Thursday, July 28, 2011

It Could Be Much Worse


I am a member of several different groups online.  Many of which are for parents of special needs children and several for Epilepsy.  Even though I love to participate in them, some days it hits me more than others just how LUCKY we are with this disorder.

My children's seizures have always been controlled, for the most part, by medication and environment variable control.  My own seizures have always been controlled in the same way.  Other families are not.  Other families have children who have to take 3 or 4 or more medications.  Other families have children who must have an electronic device to help them control this disorder.  Other families have children who must endure a massive surgery removing a portion of their brains, risking so many complications. 

I hear of these children every day.  I pray for these children every day.  I thank God that my children are blessed not to need these things.  I thank God that we can control this disorder simply.

I am often asked how we handle having two daughters with Epilepsy, especially when I have it myself.  God has a chosen to bless me with these children and I'm thankful that He gave them to me.  I have never let this disorder get me down and I refuse to let it rule my children.  I know, from seeing others, that we could have it so much worse.  I know that one serious neurological episode, one serious tramatic event could change our life forever.  I know someday I may have to make the decision to remove a portion of my daughters' brains.  But I have Faith that God is in control of this disorder and will take care of my girls just like he has me. 

I do not limit them from enjoying their lives but they are aware of their disorder, as I have stated in previous posts.  I make them aware in the case they realize its happening as they grow up.  I make others aware so that they know how to deal with their Epileptic activity if something was to happen while they are around my daughters.  I make others aware so that my girls can live as normal a life as possible.

I don't always talk about this disorder.  Some days I wish I could just hide it away and ignore it exists.  Some days it's easy to do but naturally I am always looking for the signs: the tiredness, the staring episodes that sometimes lead to a convulsion within a few days, the stuttering, the forgetting of things they know how to do but because of their disorder can't remember.  All the effects that this disorder causes to happen often in our lives. 

I remember once when Emmalee was 2, she climbed to the top of her baby slide like she did every day but she couldn't remember "how" to slide back down.  It broke my Momma heart to see my sweet girl "forget" and know she couldn't help it because that is something this disorder does to you.  It broke my heart more to watch her lay seizing, knowing their was nothing I could do to help her the next day. 

And still I'm reminded daily that it could be so much worse for us.  My girls could go into a seizure and not wake one day.  However, I can't dwell on what could happen, no more than I can dwell on what has happened.  As their Mom, I must make sure that they don't either.  This is why I try to provide them with as much normalcy as possible.  Why should their life be any different just because they have Epilepsy?  We must make a few exceptions and changes for them to co-exist normally but no more than someone would for any child.

I'm thankful for each normal day my daughters are able to have and pray that they are able to live their lives without too much complication.  Only time will tell if that will be allowed but for now we are simply maintaining our day to day life and living as if tomorrow brings the cure to this lifelong disorder that we carry.

God bless! <3

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Beware: I Stand Up for My Beliefs

The Lord is amazing.  I cannot state that enough.  Recently, I have made several prayers that all at once were answered today, lifting a HUGE, undeniable weight off of my shoulders.  I'm so thankful that He chose to answer this in His time and way and as quick as He did.

Let me just add that if something "seems" too good to be true, it generally is!  It is awesome to fight a battle called Epilepsy but if you are going to go at some full blown guns first, know what it is you're talking about.  Especially if you are in the position of leading a foundation and its members into that battle.  I shake my head at these wonderful change makers who really have no clue what it is they are battling.  The first step to change and prevention is knowledge and that comes from research, not from interogating physicians to get your way.  Know what you are fighting against before you begin the fight and both sides of the battle instead of your own opinionated view upon it.  I see now it's not the original members of this particular foundation that were wrong but instead that they had a differing opinion from the leader who only accepts their own as the only correct one.  I wish them all luck in their business but I honestly now see why more people don't share about this disorder than already do.

The devil will not stop my efforts to support and share about Epilepsy though.  There will be plenty of future blog posts from me on this subject, as well as many others.    I will continue to speak my mind as I always have, but perhaps I should come labeled with a warning from now on: I will not necessarily agree with your viewpoint but I do respect your views.  Or maybe, Beware: I strongly stand up for what I believe in, homeschooling and Epilepsy being the main two. 

