Friday, October 17, 2014

A peek inside her 3rd grade classroom:

Lana's beloved teacher Mrs. Celis sent me these precious pictures she snapped of my girl in action this week.

Just finished presenting their research project on the Gateway Arch:

working on her ipad

I seriously wish I could just follow her around all day and watch her.
She melts me.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Lana's first swim meet!

Lana has been on the swim team for a couple of months now.
Today was her first swim meet.

We arrived at the meet in Mobile about an hour early so that she could watch what was going on for a while.  Here's a peek into her personality (and why we knew to come early): 
as Dan & I were remarking in the front seat of the car that we had made such good time that we would be about an hour early, she pipes up from the back:
"That's ok!  I would rather be 2 hours early than 5 minutes late!"

Lana with her coach:
Coach Alex has been swimming since she was Lana's age,
all the way through college on a scholarship.
She graduated last year, and is now coaching our swim team.

She spent a few minutes with us before warm-ups, and said things like:
"Lana trains hard," and 
"She's swimming really fast to be so new - faster than some who have been with us for a couple of years.  She's got natural talent."

Headed into the pool for warm-ups:

Last minute reminders and pep talk from Coach.
I love how intently Lana is listening to her - she always does.

This sport suits Lana's personality really well.
It's a team sport, so there's that camaraderie there,
but when you get in the pool and race, it's you.
When you train, it's you.
The person you're competing against is yourself, first and foremost.
It's a really great balance for her.

Then it was time to swim!
That's her on the block right in the middle, 
getting ready to swim freestyle.

She swam 2 events, the freestyle (in lane 5, the next to farthest) and the backstroke (in lane 2).
She wasn't the fastest by any stretch but she swam hard and remembered what she'd been taught and I swear she was the bravest little girl I've ever seen, diving off that block with total composure.  I was in tears I was so proud of her.

First swim meet was officially a success!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

One year ago.

One year ago today:

My caption was 
Can't wait to see if these are all they're cracked up to be.

In short:
they are.
they are.

Before: we suffered through seasonal allergies with zyrtec, claritin, local honey, and afrin.
Now: lemon, lavender, and peppermint are in our diffuser, rollerballs, and capsules.  We add copaiba when they are very bad.

Before: cold season meant wheezing and breathing treatments.
Now: we prevent sickness with thieves and oregano, and treat any coughs or congestion we do get with RC and Raven in the diffuser, and rubbed on the chest and feet.

Before: stress meant mama acted kind of crazy.
Now: Stress Away behind the ears and back of neck and Joy or Orange in the diffuser.

Before: visits to the doctor and dentist usually led to weeping and gnashing of teeth
Now: Valor on the jawline and Peace & Calming on the wrists and ankles make a night and day difference.  I wouldn't take the kids to the dentist by myself a year ago; Dan always had to go with to help me.  Now I don't think twice about it.

Before: excedrin was my go-to headache medicine; Dan preferred Advil.
Now: Peppermint on the temples, Frankincense on the roof of the mouth, Deep Relief on the forehead. Our headache medicines have literally expired in the cabinet....and it's not because life doesn't give us headaches anymore, people.  :)

Before: we went through a bottle of children's tylenol/ibuprophen every month of so
Now: we haven't bought any in one year.  and not because I'm opposed to it - we just haven't needed it.  Instead, it's peppermint for fever, panaway for muscular/achy things, diluted thieves for new molars.

Before: bug bites blistered and swelled and popped and oozed and got infected.  Benadryl was virtually ineffective except in high doses.
Now: Citronella oil before we go outside; if we forget, Purification and Lavender take away swelling and itching overnight.

Before: cuts, scrapes, and other bleeding boo-boos meant hydrogen peroxide and antibacterial  ointment and screaming like limbs were being torn off.
Now: kids come in and ask for lavender on their minor wounds.  It disinfects and speeds healing.

Before: bedtime was kind of like playing a not very fun version of whack-a-mole.
Now: Lavender and Cedarwood in the diffuser, and Tranquil roll-on help us all go to sleep and stay asleep.

Before: my back and neck issues that were caused by a car wreck years ago would flare up every few months, leaving me in muscle-relaxer, painkiller induced fog for days.
Now: idaho balsam fir, copaiba, and frankincense in a capsule are heavy duty enough to completely keep me away from prescription meds.

Before: one of our kiddos took Miralax daily to help with chronic constipation.  Had been for years.
Now: Digize clockwise on the belly has gotten us completely miralax-free!

Before: when the grownups got a cold or virus, we reached for the Advil, Nyquil, Benadryl and whatever else we thought might help our coughing-sniffling-sneezing go away.
Now: a capsule 3x a day of thieves, oregano, and frankincense has not yet failed us!  We start it as soon as we feel the sickies coming on, and it's gone within 48 hours, usually more like 24.

