Saturday, February 28, 2009

Were A Hands On Family...

Being a homeschool mom allows me to do things I normally wouldn't do or think to do with my children. For example volunteer work. My kids and I are now apart of Hands On a volunteer organization that provides a link for individuals and families to join together and engage in meaningful volunteer opportunities.

Next month we are signed up to put together a fun, themed meal and activity for the families at the Ronald McDonald House for an evening.
The Loma Linda Ronald McDonald House is a “home-away-from-home” for families with children undergoing treatment for cancer and other serious illnesses at Loma Linda Children’s Hospital.
Our theme is breakfast for dinner.
I think I can handle making breakfast. Pancakes are simple right? haha...I hope!If not frozen waffles for back up. I don't want to let these families down. I know this will be a fun and rewarding evening for all of us.

Another opportunity that we will be helping out with is to share our voice while helping others. No, not my singing voice. We all know I can't carry a tune in a bucket with a lid sealed on it. But I can read and so can my children. We are volunteering at The Upland Studio of Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic.

How cool is that? We usually finish school around noon and can use the rest of the school day to do as we please. Which I think volunteer work would be a great way to spend time with my children. It's a terrific way to teach them the real values of life-giving and serving.

We will be recorded reading under the supervision of a RFB&D staff. They digitally record textbooks in many subjects.
This project is a great way to be introduced to the rewarding work being done at RFB&D.

I will keep you posted on other Hands On projects we do:)

I will be posting on the curriculum and Easter dresses this coming week...sorry I've been busy. Here's what my living room looked like last night:)

Friday, February 27, 2009

A Little Change

I was way over due for a change. My husband likes me with short hair. So, I was about to go chop off all my hair, but chickened out. Then I saw a picture of Heidi Klum and thought maybe I'd go for the bang look. It's a change but not too much of a drastic thing. I've learned not to do anything drastic when pregnant or pms-ing. I'm not preg!!!! Just pms-ing...Although after that one post everyone keeps asking if I am.
I've been known to grab my scissors and cut off more than 10 inches before. Then cried the whole night wondering what I just did. haha...Plus I figured the bangs could hide some unwanted forehead wrinkles at the same time. Bangs or Botox? I'll go for the bangs. We know how I hate needles.
This is the look I was going for...

When I looked in the mirrow I could just hear that song in my head from an old sitcom....
Come and knock on our door............We've been waiting for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I think I look more like Crissy from Three's Company than Hiedi Klum.....but that's ok my husband likes it and so does Faith. (Gotta love my honest daughter)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

My Little Dolls

Practicing before we went.

Yesterday Farrah and Finley modeled for a clothing company called Beary Basics. Finley was like a little doll. She let them dress her and set her where ever they needed her to be. They said she was the perfect baby model. She didn't fuss once. Farrah was a ham the whole time! She had everyone laughing. It was so fun to sit back and watch my babies. They dressed them in about 15 or more outfits and took hundreds of pictures. I tried not to be that annoying mom ruining the shots with my camera but I did sneak a few in between them doing their job.

She's a natural:)

We got tons of clothes and there giving us a disk with all the pictures on it that they took. Can't wait to share those when I get them:)

p.s. if you need to buy Easter dresses wait! For all of you who are Don't Blink fans haha..I can get you a deal with a Beary Basic dress. I'm talking cheap and soooo cute!!! more details to come....

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Weekend Recap

Hello from the little Ryan school house where we are starting school late today because it is 9:30 and everyone is still sleeping! (ahhh the joys of homeschooling) We stayed up late so I'm letting the kids sleep in. I woke up early and had some time to myself. Now I am enjoying my cup of coffee (through a straw) I've been told by my lovely daughter Faith my teeth are getting yellow. And enjoying some blogging time.
I thought I'd share some pictures of our weekend.

We woke up early Saturday morning to have our blood, urine and blood pressure taken. Just what I want to do on a early Saturday morning. Fun! Fun! We figured it was time to up our life insurance. Last time we got it we only had 2 kids, now with 5 we figured we needed more. Lord willing we won't need it. So, the lady walks in and takes Justin's blood pressure first. "OH, wow, do you work out?" She tells Justin. "You have blood pressure of an all American athlete." I can see his head swelling from where I'm sitting. Then she moves on to take his blood. "Make a fist" The lady says. Then she proceeds to make comments, "you can tell you work out by looking at your arm." He then again looks at me with a smile going from ear to ear and gives me a wink. I am just rolling my eyes! Does she realize what I am going to have to hear all week.
Then it was my turn (and if you know me I am very competitive) even when it comes to taking my blood pressure. Guess what, I had even better blood pressure than my husband!!!!Eat that! lol And yes, he will be hearing about that all week. Then I had to get my blood drawn (which I'd rater give birth) I hate getting my blood drawn. Then my second favorite part was standing on the scale. As I took everything off that I could to help with the numbers I stood on.... The lady just had to say it extra loud you weigh one hundred and ... (I'm not saying) Making sure my husband could hear clear across the house. WHAT!!?? I could of sworn I weighed 10 lbs less. Then she says and your only 5'6 not 5'7 like you thought you were. OH, thanks!!! That makes me feel even better. When she was leaving she said," Have a nice day and you really do look good FOR having 5 kids." I think she was feeling a little guilty for flirting with my husband and then making me feel like a short fatty. "Yeah you too." I said with a fake smile:) She had to add in FOR having 5 kids. Why can't anyone just say you look good? It's always you look good FOR having 5 kids. So, Today starts the day I am going to get my yellow teeth short fat body running!!! I am starting my new workout routine. (wish me luck)

