Thursday, September 17, 2009

Happy "Birth" Day, Zack!

I had a good laugh when I read this joke sent to me by a friend! But it reminded me that I have something to share! We have always talked to our children about their need for Jesus, and I remember helping Zack say the sinner's prayer at a young age. Of course, we wonder what about the time when they are past the age of innocence, do they need to say that prayer again, or if they just keep on keepin' on. I'm sure it's different with each child, of course. Dealing with Zack's autism adds a whole other dimension to this subject. I believe to a certain extent, God gives much more mercy and grace to Zack than to my other children. Zack operates within the abilities that his DISabilities afford him. His autism plays out in his behavior. Social situations are hard. The more sensory input he has, the less abilitiy he has to cope. Crowds, noise, visual stimulation, all pushes his coping mechanisms to the max. He reaches overload at the slightest provocation. So, as you can imagine, discipline is an major, ongoing thing in our home. I was recently introduced to The Young Peacemaker and we have been going through the book as a family. It's amazing the difference this book has made. It really is perfect for autistic/asperger's children. This Tuesday, I was asking Zack specifically about "getting" to Heaven and how he thought that was accomplished. He said, "Well, when I get there, God will give me my punishment for being bad and then let me into Heaven." My jaw nearly hit my chest! Where had we gone wrong, and how in the world did he get THAT so mixed up?!? I told him, "No, sweet boy! That's not how it works! When you take your last breath, it's over! You have made your choice and it's time to get your consequence, Heaven OR Hell and Hell IS the punishment!" You should have seen the look of shock that came over his face and he began to cry. Real tears streaming down his cheeks (by this time, I'm crying, too!) I asked him to tell me what he was thinking and he said he realized that he has been "very horrid to Nate and James." The realization that he deserved to go to Hell because of his sinful nature and that his idea of God accepting him into Heaven no matter how badly he behaved was WAY off, really shook him up. Of course, we prayed together and he confessed that he was a sinner in need of Jesus. I tell you, it shook ME up! To see someone realize for the first time that they NEED Jesus was something else to behold! I know that on some level we all experience this on a daily basis. It's called being humble. Realizing our position of desperate need for a Savior. It also made me think about how much MORE my children need us to talk to them about the things of God. How did we miss such a big one like that?

These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

Deuteronomy 6:6-7

I guess there's no such thing as too much when it comes to talking to our children about God!

We wrestle not against flesh and blood....

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

School Fun

A couple weeks ago, I excitedly brought out the preschool items I had assembled for Nate and James and announced "Hey guys, you wanna get started on school work?" I heard a rather decided "nope!" followed by another "nope!" (Not sure who went first.) Great, I thought. I must be saying something wrong. The proverbial light bulb lit up over my head and I waited a few minutes before saying, "Hey guys, you wanna get started on school FUN?" Eyes lit up! Score another win for the art of persuasion! It took them a little while to warm up to the routine, but they are really into it now.

This is the book we are using to learn Bible stories, songs, rhymes, ABC's, 123's and art. (and more!) It takes us between 15-30 minutes a day, depending on what activities we have planned. They really like doing the art, so that can stretch the time a bit more. As long as they are interested, we keep going!

This is the Bible that the curriculum recommends using. It begins at the "Beginning", of course. A story a day with comprehension questions built right in. It's amazing how much their little minds absorb!

Here is a peek into the main activities for today. To go with the part of Noah's story of the rainbow: tear up bits of colored paper and glue on black paper. I was getting a kick out of how each of them went at it their own way. True to personality, James GLOBBED on the paper bits, in a hurry to get it done. Nate carefully placed each piece.

In the end they both finished at the same time! So much for hurrying!

Neat, careful rows!

Really getting "into" it! Love the bandaids. Previous injury, not inflicted by tearing up bits of paper.

The letter for this week is B. Guess what week we are on! Using masking tape, we taped out a capital "B" and they placed blocks on it.

~Hooray for school FUN~

Monday, September 14, 2009

Messin' with the Martians

Mary Ellen Huff put this little clip of various moms and their kids together with a song "I'm a Mom". The singers are Joyce Martin McCollough, Karen Peck and Sheri Easter and the words are great! You'll find (thanks to Mary's great sense of humor) our family picture is put along with the words "people ask what planet I'm from". I realize that there are WAY worse last names to have than Martian, and when I read some of them I thank God that I don't have THAT one! The most unusual thing that has ever happened to me concerning my (apparently hilarious) last name took place one afternoon at Walmart. I signed the check and handed it to the male clerk. (why am I not surprised that a GUY did this to me?) He noticed right away that my last name was Martian. He literally tipped his head back and started laughing his head off and said "You MARRIED a MARTIAN!!!" Oh yeah. That was funny.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Since my day starts early and ends late, this is how I keep my sanity. Just thought you might wanna know! (you know, just in case you were actually worried about me!)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Kready Bunch

