 25, 2011
Saturday, April 23, 2011
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
With a little help from the girls we recycled an old wreath, some old silk flowers, some butterflies and birds bought for previous birthday cakes and made ourselves this spring and summer wreath for our front door. Don't those colors cheer you right up? I love eye candy!
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 12:00 PM
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
I took these pictures of Scarlett the other day in her Indian girl costume for her 5th birthday party invitation. She is having an Indian Princess party. Not sure how we're going to pull that off yet, but I love that she wants something different and soooo Scarlett. She's always been fascinated by Native Americans. Not sure why, but Pocahontas is her favorite "princess" and she loves to do an Indian Rain Dance for us.
Scarlett is our happy girl. She is a glass is half full kind of person. I love that about her. Probably because I tend to be a glass half empty. I wish I were more like her, but her example is helping me. Amazing, huh?
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 9:11 PM
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
A few of our daily blessings around here in the past week:
1. This is the campground we were supposed to camp at this past weekend. Unfortunately, the weather didn't cooperate. In fact, the weather basically said, "You want to camp this weekend? I'll show you how much you want to camp!" And then the weather proceeded to dump all the rain it's been holding back for the last several weeks in which it was beautiful (perfect camping weather). So, we decided not to go. I mean it's not too much fun being stuck in an extremely small camper with 4 kids for two days. No reason to risk it, if we could avoid it, know what I mean? It's been raining ever since I think... Oh wait, there was one afternoon this week where it wasn't raining. More on that later. So, here's why not going camping was a blessing.
Coincidentally, some of the McCabe cousins were coming to the zoo on Saturday, so we were able to meet them there and then they came over to the house afterwards for a visit. We don't get to visit with these guys very often, so it was a real treat to have them and so much fun. Those McCabes and Holladays are hilarious!
So, we decided to ride out to the campground to check it out on Sunday after the rain let up for a little while. Yes, we were going to camp there sight unseen. It is close to where we live, about 45 minutes away. It's a Yogi Bear campground which is supposed to be kid friendly and have lots of activities, etc. Since we were there, I had to get a quick picture. (Excuse some of these pictures. The ones that are a little blurry were taken with my phone) We let the kids out of the car for about 2 minutes. Long enough to snap a picture with Yogi and long enough to spark a serious tantrum thrown by none other than Hurricane Andrew! You can see the beginning of it here. Don't ask me what it was about, I don't remember. Take it from me, it was completely irrational and that seems to be his MO these days...Love him though, who wouldn't when...on to blessing #2
2. Yep. That's my boy. Winking at me. He has learned to wink. He can only do one eye and if he tries to do the other eye he holds it down with his fingers. Why, you ask is this a blessing. Well, I'll tell you. It's a blessing because he knows just how to charm his Mama with his little wink. I'll turn around and there he is out of the blue looking at me and winking. Or he's sitting at the table eating breakfast, catches my eye and winks. Or he walks up to me, winks his precious eye and then puts his head on my knee and says "I wuv you, Mama!" Where did he learn this stuff? I'm putty in his hands, which leads me to blessing #3.
3. It's hard to tell from the picture but that is the snowman family I drew on the driveway with sidewalk chalk on the afternoon where we had no rain. See, little man and I have this thing. We sit on the driveway and he asks me to draw him a snowman. He asks me to draw a Daddy snowman, a Mommy snowman, and a baby snowman. He is very specific and they must have eyes, noses, mouths, and "feets". Yes, "feets" So, I draw stick feet and he laughs and laughs and thinks it's wonderful. He doesn't even care that I can barely draw snowman families! And that brings me to blessing #4.
4. This little joy named Juliana, who was watching Andrew while he was watching me draw snowman families. This is her spot while we're playing outside. She is crawling everywhere, so she has to be confined to her car while we're on the driveway. So, she was watching Andrew and laughing because he was laughing. She pretty much laughs at anything and she smiles so easy. She's a happy, happy girl, but with an Irish temper, let me tell you! "We won't talk about that now. We'll talk about that tomorrow. After all tomorrow is another day" (inserting Scarlett O'Hara wisdom here). On that note, on to blessing #5.
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 9:54 PM
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
I went to a homeschool conference this weekend in Greenville. It was really great and I appreciate my sweet husband who stayed home on Friday and Saturday to take care of the kids so that I could go. When I came back I heard that sometime during the two days and one night that I was gone they had Moes, Papa Johns, and Krispy Kreme. I decided I didn't want to hear anymore. I don't know what they ate for lunch, but I can only imagine it had something to do with McDonald's, Burger King, or Chick Fil-A...
Anyway, I went with a few girlfriends and it was a great girls time as well as a motivating, encouraging, and fun time at the conference. I always come away from a conference re-energized and excited about the privilege of teaching my children. everyday. I'm probably in the vast minority when I say this, but walking through the vendor hall at a homeschool conference must be what it's like for my children to walk into Toys R Us! It is curriculum, literature, and educational tool heaven!
I won't bore you with anymore details from the conference except one. I was excited that the creator of the curriculum I'm using was going to be there and even speaking at several of the workshops. When I was choosing a curriculum a few years ago I was thrilled to find My Father's World which not only had a strong emphasis on the Bible in addition to the obvious subjects, but it has a unique and easy way of combining all subjects except for language arts and math with all age groups. So, all my kids are learning the same Bible, history, and science but doing it at their own levels. Here they are making their own Tower of Babel using toothpicks and Play-Doh. Obviously, they all have different interpretations and abilities but they're all making a Tower of Babel and having a great time doing it! Learning how to problem solve as their towers can't stand up to the weight of the Play-Doh, or when the toothpicks come up short.
After hearing the speaker from My Father's World at the conference, once again the Lord confirmed to me that we are on the right track when it comes to curriculum and I can't wait till next year when we begin Adventures in My Father's World where we'll be doing American History along with our Bible History.
Betsy Grace's Tower of Babel
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 11:52 AM
Thursday, March 17, 2011
May God give you...
For every storm, a rainbow,
For every tear, a smile,
For every care, a promise,
And a blessing in each trial.
For every problem life sends,
A faithful friend to share,
For every sigh, a sweet song,
And an answer for each prayer.
Juliana Rose McCabe 6.6.10
As seen in the Scrap Girls newsletter here.
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 8:47 PM
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
So, I was fixing lunch and Betsy Grace was on the back porch drawing on the easel. Well, I thought she was drawing. She told me she had a surprise for me. After putting her off because I had to change a diaper, finish lunch, etc., I was finally ready to see the surprise. She was so excited to show me. I figured it was just another drawing of a house and some flowers, clouds and sun. I was wrong! And wow, was I excited to see this when I walked out there!
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
We have been memorizing the verses from the book of Proverbs all year. This is one of them. She remembered it, wrote it from memory and even spelled almost everything right! Now, we write the Proverb of the week, every week. We practice them every day, and they even recite them spontaneously here and there, but this was the first time that Betsy Grace took it upon herself to write one down from memory on her own. I am so proud of my girl and that she is learning to love God's Word, hide it in her heart, and apply it to her life! THAT'S the beginning of wisdom!
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 3:37 PM
Saturday, March 12, 2011
Posted by Silver Swan Mama at 9:30 PM