Farrah wasn't feeling well. She teething and really clingy. This is her Saturday Morning she feel asleep snuggling her baby Valerie (which was my old cabbage patch when I was little)

Finley said "DA DA" for the first time.

Aut can now do a back flip on the trampoline

Dad took the boys to the Chicks sale and got them some new clothes

I took the girls shopping and found these cute little dresses. I love the flower on the butt:)

Getting ready for church... love the curls:) I can't wait till I can do this to Finley. A friend sent me this after seeing the post on Finley's haircut in helping me feel better about it.
Thanks Michelle. I am now hoping her locks will grow in even thicker:)

on Salma Hayek's bio page... "Determined to see that her grandchild develop into a ravishing
beauty, her grandmother frequently shaved young Salma's head and clipped her
eyebrows, in the belief that such treatments would add body and sheen to her
granddaughter's thick dark locks."

Yesterday, my sister watched the girls. While Justin and I took the boys snowboarding.
Faith didn't want to go. She said it's too cold she would rather stay and practice her crochet in a nice warm house. haha

We ended not getting to go because we thought Mt. Baldy had night skiing. We planned to only go half day like we do at Mt. High. This is us riding on the ski lift all the way to the top to find out the ski lifts were going to close in a half hour. We got our money back but daddy snuck one ride down the mountain. I had Landen on my lap and Austin sitting next to me on the way back down. The wind was blowing and it was so cold but I still happened to take some pictures and sneak some kisses from my boys:)

Justin having some free fun and showing off for the boys....
I'm yelling from the lift:
Go, head babe do a trick or big jump. It's ok we upped your life insurance. That comment was followed by a snowball thrown at me:)

Laden's feet were freezing. Here's me trying to warm them with some dry gloves.

Ah... the heater on his piggy's feels good

Friday, February 20, 2009

All Children...Should Be Able To See A Sunset

Another reason I love blogging. A way we can help others...

One of the famlies that participated in the big Valentine exchange has recently learned that their precious 4 month old son Gavin, and little brother to (another) Landon Troy was diagnosed with Congenital Retinal Dystrophy. He has VERY minimal to no vision.
His mom Jen is an awesome mom and is so determined, check out her blog. All children.... should be able to see a sunset.
We have exchanged some emails and I wanted to inform all of you so maybe you could help.

They are doing a walk to honor little Gavin and other families/people affected by vision loss/problems. This walk will raise money for research.
you can find their personal page here
They are a very humble family and understand during these hard economic times, it may not be feasible to donate. They even hesitated to reach out and even inform others about the fundraiser - because so many are affected by their own individual hardships. Then she figured, even if $5 dollars is raised, that is 5 dollars more than what the Foundation had.

If you would like to donate, fabulous! If you would like to join the Stevens family for this event, even better! It will be on the CSUF campus on Sunday, June 7th at 9am. PLEASE just come out and show your support, it's an easy walk - bring your family, throw the little ones in strollers and be part of something great!
My kids pitched in their own money and we will all be doing the walk too:)

God Doesn't Call the Qualified He Qualifies the Called

I love that quote!

I get asked all the time, "Why do you homeschool?"
There are many reasons I could give you for why we home school, but it would take me all day to list them. Right now I have a house full of 10 children. 4 girls upstairs playing ponies and 4 boys sitting right here in my living room playing PlayStation and 2 babies sleeping. What can I say I'm the hang out house..and I love it! So let me make this kind of quick.
Ok, let's see one reason we home school, for me it all started with a vision. As I held my first born in my arms as a tiny baby I felt completely overwhelmed by the great responsibility of raising a child. As tears trickled down my young and inexperienced baby-face (I was 19), I asked the Lord to give me His wisdom for this little life. I looked down at his big brown eyes and I caught a glimpse of a teenage boy. It wasn't so much about what he looked like on the outside (although he looked really cute like his dad)that I took notice of, but what his character was like, his strength, his gifts, talents, life skills and his security in who he was in his Lord Jesus Christ.
I didn't want him to fall or fail like I had. I wanted to do everything I could to raise him and make him live for Jesus.

