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Thursday, September 29, 2016

Fall.......finally

We have had 3 great day of cooler weather...which means its sooo incredily refreshing to get up and run with my girls first thing in the morning. I almost have to force myself to take a shower as I come home without dripping sweat....but then I take in a big whiff and I jump in and SCRUB!!

Goober says everyday " I hope it stays this cool" right as he walks outside every morning.
 Goober has been on a rapping kick lately and is writing his own christian rap song...I know certain lines by heart as he and Little Man sing it over and over. He is also into riddles but can't tell one right to save his life. He normally gives away the ending or punch line early on in the riddle...or over emphasizes the small details that should stump you at the end. We are already in the pre-teen/teenage stage of reminding him of who he is daily. I have to constantly tell him that he is a (our last name)...not any other kid and therefore he doesn't have to hae those brands or those accessories. He is really into impressing others right now and will do anything to fit in...its scary to think that we are losing that control over him, that others are bigger influences now than us...its scary but I have hope because of the environment he is in and the heart I know he has. DAGUM though, I am tired of repeating myself.

Ribbit is still madly in love with school. She wants to read more than the 10 minutes of required reading every night and she loves to take her teacher a gift every day. She hit an all time low though of a messy room this weekend though, like UNGODLY UNCLEANINESS..if thats even a thing. So Adam grabbed two trash bags and poured all of her toys into them. She has bare drawers, shelves and we can finally see her floor. Therefore all she has are books and I honestly think everyone involved is relieved.
Ribbit comes to my room every morning with her hairdo request....recently she has started more of my earrings too and some mornings she gets a little mascara. She loves to accessorize and wears at least 2 pieces daily....she also does her socks in different folds (heaven forbid we look like all the other kids in school uniforms).

Little Man is just that. A 4 year old boy living in a 6th grade boy world. He wants to be a 6th grader and he is quite comical. He has the heart of a 4 year old and that is still super sweet and cuddly. The smack talk and wrestling though is full on 6th grade boy. He still loves learning but hasn't found that sweet spot yet in PK4...I think he would much rather play outside with the chickens and on the Wii all day.

We have all been engulfed with Trail Life and American Heritage Girls...we have our first family campout this weekend. Adam is doing a great job as the troop leader. Fortunately I have a co-troop leader and even though she was stuck in jury duty for our last meeting she is super helpful and on top of things.

Church has been really challenging lately. Every sermon centers around the fact that we are better together. We are better when we are engaged and doing life with other believers. Satan loves to isolate us and make us believe that church is full of hypocrits (duh) and that we are fine on our own. That couldn't be more of lie...we are held accountable in church, we are challenged, inspired, motivated and made better. In the dark, isolation turns us into excuse makers, justifiers of bad choices, dependant on our self and not the Lord. I loved what the pastor said this past Sunday...he kept repeating "better is better". Taking time to be a better mom is better. Taking time to be a better christian is better. Being a better sister in christ is better. No excuses, be better.

We love getting handmade cards from Aunt Robin!! They are seriously the  big event of the day when they come!

This precious teacher is one of my running buddies and she grabbed Little Man and loved on him on the playground one day and sent me these two pictures. I love having a village to raise my kiddos and love on them when I can't!


I'm quickly becoming famous with the teachers and baseball team for the "wild orange oil" cookies with dark chocolate chips. They are seriously STINKING GOOD!

rosemary and cumin oil meatballs cooking for lunches. They love these topped with mustard.

Another great long run with Carrie, my pace buddy. Its amazing how fast you bond with someone over running!

A favorite meal, roasted sweet potatoes, rainbown carrots and bacon!!

I got together with some girlfriends from church and made bows for our girls. Aren't these the cutest? They have her monogram!

A sweet tradition at our school is reading buddies where 6th graders are paired with 1st graders to read every week. Goober got one of our church friends youngest! 

Little Man ready for baseball!

He was the cutest little catcher you ever saw.

