Thursday, September 13, 2018

Skills and no school

Tuesday 11th: Rachel has been on a Barista course over the last two days. It's been fun to hear about all that she has done. She has made many different drinks and learnt so much.
She also took a couple of photos (at my request) so that I could have some for the blog. This is the cappuccino she made. They also got to taste the drinks (at least a sip) so that they can understand how they are different.

Fun with Anastasia.

Wednesday 12th: Hezekiah has picked up a tummy bug and so he won't be back to school this week. Thankfully after the 24 hours he felt absolutely fine.
So just staying home for the 48 hours clear. Asher had one loose stool and so we just had to keep her home too. Hannah had stomach cramps, so to be safe she stayed home too today. Thankfully she was fine by the end of the day. So it was only Ruth who went to school today.
Thankfully our windscreen got fixed today already. I was pleased it got sorted before our weekend away. Hannah and Hezekiah got to watch how it gets done.
Thursday 13th: Anastasia had a fever today. I started wondering if our weekend away was going to be cancelled, but thankfully she hasn't gotten very sick and we didn't need to cancel.
This afternoon Robert stopped by to show us how to play Ticket to Ride - a board game he has lent us for the weekend away. It was much easier to learn as we played.

BELOW: Even though Anastasia wasn't feeling 100%, she still had so much fun laughing at Hezekiah this afternoon. You can see Asher is just chilling today.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Family fun, Wig and windscreen

Tuesday 4th: Hannah had Anastasia laughing so much this afternoon, by just throwing a ball and making fun noises. I had Asher sitting next to me laughing along too.
Once Hannah had stopped, Asher got the ball and started trying to copy the game. She would jump up and throw the ball up, laughing all the time. Anastasia laughed along too. So much fun, and thankfully Asher didn't hit the lights with any of her "too hard" throws.

We had Asher's IEP at 1:30 today. It was a good time of reflecting on how much she has learnt and grown over the last two terms and also to make some plans on some of the next steps and goals for her.

Enjoy this video of the fun.
Hezekiah brought Ed the Ted home today and they got to sit and enjoy a bit of TV together this evening.
Wednesday 5th: Hezekiah was exhausted when he got home today, his legs were especially tired. He was also loosing his voice and by the evening had a temperature. Rachel came back from camp with almost no voice, so it seems he is struggling with the same thing. He often gets a fever. It seems his body just heats up quickly and does a good job of fighting any illness off.
RIGHT: Anastasia was using Dad as a jolly jumper this evening, bouncing away supported by his legs. Having so much fun.
Thursday 6th: Hezekiah was already feeling much better this morning. I had thought he may spend the day at home, but he said he was fine and wanted to go to school. I think his voice will take a while to fully return though.
He decided to stay home with Dad this evening while I went to the Hurunui's Got Talent event with Rachel and Hannah. Ruth was already at the school earlier as she was helping.
Rachel is going to a St John Regional Competition Camp at the end of this month and they are having a colour themed party on camp. Rachel is in the light purple group, so she decided to buy a wig for it. She put this photo as her fb profile picture with the comment "trying out a new look" and had a number of people fooled into thinking she had coloured her hair.
She even wore the wig to the show this evening. :-)
When we got home she was wondering how to let people know that it was just a wig (and a joke) and so we tried to get a similar photo of me. We didn't get the angle right and the wig was already needing a brush. She posted this photo and said "I have a twin". :-) The evening lighting wasn't as good has her day time photo either.
She even got it on Dad (but no photo taken) and then on Anastasia.
Who wasn't at all worried about this thing on her head. :-)
Friday 7th: Hezekiah stayed home from school today. He was just looking so tired this morning. I suggested he stay home but he was very upset. He was already dressed and ready to head out. I asked him why he wanted to go to school and it was so that he could share his news with the class about the money he had raised with the Reading Eggs challenge. He is on "news" on Fridays, so had been waiting the whole week to tell his class. So we suggested he just ask the teacher if he could tell the class at the start of the day, and then come home. He was happy with this plan and so pleased to be able to share his news.

