Monday, March 22, 2010

Budding Artist

I am not an artist.  I wish I was.  My mom is an artist.  My brothers are both good at drawing and “arty” things.  Apparently I missed that gene!  I am also not so quick sometimes.  Let me explain…
Kellen and Gannon both love to draw and do a great job.  Garrett does a great job drawing, but I wouldn’t say he loves to do it!  So, being the not–so–quick homeschool teacher that I am, it never occurred to me to push some sort of art besides drawing, painting, etc.  Garrett is very much a hands on person.  You need a cabinet built, he’s your man.  Need your pencil sharpener fixed when your two old tries to sharpen something besides a pencil, again, he’s your man.  (This has happened so much at our house I think he could go into business fixing pencil sharpeners!)  Need someone to work hard until the job is done, he’s your man. 
Luckily, the co-op leaders are smarter than I am!  All the art projects they have worked on this semester are hands-on, right up Garrett’s alley.  These are the projects he has brought home so far.
Garrett’s planet Saturn.
bloggarrett2Garrett’s horse head made out of clay.  I am quite impressed, he was really attentive to the details and it actually looks like a horse head!  If I tried this, you would not know what it was!
garrettblog3 garrettblog4
garrett1He made this at home with Play-doh a couple of weeks ago.  I think this is so cool!
Hopefully we can find a creative niche for him now that I see what he really enjoys and is good at.  I remember my brother Ryan sitting for hours making things out of clay.  He would have whole dioramas set up, just for the fun of it!  Tiny little people and battles and whatever else went with the scene.  He really could have gone into business doing that, if there is a business doing that! :)
So, I am just so excited for Garrett!  And I am excited for me!  It’s good to wake up and figure something out once in a while!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Spring Break!

Woo-hoo it’s spring break!  Ok, technically we can take a break anytime we want to, but I just needed any excuse to share this picture.  Is this not the cutest swimsuit and model you’ve ever seen!
Happy Spring!

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Whimsical is my new favorite word.  This all started a little while back when I was looking for furniture for our living room.  First let me say I stink at decorating.  I know what I like, but I can’t get it to come out the way I have in my head to save my life.  So, looking for furniture is a weeks, months, years long process.  Anyway,  I was looking for something else on the internet when these chairs called “Whimsical” popped up.
 blogchairs1 blogchairs2
I instantly loved them, I am always drawn to anything with the word whimsical in the title or description, when I think of that word I think fun.  I loved the price of these chairs, loved the free shipping and free returns.  What was not to lose?  The fact that these do not look like anything else I have is beside the point!  I kept showing them to my kids (they could care less).  Kellen just couldn’t understand why they were called Whimsical or why I would want chairs called Whimsical.  I love to find an opportunity to look up a word in the dictionary, so I told him to look it up!  He said “on Google?”  I said “No, in a dictionary!”  So, he looked it up on an online dictionary :) and this what he found:
whimsical:  1 : full of, actuated by, or exhibiting whims
2 a : resulting from or characterized by whim or caprice;  b : subject to erratic behavior or unpredictable change
When you look up whims it says this:  1 : a capricious or eccentric and often sudden idea or turn of the mind
So, can you see why this is my new favorite word?  Does this not describe me?!  At least the 2b, “subject to erratic behavior or unpredictable change”?    Or  1, “exhibiting whims”, which is an “eccentric and often sudden idea or turn of the mind”.  I have beat myself up for years, calling myself scatterbrained.  Do you know what scatterbrained means?
: a giddy heedless person
Giddy, maybe but heedless I am not.  At least not anymore, I have four kids!
Who knew all these years I could have been calling myself whimsical?  That sounds much more fun and cute doesn’t it?  Now when I drive the wrong way on a one-way street, I can just say I am being whimsical.  When I tell my kids we are doing this and this and this today, and we actually do that and that and that, I am not being scatterbrained, I am being whimsical!  See what I mean!  Sounds so much better than scatterbrain!

I've linked my post to two fun blogs today if you want to go check them out!  I love seeing other peoples ideas on things!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Hee Hee

Last weekend we had company over for Kellen’s birthday.  Before they arrived I called the kids to the kitchen and reminded them of their manners.  I went on and on (and probably on some more) about being hospitable.  Kellen and Garrett were like yeah, yeah, we’ve heard this before.  When I was done, I asked if they understood.  They said yes. Then Gannon asked “what does spitable mean?”  I told him hospitable was all one word.  He said “oh, I thought it was something about spit”.

This past Sunday was a beautiful day!  Spring is definitely around the corner.  I decided to get fancy and pull out a new shirt since I’ve worn basically the same thing to church all winter.  Gannon walked in and I said “What do you think?  Is this shirt too crazy for mama?”  He said “No, I like it.  But, I see what you mean about things looking different on the hanger.  On the hanger it looks all flat.  On, it looks…(pause)…bumpy.”  Thanks Gannon, that was the look I was going for.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Just That Kind of Kid

