January 30, 2012

It's Been a Long Time!

It's really been awhile since I sat down and posted anything!  We had a great time in TX celebrating Christmas and just enjoying time with family.  We also had a good time celebrating Christmas a little late with my family this month after we returned from TX.  It seems like we have constantly been on the move since, though it seems like nothing has been happening all at the same time.  How is that possible?  Please tell me others have that feeling, too?!?!?!  Anyway, here are some updates on what has been happening in the McSmith household in the last month or so:

-We are still plodding along on this crazy homeschooling journey.  Still very happy with it and glad we were obedient to what God asked us to do.  Though it has been crazy hard and more expensive than we thought it would be, each day has been such a blessing!  I now know why teachers do what they do...it is so rewarding to watch children grow and learn and "get" something for the first time!  Now, by no means have I figured out any schedule, yet.  It still feels like it's all just total chaos and only by the grace of God that we get anything done in  a day.  In fact, today, Kevin was the only one that even got out of his pajamas!  I know that I am not a very good teacher, which is what made the homeschooling decision so hard.  I knew that here in Hannibal she would get a teacher that was good and actually had the gift of teaching and at home, well, all she had was me...but somehow she's still learning!  (Pretty sure that's a God-thing, too!)  We are taking each year as it comes, but I have to be honest and say that I am looking forward to doing this next year and have already been looking into curriculum and making lists of what I want/need to get.  We'll be trying All About Reading and All About Spelling starting next week (it's scheduled to be delivered on Wed. and I can't wait for it to get here!)  Praying it goes well and she'll really enjoy it.  She reads like a pro already, but this should really help her with all the rules that, I must admit, I don't know about...AT ALL! 

-Sophie has been doing so well with her scripture memory.  I am so amazed!  We have a white book of verses at church that she learns and will earn a special dinner when she completes...and she has been blazing through those!  We started them back in Sept. and I think in about 2 or 3 weeks she'll have finished her first book.  She only has the verse she's learned for this week (well, 6 verses...they're the verses that go with the colors in the witnessing bracelet) and then one more (which is a really long one, so it may take longer than a week to learn) and she'll be done.  And, to my amazement, she still remembers the other verses in the book, too!  Ethan has been learning our monthly Family Quest verses this year, too.  He has done amazing!!!!  I can't wait for him to be part of that with us each week next year (while at the same time, I can't help but wonder how in the world he got old enough to be part of this!  When Sophie was his age she was in the first preschool group to ever do Family Quest!  My, how time flies!!!)  Lord, thank you for providing so many ways for us to teach our children Your word and for helping us help them hide it in their hearts!  Make it fruitful!  Use Your words to draw them to You and into a saving relationship with You.

-We're trying something new this year...we're trying to do one thing each month as a service project for others (beyond the one that we do to get our prize for Family Quest).  Last month we made cookies for our church to serve at Loaves and Fishes.  Haven't decided exactly what to do for Feb, but I would like it to be something that benefits a family or organization here in MO (yeah, I am trying to do the whole Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, Ends of the Earth idea because I was hoping it would make it easier for me to come up with ideas!)  So, if you know of anything we could do this month as a family, feel free to let us know!  It can be donating money, gathering supplies for someone, serving food, whatever. 

I feel like I really had one more thing I wanted to share, but it just isn't coming to me!  That's the problem with this blog, all my blog ideas come to me as I am falling asleep and I'm not coherent enough to jot things down, so when I have time to sit and type, the thoughts are gone!  Praying that the Lord is drawing you closer to Him everyday and that he is molding and shaping your heart and life to be more like His.  I pray this each day for myself and my family, as well!