Thursday, May 8, 2014

Thankful Thursday: Feeling Blessed

I am THANKFUL for spring. I love springtime. Fall is my favorite, but spring is a close second. The greening up, the flowers, the warmer breezes, and freshness to everything. It makes me restless and energized -- in a good way. I find myself off the computer more (a good thing usually!) and outside working on projects.

I am THANKFUL for the colors of spring.

I am THANKFUL for fresh, new gardens full of promise.

I am THANKFUL for morels. Yum... A once a year treat.

I am THANKFUL for my favorite wild spring flower, aptly named spring beauty. I am so happy to find clusters growing in our yard!!! I usually see them in woods in the spring. I guess we have a "woods" now. :)

I am THANKFUL for hills to roll down. A childhood classic and must-do.

I am THANKFUL for this sweet girly and chalk masterpieces.

I am THANKFUL for spring thunderstorms... when they are not on top of you. The lightening was awesome, we received some needed rain, and I lost out on sleep thanks to two boys who crawled into our room. I am THANKFUL that they still want to crawl in our room when they're scared.

I am THANKFUL for spring days that give a glimpse of summer. It was sprinkling at the time and the kids had to put on their bathing suits to jump in the rain.

I am THANKFUL for babies role-playing momma. It makes me want to be a better model.

I am THANKFUL for our continent study. Sometimes school can feel like such a drag. Planning and doing such studies brings in a fun component to the week. The boys are drawing on paper boomerangs (that actually flew!) using Aboriginal symbols while we studied Australia. We are in South America at the moment and about to head into the Amazon. I should share my plans. I keep it fairly simple for my sake but the kids have responded well to it. Anyone interested?

I am THANKFUL for sweet little girls who like to give hugs and kisses (such a difference from her big sister).

I am THANKFUL for kids saying please (and in such a cute way sometimes!).

I am THANKFUL for accidental discoveries. The kids came running up from the basement the other day to tell me that there was a butterfly in the basement. "A big one!"

Naturally, I didn't believe them. I mean, why would there be a butterfly in the basement? I thought maybe they saw a moth. I went down, and sure enough it was a butterfly!

We placed it in our butterfly habitat with some oranges but it was only interested in crawling around. Eventually we took it outside where it finally flew out only to land on me. I put it on a bush where it rested and eventually flew away.

The mystery was solved when I saw an overturned patio chair. My in-laws had brought it over to use a few days prior since we have no furniture in the basement. Sure enough, on the bottom, I saw the chrysalis. We must have caught it shortly after it emerged.

It was definitely a fun learning experience and helped launch our insect study.

I am THANKFUL for French braids - soo pretty, even if I am still trying to get the hang of it.

I am THANKFUL for chocolate pudding. The kids were excited. It's the little things.

I am THANKFUL for pretty little girls, excited to dance. Miss L had to wear her costume to class for picture night. She also has a fluffy tutu that goes over the green shorts. She is supposed to be a mermaid dancing to "Under the Sea." It's been cute to watch the girls practice all year.

I am THANKFUL for a day trip to a hands-on kid science museum. My husband had taken the kids when Miss Z was first born so the boys remembered it. I loved it. The kids too. There was so much to do and learn. The little kid play space was awesome with a ton of pretend play areas. 

We were also able to see a Titanic display with items from the actual ship that were brought up from the ocean floor. We were given a ticket with an actual person's name and info from the Titanic and we could see how our person would have lived on the boat (depending on class) and at the end, if he/she survived or not. I really liked how that brought you into the story more.

(By the way, my character survived as did my daughter, and my son's secret love who he snuck on the ship and planned to marry in America. My son did not survive.)

I am THANKFUL for this excited boy. At the end of the day at the science museum, they had a live show with a few experiments that showed how scientists use the scientific method and all the senses to learn about the world around them. 

The audience was able to volunteer in spots and Mr. D was chosen for the last experiment. He was beyond excited. He did well in-between his clapping and jumping up and down. His experiment was soap poured into hydrogen peroxide -- a foamy, hot "snake" shot out of it.

I am THANKFUL that this boy still loves his Teddy. He doesn't carry him around everywhere like he used to, but I find him around, especially when Mr. A needs a little more support. (He had a doctor's appointment.)

I am THANKFUL that Mr. A's headaches have been minimal over the past month. He's only had three. The bad news is that simple ibuprofen doesn't seem to help so much any more. The doctor gave us a medicine to try without scary side effects (it used to be used as an anti-histamine). He's to take it with the ibuprofen.

I am THANKFUL for this girl wanting to get close enough for a happy photo shoot. She's a tough one, this girl.

I am THANKFUL for pure cuteness and long nightgowns.

I am THANKFUL for silly kids. They were doing some kind of insect exercise (as part of Miss L's notebook page).

I am THANKFUL for this girl making me laugh. Miss Z was "helping" me make dinner. I was making a fish face at her (she was so cranky) and she thought it would be a fun thing to do. I caught a number of faces on the camera. So funny!

I am THANKFUL for this happy poser with missing teeth!

I am THANKFUL for ice-cream treats. Last night was our last night of CCD. Mr. D actually had ice-cream in class. Mr. A was supposed to have had ice-cream but his teacher thought whey was gluten. It's not! For future reference, whey has to do with dairy, not gluten. But don't worry. He was fine as they gave him a box of M&Ms all to himself.

I am THANKFUL for the chance to help out with CCD this year. Our group of 6th graders was a very nice one. It makes me wonder in what ways we can reach out to our youth. How can we get these kids to Mass when family members won't take them? Does that even make any kind of sense? If you refuse to take them to Mass (even if the parent doesn't attend) why in the world are they even signing them up for CCD? 

Many of these kids are sons and daughters of people I went to school with. I was NOT Catholic then but my husband was. He even went to the Catholic school. They were not catechized well. At all.

I see a few young families attend Mass weekly, but I would say the majority of the parish is elderly. If the parents do not live the lifestyle, or refuse to aid their children outside CCD, how can we help them?

I am THANKFUL for parents that took me to church, even if eventually they stopped going themselves. They did not prevent me from going. They supported me.

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