He stayed like this for a solid 2 minutes, then dropped to his knees where he stayed for a solid inning while politely asking the ump to go get that ball.

Of course I am bias, but I love Ribbit's painting of a bowl of apples. 

I couldn't rearrange my schedule to go on the apple orchard field trip with Ribbit but I got these two pictures from one of my friends who said "Ribbit is sad that you didn't come"

And this one she titled " she is refusing to smile for me". HA



Thursday, September 22, 2016

A day in the life

Heres an attempt to capture A day in the life of the Harvells at our current stage. I don't want to forget all the daily details that make our family special and provide sweet memories.

Every night one of two things happen. Little man comes in and ask to snuggle or he finds his way into one of his siblings rooms and crawls into bed or curls up on the floor beside their bed. When he does stay in his bed the whole night we normally have to wake him up in the morning from being so extremely worn out from the day before. Ribbit has been having lots of growing pains lately and complains of her legs hurting at night too...a little Deep Blue oil and she is good to go though.

Every morning between 4 and 4:30 I wake up and head to meet my girls somewhere, either for  running or weights or a little of both. The last few times I have tried to get Goober to come with me he has waved me out of his room and knocked off a blanket or two as he mumbles something.

I get home between 6-6:15 and turn on lights and say Good Morning. That is the kiddos cue to head to the breakfast table. Goober always says "morning mom" and grabs the OnGuard to start dripping it into the kiddos hands. Little Man walks out and declares he is hungry and sits down to get his OnGuard. Ribbit comes out, looks around and bust it to the bathroom in a flash...she does this EVERY MORNING!!!. They all take their vitamins while I am cooking breakfast and down some water.

They all eat and with Daddy's help we all start getting ready. We get dressed, brush "teefers", tie shoes, pack waterbottles (very important to our family to always have 5!), we do hair (two ponytails almost daily), sometimes eat some more breakfast and make sure we have our violin! The kids almost always unload the dishes before they head out and I load it while Dad lets the chickens out for the day.

We load up for the long (seriously sarcastic) ride to school. We have walked once or twice but until the heat wave is over we are driving! We park and all start walking. I try to take the kids to class every day but Friday. Adam takes them Friday since I have a first period. We walk, talk to our friends on the way, gives hugs and kisses and are off.

Every school day is different but Adam probably sees every kid once or twice as he is all over campus. I see Goober daily as he spends more time in my building now. I try to eat lunch with the kiddos at least once a week and we also try to see them when they have chapel performances or on field trips.

Goober comes straight to my room after school and gets any homework done that he can...especially if he needs to print off materials. I clean up all of the clay, clay tools and wheels (i have monitors for each class but there is no way that 55 minute classes are going to include perfectly clean pottery wheels :)). I put in any attendance I forgot for the day and go around and lock doors. ( I have a back outdoor classroom...its so stinkin nice). Adam lets us know what his plan is for the day at this point..either staying late or coming home with us.

We pack up, drive down the little kids school and pick them up from Cougar Club. I teach until 3:45 and they get out at 3:15 so our school offers teachers free child care until 4:15. We head home and discuss what everyone did that day and what we are doing that night.

The minute we get home Goober grabs the mail and the two youngest head out to see how many eggs the chickens have given us that day. They love to walk in and say "we didn't get any with sad faces. Then out from behind their back they pull 4 or 5 eggs.....every single day ;). We then start homework and dinner. Ribbit normally reads to me while I cook and the boys do hw or play.

Then we have dinner or head to an evening activity....gymnastics/baseball/church/ trail life or American Heritage Girls....we almost always take our dinner though as eating out is super expensive and there aren't that many paleo options...plus Adam thinks my cooking is better and I know that the way to man's heart is through his stomach :). We even take our own food to our school sporting events and everyone gathers around to smell and taste ...its quite comical.

Dinner at home consists of prayer, going around and hearing everyone's High and Low from the day and discussing those. Then Adam normally ends with a devotion or something that God is teaching us. There is normally one kid that needs some encouragement to finish their food. There is always someone asking for more mustard or salsa or a different utensil than the one they have. We love to watch our neighbors who walk daily as they pass the big window in the kitchen.

