Hello, I'm Laura and I like to blog for a few weeks then stop for a few months.
Yeah. I had all the greatest intentions to stay on top of posting weekly but, life gets in the way and I make a priority list. This blog is usually the last thing on the list. Sadly enough, I want to blog so that my kids can someday read these...it's like a fun scrapbook that I don't have to worry about misplacing or losing...which would totally happen. I always see those parents that make these amazing keepsakes for their kids, like videos and scrapbooks or notebooks full of their quotes or little memories! I love that!! I always beat myself up about how I never started anything like that when Cody was little or even now as Eisley came along. But, that's why I always try to come back to this blog. Maybe just maybe this could be a constant. Sadly, that's never been the case.
I don't know if it's lack of time management or just feeling self conscience about what I write not being good enough. Good enough for who you ask?? Well, I don't know. I figure if it's up, might as well make it entertaining enough for everyone else to read too right? But really, I write to those of you who can relate. Of course I want to inspire people with little things here and there, but mostly I seek motivation and advice from those who have been there, done that. Although I do have people to connect with about being a mom, wife, homeschooling, working mom...etc. Somehow the combining of all those is when there are less to connect with. So that leaves me asking God...."Do you have a Pinterest board?" Could you imagine if he did!! Oh man, that thing would be overflowing with useful tips and tricks and would have the best graphic quotes and verses!! haha!! I wonder if he'd repin all those "All I need today is a little bit of coffee and a whole lot of Jesus" signs and shirts, Hahaha. Now I've distracted myself.
But Honestly, life is in a constant state of change and there are seasons that I feel I've done it again. I've picked the wrong path again. I've failed. For some reason, those lies tend to show up when there is an opportunity for growth. I've been through it enough to see the pattern now. But, it's still a struggle. What a crazy lie though. I think it comes from the very early years of learning what it meant to believe in Jesus. Instead of focusing on a relationship, it was all about right and wrong. Which makes sense when you learn about Jesus from being so little. I find that to be what I teach my kids about. "Are we loving like Jesus when we hit?" Hitting=Wrong ...so I can see where if not elaborated on it can be a very black and white way of thinking...atleast that's what I take from my upbringing.
My parents were amazing, but my own interpretation of believing was a lot of right and wrong choices. Fast foward to getting married and having kids and here we are. A better understanding of Grace. Let me tell you, when I heard songs about being free, I couldn't tell you what the first thing about what being free felt like. I knew I believed in Jesus and I knew I'd be with him in heaven when the time came and till then I would serve him because that's what you do. But Grace....I didn't know I needed it, better yet, I didn't know he gave it so freely. I didn't have the slightest clue of how deeply my creator loved me. That, that relationship is what I want my kids to experience now...not years down the road, not after their kids are grown...but now! When I looked at my creator as much more than just my provider, my strength, my savior, I started to see a father. I know.....how weird to know Jesus for all my life but not see him as my father! To tell you the truth, I was blessed with a pretty amazing earthly one and just didn't see how Jesus could love me more. But he does! He sees me for who I am when no one else is around! He knows what I was created for and knows my heart better than anyone else on this planet. He will love me, no matter what path I choose and that truly made me free. That song "Good, Good Father" totally gets my every time. It's such a crazy feeling to know that someone loves you that much, more than the greatest love you have ever felt..BUT HE DOES!! You don't have to do a SINGLE thing for him to love you that way! HE JUST DOES!! You'll never earn it or deserve it (Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.) HE JUST LOVES YOU!!! Yup YOU the one who keeps messing up, the one who feels like there's no hope, the one who just can't love themselves. YOU! You are worth more than rubies (Proverbs 3:15)!! So if you read this whole thing *High Five* know that you are loved. Even if you start blogs and stop updating...even if you decided to give the kids "Nature Class" (Playing outside) for school on days you just can't think straight and even if you jump into things with all your heart and have to jump out because you were in over your head. God is not disappointed, he loves you, HE JUST DOES!
Monday, December 28, 2015
Christmas Break has come and gone. Our decision to take a week off early and start school this week was a really bad choice. Our friends are still on vacay and we are back to the daily grind. Didn't think this one through I guess. Oh well. If we really wanted to, we could totally take another week off, but I figure since we don't have plans for New Years, why not get back to the regularly scheduled program! I actually miss our routine. I'm also over all the screen time!
Christmas Day was really nice. We invited my in laws, my parents, my brother and his fiance over. I made a full breakfast with fresh waffles, country potatoes, bacon and eggs! Nom Nom! We ate then unwrapped presents. I really wish we had added some singing. I'm a sucker for singing of any kind. I love how it brings joy and happiness! And since we ended up canceling the caroling event I planned for our friends, I was really craving some carols. But oh well. Next year, it's happening!
