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Monday, August 23, 2010

Do you hear what I hear?

The sound of buses and school bells; yep, it's that time of year already!  It seems like the summer just flew by way too quickly!  Although I'll miss the lazy days of summer, I'm kinda excited about settling into the routine, structure, and discipline that a new school year brings. 

My oldest, Cecily, begins SEVENTH grade this year!
It seems like only yesterday that Mike and I walked her into her kindergarten classroom where she began consoling another little boy who was just balling his little eyes out.  She's always had a tender heart toward the plight of others and I pray God continues to grow that compassion for others in her life.
My beautiful firstborn!!!  She wasn't excited at all about the "first day of school" picture being taken, but I informed her that I'll probably show up at her dorm to take her "first day of college" picture so she'd just as well humor me!!
I know two little people who are sure going to miss their big "tister"!
Big "tister" and little brother under a homemade tent reading books!
Big "tister" and little "tister" "nuggling" under the "nuggle" blanket as JennaBeth calls it!

We have another little student this year!  And here he is having his muffins and chocolate milk for breakfast on his first day of "mommy preschool"!
I'm going to do some preschool things with Bentley at home this year and see how it goes.  Here is my plan at this point:
I found these things all at the dollar spot at Target.  We'll work on letter recognition, sounds, and writing.  I will also introduce some simple math using manipulatives.  With each letter in the alphabet, we will be learning about an animal that begins with that letter and also working on some sight words.  
I'll use this book to help teach Bentley the days of the week.  Be looking for my review of this children book later this week.  And we'll also work on learning the months of the year and learning a little about how the calender works and telling time.
Bentley will also learn a Bible verse each week.  We'll probably use his TeamKid verse most of the time.  This is the one he will be learning this week:
And finally, one day during the week, Bentley will be working on learning some catechism questions and answers.
I am completely a rookie at this homeschooling thing, so any of you who read that have any ideas about how I can make sure he is ready for kindergarten PLEASE leave me any suggestions and words of advice you have!

I also have to introduce you to Bentley's "assistant teacher",
who will assist while taking a good middle of the day nap!!!  And who will be teaching us much patience as we get accustomed to this schedule during the day!!!!!  And no she wasn't posing for that picture; I just happened to catch it like that!!

As I was thinking this morning about all that lays ahead with my children growing up so fast and the importance of being in tune to their very different needs, I remembered this picture I took just the other day:
That rainbow looked like it was framing our house.  And if you look closely, it was a double rainbow!  While I was taking the picture there was the most beautiful lightning storm going on.  As I reflect on that now, it occurs to me now that even in the midst of chaos, confusion, and difficult times (the lightning in our lives), God's promises can be trusted!  Our pastor reminded us of this promise in Psalm 50:15 last evening:
"Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me."
Pastor pointed out that this is an invitation from God with promise.  He WILL deliver you.  It is God's desire and determination to bless you!  He is determined to fulfill His promises to you and me!!!!  He CAN BE TRUSTED!!!

So, I'm praying for the blessing Moses pronounced on the sons of Asher in Deuteronomy 33 verse 25:
"The bolts of your gates will be iron and bronze, and your strength will equal your days."
Praying for strength to equal YOUR days as well,