Archives For Family

For the past 5 years now, I have recorded a day in my life on a January day and shared about our everyday life. This year, I recorded our day in January once again but am just now sitting down to post about it over 2 months later!

Here’s a glimpse into my life as a stay at home, homeschooling mama of 3 (and one on the way!) on Wednesday, January 25, 2017:

8:30 – I’m awake and moving slow. At 23 weeks pregnant, I still need lots and lots of sleep!! I get out of bed, start a load of laundry and begin making breakfast.

9:30 – We’re all eating breakfast. Then we tidy up the table and begin our school work for the day.

10:30 – We’re in the midst of our school day. Paxton is working on his math worksheet while I read to him. While he is working, I take a quick break to move laundry from the washing machine to the dryer and begin another load.

11:30 – We’re reading Sybil Ludington’s Midnight Ride (a lesser known young female figure from the American Revolution). We spent the beginning of this semester reading anything we could get our hands on about the Revolutionary War period! This hour continues with more school work and of course breaking up the occasional fight between the younger two who don’t have any structured school work.

12:30 – Lunch time. Everybody is happily eating lunch. We have a little bit more school work to finish up, I check Paxton’s math and start tidying the kitchen.

1:30 – It’s story time! Oh, how I love reading to my little ones. We read a lot of books as part of our school work but there’s nothing quite like cozying up on the couch with story books that the kiddos pick out for me to read and snuggling – especially on a winter day!

2:30 – The boys are in their room resting (which means playing quietly with their toys or looking at books) while Cecilia and I are in bed. For several weeks, thanks to pregnancy tiredness, I’ve been taking an afternoon nap and she usually joins me. I’ll read a chapter or two in my books and then we snuggle up and nap.

3:30 – I’m awake from my afternoon nap and feeling rested to face the afternoon and evening while Cecilia is still snoozing.

4:30 – Starting dinner prep. Wednesdays are Awana night which means I have to have dinner ready earlier than our normal dinner time in order for the kiddos to have time to eat without being rushed before we leave around 6:10.

5:30 – Finishing up folding a load of laundry (I’m always doing laundry it seems) and getting ready to serve dinner to my crew.

And, from dinner time, the day got crazy and I stopped taking pictures! The kids have AWANA at 6:30 at a church in our community. It’s just 5 minutes from our home which is nice. Once I/we drop them off, we typically come home, clean up our dinner mess and relax for a little bit without kids. If John David is working late for whatever reason, I’ll just sit and read a book in silence!

I leave to pick them up around 7:45 and we’re all home by 8:15. The kiddos typically eat a snack after Awana and then we start our nighttime routine – get pajamas on, brush teeth, pick out books, cuddle up on the couch and read and then head to bed.

My days are not very exciting but how I love being able to stay home with my children, educate them at home and live such a wonderful life!

A Day in My Life from previous years:

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

We’ll be welcoming our fourth baby this May! We’re excited and can hardly believe we just have a little over 3 months to go!

Cecilia is thrilled to become a big sister! She’s such a good little mama to her baby dolls.

This is a picture of our littlest from January 6 when we had our anatomy scan. We did not find out the gender and are looking forward to our surprise when baby arrives!

This is my 24 week belly on January 29.

I’m learning with each baby we have how little babies really need. I purchased a few new cloth diapers for this baby (we have a decent size stash of diapers from Cecilia) and we need to purchase a new car seat (planning to buy Cecilia a new one and let the baby use her current convertible seat.) I have a minimal gender neutral newborn wardrobe that was Cecilia’s and have managed to thrift a few muslin swaddles over the past few months. At this point, we pretty much need some newborn disposable diapers and a Rock N Play for the baby to sleep in for the first few weeks/months and we’ll be all ready to welcome baby number 4.

 

We’ve been using cloth diapers for nearly 7 years. All of our kids are out of diapers now (our daughter has been out of day time diapers for almost a year) but we’re still using one cloth diaper each night for our daughter.