Oh the joys of being a parent on Christmas Day! Our original plan was 1 gift per child, I'm not big on the whole giving gifts thing. I would much rather make memories than just buy toys and stuff they'll be bored of in a few months, but my husband LOVES gifting! So of course he broke the 1 gift rule...not just broke, destroyed! I didn't mind, but it was pretty hilarious to watch these kids open presents. As usual, my first born had the best reactions ever!
I mean come on! Look at that face!! Pure delight! I LOVE IT!! He literally did this every time, no matter how big or small the gift! He wears his gratitude on his face so amazingly!
Watching him unwrap presents is really awesome, so I can't say I didn't love that he had more than 1. These kids are so blessed to have so much family that loves them!
Now, we come to my second born. This was a whole different story! This year has been such an exciting time for her. She totally understands what this season holds (Christmas, Santa, Baby Jesus and Snow!) and she has been singing non-stop for weeks now. I love her Christmas spirit! So of course I was so excited to see her open her gifts and capture it for years to come....
This was it...this was all she gave me. EVERYTIME! At one point I was starting to question if any of these things were even something she wanted! The best part came when my brother followed through on his tradition to wrap something completely random for the kids as a joke. This was Eisley's first time to experience this and well.....this was her reaction...
"Is this a joke...Which one of you did this?!"
I was laughing way too hard to explain it was a joke! But oh man, it looks like we won't be giving her anymore gag gifts! Geez!
Even after all was said and done and they started to play with all their new toys for the day...this was still her face..
Just not impressed with anything! I'll blame it on the sleep deprivation and sugar overload.She does love her new Lego set though, I actually love it more!!
And I still have this kid who is stoked and so excited about all his new fun stuff! I love how different they are and it really does bring me so much joy to see them grow and develop these unique personalities! They keep life interesting!
Thursday, December 10, 2015
We started our break this week a little. Since we are coming to the middle of the school year, Cody is finishing off some of his subjects like Science, English and Reading! WOO!!! I find it hilarious that he took it upon himself to continue working more pages than required per day so that he could be finished! I love that he's motivated enough to do that, because once he's done with those, we move onto Geography, Spanish and more Art! The curriculum for these subjects is created by me! Although I love our curriculum that we get from Christian Liberty Academy. It's a lot of book work and the way I teach is totally hands on. I'm a visual learner so I love being able to explore in that way.
Speaking of Curriculum! I also write Sunday School Curriculum and if you are a Sunday school teacher or even Nursery through Elementary teacher these might be helpful to browse through! I will be linking those in a different post called "Confessions of Children's Ministry" Where I will not only be sharing curriculum, but tips for working in children's ministry as well! I mean, if I'm there every Sunday I should have some tips right?! YES, the answer is YES! I'll admit I don't have all the answers, but over the years of working in children's ministry, I've definitely picked up some useful information!!
So as you may remember, I created an amazing little advent calendar and was so jazzed about how we're gonna totally stay on top of it this year...well, sad to say, we've already fallen off the wagon! I completely lost track of things because of our break from school and starting my new job! But we plan to do our best to make up for it and do as many as we can from here!
You guys this is what we've done so far...so sad!
What's even worse, is that we have this on the fridge and if we miss something Cody immediately points it out! Which I reply, we'll do it tomorrow...we can all see that's not happening! But hopefully we can do a few that we missed over the weekend! We'll see.
Here are some pics of Gingerbread House Decorating though!
This house was much more successful than any other in the past! Although we did have the roof slide off once but I think we didn't allow the proper time for it to set so that's our bad on faulty craftsmanship!
So glad we got to do this activity with our friends Tallou and Zebb. With our busy schedules, we don't get to see each other very much, but it's always a treat to have them over.
Cody wasn't as amused with this so Eisley took over and I love her imagination! We cut bear faces out of fondant and she wanted them everywhere! She said it was a bear house!
We got out some pom poms and googly eyes as well, things got a little crazy! I mean it's not edible anyways, so why not go to town! I love the eye balls in the snow! #thehousehaseyes
I also love the bear buried in the snow! The amount of frosting used was insane! Although at one point I suggested we cover it in frosting like it was in a snow storm, but that idea was thrown out by Buddy who is a Gingerbread Specialist of sorts or so he thought, since he just hummed and haahhed at us as we put things that didn't belong on a traditional gingerbread house everywhere! haha.
THIS GIRL!!! I don't know how, but this girl has my sense of humor to a tee! I literally laugh at my own jokes and think I'm hilarious and she is exactly the same way! It's my favorite thing ever! I love hearing her say crazy things or snap back witty comments then chuckle to herself! I'm so caught off guard by it that I'll literally do a spit take! I love her to pieces! She brings so much joy to our lives with her sassy and brilliant sense of humor, along with her loving side. She can just melt your heart! So looking forward to watching her grow up because she is set on being 16! She tells us that constantly "Mom, I want to be 16!". I can't wait honestly. She's gonna be a riot!
