Thursday, November 6, 2014


I am a firm believer in animals are a great teaching tool for kids. Feeding, walking, grooming and loving a dog are all excellent ways to teach responsibility for another living creature.

My boys have lots of animals outside and they do GREAT at taking care of them. They are responsible beyond their years. 

Elizabeth has in the past had cats and she bottle fed Ben, our steer. She is very responsible and loves animals.

But Fayth.. this is a first for her. She is finally at the place where she is ready to care for a living creature. She is doing very well so far, cuddling her, grooming, making sure Lady is fed. The girls take turns having her sleep with them. They love to take her with us in the car. She even has her own carseat.

My girls walk this dog in the cold and the rain. They go to great lengths to make sure she doesn't have accidents in the house... They are learning to sacrifice their own comforts for someone/something else's.
They do this all without complaining. Mostly because their brothers would be more then happy to take over the care of lady.  

My goal is to teach my kids to love and treasure life. To be responsible for something/one other then themselves.

 They were hiding from the dog catchers aka big brothers. 

The dog story.. now we know all things we own have a story. I had been searching for a specific dog for quite some time. I wanted a dog that was fully trained, gentle, kid friendly and easy to care for. Something clean and tiny. I needed for the dog to be hypo allergenic and really good with all kinds of kids and choas.
I also have a very limited budget.

So for the last 6 months or more I have been reading online, researching what would work with our needs AND wants. We decided on a bichon frise. They are hypoallergenic if groomed and cared for properly. They are GREAT with kids and need lots of love.

We searched the local puppy advertisements but finding a full grown dog, fully trained for an affordable price is nearly impossible.

A couple months ago we noticed "lilly" on the local website. I just wasn't sure. She was not that cute and I assumed she had been a puppymill momma.

Finally several weeks ago, I realized that Fayth had made great progress in her school work and her willingness to be a helpful, respectful member of our family. IT was time for a big reward.

The kids and I sat down AGAIN and scoured the puppy websites. We decided to call about "lilly" late on a Saturday evening. She was owned by an amish guy that lived 2 hours away. Her price tag was higher then what I wanted.
We prayed as we waited to hear back from the owner. We called the landlord for permission to have a house dog. We scoured amazon for the perfect collar and leash.

Monday afternoon I spoke to Mr. L who owned "lilly". He was selling her because she was a family pet, but due to family circumstances he needed to sell her. Yes, she was great with kids, even toddlers. She was sweet, well trained and quiet. Plus he was willing to drop his price by almost 40%!! This was so perfect. The only glitch, I was not looking forward to that far of a drive just to buy a dog.

But when we discussed, he mentioned that they were traveling later that week and would be in my area. PERFECT!

When we finally met "Lilly" at the amish farm, we were delighted. She had an awful, hacked up haircut, but she was still adorable, so ladylike and sweet. Plus the "grandma" who was babysitting the kids and dog that day, almost cried when she had to let go of this dog. She had been in the family for 7 years. The kids promised to write her letters with an update on "Lilly" once she was settled in.

We brought "Lilly" home and the kids were over the moon with happiness. They all love her dearly already and she them. She thinks she needs to go with us, whenever we go anywhere.

I have been pleased to see the girls take responsibility. They take turns, each having certain responsibilities each day.  I do very little other then checking in to make sure she is fed and cared for properly.

Yes, God even cares about dogs, especially for his little girls..

Sunday, November 2, 2014

David's Race and Other Random Moments.

My David has a natural God given talent when it comes to running. I have never seen another person run so effortlessly. 
This particular race is challenging for him. He was one of the top 5 at the Elementary Run so he got to compete in the Regionals.

Burst of determination at the end. Sadly this kiddoe learned a hard lesson. If we do not practice we will not be able to do our absolute best. 

Miss A was home for a visit. We love hanging out with her. 

Life has been busy lately.. sick kids, adjusting to babysitting and other life things. Posting here has been on the bottom of my to do list.. Sorry.. :)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Homeschooling Fosters Creativity

Several weeks ago the kids watched a movie about sled dogs.
The next thing I knew they had these big ideas about building their own. It just happened that we were babysitting that Saturday. So their friend added his imagination to the mix.

These pictures are in random order. They were taken by my little photographer. 

This is a special homemade "paint" made by the boys. they gathered poke berries and smashed them into a jar. The results were pretty cool. 

This garage is the boy's haven. It is a place of creativity and much mess. I try to stay out of it.

Mr. J brings them lots of old wood, which they use to build things. But you know as I am writing this, I realized that this plyboard (stored in the garage) was actually from their bunkbeds! AGH!

This is the smaller dog sled that David and his friend built.

We were less successful at putting together a dog harness. Hopefully by the time it snows we will be able to figure that one out.

My boys spend hours and hours working on this dog sled. They had no directions, no google, nothing! This was entirely from watching one movie.