Thursday, September 29, 2011

That IS the point.

I believe reading is making meaning.

I'm really good at reading my kids' facial expressions.
When Connor makes his lips tight and his eyebrows are furrowed I know that means he's about to make a dirty diaper. When Reagan raises her eyebrows and looks down I know she's scared. When Landon pokes his lips out and leans his head to the right I know that means he doesn't agree with the decision I just made.
When I read my kids' facial expressions, I'm making meaning.

Last month, because of sick children, I read a lot of thermometers.
When I read thermometers, I'm making meaning.

And the same is true of text. Magazines, books, billboards, menus. Reading is only really happening when we are creating meaning from it.

And Reagan totally gets that. She's got it nailed. Reading is making meaning. She reads aloud to her babydolls all day long every single day. She uses the pictures to construct meaning. Her stories make sense. She thinks aloud when something confuses her or amuses as she reads. She asks questions. She activates prior knowledge. She gets it! Reading is making meaning.

Now. The details? The fact that words are made of these little things called letters and those letters make sounds and all of that stuff? She could not care less. But she so gets the point. She gets that reading is making meaning. And that's the absolute best place to be!

Because that IS the point.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Update on Connor Man

He turned 2 last month and his well-visit went wonderfully. He is now in the 50% for height and 20% for weight. We were pleasantly surprised at how tall he has gotten! Gooooo Connor Man!
His ears looked great and he's meeting all his developmental goals. Except one.

He's quite verbally delayed. I think the magic number for a two-year-old is 50-100 words and/or phrases. He's not quite there yet. He currently says "Daddy", "hi/bye" (same sound), and "ball" consistently. One day a long time ago he said "duck" and recently he said "buddy" and one day he sort of said "Miss Stacey". But that might be our babysitter's imagination at work.

Our pediatrician recommended speech therapy and so we went through the paperwork and meeting after meeting after meeting to qualify for BabyNet. We have another meeting scheduled for next week just to make sure he doesn't have anymore delays and then we are good to start speech therapy!

We are not concerned in the slightest. He's crazy smart. He's a great listener. He follows directions beautifully. He's the man. He just thinks saying words isn't all it's cracked up to be. And I'm cool with that for now. He'll get there.

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Last night, we were at a friend's house. Her kids go to a private, Christian school. She was telling me that in her daughter's class, they are reading the entire Bible aloud this school year. It's made for some interesting conversations because "semen" was one of the words in one of the verses this week. So her daughter is now wondering what semen is.

My kids go to public school. So after she told me her story, I pointed at her and laughed and made fun of her and responded, "See, I don't have to worry about that happening in my kids' school because public schools don't read Bibles out loud."

The room erupted into laughter because I'm hilarious.

I love that she and I could laugh and joke about that. All the while totally loving and respecting each other's personal decisions about where to send our children to school.

My friend, Ellen, recently posted on her blog:
"We don’t homeschool. I love homeschooling! I think it’s awesome! I’d do it in a skinny minute. But. Right now our family is called to be in a public school and we love it. I don’t love all of the running around but we are taking advantage of the opportunity to build some community. I also don’t love blanket statements about how one form of schooling is better than another."

Ditto. Especially that last sentence.

I love me some momma friends who know why they do what they do, whether it's homeschooling, private schooling, or public schooling and I pray I'll never, ever, ever for a tiny little second think our choice is the best for every family.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Monday, September 12, 2011

Way to see the positive.

Me: I hope she's not being bossy. We are working on that at home.

Reagan's teacher: No, she is not bossy. However, I can tell she does own leadership qualities.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Preschooler

She loves preschool. And preschool loves her. She is so the middle child. I woke up on her first day of school and thought to myself, "I feel like something is happening today. Oh, right. My daughter's FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL." Meanwhile, she was up, dressed, and stoked about hitting the road.

The first day of school outfit. Brand new. Almost zero dollars at my new favorite consignment store. I know what you're thinking. Not enough polka dots.

Connor Man wasn't sure what to think about his big sister leaving. He later learned to love it because it means a date with Mommy every single morning!

Her classroom. It's almost like the teacher called me and said, "What does Reagan talk about constantly?" And I responded, "Princesses." And she said, "Well, then I'll make a castle room." It's perfect for Reagan.

Reagan is signing in.

Happy 4-year-old Preschool Year! Woohoo!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Broccoli and Red Grape Pasta Salad

Super yummy and not too girly...the hubby said he wouldn't be embarrassed to eat it in public.

16 oz. farfalle pasta
1 lb. broccoli, chopped
8 slices bacon, cooked crispy and crumbled
1/3 c. red onion, finely chopped
2 c. red grapes, cut in half
1 c. mayonnaise
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 cup pecans, chopped

Cook and drain pasta. Cook bacon and crumble. Toast pecans (5 minutes on 275 degrees, turning once halfway through).
Whisk mayo, vinegar, sugar, salt, and red onion.
Add mixture to hot pasta. Add broccoli and grapes and toss to coat. Cover and chill for 3 hours. Add pecans and bacon when ready to serve.

The First Grader

I love my first grader. He's just so cool. And handsome. And smart. And hilarious (which sometimes gets him in trouble but we're working on that.) And stoked about life. I love that he just had to wear his Gamecock jersey on the first day of school.

I love that he couldn't wait to go on a date with me to celebrate his first gradeness.

I love that he loves his teacher and when I ask what his favorite thing about her is, he responds, "She reads lots of books to us!"

I love how excited he got when he first looked in the classroom library and saw a full bin of books by Mo Willems, his favorite author!

I love that he sits at a table with other learners, instead of a desk. And he loves that, too!

I love that he wrote this precious note to give to his teacher: Dear Miss Werntz, I am excited to be in your class. I love the Gamecocks. Love, Landon Trevett

Monday, September 5, 2011

Glinda the Good Witch!

In August, I stepped waaaaaay out of my comfort zone and played Glinda the Good Witch in our church's production of The Wizard of Oz. I even got to fly (thanks to my man and chief flying engineer!)

Huge goals I met:
1. I did not throw up on stage.
2. I did not have diarrhea on stage.
3. I did not break out in a rash on stage.
4. I did not laugh uncontrollably on stage.

I am growing up.

I had And I actually did a good job. The audience laughed and clapped! It was ridiculous. But the best part was hundreds of people from the community came to see a wonderful production done by people who love the Lord and love to have fun.