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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Voices

We all have voices that we listen to.  They can be our parents, friends, relatives, or even strangers.  We can hear their words and forget them or we can hear them, take them into our hearts and then they become the voices in our heads.  The voices that talk to us in a continuous stream every day.  

The voices that play in my head are all the negatives ones I have heard over the years. Right or wrong, they are the voices I hear.





Words like slob, ugly, loser, unqualified, disorganized, fat, mean, petty, cold-hearted, hypocritical, and so many more.





I can pretend that those words don’t affect me and I can bolster my courage and pretend that I don’t care what others think of me; but the truth is I do care. Each and every word-unkind or kind, is remembered and played thousands of times in my head every day.





I take them into my heart and they become part of me, of who I am. Those labels become my identity. They change me in small ways that forever alters what I see when I look at myself. And when I think about who I am. Words have the power of life and death.





Words don’t even need to be spoken. It can come in the form of gossip and non-confrontational behavior. If someone has a problem with me or something I have done but doesn’t even respect me enough to talk to me about it-what does that say? That I am not worth talking to and working out the situation. That voice is on a constant loop. This is an almost constant occurrence in my life. People would rather talk about me and the problem to others rather than me. I am too irrational to have a conversation with. I am too opinionated and talk too much. Yeah, I have heard all of it.





I hear it in my head every day. When situations pop up, the voices chime in and let me know exactly what others have said. It never ends. It is crippling at times. The fear of failure is so great that I would rather do nothing and see no one so that I wouldn’t disappoint or upset anyone.

I have to fight these voices every day.  Sometimes every moment.  They lie.  The feed my doubt and my fear until it is a living, breathing thing.  But fear is a liar.  Doubt is a trap that has sticky sides so you can't get out and an easy chair in it so you don't want to.  It is easier to stay in the fear and doubt than to fight your way out.

But fight you must.  

Knowing what God says about you is a must.  He is the author of your life and only He can tell you who you are and who He created you to be.  He is the Light and the Hand reaching into the darkness.  He is also the Friend that sits with you while you cry giving Comfort and Strength to go on.  

Every day the battle wages and every day we must fight.



Monday, April 16, 2018

That's What I Get

I just thought I would do a better job of blogging!  I guess I had no idea how busy I was about to become after my last post.

Naomi has had a great competitive gymnastics season.  She placed at every meet in at least one event and I believe she placed in the All Arounds each time as well.  She competed at State in March and placed on every event except for Vault-she was close to placing though!  She took FIRST on Beam at State!!  She also took 2nd All Around at State and qualified for Regionals in Galveston, Tx.  We are so proud and can't wait to see her growth over the coming years.

I have had some job changes this winter.  I started at Wichita Gymnastics doing classes and the Silver team and then in December/January I started training to coach the Gold and up teams.  So, I have been working every day of the week at the gym.  Plus, doing meets for both sets of teams.  It has been exhausting but I truly love it.  That scheduled changed a little when soccer started...it got busier!

Soccer started in February with Conditioning in the afternoons.  So, I would go to work right after Conditioning or come from work straight to Conditioning.  It was crazy but it worked.  Then we started our season and the Training times had to change.  So, then I would go to work on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday after two hours of soccer training and once games started it changed again!  With games going I wasn't able to work as much but would try to go to work after games.  I am beat.  We only have three more weeks of soccer and I am sad and glad. lol  For work, I have been able to cut back on my hours and I am not coaching the Silver girls anymore-I am sad because I love them but I am glad to have some of my time back.  For now, anyway!

On the home front, life is moving along.  Sarah went to Thailand for 10 days with our church and loved every minute of it. Beth got a new job at Cocoa Dolce and adores it.  Hannah is driving everywhere and has three jobs, she is a starter for our High School team.  Naomi is in the off season for gymnastics but is a starter for Jr. High soccer and a part-time starter on our High School team.  Phoenix is still loving public school and thriving.  Steven is still amazing and supportive and crushing his job.  I seriously wouldn't survive without him.

I am looking forward to a trip to Al Fong's coaches training this weekend, a soccer tournament in Springfield, Mo, our trip to Galveston, another trip to Texas for a gymnastics conference, vacation, and probably more that I can't remember at the moment!

For now, I have to check my calendar to make sure I am not missing an event!




Friday, November 24, 2017

First Gymnastics Meet

Naomi had her first gymnastics meet last weekend!  She was so nervous and the last month before the meet she spent freaked out and couldn't throw her double back handspring.  She threw it last month and had a bad fall and lost it.  She wanted that and her back walkover on beam for this meet...

She got them both!  She worked hard and really focused in practices and it paid off.  We are so proud of her.  She placed on every event and got 3rd All Around!!  Her team took home 1st place!

We can't wait to watch her the rest of this season!






Thursday, November 23, 2017

Kutlass Alpha/Omega Review

I have new music for you!  I am so excited to share this CD with you.  I wasn't sure what to think when a Kutless album was coming but I am so thrilled to have this CD.  
Alpha/Omega is a wonderful Praise & Worship album that will surely become a staple in your music collection.  We had this album playing while we were making dinner and every song that came up, we were excited to hear it and it became our favorite.  I am not sure I can pick a favorite; I love them all that much. 
You need to listen to this album and buy it.  