Yesterday was Kellen’s birthday.  Thirteen.  Yes, a teenager.
We have noticed a change in Kellen, the last six weeks especially.  Not bad changes, just changes that means he’s growing up.  He’s getting more muscular, probably in part to working out at the Y, but part his age.  He’s kind of got the Peter Brady thing going on with his voice.  He’s spending a little more time alone.  I don’t think he’ll ever be in total hibernation like some teenagers, he has too many things he wants to share with the rest of us!  But, he is being a loner a little more.  Only five more years and he can take off on his own, never to be heard from again!
Luckily, there are things that are not changing, not yet anyway.  He is still the kind, thoughtful person he has always been.  That’s what I mean when I say he is that kind of kid.  I don’t take any credit for this, this was all God’s handiwork.  Why God chose to give me a child like this, I don’t know, but I am forever grateful.  I tell him all the time that he is going to make a great husband some day, if I don’t use him all up before then!  Just a couple of weeks ago we were out somewhere and I was trying to fill something out, holding Callie, juggling things. Kellen came up and said “Come on Callie let’s go over here”.  I didn’t ask him, I wasn’t freaking out over my predicament, he just noticed I was struggling and helped.
Kellen is to the point in his schooling where there are some things that I can plan out for the week and he is on his own to get them done.  He is an early riser and he’ll start on his schoolwork before everyone else is even up so he can get it done.  He knows that he wants to move on to better things, so he knows how to schedule his day and get his stuff done on his own.
We decided very last minute what we wanted to do to celebrate his birthday.  We decided we would have a few friends over to play outside and eat pizza, just hanging out kind of stuff.  He said “is this one of those kind of parties where people bring you gifts?”  I told him it didn’t have to be.  “I don’t really need anything, so I would rather people not bring stuff”.  On his own.  I didn’t have to rant and rave about how he didn’t need anything, he knows he doesn’t.  He wanted to invite some kids…and their siblings and parents.  Not for any particular reason, he just likes all ages of people and wanted everyone to have someone to play with.  I think this is a great quality that will serve him well forever. 
Kellen setting the table for his party :)
Now, lest anyone thinks I think he is perfect.  Or, in case he reads this and starts getting a big head…let’s just say God is not finished with him yet!  He is human,  he has struggles just like anyone else.  We work on them daily!  But, luckily, I think his great qualities outweigh the struggles, so I think we’ll keep him around :).
I am so thankful for Kellen.  We didn’t know what we were having when we were pregnant with him, but for some reason I knew it was a boy.  I am so blessed by him.  I am so blessed to be able to spend so much time with him and try in spite of myself to train and teach him.  He makes me look way better than I am!  What more could a parent ask for!
Happy Birthday Kellen!  Your daddy and I love you more than you know and we are so proud of you.  Your brothers and sister love and look up to you.  Thanks for loving God and trying your best to do His will. Thanks for being the best Kellen I know!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Our Typical Day

Ha!  I decided to take part in Kelly’s Korner Show Us Your Life/Your Typical Day.  I wish we had a typical day, oh how I wish.  But, it is not to be.  I have four kids and a husband that works retail, so luckily I am flexible!  And really, I don’t really know if I want a typical day.  I like unpredictable, spur-of-the moment days. A good thing with Todd’s unpredictable hours!  The problem with this is that there are things that do have to be done on a typical day: cooking, cleaning, laundry, schoolwork…the list could go on and on.  So, we have our set things, then try to just have fun in between. 
We go to church Sundays and Wednesdays.  We are so happy about our church here.  It is a growing church with 350 or so members and lots of kids!  And counting us, there are four home school families that I know of.  That is such a blessing for the kids.  It’s always nice to not be the only ones!  And, we have friends with similar schedules, even better!
Since moving to Nixa we have joined a home school co-op.  In all our years homeschooling we have not ever joined a co-op.  The funny thing is that before we moved to Iowa, we were talking to the leaders about joining this co-op.  Then we came back to this area and were still able to to join.  It has been such a blessing.  The kids loove it!  Well, I know Kellen and Garrett do.  Gannon does on most days and as long as Callie has Play-Doh time in her class, she is happy!  The boys participate in all types of classes from science to art to P.E..   We do this on Tuesday afternoons.
On Thursday afternoons the boys go to home school P.E. at the YMCA.  They love that too!  Some friends from church and co-op recently joined so I have been walking with their mom while the boys play.  So I enjoy getting in shape and chatting!
In between all of this we live our lives.  We have our schedule for chores, school etc.  If we stick to those, things go pretty good!  But, we have been known to drop everything and go play, redecorate a room, visit family, you name it!  This is one reason I so love homeschooling.  The flexibility was not on our list when we first started this journey.  But it so is now!  I can’t imagine living by someone else’s calendar.  I guess we live a little by Sam’s Club calendar if we want Daddy to join us, but he doesn’t always get to join us, and he’s fine with that.  I know this life is not for everyone.  I have many friends that would panic if they didn’t have more of a routine, but I panic if I don’t have some time to be flexible!
So, a typical day?  We don’t have those, even by my standards!  The only typical is that we are flexible and always together.  Sounds like the perfect day to me!

You can find other peoples "typical days" here:

It's always fun to see what others are up to!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Remember when I said I couldn't look at the picture of Kellen and Madison from Christmas?  This is why.
They will be teenagers this year.  Kellen's birthday is this month, Madison's is in October.  I can't stand it.  They have always had a special friendship.  They used to just play and play and have always gotten along so well together.  We haven't gotten to spend as much time with Madison the last few years.  Life does that sometimes.  When you live in Iowa you can't just say, "hey come over for dinner."  Well, you can, but people in Oklahoma can't just run over.  Hopefully we'll get to spend more time will all of our family now that we are closer.
Kellen and Madison at her baby shower.
Going to a pumpkin patch with Grandma and Grandpa, 1998
Kellen and Madison at Great-Grandpa McDonald's house for Christmas 1998. 
Riding rides at the Oklahoma State Fair.  I think this was 1999, I don't see any little siblings there, and the siblings were born in 2000.
At the same fair, getting ready to watch Disney On Ice.
Halloween 2000 at the Oklahoma City Zoo.
kelmadlaugh_IMG Grandma and Grandpa's house, 2003
Summer 2007 when Clay and kids visited us in Iowa.
Have no idea the date, I am guessing 2007,  but this is at Grandma and Grandpa's house.
The Cousin Rockers!
Summer 2009, we were visiting Oklahoma.
Christmas 2009.  Can't we go back in time!?