Apples, Charts and Catch-up!

 The days are flying by so quickly that I hardly realize how much time has passed since I last blogged. Of course, I only feel a little guilty considering there aren’t that many people reading anyways…..Not that I blame anyone; this isn’t the most exciting place to visit! (Okay, that was totally a shameless shout-out for readers and comments. Where are you?? It gets discouraging!)

Our new schedule is taking time to adjust to. We were so in tune with our old school schedule in Chicago for so long that breaking out of it has been harder than expected. It just feels so different and we feel like we are always running, trying to catch up with all that needs to get done.

Ben goes into work anywhere from 6:30am-8:30am, depending on whether they need him for overtime or not. He gets home at 5:30pm every day which is nice because he’s home in time for dinner each night. The hard part is that this is definitely a more physically demanding job than he had before (okay, physical period!) so he is exhausted the few hours he can stay awake. As a matter of fact, he’s snoring next to me as I write…:) haha.

We also were used to having him home during the day 2-3 days a week, whereas now he is gone Mon-Fri (like a regular person, I guess!) and sometimes on the weekends, too. He is SO incredibly busy all the time. And so, then, am I….

We have a cute little playground not far outside our backdoor and the boys, especially love to play there after school. I admit, Eliana doesn’t get to go often because she wants to go when the boys do and there are a lot of other kids out, too, playing wildly and not generally watching out for tiny almost-four year olds. On this day that I took the picture, it was just the four of us for awhile! I enjoyed watching all three of them swing:)

Then Eliana decided to get silly, of course. She loves to be silly!

She also loves to pick out her own outfits several times a day. I have to fight with her to dress in something cute most days. Then during naptime, inevitably, she changes into something “comfy” which usually includes a Buckeye shirt and shorts, or cozy pants (as she likes to call them) and this pink shirt. She’s a goof! I think I may secretly raid her drawers and “hide” some of her regular go-to’s to change things up. You won’t tell, will you?

This was me scrubbing in for some deep freezer surgery the other day:) In the day or two before we moved in June, somebody closed the deep freezer lid after it was unplugged and before it had completely dried. Ew. Let’s just say that I had to arm myself with bleach, my handy dandy mask and some gloves and do some strenuous scrubbing! Thankfully, it is back in operation and mold free!

It became part of Eliana’s nightly routine to read books for a few minutes with a book light since we lived with my grandparents this summer. The room we stayed in had no window so it was pitch black when you shut the door and I would lend her my book light after I tucked her in each night. I always found it back on my bedside table when I came in to go to sleep:) She earned her very own little princess flashlight yesterday as a prize (she is holding it up in the picture) and she is very proud!

It’s apple season over here! It was a strange apple-picking year here and Ben never got to go, unfortunately, but we are still swimming in apples and yesterday I finally mustered up the energy to start dealing with them. So far I canned 8 half pints of apple butter (mmm..), made 4 mini loaves of delicious apple bread and froze 2 apple pie inserts. There are still many apples to go….if Ben doesn’t eat them all first!

I made a new chart for my kiddos today. (my phone takes awful pictures, sorry!) I originally made this chart just this past spring and while it was very helpful to have the ears/mouths for them to remove, it was also extremely annoying because the Velcro ripped off several times a week and I was constantly gluing them back on! I even attempted to sew them on but after 2 of them, I said forget it and decided to make something a little easier and with a little more of a positive spin!

This chart has room for the kiddos to move up, if having a good day, or down if having a rough day. I got the idea from pinterest and from new color charts that they seem to be using in the schools around here. It’s good for the kids to be rewarded, too! They start on Green and move up or down, depending on their choices, attitudes, etc. throughout the day.

Hopefully, they will not be moving down too much, or at least, all the way down! I put “Warning” for the first move down, “Trouble” for the second and “Rough Day/Try Again Tomorrow” for the 3rd. That’s a really bad day! Each move down comes with it’s own set of consequences, like time-outs for the littler ones, extra chores, loss of privileges/toys/etc. We have an envelope with a notecard in it that will be hung nearby for Ben and I to choose from a list we wrote out of consequences. Makes it easier to follow through quickly!

They each have their own decorated, initialed clothespin and they get to start fresh every morning! I even wrote in tiny letters, “His mercies are new every morning” on the Start square as a reminder to them and to me that grace is new each morning:)
The boys were really excited when they saw it this afternoon (updates on them coming soon!) and all three kiddos got to move up one space tonight because they got all of their sticks done (yep, we still do those and they still work!) and just had good afternoons/evening. I like being able to reward them in simple ways and make them feel good about their choices. Hopefully, it will inspire them to keep making good choices:)
Well, that’s all folks. Keep coming back and be sure to say hi in the comments sometimes!

4 thoughts on “Apples, Charts and Catch-up!

  1. Me too, I'm here every few days, I just forgot to check for a few days. I wish I could try your apple butter…Love seeing your ideas and pictures.
    Your look so cute with your mask.! I thought someone must have the coughing/cold germs in the house.


  2. Heidi, I read your blog faithfully!! Even though I don't always comment… Usually I read it from my phone – and for some reason I can't comment via my phone. Please don't stop!! I love the verse on the chart. It is a good reminder no matter how old we are. Love you.


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