Our Family

Our Family
Benaiah, Justin, Melinda, Abishai, Keturah, and Jared

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Day 91 Kindred Spirits

Ok, ok, that is TOTALLY an Anne of Green Gables pun of a title.  You can tell we live in the land of Anne with an "E."  Anyway, the title fits for today, or rather, tonight.

Pretty normal day over here, but I had a special evening away with a few of my "kindred spirits" in our homeschooling journeys.  It doesn't matter what group of people are your kindred spirits, but I'm sure you understand that when you are with those who totally "get you" and have similar opinions, it's just so encouraging and and blissful.  That's what I feel like tonight.  The things I have been saying for the last few months that I have learned and read about came up again at tonight's homeschool meeting and once again, just reassure me that we are where God wants us to be.  Notice I say WE are where God wants US to be.  I don't know what I would do without this group of (mostly) women.  I have learned so much from them and I'm at a point that I can also share wisdom as well.

But enough about me, this blog is about our FAMILY, and yes, homeschooling is part of our journey, too, so it must be talked about from time to time.  So, sometime next week, I will take a slight departure from the normal "how was our day" post in order to join a 31 day blog hopping event, specifically about homeschooling.  And if homeschooling isn't your thing, that's ok, just ignore it.  I'll still add pictures of our day somehow.

So onwards to today's pictures.  Typical day, so nothing too spectacular.  But those are the days that kids tend to remember anyway, the normal, typical routines you have from day to day. At least that's the kind of things I remember like going to that alternative high school's Shakespeare performance in the spring and buying their maple syrup from their sugar shack.  Pretty mundane, and yet, it stands out in my mind.

Ok, ok, pictures......

"Captain Adorable" is again having to wear a summer outfit in the winter because well, it will be too small once summer arrives in 4 months.

Typical Abishai trick.  He uses the lever on the chair to climb up.

The middles came up with a new "blanket tag" game and told Daddy to join because they needed a third player and Benaiah didn't want to play!

"Captain Adorable" can actually play video games! Yes, he asks for the "buttons" and can somehow make some moves happen.  Crazy generation.  And check out those cute squishy legs and arms!  Also, baby guy has a fever and isn't feeling well.  It could be anything from teething to ear infection to flue, we don't know yet.  He's still adorable!

Day 90 Maple sugaring day!

One of my favorite times of the year! In March and April, in the North, the sugar maple trees are tapped and sweet water flows! I LOVE LOVE LOVE maple syrup ever since an alternative high school started a sugar shack program that started on our pastor's property by their eldest son.  The kids had to either choose to make maple syrup or take a part in a Shakespeare play.  And now that I'm back in the North, I look forward to teaching the kids all about it.  There is just something about the purity of maple syrup versus the alternatives.  And $20 for 1 Liter of it?! Oh my, so awesome!

Iconic image of course.  We went to MacPhee's, which is the same place where we picked apples last fall.

Another perfect iconic image of maple sugaring.  Oh, and we had just read about it in "Little House in the Big Woods."

A little on the chilly side overnight, so the sap froze in the bucket.  The guy actually had thawed a bucketful for us to try.

The 2nd most important "nectar of the gods" (although I don't believe in those gods of course, but I like the phrase!)  The 1st being coffee of course!

Justin spotted a friendly neighbor in an abandoned property near a gas station in Cardigan, PE.

Yeah, the good stuff!

Boo! The not so good for you stuff (but I guess it's all up to taste preference.)

Keturah was sharing popcorn with Abishai while I was reading our history book today.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Day 89 BVS

No, not VBS, BVS!  What is that you say? Well, if you didn't know, the Johnson 6 loves their comic book movies and BVS is Batman Versus Superman: Dawn of Justice.  Jared and Keturah saw it last Friday and Jared actually loved it! The boys and I saw it tonight and wow, so cool!  Can't wait to watch all the YouTube videos from my favorite YouTuber Emergency Awesome on it! He's a TV/Movie/Comic guru who explains all the details in 10 minute segments, so it's easier to keep up without knowing all everything yourself.  I'm sure he's paid anyway.....

If you like Superman or Batman, go watch the movie!  In 5 weeks, it'll be back to the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Captain America: Civil War.  And then there's TMNT.  It's really fun to enjoy all of these movies with the kids.  It's just something that we really, really enjoy.  Yeah for family time!

"I wish he would just fall asleep right here with me!" - Justin

No amount of wind and slush will prevent us from BVS!

Justin is now 1/3 the size in weight as Benaiah.  They are only 3 yrs apart!

Justin reading the 3D glasses lenses that said "these are not sunglasses."  He said, "Well, duh! I'm smart because I read!"


