"Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls knows that we know, and holds us responsible to ACT"...Proverbs 24:12

Monday, August 30, 2010

Day One

So today was not the greatest of starts to a homeschool year...but the ending is better.

I woke up still trying to deciede if 'today would be the day' to start our school year. When I heard of the hot temps I was seriously contemplating doing our
1st 'hookey day' and calling it a beach day :)
Jacob made the decision for us because he slept in and would refuse to budge (which was totally weird- never happened before in his life...that was my 1st time experiecing pulling a kid out of bed...totally weird!)
So my 'schudule' was all ready thrown off. Sova was so excited to start the day- she brushed her teeth and dressed and was asking to start math durring her breakfast :)

Violin is definatly the harderst so I made Jake 'get that over with.' (I know....so bad huh?)
I bought a really fun science curriculm and we did that next. My kids are nature and science lovers so this will be fun. We learned about 'the air around us' and did 2 experiments...sucess :)
Then we took our 1st 'feild trip' to my grandparents house for a quick visit and then headed up to a local farm becasue I thought it would be fun and I really wanted some honey. Quickly remembered how much we stand out being out durring school hours and have to answer the ?'s of 'no school yet?' and then being looked at as if I head 2 heads ;)

Caleb was seriously Chased by a rooster...poor kid zig zagged screaming to me which made sova practaiclly jump on my head. The rooser was relentless- it was then coming after me with 2 kids hanging off my body screaming. We got the farmer to come out though and she threatend to clip the roosters wings.

On way home- we saw mikes van- got out and 'worked' w/ him in a new construction house for a bit.

Today was Caleb's 1st time sitting down formally doing school. He was so proud to have his own handwriting book! I was going to start phonics w/ him but he put himself down for a nap (I know...amazing- he loves to sleep!)

Next up...Sova, who sadly forgot so much of her letter formation- I was pretty mad at myself for not keeping that up this summer. So this will be a month of reveiw for her. She did start her 1st math program and she was so proud.."look jake...Im doing math!"

One more to go...
Jacob pretty much continued to roll along except he started Cursive handwritng. Now it was his turn to be excited about something. He thought it was so cool. And I realized what a crazy good reader he is...no picture chapter books now!

Finished with our day at 4pm.

I never go to the gym in the evening- especialy when the kids are still up, but I practiacally ran to the car when I got a chance.
When I came home I found all 3 kids at the table doing...school...on their own.
Jacob showed me a paper w/ beautiful cursive writing on it...he was practicing! He then begged me to move ahead to the next days lesson in his book- so he did it- and then moved on again...I told him to stop or else he would complete 2nd grade before Christmas ;)
Then Caleb hung on my leg and begged for school again...then Sova chimed in. So 8:30 pm- w/ my workout sneaks still on- the kids and I sat down and did more...because they begged for it!
I then beamed proudly over to Mike who was shaking his head in the other room...(I believe my chin was a litle higher and I soaked in that moment- pretending to be superwoman!)

I will not lie- today I was exhausted and quite stressed...I felt like I was rushing and cramming knowledge in these little brains all day- praying it stays in there.
I know that the scheudule will tweak itself out within a couple weeks.
I love homeschooling. There are a hundred reasons why- which I may save for another post...but even after what I thought was a 'rough start' and could have let my mind stray to 'what if's' (Im doing something wrong ect..) I got my confirmation that Im doing something right: the kids think school is fun, they love to learn, they want to learn...they stayed up too late doing just that...together as a family...
This mama is not 2nd guessing herself this year...off to a good start...maybe we will celebrate at the beach tomorrow ;)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Jill's book reveiw, "There is No Me Without You"
One Womans Odyssey to Rescue Africa's Children by Melissa Fay Greene

Ok so this book kinda changed my life..ok well, the inside of me, like my mind...maybe not outwardly yet.

Anyways I think is should be required reading. Orginally I read it because I heard everyone adopting from Ethiopia 'has' to read it because of the huge history it gives about the country. This book rocked me- I finished it a few weeks ago and I still cry...yes a little peice of my heart is there but I think it should affect everyone. Here's some blurbs that you can ponder on...

