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We are a WCA family

29 Feb

Last summer Joe, Joseph, Bidbit and Bees participated in a fundraiser golf tournament for WCA. This winter they wanted to have our family photo taken for the WCA magazine. We all dressed in school colors. I am so thankful for this photo of both sides of our family, with all of our children!

golf image kelly's 4


Because, you never really know.

7 Sep



I mean, things change, right?


First Day of School

14 Aug

That first day rolls around too soon again!



And oh, be still my heart. This one’s going to KINDERGARTEN.

And as anxious as she might have been in her younger years, she’s said goodbye to being shy.

She walked right into that classroom and picked up a book and made herself right at home.


It’s going to be a great year!

A Year to Remember

28 May

Twenty children and several siblings giggled and wiggled, ready for the pizza and cake, wondering why their mamas were misty-eyed in sheer amazement.

My own heart was full of emotion. Sitting in this same spot last year at a different school my heart had ached when the teacher called my child by the wrong name for the hundredth time, and when the other children taunted each other in the classroom around us. Today I knew we’d come full circle, J3 sitting firmly in his desk next to me, smiling broadly, surrounded by children he’s really connected to this year at school, and enveloped in a place of love, grace and bursting expectation.

“Read it to me!” my son said when he saw the little-bitty print on the letter from one of his teachers on the first page of the giant scrapbook that details every exciting moment of his first grade year. I started the letter. I stopped after the first line. My eyes were filled to the brim and my forehead was making that wrinkle that extends down to my lips, the one that makes my whole face crack into an ugly cry. I had to stop. N-o-w. I’d skimmed ahead in the letter. The one that spoke to the heart of my child–his very HEART–and gave him both faithful encouragement and gentle, Godly advice that can remain with him for the rest of his life.
These women know my child almost as well as I do, I thought. Really, maybe even as well as I do.

What a gift. What a blessing.

Our teachers are leaving after this year, one retiring after an incredible 28 years of service.
This set the tone for the topic of the day to be “Are you coming back next year.” Oh yes. We will be back. This year has been a logistical challenge. Sometimes I don’t feel as plugged in as I should be. I am not sure I could recommend this school to the next family.

But for us, it’s a gift we treasure. I appreciate the confidence of knowing that when I send my children into the world of school, it is not a world separate from our home. It is an extension of their regular world; it enriches the Christian values they learn at home. I hope it creates a continuity for them, a constancy that they can depend on in times of decision-making. I was once unsure of how important this trial year would be. I am now thankful for how solid this foundation has proven to become.

As I flipped each page of the scrapbook, I was reminded of each milestone J3 has accomplished this year. I could see the improvements little (handwriting!) and large (creativity!) he has made as the months passed. The pictures showed a bright and happy boy, excited about the challenges of school. I could hear his voice on mornings when I would ask him if he wanted to sleep in or stay home to catch up on needed rest: “No way, mom! I need to get to school!” If I’d known they were doing this much activity, I’d have better understood his enthusiasm! More than anything I felt grateful for the time and effort his teacher had put into making these twenty scrapbooks for every child’s family.

Finally, on to the pizza and cake, but not before we tell you one more time:
We will miss you, Mrs. Matthewson and Mrs. Washam, but we will never, ever forget you.

The One in the Middle

21 May

First it happened that my baby

was suddenly no longer the baby,

which suited her just fine.

But somewhere along the way her own little personality blossomed

her own interests took shape

and she was ready to take on the world.

And with charm like this, there isn’t much she can’t conquer.

She’s our star for sure.

And now she’s been given her walking papers for Kindergarten.

It’s here and it’s official. And while I know it was a process in the making, it feels like I forgot to pencil it in on my calendar and I missed it coming.

But I sure am proud.

We’re Thankful For…

20 Nov

Leaves in the fall…


Grandparents who come to see it all…


And turkeys too…


And moms who don’t miss a thing we do…


Pilgrims and Indians who introduced the day…


And our most wonderful teacher who made the Thanksgiving play…



Because, you never really know.

14 Sep

joseph work (2)

The Preschool Years

14 Aug

First Day of School rolls around too soon!