Life just hasn't been the same since my older brother and his family moved off to West Virginia, leaving the rest of us "Kready Kids" behind in Florida. That was 4 years ago. It's been even longer since the four of us and our families were all together under one roof. If you are a follower of my blog, you probably know how much we miss them when the rest of us get together here in Florida. You would think it would be a simple thing to get us all together, but with various schedules with school and work it just hasn't happened. Until last week!!! Friends of Austin and Jen flew the four of them down as a gift. Not only that, they also opened up their home to us to have a mini family reunion! Not only that, they provided much of the food and all of the entertainment for the day. Theresa and Keith were wonderful host and hostess, the food was awesome, and the kids all had a ball on the slides that they rented to keep them occupied outside. I had a hard time parring down the pictures...I wanted to include them all. I picked my favorites to give you a glimpse into our wonderful day!

Food prep time!

Tons of water fun!

Love this one of Tuckor. :-)

Not sure what happened here, but Becca is laughing hysterically and Kailee has heard enough, by the looks of it!

All the children LOVE their Papa, but they love him even more when he has a seemingly endless supply of cookies in his lap.

Trying to keep cool on the back patio.

More cookies, please?

Someone PLEASE give the girl a cookie!

One of my favorite pics. He is the ONLY grandchild who caved to a much needed nap!

The oldest of the grandkids. Not to mention my favorite girl.

The last of the grandkids that will tolerate being held and snuggled with. :-(

Old friends catching up. My mom has been friends with Erma Jones for a loooong time! That's how Austin and Jennifer met. Through their mothers! (how romantic!)

All the grands...

Siblings and spouses...

...with the best parents a kid could ever hope to have! They gave us everything we ever needed and haven't ever stopped loving or praying for any of us. Christ-like unconditional love = happy children!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Delayed or Genius? You decide!

Earlier this summer, my husband had the privilege of taking all 5 kids to their pediatrician in one day. Without me. (why do I have the urge to cackle at the thought?) Actually, he deserves a standing ovation. The children arrived showered, well dressed and with shiny brushed teeth and hair. Oh, and they were well fed, too. I couldn't have done it better myself. While he was still busy filling out forms for each of them (did I mention this was a NEW pediatrician?) the patient technician went ahead and took Nate and James on in the back to meet with the doctor. Becca went with them. No biggie. Until this tech took it upon herself to "test" my two youngest boy's skills. You know, do they know their numbers? (no, but she didn't bother to check if they knew their ABC's. Which they mostly do.) Do they know how to draw a square? (No, but Nate repeatedly asked if he could please draw a car for her. She said no.) Then she had the nerve to inform Becca that she thought the boys might be delayed based on her "evaluation" and was going to inform their daddy that he might want to get them tested.

So, here's the test. Readers, YOU are the experts. My 4 year old son refused to draw a square for this crazy person, but he can churn out these drawings of cars by the dozen if you are sweet enough to only ask. I ask you: does he have fine motor skill delays?

All I want for Christmas is the chance to meet this lady myself and give her a quiz of my own. "Hey kids! Anybody feeling sick? Mommy will take you to see the doctor!"

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Return of the blogger

My dear Mother kindly pointed out that since her computer won't run Face Book without crashing, the only way she can keep up with my family affairs, is to call me on the phone read my blog. The problem? I haven't been blogging! How did I turn my back on my on-line diary, get lost in the world of FB, and how do I return? Well, making the decision to quit wean myself off FB wasn't an easy one. What about all the long lost cousins? Old school mates? Won't I miss connecting with them? Well, I did modify "quit" to "wean". So, we'll see. But, I do know this: my children need me much more than I need to know whom is lunching with whom, who just took a nap, who is cheering for what team and who just got home from work! So, since there is not enough time in my day to include all the social highways and byways of the internet, I'll have to choose. Can I get a rousing "Welcome Back!"?

Where to begin? How about with one of my favorite photos from the last couple months: Rob's official First Day of School photo! Here he is surrounded by (almost) all his loving children who got up at an ungodly hour to tell him goodbye and good luck! Rob enrolled in PBCC this year and is going through the Machining Technology course. He has classes 7 hours a day, 5 days a week. It has been an adjustment for us all. But don't worry, the panic-induced pain in my chest is almost gone. Almost. I have worries. I pray. For him, for me, for the kids, for my job to continue at least until Rob is finished with school. (13 loooong months down the road) Here is an interesting observation I have made: Is your life flying by in a blur? Enroll your spouse in a full-time course at your local college. Time will come to a screeching halt! I'm not sure why. But, I don't like days that drag. At this point, I'm all about speeding up, but that's apparently NOT an option. But, back to Rob. :-) He loves school. School loves him.

(Mom, I know, I know! You already heard THIS story! But you haven't seen this sweet "lets-get-up-early-and-support-daddy" photo, now have you?!)