To each of you, I wish a blessed night and a beautiful week.  God bless all! <3

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

205 Followers

Wow! I am not even sure when we hit 205 but I wanted to say Welcome to each of you. Right now I am busy helping my Mom get settled into her new home so I havent had time to post! That is our big news we have been waiting to share. Hopefully by next week she will be fully settled and life will regain some normalcy so that I can blog again. Until then please bear with me! Hope each of you have a very blessed week! <3

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

2011-2012 Curriculum Part 1

As I mentioned in my last post, this year we will be stepping out of unschooling and into more structured school-style.  Think relaxed but formal.  I think a little more structure is necessary for our days and what better place to start than with school.

Anyone who knows me knows that I don't use grade levels in our school.  I consider both Winston and Emmalee to be Elementary level and in comparison to public school, they are on different levels in different subjects throughout the spectrum.  I do not place them into one single catergory because of this.

That said, I do consider my youngest to be in preschool.  She will be beginning "real" studies with us this year.  We will work through various workbooks, learning letters and numbers, number relation and early writing skills.  I'm not 100% sure what curriculum I will be using with her yet but hope to figure it out very soon.

Winston and Emmalee will be continuing much of the curriculum we used last year.  We will be adding and changing several things but I am still working out the details.  The books we will be using are as follows:

This book is part of the What We Believe series published by Apologia Press.  We began it last year but will dive into it further this year.  I hope to add the accompaning color book at some point before we finish the book.  It is a look at Biblical Worldview written for Elementary level students (ages 6-14). 


For Science, we will be working through Apologia's Exploring Creation series.  Astronomy, Botany, and Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day are the current titles we own but I hope to add the others soon.  We LOVE this science program.  Each book fully covers its subject, instead of working in bits and pieces like other science curriculums.  Each book also relates the subject to the Bible and teaches a child to see science through God's eyes instead of the world's view.

For Reading, we will be working through Pathway Readers reading program.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE this reading program.  The books are simply written but very enjoyable.  They are Amish style, keeping twaddle to a minimum.  They are perfect for Charlotte Mason type homeschools. 

For Grammar, we will also be using Pathway's Climbing to Good English program.  We haven't use this yet so it will be new for us.  I really think it's perfect for my kids though and that they will really enjoy it.  I guess we will see!  We will also continue working with Scott Foresman's Grammar and Handwriting books, which we also LOVE (and they are FREE).  
For Math, we will continue to use Miquon.  We absolutely LOVE Miquon.  It's perfect for us.  The kids love the simple activities.  They also love using the Cuisenaire Rods for each activity.  Some days we even pull out Lego's to use instead, which the kids love even more!



For History, we will be using multiple things and I am totally EXCITED!  History is by far my favorite subject to teach.  This year I found a great deal on Tapestry of Grace, Classic Edition.  I know there is a newer version and I should probably invest in that but if we like Year One Classic this year, I will go with the new version next year.  Just going to take our time and see how it goes!

Along with TOG, we will be using both Mystery of History Volume 1 and Story of the World Volume 1.


We will be using these with TOG as our main history curriculum and Mystery of History as our secondary history, while using Story of the World stories and activities to add to and fill in as I feel necessary.  Using the three of these together will give us the best well-rounded version for History over-all.

These are the things I know we will be using this year but I'm still working out details.  I have other curriculum we will be using too but I haven't quite completed that list for us.  I'm really looking forward to our lessons this year and I know the kids are too.  Now just to finish writing up schedules and lesson plans so we can get started.

What are your curriculum plans for this year?  I love hearing what other's are using so please comment, share a link and share! <3

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Quick Update: July 11, 2011

I know I haven't been posting a lot lately but that doesn't mean I haven't been writing.  I think I have a half dozen or more posts just waiting to be finished.  I manage to get half-way through before becoming unable to finish because of children needing me or writers block on how to end the post and idea.

There is so much that I want to write about and say that it sometimes becomes a jumbled mess.  I am wondering if becoming a public reviewer was a good idea for me after all and I find it affects a lot of my thinking.  I know I'm going to love it in the end but I want to write things that my readers enjoy and get something from.  I don't always feel I do a good job of that.  My decision to review publicly has left me thinking a lot about that.  I will say that I, like all  new reviewers, am anxious to get started and I am thankful for the opportunity to share my opinion with others on what I use and read.  I just pray my readers are able to get something from my reviews, to walk away wanting to try that product and find my opinions useful to their final decisions.