About Kutless:
Since signing to BEC Recordings in 2001, Kutless has transformed from a new rock band to a staple artist in the industry that has multi-format, top-charting hits, sold millions of records and more than eight million streams. Launched by original members Jon Micah Sumrall (lead vocals) and guitarist James Mead, the band formed first as a modern rock/worship band at Warner Pacific College in Portland in 2000. Kutless has two RIAA Gold-selling albums for Strong Tower and Live from Portland. The band has had 12 No. 1 radio singles across all formats including their major hits "Strong Tower,” "What Faith Can Do" and "Carry Me To The Cross.”
After more than 15 years together and reaching fans around the world, Kutless continues to be focused on sharing the Gospel with a younger generation that is searching for answers.
“We really believe that music can make a difference in people’s lives,” shares Jon Micah Sumrall. “Music is an incredibly powerful tool that can break down walls and allow us to communicate a message of hope to people who may not listen otherwise. We are still recording and performing because we really do believe it makes a difference. We hear stories all the time from people who share with us how a concert or a song has radically impacted their life, and it’s these types of testimonies that keep us going year after year.”
In 2012, Kutless formed EOTA Ministries (End of The Age) to expand their evangelistic outreach around the globe. EOTA is the non-profit arm that aids Kutless in hosting large, free outreach concerts and events. In 2015, they partnered with other organizations to bring concerts to Kiev, Ukraine and other cities for six events - the largest of their kind in that country. The next year, Kutless returned to 11 cities in Ukraine as well as in Belarus, a communist country, where more than 100,000 heard the Gospel and over 40,000 commitments to Christ.
With their upcoming album ALPHA / OMEGA, Kutless has created a collection of rock and worship songs of both original and cover tracks that are true to who the band has been for the last 17 years. They wanted to create a project that would engage the Christian community and have the greatest impact. The songs are true to who the band is at their core - rock and worship. ALPHA / OMEGA features a new version of “Strong Tower” as well as the debut radio single “King of My Heart.”
#KutlessAO & #FlyBy
Social Corner:
Landing page to buy/stream the record: http://smarturl.it/kutles
Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2eNsXwlLvo


“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.  

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Grey Wolves Series-Review

Okay, I am going to do a review for a series of books that Bethany and I love.  We have read the entire series many times-more than I want to admit at the moment.  We got hooked on them and just couldn't stop reading.  I actually re-read them at least twice a year!  No, I am not kidding.  The characters become my friends and I just have to be a part of their lives.  I NEED to know what will happen to them!  Plus, I just love the characters.

The first book in the series is Prince of Wolves.















Jacque Pierce was just an ordinary 17 year old girl getting ready to start her senior year in high school in Coldspring, Texas. When a mysterious foreign exchange student from Romania moves in across the street, Jacque and her two best friends, Sally and Jen, don’t realize the last two weeks of their summer was going to get a lot more interesting. From the moment Jacque sets eyes on Fane she feels an instant connection, a pull like a moth to a flame. Little does she know that the flame she is drawn to is actually a Canis Lupus, werewolf, and she just happens to be his mate; the other half of his soul. The problem is Fane is not the only wolf in Coldspring, Texas. Just as Fane and Jacque are getting to know each other, another wolf steps out to try and claim Jacque as his mate. Fane will now have to fight for the right to complete the mating bond, something that is his right by birth but is being denied him by a crazed Alpha. Will the love Fane has for Jacque be enough to give him the strength to defeat his enemy, will Jacque accept that she is Fane’s mate and complete the bond between them?


My take:  The writing is a little like a self-published author(at first), by that I mean there are some spelling errors and grammatical errors.  However, I don't find them to be too distracting and the character development more than makes up for any lack of writing style.  (Hannah-my literary student snubs her nose at these books because they are not Jane Austen or J.R.R. Tolkien!)  The story line is captivating and the main characters are full of life.  I would so be their friend in real life. Many times while reading this series I found myself laughing out loud, cheering, or crying at what is happening.  I truly fell in love with the characters and will be so incredibly sad when the series is finished...it can never be finished.  I'm just sayin'.

The next book in the series is Blood Rites, it continues the story flawlessly and advances the plot to the point of racing through the book to get to the next one! The story continues all the way through book 10!!  Then she takes a side-step and branches out some of the characters and created The Gypsy Healer series.  This is also a series that I just love and can't seem to stay away from.  The latest installment I made myself read it slowly just so it wouldn't end too quickly!

They are all worth the read.  Oh, did I mention that they are CLEAN?  Meaning no sex, no major language(a few 'minor' cuss words), books that I let my teens read and don't worry about it.  That is big y'all.  

You can visit her website Here  You can also buy all of her books on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other retailers.  You can also find her other book series-Elfin, Dream so Dark, The Vikings Chosen.

I encourage you to check them all out.  You just may find a new favorite author!!

**Disclaimer: I did NOT receive any books in compensation for this review.  I bought them all on my own-because I love them-and the opinions are my own.  Even if I had received any books for review, I would give an honest review and my opinions would still be my own.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Curriculum 2017-2018

I don't think I have posted for quite a while about the curriculum we are using.  With two having graduated, I find that life was slowing down quite a bit in the homeschooling department.  With Bug added back in, it is a bit busier!

This year we have Hannah in 10th grade, Naomi in 7th grade, and But in 2nd grade.  We haven't really changed curriculum much in the last few years because we found what really works for each one and we are sticking with it! 

Hannah-10th:
Tapestry of Grace Year 1-History, Literature, Bible, Writing
Apologia Marine Biology
Math U See Pre-Calc
Dave Ramsey Personal Finance
Economics for Everybody (2nd Semester)
Fallacy Detective (2nd Semester)

Naomi-7th:
Tapestry of Grace Year 1-History, Literature, Bible, Writing, Arts/Crafts
Apologia General Science
Math U See Pre-Algebra

Bug-2nd:
Time4Learning-Language Arts, Science, Math, Social Studies
various workbooks for each subject and lots of play time, learning to play on her own, and working on setting up chores and being responsible

I think that is it.  But, who knows we may add more or change something mid-year!  That is the beauty of homeschooling-you can change what isn't working.