How do I begin? Not really at the beginning.

June 15, we sold the house we were living in and drove to New Hampshire in two moving trucks and a minivan. (A very hearty and grateful "thank you!" to Ron and Ron for driving the trucks!)

The days preceding that day were extremely full, including two funerals for people from families dear enough that we felt it necessary to carve out the time to spend with them.

We did not technically buy our new house for another couple of days, but it did eventually work out.

We are staying at Jon's parents' house while renovating our new house.  This is for the very most part a good thing.  The only disadvantages we've found so far involve having things in two places.

Renovations are right now at the "rather overwhelming" stage.  There's a lot of work to do and we wonder how it will all get done.

At the end of June, we took a break to spend a week at the Maggie P with lots of family, including the Swiss cousins, and Noah and Joseph had their birthday together.

After we got back, Jonathan, Noah and Faith had two weeks of swimming lessons at the lake.  Jonathan started learning official strokes, and Noah got to the confidence level Jonathan had last summer.  Faith made progress in being comfortable in the water as well, though she still wouldn't put her head under by the end of the sessions.

For the past week, Jon and Noah have been in Pittsburgh finishing the fixing up of Carroll St, and getting some work done for Lime Daley customers.

I've been meeting with a bunch of contractors - plumbing/heating, painter, plasterer, chimney guys. A local college student has been coming over nearly every day for a few hours to scrape wallpaper.  It turns out when you start taking down wallpaper, it just goes and goes and soon you have two whole hallways including staircase of wallpaper to take off.  About four layers of it, too, a hundred years' worth.

Speaking of a hundred years.  Jon took off part of one wall in preparation for building a built-in bookcase, and he found a treasure!  A Mother's Day postcard from 1912, from the Sunday School of Smith Church (Jon's parents' church).  It is really neat.  We're going to copy one side and then frame it with the copy so you can see both sides.

Time to start getting ready for bed.  I will try to post updates more frequently, but it's hard to find the moments. Tonight, I found myself alone with the computer while all the kids were outside playing with the neighbors.  After some grueling looking at curriculum stuff, I thought I'd have a nice little blog time. (:

Posted by Heather Daley on July 31, 2012, 8:00 pm | Read 5375 times | Comments (4)
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4/11 - Jonathan likes to be creative with lunches.  He made dill pickle and mustard sandwiches that day. He liked it.

As I was keeping track of rainbows I was struck by how many days were sunny.  April 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 25

4/14 - Faith's first time successfully saying her name to a stranger.  A major victory! Even still, she doesn't like to do it.

4/16 - Joy's bottom right molar came in

4/18 - We had a very fun afternoon playing family soccer in the back yard.  It started out with rather evenly-numbered teams and then progressed to all of us against Daddy only kicking with his left foot.  He still beat us.  But when we switched goals we managed to get half his score instead of zero.  Then we played "ball soccer" which is basically do whatever you want to get the ball to the goal.  It was a super fun time! (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on May 20, 2012, 11:13 am | Read 7797 times | Comments (1)
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Last catchup ended on the weekend of the fire company banquet.  That weekend was also the beginning of the new adventure.  Two different people called up to ask about looking to buy our house.  No, not the one we're fixing up to sell.  The one we're living in.  Well, ok, I guess you can come see it, but we're not really thinking of moving.  That weekend, Jon is also showing the rental house to someone who might buy it before we finish fixing it up.  Jon ramps up looking online at houses in Hillsboro.

3/12 - Noah and Faith are supposed to be doing chores.  Faith says her hair is getting in the way.  So Noah cuts it for her.  They are both very happy with the results.  I try to remain serious while explaining why this was not a good idea, but have a hard time not laughing. I think I succeeded.  For a five year old, Noah really did a good job.  We did go to a place to get the back straightened out a bit.  And maybe next time I'll try it myself and save the money (not too much doubt on my part that there will be a next time for somebody.)  It is very cute, anyway. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on April 1, 2012, 11:02 am | Read 6027 times | Comments (10)
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2/6 - Joy went down a whole flight of stairs successfully.  She slides down forwards on her bottom.  Faith was with her this time.  By now, she's an old pro at stairs.