Our nightime routine always changes but always includes brushing "teefers', kisses and hugs, reminding of what we have the next day, "i love yous"....and oils, always oils. For scabs, sleeping help, acne, growing pains or all of the above.

Other routine details include Little Man wanting to be carried out of bed to the breakfast nook every single morning...in nothing but his underwear.

Ribbit always strips down to nothing when she heads to bed. She slings her clothes all over the floor and then wraps herself in a the hottest fleece blanket known to man.

Goober hums all day long, during any activity he has.

Goober and Little Man have begun to fight over their shared bathroom, opening doors on one another and calling dibs on the bathroom as we approach the house.

Goober has started gelling his flat top...its quite the morning routine.

I sure do love my little family and everything that makes us us.

Strawberry pecan almond flour bread for Sunday School

Queen bee at a birthday party!

A huge pile of sweet potato fries for a Labor Day weekend lunch with neighbors!

Paleo deviled eggs made with avocado instead of mayo 

Ziplining in our neighbors yard

Hanging out at our neighbors house!

Fishing with our sunday school class.

Silly face time at lunch

Heading to school on our bikes!

First baseball practice of the season

First catch of the day

Another fantastic crockpot meal with roasted veggies on the meal

Second catch of the day!

Dressing up for gymnastics class

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Hotter than Hot

I normally don't mind running in the heat...I love feeling the sweat pore off of me...but, the weather is playing cruel games with my head as of lately. Last weekend my running buddy and I hit a new PR for 9 miles and couldn't stop talking about how great it felt out side...no bugs, a cool wind.

Fast forward to this week and we needed to add to or mileage, yet it was sooo stinkin hot. We had the PR from last week in our head to beat but the heat didn't allow for it. I didn't feel the effects until I sat down 7 hours after we finished running and I felt dehydrated, dizzy and had my head hurt. I went straight from running, to 2 hours in the sun for baseball, to 2 hours outside at Top Golf....not smart.

As a look back over my run though it was pretty good...9 miles with an 8.32 average. We will be running our marathon before we know it!

Some things to remember....

Goober has been taking a beating lately at the ball park. During his little brothers first baseball game he knocked a huge bloody knot in his head by running into a tree while catching a football. During his brother's second game he fell off his scooter, ripped his shirt and has a big bloody knot on his shoulder.

He and I normally sit and chat during his sister's gymnastics practice before church on Wednesday nights. This past Wednesday we saw a bunch of dead crickets as were walking in and he said "oh I just remembered how I used to eat those". I said "WHAT?" and he said " When I would get to school, I would have free breakfast but they only gave me free chocolate milk and I would be so hungry that I would eat the dead crickets in the corner of the cafeteria". He didn't flinch or put any emotion at all into it but I was emotional enough for both of us. MAD, sad, disgusted, torn.

When I went down to visit Little Man during the school day on Friday his friend Collins, WHO WE LOVE said "hey, um, Miss (insert real name)'s mommy". Then she put her hand on her hips and said " He said he won't marry me" and made the best scowl ever. I called her mom that night to tell her and we both laughed. She said that Collins is obsessed with marriage right now and had been really mad at Little Man for saying he would not marry her but he would marry another girl in his class :).

Ribbit loves school so much. She gets mad when we tell her that she doesn't have school tomorrow on Friday and Saturday nights. She also loves gymnastics and is quite brave, flipping over the bars this year and wanting to do the highest balance beam. She wears some crazy outfits there too, adding leg warmers, wigs and jewelry to her leotard. She loves Music class at school and her teacher told me that "she catches on to rhythm quickly but boy is she a daisy picker "....HAHAHA>.I laughed so hard...thats my girl!!

Pork Ribs with cumin oil, rosemary oil, rosemary from our garden, carrots and onions

Gearing up for our Olympic Themed Pep Rally!

