Friday, November 30, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

 On the Monday before Thanksgiving Sophie had a Thanksgiving play in her classroom.

 She was a Native American dancer.  No lines, just dancing.

We had to go to school until noon on Wednesday, but we headed out for Texarkana right away.  We didn't make it there until almost 8.
 We had a very interesting Thanksgiving due to this little relationship.  John Curtis loved Uncle Erick's dog, Bartlett but we're pretty sure he was allergic to him.

Although you can't tell it here, his coughing and wheezing progressively got worse.  He started having a hard time breathing, which eventually landed us at a hotel and later in the ER.
Not before we ate some yummy Thanksgiving food, though.
We still managed to have some fun with family.

All is well now, but I did a horrible job taking pictures due to all the excitement.  Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

November Moments

 We have had such a busy fall this year that we have treasured all the little moments of freedom and play.

JC has been gathering acorns to help the animals get ready for winter.  He even made the squirrels a nice warm home with a Kleenex bed and their bowl of acorns already in it.  We have the most pampered squirrels in the neighborhood!

Election Night fun!
Our maps weren't quite as cool as CNN's, but hopefully the kids learned a lot.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Sock Hop 2012

All ready to go!
 Practicing at home
Sophie's Sock Hop was first

Mommy joined in the twist

I didn't get much video of Sophie since she's done the same dances every year (in the same clothes - thank you G-Momma for making her poodle skirt!)

That afternoon we went back for JC's

 He LOVES his little partner

 Daddy joined in this time

Thursday, November 8, 2012

A Slight Rant and an Opportunity

The summer after my freshman year in college I took a 10 day trip to Haiti to meet Roselene, a little girl I had been sponsoring through Compassion International. We worked with some local missionaries and one afternoon I rode with them to pick their daughter up from school.  We bounced across open fields, crossed dry creek beds and finally came upon a building literally in the middle of nowhere.  We walked into the open door to a classroom and I fell in love.  This was what I wanted to do with my life.  I wanted to teach somewhere on the mission field.  In Haiti I had learned the statstics.  The missionaries' daughter was one of the lucky ones.  I had seen the kids playing in the streets when they should be in school.  I knew that only those who could afford it were educated.  I knew this was a large part of the country's problem.  But I was going to make a difference. 

I came home and studied education with a purpose.  I wasn't majoring in "pre-wed" like all of my peers in the college of education.  I had a direction, a calling.  And then I fell in love.  By my senior year I had joined the others as I looked down the row one day to see hand after hand with little solitaire diamonds.  Hubby was off to seminary so I entered a different mission field teaching some underpriveledged kids in Waco.  Then my own babies came and consumed my life 24/7,  and now they are being taught by their own wonderful teachers and I find myself teaching not-so-underpriveledged 4 year olds.

This morning I kissed my babies goodbye and sent them off to their wonderful schools where they are loved, accepted, and taught and I went off to teach at my wonderful school where I loved, accepted, and taught my own students.  I don't worry about how my kids are being treated and if they are safe.  I thought to myself this morning that despite what I'm reading on Facebook we live in a pretty great country.  There is nothing my children or I did to be born here and not in Haiti and yet we think we have a right to these opportunities and priviledges.

 I have been feeling angry by what I have been reading on Facebook, and especially how people are treating each other (but I'll save that rant for another day). There is such a lack of thankfulness for what we have in our discourses, a fear that it will all be taken away, and an anger that everything isn't working out in a way that is best for us.  But maybe it isn't all about us. Maybe it's time we realize we already have so much more than most of the world.  Let's take a step back and be thankful for what we have here, and let's show our thankfulness through giving.

Obviously things have gotten worse in Haiti since I was there in 1997, and my life looks nothing like I thought it would all those years ago.  But Haiti is still on my heart and I still want to make a difference so.... LET'S BUILD A SCHOOL!.  I am so excited that two of my favorite bloggers, Jen Hatmaker and Sarah Bessey are a part of the Legacy Project in which they are building a school in "tent city" where they just visited.  I respect these ladies so much - check out their blogs to see what they are all about.  This is so easy through Pure Charity.  From Jen's blog:

So here's the deal: We spend money. All the time. Sometimes it's exciting things like vacations and iPads. Other times it's slightly less glamorous, like diapers and Windex. But we're spending. And the stores we spend at have historically managed their own charitable giving. They give a portion of their proceeds to amazing work like...well...we have no idea. There is a major disconnect between our purchasing dollars and their corporate philanthropic giving.

But Pure Charity gets this great idea: Let's bridge that gap and allow the consumers to decide where their little percentage goes. If Target agrees to donate 1.5% of your total purchase, then how about you decide what project that 1.5% funds? And so, like magic, the way we are already spending, already consuming, just living our lives turns into generosity.

This is such an easy way we can make a difference and turn our divisiveness into thankfulness and giving.  So what do you do?  Click on either of these ladies' blogs and they spell it out step by step.

Jen Hatmaker
Sarah Bessey

I'm excited to be a part of making a difference in Haiti.  Will you join me????

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Debate, Family, and Football

Friday afternoon Sophie's class had a presidential debate.  They have been learning about the election process so each table put up some candidates for class president.  They had campaign managers and advisors and learned so much. 
 Waiting her turn and feeling a little nervous.
 She started out well and had an answer for most of the problems presented..
 To help the environment we need to get a group of people together in each state to be responsible for keeping it clean.  To solve the problem of crime we need to educate our criminals.  We need to help people on welfare by giving them $50 a month, but they need to do some chores.  We need more teachers to help with education. 
 Then she asked a question Sophie hadn't prepared for - What would you do about gas prices?  Sophie was stumped. I could see she about to start crying.  She sucked it up and made it through the rest of the interview but couldn't hold it in anymore when she got back to her seat.  Poor thing - way out of her comfort zone!
Taylor and I voted for her anyway!
 Everthing was much better when Grammy and Bumpaw got there that night.  The boys went to the high school football game while the girls hung out at home.
 Saturday they got to watch JC play to football games.
They even got to see him score another touchdown!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Some Halloween Fun!

I saw these pumpkins at the Hot Spot at Target one day and thought they had potential.
 With a little paint and ribbon I made teacher gifts.
 It was fun!
I made these mandarin orange pumpkins for football snacks one week.  I got the idea from one of my students - pretzels for the stems with spinach leaves.
John Curtis had some fun dressing up his stuffed animals for Halloween, too.
 Jaguar went as a Kleenex box.
Teddy was a knight.  Uncle Erick brought JC this mini suit of armor helmet when he was visiting a castle in Scotland a few years ago.  JC asked us why their heads used to be so small!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Halloween 2012

Taylor left last Sunday after church to go to the BGCT in Corpus.  When I picked Sophie up from school Monday afternoon she was coughing horribly and said she didn't feel like going to ballet.  This never happens so I knew she was feeling bad.  She started running fever that evening so I knew we'd have to miss school the day of her school fall festival.  She and Gracie and I spent Tuesday curled up on her bed sleeping, reading, and watching Netflix on my tablet.  Not a bad way to pass a day.  I was so thankful for our wonderful Miss Cindy who came and sat with Sophie Tuesday night so John Curtis wouldn't have to miss his Fall Festival.
 My little dragon and I had fun together!

 His rockin' teacher

Wednesday we were all back at school for some Halloween fun.
 Traditional Ghost Toast
 Daddy got home Wednesday afternoon in time for Trunk or Treat that evening.