Before: I had to carefully watch how far and long I ran or shin splints would keep me off the roads entirely.  I had started taking an anti-inflammatory every day before I ran to prevent them.
Now: Lemongrass for inflammation means I haven't had shin splints in 6 months!  I just rub a bit on my shins before running and I'm good to go.

Before: even just hearing about a stomach virus going around was enough to make me throw up.
Now: when I hear about it starting in the classrooms and at the church, we start using oregano daily - the grownups, in a capsule; the kids, on their feet.

Before: once a month, my face would break out like I was 13 again, seriously making me consider purchasing some proactiv from the vending machine at the mall.
Now: Orange Blossom Facial Wash and Frankincense in my moisturizer means that I've got the clearest complexion I've had my whole life, and I can even go without makeup sometimes.

Before: I thought spending $150 on a starter kit of oils was insane.
Now: I can't believe they don't sell it for twice that.

What a difference a year has made for us!  

I know I have friends who read this blog who are on the fence about trying them....and I just want you to know that I think you should.  I think it's worth a try.  I think you don't have anything to lose, except the price of a doctor office visit co-pay and a prescription or two.

Here's what else I know: the expense was the reason it took me so long to try them.
I think it's the reason lots of people put it off.  Even though it makes sense, and it's worth a try, it's just a lot of money, especially when you are budget conscious like we are.

So.  During the month of October, in honor of my one year oil anniversary :), if you order a premium starter kit through me, I will reimburse your taxes and shipping.  I make a bit of commission every time someone orders a kit using my member number, so I'll use that money to help offset the cost of your starter kit this month.  No pressure at all - I just want you to know that if it's the expense holding you back, maybe this will help.  I just believe in them and the difference they make that much.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Round here.

Every once in a while, we will hear Tucker singing songs that he's making up; they're prayers, really.  We tell him that he's like King David when he does that - singing his praises to God.  Here's a quick video of him (pre-haircut) singing a mealtime prayer: Tucker singing his prayers

Lana started swim lessons a couple of months ago, and the swim team coach immediately pulled her up to swim team.  She practices an hour a day, 3 days per week, and it is an intense hour - she never stops swimming.  The first couple of weeks, her arms and legs were very sore.  This weekend is her first swim meet, and I don't know when I've seen her as excited and nervous about something.  She's swimming 2 events.

Lately, Tucker's been asking to sleep with only his boxers on.  He looks so much like a big boy when I peek in on him sleeping like that!  Thank goodness he still insists on his closet doors being closed - it reminds me he's still by little buddy.

The kids and I were walking across a parking lot headed into a store. Lana, deep in thought, finally pipes up: "hey, mommy?" "Yes?" "Were roads paved when you were a kid?"

Tucker had water in his ears after a day at the waterpark: "It feels like there are spiders in my ears."  A few days ago when he had congestion/cough: "There's something sticky in my throat, and when I try to cough it just bounces on the sticky and comes back up."  I love how he describes things.

We were at the beach one afternoon with friends we made through school, and Lana & her friend were playing with hermit crabs.  There were dozens of them crawling all over.
Lana's friend laughed and said "Look, those hermit crabs are making out!"
Her mom, knowing how innocent Lana is, quickly shushed her, and the girls moved on to playing something else.
On the way home, I asked Lana what she thought her friend meant when she said that.
Lana said, "She was talking about them crawling up and making it out of the bucket."

Tucker has also been taking swim lessons for a few months.  After a rocky start, he's very slowly making progress.  He will now jump off the side tentatively, although he won't let his head go under, and he will (frantically) swim from his teacher back to the edge.  It's big progress for my body who wouldn't even step foot into a pool (never mind the ocean) at the beginning of this past summer without clinging to me like a monkey.  I think we will just let him continue lessons through the winter so he's ready for next summer. 

Lana was chosen to be on the Battle of the Books for third grade!  She has dreamed about this for years.  I had never heard of it before, but it's kind of a big deal.  Students all over our county read selected books from a librarian-chosen list.  They spend all year long reading, studying, quizzing, and practicing.  At the end of the year, they come together and have a competition where they answer questions about what they've read.  The teams are usually composed of 4th and 5th graders, so she was beyond excited to be chosen for one of the very coveted 3rd grade spots on the team.

One of the areas where we have been intentionally parenting Tucker's heart for several years now is him being a hard worker and a team player.  Usually, it goes like this: the entire family working in the yard, Tucker taking a break for water.  Then asking everyone else if they would like water.  :)  We have been talking and praying with him about being a servant leader, and giving him opportunities to really apply what we're teaching him, and we are seeing fruit, praise God!!  He is asking us "How can I help?" instead of looking for ways to get out of work; he is working hard until a job is done, and he's not complaining while working.

Lana is still the earliest bird in the house.  When my alarm clock went off at 6:30 this morning, she was already awake in her room reading.

I walked in Tucker's room during quiet time, and he said "MOM!  You made my booty jump!"  He meant I scared him!  Ha!