After being used continuously for 6 years, most of our diapers were in pretty rough condition. Once our youngest potty trained, I went through our stash and pared down to the diapers that were in the best condition to be used as her nighttime diapers and to save for a possible future baby.

What happened to the rest of the diapers?

Swim Diapers

Diaper shells that were leaking due to damaged PUL became swim diapers. I kept two for Cecilia and the rest were passed on to friends.

The bumGenius shells make excellent swim diapers. In my experience, they do a great job keeping in solids (we had a pool for 3 years when our boys were small so I have firsthand experience!)

Cleaning Rags

Cotton prefolds make wonderful cleaning rags. We had several Gerber prefolds that are now my favorite cleaning rag they are great at absorbing spills. They also absorb water really easy which makes them great as a damp cloth for cleaning.

I don’t have any of the thicker prefolds as cleaning rags at this point because I passed on some of these when Cecilia potty trained because they still had quite a bit of life left in them for diapering.

Absorbing and Cleaning Cloths

After being used for nearly 5 years straight, our microfiber inserts still absorbed but smelled horrible after a few wears. It got to where I was stripping nearly every 2 weeks because of microfiber smells. At that point, I replaced all of my microfiber inserts with infant prefolds which took care of the smell issue.

What should you do with all of your microfiber inserts?

They make wonderful cleaning cloths!

My favorite cleaning cloth is the bumGenius newborn insert. When we have a spill, we just place one of these inserts over the spill and it absorbs the liquids up so fast. And, since they’re not being used for diapering, there is no microfiber stink to deal with.

Find a New Home for Useful Diapers

I only suggest upcycling diapers that are no longer useful for diapering babies. If the PUL is still in good condition, the prefolds are not in tatters and your microfiber still has life in it, find a new home for those diapers! Either try to sell them and make back a bit of your investment or just pass them on to another parent who can continue using them.

 

If you cloth diapered, what did you do with your stash once you were finished diapering your babies? 

Come to the Family Table

When we were planning for our marriage, we talked about the importance of family meal times. We have made it a priority to sit down at the table for our meals since our newlywed days (with the exception of pizza night or snack dinner with a movie!)

Now that our children are 6, 4 and 2, we’re actually able to have conversation at the dinner table which is so fun.

We are in the habit of gathering around the table during meal times but we tend to rush through meals. I’ll dish up everybody a plate and call everyone to the table. We sit down, eat, talk a bit and then clear the table. We don’t savor our meal or linger around the table.

Ted and Amy Cunningham’s new book, Come to the Family Table is about ‘slowing down to enjoy food, each other and Jesus.’

This book has both convicted me in the importance of slowing our meal times and has encouraged me in practical ways to do just that.

One chapter is titled ‘A Place for Memories’ and it reminded me that meals are not just about feeding people. Meals are to enjoy and to create ties with the loved ones. I want our family to create memories around our table that each of our children can take with them when they leave our home.

It seems like so much of my day is spend preparing meals and with our tendency to rush through meals, it sometimes leaves me frustrated that I will spend an hour or two preparing a meal only to have it eaten within 10 minutes and then move on to cleaning up the mess. I think that slowing down to savor our food and our time spent together around the table will help me value the time I spend preparing meals even more.

The second part of Come to the Family Table is about sharing meals with others and the importance of hospitality, especially for Christians. This is one area that we’re intentionally working on as a family. It’s still a bit of a step out of our comfort zone to invite others to share meals with our family. We’re finding as we do it more, it becomes easier and we always enjoy time spent gathered around our table with others.

Not only is this book full of inspiring information, it’s also fun. Each chapter includes a recipe that is meaningful to the authors as well as a game you can play around the table and a small devotional. We’ve tried out a couple of the game ideas during our family meals over the past couple of weeks and they have been fun for us all!

This book has practical applications for people in every season of life. Singles, young married couples, couples with children, grandparents all can glean inspiration, wisdom and ideas to strengthen ties with those who gather around their table from Come to the Family Table.

*Disclaimer – I received a copy of this book from Tyndale Blog Network in exchange for an honest review. This post also contains affiliate links which help support the maintenance of this website.