As I saw that picture in my mind, it was almost like I was seeing the steps that I would need to take. The only way I could see that happening in our family was by homeschooling. For me God layed the desire to homeschool from the first months of Austin's life. I had a lot of growing to do in my own life.
I didn't dare tell anyone about my crazy thinking. Was it really God or just me? I mean come on God, you know I wasn't the smartest cheerleader on the squad. Who am I to teach? I am horrible at spelling, and math come on now, I still count on my fingers. I didn't give it much thought again until Austin was in preschool getting ready for Kindergarten. I remember going to Barnes and Noble and buying "So your thinking about homeschooling?" By Lisa Welchel A Focus on the Family book.
That was the first book I ever read on homeschooling. I remember reading it in the car when Justin was driving. He would just look over at me and roll his eyes. (he knew the Bridget who hated school) I would often say listen to this...then read something out loud to him. I did this for a good 3 years. With different books and blogs I was reading. I was slowly softening him to the idea.
Yet my husband was still to be convinced. We enrolled Austin into a private Kindergarten and I remember telling the teacher I don't think he's ready maybe I should keep him home one more year. (It was me not wanting to let go) She laughed and said he's more than ready.
Then by the time 1st grade came around I went back and forth with the homeschooling. We were blessed to be apart of a very small private school (12 in a class) where we met some really neat families and Austin had some awesome Christian teachers whom I have learned so much from. One of them has given me a lot of her supplies since retiring.
I kept feeling God tug at my heart, but if you know me I'm stubborn and always need to know how and why? It was hard for me to just step out in faith and trust God. I was filled with doubt and fear. As Austin was nearing 3rd grade and Faith was about to start 1st I took to prayer like never before about homeschooling. I prayed God would equipt me and make me just a day smarter than my kids. I prayed he would give me the resources to teach and direction where and what to do. Everything started to fall into place and ever since it has been the best decision we have ever made. My husband thinks so too:) I think a lot of mom's are scared to make this decision. One of my biggest reasons was I'm not smart enough. I didn't even think to ask God to help me be smart enough. (He's still working on me!)I've heard other moms say they don't have the patience to homeschool but haven't ask God for it. I am learning to trust God and leave the rest up to him. I was so scared of teaching 4th grade math this year and look God has brought a nice Christian girl to tutor Austin and he is thriving in math. My kids are testing way above their grade levels.
I am learning that God will ask us things that don't make sense. I am learning that we as Christians aren't suppose to fit in or do what everyone else is doing.

I am not one of these home schoolers that believe it is the ONLY way to go. I believe God gives us very unique directions for our families when we stop to ask Him.
We need to learn to listen. To be still and know that he is God. I often get so busy that I don't just stop and listen. God says, Be still and know that I am God. I've learned that if the enemy can't make you sin he will make you busy.
Some families I know are bringing up awesome children in the public education system, others in Christian or private. The decision shouldn't ever be limited to should I home school, but rather the more widely asked question, what does God want for your family?

Do you ever think about homeschooling your children? Why or why not?
Has God ever asked you to do something that didn't make sense? (like me homeschooling) Step out in faith, it's a simple matter in letting God be in charge.
I can't wait to see what crazy things God is going to ask of me....ahhhh! but I'm ready!
Another quote I love:
Don't give God instructions -- just report for duty!

I've gotten emails on what books or curriculm I use. I will do a book review on the different book I use later next week:) I am still learning...but if you have any questions about homeschooling I'd be happy to help:)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Rain, Rain go away...

leave your puddles it's time to play!!!

Us California girls can't do all this rain. It's rained for like 3 days in a row. I know all of you non Californians are laughing at us and saying it's just a heavy mist and we have nothing to complain about. But I missed the sunshine! I can't stand to be trapped in doors. Today was a beautiful day so when daddy got home from work we couldn't wait to go outside to play!

I love the street we live on. In fact my husband makes fun of me because I always take the long way home. There's a short cut to our house but I always drive allllll the way around just so I can drive down the pretty street. I drive really slow too! The kids are like mom you see this street all the time!

I thought it would make some pretty pictures if I let the kids run around in the middle of the street. (What I will do for a great shot)

The "cool" kids on the block

I think Finley's still mad about her haircut. She wouldn't crack a smile.

Finley's new thing she sticks both her hands down her throat and gags herself.

Such a poser! My kids actually ask me to take pictures of them then they stike a pose. I love it! (can you tell?)

Landen thinks he's cool because I'm letting him play in the street for once.

