Sunday, March 30, 2014

Happy Birthday, Eden!!

We celebrated Eden's 15th birthday yesterday.  On Friday night, she had Anna and Ben over for games, and Anna stayed for a sleepover.  Saturday morning, she planned a day at the mall with Anna and 3 other friends.  Sounds like a teen thing to do, right??  We had a couple of the girls back here (along with the rest of the Emersons, and Grandma Karen and Grandpa Marc) for dinner and cake and ice cream.  It was a busy, full day, but Eden had planned most of it, so I'm glad we were able to pull it off.  A few of her younger siblings also wanted to buy her presents, so I was able to work in that element, too.  Mitch and I gave her Donita K. Paul's newest book...I was super excited about that.  :)

That's a lot of candles!  

Eden asked for fried chicken for supper, but I wasn't able to pull that one off.  When we planned to have a crowd here, she changed her mind to pizza instead.  She wanted her "traditional" whopper ice cream cake, and we made some blue cupcakes as well.  Thank goodness I had some help in the kitchen from Mitch, Karen, Obi, and Tirzah!

 Mercy reallllllly wanted in on the action.  She was under the table at our feet crying while we were taking pictures with Eden.  Once I got up, Eden picked her up.  The smile on Mercy's face when she saw the treats and the candles, she was instantly giddy.  She helped herself to Eden's ice cream.

At 15 years old, Eden
~is very crafty, she loves to paint, draw, create, write, etc.
~loves to take pictures
~makes up stories to tell the younger kids
~loves to buy gifts for people
~gets very good grades in school
~is studying German
~is going to start studying Spanish
~is going to Nicaragua this summer with the youth group missions team (!!!)
~applied for a passport
~is starting driver's ed very, very soon
~likes Algebra (yay!)
~loves animals, including horses
~volunteers 2 hours per week at the humane society
~owns a guinea pig, five fish, and has been promised the care of an adorable bunny over the summer if she wants
~enjoys the shows Once Upon a Time and Duck Dynasty
~babysits to earn extra money (and now is saving money for Nicaragua)
~favorite color is blue
~favorite movie is Pride and Prejudice (she enjoys the book, too)
~favorite candies are Robin's Egg Whoppers and Fruit Gushers

We love you Eden! 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Happy Birthday, Mercy!!

We happily celebrated Mercy's birthday on Monday.  What a blessing she is! 

 {Enjoying a special birthday treat from Devona!}

 {Daddy wants a bite!}

 {Mercy says, "Here, you can have your own."}

At 1 year old, Mercy
~walks and even runs everywhere
~goes up AND down the stairs (usually the right way)
~is starting to climb other things
~"talks" and babbles all the time, and sings too
~says mama, dada, yay, Eden, nummy, Tiz, Josh (more like "dosh"), waves bye, and also uses her hands to point or signal what she wants
~eats more things now, but still prefers to feed herself.  She will try more things if she is sitting on my lap while I'm eating.
~nurses full time still, even waking at night still (but I can't even keep track of how often)
~is wearing cloth diapers again after a long break.  I "refreshed" her one-size diapers, which were hand-me-downs, by replacing the leg elastic and adding a new layer of hemp to each of the inserts.  They work so much better, and it was well worth the few hours invested!  The diapers are still snapped on the lowest rise because she has skinny legs.  She obviously wears her baby chub in her face, not in her thighs.
~wears size 12 month clothing
~loves to play with baby dolls and with anything that lights up or plays music
~has quite a bad temper!  When she is really mad, she holds her breath before letting out a wail.  I have seen her hold her breath so long that her lips turn blue, and I think it's entirely possible that one of these days she's going to pass out.  Naughty!! 
~loves to feed Eden's guinea pig. When the pig starts whistling, Mercy runs and asks for treats to feed it.
~only has 6 teeth still (4 on top and 2 on bottom), but her gums are getting fatter, promising that new teeth will emerge soon.
~loves Eden almost as much as Mommy, and will even cry to go to her.
~now empties the drawers of the sewing cabinet in addition to the kitchen drawers (where, oh where, did I hide my key?!??? I would LOVE to lock her out of it!), and when I'm trying to put away laundry she will take the clothes out and put them back in the basket
~hates wearing shoes
~loves to unroll toilet paper

Happy Birthday, sweet baby girl!!  I have a million more things I wish I could write, and pictures on my phone that I will have to rescue later. :)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


There is an old joke about a pastor who went to visit an elderly lady in her home.  He asked her, "Do you think much about the Hereafter?"

She said, "All the time.  I come into the kitchen, and wonder, 'What did I come here after?'"

Tirzah loves to wear dresses, but during the winter it can be cold (and she's also not very modest) so I encourage her to wear pants under her dresses.  Today she was wearing her favorite dress, which is getting a little short.  I told her multiple times to go get pants, but (mommy fail) she didn't obey.  Finally (as it sometimes happens when mommies don't follow through) she got my attention by hurting someone.  I sent her to timeout, but then noticed (again) that she was not wearing pants.  I sent her to her room instead.  I then sort of forgot about it.  Two hours later she emerged in a much better mood, having woken up from a nap. 

Only one problem:  she still wasn't wearing pants.

