Wednesday, August 24, 2011

First Day

 We made it!!  The first day of Kinder for my spunky little one was a success!  Loved her teacher, loved her friends, loved PE, loved seeing Caroline in the halls, and loves that she doesn't have to go back again until Monday!
 2nd did this happen??
The highlight of her day was her dance elective.  We are in for a LOT of performances in the living room!

Preston and I enjoyed just being together with Drew.  I didn't realize how much he talks!!  Now that the girls were out of the house, I thought it was going to be quieter (they have QUITE a bit to say)
   Holy Smokes, he didn't take a breath ALL day.  
He also kept stealing my steak knives to "saw" things, like sticks and dirt, the house columns etc...  Any ideas how to steer this in a better direction?  My friend, Kristin's husband bought the boys a tool box with small "real" tools in it, hammer, saw, nails, screws...   That seems brilliant to me.
I love Preston's little voice when he asks "MOM, will you come saw wood with me?"
"of course, sweetheart, let me grab a knife first."

Monday, July 25, 2011


Every summer growing up we made the 4 day drive or long flight up to New England where my parents are from.  My grandparents lived in a big old family home right on the beach in Maine.  
Not bad digs!  My parents now have the home so we can still go.
We have brought the children now 4 times. It is a blast to see them have fun on the same beach where I grew up.   Caroline is our beach bunny so far.  I was SOOO nervous treking everyone up, we haven't been doing very well with any travel as a family lately, but they did beautifully!!  Drew seemed to get over his teething-crisis just in time to be the little show stopper for the week and actually slept!!  We really needed this as a family and it was a great time of bonding for all of us.

Drew LOVED the beach!

Climbing the rocks on the Breakwater was a HUGE hit!  
The kids thought they were climbing Everest.

My parents and grandmother.  We had such a fun time just with them.

Welcome to Maine, Drew-man!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Motherhood as Mission

We are having a great summer, nothing much planned, but trying to be in the water as much as possible. We are gelling as a family very well, and Andy's work has been much lighter this summer!! Yeah!
That being said, the phrase "the days are long, but the years short" comes to mind. These summer days are VERY long. Drew is getting about 4 teeth at one time, so for the past 2 weeks, he has really just cried. most of the day. I'm trying to get on top of the pain with tylenol every 4, but he won't have anything to do with cold things to chew on to help. The other 3 are needing a lot of direction and "working out the kinks" of being together all the time. In short, at the end of many days I am afraid I am "crazy in the head" as I tell Andy. I am trying to be more planned and organized, and sometimes it works! Going a bit nuts though, feeling discouraged with disobedience, sassy talk, arguing and needing me constantly, and... the crying. I think if I can help Drew get his teeth and stop crying all day, I can focus better on the other 3 and not be so testy myself. Feeling weary and exhausted will pass, I know. Tis the season, right?

This article has encouraged me almost every day the past 2 weeks, I found it on the Desiring God site. I struggle with pretty much everything it talks about.   

Motherhood as a Mission Field

There is a good old saying, perhaps only said by my Grandfather, that distance adds intrigue. It is certainly true — just think back to anything that has ever been distant from you that is now near. Your driver’s license. Marriage. Children. Things that used to seem so fascinating, but as they draw near become less mystical and more, well, real.
This same principle certainly applies to mission fields too. The closer you get to home, the less intriguing the work of sacrifice seems. As someone once said, “Everyone wants to save the world, but no one wants to help Mom with the dishes.” When you are a mother at home with your children, the church is not clamoring for monthly ministry updates. When you talk to other believers, there is not any kind of awe about what you are sacrificing for the gospel. People are not pressing you for needs you might have, how they can pray for you. It does not feel intriguing, or glamorous. Your work is normal, because it is as close to home as you can possibly be. You have actually gone so far as to become home.

Home: The Headwaters of Mission

If you are a Christian woman who loves the Lord, the gospel is important to you. It is easy to become discouraged, thinking that the work you are doing does not matter much. If you were really doing something for Christ you would be out there, somewhere else, doing it. Even if you have a great perspective on your role in the kingdom, it is easy to lose sight of it in the mismatched socks, in the morning sickness, in the dirty dishes. It is easy to confuse intrigue with value, and begin viewing yourself as the least valuable part of the Church.
There are a number of ways in which mothers need to study their own roles, and begin to see them, not as boring and inconsequential, but as home, the headwaters of missions.
At the very heart of the gospel is sacrifice, and there is perhaps no occupation in the world so intrinsically sacrificial as motherhood. Motherhood is a wonderful opportunity to live the gospel. Jim Elliot famously said, “He is no fool who gives up that which he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” Motherhood provides you with an opportunity to lay down the things that you cannot keep on behalf of the people that you cannot lose. They are eternal souls, they are your children, they are your mission field.