(these are various quotes taken from the book)

Dr. Mark Rosenberg
"My colleagues compare AIDS in Africa to the Holocaust. They imagine we will be asked by future generations, 'What did you do to help?'

AIDS- killed more than 21 million people including 4 million children
13 million children orphaned from it..12 million is from sub Saharan Africa. Ethiopia was #2 country hit

25-50 million orphans in Africa alone

The numbers are completely ridiculous- human beings are not wired to absorb 12 million or 25 million bits of information- the ridiculous numbers wash over most of us.

We who have read the histories of the Armenian genocide, and of the holocaust, stalins Gulag, the epic killings in Cambodia, Bosnia, and Rwanda, find our selves once again safely tucked away.

We're not getting it- we'll have a cumulative total of 100 million deaths and infections by the end of the year 2012 and we call ourselves an advanced civilization.

Ethiopia- out of poverty, drought, famine, TB, malaria, HIV/AIDS, autocracy, skirmishes and war...is running low on adults.

ethiopian doctor patient ratio- worst in world...1 to 34,000 people (US is 1 to 142)

Who is going to raise 12 million children?
adoption is not the answer to HIV and aids in Africa...for every orphan turning up in a northern hemisphere learning to rollerblade- 10 thousand African children remain behind.

(Halefom -head of ethiopian childrens commission)
"Adoption is a last resort, historically our country had very few orpahns because orpahned children were raised by their extened families. THe HIV/AIDS pandemic has destroyed so many of our families that the possibility no longer exits to absorb all of our ethiopian orpahns.
I am deeply respectful of the families who care for our children, but I am also very interested in any help that can be given to us to keep the childrens parents alive. Adoption is good, but children, naturally would prefer not to see their parents die."

3/4 of children born to HIV mothers- do not carry the virus (hence the orphan crisis)

(In the US- people are rarely dieing of AIDS now...we have the wonder drugs and people w/ HIV can live long healthy lives- getting married...having children. HIV is no longer a death sentence but a condition you learn how to live with.)

The meds have a 'lazurs effect'- a person can be on the brink of death and within days be practically back to 'normal.'

Patents: (the word now causes my blood to boil) the pattented drugs cost $15,000 per patient per year- although production costs are closer to $200. universl treatment would not be an option for africans.
in fact our govt worked hard to keep prices up by limiting exports to third world countires and vigorousley enforcing patents...their argurment- 'drug firms need the profits to finance the research on new wonder drugs.'
But at what point does the human benefit to desperate, destitute countries outweigh strict adherence to patents and profits?
They blame hurdels of- 'lack of sophistication to manage complex meds.' (sickening)

Our stragedy empheszes prevention to the exclusion of treatment...ofers no hope to tens of millions of human beings. In fact, it passes a death sentence on them. WE may have to sit by and just see these millions of people die.

both the Brazilian and Indian generic companies signal their willingness to export low cost generic versions of the drugs to poor countries

2006- $275 billion spent on war in Iraq...worldwide aids programs could have been completely funded for 27 years with that amount of funding

Some activists long to see drug industry executives and political leaders-tried for crimes against humanity."

OK- I know this was long...if you read this all...Thanks..I hope your eyes have been opened like mine were...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Turner Cafe' ;)

We've just partnered with Just Love Coffee, a fair-trade coffee roaster whose mission is to support caring for orphans worldwide! When you purchase coffee through our storefront, $5 of every bag sold will be given directly to our fund each month. 100 people buying coffee= $500!! Visit our link here: https://www.justlovecoffee.com/turner
(any coffee item bought go towards our adoption...not just the few shown on the opening page)

The owners of Just Love Coffee are adoptive parents of two children from Ethiopia. Roasting Fair Trade Specialty coffees, Just Love Coffee uses proceeds to help an Ethiopian orphanage and families adopting not just from Ethiopia, but from anywhere in the world. I LOVE what they are doing for orphans around the globe.

Please Spread the word to your coffee loving friends...this is the good stuff!