Ticket stubs of course!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Day 88 Spring is in the air!

It felt so warm outside, I was able to take a walk without shivering! What temperature was it? Maybe 43 degrees.  Yes, that's warm to us Canucks up here, lol.  It did feel good to be outside.  I'm hoping that's going to be a more consistent thing going forward.

No new things happening around here.  Just your average Monday, which went well.  I think the best part of the day was when I was reading "Little House in the Big Woods" to the middles (Justin and Keturah) again tonight and Abishai was extremely loud and all over the place because he was getting tired.  I know lots of kids start getting mad and upset when they are tired, but Abishai is one of those kids that actually get quite giggly and crazy the more tired he gets!  He's so proud of himself for walking and almost running everywhere and carrying his toys to this room or that room.  He can slide down the stairs on his belly in under 10 seconds.  He's still the best entertainment there is.

Keturah is working on her memory work and in a couple of months she has already memorized the Ten Commandments, Psalm 23, the Lord's Prayer, the books of the Bible, and she's getting ready to start memorizing the Beautitudes and the rest of Matthew 5-7.  Yes, Grandpa has them memorize the whole Sermon on the Mount, which is something that our freshman college students learn.  So, I am very proud of her and the boys for working on that!  She also wrote a book report all on her own this past week.  Unfortunately she did plagiarize it a bit, but we're going to work with her on that.

Meanwhile, Justin is doing multiplication of 3 digit numbers multiplied by 4 digit numbers and in this unique expanded way where you don't combine any of the numbers.  It makes for some really long problems!

Benaiah is doing well reading through 2 large chapter books a week for history, as well as his long 2,000 word essay for Grandpa's classwork.  (Do you see a theme here?) I'm always thankful for Gary's help in essay writing as 1) I wanted my kids to write better than I did when they were done with 12th grade and 2) I don't like correcting papers!

I didn't take many pictures today, thus the longer entry.

Abishai wants to do what the big kids do, naturally, so he's figuring out how to use a pencil!

This kid is the messiest of all our kids.  His fingers constantly go up into his hair and ears and food is everywhere.  He had a nice bath after this meal!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Day 87 He is Risen!

Happy Resurrection Sunday! As is typical, Friday, Good Friday was dreary, and today, Resurrection Sunday was glorious!  It was your typical Sunday for us, albeit with a special breakfast treat and being dressed up a bit.  Jared, I, and Abishai got some naps in, while Justin got some laps in on the Need for Speed video game.  Facetime with Grandma and Grandpa Johnson, then bedtime.  Then prepare for the week while listening to another church's Good Friday service and Resurrection Sunday sermon.  It was a great day!

Jesus' Empty Tomb made with doughnuts!

I saw this on Facebook, and thought it was an easy way to combine a treat with the Resurrection story!

He is Risen!

3 out of the 4 kids.  The fourth one still doesn't like to take many pictures with us.

Handsome boy.

Keturah's eggs with Frozen stickers on them.

Justin's eggs with Star Wars stickers on them.


Saturday, March 26, 2016

Day 86 And they are gone....

After 12 days with us, I finally threw out the tulips! They really did last a good 10 days before they started to wilt.  I took a few pictures because the parts of the plant are so easily identifible.  I even brought out my trusty Abeka book Science readers with their gorgeous pictures and easy definitions.  Again, just as a YouTube channel proclaims, you can learn something new every day!

All of us puttered around all day at home doing not much.  We love days like that!

But, one of the best parts of the day was finding this:

Dairy free, soy free, gluten free, cookie dough ice cream!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Day 84 A Surprise Visitor

Well, you'll have to read to the end to find out who the surprise visitor was and the story behind it! But first, today was a typical day, so here it is in pictures.

Abishai loves wearing Daddy's sunglasses on the back of his head!

Little Man is a walking machine! He doesn't crawl much anymore!  And, he's wearing a summer outfit not because it's warm out, but because I want pictures of him in the clothes the other boys wore and these will be too small before our actual summer comes in July.

First time having his own snack in the living room and he did great!  I love the little peeking fingers here.

I didn't explain on yesterday's blog post that we have these great Resurrection Eggs that we've used for 10 years or so.  Each of the eggs contains something that symbolizes a part of the last week of Jesus' earthly life through his Resurrection.  For example, a die for the die cast for Jesus' clothing.  A cup for the Last Supper.  A spear that pierced his side.  And the golden egg is empty to represent the empty tomb.  It is well worth the $20 I paid for it!