Tuesday, December 1, 2015
The holidays are here and this means I'm extremely distracted with shiny things and food! School?! Who needs school for 2 months, right?! Just kidding! (Maybe not though) Haha! I just really love this time of year! We spend alot more time together because we stop all sports and evening activities for the months of November and December and boy does it make a difference! We turn our focus to having others over for dinner and serving the community! I LOVE doing this as a family, I hope it continues through the years as the kids get older!
Yup! That turkey right there, I made that!! This was my first year to host a "Traditional" Thanksgiving at my house! I have hosted Thanksgiving almost every year for my side of the family, but I grew up eating Tamales and Mexican food for Thanksgiving. So that was what continued for many years after I got married. My family is not huge fans of turkey so it wasn't a big deal if we missed out on it. Over the years it just didn't feel like Thanksgiving to me to not have the turkey, so we made the decision to go for it. Do the WHOLE dinner, sides and all! Boy did I under estimate how long I would be in the kitchen!! WHO DOES THIS!! Although my back and feet hurt from the constant bending, finding, lifting and walking back and forth (I'm getting so old!) I had the BEST time cooking. The kids played nicely all day and Buddy was by my side the whole time! My absolute favorite! He and I have not been in the kitchen together since our dating days, it's just more practical for someone to be with the children making sure they don't kill each other! haha. I sure do miss it, and hope we can make this a regular thing again! (Not Thanksgiving Dinner) but cooking together!
It was a very blessed evening, I was glad I was able to share it with My in laws and my parents!
The 2 most important women in our lives! The Grandmas! I can't say how grateful I am for all these two women have done! One raised me and the other raised the love of my life! Both have amazing testimonies of following after God with all their hearts! Buddy and I wouldn't be who we are without the amazing influence of these strong, beautiful, smart, loving women!
Eisley and some of my favorite men! So happy and grateful that the 2 most important men in our lives can be with us. They have both fought threw a lot and it makes me not take their presence here for granted. I'm so overjoyed to have this family in my life. God is so good and his favor on our lives is so apparent in everything, I get so overwhelmed just thinking about it!
This year we also decided to do our own advent calendar! Every year we try to follow along with different pre-made plans like "Truth in the Tinsel" or "The Christmas Angel" which have been awesome! But the last 2 weeks always seem to dwindle and we stop doing it. This could be my motivation more than anything, but we decided this year, why not take ideas from all the advent activities we've done in the past and choose our favorites?! And so the Robinson Advent Calendar was born! I love it! These were some of the things the kids have loved doing and still talk about regularly. I'm so excited for them to see this tonight!
(Do you want one of your own? Message me!)
Last week was a short school week. We decided to take Wed-Fri off so we only did school for 2 days and Eisley just got the week off. She didn't mind as long as we did some sort of craft and sang songs. Haha, that's probably the only part of school she actually likes.
So I don't have any pictures to share. (Oops)
But I do have some of my favorite photos from our Christmas shoot we had in our backyard! Enjoy!
Friday, November 20, 2015
This week was really unplanned. I dropped the ball. It was my dad's birthday so we spent 1 day with him celebrating and Dad (Buddy) was also home for 3 out of the 5 days so that also threw us off. All in all, we had a good week and some things were learned! haha.
J is for Japan, Jelly Beans, Jam and Joseph
One thing the kids would say was the highlight of this week was watching videos about a little girl's life in Japan!
First off she's adorable!! Second off these are totally amazing to watch, I had no idea things were so different in Japan. It was so fascinating and entertaining to watch. Cody's favorite video was watching her talk about the candy they have in Japan and that she gets to read about one of his favorite shows for homework!
On our video list we also had "How Jelly Beans are made" and we learned about bio-luminescence in the form of glowing jellyfish.
We also had a good amount of library books about Japan and their traditions and customs.
For Bible we talked and read about Joseph.
This was huge for Eisley! She was attempting to read!! All thanks to Dad who has a different style of teaching and totally thought to try this with her!! I didn't think she was ready and haven't even tried (my bad) but, I just didn't want to push her based on when Cody started reading. Now when I say read, I really mean memorizing the book and pointing at the words. This is a stepping stone and I love that she was even interested!
Jelly Bean Puzzle
Finding letter J! Again, I totally gave up on making her find the letters and just let her go to town with the paint dot thing, but daddy some how made it happen! I wish he was here with us everyday!! Gosh that would be a dream!