I bought some mini hair clips for Faith.  They are the normal clear, brown, black, swirly brown that hair clips often are.  But as soon as Faith saw the swirly brown ones, she said, "Cool!  Camo hair clips!"  Then she does that macho guy stance that the boys do when they're being or doing something heroic. (:

2/21 - Faith said her whole name with all the correct sounds. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on April 1, 2012, 10:35 am | Read 5440 times | Comments (3)
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More than a month's worth of notes...

10/3 - Joy's diaper was dry all night long.  She went in the potty three or four times.  This was exciting to me and so the next night I prepared to be diaperless.  I spread a waterproof pad, with towels on top.  But she and I are so wiggly during the night, it was hard to keep the towels straight and then she was cold without anything on her lower half and when she did wet the towels, changing them was a pain.  So, we're not ready to go diaperless yet, but we do have success with pottying in the night.  However, recently (read: several weeks) Joy has been screaming in the night, whether it's changing her diaper or putting her on the potty.  I found that if I'm aware of more subtle movements I can nurse her before she screams (but that is her first vocalization) but I am at a loss for the hygiene part.  Do I just put her in a paper diaperand undo all the work and awareness of needing to go?  Or do I persist in hopes that she'll stop screaming before we both go insane with the sleep interruptions?  I need to go look at forums for suggestions.

10/5 - Joy got her uppder left lateral incisor.

10/5 - Jonathan, "I don't feel like Dad-o is a grandpa, 'cause he still goes up on roofs and stuff." (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on November 13, 2011, 11:12 am | Read 4353 times | Comments (4)
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Recently, I read One Thousand Gifts, which was recommended by someone whose blog I read, but I can't remember who anymore.  It was a beautiful book and has inspired me to be thankful for the little things once again.  (Briefly, the hesitations I have in recommending it: she writes pretty stream-of-consciousness, and though I think she does it well, those who are sticklers for grammar might have a hard time.  Also, it is written for those who are already Christians.)

The premise is that being thankful opens the door to being joyful.  She writes her journey along the road of thankfulness, her progress through the ups and downs of real life.  It is a good reminder.

It takes me back to my first year at college, when everything was new, from living on my own, to snow, to daffodils.  It takes me back to childhood when everything was new.   This must be why Jesus said to become like a child.

People laughed at me in college, because I was no longer a child.  I kept telling them my "snow age" was five, since I had moved away from snow when I was four.  The cynics laughed at me for taking delight in daffodils ("That's what they're called, right?" I asked.)  Taking pictures of the very first light dusting of snow. Freezing my un-mittened hands at the first larger snow but I couldn't keep from playing in it.

I really was more joyful then, though my email signature still holds on.  Gradually, though, I got tired of being laughed at or watched strangely.  I supressed my outer delight and then the inner faded, too.  I want it back!  I will take delight in the little things.  I will slow down to look at bugs with my kids.  I will let myself be thankful and joyful in all these things, and I will not let anyone's laughing penetrate.  Neighbors may think I'm crazy, taking pictures of the first snow (that was today!) again, but I do not care.  Joy is worth it.

We took a snow day from school today.  I jumped around with my kids and took pictures and we dug out the new sizes of snowsuits and Jonathan made a snowman and Noah made slushies (from the railing snow).  It was great!  It was beautiful.

And I'm glad we seized the moment because in the afternoon the snow turned to rain and most of it is melted now.  Children know how to do this and adults are too busy with "matters of consequence".  May I always remember this!

