Saturday, August 16, 2008

A Promise

I highly recommend an article I just read called A Promise I found it encouraging and it made me more than a bit teary! (or was that just the hormones?)

It is a part of the No Greater Joy ministry magazine directed toward parents. Another brilliant article in the same issue is called "Cloistered Homeschool Syndrome"

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


I think we have finally found a technique that works.

Step 1.
limit the input. Kids now have 5 'every day' out fits, 2 'good' outfits and a few pairs of PJ's. This allows for wet days when the washing won't dry without tempting me to stop laundry for a week!

Step 2.
work the handmaidens! I have two washing machines. Yes, it is thoroughly decident, but I know people with three TV's and my kids have been known to watch the washing machines instead! I refer to them, the dryer and my dishwasher as "the handmaidens". It is my job to make sure they don't slack. I have times in my routine when I 'feed' them plus catch up times on Monday or if we have disasters. My goal is 4 loads daily, more if needed, and on Mondays I do as many as I can, making use of the drier as needed. There is usually at least one of clothes, one of nappies then the rest I make up with more clothes, towels (I wash twice a week) and sheets (once a week). I don't do laundry on Sabbath and some days I just don't have 4 to do. I like those days!

Step 3.
use the clothes. Each night as clothes are shed I inspect them and decide to put them out for the next day, sponge off and dry for the next day, put aside for repair or replacement or if they can go to the wash. I am pedantic. Some people can't stand a messy house, I would prefer a slightly messy house and kids who are clean, reasonably well presented and comfortable. Smelly, messy kids in ill fitting clothing are not my thing! But if clothes are cared for properly, they can easily go two or even three wears. Limiting the wardrobe also makes it easier for me to keep track of the clothes. Laying out clothes the night before makes things MUCH easier in the morning.

Step 4.
store the clothes. Each of the kids has a basket and it is easy for me to tuck their clothes into the appropriate basket at the end of each folding session. Ironed clothes go in my wardrobe. Ironing is something I struggle to find time to do some days as I don't like doing it when the boys are up, but I do need to iron Jon's work wear and some of our 'good' clothes.

Broad Band Is Here!!

Hopefully more blogging opportunities will follow!! Unfortuately we are still yet to set up our desk top computer so my access is limited to when Jon is home and not using the lap top and I am not busy with other things - so still not that often!! But with broad band hopefully things will be a lot faster and I can get more done in the time I have.

is FOUR! And boy does everyone know it! It was her birthday yesterday and random road workers got invited back to our house for the party LOL. The party was Nana Julie, Nanny, Poppy and our little family crammed in among the boxes that are yet to be unpacked and sorted. She was SO well behaved in spite of being so excited I expected to have to peel her off the ceiling at any given time. She got some new bed sheets from her Nana Julie and some books, a doll whose eyes open and close with a bag full of clothes and TWO bottles to feed her with from Nanny and Poppy and a Big Girl Bike with training wheels from Mummy and Daddy which she helped Daddy put together. When I got her up this morning her doll (who has had at least 5 name changes in the last 24 hours) was dressed and ready for the day! She has ridden her bike to the post office and back (over 1 km, a fair hike for a little girl) and her new sheets are in pride of place on the bed. Her baby gets rocked and fed and sung to. It is just beautiful to watch. She is so grown up now. She even chased away the ducks that pecked Billy at the park - the same little girl who still needs a night light and used to scream in terror at the bath running!!

got pecked by a duck at the park yesterday. Note to all, DO NOT FEED DUCKS, SEAGULLS, SACRED IBIS OR ANY OTHER ANIMALS OR BIRDS AT PICNIC TABLES. You may think it is cute, but when the duck is nearly as big as you are (it was a big duck, Billy is just two) and it wants your sandwich and will jump up and peck you to get it - it isn't nice. He was pretty stoked that Mummy, Nana Julie and Erin shooed the ducks away - even though the jolly things needed to be LITEREALLY 'shoe'd away with us pushing them with our feet!! But it does make me cross when people feed animals at picnic tables. It is dangerous and silly and makes the animals aggressive. If you must, go down to the water and feed the ducks. Sorry, rant over. Billy was being mothered by Erin today. She undressed him for his bath, lifted him in (with my help) and washed both the boys from the tummy up. He submitted to this quite happily. He is talking non-stop at the moment and anyone who walks in the door has a book thrust into their hands and the puppy dog eyes turned on them with "Read, book, me??" Most tire after the third or fourth volume, but Billy doesn't!

has six teeth now and can say "thesaurus". Well, he said something SORT of like that while holding one so I'm sticking to the story! What he does 'say' is "Eeer isfah" (Where's Christopher) when playing peekaboo. He has been saying it consistantly in that situation for a week or two now and I think he is VERY clever! Now that the teeth are through, I am looking forward to SLEEP! It is happening and I am a new woman because of it. Christopher shows no inclination to even walk around furniture but crawls at record speed. His favourite things are going for walks and playing peek-a-boo. He is the happiest baby in the world!

The New Baby:
is a definate presence visually and the little prods and pokes get stronger by the day. I am champing at the bit to get out baby clothes and set up the bassinette but am holding back until the rest of the house is sorted out a bit. We are half way there!!

The house:
is now minus a shower still, but no other major repairs etc have been needed. Our main focus at the moment is the last of the moving. We hired a truck for a couple of days to get some things without having to worry about the weather. It is now box city! Thank the Lord for my Mum who has helped a lot with organising, sorting, packing, keeping on top of the laundry, cleaning, taking the kids for a walk while I prepared birthday meals etc. She has been a real blessing and I will be sad to see her go tomorrow. Most days we have our routines now and I can tell you now - they are everything I say they are and more. I have found freedom, peace and rest!

typical day:
7:30 Me up, dressed, dishwasher empty, re-boot washing machines
8am kids up, dressed, tidy their room and make beds
8:30ish make and eat breakfast, Bible reading and study
9:30 kids watch playschool while I clear table and sit down for personal Bible study
10am songs and prayers
10:30 Christopher to bed, kids outside, any tea pre-prep (crock pots etc), hang out washing, stack wood by back door
11:30 "zone" cleaning and sorting (unpacking)
12n christopher up, nappies changed, lunch
1pm ish walk
2pm ish nappies, stories, boys to bed, 10 min. exercise bike, tea prep, ironing, washing in and folded
3:30 cat nap in chair, feed Christopher when he wakes
4pm vacuum lounge, afternoon clean up, set out tomorrow's clothes, load washing machines
5pm boys bathed and tea prep
6-6:30 tea
7-7:30 bed time routine
7:30-8 kitchen clean up, any prep for next day

At the moment there isn't any school work and I miss it. I miss many things that are on the back burner during the LONG process of moving and unpacking, but first thing is first! It is rare to have a typical day, but at the end of most days I can reach the end of the day and look over the routine and find most of it complete. It makes a HUGE difference to our lives and stress levels!

I have used my bike! Not every day and not for very long, but I have used it. We are also walking daily still.

I need bed now!

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