Making jet planes
Matching jelly bean shapes
Some kind of a "shape shifting ninja star" is what Cody described
Dad had to jump in because although it was on the list of easy things for kids...it was not easy!
You can find this list HERE. The one thing the kids did love was the bunny that could also be pikachu! It was super fun to make and really simple!
Rhyming words bingo! This was pretty funny to do with Eisley, she was really confused as to why the word we had to look for was different than the word/picture on the card. But near the end she started to understand, still didn't like it, but understood.
Having dad home doing school with us was such a fun gift. He was even able to come to co-op with us and help in each of the kids classes! The kids were so excited to share this with him! I can't wait for him to have a full week home in December!
Thursday, November 12, 2015
I just realized the other night that my husband and I haven't had a date night since Sept. 12th!! What is wrong with us!! We do this all the time, we push back date nights because other things come up or we don't want to inconvenience our babysitter, but then weeks go by...then months. At this time we find ourselves completely exhausted and in need of a break and in desperate need of re-connection!
Isn't that the truth!!
I feel like life becomes such a blur and we get caught up in our routine that we completely forget about ourselves (Speaking for my husband and I). Well forgetting isn't the only problem, we also tend to make excuses about what to do on these "Date Nights". We usually just go out to eat, But we've been doing really well on cutting back since we are trying to eat healthier. Also the last 2 we had, we went to concerts! This was huge for us because this is what we spent our entire dating life doing. Every weekend! Although those are amazingly fun, they're pricey too and we've become homebodies over the years. So what's left??!! Movies...don't even get me started!! My husband LOVES movies...I like the popcorn and nachos. Honestly I'd rather sit on my couch and watch a movie instead of the theater, but that's not why I throw that idea out completely! The seats at the newer theaters we go to have recliners! Oh fun, so comfortable, so much like home right! Right!! And what does my husband do at home during movies....he FALLS ASLEEP! Who wants to pay $14-$20 bucks to watch a movie alone, next to someone who is snoring!! haha! But I digress... We don't have too many other options. Until I came across THIS on pinterest! 50 Fun Date Night Ideas for at home!! What!! This is like a bucket list of date ideas!! This is amazing!! And I plan to use this starting this Friday or Saturday!! I may share this on the blog, we'll see how successful it becomes! haha. The reason I love it, is because it's being intentional about the time we're spending together. Which is exactly what a date night should be!! Also this requires No babysitter, No reservation, No getting fancy (Unless you do the one date night where you get fancy) and Not alot of money!! PERFECT!
I is for Ice Cream, Igloos, Iguanas and Insects!
One really fun thing I started doing this week is making a youtube playlist for each week. We try not to do tv through our school day, but during lunch or while I make dinner the kids really want to watch or listen to something. They usually ask for Pandora, especially the kids christmas music station. I enjoy it, but I start to get tired of the constant music on...usually around the 3rd time of hearing jingle bells! So I made this weeks youtube playlist with videos like, "How to make Ice Cream" (I found a tour of the Ben and Jerry's Factory!), "What is an insect?" and "How to build and igloo". Along with some random clips from Sesame Street talking about the letter I and other various letter I songs! The kids LOVED the tour video and the igloo video. It's awesome to be able to "visit" places virtually when we can't physically go on a field trip there! If you want links to the video just comment or message me.
These were fun, but doing the whole alphabet at once was a bit overwhelming for her. I seperated the pictures and letters, placed the letters in a pile. She would pick a letter and I told her what the letter was and the sound. If she didn't guess the picture, I would say "S is for snake!" She got about 75% of the way through the cards before she said, "I'm tired of doing this!"
They are adorable when they like eachother long enough to agree on something to play together! We've been taking alot of brain breaks after math...division is hard and sometimes even mom needs a break from it!
Ice Cream Shape Cones! She loved this activity. She loves gluing and glitter so this was a perfect activity! Until she tipped both cups of sequins all over the floor.
Name recognition! I wrote her name on a huge piece of paper and had her trace it with the Cuisenaire Rods (Learning Resources Cuisenaire Rods)
Colors in Spanish! Eisley did a great job matching and saying the colors. We are still working on rolling our R's. This printable can be found HERE.
Practicing writing her numbers!
Pouring "Nectar". We talked alot about insects this week. Bees were not Eisley's favorite but she loved pouring the nectar!
Cutting practice with paint samples! Seriously, you can do so many different things with paint samples!! Go get some!!
We have been trying to include music class into our weeks since Cody does Piano with dad. Eisley made these drums and was into them for all of 10 seconds. But we've been listening to songs and using our rhythm sticks to clap along and they've really enjoyed that! You can find some nice ones here: (Natural Wood Claves)
We bought ours at Ted Brown Music and it was a little cheaper. If you want links to the videos we used just message or comment...my comment section is lonely!