Thursday, June 26, 2008

Update on Us

Well, I can quite honestly say this summer has not kicked off like I had thought, imagined or certainly planned.

It started that dreadful Saturday night of June 7 when we had the torrential down poor of rain. Our basement flooded again. I know majority of you know the saga, so I will spare you the infuriating, obnoxious details. Here it is, nearing 3 weeks later and we are all living in tight quarters...the kids are all in the spare bedroom/office upstairs. We are adjusting to our new living situation, but definitely not happy about it. I estimate that this will be our situation for another 6-8 weeks.

Other than that we are all doing very well. I have been very busy with work, but I love it. My summer babysitter schedule is working out and the kids are happy.

I leave tomorrow for the weekend to go to Cedar Point with the middle school youth group. This will be fun....just pray for no rain. I am a bit nervous how my 30+ year old body will weather all the rides the kids are asking me to go on with them.

Zoe is due in about 1 1/2 weeks for her second litter of pups. I cannot wait. It is hard to tell, but I don't think she is quite as large as last time. So, hopefully a few less than 10 this time around.

Hope you are all enjoying the summer!!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

I just LOVE our school!

I want to start by saying that we feel Christian vs. Public school is a personal choice. I completely respect and support all of our friends and families choice in their children's education no matter if it is public, private or even homeschooling.

With that said, I want to share what I experienced yesterday.

Yesterday morning we were all invited to school for breakfast. They had doughnuts, muffins, juice, coffee, etc. yesterday for all the kids and parents. Then parents were invited to a special chapel afterwards. Each Wednesday the kids have chapel before they start their school day.

I believe yesterday there wasn't a dry eye in the house (well, most of the moms anyway). Not sure if the reason for my tears were the same as everyone elses or not, but I want to share what I experienced.

Like most families, we find that affording Christian school is a financial hardship. We have to be very conscious of our spending down to the penny. It seems lately I have often found myself allowing my mind to go into that place of "wow, if we didn't send our kids to the Christian School we could afford so much more!" or "Man, if we didn't have to pay this tuition each month we could do some really great vacations"....the list continues. Because of this thinking I have held off on sending in our enrollment for next year. Not because we don't want our kids to attend Allendale Christian, but because I was resenting the idea of the tuition again.

But yesterday, in Chapel, God made it clear to me why I am thankful for our Christian school and the ability to send our kids there. Yes, the music always seems to reach my heart...but more than that yesterday was a powerpoint they did of pictures of the year in review. Two specific photos really touched me. There was a picture of a 4th grader praying with a pre schooler and another picture of the third grade class sitting in a circle, all holding hands while bowing their heads to pray.

These pictures reminded me of why we chose Allendale Christian School in the first place. It brought me back to when Ryleigh was in preschool at Allendale Public and how her teacher there (who is a Christian) told me how hard it is for her because quite often the kids will say they have to pray before they eat their snack and she wants so badly to encourage them and pray with them, but instead tells them just to go ahead and pray quietly to themselves.

Yesterday when I saw pictures of the kids praying (especially the 4th grader praying with the preschooler) just really hit me how fortunate we are to have such an amazing Christian School that God provided us the means to send our children to. Listening to Ryleigh and Kobe each day after school and especially their own prayers....It is just so amazing.

Would my kids have a great education at Allendale Public School? Yes, absolutely, it is a wonderful school. But this year especially I have seen how a bible based education has really benefited our kids. In addition, the class size, being smaller was a HUGE advantage to Kobe. There were only 8 kids in his entire class and they were ALL boys! He has 7 BEST BUDS and all those boys are so much alike. The teachers each Ryleigh and Kobe had were outstanding as well as the strong friendships they had made.

What a great year! The school has kind of adopted a logo since building a new building last is on the t-shirts we ordered this year. On the back of each it says "Come and see what God has done!". It is clear that God has done some pretty awesome things with my kids this year and in Nick and I as well. Never ever will I begrudge our tuition payment again. Does that mean it will be easy...nope. As Nate starts up next year I know it will only be harder...But I will always keep those pictures in my mind to remind me why we are making the sacrifices we do and always be thankful for Allendale Christian School!