There are a LOT of life changes coming our way that I cannot talk about right now but they will majorly affect how we live now, how we go through our days and weeks.  One of them is reviewing materials.  Another is anxiously awaited and exciting our whole family.  One is changing how we learn, grow and share with each other.

The kids have started using their newest bible addition and are really enjoying that time during our day, though they don't always want to listen - typical them.  Laycie is LOVING doing "kool" herself.  She wants to learn numbers and say sounds.  She does NOT want to learn letters and say numbers.  She is so sweet and has a mind totally of her own.

Winston is going back to 100 Easy Lessons and enjoying it this time.  I used it years ago and it did nothing for him but now he's really liking it a lot and is flying through the lessons pretty quickly.  My plan is to let him get at least 1/4 of the way through the book, then start him on the Funnix program again (which coincides with 100 Easy Lessons) for "extra" practice in reading.  He already has much of the needed concepts, he just struggles with his secureness in them.  I'm hoping working through this program will give him the confidence he needs to take off in his reading.

He and Emmalee will both continue using Pathway Readers as their reading curriculum this year.  Emmalee is secure enough in reading that she will fly through it.  I'm hoping with the 100 Easy Lessons/Funnix instruction Winston will follow right along with her.

They are both helping to instruct baby sister in her daily lessons, teaching her the Alphabet and it's sounds as well as counting, adding and subtracting.  She absolutely loves the attention from them and it is helping them to become stronger in their own skills.  Its a beautiful thing to watch your children learn and teach one another!

There is much to come for us.  For now though, we must remain patient and let God continue his work in our life.  Soon I will finish those half-written posts.  Soon there will be many reviews coming from me from various places.  For now though, we are just enjoying our Lambert Life. <3

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Quick Update: July 6, 2011

Luv'N Lambert Life has been on vacation for the last few days.  We took a short trip to Georgia over the weekend to visit family and really enjoyed ourselves.  Family time and fun away from the norm was something we really needed.

The kids really loved the in-ground pool.  They went down the waterslide, cannonballed off the side, and swam until they were exhausted.  When they weren't playing in the pool, they were loving playing inside, jumping on the mini-trampoline and swinging on the tree swing.  We also enjoyed a wonderful fireworks show in town with everyone.  It was the perfect vacation for us all.

On the way home, we stopped by several great stores just to look around.  Daddy picked out a boat for all the kids to fit on safely while we go on our River Adventures but we haven't made a purchase yet.  We also picked some adorable furniture to use at our house for Outdoor Adventures at home (not purchased yet).  The kids enjoyed helping us pick those out too!

On July 4th, we held a cookout at home with family and good friends.  The kids played in the water sprinklers and baby pool keeping cool.  We enjoyed grilled burgers and hot dogs and a great fireworks show when night came.  Laycie was a little scared but overall she did great with the fireworks.  The whole weekend was wonderful.

The kids got a little burnt.  Laycie didn't since she stayed right with me the whole weekend.  Winston tanned just like he always does.  Poor Justain and Emmalee paid the price for sitting in the sun though.  Emma's poor little shoulders are still red two days later and she usually tans just like her brother.  Not this time though, so we have been keeping on the aloe and taking tylenol as needed for pain.  No blisters or peeling so hopefully she will be ok.

The past two days have been spent cleaning house.  We have removed tons of clothing from the kids bedrooms, sorted through it and re-washed what had been sitting in drawers or the closet for a while.  I made laundry detergent on the 4th for the fun of it and needed to try it out!  So far it's working better than my store bought detergent and it doesn't make my skin itch like the store bought kind does!  I'm in LOVE with it!  Josh and I have decided we want to wash the whole house down with this soap, it smells sooo good!!

So that's pretty much what we've been up to for the past week.  For the rest of the month, we will be continuing schoolwork, decluttering house, and spending time with friends since we have three birthday parties during the month to attend.  There's a lot of love to be shared and a lot of fun for us while we are Luv'N the Lambert Life. <3

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