Category Archives: jillian

Fair day ’13

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We are now the proud owner of a lemur. And a 3 1/2 foot long snake. (Both of which received a solid coat of Lysol before enter bedrooms, and one of which already needs back surgery to stitch him up.) We also came home from the fair with 3 sacks of candy, 2 plastic trumpets, and one pink ball (and likely many creepy carnival germs).

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It was a fun day, and one that we look forward to in the months leading up to the Richardson County Fair. I’ve been to the Arkansas State Fair growing up, and what I’ve come to learn is that I like the small town fair much better. I loved growing up and getting to go to Nokomis, IL for the Homecoming Fair each year. I have incredible memories of those weekend, and I’m glad that my kids get the same small town fair experience each year.

We sit near the tail end of the parade route, and even though most have run out of candy to toss by the time they hit our spot, we still come home with enough tootsie rolls to last us the next several months. This was the first year since I started going that Brad’s sister brought her family down on Friday. It’s always fun to watch the kids get to enjoy their cousins.

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After the parade wrapped up it was time to find some lunch and gear up for an afternoon of riding the rides. Nate is kind of in an in between stage with rides. He’s too big for the little kid stuff, and none of the other kids are really big enough to enjoy the big kid rides with him. Lucky for him his little sister is in the 91% for height, and she was able to go with him on some of the bigger stuff as long as she had a adult with her.

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And, this is pretty much how we all felt as we drove home:

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Thank you Humboldt, NE and Richardson County fair for an amazing day at the fair!

Happy 5th Birthday, Jilly Mae!!

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We have a “rule” in our house that you wait until your 5th birthday before you get to have a friend birthday party.  To say that Jilly was excited to turn five, would be an understatement.  She went through countless theme ideas before finally settling on a Lalaloopsy party.  I was thrilled since it meant that I got to do all kinds of fun sewing projects to go along with it all.  The day was incredibly hot and incredibly windy.  I might have gotten slightly stressed over not being able to decorate the table as I had hoped due to the wind, but luckily 2-7 year olds don’t pay too much attention to decorations!

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Following her celebration with friends on Saturday, she got to celebrate with family on Sunday.  We had a low key, stay out of heat, home celebration.  She seemed to have a great time, and thoroughly enjoyed her moment in the spot light as everyone’s eyes were on her as we sang Happy Birthday to her.  (Don’t you dare tell her that isn’t a real American Girl doll!  She is quite certain that it is!!)

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After a couple days of break from celebrating, it was time for the actual day of her birthday.  She was thrilled to get to spend part of her day at preschool and celebrate with her classmates.  After opening gifts, she picked Jimmy John’s as her choice for her birthday dinner.   Although we were slightly surprised by this choice, we all enjoyed our meal.  Then it was back home for more gift opening with Grammy and Grandpa and a show before bed.  Happy birthday, Jilly Mae!

the lost, lost tooth

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This just happens to be the week of Jilly.  The girl loves attention, and she sure does get to have the spot light on her a lot this week.  Saturday was her birthday party with friends, Sunday we celebrated her birthday with family, today is her first day of Preschool 4, Wednesday is her birthday, and Thursday she starts back in ballet class!  This much attention just wasn’t enough for her though – she needed to add to it.

After a very traumatic (for all of us) experience of having her first loose tooth pulled by dad, we decided to let this second one take its time.  Over the past week, she had started to talk about wiggling it – a conversation that would previously cause her to have a melt down – which let me know that it must be getting close to time for it to come out.

As we headed up to quiet time today, she mentioned that her tooth was bothering her.  I looked and noticed it was bleeding quite a bit.  (Here is where you need to know that I cannot stand loose or wiggling teeth or gaping holes where teeth one stood.)  I, being the brave obligated mom that I am, asked if she wanted me to try to pull it.  She, being the stubborn independent girl she is, said that she would do it.  And she did.  With just two tries, that tooth came right out.

Somewhere in the excitement of trying to find my phone so she could call her dad and share the news, the tooth got lost.  I thought that would cause a meltdown, but she was more than happy with the idea of writing a note to stick under her pillow.

What a little more attention for such an adorable girl!?!

silly jilly

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Jilly and I had some fun with the camera one day last week, and we took turns taking silly face picture of each other.  Most of the ones she took of me have been deleted since she was laughing so hard she couldn’t hold the camera still and seldom got a picture of my actual silly face.  Jilly has always had a way with facial expressions – so I loved doing this with her.  I still laugh when I look at some of these.

Enjoy the many faces of Jilly:

 

 

Our Favorite!

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October brings birthday cards and gifts for Laurel and I as we both celebrate our birthdays, but there are always a few cards and such in the mix for Brad.  October is Pastor Appreciation Month, which some people actually remember and acknowledge.  😉  The kids and I decided that it was wrong of us to not acknowledge our family’s favorite pastor.

They colored signs (Laurel’s says “Best”, but she refused to hold it up. (And Jilly refused to make a normal face.)), and I wrapped up a Flintstones DVD.  The kids have been really into old cartoons lately (classic Mickey, Tom & Jerry, Looney Tunes, etc.), and Brad has been enjoying it and mentioned wanting to introduce them to The Flintstones.

