Saturday, December 08, 2012

"Just get it together!"

We all know that motherhood isn't often glamorous. It's full of the nitty gritty, every day kind of love and selflessness, and I'm okay with that. In fact, I'm a pretty plane jane kind of girl and prefer a pretty simple life. However, sometimes I like to feel a bit "together", you know? Like our days are intentional in many aspects, from schooling to activities to home life and menu planning. 

Right now, not so much. To be honest, I never felt like I quite "caught up" in life after having Jubilee. Never finished that transition to three littles, two at a very different age and stage than the third. Then, surprise!, a new pregnancy and all of the exhaustion and sickness that comes with that, joyous news as it is! It can leave a mama feeling....less than, a bit chaotic, and often like we are "just making it through the day". I know it's just a season, and things will even out, but in the midst of it it is hard to remember that. 

So, in these slightly chaotic days, I want to be honest in my overwhelm, but also keep thankfulness at the forefront. Because, really, in the big picture there is SO much to be joyful about. 

So, as I lie here in bed, next to a feverish, sleeping little boy and not feeling lovely myself, instead of feeling panicky about the week to come (mainly it's what to do with a precious but needy and busy 14 month old when I'm not feeling great) or telling myself to "get it together!", I'll just jot down some of the many, many things I have to be thankful for. 

This guy. For example, right now he is walking with the girls down to the train station (in the snow) to ride the new Trax line to Provo. Something that sounds like NO fun to me, but I'm so thankful he enjoys taking them on those adventures. He has been like that since S and A were infants- not at all overwhelmed by the logistics that would totally stress me out. 
He also takes them to do things like this- give one of his patients a shell from our trip to Oregon like he promised the man he would. "Daddy's patients" are always on their hearts, and he really is instilling in them a genuine love and compassion for people. 
Thankful for these two and how much they laugh together. These days it's often about burps and silliness that isn't super amusing to me, so I'm very happy they have each other to giggle with.:)
Thankful for how little Jubilee has fallen in love with books this past month or so. I mean, she LOVES them. She climbs up in this chair of Amelia's and looks at them, she carries around her little stool and sits and looks at them, she lays down and looks at them (cutest thing I've ever seen)....this coincided with getting in ALL four of her molars at basically the same time, so in some weeks that have seen lots of fussiness, this has been an extra delightful diversion. 
Christmas and the festiveness and, in this year's case, the calmness it brings. We are keeping it simple folks. Our calendar isn't crowded, I don't have 25 advent activities we must do (I have a list of fun things I hope to do, but I'm keeping it to myself and they are surprised each time I manage to follow through on one:), we are reading a short advent reading each night, and only doing one gift per child (albeit big, in our opinion), which means I was able to not stress about that! So far, cinnamon applesauce ornaments, snow dough, decorating the tree, some St. Nicholas day fun, ice skating with their daddy, a trip to the aquarium to see the penguins (we are learning about them in school), and reading lots and lots of winter and Christmas books. 

The last one is of an "ornament snowman" that Sam thought of and created all on his own. So clever,Sammy! He is our number one Christmas fan! He loves, loves, loves all of it! The lights, the decorating, the books, the crafts, the music, and hopefully one day grasping (as much as we humans can) the significance of Christ coming down to earth as a humble babe in order to reconcile us to our God. What a wonder! 

I guess I'll end here for now. Going to try and get some rest alongside Sam while the rest of the gang in gone. Love to you this season, even if you too feel like you don't have "it all together", hopefully we can turn it to thankfulness and joy. Jen

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Our fine feathered friends...

Ahem, it's been a while. Again. Honestly, the only reason this post is getting written is because I drank caffeine too late in the afternoon and am up late with energy to spare! Tomorrow should be...interesting. But while I'm awake, I thought I'd tell you about some more new additions to the Hunt home. Chickens! We have thought about it forever, and when Joel's friend from work was looking to get rid of a few, we thought the time was right. We got two Rhode Island Reds and two black and white ones that I forget the name of. We are down to two after giving the black and white ones back. Wowsers. They were LOUD, they escaped, they were super skittish. But the Reds, oh how we love them. Quiet, friendly, docile, great layers...and Amelia's babies. I mean really, she adores them. She spends HOURS in the back yard singing to them, feeding them bugs that she catches, carrying them around, etc. It's pretty awesome. So, here some pictures of our friends..Clementine and ?? ( I forget).

