Thursday, March 12, 2015

Homefront Update March 2015

Chicago March 2015
Just a quick update on our family and our plans. 

Some of you might be wondering why the avalanche of posts. Well one of the reasons I have my blog is to document all we have done for the girls to read back on in years to come. So if looking at hundreds of photos of our family isn't your thing  just skip it (no offense taken :)).  Of course another reason is to keep our supporters up todate on how we are doing. On that note I have an apology to make. Albert did write a blog post at the end of last year which I neglected to post and when I did find the e-mail most of the content wasn't relevant anymore. Hopefully Albert will give you an update from his perspective soon. 

The girls are continuing to do well. Both Grace and Kate have been unwell at various stages, and both required a doctors visit. Thankful for continued good health for the rest of us. The girls are eagerly waiting for the snow to melt so that they can put up the trampoline in the backyard. 

This was set back at least a week when I got sick in February. We have been busy catching up with doing long days of just school hence the house needs a spring clean. In light of this I've been buying bread, eating simple meals and keeping shopping and outings to a minimum to get our school work done. I don't just want to 'tick' the box but to really take in what we are suppose to learn. I am having some help from one of the student's wives. This enables me to catch up on some jobs that need to be done, tidying, reconciling accounts, blog posts, shopping etc. I'm hoping to finish school early May. I would prefer a week or so earlier in order to sort, pack clean etc but we will have to see. Our weekly home school group is going great, Albert is still doing the devotions and PE and I'm 'sitting' on babies while their mothers teach. A win all around :). 

Day Trips
Since this is our last couple of months we have taken advantage of the mostly free things to do around the Chicago area. One day we went to the Brookfield Zoo on their free day. As a family we also took a day out and visited the Adler Planetarium (I did pay for the shows but got a great deal through Living Social). Albert LOVES stars and space etc and providentially the girls were studying space in science so a perfect opportunity to learn more about it. I was 'spaced' out at the end of the day. (hahahah!). We are still hoping to make several trip to the Museum of Science and Industry, the older girls are studying genes and the Museum has a great exhibition on this. 

I'm doing some still but have scaled back. I have stopped my subscription to the local newspaper (which had a lot of coupons) and I am mostly doing couponing for things I really need (chocolate is a need surely?) We seem to 'fly' through shampoo and conditioner with four girls and long hair! I'm trying to use up what I have in my pantry and so we are eating lots and lots and lots and lots of lentils! If anyone has a favorite lentil recipe (not Sophie Gray's -  I use plenty of hers!) please feel free to email me the link! 

Well I haven't started yet but kind of itching to, not necessarily that I'm eager to leave but just because I like to be organised. I did this also in Wanganui and I was so organised that we had a couple of days 'spare' in which we made a surprise visit to Albert's parents. We have moved all the girls into one room so that I can have one room as my packing room. 

This is kind of a sad thought as there are so many lasts. I am trying to keep the positive in mind and focus on the future. We are planning a farewell party on the 23rd of May, please come! 

I'm doing well! I did get Kate's flu for about a week which wasn't as nice but bounced back pretty quickly! I'm also on my record for swims in a row. I swim on Mon/Wed/Fri mornings and have done so for 12 sessions in a row mostly following the assigned workout (3*100 yards butterfly is pushing it!) for about 3000 yards. I'm feeling great and hopefully this will cross over into some running fitness once the weather warms up.

He has managed to stay healthy, don't know why? Must be God's grace, there is no other explanation! Since you really shouldn't boast about yourself and let others boast about you allow me to boast about Albert! Albert passed his oral exam with flying colors! This is a pretty big exam with ALL of the faculty testing you on all you have been taught over the past 2 1/2 years. He was VERY diligent and studied long hours which resulted in not just a pass but a pass with flying colors! Proud of you! We are doing much better with our study/ family balance. This is something that is always a struggle for Albert and we work together on it. Communication of course is the key in this area and it's been good for both of us to plan our week together. I for one have full confidence in Albert to finish his semester well! The pressure is on Albert to graduate because I have bought the girls new graduation dresses! (Which is a funny story in itself. Since the girls get mostly hand me downs they questioned me about the purchase of brand new dresses for all the girls all at the same time! I had to explain that graduation is a pretty big life event for our family and Albert could not have done it without the girls help and understanding. It's a celebration for all of us, hence the new dresses!)

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