It was a fun way to turn an ordinary day into a fun celebration – which the kids are always up for!

Keep on coloring kids!

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I recently had to take an emotional look at what it looks like when my kids sit in worship with me.  Very rarely, since Brad is often the one preaching, do I have help with the kids in worship.  In fact, by the time the kids get up on Sunday morning, Brad is already out the door and off to the office.  Sunday mornings are tough.  It’s a lot of work to get everyone up, fed, pottied, dressed, brushed, shoed, coated, buckled, driven, and across the mammoth parking lot on my own week after week.  Often times I’m frustrated and exhausted before I ever even walk in the door.  Sadly, I honestly dread the Sunday mornings when one or both of the biggers say that want to go to worship with me rather than Sunday School.  Sad, but honestly true.  I want worship time to recharge, refuel, and honestly provide a break from an already busy morning.  It has become more and more regular lately for the biggers to want to join me though.  For quite a while, I would grab a Children’s Bulletin for each of them, and let them work on that during the sermon.  Unfortunately though, I was fielding questions about “what do I do on this part now Mommy?” and “Mommy, is this right?”  It’s really hard to catch much of the sermon while this is happening!

I knew something had to change, but what?
I have worked with kids for years, I have study child development as I obtained an elementary education degree, I taught elementary school, I have been a parent for 6 1/2 years – I have a pretty good understanding of kids and what is and isn’t age appropriate at different ages.  Sermons (even those preached by their father) are not geared towards kids.  Many kids are able to focus better when actually doing something rather than just sitting like a lump on a log.  Also the learning style of a teen or adult is different than that of a 4 or 6  year old.  In my opinion kids coloring in worship IS GOOD!  There had to be something better than the Children’s Bulletin though.  Within days of my emotional mess of a day over this, the Lord provided me with a new way of allowing the kids to color which would be much more beneficial to them and myself!

I could not be more excited to pull out the Crayola Twistable Colored Pencils each week now – they actually join me more frequently now, and I actually mind less than I use to.  I know that many blessings will result from my kids being allowed to color during the sermon each week.

Here is a glimpse at what Nate (age, 6) has done over the past few weeks:

{during a sermon on Acts 18:24-28}

{during a sermon about “God is Vast”}

{during a sermon about God is perfect}

{while at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City this weekend}

(on  the right, all of the people are thinking about being with Jesus – I had to ask what all the black circles where – thought bubbles of course!)

It is such an incredible blessing to ask Nate after service to explain his picture.  It’s even more of a blessing to know that by allowing him to color, he is able to express the truths that God is teaching him.  Adults take notes (and doodle) during sermons, he takes notes with pictures.

How does it work?  I went to Target and bought both Nate and Jilly a sketch pad book along with a pack of Twistables.  Neither the books or the Twistables are allowed to be used outside of a worship setting.  They are to listen to what is being talked about during the sermon, and draw a picture that relates to what they hear.  I always date the page, and they are limited to the front and back of one page to help teach self control.  Obviously, Nate has a better grasp on this than Jilly does.  Most of Jilly’s colorings are completely random and abstract at this point.  I know though, that she will grow in this as she gets a little older.  My expectations for her vary from what I expect from Nate – as they should.  Seriously though, this often time frazzled each Sunday morning momma is just a little more at peace now, and lot more blessed!
LET THEM COLOR!!!

 

chapel singing

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Jilly’s class sang in chapel for the first time a couple of weeks ago.  Jilly loves the stage, so there was no shyness to be found in her.  She was extra excited since it was also Brad who was going to be doing the talk a few minutes after they sang.  She sang, she did motions, she beamed.  I am sure that she can’t wait for it to be their turn to go back up again!  (I am so far behind on posts, that I am skipping fixing the red eye in the pics.)

ballet debut

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After many months of asking if she could take ballet class, I finally found the perfect place for Jilly to take ballet.  It’s no where near as expensive as a studio, and very laid back.  Her teacher knows what she is doing, and the other girls in the class seem to be super sweet.  Graceful coordination might not be something that comes naturally to Jilly, but she is absolutely loving class.  I love seeing her all dressed up for class and having her show me the fun things they did during class.

birthday festivities take 3

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Jilly’s third birthday celebration included more grandparents, an aunt, an uncle, cousins, cupcakes, and swimming.  It was a fun day to let the kids all run around together.  Somehow we had managed to make it through the summer without having the cousins over to play in the pool a single time.  Crazy!  Jilly was super excited to get several Hello Kitty things, and also the gift she has been begging everyone for for several months:  Take Flight Tink (a Tinkerbell doll that flies).  It was a fun way to finish out the birthday celebrating.

Birthday festivities take 2

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Jilly got to draw out her birthday over the course of several days this time around.  A few days after the actual birthday festivities, she got a visit from my parents when we celebrated all over again!  Yay!  She had brownies on her birthday, and this time she got a cookie cake.  She lucked out and got to add another Groovy Girl to her collection and some fun accessories to use with them.  And, as they both are rather goofy she and Grandpa got to be silly together!