Posted by Heather Daley on October 29, 2011, 1:58 pm | Read 8971 times | Comments (6)
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6/14 - On our camping trip, Faith liked to play Ice Cream Shop.  Her flavors are unique: pineapple hot sauce, strawberry beet, water, to name a few.  After those, I requested just plain ice creams, though she really wanted to put hot sauce on most of them.  We finally settled on a good flavor that I thiink someone should really make: mint chocolate chip cookie dough.

6/15 - Noah,"I thought 'spores' were graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows."

7/5 - After some discussion about what colors make when mixed together, I suggested that Jonathan make a color wheel.  He started basic, with the three primary and three secondary colors.  When dividing his circle, at first he drew in radii, estimating how much space he needed to make sixths.  The next time he did it (when he accidentally colored two pieces red) he drew diameter lines.

7/5 - (I don't remember the context for this) Noah, "Faith, if you see a dead guy with an American flag on him, that means he's an American soldier."

7/6 - Noah can pump himself on the swings.

7/9 - We were talking about milk banks (oh, because I was thinking it might be time to use up the breastmilk I have in the freezer) and Noah, my punster, said, "So do they put milk in the penny rolls?"

7/9 - Jonathan, "I don't know why, but being generous makes me happy."

7/20 - Joy started pushing up on hands and knees.

7/29 - Faith, when meeting someone, "I is my baby sister's big girl."

Faith says this often, when I ask her what she said, "I is just talking to mine own self."

8/12 - Joy started making forward progress on hands and knees, mostly by drawing her knees up and then lunging.

8/13 - Noah, on the boat ride back from Star Island, "Star Island is a special island.  It always brings you back."

8/13 - Jonathan, also on the boat, as he watched the island recede from view, "Mom, I think you gave me some of your brains when I was born, because I recognize a lot of these things."

8/13 - Noah, discussing a word he and Jonathan were looking at, "I thought 'ON' had two 'F's"  A couple of days before, he had noticed "NO" on a cap on the floor and we discussed how "NO" and "ON" are upside down from each other.  "OFF" was also on that cap.  I suspect that he did not understand what we meant.  He knew "NO" and so the other word, "OFF" must be what we called "ON".

We are now home from our very long and mostly fun vacation.  Here's a quick summary.  We went to Madison, OH and stayed on the beach of Lake Erie.  Then Jonathan and Noah went camping with Grammy and Papa on an island in Lake Erie while Jon and the girls and I came home.  Jon picked up the boys on Tuesday.  Unpacking, washing, and repacking.  I sprayed poison ivy in the yard and poked a (not poison) stick into my cornea.  We left for NH the next day, me riding with a pillow over my face the whole time.  Jon and his mom went on a weekend canoe trip, while I stay in bed and the kids play Wii.  My eye, amazingly, is better by Sunday, as the eye doctor had predicted. (Except for some blurrines for which I am going to see him again today to check out.)  A few more days in NH, then to the Maggie P.  The Swiss contingent is there and it is so much fun to meet Joseph in person!  Big Weekend, 7 Wonders, beach bocce, swimming, crabs, etc. Jonathan caught a soft shell crab.  Day trip to Star Island turned into an overnight, then turned into a week.  Jon stayed on the island to help lead the youth conference for the next week.  The kids and I went back to CT to finish our visit with the family.  Driving by myself on a long trip with a young baby is not fun.  Please remind me not to do it again.  Last couple of days at the Mag were sgort and sweet.  We'll miss that little guy (and everyone else, too.)  Back to NH, back to the boat that couldn't seem to get us there, but finally we did.  Lots of fun and yes, even relaxation, on Star Island.  Then back to CT to pack up the sailboat and all the other things that we did not take to Star.  One night in the Flounder, then a long and rainy trip HOME!!!

If I'm not getting sleep because I have a sick baby, at least I can make a post!