Asher had a seizure at 11 and was very tired afterwards. Thankfully she has had a good 10 day break since her last one, so we are thankful for that.
RIGHT: Anastasia just loves playing with Hezekiah's "Woody". She loves chewing his hands. So I thought it would be a nice photo for her baby book.
Saturday 8th: A nice relaxing day today. Asher was very tired and when Dad lay down for a nap she decided it would be the perfect spot to lie and watch her DVD. So sweet.
I've been enjoying getting baby book pages done more regularly over the last couple of months. Today Ruth was my helper in "cutting out" some of the photos I was using. For the first time I'm actually doing pages a month after, so I will remember more things than what can be captured on the photos. So far Hezekiah's book has been done up to 9 months (I will do his each month so that by the time Anastasia is 1, his should be done). And I have done 7 and 8 month photos for Asher too but decided I wanted to get Anastasia's 8 month pages done while I remembered things I wanted to add. So it's very unlike me, doing bits and pieces all over the place, but at least they are getting done.
Sunday 9th: Last week Rachel, Ruth and Asher were not at church while this week, they were the only children who did attend. I had Hannah and Hezekiah home with Anastasia and I as they were both not feeling well. Hopefully a day's rest will help them both get better. Hannah really does want to get over this quickly (and wants her voice back) as they have a Music Festival Choir practice on Monday in town.
Hezekiah plays so nicely with Anastasia.

I have a lot of baby photos of the other children sleeping in all the different funny positions they get themselves into. So I thought I had better get a photo of how Anastasia sleeps. My first baby to need to be swaddled.
Asher wasn't feeling great at church and ended up spending most of the service sleeping on Dad's lap. On the way home she had a seizure and then slept till after 3pm. Perhaps she is coming down with the same thing the others have. We just hope she doesn't have a bad cluster of seizures.
Monday 10th: We had thought Asher would just have to spend the day sleeping at home today, but she was up at 7 and anxious to get going. So we changed the plan and got her to school. She didn't last very long through and the fever she had yesterday afternoon came back, on and off through the day. So she was home just before lunch and had a relaxed afternoon. She looked fine and didn't even sleep. She doesn't look like she is getting sick, so she is just keeping us guessing. Thankfully no more seizures today.
Brendon was able to take our van with a load of children to the choir practice in town this morning. Unfortunately on the way home, a huge rock flew up and hit the windscreen. It gave them all a terrible fright. It was such a big crack that there was glass on the dashboard.

Anastasia loves playing peek-a-boo under a cloth.