This one growing at an alarming rate…


Check out this book!

1 Aug

August 2010

Did you know that the oldest American dictionary is the 1828 Webster’s dictionary?  It is special because it was the first dictionary to list the words of the American people, defining our language.  (And language is really a social phenomenon.)  This dictionary is also special because it was formed before the time of political correctness.  Therefore it contains a lot of religious reference within its definitions.  I have the compact edition for our family, and it also comes in a hardback expanded version.  The online version also lets you look up specific words as well.  Have fun!

Babble talk!

1 Jul

July 2010 

A fly on the wall could get a well-rounded education around our house.  If we aren’t hooked on a brainless show like American Idol or Pawn Stars, we can find ourselves doing something totally dorky like reading a book (together!) or getting involved in some type of really deep discussion.   Lately we have been talking a lot about the history of the English language, which is one of my main interests anyway, and something that J2 has become interested in as well.  (Wait!  Don’t leave! 😉 ) 

J2 finds it amazing that he can read a letter or text from 300 years ago and it sounds almost just like we speak today, but everything before that is almost like it is a different language.  However, language is really a social phenomenon.  It follows the development of land and exploration of the world.  As the world grew bigger to the settlers, our language evolved too.  

Way back when England was barely even a country (it was called Angle-land because it was inhabited primarily by tribes called Angles) the language was more germanic and tribal. It was Old English, and barely recognizable to us today.  The letters are different, the pronunciations are not the same, and to tell you the truth, even the different tribes could barely communicate with one another, which may be why they were so quarrelsome!  

Do you recognize this text? 

Fæder ure þu þe eart on heofonum;
Si þin nama gehalgod
to becume þin rice
gewurþe ðin willa
on eorðan swa swa on heofonum.
urne gedæghwamlican hlaf syle us todæg
and forgyf us ure gyltas
swa swa we forgyfað urum gyltendum
and ne gelæd þu us on costnunge
ac alys us of yfele soþlice

Later, when life moved into a more castle-like lifestyle, due to the influence of the Norman invasion in 1066, our language took on more French and Norman influence.  It became Middle English.  The influence of outside trade with other countries took effect also, and our language grew more mature.  But, with some of the Old English letters still mixed in, and many French words borrowed into the vocabulary, it still isn’t very recognizable to us today.  In fact they did not even pronounce their vowels the same way we pronounce ours today. 

What about this one? 

Oure fadir that art in heuenes,
halewid be thi name;
thi kyngdoom come to;
be thi wille don, in erthe as in heuene.
Yyue to vs this dai oure breed ouer othir substaunce,
and foryyue to vs oure dettis, as we foryyuen to oure dettouris;
and lede vs not in to temptacioun, but delyuere vs fro yuel.

Still later, a movement called the Great Vowel Shift happened.  This was due to the breakdown of feudalism and the move from castle life to city life and the inter-mingling of people living among each other from many villages within cities, and heavy trading among these cities across a much more organized country.   Suddenly the vowels started sounding like we pronounce them today. And then the letters started looking like the ones we use today.  Even some of the letters started being differentiated so that a 26-letter alphabet was finally formed.  Sound familiar?  First it was Early Modern English, which is more familiar as it evolves into more familiar spelling over time, but still uncomfortable with its thees and thous.   

More familiar yet? 

O oure father which art in heven,
halowed be thy name.
Let thy kingdom come.
Thy wyll be fulfilled, as well in eth
as hit ys in heven.
Geve vs this daye our dayly breade,
And forgeve vs oure treaspases
euen as we forgeve them which treaspas vs.
Leede vs not into temptation,
but delyvre vs from yvell. Amen.

Later, once the country was fully realized, we evolved to Modern English, which is what we we’ve used for the past 300 years or so, even still today. 

Here it is! 

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.
Thy Kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.


As the globe became fully realized, our language became fully evolved. Language did not magically change over time, but changed as a result of societies forming more structured lifestyles and realizing the world around them.  As life became more organized, so did language.   

I hope you’ve enjoyed being a fly on the wall in our house this day! 


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