That's all for now, folks. More soon, I hope! Jen

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Well hello, old friend...

It's been way too long! But today this long silence ends, because at long last (at least for the moment) my technology woes have been fixed and I now have access to a working computer and an updated phone! Ahhhh, so nice. I hardly know where to begin. I guess I'll begin with the biggest news:

 * I'm 12 weeks pregnant! Whew, it has been a doosy of a first trimester. I was so humbled by my pregnancy with Jubilee (the sickness! the extreme exhaustion! the weight gain!) and this one feels pretty similar. It feels a bit like being in a cave that I just can't seem to crawl out of. I know, I know, sounds pretty dramatic.  But I have to say, it feels pretty dramatic. On the other hand, one "side effect " that I love is how much I fall in love with our little ones during pregnancy. I don't know if it's hormones or what, but the parts of them that shine, shine all the brighter in my eyes and I find myself just telling them many, many times a day just how much I love them. I think they love me more when I'm pregnant too (well, maybe not Jubilee:). Quite possibly because my willpower is pretty weak and I allow things I normally reserve for super special occasions. So now when we are out shopping, they'll be like, "Ohhh, mom, don't those little donuts look so good? Do you want them?" haha
Of course, perspective is everything, and the main thing is to remember, What a wonder! I mean really, a fourth child. A little body/soul/spirit being knit inside of me!It is worth every minute of feeling crummy, exhausted, and overwhelmed- of course! Just hard to remember sometimes in the moment. 
A few funny/cute things I want to remember:
- Sam saying (in regards to Jubilee, but a great reminder for me): "Mom, I think it's good to have a baby around the house because they make us smile and laugh so much!"
- Amelia just being so lovey dovey and affectionate when I'm pregnant. " I just can't believe you have another baby in your tummy!" 
- Sam, about 5 minutes after finding out I was pregnant, " Mom you know what I think? I think if the mama talks to the baby a lot, the baby will love the mama the most and it will be a girl. If the daddy talks to the baby a lot the baby will love the daddy the most, and it will be a boy. So, I hope daddy talks to the baby A LOT!!" :) 
I guess I better close for now, though there is so much more to say! Here's a picture Amelia drew the day she found out the news. It's me, the kids, and our cherry tree. All for now, Jen
Oh, and here's what Joel brought home when I told him I was craving Cheerios. Smart guy.:)  

Friday, October 05, 2012

Toy Maker.

Amelia prides herself in being a real toy maker. I have to say, she is a pretty clever and creative one, messy and distracting (from whatever else may be happening at the time an idea strikes) as it may be. She started with dinosaurs out of paper and has moved on to sticks, trash, yarn, acorns, straws, or whatever else she thinks of. Here is an ostrich she made the other day using an old potato, straw, and sticks:)
Go on, little one, and keep stretching that imagination. Mama will cheer you on, with quiet reminders afterwards to clean up the destruction you've left in your wake.
All for now,

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Friday, September 28, 2012

A bit more on our school days...

So, I feel like we are relaxing into our homeschool rhythm a little more lately. For me that means realizing it's not going to always be the organized, 9-11am schedule I was planning on, but more of a fluid day with learning weaved in throughout. With a one year old and a babe on the way (yep!), that's just going to be the way it often is. And that's ok.
We are using a couple of curriculums to help structure the weekly themes we use. One is " My Father's World" and the other is Wee Folk Art's free seasonal curriculum. More on this later.
I just wanted to record our work for this week- to remember what we did while learning about and celebrating leaves!
We went and gathered leaves in the beautiful mountains. Oh my, those changing leaves are just gorgeous!
When we came home Joel helped them dry some of their leaves and the next day we made leaf crowns. Well, Sam did, Amelia was busy with some other project ( typical:). During the rest of the week we made "leaf people", talked about " living and growing in Jesus", read a Read and Find out book about why leaves change and favorite books about Fall ( "Woody, Hazel, Little Pip" and others), went to the farm with friends, colored leaves in patterns for math, worked on writing L's ( though they are SO not into worksheets or writing letters in a row), listened to Sparkle stories about Fall adventures, and just enjoyed the beautiful weather.
Sounds like a lot, doesn't it? Sure didn't feel like it, especially not while feeling so very tired during large portions of our days this week. Ah, but that's the value in recording things, isn't it? Helps me realize the beauty that happened during our days when all I can dwell on is the resistance towards learning letters and how tired I was.:) Ah, these homeschooling days. They are challenging and lovely, just like the rest of life.
All for now!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Truly, our Jubilee.