Monday, September 3, 2018

Pancakes, jewellery and a reading challenge

Monday 27th: Asher had a 1 minute seizure at 1pm. She was on the toilet at the time, so a clear reminder that she does need to be watched ALL the time.
Tuesday 28th: Asher spent the day at home today as the teacher aide had training and the other backups where unfortunately not available. I had a meeting in Culverden, so it was nice to be able to just leave her at home with Rachel. It won't be long before that won't be an option anymore. Rachel is finishing up her high school work this year and will be looking for a full time job. She will only be 18 in April next year, so she has done really well in getting it done this quickly.
Ruth and Hannah were both involved with the 7-a-side tournament at school today. Both their teams did very well. Out of the 6 games each, their teams only lost 1 and Ruth's drew another. Great results and it sounded like a fun day.
Wednesday 29th: LEFT: It was so adorable seeing Anastasia and Asher crawling after the train this afternoon.
A wet day today, so Anastasia and I didn't get to join the walking group. Ruth missed school last Friday as she had a headache which got worse if she moved around. She felt like a cold may be starting on Sunday evening (both Rachel and Ruth started with a sore throat) and felt so blocked up today that she just spent the day resting at home.
Rachel hasn't made pancakes in ages, so it was a real treat for everyone when she made a huge batch this evening.
Thursday 30th: Ruth was very pleased to get her final certificate from Xtra Math. And on-line drill practice that her class has been working on. They only work on one operation at a time. Division is the last one, so she has gotten through them all now with 100%. Great job Ruth.
RIGHT: One of the boys in Asher's class was playing with this when we arrived. I was pleased to see that Asher waited for him to finish, and then had a few goes herself. She got the beanbags flying up nice and high too. It was a favourite activity at the Champion Centre, so it was great to see one in class too.
LEFT: I was a bit late in thinking about taking this photo of Asher pushing her buggy to the library this morning. As there is no school tomorrow, they went to the library today instead. It was sweet to hear (and see) this new tradition of hers. The buggy goes with anyway as it needs to be with encase of a seizure, and also as a backup if she gets restless (it can still be her safe place).  The added bonus is that it slows her down on the walk over (otherwise she tends to just run ahead). She is also quite adamant about pushing it herself and doesn't want any help at all.
RIGHT: And just look at this sweet munchkin. I smile every time I look at this photo. You can tell it got nice and warm today.
LEFT: Hannah climbed into bed with a book as soon as she got home from school today. It is such a blessing to see her enjoying reading so much. She had a hard start on her reading journey, and so it is very special to see her having overcome those struggles and enjoying reading so much now.
Who said males can't multi-task? Hezekiah has been working very diligently on Reading Eggs lessons over the last month, and today decided to carry on with the interactive story he was reading on the mini, while getting the next lesson done. :-)
Friday 31st: It was a teacher's only day at school today, so the children were all home and keeping themselves busy. Ruth made a necklace for Hezekiah's friend who is having a party on Sunday. Such a lovely one.
Hezekiah was a bit upset when Ruth tried to hold it around his neck before it was finished (to check the size) and so it slipped out of her hand and she had to re-do it. Hezekiah felt really bad and so decided he had better buy the necklace from her instead of her just making it for him. I thought it was really nice of him to be willing to use his own money to buy the gift - and also as a way of thanking Ruth for her efforts.
RIGHT: Ruth is really enjoying her blue tooth earphones. She has been diligently creating as many jewellery items as possible for a market on Sunday.
LEFT: Ruth was dancing with Anastasia and Asher wanted to join in. Such a fun photo. Such a great big sister.
RIGHT: Ruth and I spotted the magnificent colours in the sky as the sun went down this evening. So we quickly ran out to try and get a photo of it. Unfortunately the lens of my camera is no where near as good as our eyes and so this picture doesn't do it justice. It was amazing.
Saturday 1st: No children photo yet as Rachel is away at a camp this weekend.
It's a leadership training camp that a lot of the CEF leaders are attending. The trainers are over from Australia. It's great that these young people who are always giving at the CEF camps have an opportunity to be spiritually fed and encouraged.
LEFT: Our HUGE dot-to-dot book arrived today. Ruth didn't waist time to get started on one.
RIGHT: She also made this lovely green necklace today. She doesn't like green herself, so it was good that she could work with them as someone else might love it. I have numbered the photos and am trying to help her sell them on a local buy sell fb group. The market on Sunday was unfortunately very wet and so not well attended. She only sold $7 worth of jewellery. So I've listed them on-line and am just hoping she can get a few more sold for all her hard work.
LEFT: Giving Anastasia some walking practice.
RIGHT: Brendon had to finish up his sermon prep this evening, and so we closed the door from the dinning room (where he was working) to the lounge (where the children were watching TV). Anakin spotted his reflection in the glass and kept scratching it. It was so funny to have Anastasia on this side watching him. We opened the door and he wasn't interested in coming through. Just wanted to scratch that other cat. :-)
Sunday 2nd: Father's Day today, so Brendon got a couple of chocolate presents this morning. :-)
The family was spread out this morning though with Rachel at camp, Ruth at the market and Asher spending the morning with Rachiel (her teacher aide). So it was just 5 of us to church this morning, which felt like such a small family. :-)

Monday 3rd: I forgot to get the children photo once everyone was home yesterday afternoon, so I was pleased to get this one before bible study this afternoon. The challenge now is to keep Anastasia sitting still - as she kept trying to crawl forward.
Hezekiah has worked so diligently over the last month, doing either 4 or 5 lessons every day. Today was his last day and he finished up lesson number 120!
So that means he raised $120 for children's medical equipment.
Great effort Hezekiah. Well done.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Assessment, Sangam and shopping

Thursday 23rd: My drop off photo this week. Asher spotted the two girls on the teachers chair. The children often swing each other around on it. So it was heart warming for me to see Asher go over and start pushing the girls around. I had to make sure she changed direction after a while and then stopped after a while going the other way. Asher will get very dizzy and not stop. I'm not convinced yet that too much head movement won't trigger seizures, so we have to just help her from overdoing things. It was really special though.