He LOVESS to vacuum!!!

Fluffy gave us our first egg, and then he was killed the next day.

Aunt Robin sent Ribbit all of this sweet jewelry on a very sad day. What a sweet way for God to use another believer in our sweet girls life.

Gymnastics practice

Another silly lunch picture!

Butternut squash with tomatoes and onions. Then topped with grilled shrimp. OH YUM!

I love seeing our older students love on my kiddos after school!

Miss Tootie, our fav babysitter came home for a weekend!!


Carrie and I are great running buddies...I have many others...but she keeps my pace and can hold a conversation as we go. We had two great back to back runs and decided to meet up for dinner to let the families get to know one another better. Little Man and her daughter Lacey are in the same class at school and Carrie is our new Pre-Grammar Aide and we adore their family!!!

We are getting 3-4 eggs daily!!


Sunday, September 11, 2016

Football Season

Everything feels right ... the weather is starting to become bearable (even with the sun out), football games are happening at every waking minute and everyone is back in their routine....only forgetting lunches and violins after we have closed the garage door...thats better than after we have arrived, parked and walked down to their classrooms!

This past week was a doozy as we loaded up the calendar with birthday parties, doTerra classes and all of our new service opportunities with American Heritage Girls and Trail Life. We are loving those last two groups more and more as we learn how both groups strive to honor God and teach children how to worship him in every part of their lives.

The kids are really loving school.

Ribbit adores her teacher and wants to make a present for her daily. She is reading SO WELL, like brings tears to my eyes well. She is even making her own books...for example she made "The Boxcar Children Bible" today...can you guess which two books she has been reading lately? It was beautiful with lots of pictures, construction paper and tape and she was so stinkin proud. She is also doing great in Math and finishes her homework with little to no help. She loves being able to bring a friend to eat with us when I join her on Wednesdays. We take silly pictures with them and compare lunches. I even made one of her friends give me a taste of her yogurt....YUMMY...hehe, made is a strong word, they are always willing to share and trade food :).

Goober loves his English teacher and her love for books. He likes how she talks in voices and is always excited. His math teacher and one of my dear friends and bible study partners is always loving on him. He tells us how she integrates God into everything and he loves her sweet funny spirit. He is starting to show that teenage tendency to want all name brand things and we are having to remind him that God cares about whats on the inside....even when I know and remember that feeling all too well!!! That boy loves him some shoes though...and the basketball player that inspired them!!! I was walking over for a meeting on Friday and watched him at PE for a second. He is a quick little sucker and outran several boys for a touchdown..."juking" them as he went. Everyone celebrated with him and when he saw me staring he yelled "mom, did you see that!!!??". I was just as celebratory with him and then I think he realized that I was his mom and ran to his buddies for lots of manly fist bumps and grunts.

Little Man is finally finding his rhythm with his new teacher. He is becoming more agreeable and less defiant. We finally have a clear system down for his behavior expectations and I think we are all using the same language with him. He is such a smart little boy and he knows exactly what he wants to do and when and how he wants to do it. I know that he isn't being intentionally defiant or overly aggressive but we have to mold him into an obedient young man now, definitely not wait until he is 16 and has outgrown those cute curls....if thats even possible!!

One of my favorite teaching moments yet. My sweet sweet Kathleen stayed after school, during a pouring down thunderstorm to finally throw a 9 inch tall vase. She was so stinking proud and we were so stinking wet and happy when she finished!!!!!  I LOVE HER

Another painting class for couples. And me and my hubby got to participate since he had to help me demonstrate!!!

Kisses!

I love the church outfits she comes up with!

Using a giftcard she got for her birthday! Glow in the dark fingers!

First lunch with a friend silly picture! Claire is one of my running buddies daughters!

Ribbit threw this pot and glazed it for her sweet teacher!

I got to go help Little Man's class make birthday cupcakes and mix colors with icing!

One of my students took these pictures of me helping my 9th graders on the pottery wheel.

LOVE CERAMIC CLASS!!!