Dear Jubilee,
What a wonder that you are turning ONE tomorrow! In so many ways it seems like yesterday that we found out you were growing in my tummy- the biggest surprise of our life!! It was with such joy that we received that news, that when we thought of the name Jubilee, it seemed to be a great fit. Your life is indeed celebrated, and I hope that is something you will always know deep in your heart.
Jubilee, at one year old you are:
*Adventurous: you climb everything and explore everywhere! I mean, seriously, it's pretty amazing. And exhausting:)
*Curious: Sam always comments about what a curious baby you are and how interested you are in everything. He's so right!
*A lover of animals: oh my, you get SO excited when you see mama kitty or our guinea pig Murphey. Also, dogs when we are on walks or fish in aquariums- you love them all. One funny ( and great) thing is that usually you get SO excited and get right up to them and act like you are going to touch them, but then don't. They probably lead much happier lives because of that:)
* Busy as a bee. Always on the move. Not a big snuggler. Definitely like taking things out of containers, putting them back in, etc., opening cabinets and drawers, climbing everything possible, finding open baby gates and crawling up and down stairs...
* A people person. You love catching people's eye in stores and giving them your biggest smile, playing peek a boo, etc. You love when little friends your size, like our neighbor Jack, come over and play. You especially love and are very attached to mama, but are starting to be a big fan of Daddy too:)
* Have a pretty darn happy disposition! Despite having lots of irritating pain in your first year ( ear infections,bad eczema, super painful teething, etc.), you usually have a smile on your face that lights up a room. You are such a trooper- doing Amazingly well on two very long road trips in your first year!
* Have a very set rhythm to your days. You like to nap at 9 and 2-3. You like to nap in your bed. Not ours. Not the stroller. Not the sling. This is wildly different from the twins- but, of course, you are your own little person and so I'm following your lead, little Missy!
* Have many nicknames. Jubes, Jubles, Jubers, Boo boo, punkin, punkin bug, boo bear, Dan and Anne. The last two are all Sam.:)
* Are very loved by your siblings. Though they do their own thing most of the time, they love you to pieces and Sam asks me all the time, " Why is Jubilee SO cute?!":)
* Are back to sleeping all night during this break from teething. Basically you slept through the night from birth to 4 months (!!!), then definitely did not from 4months-8 months, then were sporadic until about a month ago. Whew. What a gift for me to be sleeping!
* Are transitioning from your bear crawl ( you rarely crawled with your knees touching the ground) to walking. You took about 10 steps to me this morning!!
* Bring such joy to our life. I mean really, Jubilee Rose, we could just eat you up. That little button nose, big smile, little voice that says " Uh oh", Mamamamama, Meh ( more or give me!), dadada, ohhhh ( when you see your baby doll or cat or something else exciting)....the cutest wave you ever saw, the way you point at are just precious and what a privilege it is to have you in our family!
All my love on this very special first birthday,
P.S. Still only have access to phone pics, which is probably good, because how could I choose from pictures from the whole first year?!:)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

And still they play, for most of their day...

I am itching to share about our first two weeks of homeschooling! Haven't found the time/energy yet, but soon I hope! For now, I'll just say that it's 8:15pm and the kids are deeply engrossed in play, and though that's a bit late for us, it's so nice to be able to let it go. Let them play. There is no reason they can't sleep a little later in the morning, nothing to rush off to...
They are five. They need lots and lots of time for unstructured, free play. It's one of the main reasons I'm thankful for the opportunity to do our learning at home this year.
More soon,

Friday, August 31, 2012

Big brother, little sister.

Just want to remember the difference in their size at this age (almost 5 1/2 and 1!) and the way he and Amelia tote her around like this. That's all.:) Jen

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Went to the Aviary with Sam and Amelia and friends today. I've really missed getting to spend concentrated time with them, so I've been thankful that Jim and Shari can stay with Jubilee, letting her nap and then playing while the big kids and I go on some adventures together. When we came home today Sam and grandma were off to the park to color and Amelia was helping grandpa Jim with basement construction( she has on her "safety goggles"). Ahhh, I just love it. Everyone here seems ready for Fall, but I feel like I'm just soaking up the sun before the cold moves in. Let's not go there yet:)
Happy summers end, Jen