Anastasia getting more time practicing standing. The cat is wonderful motivation to stand here. She loves playing with him. Just look at that happy face.
The book club order arrived today and Hannah had ordered a book that came with "putty". It's like slime, but specifically gave the idea of blowing bubbles in it with a straw. What a big bubble. Thankfully it's got hardly any colouring in it. The previous slime that she had been playing with this week had so much colouring her hands would be stained after playing with it. And unfortunately the colouring had a negative affect on Hannah emotionally. So I was very pleased to see the enjoyment she could get with this one - with out the negative colouring.
Ruth and I quickly headed off after school to get her to her camp assessment in town this afternoon. Anastasia obviously coming with. She had to put up a tent, a shelter and a clothes line. She had two girls with who helped. They will need to do their assessments soon too, so it helped them to know what would be involved.
She then had to talk to the assessor about running the camp kitchen, hygiene and food safety. She also had to show how she would set up her kitchen, so the leader had brought some lego for her to use to show her kitchen plan.
She also had to prepare some hot drinks, so the girls enjoyed some hot chocolate after the cold job of putting up the tents with the cold wind and drizzle about.
And the assessment was finished we headed over to visit another Guiding unit who were having a Sangam night. They did a whole range of activities relating to the Guiding centre in India. Including having some Indian food for dinner.
Dressing in Saris.
Getting some henna art on their hands.
Although Ruth wasn't mad about the colour of the sari she got, I thought it looked amazing on her.
Some wali art and rangoli as well as learning to count in Hindu and fitting 16 girls in a car. :-) It was a great evening. And Ruth and I got to also enjoy listening to an audiobook while we drove.

Friday 24th: I love how Anakin will come over to Anastasia for a rub.
She loves going into his box too. Such a cutie.
Rachel headed off early this morning for a St John camp this weekend. It was a special one that she had applied to attend and was very pleased to be accepted. She first stopped at Mrs Sampson who had said she would help her alter some fancy dresses she got. She is planning on attending the home school formal later this year, and got two dresses at a ridiculously low price. They just needed some alterations and Mrs. Sampson did such an amazing job. They had a lovely visit over lunch too. What a blessing.
Saturday 25th: It was lovely to see Asher go over and sit next to Anastasia this morning. She is trying to interact with her more, which is so special to see.
Hezekiah has enjoyed playing peek-a-boo with Anastasia around the rocking chair lately. It always makes me smile watching them and seeing her face light up ever time she sees him.
And Ruth giving Anastasia some time at the piano this morning too. What a busy morning she had with her siblings. So special.
Yesterday we had a delivery of new curtain rails (ones that help keep the rooms warmer) as well as new (curtain bank) curtains for the lounge. We so very spoilt. Our previous curtains had gotten damaged during the earth quake repairs, so it was so nice to get these. Ruth and I headed into town this morning as I had a sore tooth that I wanted to get checked. Thankfully it was only sensitivity and the tooth is fine. It gave us an opportunity to get some shopping done though. So we bought the curtain tie and we got that up this afternoon.
Rachel will have a lovely surprise when she gets home tomorrow. They look so nice. The lady had said she had some chocolate brown material and we said that would be fine. This was so much better than expected. At night they have so many different colours and are just lovely. I don't think I have ever seen curtains as nice. Both Brendon and Ruth made the comment that it made the room look so cosy.
And the extra trip also allowed Ruth and I to listen more to the audio book story. It's been nice to listen with her. We will have to continue listening on our own now though, as I don't think we will get enough time on our own to get it finished. And it's a detective story, so I am keen to find out what happens (and who did it).

Sunday 26th: Brendon preached this morning and we had the treat of fish and chips for lunch afterwards. Brendon is on new medication for his migraines and after 2 weeks without migraines we decided to give fish a try and see if he can manage some now without a headache. He has been avoiding fish for a number of weeks now as it did seem to be something he was not able to have without a headache afterwards. Thankfully no headache today (or on Monday morning). So that was a great blessing too.
Ruth finally got around to taking some pictures of some of her jewellery creations for me to list on a local facebook site. She is going to sell them as fundraising for a school camp in November. She sold 4 items and so was very motivated to get a lot more made. The advert also brought her attention to a market that is happening next Sunday, so she wants to get as much made this week to sell next weekend.
She is listening to music on her new blue tooth ear phones. These were part of her purchases yesterday with the voucher she won at the speech competition.