Memory Verses

My elementary boys (Zeke, Josh, and Malachi) go to a Wednesday night program at our church.  A key component of the program is memorizing a new Bible verse each week.  I try to help the boys learn their verses by assigning them as copy work, but even best intentions go awry and we sometimes join the other masses of families trying to learn the verse in the van on the way to church Wednesday night.  ::shame:: 

Last week was spring break for many children in the area (mine not included), so my kids have been practicing the same verses for two weeks.  Today I went the extra mile and made a little puzzle out of Malachi's verse. 

We did it through a few times and as he was really starting to get the hang of it I asked him, "Do you want to do it one more time?"

He thoughtfully replied, "No thanks, I've got it stuck in my head.  First time that's ever happened!"

I literally smacked my hand against my head.  I said, "That's kind of the point, Buddy.  That's what it means to memorize the verse."

Almost but Not Yet

Sunday and Monday brought warmer temperatures to our area.  Many of my friends were bragging about having all their windows open, so I caved under pressure and opened some of mine on Monday afternoon.  I didn't know it, but Zeke left his open overnight.  When he woke up Tuesday morning, he got very excited.  He came out to tell me, "The smell coming through the window smells JUST like when we sleep outside while camping.  Just as I was waking up, I heard a 'tweet tweet' that sounded JUST like when we are camping, too.  But when I opened my eyes and looked outside, I was like, 'awww!'"  He was slightly disappointed that it is *still* winter and there is *still* snow on the ground and, no, we were not camping. 

On the positive side, it is slowly thawing, and it will eventually be summer! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

Eden is now ready to go car shopping in Germany...hehe...hide the credit cards!!  She was writing this from memory, hence some spelling errors.  I enjoyed the conversation anyway!  :)

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Spring Chickens

We were engaging in some nerdy-geeky research today.  I have a handful of kids born in March and April, so we are wondering when, if ever, their birthdays will fall on Easter (of course, Mercy's won't ever fall on Easter).  This is what we discovered:

Eden's birthday has never fallen on Easter in her lifetime, but it will when she turns 44, 55, and 66. 

Obi is a little more fortunate--his birthday will fall on Easter when he turns 4 (next year), 15, 26, and 37, but then it won't happen again unless he lives to be 94!

Tirzah's birthday will be the day after Easter this year, but it will be on Easter when she turns 10, 21 (her golden birthday!!), and 43.

Over the next 40 years, the longest we will ever go without celebrating a birthday ON Easter will be 6 years.  We will nearly always be celebrating someone's birthday pretty close to Easter.  You can find the days on which Easter falls here:

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Biology Lab

It's our first dissection class in high school biology!!  Today we dissected an earth worm. 

 Everyone was elbowing and climbing and pushing to get a good view.  Eventually I had to chase the littles away, then invite them back once we were done.

 Cutting open the worm went a lot better than I expected.  Micah, Eden, and I all took turns trying it out.  Aside from one person's shaky hands (someone who will probably not grow up to be a surgeon), we were pros.

 "Hey Mom, no fair, get your own worm!"  (They didn't really say this, but it was true.)
Oops, sorry, I was butting in again.  I can't help it!  I like to learn too.  Eden, it's your turn.  She's like, "Um...that's ok.  Really."

Malachi said, "It's making my spit taste funny."

Lab report:  draw, label, describe, explain!
(Glad I don't have to do that part...heehee.)

Monday, March 03, 2014

Funny #2

Eden isn't home tonight, so I asked Caleb to put Zeke in her spot at the table when he set it.  I told Zeke he's "moving up in the world."  He told me that he didn't want to grow up.  He said, "I don't want to have to shave my armpits and legs and stuff that I'll have to do when I get older."  Oh boy...we tried unraveling that one as best as we could.  We assured him that he wouldn't have to, and he said, "But EDEN does!"  I don't know if sitting in her chair addled his brain or what.  Mitch demonstrated that boys do not indeed "have to" shave their armpits and legs...that tends to be an American girl thing to do.  ::grin::  We'll give it some time.

Funny #1

Malachi sat down beside his dad with a book in hand and said, "This is an ABC Bible."

I remember what it was like to not know how to read.  I must have been very young.  I pulled a book off my grandmother's shelf and pretended it was a hymnal.  In my later childhood years, once I had learned how to read, the "magic" of the books on the shelf vanished in a way.  They would no longer fit my imagination (which was much too large).  I couldn't pull off a book and find a song. 

Malachi is learning to read, but he's not quite at that stage where he does it automatically.  He makes lots of guesses based on clues.  This book was fat and heavy and had a font similar to a Bible.  I questioned him about the "ABC" part.  He told me how it has all a's, then b's, and so on.  I suggested he should try reading the words. Yep, he read "Spanish" with no problem.  I think the magic started to vanish a bit for him, too.  Good thing we have an abundance of books to choose from (maybe even a Bible dictionary or two)!

Sunday, March 02, 2014

Made by Laura

We have a bag that we use to carry Bibles and notebooks to church on Sundays. We let the kids draw or take notes during church. Zeke found this drawing this morning. What a fun memory of when Patrick's family came to visit! We love you, Laura!