I am still basking in the victory of last months craft club. I usually have a friend who is a GREAT helper, but she was unable to make it. I used my entire reserve of patience but had all seven girls finger knitting by then end of the hour. I love the directions posted on creativebug. We used super soft chunky yarn, in bright colors. This first picture just steals my heart, aren’t they just precious knitting in the “round.”
We also worked on two group hula hoop looms, using yarn, ribbons and cut up strands from old t-shirts. They loved it so much I had to pull out paper plates for more “practice.” I am going to miss this little group when we break for summer!
We had THREE snow days last week and planned on going skiing up north for the other two, so my girls had a FULL week off of school, crazy. With school cancelled, we had to make up our craft club as the roads were too treacherous even for clay! I debated like crazy about splitting the group in two for this one, since the lesson was a bit more hands on, it ended up happening naturally as a few were missing due to sickness. It was sweet to work with a small group (six) and get to help the girls a bit more individually. I’ll have to schedule a make-up for the make-up…
This month we made clay tea cups from coil pots and some fashionable clay beads. This really counts as two different 4-H crafts, since clay is one category and jewelry is another. I figured I would teach the a little early multi-tasking! My hands were too messy to snap photos during the process but they turned out great. Can’t wait to see after they are glazed and fired.
I have enjoyed watching my girls grown in friendships with other girls from their class and school. How fun to make art and invite these cuties in our home once a month.
This week we held our first craft club meeting. Since our school no longer has art class I was missing this for my girls (as were their little creative souls). Sometimes you just have to make the opportunity when there is nothing available around. So we started a club, I also thought it would be an excellent way to meet my kids friends and their parents. I picked up 10 VERY excited girls after-school and brought them to my home. This week we worked on Charlie Harper cardinal collages. We talked about pattern, shapes and lines, they turned out super- adorable! I was so thankful for a great friend who stayed to help! I can’t wait until January when we meet again!
It has been a GORGEOUS fall here in Northern Michigan, so we have been taking to the tree house in our back yard for reading time. Fitting as I was reading a “Magic Tree House” book with my kids the other day, I started reading out loud chapter books with them when they were very young. As we read about the bees, lions and masai warriors my kids were fighting to see the pictures first, so I turned one of the five pictures in the book and then I thought to myself, wait a minute… I’ll show you a picture of a massai warrior! I ran inside and grabbed my photo album and leafed through our safari pages and there is my beautiful first born daughter held by two massai tribesmen. What a neat thing to be able to 1. read to your child, 2. let them get wrapped up in the story line, and 3. personally identify with it…. I turned to S, ”you have been to this exact place” this book is talking about. It didn’t take magic, just a little following Jesus.
Don’t forget where you have been friends, it grounds you for where you are going in the future. Falling in love with reading, adventure and mommy time is great but it is nothing compared to trusting and obeying Jesus and the plan he has for you.
Can I take you girls on a “family date” tonight? My husbands idea of a surprise was to introduce us all to the driving range. I think I got a little farther with the camera than I did with the clubs… but the girls got into it. Nothing sweeter than seeing the love of your life teaching your little loves (in skirts none-the-less). Learning to take the moments as they come and embrace what’s around us. I keep saying “this is the best stage,” and praying that is my proclamation at every milestone!
The girls headed outdoors for a new class this week… such perfect weather all sun and cooler temps. S is thrilled she is finally old enough to do some “real” riding with the older kids. She spent a chunk of time this week mastering “hugs & kisses” and figure 8′s. Camp has such a great horse program, it was good to see so many camp kids out and giving our new staff an opportunity to practice before summer (like you had to twist their arms…)
I am so thankful to have so many awesome riders & wranglers in our life, so that I can just be a supportive mom on the side and keep in my flip flops. I like horses, especially pictures of them. I just get a little nervous sometimes at their size and will, perhaps it’s a clash of personalities! But the girls, they love them, I am sure these two will be counting down the days until they can sign up for horse camp. Hope you have a great weekend & fathers day!
She couldn’t keep up… I feel like a kid again on roller blades. I think I am going to love this summer.
Last week my girls bustled about with dad, planning all kinds of sweet surprises for mother’s day. All week long there were whispers and clues in the form of markers, cameras left in strange place, extra ingredients in the fridge… I really love solving mysteries, but I resisted the urge, I can wait for the sweetness. I don’t think they planned the perfect weather or all my iris blooming – lovely bonus! Yet, I did realize as I was banned to my bed on saturday morning (until 8:45AM) that I am ok with mother’s day brunch as long as someone brings me a cup of coffee during the wait. I really am awful at sleeping in.
A child has not made up his mind yet about what is and what is not possible. He has no fixed preconceptions about what reality is; and if someone tells him that the mossy place under the lilac bush is a magic place, he may wait until he thinks that no one is watching him, but then he will very probably crawl in under the lilac bush to see for himself. A child also knows how to accept a gift. He does not worry about losing his dignity or becoming indebted if he accepts it. His conscience does not bother him because the gift is free and he has not earned it and therefore really has no right to it. He just takes it, with joy. In fact, if it is something that he wants very much he may even ask for it. And lastly, a child knows how to trust. It is late at night and very dark and there is the sound of sirens as his father wakes him. He does not explain anything but just takes him by the hand and gets him up, and the child is scared out of his wits and has no idea what is going on, but he takes his father’s hand anyway and lets his father lead him where he chooses into the darkness.
Federick Buechner, The Magnificent Defeat
The other day I looked out the window across the street and saw a gaggle of boys climbing in a tree, hanging from its limbs. My daughters begged to join them, and after approval they flew across the street like so many times before. As I glanced across the street again I reached for my camera, it seems safer sometimes to grieve good friends moving from the other side on the lens. A van pulls up and more kids pile out. Their little laughs and giggles seem so natural, in fact this is all they know in life, they have played together since they were born. I quietly trail behind them snapping photos as they move from one favorite playing spot to another. They play hard together like they know the last time they get to be all together is coming, but I doubt they fully grasp yet the reality of that.
As a mother my heart breaks for these kiddos, I have learned to love them as my own, watch them grow, prayed for them and celebrated them. My heart is mindful of the teachable moments as I press through my own tears, for many of them this is their first “loss.” I can’t predict how they are going to respond or hurt as their little world changes, but I can come alongside to embrace and encourage in this moment. My youngest we tried to prepare by telling her they were moving around Easter, has remained quiet other than saying repeatedly “mommy, I don’t want Easter to come.” But my little love, it is here, now is the time to say our good byes, and hope that even this sad event may demonstrate to our kids about the meaning and cost of love, how to leave well, and the tie that binds. It’s Easter – it all happens according to His plan and glory. Thank you lord, for friends to journey with, our lives have been enriched and we have been blessed.