Friday, August 16, 2019

Thankful for Socks

I've been meaning to write a short blog post on being thankful for material possessions like socks.

Socks are quite boring unless one is truly excited about socks. I am not.  I like them comfy and without holes, but I'm no fashionista.

But because we live in the United States and because Kevin has a good job and because we live in the days of internet...

I can buy socks on Amazon any old time I want.  And we can afford it.

This. Is. A. Blessing.

I spent 3 years in a third world country as a child. I have seen true poverty. There are people in THIS country who struggle to buy socks.

So yes, I am thankful for Amazon, and money, and socks.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

First Week of School

It went fine, I guess.

It went fine.

Getting the little ones organized to do school is not easy.  Sarah and Daniel would both far rather play.  They will do a lot of playing this year, but I do intend to do more school with them. So that's a process.

Things have gone missing in the last 2 weeks. Where is my expensive 3 hole punch?  Someone walked off with it. I will blame Lydia because she's asleep right now so can't defend herself.  I'll search her room later.

Mostly a good week.  We went to Young's Dairy and we went to a splash park. We swam a lot.  We started school.

I sent off my Notification of Intent to homeschool.

We ordered a bunch of books for Lydia's upcoming semester of classes.

Naomi worked a full 40 hours at the local Goodwill.

I got another chigger bite :-(.

Mostly a good week.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019


This charming guy came out of nowhere and totally and completely adopted us. He is on our porch ALL the time now. He is officially our cat. He is very friendly and we like him.

The name 'Selky" has something to do with some mythological creature which can change from seal to human and back again.  Lydia says he looks like a seal with his gray fur.

He is nice.

Young's Dairy Trip

We went on a short field trip to Young's Dairy, a local working farm that makes their own ice cream and has animals.

Lots of Kendigs eating ice cream.

The goats like eating.

They like eating a LOT!

Tractors are fun, especially when they don't move and are therefore safe so no one falls off and gets squished. Seriously, moving tractors and small children, not a good idea. But this one ain't moving.

Big tires.

Silos and kids!

Thursday, August 1, 2019

It Begins (Soon)

Next week we are starting up school for the year.

I will have 6 students this year since Naomi has graduated and Lydia, while technically homeschooling, will be full time at Clark State.

Isaac will take a 1 credit class this fall and a 3 credit English class in the spring.

Other than that, it is all happening here!

I always feel like I'm not ready but I also know from experience that the best thing to do is leap in and get started.  We will begin very slowly, with just 2 or 3 subjects the first week.

I pray the Lord will bless this upcoming year.  Last year started with my unexpected hysterectomy. I've lived through many an interruption so I'm mellow about the reality that life won't go smoothly all the time.  Or even most of the time.

Let the academics begin!

Caterpillars and Bugs and Flowers, Oh My!

Kevin has a new hobby of photographing small objects.  And sometimes bigger objects.

We are blessed with five acres and the back 3 acres are mostly left wild. We don't spray chemicals on the lawns so there are lots of 'weeds' which make the caterpillars and bugs happy.

Here are some neat pics.

This is a monarch caterpillar on some milk weed.

Two bunnies terrifyingly near our garden :-).

Friday, July 26, 2019


We live out in the country and we tend to attract stray cats.  In the last week we've had two new ones. They probably belong to some neighbor, but we are always excited to see a new cat eating our food.

Twins!  No, not really. The one farther away is a new cat.  The closer one is our precious Lloyd.

And the gray cat here is also a new one.  He has been named Smidge, for no apparent reason.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019


I looked up that trial from last week, the one where I was called in for jury duty but was NOT chosen for the jury.

The trial lasted only 2 days (instead of the 4 that the prosecutor said he expected) and the defendant was found guilty of the murder of his infant son.

I'm very glad I didn't have to be on the jury though again, I would have done it as a civic duty. But what a tragic situation.  I can't get inside this man's head.  I wonder does he grieve his baby?  Or not?  It was apparently not an intentional homicide but likely a shaken baby situation or something like that.  Anyway, he is on his way to prison for a long time.

On a lighter note, swimming and a froggy!

Tidying the Little Girls' Room

Our church had a giant rummage sale last week and our kids helped a lot.  We got a few things and one item was a cabinet for the little girls' room.

I was able to put all the books in the cabinet, which was a better setup than a big bin on the floor.  I did lots of organizing and putting away. The annoying thing was that as soon as I cleaned up one group of items, I would notice another group of items that stuck out in my vision.

I'm detail oriented and I see things that the kids don't see.  Sometimes that is good but other times it is frustrating because I will ignore some toy in a corner for days because I'm too lazy to pick it up, but it ticks me off every time I see it.  And the kids don't see it.  Or maybe they are too lazy also!

ANYWAY, when I was working on the girls' room I kept reminding myself that "any little thing is better than nothing."

I don't always have time for a major clean up but if I collect all the Zoobs and put them in a bin and put them away and that is ALL I do, it is better than nothing.

I truly think many people with disastrous houses are so overwhelmed that they don't even start.  It just seems like too big a job and they feel like a little dent in the mess isn't worth the trouble.

But reality is, most houses will degenerate into disaster status if they are left to entropy for too long. So I keep plugging away. The kids keep plugging away.  And while the house is sometimes kind of messy and the bedrooms are often really messy, we can get them in order in an hour or so.  That's not too bad considering how many people we have! 

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Jury Duty

I got called for jury duty and had to report yesterday to the local county courthouse.