Faith Makes the Small Offering Great

If you are like me, then you may be thinking “What did I ever give up for them? A desk job? Time at the gym? Extra spending money? My twenty- year- old figure? Some sleep?” Doesn’t seem like much when you put it next to the work of some of the great missionaries, people who gave their lives for the gospel.
Think about the feeding of the five thousand when the disciples went out and rounded up the food that was available. It wasn’t much. Some loaves. Some fish. Think of some woman pulling her fish out and handing it to one of the disciples. That had to have felt like a small offering. But the important thing about those loaves and those fishes was not how big they were when they were given, it was about whose hands they were given into. In the hands of the Lord, that offering was sufficient. It was more than sufficient. There were leftovers. Given in faith, even a small offering becomes great.
Look at your children in faith, and see how many people will be ministered to by your ministering to them. How many people will your children know in their lives? How many grandchildren are represented in the faces around your table now?

Gain What You Cannot Lose in Them

So, if mothers are strategically situated to impact missions so greatly, why do we see so little coming from it?  I think the answer to this is quite simple: sin. Discontent, pettiness, selfishness, resentment. Christians often feel like the right thing to do is to be ashamed about what we have. We hear that quote of Jim Elliot’s and think that we ought to sell our homes and move to some place where they need the gospel.
But I’d like to challenge you to look at it differently. Giving up what you cannot keep does not mean giving up your home, or your job so you can go serve somewhere else. It is giving up yourself. Lay yourself down. Sacrifice yourself here, now. Cheerfully wipe the nose for the fiftieth time today. Make dinner again for the people who don’t like the green beans. Laugh when your plans are thwarted by a vomiting child. Lay yourself down for the people here with you, the people who annoy you, the people who get in your way, the people who take up so much of your time that you can’t read anymore. Rejoice in them. Sacrifice for them. Gain that which you cannot lose in them.
It is easy to think you have a heart for orphans on the other side of the world, but if you spend your time at home resenting the imposition your children are on you, you do not. You cannot have a heart for the gospel and a fussiness about your life at the same time. You will never make any difference there if you cannot be at peace here. You cannot have a heart for missions, but not for the people around you. A true love of the gospel overflows and overpowers. It will be in everything you do, however drab, however simple, however repetitive.
God loves the little offerings. Given in faith, that plate of PB&J’s will feed thousands. Given in faith, those presents on Christmas morning will bring delight to more children than you can count. Offered with thankfulness, your work at home is only the beginning. Your laundry pile, selflessly tackled daily, will be used in the hands of God to clothe many. Do not think that your work does not matter. In God’s hands, it will be broken, and broken, and broken again, until all who have need of it have eaten and are satisfied. And even then, there will be leftovers.
Rachel Jankovic is a wife, homemaker, and mother. She is the author of "Loving the Little Years" and blogs at Femina. Her husband is Luke, and they have five children: Evangeline (5), Daphne (4), Chloe (2), Titus (2), and Blaire (5 months).

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Drew Moses!!

 "Lift up your eyes all around and see;
they all gather together, they come to you;
 your sons shall come from far, 
and your daughters shall be carried on the hip.

 Then you shall see and be radiant;

 your heart shall thrill and exult
because the abundance of the sea shall be turned to you"
Isaiah 60:4-5

 Referral picture from Home of Hope Orphanage:
You've come a long way baby!!
"...the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; 
he has sent me to bind up the comfort all who mourn...
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified"
Isaiah 61: 3

Thank you Lord, that you have comforted our abandoned  and "placed the lonely in families",
 we are so blessed because of your works!

Drew, you have lit up our family, you have brought such joy and are changing our hearts.
 Happy one year birthday my son.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Wanted: summer playlist suggestions

Not being the koolest kat on the block, I need some help putting together some music for the summer.
At the swim meet the other day, all of the kids were singing along to the songs put together by the DJ. Yes, DJ, at our swim meet.  What we lack in speed, we make up in spunk!  
I knew none of the songs, at least none from the 2000s, but they were really fun.  So, what do we need to have jamming in the Schulz home this summer??

Friday, May 20, 2011

My Lucy: Off with the Old, on with the New

With many tears I allowed my Lucy to graduate from preschool. 
 I wavered back and forth whether or not to do it. 
Sonshine School has been the perfect place for her the past 3 years to make the sweetest friends, do art, chase boys and just be the nut she is.  If we didn't have about 6 more years of Sonshine ahead of us I'd be a real mess!  She is excited that she actually goes to school less next year than she did this year.  Hey, I can relate.  I wasn't exactly known for being IN school all 5 days of the week...
  I can't tell you HOW many people have asked hesitently "so... how do you think LUCY is going to do at Veritas??"  (our school where i teach her 3 days a week at home) 
I really think she is going to LOVE it, it is right up her alley!
I also have trusty Caroline who has her on a phonogram and math program already.
Can you see her sweet face behind her hair?
Her BFF, Madren
Ms. Mary giving Lucy the award for "Confidence" after explaining how she is so "comfortable in her own skin" so true, so true :)

On with the new... Swim Team!!! 

