Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Y'all, this whole homeschool thing...some days it's really hard. But it is SO. REWARDING!!!

It thrills me to see Sister succeed and press onward!

And my heart melts when she hands me something like this...

Sometimes I momentarily question my sanity and ask myself WHY we pursued this path...

And just as my heart feels discouraged, the Holy Spirit gently, tenderly reminds me that we pursued this path because God lead us on it...and His grace is sufficient.

And I thank God for grandmothers who send art projects...

 And I thank God for giant pieces of paper, left over from freelance work. And I laugh at Little Man's ingenuity...that's a "birf-day hat por my birf-day!" (that's in April!)

I thank God for counting bears and the thrill scattering them across the floor brings!

I love watching Sister count...

And the look on her face when she knows she's got the answer!

And then we sit down to lunch and I wonder what all the dots are on our table...and Sister pipes up and says, "Little Man did that with his fork." And I remember leaving him ONCE at breakfast, just to step in the bathroom. That's all it took. Less than a minute. I say it adds character. The Engineer addressed the matter with Little Man. I don't think he'll pull that one again.

And so we sit and eat. Since weaning myself from caffeine, I've indulged in one caffeine free coke at lunch. And we enjoyed peanut butter and banana and honey and sunflower seed wraps...with veggie stix, per my sister's recommendation. 

After lunch I put Little One down to nap and sent the older two out to play. I sent them out fully clothed, mind you. I'm not sure how long Little Man will put up with this kind of thing...Sister coated him in mud, rigged a "tail" with a stick (see it on the right) through his underwear band (covered with those sweet red shorts), and painted a logo on his cheek and declared him her "puppy dog!" And he came in the house barking...and dancing to the music. And all I could do was marvel and laugh and shake my head.

After dinner I walked into the living room and found Sister on the sofa, freshly bathed and in her "night cap" (read me, her raggedy ann hat with all the red yarn tucked up ineside, so she could be like Laura from Little House) and the Engineer on the phone, and my heart sighed with contentment. 

God is good and has so richly more than met our every need. I love having my family together, all well and healthy, safe and sound. These days are hard, and they are so good and so rich. 

And quickly, thank you all for your prayers and concern about the heart palps...the Echo confirmed that I have been having heart palpitations, do have a bundle branch blockage, and have Mitral Valve Prolapse. I am learning MVP is very common. The actual sensations it causes in my heart feel really scary. Those sensations, along with the heart palps (which feel distinctly different to me) should continue to decrease the further out I get from caffeine. I cried the night I found out...but I am better now. Emotionally. I think the tears were a release...I'd been at peace, but I'd spent 30 minutes the night before wide awake in fear, with a heavy sensation on my heart/chest and with it feeling like it was fluttering - weirdness, struggling to get a good breath, wondering if we needed to go to the ER...that was scary. So, we are thankful to know what it is. I had the same sensation last night for about 30 minutes and there was much greater peace and little fear, just because I knew what was happening and that it would stop. And eventually, it did.

So thank you for praying. I appreciate all of you so much. You are precious to me and your encouragement lifts my spirits! 


  1. You point me to Christ and to the gospel with your honestly about life's imperfections, messes, and adventures, and your reliance on Him. That's what I love about you, friend -- you show me His fingerprints and you reflect His glory.

  2. Praise the Lord that you found out more about the condition! I know it was such a relief to know more!! Will keep thinking of you and praying for healing!!! Thanks for sharing!!

  3. Hey Friend! I love all of your pictures, but especially the one of T has the puppy dog!
    Also, I'm so glad you have a diagnosis and will pray that the palpitations are few and far between. Lots of Love...

  4. Sweet sweet post. Family is such a gift. Glad to hear that you feel such rich rewards from the hard work of homeschooling. God is good.

    So sorry about everything you've been going through with your heart. I hope and pray the condition improves and is manageable AND that you feel the peace a that passes all understanding.

  5. I agree with everything! God's grace is sufficient!
    BTW, I have MVP also. I still have some occasional issues, so I know how scary it can be. So glad you found out what was wrong. I still have a little caffeine every day without much trouble- it's strange because it has never really given me energy or alertness, just that fluttering, panicky feeling.
    Glad you are getting better!

  6. I'm so sorry about your condition, but I am so glad it is something that seems common. It must feel scary to feel that in your heart and not know what to do about it.

    Your puppy dog scenario looked real familiar! Have Sister read my blog on Life is messy. Click on the picture of Andrew covered in mud front to back, head to toe. Maybe I'm giving her ideas????LOL! Sorry!

    Oh, and the fork on the table. Yeah, that happened here too. The one I freaked about was when one of the kids brought a brick inside and decided to scrape the table with it. Lovely...

    I have decided I am going to do nothing when my large table until my kids are waaaay older. If I need to cover it for company, there are table clothes. This keeps my stress level down.

    Isn't homeschooling amazing? I have been lacking discipline. I have found that I hate correcting papers! I need to get better about it.

    Love you, Friend!

  7. My mother had a similar problem many years ago, but through avoiding caffeine has been palpitation free for years. Sometimes God requires us to heal ourselves, I think!

  8. Girlfriend, we have the same fork marks in our table.

    Ours, however, happened when we had friends over with three of their own children.

    6 children + forks + 30 seconds while I go out to the garage for more juice = a whole lot of holes in the table.

    Yes, I'm going with the "adds character" perspective. 'Cause we got a ton o' character at our house!

  9. Great post about LIFE! You have a beautiful one, too. :) And, I'm praying for you. For peace. For joy. For delighting in Him and whatever circumstances He gives you. For wisdom to daily enjoy your beautiful life.

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  11. That sandwich looks delicious! My mom has MVP - she's had it as long as I can remember. Took her a while to break from caffeine (and she still cheats sometimes), but it helps so much!!

  12. The Hutton Family said...
    Hey- I have been considering getting off caff. too. I just don't know what i will handle it! Love the pics and love these kids!

    November 4, 2010 12:45 PM

  13. LOVE this post Jenn! SO precious!!

    These days are the BEST! And yes, there are times we ALL question our sanity...but then just look at your photos...what do you see??? ALL the children TOGETHER and doing LIFE and SCHOOL, and everything...building MEMORIES...


    SUCH good news that the heart thing is sorry that you have it though...sounds frightening. I've been praying for you lately...may the LORD continue to help you to look to HIM through it all. ENJOY!!


  14. Glad to hear your heart problem is not super out of the ordinary! It must be hard to think about it though... so glad for a peace that passes all understanding.

    Love the description of the fork incident and the light way you spoke of the discipline that ensued :) Oliver took a knife to my leather piano bench cover the week we got it. Oh boy, did we need to exercise mercy then!

    Yes, homeschooling has it's crazy days but you're right, the good overrides the bad and when it's His calling, we just do it and watch the blessings of it roll in.

    Have a great Friday too!

  15. Feel like a heel for not commenting earlier about your MVP - my brother has it and we've had conversations about the fears it brings......and as always, am loving your posts. Such an encouragement. Especially the ones about God in the details, this is not something I've thought much about, I'm sad to say I mostly overlook the little tender touches God gives, I'm too busy looking out for the BIG things (or even begrudging that they don't seem to be happening, if I'm perfectly honest.) Thanks for bringing it to light in my mind and heart! :)