I am here at home, comfortably ensconced in my chair, which is a fine thing. I did NOT get chosen for the jury.

Still, it was, I admit, kind of an emotional experience.  I have never even got to the point of being part of jury selection before so it was new and interesting and rather sobering.

They had the defendant in the courtroom and it was a murder trial.  I was expecting each one of us to be interviewed separately but instead a bunch of random questions were asked -- not random, exactly. I mean, they were applicable about child care issues and third shift workers and whether anyone had been part of a murder case and stuff like that. I only opened my mouth once during the proceedings, to ask for the definition of circumstantial evidence.

After 5 hours and periodic breaks, the bailiff read out the jury names and I was not on the list.

I'm thankful as they expected it to last a whole week and that would have been challenging. We have a busy week ahead of us.

Still, I would have done it. Civic duty and with older kids, the child care issue isn't onerous.  It would have been a hard trial to sit through as the victim was a baby.

I am impressed with the judicial process, though.  I was listening to Exodus in the Bible on the way to the courtroom (just by chance -- I started with Genesis a while ago and I'm in Exodus now).  There was a whole bunch about how to handle stealing and murder and seduction of virgins and stuff like that.  It is way better for a man to pay 4 sheep for stealing another man's sheep than for the person who lost his sheep to KILL over it.  And in many cultures, revenge can escalate and soon people are killing each other.

I don't know the evidence about this trial.  It was a tragic situation, regardless of who is responsible. I'm glad we have a legal process in place to protect both the victim and the defendant.

And yes, I'm glad I'm not on the jury.  But I would have done it because it is my civic duty.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Naomi's Graduation Party

We had a shindig for Naomi on Saturday. It was mostly relatives and near neighbors, plus an adult or two who have had a big effect on Naomi's life.

It was very hot and thankfully we all (barely) fit on our porch.

It was a lovely time.

Rose, just being typically cute



Naomi with cake

More people

Cute kids

Naomi and our youth pastor

Isaac, with hat, and Kevin's mother

Fat cat

Photos by Kevin!

Friday, June 28, 2019

Physical Therapy

Kevin has been urging me for some time to work on my back and neck problems.  Years and years of poor posture and holding babies and backpacks on my right side have resulted in years and years of back and neck pain.

I have a wonderful chiropractor and she helps a lot, but reality is that for years I just keep having the same issues.  I'm not in agony or anything and I'm mostly functional, but pain is pain and it is annoying.

I went to see my doc last week, who referred me to a PT place, which turned out to NOT be in network for our insurance.  So I found another place, closer still, which is in network.  I had my initial consult yesterday.

The man is super experienced and he quickly noticed something that no other medical person has checked for. When I duck my chin down and then begin raising it up toward the ceiling, at some point my head suddenly cants to the right. 

I also have very tight muscles along the C2 to C5 vertabrae in my neck.  He asked me more than once if I have tingling or weakness in my extremities and the answer, thankfully, is no.

So he did some work on my poor neck, and gave me some stretches to do every day.  They are easy stretches and don't involve lying on the floor.  Lying on the floor is hard because small people have a strong desire to sit on me when I am doing exercises on the floor.

I am feeling hopeful! 

Thursday, June 20, 2019

This Month's Guilty Pleasure: Total Wipeout

I'm quite a serious person, and I work hard.  One does not get a Ph.D. in engineering unless one works hard or is a genius, and I am not a genius.

Anyway, I realized in the last couple of years that I probably wasn't relaxing and enjoying life quite as much as I should.  It is good to be hard working but it is also good to rest and take pleasure in life's little and big blessings.

I'll discuss big blessings at another time.  Right now, a little blessing. Total Wipeout.

It's a TV show on Amazon Prime which involves competitors trying to make it through a challenging obstacle course; when they fail, and the usually do, they fall into mud pits or into pools of water.  There is a female host who stands around the course making snide comments, and a male host in a comfortable studio who is sarcastic and snarky.

It. Is. Hilarious.  It is family bonding as the kids and I sit around chortling over brave souls falling into mud.

I like Total Wipeout.

Sunday, June 16, 2019


Last month, Daniel turned 7!

And this week, Rose turned 5!

My sweet babies are growing up!

Monday, June 10, 2019

King's Island Day

King's Island Day!  Most of the pictures are of Rose and Daniel and Sarah because Kevin and I spent most of the day with them. The older six were old enough to go off on their own, but not the three littles.

The gang is all here!  Yes, the weather was drizzly.  It rained and showered and drizzled as we drove to King's Island and for the first 2 hours AT King's Island. It was not very wonderful.  After lunch, it cleared up, thankfully!

Rose found the whole concept of 'waiting in line' to be quite a challenge.  Well, she hated it.  She lay down on the ground and howled indignantly more than once.  If I wasn't a very experienced mother, I would have been super embarrassed.  As it was, I sighed and talked her through it.
Anyway, she loved the swings. Short lines and fun.


Tiny roller coaster.

Lunch was sponsored by my company, AND they had face paint artists.

Plus a magician.

This was also much enjoyed by the Rosie One.

There was a petting zoo!

Ok, I have to admit I had never been on this ride and I loved it!  It was very gentle (no hard bumps, which is good for my back) but also fun.

We went on the log ride.  Oh my.  I have been on it many times before and have never, ever gotten nearly this wet.  We were SOAKED.

Cute little ones.

Kevin was indeed here!  He took 99% of the pictures.