I love this picture (minus the ugly Monster hat)

Bald Beautiful Baby

You know your first baby you take them to the fancy kiddie cuts for their first little $30 snip snip. Yes, that was me I made a big deal of it and got the little certificate to prove it. You know the one you pay an extra $15 for. The piece of paper that says babies first haircut. Then you buy the $40 product when you leave just because it smells so good on your little one. Before you know it you spent over $100 dollars on your babies first haircut. Well by the time your 5th baby rolls around you just take a razor to their head at the kitchen table. I'm kidding! Well kind of! It wasn't my plan anyway. You know me "Make everything a big deal Bridget" wouldn't go for that. Finley has been losing a lot of her hair. Every day clumps come out and she had a few long pieces sticking up. So Justin decided he would just lightly cut off the few long hairs. When I went to grab my camera I heard the kids go OH NO! Daddy took off more than I wanted. I could of strangled him! My poor Finley is bald! At least we have lots of cute bows and hats!!! She's beautiful anyway! You know your beautiful when you can pull off a bald head:) I'm sure she will grow a beautiful head of hair in no time...I HOPE!

You can tell I'm mad in this picture and Justin is doing that oh no I'm in trouble laugh.

Look at her poor face, "what are my parents doing to me?"

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

In My Spare Time...

Yesterday, Faith and I had our first crochet class. Faith did very well. I just got my fingers all tangled up! We will be taking the class every Tuesday while Landen is in preschool and Austin babysits the babies outside the class. I have always wanted to learn but figured I'd just wait till I was old and gray. Faith is very artsy fartsy and wanted to learn so I figured I'd join in on the fun. It's a good break and theirs some nice ladies in there too. Faith should have a scarf done by end of winter, I might be lucky enough to get mine done when it's summer and over 100 degree's out. I'm sure I'll wear it then too. After all this hard work!!!

Once we get the scarfs down we will be learning to make little blankets for an organization called Living Well that helps girls who get pregnant and are deciding life instead of abortion. Our blankets will go to the little babies that are blessed to live! Faith and I can't wait. It's a great way to serve and having fun together doing it too!

I am also very sad to announce that poor little Fran is no longer with us. Faith was doing her chores this morning, watering the garden then going to check to see if Fran layed any eggs when she came running in crying. Something got to Fran and whatever it was it looked like it went on a rampage, feathers everywhere, things knocked over. She was torn up and all I saw was bone, blood and feathers. It wasn't a pretty sight! I about lost my breakfast. My kids and I were very upset. Pool little Fran:( We think it was a opossums?

Aunt Brianna made this for the kids..haha! What a nice auntie.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


The Famous "look"

Those dimples and big black eyes of his are dangerous! Yesterday, the kids were playing at the playground when my husband and I noticed a little girl (about 5) go running to her dad crying. Then I see Landen walk over to me with his eyebrows up and hands out(theididnothingwrong) innocent look. He can't fool me, I know that look! I ran up and ask what he did. Then I hear the dad say, "Who did that to you honey?" The little girl points to Landen and sticks out her tounge at him and says,"He did!" I said I'm sorry as I always do and made Landen say sorry too. Then I asked him what happend and made him sit in timeout. From what I got out of Landen she was bugging him and so he grabbed her legs and pulled her off the slide and she fell on her back. Austin and Faith came running out to tell me the whole story. (Meanwhile I'm getting dirty looks from the dad)
Austin says the little girl was trying to kiss Landen and he didn't want her to so he pushed her off the slide. Landen said, "Mommy she kissed me on the yips!" Oh, No She didn't!!! I didn't want to tell him but he did the right thing..haha! Push those girls away!!! Those lips are only for his mommy!!!!!!

Monday, February 16, 2009


I hope you all had a great Valentines Day!

Valentine's Day is a GREAT day! This day reminds me to thank God,my first love for all his love in my life. God created love, He is the author of love, He was the first to love. His word says "I first loved you!" He created us for his purpose, His pleasure, and His glory.
God defines the true meaning of love in 1 Corinthians 13:4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails!
Jesus is the ultimate sacrifice of LOVE. His death on the cross screams LOVE for you and me.
I thank the Lord for the love he sent YOU! I pray the lords love will up lift you, sustain you,
and guide you all the days of your life! He is truly an amazing God. I am thankful I get to share Him with you!
this was from a special friend God has brought into my life...
I am so blessed to have such sweet friends who I can share God's love with. I thank God for my family, my loving husband and lots of loving,love,love it!!!

For God so loVed the world,

that he gAve

his onLy begotten son,

that who so Ever

believeth iN him

should noT

perIsh, but have


John 3:16

Just another day for hugs and kisses!!!

I could kiss her sweet little lips all day long...

and eat this one up...