Posted by Heather Daley on August 17, 2011, 7:11 am | Read 5472 times | Comments (3)
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Jon was with a bunch of people we don't see often last night, and one of the men mentioned that his wife was discouraged by all these homeschooling mother-of-many type blogs where everyone has all their lives together and nothing goes wrong.  So I thought I'd post how my life is not perfect, though it is very blessed.  I am not a perfect mother, but I'm the best one for my children.  I am not a perfect teacher, but I am the best one for my children.  I am not a perfect homemaker, but I'm the best one for my home.  I'm not a perfect wife, but I'm the best one for my husband. I hope this post is encouraging to other not-perfect moms. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on May 28, 2011, 10:18 am | Read 25757 times | Comments (6)
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Joy has two hair swirls at the back of her head.  One goes clockwise and one counter-clockwise.  Each of my other children only have one.

5/3 - Joy's two month appointment.  12 lb, 3 oz.  She is developing a birthmark in the upper right of her forehead (can't remember the very long medical term, and interestingly enough, "birth"marks can appear within a few months of birth and not only at birth.)  It's likely to grow to about a nickel size and then recede to be gone when she's about five or six.  When her hair grows out, it should completely cover it.  Her bellybutton finally finished its healing and got the ok. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on May 19, 2011, 6:57 pm | Read 2246 times | Comments (1)
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Here is our Christmas letter - if you are reading this blog, you probably know most of it anyway, but I figure there are some people that we didn't mail this too, and who don't read every word of these posts...  :)

2010_christmas_newsletter.pdf

 

Posted by Jon Daley on February 7, 2011, 11:39 am | Read 4962 times | Comments (0)
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1/20 - Jonathan, as usual, singing while he plays and works.  This time it was, "Come, Tom Bombadil, Tom Bombadil.  Come, Tom Bombadil..."

1/22 - When boys have a tea party:  Noah, Faith and I were playing with Faith's tea set.  Noah said he couldn't eat his soup because the bad guys had poisoned it.  It was such a deadly poison we couldn't even touch it and I had him call 911 to send a squad out to take it away.  I never remember anything like this happening at other tea parties... (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on February 3, 2011, 9:58 am | Read 71045 times | Comments (13)
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Actually, the only thing written in my pocket notes from all this time is that on 11/16, Jon solved the mirror cube with his eyes closed.

Jonathan's 7th birthday was a very fun time.  He got a lot of cool presents and had a lot of cool people over to play.  Grandma and Dad-o were there for the occasion and the next few days were also busy with fun. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on December 8, 2010, 11:56 am | Read 4565 times | Comments (1)
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11/6 - Noah and I were making rice krispie treats and Noah was stirring.  He asked for a marshmallow, but I said no, they had to go in the recipe and he could have one of the finished products.  Well, he decided to snitch and got a natural lesson.  I, only a few feet away in the kitchen, heard him screaming.  He had dipped his finger in the melted marshmallow to taste it!  I rushed him over to the sink and after a while of running it under the cold water, I made an ice bath in a bowl for him.  His finger turned out fine after a few minutes and he had learned a good lesson. (More)

Posted by Heather Daley on November 15, 2010, 5:57 pm | Read 8363 times | Comments (2)
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We arrived at the Fitzkees' house on Thursday night, and Nick said we could stay as long as we wanted.  We ended up extending our trip by a day and coming home on Tuesday, which was a good decision.  I think we spent the right amount of time for the whole family to enjoy the sight-seeing. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 8:48 pm | Read 3236 times | Comments (9)
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We cooked bacon and pancakes (I found a nifty plastic pint jug in Walmart or somewhere that you simply pour water into the jug, shake it up, and pour it on the griddle) for breakfast, and then packed up and planned to meet for lunch at Great Falls, 15 miles away.

Heather went back to the store for bread and bandaids (I cut myself doing something, and Heather thought we might run out of bandaids) and also to a McDonalds to sit in the air conditioning while she looked up directions to the Fitzkee's house where we were going to stay for the next couple days.  Heather bought smoothies for Faith and herself since they were pretty hot. (More)

Posted by Jon Daley on August 20, 2010, 5:26 pm | Read 2732 times | Comments (4)
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