One of the two best moments of the day was when the kids asked me if we could read one more chapter tonight of "Little House in the Big Woods."  Leave it to good 'ole Laura Ingalls Wilder to provoke this response from children who usually respond with, "Do we have to?"  This is from the set I read as a kid too!

And finally, last but certainly not least: our surprise guest!  I don't have a picture, but I was waiting on a friend to stop by when I heard a knock on the door.  Instead of the one friend that I was expecting, it was another friend, Laura!  This fun loving crazy friend was trying to pick up something from another mutual friend "in town" and they had somehow missed each other.  So, Laura asked to borrow my computer/Internet to check out what happened before she drove the 40 minutes home.  She had already stopped at a couple of other friends' houses first, so she was very intent and making this happen!  She was apologetic, but I was pleased as punch that somebody would actually drop by to ask for "a cup of sugar."  Why? Because close friends are hard to come by these days.  And maybe it's a romantic thought, but this introvert loves to be a friend who can give in another's time of need.  I haven't had many opportunities to do that, here on PEI or back in Indiana.  It's just not a part of our culture to ask and receive help without it being highly organized.  I don't know if I'm expressing it well, but it totally made my day for Laura to stop by like that.  I can't stop smiling about it!  And not just because she's a crazy mom like the rest of us who sometimes gets communication wires crossed.  But because she would even consider us close enough that she could drop by unannounced with a need I could help with!  She just makes me smile.  And her crazy, chili powder eating toddler.  (Sorry, I still LOVE that story, Laura! And just you wait, Abishai is going to be the same way!)  Bottom line: to make a friend, BE a friend!  And soak in those friendships because they are few and far between.  I love you, Laura!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Day 83 A little of this, a little of that...and then...Jesus met Batman

Today was one of those days that lots DID get accomplished.  All of us moms decided not to have homeschool co op today just because we needed the break (it is spring break for the public schools though).  It was great to just stay home and do our schooling in the morning, leaving plenty of time for one last (ice) skating session this afternoon, and a movie after supper.  The kids didn't get to skate much this year, but they still improved their skills!  While they skated with Dad, Abishai napped at home and I got to start tackling the basement again.  I knew that when I packed up our house in Indiana to move to PEI that I would have to go through things again, especially my parents' belongings.  Today I was able to to let go of a big bagful of yarn from a box that had gotten broken in one of our many leaning towers of rubbermaid totes.  I also went through some baby clothes and moved boxes around to put back what I am keeping.  I have a new goal in mind, and that's always helpful.

Meanwhile, we were privy to an oration from Justin today.  He was reciting Matthew 5, but in a dramatic, Batman-like way.  It was utterly hilarious as seen in this video.  I also gave him my parents' old camera to mess around with and he made some great Lego mini figure videos I will share with you at some point, dear readers.  Justin can be such a ham! Just like his big brother Benaiah, who is still in that goofy, awkward, barely a teen way.  (And I still can't seem to get a picture of him because he's always hiding out somewhere with his iPod!)

Jesus meets Batman

But what is a blog post without the one and only Abishai, the 4th little ham of the bunch! He's SO cute and SO adorable and SO photogenic.  Yup, he's the baby of the family!

Always reaching for the piano!

Melting Momma's heart! That grin, which, is such a beautiful combination of BOTH sides of the family!

While we were eating dinner, Abishai played with the Resurrection Eggs set by shaking each egg to see if there was something inside it.  He did try putting them back and did NOT throw them on the floor when I told him not to.

He's big enough to stand, or kneel, or sit in a big chair! He stands really well on any surface and has great balance (although he is leaning against the table in this picture.  He reminds me a lot of Benaiah.

Day 82 Windy Clean Up

The poor men had a rough time trying to clean up this little storm because the wind was something awful!  40 mph! Benaiah and I ran some errands and boy I just couldn't get over the wind!  We usually have a breeze, but this one was a doozy! So, it's not always about how much snow you get, but it IS about the drifting of it later on.

Meanwhile, spring was still happening inside.  Our tulips have begun the wilting process and today they reminded me of ribbon candy!

The newest running joke of the Maritimes is that people prepare for storms by buying "storm chips" with their milk, bread, and eggs.  So, Jared walked to the grocery store and put some cheeto snack mix, some tortilla chips, and, drumroll......"storm doughnuts." He even tweeted about it!  (Jared uses Twitter, but never Facebook).  And the thing is, they only one who can/wants to/likes to eat the doughnuts are Abishai and Justin! Jared doesn't want to eat that much sugar.  I am gluten intolerent.  And Keturah would rather have something else to eat.  Hilarious!

"Big Brother, I want to color too! Pwease????" 13 months and he already is getting into everything the older kids do, including the little Legos with supervision! Too cute!