Apparently, She is In It To Win It. 
Look at her checking out her competition, sizing her up. " i can take her, it's on".

I love that she is the only one in a black swim suit b/c she was too small for the team suit.
Holy cow!  She flew to the other end and won her heat :) Who knew?
On to the backstroke, we're really serious about this now, pulling out the swim cap and stretching.  I'd never actually seen her DO the backstroke when i signed her up for it, so, I was just hoping she could find the lane lines when she started to sink.

Check her out, she was amazing!!

"Yes, yes, I did, I won my race, on my back!!"
like I said, "in it to win it!"  I'm proud of you Little Lu!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Children of God

oh, my dear heavens, I just watched this.
 Since I'm the only one on the planet not on facebook, I missed this...  stick with it to the end.  Preston just watched and said "Jesus is holding MY Drew"  :)  (Mac does look a little like Jesus here)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Panning for Gold

"The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders
 the Lord over many waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
the voice of the Lord is full of majesty."

Andy sent me away Saturday.  I had all morning to go where I pleased. alone.  I went to the water.  I needed to hear from the Lord.  I was able to spend all morning in His Word.  Filling, breathing into me. Kayaking down the river, feeling His presence, His voice.  "I am with you, I will equip you for this that I have given you, these children are mine and I love them more than you do"

"I sought the Lord, and he answered me
and delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant" Psalm 34:4

After my little drama the other day, so many of you called/emailed/texted with scripture and encouragement.  I felt so calmed and filled.  Thank you. 
I have loved the Christa Wells song "Panning for Gold"  It is about going to scripture hungry, expectant, waiting for God to reveal the gold he has for you today.

 "I go to the pages handed down and worn
I'm hearing the sages with the Truth on their tongues
Sifting beauty from the layers of ash
I'm tracing the universe with my fingers in the sand

I'm panning for gold, I'm panning for gold
Until I have all my heart can hold" 

That is how he feeds me, His Word, truth. Not self-help or "processing" with others.  Then her album goes into "Everything Moves But You" beautiful stuff!!

I was listening to a talk last night in the car, by Susan Hillis in which she also referenced panning for gold, in our children.  How we are to wait and search, knowing that the gold is there, expecting it to shine through in time.  Keep on panning, encourage them by voicing the gold you do see.

My Bible Study teacher, Marty, sent me this from Isaiah 40:11, it has been GREAT encouragement, I hope it is to you too:
"He will tend his flock like a shepherd;
he will gather the lambs in his arms;
he will carry them in his bosom,
and gently lead those that are with young."

His promise is to shepherd me as I shepherd my sheep. I take comfort in knowing that I am just a dumb sheep, needing to be helped when I get myself all flipped over!
love to you, my fellow shepherds and gold diggers~

Friday, May 6, 2011

In Which: The Wheels May Be Coming Off

So, we're back into The House at Pooh Corner...  Also, I just finished reading AnnE (thank you Liz) of Green Gables to the girls, so forgive me if I have a little melodrama:
As we've recovered from jetlag, introduced Drew into our family, and kept going with life, I've kept my head down and focused on what needs to get done.  There is a lot to get done.  Many balls are getting dropped.
Come to find out, 4 kids is a LOT of kids, especially when we are all home, all the time, homeschooling and cocooning and the like.  Or we are at swim team and I am having a complete breakdown with all 4 in different directions at the lake and pool.

As Drew has bonded so well with us, he is needing us more and more, a good thing.  He is healing, and that comes with much fussing in the middle of the night or when I leave the room.  He wants/needs to be on me most of the time and is not a fan of napping longer than about 15 minutes.  I love to have him on me and he starts clapping when I pull out the Ergo, did I mention he is 23 lbs?!!

I am struggling with my own inadequacies.  Lucy and Preston are having a really hard time right now.  LOTS of temper tantrums, sobbing in the middle of the night b/c "my tummy hurts", needing my full attention, and just blatant defiance and disobedience.  They need me too, and lots of me.
Come to find out, there is only 1 of me.

Also, Andy is slammed at work right now, catching up from being gone and lots of other work related issues.  That means LONG hours and travel. Neither of us has much for the other right now and we are empty, dry.  Emotionally, spiritually, and physically exhausted.  I really want to be GREAT mom, but too often try and do it out of my own capacity and fail miserably, spinning my little wheels all the while.  I am not spending time in prayer and study and have realized, once again, how Christ is my absolute lifeline.  Nothing else can fill me. Only he can equip me for this.
And, "this" in the grand scheme of things is pretty amazing!!
I am  abundantly blessed, just a little over my head with my blessings, and their needs!
 My head is spinning, my heart racing and inadequacies on display.  So, there is my melodrama for the moment, forgive my focus on ME, and the fact this post probably makes no sense.  I would put a great scripture at the bottom of this, but my mind is totally blank.  maybe you have something for me?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

kids + water

Is there anything more fun?

Lucy X2

Trouble X2

 love the shovel as an oar!

Have a happy day!